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THE FIRST WORLD WAR Powered By Docstoc
                     Trench Warfare
• Trench Warfare began in
  September 1914:
•   After the Battle of the Marne in
    September 1914, the German army
    were forced to retreat. They had
    failed in their objective to force
    France into an early surrender.
    Rather than give up the territory
    which they already held, the
    Germans dug in to protect
    themselves from the guns of the
    advancing Allies. The Allies couldn't
    break the German trench lines and
    so followed the German example.
    The trench lines soon spread from
    the North Sea to Switzerland.
                 Trench Illnesses
• Many soldiers fighting suffered from trench foot. This was
  caused by their feet being in cold and wet conditions all the
  time. The feet would gradually go numb and the skin would turn
  red or blue. If untreated, trench foot could turn gangrenous and
  result in amputation. During the winter of 1914-15 over 20,000
  men in the British army were treated for trench foot.
• Dysentery is a disease involving the inflammation of the lining of
  the large intestines. The inflammation causes stomach pains
  and diarrhoea. Some cases involve vomiting and fever. The
  bacteria enters the body through the mouth in food or water, and
  also by human feaces and contact with infected people. This
  can be fatal if the body dehydrates. This disease struck the men
  in the trenches as there was no proper sanitation.
                  Trench Illnesses
• By 1914 British doctors working in military hospitals noticed
  patients suffering from "shell shock". Early symptoms
  included tiredness, irritability, giddiness, lack of
  concentration and headaches. Eventually the men suffered
  mental breakdowns making it impossible for them to remain in
  thefront line. Some came to the conclusion that the soldiers
  condition was caused by the enemy'sheavy artillery.
• Men in the trenches suffered from lice. Various methods were
  used to remove the lice. A lighted candle was fairly effective.
  As well as causing frenzied scratching, lice also carried
  disease. This was known as pyrrexhia or trench fever. The
  first symptoms were shooting pains in the shins and was
  followed by a very high fever.
    Trench Layout
• The trenches on both sides
  were protected by lines of
  barbed wire with No-Man's
  Land in-between.
• The Front Lines were usually
  about seven feet deep and
  about six feet wide. The Allies
  were forced to dig their
  trenches in lower ground so
  they were often waterlogged.
  They had a zigzag pattern to
  prevent the enemy from
  shooting straight down the
  line. Sandbags were put on
  both sides of the top of the
  trench to absorb enemy
                                           The land that separated
      Trench                               the Allies and the
                                           German trenches was a
      Layout                               wasteland of craters,
                                           blackened tree stumps
• The fire step was cut into the side of   and the occasional shell
  the trench and allowed the soldiers to   of a building. It was
  peer over the side of the trench         normally around 250
  towards the enemy. It was where the      yards but could vary
  sentries stood or the whole unit when
  they were on 'standing-to' duty which    between 7 yards and 500
  meant that they were waiting for a       yards.
  possible enemy attack.
             Trench Layout
• Linking the front-line
  trench to the support
  and reserve trenches
  were communication
  trenches. They allowed
  the movement of men,
  equipment and supplies
  and were also used to
  take the wounded back
  to the Casualty Clearing
     Britain's Contribution to the
            Western Front
• Britain and its Empire lost
  almost a million men during
  World War One; most of
  them died on the Western
• Stretching 440 miles from
  the Swiss border to the
  North Sea, the line of
  trenches, dug-outs and
  barbed-wire fences moved
  very little between 1914-
  1918, despite attempts on
  both sides to break through.
           Battle of the Somme
•   The Somme happened on 1st July 1916.
•   27 British Divisions went „over the top‟
•   Casualties:
•   British - 420,000
•   French - 200,000
•   German - 500,000
•    The General in charge (Haig) was named the
    “Butcher of the Somme”
           Battle of the Somme
• The original plan was for     • The German‟s trenches
  British soldiers to back up     were on a hill, so they had
  the French soldiers, so the     a good view of the Allies
  pressure would be taken         lines.
  off the French at Verdun.     • The German trenches
                                  were also fortified with
• Haig decided they should        Concrete and well dug in,
  use a huge artillery            so it was very hard to
  bombardment to destroy          destroy them.
  Germany‟s barbed wire,        • Only 1 in 4 British shells
  this didn‟t work.               went off.
 • The horrors of gas warfare had never
   been seen on a battlefield until April
   1915. The Germans were the first to
   use it in war, but the French and
   English were not far behind.
 • Chlorine and Phosgene was initially
   used. These caused the lungs to
   slowly dissolve and the soldier
   would drown in his own fluids.
   Mustard Gas was used regularly.
 • One problem with using Gas would
   be that it could blow back onto your
   own side. Also, gas masks were
   carried at all times which could get
   in the way.
 • 3,000 British troops were killed by
   • The tank was a British
   • It was rejected as
     impractical early on in the
   • Winston Churchill funded
     its development
   • Tanks were used for the
     first time at the battle of
   • They crushed wire fences
     and sprayed the enemy
     with machine gun fire.
• The first tanks went at   • In November 1917, at
  walking pace                Cambrai, the tanks
                              achieved success.
• They were not very
  manoeuvrable              • However, they were too
                              successful an infantry
• They were very              could not keep up
  unreliable – more than    • By 1918 Germany could
  half broke down             pierce the tanks armour
  before they reached         and they had adapted
  enemy lines                 field guns to fire at
• Machine guns could
  fire 600 bullets a
• The German gun on
  the right accounts for
  90% of of the British
  casualties on the
  opening day of the
  Somme Offensive.
                 The War at Sea
• The U-Boat threat to           • Connections between War
  Britain meant that vital         at Sea and the Western
  supplies were not arriving,
  leaving people in Britain        front:
  losing faith in the war and    • If a boat was bombed at
  illness increasing.              sea troops and supplies
• The British Blockade             would not arrive for those
  meant German supplies            fighting and also the
  were not arriving as well.       people in Britain would be
• People still at home were        starved of supplies.
  suffering because of the
  war at sea, as well as those
How did the war change life in
               • When war broke out a
                 number of things
                 changed, including
                 censorship, rationing,
                 propaganda and the
                 role of women.
               • Life in Britain was
                 better known as the
             Role Of Women
• When war broke out women‟s organisations in the
  autumn of 1914 were set up, including the
  women‟s hospital corps and the women‟s police
• In July 1915 a munitions crisis broke out because
  there were not enough men to work and to make
  the ammunition required, because they had been
  called up for war. So women set up up „Women‟s
  march for jobs‟ to recruit women to work in
• Many employers refused to take on women
  including trade unions.
• But in autumn 1915, the Government then
  came to an agreement that women would be
  paid the same as men „until sufficient male
  labour should again be available‟
• The government also set up munitions
  factories, employing largely women.
Role of Women
       • Then in February 1917
         women were recruited to
         work as farm labourers.
       • And in December 1917,
         because of there hard
         work and effort towards
         helping the war, women
         over 30 were given the
         right to vote in general
     • Propaganda posters
       were used to
       encourage men to join
       up with the war.
     • Over half a million
       joined the army in the
       first month.
• Propaganda posters didn‟t highlight what was
  really happening in the war, because they were
  always trying to find men to join up in the war
  from 1914-1918.
• Propaganda wasn‟t just targeted at men to join the
  war, but also to get people such as women to help
  out as nurses and workers, and to provide
  ammunition and food for the soldiers in the war.
• Letters from the soldiers to there families were
  often censored so the people at home didn‟t know
  what the conditions were like in the trenches,
  because of the Defence of the Realm Act (DORA).
  They didn‟t want to stop encouraging people to join
  and support the war. Even so, often men tried to
  conceal the horrors of the war to there friends and
•   Soon after the outbreak of the First World War the the German Navy attempted
    to halt the flow of imports to Britain by introducing unrestricted submarine
    warfare. By the end of 1916, U-German boats were on average destroying about
    300,000 tons of shipping a month. In February 1917, the German Navy sank
    230 ships bringing food and other supplies to Britain. The following month a
    record 507,001 tons of shipping was lost as a result of the U-boat campaign.
    However, Britain was successful at increasing food production and the wheat
    harvest of 1917 was the best in our history.
•   However the Government tried to tell people to eat less wheat, to stop the
    merchant ships from being blown up. People had to ration there food and make
    there wheat last longer to avoid these deaths and shortages.
•   But as this happened food prices began to rise, because it couldn’t keep up with
    the demands.

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