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Remembered Today:

Online - thesis THE BATTLE OF THE OURCQ RIVER July-August 1918


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The writer didn't bother to even check one German regimental history... How on earth can one write a master's thesis with one-sided sources?

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14 hours ago, DavidIsby said:



“The Battle of the Ourcq River” By Earl Starbuck

July-August 1918

Should read "The Battle of the Ourcq River from an American point of view".

Not a single German primary source was used to portrait the battle from the other side. 

Typical US Master's thesis. A European university with right to scientific approach would have dismissed the paper.

I have proofread some draft US Master theses and came across such attitude like the one here.

Because the so called "historians" chose a subject where foreign language knowledge is required. which they do not have.


The author says it all "....In order to properly understand and study the Ourcq, one must first become familiar with its participants.".....


Also substantiating its case by quoting i.e.  " the majority of the Allied air forces were occupied attacking strategic targets behind the German lines, granting “Les Boches” air superiority over the battlefield itself" makes me laugh or should I say cry?

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  • 2 weeks later...

How things have changed, egbert. You will remember the time on this Forum where the mention of any German primary source invoked a flurry of criticisms, to put it politely. Now, as you rightly point out, a balanced historical analysis must reference German primary sources. A change for the better!



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  • 2 months later...

It's a shame that the author did not advertise more as there are unpublished primary sources available, including two I have, one a family member, the other his friend. Otto Ernst, my wife's great uncle was killed in the fighting while his friend ended up as a POW. There are also volumes of material in the U.S. National Archives from the German side, all gathered during the inter war years from the German archives, basically any unit that faced the U.S. is included in the records obtained (before many were destroyed in WW2). 


These would have vastly improved the overall presentation of the thesis and provided a well rounded view that is lacking.


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