I feel that the sources do not entirely support the interpretation that poor planning and Winston Churchill were responsible for what went wrong at Gallipoli. Although they mainly do agree, most of them have taken other factors such as: the geography of Gallipoli and the Turks being strong into consideration as well. From my own knowledge I know there are many reasons why the Gallipoli campaign failed including the ones mentioned above. Poor planning had a major impact on the Gallipoli campaign, and several of the sources agree that this was the main problem.
Source H hints that part of the problem was poor planning, it does this by saying-“poorly trained officers applying poorly trained tactics” this suggests they think that if it had been better planned the solders and they tactics would have been better trained and prepared. I think that this source is very reliable because a historian for a GCSE history textbook writes it and therefore the author (Cate Brett) would want to get it as close to the truth as possible so the children studying the book have the write information.
She would have no reason to exaggerate or try and put the blame onto someone else, as she was not involved in the campaign. It would also be based on many different sources that ha been collected and there for would be more likely to be truthful. Source D also agrees that it was mainly down to the poor planning-” Attacks were ordered rather light-heartedly and carried out without method” and “attacks seemed to be ordered against very long strips of line at once without any weight anywhere. It all seemed very amateur” support this statement.
The reliability of this source is limited as Captain Mynors Farmar who was personally involved in the campaign wrote it. He therefore might have edited it so the people blamed the officers rather blaming him and the other solders. As he wrote it some time later he might have had the advantage of hindsight which would allow him time to recover from the shock and write what actually happened- he would have time to reflect on the events and possibly change some of the information. As he was there it would be an eyewitness account so he actually saw what happened and is not relying on other peoples information so that would make it more reliable.
Source I is a map that shows the date and positions of the ANZAC and British troops landings. It also shows how badly co-ordinated and poorly planned they were. The troops landed at different times giving the Turks an advantage because the British and ANZAC troops were not co-ordinated. This source is not very useful because not much information can be gained but the little information it does give us I think is reliable because it is just showing were and when the landings occurred so it is not written from either sides point of view or written to improve how either side looks.
Source H is the only source that directly links Winston Churchill to being responsible for the failing of the Gallipoli campaign. ” In part this was due to the involvement of Winston Churchill. His errors of judgement and humiliation at the failure of the assault. ” None of the other sources mention Winston Churchill. From the DVD- “the line of fire” I know that Winston Churchill made the plans and therefore it could be argued that the poor planning was down to Winston Churchill as well. Another reason that the Gallipoli campaign failed was because of the Turks strong defence and good planning.
As shown in source D the Turks were well prepared and well organised- ” The Turks had sited their trenches very cleverly and it was often useless to attack one set before another had been taken” although this source might not be completely reliable as said earlier, from my own knowledge I know that this is true because I know that there was a stalemate on the western front which meant that the Turks had made in impossible for the British and ANZAC troops to advance towards the peninsula. Source F also shows the Turks strong defence along the Dardanelles.
The map shows that the Dardanelles was nearly completed covered in mines that were carefully planned and placed. It also shows that the land along the edge of the Dardanelle’s was lined with well-placed forts making it nearly impossible for the allies to successfully attack. As it is a map of what happened it is quite reliable because the author is not from the allies or the Turks point of view just showing the facts of what actually happened. The failure of the campaign was also down to the poor leadership.
From my own knowledge I know that when the Allied troops first landed they waited around for along time doing nothing. You can also see this from source E- “2000 men landed and sat around all day waiting” this was because they were not given instructions from the officers- “none of us had been given any instructions from the generals. ” Source E is a useful source as it is written by two solders looking back on their experiences therefore it is an eyewitness account so it is more likely to be what actually happened.
Also because they are looking back on it they will have time to recover from any shock they were in and change anything that is exaggerated. This could also be negative because they could emphasise the problem of poor leadership to make the officers look bad so they don’t get the blame themselves. The poor co-ordination in source I also come down to poor leadership because the officers should have communicated to each other so they knew when all the landings were taking place and so it could all be synchronized.
I also know from the DVD -“the line of fire” that the Australians landed on the wrong beach, this would also come down to poor leadership as there weren’t directed properly on where to go. Another reason responsible for the failure of the campaign is that the geography of the Gallipoli peninsular was against the allies. ” Succeeded only if it had been fought somewhere else. ” This suggest the author- A. J. P. Taylor thought that even if the attacks had been better planned and organised they would have still failed because of the lack of room in the crack “narrow, tight crack, and stronger forces would not have made the crack any wider.
The geography of the peninsular worked to the Turks advantage and there was nothing the allies could have done except fight in a different place to win the campaign. This source is reliable because it is a factual not emotional account of what happened, it is written using the evidence that many other people have created therefore it is less likely to be bias because it has many sides of the story. The author was not personally involved so would not have any reason to make one side sound better than the other.
He also wrote it quite a long time after the event, which means he has the advantage of being able to look at a lot more sources and compare them so making his source more reliable. In conclusion I think that the sources do agree with the statement that poor planning and Winston Churchill were responsible for what went wrong at Gallipoli. But they also suggest several other factors played a part in it as well. They blame poor leadership, the geography of the peninsular and the strength of the Turks. Using my own knowledge and the DVD ” the line of fire” I know that these were the main causes of the failure to the campaign.