Haig: Butcher of the Somme?
“HAIG WAS A BUTCHER WHO THOUGHT NOTHING OF SENDING MEN TO THEIR DEATHS. ” DO YOU AGREE? Field Marshal Douglas Haig was a British chief administrator during World War 1. He allowable the British Expeditionary Force from 1915 to the end of the War. This meant that he was in allegation of the Activity of the Somme. His allotment in this activity has led to breach angle on him as an army officer. Some accept that his tactic was poor and he was mindlessly sending men to their deaths. However, some accept that the Somme was absolutely not a adversity and that Haig active a acceptable tactic.
I will explored both abandon of the altercation and afresh achieve with my all-embracing appearance on whether Haig was a “butcher” or not. ~0~ There are several affidavit why Haig was or was not a “butcher”. I’m activity to alpha off with a acumen why I anticipate he was a “butcher”. The acumen was his area during the Activity of the Somme. He was anchored in the luxuries of a alcazar a accomplished fifty afar abaft the line. This meant that, to be altogether honest, Haig had abutting to no abstraction as to what was activity on in the battle. This is backed up by Source D area the differences amid a call and a absolute attack.
The Sergeant Major says that the “absence of the general” is one. This acutely shows that Haig was boilerplate to be apparent aback war bankrupt – appropriately out assuming his cowardice. My point about Haig accepting no abstraction about what was activity on is accepted by Source B area there is an abstract accounting by Haig about the aboriginal day of the attack. It is bright that he was not there and is clueless as the address is artlessly wrong. The actuality that he was clueless and anticipation that the activity was activity able-bodied meant that he didn’t change his tactic. This was not absolutely his accountability you could say – he was ill informed.
However, what facts say is that he wouldn’t accept to be abreast at all if he was nearer to the activity and so would accept accepted that his tactic was not working. Haig’s backbone of his tactic is what he is best criticised for and this aberration was actual preventable but for Haig’s cowardice. Another acumen that additionally supports Haig actuality a “butcher” is his aggressive strategy. This was aloof poor. He active a tactic in which the plan was to artlessly annihilate as abounding Germans as possible. However, as Source F describes, “it is not a activity at all, it’s slaughter”. This, he knew would beggarly there would be losses, too.
He explains this in Source A area he says that: “the nation charge be accomplished to buck losses”. This may be him actuality a realist, about I account he is aloof application this account to awning his back. So if there are abounding losses he cannot be blamed. However, alike if there were consistently activity to be sacrifices – I anticipate that 20,000 British asleep on the aboriginal morning with 600,000 Allies in absolute asleep is added than anyone could accept advancing or accounted for. Furthermore, afterwards the antic losses on the aboriginal morning alone, you would accept anticipation that anyone would accept fabricated some big changes – finer tactics-wise.
However, no, his backbone or apathy is bright to see as the Somme bears huge casualties and is apparent by best as annihilation of the British troops. His plan of activity was additionally affecting as it complex abounding presumptions that were aloof wrong. He had accepted that the battery would absolutely abort the acid wire so the troops would be able to aloof airing – as they did, accept to accept – beyond No Man’s Land. However, all that happened to the acid wire is that it was aerial up but afresh brought aback bottomward by the force of the explosions. So, if anything, it was in alike added of a coil than before. Source C backs this up.
It states: “it was bright that there were no gaps in the wire at the time of the attack. This slowed the men down, as they had to cut there way through it. This was not planned for. Haig had additionally counted on the German Trenches actuality obliterated. He had anticipation that, afterwards the cruise over No Man’s Land, there would be actual few opposing Germans. He anticipation that all of them would accept been dead during the battery and it wouldn’t be able to be easier for the troops. This is what they were told. However, the Germans had fabricated appropriate trenches, which were able with concrete. They were actual abysmal too – about 20 metres down.
This meant that the Germans aloof hid in bunkers. Then, aback they heard the bombing stop, they climbed out to there apparatus guns. Here, they aloof watched the British aimless appear the. They were sitting ducks. They Germans couldn’t accept their luck as they mowed the British troops down. And afresh to anticipate that Haig pursued this tactic and he gave letters like that in Source B where, afterwards 20,000 British troops accept died in aloof one morning, he writes that it was “very successful” and “all went like clockwork”. Butcher…? I anticipate so. However, admitting aggregate I accept said so far some still don’t anticipate that Haig was a “butcher”.
I’m activity to accord you one of the affidavit why they could possibly anticipate this. This acumen is how he was not abreast well. His plan did not absorb any soldier acquaintance based knowledge. This was the acumen that his presumptions were incorrect. He would accept accepted that the acid wire was never activity to be destroyed by the barrage. Therefore (you would assume that) he wouldn’t accept complex this in his plan. Also, if he had accepted about the German trenches – how they were able and had bunkers to adumbrate in during the battery – he wouldn’t accept complex that in his plan, either. Should he accept asked or should he accept been told?
Either would accept been bigger than brainlessly sending men to their deaths. It is additionally bright that the soldiers did apperceive that the battery was not activity to accept the adapted affects. This is fabricated bright in Source C area Private George Coppard’s account is accounting down. He said: “any Tommy could accept told them that carapace blaze lifts wire up and drops it down, generally in a worse coil than before”. So, he didn’t absolutely apperceive how to accouterment the plan he capital to put into play. This was, debatably, not his fault. Therefore there is at atomic one acumen why some accept that Haig was not a “butcher”.
But, afresh again, some anticipate that the Activity of the Somme was absolutely a success. They anticipate that Haig, actuality the General, charge accept guided us to the victory. I think, unless it won us the war, (which it acutely didn’t) that abounding deaths cannot be in any way good. ~0~ To conclude, I’m abiding that you can assumption my verdict. I accept that Haig was a “butcher”. I anticipate he started out with the amiss mind-set – not absolutely caring about casualties. He anticipation that to win we aloof had to annihilate as abounding Germans as possible. This was the amiss way to go about it, I think. Secondly, His plan did not work.
More than that, it resulted in 20,000 deaths on aloof one morning. He was appealing abundant clueless and so fabricated abounding presumptions that were incorrect. He maybe could accept accepted added if he wasn’t afraid abroad 50 afar abroad from the activity in the luxuries of a castle. And finally, afterwards all of the deaths I told you about on the aboriginal day of the Battle. He still pursued with that tactic. One of my agents acclimated to acquaint me that the analogue of applesauce is accomplishing the aforementioned affair and assured a altered result. This is absolutely what Haig did and it was on a massive scale. He was assuredly a “butcher” in my opinion.
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