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no reason. You have battled utmost one oould do was to gallantly. You have done mark the shapes of hills, the your duty; more than duty. mouths of particularly big nalas, It is the chance of war. Why and the positions of any landthis sadness, then ? You will marks that were passed. now remain in safety and some We were able to talk todegree of comfort till the end gether, and agreed that we of the war. That end oannot must play for delay in every now be far off. Why be sad ? way possible. We both had a In a little time the war will general idea of the intentions be over and you will be re- of the British force, and know stored safely to your families, that the nearer we could keep in full knowledge that you to the front, the more our have done all that was pos- movement baok could be postsible."
poned, the better. Coffee was produced. The After about five miles going, golden-mouthed Brigadier con- we turned off from the river, tinued his philosophy on the and soon afterwards saw a theme of captivity. He des- group of tents in a nala. This oanted at large on the atti- proved to be the oamp of the tude of mind of British officer Divisional Commander, a tall prisoners in a way that indi. thin man of forty-five, with oated infinite experience. We an intelligent face and thiok happened to know, however, gold-rimmed glasses. He rethat he could not by any weived us politely outside his possibility have met more than bell-tent, and ushered us in. four at most. He disoussed We sat down, and coffee was the use and abuse of aero. produced at once. The Divi. planes, and was very explioit sional Commander did not feel in his dislike of our bombing muoh at home in French, and and machine - gunning enter- told us that he would summon prises.
one of his men who could speak He found the situation in English exoellently. A goodEarope interesting. The Ger- looking boy of eighteen apmans were advanoing. They peared shortly after at the were already bombarding Paris. tent door, saluted smartly, and Very soon the war would be opened on us in faultless over. And then — then we Amerioan. Most of the conshould meet again happily in versation after this was carried Paris? or London? yes. on through his interpretation ;
We exchanged addresses, though oooasionally the Gendrank more coffee, and pro- eral, when very interested, ceeded on our journey. The would burst into execrable path now descended from the French, search wildly for the bare broken country into the required word, stammer uninnarrow strip of grassy plain telligibly, oome to a halt, and which borders the river. This then have recourse to the prevented us seeing the sar- interpreter once more. rounding country at all. The After a polite expression of
goussed We sat down ushered us in.
the use and abnga
satisfaction that we had not you think the war will be been wounded, he told us that over?” Ballast answered imwe must make ourselves at passively, “When we have home. To facilitate which won." This reduoed the Genprocess he informed us that eral to dumbfoundered silence. the tent and all its furniture But he returned repeatedly to were English. They had come the point during the next hour; from Gallipoli, spoils of war. incredulous that any one could He was very certain that we be so blookheaded. On one of should not be prisoners long. these 060asions the Pilot in his The war was in its last stage: suavest manner put in, “It is Paris bombarded, and the Ger- diffioult for you to realise, mans advansing at the rate General, that we—the Englishof five kilometres a day. His speaking portion of the Allies, news seemed socurate as far I mean-have hardly begun to as we know the situation, and fight yet. We weren't military to be rather later than any- nations, you see, and ap till thing we had heard. He read now we've really only boon out to us & wireless message making our armies : just trainjust received, announcing & ing them, you know. Next furthor German advanos, and year, however, we hope to be claiming the capture of & able really to start ahead." number of villages. From This nearly finished off our what we saw all along their host. wireless appeared to be very conversation turned on to good, and the arrangements our own campaign. Old battles for the dissemination of nows were discussed, and the deplor. prompt and efficient. Balle- able prospeot of the summer of tins were received throughout inaction was touched upon; the day. They may have been especially the extremo discomdue to the faot that at the fort of the present position on time the news was favourable, this front, and the appalling the German advance in France heat that was to be antioipated being then in full swing. In in these rooky trenohes. It any case, the best use was made would be a very boring busiof it; the troops were informed neds for both sides sitting promptly, and confidence in opposite one another in these the final viotory of the Ger- tronches all through the hot mans was most noticeable in weather. all ranks.
Relations being established We had a long conversation now on a cordial basis, Pilot with the Divisional Commander asked whether a message could on the subject. He was aston- be sont across to the British, ished at our inability to grasp so that our relatives could be the inevitableness of the Ger- informed that we were unin. man vietory. After a long jured; and that our kit might period of eloquence which made be dropped over. The General no impression, he asked us in assured us that this would be desperation, “Well, when do done: that he had already wired to his Army Head- already troublesome transport quarters for instruotions, but difficulties. hoped that we should be stay. Pilot of course pointed out ing with him for a few days, in the blandest manner that in as officer prisoners had done this terrain observation was previously, until the arrival of very difficult, and preparations our kit. (We ascertained later, for concentration for offensive however, that the only infor- action might easily be missed mation the British H.Q. re- unless constantly watohed ; oeived on the subjeot from the moreover we had known of his Turks officially, was the Con- arrival, and it was necessary stantinople Wireless Press of for us to watch very carefully the next day which mentioned & man of his reputation. Howour capture.) We touched over, the General was not to tentatively on the subjeot of be diverted from his reproaches Germans, and met with very anent our unsportsmanlike little enthusiasm, The Gen- habit of machine - gunning eral evidently disliked the sub- harmless ration - parties well jeot. He stated briefly that away from his anti - aireraft he had a number attached to defences. his Command in various teoh. Before we took our leave wo nioal and advisory capacities, asked for a meal, which was but that none of them were in promised ; and for the return a position of any exeoutive of suoh private correspondence authority.
as had been in our pookets, It was very noticeable that whioh was refused. there was no love lost bo. It was nearly sunset when tween the Germans and the we were dismissed. Ali, the Turks or the Arabs, or any young interpreter, was sent others that wo met. They along with us to see that our were heartily disliked every needs were attended to. We where.
passed en route a big green Before we took our leave the double fly-tent in which three General romonstrated in a very German officers were sitting, deoided manner on the abuse and a little farther on same to of aeroplane superiority. He a bell-tent from which bedding had none now at his direot was being removed. Tentage disposal, whilst we had plenty; being very short, Turkish and not only indulged in fre- officers were clearing out to quent bombing raids and re- make room for us. connaissanoes (which he re- Throughout our sojourn in garded as mere waste of petrol their hands we invariably met on our part: surely one flight with the greatest oourtesy and a day would be ample), but consideration from all Turkish had taken to the reprehensible officers. The hunger and cold habit of sweeping down low, we experienced were due to and maobine - gunning roads force of ciroumstances or and paths in his rear, thus actual laok of supplies, not to rendering still more soute his any ill-will on their part; and
the faot that the lot of a with the warning, “Here comes wounded prisoner of war the sausage, but don't you take would be extremely unenvi- any notice of him: he can't able, is not due to any de. touch you.” At the time we liberate brutality or frightful- were somewhat bewildered by ness, but to the total absence this announcement, as, not of any adequate medioal ma- having had anything since an terial, or personnel, or arrange- early breakfast, we were rather ments.
expecting something to eat. Ali showed himself most We got permission to walk friendly. He was a man of up and down outside the tont good family, had been eduoat. under & guard of four sentries, ed at an American college at and on one pretext or another Constantinople, and knew managed to get a fair idea of many of the English Colony our immediate surroundings by there before the War. He re- nightfall, when wo were conlated to us various stories about fined to our tent, and Ali went General Townshend, whom he off to get us a meal. This gave had seen, and for whom the as an opportunity of disoussing Turks appear to have a great ways and means. It was a respect and affection. He also most unfortunate thing for us gave us good aooounts of four that the moon was almost full : R.F.C. officers who had pre- a full moon in Mesopotamia is viously been brought down on to the English moon as an arothis front. All had been kept lamp to a glow-worm. Moreat Divisional Headquarters for over, at dusk the wind drops several days. One pair of entirely, and the night is so these, & Pilot and Observer, still that the slightest noise is one of them & partioularly audible. hefty Colonial, appeared to Our tent was pitohed on a have had heart-breaking look. lodge in a small nala. The They were foroed down & guard lived five yards farther long way behind the Turkish up the nala, with one sentry at front, made a landing in the our door, and another on the desert, burnt their machine all hillside above the tent. right, and got away. They The hillside was covered straggled gallantly on for forty- with loose stones. The only eight hours, and had got 80 possible way of leaving the near home before they were tent would be by the back, osaght by Turkish cavalry, where the earth was out away that they were sotually in to fit it. One would have to sight of our Lamb cars, who go without boots, and even then unfortunately did not notice there was little chance of avoidthem.
ing making a noise on the Ali's dislike of the Germans stones. The full moon was was extremely emphatio. Later bright as day on the lemonon, when one of these gentle- coloured rook. men was coming to interrogate There were three dogs about, as, Ali bounced into the tent apparently belonging to the
VOL. CCIV.-NO. MCCXXXIII.
guard, jolly beasts of an Arab more with his reminiscences of sheep-dog strain. We spent Caloutta, where he had been half an hour playing with them living for sixteen years before and making friends, hoping to the War, engaged in the rice avoid their suspicions later on. trade. As his absence in the
We thought that if we could East had prevented him from only avoid the sentries and get putting in the necessary train. a clear hour's start, we would ing during this period, he lost have a fair chance. Without his rank of Reserve Officer, and this start, any attempt at had to go in as a Private when escape would be hopeless. the raising of the age-limit in
It seemed advisable to refuse Germany caught him in the beds and to sleep on the second year of the War. He ground, both for warmth and had risen to “Under Officer” also to be more inconspicuous, quiokly enough, and had volunand ready to take advantage of teered for Asia, thinking his any possible clouding over of experience would help him. the moon, storm, or other aooi- The Senior Intelligence Officer dental oocurrence.
with the Foroe having lately We both had a fairly shrewd gone sick, he had been apsuspicion as to what the British pointed to his job, and was foree was oontemplating, and a expeoting his commission to very hearty confidence in the arrive very shortly. It was two Generals concerned. We already on its way from Berlin. know that if any one could He was being well paid, espebring the coup off, it would be gially as all Germans on this the leader of the Dolphins. But front were paid in gold, which we did not know for what date they promptly exchanged for the stroke was planned, nor Turkish notes at a fraction of any details, of course. How- the latter's face value. These ever, we were much relieved by notes they remitted to Europe, the evident intention of the where State bonds could be Turkish Divisional Commander bought and paid for with the to keep us where we were for a notes at their full face value. day or two.
Asked what had happened About seven o'olook they to his property in Caloutta, he brought us a meal of black laughed obeerfully. “Oh, I bread, thiok soup, and a fowl. am out of that all right. I Fully oooupied, we were sur. sold up everything in June prised by a “Good evening, 1914, inoluding my house, and gentlemen, don't let me inter- got my family and all away. rupt you,” in perfeot English. Some of my stuff was on the This was the German Intelli- last two boats which arrived gonce Officer. After a short at Hamburg." No comment preliminary spar over our re- seemed necessary. fusal to give anything but He said that the higher name and rank, he gave in authorities were anxious to with good enough grace, and get us to Aleppo as soon as entertained us for an hour or possible, and that we would