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GERMAN DISCIPLINE

llt-JX J.ULE OVEJt MEN. ORGANISATION MARVELLOUS. A dislinguifched F.-encii. artist arrested by the enemy at Si. fieraid, near Namnr. gives the following description of l,imarch with the Gennai: army:— After sleeping in a barn with Zoua-v*-prisoneis, n soldier standing over us with fixed bayonet, we were called at five the r.ext morning. Tin; prisoners were told to peel potatoes for the field kitchen. At six all the soidiers began to form up. Orders came 'fiom the officers like pistol fcliots, the click of hi.els and the thud of shoulder arms coming as from one man. Woe to the man tightly out of line! Th ■ close-cropped other .spat at him, a flow of expletives showing his teeth like a. tiger ieadv lo spiiug. I was placed in the middle of ;■ ma ching column, and a; I was loaded v.itii rny knapsack and coat (a (soldier n ."r me carrying my papers) I could take pan in the sensations of the mm nude ' the iron d;ficipl.ne of the offi tors. ihj mad lay inches thick of chalky disl. which rose in clouds above our heads. Never were we allowed to open out, an ! had seen the marching Belgian*; do, and let, the aiv rheulate. We plodded on the whole- driv. tlie only .rest being when there was an oeee.sv.-nnl block on the road. The march v.a> a-- if on parade. Should one fell oat of ste j. the .'bonis of his superior soon brought him up Now and then men were wiling with buckets, and as the. column .swung by the. soldiers dipped in their aluminium eup". Another man would be holding a biscuit tin lull of sweets, or it might he- hand fills of prunes, but stiil lhe march, went on. Jt was xemaakablt to f~ee the field post office, at work. The aimed, bine-coaled postmen stood by the marching column receiving the post cards banded to them. Somirtimes an. officer would hand over fowlingpiece, or antique with the address hanging from it. At noon 1 was handed over to officers, and I left the regiment. I was on the box seat, of a char-a-banc full of officers, and could observe the marvellous organisation of the column. The pace was at a walk, butcontinuous. Ammunition waggons, n'eid pieces, carts filled with flour, whole trainof enormous pontoons pulled by heavy horses, and great traction engines pulling eiege guns, landaus and motor care filled with doctors arid officers, whose only distinguishing mark is a strip of color at the neck—all advancing at the same pace. Should a slight block occur, the whole column would stop as one train, the drivers passing the message ba>ck by a jumping movement made with the fist on high. The warning of a declivity or bend in the road passed backwards like musketry fire. All vehicles belonged to the army. Some had chalked on their grey sides "Berlin-Pa.:is." Sometimes tl)p column would let an enormous grey motor omnibus daeh by, and throu hj the glaiss sides I saw Ft'afT officers tending over maps. Every driver arid ee:v:c-3 man carried his weapons, the great waggons simply bristling with rifles.

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/ESD19141027.2.4

Bibliographic details

GERMAN DISCIPLINE, Issue 15634, 27 October 1914

Word Count
522

GERMAN DISCIPLINE Issue 15634, 27 October 1914

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