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MACKENSEN.

HIS AIM AND HIS FAILURE. WHY HE MISSED FIRE. THE FRINGE OF THE NEUTRALS t • ITALY AND OTHERS. WARFARE AS “GOD’S PLOUGH.” [By A. Spence.] Mackensen's tour-de-force in Poland is illustrated to-day. The first illustration shows what he intended to happen to the Russians; the second what happened to him. In the first he is stepping out blithely for Lowicz ami Warsaw; in the other he seems in the same predicament as the Light Brigade at Balaclava—Russians to north of him, Russians south of him, and Cossacks nearly, hut not quite, on his rear. The maps arc not so formidable, as they look, but lighting is a. very venerable pastime, and, like all the amusements of leisured folic, it has become refined and complicated in proportion to its age. The battle of hodz is an imitation of Napoleon —no hail imitation —hut Genius is a. black swan, and a Napoleon or a Roberts must not be expected in every campaign. The imitator often fares badly, and the more ambitions he is the greater the “muss up" usually is at the last. Still, the strategist must bo respected, for, like the terrible, little tailor in the fairy tale, he may claim " seven at a blow,"

puts it another -way i “ The Goddess of War,” he says, “ when eh© Invented her groat* game to amuse humanity ©pared no pains to make it interesting. She devised many cards, and arranged that each should have ita value—pluck, mobility, physical strength, quickness of mind and eye, and, lastly, she invented Death. Ail these, when pitted against each other, resulted in a pastime so absorbing that the world has never been able to do without it aince.” “ Linesman ” forgot one thing. Ho forgot Luck. It was luck, or the want of it, which overtook Yon Mackensen' and Vpn Francois. The Moscow, Kazan, Varsovio, KieU, and Odessa armies were not all caught in tho battle Czenstochowa-Cracow, as the German Staff seem to have assumed. A portion of tho Moscow army was, on cable authority, stuck in the mud .south of Lodz (first map). These troops wheeled on Von Mackensen’s southern flank, firing heavily into him. At the fame time the Petrograd army drew into line of battle on tho northern flank of Von Francois. This forms the “corridor” of which tho Russian paper ‘ Novo© Vremya.’ spoke this week. To make “sic siccar,” as our Scottish friends have it, tho _ Vilna, army (in the north) was ordered to send its Cossacks south to Maokensen’s roar. It seems that Rcnnenkampf was slow in doing this, and the corridor movement did not succeed. The back entrance was not clcscd, and the avenue enabled other German reserves (from Thorn) to stretch out tho hand of help. Other aid was despatched from the central reserves between Wielun and Kalisz, hut this does not seem to have got up in time. Tho second man sketches the uncomfortable position of Von Mackensen and Von Francois in tho corridor—Koluszki, Breziny, Strykow, Glowno, Zgierz, Lodz, and Szadek. Small wonder that they fought desperately to gel out through Strykow. That egress implied joining forces wi{h tho reserves from Thorn. “GOD’S PLOUGH." War is God’s plough, they tell us, but what a lot of tho soil of mankind is resolute not, to be ploughed. This association of the Deity with tin) savagery of war revolts one’s reason at tho first thought. Lieutenant-colonel Maude, the ablest military writer in England, once summed it

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https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/ESD19141205.2.20

Bibliographic details

MACKENSEN., Issue 15668, 5 December 1914

Word Count
575

MACKENSEN. Issue 15668, 5 December 1914

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