The History of the Great European War, Volume V

CHAPTER XLV THE EVACUATION OF GALLIPOLI Sir C.C. Monro uptakes command instead of General Hamilton recalled— Report of new Commander on situation— The Mediterranean forces— Transfer of io th Division from S uvla to Salonika for Serbia— Plans for the evacuation of the Dardanelles Army —Evacuation of S uvla and Anzac— E vacuation of H elles— Extract from dispatch of General M onro. O N October 281915 the command of the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force was overhanded to General Sir C.C. Monro K.C.B. Sir HamiltonIan had been re­called by the War Office and was now engaged in drawing up the famous dispatch upon which the account of events in the preceding chapter has been founded. The immediate duty of General Nixon was to report on the military situation on the Gallipoli Peninsula which to the authori­ties at home almost seemed to be desperate. So he was also to express an opinion whether on purely military grounds the penin­sula should be evacuated or another attempt be made to carry it. Moreover he was to estimate the number of troops that would be required to carry the peninsula to keep the Straits open and to take Constantinople. The new Commander soon discovered that the positions occu­pied by our troops presented a military situation unique in history. Only the mere fringe of the coastline had been secured and the beaches and piers upon which they depended for all requirements in personnel and material were exposed to registered and observed enemy artillery fire. Our entrenchments were dominated almost throughout by the Turks the possible artillery positions were insufficient and defective the Force in short held aline possess­ing every possible military defect— the position was without depth, the communications were insecure and dependent on the weather. Moreover no means existed for the concealment and deployment of any fresh troops which might be introduced for the offensive, whilst the Turks enjoyed full powers of observation abundant artillery positions and had been given the time to supplement the natural advantages which the position presented by all the devices at the disposal of the field engineer. The troops had alas! suffered much from various causes. It 164
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