Sunday, September 20, 2015

September 20th, 1915

- In Champagne General Pétain issues final orders for the attack of his 2nd Army, which comprises the eastern wing of the major offensive planned for the 25th.  From west of Perthes to east of Massiges, he has deployed four infantry corps totaling nine divisions, with a further four infantry divisions and a cavalry corps in reserve.  To the west, General de Langle of 4th Army has similarly placed four infantry corps in the first line, with four infantry divisions and a cavalry corps in reserve as well.  The focal point of the assault will be the inner wings of the two armies, while beyond the outer wings supporting attacks will be undertaken by 3rd and 5th Armies.  The offensive will be supported by 2164 artillery pieces, including 728 heavy guns, which will commence a preliminary bombardment on the 22nd.  The reserve divisions of 2nd and 4th Armies are to be used to maintain the momentum of the offensive in order to fight a continuous battle that will wear through the Germans.  In expectation of rupturing the enemy front, French cavalry have undergone training in crossing trenches and battered terrain, and special platoons on foot have been formed to clear obstacles ahead of the cavalry.

The Entente plan for the 1915 fall offensive on the Western Front.

- The French military attaché in Bulgaria informs Paris today that news has reached him that the Bulgarian government has ordered cavalry regiments to the frontier with Serbia and intends to proclaim a general mobilization tomorrow.  It is the clearest evidence yet of an imminent offensive against Serbia.

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