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Major reasons behind the United States'entry into World War I - Essay Example

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The submarine attacks on US passenger and naval ships by the German government is considered to be the primary motivation for America’s entry in to World War I by declaring war against Germany. In the year 1916 following the German attack on an unarmed French boat, US…
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Major reasons behind the United Statesentry into World War I
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Events that lead to US entry into World War I The submarine attacks on US passenger and naval ships by the German government is considered to be the primary motivation for America’s entry in to World War I by declaring war against Germany. In the year 1916 following the German attack on an unarmed French boat, US President Woodrow Wilson threatened to severe ties with Germany if they continued to attack passenger vessels and kill innocent people. Though Germany had agreed to this demand, by early 1917 German Navy representatives had convinced the government that by resuming unrestricted submarine attacks it would be possible to defeat Great Britain. As the US was supplying arms and financial assistance to the allies, Germany became poised to violate the terms with the US government to stop its submarine attacks. While the then German Chancellor Theobald von Bethman-Hollweg was against this decision fearing the US entry in to the war and the subsequent downfall of Germany, the German government however, decided to resume its attacks. President Wilson, thought shocked by the developments, hesitated to immediately declare war on Germany as he was not sure about the public support of his opinion. And in case the German attacks did not target US ships he decided to negotiate with the German government. But the submarine attacks by Germany destroyed several US ships, passengers and naval officials. Following this Wilson decided to arm American merchant ships with naval personal and equipment’s by exercising an executive order. Wilson also received a German telegram sent to officials in Mexico which was intercepted by the British. This telegram sent by the German Foreign Minister promised assistance to Mexico to recover the territory that it had ceded to America during a previous war. In return it requested Mexican support for the war. This telegram along with the continued attacks by Germany on American merchant ships forced President Wilson to declare war against Germany which marked its entry in to World War I.
“American entry into World War I, 1917.” Office of the Historian. U.S. Department of State. n.d. Web. 16 March 2013. Read More
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