The forgotten siege of Kut el Amarah, Mesopotamia, 1916; a saga of heroism and military blunder, the greatest humiliation suffered by British arms between Balaklava and Singapore. From dust jacket notes: "In the winter of 1915-1916, Kut el Amarah, a primitive and filthy village on the banks of the Tigris in northern Mesopotamia, became the scene of the most futile and humiliating disaster suffered by a British force between the disaster at Balaklava in 1854 and the capture of Singapore in 1942. It was here that Major General Sir Charles Townshend made the fatal decision to hold out with his division of ten thousand combat troops against a superior besieging force of Turks and Arab conscripts after he had been turned back in the drive to take Baghdad. The Siege of Kut lasted one hundred and forty-seven days - an epic of endurance, starvation, and disease - until Townshend was finally forced to surrender. Of the emaciated survivors forced to march into captivity twelve hundred miles across the broiling desert and freezing mountains, seventy per cent of the British and fifty per cent of the Indian troops perished: and that only after attempts to rescue the division had cost a Relief Force twenty-three thousand casualties. As for Townshend himself, he spent the rest of the war in luxurious house arrest on an island near Constantinople, enduring little worse than occasional boredom while he intrigued for his own release...."
Used availability for Russell Braddon's The Siege
January 1970 : USA Hardback
October 1969 : UK Hardback
October 1971 : UK Paperback