Published on 24 Sep 2016
Sitting in the Chair of Temporary Insanity, Indy talks about Galicia’s big role in war on Location, if Pilots were issued guns, and a story from a viewers great grandpa.
September 25, 2016
September 23, 2016
Published on 22 Sep 2016
This week 100 years ago Manfred von Richthofen is credited with his first aerial victory on the Western Front. He shoots down a British airplane with his Albatross D.II. At the same time the Isonzo Front is in full swing again where Luigi Cadorna is leading another offensive.
September 20, 2016
Published on 19 Sep 2016
Cinemas were already pretty popular when World War 1 broke out in 1914. After initial hesitation all warring nations started to embrace the new mass medium for their propaganda. Since it was technically difficult deliver the authentic material the audiences wanted, the films were mostly staged. Film scripts opened the opportunity to transport any message about the war to a mass audience.
September 18, 2016
Published on 17 Sep 2016
Sitting in the Chair of Temporary Insanity, Indy talks about officers tricking their own men, the relationships between them and how criminals were treated in the first world war.
September 17, 2016
At Samizdata, Patrick Crozier gets all contrarian about the tank in a post he titles “Haig’s greatest mistake”:
On 15 September 1916 tanks made their debut at Flers-Courcelette, one of the many engagements which took place during the Battle of the Somme.
The battle marked the beginning of a sorry chapter in British military history because the truth – a truth that to this day few seem prepared to acknowledge – is that the First World War tank was useless.
The list of its failings is lengthy. It was slow, it was unreliable, it had no suspension and it was horrible to operate. The temperature inside was typically over 100°F and as exhaust gases built up so crew effectiveness collapsed. It was also highly vulnerable. Field artillery could take it out easily. Even rifle ammunition could be effective against it. While normal bullets might not be able to penetrate the armour they could knock off small pieces of metal from the inside – known as spall – which then whizzed round the interior wounding all and sundry.
That the tank was the brainchild of Winston Churchill from his days as head of the Admiralty should have alerted senior commanders to the possibility that it was yet another of his crackpot schemes. But they persisted. For his part, Haig being a technophile put a huge amount of faith in the new invention. His diary is littered with references to the tank and he seems to have made great efforts to secure ever more of them. In consequence, huge amounts of effort went into a technological dead end when it would have been far better spent on guns, shells and fuzes.
Not that such efforts were ever likely to satisfy the snake-oil salesmen who made up the ranks of the tank enthusiasts. In the face of tank failure after tank failure they simply claimed that their beloved weapon just wasn’t being used properly.
September 16, 2016
Published on 15 Sep 2016
For years the British had developed the idea of the “landship” or tank and now it was finally ready for the first deployment during the Battle of Flers-Courcelette. And even though technical problems plagued the new invention, the British leadership was confident that this new weapon would break the stalemate at the Western Front for good. In the meantime Germany was focusing all offensive efforts on the Romanian front to mercilessly crush the new enemy.
September 13, 2016
Published on 12 Sep 2016
The idea for an armoured vehicle that could withstand fire and travel across battlefields was already developed in 1914 after the Race to the Sea. The British “Landship Committee” developed the tank weapon in secrecy. The French were also trying out different designs at the same time. Learn all about the development and the invention of the tank in our special episode.
September 11, 2016
Published on 10 Sep 2016
It’s time for the chair of wisdom again and of course Indy answering your questions about World War 1.
September 9, 2016
Published on 8 Sep 2016
German Zeppelins brought terror and destruction to the British homeland since the beginning of the war. But a new invention helped to bring the first one down this week 100 years ago: the incendiary bullet. The public is overjoyed as the first behemoth strikes the ground as a flaming ball of fire. At the same time an unusual calm descends on the battlefields around Verdun: Paul von Hindenburg and Erich Ludendorff visited the battlefield for the first time and are appalled by what they see.
September 7, 2016
Published on 6 Sep 2016
The next Rock Island premium auction happens this weekend: http://www.rockislandauction.com/
The era before and during World War 1 saw rapid development in firearms. Some of them were only prototypes or only saw very limited production. In collaboration with Rock Island Auction we present 10 rare and obscure firearms of the WW1 era.
September 6, 2016
Published on 5 Sep 2016
Visit the Fortress Museum in Przemyśl: https://goo.gl/maps/8vdZ8AbqapG2
Romania’s history before World War 1 was heavily influenced by the great powers surrounding them. Not only was a considerable minority of Romanians living in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the Romanian royal family had ties to Germany, Britain and Russia. After fighting in the Balkan Wars, Romania remained neutral during the first two years of World War 1 but decided to join when the moment seemed right.
September 4, 2016
Published on 3 Sep 2016
Map of all the locations we went to: http://bit.ly/2bxRZCg
Indy & Flo talk about our first trip to original WW1 locations in Poland and Ukraine. The trip was a great experience for all of us and you will surely like the future episodes we will publish throughout the next months. Thanks again to everyone who made this possible.
September 2, 2016
Published on 1 Sep 2016
After more than two years of carnage, the war is still growing as Romania joins the war. The moments seems right to them as the Russians steamrolled the Austro-Hungarian Army on the Eastern front this summer. But can the unproven and under equipped Romanian Army really seize the moment? The German High Command wants to make sure that Romania regrets joining the Entente and sends two of their best generals: Erich von Falkenhayn and August von Mackensen.
August 30, 2016
Published on 29 Aug 2016
Submarine warfare is one of the lasting impacts of World War 1. Especially the unrestricted submarine warfare by the German navy was a big problem for the British supply routes. But the development and improvement of submarines was not a German story at first.
August 28, 2016
Published on 27 Aug 2016
It’s time for the Chair of Wisdom again and this week we talk about the German war aims and the war economy.