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World War One

By 10:48:00 ,

I have recently done a report on World War One, hopefully it is not too boring. I didn't find writing it boring and had a lot of trouble choosing what in WW1 to write about. So here it is. If I have got any details (dates/numbers) wrong I blame wikipedia and what ever other sites I used.

For Their Country

World war one commenced on the 28th of July 1914. The main trigger was the assassination of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand, though there had been underlying enmity for a long time. The assassination started a chain reaction, which brought many counties into the war. The Central Powers: Austria-Hungary, Germany, Bulgaria, Turkey and others fought against The Allied Powers: Serbia, France, Belgium, Russia, England, Italy, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and eventually the US. Battles were fought in many countries and places, Like the Battle of Lone Pine at Gallipoli, the Battle of Somme or the Battle of Ypres. Conditions for the soldiers were awful, but sometimes the worst circumstances can bring the best out of people. 

The Gallipoli Campaign turned out to be one of the greatest disasters for the Allies.  Australians and New Zealanders made up most of the forces at Gallipoli but there were also men from France and Britain. At dawn on the 25th of April, the troops landed. Many fell even before they reached the shore. The Campaign took over 26,000 men’s lives, some were really only boys. Here the ANZACs showed their mateship and bravery, which would become the stuff of legends.  When authorities finally realized that Dardanelles could not be taken the troops were evacuated. The evacuation happened without loss of life making it one of the most successful things that happened during the Gallipoli Campaign.

Fighting happened in the air and at sea, but mostly in the trenches. The trenches often had mud and water in them and death by disease happened often. Rats lived in the trenches, they could grow to the size of cats and would scuttle around spreading sicknesses and feeding on human flesh. Everywhere smelt too, stagnant pools, mud, overflowing latrines, rotting flesh, cigarette smoke, remnants of poison gas, altogether totally sickening. The soldiers had to live as best they could. Sadly many of them ended their lives in those hell holes, whether from disease or the guns and shrapnel. 

Then, in the middle of all the terror and destruction of the war, something magical happened. On Christmas day 1915, instead of shooting the troops were shouting. Christmas carols travelled over no-man’s land to the opposing trenches. Men emerged from the trenches that had been opposing one another and shook hands. Gifts were exchanged. Both sides realized the enemy were just as human as they were. In one place someone produced a soccer ball and a game commenced. Sadly some people in authority got wind of the goings-on  and a British major stepped in and said, “Kill the Hun! Not make friends with him.” So the fraternizing with the enemy stopped and the next day bullets and shells whizzed back and forth once more.

During World War One over 37 million people were either killed or injured. Many of the campaigns were a success as well as a failure, like with Gallipoli, it brought Australians together and helped them see Australia as a nation. Through all the death and destruction men held on. Occasional bright sparks like the Christmas of 1915, brought hope and showed that we are still people. The end finally cane on the 11th of November 1918. Now the allied soldiers would return home as heroes. Some would never return in person, but only as legends. Legends on the lips of others who told of the heroic sacrifice the soldiers they left behind made for their country.

EDIT: Check out this site tis about Gallipoli. Watching it made me realize some things i'd never known about Gallipoli before, its really interesting! here the landing in 3D. 

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  1. I just finished WWI this afternoon! :) It was so tragic - and then the influenza epidemic afterwards brought the death toll even higher. Such a sad decade of history.