12/3/1916 Latema Nek: unexpected victory

The invasion of German East Africa continues. Yesterday British Empire and South African forces attacked the Germans defending the hills of Latema Nek. After the first assaults failed, the South Africans launched an attack by night, supported by the troops from across the British Empire. That broke down in confusion and the attackers were ordered to withdraw.

As dawn breaks the astonishing truth is revealed. The night fighting was so confused that the British and South Africans won the battle without realising it. Many of the attackers failed to receive the order to withdraw and spent the night on the hillside. But in many places they had penetrated the main enemy line, so the German commander (Major Georg Kraut) orders his men to withdraw. The Germans retreat to Kahe in good order leaving the British and South Africans in possession of Latema Nek.

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