Diary March 21, 1916

Mortier de 280 mle 14/16

A heavy French Mortier de 280 mle 14/16 in action, a ponderous piece designed for siege warfare.

Diary for Tuesday, March 21, 1916:

Western Front

Verdun: German shell Hill 304. French now have 1,294 guns (570 medium and heavy), the 155mm heavy guns alone fire 278,000 rounds in March.

Eastern Front

Baltic Provinces – Russian North Front offensive (until March 26): Fifth Army crosses Dvina near Jakobstadt with 4 divisions, takes 1,000 yards of marshes for 28,000 casualties.
Western Russia: General Baluyev takes 1,000 German PoWs at Lake Naroch in fog as 2 German regiments break.

Southern Fronts

Isonzo: Austrian gas shelling forces Italian evacuation of gains in south.

African Fronts

East Africa: South African Mounted Brigade captures Kahe Hill but 1st Division attack (290 casualties) held between crocodile-infested rivers to north (171 German casualties).

Air War

Western Front: Escadrille Americaine (N 124) author­ized, volunteer fighter unit and forerunner of legendary Escadrille Lafayette. Little flying possible.
Britain‘Fokker Fodder’ scandal: Noel Pemberton Billing MP taunts Government in Commons over officially approved obsolete aircraft produced for Royal Flying Corps by Royal Aircraft Factory: ‘I would suggest that quite a number of our gallant officers … have been rather murdered than killed’ (Fokker E fighters vs B.E.2)

Neutrals

Denmark agrees not to re­-export French goods to Central Powers.

Home Fronts

Ireland – Loyalist demonstration against Sinn Fein Headquarter at Tullamore: 3 police men injured in firing from it.
Britain: War Office to buy and import all Russian flax and tow.

Call of War
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