Topic: BatzS - El Mazar
Bir el Mazar
Sinai, 17 September 1916
As part of the Official British War History of the Great War, Captain Cyril Falls and Lieutenant General George MacMunn were commissioned to produce a commentary on the Sinai, Palestine and Syrian operations that took place. In 1928, their finished work, Military Operations, Egypt and Palestine - From the outbreak of war with Germany to June 1917, was published in London. Their book included a section specifically related to the battle of Romani and is extracted below.MacMunn, G. & Falls, C., Military operations: Egypt and Palestine, (London 1930), p. 245:
The first raid was directed against El Mazar, on the main coastwise track to El Arish. Here, it will be remembered, the enemy had left a post on his retirement after the Battle of Romani. The force was commanded by Major-General Chauvel and consisted of the 2nd and 3rd L.H. Brigades, three companies Imperial Camel Corps, two horse artillery batteries and two guns of the Hong Kong & Singapore Battery. The 1st L.H. Brigade followed and remained during the action 10 miles in rear. It assembled at Bir Salmana, 20 miles west of Mazar, on the 16th September, but the palm groves gave insufficient concealment, and it was attacked by German aeroplanes. The hope of surprising the garrison of Mazar, believed to be from five to seven hundred strong, had therefore to be abandoned. Nevertheless the column started that evening, marched through the night, and attacked the Turkish outposts at dawn on the 17th. But the place was found to be well fortified and its garrison thoroughly alert; the horse artillery, misled by its guide, was late; so General Chauvel, to the disappointment of his troops, decided to break off the action. Shortly afterwards the Turks withdrew their post from Mazar.
Citation: Bir el Mazar, Sinai, 17 September 1916, Falls Account