Verdun is one of the greatest artillery battles in history. Even though they were deluged by millions of shells, the French repelled the Germans for 8 months. The Germans lost 500,000 troops in their failed attempt to reach Paris.
French Forces, 500,000
General Petain, Commander (Succeeding General Castelnau)
German Forces, 1,000,000
General Falkenhayn, Chief of Staff Army Commanders:
Crown Prince Frederick
General von Haesseler
General von Guretski-Cornitz
The invincible spirit of France, proved on a thousand battlefields, was put to its supreme test in the inferno of Verdun, where for eight months the slim band of French heroes, guarding the gateway to Paris, held back the overwhelming forces of Germany in the face of a hurricane of artillery fire unequalled in history. Deluged daily with shells, their trenches blown to dust, fighting without adequate shelter and hopelessly outnumbered, the superb soldiers of France heroically defended their line and once again saved Europe from Hun domination. Five hundred thousand Germans were sacrificed in this vain attempt of the German Crown Prince to crush France in one overpowering operation.
Von Ludendorff Resigns as Chief of Staff
The siege of Verdun was launched in compliance with the wishes of Crown Prince Frederick William, who had a roseate vision of himself as a world conqueror entering Paris at the head of a horde of Huns. Upon his suggestion the best shock troops in Hindenberg's victorious army on the Russian front were transferred to his command. This so angered General von Ludendorff, the German Chief of Staff, that he resigned his office in a huff and was succeeded by General yon Falkenhayn. Nor did the great Hindenberg take kindly to the withdrawal of his best troops from the Russian front; on the contrary, he frankly predicted the failure of the ...