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The Battle of Naroch Lake - The First World War - 1916

With the French fighting for their lives at Verdun pleas were made to the other Allied powers to relieve the pressure upon the French forces by mounting offensives against Germany. The Russian response was to identify an area of weakness in the German line and assault it with a much larger force in the hope that they could break through and cause the Germans to relocate troops from Verdun. Lake Naroch was chosen as it was guarded by just 70,000 men. Russian forces totalled over 300,000. After two days of bombardment the Russian assault began. It failed. The bombardment had not been as accurate as anticipated and the Russian soldiers moved across no-mans land in groups rather than spreading out: they were easy targets for the German Machine Gunners. The floundering attack gained several kilometres of land in some places but made little impact on the German defences, or to their troop allocations. All of the captured land was retaken over the following months by German counter attacks.

Russian infantry marching towards the Front.

For more a more detailed account of the Battle of Naroch visit: The Firstworldwar.com

To read about other battles on the Eastern Front click here.

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