The Great War 100: Decisive Battles of the War

Battle of Verdun - February 21, 1916 - December 18, 1916
- An attritional battle instigated by Germany to destroy the French Army
-On the opening day of the battle, 1,220 German artillery pieces fired over 1,000,000 shells on Verdun and the surrounding areas in a 9 hour period.

Battle of the Somme - July 1, 1916 - November 18,1916
- Originally planned as a French offensive with minimal British support, intended to smash the German army and deplete their manpower.
- With the German attack at Verdun, the French instead asked the British to carry out a large diversionary attack to relieve pressure on the French army.
-The Battle of the Somme was one of the largest battles of the First World War, by the time fighting had petered out in late autumn 1916 the forces involved had suffered more than 1 million casualties, making it one of the bloodiest military operations ever recorded.

3rd Battle of Ypres, Passchendaele - July 31, 1917 - November 10, 1917
- Haig was convinced the fighting of 1916 (Somme and Verdun) had weakened the German Army and wanted to deliver the knockout blow in Flanders
- As well as being Haig’s preferred region for a large attack, the Royal Navy were worried about intense German submarine activity emanating from the Belgium ports and implored Haig to capture these areas.

Gallipoli - March 18, 1915 - January 9, 1916
- Originally a Naval operation, the main reason to attack this area was to open up more reliable trade routes with Russia, via the Black Sea.
- There was also a feeling among senior British leaders that due to a stalemate on the Western Front, a new front was needed to ensure progress in the war.

Kaiserschlacht, The German Spring Offensive of 1918 - March 21, 1918 - June 12, 1918
Germany knew that their only chance of winning the war was to knock out the Allies before the extra resources of men and material from the USA could be deployed. The main thrust of the attack was against the British towards the town of Amiens. It was thought that after the British were defeated the French would quickly look for peace.
- Amiens was a strategically important supply town with a large railway hub that supported both British and French armies. If this town was captured, it would severely impede Allied supply.


Imperial German Mauser Model 1898 with 25-round trench magazine and dust cover over the bolt.

To compensate for the failings of the bolt action rifle in the intense trench warfare of the Western Front, the Germans retrofitted their Gewehr 98 rifles with magazines from MG13 machine guns before putting in place the proprietary 25 round magazine we see here. The dust cover protected the bolt from the dirt and damage of the rough and tumble nature of trench combat. The large and clumsy magazine prevented graceful prone fire, but that particular issue never presented itself in the hands of eternally sprinting trench raiders. It is likely that such types of rifles as these were used by German stormtroopers during the Kaiserschlacht alongside the shorter Kar 98a’s. 

kaiserschlacht-deactivated20150  asked:

Henna actually isn't cultural appropriation. I'm Omani and a quarter Yemeni, so its also a part of my culture. For the most part, henna isn't worn for spiritual purposes anymore, but rather as a fashion statement. Although it was originally a part of Hindu tradition, it also spread to other areas where the original symbolic meaning was lost. Also, henna is the Arabic term, and mehndi is the term used in India, so only the latter term should be used in the context of Hindu temples.

Snaps to you! Thanks for the knowledge.

German troops cross a field, ca. 1918.

During 1918 the nature of the War changed drastically when the German army launched it’s Spring offensive called the Kaiserschlact (Kaiser’s Battle). Tactical and mechanical advances over the last few years paid off for the Germans who pushed the Allies back and broke the British Fifth Army who fled and opened a gap in the Allied line.

The Germans were able to advance up to 40 miles (65km) in twelve days, an astonishing distance by Western Front standards.

Beta-M-Gerät around the time of the German Spring Offensive. An improvement on the 42cm “Big Bertha”, this 30.5cm howitzer was intended to provide longer range fire.

(Collection of M. Romanych)

German soldiers during the summer of 1918. With the operational failure of the Spring Offensive, the Germans were in an exceptionally precarious position by the end of July. Their gamble to deliver a quick, crushing blow to the Entente forces hadn’t paid off, and they were now left exhausted and worn down just when the fresh and eager doughboys of the AEF began funneling to the front lines en masse.