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BATTLE OF STEP BY STEP.

dated December 16. It illustrates the difficulty which the British experienced in „ attempting to inovo on from Passchendaeto ' to Moorstedc—about a mile and a-half. ' The country is ilat, and woods block the ' aim of the* gunners, so nbcut a fortnight ! ago the British engineers "razed the largest wood near Ypres." This probably means the wood shown on the map betwoen Gheluvolt and Zonnebeke. It is , evident, from what followed, that Gheluvelt is the artillery position dominating that part of the battlelield. The Tango to Moorsledo is about 5i miles. Covered by the lire, the British infantry (then posted at Passchendaele, far in advance of the guns) woro to move directly forward on Moorslede, and eo " feel"" whether tho road to Houlers was weakly or strongly held by the Germans. What followed forms an extremely red page in the book of war, even though it was carried out by two British general officers who are probably the best tacticians in the world. The cannonade by tho heavy guns at Gheluvelt does not appear to have met much response at first, and so our commanders, deeming perhaps that the time was propitious, launched the British brigades of the Ist Corps from Passchendaele on Moorslede. Then tho cable of December 16 proceeds to tell its story: "The Germans concealed armored trucks at a railway siding, whence they directed a heavy Are, forcing tho Allies to retire and reform." To bring British troops, covered as they were by heavy artillery, to a standstill implies a bloody repulse, and, as each side always looks for an opportunity to coun-ter-attack, it is natural to Tead that the "Germans then advanced into the wooded country near Zonnebeke." One glance at | the map discloses that at this stage Sir ]l)«i£ke Haig iiad nob-only b«en repulsed

went, on to paint the war aspect nf deatli in Natal. 1899. What would he have said of Pnsseliondaele, 1914? Armies, machines for death, with great furnace fires always alight, burning immense quantities of useful fuel, and with their millions of parts, composed of the best metal and mettle of the world's manhood—armies long kept polished, idle, and unproductive—have at length como to a j time when someone's angry touch on the j releasing lever has ?.et all these machines furiously grinding and revolving, rolling out the supernatural, machine-made stuff —death—which man calls his own, though it is no more his own than the. sun and tho ram. * THE SHIPS TnisY RISKED. In a helpful way the naval correspondent of tho London 'Times' points out how cheap tins bombardment was. The distance from Heligoland to Hartlepool is 500 miles. It is dark at 5 p.m. at Home j now, and daylight does not begin till breakfast time. At slowest iho Germans Mould make 20 lenots, provided that they did not have to carry out any mine sireepj ing, and that they could not have done, j or they would not have arrived in time, j lit somo unexplained way they seem to have had en it>timate knowledge of the swept tracks which the Admiralty keep* open for the lobstermen and fishermen. Perhaps tho Nachrichten Bureau supplied them with that knowledge, and so they come on at full speed Correspondent* oil tho east coast of Rigland suggest that the Germans followed British trawlers goinjr homo with the catch of fish in the earty morning from tho Dojreer Bank. It is very ieasibtat bat the German*, nrasfc have.

not far off, that tho flanking mors on tho Russians from Mlawa (said to have been repelled) may amount to anything raw, and that the main Austro-Geman battle line, Gzenstochowa-Cracow ha&tla line, i.% still intact; alsot hat the Kiefi" and Ockauy j armies are again out flanked—this tjma not I from the north, but from the south. j There arc, however, other unhappy evidences of the inside- state of the Ruarisn | army, these heinjr furnished by the London j'Times' and other Homo papers. A.bcui vx weeks a»ro wo heard that vodka, had been stopped to the soldiers. That n*w.» j was broken very gently. It wai not- a ] matter aifecting the soldiers bo much as one relating to tome of the higher officers. l'eriia-ps the ' New Statesman' puts lhr> j painful position more plainly than other I Home papers. It* Warsaw correspondent, j writing under date October 18, say*: j The least satisfactory feature of til's j last two weeks' doings in and round, | Warsaw has been the behaviour of some of the officers, quartered in the town. They have made no attempt to conceal the dissipations with whioa t&ey hav» whiled away their time la the principal hotels. There is a story to pha effectthat the Grand Duke NLobolae made an unexpected appearance, and, Infuriated I by what he saw, degraded a number of officers to the ranks. That is ae it may be, bat it is certainly truo that Cometh ing- sudden and violent did happen, for the hotels of the first class oeaoed to «ei! intoxicating liquors, and the nfcmber of officers in their public rooms visibly diminished. Tie correspondent affirm* tfaafe lie ws*nii eye-wjtruiss m Warsaw wfceo thcaw <«pK»' took place- If so, U iiLTfjgflHiMi Tpßtm t

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https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/ESD19141219.2.63

Bibliographic details

BATTLE OF STEP BY STEP., Evening Star, Issue 15680, 19 December 1914

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869

BATTLE OF STEP BY STEP. Evening Star, Issue 15680, 19 December 1914

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