The Lord General report´s
His Excellency Lord General Gordon was kind enough to give the Praetorian war correspondent Lieutenant Rupert Worseley a short interview. The exact wording of the call is billed to the interested reader now, after looking through the Commissariat available.
Lieutenant Worseley: My Lord, I thank them for the interview.
Lord Gordon: But please, do not bother.
Lieutenant Worseley: My lord, they give us a brief summary of the arguments about Calandra. Meanwhile, one speaks also of the Battle of Calandra?
Lord Gordon (laughing): Of course, the Battle of Calandra. The men are always very imaginative. Very well....
On the night of the 12th the Praetorian Corps formed an encampment, not far from the Mahdi`s positions. From around 1 o'clock until dawn, Mahdist riflemen approached the camp and opened fire, but their shooting was imprecise, and they inflicted few casualties.Lieutenant Worseley: Permit an intermediate question, my lord?
Lord Gordon: Of course, please.
L.W.: Did my lord, already, that Calandra was under siege?
L.G.: Not really. We suspected that something was not right, because there is no more news came through, no communication was possible. So I had Colonel Sheppard and the 114th Hussars in march set. Lord Peter again sat with the bulk of the 20 Praetoria at Khalafan over and took back the ford.
L.W.: It is said that Colonel Wimsay ....
L.G.: I think it will be allowed to publish that we are talking about Major General Lord Wimsay.
L.W.: This is exciting! I would like to express my appreciation of his Lordship expressed.
L.G. (chuckling): I'll tell it.
L.W.: It is said that Major General Wimsay the assault at the top of the 1st Battalion led himself?
L.G.: That is correct. The 20th Praetoria has earned that day, a new Battle Honour.
L.W.: How did the debate continue?
L.G.: At dawn, the artillery was brought to bear against the Mahdist skirmishers and they were driven back. The infantry (which included the Black Watch) then formed into two infantry squares each of brigade-size and advanced. One square was commanded by Major Ross, with Lieutenant General The Viscount Sidmouth and the other by Captain C. Buller. A scouting party discovered that the main body of the Mahdist force was hidden in a nearby ravine, whereupon The Viscount Sidmouth ordered the 2nd Black Watch to charge, leaving a wide gap where they had been stationed in one of the squares. A sudden onslaught of Mahdists rushed into this gap. Finding themselves in danger of being cut off, the Praetorian Forces units fell back in disarray.
L.W.: Inventory risk for the Corps?
L.G.: At this time no longer. The Praetorian special unit of the Black Watch, had their act well calculated. Furthermore, it was Viscount Sidmouth possible to close the gap by withdrawing.
The Mahdist advance was halted by volleys from the other (Buller's) square which had survived the attack and by dismounted cavalry units that had not been engaged until then. The concentrated flanking fire they inflicted caused huge casualties among the Mahdists, who were forced to retreat.
The 114th Hussars then reformed, and resumed their advance, driving the shaken Mahdists out of the ravine and inflicting more casualties on them as they fled. There desert camp was captured later that day, but the chief of them, Cemal Digma escaped.
L.W.: I thank your lordship for the short report and hope that the fighting can be immediately taken into a new phase, to finally bring peace to Indira IV and Deliha Sector.
L.G.: It was my pleasure, Lieutenant.
The interview was conducted in the evening after the return of the 20th Praetorian regiment after Kahnadrapur.