Born on 24th of June 1850
Died in Orkneys
Died on 5th of June 1916
Quotes from Lord Kitchener
'Don't talk to me about atrocit'... More
Lord Herbert Kitchener is the face on the iconic WWI recruitment poster bearing the legend “Your Country Needs You” and this was certainly the case. Had Kitchener not died in 1916 some commentators believe the war might have ended a year earlier. Others contend his death suited the government, removing an outdated thinker without damage to his heroic status.
Born June 24, 1850 in Ballylangford, Southern Ireland, Herbert Kitchener joined the army in 1870 serving in Palestine and Cyprus between 1871 and 1882. More overseas service followed in the Sudan and Egypt (1882 - 85). Kitchener’s distinguished service led to his appointment as governor general of east Sudan in 1886. His next promotion was as commander in chief of the Egyptian Army. In this capacity he undertook the re-conquest of the Sudan. His victory at Omdurman on September 2 1892 made him a national hero.
During the Boer War Kitchener became commander-in-chief. His strategy for breaking Boer resistance with blockhouses and concentration camps was criticised then and now, as was his insistence on totally inappropriate close-formation fighting – advancing in neat lines to be slaughtered by Boer marksmen. After the Boer surrender he served as commander-in chief-in India until 1911 returning to Egypt as a British agent and consul-general.
Kitchener’s greatest hour was to come with the outbreak of WWI and his appointment as war minister. Foreseeing a long conflict he called for the enlistment of half a million volunteers. The poster used to spread the recruitment message showed his heavily mustachioed face pointing directly at the viewer. Although highly successful in raising a volunteer army he fell out with his colleagues and consequently his influence on the conduct of the war was limited. Kitchener drowned on June 5 1916 when the ship he was travelling on to Russia hit a German mine off Orkney.
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