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Thread: WW1 Centennial Thread

  1. #1

    Default WW1 Centennial Thread

    Belated, but might as well.

    Modern travelogue/meditation on the 1916 storming of the Castelletto in the Battle of the Dolomites.

    The Austrian platoon commander, Hans Schneeberger, was 19 years old. He arrived on the Castelletto after an Italian sniper killed his predecessor. “I would gladly have sent someone else,” Capt. Carl von Rasch told him, “but you are the youngest, and you have no family.” This was not a mission from which Schneeberger, or his men, were expected to return.

    “It’s better that you know how things stand up here: They do not go well at all,” von Rasch said during a late-night visit to the outpost. “The Castelletto is in an impossible situation.” Nearly surrounded, under incessant artillery bombardment and sniper fire, with too few men and food running low. Throughout the valley, the Italians outnumbered the Austrians two to one; around the Castelletto it was perhaps 10 or 20 to one. “If you do not die from hunger or cold,” von Rasch said, “then someday soon you will be blown into the air.” Yet Schneeberger and his few men played a strategic role: By tying up hundreds of Italians, they could ease pressure elsewhere on the front.

    “The Castelletto must be held. It will be held to the death,” von Rasch told him. “You must stay up here.”
    In the Austrian camp, Schneeberger reported to von Rasch, who stood at his window with stooped shoulders and wet eyes, hands clasped behind his back.

    “It was very hard?” he asked.

    “Sir,” Schneeberger said.

    “Poor, poor boy.”
    Last edited by Montmorency; 07-05-2017 at 13:55. Reason: Quotes
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  2. #2
    master of the pwniverse Member Fragony's Avatar
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    Default Re: WW1 Centennial Thread

    Just finnished 'Somme' by Lyn Macdonald, it's full of letters and anecdotes. What keeps baffling is that such horrible things are taken for granted by those (of all ranks) writing them. Clynically saying we 'lost a hundred men' as if losing a game of cards, it must have been w nightmare I would be kiiiinda upset

  3. #3

    Default Re: WW1 Centennial Thread

    For fun, this rock was the battlefield of the article linked:

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    master of the pwniverse Member Fragony's Avatar
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    Default Re: WW1 Centennial Thread

    I am no expert but how can you either hold that or take it, both seems impossible

  5. #5

    Default Re: WW1 Centennial Thread

    The Austrians held it with a platoon. The Italians could not dislodge them, so they drilled tunnels and blew them up.
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  6. #6
    Praefectus Fabrum Senior Member Anime BlackJack Champion, Flash Poker Champion, Word Up Champion, Shape Game Champion, Snake Shooter Champion, Fishwater Challenge Champion, Rocket Racer MX Champion, Jukebox Hero Champion, Cub Shoot 2 Champion, My House Is Bigger Than Your House Champion, Funky Pong Champion, Cutie Quake Champion, Fling The Cow Champion, Treasure Diver Champion, Tiger Punch Champion, Virus Champion, Solitaire Champion, Worm Race Champion, Slack Man Champion, Japanese Baseball Champion, Rope Walker Champion, Penguin Pass Champion, Skate Park Champion, Super Mario Mushroom Champion, Watch Out Champion, Lawn Pac Champion, Weapons Of Mass Destruction Champion, Skate Boarder Champion, Fish Kill Champion, Lane Bowling Champion, Bugz Champion, Makai Grand Prix 2 Champion, KF 9000 Champion, White Van Man Champion, Parachute Panic Champion, BlackJack Champion, Stans Ski Jumping Champion, Smaugs Treasure Champion, Sofa Longjump Champion Seamus Fermanagh's Avatar
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    Default Re: WW1 Centennial Thread

    About the only assault that might work would be assaulting down from the peak....and that would be chancy. Going UP to it? Sucker's bet.
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  7. #7
    master of the pwniverse Member Fragony's Avatar
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    Default Re: WW1 Centennial Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Seamus Fermanagh View Post
    About the only assault that might work would be assaulting down from the peak....and that would be chancy. Going UP to it? Sucker's bet.
    Those up can't be resurplied, just as screwed

  8. #8
    Coffee farmer extraordinaire Member spmetla's Avatar
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    Default Re: WW1 Centennial Thread

    For those that aren't aware already the Youtube Channel https://www.youtube.com/user/TheGreatWar The Great War does a weekly summary of what happened a century ago during WW1 and does more informative specials etc... about the topic and has been doing it since a bit before the centennials started three years ago. Short, informative, and well researched clips. Will make you wonder how folks like Cadorna and Hotzendorf managed to become so important when so incompetent when you see their week to week decisions and impacts!

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  9. #9
    master of the pwniverse Member Fragony's Avatar
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    Default Re: WW1 Centennial Thread

    Have been reading up a bit lately, I am starting to have my doubts about alledged imcompetence of military commanders, a lot of thought went into this insanity on a tactical level, they just thought completily different about extreme loss of life I guess, what they did wasn't just simply stupid, just unimagible for us in our time, there was actually a lot of stratigec thinking, but at enormous cost of life
    Last edited by Fragony; 07-17-2017 at 21:39.

  10. #10
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    Default Re: WW1 Centennial Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by spmetla View Post
    For those that aren't aware already the Youtube Channel https://www.youtube.com/user/TheGreatWar The Great War does a weekly summary of what happened a century ago during WW1 and does more informative specials etc... about the topic and has been doing it since a bit before the centennials started three years ago. Short, informative, and well researched clips. Will make you wonder how folks like Cadorna and Hotzendorf managed to become so important when so incompetent when you see their week to week decisions and impacts!
    The most difficult part of high level command is supposedly building an army. Whatever these guys' strategic incompetence, they were the best in their country at that one task. Pershing wasn't too hot in the field either, and one wonders how Marshall might have fared had he got the European command.

  11. #11
    master of the pwniverse Member Fragony's Avatar
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    Default Re: WW1 Centennial Thread

    Competence kinda deserves it's own thread. German officers, usually of prussian military heritage were often amazed (and shocked) by the recklessness of especially the Brittish generals, in the book mentioned earlier there a lot of anecdotes, about recklessness but also genuinely inguiniously smart things. WW1 is pretty fascinating the scale is mind-blowing

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