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11 Trench Warfare
Transcript of 11 Trench Warfare
Sanitary conditions in the trenches were quite poor, and common infections included dysentery, typhus, and cholera. Many soldiers suffered from parasites and related infections. Poor hygiene also led to fungal conditions, such as trench mouth and trench foot. Another common killer was exposure, since the temperature within a trench in the winter could easily fall below freezing.
Medical services were primitive and antibiotics had not yet been discovered. Relatively minor injuries could prove fatal through onset of infection and gangrene.
How did the major events of WWI lead to future conflict?
A type of combat in which opposing troops fight from trenches facing each other. Troops are significantly protected from the enemy's small arms fire and are substantially sheltered from artillery.
During the day, snipers and artillery observers in balloons made movement through no man's land perilous, so the trenches were mostly quiet. Consequently, trenches were busiest at night, when cover of darkness allowed the movement of troops and supplies, the maintenance and expansion of the barbed wire and trench system, and reconnaissance of the enemy's defenses.
Due to the intensity of fighting, approximately 10% of all front line soldiers died.
The development and use of poison gas was started in 1914 by the French and German armies because they needed to find new way of overcome the stalemate of trench warfare.
Poison gas was very deadly and effective. It caused one million casualties and 100,000 deaths. Gasses did not normally kill the enemy immediately, but rather took several days to slowly and painfully kill them. It was also used as a surprise attack on enemy forces, but most countries invented gas masks to protect their soldiers.
No Man's Land
Death in the Trenches
Burial of the dead was usually a luxury that neither side could easily afford. The bodies would lie in no man's land until the front line moved, by which time the bodies were often unidentifiable. Rats were common in the trenches, often surviving on the corpses that couldn't be moved.
On some battlefields, the bodies were not buried until after the war. On the Western Front, bodies continue to be found as fields are plowed and building foundations dug.
The area of land between two enemy trench systems, which neither side wished to cross or seize due to fear of being attacked by the enemy in the process.
No man's land often ranged from several hundred yards to, in some cases, less than 10 yards. Heavily defended by machine guns, mortars, artillery and riflemen on both sides, it was often riddled with barbed wire and rudimentary land mines, as well as corpses and wounded soldiers who were not able to make it across.
I can explain how the major events of WWI led to future conflict.
"I can" Statement
Shell shock is a phrase coined in World War I to describe the type of posttraumatic stress disorder many soldiers were afflicted with during the war (before PTSD itself was a term). It is a reaction to the intensity of the bombardment and fighting that produced a helplessness appearing variously as panic and being scared, or flight, an inability to reason, sleep, walk, or talk.