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The Angel Of The Revolution George Chetwynd Griffith

The New Warfare

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"Two combined attacks, delivered by the allied French and Italian squadrons on Malta and Gibraltar, have been repulsed by Admiral Beresford with heavy loss to the enemy, thanks to the timely warning delivered to Mr. Balfour by the Earl of Alanmere--upon whose mysterious disappearance we comment in another column--and the Prime Minister's prompt and statesmanlike action in doubling the strength of the Mediterranean fleet before the outbreak of hostilities.

"Thanks to the tireless activity and splendid handling of the Channel fleet, the North Sea Division, and the Irish Squadron, the enemy's flag has been practically swept from the home waters, and the shores of our beloved country are as inviolate as they have been for more than seven centuries. These brilliant achievements go far to compensate us as an individual nation for the disasters which have befallen our allies on the Continent, and, in addition, we have the satisfaction of knowing that, so far, the most complete success has attended our arms in the East, and that the repeated and determined assaults of our Russian foes have been triumphantly hurled back from the impregnable bulwarks of our Indian Empire.

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"It has been pointed out, and it would be vain to ignore the fact, that not only have all our victories been won in the absence of the aerial fleets of the League; but that we, in common with our allies, have been worsted in each of the happily few cases in which even one of these terrible aerostats has delivered its assaults upon us. Against this, however, we take leave to set our belief that these machines do not yet inspire sufficient confidence in their possessors to warrant them in undertaking operations above the sea, or at any considerable distance from their bases of manoeuvring. It is true that we are entirely ignorant of the essentials of their construction; but the fact that no attempt has yet been made to send them into action over blue water inspires us with the hope and belief that their effective range of operations is confined to the land. . . .

"It would be superfluous to say that the British Empire is now involved in a struggle in comparison with which all our former wars sink into absolute insignificance, a struggle which will tax its immense resources to the very utmost. Nothing, however, has yet occurred to warrant the belief that those resources will not prove equal to the strain, or that the greatest empire on earth will not emerge from this combat of the giants with her ancient glory enhanced by new and hitherto unequalled triumphs.

"Certainly at no period in our history have we been so splendidly prepared to face our enemies both at home and abroad. All arms of the Services are in the highest state of efficiency, and the Government dockyards and arsenals, as well as private firms, are working day and night to still further strengthen them, and provide ample supplies of munitions of war. The hearts of all the nations united under our flag are beating as that of one man, and from the highest to the lowest ranks of Society all are inspired by a spirit of whole-soured patriotism which, if necessary, will make any sacrifice to preserve the flag untarnished, and the honour of Britain without a spot.

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The Angel Of The Revolution
George Chetwynd Griffith

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