World War I and I1 Failed to Meet Universal Status: An Examination of Africa’s Involvement in the Wars


Many Research works have been published on two major historical events in the history of man “The First World War and the Second world war”. These are events whose impact was experienced far and wide. After the First World War 1918, the Second World War followed in just a range of 21 years. The First World War occurred between 1914-1918 while the Second World War occurred 1939-1945. The war which began in August 1914 was a new experience in human history. It was a struggle until then unparalled in the forces involved i.e. the number of warring states, the size of the armies, the deadliness of the weapons the colossal expenditure of life and money. Other conflicts had lasted longer and by their savagery or prolongation had inflicted greater suffering on some unhappy land e.g. (Germary‘s thirty years war – 1618 -1648), but no armed struggle could previously have caused such wide spread human agony as the four years’ war which followed the murder of Franz Ferdinand (Dennis. 1938: 262). Expressions such as this make people to conclude that the First World War and the Second World War were simply world events. The purpose of this paper is therefore aimed at correcting the impression that the two events were world events. According to this research a war can be said to belong to some people when the reasons/cause emanates from them. The people involved must own the causes. A careful examination of the two historical events show that Africans did not have a cause of their own. Africa was only used as a battlefield and by the fact that the effects spread to Africa is not enough reason to call the two or describe them as world events. This paper is organized and structured thematically with four sub-headings i.e. introduction, causes of the wars, course of the wars and the reasons for the two not being world events. The paper brings out an argument that appropriates the two historical events as simply great wars

Keywords: African Involvement., Great Wars, Universal Status, World Wars

Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 20-31 (Download PDF)

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