War Strategy of World War I

War of Attrition

War of Attrition

War of attrition works through progressive erosion on each other's forces. This technically isn't even a strategy, seeing as how it uses none. The goal of this "strategy" was to repeat defeat, on a large or small scale would eventually lead the enemy to realise inevitable and total loss, forcing them to submit. With the cost of capitulation, spillage of pride, and the simple fear of defeat, commanders would fight to the bitter end. Troops who realized this would often attempt to escape the horror, and would then be killed for treason.
Soldiers are sent "over the top" to run helplessly across no man's land, into the enemy's line of fire, where they are mowed down by machine guns until one side realizes that it is hopeless or they run out of soldiers to toss over the trench, and give up. Forces may also be worn down by multiple open battles, gradually exhausting the enemy, or several convert actions to sneak in and cause destruction from within time and time again. (1)

Trench Warfare

The trench was effective at providing troops with another way of building defenses when other defensive resources were not available. Trench warfare was first implemented during World War I due to the limited foot soldier mobility caused by the creation of the machine gun. the improvement of firearm accuracy also contributed to this, trenches became obsolete when tanks became an instrument of war. Though, wars were not always fought this way. The Napoleonic tactic of mass troups firing at eachother in an open field were rendered useless with the introduction of trench warfare. (2)

The Western Front
The Western front stretched from the North Sea to the Swiss Frontier with France". Over 200,000 lives were lost in the trenches, a majority of which died in combat, though large numbers were taken by infection and disease which were brought upon them by the extreme unsanitary conditions. The trenches were wet, infested with rats, and matted with dead, rotting bodies. No fascilities were available to soldiers.

Trench foot was not uncommon when living in the trenches, though it was more of a problem at the beginning of trench warfare than any other time. This was due to the wet and unsanitary conditions, but as conditions improved over time trench foot faded off, with a few odd cases here and there.

Trench Layout

Enduring lice was yet another of many unsanitary factors of fighting in the trenches. Even after washing their clothes and delousing, eggs were able to escape the treatment through seams. Having lice caused trench fever, which generally caused intense pain and was followed by a high fever. Recovery would take up to twelve weeks.

Other creatures infested the trenches, frogs were often found in shell holes, slugs and horned beetles everywhere else. Soldiers took the initiative to shave their heads to avoid lice amongst other infestations, such as nits. (3)


(1) [["Attrition warfare - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia." Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Feb. 2010. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attrition_warfare>.]]

(2) [["WikiAnswers - Why was trench warfare used in World War 1." WikiAnswers - The Q&A wiki. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Feb. 2010. <http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Why_was_trench_warfare_use]]

(3) [[jimmythejock. "World War 1 Trench Warfare." HubPages. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Feb. 2010. <http://hubpages.com/hub/World_War_1_Trench_War]]