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World War I

  • By: John H. Barnhill
  • In: Encyclopedia of Disaster Relief
  • Edited by: K. Bradley Penuel & Matt Statler
  • Subject:Public Health (general), Public Policy (general)

World War I took place between 1914 and 1918, but the need for disaster relief continued into the mid-1920s. Although the primary theater was western Europe, the war also spread through eastern Europe to the Middle East and additional areas where warring European nations had imperial possessions. For the first time in modern history, machines dominated, empires and their economies collapsed, and civilian populations were affected on a scale that was previously unimaginable. This was modern war, and it brought disease, suffering, and destruction to millions of people. Warring powers mobilized 65 million soldiers, and war displaced tens of millions more among civilian populations. The 37 million casualties included 16 million dead—9.7 million military personnel and 6.8 million civilians—and 21 million wounded. Displaced at ...

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