• Lord Kitchener's volunteer
campaign spearheaded by his
famous call to arms poster 'Your
Country Needs You', encouraged
over 1 million men to enlist by
• However, Christmas came and
went and the war was still
• Overall in 1914 the Allies lost
nearly 400,000 men. Two thirds
of the original British army had
• Recruitment ﬁgures
fell the longer the war
• The fall in the number of
recruits meant that in
• All men aged between
18 and 41 now had to
join the army unless
they were working in
• Under The Defence of the Realm Act (DORA) (1914) the
government was given great powers of propaganda and
• Censorship is deleting unwelcome facts. From 1915,
newspapers and letters from the front were heavily
censored in order to preserve morale, and there was a
strict rule that no photograph could be published which
showed a dead British soldier.
• Propaganda is putting spin on events to persuade the
public to a certain point of view.
• quot;As the German soldiers came along the street I
saw a small child, whether boy or girl I could not
see, come out of a house. The child was about two
years of age. The child came into the middle of the
street so as to be in the way of the soldiers. The
soldiers were walking in twos. The ﬁrst line passed
the child; one of the second line stepped aside and
drove his bayonet with both hands into the child's
stomach, lifting the child in the air on his bayonet,
and carrying it away on his bayonet, he and his
comrades still singingquot;.
British National Archives - Alleged German war atrocities
• Source A: When the fall of Antwerp became known, the church bells were
rung in Cologne.
From the German newspaper Ksche Zeitung, August 1914.
• Source B; According to the Ksche Zeitung, the clergy of Antwerp were
compelled to ring the church bells when the fortress was taken.
From the French newspaper Le Matin, August 1914.
• Source C; According to what The Times has heard from Cologne, via
Paris, the unfortunate Belgian priests who refused to ring the church bells
when Antwerp was taken have been sentenced to hard labour.
From the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera, August 1914.
• Source D; According to information which has reached the Corriere della
Sera from Cologne, via London, it is conﬁrmed that the barbaric
conquerors of Antwerp punished the unfortunate Belgian priests for their
heroic refusal to ring the church bells by hanging them as living clappers
to the bells with their heads down.
From Le Matin, August 1914.
• What can you infer from the changes in this story?
Discussion point: What are
the similarities and
differences between these
TIP: Consider who they are
aimed at and the emotions
they appeal to.
• What are the strengths and
weaknesses of these
posters as an explanation of
why men joined the army