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Verdun remembered.......

Discussion in 'Roll of Honor & Memories - All Other Conflicts' started by Liberator, May 29, 2016.

  1. Liberator

    Liberator Ace

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    French President Francois Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel are marking the 100th anniversary of the battle of Verdun, the longest of World War One.
    Hundreds of thousands of French and German soldiers died during 10 months of fighting in north-eastern France.
    France eventually emerged victorious.

    Read more

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-36407564
     
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  2. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana WW2|ORG Editor

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    "The French will be bled dry!"

    "Yeah, along with the Germans."

    Insane plan.
     
  3. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    10 months of hell , the price to pay was tremendous for both sides. :poppy:
     
  4. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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  5. TD-Tommy776

    TD-Tommy776 Man of Constant Sorrow

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    May the sacrifice of those who fell never be forgotten. :poppy: x300,000+
     
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  6. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer Member

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    100,000 missing. In most battles, the majority of the missing are in fact captured. That wasn't the case at Verdun. Fragments of those 'missing' men are turned up by farmers each spring when they plow their fields. About two million (perhaps as many as three million) artillery shells landed in that relatively small area over the ten months of the battle and so many of the fallen were not to be found when the battle was over.
     
  7. Sheldrake

    Sheldrake Member

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    That was also true of many of the other Ww1 battles of attrition. The battle of the Somme? Half of the British dead have no known grave. Ditto 3rd Ypres. The cemetery at Tyne Cot has 12,000 graves. Only a throd of these are names. The back wall contains the names of 34,000 men who have no no known grave.
     
  8. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard

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    I read this article today. The number of dead and missing is impossible to imagine. The amount of ordnance that was not exploded is astounding. All this for a few yards of territory. Sad doesn't begin to describe my feelings.
     
  9. Sheldrake

    Sheldrake Member

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  10. Lawryleslie

    Lawryleslie New Member

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    My Great Uncle fought in this battle as the British attempted to provide reinforcements to the French. During his time there his youngest son was born and his wife named him Frederick Verdun. This was seen as a good luck charm to ensure his father's safe return.
    My Great Uncle had witnessed horrors beyond comprehension. On his return his son was formally christened Frederick Verdun in commemoration of his father's return. However, by the time of the christening, my uncle's unit had received orders to return to the Western Front. His mental state was so very fragile that, after the christening, he chopped off the index finger of his right hand to avoid returning to the hell he'd experienced at Verdun. He was dishonourably discharged unable to claim any medals.
    His story remains in our family folklore and the morality of his actions the subject of many after dinner debates, often heated argument.
    Many historians claim that there is little evidence that British troops were involved in Verdun but my family story would seem to revoke this.
     
  11. Owen

    Owen O

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    Not heard of British units fighting at Verdun.
    What regiment was he in ?
    I'd like to see what their war diary has to say about it.
     
  12. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    Yes that would be quite a surprise for me too. Verdun is was a 100% franco-German battle. Maybe your great uncle was at the Somme front where the British and the French fought side by side.
     
  13. gtblackwell

    gtblackwell Member

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    Fully realizing that the parameters of exactly what defines a "battle" in some cases but assuming a battle in a defined area like Verdun, was it the sinle largest loss of life in a single battle in the history of warfare ?The numbers are mind boggling, the carnage indescriable and I am not trying to be morbid but genuinely curious about the scale of that event. Where would the Somme rank ?

    Gaines
     
  14. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    It's almost impossible to compare both battles not to mention the Somme could be divided into several fronts and that both battles did not last the same amount of days . . When you compare casulaties the Somme actually reaches higher , and German losses will remain a mystery for decades (estimtes go from 465.000 to 600.000) Brtitish + Commonwealth around 420.000 , French 204.000 . I wouldn't venture saying such Battle was worse etc.. for those who were there it was utter hell , no matter the area, the date or the nationality. They all wanted to go home , except the generals.
     
  15. gtblackwell

    gtblackwell Member

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    Skipper, I would never try to reduce either to numbers. I could never imagine the sheer hell of such battles. I was concerned it sounded crass to say which battle was worst as both represent the horrors of war to a great extent. How generals could keep sending men into such day after day is beyond comprehension. One is reminded of the old quote, "Stupidity is doing the same thing over and over expecting a different results " But in these cases they were using lives and limbs by the hundreds of thousands.
     
  16. JCM6395

    JCM6395 New Member

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    My German great grandfather's brother (my great uncle?) Josef Pröll served at Verdun in the 13th Bavarian Reserve Infantry regiment. He was at Verdun from March to beginning of June, 1916. His regiment suffered up to 75% casualties at one point in the assault on Verdun. He was slightly wounded in June. He would survive this battle but die a couple weeks later during the Brusilov Offensive of June 1916.

    I've been reading up on the battle of Verdun and it just amazes me what the soldiers put up with there. One German soldier wrote that after capturing a hill they had to request a double ration of tobacco due to the stench of death not only on the hill but around Verdun itself.
     
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  17. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    I visited Fort Douaumont last month. There is a German mass grave of 659 casualties in there. One day a amno depot exploded and because the soldiers were besieged the Germans had to bury their dead inside a sealed part of the fort. It is still a Memorial nowadays.
     

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