Pyrrhic Victory French Strategy and Operations in the Great War

ISBN-10: 0674027264
ISBN-13: 9780674027268
Edition: 2005
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Description: As the driving force behind the Allied effort in World War I, France willingly shouldered the heaviest burden. In this masterful book, Robert Doughty explains how and why France assumed this role and offers new insights into French strategy and  More...

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Book details

List price: $31.50
Copyright year: 2005
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publication date: 3/31/2008
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 592
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.50" long x 1.25" tall
Weight: 4.356
Language: English

As the driving force behind the Allied effort in World War I, France willingly shouldered the heaviest burden. In this masterful book, Robert Doughty explains how and why France assumed this role and offers new insights into French strategy and operational methods. French leaders, favoring a multi-front strategy, believed the Allies could maintain pressure on several fronts around the periphery of the German, Austrian, and Ottoman empires and eventually break the enemy's defenses. But France did not have sufficient resources to push the Germans back from the Western Front and attack elsewhere. The offensives they launched proved costly, and their tactical and operational methods ranged from remarkably effective to disastrously ineffective. Using extensive archival research, Doughty explains why France pursued a multi-front strategy and why it launched numerous operations as part of that strategy. He also casts new light on France's efforts to develop successful weapons and methods and the attempts to use them in operations. An unparalleled work in French or English literature on the war, Pyrrhic Victory is destined to become the standard account of the French army in the Great War.

Brigadier General (Ret.) Robert A. Doughty served as Professor and Head of the Department of History at the United States Military Academy from 1985 to 2005.

List of Maps
Preface
Introduction
The Transformation of the French Army
The War of Movement, 1914
Siege Warfare, 1914-1915
An Offensive Strategy, May-October 1915
The Search for Strategic Alternatives, 1915-1916
A Strategy of Attrition, 1916
A Strategy of Decisive Battle, Early 1917
A Strategy of "Healing" and Defense, Late 1917
Responding to a German Offensive, Spring 1918
A Strategy of Opportunism
Conclusion: The "Misery" of Victory
Abbreviations
Notes
Essay on Sources
Index

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