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"John Keegan, a modern military historian, suggests that Haig was an 'efficient and highly skilled soldier who did much to lead Britain to victory in the First World War'.

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Introduction

"John Keegan, a modern military historian, suggests that Haig was an 'efficient and highly skilled soldier who did much to lead Britain to victory in the First World War'. Is there sufficient evidence in Sources A to H to support this interpretation?" Source A supports this claim as it is a positive piece of writing about general Haig, then again it was written by him, therefore is full of lies and deceit. E.g.: "A considerable proportion of the German soldiers are now practically beaten men" His head of intelligence, John Charters, fabricated this information; nether the less this is still a positive piece of writing. Source B, greatly disagrees with John Keegan's view of Haig as it is a very negative poster aimed at Haig's uselessness and how the people at home didn't want him anymore, the text: "Your country needs me... like a hole in the head" Proves this and then written underneath: "Which is what most of you are going to get." ...read more.

Middle

Charters: "The barbed wire has never been cut so well" "(iii)", written on the day of the battle is full of lies, as the first day of the battle is well known to have been a disaster and there fore stating that "Al went like clockwork" does not represent Haig in a positive way. But at the time no one was the wiser so this would have shown Haig in good light. Source D, I believe is against Haig as it shows him to be somewhat insane: "his belief that he had been chosen by God to serve his country." And also shows him to be somewhat idiotic and too proud of himself: "It was probably this inability to recognise defeat that led to his continuing attacks on the Somme" But then again this is written by a modern historian in 1989 therefore is not a current account and less accurate. Source E, is also against Haig and comments on how he was too proud to accept defeat along with the rest of his army: "the ...read more.

Conclusion

for the disaster of the battle of the Somme: "if he had ever been replaced, would there have been anyone better for the job?" This is written some time after the battle so reflects upon it, therefore is less accurate. Source H (Haig: BBC TV 'Timewatch'.), was again very negative towards Haig, and showed soldiers accounts of their personal opinions of Haig and their personal tragedies of the war. One man even stated that Haig was the 'biggest donkey of them all'. As the people seemed very old the stories could have changed and accounts could have become twisted, this makes it less accurate. When I weigh out the positive and negative opinions of Haig they match each other, this may be why there is some debate over whether he was a genius or a fool, but I believe that as the majority of positive opinions are that of his own, I must agree with the man on the video when I say Haig was the biggest donkey of then all. Nic. Locock - 1 - ...read more.

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