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July 28, 1914

AUSTRIA-HUNGARY DECLARES WAR ON SERBIA. WORLD WAR I BEGINS

“The intrigues of an enemy filled with hatred force me after long years of peace to draw the sword for the maintenance of the honour of my monarchy, for the protection of its prestige and position of power, for securing its possessions…

I have confidence in My peoples, who in stormy times have always rallied around My throne in unity and loyalty and were always ready to make the heaviest sacrifices for the honour, greatness and power of the fatherland.

– Emperor Franz Joseph, Imperial Proclamation, July 28, 1914

WW I Time line

28 July – Churchill orders fleet to sail to its war base at Scapa Flow

28 July – 11:00 a.m. Austria-Hungary declares war on Serbia; partial mobilization ordered; about 2/3 of armed forces to be deployed along southern frontier with Serbia; one Reserve Army Corps [20-45,000 men] mobilized; reservists in U.S. are ordered to return to Austria.  No troops sent to eastern front, hoping not to give Russia a pretext for intervention

28 July – King Peter of Serbia goes to Niš, where Serbian government had been evacuated from Belgrade

28 July – Prince Henry of Prussia reports to Wilhem II on his conversations with George V

28 July – Wilhelm issues ‘Halt-in-Belgrade’ appeal shortly after seeing the Serb reply to the Austrian ultimatum

28 July – Wilhelm II appeals to Tsar’s monarchial solidarity; crosses the Tsar’s telegram to him

28 July – Russia orders mobilization of four western military districts and Black Sea coastline black-out

28 July – Grey hopes that Austria-Hungary and Russia can be brought to negotiate

28 July – French General Staff informs Russian military attache in Paris that French Army is fully ready and active to do her duty as an ally of Russia

28 July – French Army moves to the frontier areas

28 July – French Socialists demonstrate against war; German Socialist anti-war rallies

28 July – Italian Government orders concentration of 1st and 2nd naval squadrons at Gaeta and Italian vessels ordered home
All from byu.edu

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“On July 28, the day Austria declared war on Serbia, Turkey formally asked Germany for a secret offensive and defensive alliance to become operative in the event of either party going to war with Russia. Within the same day, the offer was received in Berlin, accepted, and a draft treaty signed by the Chancellor telegraphed back. At the last moment the Turks had difficulty bringing themselves to the point of tying the knot that would tie their fate to Germany’s. If only they could be sure Germany would win… While they were hesitating England helpfully gave them a push by seizing two Turkish battleships then being built under contract in British yards.”

Tuchman, Barbara W. (2009-07-22). The Guns of August: The Outbreak of World War I;