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THE SLOGAN., Issue 15695, 8 January 1915
CALL FOR MILLIONS & WHY. REALISM AT LAST. THE NATURE OF THE ENEMY MUCH UNDERRATED. OUR OFFICERS SPEAK OUT. [By A. Spence.] Wlui-fc is a German? What concept is to be formed after reading of him for five months ? A shabby sort of Hun, is he not? Something of a coward, too, afraid of the bayonet: a shockingly bad shot; so childishly simple that he can be bound and gagged on the picket line. A man who is generally on the run rearward, being routed daily! That is the picture furnished. Jt seems that officers in the. First Army revolt against it. A British commander of a brigade could hardly be called a proGerman, yet this is what lie writes to the London ‘Times’ of November 19: “The German artillery are extraordinarily good, and their shooting accurate beyond anything I had. ever dreamed of. 1 am disgusted by tho accounts I see of the inferiority of Germans as soldiers; don't believe one word of it. They are splendid in every way. Their courage, efficiency, equipment, and leading are all of the. very best, nod never were surpassed by any troops ever raised, i. am full of admiration for them, and so are. all who know anything about them.” “I blame the Horne papers fromondnusly,” writes another officer (‘ Times,’ November 19), “for publishing articles saying that tho Germans cannot shootstraight, that they run away, and that their armies are now composed of old men and boys,” etc. Most British officers seem to ho agreed that the German artillery' are accurate past belief. There is. for instance, a harrowing account by an officer in tho ‘ Manchester Guardian’ of November 12, describing the Calvary which two British platoons suffered by steady gun fire—not machine guns, hut field artillery. There was cover, they were in open order, hut only two or three survived. Tho senior captain temporarily lost his reason. No wonder! These writers arc not German sympathisers. Nobody is. Thev are simply arigrv. Their aense of ordinary hone-M.y has been outraged by 7 what they read. But do they do justly in placing the mantle of Ananias on tho English. Press? ‘The Times’ of November 20 points out editorially that the arch-disseminator of all this pernicious nonsense is none other than the English Government's Press Bureau, and it quote? two notorious messages which were set. a-wing round the globe, by that concern on September 6 arid September 11. At this end of thn world, one is sorry to reflect, thousands of New Zealand citizens probably believed every word. The business of “Killing Kruger with the mouth” is now so old an enterprise that those who dabble in it should be retired on a pension. The soberer picture, as it comes to-day, is by 7 Ivord Kitchener. He admits Germany's efficiency and strength, but adds that those aro diminishing. Lord Gurzon speaks of sending over 2,000,000 or perhaps 3,000,000 men. Both .speak good horse-sense. The. result of tho householders’ canvass at Home is disappointing, however. Only 21,800 are willing to enlist, and what is that in a. war of millions ! Thus cannot mean the whole of England. COMPULSORY SERVICE! It has been Jong evident from the English Press that the recruiting rate at Home does not meet the, call of the war. Perhaps some young men—-pardonably, I think—did not consider enlistment necessary, seeing that tho Gormans are well routed every day—or, at least, the Press Bureau says so. Perhaps others had cold feet. Like a shot from a gun comes ilia news to-day that the Press at Homo are campaigning for larger armies, and that those immense armies are necessary. The ‘Daily Telegraph ’ mys that compulsory service in the only way. It paints the position in Flanders as one of stalemate and mutual exhaustion. It is a. pity that the ‘Telegraph’ did not furnish that picture long ago. What is going to get the Germans out of Belgium? No force that wc can yet see in sight. The ‘Post’ and the ‘Chronicle’ add to the jeremiad, but the Radical ‘Chronicle’ reii;n up before the proposition of compulsory service. Generally speaking, there, is evidence in These messages that England, a.s might be expected, is a little panicky a.t this first awakening, which is being undertaken by tho Unionist Press, Sho never dreamed of this. The ‘Chronicle,’ for instance, point* to the scare of property owners and residents who are moving back from the, east coast in some alarm. It is no idle crusade cither, for Lord Kitchener professes his- willingness to accord certain terms to professional footballers. When a world’s War lord comes with gifts in both, hands to a parcel of footballers the rdtuntioii must be as urgent, as today's messages imply. And all this revelation is merely what the. Press Bureau has struggled so long to hide. The curtain lifts irom the. stage, and we see, an enemy nation in arms—the greatest army in tho world to boat. Mo see it for tho first time. THE DEAR OLD DUM-DUM. They have got so far as arguing what are humane, wounds and what are not. Jt is not. long since the, dum-dum atrocity was thrown on the English conscience by the Germans. This was at once refuted by the English Mar Office. Yesterday tho. allied news sources threw the. “ explosive bullet." charge in the face of tho foe. There arc no humane wounds. _ ’The. bullet propelled by tho modern rifle — dum-dum or no dum-dum —strikes with such terrific force, that it produce? a.series of molecular shocks which radiate ronewiso through the body, and the added agony of the, dum-dum, if there could be any, cease* to matter. To be struck at extreme ranges by any bullet—2, 800 yards, for example—is to be, struck by a missile which is “tumbling” or assuming “spin-ning-top)" or “ pirouetting ” motions, with the result that tho wound it inflicts is as bad as shrapnel. Closer in it, hurts all the same. Kmrland invented dum-dums, or expanding bullets, so called from Dum-Dum, a town four and a-half miles north of Calcutta, containing- an arsenal, where, these missiles were first made. In his now world-read article, 'Atrocities in War,’ Mr Charles Frederick Carter lays tho whole cant of the dum-dum very low:, , “ At the first blague Conference, in 1899,” he says, “all nations hut the two supposed to be the, furthest advanced in humanity—England and the United States —agreed not to use dum-dum bullets any more. At tho second conference, in 1907, these two nations alto signed tho agreement.” “ But since The. Hague Conference no nation ho ? used dum-dum bullets for n consideration that has nothing to do vnth The Hogue, nor with considerations of humanity. Experience ha® taught that when a. 'modem high-powered rifle is hot and dirty the dum-dum is liable to ‘strip.’ That is,' the leaden core is apt to squirt out. leaving the jacket in the barrel, so that when the next shot is fired the gun blows back or bursts. Although England was accused of using dum-dum bullets in the Boer War, the. fact is that of, the opening of hostilities the TUr/r Department hastily recalled nil ammunition of that character for those reasons. It was
' a very serious step to taJ:t, for nearly half the. stock of ammunition on hand was of the dum-dum variety. But the Government dared not risk such uncertain ammunition in such nn uncertain enterprise." Mr Garter, speaking in. terras which no one ran. misundertand, thus dismisses the dear old dum-dum, and adds : "The national code which strains .it the. dum-dum gnat swallows the proverbial camel by sanctioning the- use of shrapnel, which c:-.n produce nothing' but the most gkwtly mutila-tions.'' THE FROSTY CAUCASUS. Hold hard, Petrograd I Avast heaving on the public credulity ! We .ire not quite the simpletons that you would buy ami sell us for. Pass the story about Sarykamish down to the. lower dc-ek, preferably to the marines. One felt inclined to say all that when the first news of the battle of Sarykamish came. Full news has now reuched us, however, and there is something good to record. As first presented, it was said that the 9th and 10th corps of the Turkish armycrossed the frontier, entering Russian territory between Erzerum and Kars. They outnumbered the Russians by 10 to 1. Petrograd put it that. way. Forces which outnumber their opponents by 10 to 1 are not to bo killed off in one stroke. Tho annihilation of a 10-io-l superiority takes time, even if it is conceded that such a feat is within the bounds of reason. When it all went back to the methods of the days of William the Conqueror the intelligence wilted. Tlif fire was reserved until the Turks were within 400 yards. Jf so, it. must have been, on the Turkish side, ths clumsiest action ever fought. Then there was a devastating machine-gun whirlwind, but nevertheless "the Prussians then retired, drawing the Turks into the zone of the Russian artillery.'' This stratagem, smack)nj of the battle of Senlae, 1066 A.r>., is not feasible in the wars of 1914. Under modern reconnaissance and modern ways of estimating the enemy by th« volume, of his lire it is nearly impossible. _What really happened was something big and fairly good. The Turks advanced one army corps in the centre along ths liuo leading up towards the fortified town of Kars. Anticipating the sort of haul* in front of Kars which was ordinarily to lis expected, another corps skirted out wide t« the west —near the Black Sea, in fact. 11 wag evidently intended to Jock the Russians up in a frontal engagement on tin line Sarykamish-Kars. Then the seaward column would close, in on the flank. The central column rested on Ehzenim, but was not close to it. It was some time before tho Russian? picked up the drift of things, for the atmosphere in tills frosty region was againet the aeroplanes; but presently they saw what was coming. A strong force, thrown in front of the Turkish left or seaward column. That blocked that move. Simultaneously a. Russian force was posted, not in front of the Turkish central column, but between the sea and Kars. It was thus on the Turkish flank, though they did not know it, and "they walked into a trap." Unawaro that their movement near the Black Sea had been held up, they sailed in gaily in front, relying ou, the" flanking stroke which never cam©. Importance must ho attached to this battle on account oi the congratulatory messages which the Grand Dtrito 'Nicholas, has received from Generals Joffro and French. General doffre puts it very nicely when he speaks of " constant uninterrupted efforts in all theatres.'' It would be interesting to know who was the skilful Russian who commanded on this front. Was it Radko Dimitneff. ths victor at Lulo Burgas, in the fin-f. Balkan War? CORONEL RECALLED. Dusky pageantry mantles the story of the battle of Coronel, November 1. as told by Captain John Luce, of H.M.R. Glasgow. It occupies just half a column of one of the last issues of the London 'Times.' and the 'Saturday Review' characterises it as "the most effective description of a sea light that wo ran recall." The strangest part is that though the sun set at 6.55 p.m., fire was not opened till 7.3 p.m.. the battle beinaf fought in the after-glow. There was a tumbling bead sea. Only the baldest outline of Captain Luce's narrative can be. ghen. Ths Glasgow' left Coronel at 9 o'clock in the morning, the squadron being then scattered. "It did not unite till 5.47 p.m., and was thereupon formed in line ahead, speed 15 knots. The enemy were then 12 miles away, and in line ahead, theSo.harnhorst leading. At, 6.18 p.m. ?pccd was ordered to 17 knots. The enemy were uow 15.000 yds distant, and busy ''jamming" the British wireless. .At 6.55 p.m. the! sun set. Fire, was opened at 7.5 p.m., the Good Hope and Monmouth at or: re answering. Tin- third German salvo s. t both on h'rr. .At 7.50 p.m. the roar <.; an immense explosion rose from the Good Hope, the flames reaching 200 ft. Darkness came, but both .rides continued bring at the flash. Under * rising moon, the guns thundered «'n till 9.20 p.m.. when the watchers on the Glasgow observed 7ri flashes of fire, which was no doubt tha final attack on the .Monmouth. There was thus, it seenw, an all-day of manauvnng—a fact which we did not know before—the setting of the sun, the hcavv thrash of the British lino against the 'rolling sea. and, in the after-glow and the moonlight, the impressive pagean. try amid which Sir Christopher Cradoci fought, a. good tight and finished hit course. RICOCHETS. Gilberiian indeed is the situation m which some of the, Clyde shipbuilders find themselves. According to Home advices they have on their hands uncompleted merchantmen originally destined for enemy trade. When war broke out they were told to stop ; later to build on and seli. If thev made a loss on the contract pace they could, they were informed, debit that loss to the enemy n'rm. Nothing wts said, however, as to how the debit ajnount could be collected. The last list of total German losses was given as about 1,500,000. About three times that, number have been "killed by cable."' however. The Turks are filling ships with heary material to block the. passage of the .Dardanelles, and thus frlmt, Russia's only window which looks out on the ' seas. It' Ls to b« hoped that the. Allies wiil find soma way of counters ting this, proposal, for s-'-ucil obstructions are very diilb tut. to clear ait-jf the. mischief lus been done. As was anticipated in these notes long ,*2o, men's thoughts turn largely to religion in the 'lav of severe- wars, 'lucre is a proposal by the Rev. R. .1. Campbell (the pastor of tin''. City Temple, London) for x. gr.-.nd enmieil of the world'* churches. The, promoter thinks that His Holiness tV- Lope is the one person w' o can call si" hj a council with a chance ■' SU'<Cr.>\ Tin- Ooci-.eu is said io have, burr! out some, oi" i,rr hnileis. It has ak-vays be- n ■aii open question what *ort. of fuel she burns since Cue M.ilieri<-s at Reiaclca. wera bombarded by the. Rus.-inn lleet in November. On the 19th of that month the Goelen was reported ciai.iHCd J" acton with t-V- Russian Black Hen licet. 2o miiea off tho Chersonese lighthouse. .It is now stated definitely that the battleship Formidable was fiubira-rined. It was a wonderful feat, if Hue. TO CORRESPON DENTS. The sentence " Captain Arthur Loxlejf and' John Deed" puzzled mo when ths, loss of the Formidable came. Mr Sydney Waters, writing irom Cnnst-ehurfh, furnishes the explanation. He states :—• "The 'Navy List' of October or No« vember will" show that Captain Arthw. N. Lesley was appointed t, command* the Formidable on September 2, 1914 The Captain John Deed referred to a retired captain of Royal Marines, isb,' had rejoined the service since the ft?jM -break of war, and who had been ap< pointed to the Formidable. In no ship of the Royal Navy is there such a thina as dual control, Eor is there likely to be. " H.D.G."—Receipt of interring magazine article acknowledged. • "Want to Know."—" What went wrong at Majuba if it were not the general ?' Everything went wrong—eve-ything except'the general. No troops in the history of war were ever posted in a strongei position. Better nut rake the nahu'ui subject tin.
THE SLOGAN., Issue 15695, 8 January 1915
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