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How useful are sources A, B and C to an historian studying the attitudes of British soldiers to their commander during the First World War? Use Sources A to C and knowledge from you studies in your answer

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Introduction

How useful are sources A, B and C to an historian studying the attitudes of British soldiers to their commander during the First World War? Use Sources A to C and knowledge from you studies in your answer: Source A depicts a general during a practise attack declaring how the real attack will be difference to the practise, he states ". . . First, The absence of the enemy" turning to the sergeant major he asks for the second reason. The officer replies with "The absence of the General, Sir". This is a typical cheeky cartoon displaying the stereotype of generals who don't go and visit the battle fields. To a historian this source is of some use however the source doesn't declare what date it is. It is from a British magazine - 'Punch'. This magazine was published from 1841 - 1992. I believe this to be most probably from the early post WWI so this shows how the general public (the majority of the men being made up of soldier) were feeling. However 'Punch' was mainly read by the upper class meaning that this view could be biased towards people who served in the war who came from upper class families and hence not provide an accurate view. ...read more.

Middle

However there is no evidence to support that Haig was a highly efficient soldier, the source does not go into depth regarding that which leads us to question the bias of the source. It's written by Haig's son so most probably is biased towards Haig. The source doesn't offer any evidence to support the claims and makes this no more than an opinion. Source F is very negative towards Haig as a person however mentions that he had great self-confidence and that he did not know when to recognized defeat. This could be seen in 2 views. 1 that he was wrong and should of stopped fighting, and the other being that if he had stopped; co-operation with the French would have broken down (source H refers to this and hence implies that Haig was not wrong to carry on fighting) and allowed Germany to win the war. This inability to recognise defeat resulted in Britain prevailing over Germany due to the sustained fighting in my opinion. Source J is a tribute to Haig by the Germans, They certainly agree Haig was a good soldier - "Haig is certainly one of the ablest generals of contemporary England . ...read more.

Conclusion

heavy artillery) However one could argue that Haig was quite versatile and was happy to let experts do what they needed to do and he did use tanks and realised how powerful artillery was and used them to his advantage. Haig didn't stay anywhere near the frontline which leads one to question how could he order his men to go to fight if he didn't know about any complication. On the other hand if he had died on the front line he would of been no use. John Laffin believes that Haig's mindset of the war being one of attrition was an appalling tactic, yet others would argue that it was the only way to win the war. In my opinion I think that Haig was not a perfect general, He did not find out what was happening on the frontline which clouded his judgement, nevertheless He did lead the British to victory which in my opinion suggests that he was a highly skilled and efficient soldier who did much to lead Britain to victory. At the time there was no one who could have done better than him, perhaps he was the best of a bad bunch yet he still brought Britain to victory. ?? ?? ?? ?? Will Price Centre Number:25140 Candidate Number :2485 ...read more.

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