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Newspaper Page Text
TURPINITE, DREADED DE A T H - DEALJNG'j
SECRET, IS A MYTH!
, BY MARY BOYLE O'REILLY.
Paris. "Turpinite, 'the world's
worst explosive,' 'France's death
dealing secret,' is a myth," said His
Excellency, Mons. 'Millerand, the
French minister of war, and raised
his handsome gray head to glance at
the war map of La Patrie, along
whose northern frontier a line of tiny
tricolors blocked an invading line of
small, black flags.
To see Mons. Millerand is to rec
ognize him as a strong man in the
s.Kv-Vc v x i
patriotic cabinet of enemies who have
forgotten all differences in their de
termination to save France. Over and
over again at the tense times when
foreign strife seemed inevitable Mons.
Millerand has been recalled to the
ministry of war. In the prime of life,
still a poor man, always ready to
fall from power for principle, he has
long been an upholder of compulsory
military service for Frenchmen.
His Excellency received me at the
ministry at 8 o'clock in the evening.
He had reached his desk twelve hours ,
earlier. His dinner tray, covered with, j
simple food, still waited on a side
table. Soldiers, in service-stained i
uniform, came and went. One sub
mitted the latest communication
from the front.
"Mon Dieu, this is awful. Think of
the poor women," sighed the minis
ter of war, and courteously handed
me the paper. A grim dispatch an
nounced the annihilation of a Prus
sian corps de guarde only 100 men
"Will Your Excellency be good
enough to speak of turpinite, until
lately France's, great military se
cret?" The tired minister smiled,
"Turpinite, the 'world's worst ex
plosive,' 'France's death-dealing se
cret,' is a myth. Mons. Turpin, the
inventor of melinite and lyddite, did
invent turpinite in 1912. He and his
assistants are said to have worked
under lock and key in a factory near
Paris, where they assembled the parts
of turpinite bombs manufactured In
diffeernt workshops. This is possible.
"Many unique men are over-susceptible,
prone to nurse grievances,
and to become suspicious. Enough.
It is claimed that the death-dealing
fumes generated by the explosion of
a 56-pound shell paralyze certain or
gans of the body and cause Instan
taneous and painless death to every
living thing within a radius of four
hundred square yards.
"Whole regiments of German in
fantry are said to have been found -petrified
by this lethal gas, still
standing in their trenches, dead
hands grasping their rifles, glazed -eyes
still at the sights. Were these?
claims true the appalling new "explo
sive would be the most awful engine
of destruction ever known to man, a
hail of hell capable of instantly ex
terminating the people of a city.
"Attendee. It is claimed that the-