23 DECEMBER 1854, Page 12

Our great contemporary the Times, ever fertile in procuring some

striking novelty for its readers, comes out today with a slashing attack on Ministers for incompetency in the war. The whole article tells like a new shot "from the maintop" ; and the assertions are as unqualified as those of a recently-detected writer. This time, however, Lord' Raglan takes the place of Admiral Dundas.

"We echo the opinion of almost every experienced soldier or well- informed gentleman, when we say that the noblest army England ever seat from these shores has been sacrificed to the grossest mismanagement. In- competency, lethargy, aristocratic hauteur, official indifference, favour, rou- tine, perverseness, and stupidity, reign, revel, and riot in the camp before Sebastopol, in the harbour of Balaklava, in the hospitals of Scutari, and how much nearer home we do not venture to say. We say it with extremest re- luctance,—no one sees or hears anything of the Commander-in-chief. Offi- cers who landed on the 14th of September, and have been incessantly en- gaged in all the operations of the siege, are not even acquainted with the face of their commander."

This is contrasted with Wellington, whose personal appearance was a familiar thing to every soldier in his army. From the Commander-in- chief the rifle is turned to those around him-

" Unfortunately, the Staff is said to consist of young gentlemen, whose honour and courage nobody can doubt, but who are devoid of experience, without much sympathy for the distresses of such inferior beings as regi- mental officers and privates, and disposed to treat the gravest affairs with a dangerous nonchalance." Having pointed out the fault, acoording to rule the writer points out the remedy-

" Send out some man ("Name, name !"] with competent administrative powers to the necessary basis of our operations—Constantinople. Give him the command of the hospitals, that present so scandalous a contrast to the French hospitals ; the command of the post-office, and of transports wait- ing for orders; and give him also the ordering of such supplies for the army as can be procured in that neighbourhood, and which the French have not obtained before us. Nobody has yet had command of this important station who was fitfor anything else than to be the figure- head of his own ship. There is Sir Charles Trevelyan, for example, who possesses the administrative power of fifty old Admirals : why not send him as High Commissioner to the Bosphorus? Send somebody to Balaklava with a bead on his shoulders and a competent staff, so competent., both in numbers and ability, that the whole work will not immediately change hands on the death or removal of „one man; and let everything sent for the

army, the officers, or the privates, be addressed to this officer, who shall be answerable for its delivery. Must we stop here ?"