World War 1

HideShow resource information
Differences in WW1 to earlier wars
• 20th century technology - huge advances in weaponry that rendered earlier ones obsolete e.g. cavalry, introduction of machine guns • Military officials were used to old style of warfare, lacked flexibility • No knockout blow – caused a stalemate
1 of 57
Differences in WW1 to earlier wars 2
• Defensive tactics became superior to offensive causing trench warfare • Protracted warfare – reliance on constant supplies • Total war – industrial production and civilian morale • War of attrition; gradually wearing down the opposition to a point
2 of 57
How many countries involved in ww1
• First war on a scale this large (32 countries) – able to dislocate international economy
3 of 57
Reactions to the outbreak of war •
• Enthusiasm, excitement, sense of adventure • Hurry to enlist for fear of missing out • The attraction of a soldier as a well-paying job and chance to travel (Allies) Conscription in Russia and Germany
4 of 57
The Schlieffen Plan
• Developed in 1905 • Based on pre-war European diplomacy, geography of Western Europe, railway communications and thinking of pre-war military leaders • Aim to avoid a war on two fronts simultaneously
5 of 57
The Schliefen Plan 2
• Development of plan came from the possibility of German encirclement by the Allied forces • Relied on Russia’s slow mobilisation • Relied on massive movement of troops through flat terrain (Belgium and Netherlands) •
6 of 57
The Schliefen Plan 3
• Pass through Belgium encircle and knockout France and then defeat Russia (believed to be the more difficult enemy) • Fateful decision to proceed through Belgium which brings Britain into the war • Knockout blow against France first
7 of 57
The Schliefen Plan 4
• 6 German armies utilising the concentration of power • Aim to reach the French channel coast and encircle Paris (giant hammer swing, hinge) • Schlieffen believed that the German advance would be so rapid that objectives would be achieved before Fra
8 of 57
The Schliefen Plan modification
• Moltke took over in 1906 • Decision to not move through the Netherlands so that trade between Germany and Netherlands could continue during war • Weakened the hammer swing to strengthen the hinge – more difficult for the Germans to reach Paris
9 of 57
Too much reliance on speed of movement and railways • The delays that occurred at Aachen and Liege allowed the Belgians and the French to mobilise and for the British to mobilise in Belgium • Did not expect the Russians to attack in under 8 week
10 of 57
Modifications to the Schlieffan plan proved fatal • Moltke diverted more troops away from the hammer swing to the hinge and sent troops to Antwerp – further weakening the thrust through Belgium • Belgian resistance was heavier than expected
11 of 57
6. Germany failed to knockout France and now faced a prolonged war • 3. The invasion of Belgium lead to the involvement of the British forces fought the Germans at Mons (Western Belgium, 23rd August) – Germans were defeated however advance was slowed
12 of 57
Battle of the Marne
• 15 September • German advanced halted and Paris saved "miracle on the Marne"
13 of 57
The race to the Sea
• September/November both sides attempted a series of outflanking movements • Aim to get around the back of the enemy’s forces and to gain control of channel ports • Trenches dug as each outflanking action failed – eventually line of trenches develop
14 of 57
Tactical and strategic issues
Movement by rail - rapid Beyond rail lines, troop movement depended on horse or foot Nature of the modern battlefield made attack more likely to fail than originally believed Generals not prepared for a new type of warfare and were slow to adapt
15 of 57
Nature of trench warfare
• Filth and degradation • Purpose to house men before knock-out blow was achieved • Stalemate caused permanency of trenches
16 of 57
German trenches
− Rooms − Electricity and wallpaper in some officer trenches − Concrete − 12m deep
17 of 57
Types of trenches
− Front line trench = where attack was launched. Supported with observation posts and machine gun nests − Reserve trenches = where reinforcements would wait to join the front line − Communication trenches = connected first aid posts and supply depots
18 of 57
No-man’s land
• No man’s land could be anything between 50m to 10km wide • Going into no man’s land made you an easy target • Quagmire land – deep craters, artillery bombardment, mud and rain − Battle of Passchendaele fought under these conditions
19 of 57
• Steps of launching an attack:
1. Stockpile resources 2. Artillery bombardment 3. Beginning an attack ‘over the top’
20 of 57
British attitude to attack
• British move in straight line/wave formation − ‘Taking cover’ was discouraged – seen as cowardly → Attitude to the men in the battle Marc Ferro The Great War – ‘fed into the mincing machine’, ‘cannon fodder’
21 of 57
Machine gun
• Key weapon, excellent defensive • Range between 500 and 1000m • Cone of fire = varying trajectory if machine gun burst (single weapon could wipe out hundreds of advancing troops)
22 of 57
Types of guns
• German gun Maxim, British gun Vickers − 450 rounds per minute • Machine gun heavy – hard to move • Later lighter versions were introduced e.g. British Lewis light machine gun
23 of 57
• (German) Big Bertha 420mm Howitzer range and destructive power enormous, limited effectiveness due to heavy weight • Increased in sophistication as war progressed − Creeping barrages – screen of cover to troops advancing forward
24 of 57
Other weapons
• Grenades – portable • 1915 Germans introduced flamethrower – limited effectiveness in short range and duration • Mortars (small bombs launched from metal tubes) – high trajectory, limited range, limited attacks on close rival trenches
25 of 57
• Useful for reconnaissance/surveillance of enemy positions – accurate trench view • 1916 aerial ‘dogfights’ common − German Richthofen Circus lead by Manfred von Richthofen allegedly shot down more than 80 Allied aircraft
26 of 57
• Most fearful weapon introduced • Gas canisters fired and exploded on impact • Aim to clear trenches • Not reliable because of changes in wind direction
27 of 57
• Turned the tide of war in 1918 • Took several years for the tank to achieve its potential – slowly developed • General Douglas Haig had great doubts about it’s capability • Lord Kitchener described it as a pretty mechanical toy
28 of 57
Types of tanks
• First tank (British mark 1) appeared early 1916 − Ineffective for 2 years − Too slow, 6km/h made the easy targets − Broke down frequently, not strig enough to go through mud
29 of 57
Effectiveness of tanks example
− Cambrai 20 November 1917 mass Allied tank attack (led by Brigadier General Elles) broke through German lines and created 4km gap. Almost 400 Mark IV tanks – however lack of supporting infantry – effectiveness of Mark V tanks in 1918
30 of 57
Verdun 1
• German offensive • Falkenhayn’s strategy to wear down the French to point of exhaustion "bleed the French White" Falkenhayn
31 of 57
Verdun 2
• im not to defeat but to annihilate France • 10 million shells on both sides • Germans fired 1 million shells in one day • Germany failed to take Verdun
32 of 57
Verdun casualties
• 500 000 French 400 000 German casualties
33 of 57
Somme 1
• BRITISH offensive • Both sides concentrating on battles on other fronts causing relative quiet on the front • Germans used time wisely to prepare – contributed to less overall German casualties (ground surveyed to give precise range)
34 of 57
Somme 2
• Was a principle of German warfare to retake any lost ground immediately – quick counter attacks
35 of 57
Somme 3
• British 60 000 casualties first day, 20 000 dead • British never reached the German wire • Haig considered it a victory because his original aims were fulfilled even though the battle was so disastrous
36 of 57
The Passchendaele Campaign (3rd Battle of Ypres) 31 July - 7 November 1917
• BRITISH OFFENSIVE • Break the German line • Capture Ostend and Zeebrugge ports – German U-boat bases • Ports being used for unrestricted U-boat warfare which sunk ¼ of British supply ships – leaving Britain with only six weeks supply of food
37 of 57
Passchendaele result
• 240 000 British 260 000 German casualties • British gained less than 8km land • Relieved pressure on the French • 88 divisions = third of the German army • 43 divisions = more than half of the British army
38 of 57
Changing attitudes Britain early
Early response was overwhelmingly supportive • No conscription, conscription had never been used • Rush to enlist – desire to volunteer transcended class lines • Obedient response to propaganda
39 of 57
Attitude Britina later
1916 enthusiasm had disappeared • Reality of the trenches had greatly changed the attitude of men at the front • War futility and slaughter affected troop morale • Turning point was extreme carnage at the Battle of the Somme
40 of 57
German attitudes early
1. Enthusiasm and excitement 2. Same motivation as Britain • Patriotism, honour, duty • Steady income • Impressing girls • Peer pressure
41 of 57
German attitude late
1. Unrest • March 1917 – major strikes in Kiel • August 1917 – 500 sailors disobey orders • November 1918 – massive mutinies, Kaiser abdicated, revolution • Disillusionment, war weariness • By 1917 − Parts of Germany were facing starvation
42 of 57
Total war
. Enormous scale of the war 2. Need to keep up armaments, reinforcements, supplies, and civilian morale – leading to war of attrition 3. Military forces aimed at civilian targets e.g. Attacks on British coast 4. Total war = complete use of resources
43 of 57
Germany and Total War
• Had it from the start of the war • Germany’s allies needed much support from them. Therefore the blockade had a much greater impact and began to cripple Germany. − Whereas Britain had allies that were much stronger and did not require much support
44 of 57
Financing the war Germany
• Germany only receiving 16% of the required 3 billion marks through taxation. • Minister of Finance (Helferich) ordered the production of more currency. His hope was that the enemy would pay the bill at the end of the war • Circulation of paper mon
45 of 57
Britain and total war
• Slow to move to organization for total war, but they were quick to assume controls. • On 8 August 1914 the Defence of the Realm Act (DORA) was passed. • This suspended civil rights and put Britain under virtual martial law. • Police were given righ
46 of 57
• During the war the DORA’S scope was gradually increased to encompass control over a wide range of activities • 1917 – kite fling became illegal. • DORA gave government power to requisition all forms of transport and could by goods at rock
47 of 57
Control on food Britain
• British living standards did not drop like Germany’s, and for many nutrition and diet improved during the war due to direct government intervention, which maintained wage levels • Government aim was to keep workers happy, prevent strikes that would
48 of 57
Britain munitions
• Spring of 1915, British government realised it was desperately short of artillery shells, highlighted by the difficulties the army faced at Neuve Chapene. • Britain producing 700 shells per day, compared to the 250,000 coming out of German factori
49 of 57
Financing the war Britain
• Income tax rose to 150% in three successive budgets to reach a level of 30% of income by 1918.
50 of 57
• In July 1914 there were 3.22 million women in the workforce; by January 1918 this number had increased to 4.8 million. • By July 1918, 80% of British munitions were being produced by female munitions workers- munitionette
51 of 57
Female suffrage
• Emmeline Pankhurst and her daughter Christabel Pankhurst, key figures in the Women’s social and Political Union (WSPU), encouraged men to enlist, demanded the harsh treatment of contentious objectors
52 of 57
Reason for US entry
1. Unrestricted submarine warfare • May 1915 Lusitania 128 civilian casualties • Feb 1917 resumption of U-boat campaign, more lives lost 2. Effectiveness of British propaganda 3. Zimmerman telegram Jan 1917
53 of 57
Effect of US
∗ July 1918 – 10, 000 a day leaving the US − Allied huge boost in morale − Feeling that the war could be won − Could send an unlimited number of reserves
54 of 57
Military role of US
− 250 000 American troops in Second Battle of the Marne (July 1918) – defeat which marked the end of the German offensive − Mines in the North Sea = 56 000/70 000 American
55 of 57
Impacts of Russian withdrawal
• Gave Ludendorff ‘window of opportunity’ – moving Eastern troops quickly to Western Front before the Us arrived • 400,000 men to reinforce the Western Front
56 of 57
• Ludendorff believed that the chances of Allies winning would increase the longer the war dragged on
57 of 57

Other cards in this set

Card 2


Differences in WW1 to earlier wars 2


• Defensive tactics became superior to offensive causing trench warfare • Protracted warfare – reliance on constant supplies • Total war – industrial production and civilian morale • War of attrition; gradually wearing down the opposition to a point

Card 3


How many countries involved in ww1


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


Reactions to the outbreak of war •


Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5


The Schlieffen Plan


Preview of the front of card 5
View more cards


No comments have yet been made

Similar Fun resources:

See all Fun resources »See all Fun resources »