Chapter

Gallipoli: the failure of command

Mark Harrison

in The Medical War

Published in print October 2010 | ISBN: 9780199575824
Published online January 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191595158 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199575824.003.0005
Gallipoli: the failure of command

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In Gallipoli medical evacuation was hampered by unrealistic casualty estimates, poor planning of sea-borne evacuation, and a general failure of communication between commanders and medical staff. High levels of disease and poor sanitary discipline also meant that sickness rates were far higher than they had been on the Western Front. These medical failures contributed to loss confidence in the management of the campaign and were examined by the Dardanelles Commission appointed in 1916. This chapter explains why medical arrangements were so much worse than on the Western Front, paying particular attention to the exclusion of medical officers from headquarters in the vital planning stages of the operation. It ends by considering the verdict of the Dardanelles Commission and the expectations of witnesses summoned before it.

Keywords: casualty estimates; commanders; Dardanelles; disease; evacuation; hospital ships; planning; sanitation; sickness

Chapter.  16060 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Military History

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