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Floyd Low

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About Floyd Low

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  • Birthday 06/16/1954

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  • Location
    Ottawa Canada
  • Interests
    WW1 Canadian Theatre of Operations in France and Belgium

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  1. As a follow up - I am reading a small book now called Clausewitz - A very Short Introduction - by Michael Howard - Oxford University Press 2002 In this book and in Clausewitz`s own ON WAR - there is a notion that there is only one means of making war and that there is no limited war. The Howard Book notes that by the 1911 time period - the doctrine of all parties later to be found guilty - promoted total war vs. limited war in all the Armies of Europe. They say the spread of democratic sentiments made all peoples more bellicose rather than less. This engendered a lack of subtlety in Strategic thinking and the "implacable determination of leaders to gain their objectives whatever the cost, their almost joyful acceptance of heavy casualties as an indication not of military competence but of moral strength. Clausewitz`s defenders could reply that given the issues that were seen to be at stake the war could only be settled by just such a `trial of moral and physical forces by means of the latter`, and no amount of military skill could have attained the political objects - the preservation and destruction of the Habsburg Empire, the establishment or prevention of a German hegemony in Europe, the maintenance of British maritime supremacy, and the territorial integrity of France - any more cheaply. (pp 68 and 69 Clausewitz - A very Short Introduction - by Michael Howard - Oxford University Press 2002) Thus we may have many term papers to be written on Haig - no smarter but no less blind than the rest of his fellow protagonists.
  2. There is quite a lot of ground to cover when assessing if Haig had what it took to compete against the Germans with regards to his tactics. I think he has more than enough fellow inmates in the prison of eternal damnation. Many points of view can be taken among which are Examples The pre-war British Government which did not invest in a robust and sustainable Army against what it faced when the Schlieffen Plan unwound across France and Belgium. Once the war settled down the Germans and the British may have inadvertantly extended it by defending everywhere at all times. Post war mobilisation took longer than expected and did not rapidly produce industrial efficiency nor a flood of troops after the volunteer mania wore off. We see that that the British were still weak in April 1915 when the gas attacks at Ypres threatened to allow a gap to be opened. But even though a gap could be opened in either direction Germans going West or British going east - they had severe difficulties to exploit the local breakthrough. This pattern repeated itself in the summer of 1916 at the Somme, 1917 at Cambrai. This approach seems to have started to break when the French took over the general direction of the war under the Supreme Allied War Council. In short - the British Government (- as reported by Walter Page - US Ambassador to London-) thought it would be over before the Americans came in -------- see my paper on The US Mobilization in WW1 at http://www.donlowconcrete.com/wilson/ - the US Secretary of Defence asked why had joint cooperation not been sought with the French pre 1917? Because the government would have fallen was the answer. This seems only to have been solved in late August 1918 when the August 8 battles at Amiens started pushing back the Germans for the next three months. Short answer to a long question - Haig didn`t have the tools - they being a joint European approach to the war from the start - didn`t have the mass of American industry available until well into 1916. The Brits went broke early and tried to do things on the cheap - only to be bailed out financially by Uncle Sam - who had money but no strategic vision - or ability to get masses of bombs onto German trenches any better despite their economic aid.
  3. Hi! I am Floyd Low from Ottawa Canada. In my day job I am a full time reserve officer with the Canadian Military HQ in Ottawa Canada. My interest is WW1 and the Canadian Expeditionary Force, which fought with the British Army in France and Belgium in WW1. Feel free to email me questions - I can put them all on my list. I am involved with two websites The 54th BN CEF at http://members.tripod.com and The 102nd Bn CEF at http://www.donlowconcrete.com/102 Why are these of interest to Education Forum Visitors you may ask? Answer - These battalions featured many people who had come to Canada and then went back when the war broke out. Although the war is far away now - we are tracing their movements via old war diaries from the Canadian Archives and maps from the Imperial War Museum and correlating these places with modern day latitude and longitude references. When we are done, we expect to have a unique battlefield tour. See http://www.donlowconcrete.com/44/26bnnov51.../fullscreen.htm for a brief tour of the Paschendaele battle area or here http://www.donlowconcrete.com/44/jackwar2_.../fullscreen.htm for the Ypres Battle area If you have relatives who may have served with the Canadians, we can trace their movements for a small fee. I look forward to helping out the search for the past!
  4. Floyd Low reporting for duty on the WW1 forum! I am a History graduate from University of Victoria in British COlumbia Canada. Currently I work as a full time reserve Army Captain in Ottawa Ontario and have an interest in WW1. My home area in British Columbia sent a Battalion to the Somme and most other Western Front areas. It was the 54th Canadian Infantry Battalion, part of the 11th Canadian Infantry Brigade of the 4th Canadian Divison. The website is at http://apollon_2.tripod.com I am also interested in the 102nd Battalion of the 11th Brigade see http://www.donlowconcrete.com/102. I am currently involved in a project to map the travels of the 54th Bn on the Western Front and may well do the entire 11th Brigade using maps from the Trenchmap CD of the Imperial War Museum and the IGN French National Mapping service. These battalions comprised many Brits who had came over to Canada in 1912 - 1914 and then went back to the UK for training. Many never returned from France. My contribution? I can assist with Canadian facts and figures and I also offer a small paid service on personnel file tracing. See the 54th Bn website. In addition to the above I am presently starting the 3rd of 5 courses for an MA in War Studies through our Royal Military College. I`ve done papers on the British Army in operations in North America from 1750-1760, USA/UK relations in WW1 and USA/UK relations from 1939-1942. Copies available for those willing to suffer through my torturous prose. Last summer I was lucky enough to visit Manchester, Blackpool, Salisbury Plain and Shornecliffe - all places the Canadians have spent time in the UK during WW1 and WW2.
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