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30 December

 
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BerichtGeplaatst: 30 Dec 2005 0:09    Onderwerp: 30 December Reageer met quote

December 30

1916 Rasputin is murdered

Sometime over the course of the night and the early morning of December 29-30, 1916, Grigory Efimovich Rasputin, a self-proclaimed holy man, is murdered by Russian nobles eager to end his influence over the royal family.

Rasputin, a Siberian-born muzhik, or peasant, who underwent a religious conversion as a teenager and proclaimed himself a healer with the ability to predict the future, won the favor of Czar Nicholas II and Czarina Alexandra through his ability to stop the bleeding of their hemophiliac son, Alexei, in 1908. From then on, though he was widely criticized for his lechery and drunkenness, Rasputin exerted a powerful influence on the ruling family of Russia, infuriating nobles, church orthodoxy, and peasants alike. He particularly influenced the czarina, and was rumored to be her lover. When Nicholas departed to lead Russian forces in World War I, Rasputin effectively ruled the country through Alexandra, contributing to the already-existing corruption and disorder of Romanov Russia.

Fearful of Rasputin’s growing power (among other things, it was believed by some that he was plotting to make a separate peace with the Germans), a group of nobles, led by Prince Felix Youssupov, the husband of the czar’s niece, and Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich, Nicholas’s first cousin, lured Rasputin to Youssupov Palace on the night of December 29, 1916.

First, Rasputin’s would-be killers gave the monk food and wine laced with cyanide. When he failed to react to the poison, they shot him at close range, leaving him for dead. A short time later, however, Rasputin revived and attempted to escape from the palace grounds, whereupon his assailants shot him again and beat him viciously. Finally, they bound Rasputin, still miraculously alive, and tossed him into a freezing river. His body was discovered several days later and the two main conspirators, Youssupov and Pavlovich were exiled.

Not long after, the Bolshevik Revolution put an end to the imperial regime. Nicholas and Alexandra were murdered, and the long, dark reign of the Romanovs was over.
www.historychannel.com
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BerichtGeplaatst: 31 Dec 2005 5:55    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Die Nachrichten vom 30. Dezember

1914
Lowicz und Skierniewice in deutschem Besitz
Zusammenbruch russischer Angriffe in Galizien
Die Universität Budapest

1915
Mißglückter englischer Angriff bei Lille
Neue russische Sturmangriffe in Ostgalizien abgeschlagen
Das französische Unterseeboot "Monge" in der Adria versenkt

1916
Verfolgung des weichenden Feindes in der Walachei
Ein deutsches Seeflugzeug über Sulina
Die ablehnende Antwort der Entente auf den Friedensvorschlag der Mittelmächte

1917
Gesteigerte Artillerietätigkeit im Westen

www.stahlgewitter.com
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 19:48    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

HMS Louis (1913)


HMS Louis stranded at Suvla Bay.

HMS Louis was a Royal Navy Laforey-class destroyer, built as HMS Talisman, but renamed on 30 September 1913 before being launched. She was wrecked in Suvla Bay on 31 October 1915.

Built by Fairfield Shipbuilding and Engineering Company, Govan (Yard No 491) and launched 30 December 1913. She was wrecked in Suvla Bay on 31 October 1915 during the Dardanelles Campaign. The wreck was destroyed by Turkish coastal artillery.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Louis_(1913)
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 19:54    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

THE ILLUSTRATED WAR NEWS - PART 21 - 30 December 1914



Helemaal te lezen & te bekijken op http://www.gutenberg.org/files/18334/18334-h/18334-h.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 19:57    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Nerincx, A., Poster, 30 December 1914



http://digitalcollections.mcmaster.ca/nerincx-poster-30-december-1914
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:00    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

The Emperor Nicholas II- As I Knew Him - Diary in Russia 1914

30th December 1914. DARDANELLES.

To-day I was sent for by the Grand Duke Nicholas, who saw me with the Chief of the General Staff, my friend Prince Galitzin having told me beforehand of the nature of the interview.

I was told by the Commander-in-Chief that the position in the Caucasus was very serious, that the Turks were massing forces against the Caucasus army, and that though he could retain a Caucasian army corps, which was intended for this front, he had not done so, and had told the C.in-C. of the Caucasus front that he must get on as best he could, but he felt sure that it would be for our mutual interests as Allies if we - that is, Great Britain - could render help by a demonstration of some kind which would alarm the Turks, and thus ease the position of the Russians on the Caucasus front. I answered that so far as I knew-and I had a pretty shrewd idea-our armies were not yet strong enough to spare sufficient men for a military expedition, but I asked him, in the event of its being possible, whether he thought a naval demonstration would be of any use.

He jumped at it gladly.

(N.B.: It is of historical interest that this conversation was really the origin of what eventually developed into the Dardanelles operations, though I naturally, at the time, had no idea of the great development in that line which Was to take place later on. These were, so far as I know, undertaken originally with a view to helping our Russian Allies out of a "tight place." It was thus the first chapter of what turned out to be an unfortunate undertaking, but it did anyhow render a considerable service to Russia. I left at once for Petrograd, saw Sir George - Buchanan, and sent off a message, the answer to which eventually announced the proposed action of our Navy and later on Of General Sir Ian Hamilton's expedition, an expedition undertaken with the hope and expectation Of some assistance from Russia. This was not promised, though at a later period troops were actually sent to Odessa with a view to helping, but circumstances prevented this, principally the munitions debacle)

http://www.alexanderpalace.org/hanbury/1914.html
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:15    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 147, December 30, 1914



THE NEW ARMY TO THE FRONT

http://www.gutenberg.org/files/29669/29669-h/29669-h.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:18    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Admiral Aleksandr Kolchak



While aboard Rossiia in the winter of 1914/1915, Kolchak planned and took part in a minelaying expedition deep into German waters. On the evening of 30 December 1914/12 January 1915 the cruisers Oleg, Bogatyr', Riurik and Rossiia (flying the flag of Admiral V.A. KANIN, commander of the mine forces) steamed out of Ute. While Oleg and Bogatyr' laid two minefields west as Bornholm, Rossiia went even further west, laying 98 mines north of Rugen Island. As Rossiia proceeded toward her destination, she picked up radio signals from nearby German warships; Kanin and the ship's captain, POGURSKII, considered turning back, but Kolchak, roused from a nap, curtly said "I see no reason to make any change in plan. We must proceed to the appointed place." The minefield was laid without incident. The German cruiser Gazelle was later damaged when she struck a mine in this field, and two freighters were lost there.

http://www.gwpda.org/naval/pers0002.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:20    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

10 (Kent) Company

On the outbreak of the First World War in 1914, many Officers, Adult staff and Cadets enlisted into the army. In the summer of 1914, Large groups of them signed up to form Territorial Battalions at Bromley, Lewisham and Dartford. These Volunteer Battalions were quickly reorganised into the 1/5 and 2/5 Battalions Queens Own Royal West Kent Regiment. The following year, many ex-cadets volunteered with local men to form the 3/5 Battalion and 11th (Service) Battalion, Queens Own Royal West Kent Regiment.

The 1/5 Battalion was part of the 1st Kent Brigade, Home Counties Division, and is listed as being officially raised on 04 Aug 1914 at the Drill Hall, East Street, Bromley. It was comprised wholly of cadets of the 1st Cadet Battalion, Queens Own Royal West Kent Regiment. Initially, it embarked for India on 30 December 1914. Two years later, after supplying drafts for the 2nd Regular Battalion, it was sent to Mesopotamia as part of the 54th Brigade, 18th Indian Division. Here it saw heavy fighting against the Turks at the Battle of the Fath’a Gorge and the Battle of Shrqat. The Battalion survived the war but was eventually absorbed into the 5th Battalion on the 20 July 1920.

http://www.10company.co.uk/about/war.html
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:24    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

AUCKLAND WEEKLY NEWS - 30 DECEMBER 1915

FIREMEN JOIN FORCES
Since the outbreak of war about 20% of the members of the Auckland Fire Brigade have volunteered for active service.
BURNS, T R; CHURCH, W; HARPER, C P; HARRIS, F H; MOON, V; MOORE, W T; REXWORTHY, E M; WILLIAMSON, H W; WOOLLEY, C A, Jnr.
The three last named have been wounded.

http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~sooty/awn30dec1915.html
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:27    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Diary of Lcp P. Allsup - Y Coy. 11th East Lancs. Regt.

Dec 29th [1916] - Rather a lot of shelling through day, nothing out of the ordinary. Stand down 5.0PM. Got relieved 7.0PM. Went in reserves in orchard.

Dec 30th [1916] - Stand down 7.0AM. In charge of working party through day. Stand to 5.15PM.

http://www.pals.org.uk/allsup_diary01.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:30    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

A British officer's letter: friend and foe of the dead
By a Subaltern at the Front

The Guardian, Thursday 30 December 1915

A truce had been arranged for the few hours of daylight for the burial of the dead on both sides, who had been lying out in the open since the fierce night-fighting of a week earlier. When I got out I found a large crowd of officers and men, English and German, grouped around the bodies, which had already been gathered together and laid out in rows.
I went along those dreadful ranks and scanned the faces, fearing at every step to recognise one I knew.

It was a ghastly sight. The bodies lay stiffly in contorted attitudes, dirty with frozen mud and powdered with rime. The digging parties were already busy on the two big, common graves, but the ground was hard and the work slow and laborious.

In the intervals of superintending this work we chatted with the Germans, most of whom were quite affable, if one could not exactly call them friendly, which, indeed, was neither to be expected nor desired.

We exchanged confidences about the weather and the diametrically opposite news from East Prussia. The way that they maintained the truth of their marvellous victories because they were official (with bated breath) was positively pathetic.

They had no doubt of the issue in the east, and professed to regard the position in the west as a definite stalemate.

It was most amusing to observe the bland innocence with which they put questions, a truthful answer to which might have had unexpected consequences in the future. One charming lieutenant of artillery was most anxious to know just where my dug-out, the Cormorants, was situated. No doubt he wanted to shoot his card, tied to a "Whistling Willie". I waved my hand airily over the next company's line, giving him the choice of various mangle-heaps in the rear.

They spoke of a bottle of champagne. We raised our wistful eyes in hopeless longing. They expressed astonishment, and said how pleased they would have been, had they only known, to have sent to Lille for some.

"A charming town Lille. Do you know it?" "Not yet," we assured them. Their laughter was quite frank that time.

Meanwhile, time drew on, and it was obvious that the burying would not be half finished with the expiration of the armistice agreed upon, so we decided to renew it the following morning. They left us alone that night to enjoy a peaceful Christmas.

I forgot to say that the previous night (Christmas Eve) their trenches were a blaze of Christmas trees, and our sentries were regaled for hours with the traditional Christmas songs of the Fatherland. Their officers even expressed annoyance the next day that some of these trees had been fired on, insisting they they were part almost of a sacred rite.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/1915/dec/30/mainsection.fromthearchive
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:35    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Maritieme kalender - Welke maritieme gebeurtenissen vonden plaats op welke dag of in welke maand?

30 december 1915

Het vrachtschip ss. 'Noordwijk', onder kapitein G. Kleykamp, weet in het Kanaal de overlevenden te redden van het door de Duitsers tot zinken gebrachte ss. 'Gaea'.
Bron: L.L. von Münching: 'De Ned. koopvaardij in de oorlogsmaanden van 1915' in: 'DBW' jrg. 55 nr. 11 (2000)

Het vrachtschip ss. 'Ellewoutsdijk' (1906) van Solleveld, van der Meer & van Hattum's Stoomvaart Maatschappij te Rotterdam loopt, varende op de Noordzee bij het lichtschip 'Galloper', op een door de Duitse onderzeeboot 'UC 10' gelegde mijn en gaat verloren. Alle opvarenden kunnen worden gered door het ss. 'Batavier II' van de Batavier Lijn.
Bron: L.L. von Münching: 'De Ned. koopvaardij in de oorlogsmaanden van 1915' in: 'DBW' jrg. 55 nr. 11 (2000).

http://www.hetscheepvaartmuseum.nl/1114?j=&m=12&d=30
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:39    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

H.M.S. "Natal": A Cruiser's Story (1905-1915)
By Ross Dix-Peek



H.M.S. "Natal", like H.M.S. "Good Hope" (which was lost in action off the coast of Chile during the early stages of the First World War), was presented to the Royal Navy by South Africa, and like her "compatriot", would suffer an ignominious fate, succumbing, on the 30 December 1915, to what was believed to be an internal explosion, at Cromarty Firth, in Scotland. The Cruiser, H.M.S. "Natal", was bequeathed to the Royal Navy by the people of Natal (as her name suggests), and was launched at Barrow-in-Furness, Lancashire, in late September 1905.
The "Natal" upon commencement of her service with the Royal Navy, received a ship's bell, a silver cup, a silver record plate, and a silver centre-piece and candelabra, from the people of Natal.

http://peek-01.livejournal.com/79830.html
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:42    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Utrechts Nieuwsblad - 30-12-1916

http://www.hetutrechtsarchief.nl/collectie/kranten/un/1916/1230
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:48    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

HISTORY OF M.I. 7 (b) (MARCH, 1916 - DECEMBER, 1918).

It should be added that, in conjunction with M.I. 7 (c) (later with M.I. 3 (e)),
arrangements were made for the translation of suitable articles into foreign
languages for despatch to the foreign Press, and for distribution through
representatives of the neutral Press in London, who were in the habit of calling
weekly at the War Office. Sir Douglas Haig’s despatch of 30th December, 1916 - to
name one example - was thus translated into nine languages and distributed
wherever these languages were current.

http://www.psywar.org/psywar/reproductions/MI7b.pdf
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:50    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

MOVING PICTURE WORLD, 30 December 1916



http://www.moviemags.com/main.php?title=MOVING%20PICTURE%20WORLD&etos=1916
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:52    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Kroniek van Baarle in de Eerste Wereldoorlog (1916)

30 december 1916 - Burgemeester van Gilse verklaarde dat dr. Govaerts zijn auto niet kon missen omdat hij de omliggende dorpen bediende. In het algemeen belang had de dokter nieuwe autobanden nodig. (Gemeentearchief Baarle-Hertog; 2.073.564 Register van Briefwisseling)

http://www.amaliavansolms.org/joomla/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=189&Itemid=47
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:53    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Langley Air Force Base

The base is one of the oldest facilities of the Air Force, being established on 30 December 1916, prior to America's entry to World War I by the Army Air Service, named for aviation pioneer Samuel Pierpont Langley. It was used during World War I as a flying field; balloon station; observers’ school; photography school; experimental engineering department, and for aerial coast defense.

http://www.answers.com/topic/langley-air-force-base
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 20:55    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

The New York Times, 30 December 1916: BOY SURVIVOR TELLS HOW BRITANNIC SANK

Fifteen-Year-Old Sea Scout Here Says Crew Believed She Was Torpedoed
---
ONLY ONE KILLED BY BLAST
---
But Thirty in Lifeboats Were Killed When Huge Propellers Smashed Them
---
Further details of the sinking of the White Star steamship Britannic were
brought to New York yesterday by Henry Pope, a 15-year-old cabin boy on the
liner Lapland, who was a sea scout on the great British hospital ship when
she was torpedoed or sunk by a mine on Nov. 21 in the Aegean Sea. Young Pope
said that the officers and crew of the Britannic believed that she had been
torpedoed because the explosion, while it shook the 50,000-ton ship fore and
aft, made little noise, as if a torpedo had passed through the hull forward
and exploded in the centre of the ship, where the inrush of water had deadened the
sound.

If it had been a mine, the officers said, it would have exploded against the
side of the ship with terrific violence. Pope is an intelligent boy, small
for his years. He told his story without any flourish.

"On the morning of Nov. 23 the Britannic was steaming past the Island of Zea
toward Mudros, where we were to take about 3,000 wounded on board and convey
them to Southampton," said the lad. "There were fifty doctors and assistant
surgeons on board, 150 nurses, and 650 in the crew of the Britannic.

"I was one of seventeen sea scouts, and my duty was to look after Purser
Lancaster in his office. Others of us ran the lifts and stood by for calls.
At 8:05 five of us were in the saloon pantry when we felt a shock and the
ship shook as if she had been struck by a big sea. There was little noise.
We went on eating our breakfasts for a few minutes, and then the whistle
blew four times, and we knew that the Britannic had been torpedoed or mined.

"There wasn't any excitement, as every one knew their boat stations and went
to them without stopping to look for their kits. The sea scouts on the lifts
worked them as long they could, but the ship soon listed so much to
starboard that they had to give it up and go to the boats. The officers told
us that the explosion was forward of the No. 1 hold, which was blown away
with the "glory holes," where the stewards live, the cooks' cabins, and sea
scouts' quarters. So far as we could find out in the short time before the
Britannic was abandoned, only one man was killed by the explosion, the night
watchman, who was asleep in his bunk.

"Thirty men were killed by the smashing of three lifeboats, which got
entangled with the big propellers, and others died afterward in the hospital
at Athens. Three sick bay attendants were drowned through one of the boats
being dropped by the stern, while the bow was held up to the davit. Five
scouts were in that boat, but they hung on to the standing part of the boat
falls and were not hurt.

"Captain C. A. Bartlett, commander of the Britannic, stayed on the bridge
giving orders to the officers through his speaking trumpet as the ship was
going down under his feet, and did not leave until the water lapped over
him. Then he struck out and got to one of the lifeboats which was waiting
for him.

"Directly after the explosion our wireless operator sent out calls for help,
and the auxiliary cruiser Heroic and the destroyers Greyhound and Scourge
came at full speed to rescue us. The wounded were taken by special train to
Athens.

"I was sorry to see the big ship sink in the bright sunshine with her
starboard side almost on the bottom of the ocean. As the sea swirled into
her big funnels they broke off one after another with the heavy strain, as
if wrenched from the steel plates on the hurricane deck."

The lad's home in [sic] London. Victor Niblo, a vaudeville actor in this
country is his stepfather.

http://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/discus/messages/15663/46754.html?1132320333
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BULGARIAN REPLY TO PRESIDENT WILSON, December 30, 1916

The generous initiative of the President of the United States tend-
ing to create bases for the restoration of peace, was cordially received
and taken into consideration by the Royal Government in the same
friendly spirit which is evidenced by the presidential communication.
The President indicates the object he has at heart and leaves open the
choice of the way leading to that object. The Royal Government con-
siders a direct exchange of views to be the most efficacious way to
attain the desired end. In accordance with its declaration of the 12th
of December inst., which extends a hand for peace negotiations, it has
the honor to propose an immediate meeting at one place of delegates
of the belligerent Powers. The Royal Government shares the view
that the great undertaking which consists in preventing future war
can only be initiated after the close of present conflict of nations.
When that time comes, the Royal Government will be glad to cooperate
with the United States of America and other neutral nations in that
sublime endeavor.

http://www.questia.com/read/3552157
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DECLARATION OF PREMIER RADOSLAVOFF IN THE
BULGARIAN SOBRANJE, December 30, 1916


I can assure you that Bulgaria's work has been brought to a suc-
cessful conclusion. To those who assert that we are asking too much
I reply that we are no chauvinists, but that we are aware of the aspira-
tions of the Bulgarian people. You know from the Royal manifesto
issued when war was declared what Bulgarian aspirations are. I am
not obliged to reply to each speaker individually.

http://www.questia.com/read/3552157
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SPANISH REPLY TO PRESIDENT WILSON'S PEACE NOTE, December 30, 1916

His Majesty's Government has received through your embassy a
copy of the note which the President of the United States has pre-
sented to the belligerent Powers, expressing the desire that an early
opportunity should be sought for obtaining from all the nations now
at war a declaration as to their intentions so far as regards the bases
upon which the conflict might be terminated. This copy is accom-
panied by another note, signed by yourself, and dated December 22,
in which your embassy, in accordance with the instructions of your
Government, says, in the name of the President, that the moment
seems to be opportune for action on the part of his Majesty's Govern-
ment, and that it should, if it thinks fit, support the attitude adopted by
the Government of the United States.

With regard to the reasonable desire manifested by the latter Gov-
ernment to be supported in its proposition in favor of peace, the
Government of his Majesty, considering that the initiative has been
taken by the President of the North American Republic, and that the
diverse impressions which it has caused are already known, is of
opinion that the action to which the United States invites Spain would
not have efficacy, and the more so because the Central Empires have
already expressed their firm intention to discuss the conditions of
peace solely with the belligerent Powers.

Fully appreciating that the noble desire of the President of the
United States will always merit the gratitude of all nations, the Gov-
ernment of his Majesty is decided not to dissociate itself from any
negotiation or agreement destined to facilitate the humanitarian work
which will put an end to the present war, but it suspends its action,
reserving it for the moment when the efforts of all those who desire
peace will be more useful and efficacious than is now the case, if there
should then be reasons to consider that its initiative or its intervention
would be profitable.

Until that moment arrives the Government of his Majesty regards
it as opportune to declare that in all that concerns an understanding
between the neutral Powers for the defense of their material interests
affected by the war, it is disposed now, as it has been since the begin-
ning of the present conflict, to enter into negotiations which may tend
toward an agreement capable of uniting all the non-belligerent Powers
which may consider themselves injured or may regard it as necessary
to remedy or diminish such injuries.

http://www.questia.com/read/3552157
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Wilfred Owen's First Encounter with the Reality of War

On 30th of December 1916 Wilfred Owen, having completed his military training, sailed for France.

No knowledge, imagination or training fully prepared Owen for the shock and suffering of front line experience. Within twelve days of arriving in France the easy-going chatter of his letters turned to a cry of anguish. By the 9th of January, 1917 he had joined the 2nd Manchesters on the Somme – at Bertrancourt near Amien. Here he took command of number 3 platoon, "A" Company.

He wrote home to his mother, "I can see no excuse for deceiving you about these last four days. I have suffered seventh hell. – I have not been at the front. – I have been in front of it. – I held an advanced post, that is, a "dug-out" in the middle of No Man's Land.We had a march of three miles over shelled road, then nearly three along a flooded trench. After that we came to where the trenches had been blown flat out and had to go over the top. It was of course dark, too dark, and the ground was not mud, not sloppy mud, but an octopus of sucking clay, three, four, and five feet deep, relieved only by craters full of water . . ."

http://www.warpoetry.co.uk/owena.htm
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WORCESTERSHIRE AND SHERWOOD FORESTERS REGIMENT - VICTORIA CROSS WINNERS



Lieutenant Eugene Paul Bennett VC MC. 2nd Battalion the Worcestershire Regiment at Transloy Ridges on the Somme on 5 November 1916 despite having been dazed by a shell burst he dashed through heavy shell and machine gun fire to rally a Company which had been pinned down. The rest of the Battalion followed and the objective was secured.

London Gazette 30 December 1916

http://www.wfrmuseum.org.uk/vcwinners.htm
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The action of Welsh Ridge, 30 December 1917

Third Army (Byng)
V Corps (Fanshawe)
63rd (Royal Naval) Division.
VII Corps (Snow)
9th (Scottish) Division.

On 30/31 December, German troops dressed in white camouflage suits surprised British battalions in snow on the southern part of the Cambrai front. A difficult defensive action took place: the Action of Welch Ridge.

http://www.1914-1918.net/bat21.htm

The 63rd Naval Division held its front with all three Brigades, the 188th were on the right, the 189th in the centre and the 190th on the left.

At 6.30 a,m. on the 30th December the 63rd Division’s front was heavily bombarded for fifteen minutes followed by a infantry attack, with Flammenwerfer detachments. British fire took toll of the Germans, but at many points he entered the forward trenches, where the defenders had suffered heavily from the German bombardment. Corner Trench, Welsh Trench and Welch Support were lost by the 188th Bde. The 189th Bde. had both flanks penetrated, with the Germans entering Ostrich Lane on its right and Battery Lane on its left, where the 7/Royal Fus. of the 190th were driven in losing Eagle Avenue. At 8 a.m. the Germans advanced up a sunken road into the northern side of the salient pressing back the 1/4/K.S.L.I., the left battalion of the 190th Bde. (the K.S.L.I. Regt. History makes no mention of the 1/4 losing any trenches it records that they formed a defensive). Two companies of the Artists Rifles, from brigade reserve, counter-attacked about noon and cleared the Germans from the sunken road, where a new line was established. No attempt was made to recover the salient (the K.S.L.I. Regt. History records the 1/4’s two support companies co-operated in the counter-attack, and records that the situation was restored, but it may have only been referring to the situation of K.S.L.I. Line only). Counter-attacks by the 188th & 189th Bdes failed to regain their part of the line.

From the Official History, http://1914-1918.invisionzone.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=3440

'Over The Top'. 1st Artists' Rifles at Marcoing, 30th December 1917



http://www.iwmprints.org.uk/image.php?id=377608&idx=2&fromsearch=true
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The sinking of the S.S. Aragon, 30th December 1917


The S.S. Aragon goes down

1917 was a dreadful year for the Allied powers, despite the gains made both on the Western Front and in the Eastern Mediterranean theatre. The Arras offensives in April were deemed a success despite the usual high casualty rates, with the years big push (the "Third Ypres" or "Passchendaele") achieving it's objective but at a truly horrendous loss of life. The Russian Army had left the field after their famous revolution and the French Army all but mutinied, refusing to go on the offensive due to their horrific losses in attack after attack. Offensive operations were, therefore, left to the British and Empire forces, who almost broke their morale in the mud around Passchendaele. As the years carnage settled into the usual winter routines of simply holding the lines, a further set of disastrous losses awaited the British forces at the very end of 1917.

On the 30th December 1917, the Troopship S.S. Aragon arrived at Alexandria Harbour, having sailed from Marseilles on the 17th December. She was laden with around 2,700 troops bound for the conflicts raging in Palestine.

As she arrived in a convoy bound for the port, the rest of the ships sailed onwards to Alexandria and she lay up ten miles off shore, awaiting her escort. The 9588 tons of ocean liner drifted gently as she waited within sight of land but was torpedoed by the German Submarine and minelayer the UC-34.

The destroyer HMS Attack dashed to her rescue as she sunk quickly, as well as every available ship within reach. Many of the men rescued and taken onto the HMS Attack had just stripped their oil drenched clothes from their bodies and laid on the deck when she too was torpedoed by the same submarine, almost blowing her in two.

The following day - New Years Eve - just as the rescue was called off, fleet auxiliary craft HMS Osmanieh also hit a mine in the area, taking another 197 soldiers and nurses down with her.

610 of the 2,700 passengers on board the HMS Aragon were lost at sea, including 25 of the new draft bound for the 5th Battalion of the Bedfordshire regiment.

http://www.bedfordregiment.org.uk/5thbn/ssaragon.html
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Defence of Jerusalem. Situation at 1800 30 December 1917



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Jerusalem_(1917)
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Patrick Houston Shaw-Stewart (1888-1917), War Poet

He was in America on bank business in 1914, but returned to England not long before war was declared. He was commissioned as a Sub-Lt in the RNVR in September 1914, joining the Hood Battalion of the RND in November. When they sailed on the Grantully Castle for the Mediterranean on 22 February 1915, he took his Herodotus as a guidebook. His mess companions included FS Kelly*, Bernard Freyberg*, and Rupert Brooke*. When they buried Brooke among the olive trees of Skyros on 23 April 1915, Shaw-Stewart commanded the firing party. After Gallipoli, where he grew a striking red beard and earned the Legion of Honour for liaison work with the French, he was attached to the French forces in Salonika through 1916, for which he was awarded the Croix de Guerre. Although appointed a staff officer (GSO.3), he badgered the War Office to be allowed to see real action, and rejoined the Hood Battalion in France in May 1917. He was killed on 30 December 1917 as its temporary commanding officer in the rank of Lt-Cdr, and was buried on 6 January 1918 in the British extension to the communal cemetery at Metz-en-Couture.

Characterised as a "war poet" in many places, this rests on a single poem which was unknown in his lifetime, albeit a memorable one which has been printed many times since. Written in a rest period during the Dardanelles campaign, it is, like his correspondence, heavily laced with allusions to Greek epic literature.

I saw a man this morning
Who did not wish to die
I ask, and cannot answer,
If otherwise wish I.

Fair broke the day this morning
Against the Dardanelles ;
The breeze blew soft, the morn's cheeks
Were cold as cold sea-shells

But other shells are waiting
Across the Aegean sea,
Shrapnel and high explosive,
Shells and hells for me.

O hell of ships and cities,
Hell of men like me,
Fatal second Helen,
Why must I follow thee ?

Achilles came to Troyland
And I to Chersonese :
He turned from wrath to battle,
And I from three days' peace.

Was it so hard, Achilles,
So very hard to die ?
Thou knewest and I know not-
So much the happier I.

I will go back this morning
From Imbros over the sea ;
Stand in the trench, Achilles,
Flame-capped, and shout for me.


http://archives.balliol.ox.ac.uk/Past%20members/PHStewart.asp
Zie ook http://war-poets.blogspot.com/2010/07/miles-jebb-patrick-shaw-stewart.html
Zie ook http://sites.google.com/site/patrickshawstewartww1/home
_________________

"Omdat ik alles beter weet is het mijn plicht om betweters te minachten."
Marcel Wauters, Vlaams schrijver en kunstenaar 1921-2005


Laatst aangepast door Percy Toplis op 28 Dec 2010 21:39, in totaal 1 keer bewerkt
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Letters of condolence

(...) [W]hat can one possibly say? And how can one say it? It's not as easy as it looks. Take George Bernard Shaw, for example, writing to Mrs Patrick Campbell on the death of her son, Acting Lieutenant-Commander Alan Campbell, killed in action, 30 December 1917. The best the great logomonomaniac could do: "Oh, damn, damn, damn, damn, damn, damn, damn, damn, DAMN. And oh, dear, dear, dear, dear, dear, dearest!" Or take Edith Sitwell writing to the mother of Wilfred Owen on the anniversary of his death, struggling to raise the self out of pity: "If only one could express what one feels, ever." And TE Lawrence, perhaps the most troubled and honest of all, admitting at the end of a letter to Thomas Hardy's widow, "This is not the letter I'd like to write."

http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2009/nov/21/tony-benn-maya-angelou-letters
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Seabee History: Introduction

On 30 December 1917 the regiment became "fully operational" at Camp Paul Jones with 1,500 men, organized into three battalions.

http://www.history.navy.mil/faqs/faq67-2.htm
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Brothers died in 1917

30 December 1917 - Corporal Charles and Sergeant James Freeman, 26, died whilst serving with the 1/4th Bn, the King's Shropshire Light Infantry in the action for Welsh Ridge near Cambrai. Sons of Susan Freeman of Old Park, Dawley, Shropshire. James had won the MM in late 1917. Charles has no known grave and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing; James lies in Fifteen Ravine British Cemetery at Villers-Plouich. Their brother in law William Hawkins, 1st King's Shropshire Light Infantry, also perished, dying of wounds on 27 June 1915.

http://www.1914-1918.net/brothers1917.htm
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USS Zaca (ID-3792)



The first USS Zaca (ID-3792) was a steel-hulled, single-screw freighter that served in the United States Navy from 1918 to 1919.

Zaca was built under a United States Shipping Board contract and completed as SS Zaca in 1918 at Oakland, California, by the Moore Shipbuilding Company. She was acquired by the U.S. Navy for duty with the Naval Overseas Transportation Service (NOTS). Designated Id. No. 3792, she was commissioned as USS Zaca on 30 December 1918 at her builder's yard, Lieutenant Commander James J. Carey, USNRF, in command.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Zaca_(ID-3792)
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Mannerheim


After Germany had been forced to surrender in November 1918, General Mannerheim was elected Regent of Finland (from 12 December, 1918, till 27 July, 1919).

When assuming the duties of the office, he asked Archbishop Gustaf Johansson a blessing on his task. Mannerheim was also Commander-in-Chief from 30 December 1918, till 26 July, 1919.

As Regent, Mannerheim was able to enjoy some of the splendour reserved for a head of state by the monarchists whose plans had recently gone amiss. He travelled in Finland and abroad to keep up the self-esteem of the Finns and Finland.

In foreign policy, he had to attend to Finnish interests in the tense situation caused by the Russian Civil War. He held to the view that Finland should participate in the occupation of St Petersburg and establish good relations with the government that might replace the Bolshevik Regime. On the other hand, he could not commit himself to the plans of the Russian anti-revolutionaries unless they were able to reorganize their ranks and recognize the right of Finland to independence. He even went as far as to consider leaving the law on the Republic form of government unratified in July 1919, a kind of coup d´etat. In the presidential election his support was insufficient

http://www.mannerheim.fi/07_vhoit/e_valtho.htm
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Soldier's Mail - Letters Home from a New England Doughboy 1916-1919

Chauffort, France 12/30/1918

Dear Em,

Received the Christmas box today and was very much pleased with it. All the contents were in it when I got it and will say that you sure knew what I neaded when you put the razor blades in. The Boston Post of Nov. 27-28 was also received and was very interesting not only to me but all the boys in the billet here. Every one wants to be next to read it especially General Edward’s talk. He said that he could talk all night if given the time, and I agree with him, as will every one else that was in the Division when we left Westfield a year ago last September, and landed in England and France the first complete U.S. Division.

The stockings will come in very handy, also the pipe, and tobacco. I have received no mail from you since I answered your letter of Dec. 1, telling you that I was again with the company and feeling O.K. this being my condition and position at this writing. I expect to hear from you any time now though, which will mean an answer right away of coarse. I am in a very good position to write now so you can expect to hear from me oftener than you have latly.

Will inform you now why it was that I wrote so many letters (for I think I sent a lot of mail) from Oct 20 to the 30. I was in Verdun which city was quite a distance behind the lines although Fritzy threw many large shells into it daily. Those of us that were in the city (the regiment was on the line) were well quartered while there, therefore giving us plenty of chances to write. Since then I will admit that my letters have not been as numerous for we went up for the drive which lasted until the 11th of Nov. after which we hiked for ten days, then I went on a furlough for seven days, which really took up about fifteen, went to the hospital and now Im back and settled.

As for the weather, rain is very much in order now although it has warmed up considerable the last day or so. Plenty of wood for the fire, plenty of tobacco for the pipe and a crowd of the old timers present makes many an hour spent far from uncomfortable here in this little town about fifty miles from civilization.

The talk over an early return home has died out now so we just simply do what we have done in months gone by. Take whats coming and make the best of it. I thought sure that we would be back for Christmas but now I guess it will be after Feb. 1.

Well Em Ive got nothing more to say until I hear from you and I hope that is soon. Regards and best wishes to all

Sam
Samuel E. Avery #69762, Hdq Co. 103rd Inf.

http://worldwar1letters.wordpress.com/2009/12/
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Joseph Lesage (1884-1918) - Frontsoldaat in de eerste Wereldoorlog

Nieuwjaar

1916 "Zonder vrolijkheid in het hart gaan wij het nieuwe jaar in, dat ons, zoa/s het er naar uitziet, wéér een van de beste jaren van ons leven zal ontnemen. Juist op mijn leeftijd begin je te profiteren van het leven, omringd door de lieftalligheid van kieine kinderen en gekoesterd door een schat van een vrouw. Het is de leeftijd waarin men tot volle ontwikkeling komt in een vak a/s het mijne. Dat a//es is een dagelijkse zorg voor mij. 1k zou mijn verstand stil willen zetten, maar de werkelijkheid dringt zich aan mij op en daar lijd ik onder." (31-12-1915)

1917 "Jullie hebben wel geraden dat, sinds twee dagen, de omstandigheden er niet toe hebben bijgedragen om correspondentie bij te houden." (30-12-1916)

1918 "1k ben niet in staat om de goede wensen nog eens te herhalen; die sturen we nu a/ vier jaar zonder resultaat. Kunnen we nog echt in het wonder ge/oven dat onze grote leiders het boetekleed aantrekken? Niets wijst er nog op, helaas! Ik hoop eigenlijk maar één ding en dat is dat de nieuwe Duitse stormloop die ons ongetwijfeld te wachten staat ons zó za/ mange/en dat wij de armen ten hemel moeten heffen om genade en vergiffenis te vragen. Het is walgelijk om te zien dat onze inspanningen al bij voorbaat teniet worden gedaan door de kwade wil van de leiders en soms wens ik bijna de definitieve nederlaag, opdat zij des te meer hun straf krijgen. 1k ben niet erg opgewekt voor mijn nieuwjaarswensen. Neem het me maar niet kwalijk, Want wat zou ik voor leuks kunnen zeggen onder zulke treurige omstandigheden ? -21 graden s'nachts." (30-12-1917)

http://www.josephlesage.com/nl/tekeningen/nieuwjaar.html
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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 21:59    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

The Diary of Bugler Benjamin Edgar Cruzan

December 30, 1918: Got a pass yesterday went down to Trier a fair good sized town Not much sport while there to many M.P. they are thick as flies had a couple good feeds saw some Old Old buildings Stayed till 8:00 a.m. Came back and after we got off Sgt Brown, Rotcap, and Corp Carlton shot up a Saloon by the depot they are under arrest dont know what will be done. All is well.

http://www.kancoll.org/articles/cruzan/c_diary2.htm
_________________

"Omdat ik alles beter weet is het mijn plicht om betweters te minachten."
Marcel Wauters, Vlaams schrijver en kunstenaar 1921-2005


Laatst aangepast door Percy Toplis op 28 Dec 2010 22:07, in totaal 1 keer bewerkt
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Percy Toplis



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BerichtGeplaatst: 28 Dec 2010 22:04    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Dora B. Montefiore 1919: "Dr. E. J. Dillon on the Peace Conference"
Source: The Call, 30 December 1919

If anything would tend to increase the hostility of Socialists to the existing capitalist system with its greedy crowd of statesmen, financiers, crowned heads, tame Labour leaders, and prostituted press, it would be the perusal of Dr. E. Dillon’s cinematograph-like descriptions of the scenes in the coulisses, and sometimes in the limelight of the stage of the so-called “Peace” Conference, whose labours at Versailles have “made the world safe for hypocrisy.” Dr. Dillon, as a Home Ruler, writes in a vein of cynical irony about the “Great Four” who behaved throughout as benevolent despots, to whom despotism came, more easily than benevolence; and he makes out an absolutely sound case for those who feel that two at least (and those the two chief Anglo-Saxon delegates) were too ignorant of the details of European conditions, geography, ethnography, complicated strategic frontiers, and racial rivalries to be able successfully to fill the role of all-pervading demigods, rearranging the map of Europe according to their make-believe Olympian plan. It is a sublimely ludicrous picture! Woodrow Wilson setting sail from America, preceded by the trumpet blasts of the “Fourteen Points,” the first point being “The Freedom of the Seas,” which he was obliged to drop, before setting foot in Europe, because British statesmen had shown their teeth and had communicated to him by wireless that they would have none of that nonsense. As a matter of fact, we gather from Dr. Dillon’s pages that the much-Vaunted “Fourteen Points” were an absolute frost at Versailles, for “State Secretary Lansing admitted to the States Foreign Relations Committee that the President’s fourteen points, which he had vowed to carry out, were not even discussed at the conference.” As we all know, however, Wilson got even with his co-delegates by insisting on having his shadowy League of Nations endlessly discussed at the conference before any realities of peace were allowed to be considered, thus prolonging by months the armistice, and helping to bring economic ruin and misery on Central and Eastern Europe. He also eased his ethical temperament by hectoring and brow-beating the delegates from the lesser States, using in his process of subjecting them to his will a similar form of pressure to that used by the capitalist to the worker—the economic thumbscrew. “Oh, you won’t consent to advise your Government to have a piece of territory snipped off in one part, or a part taken from you in another part, or a concession for your oil or coal mines granted to the financiers of one of the four Great Powers? Very well then, you will have to go without the food and the raw materials you require, till you come to your senses.” This, in effect, was the language used, and the action taken towards the small fry of the nations by two men, “one of whom had never heard of Teschen before the year 1919,” and the other of whom asked where this place Transylvania was “that the Roumanians were making all this fuss about.” On the subject of the Balkans I must challenge Dr: Dillon’s contention that, “of the total population of Bulgarian and Turkish Thrace, the Turks and Greeks together form 80 per cent., and the Bulgars only 6 per cent.” Every later Turkish census gave an overwhelming predominance of Bulgarians as inhabitants of Thrace, every ethnographical map shows the same state of things, and in most books of travel written about the country stress is laid on the fact that the Bulgarian language is everywhere spoken. Bulgaria was punished by the terms imposed on her at the Peace Conference, first, because she was an enemy Power, and secondly, because her army and a large majority of her people have Bolshevist tendencies and it is deemed expedient to clip her wings, and make her as dependent as possible on the good or bad will of her neighbours.

We Socialists affirm (and rightly from many points of view) that monarchies are side issues, and that it makes little difference whether the various countries where the class struggle is being carried on live under a Monarchy or a Republic. But much of the intrigue which has been carried on during the war is due to the close relationships of some of the reigning families in Europe to our own reigning family. We are familiar with the fact of the Russian Queen Mother having resided for months in London with her sister, the English Queen Mother, where she made herself the centre of Imperialist intrigue against the Soviet Republic. Then we find Roumania, whose queen is a near relative of our King, treated by the terms of its Peace Treaty as a favoured nation, granted the Southern Dobrudja, which was originally Bulgarian territory, and sharing with Serbia the Banat, the richest undeveloped portion of the Balkans. Finally, we note that when the question came up as to whether neutral States should sign the covenant, President Wilson declared himself against such an arrangement, adding, “I think it would be conferring too much honour on them, and they don’t deserve it.” In April, 1919, “the delegates and the world were surprised to learn that not only Would Spain be admitted to the orthodox fold, but that she would have a voice in the management of the flock, with a seat in the Council.” it is needless to labour the point.

Dr. Dillon is more at home in the gossip of a prolonged Peace Conference than in the world of realities of a prolonged class struggle. He devotes a chapter to Bolshevism, which he defines as “a few epileptics running amok among the multitude of paralytics.” He boasts of having been privileged to know Dostoyevsky, who he considers was not a forerunner of Bolshevism, but “one of its keenest antagonists.” Tolstoy and Gorki he looks upon as forerunners, but he does not mention Turgenieff, who shared that honour with them; and writes of Bakunin as if he also were a forerunner of Bolshevism, whereas Bakunin was an anarchist, and bitterly opposed in his writings the authors of the Communist Manifesto, on which Socialism, or Communism is founded. But though our author loathes Bolshevism, he knows enough of European tendencies to realise that it is in the order of coming changes, and that neither abuse, misrepresentation, nor Lloyd . George, nor Clemenceau, nor President Wilson can stay the force of its rising tide. “What Germany borrows from Bolshevism to-day, Western Europe will borrows from Germany to-morrow, and foremost among the new institutions which the revolution will impose upon Europe is that of the Soviets, considerably modified in form and limited in functions.” Bolshevism only offered to the people three points instead of fourteen, and they were bread, land, and peace. When the peoples of Europe extend their hands with real faith in the demand they can have all three of them, they can at the same time sweep away the Versailles Conference, and all its hypocrisies.

http://www.marxists.org/archive/montefiore/1919/12/30.htm
_________________

"Omdat ik alles beter weet is het mijn plicht om betweters te minachten."
Marcel Wauters, Vlaams schrijver en kunstenaar 1921-2005
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