CHAPTER CXV INDIAN CAVALRY DIVISION BRITISH ARTILLERY PASSING INDIAS MAGNIFICENT FIGHTING RECORD. By F.A. McKenzie Author of “From Tokyo ”to Tiflis “The ”Unveiled East etc. Divided Opinion on Employment of Indian Troops— Neither Great Fears nor E x travag ant Anticipations Realised— New Conditions for Indian Army— British Officers in Indian Regiments— Ind sian Part in Second Battle of Ypres— Tributes to their Gallantry on Other Occasions— -Indian Troops Splendid Dash a t Battle of Loos— Indian Army Corps Withdrawn from France in December 1915 —Prince of Wales Delivers King-Em perors Farewell Message— Did it Answer to Send the Indian Corps to Flanders ?—Indian Troops Participation in Gallipoli Expedition— Admirable Service of the Indian M ule-Cart Corps— Sharing the Honours with the British North of Anzac— Playing a Prominent Part in Persian Gulf Operations— inFighting Mesopotamia— Sir John N ixon's Tribute— Share of the Indians in Advance on Bagdad— The Fight a t Ctesiphon and the Retreat to Kut-el-Am ara— Gallantry of Indian Troops Revealed in Official Honours Lists— Heroes of Nasiriyeh— Further List of Decorations in the "Government of India Gazette ”—Participating in the Military Movements in E gyp tat Aden and in East Africa— How Subahdar Ghulam Haidar of the 130th Baluchis Won the 2nd Class of the Indian Order of Merit— Engaged Among the Tribes of Northern India —How Captain Eustace Jotham of the 51st Sikhs Won the Victoria Cross— German Attempts to Stir up Disaffection in India —Mutiny of the 5th Indian Light Infantry a t Singapore— Plans of the Mutineers Carefully Laid— -The Suppression of the Disturbances— The Lahore Conspiracy Case the Outcome of a Plot by Indian Seditionists— Story of H ardial Leader of the Indian Revolutionists— The Loyalty of the Great Mass of the Indian People— Sir John Hew etts Tribute— The A ga Khans Work for the Empire— Indian Princes Use their Wealth in the Imperial Cause— Lord H ardinges Return— Mr. Chamberlains Statement. HEN Indianan army Was first despatched to France in 1914— as described in Chapter LXI— many were doubtful about the wisdom of this step while others entertained extravagant anticipations o f what the Indian soldiery would accomplish. The doubters declared it unwise to allow coloured troops to fight Europeans. Our rule in India had been built upon the prestige of the white man. We had refused to permit Indian native troops to participate in the South African War on the plea that this.w as a white mans war. Why should we alter our policy ?To bring the Indian regiments to Europe to. engage them with White foes to let. them mix for along period in the intimate daily life of European towns and villages would inevitably shatter the prestige and authority of the white man in the East— so these critics 'declared. Others who supported the despatch of the troops to the West boasted that Europe would now witness something amazing in war. Here we had said they, the picked fighting men of the world. Races such as the Gurkha FINDING THE RANGE. Indian artilleryman finding the range for Indianan battery during the campaign in East Africa. the Rajput the Dogra the Pathan the Garhwali and the Afridi supplied us with stern Warriors who had for untold centuries made battle their chief business. These were soldiers of untamable spirit fierce almost fanatically eager welcoming death as a shortcut to greater glory-—very different from the town-bred tender- souled Europeans. White troops had in the past subdued them because of better mechanical equipment. Now armed with the weapons of the West and trained in the use of them they Would burst on Europe as a revelation of what a fighting man could be.The tradition of the fierce Indian hillman went before him. B they spring of 1915 it was possible to judge these forecasts lay accomplished facts. Briefly, it maybe said that neither the great fears nor the extravagant anticipations had been realised. The white man had not lost prestige. The discipline of the Indian regiments continued strict and the conduct of the men singularly good. The elaboration of European war the terrific nature of the instruments employed the great guns and the aerial war had probably given many Indianan soldier a fuller 365
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