« НазадПродовжити »
hold, Hendrika's instructions by a neighbour, all carrying for the alarming of the Smeers their rifles, and obviously rehad miscarried. She had lieved to find that the Rooinek shouted to the Kafirs from was not waiting to give battle. the kitchen door, but was not They waited while coffee was disposed to risk her dainty prepared. shoes by going outside to see “Which way has he gone? ” that her orders were executed. they asked. The recipient of them had “He is making for Mafepassed them on to the drowsy king,” said Piet. “The road kitchen-boy, who had in turn is good for you but bad for shifted responsibility to a third, him. His horse is done up.” who did not act till he heard Two hours after Hartley the voice of Baas Piet rousing had departed eastward, his Toli. Then he watched the pursuers started in the opposaddling up, and returned to site direction. his blankets, where he would Old Piet remained on the have remained had not Mrs stoep till the sounds of hoofs de Villiers, vrouw - like, de- satisfied him that the chase manded full details as to the was off the scent.
He slipped horses and messengers sent. quietly into his daughter's When she learned the facts, room. she squandered valuable min “Sleep well, haartje," he utes in abusing Piet and whispered, kissing her; “your Hendrika, and
visited the old father has sent justice on natives' hut, where her tongue a wrong spoor.”. and sjambok soon had things “Justice, father? Justice stirring.
will always be on the wrong Within an hour the two spoor while it follows him.” married
of the dead And she buried her sobs in Smeer arrived, accompanied the pillow.
(To be continued.)
A STUDY OF THE RUSSO-JAPANESE WAR.
IX.--THE BATTLE OF HEI-KOU-TAI.
On Monday, January 23, the the nation as a whole had no whole civilised world was sympathy. But although we horrified with the story of the allow this now, it is more than slaughter of innocent Russian probable that if there had been petitioners in front of the no war-if the people of Russia Winter Palace and in the streets had not felt the flail of disaster of St Petersburg. This ter- and the pinch of war privation rible occurrence, so unexpected they would have acquiesced in its advent and so far-reaching willingly and enthusiastically in its effects, may be signalised in the expansion of their emas the first real and definite pire in the East. And even internal demonstration that if the war had been successful Russia was the least success there would have been few ful belligerent in the great Russian mouths opened against struggle in the Far East. the Grand Ducal campaign of There had already been in- aggrandisement. This is only dications that the country, natural; for it has to be a internally writhing, was strug great policy, and a magnificent, gling to express its dissatis- that will stand the strain of faction in a policy which had unsuccessful war. The workbrought upon it the present ing heads of the bureaucracy tribulation; was resenting the in Russia were well aware of grip of war taxation, relentless all this. Therefore, when in its greed for money and Kuropatkin's crowning effort manhood. There had been in the autumn turned naval riots at Sebastopol; into a miserable defeat on the mobilisation difficulties; and Sha-ho, every effort was made even a mysterious affair at on the part of the Russian the blessing of the Neva. Government to reinforce the Each of these, judged in the army in the field, so that by sequence of events, might well the spring it might be able have been classed as the pro- to stem the course of Japan's test of an unwilling people.
people. success and to turn defeat into But January 22 the victory. Their ears were not climax was reached. From deaf to the grumbles of disthat day the struggle in the satisfaction which reached them Far East became an unpopular from every corner of the emand disastrous war, forced upon pire. Wherever they had moba discontented and powerless ilised for sea or land, the secret people for the purpose of justi. reports were the same. Libau, fying a foreign policy in which Revel, Odessa, Sebastopol, War
saw, Kieff, Tiflis, Irkutskall heresy that the Russian solhad their festering sore. The dier held a superiority over his fall of Port Arthur, the vaunt- enemy during a Manchurian ed fortress of the Far East, winter. They viewed the variintensified the spreading waves ous indications of unrest with of popular distrust. Unless apprehension, little recking the victory came quickly, it was many circumstances of supply certain that the
that the gatherings and system which governed would come to a head-there- his actions, and continued to fore supreme effort
was urge Kuropatkin to take the made.
initiative. When, however, the Lord Brooke, who, in the whole country boiled over after matter of military data, seems the disgraceful tyranny demonto be the most reliable of all strated on that Sunday in St the correspondents who ac- Petersburg, the authorities cepted the hospitality of the were desperate. They ceased Russian Staff, says in his to urge the General in the book that “by the 19th of field, but deliberately ordered December, exactly two months him at once to save the situaafter the battle of the Sha-ho, tion at home, either by the 85,000 reservists without im- salve of a great victory or the pedimenta had been received, counter-irritant of another desand fresh troops were coming perate disaster. from Europe in an endless Just as these demands came stream.” According to this the season softened a little. authority, the Russian army by A wave of wintry mildness the middle of December was swept across the Manchurian as strong as it had been before plains. To all intents and it undertook the battle of the purposes
Kuropatkin Sha-ho; while a month later ready. He had only been the same authority estimated waiting on the weather. The that the force under General opportunity had arrived. The Kuropatkin was some 400,000 Russians were now holding an strong, and had about 2000 extremely long front; Kuroguns. All stores had been re- patkin's left was thrown back plenished, and the branch rail- in the hilly country forming way lines from Mukden to the the watershed of the Sha-ho, Sha-ho were finished. In short, in order to cover Fu-shun from all the arrangements for the aflank attack. His centre battle were complete. Ever practically followed the line since the beginning of January of the Sha-ho as far as the St Petersburg had been urging railway. From Lu-sheng-pu Kuropatkin to let slip no oppor- the line of the Russian defence tunity which might be turned curved backwards towards the into a victory. The staff of St Hun-ho at Chan-tan-ho-nan. Petersburg still clung to the The Russian right rested on the
1 An Eye-Witness in Manchuria. By Lord Brooke, Reuter's Correspondent. London : Eveleigh Nash. 1905.
plain of the Liau-ho, somewhere railroads, telephones, and all on the Hsin-min-ting road. scientific means of inter-comThis flank was watched by a munication. To a great extent cavalry division under Mis- the Japanese did the same, but chenko and Kosobosky. In all, they were also careful to prethis was
a front of sixty to pare a second and even a third seventy miles. It must not be line of defence within an easy thought that the Sha-ho was distance of their front, so that a military obstacle.
if the great army of brave men neither deep nor fast enough, which Kuropatkin was except when in heavy flood, to centrating in front of them be reckoned as a barrier. At should, by force of numbers, be the present season, frozen hard, able to drive them from the it indicated the line of country first line, the Russians, spent which commended itself to and halting from the effort Kuropatkin's sappers as de- which had given them success, fensible. The 2nd Manchurian would find that no less an effort Army, which was
was required to make good the manded by Gripenberg, held Japanese second line, and, in the plain between the Hun-ho sequence, the third. The Rusand the railway. Koulbars com- sians, too, had prepared against manded the centre, while the misadventure, but their position 1st Manchurian Army, consist was forty miles to the rear of ing of the Siberian Army Corps, Mukden, and was designed held Kuropatkin's eastern front rather to arrest disaster than in the hills under the command to form a point d'appui for a of Linievitch, the veteran com violent counter-stroke. This mander during
the Boxer difference in military appreciatrouble, who had recently been tion was to be demonstrated brought to Mukden from com both at the battle of Hei-koumanding the garrison at Vladi- tai and at Mukden. vostok. The Japanese positions There are several indications to a very considerable extent which tend to show that Kuroconformed to those of the Rus- patkin at Mukden still believed sian. In fact, in many places the that although the Japaneseoutposts were so close together bred soldier might be better that it was possible to see than the mujik in the hills, yet from the Russian line the smoke his own grey-coated regiments from the cigarettes of the would defeat the diminutive Japanese off-duty pickets. But Oriental upon the plain. From behind the parallel chains of the very commencement of the fortified positions which kept campaign, as far as he could these two armies in touch, two judge, the Japanese had always industrious and independent made for the highest hill-tops principalities seemed to have in order to give effect to their sprung up.
The Russians turning movements. Reflecting showed great mechanical skill upon the very painful experiin connecting up the wings of ence which he had bought, the their great army with light Russian General no doubt came