Mapping the most important events in history is a daunting task. With all that has happened over the course of 5,000 years of human history, how, you might be asking, can we dwindle it down to 25 things? Obviously, there were plenty of other events that occurred which had wide-ranging consequences. Out of all the kings, rulers, leaders, assassinations, wars, and innovations changing the progress of mankind, what were some of the most consequential that reverberated throughout the world? That’s what we’re here to discover. So, ready to hop into a time machine and travel back in time? Here are 25 Most Important Events In History.
World War II
While many thought World War I was over, deep roots of resentment and anger still existed in certain parts of Europe. With the rise of Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany, the war started with the invasion of Poland in 1939 and continued as they began to advance on France and Belgium. The war included all parts of the world, such as the Soviet Union, China, and Japan. By the end of the war, millions of lives had been lost, Europe was a devastated wasteland, and new superpowers such as the Soviet Union and the United States rose up to create a new order and new conflicts.
With the end of World War II came a new type of war, the Cold War. The Soviet Union advanced on Eastern Europe, trying to spread Communism, while the West held onto Democracy, creating the Iron Curtain. With the threat of nuclear weapons wiping out millions in a matter of seconds, the Cold War was born and would continue for decades, using a war of undercover intelligence, words, and diplomacy. The Cold War ended in 1991 with the fall of Communism in Eastern Europe and Russia.
During the Cold War, new tensions rose with the Soviet Union launching Sputnik, the first satellite into space. It shocked the United States and sparked a space race between the two countries. The technological achievements created out of the Space Race included advanced weaponry, the ability for man to land on the Moon, artificial limbs, water purifiers, and satellite TV.
President John F. Kennedy championed many efforts during his time as United States president, including softening tensions during the Cold War, advancing the space program, and fighting for Civil Rights. But with his assassination, much of his efforts were suddenly thrown into limbo. Luckily, his successor President Lyndon Johnson helped push forward his vision, and Johnson used JFK’s legacy as a way to push Congress to pass the Civil Rights Act as well as fund NASA. Consequently, however, the biggest impact of the JFK assassination could arguably be the continuation of the Vietnam War. With his reluctance to put boots on the ground, many historians don’t believe JFK would have heated up the war like LBJ. Without a Vietnam War, the world would have looked much different.
With the advancement of computers and the internet, the Digital Revolution has and continues to change the economic and information landscape. In many parts of the world, new businesses and jobs have grown out of the creation of the Internet, but it also has provided challenges. With hackers stealing millions of dollars and identities, the mass spying from the NSA, and the use of false information to disrupt democracies, we certainly live in a brave new world.
Photo: 25. User:Bibi Saint-Pol, Map Greco-Persian Wars-en, CC BY-SA 3.0, 24 – 21. Wikipedia Commons.com (Public Domain), 20. derivative work: Bkkbrad (talk) Gengis_Khan_empire-fr.svg: historicair 17:01, 8 October 2007 (UTC), Genghis Khan empire-en, CC BY-SA 3.0, 19 – 15. Wikipedia Commons.com (Public Domain), 14. Davius, EuropeanColonialism, CC BY-SA 4.0, 13 – 12. Wikipedia Commons.com (Public Domain), 11. GoodFreePhotos.com (Public Domain), 10 – 6. Wikipedia Commons.com (Public Domain), 5. User:Staberinde, Infobox collage for WWII, CC BY-SA 3.0 DE, 4. Noir at the German language Wikipedia, Berlinermauer, CC BY-SA 3.0, 3 – 1. Wikipedia Commons.com (Public Domain)