The World War I Portal

World War I or the First World War, often abbreviated as WWI or WW1, was one of the deadliest global conflicts in history that lasted from 1914 to 1918. It was fought between two coalitions, the Allies and the Central Powers. Fighting took place throughout Europe, the Middle East, Africa, the Pacific, and parts of Asia. An estimated 9 million soldiers were killed in combat, plus another 23 million wounded, while 5 million civilians died as a result of military action, hunger, and disease. Millions more died as a result of genocide, while the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic was exacerbated by the movement of combatants during the war.

The first decade of the 20th century saw increasing diplomatic tension between the European great powers. This reached a breaking point on 28 June 1914, when a Bosnian Serb named Gavrilo Princip assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne. Austria-Hungary held Serbia responsible, and declared war on 28 July. Russia came to Serbia's defence, and by 4 August, defensive alliances had drawn in Germany, France and Britain, with the Ottoman Empire joining the war in November. (Full article...)

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Falls Map 20 detail
Falls Map 20 detail
Falls Map 20 Detail shows capture of Nahr el Faliq and clearing of the coastal plain for the cavalry advance, the attack on the Tabsor defences and the advances towards Tulkarm and Et Tire

The Battle of Sharon fought between 19 and 25 September 1918, began the set piece Battle of Megiddo half a day before the Battle of Nablus, in which large formations engaged and responded to movements by the opposition, according to pre-existing plans, in the last months of the Sinai and Palestine Campaign of World War I. The fighting took place over a wide area from the Mediterranean Sea east to the Rafat salient in the Judean Hills. Here the Egyptian Expeditionary Force (EEF) XXI Corps with the French brigade sized Détachement Français de Palestine et de Syrie attacked the Yildirim Army Group Eighth Army's XXII Corps and German Asia Corps. The Battle of Sharon extended well behind the Ottoman front lines when the Desert Mounted Corps rode through a gap in the front line across the Plain of Sharon to occupy the Esdraelon Plain. Meanwhile, during the Battle of Nablus the XX Corps attacked Nablus while Chaytor's Force held the right flank in the Jordan Valley before advancing to secure bridges and fords across the Jordan River, to continue the encirclement the defenders in the Judean Hills. Subsequently, Chaytor's Force advanced against the Fourth Army to capture Es Salt and Amman after the Second Battle of Amman.

The Battle of Sharon began on 19 September with a Western Front style bombardment during which two-thirds of the mainly ground-based heavy artillery, supported by the firepower of two destroyers pounded Ottoman positions, while one third of the heavy artillery fired creeping barrages to cover the infantry assaults. The XXI Corps infantry attacked simultaneously along the front line from the Mediterranean coast where the 60th Division, launched an attack on the western coastal section of the front line defended by the Eighth Army's XXII Corps. During this Battle of Tulkarm the 60th Division breached the front and second line trenches to eventually capture Tulkarm, the site of the Eighth Army headquarters. On their right, the main Tabsor system of trenches held by the Ottoman XXII Corps was attacked and eventually captured during the Battle of Tabsor, by the 3rd (Lahore), 7th (Meerut), and the 75th Divisions. These three divisions subsequently advanced, despite the Ottoman XXII Corps being reinforced, to capture Et Tire and Masudiye Station. In the process of the battles for Tulkarm and Tabsor the 7th (Meerut) and 60th Divisions created a gap in the front line, for the Desert Mounted Corps to ride through. They rode north and eastwards to the rear to capture the defending Ottoman armies' lines of communication. The right flank of the attacking XXI Corps was protected from the Eighth Army's Asia Corps, by the 54th (East Anglian) Division and the French Colonial Détachement Français de Palestine et de Syrie holding and pivoting on the Rafat salient, during the Battle of Arara as the infantry battle progressed.

The cavalry phase of the Battle of Sharon began as soon as the gap was made during the infantry attacks. The 5th Cavalry Division led the way north up along the Plain of Sharon followed by the 4th Cavalry Division with the Australian Mounted Division in reserve. These divisions subsequently rode across the Mount Carmel Range through two passes, to occupy the Esdraelon Plain, on 20 September. Here they cut the main Ottoman lines of communication. Units of the 4th and 5th Cavalry Divisions converged to capture Afulah with the 4th Cavalry Division capturing Beisan in the afternoon. The Australian Mounted Division captured Jenin along with thousands of prisoners when they captured the main line of retreat from Nablus to Damascus. On 20 September Nazareth, the site of the Ottoman Army's Yildirim Army Group headquarters, was unsuccessfully attacked by the 5th Cavalry Division. During the Battle of Nazareth the Ottoman Commander in Chief, Otto Liman von Sanders, was forced to escape. The 5th Cavalry Division captured the town the following day and several days later this division also captured Haifa and Acre following the Battle of Haifa. On the last day of the Battle of Sharon, the Australian Mounted Division attacked a German reinforced rearguard garrison at Samakh, which had been put on the alert by Liman von Sanders during his escape from Nazareth. The Australian Light Horse victory at the Battle of Samakh and the subsequent Capture of Tiberias ended the Battle of Sharon and the Battle of Megiddo. As a result of the battles of Sharon and Nablus, known collectively as the Battle of Megiddo, much territory and many prisoners were captured. The Final Offensive of the Sinai and Palestine Campaign began the day after the Battle of Megiddo ended, with the pursuit to Damascus, which was captured on 1 October. (Full article...)

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The 42 cm L/15 Küstenhaubitze M. 14

The 42 cm L/15 Küstenhaubitze M. 14 (42 cm, 15 caliber, Coastal Howitzer Model 14) was a superheavy siege howitzer used by Austria-Hungary during World War I and by Nazi Germany during World War II.

It was designed to penetrate the weakly armored decks of modern dreadnoughts in accord with the prevailing coastal defense doctrine that held it was better to attack the weakest point with high-angle indirect fire than to attempt to challenge their strongly armored sides with exceedingly expensive guns that had to be equally well armored to withstand return fire from the battleship. Howitzers were significantly cheaper and could be hidden behind hills to avoid the expense of armoring them. The known problem of hitting a moving target with indirect fire was to be alleviated by massed fire from multiple weapons all firing with the same data.

Two howitzers were bought to defend the main Austro-Hungarian naval base at Pola on the Adriatic. They were to be installed on a turntable carriage with an armored dome able to traverse a full 360° for all-around defense. The turntable rested on a ball-race ring, set in a concrete foundation. However, with Pola unthreatened after the outbreak of the war, it was decided that they might be better used in support of the Army. The first howitzer was already fixed in place, but the second was not yet installed and Skoda was able to adapt it for mobile use by January 1915. On the 14th of that month, Howitzer No. 2, assigned to Küstenhaubitze Batterie (Coastal Howitzer Battery) no. 1, fired its first shot at the railway station in Tarnów, Austrian Poland. (Full article...)

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"There seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today."
David Beatty, 31 May 1916

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Živojin Mišić GCLH, KCB, GCMG (Serbian Cyrillic: Живојин Мишић; 19 July 1855 – 20 January 1921) was a Field Marshal who participated in all of Serbia's wars from 1876 to 1918. He directly commanded the First Serbian army in the Battle of Kolubara and in breach of the Thessaloniki Front was the Chief of the Supreme Command. He is the most decorated Serbian military officer in history. (Full article...)

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From the World War I task force of the Military history WikiProject:

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Adriatic Campaign of World War IAtlantic U-boat campaign of World War IBalkans Campaign (World War I)Battle of Belleau WoodBattle of Gully RavineBattle of PozièresBattle of Sari BairEastern Front (World War I)Italian Front (World War I)Robert NivelleSerbian Campaign of World War ISouth-West Africa CampaignLanding at Suvla BayMax von Boehn (General)Johannes von EbenNaval operations in the Dardanelles CampaignNaval warfare in the Mediterranean during World War IScottish Women's Hospitals for Foreign Service
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Bombardment of Samogneux • Götz von König de • Black Sea Campaign (World War I) • Battle of the Nete • Battle of Musalla • Battle of Qasr-i-Shirin • Battle of Qom • Battle of Hamadan • Occupation of Tabriz • Affair of Umm at Tubal • Battle of Namacurra • Makombe rebellion • Auguste Clément Gérôme • Konrad von Hippel • Hermann von Ziegesar • Josef Freiherr Roth von Limanowa-Lapanów • Adolf Freiherr von Rhemen zu Barenfels • Hugo Martiny von Malastów • Battle of Kyurdamir • Army Detachment Scheffer • Egon Graf von Schmettow • Army Group Boroević (currently a redirect) • Max Hofmann (general)
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Battle of BehobehoBattle of Cambrai (1918)Battle of CaporettoBattle of Courtrai (1918)Battle of DodomaBattle of DutumiBattle of KaheBattle of Kibata (1916)Battle of Kibata (1917)Battle of KidodiBattle of KilosaBattle of KimbarambaBattle of Krithia VineyardBattle of LukiguraBattle of the Lys (1918)Battle of NambanjeBattle of MahiwaBattle of MatamondoBattle of MlaliBattle of MorogoroBattle of MkalamoBattle of Mouquet FarmBattle of NarungombeBattle of NjinjoOccupation of German SamoaBattle of RumboSamarra offensiveBattle of Scimitar HillBattle of SharqatBattle of St. Quentin CanalBattle of UteteBattle of WamiDemilitarisationFirst Battle of Villers-BretonneuxSecond Battle of KrithiaSecond Battle of KutSecond Battle of the IsonzoThird Battle of KrithiaThird Battle of the IsonzoFifth Battle of the IsonzoSeventh Battle of the IsonzoNinth Battle of the IsonzoTenth Battle of the IsonzoOperation Marne-RheimsJoseph B. SanbornRobert Kosch deSecond attack on Anzac CoveBarue uprisingYser FrontEttore MambrettiUkrainian Sich Riflemen
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Battle of Robănești
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Hundred Days OffensiveAsian and Pacific theatre of World War I1st Canadian Tunnelling Company &bull Landing at Suvla BayBattle of Gully RavineBattle of KumkaleVictory Medal (Romania)Battle of Augustów (1914)Draft:Vilno-Dvinsk offensive
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de:Schlacht in den Karpaten (Large battle in the Carpathians) • fr:Mémorial Interallié


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