At the start of 1917, the Egyptian Expeditionary Force (EEF) crossed the border from Egypt into Palestine. After a pause to build up their logistics, in March and April 1917 they made two failed attempts to break through the Ottoman lines around Gaza and advance north into the country. The summer was spent digging in, re-organising, and re-building their strength. They also received new leadership, with David Lloyd George despatching General Sir Edmund Allenby with specific orders to 'capture Jerusalem as a Christmas present for the Allied nations'. Allenby did just this, launching one of the most successful British offensives of the war at the end of October, and advancing over 50 miles to capture Jerusalem and Jaffa in early December. This talk looks at the trajectory or the EEF through this difficult, but ultimately triumphant, year.
Stuart Hadaway is a professional historian who researches and has written several books about the British campaigns in Egypt and Palestine during the First World War.