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W.T. Massey - How Jerusalem Was Won. Allenby's Campaign in Palestine

(3) The Holy Places have had Guards placed over them.

(4) My Military Governor is in touch with the Acting Custos of Latins, and the Greek representative has
been detailed to supervise Christian Holy Places.

(5) The Mosque of Omar and the area round it has been placed under Moslem control and a military
cordon composed of Indian Mahomedan officers and soldiers has been established round the Mosque.

Orders have been issued that without permission of the Military Governor and the Moslem in charge of

the Mosque no non-Moslem is to pass this cordon.

(6) The Proclamation has been posted on the walls, and from the steps of the Citadel was read in my
presence to the population in Arabic, Hebrew, English, French, Italian, Greek, and Russian.

(7) Guardians have been established at Bethlehem and on Rachel's Tomb. The Tomb of Hebron has been
placed under exclusive Moslem control.

(8) The hereditary custodians of the Wakfs at the Gates of the Holy Sepulchre have been requested to
take up their accustomed duties in remembrance of the magnanimous act of the Caliph Omar who

protected that Church.

As a matter of historical interest I give in the Appendix the orders issued on the occasion of the Official
Entry into Jerusalem, the order of General Allenby's procession into the Holy City for the reading of the

Proclamation, together with the text of that historic document, and the special orders of the day issued by

the Commander-in-Chief to his troops after the capture of Jerusalem.[1]

[Footnote 1: See Appendix VII.]

 

CHAPTER XVI. MAKING JERUSALEM SECURE

General Allenby within two days of capturing Jerusalem had secured a line of high ground which formed
an excellent defensive system, but his XXth Corps Staff was busy with plans to extend the defences to

give the Holy City safety from attack. Nothing could have had so damaging an influence on our prestige

in the East, which was growing stronger every day as the direct result of the immense success of the

operations in Palestine, as the recapture of Jerusalem by the Turks. We thought the wire-pulling of the

German High Command would have its effect in the war councils of Turkey, and seeing that the

regaining of the prize would have such far-reaching effect on public opinion no one was surprised that

the Germans prevailed upon their ally to make the attempt. It was a hopeless failure. The attack came at a

moment when we were ready to launch a scheme to secure a second and a third line of defences for

Jerusalem, and gallantly as the Turks fought - they delivered thirteen powerful attacks against our line on

the morning of December 27 - the venture had a disastrous ending, and instead of reaching Jerusalem the

enemy had to yield to British arms seven miles of most valuable country and gave us, in place of one

line, four strong lines for the defence of the Holy City. By supreme judgment, when the Turks had

committed themselves to the attack on Tel el Ful, without which they could not move a yard on the

Nablus road, General Chetwode started his operations on the left of his line with the 10th and 74th

Divisions, using his plan as it had been prepared for some days to seize successive lines of hills, and

compelled the enemy, in order to meet this attack, to divert the fresh division held in waiting at Bireh to

throw forward into Jerusalem the moment the storming troops should pierce our line. With the precision

of clockwork the Irish and dismounted yeomanry divisions secured their objectives, and on the second

day of the fighting we regained the initiative and compelled the Turks to conform to our dispositions. On

 

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