20 November-8 December 1917


The battle of Cambrai was the first to use tanks on a large scale, with tactics created especially for them. An intense artillery barrage started early in the morning of the 21st, with 378 tanks moving forward followed by the infantry. In certain sections, this worked very well and the British managed to capture five miles of land. In the following days, stiff German resistance meant that certain sections, like Bourlon Wood and Cambrai itself, were not taken. By the 30th, the Germans had enough reserves to counter-attack, and managed to regain some of the ground they had lost, and nearly cut off the troops in the centre. The German advance was eventually stopped. While the main objective of Cambrai was not achieved, it did show that with certain tactics the tank could break through German lines..

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