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5 April
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BerichtGeplaatst: 05 Apr 2006 6:41    Onderwerp: 5 April Reageer met quote

April 5

1918 First stage of German spring offensive ends

On April 5, 1918, General Erich von Ludendorff formally ends “Operation Michael,” the first stage of the final major German offensive of World War I.

Operation Michael, which marked the first sizeable German offensive against Allied positions on the Western Front in more than a year, began on March 21, 1918, with a five-hour-long bombardment of Allied positions near the Somme River from more than 9,000 pieces of German artillery, in the face of which the poorly prepared British 5th Army was rapidly overwhelmed and forced into retreat. For a week, the Germans pushed toward Paris, shelling the city from a distance of 80 miles with their “Big Bertha” cannons; by March 25, they had crossed the Somme and broken through the Allied lines. Hampered by a lack of supplies and cavalry, as well as hardening Allied defenses, German troops became exhausted, and by the end of March the Allies had halted their advance. On April 2, U.S. General John J. Pershing sent several thousand fresh American troops down into the trenches to fight alongside the British and French. It was the first major deployment of U.S. troops in World War I.

By April 5, when Ludendorff shut down the attacks, Operation Michael had produced the biggest gains of territory on the Western Front by either side since 1914. The Germans had advanced almost 40 miles, inflicted some 200,000 casualties and captured 70,000 prisoners and more than 1,000 Allied guns. The costs of battle were high, however: Germans suffered nearly as many casualties as their enemies and lacked the fresh reserves and supplies the Allies enjoyed following the American entrance into the war. Still, Ludendorff would launch four more similar operations that spring of 1918, as the Germans staked everything on a last, desperate offensive on the Western Front.

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BerichtGeplaatst: 05 Apr 2006 7:01    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Events
None for 5 April



Births
1 1888 William Wheeler
2 1890 Pierre Leroy de Boiseaumarie
3 1892 Hans von Keudell
4 1896 Heinrich Drekmann
5 1898 Charles Mace



Deaths
1 1959 Roman Schmidt
2 1963 Gilbert Uteau
3 1984 Arthur Harris
4 1987 George Bulmer



Claims
1 1917 Roderic Dallas #8
2 1917 Hugh Griffith #1
3 1917 James Smith #4
4 1917 Laurence Allen #1
5 1917 Robert Compston #2
6 1917 Frank Hudson #3
7 1917 Geoffrey Pidcock #1
8 1917 Maurice Scott #2
9 1917 Hugh White #1
10 1917 Alan Wilkinson #11
11 1917 Henry Woollett #1
12 1917 Jean Chaput #9 #10
13 1917 Hans Auer #1
14 1917 Karl Menckhoff #1
15 1917 Manfred von Richthofen #35 #36
16 1917 Georg Schlenker #6
17 1917 Adolf Schulte u/c
18 1917 Otto Splitgerber #2
19 1917 Giles Blennerhasset #2 #3
20 1917 Victor Huston #2 #3
21 1917 Ernest Norton #3 #4
22 1918 Gerhard Fieseler #3
23 1918 Wilhelm Zorn #3



Losses
None for 5 April



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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 8:34    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Westfront, Frankrijk
5 april 1915
Het Franse 1ste en 3de leger lanceren een aanval op de door de Duitsers bezette St.-Mihiel-saillant in de regio Maas-Argonne. De vooruitgang was miniem door een combinatie van slecht weer, dikke modder en de uitgebreide Duitse verdediging. De aanval verzwakt na enkele weken, maar kleinschalige schermutselingen komen nog maandenlang voor.
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 8:38    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Zeeoorlog, Adriatische Zee
5 april 1916
In de tot op heden grootste zee-evacuatie voltooien oorlogsschepen de evacuatie van zo'n 260.000 Servische troepen uit Albanië. Merkwaardig genoeg lijden de Serviërs geen verliezen, terwijl negentien Franse, Britse en Italiaanse oorlogbodems bij lucht- en onderzeeërsaanvallen tot zinken worden gebracht.
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 8:40    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

1915
Western Front

Belgians repulsed at Driegrachten.

French make progress east of Verdun, but are repulsed in the Argonne.

Eastern Front

Russians make further progress in the Carpathians.

Naval and Overseas Operations

Union forces occupy Kalkfontein and Kamus (German south-west Africa).

United States demands �46,000 for the sinking of "W.P. Frye".

Political, etc.

King George V prohibits use of alcoholic drinks in any of the royal households.

Mr. John Redmond addresses the National Volunteer Convention at Dublin.

1916
Western Front

Battle of Verdun: Germans occupy Haucourt; attack on Bethincourt breaks down.

Zeppelin raid on north-east coast: 1 killed, 9 injured.

Asiatic and Egyptian Theatres

British take Um-el-Hanna and Falahiya position (Mesopotamia), and positions on right bank of Tigris.

Sir J. Nixon's Mesopotamian despatch of 1 January 1916 published.

Naval and Overseas Operations

"Breslau" aids Turks near Trebizond.

Political, etc.

List of certified trades under Military Service Act revised.

"Military Medal" instituted.

General Morone becomes Minister of War in Italy.

1917
Western Front

British capture three villages between Cambrai and St. Quentin.

Germans bombard French north of Urvillers.

Great air battle begins, lasting two days.

Aeroplane raid on Kent and Ramsgate, no casualties.

Eastern Front

Manifesto of M. Guchkov (Russian War Minister) to soldiers to do their duty.

Political, etc.

British Food Hoarding Order.

Dutch Note to British Government re: armed merchantmen.

General Lyautey appointed to Morocco.

1918
Western Front

Germans again attack from Somme to beyond Bucquoy.

British take 200 prisoners in counter-attack near Hebuterne.

French attack north of Montdidier and near Noyon.

End of Second Battle of the Somme.

Eastern Front

German landing in Finland confirmed.

Siberia: Japanese marines land at Vladivostok, followed by a British detachment.

Southern Front

60 Austrian sailors captured on land by Italians near Ancona.

Asiatic and Egyptian Theatres

Van (Armenia) retaken by the Turks.

Naval and Overseas Operations

Sir J. Van Deventer's despatch on East Africa published.

Political, etc.

51st Meeting of Irish Convention adopts draft report. Convention adjourns sine die.

1919
Aftermath of War

General Smuts' Mission to Budapest a failure (2-6 April).

Bolsheviks again attack Archangel front and are repulsed.
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 11:10    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

1916
Geboortedag van de Amerikaanse acteur Gregory Peck (Eldred Gregory Peck, 1916-2003) in La Jolla, Californië als zoon van een drogist.
Films: "The guns of Navarone", "How the west was won", "Gentleman's agreement", "The boys from Brazil", "The omen", "Cape fear", "Spellbound", "Roman Holiday".
Hij kreeg een Oscar voor "To kill a mockingbird".
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 11:10    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

1910
De Franse Spoorwegen verboden het "kussen bij het vertrek", omdat het vertragingen veroorzaakte. Embarassed Embarassed
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 11:54    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Interessant genoeg om in z'n geheel over te nemen...

Opposition to Wilson's War Message

I. Speech by George W. Norris


While I am most emphatically and sincerely opposed to taking any step that will force our country into the useless and senseless war now being waged in Europe, yet, if this resolution passes, I shall not permit my feeling of opposition to its passage to interfere in any way with my duty either as a senator or as a citizen in bringing success and victory to American arms. I am bitterly opposed to my country entering the war, but if, notwithstanding my opposition, we do enter it, all of my energy and all of my power will be behind our flag in carrying it on to victory.

The resolution now before the Senate is a declaration of war. Before taking this momentous step, and while standing on the brink of this terrible vortex, we ought to pause and calmly and judiciously consider the terrible consequences of the step we are about to take. We ought to consider likewise the route we have recently traveled and ascertain whether we have reached our present position in a way that is compatible with the neutral position which we claimed to occupy at the beginning and through the various stages of this unholy and unrighteous war.

No close student of recent history will deny that both Great Britain and Germany have, on numerous occasions since the beginning of the war, flagrantly violated in the most serious manner the rights of neutral vessels and neutral nations under existing international law, as recognized up to the beginning of this war by the civilized world.

The reason given by the President in asking Congress to declare war against Germany is that the German government has declared certain war zones, within which, by the use of submarines, she sinks, without notice, American ships and destroys American lives. . . . The first war zone was declared by Great Britain. She gave us and the world notice of it on, the 4th day of November, 1914. The zone became effective Nov. 5, 1914. . . . This zone so declared by Great Britain covered the whole of the North Sea. . . . The first German war zone was declared on the 4th day of February, 1915, just three months after the British war zone was declared. Germany gave fifteen days' notice of the establishment of her zone, which became effective on the 18th day of February, 1915. The German war zone covered the English Channel and the high seawaters around the British Isles. . . .

It is unnecessary to cite authority to show that both of these orders declaring military zones were illegal and contrary to international law. It is sufficient to say that our government has officially declared both of them to be illegal and has officially protested against both of them. The only difference is that in the case of Germany we have persisted in our protest, while in the case of England we have submitted.

What was our duty as a government and what were our rights when we were confronted with these extraordinary orders declaring these military zones? First, we could have defied both of them and could have gone to war against both of these nations for this violation of international law and interference with our neutral rights. Second, we had the technical right to defy one and to acquiesce in the other. Third, we could, while denouncing them both as illegal, have acquiesced in them both and thus remained neutral with both sides, although not agreeing with either as to the righteousness of their respective orders. We could have said to American shipowners that, while these orders are both contrary to international law and are both unjust, we do not believe that the provocation is sufficient to cause us to go to war for the defense of our rights as a neutral nation, and, therefore, American ships and American citizens will go into these zones at their own peril and risk.

Fourth, we might have declared an embargo against the shipping from American ports of any merchandise to either one of these governments that persisted in maintaining its military zone. We might have refused to permit the sailing of any ship from any American port to either of these military zones. In my judgment, if we had pursued this course, the zones would have been of short duration. England would have been compelled to take her mines out of the North Sea in order to get any supplies from our country. When her mines were taken out of the North Sea then the German ports upon the North Sea would have been accessible to American shipping and Germany would have been compelled to cease her submarine warfare in order to get any supplies from our nation into German North Sea ports.

There are a great many American citizens who feel that we owe it as a duty to humanity to take part in this war. Many instances of cruelty and inhumanity can be found on both sides. Men are often biased in their judgment on account of their sympathy and their interests. To my mind, what we ought to have maintained from the beginning was the strictest neutrality. If we had done this, I do not believe we would have been on the verge of war at the present time. We had a right as a nation, if we desired, to cease at any time to be neutral. We had a technical right to respect the English war zone and to disregard the German war zone, but we could not do that and be neutral.

I have no quarrel to find with the man who does not desire our country to remain neutral. While many such people are moved by selfish motives and hopes of gain, I have no doubt but that in a great many instances, through what I believe to be a misunderstanding of the real condition, there are many honest, patriotic citizens who think we ought to engage in this war and who are behind the President in his demand that we should declare war against Germany. I think such people err in judgment and to a great extent have been misled as to the real history and the true facts by the almost unanimous demand of the great combination of wealth that has a direct financial interest in our participation in the war.

We have loaned many hundreds of millions of dollars to the Allies in this controversy. While such action was legal and countenanced by international law, there is no doubt in my mind but the enormous amount of money loaned to the Allies in this country has been instrumental in bringing about a public sentiment in favor of our country taking a course that would make every bond worth a hundred cents on the dollar and making the payment of every debt certain and sure. Through this instrumentality and also through the instrumentality of others who have not only made millions out of the war in the manufacture of munitions, etc., and who would expect to make millions more if our country can be drawn into the catastrophe, a large number of the great newspapers and news agencies of the country have been controlled and enlisted in the greatest propaganda that the world has ever known to manufacture sentiment in favor of war.

It is now demanded that the American citizens shall be used as insurance policies to guarantee the safe delivery of munitions of war to belligerent nations. The enormous profits of munition manufacturers, stockbrokers, and bond dealers must be still further increased by our entrance into the war. This has brought us to the present moment, when Congress, urged by the President and backed by the artificial sentiment, is about to declare war and engulf our country in the greatest holocaust that the world has ever known.

In showing the position of the bondholder and the stockbroker, I desire to read an extract from a letter written by a member of the New York Stock Exchange to his customers. This writer says:

Regarding the war as inevitable, Wall Street believes that it would be preferable to this uncertainty about the actual date of its commencement. Canada and Japan are at war and are more prosperous than ever before. The popular view is that stocks would have a quick, clear, sharp reaction immediately upon outbreak of hostilities, and that then they would enjoy an old-fashioned bull market such as followed the outbreak of war with Spain in 1898. The advent of peace would force a readjustment of commodity prices and would probably mean a postponement of new enterprises. As peace negotiations would be long drawn out, the period of waiting and uncertainty for business would be long. If the United States does not go to war, it is nevertheless good opinion that the preparedness program will compensate in good measure for the loss of the stimulus of actual war.

Here we have the Wall Street view. Here we have the man representing the class of people who will be made prosperous should we become entangled in the present war, who have already made millions of dollars, and who will make many hundreds of millions more if we get into the war. Here we have the cold-blooded proposition that war brings prosperity to that class of people who are within the viewpoint of this writer.

He expresses the view, undoubtedly, of Wall Street, and of thousands of men elsewhere who see only dollars coming to them through the handling of stocks and bonds that will be necessary in case of war. "Canada and Japan,," he says, "are at war, and are more prosperous than ever before."

To whom does war bring prosperity? Not to the soldier who for the munificent compensation of $16 per month shoulders his musket and goes into the trench, there to shed his blood and to die if necessary; not to the brokenhearted widow who waits for the return of the mangled body of her husband; not to the mother who weeps at the death of her brave boy; not to the little children who shiver with cold; not to the babe who suffers from hunger; nor to the millions of mothers and daughters who carry broken hearts to their graves. War brings no prosperity to the great mass of common and patriotic citizens. It increases the cost of living of those who toil and those who already must strain every effort to keep soul and body together. War brings prosperity to the stock gambler on Wall Street--to those who are already in possession of more wealth than can be realized or enjoyed.

Again this writer says that if we cannot get war, "it is nevertheless good opinion that the preparedness program will compensate in good measure for the loss of the stimulus of actual war." That is, if we cannot get war, let us go as far in that direction as possible. If we cannot get war, let us cry for additional ships, additional guns, additional munitions, and everything else that will have a tendency to bring us as near as possible to the verge of war. And if war comes, do such men as these shoulder the musket and go into the trenches?

Their object in having war and in preparing for war is to make money. Human suffering and the sacrifice of human life are necessary, but Wall Street considers only the dollars and the cents. The men who do the fighting, the people who make the sacrifices are the ones who will not be counted in the measure of this great prosperity that he depicts. The stockbrokers would not, of course, go to war because the very object they have in bringing on the war is profit, and therefore they must remain in their Wall Street offices in order to share in that great prosperity which they say war will bring. The volunteer officer, even the drafting officer, will not find them. They will be concealed in their palatial offices on Wall Street, sitting behind mahogany desks, covered up with clipped coupons--coupons soiled with the sweat of honest toil, coupons stained with mothers' tears, coupons dyed in the lifeblood of their fellowmen.

We are taking a step today that is fraught with untold danger. We are going into war upon the command of gold. We are going to run the risk of sacrificing millions of our countrymen's lives in order that other countrymen may coin their lifeblood into money. And even if we do not cross the Atlantic and go into the trenches, we are going to pile up a debt that the tolling masses that shall come many generations after us will have to pay. Unborn millions will bend their backs in toil in order to pay for the terrible step we are now about to take.

We are about to do the bidding of wealth's terrible mandate. By our act we will make millions of our countrymen suffer, and the consequences of it may well be that millions of our brethren must shed their lifeblood, millions of brokenhearted women must weep, millions of children must suffer with cold, and millions of babes must die from hunger, and all because we want to preserve the commercial right of American citizens to deliver munitions of war to belligerent nations.

II. Speech by Robert M. LaFollette

I had supposed until recently that it was the duty of senators and representatives in Congress to vote and act according to their convictions on all public matters that came before them for consideration and decision. Quite another doctrine has recently been promulgated by certain newspapers, which unfortunately seems to have found considerable support elsewhere, and that is the doctrine of "standing back of the President" without inquiring whether the President is right or wrong.

For myself, I have never subscribed to that doctrine and never shall. I shall support the President in the measures he proposes when I believe them to be right. I shall oppose measures proposed by the President when I believe them to be wrong. The fact that the matter which the President submits for consideration is of the greatest importance is only an additional reason why we should be sure that we are right and not to be swerved from that conviction or intimidated in its expression by any influence of power whatsoever.

If it is important for us to speak and vote our convictions in matters of internal policy, though we may unfortunately be in disagreement with the President, it is infinitely more important for us to speak and vote our convictions when the question is one of peace or war, certain to involve the lives and fortunes of many of our people and, it may be, the destiny of all of them and of the civilized world as well. If, unhappily, on such momentous questions the most patient research and conscientious consideration we could give to them leave us in disagreement with the President, I know of no course to take except to oppose, regretfully but not the less firmly, the demands of the Executive. . . .

Mr. President, many of my colleagues on both sides of this floor have from day to day offered for publication in the Record messages and letters received from their constituents. I have received some 15,000 letters and telegrams. They have come from forty-four states in the Union. They have been assorted according to whether they speak in criticism or commendation of my course in opposing war. Assorting the 15,000 letters and telegrams by states 'in that way, 9 out of 10 are an unqualified endorsement of my course in opposing war with Germany on the issue presented. . . .

A wire from Chicago received this afternoon from Grace Abbott, of Hull House, says that in City Council election held yesterday, John Kennedy received the largest plurality of any of the city councilmen elected. His plurality was 6,157 votes in his ward. On account of his stand against war, every newspaper in Chicago opposed him bitterly throughout the campaign. Mr. Kennedy made his campaign on the war issue, and in every speech he took occasion to declare himself as against war.

There was received in Washington today a petition against war with over 6,1 20 bona-fide signers, which were secured in the city of Minneapolis in one day; and a wire late this afternoon states that 11,000 more names have been secured to that petition. In New Ulm, Minn., at an election, according to a telegram received this afternoon, 485 votes were cast against war to 19 for war. . . .

Do not these messages indicate on the part of the people a deep-seated conviction that the United States should not enter the European war? . . .

It is unfortunately true that a portion of the irresponsible and war-crazed press, feeling secure in the authority of the President's condemnation of the senators who opposed the armed-ship bill, have published the most infamous and scurrilous libels on the honor of the senators who opposed that bill. It was particularly unfortunate that such malicious falsehoods should fill the public press of the country at a time when every consideration for our country required that a spirit of fairness should be observed in the discussions of the momentous questions under consideration. . . .

Mr. President, let me make a . . . suggestion. It is this: that a minority in one Congress--mayhap a small minority in one Congress--protesting, exercising the rights which the Constitution confers upon a minority, may really be representing the majority opinion of the country, and if, exercising the right that the Constitution gives them, they succeed in defeating for the time being the will of the majority, they are but carrying out what was in the mind of the framers of the Constitution; that you may have from time to time in a legislative body a majority in numbers that really does not represent the principle of democracy; and that if the question could be deferred and carried to the people it would be found that a minority was the real representative of the public opinion. So, Mr. President, it was that they wrote into the Constitution that a President--that one man--may put his judgment against the will of a majority, not only in one branch of the Congress but in both branches of the Congress; that he may defeat the measure that they have agreed upon and may set his one single judgment above the majority judgment of the Congress. That seems, when you look at it nakedly, to be in violation of the principle that the majority shall rule; and so it is. Why, is that power given? It is one of those checks provided by the wisdom of the fathers to prevent the majority from abusing the power that they chance to have, when they do not reflect the real judgment, the opinion, the will of the majority of the people that constitute the sovereign power of the democracy. . . .

The poor, Sir, who are the ones called upon to rot in the trenches, have no organized power, have no press to voice their will upon this question of peace or war; but, oh, Mr. President, at some time they will be heard. I hope and I believe they will be heard in an orderly and a peaceful way. I think they may be heard from before long. I think, Sir, if we take this step, when the people today who are staggering under the burden of supporting families at the present prices of the necessaries of life find those prices multiplied, when they are raised 100 percent, or 200 percent, as they will be quickly, aye, sir, when beyond that those who pay taxes come to have their taxes doubled and again doubled to pay the interest on the nontaxable bonds held by Morgan and his combinations, which have been issued to meet this war, there will come an awakening; they will have their day and they will be heard. It will be as certain and as inevitable as the return of the tides, and as resistless, too. . . .

In his message of April 2, the President said:

We have no quarrel with the German people it was not upon their impulse that their government acted in entering this war; it was not with their previous knowledge or approval.

Again he says:

We are, let me say again, sincere friends of the German people and shall desire nothing so much as the early reestablishment of intimate relations of mutual advantage between us.

At least, the German people, then, are not outlaws.

What is the thing the President asks us to do to these German people of whom he speaks so highly and whose sincere friend he declares us to be? Here is what he declares we shall do in this war. We shall undertake, he says--

The utmost practicable cooperation in council and action with the governments now at war with Germany, and as an incident to that, the extension to those governments of the most liberal financial credits in order that our resources may, so far as possible, be added to theirs.

"Practicable cooperation!" Practicable cooperation with England and her allies in starving to death the old men and women, the children, the sick and the maimed of Germany. The thing we are asked to do is the thing I have stated. It is idle to talk of a war upon a government only. We are leagued in this war, or it is the President's proposition that we shall be so leagued, with the hereditary enemies of Germany. Any war with Germany, or any other country for that matter, would be bad enough, but there are not words strong enough to voice my protest against the proposed combination with the Entente Allies.

When we cooperate with those governments, we endorse their methods; we endorse the violations of international law by Great Britain; we endorse the shameful methods of warfare against which we have again and again protested in this war; we endorse her purpose to wreak upon the German people the animosities which for years her people have been taught to cherish against Germany; finally, when the end comes, whatever it may be, we find ourselves in cooperation with our ally, Great Britain, and if we cannot resist now the pressure she is exerting to carry us into the war, how can we hope to resist, then, the thousandfold greater pressure she will exert to bend us to her purposes and compel compliance with her demands?

We do not know what they are. We do not know what is in the minds of those who have made the compact, but we are to subscribe to it. We are irrevocably, by our votes here, to marry ourselves to a nondivorceable proposition veiled from us now. Once enlisted, once in the copartnership, we will be carried through with the purposes, whatever they may be, of which we now know nothing.

Sir, if we are to enter upon this war in the manner the President demands, let us throw pretense to the winds, let us be honest, let us admit that this is a ruthless war against not only Germany's Army and her Navy but against her civilian population as well, and frankly state that the purpose of Germany's hereditary European enemies has become our purpose.

Again, the President says "we are about to accept the gage of battle with this natural foe of liberty and shall, if necessary, spend the whole force of the nation to check and nullify its pretensions and its power. " That much, at least, is clear; that program is definite. The whole force and power of this nation, if necessary, is to be used to bring victory to the Entente Allies, and to us as their ally in this war. Remember, that not yet has the "whole force" of one of the warring nations been used.

Countless millions are suffering from want and privation; countless other millions are dead and rotting on foreign battlefields; countless other millions are crippled and maimed, blinded, and dismembered; upon all and upon their children's children for generations to come has been laid a burden of debt which must be worked out in poverty and suffering, but the "whole force" of no one of the warring nations has yet been expended; but our "whole force" shall be expended, so says the President. We are pledged by the President, so far as he can pledge us, to make this fair, free, and happy land of ours the same shambles and bottomless pit of horror that we see in Europe today.

Just a word of comment more upon one of the points in the President's address. He says that this is a war "for the things which we have always carried nearest to our hearts--for democracy, for the right of those who submit to authority to have a voice in .their own government." In many places throughout the address is this exalted sentiment given expression.

It is a sentiment peculiarly calculated to appeal to American hearts and, when accompanied by acts consistent with it, is certain to receive our support; but in this same connection, and strangely enough, the President says that we have become convinced that the German government as it now exists--"Prussian autocracy" he calls it--can never again maintain friendly relations with us. His expression is that "Prussian autocracy was not and could never be our friend," and repeatedly throughout the address the suggestion is made that if the German people would overturn their government, it would probably be the way to peace. So true is this that the dispatches from London all hailed the message of the President as sounding the death knell of Germany's government.

But the President proposes alliance with Great Britain, which, however liberty-loving its people, is a hereditary monarchy, with a hereditary ruler, with a hereditary House of Lords, with a hereditary landed system, with a limited and restricted suffrage for one class and a multiplied suffrage power for another, and with grinding industrial conditions for all the wageworkers. The President has not suggested that we make our support of Great Britain conditional to her granting home rule to Ireland, or Egypt, or India. We rejoice in the establishment of a democracy in Russia, but it will hardly be contended that if Russia was still an autocratic government, we would not be asked to enter this alliance with her just the same.

Italy and the lesser powers of Europe, Japan in the Orient; in fact, all the countries with whom we are to enter into alliance, except France and newly revolutionized Russia, are still of the old order--and it will be generally conceded that no one of them has done as much for its people in the solution of municipal problems and in securing social and industrial reforms as Germany.

Is it not a remarkable democracy which leagues itself with allies already far overmatching in strength the German nation and holds out to such beleaguered nation the hope of peace only at the price of giving up their government? I am not talking now of the merits or demerits of any government, but I am speaking of a profession of democracy that is linked in action with the most brutal and domineering use of autocratic power. Are the people of this country being so well-represented in this war movement that we need to go abroad to give other people control of their governments?

Will the President and the supporters of this war bill submit it to a vote of the people before the declaration of war goes into effect? Until we are willing to do that, it illy becomes us to offer as an excuse for our entry into the war the unsupported claim that this war was forced upon the German people by their government "without their previous knowledge or approval."

Who has registered the knowledge or approval of the American people of the course this Congress is called upon to take in declaring war upon Germany? Submit the question to the people, you who support it. You who support it dare not do it, for you know that by a vote of more than ten to one the American people as a body would register their declaration against it.

In the sense that this war is being forced upon our people without their knowing why and without their approval, and that wars are usually forced upon all peoples in the same way, there is some truth in the statement; but I venture to say that the response which the German people have made to the demands of this war shows that it has a degree of popular support which the war upon which we are entering has not and never will have among our people. The espionage bills, the conscription bills, and other forcible military measures which we understand are being ground out of the war machine in this country is the complete proof that those responsible for this war fear that it has no popular support and that armies sufficient to satisfy the demand of the Entente Allies cannot be recruited by voluntary enlistments. . . .

Now, I want to repeat: It was our absolute right as a neutral to ship food to the people of Germany. That is a position that we have fought for through all of our history. The correspondence of every secretary of state in the history of our government who has been called upon to deal with the rights of our neutral commerce as to foodstuffs is the position stated by Lord Salisbury. . . . He was in line with all of the precedents that we had originated and established for the maintenance of neutral rights upon this subject.

In the first days of the war with Germany, Great Britain set aside, so far as her own conduct was concerned, all these rules of civilized naval warfare.

According to the Declaration of London, as well as the rules of international law, there could have been no interference in trade between the United States and Holland or Scandinavia and other countries, except in the case of ships which could be proven to carry absolute contraband, like arms and ammunition, with ultimate German destination. There could have been no interference with the importation into Germany of any goods on the free list, such as cotton, rubber, and hides. There could have properly been no interference with our export to Germany of anything on the conditional contraband list, like flour, grain, and provisions, unless it could be proven by England that such shipments were intended for the use of the German Army. There could be no lawful interference with foodstuffs intended for the civilian population of Germany, and if those foodstuffs were shipped to other countries to be reshipped to Germany, no question could be raised that they were not intended for the use of the civilian population.

It is well to recall at this point our rights as declared by the Declaration of London and as declared without the Declaration of London by settled principles of international law, for we have during the present war become so used to having Great Britain utterly disregard our rights on the high seas that we have really forgotten that we have any, as far as Great Britain and her allies are concerned.

Great Britain, by what she called her modifications of the Declaration of London, shifted goods from the free list to the conditional contraband and contraband lists, reversed the presumption of destination for civilian population, and abolished the principle that a blockade to exist at all must be effective. . . .

It is not my purpose to go into detail into the violations of our neutrality by any of the belligerents. While Germany has again and again yielded to our protests, I do not recall a single instance in which a protest we have made to Great Britain has won for us the slightest consideration, except for a short time in the case of cotton. I will not stop to dwell upon the multitude of minor violations of our neutral rights, such as seizing our mails, violations of the neutral flag, seizing and appropriating our goods without the least warrant or authority in law, and impressing, seizing, and taking possession of our vessels and putting them into her own service.

I have constituents, American citizens, who organized a company and invested large sums of money in the purchase of ships to engage in foreign carrying. Several of their vessels plying between the United States and South America were captured almost in our own territorial waters, taken possession of by the British Government, practically confiscated, and put into her service or the service of her Admiralty. They are there today, and that company is helpless. When they appealed to our Department of State, they were advised that they might "file" their papers; and were given the further suggestion that they could hire an attorney and prosecute their case in the English Prize Court. The company did hire an attorney and sent him to England, and he is there now, and has been there for almost a year, trying to get some redress, some relief, some adjustment of those rights.

But those are individual cases. There are many others. All these violations have come from Great Britain and her allies, and are in perfect harmony with Briton's traditional policy as absolute master of the seas. . . .

The only reason why we have not suffered the sacrifice of just as many ships and just as many lives from the violation of our rights by the war zone and the submarine mines of Great Britain as we have through the unlawful acts of Germany in making her war zone in violation of our neutral rights is simply because we have submitted to Great Britain's dictation. If our ships had been sent into her forbidden highsea war zone as they have into the proscribed area Germany marked out on the high seas as a war zone, we would have had the same loss of life and property in the one case as in the other; but because we avoided doing that, in the case of England, and acquiesced in her violation of law, we have not only a legal but a moral responsibility for the position in which Germany has been placed by our collusion and cooperation with Great Britain. By suspending the rule with respect to neutral rights in Great Britain's case, we have been actively aiding her in starving the civil population of Germany. We have helped to drive Germany into a corner, her back to the wall to fight with what weapons she can lay her hands on to prevent the starving of her women and children, her old men and babes.

The flimsy claim which has sometimes been put forth that possibly the havoc in the North Sea was caused by German mines is too absurd for consideration. . . .

I find all the correspondence about the submarines of Germany; I find them arrayed; I find the note warning Germany that she would be held to a "strict accountability" for violation of our neutral rights; but you will search in vain these volumes for a copy of the British order in council mining the North Sea.

I am talking now about principles. You cannot distinguish between the principles which allowed England to mine a large area of the Atlantic Ocean and the North Sea in order to shut in Germany, and the principle on which Germany by her submarines seeks to destroy all shipping which enters the war zone which she has laid out around the British Isles.

The English mines are intended to destroy without warning every ship that enters the war zone she has proscribed, killing or drowning every passenger that cannot find some means of escape. It is neither more nor less than that which Germany tries to do with her submarines in her war zone. We acquiesced in England's action without protest. It is proposed that we now go to war with Germany for identically the same action upon her part. . . .

I say again that when two nations are at war any neutral nation, in order to preserve its character as a neutral nation, must exact the same conduct from both warring nations; both must equally obey the principles of international law. If a neutral nation falls in that, then its rights upon the high seas--to adopt the President's phrase--are relative and not absolute. There can be no greater violation of our neutrality than the requirement that one of two belligerents shall adhere to the settled principles of law and that the other shall have the advantage of not doing so. The respect that German naval authorities were required to pay to the rights of our people upon the high seas would depend upon the question whether we had exacted the same rights from Germany's enemies. If we had not done so, we lost our character as a neutral nation and our people unfortunately had lost the protection that belongs to neutrals. Our responsibility was joint in the sense that we must exact the same conduct from both belligerents. . . .

The failure to treat the belligerent nations of Europe alike, the failure to reject the unlawful "war zones" of both Germany and Great Britain is wholly accountable for our present dilemma. We should not seek to hide our blunder behind the smoke of battle, to inflame the mind of our people by half truths into the frenzy of war in order that they may never appreciate the real cause of it until it is too late. I do not believe that our national honor is served by such a course. The right way is the honorable way.

One alternative is to admit our initial blunder to enforce our rights against Great Britain as we have enforced our rights against Germany; demand that both those nations shall respect our neutral rights upon the high seas to the letter; and give notice that we will enforce those rights from that time forth against both belligerents and then live up to that notice.

The other alternative is to withdraw our commerce from both. The mere suggestion that food supplies would be withheld from both sides impartially would compel belligerents to observe the principle of freedom of the seas for neutral commerce.

Source: Record, 65 Cong., 1 Sess., pp. 212-214, 223-236.
http://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel/doc19.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 16:25    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

The foundations of Anzac Day

On 30 April 1915, when the first news of the landing reached New Zealand, a half-day holiday was declared and impromptu services were held. The following year a public holiday was gazetted (i.e., officially declared) on 5 April and services to commemorate were organised by the returned servicemen.

The date, 25 April, was officially named Anzac Day in 1916; in that year it was marked by a wide variety of ceremonies and services in Australia and New Zealand, a march through London, and a sports day for the Australian and New Zealand soldiers in Egypt.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anzac_Day
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 16:32    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

German Infantryman, Western Front, April 1915

When the advances of summer 1914 ground to a halt, and the front lines stabilized into what threatened to be a long war, the German army was forced to reconsider the elaborate uniforms which had been devised in peacetime. The huge numbers of men deployed and their lavish consumption of all kinds of stores took the German commissariat by surprise, and stockpiles diminished at alarming rates. The Allied maritime blockade of the Central Powers also created shortages of raw materials from 1915 on; and German industry was obliged to apply its ingenuity to the production of synthetic and substitute materials--the famous `ersatz' products which gave the world a new term.

At the level of the fighting soldiers the most immediate result was the steady replacement of leather by vulcanized fiber, of brass by painted iron, and of uniforms of pre-war quality by simplified designs made of inferior material. The appearance of the German infantryman had already begun to change by the end of the first year of the war.

Voor plaatjes en uitleg naar http://www.ir23.org/kit/2-westfront-1915.html
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 16:39    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

De Staffordshire Brigade in Wulvergem (april-juni 1915)

In april 1915 marcheerde de North Midland Division van Belle naar België. Ze hadden net een korte periode van "loopgravenonderricht" nabij Armentières achter de rug. De Divisie moest voor de eerste keer naar het front om de 28ste Divisie af te lossen tussen Kemmel en Wulvergem. Daar werd hevig gevochten tijdens de maanden oktober en november 1914. (...)

Soldaat Wilfred Sheard, een voormalige leerling van de Hanley School of Art en lid van de1/5 North Staffords, beschreef zijn indrukken van zijn eerste bezoek aan het front in een brief aan zijn ouders in Etruria:

"Het is opnieuw onze beurt om naar de loopgraven te gaan. Wij bleven achter de vuurlijn in een schuur terwijl delen van de compagnie eerst gingen. Wij moesten hen bevoorraden met voedsel en water. De mars in het donker was verschrikkelijk. We gingen van de ene schuur naar de andere, steeds dichter naar de vuurlijn. We werden de hele weg onder vuur genomen, onwetend of we geraakt zouden worden of niet aangezien de kogels hoog en laag tussen ons heen floten. Het is de slechtste ervaring die we al hebben meegemaakt. Toen we gezond en wel opnieuw in onze schuur aankwamen, hoorden we dat er sommige kameraden gewond waren. Van zodra je maar een vinger boven de borstwering steekt, vliegen er twee, drie kogels rond. Je ziet dat je niet veel kans hebt als je je hoofd uitsteekt. Het betekent onmiddellijk het Rode Kruis…"

Soldaat Sidney Richards afkomstig van West Bromwich en voor de oorlog tewerkgesteld als bediende, was lid van de Machinegeweer Sectie van de 1/5 South Staffords. Hij schreef zijn ervaringen neer in zijn dagboek:

2 april. Inspectie van de geweren. Mars naar de loopgraaf in Mesen. Namen de loopgraven over van de 3de Monmouths.
3 april. Op wacht. Een sluipschutter schoot iemand de hersenen uit in mijn loopgraaf. Het regent pijpenstelen.
4 april. Het regent pijpenstelen. We kregen geen bevoorrading. Tekort aan water. Tot onze knieën in de modder.
5 april. Gewoonweg afschuwelijk. Het regende de hele dag en nacht. Overal ontploffen er granaten. Ik heb maar één koek om op te eten - ik zou een fortuin geven voor een vieruurtje.
6 april. Meer granaten. Zeer veel modder. Het weer is iets beter. Afgelost om 22 uur. Bereikte het kamp om 2 uur op woensdag.


Het weer was tijdens de eerste beurt uitzonderlijk slecht. Kapitein F.E. Wenger, verbindingsofficier van de 1/5 North Staffords vertelt:

"Het weer is verschrikkelijk, stormachtige wind met veel regen; de loopgraven zijn zeer modderig en staan vol water. Je moet de hele tijd je rubberlaarzen aanhouden. Je voeten zwellen ervan en maken ze zeer zacht."

Na een paar dagen werden de bataljons omgewisseld. In de loop van de avond van 5 april werden de 1/5 North Staffords afgelost door de 1/6 North Staffords. De 1/5 South Staffords moesten tot de volgende avond wachten op aflossing door de 1/6 South Staffords. De aflossing werd waar mogelijk tijdens de nacht uitgevoerd omdat troepenbewegingen tijdens de dag artillerievuur en sluipschutters aantrokken. Tijdens hun verblijf in Wulvergem wisselden de North en South Staffords elkaar voortdurend af. Elke beurt in de frontlijn duurde gewoonlijk vier dagen.

Mooi artikel... http://www.wo1.be/ned/geschiedenis/gastbijdragen/staffordshire-NDL.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 16:49    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Kroniek van Baarle in de Eerste Wereldoorlog (1916)

5 april 1916 - In Baarle-Hertog werd veldwachter Andreas Wouters wegens kennelijk ‘wangedrag’ ontslagen, zie de gebeurtenissen van 15 juni 1915*. Hij zou worden opgevolgd door Louis Huysmans, een afgekeurde soldaat. Na de oorlog schreef Wouters een ver­weerschrift aan de minister van Binnenlandse Zaken waarin hij verzocht weer in dienst te mogen treden. Volgens hem was de directe aanleiding tot zijn ontslag terug te voeren tot een incident uit 1907, waarna de burgemees­ter en de arrondissements-commissaris een aanleiding zochten om hem te ontslaan. Burgemeester van Gilse was echter van oordeel dat Wouters op het ogenblik van de schietpartij (15 juni 1915) dronken was geweest. Dát plus het feit dat hij in de daarop volgende maanden weigerde verantwoording af te leggen voor de gemeenteraad en zijn dienstorders te ontvangen van de burgemeester, waren de redenen voor zijn ontslag. Van Gilse was kordaat en leidde zelfs persoonlijk bij zijn veldwachter een huiszoeking naar een voorraad wapens die Wouters bij het begin van de oorlog in bewaring had gekregen van de plaat­selijke douanebrigadier. (onuitgegeven kroniek van Jan Huijbrechts)

* 15 juni 1915 - Bij een woordenwisse­ling met Nederlandse militairen had veldwachter Andreas Wouters uit zelfverdediging zijn revolver getrokken en vijf waar­schuwingsschoten in de lucht afgevuurd. De oorzaak van dit opstootje was het feit dat er een illegale kroeg, uitgebaat door Nederland­se militairen op het grond­gebied van Baarle-Hertog, werd gesloten na een klacht van de veldwachter bij de Nederlandse opperbevelhebber, gene­raal Snijders. (onuitgegeven kroniek van Jan Huijbrechts)

http://www.amaliavansolms.org/joomla15/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=189:07-kroniek-van-baarle-in-de-eerste-wereldoorlog-1916&catid=90:oorlog&Itemid=118 & http://www.amaliavansolms.org/joomla15/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=188%3A06-kroniek-van-baarle-in-de-eerste-wereldoorlog-1915&catid=90%3Aoorlog&Itemid=118
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 17:20    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

The First Battle of Kut, 1916

The First Battle of Kut, begun on 5 April 1916, marked the final British attempt to relieve the Turkish siege of Sir Charles Townshend's beleaguered 10,000 troops garrisoned at Kut. Its failure sealed the fate of Townshend's force which, at last out of supplies, surrendered unconditionally to Turkish commander Khalil Pasha on 29 April 1916.

Lees beslist verder op http://www.firstworldwar.com/battles/kut1.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 17:21    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

5 April 1917, Commons Sitting

UNITED STATES AND GERMANY.


HC Deb 05 April 1917 vol 92 c1484 1484

Mr. T. P. O'CONNOR (by Private Notice) asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury if he has any information in regard to the action of the United States Senate?

Mr. DEPUTY-SPEAKER It is not usual to allow questions after Bills have been presented, but under the circumstances I will raise no objection now.

Lord E. TALBOT (Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury) We understand that the proceedings have not gone through Congress yet in America. The Senate has passed it, but, I think, not the other House, and we are given to understand that it is not likely to pass until Saturday.

Mr. O'CONNOR I assume that when the decision of the American Legislature is known, the Government will take an opportunity of making a statement and a Motion to the House? It must be after Easter now, of course.

Lord E. TALBOT No steps can be taken now until after the House reassembles.

http://hansard.millbanksystems.com/commons/1917/apr/05/united-states-and-germany
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 17:24    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

The German retreat to the Hindenburg Line - 14 March - 5 April 1917

In March 1917, the German armies on the Somme carried out a strategic withdrawal known as Operation Alberich. They destroyed everything on the ground that they left: flattening villages, poisoning wells, cutting down trees, blowing craters on roads and crossroads, booby-trapping ruins and dugouts. The withdrawal was to an immensely powerful and shorter line, positioned to take every tactical advantage of ground. The construction of this line - or rather, series of lines - had been spotted by British and French aviators in late 1916. British patrols began to detect the withdrawal of German infantry from the Somme in mid February 1917 and a cautious pursuit began, halted only as the Hindenburg Line itself was approached.

Lees verder op http://www.1914-1918.net/bat17.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 17:34    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

AUCKLAND WEEKLY NEWS - 5 APRIL 1917

MEDALS AWARDED

Military Medal: CLARKE, Sgt Samuel B, AMR - NOK: Father, Otorohanga; HOUGH, Pte Raumoa, 1st Cty Batt - NOK: Sister, Mrs Russell, Chatham Islands; JEFFERIES, Pte R S, 1st Otago Batt - NOK: Otiake, Oamaru; BUTLER, Pte R H, Rifle Brigade; EASTGATE, L/Cpl, H S, Rifle Brigade; EILSON, Sec/Cpl H G, Engineers; KEYS, Pte J, Rifle Brigade; MOORE, Sgt G V T, Engineers; NICHOLSON, Pte N A, Rifle Brigade; PHELAN, Pte E M, Rifle Brigade; PRATT, Spr R J, Engineers; WELCH, Cpl H C, Rifle Brigade

Distinguished Conduct Medal: BOLES, G H, Sgt A/CSM, Rifle Brigade; McCONACHY, Sgt W, Rifle Brigade

Meritorious Service Medal: GOULDING, R T, Pte A/Staff Sgt, Auckland Infantry; WAUGH, Gnr, H, Field Artillery; BUDDLE, Lt G A, Royal Engineers, Servian Order of the White Eagle fifth class (with swords); HERBERT, Captain the Hon. A N H M, Irish Guards, attached to the Australian & NZ Division.

Presented by H M The King at Buckingham Palace
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 17:44    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Purple Heart

Het Purple Heart is een Amerikaanse militaire decoratie uitgereikt in naam van de president van de Verenigde Staten aan hen die gewond of gedood zijn terwijl ze het Amerikaanse leger dienden op of na 5 april 1917. Het is een voorbeeld van een Gewondeninsigne zoals dat ook in andere landen wordt toegekend.

De eerste 'purple heart'-onderscheiding was het Fidelity Medallion (1780) en het tweede (officieel eerste) de Badge of Military Merit (1782). Beiden werden behalve in het jaar van instelling later nooit meer uitgedeeld.

http://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Purple_Heart

Purple Heart

The actual order includes the phrase, "Let it be known that he who wears the military order of the purple heart has given of his blood in the defense of his homeland and shall forever be revered by his fellow countrymen." (...)

The "History" section of the November 2008 edition of National Geographic estimated the number of purple hearts given as below.

World War II: 964,409
Korea: 136,936
Vietnam: 200,676
Persian Gulf: 590
Afghanistan: 2,743 (as of 8/21/2008)
Iraq: 33,923 (as of 8/21/2008)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Purple_Heart

En de Purple Hearts voor WO I? Probeer het hier eens... http://homepages.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~sebring/?cj=1&o_xid=0000584978&o_lid=0000584978
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 17:48    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Bureaucratic Wrangling over Counterintelligence, 1917–18

President's Neglect Intensifies Infighting
As the United States was about to enter the war, the bureaucratic conflict threatened to break out in public. On 5 April 1917, the day before the United States declared war, the Senate Appropriations Committee asked Bureau Chief Bielaski whether his outfit provided the “secret-service work to protect the government against spies, or does the Treasury Department?”[16] Bielaski said that his group did. This public claim to preeminence appeared to receive executive confirmation when, following the declaration of war, President Wilson issued a proclamation assigning a number of war-related investigative matters, especially alien enemy control, to the Department of Justice. The Secret Service, though, continued to claim an equal role in these matters, based on the president's 1915 authorization, among other implied or assumed delegations of authority.

War alone was unlikely to bring these two sides together and Wilson's penchant for ignoring intelligence policy would only exacerbate the matter. According to historian Christopher Andrew, Secretary of State Robert Lansing immediately pressed President Wilson to effect better “coordination of the secret service work of this government” upon entry into the war. His concerns included both foreign and domestic intelligence issues, the latter complicated by the “extreme jealousy” between Justice and Treasury. Lansing told Wilson that Counselor Polk's coordinating efforts had been ineffectual in settling this rivalry and suggested that the president take a more active role in resolving the matter.[17] In response, however, President Wilson chose to ignore the growing interagency conflict. He even added to the confusion by acting in a manner that gave both the Bureau and the Secret Service reason to claim responsibility for domestic security.

Boeiend artikel op https://www.cia.gov/library/center-for-the-study-of-intelligence/csi-publications/csi-studies/studies/vol49no1/html_files/bureaucratic_wragling_2.html
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The Diary of Thomas Fredrick Littler: January-June 1918

April 5th 1918 - We are still in the train and at 0-0a.m we passed through Tilques and at 11-20 we stopped at Hazebrouck, we went on after to the rail-head at Weursveldt, and marched to Steenvoorde a distance of 8 kilos on the borders of Belgium.

Fred Littler joined the Cheshire Regiment shortly after his 17th birthday in 1914. He trained in Aberystwyth, Cambridge, Northampton and Norwich, before beginning work at Siddley Deasy in Coventry.
He signed for Foreign Service on his 18th birthday, and, after further training, left England for Rouen in March 1916. His diary describes his experience of battle in Northern France for 11 months from April 1916, where he sustained a leg injury, which eventually led to his return to England to convalesce.
In England he met his future wife and joined the Royal Engineers with whom he returned to France in April 1918 until the end of the war. He reports many casualties around him on the front line and in support positions, and himself survived Spanish Flu, a major killer, towards the end of the war.


Lees verder op http://www.firstworldwar.com/diaries/littlerdiary6.htm
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Dernancourt - 28 maart en 5 april 1918

Op 5 april 1918 deden de Duitsers opnieuw een poging bij Dernancourt. Het 47ste en het 48ste Bataljon die na de gevechten van 28 maart uitgerust waren, bevonden zich weer aan de linie. Onder dekking van ochtendmist en geconfronteerd met een felle Australische weerstand stelden de Duitsers zich aan de achterhoede van het 48ste Bataljon op. Met behulp van een spoorbrug even ten westen van Dernancourt slaagden de vijandelijke soldaten er in om achter de Australische voorposten te komen die zich langs de spoordijk bevonden. De Duitsers brachten een veldkanon naar het front om de Australische flank in het noorden te bedreigen. Het 48ste Bataljon dat de Duitsers aan het front bedwongen had, maar die nu merkten dat ze omsingeld waren, redde zichzelf door zich vechtend terug te trekken. Om 17u.15 deden de Australische reservisten een tegenaanval en ondanks zware beschietingen slaagden ze er in om de Duitsers terug te dringen en daarmee hun strijd te beëindigen. Charles Bean beschreef het belang van de gevechten bij Dernancourt:

Dit was de sterkste aanval die in deze oorlog op de Australische troepen gedaan werd … Op die twee dagen [4 en 5 april 1918] kwam hier en meer naar het noorden en zuiden werkelijk een einde aan het eerste en grootste offensief van Ludendorff in 1918. Charles Bean, Anzac to Amiens, Canberra, 1948, blz.426

http://www.ww1westernfront.gov.au/nl-be/battlefields/dernancourt-28-march-and-5-april-1918.html
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EXTRACT FROM THE RUSSIAN GOVERNMENT'S STATEMENT ON THE JAPANESE LANDING AT VLADIVOSTOK -
5 April 1918


A report has been received from Siberia, from the Soviet authorities in Vladivostok and Irkutsk, that Admiral Kato, the Japanese naval commander, has landed troops at Vladivostok and has issued a proclamation to the local population, informing them that Japan takes upon itself the maintenance of order. The pretext given for the landing is the murder in Vladivostok of two Japanese by unknown persons.

At the present moment the Soviet Government has no information whatever about this murder, its causes, circumstances, and the culprits. But it knows, as the whole world knows, that the Japanese imperialists have been preparing a landing at Vladivostok for several months. The Japanese Government press wrote that Japan was called upon to reestablish order in Siberia up to Irkutsk, and even up to the Urals. The Japanese authorities sought appropriate pretexts for their marauding incursion into Russian territory. At Staff headquarters in Tokio monstrous statements were invented about conditions in Siberia, about the part being played by German prisoners of war, etc., etc. The Japanese Ambassador in Rome stated a few weeks ago that the German prisoners of war were armed and ready to seize the Siberian railway. This statement made the round of the world's press. The Soviet military authorities sent a British and an American officer along the Siberian line, and gave them every opportunity to convince themselves of the falsity of the official Japanese statement. With this excuse removed, the Japanese imperialists had to look for other excuses. The murder of two Japanese, from this point of view, was most opportune. The murder took place on 4 April, and on the 5th the Japanese Admiral, without awaiting any investigation, carried out the landing.

The course of events leaves no doubt whatever that all this was prearranged and that the provocative murder of the two Japanese was an essential part of the preparations. In this way the imperialist blow from the East, which has been a long time in preparation, has fallen. The Japanese imperialists want to strangle the Soviet revolution, to cut Russia off from the Pacific Ocean, to seize the rich territories of Siberia, and to enslave the Siberian workers and peasants. Bourgeois Japan acts as the deadly enemy of the Soviet Republic. What are the plans of the other Governments of the Entente: America, England, France, and Italy? Up to the present their policy in regard to the predatory intentions of Japan has apparently been undecided. The American Government, it seems, was against the Japanese invasion. But now the situation can no longer remain indefinite. England intends to act hand in hand with Japan in working Russia's ruin.

This question must be put to the British Government unambiguously. The same question must be put to the diplomatic representatives of the United States and the other countries of the Entente. The answer given, and even more, the action taken by the Allied countries will inevitably have a great influence on the future international policy of the Soviet Government.

While taking the appropriate diplomatic steps, the Soviet Government is at the same time instructing the Soviets in Siberia to oppose any forcible invasion of Russian territory.

http://www.marxists.org/history/ussr/government/foreign-relations/1918/April/5.htm
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Hamel: the textbook Victory - 4 July 1918

Private Arthur R. Eastburn, 16th Battalion, was killed in action near Hamel, 24 June 1918, aged 23.

On the 5th April 1918, when the enemy delivered a very heavy attack against the position occupied by the Battalion near Hbuterne he went through the enemy's intense barrages with communications for Battalion Headquarters. He showed a total disregard for his own safety and seemed obsessed solely with the idea of getting his dispatches through. He is recommended for distinction.From the Military Medal citation

http://www.awm.gov.au/exhibitions/1918/battles/hamel.asp
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 20:37    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Collinsville Illinois - The Robert Paul Prager Lynching April 5, 1918

The lynching of Robert Paul Prager is a pivotal event in the United States during World War One. While other German and Austro-Hungarians died in the violence during the spring of 1918, Robert Paul Prager's murder was publicized in all the newspapers in the United States. Robert Paul Praeger is buried at the St. Matthew's Cemetery in St. Louis, Missouri.

Presented here are documents relating to the murder.

Lees zeker verder! https://netfiles.uiuc.edu/rcunning/www/lynch.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 20:42    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

German attack at St Quentin, March 1918

5 April 1918

The last day of the battle, the Germans called off their offensive.

1st Dublins War Diary shows total casualties of 28 officers and 600 men (of whom 19 officers and 340 men were killed or missing).

2nd Dublins War Diary shows total casualties of 39 officers and 916 men (of whom 15 officers and 723 men were killed or missing).

Later figures show that 142 men died in 1st Battalion, 126 men died in 2nd battalion, 34 men died in other RDF battalions, and 34 RDF officers died in total. Using the accepted ration of 3 wounded to every man who died, one would put the wounded at about 1000

The 16th (Irish) Division had a total of 1085 killed, 3255 wounded and about 1000 unwounded taken prisoner.

http://www.dublin-fusiliers.com/battaliions/1-batt/campaigns/1918-kaisers.html
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 20:48    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Corporal Rupert James WHITE - 3496 - 45 Battalion AIF - 1914 - 1918

At the age of 20 years Rupert James WHITE enlisted in the First AIF for service during World War 1 and his war record is very impressive. I obtained his service record from the National Archives of Australia and the Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT. His record states that he served with distinction in France.

Rupert WHITE joined the AIF on 4 August 1915, at Warwick Farm, Sydney NSW, his service number was 3496.He was 5′7¼″ tall, weighed 134 pounds, measured 35½″ around the chest, he was of a ruddy complexion, blue eyes, brown hair and he was a Roman Catholic.
He embarked at Sydney on the troopship "Port Lincoln" on 14 October, 1915, and on the 6 March, 1916 was aken on with the 45th Battalion. He was wounded in action on the 31 August 1916 and on the 5th September, 1916 he embarked on the Hospital Ship "David" at Boulogne bound for England with a gun shot wound to his left arm and admitted to the Army Hospital at Grantham in England on 6 September, 1916.

On the 23 March 1917 he was transferred to the 61st Battalion at Wareham, England and was then, on the same date, taken on strength to the 45th Battalion and returned to France for active duty. Between the dates of 1st May 1917 to 18th September 1917 and 19th September 1917 to 4th April 1917 he was promoted from Private to Driver between the 61st and 45th Battalions. Again on the 5 April 1918 he was promoted to the rank of Corporal, 45th Battalion to replace Corporal R. W GEORGE who had been killed in action. On the 6th April 1918 Corporal Rupert WHITE was awarded the Military Medal for heroism in action against the Germans.

On the 4th August 1918, he was taken sick to the Army Field Hospital in France with Cellulitis to the left arm, and on the 10th August, 1918 invalided to London General Hospital at Lambeth, England, he had developed pneumonic influenza during October 1918.

Here are the circumstances of which Corporal Rupert James White, of the 45th Battalion AIF was recommended for the Military Medal.

" For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty during the attack near DERNAHCOURT RIDGE on 5th April, 1918. When his officer was killed and all other NCOs were out of action he took charge of the platoon, rallied the men and led them to the attack. Although wounded in the shoulder he carried on and consolidated his platoon position. At nightfall he, in company with L/Corp RITCHIE went forward and located the position of the enemy so successfully and brought back such information he enabled his company commander to make his defensive position secure where it might have been dangerously weak".
Signed by R. G. Sinclair MACLAGAN, Major General, Commanding 4th Australian Division.

On the 10th January, 1919 Corporal Rupert James WHITE was transferred to 3Rd Aux. Hospital with "Cellulitis" to the left Arm. and embarked back to Australia aboard the Troopship "Derbyshire" departing England 2 March 1919, arriving Australia 24 April 1919 where he was discharged from the Army on 17 June 1919.

Rupert's originele documenten zijn te bekijken op http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~hanhorg/gallery/war_memorial/white/white_rupert_james_0077-02.html
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12é Linieregiment

Het 12é Linie, als onderdeel van de 3é Divisie stond in augustus 1914 in voor de verdediging van de P.F.L. (Position Fotifiée de Liège). Bij de gevechten van Visé, Herstal, Queue-du-Bois onderscheid het 2é bataljon van het regiment zich door het eerste vijandelijke vaandel buit te maken (1. Großherzoglich Mecklenburgisches Grenadier-Regiment Nr.89).
Na de val van de stelling wordt het 12é Linie naar Antwerpen gezonden waar het deelneemt aan de verschillende uitvallen.
Tijdens de Ijzerslag bezet het regiment Diksmuide van 16 tot 26 oktober 1914, waar het Duitse XXIIé korps talloze stormlopen onderneemt.
Vanaf 5 april 1915 begint de militaire vorming van de toekomstige koning Leopold III in het 12é Linie.
Op 17 april 1918 bevindt het regiment zich in de sector Merkem waar het de herhaalde Duitse stormlopen weerstaat. Tijdens het Eindoffensief vecht het zich een weg naar de Leie via de Schaapsballi, Stadenberg, Roeselare en Lendelede.
Ongeveer 1.250 officieren, onderofficieren, korporaals en soldaten sneuvelen tijdens de Eerste Wereldoorlog.

http://users.telenet.be/ABL1914/HistorLinie.htm (met dank aan Patrick De Wolf, een man en zijn kilt...)
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1918: Australians in France - Prisoners of War

There were 4,082 Australian prisoners of war (POWs) on the Western Front during the First World War, and 395 died while in German captivity. POWs were often treated harshly, and although by international law they were prevented from being forced to work in war-related areas, this was not always upheld. Food was often scarce, and POWs were also often vulnerable to attacks by their own forces.

One Australian POW, Sergeant Charles McPhee, was captured during the fighting at the Battle of Dernancourt, on 5 April 1918.

Heavy bombardment. Taken prisoner 9AM. - Diary entry, 5 April 1918.

He and others who were captured were sent to a German POW camp at Marchelepot, but were frequently moved around. All were forced to perform heavy physical labour, for very little food. While there, Sergeant McPhee kept a diary, in which he recorded the work he did, deaths of fellow prisoners, weekly Christian services and funerals that he conducted, and his own battle with trench fever.

Charles McPhee survived captivity, although he saw many around him - of all nationalities - who did not.

http://www.awm.gov.au/exhibitions/1918/battles/pow.asp
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2010 21:01    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Diary of Paul B Hendrickson

World War I diary of Cpl. Paul B Hendrickson, Headquarters Company, 129th Infantry, 33rd Division

Apr. 5-Sat. Big inspection of Reg & attached Mach. gun Bn. by Col. & Gen Bell. Col. told us we were in the finest condition of any unit he has ever comman[ded] and hopes we keep up our good record & appear just as well before Gen. Pershing when he ins. us. Finest equiped & most uniform of any Ive seen. Played w. long review & in afternoon played for base ball & foot ball game. all the big boys out.

http://www.jimgill.net/wwipages/diary/pd190330.html
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Meierijsche Courant, Zaterdag 5 April 1919.

Wonderpaard. Te Woensel is bij den landbouwer C. S. op Vlokhoven, dezer dagen een paard geboren zonder staart en van achter dicht. Het beestje is gebarsten.

http://www.shgv.nl/KrantenArtikelen/19191.htm

Voor hulp, ga naar http://www.korrelatie.nl/ en/of http://www.partijvoordedieren.nl/ en/of http://www.dierenbescherming.nl/
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 19:59    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

The 1914 Milan-San Remo - Images from 1914

Date: Sunday 5 April 1914
Starters: 72
Classified: 42
Distance: 286.5 km
Average speed: 24.822 km/hour
Weather conditions: Rain at first becoming dry

Foto's op http://www.milansanremo.co.uk/1914/1914story.htm
Zie ook http://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milaan-San_Remo_1914
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Marcel Wauters, Vlaams schrijver en kunstenaar 1921-2005


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April 5, 1914, LEBANON RESERVE

Fire Warden Victor Bush Warns of Spring Wildfire Season. New Broadside Posted in Lebanon Reserve

http://whitesbog2.blogspot.com/2010/03/april-1-1915-lebanon-reserve.html
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Marcel Wauters, Vlaams schrijver en kunstenaar 1921-2005


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Thrace during the Greek Genocide

On 5/18 April 1914 the Greek Consul General of Adrianople, Thrace, telegraphed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs: "... it is now an established fact that the work of extermination is proceeding systematically, from the smaller villages to the more important centers, under the direction of the Committee of Union and Progress." Three days later the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Athens informed the Greeks Legations abroad: "From Rodosto it is reported that all the Greek towns and villages in Thrace have been given over to pillage, rapine and murder. The entire Greek population of two townships, after having been ousted and led as far as the outskirts of Rodosto, were prevented by the Mutesarif [Turkish governor] from entering that town, but were driven on to Heracleia."

An eye-witness account by a missionary of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions, Rev. Arthur C. Ryan, describes some of the earlier practices implemented before wholesale massacre and deportation in Turkish Thrace, in particular the anti-Greek boycott:

"In March 1914 while I was doing relief work in Thrace I saw many things which were evidence of the misrule of the Turks and of their cruel treatment of their non-Moslem subjects. ... The armies of the Turks which retook Adrianople and such portions of Thrace as they recaptured in 1913 devastated the non-Moslem regions and carried away much of their movable property and imprisoned many of the male members of these cornmunities. I saw prisons in Malgara and other villages that were full of men and filthy beyond description. ...During this same spring I saw the working of the official boycott against the Greeks in Thrace and along the lateral of the sea of Marmora. Not only were Moslems forbidden to buy from these Greeks, but they were encouraged to take their goods and then walk off without paying for it. Moslems were forbidden to sell anything to the Greeks. Many Greek merchants were financially ruined by this boycott."

According to figures compiled by the Greek Patriarchate in Constantinople by 1918 approximately 60% of the Greek population of Thrace had been deported to the Turkish Interior where the vast majority died.

http://www.greekgenocide.org/thrace.html
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 20:13    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Diary One - April 1915 // Egypt - Lemnos Island - Gallipoli // Australia to Egypt (Cairo)

A brief account of my personal experience while on active service proper dating from April 5th 1915

5th April 1915 - After having come from Australia per SS 'Argyleshire' and arriving in the 'Land of the Pharaohs' where rigorous training and tons of good fun and High Life generally were the rules of the road we got embarkation orders thank God! So here's to it and may our little flutter which we are about to have tend in some way to weight his balance against 'His most Satanic Majesty THE KAISER'. I was detailed to be in charge of 3 goods waggons in one of Cairo's many railway stations. Having got there, I started looking around for the necessary something to eat. Had a last stroll around the square. Posted a photo to cousin Annie in England. Had a last bath at the National (awfully tender memories of that place).
The devil alone knows when we'll get another.
7.15pm we started entraining. Had charge of 30 waggons. Loaded one truck in 25 minutes. Have developed into a real nigger driver. Got informed by the entraining officer that ours was the quickest he had seen. What dogs we must be. Goodbye Cairo.
0.45am slept in a truck with the gun stores.

http://www.thekivellfamily.co.nz/family_pages/ralphs_diaries/monthly/01_april_15.html
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"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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Teddy Tail (1915 - 1974)

Teddy Tail was a cartoon mouse featured in the Daily Mail from 5 April 1915 and was the first daily cartoon strip in a British newspaper. The character survived until the 1960s with several artists drawing him for Newspaper strips and the varied Annuals. Such was his popularity that other Newspapers created their own cartoon characters, the Daily Express with Rupert Bear. The first variant of Teddy Tail was drawn by Charles Folkard (1878–1963).

http://www.politicalcartoon.co.uk/gallery/artist/teddy-tail-1915-1974_120.html
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 21:22    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Sir John French's Seventh Despatch

The seventh Despatch of Field Marshal Sir John French, Commander in Chief of the British Armies in France and Flanders. Printed in the Second Supplement to the London Gazette of 14 April 1915. It covered the final operations and the Battle of Neuve Chapelle.

From the Field-Marshal Commanding-in-Chief, The British Army in the Field.
To the Secretary of State for War, War Office, London, S.W.

General Headquarters,
5th April, 1915.

My Lord, I have the honour to report the operations of the Forces, under my command since the date of my last despatch, 2nd February, 1915.

1. The event of chief interest and importance which has taken place is the victory achieved over the enemy at the Battle of Neuve Chapelle, which was fought on the 10th, 11th and 12th of March. The main attack was delivered by troops of the First Army under the command of General Sir Douglas Haig, supported by a large force of Heavy Artillery, a Division of Cavalry and some Infantry of the general reserve. Secondary and holding attacks and demonstrations were made along the front of the Second Army under the direction of its Commander, General Sir Horace Smith-Dorrien. Whilst the success attained was due to the magnificent bearing and indomitable courage displayed by the troops of the 4th and Indian Corps, I consider that the able and skilful dispositions which were made by the General Officer Commanding First Army contributed largely to the defeat of the enemy and to the capture of his position. The energy and vigour with which General Sir Douglas Haig handled his command show him to be a leader of great ability and power.

Another action of considerable importance was brought about by a surprise attack of the Germans made on the 14th March against the 27th Division holding the trenches east of St. Eloi. A large force of artillery was concentrated in this area under cover of mist, and a heavy volume of fire was suddenly brought to bear on the trenches at 5 p.m. This artillery attack was accompanied by two mine explosions; and, in the confusion caused by these and the suddenness of the attack, the position of St. Eloi was captured and held for some hours by the enemy. Well directed and vigorous counter attacks, in which the troop's of the 5th Army Corps showed great bravery and determination, restored the situation by the evening of the 15th. A more detailed account of these operations will appear in subsequent pages of this despatch.

2. On the 6th February a brilliant action by troops of the 1st Corps materially improved our position in the area south, of the La Bassee Canal. During the previous night parties of Irish Guards and of the 3rd Battalion Coldstream Guards had succeeded in gaining ground whence converging fire could be directed on the flanks and rear of certain " brickstacks" occupied by the Germans, which had been for some time a source of considerable annoyance. At 2 p.m. the affair commenced with a severe bombardment of the " brickstacks " and the enemy's trenches. A brisk attack by the 3rd Coldstream Guards and Irish Guards from our trenches west of the "brickstacks" followed, and was supported by fire from the flanking positions which had been seized the previous night by the same regiments. The attack succeeded, the "brickstacks" were occupied without difficulty, and a line established north and south through a point about forty yards east of the " brickstacks." The casualties suffered by the 5th Corps throughout the period under review, and particularly during the month of February, have been heavier than those in other parts of the line. I regret this; but I do not think, taking all the circumstances into consideration, that they were unduly numerous. The position then occupied by the 5th Corps has always been a very vulnerable part of our line; the ground is marshy, and trenches are most difficult to construct and maintain. The 27th and 28th Divisions of the 5th Corps have had no previous experience of European warfare, and a number of the units composing it had only recently returned from service in tropical climates. In consequence, the hardships of a rigorous winter campaign fell with greater weight upon these Divisions than upon any other in the command. Chiefly owing to these causes, the 5th Corps, up to the beginning of March, was constantly engaged in counter-attack to retake trenches and ground which had been lost. In their difficult and arduous task, however, the troops displayed the utmost gallantry and devotion; and it is most creditable to the skill and energy of their leaders that I am able to report how well they have surmounted all their difficulties, that the ground first taken over by them is still intact, and held with little greater loss than is incurred by troops in all other parts of the line.

On the 14th February the 82nd Brigade of the 27th Division was driven from its trenches east of St. Eloi; but by 7 a.m. on the 15th all these trenches had been recaptured, fifteen prisoners taken, and sixty German dead counted in front of the trenches. Similarly in the 28th Division trenches were lost loy the 85th Brigade and retaken the following night. During the month of February the enemy made several attempts to get through all along the line, but he was invariably repulsed with loss. A particularly vigorous attempt was made on the 17th February against the trenches held by the Indian Corps, but it was brilliantly repulsed.

On February 28th a successful minor attack was made on the enemy's trenches near St. Eloi by small parties of the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry. The attack was divided into three small groups, the whole under the command of Lieutenant Crabbe. No. 1 Group under Lieutenant Papineau, No. 2 Group under Serjeant Patterson, and No. 3 Group under Company Serjeant-Major Lloyd. The head of the party got within fifteen or twenty yards of the German trench and charged; it was dark at the time (about 5.15a.m.). Lieutenant Crabbe, who showed the greatest dash and elan, took his party over everything in the trench until they had gone down it about eighty yards, when they were stopped by a barricade of sandbags and timber. This party, as well as the others, then pulled down the front face of the German parapet. A number of Germans were killed and wounded, and a few prisoners were taken. The services performed by this distinguished corps have continued to be very valuable since I had occasion to refer to them in my last despatch. They have been most ably organised, trained and commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel. F. D. Farquhar, D.S.O., who, I deeply regret to say, was killed while superintending some trench work on the 20th March. His loss will be deeply felt.

A very gallant attack was made by the 4th Battalion of the King's Royal Rifle Corps of the 80th Brigade On the enemy's trenches in the early hours of March 2nd. The Battalion was led by Major Widdrington, who launched it at 12.30 a.m. (he himself being wounded during its progress), covered by an extremely accurate and effective artillery fire. About sixty yards of the enemy's trench were cleared, but the attack was brought to a standstill by a very strong barricade, in attempting to storm which several casualties were incurred.

3. During the month of February I arranged with General Foch to render the 9th French Corps, holding the trenches on my left, some much-needed rest by sending the three Divisions of the British Cavalry Corps to hold a portion of the French trenches, each division for a period of ten days alternately. It was very gratifying to me to note once again in this campaign the eager readiness which the Cavalry displayed to undertake a role which does not properly belong to them in order to support and assist their French comrades. In carrying out this work leaders, officers and men displayed the same skill and energy which I have had reason to comment upon in former despatches. The time passed by the Cavalry in the French trenches was, on the whole, quiet and uneventful, but there are one or two incidents calling for remark.

At about 1.45 a.m. on 16th February a halfhearted attack was made against the right of the line held by the 2nd Cavalry Division, but it was easily repulsed by rifle fire, and the enemy left several dead in front of the trenches. The attack was delivered against the second and third trenches from the right of the line of this Division.

At 6 a.m. on the 21st the enemy blew up one of the 2nd Cavalry Division trenches, held by the 16th Lancers, and some, adjoining French trenches. The enemy occupied forty yards of our trench and tried to advance, but were stopped. An immediate counter-attack by the supporting squadron was stopped by machine-gun -fire. The line was established opposite the gap, and a counter-attack by two squadrons and one company of French reserve was ordered. At 5.30 p.m., 2nd Cavalry Division reported that the counter-attack did not succeed in retaking the trench blown in, but that a new line had been established forty yards in rear of it, and that there was no further activity on the part of the enemy. At 10 p.m. the situation was unchanged. The Commander of the Indian Cavalry Corps expressed a strong desire that the troops urnder his command should gain some experience in trench warfare. Arrangements were made, therefore, with the General Officer Commanding the Indian Corps, in pursuance of which the various units of the Indian Cavalry Corps have from time to time taken a turn in the trenches, and have thereby gained some valuable experience.

4. About the end of February many vital considerations induced me to believe that a vigorous offensive movement by the Forces under my command should be planned and carried out at the earliest possible moment. Amongst the more important reasons which convinced me of this necessity were:-

The general aspect of the Allied situation throughout Europe, and particularly the marked success of the Russian Army in repelling the violent onslaughts of Marshal Von Hindenburg; the apparent weakening of the enemy in my front, and the necessity for assisting our Russian Allies to the utmost by holding as many hostile troops as possible in the Western Theatre; the efforts to this end which were being made by the French Forces at Arras and Champagne; and, perhaps the most weighty consideration of all, the need of fostering the offensive spirit, in the troops' under my command after the trying and possibly enervating experiences which they had gone through of a severe winter in the trenches. In a former despatch I commented upon the difficulties and drawbacks which the winter weather in this climate imposes upon a vigorous offensive. Early in March these difficulties became greatly lessened by the drying up of the country and by spells of brighter weather. I do not propose in this despatch to enter at length into the considerations which actuated me in deciding upon the plan, time and place of my attack, but Your Lordship is fully aware of these. As mentioned above, the main attack was carried out by units of the First Army, supported by troops of the. Second Army and the general reserve.

The object of the main attack was to be the capture of the village of Neuve Chapelle and the enemy's position at that point, and the establishment of our line as far forward as possible to the east of that place. The object, nature and scope of the attack, and instructions for the conduct of the operation were communicated by me to Sir Douglas Haig in a secret memorandum dated 19th February. The main topographical feature of this part of the theatre is a marked ridge which runs south-west from a point two miles south-west of Lille to the village of Fournes, whence two spurs run out, one due west to a height known as Haut Pommereau, the other following the line of the main road to Illies. The buildings of the village of Neuve Chapelle run along the Rue du Bois-Fauquisart Road. There is a triangle of roads just north of the village. This area consists of a few big houses, with walls, gardens, orchards, etc., and here, with the .aid of numerous machine guns, the enemy had established a strong post which flanked the approaches to the village. The Bois du Biez, which lies roughly southeast of the village of Neuve Chapelle, influenced the course of this operation. Full instructions as to assisting and supporting the attack were issued to the Second Army. The battle opened at 7.30 a.m. on the 10th March by a powerful artillery bombardment of the enemy's position at Neuve Chapelle. The artillery bombardment had been well prepared and was most effective, except on the extreme northern portion of the front of attack. At 8.5 a.m. the 23rd (left) and 25th (right) Brigades of the 8th Division assaulted the German trenches on the north-west of the village. At the same hour the Garhwal Brigade of the Meerut Division, which occupied the position to the south of Neuve Chapelle, assaulted the German trenches in its front. The Garhwal Brigade and the 25th Brigade carried the enemy's lines of entrenchments where the wire entanglements had been almost entirely swept away by our shrapnel fire. The 23rd Brigade, however, on the north-east, was held up by the wire entanglements, which were not sufficiently cut. At 8.5 a.m. the artillery turned on to Neuve Chapelle, and at 8.35 a.m. the advance of the infantry was continued.

The 25th and Garhwal Brigades pushed on eastward and north-eastward respectively, and succeeded in getting a footing in the village. The 23rd Brigade was still held up in front of the enemy's wire entanglements, and could not progress. Heavy losses were suffered, especially in the Middlesex Regiment and the Scottish Rifles. The progress, however, of the 25th Brigade into Neuve Ohapelle immediately to the south of the 23rd Brigade had the effect of turning the sputhern flank of the enemy's defences in front of the 23rd Brigade. This fact, combined with powerful artillery support, enabled the 23rd Brigade to get forward between 10 and 11 a.m., and by 11 a.m. the whole of the village of Neuve Chapelle and the roads leading northward and south-westward from the eastern end of that village were in our hands. During this time our artillery completely cut off the village and the surrounding country from any German reinforcements which could be thrown into the fight to restore the situation by means of a curtain of shrapnel fire. Prisoners subsequently reported that all attempts at reinforcing the front line were checked. Steps were at once taken to consolidate the position won.

Considerable delay occurred after the capture of the Neuve Chapelle position. The infantry was greatly disorganised by the violent nature of the attack and by its passage through the enemy's trenches and the buildings of the village. It was necessary to get units to some extent together before pushing on. The telephonic communication being cut by the enemy's fire rendered communication between front and rear most difficult. The fact of the left of the 23rd Brigade having been held up had kept back the 8th Division, and had involved a portion of the 25th Brigade in fighting to the north out of its proper direction of advance. All this required adjustment. An orchard held by the enemy north of Neuve Chapelle also threatened the flank of an advance towards the Aubers Ridge. I am of opinion that this delay would not have occurred had the clearly expressed order of the General Officer Commanding First Army been more carefully observed. The difficulties above enumerated might have been overcome at an earlier period of the day if the General Officer Commanding 4th Corps had been able to bring his reserve brigades more speedily into action. As it was, the further advance did not commence before 3.30 p.m. The 21st Brigade was able to form up in the open on the left without a shot being fired at it, thus showing that at the time the enemy's resistance had been paralysed. The Brigade pushed forward in the direction of Moulin Du Pietre. At first it made good progress, but was subsequently held up by the machine gun fire from the houses and from a defended work in the line of the German entrenchments opposite the right of the 22nd Brigade. Further to the south the 24th Brigade, which had been directed on Pietre, was similarly held up by machine-guns in the houses and trenches at the road junction six hundred yards northwest of Pietre. The 25th Brigade, on the right of the 24th, was also held up by machine-guns from a bridge held by the Germans, over the River Des Layes, which is situated to the north-west of the Bois Du Biez.

Whilst two Brigades of the Meerut Division were establishing themselves on the new line, the Dehra Dun Brigade, supported by the Jullundur Brigade of the Lahore Division, moved to the attack of the Bois Du Biez, but were held up on the line of the River Des Layes by the German post at the bridge which enfiladed them and brought them to a standstill. The defended bridge over the River Des Layes and its neighbourhood immediately assumed considerable importance. Whilst artillery fire was brought to bear, as far as circumstances would permit, on this point, Sir Douglas Haig directed the 1st Corps to despatch one or more battalions of the 1st Brigade in support of the troops attacking the bridge. Three battalions were thus sent to Richebourg St. Vaast.

Darkness coming on, and the enemy having brought up reinforcements, no further progress could be made, and the Indian Corps and 4th Corps proceeded to consolidate the position they had gained. Whilst the operations which I have thus briefly recorded were going on, the 1st Corps, in accordance with orders, delivered an attack in the morning from Givenchy, simultaneously with that against Neuve Chapelle; but, as the enemy's wire was insufficiently cut, very little progress could be made, and the troops at this point did little more than hold fast the Germans in front of them.

On the following day, March 11th, the attack was renewed by the 4th and Indian Corps, but it was soon seen that a further advance would be impossible until the artillery had dealt effectively with the various houses and defended localities which held up the troops along the entire front. Efforts were made to direct the artillery fire accordingly; but owing to the weather conditions, which did not permit of aerial observation, and the fact that nearly all the telephonic communications between the artillery observers and their batteries had been cut, it was impossible to do so with sufficient accuracy. Even when our troops which were pressing forward occupied a house here and there, it was not possible to stop our artillery fire, and the infantry had to be withdrawn. The two principal points which barred the advance were the same as on the preceding day-namely, the enemy's position about Moulin de Pietre and at the bridge over the River des Layes.

On the 12th March the same unfavourable conditions as regards weather prevailed, and hampered artillery action. Although the 4th and Indian Corps most gallantly attempted to capture the strongly fortified positions in their front, they were unable to maintain themselves, although they succeeded in holding them for some hours. Operations on this day were chiefly remarkable for the violent counter-attacks, supported by artillery, which were delivered by the Germans, and the ease with which they were repulsed.

As most of the objects for which the operations had been undertaken had been attained, and as there were reasons why I considered it inadvisable to continue the attack at that time, I directed Sir Douglas Haig on the night of the 12th to hold and consolidate the ground which had been gained by the 4th and Indian Corps, and to suspend further offensive operations for the present. On the morning of the 12th I informed the General Officer Commanding 1st Army that he could call on the 2nd Cavalry Division, under General Gough, for immediate support in the event of the successes of the First Army opening up opportunities for its favourable employment. This Division and a Brigade of the North Midland Division, which was temporarily attached to it was moved forward for this purpose. The 5th Cavalry Brigade, under Sir Philip Chetwode, reached the Rue Bacquerot at 4 p.m., with a view to rendering immediate support; but he was informed by the General Officer Commanding 4th Corps that the situation was not so favourable as he had hoped it would be, and that no further action by the cavalry was advisable. General Gough's command, therefore, retired to Estaires.

The artillery of all kinds was handled with the utmost energy and skill and rendered in valuable support in the prosecution of the attack. The losses during these three days' fighting were, I regret to say, very severe, numbering- 190 officers and 2,337 other ranks, killed.
359 officers and 8,174 other ranks, wounded.
23 officers and 1,728 other ranks, missing.
But the results attained were, in my opinion, wide and far reaching. The enemy left several thousand dead on the battlefield which were seen and counted; and we have positive information that upwards of 12,000 wounded were removed to the northeast and east by train. Thirty officers and 1,657 other ranks of the enemy were captured.

I can best express my estimate of this battle by quoting an extract from a Special Order of the Day which I addressed to Sir Douglas Haig and the First Army at its conclusion: - " I am anxious to express to you personally my warmest appreciation of the skilful manner in which you have carried out your orders, and my fervent and most heartfelt appreciation of the magnificent gallantry and devoted, tenacious courage displayed by all ranks whom you have ably led to success and victory."

5. Some operations in the nature of holding attacks, carried out by, troops of the Second Army, were instrumental in keeping the enemy in front of them occupied, and preventing reinforcements being sent from those portions of the front to the main point of attack. At 12.30 a.m. on the 12th March the 17th Infantry Brigade of the 4th Division, 3rd Corps, engaged in an attack on the enemy which resulted in the capture of the village of L'Epinette and adjacent farms. Supported by a brisk fire from the 18th Infantry Brigade, the 17th Infantry Brigade, detailed for the attack, assaulted in two columns converging, and obtained the first houses of the village without much loss. The remainder of the village was very heavily wired, and the enemy got away by means of communication trenches while our men were cutting through the wire. The enemy suffered considerable loss; our casualties being 5 officers and 30 other ranks, killed and wounded. The result of this operation was that an advance of 300 yards was made on a front of half a mile. All attempts to retake this position have been repulsed with heavy loss to the enemy.

The General Officer Commanding the Second Corps arranged for an attack on a part of the enemy's position to the south-west of the village of Wytschaete which he had timed to commence at 10 a.m. on the 12th March. Owing to dense fog, the assault could not be made until 4 o'clock in the afternoon. It was then commenced by the Wiltshire and Worcestershire Regiments, but was so hampered by the mist and .the approach, of darkness that nothing more was effected than holding the enemy to his ground.

The action of St. Eloi referred to in the first paragraph of this despatch commenced at 6 p.m. on the 14th March by a very heavy cannonade which was directed against our trenches in front of St. Eloi, the village itself and the approaches to it. There is a large mound lying to the south-east of the village. When the artillery attack was at its height a mine was exploded under this mound, and a strong hostile infantry attack was immediately launched against the trenches and the mound. Our artillery opened fire at once, as well as our infantry, and inflicted considerable losses on the enemy during their advance; but, chiefly owing to the explosion of the mine and the surprise of the overwhelming artillery attack, the enemy's infantry had penetrated the first line of trenches at some points. As a consequence the garrisons of other works which had successfully resisted the assault were enfiladed and forced to retire just before it turned dark. A counter attack was at once organised by the General Officer Commanding 82nd Brigade, under the orders of the General Officer Commanding 27th Division, who brought up a reserve brigade to support it. The attack was launched at 2 a.m., and the 82nd Brigade succeeded in recapturing the portion of the village of St. Eloi which was in the hands of the enemy and a portion of the trenches east of it. At 3 a .m. the 80th Brigade in support took more trenches to the east and west of the village. The counter attack, which was well carried out under difficult conditions, resulted in the recapture of all lost ground of material importance. It is satisfactory to be able to record that, though the troops occupying the first line of trenches were at first overwhelmed, they afterwards behaved very gallantly in the counterattack for the recovery of the lost ground; and the following units earned and received the special commendation, of the Army Commander : -The 2nd Royal Irish Fusiliers, the 2nd Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry, the 1st Leinster Regiment, the 4th Rifle Brigade and the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry.

A vigorous attack made by the enemy on the 17th to recapture these trenches was repulsed with great loss. Throughout the period under review night enterprises by smaller or larger patrols, which were led with consummate skill and daring, have been very active along the whole line, A moral superiority has thus been established, and valuable information has been collected. I cannot speak too highly of the invincible courage and the remarkable resource displayed by these patrols. The troops of the 3rd Corps have particularly impressed me by their conduct of these operations.

6. The work of the Royal Flying Corps throughout this period, and especially during the operations of the 10th, 11th, and 12th March, was of the greatest value. Though the weather on March 10th and on the subsequent days was very unfavourable for aerial work, on account of low-lying clouds and mist, a remarkable number of hours flying of a most valuable character were effected, and continuous and close reconnaissance was maintained over the enemy's front. In addition to the work of reconnaissance and observation of artillery fire, the Royal Flying Corps was charged with the special duty of hampering the enemy's movements by destroying various points on his communications. The railways at Menin, Courtrai, Don and Douai were attacked, and it is known that very extensive damage was effected at certain of these places. Part of a troop train was hit by a bomb, a wireless installation near Lille is believed to have been effectively destroyed, and a house in which the enemy had installed one of his Headquarters was set on fire. These afford other instances of successful operations of this character. Most of the objectives mentioned were attacked at a height of only 100 to 150 feet. In one case the pilot descended to about 50 feet above the point he was attacking. Certain new and important forms of activity, which it is undesirable to specify, have been initiated and pushed forward with much vigour and success. There have been only eight days during the period under review on which reconnaissances have not been made. A total of approximately 130,000 miles have been flown-almost entirely over the enemy's lines. No great activity has been shown over our troops on the part of the enemy's aircraft, but they have been attacked whenever and wherever met with, and usually forced down or made to seek refuge in their own lines.

7. In my last despatch I referred to the remarkable promptitude and rapidity with which reinforcements arrived in this country from England. In connection with this it is of interest to call attention to the fact that, in spite of the heavy casualties incurred in the fighting between the 10th and 15th March, all deficiencies, both in officers and rank and file, were made good within a few days of the conclusion of the battle. The drafts for the Indian Contingents have much improved of late, and are now quite satisfactory.

Since the date of my last report the general health of the Army has been excellent; enteric has decreased, and there has been no recurrence on any appreciable scale of the "foot" trouble which appeared so threatening in December and January. These results are due to the skill and energy which have characterised in a marked degree the work of the Royal Army Medical Corps throughout the campaign, under the able supervision of Surgeon-General T. J. O'Donnell, D.S.O., Deputy Director-General, Medical Services. But much credit is also due to Divisional, Brigade, Regimental and Company Commanders for the close supervision which has been kept over the health of their men by seeing that the precautions laid down for the troops before entering and after leaving the trenches are duly observed, and by the establishment and efficient maintenance of bathing-places and wash-houses, and by the ingenious means universally employed throughout the Forces to maintain the cleanliness of the men, having regard both to their bodies and their clothing. I have inspected most of these houses and establishments, and consider them models of careful organisation and supervision. I would particularly comment upon the energy displayed by the Royal Army Medical Corps in the scientific efforts they have made to discover and check disease in its earliest stages by a system of experimental research, which I think has never before been so fully developed in the field. In this work they have been ably assisted by those distinguished members of the medical profession who are now employed as Military Medical Officers, and whose invaluable services I gratefully acknowledge.

The actual strength of the Force in the field has been increased and the health of the troops improved by a system of "convalescent" hospitals. In these establishments slight wounds and minor ailments are treated, and men requiring attention and rest are received. By these means efficient soldiers, whose services would otherwise be lost for a long time, are kept in the country, whilst a large number of men are given immediate relief and rest when they require it without removing them from the area of operations. This adds materially to the fighting efficiency of the Forces. The principal convalescent hospital is at St. Omer. It was started and organised by Colonel A. F. L. Bate, Army Medical Service, whose zeal, energy and organising power have rendered it a model hospital of its kind, and this example has materially assisted in the efficient organisation of similar smaller establishments at every Divisional Headquarters.

8. I have already commented upon the number and severity of the casualties in action which have occurred in the period under report. Here once again I have to draw attention to the excellent work done by Surgeon-General O'Donnell and his officers. No organisation could excel the efficiency of the arrangements- whether in regard, to time, space, care and comfort, or transport-which are made for the speedy evacuation of the wounded. I wish particularly to express my deep sense of the loss incurred by the Army in General, and by the Forces in France in particular, in the death of Brigadier-General J. E. Gough, V.C., C.M.G., A.D.C., late Brigadier-General, General Staff, First Army, which occurred on 22nd February as a result of a severe wound received on the 20th February when inspecting the trenches of the 4th Corps. I always regarded General Gough as one of our most promising military leaders of the future. His services as a Staff Officer throughout the campaign have been invaluable, and I had already brought his name before Your Lordship for immediate promotion. I can well understand how deeply these casualties are felt by the nation at large, but each daily report shows clearly that they are being endured on at least an equal scale by all the combatants engaged throughout Europe, friends and foes alike. In war as it is to-day between civilised nations, armed to the teeth with the present deadly rifle and machine-gun, heavy casualties are absolutely unavoidable. For the slightest undue exposure the heaviest toll is exacted. The power of defence conferred by modern weapons is the main cause of the long duration of the battles of the present day, and it is this fact which mainly accounts for such loss and waste of life. Both one and the other can, however, be shortened and lessened if attacks can be supported by the most efficient and powerful force of artillery available; but an almost unlimited supply of ammunition is necessary and a most liberal discretionary power as to its use must be given to the Artillery Commanders. I am confident that this is the only means, by which great results can be obtained with a minimum of loss.

9. On the 15th February the Canadian Division began to arrive in this country. I inspected the Division, which was under the command of Lieutenant-General E. A. H. Alderson, C.B., on 20th February. They presented a splendid and most soldierlike appearance on parade. The men were of good physique, hard and fit. I judged by what I saw of them that they were well trained, and quite able to take their places in the line of battle. Since then the Division has thoroughly justified the good opinion I formed of it. The troops of the Canadian Division were first attached for a few days by brigades for training in the 3rd Corps trenches under Lieutenant-General Sir William Pulteney, who gave me such an excellent report of their efficiency that I was able to employ them in the trenches early in March. During the Battle of Neuve Chapelle they held a part of the line allotted to the First Army, and, .although they were not actually engaged in the main attack, they rendered valuable help by keeping the enemy actively employed in front of their trenches. All the soldiers of Canada serving in the Army under my command have so far splendidly upheld the traditions of the Empire, and will, I feel sure, prove to be a great source of additional strength to the forces in this country.

In former despatches I have been able to comment very favourably upon the conduct and bearing of the Territorial Forces throughout the operations in which they have been As time goes on, and I see more and more of their work, whether in the trenches or engaged in more active operations, I am still further impressed with their value. Several battalions were engaged in the most critical moments of the heavy fighting which occurred in the middle of March, and they acquitted themselves with the utmost credit. Up till lately the troops of the Territorial Force in this country were only employed by battalions, but for some weeks past I have seen formed divisions working together, and I have every hope that their employment in the larger units will prove as successful as in the smaller. These opinions are fully borne out by the result of the close inspection which I have recentlv made of the North Midland Division, under Major-General Hon. Montagu-Stuart-Wortley, and the 2nd London Division, under Major-General Barter.

10. General Baron Von Kaulbars, of the Russian General Staff, arrived at my Headquarters on the 18th March. He was anxious to study our aviation system, and I gave him every opportunity of doing so. The Bishop of London arrived here with his Chaplain on Saturday, March 27th, and left on Monday, April 5th. During the course of his visit to the Army His Lordship was at the front every day, and I think I am right in saying that there was scarcely a unit in the command which was not at one time or another present at his services or addresses. Personal fatigue and even danger were completely ignored by His Lordship. The Bishop held several services virtually under shell fire, and. it was with difficulty that he could be prevented from carrying on his ministrations under rifle fire in the trenches. I am anxious to place on record my deep sense of the good effect produced throughout the Army by this self-sacrificing devotion on the part of the Bishop of London, to whom I feel personally very deeply indebted. I have once more to remark upon the devotion to duty, courage and contempt of danger which has characterised the work of the Chaplains of the Army throughout this campaign.

11. The increased strength of the Force and the gradual exhaustion of the local resources have necessitated a corresponding increase in our demands on the Line of Communications, since we are now compelled to import many articles which in the early stages could be obtained by local purchase. The Directorates concerned have, however, been carefully watching the situation, and all the Administrative Services on the Line of Communication have continued to work with smoothness and regularity, in spite of the increased pressure thrown upon them. In this connection I wish to bring to notice the good service which has been rendered by the Staff of the Base Ports. The work of the Railway Transport Department has been excellently carried out, and I take this opportunity of expressing my appreciation of the valuable service rendered by the French railway authorities generally, and especially by Colonel Ragueneau, late Directeur des Chemins de Fer,. Lieutenant-Colonel Le Henaff, Directeur des Chemins de Fer, Lieutenant-Colonel Dumont, Commissaire Militaire, Chemin de Fer du Nord, and Lieutenant-Colonel Frid, Commissaire Regulateur, Armee Anglaise. The Army Postal Service has continued to work well, and at the present time a letter posted in London is delivered at General Headquarters or at the Headquarters of the Armies and Army Corps on the following evening, and reaches an addressee in the trenches on the second day after posting. The delivery of parcels has also been accelerated, and is carried out with regularity and despatch.

12. His Majesty the King of the Belgians visited the British lines on February 8th and inspected some of the units in reserve behind the trenches. During the last two months I have been much indebted to His Majesty and his gallant Army for valuable assistance and co-operation in various ways.

13. His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales is the bearer of this despatch. His Royal Highness continues to make most satisfactory progress. During the Battle of Neuve C'hapelle he acted on my General Staff as a Liaison Officer. Reports from the General Officers: Commanding Corps and Divisions to which he has been attached agree in commending the thoroughness in which he performs any work entrusted to him. I have myself been very favourably impressed by the quickness with which His Royal Highness has acquired knowledge of the various branches of the service, and the deep interest he has always displayed in the comfort and welfare of the men. His visits to the troops, both in the field and in hospitals, have been greatly appreciated by all ranks. His Royal Highness did duty for a time in the trenches with the Battalion to which he belongs.

14. In connection with the Battle of Neuve Chapelle I desire to bring to Your Lordship's special notice the valuable services of General Sir Douglas Haig, K.C.B., K.C.I.E., K.C.V.O., A.D.C., Commanding the First Army. I am also much indebted to the able and devoted assistance I have received from Lieutenant-General Sir William Robertson, K.C.B., K.C.V.O., D.S.O., Chief of the General Staff, in the direction of all the operations recorded in this despatch. I have many other names to bring to notice for valuable, gallant and distinguished service during the period under review, and these will form the subject of a separate report at an early date.

I have the honour to be,
Your Lordship's most obedient Servant, J. D. P. FRENCH,
Field-Marshal,
Commanding-in-Chief,
The British Army in the Field.

http://www.1914-1918.net/french_seventh_despatch.html
_________________

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Marcel Wauters, Vlaams schrijver en kunstenaar 1921-2005
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 21:25    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Letter from Admiral Lord Fisher (First Sea Lord) to Churchill (First Lord of the Admiralty), 5 April 1915.

"From Maginess' report the Inflexible is far worse than Lion so will be quite 3 months hors-de-combat! The war may be over by then if Holland comes in! I dont think you are sufficiently impressed by Cambon's warning as to Holland! We ought to have every detail organized to move in a moment to Texel! [island off the coast of the Netherlands]. You are just simply eaten up with the Dardanelles and cant [sic] think of anything else!

D-m the Dardanelles! they'll be our grave! A.K.W. says Texel not Terschelling [island off the coast of the Netherlands] - that ought to be settled - Kitchener ought to have some good troops told off - transports ready - Every one told off -! We shall be as usual "Too late"!

We could have had the Greeks & everyone else at the right time but we are "too late" ALWAYS! This war might be described as "Procrastinations - vacilliations - Antwerps"* (That's copyright!)."

* Reference to Churchill's unsuccessful attempt to defend Antwerp in 1914

http://www.chu.cam.ac.uk/archives/education/churchill_era/transcripts/fisher_to_churchill.php
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Marcel Wauters, Vlaams schrijver en kunstenaar 1921-2005


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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 21:28    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Jess Willard Dethrones Jack Johnson on April 5, 1915

On Monday, April 5, 1915, a boxing reign as a champion came to an end in a bout from Havana, Cuba. It was on this day that Jack Johnson defended his heavyweight title against Jess Willard in a scheduled 45-round fight at Vedado Racetrack.

Johnson, who was the first African-American to win the heavyweight championship having done so in 1908 by beating Canadian fighter Tommy Burns, was 37 years old in this fight. Johnson was by all accounts a celebrity ahead of his time as he earned money from endorsement deals, motion pictures, drove fast and expensive cars, and participated in many expensive ventures which included being involved with prostitutes. He wasn't afraid of who he was despite racial tension at many fight venues he was in.

Johnson had also been arrested for violating the Mann Act in 1912 which was the illegal transportation of women across state lines with the main purpose of fighting prostitution. His second wife Lucille Cameron was the one he transported across state lines, but the case was thrown out. Johnson was charged again in 1913 for transporting another prostitute in 1909 and 1910. He was convicted this time despite the fact that the incidents took place prior to the Mann Act going into affect. He skipped bail and left the U.S. not to return again until he gave himself up in 1920.

A fighter from Kansas, Willard didn't begin boxing professionally until 1911 at nearly 30 years of age. At the time, he was largely known for having strong punching power which did lead to the death of John Young in 1913 after surgery to relieve pressure of cerebral hemorrhage from a Willard punch. Willard was a towering figure in the ring standing 6'6" and weighing about 240 lbs for his title fight with Johnson. He had a long reach advantage of 83 inches which is still one of the longest ever.

Boxing was very popular in the 1910s as many were looked upon as the "Great White Hope" to knock off Johnson as champion. The bout was scheduled to take place on April 4, but heavy criticism of having it on a Sunday forced promoters to change it to the next day.

In the opening round of the fight, Johnson unloaded with left hooks to Willard as the big challenger used his arms to defend the punches. Johnson nailed Willard with a right cross later in the round that momentarily stunned him. However, Willard recovered by backing up and sticking to his plan to counterpunch the champion.

While Willard stuck to his plan, Johnson continued to punch away in the second round. Willard wasn't knocked down in the early rounds as he continued to take punishment from the champion.

However in the seventh round, Willard staggered back to his corner after taking a shot to the jaw from Johnson. Johnson continued the onslaught as Willard took a beating into the eighth round.

Johnson was still in control of the fight as the fight had reached 20 rounds. On the scorecards, Willard was down by a huge margin which would have been long over by today's boxing rules.

But Willard had used a defensive counter-attack and wore down the body of Johnson by the time the rounds reached the 20s. Johnson was getting noticeably tired and was leaning on Willard as well as taking more body shots after the 20th round.

In Round 25, Willard hit Johnson with a heart punch which clearly hurt him. Johnson was slow to get out of his corner for the next round which ended up being the last of the fight.

About a minute and a half into the Round 26, Willard hit Johnson with a right hand square on the chin of Johnson knocking him down the mat. Johnson could be seen shielding the sun from his eyes, and didn't get up. Willard had dethroned Johnson, who hadn't been beat in 10 years before this fight.

Years later, rumors spread rapidly that Johnson had fixed the fight to Willard in Havana. When asked about the rumor of a fixing, Willard didn't buy it.

"If he was going to throw the fight, I wish he'd done it sooner. It was hotter than hell out there," said Willard.

Though many historians still credit Willard for winning a clean fight, it was Johnson's pride that really had been hurt. Johnson continued to fight after the loss, but was never the same boxer. And later, legal as well as financial trouble outside the ring eventually caught up with him as well.

For the fight, Johnson was guaranteed a $30,000 purse win or lose for his fight with Willard. Johnson had blown much of his money on expensive cars, and it didn't help he wasn't getting much money outside of the U.S. when he left the country. This fight gave him his biggest money outside the country.

Johnson turned himself in to authorities when he returned to the U.S. in 1920, and was released the following year. He continued fighting until he lost his last bout to Walter Price in 1938. He died in an automobile accident in 1946 at the age of 68.

Willard was billed as "The Great White Hope" after defeating Johnson, and would hold the heavyweight title until 1919. He won his next two fights before losing the title to another one of the great boxers of all-time and 1920s icon Jack Dempsey. Dempsey punished Willard unmercifully in the bout with knocking down the champion seven times in the first round before Willard didn't answer the bell for Round 4.

Willard fought his last fight in 1923, and died in 1968 at the age of 86 in Los Angeles.

One of the promoters for this boxing match was Roderick "Jess" McMahon. McMahon left the boxing industry soon after and relocated to Long Island, New York. While there, he began promoting professional wrestling at a time before it became "worked" or scripted matches. He was famous for promoting wresting events at the famed Madison Square Garden for over 20 years. He died in 1954, and his son Vince J. McMahon took over the promotion, and eventually founded World Wide Wrestling Federation. Jess' grandson Vince K. McMahon bought the business from his father in the early 1980s, and the promotion exists today as World Wrestling Entertainment(WWE).

As for the fight itself, I personally don't believe it was fixed. First, no one would fight for 26 exhausting rounds in sweltering Havana heat if he was paid to fix the fight. Second, Johnson controlled most of the fight - even stunning Willard at times before fatigue caught up to him. And finally, Johnson was a very proud fighter and was known for wanting to show up white fighters every time he got the chance in the ring. I have seen film on YouTube of this fight, and the punch that knocked out Johnson looked very legit to me.

Without question, Johnson is one of the greatest heavyweight boxers ever, but Willard was in better shape to simply outlast him on this day. No one goes undefeated for 10 years like he did especially with having to deal with racial tension like he had to endure. He definitely made his mark on the sport.

Willard showed the heart of a champion in taking a beating for most of the fight before his endurance as well as game plan worked on Johnson. The largest boxer in his generation up to that point won the heavyweight title. He dethroned the one man who forever changed the sport being a very skilled African-American boxer as well as celebrity status and fast living which also contributed to his fall from the top. It was a day that changed the boxing lives of two fighters for the better and worse on this day in 1915.

http://www.basicbloganomics.com/2010/04/jess-willard-dethrones-jack-johnson-on.html
Zie ook http://sports.ha.com/common/view_item.php?Sale_No=410113&Lot_No=43182
_________________

"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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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 21:34    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Anzac Day Gazette notice, 1916

http://www.nzhistory.net.nz/media/photo/anzac-day-gazette-notice-1916
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"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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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 21:36    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Der Weltkrieg am 5. April 1916

http://www.stahlgewitter.com/16_04_05.htm
_________________

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Marcel Wauters, Vlaams schrijver en kunstenaar 1921-2005


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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 21:39    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Kroniek van Baarle in de Eerste Wereldoorlog (1916)

5 april 1916 - “De gemeenteraad, willende een blijk van achting en genegenheid geven aan de soldaten dezer gemeente die strijden voor wat ons boven alles duurbaar is: de eer en de roem van ons geliefd België. Besluit: een buitengewoon krediet van 275fr wordt gesticht in de gemeentebegroting van 1916. Dit bedrag zal worden verdeeld tusschen de soldaten van Baarle-Hertog en zal in natura (tabak, cigaren en chocolade) worden toegezonden.” (Gemeentearchief Baarle-Hertog; gemeenteraad Baarle-Hertog)

http://www.amaliavansolms.org/joomla15/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=189:07-kroniek-van-baarle-in-de-eerste-wereldoorlog-1916&catid=90:oorlog&Itemid=118
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 21:44    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

April 5, 1917: Women win vote in British Columbia

On 5 April 1917, women gained the right to vote and run for office in British Columbia's provincial elections. British Columbia became the fourth province in Canada to enfranchise its female citizens, following Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta. Ontario would quickly follow suit in that same month, granting its women the right to vote on 12 April 1917.

http://www.albertasource.ca/aoe/ui/indexx.aspx?callpage=54
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"Omdat ik alles beter weet is het mijn plicht om betweters te minachten."
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 21:45    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Executive Order Establishing Defensive Sea Areas.

In The American Journal of International Law, Vol. 12, No. 1, Supplement: Official Documents (Jan., 1918), pp. 13-16

http://www.jstor.org/pss/2213344
_________________

"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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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 21:48    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Letter from Private Frederick Guy Guy, 5th April 1917 to 8th April 1917

A letter from Private Frederick Guy of the Sherwood Foresters to his grandparents, thanking them for a parcel he recently received. The letter is dated 5 April 1917, with a brief postscript added three days later.

Lees verder via http://www.oucs.ox.ac.uk/ww1lit/gwa/document/9483/7562
_________________

"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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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 21:51    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Prisoner of War Medal

The POW Medal is authorized by Public Law 99-145 (Nov. 8, 1985), as amended by Public Law 101-89 (Nov. 29, 1989), and codified at section 1128, title 10, United States Code. The POW Medal is authorized for any person who, while serving in any capacity with the U.S. Armed Forces, was taken prisoner and held captive after April 5, 1917. The POW Medal is to be issued only to those U.S. military personnel and other personnel granted credible U.S. military service who were taken prisoner and held captive:

(1) while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States;
(2) while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force;
(3) while serving with friendly forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing force in which the United States is not a belligerent party; or
(4) by foreign armed forces that are hostile to the United States, under circumstances which the Secretary concerned finds to have been comparable to those under which persons have generally been held captive by enemy armed forces during periods of armed conflict.

http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/medals/pow/
_________________

"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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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 21:56    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Brothers died in 1917 - Our listing of known sets of brothers who died on the same date in 1917.

5 April 1917 - Ben, 27 and Fred Whitaker, 25, served in D battery, 312 Brigade Royal Field Artillery. Sons of John Henry and Mary Elizabeth Whitaker of Otley, West Yorkshire, they are buried in adjacent graves in Ervillers Military Cemetery, France.

http://www.1914-1918.net/brothers1917.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 21:59    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Les Darcy

Born James Leslie Darcy on 31 October 1895 at Stradbroke near Maitland he was a champion boxer and a folk hero. Les first made money as a boxer at 14 years of age. By September 1916 he had won 22 consecutive fights.

During 1916 Darcy was put under pressure to enlist in the army as an example for other young men to follow. Darcy was in an awkward position as a result of his Irish Catholic background. He sailed for America on 27 October 1916 (in breach of the War Precautions Act, which meant no passports were issued to young men of military age). The press had a field day, denouncing him as a shirker. On 5 April 1917 Les became a citizen of the United States.

On 27 April 1917, Darcy was admitted to hospital with septicaemia and endocarditis. While in hospital he developed pneumonia and died on 24 May 1917. Darcy's body was brought back to Australia and he received a huge funeral procession in Sydney before he was buried at East Maitland. Les stands out as one of Australia's greatest boxers, losing only four professional fights and never being knocked out.

http://www.records.nsw.gov.au/state-archives/digital-gallery/our-sporting-heritage/sporting-heroes/sporting-heroes
_________________

"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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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 22:07    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

The Senate of Finland has upon the motion of Department of Internal Affairs, delivered the following Declaration:

To the People of Finland.
After German troops, at the request of the Government, have landed on Finnish soil to assist in expelling of Russian troops and Bolsheviks, the Government wishes to make the following generally known among the population of the country:
Although German troops will, whenever possible, to use provisions and other material they have brought with themselves, it might occur that procurement of food and other supplies will turn out to be unavoidable. As Government now urges the population willingly to fulfill the requirements that might this way arise, it will also clearly state that the State of Finland will remunerate all the materials provided for the German troops, as well as all the damages they might cause.
All requisitions for the German troops are communicated through appropriate food staff boards or other municipal authorities. All deliveries are acknowledged with a receipt, of form and content approved by the Finnish government, carrying the due signature and official seal and showing the list of the delivered goods and their values. To illustrate the type of requisitions the German troops might need, the following list is provided:
1) quarters for troops and stables for their horses;
2) food for troops and fodder for their horses;
3) all kinds of carriages and harnesses and assistant personnel to work as coachmen, guides, messangers, oars- and ferrymen, as well as for construction work on roads, railways, bridges or in fortifications, and to blockade rivers and harbours;
4) disposal of houses and buildings for military operations and for road, railway and bridge construction, allotting materials for camps and resting places and fortifications and for blockading of rivers and harbours;
5) supplying of fuel and straw for camps and resting places;
6) providing other assistance and material, which in unusual cases might be needed for military purposes, especially material for clothing and fortifications, medicines and bandaging material insofar there are suitable persons and available supplies in the municipality.
If there is no food otherwise accessible for the troops, they can make requisitions for livestock, grain, oats, hay and straw. The amount of foodstuff thus delivered in form of a purchase or requisition to the military, will be at due time returned in nature by the German High Command.
Owners of ships or boats are obliged, whenever required, to set them at disposal of the military command for war purposes. The owners are compensated for the loss of their earnings or loss of the vehicle.
To fulfill the need of horses for troops, all horse owners are at war times obliged to yield up suitable horses for war purposes. They will be remunerated with a full compensation assessed by a person with expertise on the matter. The following persons are, however, exempted:
a) state official insofar horses are needed for their official duties, as well as doctors and veterinarians in case the horses are necessary for carrying out their professions
b) mail carriers and innkeepers isofar they need horses to regular mail transportation and stagecoach service;
c) city fire brigades.
The railway administration is obliged to:
1) to furnish necessary fittings into the railway cars for transportation of troops and horses;
2) arrange transportation for troops and the material;
3) set its personnel and supplies for use in construction and operating on the railways.
The railway administration is also obliged to follow the orders of the military command in arranging, continuing, interrupting or resuming operating on the railways.
In case these orders are not obeyed, the military command is authorized to carry them out on their own decision.
In Vaasa, on April the 5th, 1918.
On behalf of the Finnish Senate:
P. E. Svinhufvud.

https://histdoc.net/history/65_44.html
_________________

"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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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 22:19    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Percy Clive

Percy Archer Clive DSO, DL (13 March 1873 – 5 April 1918) was a British army officer and Liberal Unionist Party politician.

Percy Clive was the eldest son of Charles Meysey Bolton Clive of Whitfield estate, Herefordshire, and Lady Katherine Feilding. He was educated at Eton and Sandhurst and entered the Grenadier Guards as a second lieutenant in 1891. He was appointed as a Deputy Lieutenant of Herefordshire in December 1894, and was attached to the Niger Field Force from 1897 to 1899 based in Lagos, rising to the rank of captain. In May 1899 he was elected a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.

He was elected to the Commons as the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Ross division of Herefordshire in the "khaki election" of 1900, while fighting in the Second Boer War. He did not return to England to take his seat until February 1902. In December 1903 he was appointed private parliamentary secretary to E G Pretyman, Parliamentary and Financial Secretary to the Admiralty.

He was unseated at the 1906 general election, which saw the Liberal Party win a landslide victory. He returned to Parliament at a by-election in January 1908, and remained Ross's MP until his death. Following a merger of the Unionist parties in 1912 he became a Conservative.

He returned to the army in World War I and was wounded twice. Clive was awarded the Distinguished Service Order, the Legion of Honour, and the Croix de Guerre, and was twice Mentioned in Despatches. As Lieutenant-Colonel of the Grenadier Guards he was killed in action when attached to the 1/5th Lancashire Fusiliers, 5 April 1918 at Bucquoy. Memorial services were held on 17 April at St Margaret's, Westminster and Hereford Cathedral.

His elder son Major Meysey George Dallas Clive (1907–1943) was killed with the Grenadier Guards in North Africa on 1 May 1943. His younger son Lewis Clive (1910–1938) won a gold medal for rowing at the 1932 Olympics and was a member of the International Brigade in the Spanish Civil War, killed in action in August 1938.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Percy_Clive
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 22:25    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

The front line during Operation Michael: 21st March to 5th April 1918. Based on the Official Histories.

http://www.webmatters.net/maps/ww1_map_michael.htm
_________________

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Marcel Wauters, Vlaams schrijver en kunstenaar 1921-2005


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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Apr 2011 22:27    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Letter from Jack Tait sent from Palestine

Letter sent from Palestine to his mother by my grandfather who fought in Palestine 1917-1918. He was a truchk driver with the Desert Mounted Corps.

Editor's Comment: Driver T4/143045 Jack Tait, Army Service Corps (Later service no. ET/50689). The Egyptian Expeditionary Force, of which the Desert Mounted Corps was a part, had captured Jerusalem on 9th December 1917
.

Palestine Ap 5th 1918

I received your letter of March 12th today. The weather here is very like
our winter, plenty of rain and hailstones but I think the snow is finished
now. You would hardly think there could be snow in Jerusalem, but it is
right as I was there at the time and it was very cold, it sits so high up.
At one part of the road there is a fine view of the plains of Palestine
stretching right down towards Gaza.

I was in the old city on Easter Monday and was shown round by a guide and saw
what is left of Solomon’s temple. It must have been a huge place but now
there is only the wall standing and his stables under the courtyard of the
Temple. The courtyard is about the size of a football field, all paved with
a pure white stone. He must have kept a lot of horses etc. as there are
hundreds of stalls.

It was a great idea making the stables underground and using the roof of them
as a floor for the courtyard.

The wall of the Temple which forms the side of a narrow street is the praying
place of the Jews and the day we were in there was a big crowd of them lined
along the wall praying and kissing the stones of it.

They believe that if they keep on praying that Palestine will be returned to
them, and that they will recover their faith, as they lost it in the first
instance through want of faith. I told one of them that we had restored this
land to them just to see what he would say, but was told that faith was not
restored yet. The guide told us to break a piece of stone of the wall to
send home but it is very hard so I only got a small piece. The joints
between the stones are filled with nails driven in by pilgrims and tourists,
you can take one out (provided you replace it with another) and keep it for a
souvenir.

The stones of the Temple are a tremendous size and it is a marvel how they
got them into position. There can be seen the marks and symbols on some of
them. The Mosque of Amar is built on the site of the Temple and is the
loveliest building I ever saw. It is all mosaic work, the chief colours
being blue and white while the inside is beyond description.

We had to remove our boots before going in so as not to damage the floor and
had to do the same when going into the Holy Sepulchre. When we first took
the city, we had to hire a pair of slippers at 21/2d per time so the slipper
lenders made some piastres but the Military Governor stopped them at that
game and only the officers now get them.

There are a lot of beautiful churches in the Old City and each one is built
over some sacred relic. The French church of Saint Anna contains the
birthplace of the Mother of Christ, a small cave in below the church, and
also there is the Pool of Bethseda close by where Christ healed the cripples.

We went down about 20 ft to this pool which is about 30ft long and 12 ft wide
and containing about 2ft of water.

The last part of our tour was the most interesting as we went up the famous
“Via Dolorosa” or the way of the Cross. There are 15 stages, the last being
the Holy Sepulchre.

Mount Calvary is not a “Green hill far away” now, it is all churches and
streets, but the site of the Cross is seen. Pontius Pilate’s house is still
pointed out also the stone where Jesus laid his hand when he stumbled under
the weight of the Cross.

There is a hollow the shape of a hand in the stone and each of us laid our
left hand in it just as thousands of pilgrims have done for hundreds of
years. Each stage has a church built over it and it is very interesting. I
never thought that I would the way that Jesus walked up to Calvary. It
seemed all so strange and I could hardly realise it.

There is one thing about Johnny Turk, he never touched any of the buildings,
except a British hospital on the outskirts of the city. He used it as an
ammunition dump and blew it up when he left in a big hurry. The Turk left
the city in a dreadful mess, dirt all over the place and the people were
absolutely starving.

I never saw the like of it when we went in first, they crawled in below our
lorries to pick up any grains of wheat or millet that had dropped through the
cracks in the bottom. They were as thin as lathes and fought for a scrap of
bread. It is a bit different now, the city being a lot cleaner and there is
plenty of work for them that want it on the roads. The youngsters are quite
cocky now, but they were very shy at first, and there are great droves of
them sweeping the streets and sidewalks and quite proud of their armlet of
green with M.L. (Military Labour) on it. Another thing I saw in the Holy
City was the graves of the Crusaders who died in Jerusalem while outside the
city could be seen a lot of small white crosses, the graves of the New
Crusaders, men of the “West Countree” Somerset, Devon etc.

Trusting this finds you all well,
Jack

http://www.oucs.ox.ac.uk/ww1lit/gwa/item/5709?CISOBOX=1&REC=8
_________________

"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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