Military Buildup
Military Buildup Defense Alliances Nationalism Colony Disputes

Between 1890 and 1913, the European powers at the time began building up in military power. This included the countries of Britain, France, Germany, Russia, and Austria-Hungary. The reason for the military buildup was primarily nationalism in which each country wanted to be "better" than the others. The terms of power during this time began transitioning from having more land to having better means of fighting. Inasmuch, the countries and leaders felt that the best way to reveal their prowess was to make a stronger military.

HMS Dreadnought
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Britain's big battleship built during the period of 1890 to 1913.

The military buildup was manifested in the conscription of men into the armies and the increased spending into the military faction of the states. This money was used to get more men into the army and create/buy more weapons. For certain countries, such as Britain, there was a focus on the buildup of a navy. Britain actually built a new ship called the HMS Dreadnought which was a super-battle ship meant to instill fear in the other countries. Germany would respond by spending money in their navy to compete with the British navy. This conflict increased the tensions between the two countries which would prove vital in the creation of defense alliances.

By 1913, most of the countries had at least doubled their spending in the military from 1890, and the army sizes were monstrous. The chart below provides details for each of the five countries:

Country Spending Increase Military Size
Britain 117% 430000
France 92% 970000
Russia 19% 1500000
Germany 158% 760000
Austria-Hungary 160% 480000

Through this increase in militaristic power, tensions increased between the countries. As armies builds up, it would only be a matter of time before someone decides to use them for something. This mistrust is a reason that World War One sparked and caught aflame as it did after the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand. This fear is what created an increasing sense of paranoia in the countries.

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