Colourized photograph, which depicts from left to right: German Admiral Ernst Vanselow, German Count Alfred von Oberndorff (1870 – 1963) of the Foreign Ministry, German army general Detlof von Winterfeldt, British Royal Navy Captain Jack Marriott (Naval Assistant to the First Sea Lord), Matthias Erzberger, head of the German delegation Center party member of the Reichstag (1875 – 1921), who was later murdered by Freikorps rightists for his role in the Armistice, British Rear-Admiral George Hope (Deputy First Sea Lord), British Admiral of the Fleet Sir w:en: Rosslyn Wemyss (First Sea Lord), Marshal of France Ferdinand Foch (1851 – 1929), and French general Maxime Weygand (1867 – 1965). There is a signature in the left corner: Pillard.
On November 11, 1918, the Compiègne Agreement was signed in northern France, which ended the First World War (1914 – 1918), or, as it was then called, the Great War. For that time, it was the most massive and bloody military conflict of all the previous 15 thousand conflicts known: 38 states, having mobilized 68 million people, fought for economic dominance and territory for more than four years.
The truce went into effect at 11 am. 101 volleys were fired, the last volleys of the First World War, during which conflict 10 million servicemen, mostly conscripts and 12 million civilians died in just four years of terrifying bloodshed. The result of the First World War was the collapse of four empires, Imperial Russia (1721 – 1917), Imperial Germany (1871 – 1918), and the Austro-Hungarian Empire that had endured for 1,000 years. Also destroyed was the Ottoman Empire (1400 – 1918).
Photographer Artur Bondar provided an archive of photographs taken by German Lieutenant Gasmus in 1916 on the Western Front.
They give an idea of the life of the Germans on the front line and in the rear. The photographs show the soldiers’ morning toilet, the time of rest in the trenches, and the work of the officers at the headquarters. Some of the pictures were taken on the day of the Battle of the Somme, one of the most brutal battles of the First World War, as a result of which the Germans lost about 650 thousand conscripted troops and ceded eight kilometres of territory. Several photos from the photo archive of a German soldier.
Unique Images of the Great War
Photos: Gasmus / private collection of Arthur Bondar
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MICHAEL WALSH is an Irish British-born journalist. His 64 books include best-selling historical books THE ALL LIES INVASION, WITNESS TO HISTORY, TESTIGO DE LA HISTORIA: HISTORIA SIN CENSURA (SPANISH EDITION), REICH AND WRONG, HEROES HANG WHEN TRAITORS TRIUMPH , HEROES OF THE REICH, THE FUHRER’S PROCLAMATION TO THE GERMAN PEOPLE , FOR THOSE WHO CANNOT SPEAK, MEGACAUST, THE RED BRIGANDS, RANSACKING THE REICH, and DEATH OF A CITY.
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