24/7/1915 Mesopotamia: Britain attacks Nasiriya

In Mesopotamia, British forces have advanced up the Euphrates river from the port of Basra. Now they attack the town of Nasiriya. Ottoman forces are commanded by Ali Jawdat. His small contingent of regular Turkish troops is supplemented by locally recruited Bedouin Arabs.

The Bedouin are not entirely steadfast in their support of the Ottoman Empire. When the British approach in strength the Bedouin decide to change sides. They attack Turkish troops to steal their weapons before riding away. Jawdat himself is relieved of his weapons and valuables by the Bedouin before they make themselves scarce, leaving him to be captured by the British.

Despite these reverses, the Turkish troops put up a tough fight. They give ground grudgingly, often yielding positions to the British after brutal hand to hand fighting. But as night falls the Turks have been forced back to the gates of Nasiriya.

image source (Royal Navy and Naval History)

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