On Kut-al-Amara, the city on the Tigris River

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Last updated: September 26, 2019

On March 10, 1917, the British defeated the force with an abrupt attack.  As of two days ago, March 11, 1917 they have evacuated the Turks and have taken over Baghdad. Less than two weeks after Kut-al-Amara, the city on the Tigris River in Mesopotamia, was captured, British regional commander, Sir Frederick Stanley Maude, directed his troops to converge on Baghdad.  This lead their opponents, the Turks, to desert the state, on the evening of March 10, 1917. In January 1917 the 150,000 men under Maude’s command embarked, commencing the offense that would climax the recapturing of Kut on February 24.

After their triumph in Kut, Maude and his troops waited in the London headquarters to get corroboration to continue their attack.  According to Thomas Smith, “This halt gave Khalil Pasha, time to decide what he was to do about setting up a defense.”  Pasha, the turkish commander in chief, first had began to make preparations for an offensive attack on the Allied forces.  Instead, he ended up deciding to stay behind and focus his troops in Baghdad.

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 He positioned the Turkish Sixth Army near the intersection of Tigris with the Diyala River, about thirty-five miles away from the city.  The 9,500 Turks were greatly outnumbered, by the 45,000 British and Indian troops they were facing.  On March 8, maude’s troop arrived at the Diyala.  They set up their first attack on the Turks the next morning.  Pasha and his men victoriously pushed back.  Maude struggled to cross the rapid waters of the Diyala.  Consequently he decided to cross at a higher, more northern location.  Notified by the enemy movements by the German exploration aircraft, pasha imitated his movements.

 Just like maude, he sent a large part of his troops to meet the allied soldiers.  He left merely a single division to keep the original defensive location at the Diyala. However, on march 10, it was hastily and unquestionably defeated by the British and Indian forces with a sudden assault. Pasha, being stupefied, demanded his troops to retreat.  By that night, at the end of the day,  the evacuation of Baghdad was on its way to completion.   

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