Canadians prepare to observe special anniversary -- WWI assault on Vimy Ridge
It was a momentous day, for the first time they were all fighting as a unit under their own general and, as many claim, Canada became a nation in the process.
Although Canada had earned many Empire battle honours, from Lundy’s Lane in 1814 to the Boer War in South Africa to repulsing the German gas attacks at Ypres in 1915, Vimy was the first time Canadians had not fought under British army command.
In five days they swept the Germans off the ridge, succeeding with new tactics and training, much to the surprise of the French and British who had earlier failed. The cost, as always during the Great War, was enormous with more than 10,000 casualties, including 3,600 dead.
The twin-towered Vimy Memorial is a Canadian historic site near Arras, completed in 1936. Located on the militarily designated Hill 145, where some of the last and heaviest action occurred, it is engraved with names of 11,285 Canadians “missing, presumed dead” in the Great War.
comments powered by Disqus
- Were Neanderthals a sub-species of modern humans? New research says no
- Irish archaeological sites explain huge European population fall
- Reactions to JFK Assassination Included Fear of Possible Soviet Strike against U.S.; Desire to "Bond" with LBJ
- Swiss Museum to Announce Decision on Nazi-Looted Art Next Week
- What Happened the Last Time Republicans Had a Majority This Huge?
- Juan Cole says the postwar Middle East governments were modeled on the Soviet Union, though not communist (interview)
- Ted Widmer picks the 5 best presidential books worth reading
- AHA backs California's LGBT History law
- Cultural historian traces history of baby food
- Jules Witcover identifies the best and worst veeps in US history in an interview about his new book