Essay Example on The Great War was the first war fought during the Industrial Age









World War I known as the Great War was the first war fought during the Industrial Age and the technology of machine guns caused military officials to change the tactical and physical aspects of warfare The machine guns ability to mow down enemies quickly and in great numbers forever changed the face of modern warfare Wall Street Journal Machine Guns This one deadly weapon could kill thousands in just a short period of time The machine gun drastically impacted how the war was fought The first automatic machine gun was invented by Hiram Maxim an American in 1884 Maxim s machine gun was completely self powered and worked by relying on the energy released in the firing cartridge that would then dislodge multiple bullets with nothing more than the pull of a trigger This kind of technology was unheard of and it was what prompted this primitive powerhouse to be first demonstrated by the British armed forces Norwich University Online How The Machine Gun Changed Combat during World War 1 This gun could fire 600 rounds per minute Towards the late 1890s Maxim started manufacturing his guns all over Europe demonstrating the guns for military officials who ordered them in large loads At one weapons demonstration in Switzerland an officer pulled Maxim aside to express his disbelief 

No gun has ever been made in the world that could kill so many men and horses in so short a time A field marshal in the Austrian military told Maxim that his gun was too fast The Atlantic People Thought Machine Guns Might Prevent War 2016 Early versions of machine guns were used in the American Civil War but the weapon modernized in World War I and had a drastic impact on how the war was fought Machine guns played a major role in how the battlefield changed A British General Sir Aylmer Haldane stated that it was impossible to take a position defended by machine guns until these guns have been put out of action Richard Holmes The Western Front 1999 Throughout World War One the machine gun was used by both the Allies and the Central Powers however the Germans were the first ones to use this deadly device on the battlefield The Germans recognized it s military potential and had large numbers ready to use in 1914 NCPedia WWI Technology and the Weapons of War 1993 Some say that the Germans got more practice and learned many tactics before any other country The Germans were the first to use the enormous firepower of the machine gun and soon the others realized this after many casualties forcing soldiers on both sides to take defensive positions in the trenches The firepower of the machine gun allowed a few soldiers to take down many in a matter of minutes 

Most armies were still using rifles at the beginning of World War One Rifles could only fire one bullet at time then the weapon had to be reloaded It was no match for the firepower that the machine gun delivered Because of the introduction of the machine gun World War One became a defensive war fought in the trenches Prior to World War One most wars were fought with offensive plans founded on the belief that attack alone would provide decisive results Holmes The Western Front 1999 A WWI historian Richard Holmes argues that World War One was the opposite and was more of a defensive war where each side on the western front took up cover in the trenches Holmes The Western Front 1999 Most commonly demonstrated during the war machine guns were used in the trenches The trenches became a defensive tactic to the machine guns making the trenches a safe place where soldiers could take cover while being attacked from rapid gun fire The term trench warfare is a common reference to describe World War One In many of the trenches there would be a machine gun nest These nests would hold a machine gun with two or three soldiers operating them If a trench did not have a machine gun nest the guns would usually be kept on a tripod just outside of the trench The guns mounted on tripods were very heavy requiring four men to operate them

One of the most gory battles in the war was the Battle of the Somme fought on the Western Front The weapon s full potential was demonstrated on the Somme battlefield in July 1916 when German machine guns killed or wounded almost 60 000 British soldiers in only one day NCPedia WWI Technology and the Weapons of War 1993 In comparison to the Battle of Worth fought during the Franco Prussian War in 1870 approximately 10 000 troops from both sides France and Germany were killed mostly from artillery and gun fire This was before the machine gun was deployed in battle Unsettled differences between France and Germany from the Franco Prussian War led to the start of World War One The years from 1871 to 1914 were marked by an extremely unstable peace since France s determination to recover Alsace Lorraine and Germany s mounting imperialist ambitions kept the two nations constantly poised for conflict Their mutual animosity proved to be the driving force behind the prolonged slaughter on the Western Front in World War I Encyclopedia Britannica Franco German War 1998 The Machine Gun Corps played a huge role in the how the British fought in this war This group was formed by the British because they needed a more effective way to use the machines guns on the Western Front

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