Allied plans 1918?

#1
Did the Allies have a plan in 1918 for an offensive or were they content (after 3rd Ypres/Nivelle) to sit it out until 1919 when the Yanks would be there in numbers?

I do not recall seeing anything about plans that were interupted by Op Michael/Op Georgette and the initial success of these German ops seems to have more than just caught the Allies of guard.

Any pointers?
 
#2
Op Michael/Op Georgette and the rest destroyed the German army, the follow-up led the Allies to victory, maybe not planned but showed greater operational flexability than subsiquent historians give Haig credit for. Once the Hindenburg line was broken it was 'game over' - defeat on the battlefield despite what the Austrian house painter and his mates would have you believe
 
#3
Would that be the plan to continue with total slaughter until everyone's dead except Field Marshal Haig, Lady Haig and their tortoise, Alan?
 
#6
Crabby - The British Army in 1918 was probably the best trained and best led Army we have ever put into the field.

If you want to find out why I say that read the many books by many bright sorts that have totally debunked the so called view of history put forward in the '60's.

Course if you want to persist in your small minded views go and watch 'oh what a lovely war' again and eat some yoghurt.
 
#8
mushroom said:
Crabby - The British Army in 1918 was probably the best trained and best led Army we have ever put into the field.

If you want to find out why I say that read the many books by many bright sorts that have totally debunked the so called view of history put forward in the '60's.

Course if you want to persist in your small minded views go and watch 'oh what a lovely war' again and eat some yoghurt.
For some really good detailed maps and info please go here.
http://www.1914-1918.net/wf.htm

The Battle of Amiens, August 8th 1918.
http://www.1914-1918.org/MAPS/maps/allied18h.jpg

The Battles of Amiens, Bapaume, and the Scarpe : Allied line between August 8 and September 8, 1918.
http://www.1914-1918.org/MAPS/maps/allied18i.jpg

British Attack on the Hindenburg Line between Cambrai and St. Quentin, September, 1918.
http://www.1914-1918.org/MAPS/maps/allied18l.jpg
 
#9
Public apology to Crabby. He was being ironic.

Given his other posts showing both wit and knowledge I should have known better.

Note to self - do not get on high horse after eight cans of imported Grolsch.
 
#10
mushroom said:
Public apology to Crabby. He was being ironic.

Given his other posts showing both wit and knowledge I should have known better.

Note to self - do not get on high horse after eight cans of imported Grolsch.
Which posts are you bloody reading?

1918 ended up turning out well for the British and was almost definitely going to be the year the war ended - but not how they expected. The German advance was the final fling (think battle of bulge in 1944!) which once again pushed the allies towards the edge and gave some very hairy moments, but they were not as close to breaking point as they had been in 1914 and 1916. Yet the number of troops, the training and the equipment was such that they could make up the ground lost in very short time. Casualties in 1918 were similar to those on the first week of the Somme, but were publicly acceptable due to the area of ground taken in the offensives.
 
#11
JoseyWales said:
Read 1918 The Last Act by Barrie Pitt.

ISBN 0 333 38377 X
Thanks JW - I understand about the Kaiserschlacht and the 100 days. I hope the book covers what the Allies were doing and planning when the Hun struck in Mar 1918.
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
#12
As I understood it there was to be a massive offensive in 1919 when enough Yanks and Tanks could be found in France but as it happens the Germans liked to go out with a bang!
 
#13
Agree with Maple's first post. Haig's case for being a good general rests with his well-conducted offensive in 1918. Took good advantage of the enemy's weakness after he had shot his bolt. Though might have been different if they had the quality of troops pre-michael.

But as I understand the initial stance in 1918 was to await the German offensive which was known to be coming and see how the situation developed. Also Lloyd George kept Haig short of troops, believing him to be a butcher after Ypres, thus restricting immediate offensive options.

Given the offensive minded-mentality of the Cavalry Generals, I can't see them being content to wait out a complete year for the yanks to get in gear. Plans there would be, resources maybe not.
 
#14
I need to re-read '1918 The Unexpected Victory' by J H Johnson. If I remember rightly everyone bar Haig thought the best policy was to hold the Germans over the winter and then have a big spring offensive using the US Divisions which would by then be in place and trained. Haig took the view that the Germans were near to collapse and couldn't survive a winter.

Casualties in 1918 were the worst of the war, though how many were due to the Kaiserschlact and how many to the general advance I can't recall.
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
#15
mushroom said:
I need to re-read '1918 The Unexpected Victory' by J H Johnson. If I remember rightly everyone bar Haig thought the best policy was to hold the Germans over the winter and then have a big spring offensive using the US Divisions which would by then be in place and trained. Haig took the view that the Germans were near to collapse and couldn't survive a winter.

Casualties in 1918 were the worst of the war, though how many were due to the Kaiserschlact and how many to the general advance I can't recall.
Thanks for that, are they even worse tha the big set piece battles of 1916 and 1917?
 
#16
Johnson quotes 2.7m British (and Empire) casualties for WW1 (not including RN and MN). 830k were suffered between March and November 1918, and he says that only 1917 came close with 818k cas.
 
#17
An interesting side question; if the 1918/1919 offensives had stalled or politicians/generals had seem them as too costly; would there have been another "side-show" to attack Germany via their allies? Would there have been another attack on the ottoman empire (other than through Iraq?)? Increased supplies and a focus on the Italian front?
 
#18
ugly said:
mushroom said:
I need to re-read '1918 The Unexpected Victory' by J H Johnson. If I remember rightly everyone bar Haig thought the best policy was to hold the Germans over the winter and then have a big spring offensive using the US Divisions which would by then be in place and trained. Haig took the view that the Germans were near to collapse and couldn't survive a winter.

Casualties in 1918 were the worst of the war, though how many were due to the Kaiserschlact and how many to the general advance I can't recall.
Thanks for that, are they even worse tha the big set piece battles of 1916 and 1917?
Christ - I hope that's not the J Johnston I work for!
 
#19
crabby said:
An interesting side question; if the 1918/1919 offensives had stalled or politicians/generals had seem them as too costly; would there have been another "side-show" to attack Germany via their allies? Would there have been another attack on the ottoman empire (other than through Iraq?)? Increased supplies and a focus on the Italian front?
I don't think that there would have been sideshows as we were involved in quite enough already with Italy and Palestine.
Plus the fact that had the offensives stalled then certainly Lloyd George would have veteoed further adventures to prevent casualties. Also by that time the war had focused on the Western Front as the key to it all.
Don't forget that the Frogs were not up to anything apart from defensive stuff in general. Also that we had been obliged to do a major restruction of our divisions going to 3 Bn brigades rather than 4 and so on, to compensate for lack of troops on the ground an to give more flexibility. So we weren't up to spreading ourselves about.
But The Germans were shot in manpower and economically, they had only one card and they blew it in 1918 by attacking us not the Frogs. The offensives wouldn't have stalled as the german reserves were not there.
 
#20
Dwarf - There were several threads going on here. LLoyd George and the Supreme War Council ordered against all military advice the changes in Divisions and Brigades (these were politicians not soldiers). LG was all for knocking out the Turks as a way of getting at the Germans and was furious that both Clemenceau and Robertson (CIGS) was against him.

The French Generals and the British Generals all saw the Western Front as the key area to beat the hun. LG was furious that the CIGS sided with Haig and very politely removed him to command Eastern District.
 
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