Stalemate on the Western Front

How useful are sources A and C for a historian studying the reasons for the stalemate on the Western Front?

Source A is the historical text, “Death’s Men” written by Denis Winter in 1985, making it a secondary source. This source could be considered reliable as it was written over 70 years since the end of World War I eliminating the emotional attachment to the event. However, it could be argued the large lapse of time since World War I would make the source less reliable as events and details could be misconstrued overtime. Due to the fact Winter composed a historical text, his motive would to be to educate his critical audience therefore he would omit any bias to maintain historical integrity and his reputation, increasing the source’s reliability. The source’s secondary nature would make it less bias, this is evident in its elimination of personal views and continuous statements of facts such as ‘six machine-guns could hold up a brigade’, enhancing its reliability. Furthermore, the benefit of hindsight deems the source reliable as Winter would have access to a range of sources allowing him to portray different perspectives and deduce a fair judgment on the role of machine guns in World War I.
Source A is useful for historians studying the reasons for the stalemate on the Western Front as it highlights how and why modern weaponry deemed the traditional war tactics of attacking futile. Modern weapons, such as machine guns outpaced strategies of the offensive due to their speed, precision and efficiency. This led to a stalemate as both the offense and defence were of same strength, instead of charging by foot across land action could now be brought within ‘four seconds of an alarm.’ The speed and accuracy of machine guns meant all nerves of advancement were ‘eliminated’, thus increasing the psychological power of the soldier. This meant soldiers were now protected by the ‘nerveless weapon’ making them feel more safe and enhanced their confidence when defending...