By Stephen Chambers
The August Offensive was once born out of the mess ups of the Gallipoli landings and the next battles of past due spring and early summer season 1915. common Sir Ian Hamilton, Commander-in-Chief of the Mediterranean Expeditionary strength, selected to play all his final playing cards during this bold and inventive gamble that he was hoping could ultimately flip the tide within the allies desire and produce his military up onto the heights overlooking the elusive Dardanelles.
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Additional info for Anzac Sari Bair
Even though the thick logs, that covered the Turkish trenches, were good protection from shrapnel, when the high explosive shells began to fall they had the effect of splintering the wood to devastating effect on the occupants. The Turks had learned that occupying the narrow communication trenches and saps provided the best chance of survival, and then to reoccupy the front lines when the bombardment had lifted. For now this bombardment was to continue. For the 1800 Australians waiting for the whistle, the tension was undoubtedly mounting, but morale was high.
Hamilton had a request pending for three more divisions in total, in addition to the 52nd (Lowland) Division that Kitchener had already promised him. Initially he would have had to make do with this division, but then a change of tack fell in Hamilton’s favour. Kitchener and the War Council’s focus was Gallipoli and they needed an early conclusion to the campaign. For this Hamilton received his three additional divisions as well as the 52nd. The three New Army divisions consisted of the 10th (Irish), 11th (Northern) and 13th (Western) Divisions, who were volunteers who had answered Kitchener’s ‘Your Country Needs You’ recruitment campaign of 1914.
Our whole scheme hinges on these crests of Sari Bair which dominate Anzac and Maidos; the Dardanelles and the Aegean. The destroyers next took us to Cape Helles where I held a pow-wow at Army Headquarters, Generals Hunter-Weston and Gouraud being present as well as Birdwood and Braithwaite. Everyone keen and sanguine. Many minor suggestions; warm approval of the broad lines of the scheme. Afterwards I brought Birdie back to Anzac and then returned to Imbros. A good day’s work. Half the battle to find that my Corps Commanders are so keen.
Anzac Sari Bair by Stephen Chambers