Who Is Douglas Haig Essay

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Douglas Haig, the eleventh child of John Haig, the head of the successful whisky distilling company, was born in Edinburgh on 19th June 1861. Haig was sent to Clifton College in 1875 and entered Brasenose College five years later. At Oxford University he led an active sporting and social life but left without taking a degree. Haig went to the Royal Military College at Sandhurst in 1884. His biographer,Trevor Wilson, has argued: "There he devoted himself to his work, developed a reputation for being aloof and taciturn, passed out first in his year, and was awarded the Anson memorial sword. He also made good progress as a horseman and polo player (he had played polo at Oxford), both important attributes for a cavalry officer." In 1885 Haig was commissioned into the 7th Queen's Hussars. His regiment was sent to India and after three years he was promoted to the rank of captain and was sent to the headquarters of the Bombay Army at Maharashtra. In 1893 he applied to enter the Camberley Staff College, but was rejected after a poor performance in the compulsory mathematics examination. Soon afterwards Haig was appointed aide-de-camp to the inspector-general of cavalry. In 1896 he finally secured entry to the Staff College, by nomination. Other officers at the college at this time included William Robertson, Edmund Allenby, Archibald Murray and George Milne. Robertson's biographer,David R. Woodward, has argued that he came under the influence of George Henderson who had made a detailed study of Stonewall Jackson and the American Civil War: "Robertson's intellectual mentor, the military theorist George F. R. Henderson, emphasized the concentration of forces in the primary theatre of the enemy in order to overwhelm his main force in a decisive battle. These principles served as a bond between Robertson and Haig when the two men dominated British military policy." In 1897
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