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World War One


Todd A. Raffensperger

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Todd A. Raffensperger

I would hope that some lively discussion will take place here about the Great War, its controversies and consequences.

 

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Edited by Lenny
Remove reference to memes...
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Todd A. Raffensperger

How about this guy? Field Marshal Sir Douglas Haig.  Commander of the British Expeditionary Force, and one of several World War One generals who earned the same nickname, "The Butcher."

Has history been fair to this man?

It's hard to say.  But it should be noted that after the war, when he retired Haig devoted a great deal of the remainder of his life working for various veterens' charities and support groups.  Perhaps he did have a heart, but felt that as a commander tasked with the grim duty of ordering thousands of men to their deaths, he simply couldn't show it.

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HetzersGonnaHetz

@Todd A. Raffensperger I believe what you are referring to is Zeitgeist, the opinions of a person or event that change over time...

You have to remember that this was the first industrial war, fought with machine guns and heavy artillery. I believe it is well put in Blackadder, 

Captain Blackadder: You see, Baldrick, in order to prevent war two great super-armies developed. Us, the Russians and the French on one side, Germany and Austro-Hungary on the other. The idea being that each army would act as the other's deterrent. That way, there could never be a war.

Private Baldrick: Except, this is sort of a war, isn't it?

Captain Blackadder: That's right. There was one tiny flaw in the plan.

Lieutenant George: O, what was that?

Captain Blackadder: It was ballhawks.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

No-one was expecting a war and many generals of Britain, France and Germany were still using tactics from wars where you'd stand in a field and shoot at each other, WW1 was like that but there was Machine Guns.

Many Australian Soldiers despised Haig, whereas many Britons revered him as a national hero.

Haig cannot be completely to blame for the Somme, his artillery officers assured him there would be nothing left of the Bosche , so he sent his men out at walking pace, the plan for the Somme did not cater for something going wrong, which evidently did happen and many generals stuck to the plan that was getting men killed. It sadly happened in many sectors, my great-grandfather fought at the Battle of Hohenzollern Redoubt, Hohenzollern Redoubt was the heaviest defended area in the Loos Sector, his battalion went out with 650  and came back with 170, every officer was either killed or wounded during the battle. 

That's my .02 

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Todd A. Raffensperger

This is how Kaiser Wilhelm II thought of himself, a great admiral in command of the German battlefleet that he built.  

wilhelmii.jpg

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DAK D

Even if most of the German soldiers were wiped out by artillery fire in the trenches, some men would have survived the bombardment and there would have been enough reserve German soldiers to move to the front line, so ultimately the plan for the Somme was flawed and it was not just one persons fault, but Haig was no hero  in my opinion.

D

 

 

 

 

 

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DAK D

Hi @Todd A. Raffensperger,

I want to challenge your remark that stated German battleships may have been useless during WW1.

It will be one hundred years at the end of this month since the battle of Jutland that took place off of the coast of Denmark near the Jutland Peninsula, from the 31st May until the 1st June 1916. Great Britain's Navy was arguably the greatest and most powerful Naval fleet during WW1 and WW2, but it failed to gain a victory at Jutland and if the German Dreadnought class was so inferior to British design please tell me why the Germans sank more ships during that famous encounter?

Although neither side could truly claim victory the following stats show that there was nothing wrong with German battleship design and it was certainly on par with the British Dreadnought class of battleship at the time.

Total Fleet Size on Both Sides

 

Great Britain 151         Germany 99

 

28 Battleships              16 Battleships

 

9 Battle Cruisers          5 Battle Cruisers

 

8 Armoured Cruisers   6 Pre-Dreadnought

 

26 Light Cruisers        11 Light Cruisers

 

78 Destroyers              61 Torpedo Boots

 

             Casualties & Losses

 

6,094 Killed                2,551 Killed

 

674 Wounded             507 Wounded

 

177 Captured              1 Battle Cruiser

 

3 Battle Cruisers         1 Pre-Dreadnought

 

3 Armoured Cruisers  4 Light Cruisers

 

8 Destroyers                5 Torpedo Boats

 

113,300 Tons Lost     62,300 Tons Lost

Edited by DAK D
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Mike Charlie November

Memes don't add to historical discussion, keep them in the Fu Bar, not in the Military History area.. ;)

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Bil4338

It's a fact that many British soldiers came to detest Haig after WW1.'Lions led by donkeys' comes to mind.

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Todd A. Raffensperger

Dak D, don't think that I am saying that the German battleships were of inferior quality to the British.  They certainly were not.  They were arguably some of the best built, armored and armed warships of the period.  But you see, in strategic terms that didn't matter.

You can have the best navy in the world, and it would not matter if its leaders have no real use for them.  And there was no real use for the Imperial German Navy at all.  All it managed to do was needlessly antagonize one of Germany's oldest friends, and pour millions of marks and resources into a fleet that would have been better spent building two or three more infantry corps that might well have made all the difference in executing the Schieffen Plan.

Yes, the Germans inflicted great losses onto the Royal Navy, and the Royal Navy could afford it.  But in the end it did nothing to change the strategic strangulation of Germany through the distant blockade, and leave the Kaiser's toys to sit and rust at Wilhelmshaven.  

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Todd A. Raffensperger

The one and only H.M.S. Agincourt.

Why does it seem that the British shipyards built better warships for other countries than for their own Royal Navy?

2ajxl4x (1).jpg

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DAK D
8 hours ago, Todd A. Raffensperger said:

Dak D, don't think that I am saying that the German battleships were of inferior quality to the British.  They certainly were not.  They were arguably some of the best built, armored and armed warships of the period.  But you see, in strategic terms that didn't matter.

You can have the best navy in the world, and it would not matter if its leaders have no real use for them.  And there was no real use for the Imperial German Navy at all.  All it managed to do was needlessly antagonize one of Germany's oldest friends, and pour millions of marks and resources into a fleet that would have been better spent building two or three more infantry corps that might well have made all the difference in executing the Schieffen Plan.

Yes, the Germans inflicted great losses onto the Royal Navy, and the Royal Navy could afford it.  But in the end it did nothing to change the strategic strangulation of Germany through the distant blockade, and leave the Kaiser's toys to sit and rust at Wilhelmshaven.  

@Todd A. Raffensperger,

You can not make the statement you did and expect anyone to think you were writing about flawed German battle tactics at Jutland in 1916.

"They may have been useless, but the German warships of WWI had a certain grace to them".

Poor tactics and technology are not the same thing and you will note that I clearly stated that Germany and Great Britain failed to gain any sort of real victory at Jutland in1916.

 

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Todd A. Raffensperger

It's not about the Imperial German Navy's tactics, or its technical superiority.  It's a about the fact that this battlefleet should not have been built in the first place.

If I am making a mess of getting my point across, then I apologize.  

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Todd A. Raffensperger

A little bit of WWI German militaria.  I don't know about the Hindenberg medal, but I do think that the other two medals are authentic.

 

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DAK D
2 hours ago, Todd A. Raffensperger said:

It's not about the Imperial German Navy's tactics, or its technical superiority.  It's a about the fact that this battlefleet should not have been built in the :)first place.

If I am making a mess of getting my point across, then I apologize.  

Hi @Todd A. Raffensperger,

It's fine and there is no need to apologize at all. 

D

 

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