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

The failure of the Schlieffen Plan - Stalemate.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

The failure of the Schlieffen Plan - Stalemate Schlieffen Plan - total victory against France in six weeks; ten divisions in east in holding operation ? Schlieffen, Chief of German General Staff 1890-1905, conceived & developed plan; * Forces concentrated on right wing for a gigantic wheel; left wing reduced to slenderest possible. * Extreme right pass south of Paris & cross Seine through Rouen ? press French back towards Moselle, where hammered in rear on anvil formed by Lorraine fortresses & Swiss frontier. ? Swinging mass, pivoting on fortified Metz, was to consist of 53 divisions - revolving door * Counted on intervention of British expeditionary force of 100,000 in conjunction with the French. * Advocated using Landwehr & Ersatz troops in operations & fusing resources of nation into army. * His dying words were: 'It must come to a fight. Only make the right wing strong.' * CRAIG: From a technical point of view, the plan was brilliant; from others it was disastrous. The Moltke revisions - Moltke the younger, successor to Schlieffen, lacked predecessor's courage ? Whittled away essence of plan: Of 9 divisions available 1905-14, 8 allotted to left wing. * Rather than crossing 'Maastricht Appendix', decided Liege must be taken immediately. * August 1914: 2 army corps taken from French Theatre in order to reinforce the Eastern Front. Plan 17 - frontal offensive launched with bare equality of force against German fortified frontier zone. ? German army estimated at maximum of 68 infantry divisions. Deployed 83 (Landwehr & Ersatz) * When rival armies concentrating, French Intelligence counted only 45 active German divisions. ? size of German sweep through Belgium utterly misjudged - expected to go through the Ardennes * Thrust by the First and Second Armies towards the Saar into Lorraine. * Third army opposite Metz & Fifth army facing Ardennes, to take up offensive between Metz & Thionville, or, If Germans came through Luxembourg & Belgium, to strike at flank. ...read more.

Middle

? German historians claimed Somme & Verdun fatally weakened army - Hindenburg line March 1917 1917 - Nivelle Offensive: Chamin des Dames 16-27 April - 187,000 French losses; 17 April mutinies * Mutinous French were only about 1% in total. Petain restored discipline at the cost of 23 mutineers * Nivelle replaced by Petain, who ruled out any more large-scale offensives - waiting for USA Passchendaele - 3rd battle of Ypres - 31 July to 7 December 1917 - British * drive Germans from Belgian coast and break out of Ypres salient * Planning and preparation - Fortnights' heavy bombardment that preceded the 'surprise attack had devastated the network of drains and dikes that prevented the area from becoming a swamp. * Meteorological reports had disclosed that heavy rain was a feature of August weather. * Battle: 31st July Haig launched the third battle of Ypres - Fifth army under Gough * Gough made 2 attacks in August - disastrous, reported to Haig that tactical success unlikely. * Heightened tensions between military under Haig & George's civilian administration * Replaced by Plumer: organised set-piece battles for September. Aided by weather. * The third attack, in October, afforded a passage on to part of Passchendale ridge. * Plumer & Gough - offensive should be halted - Belgian ports could not be reached before winter * Haig: wanted control of Passchendale ridge - more easily defended line for winter. * Campaign in early October to early November, hampered by atrocious weather, * The Canadians captured Passchendale village on 6 November, still not giving complete control of the ridge, but even Haig was persuaded to call a halt ? Results: 11 km for over 300,000 lives & 4.25 million shells; German Western Front losses 275,000. * Although British had advanced, Germans not demoralised and had not disappeared. * Haig's defence of the attrition: he gave the French army the quiet time they needed. ...read more.

Conclusion

? Largely self-reliant in food iron & coal but relied on imports of vital raw materials * Aug 1914: Rathenau (chairman AEG) in charge of KRA - Germany could only fight for 12 months. * Set up series of War Raw Materials Corporations, which succeeded in preventing the loss of the war in early 1915 owing to lack of supplies. * Ersatz - synthetic materials (rubber), substitutes (fixation process for nitrates; aluminium) ? 1916 Hindenburg created Supreme War Office: labour force, manufacturing industries, transport * To ensure proper allocation of labour occurred, Exports & Exemptions Office, AZS, was set up in 1915. National Service law: military & trade unions agreement for mobilisation of males 17-60. social and economic changes in the role of women. Australia - direct contributions to the war in two areas: voluntary work and nursing * The Red Cross and Australian Comforts Funds raised large sums of money and produced huge amounts of clothing and other 'comforts' to be sent to Australian service men. * 1916 Australian Women's Service Corps to offer to replace men in non-combat roles. * Unions vigorously fought against women in work-force - cheap labour source undermining pay. Britain - slow to move into traditionally male occupations. As war continued, role increased; vote - 1918 * 1916 Conscription gave great impetus: 1917-18 Munitions industry employed 1,000,000 women * Women used in non-combat roles - transport, communications, clerical, trade and technical jobs * Created tension in workplaces, claims of undercutting traditionally male pay & conditions. Germany - German government most effective in its use of women for the war effort ? 1914 government placed Gertrude Baumer in charge of organisation of women in industry. * Typically, in rural sector, light industry & transport. Eventually, in heavy industries. Generals: Britain: French (indecisive use of reserves at Loos); 17 December 1915: Haig US: 6 April 1917 - entry into war - Pershing France: Joffre (lack of preparation for Verdun); December 1916: Nivelle (mutinies); April 1917: Petain; Foch - Allied Supreme War Council Germany: von Moltke the younger (Marne); September 1914: Falkenhayn (Verdun); 29 August 1916: Hindenburg & Ludendorff ...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. Why did tension increase in Europe between 1900 and 1914?

    * In addition, Clemenceau wanted guarantees that this could never happen again. He demanded that the Rhineland should be handed over to France to prevent an attack from there in the future.

  2. Dunkirk - A success or failure?

    Source 5 also backs the miracle of Dunkirk it was created by Anthony Eden who was a senior army officer and later turned Prime Minister of Britain it was taken from his book memoirs called the reckoning in 1965. This is a primary source as Anthony was at Dunkirk during the time if the event.

  1. To what extent did the failure of the Schlieffen Plan lead to Germany's defeat ...

    method of surprise was lost, the troops could attack just after the bombardment had ended leaving the Germans with no time to prepare to fight off the Allies. This is another example of how new fighting methods led to allied breakthrough.

  2. The Prelude to the 1975 War and the Cairo Agreement.

    More significant, Arafat reorganized the command and control structure of his forces, transforming the Palestine Liberation Army (PLA) from a decentralized collection of terrorist and guerrilla bands to a disciplined standing army. By 1981 the Kastel, Karami, and Yarmuk brigades were established, and seven new artillery battalions were organized.

  1. The Marshall Plan.

    of 1947 would be adjudged one of the greatest of America's foreign policy successes. Harry Truman considered the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan "two halves of the same walnut," although Marshall did not. Charles Bohlen wrote a draft of the talk for Marshall based upon a study by George F.

  2. Was the public misled about conditions in the Trenches?

    It also could have had an effect on the men in England who haven't joined up for the army, because if stories leaked out men who were considering joining up may find out the truth about what it is all about.

  1. Creative Writing - Crossing the Frontier

    No news from her father in this case meant bad news, and she wasn't going to stay in Berlin to find out. Remaining in the city meant certain death. She ran upstairs, and changed into her khaki clothes that she had stowed away.

  2. Native Americans and the Frontier

    Hostilities were widespread, fighting was fierce and atrocities occurred on both sides. Forced assimilation: In the late 19th century, when fighting was still ongoing on the frontier in the west between the Native Americans and the settlers, attitudes were changing on the east coast.

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