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 Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.

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PostSubject: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Mon Sep 07, 2009 10:43 pm

I wanted to post this in order to get your thoughts on what is being said by Lord Chelmsford. At the moment i'm putting two and two together and coming up with 6.

Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.

Lord Strathnairn alleged was “that it would have been better if he had allowed Colonel Durnford to continue to discharge his special duties of superintending the fortification of the camp.”

In reply to this, Lord Chelmsford could only say, “that the fact of his sending for Colonel Durnford was evidence that he wished to have him close at hand in order that his advice might be available on engineering questions. Furthermore, he was much indebted to Colonel Durnford for the organization of the force of mounted Natives, which was entirely due to the personal influence which the gallant officer had with the Native Tribes.”
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Mon Sep 07, 2009 11:05 pm

I think Chelmsford is referring to placing Durnford in command of the camp mainly based on his engineering skills. And his ability to commanded the force of mounted Natives.
If Durnford had remained in the camp Clelmsford would have been expected him to use his engineering skills to fortifiy the camp. Of course this did not happen, because he left the camp.
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Tue Sep 08, 2009 7:13 am

I'm not sure what to make of it. I have never seen this before. Is there more to this statement or does it end there.
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PostSubject: lord chelmsford question   Tue Sep 08, 2009 8:06 am

hi all,
This is what i make of it, LORD STATHNAIRN is asking why DURNFORD wasnt left in charge of fortifying the camp,
simple, Chelmsford didnt leave any orders for such an undertaking, the good lord had sent a messeage back to
ISANDLWANA early on the morning of the 22nd to stike the camp and meet up with him at MANGENI FALLS. He had
previously decided during the march to ISANDLWANA they were to leave ISANDLWANA on the 23rd. So LORD
STATHNAIRN"S question is rather pointless to me. As regards to why DURNFORD was sent up to ISANDLWANA
from RDRIFT , i think C"FORD was more concerned in getting the natives up to ISANDLWANA so the road could
be made ready for the quick advance to ULUNDI. Chelmsford doesnt say it directly but reading between the lines
thats what i come up with. So a classic case of forgetting to " dot the I's and cross the T's, in his haste to catch
the zulu !!!.
cheers 90th
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Tue Sep 08, 2009 1:32 pm

Doe's Chelmsford make reference to leaving Durnford in change.Or is he now saying
Quote :
"his advice might be available on engineering questions"
As littlehand as stated, it would be better to see the whole statement rather than just a part.
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Tue Sep 08, 2009 7:01 pm

QUESTION. OBSERVATIONS. Part one
HL Deb 02 September 1880 vol 256 cc1025-35

LORD STRATHNAIRN
rose, according to Notice, to call the attention of Her Majesty's Government to Lord Chelmsford's statement in the House of the evening of the 19th August, 1880, as compared with his despatch dated Pietermaritzburg, 27th January 1879, on the Isandlana disaster; and to ask Her Majesty's Government to place on the Table of the House further Papers on the question if they are in possession of information differing from the despatch quoted, together with a map (with proper scale of distances) of the ground on which the Headquarter Camp was pitched, and of the hills above and near it; and to submit certain mistakes in the operations in Zululand; and also to move for a Return of the ages and length of service of the soldiers and non-commissioned officers of the 1st and 2nd Battalion of the 24th Regiment. The noble and gallant Lord said, that in his Notice he called the attention of Her Majesty's Government to Lord Chelmsford's despatch, dated Pietermaritzburg, January 27, 1879, as compared with his speech of the 19th of last month, which elicited cheers from some of their Lordships. But in the despatch it was said of the 24th Regiment:— So long as they kept their faces to the Zulus the enemy could not drive them back, and they feel in heaps before the deadly fire poured into them. But when the Zulus got round the left flank of these brave men they appear to have lost their presence of mind, and to have retired hastily through the tents, when immediately the whole Zulu force surrounded them, they were overpowered by numbers, and the camp was lost. The plain English of this was that they misbehaved before the enemy. But in his speech the noble and gallant Lord (Lord Chelmsford), reciting the same events, said—"What could they do more than they did, and that was to die like gallant soldiers?"
LORD CHELMSFORD
observed, that the noble and gallant Lord was not reading his despatch, but some printed report; and if he was going to found any charge upon it he ought to quote from the actual words of the document.

LORD STRATHNAIRN
said, he must leave the noble and gallant Lord to reconcile those two opposite statements, and would only observe that they were not calculated to promote devotion or discipline among soldiers. He proceeded to submit to their Lordships what, in his humble opinion, were mistakes in the operations in Zululand, and which, he thought, were amply sufficient to account for Isandlana and other mishaps. First, the columns invading Zululand were too far distant from one another for mutual support and communication, especially in so difficult and unknown a country as Zululand. For instance, Sir Evelyn Wood's, the fourth column, was 35 miles distant from Colonel Glyn's headquarter No. 3 column, and, consequently, the fourth column acted independently. The result of this was that 20,000 Zulus were enabled to pass through the interval and post themselves, on the 21st of January, unobserved, under the crest of the height commanding the left front of the camp at Isandlana, and fell like an avalanche on the left flank of the camp next day, the fatal 22nd. Of course, if this dangerous ground had been properly reconnoitred, it was more than probable that that great calamity would never have occurred. Secondly, the position of the camp at Isandlana was commanded, as had been shown by an excellent authority, who had visited the spot. He said— I spent many hours in examining the position of the camp, and I emphatically repeat that the camp is dominated by hills to the right and loft (a little to the right and left) rear which were within pistol-shot. There was a glacis sloping away from the front towards the open plain; but what man in his senses could expect an enemy to advance over that when he could approach a flank under cover of a range of hills? Archibald Forbes, in his article in The Nineteenth Century, said something to this effect—"I challenge any soldier of experience to say whether any more inherently vicious position could have been chosen." He (Lord Strathnairn) certainly considered that any disinterested person who had sufficient military knowledge to entitle him to give an opinion at all must, after seeing the ground, entirely coincide with Mr. Forbes. Their Lordships had only to look at the map to be convinced of the justice of these views; and it was this hill-commanded camp which, by the orders of the Commander-in-Chief, was not to be left, but to be defended. If instead of that order he had previously directed that that camp, and all other camps in the line of operations, should be in safe positions to be fortified, either by intrenchments with obstacles or with waggon laagers, we should not have been the victims of surprises or defeats. Such as it was, the camp could only be defended from outside. Thirdly, reconnaissances should have been made of the position of the enemy above and round Isandlana to any extent. The Commander-in-Chief did reconnoitre the positions to the left front of the camp, but did not go far enough or thoroughly enough; for he stated that he saw a few Zulu horsemen, who could only have been an outpost or a patrol of the 20,000 men, and he should have done all he could to take these men or follow them, or, with a reconnaissance in force, to ascertain where their main body was. If he had done so, he would have ascertained the position of the 20,000 Zulus, and been enabled to counteract their dangerous flank manœuvre. He (Lord Strathnairn) had practical proof of the advantages of this reconnoitring in Syria and in India. Fourthly, the camp with all its contents should have been intrenched, as he had already said, with engineering obstacles to protect it, arrest the enemy's advance, and expose them to the scientific and deadly fire of the English artillery and infantry, Fifthly, the warning that the Zulus had shown themselves in force to the left front of the camp, given not only by the firing which was heard from the direction of the camp, but by messages received by the noble and gallant Lord and officers under him from the officer commanding the camp—

LORD CHELMSFORD
asked the noble and gallant Lord to quote his authority for that statement, for it was the first he had heard of it. If the noble and gallant Lord quoted his authority the House would know what reliance was to be placed on that information. It was perfectly new to him.

LORD STRATHNAIRN
said, he would not have made that statement to the House without authority. The noble and gallant Lord's own despatch stated that firing was heard, and that the noble and gallant Lord himself sent an aide-de-camp.

LORD CHELMSFORD
said, the noble and gallant Lord was entirely mistaken, as he did not say anything of the kind in his despatch.

LORD STRATHNAIRN
said, he was going to add that when this alarm had been heard, when messages had been received from the camp, and when the firing had been heard, the noble and gallant Lord should have caused the immediate return of the reconnaissance party to the camp, a distance of 9 or 10 miles, running two miles and walking one on the Prussian system of alarms. But, so far from that, a detachment with guns, under Colonel Harness, who had actually seen the combat and was marching to the camp, was ordered not to go there. He need hardly observe that under all the circumstances of the case which he had detailed, and which, he ventured to think, should certainly have occurred to the Commander-in-Chief, to leave the camp unintrenched, dominated by dangerous ground, and deprived of half its garrison, as seen by the watchful Zulus, was an invitation to the enemy to attack it. Sixthly, it would have been better not to have taken the lamented Colonel Durnford, so valuable an Engineer officer, from his special duties of superintending the fortifications of camps and of strongholds for ourselves. And it was only justice to that gallant officer's memory to represent that he had to cope with almost unexampled difficulties on taking over the defence of an indefensible camp against an enemy overwhelming in numbers, with remarkable military instinct, and holding positions insufficiently reconnoitred. The death of this gallant officer, with some brave soldiers of the 24th Regiment, rivalling their brothers in arms at Rorke's Drift, some brave Natal Volunteers, and Native levies, while holding the important neck of land which covered the retreat to Rorke's Drift, was a fitting close of a life of devotion to the Service. While he lamented the dead, he was happy to notice the distinction that had been won by many officers who had played conspicuous parts in the campaign, among the most prominent of whom might be mentioned Sir Evelyn Wood and Colonel Buller. It was eight or nine years ago that he (Lord Strathnairn) drew their Lordships' attention, in a long speech on military education, to the disadvantages of the British system of mechanical drill without an object—that was, without the elementary or higher rules of strategy; and he had since never failed, at the cost of their Lordships' patience and indulgence, to press it upon the House. He would not, however, detain their Lordships any longer on that occasion, particularly as the Commander-in-Chief was not present, but would at once move for a Return of the ages and length of service of the soldiers and non-commissioned officers of the 1st and 2nd Battalions of the 24th Regiment.

THE EARL OF CAMPERDOWN
said, he had no doubt that the noble and gallant Lord who introduced this matter was actuated with a desire to forward the interests of the Public Service; but a discussion upon such a subject in their Lordships' House was, he thought, very much to be deprecated. Whatever might be the merits or demerits of the way in which the campaign was conducted, the campaign was over, and that was not the place for recording a calm and safe judgment on the matter. The plan of the General commanding had formed the subject of a military Court of Inquiry; and an aimless discussion of this sort was not only unfair to the noble and gallant Lord (Lord Chelmsford), but was also calculated to create a mistaken impression out-of-doors.

LORD VIVIAN
observed, that the noble and gallant Lord (Lord Strathnairn) had not censured the noble and gallant Lord who had conducted the war in South Africa. The statement that had been made on another occasion had practically challenged the noble and gallant Lord to recur to the subject. He regretted, how- ever, the difference that had arisen between the two noble and gallant Lords.

THE EARL OF MORLEY
said, he could not but think that the noble and gallant Lord (Lord Strathnairn), for whose military reputation he had great respect and admiration, had pursued an inconvenient and irregular course in again bringing this subject forward. The present Government, however, were not called upon to pronounce any opinion whatever on the matter. Eighteen months had elapsed since the events to which the Motion referred, and he looked upon the affair as entirely closed. The proper course for the noble and gallant Lord to have taken would have been to have brought the question before the House when the late Government, who had the whole circumstances within their knowledge, and who dealt with every circumstance as it arose, were in Office. Under the circumstances, Her Majesty's Government were not prepared, even if they had them, to produce any further Papers on the subject. They considered that the matter was entirely closed, and that there would be no advantage to the Public Service to produce Papers upon a vague Motion, directed to no practical and definite end. With regard to the Return asked for, such a Return was impossible, because the documents relating to the 24th Regiment were lost in the war. He regretted that the matter had been revived; and he deprecated any further discussion of a matter so technical, and which could not be adequately discussed in such an Assembly as this.
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Tue Sep 08, 2009 7:02 pm

Part Two.

LORD CHELMSFORD
regretted that the noble and gallant Lord (Lord Strathnairn) had not given any authority for the statements he had made regarding his (Lord Chelmsford's) conduct when in command of the South African Forces. The speech of the noble and gallant Lord had taken him completely by surprise; because he could not discover by the Notice of Motion that the noble and gallant Lord intended to reopen the questions that had so very recently been discussed by the House. When on a previous occasion he had endeavoured to give a full, true, and clear account of the Isandlana disaster, his narrative had been based, not upon information exclusively possessed by himself, but upon the evidence of eyewitnesses, whoso statements had since been published in the newspapers. His account had been taken from evidence published in The Times of March 17 and 22; and he now challenged the noble and gallant Lord to say whether all the details of his speech were not borne out by that evidence. The noble and gallant Lord had quoted authorities to whose words the House would probably not attach very great importance. The noble and gallant Lord had referred to the statement in an article by Mr. Archibald Forbes in The Nineteenth Century. But to show how fallacious some of the statements were, he need only point out the inaccuracy of the story related in reference to Colonel Harness. Colonel Harness had himself referred to the incident in an article in Frazer's Magazine, and had given quite a different account; and, as a matter of fact, the statement that he was in a position to afford relief to the camp was quite incorrect. He (Lord Chelmsford) was on his way to the camp—it must have been between 3 and half-past, the whole affair being over at 1 o'clock—when he saw Colonel Harness about 500 yards from him, moving off in the direction of the camp, being then 10 miles distant from Isandlana. Major Cosset, his aide-de-camp, asked him if he should go and stop the battery, and he said—"Yes; he could not understand why they were moving." And yet in the public prints there had been an accusation that Major, now Lieutenant Colonel, Gosset, prevented valuable reinforcements going on to the camp, and was almost accountable for the disaster. There was not a particle of truth in the story. Another important statement made by the noble and gallant Lord had reference to the number of messages which he asserted he had received from the camp on the day in question. In point of fact, he only received one message from the camp in the course of that day, which was that mentioned in his despatch, which had been sent to him at 8 o'clock in the morning, and which was received by him at 9.30, which merely gave the information that a body of the enemy had been noticed in a north-westerly direction. From half-past 9 o'clock until he reached the camp on his return not a single message, if any were despatched, had reached him. His statement on this point was fully corroborated by Lieutenant Colonel Croalock, his Military Secretary, in his letter recently sent to a London newspaper, in which he gave a distinct denial to the story that several messages had been received. The noble and gallant Lord, in referring to his despatch, had declared that he had reflected upon the gallantry of the 1st and 2nd Battalions of the 24th Regiment by stating that they had run away from the enemy. He had made no such reflection upon that gallant body of men. He wrote that despatch immediately after arriving in Pietermaritzburg, five days after the disaster. In it he stated that— One company went off to the extreme left and has never heard of since, and the other five, I understand, engaged the enemy about a mile to the left front of the camp, and made there a most stubborn and gallant resistance. So anxious was he that the Government at home should receive a true and faithful account of what had occurred that he wrote the whole of the despatch with his own hand; but he must confess that, on calm consideration, he should have altered the the paragraph in it to which the noble and gallant Lord had referred, because it was, perhaps, capable of an interpretation which he had no idea would be placed upon it, and which he did not intend should be placed upon it. He much regretted that it had given pain in some quarters. He never intended that the smallest impression should be left on the minds of anyone that he reflected on the conduct of the 24th Regiment. The paragraph said— When, however, the Zulus got round the left flank of these brave men, they appear to have lost their presence of mind, and returned hastily to the tents, that had never been struck. He would not have used the term "brave men" had he intended to have reflected upon their courage. What he had in his mind at the time he wrote that paragraph was that the men of the 24th Regiment, finding that the Zulus had worked round their flank, and that it was hopeless to remain where they were, had retired hastily with the view of taking up the stronger position which they should never have left. In his opinion, under the circumstances, it would have been better for them to have remained where they were, and to have fought it out on the spot without attempting to retire. They had been fighting an enemy outside their camp, and it was hopeless for the poor fellows to expect to get back.

LORD STRATHNAIRN
asked if the men retired by the orders of their officers?

LORD CHELMSFORD
Said, that it was so stated in the evidence. They were ordered back to take up a final position under the hill, which they ought never to have left, and they endeavoured to do so. That was the reason they turned their backs to the enemy; not that they ran, or attempted to run. In self-defence, he was compelled to refer in detail to the six mistakes which it was alleged by the noble and gallant Lord had led to the disaster at Isandlana. In the first place, he denied that the invading columns were too far apart to render each other mutual support. A reference to the map would show that the position taken up by the columns, having regard to the long frontier line, was the only one that could be properly adopted. With reference to the position of the camp, he defied the noble and gallant Lord to show that the account he had given of its position was inaccurate in any particular. The map which had been placed in the Library of the House, and which accurately described the ground near Isandlana, corroborated that account. With regard to the charge that the ground occupied by the enemy on the day in question had not been sufficiently reconnoitred previously, as a matter of fact, it had been carefully reconnoitred on the day before without the Zulus being discovered. Lieutenant Browne, 24th Regiment, and a party of mounted Infantry, went out by his (Lord Chelmsford's) orders in the direction from which the Zulus advanced, and he must have passed close to the spot where they bivouacked that night. He saw, however, no traces of a large force, simply because they were not there till after dark that evening. On the morning of the attack the vedette was placed, as usual, three miles in advance; and he gave notice of the approach of the enemy long before the actual attack was made, and which, therefore, could not be characterized as a surprise. The enemy did not advance from the direction of the mountains to the north of Isandlana; but from the eastward two of their columns, however, moved along the top of these mountains and came down upon the camp that way. In reference to the statement that the camp should have been intrenched, he had already stated that the ground in the neighbourhood of the camp was so rocky that it was absolutely impossible to make even shelter-trenches round the tents. When the party subsequently came to bury the poor men who had fallen in the battle, they found it almost impossible to dig a shallow grave, owing to the small amount of earth. Nor were there any trees with which to make abattis. The troops had, in fact, to carry their fuel with them. With regard to the assertion that on receiving the message that the camp was attacked, he should at once have returned with his force to its assistance, he had already explained that, by some extraordinary fatality, he never received such a message, if it had ever been sent. All he could say, standing before their Lordships, who, he believed, would give him credit for telling the truth faithfully, was, that neither he nor any of his staff received more than the one to which he had referred at half-past 9 in the morning; and the fact that he immediately sent a messenger back to Colonel Pulleine was a refutation of the charge brought against him. The sixth mistake alleged was that it would have been better if he had allowed Colonel Durnford to continue to discharge his special duties of superintending the fortification of the camp. In reply to this, he could only say that the fact of his sending for Colonel Durnford was evidence that he wished to have him close at hand in order that his advice might be available on engineering questions. Furthermore, he was much indebted to Colonel Durnford for the organization of the force of mounted Natives, which was entirely due to the personal influence which the gallant officer had with the Native Tribes. As far as the formation of the columns of invasion was concerned, the question was a purely technical one, which could not be satisfactorily discussed in their Lordships' House. To justify the strategy which he had adopted, it would be necessary to have a large map; and he would, in fact, have to give a lecture. He would only say that in his view a division of the force into three bodies was absolutely necessary, and was not too much to cover a line of close upon 300 miles. He would, however, be perfectly prepared to discuss the point with anybody who was interested in the subject. He looked back to the campaign with mixed feelings—regret at the loss of the gallant men who fell, and for that sad day of Isandlana, but with pride at what had been accomplished. When the nature of the country in which the troops were operating—the fact that, for military purposes, it may be said to have been a terra incognita—and the numerous difficulties of supply and transport which had to be overcome, were taken into consideration, the six months from January 11 to July 5 could not, he contended, be considered but a short time for the campaign to be brought to a close, and would contrast very favourably with the duration of former Kaffir Wars. He could not but think it unreasonable to say that undue delay had arisen in consequence of the steps which he thought it necessary to take in order to secure the completeness of the expedition. In conclusion, he thanked their Lordships for their attention, but regretted that he should have been called upon to make this explanation.

LORD STRATHNAIRN
said, he was very much surprised that the Under Secretary of State for War should have persistently refused to give any further Returns relative to the short-service system; and it appeared to him that there was a complete union between the Government and the Front Opposition Benches in their resolve not to inquire into the effect of that system, and not to produce the Report of Lord Airey's Commission, which everyone knew was a complete exposure of it. He denied that the noble and gallant Lord had said a word of refutation of the charge he had brought, and the fact remained that 20,000 Zulus were allowed to lie in ambush so near the camp and to assault it as they had done. Whatever might be said, there were not the necessary precautions taken to protect a camp in which most of our stores were.

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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Tue Sep 08, 2009 8:15 pm

Thanks Admin. Lot to get through. But will read later.
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Tue Sep 08, 2009 8:41 pm

So in a nut shell. Is Chelmsford saying the men did run away. But due to his state of mind (ie) 5 Days after the event. he didn't mean to say it
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Tue Sep 08, 2009 8:57 pm

Chelmsford is saying.

"In reference to the statement that the camp should have been intrenched, he had already stated that the ground in the neighbourhood of the camp was so rocky that it was absolutely impossible to make even shelter-trenches round the tents. When the party subsequently came to bury the poor men who had fallen in the battle, they found it almost impossible to dig a shallow grave, owing to the small amount of earth. Nor were there any trees with which to make abattis. The troops had, in fact, to carry their fuel with them."

He choose the area to make camp. Why on earth if he knew the above did he set up camp. i'm no Miliitary man. But the above statement from Chelmsford gives all the reasons where not to set up a camp.
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Tue Sep 08, 2009 9:56 pm

Is there a description of Isandlwana before the battle.
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PostSubject: house of commons   Wed Sep 09, 2009 2:16 am

hi all.
Good one pete, very interesting reading , it seems the good Lord ( chelmsford) had forgotten that he
recieved 4 ( i think thats the number !) messages from COL HAMILTON - BROWN who was watching the
events unfold from a ridge . Did H-B make this up ?, did the messages actually go to the good lord ?
Maybe Gosset or Crealock recieved them and thought them to be ridiculous ?. We will never know.
COL HAMILTON- BROWN had a reputation for embellishing the facts some what, which is why ( possibly)
if he did send four messages no-one seemed to think it prudent to act upon them. A fascinating story
ISANDLWANA , one that we will never get to the bottom of , until the invention of a TIME MACHINE :lol!:
As for HARNESS , I am sure he was a lot further advanced toward the camp as GOSSET or CHELMSORD
have since said, if i remember rightly , Harness heard the firing from the camp. Gosset seems to have flown
under the radar, he most likely recalled Harness on his own volition as chelmsford from what i have read was
further away !!.In CHELMSFORD inquiry ( i use the term loosely) he appointed HARNESS to the board , which
basically kept him quiet ! , as he couldnt give his facts from the 22nd jan. If i recall this story is in LOCK
and QUANTRILLS ZULU VICTORY THE EPIC OF ISANDLWANA AND THE COVER UP.
cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Wed Sep 09, 2009 7:18 am

To be a good liar. You have to have a good memory.
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Chelmsfordthescapegoat

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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Wed Sep 09, 2009 8:51 pm

I'm sure like me, you will agree that Lord Chelmsford was a honourable gentleman.

So when he was prepared to say “ With regard to the assertion that on receiving the message that the camp was attacked, he should at once have returned with his force to its assistance, he had already explained that, by some extraordinary fatality, he never received such a message, if it had ever been sent. All he could say, standing before their Lordships, who, he believed, would give him credit for telling the truth faithfully, was, that neither he nor any of his staff received more than the one to which he had referred at half-past 9 in the morning; and the fact that he immediately sent a messenger back to Colonel Pulleine was a refutation of the charge brought against him”

I don't think he would.
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Wed Sep 09, 2009 9:29 pm

CTSG. Many mistakes were made that day. Which cannot be un-done, there was that historical message and part of that said. (The Zulu in over-whelming numbers launched a highly disciplined attacked on the camp at Isandlwana) In my eyes that is what sealed the fate of the camp. I made a statement and that were (Only the Zulus really know what happen at the end, this is true.

Has anyone ever read anywhere, where the Zulus stated that the British died like cowards? But did say (They fought like lions.) They fell like stones each one in his place.

Was it a disaster? I don’t think it was. It was a famous battle that the British lost and gained the respect of the Zulu Nation. The Zulu army was defeated (Ulundi) and again I have never read anywhere, where the British stated that the Zulu’s were cowards. Both sides lost good men. They stood toe to toe and thrashed it out, and the better side one.
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Chelmsfordthescapegoat

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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Wed Sep 09, 2009 9:35 pm

Admin.
So can I take this, as you saying that it was not Chelmsford fault? And that those at the camp were the ones that made the many mistakes you say.
You say the better side won. But if orders had been followed just maybe the better side would have won.
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John

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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Wed Sep 09, 2009 9:39 pm

CTSG. Give it a rest. He is not saying that at all. I have seen your posts regarding Chelmsford but the truth is we will never know.

Good night..
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Wed Sep 09, 2009 9:43 pm

And there's me thinking this was a discussion forum. scratch
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PostSubject: chelmsford --- house of commons ,   Thu Sep 10, 2009 10:57 am

hi ctsg.
You are correct , it is a discussion forum. One thing i will discuss , never have i read anything where the average soldier
thought poorly of CHELMSFORD"S manner or integrity, but as i have said before you cant blame one man for the disaster
although Chelmsford didnt help the cause either, whether he was telling the truth in regards to how many notes he saw
or was delivered is a little redundant . If he decided to go back at 9.30 when the note arrived i doubt he would have been able
to help . He more than likely would have been quickly overwhelmed in the open and cut to pieces also. In regards to the 9.30 am
note , when it was recieved his forces were scattered to all points of the compass searching for the zulus , so he needed time to
to call them back , just another piece of fate conspiring against the british on that day, im not sticking up for the good lord , but fail to see what he could have done with the way things unfolded on that morning. The only safe bet is , if he didnt leave the camp they
may have been able to hold it , but then again it wasnt fortified so who knows ?. Khambula was fortified but it was a very close run
thing indeed , if WOOD hadnt goaded the right horn to attack early , in his words things may well have been DIFFERANT !
cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Thu Sep 10, 2009 9:04 pm

Well said 90th. The truth is out there but the record were lost long ago.
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Thu Sep 10, 2009 9:15 pm

Chelmsford. Does seemed to have forgotten alot of what he said in South Africa. scratch
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Mon Dec 05, 2011 9:52 pm

VISCOUNT BURY I cannot too highly thank the noble Earl behind me (the Earl of Longford) for the manly and outspoken way in which he has given voice to feelings which my mere prosaic duty of answering a Question would render inopportune in me. I think the Question which has been put by the noble Lord (Lord Thurlow) is founded on a radical misapprehension of the real meaning of what a Court of Inquiry is. On reading the Notice, I must confess it struck me as containing an imputation which it would be my duty most energetically to repel—an imputation that the Commander of Her Majesty's Forces in South Africa had seized the occasion of the appointment of this Court of Inquiry to place upon it officers so immediately under his own control that they would be likely, in plain language, to "whitewash" him. There can be no other interpretation placed on the Notice, which the noble Lord did not read to the House, but which, if the House will allow me, I shall read. The noble Lord's Question is as follows:— To ask whether, in the opinion of Her Majesty's Government, such Court of Inquiry is composed of elements sufficiently
independent of their Commanding Officer to justify the hope that their Report will be as unprejudiced and authoritative as the magnitude of the disaster renders desirable? My Lords, in answer to that I have to say, that the only
information which the 891 Government are possessed of with regard to the constitution of that Court is one paragraph in the despatch of Lord Chelmsford, in -which he mentions that he has not received from Colonel Hassard, commanding the Royal Engineers, the Report of the Court upon which he sat. We only know this indirectly—that Colonel Hassard was the President of that Court; but we conclude, from. Lord Chelmsford's despatch, that such was the case. Now, Colonel Hassard is the second officer in command. He is a man highly distinguished and highly respected in his profession, and, as a British officer, he ought, I should think, to be shielded from such imputations as are conveyed in this Question. But I have another and a more complete answer to the imputation conveyed—and that is, that by the very nature of a Court of Inquiry, any kind of collusion between Lord Chelmsford and those composed
the Court is rendered absolutely out of the question. A Court of Inquiry such as this is held under the Prerogative and not by Statute. It is a Court which can call before it witnesses subject to military law, but only by virtue of their position as military persons. It cannot take any evidence on oath. I will read from the Queen's Regulations the conditions under which the Court sits— A Court of Inquiry may be assembled by any officer in command to assist him in arriving at a correct conclusion on any subject on which it may be expedient for him to be thoroughly informed. With this object in view, such Court may be directed to investigate and report upon any matter that may be brought before it; but it has no power (except when convened to record the illegal absence of soldiers as provided for in the Articles of War) to administer an oath, nor to compel the attendance of witnesses not military. A Court of Inquiry is not to be considered in any light as a judicial body. It may be employed at the discretion of the
convening officer to collect and record information only. Now, My Lords, Lord Chelmsford was absent from Isandula at the moment of the disaster. He could not from his own personal observation send home an entirely satisfactory account to the authorities in this country. There was but one course open to him—to order the assembly of such a Court of Inquiry to inquire merely into matters of fact and not into matters of opinion. If that Court of Inquiry had been directed, or if it were directed, to express an opinion, 892 then it would be open to anyone to question the motives on which that opinion rested. But, as it is, it was appointed simply to collect facts for the information of the Commander-in-Chief, which he might employ as he thought best and send home to the authorities on his own responsibility. The terms in which the noble Lord has been pleased to couch his Question, therefore, makes it fall to the ground, and it loses that unfortunate significance with which it is now invested. I wish it were now my proud duty to follow the noble Lord in the first few word of his remarks
and to offer a panegyric upon those brave men who fell at Isandula, and those who distinguished themselves at Rorke's Drift. It is not my duty to do that—I must confine myself to the Question—but no Englishman, in speaking upon this subject, can resist a passing tribute of admiration to their courage. In answer to the second part of the nobleLord'sQuestion—Whether it would not be better to delay a further invasion of Zululand until the Report above referred to shall have been received and fully considered?—I have to say that Her Majesty's Government are giving their best consideration to the state of affairs, and will take that course which circumstances induce them to believe is best for the public interest.
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Tue Dec 06, 2011 8:51 pm

In the immediate aftermath and the 5 days following the loss of iSandlwana, Chelmsford seems to be groping around, looking for someone or even a whole battalion to blame, trying to get his story straight before eventually settling on Durnford as the scapegoat.
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Tue Feb 28, 2012 9:46 pm

"A court of Inquiry was convened at Helpmekaar on 27th January, under the Presidency of Colonel F.C. Hassard, R.E.  Hassard was assisted by Lt. Col. Law, R.A. and Colonel Arthur Harness, R.A. Harness had been personally involved in the Isandlwana campaign as the commander of N/6 Battery, which had lost two guns in the battle, although he had been out with Chelmsford, rather than in camp, at the time of the battle.  The most important aspect that needs to be understood about the Court of Inquiry was that it was not an impartial body, set up to consider the campaign as a whole, or to pass judgement; it was set up by Lord Chelmsford himself, to gather information on one specific issue, the loss of the camp.  It was, indeed, set up to discover the very information which Chelmsford had regretted the lack of in his despatch home.  As such, the members of the Court, and specifically Harness, considered it their duty to exclude any information which did not relate to their narrow remit.  Certainly, there was never any intention to examine Chelmsford’s role, since the General himself was the intended recipient of the report.  Furthermore, the Court’s attitude was shaped by an over-reliance on testimony from regular Imperial officers.  There were two reasons for this bias; firstly, the Court members expected that fellow professionals would best be able to give them some insight into the defence arrangements at the camp, and that officers were more likely to be privy to any command decisions that were taken.  Secondly, most Imperial officers were wary of colonial volunteers, whose professional and social background was often different to their own.  Even before the battle, there had been something of a gulf of understanding between the regulars and the colonial volunteer units who had been attached to the various columns.  This was, perhaps, inevitable; the volunteers felt that their experience of the country, and their knowledge of Zulu customs, should have given them more influence in military decisions than it actually did, while the Imperial troops (who were also experienced in South African warfare), preferred to rely instead on their own professional instincts, and looked down on the volunteers as amateurs."
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PostSubject: Re: Lord Chelmsford question in the house of commons 02 September 1880 regarding the Battle of Isandlwana.   Wed Feb 29, 2012 8:00 am

Hi all

Gary very interesting

This is the 23 they had to abandon the camp, so this does not change, they were also massacred that day ...

Since Chelmsford, banned entrenchments.

Sacred liar, this Chelmsford ...

Salute

Pascal
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