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Verdun 1916

Author: William Martin
Publisher: Praeger Publishers
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"On 21 February 1916, German General Erich von Falkenhayn unleashed his hammer-blow offensive against the French fortress city of Verdun. His aim was nothing short of the destruction of the French army. He was sure that the symbolic value of Verdun was such that the French would be 'compelled to throw in every man they have.' He was equally sure that 'if they do so the forces of France will bleed to death.' The massed batteries of German guns would smash the French troops in their trenches and bunkers. However, the French hung on with immense courage and determination and the battle became a bloody battle of attrition"--Page 4 of cover.


Verdun 1916

Author: William F. Buckingham
Publisher: Amberley Publishing Limited
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A gripping narrative of the most infamous Western Front battle of the war. The British remember the Somme, Russia the Brusilov Offensive, and France and Germany remember Verdun


The Price of Glory

Author: Alistair Horne
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Verdun 1916

Author: J E Kauffman
Publisher: Pen and Sword
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Wrapped in myth and distortion, the Battle of Verdun is one of the most enigmatic battles of the Great War, and the controversy continues a century later. Before the battle the Germans believed they had selected one of the strongest points in the French defences in the hope that, if they smashed through it, the French would collapse. But Verdun was actually a hollow shell since its forts were largely disarmed and the trench lines were incomplete. So why did the Germans fail to take Verdun? As well as seeking to answer this fundamental question, the authors of this perceptive new study reconsider other key aspects of the battle – the German deployment of stormtroopers, the use of artillery and aircraft, how the French developed the idea of methodical battle which came to dominate their military thought after the war. They look too at how Verdun brought about a renaissance of fortress engineering that resulted in the creation of the Maginot Line and the other fortifications constructed in Europe before the Second World War.


French Soldier vs German Soldier

Author: David Campbell
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
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On 21 February 1916, the German Army launched a major attack on the French fortress of Verdun. The Germans were confident that the ensuing battle would compel France to expend its strategic reserves in a savage attritional battle, thereby wearing down Allied fighting power on the Western Front. However, initial German success in capturing a key early objective, Fort Douaumont, was swiftly stemmed by the French defences, despite heavy French casualties. The Germans then switched objectives, but made slow progress towards their goals; by July, the battle had become a stalemate. During the protracted struggle for Verdun, the two sides' infantrymen faced appalling battlefield conditions; their training, equipment and doctrine would be tested to the limit and beyond. New technologies, including flamethrowers, hand grenades, trench mortars and more mobile machine guns, would play a key role in the hands of infantry specialists thrown into the developing battle, and innovations in combat communications were employed to overcome the confusion of the battlefield. This study outlines the two sides' wider approach to the evolving battle, before assessing the preparations and combat record of the French and German fighting men who fought one another during three pivotal moments of the 101⁄2-month struggle for Verdun.


A Day with the Old Folks

Author: Michael P. Kihntopf
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What is the face of combat like? A Day with the Old Folks shows what it was like to fight in the longest battle of World War 1: Verdun for just one 24 hour period. The Old Folks is a group of four German soldiers who have been together for nearly a year and have managed to survive longer than any squad in their company. The replacements that filled out their squad of eight have come and gone at an alarming rate yet these four have dodged death, wounds or capture. The rest of company is certain that they drain the luck from anyone who serves with them. There are even stories that the four were former patients in asylums for the criminally insane. The Old Folks come from diverse backgrounds. Kluggmann is a professional soldier called back from retirement who revels in killing. He is an adrenal junkie. Taken from the coal mines and forced to enlist in the Kaiser's army or spend time in prison for a near fatal assault on a store keeper, he found a calling in being a soldier. He engaged in pacifying the native population in German Southwest Africa, training Boers for their war against the British, and rampaging through the Chinese countryside during the Boxer Rebellion. Retired to being a postal worker after many long years on the frontiers of European civilization, Kluggmann was called back to train the volunteers and conscripts who replaced the many thousands killed in the first months of the Great War. Kowalski is the pseudo-intellectual of the company who reasons out his existence as a conscripted soldier and expounds those views to anyone who will listen. For him war is a return to a primal state of human creation; the very state which will reveal the supreme being's universal plan for mankind. Yet he is a socialist who longs for the demise of the class structure which denied him a higher education. Liebermann is a survivor from the streets of Berlin, a one-time thief and gigolo. His claim to fame is that he can find food in a famine and water in a desert. And Lange is a volunteer student who has become disillusioned about the war's purpose. Like so many young men he saw himself as a modern medieval knight fighting to save his homeland; after one year he sees himself as powerless in the face of technical and mechanical weapons that do not allow heroism. This book chronicles one day in their lives in the meat grinder of Verdun, a battle that took the lives of over a million soldiers. It shows their dreams, their realizations, and their triumphs in survival. But most of all it shows that the face of combat is a complicated enigma, as complicated as each of them.


Verdun 1916

Author: Malcolm Brown
Publisher: The History Press
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1916 was a year of killing. The British remember the Somme, but earlier in the year the heart of the French army was ripped out by the Germans at Verdun. The garrison city in northeastern France was the focus of a massive German attack; the French fought back ferociously, leading to a battle that would permanently scar the French psyche. Using original French sources and eyewitness accounts from both sides, Malcolm Brown brings the horror of Verdun into vivid focus.


Battle Story Verdun 1916

Author: Chris McNab
Publisher: The History Press
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The Battle of Verdun was one of the bloodiest engagements of the First World War, resulting in 698,000 deaths, 70,000 for each of the 10 months of battle. The French Army in the area were decimated and it is often most tragically remembered as the battle in which the French were ‘bled white’.A potent symbol of French resistance, the fortress town of Verdun was one that the French Army was loath to relinquish easily. It was partly for this reason that the German commander chose to launch a major offensive here, where he could dent French national pride and military morale. His attack commenced on 21 February, using shock troops and flamethrowers to clear the French trenches. Starting with the capture of Fort Douamont, by June 1916 the Germans were pressing on the city itself, exhausting their reserves.The French continued to fight valiantly, despite heavy losses and eventually rolled back German forces from the city. In the end it was a battle that saw much loss of life for little gain on either side.


Walking in the Footsteps of the Fallen

Author: Christina Holstein
Publisher: Pen & Sword Military
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A visit to the battlefield of Verdun is usually dominated by the forts of Douamont and Vaux, the museum at Fleury and the striking, huge Ossuary, Although this gives a flavour of the horrific fighting that took place in the area, particularly in 1916, the visitor will be hard pressed to get much more than an impression from such places.This book seeks to guide the battlefield pilgrim into parts of the battlefield that get rarely visited by means of a series of walks, a number of which include the major sites.The four tours have been carefully walked. All are practicable for a reasonably healthy adult; the tours vary in length, most taking a half day to complete and the longest (the last) a day.In a twist to the usual walks to be found in the Battleground series, Christina makes full use of the numerous field graves and isolated memorials that are to be found on the Verdun battlefield, a number of which will bring visitors to the most visited sites. In the course of these walks many physical remnants will be found, such as gun positions, bunkers and trench systems, the significance of which is fully explained. The walks have not been chosen at random: by following these the tourer will get a far greater understanding of why the fighting at Verdun developed as it did and why such places as Fort Vaux were so significant to both sides.The field graves and memorials to the combatants, very often of individuals, provide an opportunity to give their story and the unit action in which they were fighting when they were killed.Verdun is a battlefield where the story of units and individuals can easily become lost in the horror of the incessant fighting that raged over ten months; and over ground which is extremely difficult to read because of the post war forestation programme. Profusely illustrated and with excellent mapping, a hallmark of Christina Holstein's books, a visitor who follows the walks in this book will be left with a far clearer idea of the men who fought and died here and of the features of the battlefield and their significance in this battle that so challenged the endurance of the armies of two nations.


Verdun

Author: Paul Jankowski
Publisher: Oxford University Press
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A definitive account of the iconic World War I battle provides coverage of its leaders, strategies and technologies while offering insight into the experiences of soldiers, analyzing the battle's unique status to consider if it merited its definitive reputation. By the author of Stavinsky.