1917: Beyond the Western Front (History of Warfare, 54) by Ian F.W. Beckett, Ian F. W. Beckett

By Ian F.W. Beckett, Ian F. W. Beckett

The growing to be army, political and socio-economic charges for all belligerents because the nice battle entered its fourth yr have been more and more obvious, liberal democracies and authoritarian states alike having to remobilise public opinion for but larger sacrifices. whereas the Western entrance used to be dealing with those demanding situations, 1917 used to be additionally marked by means of the cave in of Tsarist Russia and via nutrients riots resuting either from the Entente's blockade of relevant Europe and the revival of unrestricted submarine war by means of the valuable Powers. Ottoman Turkey was once feeling the stress of warfare to boot, as British forces complicated in either Palestine and Mesopotamia. For states as but uncommitted to struggle, corresponding to the U.S. and China, 1917 was once a yr of choice. This quantity amply illustrates the importance of this important 12 months within the international clash. The members are Lawrence Sondhaus, Eric Grove, Keith Grieves, Matthew Hughes, Kaushik Roy, Vanda Wilcox, Laura Rowe, and Nick Hewitt.

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Additional info for 1917: Beyond the Western Front (History of Warfare, 54)

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26 Delmé-Redcliffe had made a career out of scathing judgements on his hosts’ military capabilities, and never missed an opportunity to put the boot in. Nonetheless in this case, there is concrete evidence to show that incidents of mass surrender did occur, with little or no resistance being offered. Mass Surrender A few examples will illustrate the extent of incidents of mass surrender, particularly within IV Corps. The 87th Infantry Regiment lost a total of 69 officers and 1455 men, of whom 12 officers and 780 men were taken within a few hours at Plezzo, and 19 officers and 255 men at Monte Rombon, during the course of 24 October.

31 The allied blockade was causing serious food shortages in Germany and Austria-Hungary by the winter of 1916–17, known in Central Europe as the ‘turnip winter’ after the bulbous taproot that remained in plentiful supply while bread and other staples grew scarce. 32 Such conditions on the home front (worse yet, a home front being expected, under the Hindenburg Programme, to do much more for the war effort) raised the question of how long the Central Powers could continue the fight, even though their armies were entrenched on allied soil on all fronts.

31 Moreover, while Italian observers were claiming that the troops had not fought, reports from the enemy suggested otherwise. When Lt Erwin Rommel and his Württemberg Battalion captured 50 officers and 2000 men of the 4th Bersaglieri Brigade, who surrendered to him en-masse, it was only after fierce resistance. Three times Rommel demanded their surrender and each time the Italians refused, continuing their machine-gun fire and even launching an attack. 32 Rommel’s assessment was that many could have escaped, since ‘clear thinking and vigorous command were lacking’.

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