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WW I Part 2

Allied troops Ypres 1918

As casualty levels increased the need to bolster the B.E.F. became an issue. Attention  turned to the civilian population to fill the gap. A great Military Machine swung into action to recruit "new armies" who would soon become known as "Kitcheners men" after Lord Kitchener, Minister for  War, whose image featured on one now famous recruiting poster pointing out at you with the caption stating to all Britons that Lord Kitchener wants you. Many recruiting posters were posted, initially appealing on patriotic grounds but later turning to more dubious methods of peer pressure and veiled hints of cowardice. The propaganda machine also moved into top gear filling the newspapers with tales of sickening deeds and butchery carried out by the evil Hun. Although some of these deeds may have foundation many seem to have been fabricated purely to whip up increased support for the campaign as casualties increased still further.
In the first 10 days of the appeal for volunteers nearly 439,900 men came forward. The present day British army stands at around 120,000 men, to recruit that number of men in only 10 days gives some indication of the patriotism of those times. In all by the end of war another 2,500,000 men would have voluntarily joined the armed forces.
The original requirement for a volunteer was to be aged between 19 and 35 years, but a blind eye was often turned to this requirement and many were accepted both younger and older than the requirement.


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