• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Explain how the Schlieffen plan was meant to work.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Samantha Bennett Modern World History Coursework Assignment 1 a) Explain how the Schlieffen plan was meant to work. The Schlieffen plan was a plan devised by General Schlieffen in order to avoid a war on two fronts. The General Schlieffen was sure that Germany would come to face a war on two fronts, a war against Russia in the east and France in the west. General Schlieffen knew that Germany would be defeated if forced to fight a war on two fronts. The Schlieffen Plan was to knock out France in six weeks. Schlieffen knew that Russia would probably mobilise slowly and take a few months to march to war, in this time Germans northern army could sweep down through Belgium into France. The success of the plan depended on three main things, firstly, the army in the north had to be large and it would need troops to guard Alsace-Lorraine from the southern army but Germany knew that Italian troops would help them to defend Alsace-Lorraine front against any French attack. Secondly the soldiers in the northern army would have to cover at least thirty-five kilometres a day this would take great experienced logistics who have the ability to keep troops in battle supplied with food, ammunition and other needs, thirdly Russia would have to take at least three months to get their army ready to fight. ...read more.

Middle

The Germans took Ostend and then captured Antwerp, despite the reinforcements of British marines. Ypres in Belgium was the recaptured by from the Germans and the other channel ports were al safely in allied hands. The race for the sea was over, Both sides 'dug in' for the winter in a line of trenches 470 kms long stretching from the north sea to the French-Swiss border. From the late 1914 to early 1918 there was a large stalemate on the Western front as the Germans and the allies were evenly matched, Commanders on both sides were committed to a war of attrition and each side was failing to cut through the enemies barbed wire and both warned the offending side of a impending attack there were waves of attacking infantry being mown down by the defending machine gunners but neither sides artillery or infantry could breach the enemies front line to let the Calvary through. Even the development of new tanks, gas and aircrafts could not break the stalemate and despite heavy losses neither side gained much ground. The governments were using means of propaganda as a way to build morale throughout the troops, conditions were terrible and soldiers discipline was extremely harsh as deserters could be shot. The only way it seemed that stalemate could be broken was if the Schlieffen plan had succeed, one of the German offences broke through the front line or if one or both sides were prepared to make peace. ...read more.

Conclusion

The worse period of the war was the summer of 1918 when sever food shortages coincided with the retreat of the main German armies. The German offensive 1918 was also an important contributor General Ludendorff was in charge of the great offensive and he planned to break the stalemate. Instead of an 'over the top' frontal assault by a wave of troops. He sent small groups of 'stormtroopers' to attack all along the western front line. It was a success and the Germans broke through the line and drove the allies back more then 60 kms, and once again the Germany army was in sight of Paris. But the German army became exhausted and could not reach Paris as the allies had fought hard to hole their positions and American troops were now joining them. Now it was the turn of the allies to push the Germans back and the new invented technology helped. The Germans eventually withdrew to the Hindenburg lines. All of these factors are sole contributors the reason why stalemate was broken on the western front as if American had not joint the war then the German offensive would have succeed even better and the allies may not have been able to push germane back which also need the invention on the new tanks and gas weapons. So I agree with the statement that they are all equally important reasons to why stalemate was finally broken on the Western front. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 essays

  1. Explain how the Schlieffen Plan was meant to work?

    Their decision to go through Belgium proved decisive because they met meet strong resistance from Belgium giving Russia and Britain time to mobilise their troops. The resistance from Belgium meant that France and Britain had enough time to mobilise and get into position, to halt the German attack on Paris at the Battle of Marne.

  2. The Schlieffen Plan and the Reality

    The Germans were in for a big change of plan as the opposition was a lot stronger than planned. On 2nd August 1914, the German army invaded Belgium according to the Schlieffen Plan.

  1. The home front (source based work) 1914 - 1918.

    However, I think that Source E is not useful as it is a propaganda poster, therefore only contain a small element of truth. E.g. It is true that the husband had to go to war in 1916 when conscription was introduced and it is also true that many women went

  2. American History.

    Revenue - Madison took the here lead by convincing Congress to pass the? Revenue Bill of 1789, which put a 5% tariff on some imports. Bill of Rights - Madison also took the initiative here and wrote 19? Amendments for the Constitution, 10 of which were ratified on December 15, 1791 and became known as the Bill of Rights.

  1. The First World War - Explain how the Schlieffen Plan was meant to work.

    Therefore, all the soldiers hid in their trenches and no one attacked because if they tried to attack, they got killed. The machine gun could mow down charging soldiers. 10 machine gunners could easily kill around 200 soldiers. Hence the infantry and the cavalry had no chance against them.

  2. The schlieffen plan "What was meant to happen"

    He knew that the common border between France and Germany was well defended with major forts, such as Nancy and Verdun. Trying to take these forts would take time. Schlieffen reckoned that he could avoid tem altogether - by sending the bulk of the German forces through Belgium.

  1. Explain how the Schlieffen Plan was meant to work.

    This failure was due to several factors, which encompassed; the death of General Schlieffen, the changes made to the plan by his replacement General Von Moltke, the unexpected speed at which Russia mobilised her troops, which ties in with the delay caused by von Moltkes decision to attack the Belgians,

  2. Explain How the Schlieffen Plan Was Meant To Work.

    Britain therefore declared war on Germany, and two days later (August 6th), Austria declared war on Russia. The Schlieffen plan was a war plan, created by Count Alfred Von Schlieffen, a general in the German army.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work