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The tide changed 100 years ago at the Battle of Amiens in favor of the Allies



In the late summer of 1918, the First World War seemed to be in a hellish stalemate.

Millions of men had already died during the conflict and there was fatigue and a feeling of resignation that the hostilities could go on indefinitely as the list of the injured went up.

British recruits seemed to get younger every day, the German army literally starved to death in the mud and chaos of the trenches, and there was a frightening surge in cases of Spanish flu.

However, at the beginning of August, a renewed upswing and a determination to break the impasse that had arisen since 1914 came.

The result was the beginning of the Battle of Amiens on 8 August, which was the first major offensive of the last three months of the war.

There would be an abundance of setbacks, severe loss of life and destruction to an unprecedented extent during this last 90 to 1

00 days, but the spirit of such regiments as the Gordon H Finally, Amiens proved in northern France, 120 km from Paris removed as a major choice for the Allied attack. It was one of the main objectives of the German spring offensive earlier this year.

This was because the city was where the British and French armies met and was a crucial link in the Western Front.

All summer, It was attacked by railroad rifles to break rail links and disrupt communications, but it always remained in British hands, no matter how hard the Germans pushed.

As Ruth Duncan, the curator of the Gordon Highlanders Museum in Aberdeen said: "The area was favorable for an attack, as hard ground and the dry weather of recent months made the ground suitable for tanks and cavalry.

" One Draft for the plan was sent to the GHQ in mid-July Main attack with the harsh teachings that had been taught in the last three years of the Stellar War; Surprise was the key and secrecy was emphasized at all levels.

"Straw was laid on rough roads and ropes around wheels to disguise the appearance of rails to the Amiens sector.

" They even crafted a series of orders to make it look as if the Canadians were in the north instead of the south would be used.

"When 8 August arrived, there was a punitive joint attack by British, French, Canadian, Australian and American troops, who finally signaled the Allies to lead the fight against the enemy."

The Battle began at 4:20 with the devastating bombardment of over 2,000 guns against the German 2nd Army.

At the same time, eight divisions of British, Australian and Canadian troops advanced and crossed No Mans Land to go to their previously agreed goals.

Their opening movements were darkened by the dense fog that hung around for hours as phosphorus shells were thrown off the plane

German resistance ranged from stubborn to none in some countries, while Australian, Canadian and French troops pushed their goals. At eleven o'clock, the Canadian Corps had advanced about four miles.

This was considered a "black day" for the German army: a period in which they suffered a staggering number of losses, with estimates as high as 48,000 men. [196592002] However, there was no quick way to victory. On the contrary, the roads worsened to muddy ravines, progress stagnated, initial progress stopped and the offensive was halted on 11th August.

At this time, half of the soldiers in the British Army were under 20 years old. old and, although he was eager to fight, lacked experience and steadfastness. 1. Gordons received a draft of 114 soldiers, but the regiment had lost so many men that it was stretched to its limits.

Local tragedies echoed in the global slaughter.

29-year-old Charles Blackhall Gray died of a gunshot wound in his left thigh on August 8 while serving with A Company 1st / 5th Gordons

He was the son of William and Mary Gray, of Whitehouse in Aberdeenshire and had a twin brother who was also in the Gordons. 19659002] This brother, second lieutenant James Blackhall Gray, died on 27 October in Italy and is buried at the Tezze British Cemetery.

James was married to Edith Gray of Crown Street 162 in Aberdeen: one of millions of women across the UK whose mistress never returned from the continent.

In fact, the Gordon Highlanders lost thousands of troops and even recruited new blood during the second half of 1918.

And, as Mrs. Duncan added, they had also been tasked with other challenges, amid hostilities elsewhere.

She said: "The 5th Battalion agreed with Izel-les-Hameau and arrived at 8.00 on the 8th of August.

After washing and freshening, they lined the streets, awaiting His arrival, the King's Majesty George V., who went to the 44th Highland Brigades, where everyone present greeted him warmly as he passed by.

"The 6th Battalion at Caucort, in northern France, undertook training, inspections, and received a draft of new officers and 205 others Ranks that became known to their relevant companies.

"The 7th Battalion began the day with parades and inspections as usual and received two separate designs of men and NCOs."

The Gordons lined up for the second phase of the offensive, which began on August 21st.

They played sports in the afternoon – including a game against the Seaforth Highlanders they lost – and coached and participated in parades as new designs of men joined the ranks

They even attended concerts on the 9th and 12th August, and on the 10th of August. Gordon's marched to the main road between Ferfay and Bellery, where the king passed the street in his motor car.

It worked as a moral enhancer, but there were still frightening casualties, both during and after the first phase in Amiens

The spread of the flu epidemic also became more and more insidious.

In June and July 1918, half a million soldiers were treated in "flu hospitals" "Behind the Lines."

Ruth Duncan added, "This type of flu was not usually fatal, and this killer strain originated in the winter of 1918-1919, when up to 50 million people died worldwide by the end of 1919.

" But there were many other challenges to manage something. These were the last days of the war, but not everything went according to plan.

The Gordon Highlanders Museum has organized an interactive exhibition documenting the last 100 days of World War I.

For more information, visit www.gordonhighlanders.com/Visit#.W2MTvUxFyUk.


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