Sunday, September 11, 2016

Documentary Review: World War I in Color: Victory and Despair

With Russia rescinding in the east, Germany was able to move troops to the west, and with the beginning of 1918 they were able to unleash an offensive that threw the Allies back 30 miles.  This is more territory than had been changed in the past three years.  This was known as the Ludendorff Offensive and brought the Germans to within miles of Paris.  However an allied, tank-lead counterattack put the germans on their heals and pushed them back to the original lines.  At that time the United States now entered the war.  The Allies, following the example of the Australians began to use coordinated air and ground attacks, with troops following tanks.  This allowed the allies a new strategy which was effective.
However they still face the Hindenburg Line, a strong German defensive position with barbed wire and concrete defensive works.  However they were able to make a create a break in the line, and the next day followed up this break.  German morale was greatly influenced, but while they still had some morale, they proposed peace.  However the Germans were able to regain some momentum and talks of peace faded for a time.  It was the blockade that lead to peace.  The Germans were starving.  At this time, the war seemed a wasted effort to the Allies, as the outcome seemed certain.  Casualties remained high.  But everybody knew the end must be close.
The Kaiser sacked his general who did not want to surrender, and himself abdicated, and went into hiding.  An armistice was finally signed 11 November 1918, and the guns went silent.
Armistice of Compiegne

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