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New-York tribune. [volume] (New York [N.Y.]) 1866-1924, May 29, 1918, Image 2

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The Great War-1395th Day
up, and will be thrown in ae the oc
??asion warrant?.
Allies Counter Attack
On the northern front, southeast
of Locre, the French and British
counter attacked in great force to-?
day, winning back the ground on the
lower slopes of Mount Kemmel that
they lost in the first onrush of the
Germans in that sector yesterday.
Terrific artillery fire ? along the
whole West front marked the sec?
ond day of the new drive. When
his attempts to force the Allied posi?
tions before Ypres proved ftuitlcss,
Ludondorff turned all attention to
the southern front. His attack there
was launched between Vauxaillon
and Brimont, three German armies
being employed. On the German
right was the army of von Hutier;
then came von Boehm and von
Below. The enemy's entire army has
not been engaged thus far.
Facing von Hutier and von
Boehm were the French, while von
Below had the job of forcing back
the British in their fifteen-mile sec?
tor from Craonelle to Bemncricourt.
British Fall Back ?
Following the launching of the
attack, the British centre and left
began to fall back according to a
1,rearranged plan, keeping in touch
with the French on their left. They
made a stand in the second line of
?lefences, but the Germans came on
furiously, and when the French,
who had evacuated Terny, Sorny,
Vregny, Fort Conde and Cond?-sur
Aisne, withdrew behind the river,
the British divisions also crossed.
At nightfall of the 25th the Ger?
mans, who had been using tanks,
i'rmored motor cars, light field ar?
tillery and every manner of weapon,
had penetrated at several points to
the southern side of the river. They
had advanced approximately four
miles along a front well over thirty
miles wide.
Foe Paid Heavy Toll
Most of the ground won by
Nivelle in April of last year was re?
covered. The retirement of the
Allies, however, had been carried
out in an orderly manner and heavy
toll had been exacted of the enemy.
During the night the battle raged
under a fairly bright moon with
unabated intensity. Daybreak found
the Allied armies still in alignment,
with the struggle continuing fiercely
down the same valley of the Aisjne
which had already been the scene
of many bloody encounters in this
Fresh divisions were continually
hurled into the fray by Ludendorff,
and the same, so-called leapfrog
tactics, which were used so success?
fully on the plains of Picardy were
again employed.
Strike for Vesle Crossing
The Germans succeeded in get?
ting a considerable number of their
forces across the Aisne, between
Vailly and Berry-au-Bac, in the sec?
tor held by the British, and a big
battle developed between the Aisne
and the Vesle rivers, which paral?
lels it.
A high plateau rises south of the
Vesle, and here General Foch says
the Allied reserves are being con?
centrated. The Vesle River runs
through a deep valley, with hills
rising from 500 to 600 feet on each
side. Those on the southern side
Overlook the country where the gi?
gantic struggle is being waged.
Early communiqu?s to-day were
extremely indefinite, especially those
of the French. These said that the
Allied troops "are facing an enemy
very superior in numbers."
As Ha ig has stated that four B-rit
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ish divisions aro engaged on prac?
tically half the front, it is easy to
calculate that the Allies arc defend?
ing the battlefront with some ten
divisions at most, while probably the
enemy is employing at least thirty
five divisions. The 21st, the 25th
and the 50th British divisions, which
are mentioned by Haig, saw ter?
rific fighting on the Armenti?re3
front in April.
The 25th and the 50th divisions
fought with the Portuguese when the
second German blow fell, while the
2l8t was cut up badly during t'v?
struggles around Neuve Eglise.
All reports show that the British
"Tommies" fought gallantly. For
two hours before the attack, the
Allied line3 were drenched with gas
shells, followed by a short bombard?
ment With high explosives.
Veterans Fought Stubbornly
Four British divisions, the 25th.
the 50th, the 8th and the 21st, in?
trusted with the defence of the bend?
ing line astride the Aisne River, snp
fered heavy punishment from the
outset, but the British right held
stubbornly throughout the attack.
The "Tommies" fought as though
they were tackling the enemy for the
first time in many months instead of
for the third time in a few weeks.
The enemy has moved nearer
Paris, but he still has a long journey
to travel. Ludendorff evidently is
planning more to crush the Allies
than to win territory, but nothing
would please the Crown Prince so
much as to lead his army through
the gates of Paris.
Whether the Germans can turn,
victory will depend upon the strength
of Foch's reserves now going into
battle. Experience has shown that
the momentum gained in the initial
attacks often carry the army for?
ward several days.
Seek to Exhaust Foch
The attack in Flanders is on a
comparatively small scale, with only
a few divisions striving to turn <
Ypres and the chain of hills running ?
West from Kemmel. This northern
battle may be extended still further
to the north to include the Belgian
front, although evidently Ludendorff
is not ready to strike the real blow
Ludendorff has aimed constantly
to exhaust Foch's army and the re?
serves. The long range bombard?
ment and air raid against Taris are
all part of the general enemy move?
ment to demoralize the French and
affect Foch's distribution of troops.
Fortunately for the Allies, Foch is a
cool general with plenty of confi?
British Divisions
Facing Teuton Hordes
Have Proved Bravery
(By The Associated Press)
FRANCE, May 28.?With the defeat by
the Americans near Montdidier and by
the British and French east of Dicke
busch Lake, the Germans again have
recorded bad failure in these regions
for their arms. Not only this, but a
long list of dead and wounded must be
added to their already heavy casualties.
The main interest of the fighting
men on this front naturally is centred
for the moment on the German drive
against the British and French in the
Aisne region. Those British divisions
mentioned in to-day's official communi?
cation as being in tho line of attack?
the 8th, 50th; 25th and 21st?have back j
of them as fine a record for bravery
as any in the army. The 25th, 21st and
50th all did work that- stood out in the
fighting in Flanders in April and were
sent to the Lys front, where they held
up the enemy by dogged resistance at
Estaires and Merville. The enemy ad?
vance was checked by the fine work of
this unit. The 8th showed exceptional
gallantry in the first day's attack in
the region of the Somme and went I
throu?h some of the hardest fighting
at that time.
During the latter part of March, after
the great offensive began, the 21st Di?
vision maintained its position at
Epehy against numerous furious as?
saults, and withdrew only when the
situation on its flank became threaten?
ing. The intrepid men of this division
inflicted great losses on the enemy at
that time.
The 25th Division was sent into bat?
tle in the neighborhood of the Ba
paume-Cambrai Road during these first
bitter days and hung on in the face of
constant attacks. The 50th Division
had a week of continuous fighting
south of the Sommo as the Germans
swept forward. Thus they have jumped
from one big battle into another fierce
British Confident
Reorganized Allies
Will Stop Boche
LONDON, May 28.?The British pub?
lic received the news of the resumption
? of the German offensive with less
! manifestations ' of anxiety than were
| observable daring the critical days last
March. At that ?time the Germans
?prang a surprise, as the British peo?
ple did not expect the Allied line to
fall back. On the present occasion,
however, the much advertis?d resump?
tion of th? German onslaught found the
public prepared. Furthermore, the at?
tack comes under somewhat changed
conditions, such as the unified com
m?"?. Rnd now troop* dispositions,
which give tho people here greater
confidence in the final outcome of the
gigantic struggle.
The crowds which thronged the
streets, tho parks and other public
places eagerly read the latest report?
from the battlefront, and the first edi?
tion! of the afternoon newspapers,
:Acht*.*P??.?.r*'**' ?bortly after midday
WltAFi?T5,Mlir,,nBl Hft'ff'8 office! dis
patcn, the longest in many weeks, were
snatched up quickly everywhere, and
some persons stood in the mtddia of
tue ?treet at the imminent riak of be?
ing run over while they scanned the
Among the groups which gathered be?
fore the newspaper offices and read the !
In their attack in the Montdidier
sector yesterday, "the Americana
pushed the enemy back and captured
the village of Catigny, west of Mont
(Uder. The arrow indicates the di?
rection of the advance.
latest new? there were frequent re?
marks as to the probable participation
of the Americans in the new battle.
French Restore
Positions in North;
Foe's Losses Heavy
FRANCE, May 28 (via Ottawa).--When
the battle of Flanders died down last
night the situation on the right and
centre of the front attacked remained
practically as before. Northward, be?
tween La Clytte and Dickebusch Lake,
where the French left rests upon the
British flank, tho Cermans were still
in possession of a small length of the
front line system.
The hsaviest fighting occurred op?
posite Omicrdem, where the French
took two woods near Dickebusch. Tow?
ard evening touch was regained with
a group of machine gunners in Ridge
Wood, the party in a most gallant way
having kept the Germans at bay dur?
ing the entire day.
The night was fairly quiet. No?
where north of tho Somme has the
enemy renewed his heavy bombard?
Franco-British troops again actively
engaged at daylight this morning east
of Dickebusch one or two enemy pock?
ets remaining in the neighborhood of
Ridge Wood.
The issue of yesterday's battle in .
Flanders may be regarded with com- I
plete satisfaction. The enemy attained |
practically nothing. His casualties
were of the heaviest description, as at
many places he was repulsed before
reaching the Allied front line.
Smashing French^counter-attacks re
establised the situation in the centre
almost immediately, while in the lake
section 'the Poilus also regained the j
major portion of the ground lost. j
Bitter fighting occurred about the
famous Ridge Wood and two other
woods lying east of tho lake. Both of
the latter were captured by the Ger?
mans in the earlier hours of the battle,
but were regained later in the day.
Enemy Gains Small
When the correspondent visited the
French last night virtually the entire
sector involved was intact. It was
stated that the gains which the enemy
made in the Dickebusch region were
There was very hard fighting on the
French left flank throughout the day
and the artillery duel was intense, but
the German attack was not made in
great strength. Its object appears to
have been merely to regain the high
ground which the French captured on
May 20. Apparently elements of four
divisions were employed by the enemy,
and it may be estimated that eight to
ten thousand German infantrymen
were sent forward on a front of about
6;T)00 yards.
The attack was preceded by the
heaviest bombardment sipce von Hin
denburg launched the offensive of
March 21. At the beginning of this
terrific cannonade it looked as though
the Germans were about to renew their
great effort. From 1 o'clock yesterday
morning until dark a great concen?
tration of hostile artillery maintained
a bombardment of drumfire intensity,
which was opposed furiously. More
gas Bhells than usual were employed
by the Germans, especially in the back
areas, in an effort to catch concentra?
tions of Allied troops.
Barrage Halts Attack
When the Germans advanced they
met such an effective barrage on the
French right flank that the attackers
never got to close quarters. They sus?
tained severe punishment from concen?
trated shellfire and French machine
In the centro and on the left flank,
however, the enemy was more success?
ful in the first rush. Pompier, south of
La Clytte, was captured, and the enemy
pushed back the defending line some?
what south and east of Dickebusch
Lake. ?<
Fighting was still continuing at
nightfall, when the Germans again in?
crease--! their artillery fire, which had
subsided somewhat during the day.
No infantry action was reported last
j night on any other part of the British
front except for raiding operations.
British troops carried out successful
raids to the east of Ayette and north?
east of Bpisleux-St. Marc.
The British and enemy air services
were again intensely active. Taking
advantage of the moonlight, German
pilots crossed the lines in large num?
bers on bombing raids, and all night
the sky along the whole front was
lighted up by the flashes from the Al?
lied anti-aircraft guns.
American Guns Wreck
Enemy Gas Projectors
(By Th? Associated Press)
FRANCE. May 28?After French avia?
tors bad located the approximate posi?
tions of the German gas projectors
which deluged the American Luneville
front with a thousand shells on Sun?
day and early Monday, the American
artillery laid a heavy fire of high ex?
plosives throughout last night, cover?
ing the area with hundred? of shells
and making it virtually certain that
the projectors were destroyed,
i There has been incigaBed artillery
?activity, and-also irrerAB?d patrol ac
! tivity on all the sectors held by the
Military Comment
By William L. McPherson
IN ITS ,tHird phase the German
Western offensive is again run?
ning true to form. It has made
steady progress and is still un?
checked. Berlin official reports indi?
cate that, having reached the Aisne
on the first day?live miles from the
starting point?it has now reachetl
the Vesle River, at Fismes, seven
miles further. The attack in Cham?
pagne was made on a front of about
forty miles. Three army groupe en?
gaged in it, those of von Boehm and
Franz von Below being aided on the
west by detachments from the armies
of von Hutier.
The main blow, however, fell on a
shorter front?on the line north of
the Aisne River, extending about
twenty-five miles east and west from
i Binon to Berry-au-Bac, where the
' Allied positions crossed over to the
south side of the Aisne. The great?
est penetration on the first day was
in the middle of this section. The
Crown Prince's troops drove through
due south for about five miles, rea?-h
ing the Aisne at Pont d'Arcy. The
Allied forces held fairly well at first
on the two extremities of the line,
so that German progress on Monday
morning was represented roughly by
a narrow wedge driven through the
Allied centre.
In the afternoon the wedge was
quickly broadened. On the west
em end of the line the Germans took
the villages of Pinon and Chavignon
and the old fort of Malmaison, to the
northeast of Soissons. This repre?
sented only a slight advance. But
from-the fort of,Malmaison straight
south to the Ai$ne at Vailly all the
north bank of the river was rapidly
cleared. Vailly was taken late ir
the day, and from Vailly to Pont
d'Arcy fresh German troops were
rushed over the Aisne and startec
across the plateau which lies be
tween the Aisne and the Vesle.
A similar clearing operation wa.s
completed on the eastern end of the
main line of attack. Craonne fell
So did La Ville au Bois. Then the
defences of Berry-au-Bac wer?
stormed and most of the nox-therr
bank of the Aisne in this sectior
passed into German hands. By eve
ning Germ, n divisions were crossing
the river ai far east as Beaurieux.
Below Berry-au-Bac, where th?
fighting was more in the nature o:
a holding operation, the Germani
also pushed their line forward. Ii
this area, to tha northwest of
Rheims they took Cormicy and
Loivre and threw the Allies back
across the Aisne-Marne Canal.
Yesterday the fighting was car?
ried into the area between the Aisne
j and the Vesle rivers. From Pont
d'Arcy to Fismes the distance is
seven miles. It is a hilly country,
offering many advantages for de?
fence. But apparently the Allies
were not able to organize a serious
resistance there. The German van
reached Vesle yesterday evening.
Prom the Chemin des Dames the
Crown Prince has covered twelve
j miles in two days. That shows un
I usual speed. Vet the advance may
probably be considered' logically
j proportional to the length of the
i front attacked on and to the masses
used against the vastly inferior
Allied forces defending it.
Paris reports that reinforcements
have begun to flow in on the line
! of the Vesle. This is a central point
in the French system covering Paris.
It is within easy reach from the
i Somme front and from the Verdun
) front. There should be no great
i difficulty in delivering all the re
' serves needed to 3low down the Ger
I man advance.
The third day is generally the
critical one in operations like the
lone which the Crown Prince is con?
ducting and Foch is now meeting.
If the momentum of the drive
[ slackens appreciably to-day it may
i soon be pinned down, as the Lys
I Valley drive was pinned down with?
in a week, and as the drive from St.
Quentin would have been, but for
the dislocation of the "British line
through a mishandling of the British
Fifth Army.
It is evident that the Allied posi?
tions north of the Aisne were light?
ly held and that they were not de?
fended obstinately enough to in?
volve partial jnvelopment and seri
our losses. The Germans claim only
15,000 prisoners so far. And this
total may include the wounded. Ar?
tillery losses were also probably not
In Flanders the Allied forces
counter attacked yesterday to re?
cover some points lost the day be?
fore on the Locre-Voormezeele front,
east of Dickebusch Lake. It was a
purely local operation. On this
front it begins to look as if the Ger?
mans had fought themselves to a
The Official Statements
Continued from paire 1
line of the Vesle, which the Germans succeeded in crossing at several
points, notably in the region of Bazoches and Fismes.
On our right the British withstood the assaults against the massif of
St. Thierry, inflicting particularly heavy losses.
West of Montdidier the Americans, supported by our tanks, brilliantly
occupied a salient along a front of two kilometres and the strongly fortified
village of Cantigny, capturing 170 prisoners and war material. They re?
pulsed counter attacks.
DAY.?Late yesterday the Germans, with the assistance of newly ar?
rived forces, succeeded in crossing the Aisne, between Vailly and Eerry
au-Bac. Franco-British tro^ops, confronted by enemy forces of greatly
superior size, are continuing their retirement in good order. The battle
is going on with violence between the Vesle and Aisne rivers, in the region
of the plateau, behind which French reserves are coming up.
In the Champagne, on the right bank of the Meuse and in the Woevre
great artillery activity continues. A strong raiding attack In the sector
of Chambrettes was repulsed by our fire.
Rome Reports Further Succees on Mountain Fronts
ROME, May 28.?The War Office to-day issued the following:
On the night of May 26-27 our assault parties broke into successive
enemy defences at Capo Sue to a depth of more than 750 yards. In spite
of the enemy's violent reaction the positions reached were maintained.
There were considerable enemy losses, 450 prisoners being taken and four
trench mortars, ton machine guns, several hundred rifles, and ammunition
i and material being captured. ?
The artillery of the Italian navy contributed to the success of the ac?
tion, which cost us very slight losses.
Hostile detachments were repulsed in the Ornic Valley and on the
banks of the Piave., ?
At Cortellazzo sailor patrols penetrated an enemy trench and took four
Vienna Admits Loss of Position e on Capo Sue
VIENNA (via London), May 2 8.?The official communication on
operations in the Italian9 theatre, issued to-day, reads:
The fighting activity in the T onale region diminished yesterday.
Repeated Italian attempts to make further progress were frustrated, but
part of our materials, built in what is now a glacier, fell into the hands
of the enemy. Strong reconnoltrin g advances to the south of Capo Sile,
supported by violent artillery and mine fire, put the Italians in posses?
sion of an unimportant part of our first line.
Americans since the resumption of the
German offensive.
Foe Paid Ruinous
Cost for Gains,
?s French View
PARIS, May 28. ? The military
critics now consider that the idea that
the German offensive launched yester?
day between Soissons and Rheims is
1 a "diversion must be abandoned, now
that the movement has developed in?
to a groat battle along a thirty-mile
The enemy's initial efforts, says
the "Temps," having unfortunately
obtained for the troops of the Ger?
man Crown Prince some notable ad?
vantages, as they succeeded in carry?
ing the Chemin-des-Dames and thrust?
ing back the Franco-British contin?
gents from the Ailette to the Aisne,
the enemy command has at once madu
every effort to exploit the success.
Commenting on the news from the
battlefront the "Temps" says:
"We have retired: that is unfort?
unately incontestable. But we are
only beginning the battle. The French
has only begun t? place in the line
the reserves which,, will go into action.
when the enemy's intentions are per?
ceived, and this is why .the, r?le of
I the commander of a defensive army
is more difficult than that of his
The results of the first day of the
long expected German offensive are
considered , in competent French
quarters as satisfactory. By paying
the price, it is contended, it was in?
evitable that the enemy could gain
ground. After the terrific struggle
throughout the day of yesterday the j
Germans at a ruinous cost advanced i
nt the furthest point three and a
half miles. i
Foch Rushing
Reserves to Face
German Drive
Continued from page 1
bardment of poison gas shells lasting
for several hours. The entire Allied
line was thinly held by a division of
French and British troops.
Meantime other German divisions
attacked from the Ailette Valley, and
the small bodies of Allied troops
holding the knifelike ridge decided
to fall back in order to avoid useless
losses in trying to keep an unten?
able position in the face of greatly
superior numbers.
Everything had been prepared for
such a movement in the case of ne?
cessity, and the troops retired fight?
ing foot by foot until joined by their
reserves further back, the local re?
serves covering the retirement of
their comrades before the German
As the troops fell back with vir?
tually all of their guns and mate?
rial they took up positions ah'eady
prepared, where they awaited the ar?
rival of reinforcements, which were
rapidly coming.
Very strong enemy columns about
4 o'clock in the morning came
through ( the plain to the east of
Craonne and around -Tuvincourt, and
the Allied troops after the over?
whelming nature of the enemy's
forces was perceived, carried out
the retirement east of the Aisne to
their principal defensive positions.
Craonne fell, leaving the remainder
of the Chemin-des-Dames open to a
flank attack,
18 German 'Planes
Downed in One Day
British Drop 5 Tons of Bombs
on Mannheim-Metz Rail?
way Station
LONDON, May 28.?Fifteen German
airplanes have been destroyed by Brit?
ish aviators and three others driven
(?own oik of control, according to the
British official communication on avi- :
ation issued to-night.
The communication says also that
five tons of bombs have been dropped
on the Mannheim, Kreusewald and
Metz railway stations.
The text of the communication fol?
"Monday the weather generally wb3
c'oudy and the visibility was not good.
He we ver, a full day's work wi3 done
by our aiiplanes, both in cooperation
with the artillery and in photography
and bombing.
"Sixteen tons of bombs were dropped
ir. the course of the day on vinous ob
jectives, including bul?is bu+v/een Ar?
mentieres and Lens and the docks at
"Fifteen German machines were de?
stroyed and three driven down out of
"Five tons of bombs were dropped on
the Mannheim, Kreusewald and Metz
railway stations." '
"Monday night heavy bombs were
dropped on the Zeebrugge lock and the
Bruges docks. A great number of
dumps and billets behind the enemy's
lines also were bombed. A total weight
of twenty-one tons of bombs was used
in these different attacks. All the air?
planes engaged in this work returned
in safety. ,,
"Hostile night bombing machines
have been active over our back areas.
A Gotha ah"plane was'forced to de?
scend behind our lines, and its three
occupants were captured.
"The same night our Ion***: distance
bombing machines, were active. They
dropped between four and five tons of
bombs on chemical works at Mann
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4SI Fifth Avent? mi eoih St rest
r?b Fifth A vtnmt at ?3rdStreet ibr Breaiiwmy, Singer Building
\\.y. v:.u, ,, rr^-t-r-r-? - * "'*? r r-rrr
heim, the L?udau railway station, an
electric power station at Kreusewald
and on the Metz-Sablons railway sta?
tion and the Courcelles railway sta?
tion. Very large explosions were
caused. All our machines except one
Rickenbacher Bags
Another Aeroplane
(By The Associated Press)
FRANCE, May 28.?Lieutenant Edward
V. Rickenbacher, of Columbus, Ohio,
and Lieutenant Douglas Campbell, of
California, this morning forced a Ger?
man biplane down out of control in the
Bois de Rate, northeast of Xivray, in
the Toul sector, during a battle with
six enemy 'planes.
The German machines encircled the :
American pilots and attempted to drive j
them behind the German lines. Rick- ;
enbacher suddenly pounced on one of
the enemy 'planes, and Campbell, com?
ing to his assistance, managed to drive
the enemy down.
It was Lieutenant Campbell, it has
been established, who destroyed an
enemy biplane near Easey, inside the
German lines on the Toul front, yes?
terday in a battle a mile in the air.
The German machine's wings crumpled
and it crashed to the earth.
Princeton Ambulance
Unit Cited for Bravery
Tho Princeton University unit,
known officially as the United Statut
Ambulance Section 823, it was leanwi
yesterday, has received a citation ?Pf
bravery from General Lecomte, com?
manding the 3Sd Army Corps. Tn? ?M*
der was issued on April 29, but wori
of it has just reached this country.
The citation praises the unit for tti
work during the violent n?**htinf ?*
Noyon and Mt. Renaud, from Marco 28
to April 8. Commanded by Lieutenant
Motte and Lieutenant Butkiewics, ta*
unit', General Lecomte's order read*,
"assured th?* evacuation of the wctw4
cd in perfect manner under the mo*?*
violent bombardment-vvith an absaht?
contempt for danjrer and the higheft
consciousness of duty."
The unit is composed entirtly ?i
Princeton University men. Early i?
the summer of 1917 thirty-six voltm
teered. They spent the training pa
riod at Allentown, Penn., and saw th<Wr
first field service in France in S*r
tember last.
The men have been in the thick ?if
the fighting since that time and half
had one roan killed, six gassed and
several ambulances blown to pie*?.
The citation was read to the PrincatOS
men on May 2 in the presence of G?***
eral Lecomte. after which a ciUtf?*?
medal was pinned on the ?ectioS*? :
service flag.
564-506 .??,50? J?i?kJ\?-?nuC-!^4?_.a*-^^_tSI5
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