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German East Africa

 
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Tandorini



Geregistreerd op: 11-6-2007
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BerichtGeplaatst: 30 Sep 2007 12:52    Onderwerp: German East Africa Reageer met quote

campaign in German East Africa.

German East Africa, campaign in (1914-18). In 1914 Germany possessed four colonies in sub-Saharan Africa: Togoland, Cameroons, South-West Africa (now Namibia), and East Africa (now Tanzania). The fight for the fourth of these has most captured the public imagination. The last German troops did not surrender until two weeks after the Armistice in Europe, on 25 November 1918. Their commander, Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck, became a German hero, the symbol of an army that deemed itself undefeated in the field. By the 1960s he had acquired another reputation, that of guerrilla leader. Neither interpretation can be fully sustained.

The German colonial troops, the Schutztruppen, were equipped and trained only for internal policing duties, but Lettow-Vorbeck, appointed through the influence of the German general staff, aimed to contribute to the main struggle in the event of war in Europe by drawing British forces away from their principal theatres and sought battle rather than shunned it. However, his isolation from Germany meant that neither trained European soldiers nor stocks of munitions were easily replaced. After the battle of Mahiwa, which Lettow-Vorbeck began on 15 October 1917, the Germans had exhausted all their smokeless cartridges and had to abandon German territory for Portuguese in the search for ammunition.

British strategy in Africa was much more limited. On 5 August 1914 a subcommittee of the Committee of Imperial Defence decided that the principal objectives were to eliminate Germany's wireless stations and to deprive its navy of bases. Heinrich Schnee, the governor of German East Africa, anxious to protect the fruits of German colonialism, effectively co-operated in the achievement of both these objectives. The principal German cruiser in the region, SMS Königsberg, was unable to enter Dar es Salaam, and took refuge in the delta of the Rufiji river, where she was eventually located and sunk on 11 July 1915. The British colonial office lacked the troops to do much more, and it therefore called on the Indian army. Indian Expeditionary Force B, principally made up of second-line units, landed at German East Africa's second major port, Tanga, on 2 November 1914. Lettow-Vorbeck had concentrated his forces to the north, with a view to launching an attack into British East Africa, but was still able to redeploy and inflict a humiliating defeat on the British. The latter, hamstrung by overlapping administrative authorities and now deprived of any faith in the available Indian troops, did nothing in 1915. The Germans raided the Uganda railway.

The campaign was reactivated in March 1916 with the arrival of South African reinforcements under J. C. Smuts. Like the Indians, the South Africans were not easily deployable to the western front, and to that extent Lettow-Vorbeck's strategy was not working. However, Smuts's aims were much more extensive than those of London. He wished to conquer the entire German colony and then to trade territory with Portugal, so as to extend South Africa's frontier into Mozambique at least as far as the Zambezi. He therefore invaded German East Africa from the north, cutting across the axes of the two principal railway lines and neglecting the harbours on the coast. He had earned his military reputation as the leader of a Boer commando and conducted his campaign as though his mounted rifles could move as fast through regions infested with tsetse fly as across the veld. He accorded little recognition to the difference between rainy seasons and dry. His advance, although rapid, failed ever to grip and defeat the German forces. His troops entered Dar es Salaam on 3 September 1916, and were astride the Central railway, running from there to Tabora and Lake Tanganyika. Smuts should have paused but he did not, plunging on to the Rufiji river, and claiming that the campaign was all but over when in reality it had stalled.

Worrying for Smuts were Belgian territorial ambitions in the west. Debouching from the Congo into Ruanda and Urundi, the Belgians had reached Tabora in August 1916. Smuts's sub-imperialism was challenged even more fundamentally by the contribution of blacks to the campaign. The Schutztruppen, although officered by Europeans, were predominantly native Africans, and yet they had proved formidable opponents for the whites. On the British side the South Africans were particularly susceptible to malaria, and by early 1917 they were being replaced in the British order of battle by the black units of the West African Frontier Force and the King's African Rifles. Moreover, the collapse of animal transport meant that supply was largely dependent on human resources; the British ended up recruiting over a million labourers for the campaign. The long-term impact for Africa—in the development of the cash economy, in the penetration of colonial rule into areas hitherto unmapped, and in the erosion of chiefly or tribal authority—was immense.

Smuts was recalled to London in January 1917, and handed over his command to A. R. Hoskins. Hoskins set about remedying the worst of the health, transport, and supply problems, but in doing so aroused impatience in the War Cabinet in London which could not understand why a campaign which Smuts had said was over was still continuing to drain Allied shipping. (This was one area in which Lettow-Vorbeck most nearly fulfilled his overall strategy.) In April Hoskins was replaced by J. L. van Deventer, another Afrikaaner, who implemented Hoskins's plan but still failed to prevent the rump of the Germans from escaping into Portuguese East Africa in November. For the next year, Lettow-Vorbeck's columns marched through Portuguese territory, fighting largely to secure supplies and munitions. The Allies still had a ration strength of 111, 371 in the theatre at the war's end.



The campaign for German East Africa was effectively confined to a period of eighteen months, from March 1916 to November 1917. Its commencement had been delayed by the under-appreciated efforts of Lettow-Vorbeck's colleagues in South-West Africa (which had engaged the South Africans until 1915) and in the Cameroons (which had tied down British West African forces until 1916). The inadequacies of Portuguese military administration, rather than the failings of the British, go far to explain Lettow-Vorbeck's continued survival after all political purpose in continued fighting had been removed.

Bibliography

Miller, Charles, Battle for the Bundu: The First World War in East Africa (London, 1974).
Page, Melvin E. (ed.), Africa and the First World War (London, 1987)

www.Answers.com








www.chakoten.dk/tanga_1914.html
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Tandorini



Geregistreerd op: 11-6-2007
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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Okt 2007 20:50    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

German East Africa
This largest of the German colonies was commanded by Lt. Col. Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck. The colony had been first developed by Karl Peters and the Company for German Colonization in 1885, and the protectorate was confirmed by the Anglo-German agreement in 1890 that also gave Heligoland to Germany and Germany recognized British control over Zanzibar. The boundaries were drawn to include Mt Kilimanjaro in German territory at the desire of the Kaiser to have at least one snow-capped peak in his empire. Lake Tanganyika formed the western boundary with the Belgian Congo, Lake Victoria in the north bordered British East Africa near Nairobi, where a British railroad connected from the coastal port of Mombasa, and Lake Nyasa in the south bordered Portuguese East Africa. The British island of Zanzibar was off the coast from the capital port city of Dar Es Salaam, and a railroad ran west to the wireless station at Tabora.

1914 Sept. - Lettow-Vorbeck sent Tom von Prince to capture Taveta in the north, who sent his message of success back to Dar Es Salaam by African messengers on bicycles.

Sept. 3 - German cruiser Konigsberg secretly found harbor in the delta of the Rufiji 100 miles south of Dar Es Salaam.

Sept. 22 - the Konigsberg disabled the HMS Pegasus and packet ship Helmut at Zanzibar, then again went into hiding in the Rufiji delta. The British recruited H. Dennis Cutler and his pontoon seaplane to search for the ship, but it blew its radiator and had to be repaired with a radiator from a Model T. Cutler found the cruiser 2 miles up the river, but then crashed Dec. 10 and became a prisoner. The British set up a blockade of the delta with 3 cruisers. The German crew of the Konigsberg came down with malaria and typhoid. Another British seaplane flown by Lt. John T. Cull again spotted the Konigsberg on the river. The British had broken the German naval code and intercepted radio messages to and from the Konigsberg. The British found out about a plan to send a supply ship, the Kronborg, to the Konigsberg, but it was intercepted by the British and sunk, but the Germans salvaged part of its cargo. On June 22, 1915, The British built and airfield on Mafia Island near the mouth of the Rufiji delta, and two monitors towed from England were prepared to sail up the river with 6-in guns. On July 6, the monitors Severn and Mersey sailed into the delta to 10,000 yards of the Konigsberg and began firing with the airplanes overhead providing direction. On July 11, the monitors again sailed into the delta, fired on the Konigsberg, setting her on fire, and the Germans scuttled the ship. Later the Germans salvaged the ten 105mm guns, put them on RR cars, and used them against the British during the war. Capt Loof was decorated with the Iron Cross for tying down 27 British ships during the 255-day blockade of the Konigsberg.

1914 Nov 4 - At the Battle of Tanga, the British attack with a force of 8000 men was too slow, gave 1000 Germans time to build defense, and to defeat the British with the help of swarms of bees angered by the destruction of their log hives ("Battle of the Bees"). The battle became widely known in the press, with a song "Steaming Down to Tanga" written about the affair.

Nov. 28 - British battleship Goliath and a small force bombarded Dar Es Salaam that was seen as an unnecessary and brutal act on the part of the British, and raised German morale.

Dec. 25- Germans attacked and defeated British at Jassin, on the British East Africa border.

1915 - Lettow-Vorbeck increased his German force to 3000 Europeans and 11,000 askaris ( not a single askari would desert the Germans during the war). Despite the British blockade, the colony provided for itself, made gasoline from coco, vulcanized rubber with sulfur for tires, built looms to make cloth, produced dairy and livestock, made boots from leather tanned with mangrove bark, made quinine. German raids were successful, destroyed trains on the British railroad.

1915 June - British took town of Bukoba on Lake Victoria in the north and looted and destroyed, caused embarrassment world-wide for the British bad behavior.

1915 - On Lake Tanganyika, Germany had 2 gunboats, the Hedwig von Wissman 100 tons, and the Kingani 45 tons, with a 3rd boat the Graf von Gotzen 800 tons launched June 9, 1914. The Hedwig shelled Belgian 90-ton steamer Aleandre del Commune, on Aug. 22, 1914, the only Allied ship of any size that would have threatened German control of the Lake. In Britain, the big game hunter John R. Lee convinced British Sea Lord Sir Henry Jackson of a plan to haul two 40-foot motorboats from England to Capetown to the Lake. Admiral David Gamble was put in charge of the new Naval Africa Expedition, with Lee his second in command. The expedition would be led by Lt Commander Geoffrey Spicer-Simpson. The two boats had been built for the Greek Air Force, but the British took them and Jackson christened them Mimi and Toutou, gave them three-pounder guns, and with 100 hp engines could make 15 knots, faster than the German gunboats. The expedition left England June 15, 1915, arrived at the Lake in October, waited until after the tropical rains, then were launched on the Lake Dec. 22, 1915.

1915 Dec. 26 - Mimi and Toutou defeated the German gunboat Kingani that had a 6-pounder gun.

1916 - Belgians completed construction of boat Baron Dhanis of 1500 tons, the Alexandre del Commune was repaired, the barge Dix Tonne was armed with 57 mm and 47 mm guns, the captured German gunboat Kingani was renamed Fifi with a 12-pounder. The little fleet was based at Lukaga, with Short seaplanes at Tongwe. On Feb. 9, the Fifi sank the Hedwig with one of its last 12-pound shells that hit the German engine room. In June, the Rhodiesian unit called Murray's column in the south end of the Lake advanced on German fort at Bismarckburg that was evacuated by Germans June 8. Seaplanes tried to bomb the Graf von Gotzen June 10, but did not hit anything. The Germans dismantled the guns from the Graf and scuttled the ship. The mission of the Naval Africa Expedition was a success, the British and Belgians controlled the Lake.

1916 Feb. 12 - Gen. Wilfred Malleson, the least competent general in Afrcia, lost a battle at Salaita near Taveta, with 6000 troops against the 1300 German troops led by Major Georg Kraut. Malleson bombarded the wrong trenches at the top a hill, missed the real trenches at the bottom, wasted two waves of troops against fixed machines guns.

Feb. 19 - Jan Smuts took command of the Allied forces in East Africa, with HQ in Nairobi. The British needed a quick victory, having suffered losses at Gallipoli, Loos, Mesopotamia. Smuts put together a force of 27,000, including the colorful 25th Royal Fusiliers, know as the Legion of Frontiersmen, led by Lt. Col. Daniel Patrick Driscoll. In the Legion were big game hunter Frederick Courtney Selous, 336-lb millionaire William Northrup, naturalist Angus Buchanan, photographer Cherry Keaton, Texas cowboys, an opera singer, Russians from Siberia, a Honduran general, a circus clown, a lighthouse keeper from Scotland, an Arctic explorer, and a lion tamer who was afraid of lions. The Legion had been sent from England without training, 1166 strong. The 129th Baluchis made of Indians and sepoys had been sent to Africa after they were blown up by the mine at Givenchy Dec. 19 on the Western Front, and afterward inflicted themselves with hand wounds to avoid fighting (318 such casualties by Aug. 1915). Also joining Smuts were Portuguese (Portugal had declared war on Germany March 9) and South Africans and Rhodesians. Smuts advanced on Salaita and Longido and Moshi by mid-March, 1916, but Lettow kept retreating and avoided a fight.

1916 Mar. 18 - At the Battle of Kahe, Smuts attacked Kahe but Lettow had taken a strong defensive position, inflicted heavy casualties, then withdrew that night. The tropical rains began to fall, and Smuts army began to fall ill to disease.

Apr. 2 - van Deventer had been sent south to take the Central Railroad, won a small victory at Lolkisale Arp. 2, but lost half his force to disease, was slowed by rain and mud, half his horses and mules killed by the tsetse flies. Major Kraut with 4000 troops attacked van Deventer with 3000 at Kondoa Irangi on May 9, then retreated, and van Deventer took a month to recover, could not help Smuts advance on Tanga.

Apr. 30 - The German supply ship Marie von Stettin slipped through the British blockade with badly needed supplies for Lettow

July 7 - Smuts took Tanga after Germans evacuated the town.

Aug. 6 - Smuts took Morogoro and now controlled the Central Railroad. The Belgians had sent an army of 10,000 from the Congo led by Gen Henri Tombeur, some from Lake Kivu where the Mountains of the Moon were a major source of the Nile, and joined by a British army of Charles Crewe, advanced south and took Kigoma July 28, and Ujiji (where Stanley found Livingston) on Aug. 2, thus controlling the western end of the Central Railroad, then took Tabora Sept. 19 as the Germans retreated southeast. The Belgians mistreated German civilians captured from Tabora, supposedly forced to pull wagons and load manure with bare hands, so in Europe, Germany imprisoned 23 prominent Belgian citizens.

Dec. - by Christmas, the Rhodesians pushing up from the south had taken Bismarckburg and Langenburg, and the Portuguese had pushed up from Mozambique, the Belgians had taken the west, and the British controlled the eastern ports, after the capture of Dar es Salaam Sept 3. Lettow and his 3000 Germans were surrounded by 80,000 allied troops. Disease had taken a heavy toll on both British and Germans, from dysentery and typhoid and guinea worm (from bad water) and chiggers (sand fleas infected the toes and nails of feet) and especially malaria carried by the female anopheles mosquito. Germans wore high-necked uniforms with long sleeves and pants, suffered less than British with open shirts and shorts.

1917 Jan.- Lettow retreated to the Uluguru Mts, and Smuts pursued, but was defeated by ambush and small battles.

Jan. 4 - Selous killed on a patrol. There was widespread news of his death in America, although little was known of the East Africa campaign. The Selous Game Preserve in Tanzania was dedicated in 1922 where he was killed.

Jan. 20 - Smuts was replaced by Gen. A. Reginald Hoskins.

1917 Sept. 21 - Germany sent the zeppelin L-59 with supplies for Lettow from Bulgaria. On Nov. 22 over Egypt, the zep received a feint radio message ordering it to return to Bulgaria, and it arrived at Jamboli Nov. 25, traveling 4220 miles in 95 hours, the longest sustained flight up to that time.

1917 Oct. 17 - The Battle of Mahiwa was the last big battle in East Africa. The British lost half of its 4900 troops, Germans lost 500 of its 1500, so Lettow claimed a "splendid victory" but his forces were getting smaller and he could not risk another such battle. He decided to release his women and prisoners and invaded Portuguese Mozambique with 2200 troops, crossed the Rovuma Nov. 25.

1918 Aug. - Lettow's German and African troops crippled by the world-wide flu epidemic.

1918 Sept. 28 - Lettow recrossed the Rovuma back into East Africa, and after the Nov. armistice, surrendered to the British, was taken to Dar-es-Salaam, then by ship to Cape Town and Rotterdam, then to Berlin.

1919 - In Section VIII of the Versailles Treaty, "Reparation and Restitution," Germany was required to return the skull of Sultan Mkwawa to Great Britain, but it was never found until 1954. The British wanted to reward the service of the Wahehe who had been defeated by the Germans in the 1890s and who had helped the British in the East Africa campaign.

http://history.sandiego.edu/gen/ww1/africa.html
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A. de Koster



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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Okt 2007 21:03    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Intressant!!Ik heb hier ook nog een link naar een duitse site hierover.

http://www.deutsche-schutzgebiete.de/ostafrika_1914.htm
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Tandorini



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BerichtGeplaatst: 04 Okt 2007 21:20    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

FIRST ALLIED VICTORY
The South African campaign in German South-West Africa, 1914-1915
by Hamish Paterson
South African National Museum of Military History
‘Urgent Imperial service’

On 9 July 1915 the German forces in South-West Africa (now Namibia) surrendered to the Union Defence Forces under the command of the prime minister of the Union of the South Africa, General Louis Botha. The Union Defence Forces had barely been in existence for three years when they secured what was seen at the time as the first major allied success of the First World War. This victory was achieved with a minimum of casualties in a war which has become a byword for slaughter. This and the ascendance to power in South Africa in 1924 of the National Party/Labour Party Alliance meant that the campaign would be largely forgotten, the National Party having opposed South Africa’s undertaking the campaign on behalf of the British Empire. Even today, very little has been published on this campaign and copies of the two main works, Collyer’s 1937 staff history and the 1991 popular history by L’Ange, are difficult to obtain.

This begs the question: why should we revisit the German South-West Africa Campaign? There are several reasons. Firstly, it was the only major campaign undertaken by a Dominion with very little Imperial support - mainly in the form of the provision of Royal Navy protection, a unit of Royal Navy armoured cars, aircraft for the South African Aviation Corps, and 20 000 Portuguese Model 1904 Mauser-Vergueiro rifles and twelve million rounds of ammunition. Secondly, owing to the young age of the Union Defence Forces, to fight the Germans, South Africa had to rely on the expertise and skills developed by the Cape colonial forces, Natal militia, Transvaal volunteer force and the commandos of the former Boer republics of the Transvaal and the Orange Free State. There was also the question of mobilising men who had been on opposing sides only twelve years earlier, during the Anglo-Boer War of 1899 to 1902, many of whom perceived Germany to have been one of their major supporters during that conflict and some of whom saw the First World War as an opportunity for the former Boer republics to regain their independence. Those who were closer to the seat of power saw things differently. Botha and Smuts considered that the terms of the Treaty of Vereeniging were generous and that oaths of allegiance were binding. With the formation of the Union of South Africa, they felt that independence had effectively been achieved. Amongst those of British descent, the cause of the Empire enjoyed wide support.

The ‘urgent Imperial service’ which was requested of the Union of South Africa involved the capture of the ports of Lüderitz Bay and Swakopmund and the silencing of the radio transmitters there and especially of the powerful one in Windhuk which, when conditions permitted, was capable of sending signals to Nauen in Germany. The ports could be used as bases for German raiders, controlled and fed intelligence via the coastal wireless transmitters. These facilities, positioned as they were on the jugular vein of the British Empire, had to be denied to the German Reich. Capturing the ports called for an amphibious operation, which presented its own difficulties. For the Union Defence Forces, this type of operation was entirely new, but a land attack from the south was a logistical nightmare. The South African railheads at Steinkop and Prieska were between 80km and 480km from the border with German South-West Africa. In either case, the campaign would entail crossing a desert barrier before the more hospitable inland highlands could be reached. With military transport beyond the ports and railheads still dependent on animal traction, the pace of the campaign would be determined by the ability of the South African logistical apparatus to bring water to the forward troops and the provision of water would depend on how quickly railway lines could be constructed or repaired.

On 21 August 1914, while a group of senior officers met under the chairmanship of General (later Field Marshal) J C Smuts, a report was published in The Star about a German force digging trenches on a kopje in South African territory near Nakob. This invasion of South African territory was a highly provocative act. On the same day, some South African farmers who were returning to South Africa from South-West Africa were ordered by the Germans to go to Keetmanshoop. The farmers refused and an exchange of rifle fire followed, leaving one German soldier dead. These events helped to justify Botha’s decision to go to war with Germany.
The offensive in the south

At the senior officers’ meeting, the decision was taken to occupy Lüderitz Bay and to use naval gunfire to destroy the wireless station and harbour facilities at Swakopmund. Another force, Force A, was to land at Port Nolloth and operate against the southern border of German South-West Africa while Force B, based in Upington, was to apply pressure to the German colony’s eastern border. Force B, to be composed of mounted rifle units and machine guns, was to assemble at Upington under the command of the district staff officer of Military District No 12 (Prieska), Lt-Col S G Maritz. Mobilization of the Active Citizen Force (ACF) had already begun on 6 August and many ACF units were concentrating in Cape Town.

On 31 August 1914, Force A, consisting of two 4-gun artillery batteries, five regiments of South African Mounted Riflemen (three squadrons each), the Witwatersrand Rifles, a section of engineers and an ammunition column under the command of Brig-Gen H T Lukin, began landing at Port Nolloth.

Force B was drawn from independent mounted and dismounted rifle squadrons which had been formed in 1913 and the machine gun sections of Prince Alfred’s Guard and the Kaffrarian Rifles (now the Buffalo Volunteer Rifles). Maritz’s mounted rifle unit resembled Boer commandos and did not have the formal structure and longer history of mounted rifle regiments like the Imperial Light Horse and the Cape Light Horse. There were considerable problems concealed within the force, not least of which was that Col Maritz had been in contact with the Germans and had been plotting rebellion since 1912. As events would show, he was unlikely to undertake his part in the Union Defence Forces’ plan.
The third force, Force C, was assembling in Cape Town and was waiting to go to Lüderitz Bay. The Union Parliament convened on 9 September and, on 11 September 1914, adopted a motion (92 votes to 12) which assured the King of the Union’s continued loyalty and support and endorsed all measures necessary to cooperate with the Imperial Government to maintain the security and integrity of the British Empire. Military preparations started to gain momentum, but so did those of the group who were opposed to South Africa’s participation in the war on the side of the Allies.

On 14 September, the South African Mounted Riflemen (SAMR) took Raman’s Drift. The next day Brig-Gen C F Beyers, commandant-general of the Active Citizen Force, and Major J C Kemp, district staff officer, Military District No 7, resigned their commissions. That evening, General Koos de la Rey was killed when Beyers’ car drove through a road block. This event delayed Kemp’s and Beyers’ plans. On 16 September, the Vrij Korps, a unit of Afrikaners who had refused to accept British rule and had gone into exile in German South-West Africa offering their services to Germany, attacked the South African Police Station at Nakob. The six-strong SAMR detachment was overwhelmed.

Meanwhile, a naval bombardment on 14 September had destroyed the wireless station at Swakopmund and, on the following day, Force C, consisting of one six-gun battery, a squadron of the Imperial Light Horse, the Transvaal Scottish, the Rand Light Infantry and a section of engineers, sailed from Cape Town, landing its scouts on the evening of 18 September and making an unopposed landing the next morning. Thus far, the Union Defence Forces’ plans were working. However, a disastrous advance to Sandfontein saw Col Grant’s SAMR, supported by two guns of the Transvaal Horse Artillery, surrounded and overrun on 26 September, while, at Upington, Maritz refused to move, claiming that his men were ill-equipped, untrained and not strong enough to operate against the Germans. His refusal to move contributed towards the Germans' ability to destroy Grant’s force at Sandfontein.

Maritz’s behaviour meant that action had to be taken. The Imperial Light Horse (ILH) was despatched to Upington from Cape Town and the Durban Light Infantry (DLI) was sent from Durban. The two units met at Prieska and reached the railhead, 198km from Upington, on 2 October. On being informed that reinforcements would be arriving, Maritz replied that he did not need them to defend Upington. That afternoon he proceeded towards the border with German South-West Africa. He went into open rebellion on 9 October, the day on which the DLI reached Upington. Maritz’s rebellion triggered a wider rebellion in South Africa which diverted troops who were to be deployed in German South-West Africa. On 8 December, the rebellion in the Orange Free State was over and by mid-December it had ended in the Transvaal.

Meanwhile, on 26 September 1914, Force C eliminated the German outpost at Grasplatz. In the aftermath of the defeat at Sandfontein, Force D, consisting of two ACF mounted rifle regiments and a further five infantry battalions, a six-gun battery of field artillery and two four-gun heavy artillery batteries, landed at Lüderitz Bay, allowing a slow advance to be undertaken inland to Aus, to where the Lüderitz Bay wire transmitter had been moved. To get there, however, the combined Forces C and D had to cross a 129km stretch of desert.

The Germans believed that, with their aid, the desert would destroy Central Force. Owing to superior logistics, however, Central Force triumphed. The main challenge lay in rebuilding the railway so that water could be supplied to the front line troops. On 8 November 1914, Central Force was able to take Tschaukaib and although no German soldiers were captured, 32km of intact railway line and an intact overhead water tank fell into South African hands. There the advance halted until 13 December 1914 when Central Force made its next advance. Three battalions of infantry were brought up to Tschaukaib in preparation for a raid on Garub. The raiding party encountered a well-entrenched German position which included two Maxim guns and a Pom-Pom. With no artillery, the raiding force could not dislodge the Germans and a stalemate ensued until a large force was seen leaving Aus. As it was likely that this force included artillery, the South Africans decided to withdraw and to consolidate the Tschaukaib position. Difficulties in providing water forced the replacement of the mounted rifle regiments with infantry. The Tschaukaib garrison also had to deal with intense heat, prolonged sandstorms, and intermittent air attacks.

Garub was finally occupied, unopposed, on 22 February 1915. To turn it into a base for the attack on Aus, the water holes had to be developed. By 22 March, the daily yield from the Garub wells was 270 000 litres of water and three mounted brigades were finally brought forward to Garub in preparation for the attack. On 26 March, General Louis Botha conferred with Brig-Gen McKenzie at Lüderitz Bay. Operations in the north had yielded documents indicating that the Germans had stripped the southern theatre in order to face the northern thrust from Walvis Bay. On the night of 28 March, the wireless transmitter went silent, further evidence of the imminent abandonment of Aus by the Germans. The last Germans departed on the night of 30 March, when Central Force left Garub. Aus, its formidable defences abandoned, was entered without opposition.

The Germans retreated northwards and the scene was set for a prolonged pursuit. It took nine days before the wells at Aus were able to support Central Force’s mounted troops. On 14 April a flying column was formed, consisting of three brigades of mounted rifles (two regiments per brigade) and one field gun battery. Leaving Aus on 15 April 1915, it covered 185km in four days, the mounted brigades having to move at intervals of a day to conserve water. The column followed the railway line to Kuibis, after which it cut across country to Bethanie and on to Besondermaid, where it surprised a group of six German soldiers. After a six hour rest, the advance continued, Berseba being reached at dawn on 22 April 1915. Here, two German officers and 28 men were rounded up after a chase. An NCO, who managed to escape, reported the presence of South African troops at Berseba, but the Germans were doubtful and a force approaching Berseba was surprised to find that South African troops were indeed in possession. Rifle fire provoked an instant pursuit which, after several hours, resulted in the capture of several prisoners.

At Berseba, the mounted brigades were united and the pursuit continued with the troops on short rations. On reaching Grundorn on 26 April, they found the telegraph line to be intact, enabling the interception of German telephone messages, which revealed that the Germans were unaware of the proximity of the South African flying column and intended leaving Gibeon that night. If the Central Force column moved fast enough, it might trap the German force. Scouts reported that a train was getting up steam in Gibeon Station and that there was much movement of supplies from the village to the station, but the Germans took their time leaving, not realising how close the Central Force was. The attack opened when a party of South African scouts and engineers was sent forward to blow up the railway line to Windhuk. Three mounted rifle regiments, the Umvoti Mounted Rifles, the 2nd Imperial Light Horse and Natal Light Horse, under the command of Col J P Royston, moved in after the demolition team.

Royston’s orders were to cut the German line of retreat, but he made several mistakes in deployment. The most serious of these was that he positioned his force too close to where the railway line had been blown up. A German patrol, sent to investigate the explosion, soon located his force, which was also unwisely deployed parallel to, rather than across, a possible German retreat. Poor reconnaissance on the part of Royston’s force also enabled a German machine gun to wreak havoc on the South African position from a nearby railway culvert. Inexplicably, too, Royston himself then went to the rear to bring up the Umvoti Mounted Rifles. In his absence, the commander of the 2nd ILH gave the order to retreat to the horses. When Royston returned, he ordered a general withdrawal. In the confusion that followed, a squadron of the inexperienced Natal Light Horse, left behind, was forced to surrender shortly after dawn. Royston withdrew his men 4,8km to the east to await daybreak.

The defeat of Royston’s force led the Germans to believe that they had removed the immediate threat to their position at Gibeon. The stocks of captured rifles were smashed and attention was given to the wounded. There were celebrations and a shaking of hands, but these were short-lived because already Brig-Gen McKenzie was beginning his attack from the south. By dawn, McKenzie’s men were closing in on Gibeon Station. A train in the station with steam up was immediately shelled by the 15-pr guns of the 12th Citizen Battery. The train crew surrendered immediately because the train was packed with explosives which, had they been detonated, could have destroyed everything within a range of 0,8km. The capture of these explosives was the first significant South African success during the battle for Gibeon. A running fight ensued when McKenzie tried to pin the Germans with his centre while attempting to outflank them on the left and right. The return of Royston’s force gradually forced the battle to the west. The pace of the action forced the Germans to abandon their artillery and machine guns and, eventually, after losing a quarter of their force, both field guns, and four of their six Maxim machine guns, they made good their escape. The South Africans lost 24 killed and 66 wounded, but recovered the captured men of the Natal Light Horse. The outcome of the action was that it cleared the southern regions of the German forces, preventing the onset of guerrilla operations there or a German threat to the flank of South Africa’s northern thrust.

The northern offensive

In the north, the early German victory at Sandfontein and the armed rebellion in South Africa had caused a delay in the defence of Walvis Bay and the securing of Swakopmund. On 25 December 1914, two infantry brigades (three battalions per brigade), a mounted rifle regiment, and seven field artillery guns, landed at Walvis Bay. Swakopmund was occupied, unopposed, on 3 January 1915. General Louis Botha arrived there on 10 February. On the following day, he assumed command of Northern Force with an additional two mounted brigades and a field gun which allowed the field artillery to be organized into two field batteries, one for each of the mounted brigades. Two more infantry battalions also arrived, and six heavy guns, forming one four-gun battery and a two-gun section. Except for the 1st ILH, Botha’s mounted troops consisted of commandos. On 23 February, having familiarised himself with the terrain and the strength of the German forces, Botha ordered Col P C B Skinner’s infantry and Col Alberts’ mounted brigades to move forward from Swakopmund. Skinner’s force captured Nonidas without incident, but the mounted brigade experienced some losses in a rearguard skirmish after its scouts lost their way, delaying the advance and enabling the Germans to slip away. At Heigamchab, 40km up the Swakop River, two options opened up for Botha: to advance along the Swakop River or along the railway line. He opted for the river route, a decision marked by a good omen - the Swakop River had one of its rare floods. In addition, wireless intercepts revealed that heavy rain had fallen inland and as far south as Keetmanshoop and Aus, raising hopes that there would be grass for the horses of the mounted brigades at Riet. The main difficulty lay in the shortage of transport. To sustain the advance, the daily lift of supplies from Walvis Bay had to be increased, entailing the suspension of either the railway construction or the river advance. Accordingly, Botha halted railway construction from 23 February to 3 March 1915. All mounted troops except the Imperial Light Horse were withdrawn to Walvis Bay so that they could be fed.

Infantry garrisons were in place at Goanikontes, Heigamchab, and Husab, and Skinner’s brigade was covering the construction of the railway line, but the Germans failed to interrupt the South African supply route up the Swakop. This may be attributed to a different approach to the defence of South-West Africa by the more passive Major Victor Francke, who replaced the late Colonel J von Heydebreck, architect of the trap at Sandfontein. The interception of German wireless messages also greatly facilitated Botha’s plans.

By 18 March 1915, the South Africans were ready to advance on Riet and Pforte, positions held by the Germans. The Riet position was strong, the Germans having made good use of the banks of the Swakop River and the Langer Heinrich range of hills. By dawn, 20 March 1915, the South Africans were in position to strike, success depending on the effectiveness of flank attacks. The South African right flank attack stalled because the Langer Heinrich proved to be impassable to horses. The attack on the Pforte position was more successful, Col Alberts launching attacks simultaneously on the railway gap on the South African left and on the nek at the foot of Husab Berg. Artillery fire kept the attack on the railway at bay, but the nek was taken and two commandos were immediately rushed up to consolidate the position and to launch further attacks. Dust and uncertain light played havoc with the effectiveness of the German machine guns and eventually the railway was occupied and the German line of retreat was cut. This forced the Germans to redeploy, ending their artillery fire and thus enabling the commandos to capture part of Pforte Berg. The reserves and the artillery moved through the captured nek and, at 08.30, after two hours of fighting, the German force surrendered. Col Alberts’ men captured 209 Germans and two guns; additional prisoners were taken when a small group at the railway gap surrendered after being subjected to artillery fire.

In the third action of the day, the long outflanking movement by the left wing of the 2nd Mounted Brigade under Col W R Collins led to the cutting of the railway line just west of Jakkalswater and a brief skirmish with the German reserve. Forty-three men, whose horses had been killed by artillery fire, were taken prisoner. The victory at Pforte led directly to the German withdrawal from the Riet position but pursuit was out of the question owing to a lack of water and the spent condition of the South Africans’ horses. On 21 March 1915, the South Africans made a reconnaissance to Modderfontein. The result was the capture of the camp there together with a large quantity of supplies and, most significantly, documents showing that most of the German forces were in the north. Again, logistics prevented pursuit - the expected grass at Riet had failed to materialise and the mounted troops had to be withdrawn to Swakopmund so that the horses could be fed from the ships. The mining of water holes and other places frequented by soldiers added to the delay. An infantry garrison (DLI) replaced the mounted brigades and a commando was placed on reconnaissance duty.

Supplies had to be built up at Riet before an advance could be attempted. In the meantime, the Northern Force was forced to eat the oxen of the heavy artillery. Logistic concerns continued to plague Botha when he ordered the resumption of the advance on 26 April 1915. Some relief came in the form of the arrival at Swakopmund of the Royal Navy’s No 1 Armoured Car Division, the vehicles requiring less water than an equivalent number of mounted riflemen.

On the night 25/26 April 1915, the Germans attacked the railhead at Trekkopies. Out on reconnaissance when a force was detected marching towards his camp, Col Skinner left two troops to shadow the enemy while he returned to camp and ordered the Rhodesian Regiment and two heavy guns to be brought forward from Swakopmund. At 05.45 the Germans blew up the railway line to the north of Skinner’s camp, but failed to cut the South Africans' line of communications. At 07.40, the Germans launched an attack with artillery and mounted infantry, advancing on foot from the north and west, but were repulsed by the infantry and the Royal Navy’s armoured cars. Skinner began a counter-attack at 10.30, but, owing to a lack of artillery, it failed to make much of an impression. The South Africans suffered nine killed and 32 wounded to seven Germans killed, fourteen wounded and thirteen unwounded prisoners left on the battlefield.

The strike from Riet had been entrusted to the 1st and 2nd Mounted Brigades under Brig-Gen C J Brits, and the 3rd and 5th Mounted Brigades under the command of Brig-Gen M W Myburgh. Brits’s force mustered 4 273 rifles and the equivalent of two artillery batteries. Myburgh controlled 4 595 men and two artillery batteries. There was also an infantry brigade available for field operations. The lines of communications were protected by an infantry brigade, two infantry battalions, two squadrons of the Southern Rifles (a dismounted rifle regiment serving in the infantry role), the Royal Navy armoured cars, the Imperial Light Horse, and four guns.

By 28 April 1915, Northern Force’s preparations were complete. Setting its sights on Tsaobis, Gen Myburgh’s force began to advance along the edge of Khomas Highland. General Brits’s objective was Kubas, with support provided by Col Wylie’s infantry brigade. By the following day, Gen Myburgh’s men had taken Kaltenhausen after undertaking a march without much water over heavily-mined terrain. Losses were slight, mainly owing to the alertness of the troops and their bypassing of the narrow parts of the tracks. Water was obtained from the Swakop and grazing at Otjimbingwe, which was reached on 30 April 1915. As the South Africans moved northwards, the Germans retreated north of the Swakopmund-Windhuk railway line, abandoning Windhuk to prevent being caught between the Northern Force and the Southern and Central forces, thus prolonging their campaign. On 12 May, Windhuk surrendered to General Botha, fulfilling the requirements of the urgent Imperial service, but it then became necessary to eliminate the remaining German forces.

Once again, logistic difficulties brought military operations to a halt. For ten days from 5 May 1915, South African units facing the German forces along the Usakos-Okahandja railway suffered severe shortages of rations and other supplies. On 15 May 1915, the railway had progressed sufficiently to resume the supply of the Northern Force. The South Africans were building up strength in preparation for further action when the Germans asked for an armistice to discuss peace terms, proposing that a neutral zone be set up south of 22° latitude, north of which they would retain control. General Botha made it clear that he would only accept total surrender, but the Germans rejected this, believing that they could sustain themselves in the north.
The South Africans then prepared a strike force consisting of the 1st, 2nd, 5th and 6th Mounted Brigades, the right wing of the 3rd Mounted Brigade, and the 1st Infantry Brigade, supported by five field batteries (each comprising four 13-pr quick-firing guns), a battery of 4-inch guns, a battery of 6-inch guns, a battery of 6-inch howitzers, two 12-pr naval guns, and two 5-inch howitzers. Logistic support was provided by 532 wagons and, for the first time in the campaign, units had more than two days’ supplies on hand. By 17 June 1915, the strike force was ready to be deployed.

On the left, at Klein Aus, was Brig-Gen Brits’s force (Colonel-Commandant L A S Lemmer’s 1st Mounted Brigade). Brig-Gen Lukin’s 6th Mounted Brigade was at Usakos and Col P S Beves’ 1st Infantry Brigade was at Erongo. On Lukin's right, Brig-Gen H W N (Manie) Botha's 5th Mounted Brigade was based on Johann Albrecht’s Hohe and Brig-Gen Myburgh’s command (Colonel-Commandant J J Alberts’ 2nd Mounted Brigade and Colonel-Commandant Jordaan’s right wing of the 3rd Mounted Brigade) held positions between Wilhelmstal and Okasise.

The advance began on 20 July 1915, Myburgh’s command embarking on a long outflanking drive which would take them past the Waterberg, through Grootfontein, and finally to Tsumeb, effectively preventing a German retreat north of Khorab. Lukin’s command moved up the railway line to attack the Germans at Kalkveld, but before they reached this position, the Germans had retreated. Meanwhile, Brig-Gen Brits moved his brigade from Otjiwarongo to Etosha Pan and then turned south-east to prevent a German retreat in that direction. The pursuit along the railway continued and on 1 July 1915, the South Africans caught up with the Germans at Otavi before they could properly deploy their 3 400 men, 36 guns and 22 machine guns against 3 200 South Africans and eight guns. Four men were killed and seven wounded before the South Africans forced the Germans to abandon Otavi and to retreat to Khorab. The South Africans then paused to recover their strength.

On 3 July 1915 an emissary arrived from the German governor, bringing a proposal that the German forces and their equipment be interned until the end of the war. This was flatly rejected by General Botha, who immediately set about continuing his preparations to advance, South African aircraft monitoring the German position at Khorab. A second emissary from the German governor then arrived, asking for South Africa’s terms for a cessation of hostilities and requesting a meeting. General Botha agreed to this and the meeting was conducted at Kilometre 500 at 10.00 on 6 July1915. General Botha’s terms were that regular officers would be released on parole, other ranks would be interned, and reservists would be allowed to return home. All machine guns, artillery, stores and transport, however, were to be handed over. The Germans had three options: to surrender, to resume fighting to the end, or to resort to guerrilla warfare. They were very unhappy about handing over their artillery and requested an extension of time. Eventually, however, Botha lost patience and informed them that unless the terms were accepted by 02.00 on 9 July 1915, fighting would resume. Acceptance of the terms was received at 02.30 and at 10.00 the Germans formally surrendered.

South Africa celebrated wildly. The British Imperial Forces in France cheered the victory. However, in a war marked by blunder and butchery, the low casualties of a campaign of manoeuvre would ensure that the victory would be forgotten, and the triumph of the Pact Government in South Africa in 1924 would consign the first permanent Allied victory of the First World War to virtual oblivion.

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Niet nader genoemde werken



Opkuis van hulzen




Plantage eigenaars nabij de Kilimanjaro



In het lazarett



De Landsturm
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Observatiepost



Onderstand met kanon



Voorpost



Plaatselijke woning



Askari’s bij het oefenschieten
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Plaatselijk hospitaal



Artillerie



Idem






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Askari kompagnie





Schutztruppe





Landsturm ?
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Schutztruppen





Bismarckplatz



Schutztruppe



Idem



Zelfgebouwd watervliegtuig ???
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Musiktruppe
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Het vernielde gouverneurspaleis








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Een heel zwaar verlies, de beschadigde brouwerij !
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Beschadigde gouverneursvilla



Idem



Beschadigingen in burelen



Idem
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Nog meer vernielingen…
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Wat overbleef van het interieur van de gouverneursvilla…
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Tentenkamp



Brits massagraf





Askari’s aan het kaarten


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Plaatselijke krijgers





Askari legerplaats




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Massagraf



Begraafplaats



Tijd voor de krant bij de Askari’s



Askari krijger



Kamp
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Massai





Schutztruppen bij de schietoefening



Taveta in Brits Oost-Afrika
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Idem



Apenbroodboom



Duitse graven



Bouw van loopgraven en versterkingen
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Askari in gevecht



En op mars…



En opnieuw in gevecht !


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.... blauwe/grijze pijlen De Duitsers

uit deel III les operations Militaires
van La Belgique et la Guerre.

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BerichtGeplaatst: 08 Nov 2010 23:17    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

The Battle of Tanga, November 1914

At the end of October 1914, two months after the outbreak of the First World War, the overall commander of the German Schutztruppe, General (actually only of the rank of “Oberstleutnant”) von Lettow-Vorbeck travelled to Tanga to inspect the defense preparations. In his memories he mentiones that captured English newspapers announcing the arrival of a 10.000 men strong expeditionary force from India had convinced him that a British landing in force at Tanga was very probable. He instructed Hauptmann Adler of the 17th Feldkompagnie and the representative of the civil authority, Bezirksamtmann Auracher, to prepare the defenses and returned then to Neumoschi to assemble more troops for the coming battle of Tanga. At that time, in spite of minor successes in the Kilimandjaro district, it seemed very unlikely that a prolonged resistance could be build up in East Africa, due to the small numbers of the Schutztruppe and the impossibility to keep open the supply lines to Germany.

Drawing by Lettow-Vorbeck showing the main settlements, roads and railways in the northeastern part of German East Africa


Arrival of the landing force:

On 2nd November the British cruiser Fox arrived at Tanga, ahead of the the main force of 14 troop transports , demanding formally the surrender of the town. Bezirksamtmann Auracher led the negotiations with the prime objective of gaining time. The Expeditionary force consisted of the 27th Bangalore Brigade (one British and three Indian battalions) under Brigadier General Richard Wapshare and the Imperial Service Brigade under Brigadier General Seymour Hulbert Sheppard, altogether 8000 troops under the overall command of Arthur Edward Aitken. As the Indian troops assigned to the landing force were poorly trained and had suffered much during the voyage from Bombay on crowded ships and under seasickness, the strongest fighting unit with the expeditionary force was the British 2nd Battalion of the North Lancashire Regiment.

German troop movements prior to the battle:

Two companies under Hauptmann Baumstark were moved to Tanga immediately from their position in the north of the town. Two companies from Taveta and the Kilimandjaro district (made up entirely from European troops) were moved together with Askari companies to Neu-Moshi. Two lorries helped to move the troops from Taveta. Eight trains were available on the northern “Usambara” railway to transport these troops without further delay 300 kilometers to the west, directly into the battlezone in Tanga (as the railway was narrow gauge, each of the trains only had the capacity to transport one company). Altogether five and a half companies were moved by rail, together with smaller units, during the 2nd and 3rd November.

General von Lettow-Vorbeck arrived with his staff in Korogwe (first railway station north of Tanga) and received word of the landings and the first firefights. Patrols had fought skirmish actions at Ras Kazone in the evening of 2nd November. During the first night English boats had checked the harbour for mines (there were none) and one of the boats had been fired at by a German machinegun nearby the Hospital. The 17th Feldkompagnie had been attacked on 3rd November holding it’s position east of Tanga, reinforced by European troops from Tanga and the town’s Polizeiaskaris under Oberleutnant Auracher. When the first reinforcements arrived by rail (one and a half company), they were counterattacking the British left flank.

Lettow-Vorbeck moved to a position 6 kilometers east of Tanga and met Hauptmann Baumstark in order to get a clearer picture of the situation. Baumstark had retreated in the evening of 3rd November from Tanga with his two companies taking also the 17th company (that had hold the ground against the first British attack) with him, as he believed that they would not be able to repulse a new attack by the superior enemy forces. Only small patrols had been left in the town of Tanga. Lettow-Vorbeck decided to recoinnoitre Tanga immediately. Together with Hauptmann von Hammerstein and Dr. Lessel, he went by bicycle to the railway station in the center of Tanga.

At a post of the 6th Feldkompagnie he didn’t get the desired information and so he patrolled the empty streets at night by himself. He soon reached the harbour and could see the British transport ships only 400 meters away. The enemy obviously had made no attempt to occupy the town. In the moonlight the ships would have been perfect targets and Lettow-Vorbeck regretted no to have his two C73 fieldguns available at that moment. They continued to the Hospital building where they left their bicycles and walked to the beach, in front of one of the British warships. On their way back to the hospital they were called by an Indian sentry, which did not fire, in spite of Lettow-Vorbeck answering the call with the German password “Stambuli”. Had the sentry fired, perhaps the outcome of the forthcoming battle the next day would have been very different.

Themain battle commences:

Early on the next morning, 4th November, the 6th Feldkompagnie fought skirmish actions between Tanga and the landing zone at Ras Kazone. Lettow-Vorbeck issued an order to Hauptmann Baumstark to move all available troops to the railway station in the center of Tanga. He realized that they would be at least partly protected against naval artillery by the houses of the European settlement stretching between the railway station and the harbour to the north .Ludwig Deppe, medical staff officer at the Hospital building, counted one cruiser and nine transport ships in the harbour at that moment.

View on the harbour of Tanga with Ras Kazone in the background.


The flat area towards Ras Kazone and also the southern part of Tanga were characterized by dense coconut and rubber plantations, enclosed by hedges. As Lettow-Vorbeck feared additional landings further south, he concentrated his reserves at his right (southern) flank, were they could also be used for a counterattack should the main battle take place between Tanga and Ras Kazone.


Bucht= bay, Kreuzer= cruiser, Landungsplatz= landing site, Deutscher Anmarsch= German advance route, Eur.Stadt/Europäerstadt= European settlement, Bhf./Bahnhof= railway station, später eintreffend= arriving later.

Lettow-Vorbeck describes the available forces as follows:

6th Feldkompagnie (“field company”): A peacetime formation that had received intensive training on machinegun tactics in Udjidi. It was ordered to defend the western side of the town. On the right rear of the beforementioned unit, the 16th and 17th Feldkompagnie under Hauptmann Baumstark were positioned. They had been formed from police units and other small detachments. Further right were three companies with high combat value: the 7th and 8th Schützenkompanie (entirely consisting of European troops), together with three machineguns, and the askaris of the veteran 13th Feldkompagnie with 4 machineguns. These troops formed a reserve under command of Lettow-Vorebeck himself.

The staff of Lettow-Vorbeck took up position at the street Tanga-Pangani, connecting to the telegraph line in order to improve communicaction. The 4th and 9th Feldkompagnie and two C73 fieldguns had not yet arrived and the exact time of arrival was still unclear. At the beginning of the war, the field companies usually consisted of 16 Europeans, 160 Askaris, up to 250 porters and 2 machineguns.

The situation remained unchanged until the afternoon. The German advance posts observed the enemy and estimated the strenght of the landing British and Indian troops. Before noon Hauptmann Prince had been ordered to move into Tanga with the two European (“Schützen-”) companies to back up the 6th (“Feld-”) company.

The battle finally started as late as 3 p.m. The fighting was very intense at the eastern outskirts of Tanga where the 6th Feldkompagnie was forced to retraet by the British North Lancashire regiment. The enemy reached the railway station and occupied part of the town when Hauptmann von Prince assembled the remnants of the 6th Feldkompagnie and counterattacked using also the two European companies. A tough street fighting started as the newly arrived German companies tried to clear house by house of the enemy.

Meanwhile Hauptmann Baumstark had engaged the enemy south from Tanga, but his askaris started to retreat after approximately one hour of firefights. Used to fight tribal warriors, they had never been confronted with an enemy with such a degree of firepower.

Some of Lettow-Vorbecks staff officers intervened immediately to stem themselves against the retreat. Hauptmann von Hammerstein is mentioned furiously throwing an empty wine bottle at retreating German askaris, while others tried to appeal to the pride of the askaris or exposed themselves to enemy fire to show them that the enemy fire was not as deadly and accurate as they believed.

The decisive moment, 4th November, 04:30 p.m.:

Lettow-Vorbeck realized that the situation had become critical and that the front would not hold much longer against the attacks of superior numbers. At the harbour the Kashmiri rifles’ battalion, supported by naval artillery, was about to outflank the German defenses. Lettow-Vorbeck threw the 13th Feldkompagnie into the battle. The company immediately performed a bayonet charge against the left flank of the Lancashire regiment, supported by the continuos fire of four machineguns.

The 4th Feldkompagnie also arrived moments after and was immediately used to support the 13th Feldkompagnie on it’s left side. Witnessing the successful advance, the other units along the frontline enthusiastically joined the attack rooting the British and Indian troops in close combat in the plantations. The machineguns were used against the retreating troops causing numerous casualties. It was already getting dark and the situation became quite confused. Unexpectedly, the German troops were supported by a new ally: swarms of bees attacked when their hives were battered by machinegun bullets. Ludwig Deppe, at the Hospital building, now in the middle of the battlefield, looking after the wounded of both sides, mentiones that the firing ceased at about 18:30pm.

Failed attempt to assemble troops for a night attack:

General von Lettow-Vorbeck moved to the left German flank in an attempt to retake direct command of at least part of the troops. He wanted to attack again at night, making full use of the confusion on the enemy side. Besides, at night the cruisers would not have been able to use their artillery efficiently. He assembled and regrouped the troops again at the railway station. Some of them had already been on the way back to their camps west of Tanga as a result of misunderstandings. Valuable time had been lost and so the troops didn’t occupy their positions at the eastern outskirts of Tanga again until the early morning of 5th November.

The day after, 5th November:

Lettow-Vorbeck didn’t order an overall assault against the enemy troops, which were already boarding their ships, as he feared the artillery of the British warships. Nevertheless, strong German patrols and units up to company strenght charged again and caused additional casualties, firing also at the transport ships with machineguns. On occasions they used the two C73 fieldguns against the ships, even though they had to change position many times as the smoke of their shots attracted naval gunfire almost immediately.
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BerichtGeplaatst: 08 Nov 2010 23:24    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Idealized illustration showing a fieldgun engaging troop transports during the battle of Tanga.

Although Lettow-Vorbeck estimated that the casualties inflicted on the enemy could mount to 800 dead, he didn’t fully realize that the battle had concluded until the evening of 5th November, when Captain Meinertzhagen, intelligence officer to Aitken, approached the German lines at the Hospital building to negotiate the exchange of the wounded. The interrogation of captured British officers supported the idea that the British-Indian expeditionary force was not in a position to renew the attack on Tanga. The casualties of the Schutztruppe amounted to 16 Germans (Hauptmann von Prince among them), 35 askaris and 13 machinegun carriers dead. British casualties, wounded or dead, totalled 817 (20 officers and 340 other ranks killed).


Schutztruppe soldiers posing with a captured British flag in front of the casino of Tanga.

Indian prisoners of war after the battle


Kaiser Wilhelm II posing in one of his favourite uniforms.

“Grosses Hauptquartier, 18.Januar 1915. Ihre Meldung von dem schönen Sieg bei Tanga in Ostafrika hat mich hoch erfreut. Ich spreche Ihnen zu dieser Ruhmestat unserer Schutztruppe meinen herzlichsten Glückwunsch aus. Übermitteln sie meine Anerkennung an die braven Männer, die fern von der Heimat vierfache Überlegenheit entscheidend geschlagen haben zur Ehre des deutschen Namens. Das Vaterland ist stolz auf diese Söhne. Wilhelm.I.R.”

(“Overall head quarter, 15th January 1915. I’m pleased about your message regarding the fine victory at Tanga, East Africa. My congratulations for this deed of arms by our Schutztruppe. Please communicate my respect to these men, which contributed to the honour of Germany by winning a decisive victory, far away from their homes, against an enemy four times their number. The fatherland is proud of these sons.”)



Staff car used by Lettow-Vorbeck until 1916.



General von Lettow-Vorbeck on horseback in 1914.


Main railway station at Tanga.


Kaiserstrasse.


Marktstrasse.


Bezirksamtstrasse.

The information for this short article mainly derives from the following three sources:

General von Lettow-Vorbeck: Meine Erinnerungen aus Ostafrika, Leipzig 1920

Ludwig Deppe: Mit Lettow-Vorbeck durch Afrika, Berlin 1921

Byron Farwell: The Great War in Africa, New York 1989

As the Battle of Tanga is one of the few well documented battles of the Graet War in Africa, I would appreciate to hear from anybody having access to additional sources in order to complete the information of the present article, that does not pretend to give more than a short summary.


(c) http://warandgame.com/2010/03/03/the-battle-of-tanga-november-1914/
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BerichtGeplaatst: 22 Aug 2011 8:56    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Salaita Hills:1st World War crucial battle field

http://www.ntv.co.ke
Residents are pushing for the gazettement of several locations as national heritage sites. The Salaita Hills served as a crucial battle field during the First World War and was the scene of the slaughter of hundreds of British soldiers. Residents say the scars of war that still dot the land could be a major tourist attraction. NTV's Pamela Asigi went up the Salaita Hills, and came down with this 95-year-old story.

http://youtu.be/eSbB4R-ESvo
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BerichtGeplaatst: 22 Aug 2011 8:57    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

AMMUNITION FOUND AT WORLD WAR ONE BATTLE SITES IN TAITA TAVETA AR
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BerichtGeplaatst: 22 Aug 2011 8:59    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

OLD PHOTOGRAPHS FROM WORLD WAR ONE IN KENYA
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BerichtGeplaatst: 22 Aug 2011 9:00    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

TAVETA WORLD WAR ONE CEMETERY

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BerichtGeplaatst: 16 Okt 2012 9:16    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Yvonne @ 13 Aug 2011 10:32 schreef:
German East Africa


© Imperial War Museum


Quote:
German East Africa comprised the territory occupied today by Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania. Although the hit-and-run campaign conducted there by Colonel (later General) Paul von Lettow Vorbeck ended in his surrender to the Allies on 25 November 1918, this clever bush strategist and his overall total of 14,000 men had managed to tie up, pin down, evade and exasperate an Allied force of some 373,000 men for four long years. Once von Lettow Vorbeck had beaten off an initial landing by British and Indian forces at the beginning of November 1914, he stayed brilliantly on the run. Captured supplies and ammunition maintained his small force - never more than 4,000 at any one time, including a couple of hundred white German officers. German settlers came to join him from time to time, too.


Lees verder:
http://www.mgtrust.org/gea.htm

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BerichtGeplaatst: 19 Nov 2012 13:52    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Battle at Tanga - One of the most notable failures in British Military History


05/11/20120
Quote:
Recorded in the British Official History of the War as “one of the most notable failures in British military history" the Invasion of Tanga was a complete disaster from the start.

Following briefings in Mombasa, the fleet proceeded southwards at a speed of eight knots towards Tanga and its rendezvous with fate. This armada of ships was the largest British amphibious invasion force ever assembled. The force was dispatched in a convoy of 46 ships including 25 ships destined for Europe, escorted by the obsolete 1898 battleship HMS Goliath and two cruisers. They all steamed off across the Indian Ocean from Bombay, separating in mid ocean, with seven ships heading for Mosul in the Persian Gulf and 14 for Mombasa and Tanga in perfect weather.

Few lessons were learned from the great military catastrophe that was about to occur. The Gallipoli landings followed a few months later, in April 1915, with frighteningly similar results. Sir Winston Churchill, as First Lord of the Admiralty, was to suffer the indignity of being removed from his post by the War Cabinet partly as a result of these two badly executed fiascos.

General Aitken’s sea-borne forces had spent three or four weeks, some of them even longer, rolling around the Indian Ocean in overcrowded conditions and would, in any other situation, have been considered unfit for active duty. Some had been on board for as long as a month, and as conditions were so crowded there was little room for them to exercise anywhere on deck. Only once the convoy had sailed out of Bombay were they issued with new rifles, the short Lee Enfield ·303, replacing their obsolete long MLE rifles. Most of the troops had never seen the new rifles before – they operated with a completely different bolt mechanism and had a different sighting configuration – and they had no opportunity to practise with them until they actually went into action.

Off Tanga the fleet stood to for a day in full view of the town while the captain of the Fox notified the mayor that Great Britain did not acknowledge the treaty that had recently been signed between them. When the order came the troops were required to disembark from lighters in full view of the enemy. They found themselves neck-deep in water and having to wade unsteadily for the shore laden with all their heavy equipment, then clamber up a steep 30-foot embankment and prepare to fight an unknown enemy. Most of them had no idea where they were.

he British invaders were quickly repulsed by a much smaller contingent of Germans and their Schutztruppe, who were backed up by troops rushed down the Usambara railway line from Moshi and the Kilimanjaro region. Their departure left Taveta and Moshi areas virtually undefended, an opportunity that the British intelligence failed to grasp due to their poor networking.
The British retreat to the beachhead led to a complete rout, when 1,250 German troops and several swarms of bees sent nearly 8,000 troops back in panic. This defeat has gone down in British military annals as one of the most disastrous military actions ever undertaken and has since been well documented by Ross Anderson in The Battle for Tanga. The British Army still had much to learn about amphibious warfare.

The evacuation of Tanga was disorganized and enabled the Germans to recover an enormous amount of much needed war materiel and spammer. Von Lettow-Vorbeck acquired 455 British ·303 rifles – enough modern rifles to replace many of the antique weapons of several field companies; 16 machine guns; over 600,000 rounds of ammunition; field telephone equipment, medical supplies, blankets and other much needed resources that were shared out to all the Schutztruppe companies that had participated.

In addition to the spammer, the British left behind over 300 casualties who were tended to in the German hospital at Tanga; many of those who were fit enough to move were paroled a couple of days later as part of an amnesty organized by the British Army Medical Corps. The negotiations were led by Hauptmann H.F. von Hammerstein-Gesmold, with Meinertzhagen selected to conduct the mission to remove the British dead and wounded from the battlefield back to their ships.

Very little of this fiasco was reported until some fifty years after the event. A brief mention did appear tucked away in a corner in the East African Standard of 2 January 1915, stating that British troops had suffered a reverse at a railhead in German East Africa. The Leader of East Africa also published a short column without alluding to any details. There were other reports of the operation in the local press before and even during the actual Tangainvasion, but they were discontinued after the editors were cautioned about defying the rules of wartime censorship and martial law requirements. This was to be the start of a long war of words between the various civilian news interests and those of the military in the country. Even after the war ended, muted terms were used in any mention of the Tanga invasion in British military circles. It was only in 1966 that sensitive files on the First World War, including the Tanga expedition, became generally available in the public domain, and the finer details emerged from meticulously kept records of the Tanga operation.


Battle at Tanga
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BerichtGeplaatst: 07 Aug 2014 10:14    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Quote:
The occupation of the German colony of Togoland (now Togo) began on 7 August 1914 when a detachment of the Gold Coast Regiment landed at Lome, supported from the north by French troops. There was fighting at Agbeluvoe and at Khra (or Chra) before the German forces surrendered on 26 August at Amuchu, near Kamina.

http://gweaa.com/?page_id=2016
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BerichtGeplaatst: 07 Aug 2014 10:16    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Anglo-French offensive preparations
On 5 August 1914, a day after Britain declared war on Germany, the Allies cut the German sea cables between Monrovia and Tenerife, leaving the radio station at Kamina the only connexion between the colony and Germany.[9] The same day the acting-Governor of Togoland, Major von Döring sent a telegram to Robertson proposing neutrality, in accordance with articles X and XI of the Congo Act, which stated that colonies in the Congo Basin were to remain neutral in the event of a conflict in Europe.[10] Von Döring also appealed for neutrality because of the economic interdependence of the west African colonies and their common interest in dominating local populations.[11] On 6 August, the Cabinet in London refused the offer of neutrality and Bryant on his own initiative, after hearing that the French in Dahomey wished to co-operate, sent Captain Barker and the District Commissioner of Keta to von Döring, with a demand the surrender of the colony and gave 24-hours to reply. Next morning the British intercepted a wireless message from von Döring that he was withdrawing from the coast to Kamina and that Lomé would be surrendered if attacked.[12] A similar proposal for neutrality from von Döring had been received by the Governor of Dahomey, who took it as a declaration of war and ordered an invasion according to a plan to seize Lomé and the coast, which had been drafted in ignorance of the wireless station at Kamina, only 60 kilometres (37 mi) from the Dahomey border.



Invasion[
Capture of Lomé


Togoland, 1914

Late on 6 August French police occupied customs posts near Athieme and next day Major Maroix, the commander of French military forces in Dahomey ordered the capture of Agbanake and Aneho. Agbanake was occupied late on 7 August, the Mono river was crossed and a column under Captain Marchand took Aneho early on 8 August; both moves were unopposed and local civilians helped to see off the Germans, by burning down the Government House at Sebe. The c. 460 colonists and Askaris retreated inland, impressing civilians and calling up reservists as they moved north.[9] Repairs began on the Aneho–Lomé railway and the French advanced to Porto Seguro and Togo, before stopping the advance once it was clear that Lomé had been surrendered to British forces.[14] The British invasion began late on 7 August and the British emissaries returned to Lomé by lorry, to find that the Germans had left for Kamina and given a Herr Clausnitzer discretion to surrender the colony up to Chra, 120 kilometres (75 mi) inland, to prevent a naval bombardment of Lomé. On 8 August the emissaries took command of fourteen British soldiers and police from Aflao; a telegraph operator arrived by bicycle and repaired the line to Keta and Accra.[14]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Togoland_Campaign
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BerichtGeplaatst: 23 Sep 2016 14:36    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Generaal Tombeur en de Slag bij Tabora

https://youtu.be/e6jQEns9x4w
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BerichtGeplaatst: 23 Sep 2016 16:11    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

leuk filmpje

Wel vertonen ze op een bepaald ogenblik Armand Huyghé de Mahenge ipv Charles Tombeur de Tabora!!!!! Confused

Bij de redactie ook een filmpje van Cinematek

http://deredactie.be/cm/vrtnieuws/14-18/1.2769349 Smile
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