Countries That Mobilized the Most Troops During World War I

When World War I began in 1914, it brought a level of death and destruction never before seen in human history. New military technologies – including heavy artillery, machine guns, tanks, and chemical weapons – along with military strategies better suited to the previous century, turned much of Europe into the scene of horrific slaughter on an unprecedented scale. 

By the time the war ended on Nov. 11, 1918, three monarchies were toppled, four empires were dissolved, and an estimated 9.7 million military personnel and another 10 million civilians were killed.

The result of poor diplomacy, political miscalculations, and distrust among European powers, the First World War, like many other violent conflicts, was entirely avoidable. Recognizing this, President Woodrow Wilson conceived of what would become the League of Nations, an international diplomatic group that would solve disputes before violence broke out. Had the League of Nations realized its vision, WWI may have truly been the war to end all wars. (Here is a look at 13 major wars happening around the world.)

Though fighting in the First World War was largely confined to continental Europe, the conflict eventually drew the involvement of military powers from other parts of the world, including Asia and North America. 

Using data compiled by the Library of Congress, 24/7 Wall St. identified the countries with the largest armies in WWI. We ranked the 16 countries with available data on the total number of troops mobilized for the war effort. Casualty figures are also from the Library of Congress. 

The belligerent powers of the war fought on one of two sides: the Allies, which included Russia, France, the British Empire, and the United States; and the Central Powers, which included Germany, Austria-Hungary, and the Ottoman Empire, now Turkey. Allied troop counts outnumbered that of the Central Powers by a wide margin, about 39.7 million to 19.5 million. 

Among the countries and empires that were involved in the conflict, total troop mobilization ranged from 50,000 to about 12 million. Casualty counts by military power also varied considerably. Germany and Russia were the only countries to report more than 1.5 million troops killed. These two countries also had the largest armies during the war. 

Total troop involvement does not always correlate with higher casualty figures, however. Though both the British Empire and France each mobilized approximately 7.5 million troops, the number of French personnel killed in battle was nearly 1.4 million, double the number of British troops killed. (Here is a look at the wars with the most U.S. military deaths.)

Click here to see the biggest armies of WWI.

Sponsored: Find a Qualified Financial Advisor

Finding a qualified financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to 3 fiduciary financial advisors in your area in 5 minutes. Each advisor has been vetted by SmartAsset and is held to a fiduciary standard to act in your best interests. If you’re ready to be matched with local advisors that can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.

Source: Read Full Article