The Western Front is relatively quiet. Much of the line sees soldiers in their trenches doing little more than stand around in mud. On the German side, Falkenhayn is reducing the number of troops on the frontline, to create a reserve that can be used for offensive operations. While he favours an attack on the Western Front, his influential subordinates Hindenburg and Ludendorff are arguing that they can knock Russia out of the war if they are reinforced.
Things are not completely quiet. The French have been attacking the Germans in the Champagne and Artois sectors, the first serious attempt to break the German lines since the end of the “race to the sea“. But they are making little headway and taking heavy casualties. Even with reduced numbers, the Germans in their trenches are able to hold off the French. Now the French have had enough. Joffre orders a pause in offensive operations.
Erich von Falkenhayn (Wikipedia)
Joseph Joffre (Wikipedia)