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action by ulterior motives, and of a snow-looked Manchurian that the far-sighted General winter, and to prepare themStaff halted the army short of selves against such opportuniMukden for the same reason as ties as the coming spring might - they had desisted from pursuit bring. six weeks previously after the The two armies settled down success of Liauyang. They had to winter quarters on opposite beaten their enemy a second sides of the Sha-ho. The Japtime, but they were not yet anese naturally extended their prepared to crush him. It left towards the Hun-ho; but would require another six it is evident that they premonths and developments else- ferred the fringe of low hills where before Japan would be which border the great plain able to oppose the Russian of Mukden to the open steppe Commander-in-Chief in Man- in which the Russians were churia with
now forced to canton. For ficiently superior in numbers the present all idea of active to crush him adequately. The operations on extensive Japanese General Staff knew scale was at an end. Both as well as everybody else that armies had to prepare against it was only by numbers they a common enemy more terrible could hope to annihilate. For than Skoda shrapnel and the second time that summer Shimosi bursting charges. In there had commenced at Muk- a month, or six weeks at the den frenzied evacuation. latest, the Manchurian winter The treasure - chests of the would be upon them. Neither Russo-Chinese Bank were hur- army could afford to await its riedly moved
up towards coming unprepared. Beyond Tie-ling, and the majority of extending to the left and merchants and non-combatants securing their foothold in the had already started to leave hills on their right, the Japanese the Manchurian capital, when practically left the Russians again the Japanese magnan- alone. In short, so pacific did imity in pursuit declared itself. the outposts become, that each Oyama had decided that Muk- opposing group invented sig. den should be Kuropatkin's nals by which they established headquarters during the stag- local armistices for purposes nant months of the winter of camp economies.
Thus a campaign. Already the nights bucket shown above a parapet were beginning to bring a intimated that the occupants suspicion of winter. The mid- wished to draw water from day sun was losing its strength, the ice-holes in the frozen surthere was a bite in the mid- face of the river which sepnight air. After a few slight arated them. At these ice-holes and unimportant skirmishes, the unarmed reliefs often met both armies, with their out- and exchanged small courposts almost meeting, settled tesies. But apart from the down to watch each other clothing and housing of these throughout the drier months two great armies, the com
manders on both sides were under Kaulbars, Gripenberg, engaged in planning the future and Bilderling, — Kuropatkin, of the campaign. In the light with Sakharoff as his chief of of subsequent events, we now the staff, remaining in chief know that Oyama, as he sat command. The huge quantigloating over the countless ties of supplies and munitions spirals of smoke which picked and the wonderful network of out the Russian bivouacs from light railway which fell into the winding-sheet of glistening the Japanese hands after the snow on Mukden's plain, was battle of Mukden, furnish elocalculating to bring three more quent evidence of the manner armies into line with the three in which the Russians prewith which he had won the pared against the spring cambattles of Liauyang and the paign. But of that unity of Sha - ho, to enable him not purpose which alone can weld merely to defeat the Russians the departments of a great but to engulf them in irretriev- army into a scientific workable disaster. Nogi's four divi- ing machine we find little sions in front of Port Arthur evidence in the Russian lines. by spring would have accom- All authorities agree that the plished their task. During intervals in
those peaceful those early winter months months of warlike preparation contemporary writers in Japan were filled in with bickerings, commented upon the extra- petty jealousies, and often open ordinary fact that although the mutiny amongst the directing whole of Japan's organised heads. These disagreements striking arm had been trans- were even of so grave a charferred to Manchuria, yet Japan acter that it is reported that had never before seemed so full Gripenberg would tear Kuroof soldiers. The new service patkin's messages into pieces regulations were in active effect, and fling them in the face of and Hasegawa’s and Kami- the messenger who presented mura's armies, three months them ; while Kaulbars, in dismobilised, were waiting for the agreement with the chief of the transports. Nor
the staff, found outlet to his annoyRussians idle. In spite of ance by soundly boxing that assurances to the contrary, officer's ears. But with the Prince Khilkoff was maintain- Japanese how different! Their ing his daily service of twelve unity of purpose and fixed idea trains, and pouring a continu- was sufficient to eradicate even ous supply of reinforcements the jealousy of the sister serinto Kuropatkin's base. This vices. In the common cause the reinforcement had been so suc- rivalries of Army and Navy cessful that a further shuffle were relegated to absolute abeyin the commands was found ance. The lesson of this great necessary. The Army of the struggle from beginning to end East was divided into three has been that of moral supericommands. These were placed ority. The teaching has been so obvious that it would be chasseurs. Occasional howitzer superfluous to
pursue this shots and the wrangles of outreasoning further.
posts were mere hors d'oeuvre But in spite of the internal to a reading public, which durbickerings in his army, there is ing the past year had acquired no doubt that Kuropatkin held a taste for the strong meat of the view that he would be able pitched battles. Consequently to again take the initiative as there was a mild recrudescence soon as the weather and the of interest in the Far East reinforcements were favourable, when it was reported that on and the raids which he counten- January 1st an enterprising anced in the month of January Russian officer's patrol had are consistent with this theory. insinuated itself between Gripenberg, on the other hand, Antanshan and Haicheng, held the opinion which has and destroyed quite a creditnow been definitely disproved, able distance of Japanese perthat the Russian soldier would manent
Wiseacres of prove more than a match for pro-Russian proclivity shook his adversary as soon as the their heads, and said that “the snow was frozen hard on the world would now see that ground. Why this should be Kuropatkin was about to make we never could understand, for the scientific effort they had so even Southern Japan is a long promised that he would rigorous climate
climate in winter, make, and which we ourselves, and the habit of the Siberian until he failed at Hei-kou-tai, Russian has always been to believed that he could comavoid the rigours of outdoor mand. This theory life during winter months. strengthened when ten days
Before Mukden, the main later Mischenko's Raid was theatre of the war, we had reported independently from little to attract our attention Ku-pang - tsu. The officer's during November and Decem- patrol had been but a feeler. ber 1904. There were other and Mischenko's operations were more absorbing interests else- to be serious attack. where. Port Arthur, the im- In spite of the opportunities pregnable, was beginning to which attended this raid, the quiver in the grasp of the story has not been well told. intrepid Nogi, while Rojdest- The best authority, the corvensky was sounding for a respondent of an American suitable rendezvous the journal who accompanied the East Coast of Africa. Little force, did not make much use attention, therefore, was given of his opportunity. It is certo the monotonous Agency re- tain, however, that for a ports from Oku's and Kuroki's considerable period Mischenko fronts detailing spasmodic broke the boundaries of the bombardments, or to Kuropat- belligerents' self-imposed neukin's stilted narrative of the trality. Roughly, the story heroic efforts of his Volunteer of the adventure, which reads
more like the American Civil were immense Japanese supply War than anything we have depots : the remaining two colhitherto had in the story of were directed against the campaign, is the follow- the Japanese railway coming. Mischenko concentrated munication between Antanhis force on January 6 and shan and Haicheng. From 7 at Pai-chi
on the this point the raid did not fulrailway, twenty miles south fil its promise. Time had been of Hsin-min-ting. He had a wasted somewhere, and the mounted force of about 6000, Japanese, who were completely with several batteries of Cos- surprised on the 10th, were sack artillery. Poor as the “ wise" to the course of events American correspondent's de- on the 11th. The supply depot scription is as military evid- at Niu-chwang was destroyed, ence, yet he has penned a and temporary damage effected moving picture of the night- on the railway, but by January march which brought the 12 all the flying columns had raiders down to San-sha -ho, concentrated again and were below the point where the in retreat to the Liau-ho, for Hun-ho flows into the Liau-ho. the most part fighting a rearOne can picture this great guard action with the pursuing horde of semi-savage soldiery Japanese. muffled in their dirty furs and For ten days the story of skins,—the shaggy, ungroomed Manchuria was again shrouded ponies moving silently, except in its impenetrable veil of winfor an occasional cough, over
ter ice and snow. But for the hard surface of glistening Kuropatkin's fitful cables of snow,—the stiff, bitter night-air the prowess of his chasseurs subduing most human sounds, very little news reached this yet intensifying the creak of un- country. Nor was there much easy leathers and the champ of interest in the far north, since metal trappings. We, who have the public were still busy no experience, can form no esti- counting the loss and gain in mate of the terrors of frost and the surrender of Port Arthur cold that the raiders had to en- and the quality of Stössel as dure. However, it is not allowed a general.
a general. But towards the to us to follow the story of this middle of January the small raid in all its detail. It must voice of a French journalist in suffice to say that on January 10 St Petersburg was able to make Mischenko crossed to the left itself heard with the announcebank of the frozen Liau-ho, ment that Kuropatkin was on and the following day the point of again attempting divided his command into four aggressive operations. Since flying columns. Each of these the Sha-ho he had been reincolumns had a definite object- forced by between 50,000 and ive. Two were directed against 60,000 men, which brought old Niu-chwang and Niu-kia- his available striking force up tun, both of which places to the respectable total of