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The following were equally important reasons why the stalemate on the Western front was finally broken - New Technology, American Entry, Blockades and the March Offensive. How far do you agree?

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Introduction

a) b) The following were equally important reasons why the stalemate on the Western front was finally broken: * new technology, like the tank * the American entry into the war * the blockading of German ports * the offensive in March 1918 Explain how far you agree with this statement. To see whether the above stated reasons were or were not equally important I am first going to look at each reason separately, before comparing their importance and seeing how they are inter-connected. I am also going to see if these four reasons alone are sufficient enough to explain why the stalemate was broken, or whether there are other important reasons which also need to be mentioned. During World War One, many new technological inventions were either used properly in warfare for the first time. One of there was the tank. Tanks are huge machines, which allowed soldiers to cross no man's land by giving them protection from machine-gun fire. The tank was first used during the Battle of the Somme on 15th September 1916. However, mechanically tanks were very unreliable, as the often broke down. They also tended to get stuck in mud and therefore needed the correct terrain in order to function properly. ...read more.

Middle

The Americans entered the war at around the same time that Russia withdrew from it. This helped to once again tip the balance of forces towards the Allies. In 1917 the Germans were running out of manpower and had to start recruiting schoolboys to fight in their army. The Americans provided fresh new troops, who were not tired from months, if not years, of fighting like the German, British and French troops were. The Americans had, even before they entered the war, provided a great deal of aid. After April 1917 they still continued to do this. In conclusion, I think that the American entry into the war was a very significant factor when it came to the stalemate being broken. The British Royal Navy used its submarines to stop supplies getting into Germany, just like the German submarines had done to Britain. The British, however, blockaded German ports in order to do this, rather than using unrestricted submarine warfare. Through the blockading of the German ports the Royal navy prevented imports of food, oil, chemicals and weaponry as far as possible. This method was much more successful than the German use of submarines. It caused serious hunger in Germany from 1916 through til 1918 and in the winter of 1918-1919 the Germans suffered from starvation. ...read more.

Conclusion

The causes for the stalemate being broken are interconnected. For example, the submarine was a new invention, and it was used by the British to blockade the German Ports, which was a significant factor towards winning the war. The German U-boats were used in unrestricted submarine warfare, which led to the American entry into the war. The American entry into the war gave the Allies enough manpower for Foch to carry out his counter-attack. I think the reasons for the stalemate being broken are not equally important. The American entry into the war is, I think the most important reason as it had many effects. The boost in morale made the Allied forces happier, and more willing to fight for their country. The extra manpower allowed Foch's counter-attack to take place, as well as tipping the balance of forces towards the Allies. The extra money provided by the Americans helped to buy more weapons and chemicals. It also ensured that the allied supplies were far superior to the German supplies. The American entry into the war was, in my opinion, the final factor, which ensured the allied victory. I think without the American entry into the war the stalemate would not have been broken for a much longer time, if it had been broken at all as the other factors alone were not enough to end the war. ?? ?? ?? ?? Emma Cheeseman, 10M History Summer Term 2002 ...read more.

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