When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Enjoy unlimited access to quality journalism.

Limited time offer

Get your 30-day free trial!

After Austria-Hungary blamed Serbia for the assassination of Austro-Hungarian heir Archduke Franz Ferdinand, a series of diplomatic failures transformed a relatively inconsequential tragedy into the catalyst for two large Alliances of world powers to go to war in the largest conflict the world had ever seen. On this day, after 20 million deaths, World War I ends.

Sign up to receive This Happened straight to your inbox each day!

How did World War I start?

Although many nations were involved in the onset of the first World War, many scholars say tensions had been on the rise throughout Europe for years before World War I actually broke out. The spark that set off World War I was the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian Empire, was shot to death along with his wife, Sophie, by Serbian nationalists struggling to end Austro-Hungarian rule over Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Who was involved in World War I?

On one side, Britain, France, Italy, the Russian Empire, Serbia, Japan, and the United States formed the Allied powers, while Austria-Hungary, Bulgaria, The German Empire, and the Ottoman Empire formed the Central powers.

Initially dubbed “The Great War”, World War I was the first series of interrelated conflicts between world powers to reach a near global scale. Nine million people were killed in combat alone, while millions more civilians died as the effects of war spread across the world.

Why Was World War I Called "The War To End All Wars"?

World War I came to an end shortly after the U.S. deployed troops in Western Europe, leading Germany to become overpowered and forced to sign an armistice agreement with the Allied powers.

The agreement, known as the Treaty of Versailles was signed, leaders of the U.S., Great Britain and France met in Versailles to decide next steps following the call to end fighting. Germany, Austria and Hungary were not invited, and Germany was forced to pay reparations for the war.

It is bitterly ironic to note that World War I became known retrospectively as “the war to end all wars” in an acknowledgment of the futility of the scale of destruction and loss of life. Sadly just two decades later, another World War began that would be even more bloody and involve more countries.

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

Society

Deadly Virus Shakes Indian Village's Faith In Traditional Healers

An outbreak of Hepatitis-A led to the deaths of two children in an isolated village in Kashmir. Some point fingers at the lack of surveillance by trained doctors and poor sanitation, and others, to the faith villagers place in traditional healers.

Deadly Virus Shakes Indian Village's Faith In Traditional Healers

A health worker screening a young boy at the only health centre of the Turka Tachloo village

Jehangir Ali

TURKA TACHLOO Eight-year-old Afaan Altaf first lost his appetite. Then the child’s face and eyes started to pale. Within two days, he began to vomit.

The Altafs live in Turka Tachloo, a village of south Kashmir’s Kulgam district and were worried about Afaan. In early December, Afaan’s father Mohammad Altaf, a farmer, decided to visit the Maternity and Child Care hospital in the nearby town of Anantnag.

Official records show that Afaan had tested positive for Hepatitis-A on December 3 following an outbreak of the viral infection in Turka Tachloo. The village, located 54 kilometres from Srinagar, the largest city of Jammu and Kashmir, comprises about 240 households, most of which are poor and depend on agriculture.

Keep reading...Show less

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

The latest