10 MARCH 1900, Page 1


THE chief military event of the week has been Lord Roberts's successful flank attack—delivered early Wednesday morning—on the Boer army which had collected in front of him in order to oppose his advance on Bloemfontein. The Boers had entrenched themselves on a line of kopjes on each side of the Modder, and no doubt expected that they would be subjected to a frontal attack of the kind to which they have been hitherto accustomed. Instead, Lord Roberts operated on their flank, with the result that a kind of panic set in among the Boers, and they literally raced off the ground, abandoning their very strong position, leaving their dinners cooked bat uneaten, and actually allowing a Krupp gun to fall into our hands, so terrified were they as to the safety of their communications, and so anxious to ran no risks of sharing the fate of General Cronje and his army. The exploit was a most brilliant one, and, like so many fine pieces of strategy, almost bloodless,— our total casualties being only three killed and about fifty wounded. We mast not, however, while praising Lord Roberts (and none can think he deserves higker praise than we do) make unfair comparisons with our other commanders in the matter of frontal attacks. He had sufficient cavalry and a larger force than his enemy, and thus could undertake a wide turning movement.