Over the Top

Blog Post
Sunken Lane, Beaumont Hamel, Somme. 
In the photo, men of the 1st Lancashire Fusiliers are about to go over the top. 
Accurate German rifle and machine gun fire cut them down fire soon after. 
Within a few minutes, the battalion lost more than half their strength with 163 killed, 312 wounded and 11 missing.
People called it the “war to end all wars” but it wasn’t.  Lest we forget.

18 thoughts on “Over the Top

  1. "Within a few minutes, the battalion lost more than half their strength with 163 killed, 312 wounded and 11 missing."

    That's what happens when you are using last century's tactics in a new century.

    Thanks for the post.
    Paul L. Quandt

  2. The day Western Civilization committed suicide.
    It is still playing out.
    All because a bunch of inbred entitled and related fools could not get their shit together to stop an entirely unnecessary conflict.

  3. Most knew they were doomed, but went over the top anyway. Would troops today do the same?

  4. A lot of officers led their men over the top armed with nothing but a swagger stick, because they knew that they'd be wiped out and, what was the point of a pistol. Brave men all, foolish, and incredibly brave.

  5. "There was a lot of that going on – by both sides – at the Somme."

    It amazes me that the soldiers didn't just shoot their officers after the first few of those ( so called ) attacks. But, then they were European armies, not American. Although, the U.S. armies ( north and south ) did not do much better in our late unpleasantness.


  6. I didn't read down to the later comments before I sounded off. May still have but you and raven wrote it better.


  7. And here I thought the title of the post indicated an overreaction to a certain virus.

  8. It was a different time and there was a different mindset both in the First World War and in the War of Northern Aggression/Civil War. Most of the combatants had never left home before, they were all subject to diseases that they had little immunity to, and for the most part, they followed orders. Even really stupid orders.

  9. Well, I've seen those paths. I guess glory. Not too glorious to the people who are crippled both emotionally (shell shocked, PTSD, etc) and physically wrecked. My son-in-law was 100% disabled while serving in the Navy in Afghanistan, as I've written here before. It's a big damned sacrifice for a place we're pulling out of, but we all do it for old Glory.

    I think that the only thing that I and so very many others asked was that sacrifices made MEANT SOMETHING. All too often they don't.

  10. We'll all be feeling the economic blow back from this for many years. The cure may be worse than the disease.

  11. The communists in congress threw away 50,000 American lives by refusing to re-supply the ARVN as the NVA flooded down from the north- After we had pulled out in victory and promised the South we would guarantee the Paris accords. The first time this was tried, in '73, the ARVN did fine, with some US air support and re-supply. The second time, in '75, they could not manage the treaty violation by themselves and were overrun.

    Communists are what nazi's aspire to be when they grow up.

  12. That is what I am afraid of- We just inverted FDR's famous saying- Fear is going to kill our economy- it is coming in from every sector now, and the supply chains. I have contracts I am working on, but who knows if anything in coming down the road- I just had a supplier offer a 30% discount without even asking. Every closure has a cascade effect downstream from it.

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