The fighting on the Western Front between 1914 and 1918 became characterised by the inability of the mass citizen armies raised by the modem, industrial great powers to make substantial territorial gain, whilst at the same time incurring phenomenal numbers of casualties. The stalemate on the Western Front was a dilemma which was not foreseen by either the Allies or Germany. Superficially, at least, it would seem that stalemate on the Western Front was the most immediate product of the inadequate execution of unrealistic war plans.
I will be concentrating on the Schlieffen Plan and assessing its failure as the main cause for stalemate in 1914 and issues related to its failure that contributed to the emergence of stalemate.
The Schlieffen plan- the German Army’s plan of attack created by Count Alfred Von Schlieffen in 1891 PICTURE OR GENERAL was designed to avoid the problem of facing a war on two fronts. "The whole of Germany must throw itself on one enemy - the strongest, most powerful, most dangerous enemy: and that can only be the Anglo-French! The plan relied on a strong right wing of the German army to sweep behind Paris and take the capital, while the main body of the army was to draw as much attention away from this sweep as possible. The newly appointed General of the German army Von Moltke made what he thought were minor insignificant adjustments to the plan in 1914 which ultimately resulted in its failure "I lack the capacity for risking all on a single throw....".
Schlieffen's successor, von Moltke, was a courageous soldier but not a bold or daring Chief of the General Staff.
* He abandoned the planned German advance through Holland and the violation of Dutch neutrality.
He changed the relative weight of the German armies moving against France, reducing the size of the right wing and increasing the left wing on the Franco-German border.
Many factors were not taken into account, such as the speed at which the plan...