22/4/1916 Kut: Gorringe’s last attempt to raise the siege

The siege of Kut-al-Amara continues, as do British attempts to relieve their trapped comrades. General Gorringe leads the relief force. After a series of failed attempts to break through Turkish lines, Gorringe’s force is much depleted. Reinforcements are on their way but Gorringe knows that the situation in Kut is now desperate; the starving defenders have no time to wait for his reinforcements. He needs to raise the siege now or the men of Kut will have to surrender.

So Gorringe launches one last desperate attempt to force a way through the Turks to relieve Kut. He attacks at Sannaiyat, on the north bank of the Tigris. Gorringe tried unsuccessfully to break through here earlier in the month. Now history repeats itself. The fighting is bloody, with both sides taking heavy casualties, but Gorringe’s men are unable to dislodge the Turks.

This is the end. Gorringe’s men have suffered too much and are too demoralised to make any further attempt to raise the siege of Kut. There are 13,000 men trapped in the Mesopotamian town; the British have taken more than 23,000 casualties in their attempts to rescue them.

image source (Lightbobs)

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