Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Blog Assignment #1 - WW1 Battles and The Canadian Corps

The CEF in Action - How did the battles and fighting of World War One affect us as a nation?

In yesterday's class we be spent some time examining 4 key battles in detail - Ypres, Somme, Vimy Ridge, and Passchendaele. It is important that we understand the basics about these wars, but also their significance. Which battle was characterized by the first use of biological weapons in WWI? Which battle was the first to utilize the power of tank warfare? Which battle was considered to be Canada's greatest victory in the Great War? Keep these ideas in mind as we move forward in the term.

Activity: Use the internets...

PART ONE: Examine trench warfare up close. Take a look at the 4 virtual tours by the BBC.

Dog Fight Virtual Tour Trenches - Front Lines Virtual Tour

PART TWO: Choose one of the following topics below, and then answer the questions for the topic by commenting on this post. NOTE: You must leave your first/last name to receive marks & your post will not appear until I have approved it. You only need to send it once. You will receive a mark out of 5 for your post - you will be assessed on your level of analysis and your clarity. Please spell-check your answer, and indicate which topic you chose.


  • Click on the link and choose a minimum of 2 different topics to read about from the lists.
  • In your post, comment on at least TWO things that you found interesting.
  • Skim the article, and write down 2 things that you found interesting about shell-shock, and its impact on the soldiers and/or their families.
3. Shot at Dawn: Cowards, Traitors, or Victims?
  • Skim the article, and comment on whether or not you believe that corporal punishment should have been used to punish soldiers in WWI. Explain your reasoning.
  • Read over the introduction, and then select the section 2 "Tanks on the Western Front" and one other section of your choice.
  • Comment on 2 interesting things that you learned about tanks.
Extension Activity:

Go to the Fun and Games section on the right side of the blog and play the trench warfare game. It's pretty fun.


  1. Tanks

    I never knew that some tanks fell into dugouts and got stuck, as well i found some of the images that tanks looked like pretty funny. Lastly, I never knew tanks were banks.

  2. I read Trench Warfare - Information and I learn that it was important to fight with the correct weather conditions before using a gas attack because on September 25th 1915, the British Army launched a gas attack and it blew back into the advancing troops; however, this problem was solved by using heavy artillery when firing gas shells. I also learn that each division (20000 men) received 300 gallons of rum and that they would be distributed after an offensive, rather than before. My guess would be because there would be fewer soldiers to feed after a battle, meaning each soldier would get more rum or the cost of rum would be less. This also might give soldiers incentive to survive to celebrate rum with their friends.

  3. I read "Shell Shock During World War I" and I learned that being exposed to shell shock leads to psychological trauma. I already know this but what was interesting was that soldiers who had bayoneted men in the face developed hysterical tics of their own facial muscles, stomach cramps seized men who knifed their foes in the abdomen, and snipers lost their sight. Nightmares were another problem for these injured soldiers. I also learned that four out of five soldiers exposed to shell shock were never able to return to the battlefield. This is one thing that soldiers fear the most of because at the time, they did not have the medical technology to cure them to be as fit as they were before both physically and mentally. Something that was interesting that also concerns this is that according to one survey published in 1917, the ratio of officers to men at the front was 1:30 but among the patients in the hospitals specialising in war neuroses, the ratio of offices to men was 1:6.
    Jeremy Leung

  4. Shell Shock During World War I
    -Micah Chen

    I found it interesting that traumatized soldiers experienced physical symptoms based upon what they did to others. For example, men who cut others' stomachs had stomach cramps, and soldiers who struck others in the face with a bayonet felt their facial muscles twitching. I think these symptoms occurred because the soldiers' minds caused themselves to imagine if they themselves were cut in the stomach, or struck in the face with a bayonet from the guilt of the action to another human being like themselves.
    Another thing I found interesting was the reaction to the soldiers who returned home because of shell shock. I thought that society would be more sympathetic to the soldiers as they must have had a small idea of how terrible war was. Instead, many people felt that the soldiers should be ashamed of themselves, and were received with silence when they returned home. Especially surprising was the fact that poet wrote a poem about these shell shocked soldiers and how they should be ashamed of themselves, and that children look at them with hate.

  5. After reading "Shell Shock during World War One" I found it interesting that soldiers with shell shock who inflicted something on another soldier, was effected physically by it. For example, "Soldiers who had bayoneted men in the face developed hysterical tics of their own facial muscles. Stomach cramps seized men who knifed their foes in the abdomen. Snipers lost their sight." Also, the fact that some soldiers did not "crack up" during the war but developed shell shock after the war when they went home is very interesting. Perhaps its because when they are in the midst of war, they don't have time to or cannot relax and think about what they have done as they exert all their efforts in trying to stay alive; but when they return home, the fight-or-flee instinct is somewhat gone and their minds then come around to the horror they have witnessed. I think that shell shock has an eminent impact on the soldiers as they are undermined in the ability to survive in combat, and also in daily life as they cannot eat or sleep or have peace at mind. Another effect on the soldier's life was the shame that was inflicted upon them. I think it was due to more of a poor understanding of shell shock at the time, as people may have believed that shell shock victims were cowardly, afraid, and used it as an excuse to stay away from combat.

    - Steven Zheng

  6. Tanks: Life and Times of a "Wonder Weapon".

    The concept of a self-sufficient entity that could move from place to place amidst the field of battle, and causing total destruction in its path was an ongoing problem for both the Alliance and Entente Commands. Men couldn't do it, nor could horses. Armoured cars were frequently bogged down in the mud. Only the tank could accomplish this kind of task. Therefore, I found the articles very interesting because the tank is often referred to as a mobile assault weapon, outclassing infantry, cavalry, and artillery in almost every possible way. The BBC articles, however, focus on the idea that the tank was a tool that affected the morale of the people. I never knew that the tank was often a tool of laughter for the Allied officers. It proved to be a morale booster for the men on the front too (if the tank is on your side!). Another thing that I found interesting was the fact that the tank was often used as a threat of force, as opposed to a circus-like theme used in World War I. Commanders would plant their tanks to prove their power in whichever location that they choose. Overall, the tank served multiple functions throughout history, whether it be mowing down infantry, destroying other tanks, flattening buildings, or affecing the morale of the men; the tank served as something well ahead of its time: psychological warfare.

    - Matthew Lau

  7. I read the article discussing the punishment of British troops who had fled from combat. Although the form of punishment used by British command, death by firing squad, from a modern view point is very cruel almost to to point of being barbaric, I feel that at the time it may have been a necessary evil to win the war. I believe that although it is an undesirable method of keep order, it is still extremely effective for maintaining discipline. Proof of this is that out of all the men deployed, into a war where they faced horrors that had never before been seen in any other conflict, the British Army was forced to only use this punishment 306 times for the whole war.
    -Charles Turton

  8. The article "Shell Shock in WWI" explained two things: that men who were in the state of shell-shock could never fully recover and their shame will be carried with their lives forever. I already knew that shell shock was like a canceler for the body in which the individual would be wrought with sadness or rage at random given times; he could have severe diarrhea or suffer from hysterical fits. However, I do not agree that these men deserved the shame and dishonor because of their state; they bravely fought in a war that was gruesome and destructive. The impact on soldiers would have been permanent. Very few would have survived a physiological breakdown of that scale. These victim soldiers' families would have to not only live with sadness but also shame. One interesting fact was that the officers who served relatively behind the scenes also were cased with shell shock; this meant that 'shell shock' was mostly damaging in the brain.

  9. Alex MacPhail
    i think corporal punishment was necessary in WW1 but maybe not to the extreme of having men shot for quite so many cases. For betrayal and other causes of that magnitude on the front lines death is the best punishment to send a message to the rest of the men, but for deserters especially depending on the case a public beating/lashing or being tied to a wheel with no food or water like the man in the article would suffice. Multiple offences would have to increase the punishment drastically each time and a certain number would amount to death, being put at the front of the next push would also be a serious incentive to play by the rules

  10. Tony Ahn
    I read about the trench wars.
    The rats in the trench wars were interesting since many books mention rats in the trenches which symbolizes fear and death. I also remember another book that wasn't mentioned in the article but stated that the real enemy was the rat, which would eat one alive if one was buried in the trenches. The article about the lice was also interesting because it was different from what I knew. I thought the lice actually helped some soldiers by eating the rotting wounds, thus cleaning the wounds. (I was assuming the wounded soldiers would kill the lice before it ate too much) According to the article I was obviously wrong since the lice seems horrible as the rats. I was surprised that the soldiers were even willing to let hot wax from candles drip in their bodies to burn the pests.

  11. Eric Yang
    Shell Shock
    From the reading, shell shock is a psychological problem that affects those who have been under constant stress and nervousness. Some of the victims of this psychological problem did not recover, and had to live the rest of their lives being in virtual "battlefields" and have images of the gruesome deaths and injuries such as people who got blasted in the face and have ticks all over the injury. Shell shocks were not uncommon. almost 4/5 of the victims did not recover and got back to the battlefield. The constant psychological shocks in the battle field have truly driven these soldiers into life full of hysteria.

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  13. Trench Warfare:
    Self Inflicted Wounds:
    While I have heard of people who have inflicted wounds on themselves to try to get out of a war I didn't know that so many people actually did it. In the British army alone 3894 people were accused of self inflicted wounds and I'm sure there were even more people who weren't caught.

    Alcohol in the Trenches:
    Another fact that surprised me was the fact that soldiers in the war received alcohol. I had assumed that they wouldn’t receive alcohol since it would deteriorate the soldier’s performance in battle and cause them to make more rash decisions. In addition it is also a depressant and doesn’t actually warm you up in cold weather. However, each division received 300 gallons with French and German troops receiving more.

    -Robert Desjardins

  14. The tank when first introduced was not the vehicle we marvel at today. When it was first introduced by the British it was considered a useless weapon and many soldiers laughed at it. The tank crews also endured much troubles when many of the tanks malfunctioned and broke on the battlefield. If the tank breaking down in battle was not enough of an irritant. The first tanks were very tough to work in. Constant fumes and a very hot environment made it extremely difficult to operate in.

    ~ Harmillan Oberoi

  15. Shot at Dawn: Cowards, Traitors, or Victims?

    The United Kingdom and the Commonwealth executed 306 soldiers for cowardice in the face of the enemy. Supporters of these people now say that, due to suffering from severe stress in times of war, these people should not have been shot and should be awarded pardons posthumously. They may be right, but at the time there was no better option than to kill those soldiers. It was the right decision to shoot those deemed cowards because they needed to limit the amount of deserters and, perhaps more importantly, there was no alternative. By executing those who ran away, they reduced the incentive to flee; the prevailing opinion that if you “ran from German guns, [you] would be shot by British ones” stopped certain people, who may have ordinarily run, from running.

    There was also no other option. Like other advances that weren't known during WWI, combat stress was virtually unknown. There was no way to distinguish between those who were legitimately suffering from shell shock and other people who just ran. They could not be sent home or there would be mass desertion. They could not be sent to prisons because resources were low. They could not be sent back in the army because they could flee during an important battle. Also by, much harsher at that time, law, the military courts did exactly what they were supposed to do in the situation. People who signed up knew exactly what they were agreeing to. At the time, court martial and death were the only options.

    -David Choi

  16. Michael Wong
    "Shell Shock"

    I found it interesting how soldiers who performed gruesome acts such as gutting an enemies stomach or disfiguring an enemies face suffered the same punishment they dealt; however they only suffered mentally. Soldiers today still suffer from similar symptoms; however, now it is called PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder). An explanation for why "shell shock" was more severe for soldiers in World War I could be because soldiers today are trained to "lose their emotions" before combat by playing war simulation video games.

    Another fact I found intriguing was the name of the diagnosis: "shell shock". Literally, it sounds like a physical diagnosis rather than a psychological term. From the article, I learned that the term "shell shock" was given because at first it was believed that physical acts such as being buried alive or being brutally hit caused shell shock; however, it was later determined that shell shock was a psychological problem when non-combatant officers began complaining of similar symptoms.

    Unlike a broken arm, shell shock stayed with a soldier his entire life. It often hindered his way to be the same again (both physically and mentally).

  17. "Shell Shock"

    Before reading this article, I knew somewhat of the effects soldiers suffered after the war that could also be synonymous to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. However, I did not know it could manifest itself in such a way that soldiers would feel pain or loss of function of parts of their bodies because they had killed someone 'via' that body-part.

    I also found it interesting how the term shell-shock was termed to due a wrong diagnostic of medical condition. This would have perpetrated the wrong treatments for the victims of shell shock thus not helping in alleviating the problems and maybe in some cases worsening it.

    One of the problems I believe that caused shell shock among recruits was the lack of training and preparation. Fresh recruits, barely adults, were sent into the hell of Europe with no preparation whatsoever. They were not told beforehand of the horrors that awaited them and were left to fend on their own. It especially didn't help when they were received with silence and shunned by some; the only way they could survive was to retreat inward. Thus, many of them could never recover.

  18. Shot at Dawn: Cowards, Traitors, or Victims?

    Corporal punishment was required in WWI, but not to the degree of executing those who ran away from the battlefield. Firstly, all killing is wrong, whether it is done for revenge, or under the name of justice. Secondly, we must take into account the psychological impact a massacre has on a human being; when a soldier, such as those in WWI, see his fellow warriors being slaughtered in massive numbers, he will most likely suffer huge emotional distress. This distress could manifest itself in forms of mental illness, insanity, and many more. Thus, it is quite reasonable for soldiers to flee from battlefield, horrified that a victim of ruthless carnage could be himself.

    For the reasons mentioned above, corporal punishment should have been less severe in WWI. An alternative to executing could have been depriving those who attempted escape from water and food for several days. In conclusion, corporal punishment was necessary, but it was too extreme in WWI.

  19. the previous comment was posted by William Kim

  20. Shot at Dawn: Cowards, Traitors, or Victims?

    If I were one of the soldiers, I would obviously be against punishment on deserters, since I would probably be the first one to run away in a crisis!

    Realistically though, given the ever-increasing number of casualties in the horrible trench warfare, the punishment was probably necessary, or else the army would disintegrate. The executions shock the soldiers and when they are in danger, they would then choose to "die in glory" rather than running away and get executed by other fellow soldiers in the end.

    I do not entirely agree with your idea of starving the cowards food and water: in some cases, they were already starving! For example, as the war progressed, the Germans, especially, were having trouble supplying the front line, and thus the soldiers' were starving. Not surprisingly, there was much incentive to launch a successful attack on enemy trenches just to get the food. On the other hand, starving a few days to avoid death doesn't seem like a bad idea anymore. Even on the better-supplied allies side, I can imagine that some people would take a few days of suffering over 99.9% chance of dying.


  21. @Jason

    You are absolutely right; in many cases soldiers probably were starving due to lack of resources. What I meant was that different types of punishment could have been imposed depending on the situation, and killing was not one of them.

  22. Trench Warfare

    Alcohol in the Trenches: Upon reading the short article about how alcohol was distributed in the trenches, I had come to learn about it. I had not known that alcohol was given to the soldiers during battles because initially I had thought it would ruin their fighting performance. After reading this I learned that for every 20,000 men (one division) there were 300 gallons of rum given. Also that it was given to them after the battles. Why it was, I do not know because as I know, rum can warm the body when it feels cold. After a battle the men are most likely to be all warm from fighting.

    Amputations in the First World War: I had known that when injuries occur during warfare, amputations are required in order to save the lives of those injured. But a thing that I had not known was that a total of 240,000 men (15% of those sent) required in field amputations because of wounds suffered during battle.

    -Tyler Bains

  23. Shell Shock During World War 1

    Symptoms of Shell Shock: Before reading this article, i had assumed that injuries and symptoms relating to shell shock were merely temporary effects such as disorientation due to close proximity with an explosive or bomb. Scenes from "Saving Private Ryan" are prime examples of such portrayals of shell shock. However, the shell shock described in the article displayed a condition more closely related to post traumatic stress, an extremely long-term and painful disorder of war.
    I also found the fact that one does not have to have been on the front lines to experience shell-shock. Lieutenants and commanding officers would often retain similar symptoms with an extremely high percentage of officers ending up hospitalized due to the condition.

    - Anthony Hui

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  25. Trench Warfare: World War One was a conflict of attrition in which armies used trenches to keep cover and periodically attack the enemy. The conditions in these trenches were repulsive as many men lived among the decomposing bodies of their comrades. An interesting and obscene fact is that rats thrived in the war trenches. More particularly, the rats "fed on the plentiful corpses... usually eyes first." The brave soldiers considered this a mere inconvenience, since they were purely focused on fighting and surviving. Moreover, it is interesting that the journals describe the rats "as comparable to cats" that grew larger each day of the war. Personally, I cannot fathom co-existing with rodents in these deplorable conditions! Also, the recruitment of boy soldiers was controversial since young men slipped under the radar. Surprisingly, propaganda and advertisements influenced lads to truly believe that it would be fun to be in the army and get away from their strict parents. Unfortunately, these boys had no idea what they had gotten themselves into. The trench warfare was especially relentless to young teens who had fallen to the false proposal of an enjoyable overseas adventure. In general, these facts reiterate the Rememberance Day saying "Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori." - The old fallacy that it is sweet and proper to die for one's country.

  26. On the topic of Shell Shock/Post Traumatic Stress:

    I find it interesting that the officer:men ratios were so different from the front to the hospital in treatment for shell shock. From 1:30 --> 1:6 respectively. This seems to show that there was no distinction in who became "shell shocked", "everyone had a breaking point"

    Another interesting topic was the man who had too much reason and couldn't handle it. "a soldier who suffered a neurosis had not lost his reason but was labouring under the weight of too much reason"

    And the last thing I find particularly interesting within this article, which I already knew, but still find interesting, is the fact that many men suffered "shell shock" only after they have returned to the lifestyle of an ordinary citizen; suggesting to me that they have a hard time believing that everything could just go back to normal after the horrid things they had experienced/seen, and, as a result of being forced back into normality, "could spark off severe psychological trauma"

    -Han Tong

  27. Trench Warfare : Trench Rats
    Once I read this article I was instantly reminded of the novel "Johnny Got His Gun" by Dalton Trumbo, and remembered a quote by Trumbo "He thought about it afterward. It didn't matter whether the rat was gnawing on your buddy or a damned German it was all the same. Your real enemy was the rat and when you saw it there fat and well fed chewing on something that might be you why you went nuts" (pg. 91 of Johnny Got His Gun..I'mm seriouss) This quote shows how horrendous the rats were to the soldiers.

    Once I saw this again I thought of Johnny Got his Gun and how Joe Bonham had to get all of his limbs amputated. Just sitting there, no movements whatsoever. It was worse then death. I thought that it was pretty rare for soldiers to get their legs or arms amputated regularly, but apparently about 240, 000 British soldiers lost a limb.

    -JJ Asuming-Tawiah

  28. Prior to the assignment I had already been familiar with the term shell shock and was well aware that it was a psychological disturbance, that men returning from war, more specifically those engaged in heavy artillery warfare, were subjected to. In essence a nervous breakdown. Upon reading this article, I went on to find out that it was not only psychological trauma that they endured but physiological as well. Most interesting was the fact that these shell shock victims demonstrated symptoms that often paralleled the injuries they inflicted upon their enemies. For example shell shock victims experienced ticks in their faces mirroring those during warfare they had bayoneted in the face. Still others were subject to severe stomach cramps, as if to replicate the injuries they had inflicted on their enemies by stabbing them in the stomach. I also found interesting that shell shock was apparently evident during the warfare with most casualties experiencing symptoms. Most however, suffered long after the war. With this fact in mind what I found intriguing was not that these individuals had lost their mind, and inability to reason, but rather that they had attempted to rationalize and reason to much.

    - Dylan Sidoo

  29. Tanks during World War One were quite different from later wars. Tanks were exctremly slow, and not highly armoured, which was apparent once the german mauser rifle came into service, and crews began to die within the armoured beasts from penetrating rounds. Before the mauser rifle, however, tanks were a shock unit , used in numbers to support large advances of infantry , and this art would later be perfected into the german Blitzkrieg of World war 2. As well , the crews in these tanks suffered from cramped spaces that had the engine within the crew compartment , making crews delirious from fumes, even passing out during combat.

  30. I found the article about shell shock very interesting. The war not only affected the bodies of the soldiers, but also their minds. The fact that some soldiers "cracked" after the war was interesting. This was because the war constantly put pressure on the soldiers, not allowing the effects of shell shock to set in. I found it interesting that so many people were affected by shell shock. Over 1/7 of the British army was discharged with shell shock as the reason, with over 80,000 medical cases. In conclusion, shell shock is not cool.

  31. I found the article about shell shock very interesting. The war not only affected the bodies of the soldiers, but also their minds. The fact that some soldiers "cracked" after the war was interesting. This was because the war constantly put pressure on the soldiers, not allowing the effects of shell shock to set in. I found it interesting that so many people were affected by shell shock. Over 1/7 of the British army was discharged with shell shock as the reason, with over 80,000 medical cases. In conclusion, shell shock is not cool.

  32. I read the article on Shell Shock. It wasn't anything extremely new to me, but I did find the psychological implications quite interesting. The fact that victims would feel pains where they attacked their enemies truly exemplifies the bond between body and mind.

  33. Tanks: Life and Times of a "Wonder Weapon"

    Comparing the effectiveness of tanks from World War I to present day is very astonishing yet intriguing. As a main mode of transportation and weaponry for soldiers currently fighting in Afghanistan, the tank is an essential and effective part of the army. However, after reading "Banking on the Tank" and "'Star Turn' on the Western Front", I realized that the tank was more of a means of profit and threat, rather than actually damage in World War I. To outline the main contributions of a tank during the Battle of Somme, it would be instilling fear in the opposition and gaining the attention of people in order to purchase war bonds and certificates. I found these facts very interesting due to the fact that a such an object's role can change so much in a small amount of time.

  34. Shell Shock

    I have read about the topic before so I did not find anything surprising, although I found the medical symptoms to be quite different then what i had knew. "Stomach cramps seized men who knifed their foes in the abdomen. Snipers lost their sight." I did not know that soldiers would suffer in these ways.

  35. This comment has been removed by the author.

  36. Shell shock originally referred to those who were disoriented by the experiences with artillery (hence the "shell"). And by experience, it usually means being hit or watching a comrade getting hit. Then, observations demonstrate that other complaints associated with shell shock in specific body parts. However, studies have shown amongst Vietnam War veterans that the ear may be the cause of so many cases of shell shock or PTSD. As a soldier fire an artillery, the noise from the weapons popped the eardrum causing severe disorientation and possible brain damage. And by extrapolating back to the First World War, heavy artillery and tanks were prevalent, so that could be one reason why so many young men suffered from the mental illness.
    What I found interesting about this article is the treatment of the men who were suffering from shell shock. Many men were not able to fight due to extreme psychological disturbances, and those who were forced to fight were the most vulnerable on the battle field. The men did not want to suffer from humiliation by withdrawing from the battle, instead they suffered more by continue to exacerbate their mental states. It is also surprising that officers are more prone to suffer from shell shock, compared to ordinary troops.
    At the top of the article, there is a hideous looking face with "crazy" eyes: the modern depiction of a mentally ill person. However, shell shock was not a joking matter, it ruins lives of soldiers and sometimes, the constant torture and pain may be worse than death.

    -Alex Lin

  37. Shell Shock is basically based on physiological problems that happened during the World War One, were everybody especially the army argued or disagreed with one another. Although, it was an interesting article, but it really was not new to me. The interesting parts were about their soldiers,the army, their medical cases, and how they treated people.

    Mohammad Kashanipour

  38. Corporal Punishment in WWI
    I believe that corporal punishment was needed, to an extent, to subdue the number of deserters. However, I do not believe that any of the soldiers should have been executed. When a fellow compatriot is executed by the country they fought for, this creates even more fear and agitation in the other soldiers. It lowers their moral to know that either way they go they could be killed. I belive that strong and inspirational leadership was a much more effective than fear to motivate the soldiers. In addition, many of the executed soldiers were mentally ill. They were not cowards nor traitors and they were executed by the country they fought for.
    Ruaridh Boswell

  39. I think that it's ironic that the early tanks were potrayed to the civilians as new, gimmicky, circus acts, for example in the cartoons and military shows, yet in reality they were deadly, fear-inspiring war machines that led short and destructive lives. Tanks also started out with a good "moral effect" on civilians; yet after the tank became more practical, it began to be a way of driving fear and oppression into the people, for example in the protests of Tianamen Square. It's interesting that civilians did not fear the tank until it was actually improved to a certain point. However, on the battlefield the tank would have made the enemy shat bricks, as well the crew inside the tanks probably shat bricks of equal size becuase the early tank wasnt really bulletproof...or fast.

  40. I found it interesting that soldiers suffering from shell shock experienced facial ticks if they had bayoneted someone in the face and many experienced stomach cramps if they had knifed others in the abdomen. I also found it interesting that even though the ratio of officers to men was 30:1 on the battlefield, the ratio of those suffering from shell shock was 6:1. This showed that everyone had a breaking point and that shell shock was a psychological disease, not a physical one.

    Calin Manea

  41. Edward Zhao

    After reading the article about shellshock, I was impressed by several interesting I have learned. First of all, it was surprising that more officers (ratio-wise) suffered shellshock than men. This means that not only the frontline soldiers engaging all the combat received psychological trauma but that everyone fears war including officers. Also, during the time, there was not a full understanding to curing psychological illness so only 1/5 of the soldiers went back to battle. From the huge numbers of soldiers suffering from shellshock, I see that war is a gruesome thing and we who never participated in war can never understand the experiences of the ones who have.

  42. Braydn Smith

    After looking over the article on tanks accompanied by my previous knowledge of their introduction i was intrigued by the dense history of these mobile weapons. first, tanks were introduced in world war one in the battle of the somme, they were introduced by the british with high hopes that this secret weapon would break the deadlock of the trenches.. they were designed for trench warfare; untroubled by barbed wire obstacles and impervious to rifle fire, though highly vulnerable to artillery. tanks were also very slow with a top speed of 2 mph even the infantry could outpace them. they were also very unreliable, they would get stuck in shell holes and mechanical breakdowns were common. it is amazing to see the version of tanks as we know them today and what they were back then, i have attached both a picture of the first tank model.
    picture: http://www.1914-1918.net/PIX/tank_mk1.jpg

  43. Shell Shock was a term used during the First World War to describe the psychological trauma suffered by men serving on the war's key battlefronts - France, Flanders, along the Isonzo and in Gallipoli.


    this is a very interesting and sad video on how people were injured and how their minds were crippled due to the trauma of world war one

    -Sajen gill