5/4/1916 Kut: Gorringe to the rescue

In Mesopotamia things are getting pretty desperate for the besieged British army in Kut-al-Amara. Food is running low and both soldiers and the town’s civilian population are facing starvation. But help might just be at hand. The British are making another attempt to break through the Turkish lines to relieve Kut. The relief force is now commanded by General George Gorringe, who has replaced the unsuccessful Fenton Aylmer. Gorringe’s army has been reinforced; he hopes now to succeed where Aylmer failed.

Today Gorringe attacks the Turks at Hanna. Aylmer was blocked here, but Gorringe has better luck. The Turkish line is curiously under-defended and the British over-run it. But tougher Turkish resistance is encountered at Fallahiyeh. The Turks have established a strong position here. Gorringe’s men eventually manage to force the enemy back, but they take 2,000 casualties in doing so.

Gorringe hopes to press on tomorrow and break through the last Turkish positions before Kut.

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