War News – April 15, 1917
Despite winning Vimy Ridge, the battle did not end. The troops moved onward to Lens, part of the Arras offensive, with the objective of moving the Germans out of the French sector. France and its citizens were ready to surrender after two and a half years of occupation, battle and major setbacks. On other battlefields, there were incidences of military revolt when French soldiers refused to do anything but defend their trench.
When the German prisoners were rounded up, it was found they were hungry, cold and wet. Many hadn’t eaten in three days because the food supply had not been able to make it through the artillery barrage. Apparently the Germans had learned of the French offensive to break their line and had withdrawn many of their troops from Vimy. They’d gone east, and when the French attacked on April 10th, they’d been slaughtered.
In the large view, Vimy was a small battle, virtually ignored by the British, in a long, bloody conflict that left 10,000 dead and left the plains of Arras torn and cratered, making it difficult to pull artillery through it.
The victorious Canadians were now moving into their summer offensive.