On the other hand, a British machine unfortunately was brought down over Lille by the enemy’s anti-aircraft guns, but it is hoped that the aviator escaped.
In regard to the German allegation, that the British used gas in their attacks on Hill 60, the Eyewitness says:
No asphyxiating gases have been employed by us at any time, nor have they yet been brought into play by us.
[From Punch, May 5, 1915.]
When you observed how brightly
Inspired the yearning heart of Youth;
How from their lips, like Pilsen’s foaming pewters,
It sucked the fount of German Truth;
There, in your Kaiserlich laboratory,
“We, too,” you said, “will find a task to do,
And so contribute something to the glory
Of God and William Two.
“Bring forth the stink-pots.
Such a foul aroma
By arts divine shall be evoked
As will to leeward cause a state of coma
And leave the enemy blind and choked;
By gifts of culture we will work such ravages
With our superbly patriotic smells
As would confound with shame those half-baked savages,
The poisoners of wells.”
Good! You have more than matched
the rival pastors
That tute a credulous Fatherland;
And we admit that you are proved our masters
When there is dirty work in hand;
But in your lore I notice one hiatus:
Your Kaiser’s scutcheon with its hideous blot—
You’ve no corrosive in your apparatus
Can out that damned spot!
Fighting of the Second Week in May on French and Russian Fronts.
[By a Military Expert of THE NEW YORK TIMES.]
The sinking of the Lusitania has, for the week ended May 15, so completely absorbed the attention of the press and the interest of the public that the military operations themselves have not received the notice that otherwise would have been awarded them. The sinking of this ship, with the delicate diplomatic situation between Germany and the United States which the act brought about, is not a military or naval operation as such, and comments on it have no place in this column. At the same time there is an indirect effect of the drowning of hundreds of British citizens which will have a very direct bearing on Britain’s military strength and policy.
The British public is notably hard to stir, are slow to act, and almost always underrate their adversary. In almost every war, from 1775 down to and including the South African war, England, with a self-assurance that could only be based on ignorance of true conditions, has started with only a small force, and it has been only when this force has been defeated and used up that the realization of the true needs of the situation has dawned. Then, and then only, has recruiting been possible at a pace commensurate with the necessity.