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ward into Mesopotamia, to relieve General gained some of the ground lost in September and Townshend's beleaguered force at Kut-el-Amara. October, notably the position on the Hill (Butte)
of Tahure, in Champagne. In Alsace, however, (22) The Russian Army at Bay: October-De on the slopes of the Vosges Mountains, the cember.
methods of siege warfare were not always ap
plicable, and picturesquely garbed mountaineers, The close of the year 1915 found the main gliding swiftly on skees, engaged in less laborRussian army at bay, along a front 700 miles ious combats. The summit of Hartmannsweilerlong, from Riga to Bukovina, stubbornly resist kopf, in Alsace, was captured by the French in ing any further encroachments upon the terri- October, according to French reports, recaptory of “Holy Russia.” Since the cessation of tured by the Germans, and again won by the the great Austro-German offensive in September, French, December 21st. Two other features of little of importance had occurred on the Rus- the campaign in the West deserve mention. sian front. The Teutonic armies, weakened in The promotion of General Joffre to the supreme order to reënforce the Austro-Hungarian of- command of all the French armies (i.e., includfensive against Serbia (supra), were content to ing those in the Near East as well as those in rest on the defensive, although von Buelow, the West, but not the troops in the colonies), on the Teutonic left wing, continued to threaten and the appointment of General de Castelnau as Riga, and intermittent attacks were delivered French chief of staff, were shortly followed (Deagainst the Russian line west of Dvinsk and at cember 15th) by the removal of the British comthe point where the Kovel-Kiev railway crosses mander in chief, Sir John French, and the apthe Styr River. The Russian army—under the pointment of Sir Douglas Haig to command the command of Czar Nicholas since September 8th British armies in France and Belgium (see —not only held its own in the marshy region HAIG, SIR DOUGLAS; FRENCH, SIR JOHN). On before Riga and in the lake-country around December 27th the British government anDvinsk, but assumed the offensive in the extreme nounced that the Indian Army Corps, which south. In Galicia General Ivanov's army west had hitherto served in France, had left for "anof Tarnopol reported a series of successes against other field of action.” the Austro-Hungarians. Further south, in Bukovina, the Russians were striving to re
(24) Conquest of the German Colonies. capture Czernowitz. The purpose of the vigor ous Russian offensive in Galicia and Bukovina While General Joffre's armies in the West, was obvious: it might force the Austro-Hun- and Czar Nicholas's armies in the East, were garians to fall back from Volhynia, and it might unsuccessfully striving to expel the German inbring Rumania into the war.
vader from Belgium, from Northern France, and
from Poland, the colonial forces of Great Britain (23) The Deadlock in France: October-De
and her Allies were completing the conquest of cember.
the German colonies. A considerable part of
the German colonial empire had been approThe Anglo-French forward movement of Sep- priated by the Allies in 1914: the leased-territember-October failed to break the deadlock in tory of Kiaochow had been conquered by Japan, the West. From October to the end of the year, Nov. 6, 1914; in the southern Pacific German the contending armies along the great battle line New Guinea (Kaiser-Wilhelmsland), the Bigfrom Belgium to Alsace devoted themselves more marck Archipelago, the German islands in the assiduously than ever to the perfection of their Samoan group, the Marshall and Solomon Isintrenchments and fortifications. Trench war lands, and the Caroline Islands were all occufare had become a new science. First, second, pied by British and British Australasian forces and third lines of trenches, connected by zigzag before the end of the year (see YEAR BOOK, communication trenches or by tunnels, gave 1914). In Africa, Togoland had been captured, shelter to the infantry. Covered shelters, cages, August, 1914, by Anglo-French forces; the inand dugouts, constructed with amazing ingenu- vasion of German Southwest Africa had been beity, afforded protection both from shrapnel and gun in September, 1914; Kamerun had been atfrom the elements. Attacks on the enemy's tacked from the coast, from Nigeria, and from trenches must be preceded by a furious bom- French Congo; and unsuccessful expeditions had bardment with high-explosive shells, which been sent against German East Africa. During would blast out of existence the enemy's barbed the year 1915, the conquest of German Southwire entanglements and first-line trenches. The west Africa was carried to completion by Genattacking troops, often wearing gas-proof hoods, eral Botha (see GERMAN SOUTHWEST AFRICA; and carrying bombs and bayonets, were mowed SOUTH AFRICA) in July, 1915; Kamerun, on the down by machine guns and by the fire of field western coast of Africa, was almost conquered; guns such as the French "goixante quinze" (75 and preparations for a serious invasion of Germm.). The way for infantry charges, of a small man East Africa were made. By the close nature, was most frequently prepared by the of the year, the unexpectedly stubborn deexplosion of a mine underneath the enemy's fense of Kamerun had been virtually crushed, trenches. Meanwhile the mightier howitzers, and most of the colony was in Anglo-French concealed several miles behind the first-line possession (see KAMERUN); German East Aftrenches, intermittently hurled their tremen- rica, however, had suffered little from Aldously destructive shells against the enemy's lied incursions. Attempted invasions by Britposition. (Consult article on MILITARY PROG- ish troops from British East Africa, along RESS.) In this new art of trench warfare, equip- the shores of Victoria Nyanza, had been checked. ment and ingenuity appeared to be more im- Mafia Island, however, was in British possession, portant than mere numbers. The Germans, who the coast was under blockade, and the German were generally admitted to be outnumbered, were cruiser Königsberg had been destroyed near the not only able to hold their own, but actually re- mouth of the Rufiji River. In December it was
announced that a force of 25,000 men had been only naval operations of any importance, inraised by the Union of South Africa, thanks to volving capital ships, were (1) in the Adriatic, the untiring energy of the Union minister of where the Austro-Hungarian navy was held in defence, Gen. Jan Christian Smuts, and Gen. check by the French, with the assistance of the Sir Horace Smith-Dorrien had been brought from Italian fleet, after May 24th; (2) in the Baltic, France to conduct a formidable attack on Ger. where a German squadron, according to Russian man East Africa.
reports, forced its way into the Gulf of Riga and
was expelled with the loss of three small cruisVI. NAVAL OPERATIONS
ers, seven torpedo boats, and the powerful bat
tle cruiser Moltke; and (3) in the Black Sea, The supremacy of the British fleet remained where, after the Turkish battle cruiser Sultan throughout the year 1915 a silent but a potent Selim had been injured by a mine, the Russian factor, ensuring the transport of troops to and fleet asserted its superiority, but was held off from the Dardanelles, across the British Chan- from Constantinople by submarines and by the nel, and from the colonies; it enabled the Al- fortifications of the Bosphorus. In the absence lied Powers not only to continue their commerce of any really decisive naval operations, naval with neutral nations, but also to make war on critics in Germany and in Great Britain comGerman trade; it constituted, in fact, the chief mented much on the cumulative effect of Lsses bulwark of British confidence. No serious at and of new construction in increasing or detempt to question British naval supremacy was creasing the disparity between the rival fleets. made by the German battle fleet. The most im- The Germans tabulated the losses of the British portant naval engagement fought during the and Allied navies, including the losses at the year was the battle of Dogger Bank, Jan. 24, Dardanelles, as well as the British predread1915, in which a German battle-cruiser squadron nought Formidable (sunk by torpedo, January raiding the coast of England was severely pun- lst), the Italian battleship Benedetto Brin ished for its temerity. The German squadron (sunk by explosion, September 28th), the Italian was sighted by Admiral Beatty off Dogger Bank cruiser Amalfi (sunk by torpedo, July 7th), the early in the morning of January 24th. Imme. Garibaldi (sunk by torpedo, July 17th), the diately the German battle cruisers turned back British cruiser Natal (sunk by explosion, Detowards Heligoland with Admiral Beatty's shipscember 30th), and other warships destroyed by in full pursuit. The three more powerful Ger- mine, torpedo, or accident. The British, on the man battle cruisers (Moltke, Seydlitz, and Derf- other hand, maintained that not only were comflinger), screened by the dense smoke of a de parable losses being inflicted upon the German stroyer flotilla, and assisted by the timely ap- fleet, but furthermore the British Admiralty was pearance of German submarines, made their es- rushing the construction of new ships, with the cape, although with serious injuries. The anti- result that British naval superiority had been quated Blücher, however, with only 8.2-inch guns increased since the war began. (For precise into oppose to the British 13.5-inch guns, and con- formation regarding the navies of the belligersiderably slower than the three German dread- ent Powers, consult articles on GERMANY, GREAT nought cruisers, fell an easy victim and was BRITAIN, etc.) first crippled by gunfire, then torpedoed and By all means the most significant aspect of gunk. The battle was a conclusive demonstra- the war on the water was the attempt of Great tion of the value of big guns and high speed in Britain to realize to the full, and the efforts of modern naval warfare. The British battle Germany to minimize, the economic advantages cruisers engaged, including the Indomitable, the accruing from British naval superiority. A few New Zealand, the Princess Royal, the Lion, and German commerce destroyers still remained at the Tiger, mounted 16 12-inch guns and 24 13.5. large, in January, 1915, preying upon the merinch guns against the 8 12-inch guns, 20 ll-inch chant marine of the Allies. One of the German guns, and 12 8.2-inch guns of the Germans. To commerce destroyers, the auxiliary cruiser Prinz their superiority in big guns the British owed Eitel Friedrich, slipped into Newport News, Va., their success in sinking the Blücher and in dam- March 10th, after a destructive cruise of more aging the other German cruisers, a success which than 30,000 miles. The German light cruiser might have been pressed to a more decisive con- Dresden was sunk by British ships on March clusion, had not German submarines made their 14th. The German converted cruiser Kronprinz appearance and menaced the British pursuers. Wilhelm, after sinking nine British, four French, The battle of Dogger Bank so strongly confirmed and one Norwegian merchantmen, entered Newthe confidence of the British Admiralty that in port News, April 1lth, and was interned. The February a powerful British and French fleet cruiser Königsberg, which had been driven to was sent to bombard the Dardanelles forts seek refuge in the Rufiji River on the coast of (supra, under Military Operations, The Dar- German East Africa, was attacked by two Britdanelles). At the Dardanelles, however, the ish river monitors, the Mersey and the Severn, Allied battleships were pitted, not against and was destroyed, in July. The danger from German cruisers of inferior gun-power, but German cruisers and auxiliary cruisers had against land forts, submarines, and floating meanwhile been overshadowed by a new menace mines. In the great effort to force the Narrows, to the commerce of the Allies—the submarine. March 18th, the British battleships Irresistible On February 4th the inauguration of a novel and Ocean, and the French battleship Bouvet form of submarine warfare was announced. The were sunk; the British Inflexible and the French German government declared that it would conGaulois were disabled; and several other ships sider “the waters surrounding Great Britain and were badly battered. Subsequently the British Ireland, including the whole English Channel, to Goliath was torpedoed at the Dardanelles on be comprised within the seat of war, and will May 12th; the Triumph on May 25th; and the prevent by all the military means at its disposal Majestic on May 27th. Besides the battle of all navigation by the enemy in those waters. To Dogger Bank and the Dardanelles action, the this end it will endeavor to destroy, after February 18th next, any merchant vessels of the may be noted, laid the responsibility for the enemy which present themselves at the seat of Lusitania tragedy upon the British government; war above indicated, although it may not al- in a note to the United States, Herr von Jagow ways be possible to avert the dangers which stated: “The case of the Lusitania shows with may menace persons and merchandise. Neutral horrible clearness to what jeopardizing of human Powers are accordingly forewarned not to con- lives the manner of conducting war employed by tinue to entrust their crews, passengers, or mer- our adversaries leads. In the most direct conchandise to such vessels. Their attention is tradiction of international law all distinctions furthermore called to the fact that it is of ur between merchantmen and war vessels have been gency to recommend to their own vessels to steer obliterated by the order to British merchantmen clear of these waters. It is true that the Ger- to arm themselves and to ram submarines, and man navy has received instructions to abstain the promise of rewards therefor, and neutrals from all violence against neutral vessels recog- who use merchantmen as travelers thereby have nizable as such; but in view of the hazards of been exposed in an increasing degree to all the war, and of the misuse of the neutral flag ordered dangers of war. If the commander of the Gerby the British government, it will not always man submarine which destroyed the Lusitania be possible to prevent a neutral vessel from be- had caused the crew and passengers to take to coming the victim of an attack intended to be the boats before firing a torpedo this would have directed against a vessel of the enemy.” The meant the certain destruction of his own vessel." cause assigned for this extraordinary innova- Notwithstanding this attempted justification, it tion in the practice of naval warfare was the may safely be asserted that the sinking of the disrespect of neutral rights and disregard of Lusitania furnished the Allies with a most international law, particularly of the Declara- powerful recruiting argument and stimulated tion of London, evinced by the British govern- pro-Ally sentiment in neutral countries. (2) ment in capturing non-contraband German prop. What the German government hoped to gain by erty on board neutral ships, in apprehending its submarine warfare was obvious: the flow of German subjects on neutral ships, in altering ammunition to Great Britain from neutral counthe contraband rules, and in declaring the whole tries would be seriously interrupted, British North Sea between Scotland and Norway to be shipping would suffer, and possibly the British a seat of war. The Germans alleged that Great government could be compelled to relax its Britain had adopted a ruthless policy of stary. measures against German imports. The subing the civilian population. The British, on the marine campaign was at once a defensive operaother hand, declared that since the German gov- tion to prevent Great Britain from "starving ernment had commandeered foodstuffs (Jan. 25, Germany out," and an offensive operation to in1915, see GERMANY), the British navy was quite terfere with Great Britain's munitions supply justified in intercepting food supplies which and commerce. (3) The results of the submight be confiscated by the German government marine campaign had not yet been definitely esfor the use of the German army. The United tablished by the close of the year, but it ap States government endeavored to obtain mutual peared reasonably certain that in its major obconcessions from the belligerents in the interest jects the campaign had failed, inasmuch as the of neutral rights, but its proposals were re. British government, instead of relaxing, had jected by the British government, and a new drawn more tightly the restrictions on German British Order in Council, March 15th, having imports through neutral countries; and although declared a virtual blockade of Germany, the very considerable injuries had been inflicted upon issue was squarely joined between the British the Allied and neutral merchant marines, the blockade and the German submarine. Neutral flow of munitions to Great Britain and the Powers were adversely affected by the contest, course of British sea-borne trade had not been because (1) numerous neutral merchantmen seriously disturbed. In the last quarter of the were torpedoed; (2) because several belligerent year the statement was quite generally credited liners were sunk by German submarines either that a large proportion of the German submarine without warning or without opportunity for flotilla had been destroyed by British trawlers, safeguarding the lives of the passengers, some of motor-boats, and aviators, or entrapped in great whom were citizens of neutral Powers; (3) be submarine nets. cause neutral trade with Scandinavian ports and with Holland was interfered with by the
VII. AËRIAL OPERATIONS British policy of intercepting all goods of German origin or ultimately destined for Germany, The importance of airmen in directing the fire even when the goods were carried by neutral of artillery and in detecting unexpected moveships between neutral ports; (4) because Britments of enemy troops had already been well esish operations in the North Sea and German tablished by the first few months of the war. submarines in the Channel made navigation During the year 1915 the services of air-scouts hazardous for neụtral merchantmen. The in- to the belligerent armies and navies remained tricacies of the controversies which ensued with invaluable. The most interesting phase of the regard to the rights of neutrals may not be dis- aërial operations in 1915, however, was the use cussed in this article; it is important, however, of airships and aëroplanes for independent opto indicate at least a few of the salient features erations. Intense excitement, and a certain of the submarine-blockade contest, in relation amount of genuine concern, were manifested with to the general issues of the war. (1) The sinkregard to the possibility of German Zeppelins ing of the Cunard liner Lusitania (q.v.), May inflicting serious damage upon London or Paris. 7th, without warning, with the loss of 1396 lives, Most elaborate precautions were taken to darken undoubtedly embittered the anti-German senti- the city of London at night; gigantic searchments of British and Allied nations, and did lights and anti-aircraft guns were pointed tomuch to promote an anti-German agitation in wards the murky London skies. But after the neutral countries. The German government, it repetition of comparatively harmless German