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Ruined buildings in St Quentin following the Second Battle of Aisne, April 1917. Image courtesy Imperial War Museum. © IWM (Q 87696).

  • The Second Battle of the Aisne, also known as the Nivelle Offensive ends on the Western Front with an estimated 250,000 casualties. French casualties from the battle stand at 187,000; Germany’s, 163,000. The French line has advanced barely seven kilometres.
  • Private Pat Williams laments the freezing conditions in England. He says that the weather is the coldest he has ever experienced, and that his battalion is nearly always up to their waists in snow. No Sun, Moon or Stars
  • German troops on the Western front attack the Chemin des Dames, Craonne and Corbeny. Each attack fails.
  • The Leader publishes the poem Will The German Pull You Through? by E Beaufils Lamb (Edith Emily Lamb)

Old and young, and rich and poor,
Men of the South, to-day
The colors are calling across the sea,
Are you deaf to what they say?

You needs must stand to your present tasks,
There’s plenty at home to do
What, if old England furled her flag,
Would the German pull you through?

Would you rather fight for the Eagle grim
Than the dear old Union Jack?
Do you sigh for the sleuth-hound submarine
On the blue Pacific track?

Must this land of gold that to-day you hold
Be England’s bitter loss?
Will you bow to the bird of the brutal beak,
Or stand by the Southern Cross?

Come, hurry along, you men so strong,
You boys of dash and grit;
The prize is great, you dare not wait,
Australia’s in for it!

Hark! don’t you hear your comrades call,
Through thunder of the war?
A Nation’s life we die to save,
Come MORE, and MORE, and MORE.