"At a mile distant their thousand hooves were stuttering thunder, coming at a rate that frightened a man - they were an awe inspiring sight, galloping through the red haze - knee to knee and horse to horse - the dying sun glinting on bayonet points..." Trooper Ion Idriess
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The Battle for Haifa, 23 September 1918, Outline Topic: BatzP - Megiddo
The Battle for Haifa
Palestine, 23 September 1918
Map detailing the movement of the 13th Cavalry Division in the Capture of Haifa.
[From: Falls, C.; MacMunn, G.; and, Becke, AF, Military operations: Egypt and Palestine, (London 1930), Sketch 34.]
From "A brief record of the advance of the Egyptian expeditionary force under the command of General Sir Edmund H. H. Allenby ... July 1917 to October 1918", Despatch dated 31st October 1918:
19. Whilst the 4th Cavalry and the Australian Mounted Divisions were collecting the remnants of the Vllth and Vlllth Turkish Armies, I ordered the Desert Mounted Corps to occupy Acre and Haifa. The roads leading to Haifa from Tul Keram are only country tracks, which, in the event of rain, might become impassable for motor lorries at any time. Any force, advancing northwards from Haifa along the coast, would have to depend on supplies landed at that port. It was necessary, therefore, to occupy the town without delay, in order that the harbour could be swept for mines, and the landing of stores taken in hand. The 13th Cavalry Brigade of the 5th Cavalry Division, which had entered Nazareth on Sept. 20, and had then marched to El Afule, returned to Nazareth the following day.
Part of the garrison of Haifa, which was attempting to reach Tiberias, was intercepted by this brigade on the morning of Sept. 22. At 0130 this column approached the outposts of the 13th Cavalry Brigade. It was attacked in the moonlight by the 18th Lancers, who killed a large number of Turks and captured over 300.
That afternoon Haifa was reconnoitred by a battery of armoured cars. It was held by the enemy. The road was barricaded, and the armoured cars were shelled from the slopes of Mount Carmel.
On Sept. 23 the 5th Cavalry Division, less the 13th Cavalry Brigade, marched from El Afule to capture the town. The 13th Cavalry Brigade marched direct from Nazareth on Acre.
Capture of Acre and Haifa, Sept. 23.
The road from El Afule to Haifa skirts the north-eastern edge of the Mount Carmel range. Some two miles before Haifa is reached, the road is confined between a spur of Mount Carmel on the left, and the marshy banks of the River Kishon and its tributaries on the right. When the 5th Cavalry Division reached this point on Sept. 23 it was shelled from the slopes of Mount Carmel, and found the road and the river crossings defended by numerous machine guns.
Whilst the Mysore Lancers were clearing the rocky slopes of Mount Carmel, the Jodhpur Lancers charged through the defile, and, riding over the enemy's machine guns, galloped into the town, where a number of Turks were speared in the streets. Colonel Thakur Dalpat Singh, M.C., fell, gallantly leading this charge.
In this operation 1,350 prisoners and seventeen guns were taken.
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