THE TRENCHES

The Origin of Trench Warfare 
After their defeat at the Marne (in France),

the Germans retreated to a more fortified position  They built a small network of trenches (long, thin holes in the ground that would protect soldiers from gun fire) so that they rest after months of attack  These trenches were lined with barbed wire and machine guns nests & were supported by heavy cannons

Origin of Trench Warfare 2 
These trenches were easily defended and

were almost impenetrable  The Germans were able to beat back combined British and French Attacks  The British and French soon built their own trenches out of necessity

The Race to the Sea  After discovering that neither side could successfully attack the trenches. both sides tried to outflank (go around) their enemy  Both sides raced North believing that the first to reach the coastline would have a great advantage  Both sides reached the coast at the same time!  The end result was that the small trench system was stretched out and cut a line though all of France (approx 1000 km) .

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concrete was poured in and drainage systems installed  The trenches were several levels deep and were connected by small communications trenches . tunnels were dug and underground dugouts were built  In some cases. the trenches became more complex  They were lined with sandbags.The Trenches  As time passed.

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No Man s Land  Between enemy trenches was a space called No Man s Land  Entering No Man s Land was almost certain death  Most men who were killed in here were left unburied and the smell of death spread for miles in each direction .

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generals on both side were not happy being defensive and constantly ordered there armies to attack The order Over the Top forced men to get out of their trenches.Over the Top  Soldiers were expected to dig and rebuild trenches     each night Soldiers also dug Saps into no man s land and violently defended their trench in case of attack However. travel in the open across no man s land and attempt to capture an enemies trench Millions on both sides died in attacks that accomplished nothing .

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. . .The Dangers of Trench Warfare  The trenches were very dangerous and      horrible places for many reasons You faced the threat of death constantly You were outside all the time You were constantly wet You were surrounded by dead people and human waste Some examples of these dangers are .

Trench Fever .

Trench Mouth .

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Trench Foot .

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Lice .

Rats .

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