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

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

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Adam McGee History THE FIRST WORLD WAR A). EXPLAIN HOW THE SCHLIEFFEN PLAN WAS MEANT TO WORK? The Germans devised the Schlieffen Plan as a way to win the war by Christmas. The main objectives of the plan were to set off into France and go through neutral Belgium. When the Germans reached Belgium, they thought because it was a neutral country they wouldn't encounter any resistance, and if they did the Germans were a much stronger side. Once through Belgium they would march to the capital, Paris. The Germans would defeat the French and then turn back to fight off the Russians. They went to defeat the French first because they thought it would take the Russians longer to mobilize their troops. The plan was designed so that the Germany wouldn't have to face a war on two fronts. The Schlieffen Plan did not reach its main objectives because when Germany moved into Belgium the Belgium army held them up. While Germany was fighting against Belgium, France and Britain heard news about the Germans advancing towards France. So the French surrounded their border with trenches, soldiers and machine gun posts. The British sent over some of its troops to help defend France. Once Germany had defeated the Belgium army they advanced to France and were very shocked at all the troops waiting for them. The French and British fought against the Germans and held them up at Mons and the Marne. ...read more.

Middle

It had a short range, medium killing power dependant on which gas was used. Gas could be used for attacking or defending. All the weapons were geared towards fighting a defensive war. The trenches were dug in zigzag formation, so that enemy soldiers couldn't shoot from one end to the other. The trench conditions were very poor and the floor was constantly muddy, these conditions made very trench foot very common. Rats and lice thrived in these conditions, rats constantly raided the soldiers' rations, and the soldiers' food, which they ate, became contaminated causing illness. Their daily rations consisted of soggy, stale biscuits and stagnant water. Sometimes when it rained, the trenches were known to cave in, drowning the soldiers' who were in the dugouts sheltering from the gunfire. When men went over the top they had a very slim chance of making it across. Generals just sent men over in groups of twenty, and they were killed within minutes over leaving the trenches. This was mass slaughter but the Generals kept on commanding them over the top, many lives needlessly wasted. All the men going over the top lined up in queues waiting to go. All this alone helped the stalemate occur on the Western Front. Due to the conditions and the nature of the fighting stalemate occurred on the Western front. C). THE FOLLOWING WERE ALL EQUALLY IMPORTANT REASONS WHY THE STALEMATE ON THE WESTERN FRONT WAS FINALLY BROKEN: Planes, though initially primitive helped play a part in breaking the stalemate. ...read more.

Conclusion

They helped break the stalemate because they brought a new lease of life to the Allied forces that now outnumbered the Germans. The German offensive of 1918 was crucial to the outcome of the war. The Russians who had lost millions of soldiers, turned against their leaders, forcing Russia to leave the war. The Germans had to launch an offensive against the growing Allied army. They transferred troops from the east to the west to try to stop the Allies constant attacks in a single place. It was effective as the Germans broke through the Allied lines. The attack had gone well, however, the Allies held their nerve; they retreated so as to spread the Germans out. The Germans, unlike 1914, had no reserves and were badly fed and disciplined. Between May and August of 1918 the Germans made little progress and defeat was inevitable. The Allies who had supplies and food managed to counter attack. On the 8th August 1918 the Allies reached the Hinderburg Line. On the 11th November the Armistice (ceasefire) was called and the Great War was finally over. All of these factors played a role in breaking the stalemate on the Western Front. The use of planes and tanks helped break German defence lines. The influx of fresh American troops proved too much for the tired German troops. The war at sea played a vital role as it prevented supplies getting through the German troops and people. They are all interlinked in breaking the Stalemate 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?

    A tactic which was used by the Commanders of both sides was called, 'Race for the Sea'. Joffre and Falkenhayn realised that the advantage now lay to the North between Aisne and the Sea. This caused a race between the two sides; a race to take control of this position.

  2. Why was Germany Defeated in the First World War?

    The shortages of raw materials and labour that threatened Germany's production of war goods also affected the supply of goods to meet the normal daily needs of the people on the home front. Many imported goods were not available at all, and others were scarce because of the demands of the armies on the battlefield.

  1. The Schlieffen Plan and the Reality

    This was where the countries battled it out and was the famous location of the 'Battle of the Marne'. The battle at the Marne was a crucial turning-point and with the help of the remaining members of the BEF, the German advance was not only halted but for the first

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

    During the last month of his life, Hobeika was extremely distraught due to the steadily escalating measures taken against him by the Syrian-backed regime in Beirut and became wildly paranoid. During the funeral of a close ally and confidante, former MP Jean Ghanem, who died on January 14 from injuries

  1. How important was the war at sea

    The newspapers and magazines filled their minds with images of brave young men charging on horseback or heroic soldiers putting enemy into flight. Europe was gripped by war fever. As soon as war broke out, Germany's Shlieffen Plan went into operation.

  2. Explain how the schlieffen plan was meant to work The schlieffen plan was concocted ...

    The aim of gas attacks was to wipe out your enemies troops so your own infantry could invade. The tanks were a British invention, at first the idea was rejected by the army leaders. Winston Churchill however, thought that the idea had potential.

  1. The First World War - questions and answers on the Schlieffen plan, and the ...

    The stalemate became enforced with the new weapons which were being introduced on both sides, making armies stronger for defence rather than attack, such as when gas warfare began in 1915, until it was necessary for people to carry gas masks.

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

    They might say that this is because factory chores are to difficult for them and that it is now obvious to then that it is a man job and that their job is at home or working in domestic service.

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