Diary for Monday, April 26, 1915:
Gallipoli: Hill 141 stormed and V Beach secured. Turk attacks on Anzac and Y Beaches repulsed but latter abandoned in panic.
Kitchener declares that ‘Germany has stooped to acts which view with those of the Dervishes’.
Ypres: 15,000 British soldiers counter-attack; Lahore Division relieves Canadians (5,200 casualties). Germans reply with gas. 149th Northumberland Brigade vainly secures temporary hold on south end of St Julien for 1,964 casualties including GOC Brigade-General Riddell killed. Total British loss 4,000 men. Gas attack on Franco-Belgian troops south of Dixmude.
Alsace: See-saw battle for Hartmannsweilerkopf; French finally secure crest after losing it and 4 companys’ the day before.
Austro-Italian border: Allied-Italian Treaty of London soon triggers move of 3 Austrian corps (XV and XVI with c.282 guns from Serbian Front, VII with 162 guns from Eastern Front) to Italian Front. Forces already there formed into 5 divisions (90th-94th), total c.81,400 men with 324 guns excluding fortress troops and guns.
Southwest Africa: Botha repels Germans at Trekopjes aided by new RNAS armored cars (German planes mistake them for field kitchens).
East Africa: Cdr Spicer-Simson put in command of Naval Africa Expedition for Lake Tanganyika (Game hunter J Lee persuades Admiralty on April 21).
Senegal: Black enlistment authorized.
Germany: First UC-class coastal mine layer launched at Hamburg (10 by July 15, all war losses).
Western Front – first air Victoria Cross: Lt Rhodes-Moorhouse, RFC, flying a BE2, attacks with one 100lb (ca. 45 kg) bomb Courtrai rail station. Severely wounded by intense anti-aircraft and small arms fire, he flies 35 miles (ca. 56 km) to his Merville base over German lines, receiving further wounds (awarded posthumous VC on May 22). 7 BE2s and 2 RE5s bomb trains in Ghent area as RFC attempts to disrupt troop movements from there to Ypres Salient. 11 BE2cs and 2 REs despatched to 7 stations and trains on Staden-Cortemarck-Roulers line.
LONDON PACT: ITALY SECRETLY JOINS ALLIES after talks since April 23.
Turkey: German General Posseldt from Erzerum to German Embassy ‘The Armenians would have stayed perfectly quiet, if they had not been harassed and provoked …’.
Britain: Kitchener and Asquith address Parliament on German ‘war crimes’.