The futility of world war one

In April the latter transferred to Shrewsbury, where the family lived with Thomas' parents in Canon Street. He discovered his poetic vocation in or during a holiday spent in Cheshire. Owen was raised as an Anglican of the evangelical school, and in his youth was a devout believer, in part due to his strong relationship with his mother, which was to last throughout his life. His early influences included the Bible and the "big six" of romantic poetryparticularly John Keats.

The futility of world war one

It was also one of the costliest. The ten-hour opening bombardment saw an unprecedented concentration of firepower and although the French were forced back they did not break.

In the summer, the Germans were forced to reduce their strength at Verdun after the British and Russians launched their own offensives elsewhere. The Germans had lost overmen killed or wounded and the French approximatelyThe trauma of this loss not only affected French political and military decision-making during and after the war, it had a lasting effect on French national consciousness.

Verdun also had serious strategic implications for the rest of the war. The Allies had planned to defeat Germany through a series of large co-ordinated offensives, but the German attack at Verdun drastically reduced the number of French troops available.

In DecemberAllied commanders had met to discuss strategies for the upcoming year and agreed to launch a joint French and British attack in the region of the River Somme in the summer of Intense German pressure on the French at Verdun throughout made action on the Somme increasingly urgent and meant the British would take on the main role in the offensive.

They were faced with German defences that had been carefully laid out over many months. Despite a seven-day bombardment prior to the attack on 1 July, the British did not achieve the quick breakthrough their military leadership had planned for and the Somme became a deadlocked battle of attrition.

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Over the next days, the British advanced a maximum of seven miles. More than one million men from all sides were killed, wounded or captured. The Somme, like Verdun for the French, has a prominent place in British history and popular memory and has come to represent the loss and apparent futility of the war.

But the Allied offensive on the Somme was a strategic necessity fought to meet the needs of an international alliance. British commanders learned difficult but important lessons on the Somme that would contribute to eventual Allied victory in Russian troops resting in captured Austro-Hungarian trenches during the offensive, summer Brusilov used a short, sharp artillery bombardment and shock troops to exploit weak points, helping to return an element of surprise to the attack.

The Russian attack also drew Austro-Hungarian forces away from the Italian Front and put increased pressure on the already strained and increasingly demoralised Austro-Hungarian Army.

Germany was forced to redirect troops to the Eastern Front in support of its ally. The Russians were never able to duplicate Brusilov's success.

It was their last major offensive of the war and led to an overall weakening — both militarily and politically — of both Russia and Austria-Hungary. The war stoked political and social unrest, leading to revolution and eventually the total collapse of the Russian Army. The area surrounding the Belgian town of Ypres was a key battleground throughout the war.

By British forces were suffering steady casualties there, holding a salient surrounded by higher ground. A preliminary operation to seize the Messines Ridge was a dramatic success, but the Germans had reinforced their position by the time the main battle was launched on 31 July.

Initial attacks failed due to over-ambitious plans and unseasonal rain. The drainage of the low-lying battlefield had been destroyed by the bombardment, creating muddy conditions that made movement difficult. Drier conditions in September enabled British forces to make better progress during this phase of the offensive.

This demoralised the Germans, who did not have an answer to the British 'bite and hold' tactics of taking limited portions of German positions and holding it against counter-attacks that cost the German Army further casualties. This period encouraged Haig to continue the offensive in October.

But the rain returned and conditions once again deteriorated.

The futility of world war one

Although the Canadians finally captured Passchendaele ridge on 10 November, the vital railway still lay five miles away. The offensive was called off.


Many soldiers felt utterly demoralised and the government's confidence in Haig hit a low point.“World war one is a big part of the heritage we have in common with British people. in Great Britain, every year on 11 11, people wear a poppy in memory of the fallen,” Yoan Fanise said in an.

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