"Haig was an uncaring general who sacrificed the lives of his soldiers for no good reason." How far do these sources support this view?

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Ronnie Gunson

“Haig was an uncaring general who sacrificed the lives of his soldiers for no good reason.” How far do these sources support this view?

One of the main things about studying sources is interpretation. They way you view a source can very much depend on your own beliefs, or that of others and therefore it is very hard to find a completely true source. Source A in my opinion is more a realistic part of writing from Haig, it does not actually show that he is uncaring, yet to me shows a side of honesty and truthfulness. However, to people that do not view Haig politely, this source could be seen as untactful, insensitive and pessimistic as it comments on the nation losing men when it should really be a moral booster. In my opinion Haig is being honest, he realises that in any war men are lost and he merely states his predictions. There is no actual sign of him being insensitive.

         Source B as we know now is false and does not represent the truth of the battle in any respective. Yet, Haig was only going by what he heard from intelligence, and he honestly believed the offensive to be effective, he would not have known that so many people died until days later and the sources are written before and on the day of the battle. Haig was only going by intelligence, yet he should have known his tactics were not very efficient, and therefore an heir of ignorance about him tends to shine. Yet, he didn’t know what happened and therefore could not be blamed for his ignorance. Many people against Haig would call him an incompetent General for not knowing what was happening, however in a war to such large scale it would be very difficult by anyone’s standards!

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          In Source C it does not show Haig in a very nice light, as an ex-soldier tells of Haigs incompetent plans. He believes that “any Tommy” could have told Haig that his tactics are useless. And therefore it shows Haig as being a poor general. The problem is Haig genuinely believed that his plans were safe, and he was wrong another sign of ignorance. Throughout the war his “persistence” was not a public favourite as he made many mistakes. On the other side of the coin though, what could he do? He had been told ...

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