Collection Title: Cambrian Daily Leader
Provider: The National Library of Wales
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GERMANS COLOSSAL STRATEGICAL MOVEHEHT I
GERMANS' COLOSSAL STRATEGICAL MOVEHEHT. I "Thought to Create a I Sedan for Allies." Out-Manoeuvred by the French and British Invaders' Retreat Degenerates Into a Rout. Wonderful Work of British Flying Corps. Inspiring Report of a I Masterly Campaign. The Official Press Bureau issued the followiDg statement, timed 1.15 p-m-, to- day. The following report is comp'>d from, information sent from the headquarters of Field Marshal Sir John French, under date September 11th. A summary of the operations of the British Army in France -was issued by the Wa.r Office on the tith inst., and an account, stated to be in- complete. of further operations was issued from the Bureau on Saturday right, the 12th inst. To-day it is possible to give a more complete report of the movements of the I British Force and of the French Armies in immediate touch with it. This account is compiled from data received from the front, and carries the operations from September 4th to I September 10th, both days inclusive. It will be remembered that the general position of our troops on Sunday, Septem- ber 6th, was stated to be south of the Marae, with the French forces in iiue on our right and left. Practically there had been no change in the situation since Thursday, Septem- ber 3rd, which marked the end of our army's long retirement from the Belgian frontier through Northern France. SEPTEMBER 4th. On Friday, the 4th, it became apparent that there was an alteration in the direc- tion of the advance of almost the whole of the first German Army. That army since the battle near Mans on the 23rd of August, had been playing its part in the colossal strategic endeavour to create a Sedan for the Allies by outflanking and enveloping the left of their whole line. so M to encircle and drive both the British ind French to the south Change in Objective. .There was now a change in its objective, %nd it was observed that the German forces opposite the British were beginning to move in a south-easterly direction, in- stead of continuing south-west on to tha Capital, leaving a strong rear- guard along the line of the River Ourcq (which flows south, and joins the Marne at Lizy-Sur-Onrcq), to keep off the I French 6th Army, which by then had been formed, and was to the north-west of Paris. They were evidently executing I what amounted to a flank march dia- gonally across our front, and were pre- pared to ignore the British as being driven out of the fight- They were initiating an effort to attack the flank of the main French army which stretded in a long curved line towards Ute east, ud so. to carry out against it alone an envelopment which had so far failed against the combined forces of the Allies- j SEPTEMBER 5th. i On Saturday, the .Vth intt., this move- i, ment on the part of the Germane was continued, and large advanced parties j crossed the Marne southwards at Tril- port. Sammeroy, Le Forte Sous, ion&uxe ?d Cha?eMt Thtarr? rh I There was considerable fighting with the French Fifth Army on the French left. which fell back from its position south of the Marne towards the Seine. SEPTEMBER 6th. On Sunday large hostile forces crossed the Marne and pushed on through Coulommiers past the British right. Farther east they were attacked at night by the French Fifth Army, which cap- tured three villages at the point of the bayonet. SEPTEMBER 7th. On Monday the 7th inst., there was a general advance on the part of the Allies. In this quarter of the field our forces, which had now been reinforced, pushed on in a north-easterly direction in co- operation with an advance of the French Fifth Army to the north, and of the French Sixth Army eastwards against the German rearguard along the Ourcq. Pos- sibly weakened by the''detachment of troops tent to the eastern theatre of operations, and realising that the action of the French Sixth Army against the line of the Ourcq, and the ad ranee of the British placed their own flanking move- meat in considera-ble danger of being j taken in the rear, and on its right flank, I the Germans on this day commenced tu retire towards the north-east. First Turning Back. I This was the first time that these troops had turned back since their attack at Mons a fortnight before. and from reports received, the order to retreat when close to Paris was a bitter disappointment. From letters found on the dead there is 110 doubt that there was a general iiii- pr.ersion among the enemy's troops that they were about to enter Paris SEPTEMBER 8th. On Tuesday, the 8th, the German move- ment north-eastwards was continued, their rearguards un the South of the Maine being pressed back to that river by our troops, and by the French on our right, the latter capturing three villages after a haud light and the infliction of severe loss on the enemy. The fighting along the Ourcq continued on .thif. dar, and was of the most san- guinary i.' (f.\ í.' t h f- Germans had m:u--ed a for. < r artillery. Along this line very few of their infantry were seen by the French. The French 5th Army also made a fierce attack on the Gerinaut in Montmiridil, regaining that place. SEPTEMBER 9th. On Wednesday, the 9th inst, the battle between the French 6th army and what was now the German guard along the Ourcq was continued. The British corps overcoming some resistance on the liiver Petit Morin, crossed the Marne, in pur- suit of the Germans, who were now hastily retreating northwards. One of our corps was delayed by an obstinate de- fence made by a. strong rearguard with machine' guns at La Ferte-sons-Jonarre, where the bridge had been destroyed. SEPTEMBER 10tt1: On Thursday, Sept. 10th, the French Sixth Army continued its pressure on the west, while the Fifth Army by forced marches reached the lice Chateau- Thierry-Dormans on the Marne. Our corps also continued the pursuit on the north of the latter river, and after a considerable amount of fighting captured go" 1.500 prisoners, 4 guns, 6 machine SWk. Had 50 transport VWOJU6 Many of the enemy were killed and wounded; and the numerous thick woods which dot the country north of the Marne are filled with German stragglers. Most of them appear to have been with- out food for at least two days. General Situation Favourable. Indeed in this area of operations the general situation appear to bo most favourable to the Allies. i'jf Much brutal and senseless damage has been done in the villages occupied by the enemy. Property has been wantouly de- st .oy. j; i,,(h.r" in the Ciiataux been ripped 'up, and houses genially pillaged. It is stated on unimpeachable autho- rity also that the inhabitants have been | much illtreated. i Incidents of Fighting. I Interesting incidents have occurred daring the fighting. On the lOth part of our Second Army Corps advancing north, found itself marching parallel with another infantry force at some little distance away. At first it was thought that this was another British unit After some time, however, it was discovered that it was a body of Germans retreating. Measures were promptly taken to head off the enemy, who were surrounded and trapped in a sunken road, where over -tOO men surrendered. German Courtesy to Brave N.C.O. I On the 10th a small party of French under a non-commissioned officer was I cut off aud surrounded. After a desper- ate resistance it was decided to go on lighting to the end. Finally, the N.C.O. and one man only were left, both being wounded. The Germans came up and shouted to them to lay down their arms. The Ger- man commander, however, signed to them to keep their arms. and then asked per- mission to shake hands with the non- commissioned ofifcer, who was carried off on his stretcher with hit; rifle by his side. The arrival of the reinforcements and the continued advance have delighted the troops, who are full of zeal and anxious to press on.. Royal Flying Corps. Quite one of the features of the cam- paign on our side has been the success attained by the Royal Flying Corps. In regard to the collection of information it is impossible either to award too much praise to our aviators for the way ilil which they have earned out their duty, or to over-estimate the value o? the in- telligence collected, more especially dur- ing the recent advance. In due course, certain examples of what has been effected may be specified, and the far-reaching nature of the result* j fully explained, but that time has not' yet arrived. Gen.1 JofiWs Praise. That the «r*r\ ices oi our Flying Corps, which has really been on its trial, are fully appreciated by our Allies is shown by the following message from te Com- mander-in-Chief of the French Armies, received on the night of September 9th by Field Marshal Sir John French:— "Please express most particularly to Field Marshal French my thanks for the services rendered on every day by the English Flying Corps. The precision, exactitude.. and regularity of the news brought in by its members are evidence of their perfect organisation, and also of the perfect training of pilots and obserx-ers. "To give a rough idea, of the amount of work carried out, it is sufficient to mention that during a period of twenty days up to September 10th, a dailj" average of more than nine re- connaissance flights of over 100 miles each has been maintained. Fighting in the Air. The constant, object of our aviators has been to effect the accurate location of the enemy's forces, and, incidentally, since the operations cover so large an area, of jour own units. Nevertheless, the tactics adopted for dealing with hostile aircraft ii.rc, to attack them instantly with one or mora British machines. This has been so far successful that in five cases Ger- man pilots or observers have been shot ft the air, and their machine guns brought to the ground. As a Consequents the British Flying Corps has succeeded in establish- ing an individual ascendency which is as serviceable to us as it: is damaging to the enemy. How far it is due to this cause, it is not possible at present to ascertain definitely, but- the fact remains that the enemy have recently become \muh less enterprising in their flights. Mastery of the Air. Sotaething in the direction of the air has already been gained. In pursuance of the principle that the main object of military aviation is collection of intorma- tion, bomb droppng has not been in- dulged in to any great extent. On one occasion a petrol bomb was successfully exploded in a German bivouac at night, while from a diary found on a dead Ger- man cavalry soldier, it has been dis- covered that a, high explosive bomb thrown at a (cavalry column from one of our aeroplanes struck all ammunition wagon resulting in an explosion in which fifteen of the enemy were killed. GERMAN PRINCES. I REPORTED DEATH Of ONE OF THE KAISER'S I SONS. 'Ostend.—Prince Frederick William and Prince Adalbert (the latter a son of the Kaiser) and Prince Carl of Wurtemburg are reported to have died in hospital in Brussels.—Reut er. The Benjamin. I Prince Joachim, thp. Kaiser's sixth and youngest son, whose leg was shattered by a fragment of a shrapnel shell, is also reported to be in a grave condition. .Sao- THE KAISER AHD PEACE. I (Renter's Telegram.) New York, Sunday.—The Washington correspondent of the Associated Press says the German Emperor has had under consideration. for :o,cveral days an in- formal inquiry whether Germany desires to discuss terms of peace. No reply has yet been received from the Emperor. The inquiry was of an official character to determine whether Germany's reported willingness to talk of peace wae based on i&cfc.
BELGIANS GIVEI BATTLE I
BELGIANS GIVE I BATTLE. I DARING SORTIE. ( I I TEBRiflC CONFLICT IN THE RUINS OF LOUVAIN. GERMANS FORGE FRENCH NOTES I Amsterdam, Monday.—The following aceount of the present fighting in Belgium is to hand here. On Friday during the day and the night heavy fighting took place among I the ruins of Louvain between Belgian and German troops. Twice the Belgians penetrated in the centre of the town.. Yesterday a fierce cavalry attack on the Belgians took place, but nothing else was known, though the Belgian position was declared hopeful. On Friday night a Taube Aeroplane ap- peared over Antwerp, and was fired upoa. One officer was HUed and another wounded. Both had French notes in their pockets, and it is reported that. these notes are forgeries printed by the Ger- mans. and bearing the signatures of the directors of the National BanJk. Later reports say that after four days, battle the Belgians retired to the protec- tion of the forts. The Landwehr and the Lsndsturm, as well as 15,000 other troops, are at Louvain. The losses on both sides are reported to be severe. RUSSIAN TROOPS tN. BELGIUM. SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT SAYS HE HAS | SEEN THEM. Mr. Percy J. Phillip, a special corres- 11?ews and Leader, pondent of the "Daily News and Leader," telegraphs from Ghent:— To-night, in an evening paper. I find the statement; de bonne source that I the German 4rmy in Belgium has been cut at Courtenberg between Brussels and Lorn eii "by the Belgian At my, reinforced by Russian troops. The last phrase unseals my pen. For two days I have been on a long t.rek looking for the' Russians and 1 have found them—where and how many it would not be discreet to tell—but the published statement that they are here is sufficient, and of my own knowledge I can answer for their presence. Whether they a.re all here is another matter, and so too—one must be obscure to say anything—is the possibility that theirs is not the only army reinforcing the already strong Belgians. The "Cambria Daily Leader" has for some time been in possession of important information regarding the Russian troops, but has refrained from publishing it in deference to the wishes of the authorities. I ASKED FOR PEACE! BELGIUM REFUSES TO NEGOTIATE WITH THE GERMANS. A Paris telegram says the newspaper Figaro announoes that Marshal von der Goltz, the German Governor of the occupied districts of Belgium, visited Antwerp, provided with a safe-conduct, I and made proposals to the Belgian Government with a. view to reaching an agreement. The Belgian Government, however, refused to consider these "proposals.' HAD TO SURRENDER. GERMAN SHORTAGE OF AMMUNITION CONFIRMED. Paris, Sunday.—Accounts received from all sides seem to leave no doubt that the Germans are beginning to run short of ammunition. An English officer told me to-day that he had seen a letter written by a German staff officer a quarter of an hour before he was shot in which he said that the German position was becoming critical. Their transports were breaking down, and they had very little ammuni- tion left. Only to-day 2,000 Germans are reported to have surrendered without firing a ghot simply through lack of ammunition. He added that the German organisation was wonderful. Officers even had maps of Paris showing clearly all the different quarters and marking the position of police stations. The Germans are now apparently anxious to return to the 'frontier by the quickest route.—Press Association War Special. ————— ITALY. THE POSITION ON THE AUSTRIAN FRONTIER. Rome, Monday.—The Gioarnale d* Italia stat.ee that Austria has removed her first line of troops from the frontier, particularly the companies of the Gruetz Schucstzen Frontier Guards and Alpine Sharpshooters, who are required against the Russians. The defence of the Italian frontier has been left to Gendarmes, reservists and soldiers of the Landwehr and Landstunn. All roads. moreover, have been cut by ditcheFeight feet, wide and ten. deep, and walls have also been erected at different points. A possible landing by Italians at Trieste, which is unfortified, has been, provided against, by entrenchments on the surrounding hills and also by block- houses round the Gulf ot Trieste. The remainder of tjie ooast of Istria I Dalpiatia lias beeji miPffib
TODAYS WAR NOTES I
TO-DAY'S WAR NOTES. I (Special to the Leader.") I Monday Afternoon. 11,ITE.N writing on the general situa- tion a week ago, we pointed out that l so far as iaformauon to hand went, the situation of the Allied Forces in .Frauc w?s extremely serious. That was borne out amply by Sir John French's despatch to the War Office, which included the almost pathetic sentence, More men are I wanted," and was emphasised by all the leading military correspondents. We also pointed out that either a supretie effort or a great stroke; of good fortune was necessary to prevent a disaster, the effects of which would be extremely serious I TVfOT many hours after that appeared in print we had the news tnat the supreme effort had been made. To-day's) despatches include one showing how the l,'reitch Couxmander-m-Chief made his appeal to his armies, urging them to hold firm to their positions even if it meant j that every man must die at his post. How magnificent was the response is now known. The message from General Joffro that was published in last even- ing's special edition of the Cambria Daily Leader," and the further de- spatches issued to-day are simple stories, of splendid achievements in which the Allied Forces turned the German on- slaught into a definite retreat, and hut-Itd the Kaiser's masses from their positions, many of them retreating so much as to 1 be back on German territory, leaving j wounded, prisoners, and all sorts of war- like provisions scattered profusely behind them. 4 T the time these notes are written there is only one thread that holds them on to France. There is just one point near Verdun, where the yhad, it was evident, piled division on division in a desperate effort in the hope of main- taining their ground and of defeating the French. It, as we hope, within the next few hours, they are beaten back from there, the defeat will be completed, and the Kaiser will have placed to his credit a defeat far worse that the famous debacle of Napoleon before Moscow. The differance lies in this, that whilst the disasters of a century ago were caused mostly by the adverse influences of weather and lack of provisions, in this case the German defeat is due to tha valour and the hard fight ing of the French and British troops at every stage and point of a battle to which, for extent and stress in every direction, there is no equal in known history. The number of men engaged, the loss of life, and the long and difficult line of battle are features of last week's work that will. stand out as the high wtacr mark of war. THE Kaiser must be a sorry figure to- day. Be has to confess that his great lightning stroke has failed, that he lias shirked the task of talking Paris, and that a smaller army than his own has inflicted upon him a sad defeat. rPFlERE are two considerations arising out of the situation. One is, that the first effect of this success in France should be an immediate stimulus upon British trade. In all directions our traders of all descriptions have been hit badly, and the trouble has been empha- sized by a certain amount of depression that could not—and should not—be avoided as we watebl the Germans ad- vancing steadily through France towards their goal. Now the prospect is changed, and, placed at its lowest valuation, the exploits of the past week are a sure indi- cation that the Kaiser is not having his own way. Consequently, with the ports of the West of France freed from the threat of seizure, and the seat of war pressed farther and farther eastward, there should be more confidence here in the British Id, and traders should be able to arrive at something more like normal conditions. With the influx of fresh troops from England the opposition to the Kaiser will be stronger, and there is now but little reason why we should suffer a dislocation of trade much worse than it was during the South African struggle. J THE other consideration is with regard to the next chapter of events in Eastern Europe. If the Kaiser is beaten I back to behind his own frontiers, our sido will have to attack him there. A few weeks' rest for recuperation and re- organisation will be the first chapter of the new volume in the history. Probably, the Allied Forces will be able to carry out this work in the quicker time. in which case they will do well to press on with their advantage. But what, at. the moment, we should be prepared for is a possible cessation of hostilities nufal the spring (except for a few comparatively slight skirmishes), when, if necessary, a vigorous attempt will be made to press on to Berlin. There is an alternative, i.e., that a fresh composite army may be formed to attack the Kaiser via the fron- tier over which he crossed, with a view to taking some place like Coblenz, whilst a counter- attack is delivered in Alsace Loraine. XTEANWHILE, Russia on the Eastern side of the Kaiser's frontiers will be carrying on three campaigns. It is hardly likely that much advance will be made in Prussia for several months. In Galicia,the Tsar's troops will have their hands full if their object is to beat Austria to her knees, as, in spite of what has been done between Czernowitz and Cracon, there is still the potentiality to be troublesome in the Austro-Bungarizm troops. But the action of the Russian armies north and south will make it easier for the army now moving on to I Posen with a view to pressing forward to Berlin. That effort will entail a lot of hard fighting, and will not be accom- plished for a few months. "THAT we must hear in mind all through is that unless the internal affaire of the Kaiser's empire and his ability to hold on are much worse than we understand them to lip, we cannot ex- pect him to sue for peace until he has had his nose rubbed in it a great deal harder than has been the case at present. Our outlook for the moment, therefor". should be upon,a ppssibHjty of hoshli- ?as- oontinuing, quite eight mon?- lon?;.
"OUR SIDE" CERMAN GENERALDENIES A TROCITi ES AMERICAN JOURNALISTS GIVES HIM SPtCIFIC INSTANCES. THE REPLY. Mr. Alexander Powell special corres- pondent of the New York World j) d the "Daily Chronicle," writes from the j Headquarters in the Field of the 91 h German Army," giving an interview he had with CeuenJ von Boehn, in the course of which he says:— General von Boehn began by asserting that the accounts of the atrocities perpe- trated on Belgian noncombatants were a tissue of lies. I said, I Three, days ago, General, I said, "I was in Aerschot. The whole town is now but a ghastly, blackened, bloodstained ruin When we entered Aerschot he re- plied, the son of the Burgomaster came into the room, drew a revolver, and assassinated my Chief of Staff. What fol- lowed was only retribution. The towns- people only got what they deserved But why wreck your vengeauce on women and children ? None have been killed," the General asserted positively. I'm sorry to contradict yet, General," I asserted, with equal positiveness. but I. have myself seen their mutilated bodies. It is War!" Of course there is always dagger of women and children being killed ?,irtiig street fighting," said the General. if they insist in coming into the street. iti is unfortunae, but it is war." "But how about the woman whose body I saw with the hands and fc?t cut off: How about the white-haired man and his son whom I helped to bury outside of I Sempst, and who had been killed merely because the retreating Belgians had shot a German soldier outside their house. There were 22 bayonet wounds in the old: man's face. ] counted them. How about the little girl, two years old, shot while in her mother's arms, by a Uhlan, and whose funeral I attended at Heystop-den- Berg? How about the old man that was hung from the rafters of his house by the hands and roasted to death by a bonfire being built under him?" The General seemed somewhat taken back by the amount and exactness of my data. Such things are horrible if they are true." he said. Of course, our soldiers, like soldiers in all armies, some- times get out of hand, and do things which we would never tolerate if we knew it. At Louvain, for example, I nenteuced two soldier to 12 years' penal ?,,?erviti)de apiece for assaulting a woman." Why did you burn louvaiii I asked. Because the townspeople fired on our troops. We actually founS machine- guns in some of the houses; and," smash- ing his fist down upon the table, whenever civilians fire upon our troops we will teach tffem a lasting lesson. If the women and children insist on getting in the way of bullets, so much the worse for women and children."
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