The World WarLatest Official War Report - WTB. Central Headquarters July 21, Official
Western Theater of War
|German machine gun division and infantry in|
Pozières defend the entrance to a street
Original drawing: G. Müller-Münster
(Illustrierte Geschichte des Weltkrieges 1914/1916)
The English attack reported yesterday in the area of Fromelles on July 19 was, it appears, carried out by two strong divisions. The brave Bavarian divisions, on whose section of the Front it struck, counted more than 2000 bodies of enemy soldiers in the forefield and have, up to now, delivered 481 prisoners, including 10 officers, as well as 16 machine guns.
As expected, the enemy yesterday struck back on both banks of the Somme in a heavy attack. It failed. Following substantial preparations, the attacks were started in numerous waves along a front stretching across almost 40 kilometers, from the south of Pozières to the west of Vermandovillers. More than 17 divisions with over 200,000 men took part. The meager result for the enemy is that the first line of a German division located about 3 kilometers from Hardecourt was pushed out of the foremost trench lying in the 800 meters behind the village and that enemy units penetrated the forest protruding to the north-west of Vermandovillers.
Along the rest of the Front, the raging attacks broke up thanks to our troops' fearless devotion to duty with extreme losses for the enemy. Even the unexpected deployment of English cavalry on horseback in trench warfare was unable to change the situation. Up to now, 17 officers and around 1200 men have been taken prisoner.
No significant events took place at the rest of the Front.
Artillery and trench mortar activity increased to the south of the canal of La Bassee and to the north-west of Lens, as well as in the Argonne and both sides of the Maas.
To the north-west of Vendresse (Aisne) minor French divisions advanced following unsuccessful blasting and were repulsed. We occupied the crater.
The wreck of an enemy plane shot down in aerial combat is lying to the south of Pozières, another has been captured by us to the north-east of Bapaume.