Some People Have the View That British Generals Like Haig Were Incompetent. How Far Do Your Sources Support or Contradict This Interpretation?

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World War One began the 28th of June 1914 and ended on the 11th of November 1918 at 11am. There were many causes of the war, including the competition between Britain and Germany over who had the most powerful navy. Most European countries were trying to build empires around the world, leading to many small conflicts which led to Europe arranging itself into gangs known as alliances. A previous war in 1870 meant that France and Germany especially, didn’t trust each other. When the war began in 1914, people thought that it would be an easy victory and that Germany would be defeated by Christmas. However, they were wrong. It dragged on for four long years. Along with the fact that they weren’t that involved with the soldiers, this is why some people hated the generals like Haig and thought they were incompetent. This essay will explore this interpretation of Haig and the generals, but in order to provide a balanced view, I will also consider the positive interpretations of Haig as a leader, as many sources from the time and recently praise him as a good leader. At the time of the war and after, soldiers criticised Haig and the generals , Haig was criticised because he made commands without being in trenches. In source B2 a soldier who had watched his friends die around him due to Haigs incompetence and bad planning, wrote “it was pure bloody murder. Douglas Haig should have been hung, drawn and quartered for what he did on the Somme. The cream of British manhood was shattered in less than 6 hours.” This suggests that he wanted Haig to be punished due to his loss of so many of his own men, but also due to his own resentment towards him. Letters from the home front were censored letters soldiers could not express their true feelings about the war and the generals, however the soldier in source B2 could be honest as he was writing in his diary, and these are his
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