Breaking the Fortress Line 1914 by Clayton Donnell

By Clayton Donnell

Breaking the castle Line 1914 deals a desirable new viewpoint at the German offensive opposed to France and Belgium in 1914. In photo aspect it describes the serious combating that came about round the forts and fortified towns that stood within the course of the German invasion. The ordeal started with the German attack at the amazing fort of Liège. They took twelve days to batter their method throughout the ‘Gateway to Belgium’, wasting tens of millions of fellows in repeated frontal attacks, they usually needed to raise the heaviest siege artillery ever used to damage the defenses.

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Example text

He wanted to utilise the forts to provide cover for the regular troops as they assembled during the initial stages of mobilization (couverture), and then afterwards leave their use to the discretion of the local commander. ), as opposed to permanent fortifications. General Joseph Gallieni, who was offered but declined the position filled by Joffre, requested that attention be paid to Montmedy but by then it was too late to achieve anything there. On the other side were those who believed Germany would not hesitate to violate Belgian neutrality.

The French Retreat 7. Two Tragedies: Montmedy and Ayvelles 8. Between Two Battles – Fort Manonviller 9. Fortress Longwy 10. The Siege of Maubeuge 11. The German Retreat after the Battle of the Marne 12. The Heights of the Meuse 13. The Final Siege – Antwerp 14. Conclusions Appendix I: Chronology Appendix II: The German Heavy Siege Guns Appendix III: A Study of the Fall of the Forts of Liège Notes Bibliography Acknowledgements I would like to thank the following people, without whom this work would have been, if not impossible to accomplish, much more difficult.

It was simply a plan of deployment with several possible lines of attack depending on circumstances. Even more, it was a planned response to a German attack. General de Castelnau22 was appointed First Deputy Chief of Staff under Joffre in 1911 and played a key part in the development of Plan XVII. An exponent of the ‘offensive spirit’, Castelnau didn’t believe the Germans had enough men both to launch an offensive through Belgium and to defend the Franco-German border. He wrote23 that France would most likely never be the aggressor.

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