The Battle of Passchendaele is the next World War One battle mentioned in Angel of Mercy.
Here are some facts about the battle.
When: July 31, 1917-November 10, 1917
Where: Flanders, Belgium
Who: The nations involved were
- Great Britain
- New Zealand
What: The major events of the battle were
- After months of fighting, the Allies failed to capture their objective.
- The weather was extremely rainy, turning dirt into mud and shell holes into ponds.
- Canadian Corps arrived to the battle in mid-October, relieving the Australians and New Zealanders. They were in nearly the same position the 1st Division had been during the Second Battle of Ypres.
- Canadian Gen. Arthur Currie objected to the battle. The Canadians, however, were ordered to participate by Sir Douglas Haig, commander-in-chief of the British Expeditionary Force.
- With no other choice but to participate, Currie began to prepare, hoping to save as many lives as possible.
- Under enemy fire, the Corps began repairing roads and tramlines, allowing for reinforcements to easily reach the front. It also prepared gun pits.
- The Canadian stage of the battle had four phases.
- The first phase began October 26, and the Corps captured its objectives.
- The final phase occurred November 10. The battle ended that day when the Canadians secured the heights.
Why: The attack took place
- To gain Allied control of the ridges around the city of Ypres.
- To force the Germans to divert resources from the channel and their U-boat bases.
- The battle also is known as the Third Battle of Ypres.
- The Battle of Passchendaele was controversial in 1917 because of the months of futile effort fighting in the mud and still is today.
- The British Empire suffered 275,000 casualties. The Germans suffered 222,000. For two weeks of fighting, the Canadians lost 15,654.
- When the battle ended, morale for British Expeditionary Forces was at one of its lowest points in the entire war.
Prior to today had you ever heard of the Passchendaele? Leave a comment below.
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