The Battle of the Meuse-Argonne remains the single largest and bloodiest battle ever fought by the American Army. The Americans suffered around 122,000 casualties, a figure increasingly challenged as a very conservative estimate, with a disproportionate loss rate in the first eight days. With the bulk of American divisions never having seen action before, the men of President Wilson’s ‘Great Crusade’ launched an offensive hampered by rudimentary training, faulty doctrine and inexperience in the ‘All Arms’ battle, over terrain that provided formidable natural defences. This talk examines the American performance that resulted in a costly but important victory.
IMAGE: Soldiers of Headquarters Company, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division) firing a 37mm gun during the Meuse-Argonne offensive, where American Soldiers fought their most difficult battle in World War I and proved that the American Army had come of age.