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Battle Of The Somme Essay

1053 words - 5 pages

The Battle of the Somme, or “humanity’s bloodiest battle”, took place between July 1st and November 18th, 1916 (Wikipedia). The German Empire was pitted against the French and British Empires, resulting in over 1,000,000 men wounded or killed, 60,000 of them being on the first day of the battle. This battle was one of the largest and bloodiest battles on World War I, making it consequential to the French, British, and German Empires. Although there were many consequences of the battle the main consequences were that the British contribution to the battle took the strategic initiative from the German Army, secondly the British army lost thousands of men as well as suffered massive amounts of ...view middle of the document...

The battle was said to have “suffered enormous destruction, and in many cases total annihilation,” (Gilbert 244). The devastation caused by the battle resulted in financial deficiency from the repairs that need to be done to fix the damage. On November 3rd, 1916, during the recapture of Fort Vaux at Verdun the armies fired more than twenty-three million shells resulting in the death of 650,000 French and German soldiers, adding up to a total of 960,459 deaths in five months. On average the Somme and Verdun together saw more than 6,600 deaths each day. Several of the deaths include ones that took place following the end of the battle. Most of the post battle deaths were due to desertion and abandonment during the battle. Charles Wilson states that the “wrong attitude” and “loss of courage,” is what caused these men to flee the battle (Wilson 245). This resulted in the loss of outstanding men, that continued to fight the battle, because they were full of bravery and were “by nature to lead men,” (Moran 246).
Lastly the Battle of the Somme resulted in political consequences. After a great defeat many of the countries had gotten into arguments and repercussions within each other. King Albert of the Belgians wrote in his diary, “The general conduct of the war has been entrusted to incompetent men – there the trouble lies.” King Albert implies that he believes that the British and French armies were unable to follow through with the battle, even though they did lose the battle the criticism given to them was unnecessary and led to more issues. In Britain David Lloyd George replaced Asquith as Prime Minister. General Joffre, French Commander-in-Chief, was replaced by General Nivelle. These replacements and changes were due to the belief that some of the generals and other high position men were incapable of fulfilling their positions. These internal problems of the countries were the final consequence of the Battle of the Somme.
This battle was a major historical turning point of World War I; it had many positive effects...

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