The final battles to Allied victory in the West
The German Ludendorff Spring Offensive, launched at the Allied lines in Spring 1918, proved to be perilously close the right solution to achieve battlefield victory. Typically for German initiatives it was meticulously planned with coordinated operations working along an established critical timeline. While initially highly successful, the advance took longer than expected and Allied tenacity resulted in ill-conceived remedial actions which stalled the rapid progress upon which ultimate success depended. Allied commanders noted well the most effective components of the German modus operandi and were able to take advantage of its inherent weaknesses, which were exacerbated by Germany’s comparatively limited and irreplaceable—in contrast to the Allied situation—resources in men and materiel. As it became clear the German attack had run out of impetus the Allies turned to the offensive and their own attack was launched in early August, 1918. Refined versions of the German grand-tactics were now turned upon them to great effect. This was at last a mobile campaign to be fought over terrain which favoured a rapid advance by all the resources the combined Allied armies could bring to bear. By mid-November the remaining forces of the Central Powers had been defeated, had recoiled towards the frontiers of their homelands and had agreed to an armistice which ended the First World War. How the Allied armies near defeat was so resolutely turned to total triumph in less than four months is the fascinating subject of this book by John Buchan which is supported by many maps, illustrations and photographs. A companion book, ‘1918—Catastrophe to Victory—the German ‘Ludendorff’ Spring Offensive’ by Buchan, which describes the events which led to the Hundred Days Offensive, is also available from Leonaur.
Leonaur editions are newly typeset and are not facsimiles; each title is available in softcover and hardback with dustjacket; our hardbacks are cloth bound and feature gold foil lettering on their spines and fabric head and tail bands.