A LOOK ROUND. The Power of the Keys. u [BY SENTINEL."] THE Power of the Keys is claimed by the Roman Catholic Church for the Pope. In another, and a Temporal sense, we may fairly claim it for the Allied Navies, of which the British supplies by far the greatest and most important part. For the Navies here have locked all the gates of the world upon Germany and her allies. Except in the Baltic and the Black Sea, wherever their armies touch blue water, there is their progress stayed, And, even in the two seas which we have excepted, their power for mischief onlv extends to the mouth of the straits which close the entrance and exit—the Belts and Sound in the first case, and the Dardanelles in the second. NN- e publish this week a map which shows how the Allied navies operate all over the world. Moreover, it is not only that German and Austrian ships cannot get out- Turkey has none worth mentioning- but that vessels of all kinds, carrying el goods which are necessary to sustain the enemy countries, cannot get in. I The consequence is that the Germans and Austrians, the Turks and Bul- garians are reduced to living, as bears are said to do in winter, by sucking their own paws. The Prime Minister has justly claimed that this work of the Xavy has been the one decisive victory of the war. It is won daily, for the most part silently. Only occasionally have battles been fought bv sea which are comparable in importance with those fought almost daily on land. But if that silent, victory had jact J: aeji xon since. war was declared, the fighting on land would have been one monotonous round of German victory, and the war would have been over long ago, with us and our Allies down and out." There is no shame in confessing the fact, for we have always been a sea Power, and a sea Power we remain, in spite of the great armies which we and the Dominions have put into the field. As regards our Allies, the first rush of the Germans placed most of the re- sources of France and Belg-ltll-ll- I]) coal and iron in their hands, and, if the control of the sea had not been with us, the nations who are fighting with us must have been defeated by lack of the means to carry 011, if they had not been crushed* for lack of munitions. As things are, France and Italy have been able to draw food and coal and munitions—the things which are the life-blood of war from the whole world. And, moreover, thanks to the fact that we control the seas there is now a reasonable chance that Russia will once more rally to the cause of freedom which Lenin and Trotsky so blindly betrayed. Look at the map and see where Archangel and Vladivostok are. That will show the grip of the naval pincers." But, after all, the greatest victory of the Aiiied navies in the war—merchant- ships we have counted as part of the Navy—is the bringing of the American army to Europe in the teeth of the U- boats. The Germans knew perfectly well that when they ordered their sub. marine captains to sink everything they saw, they would bring America into the struggle. But they didn't care. They were so certain the submarines would make it impossible for any number of American soldiers ever to reach Europe, ,t. to be maintained here if they arrived. The U-boats have done the worst they knew. They have cost us heavy losses. But the American troops are over on this side—about a million and a half of them—and they have already given the Germans a ve-v unpleasant taste of their quality. So when we rejoice over the heavy blows which Foch and Haig have struck at the Hun, do not let us forget the navies which have made this possible. And if there should yet be a turn of fortune on land, let us equally be mindful that the Hun cannot win so long as we hold the sea. The Navv never sleeps: never goes into winter quarters. For it the battle, with the elements as well as with the enemy, has been continuous from 1914 till now. We shall have an utterly false view of what is taking place in the war unless we keep constantly in mind the In- fluence of Sea Power.
WAR STORIES. Little Pictures of Great Battles. MORE U-BOATS ACCOUNTED FOR. This week we give some little stories of the great fighting in France during the splendidly successful operations in which the combined forces of Britain, France, and America have driven back the German Armies from the neighbourhoods of Rheims and of Amiens, and which have resulted in such heavy captures of enemy guns and prisoners of war: 28,000 prisoners, 600 guns, and thousands of machine guns in five days. A Glimpse of the Battle Area. The roads were long streams of white and yellow dust, so thick that a driver could seldom see far enough ahead to know whether it was safe for him to pass, the slower vehicle in front. Huge motor lorries, ambulance vans, and heavy guns, interspersed with bodies of infantry and a few mounted troops, were pushing for- ward along one side, while down the other came the lorries, empty, and the ambu- lances full, with here and there a batch of prisoners and their guards with fixed bayonets marching beside them. As a rule I was struck (Mr. Gibbs says) by the good condition and equipment of the pri- n soners. They looked well drilled, well fed, and their boots and uniforms were sound. Of course they were dirty and tired, but so would you be after a three days' battle, especially in defeat, with food uncertain and no opportunity to wash and brush up. Many were too young for this deadly work, and, indeed, what human being is not either too young or too old? A Brigade Headquarters Caught. A small party of horsemen from over- seas were approaching a wood which they designed to clear up when a tall Bun emerged and came running directly towards them. The officer in charge was about to shoot him, but perceiving that he held nothing in his hands, desisted. The fellow still came on shouting in excellent -English*, Stop*. ■Miusn 't. go in there." "Why not ?>swrasked the officer. Why, not, indeed," cried the Hun, "there is a brigade headquarters in that wood." As this seemed a most excellent reason for proceeding the cavalry pushed on, and shortly came to a group of six horses and two orderlies standing outsida the entrance to a dug-out. The orderlies began to shout, whereupon the officer fired and brought one of them down. The other dismounted and the horses stam- peded. As the process of shouting into the dug-out met with no response a stink bomb was lobbed down, and very shortly there came crawling out, retching and green in the faces, a full German colonel and several staff officers. The Germans Playing Doggo. The little village of Chipilly became known as a mystery corner. A patrol from the south side of the river went down the village street, and reported all clear to the troops on the north. But as soon as one of the northern battalions advanced against it the village fairly blazed with machine guns. This was on Friday morn- ing. A formal attack was therefore arranged for Friday evening. A tank circumvented the gully on the west and entered on the steep promontory on which the village stands. Never did a machine face such a hail or better prove its mettle. The noise was like the noise of a shipyard when the riveters are at full work. It came from a complete battery of machine guns turned on to the tank at close quarters, and when all was over its hide looked like a Morse code alphabet—all dots and dashes. Its record is written all over it in leaded type. Apparently none of the bullets was armour-piercing, and the tank proceeded to rear itself against the defences of the battery, and helped by it a division of infantry entered from the west, and no fewer than 300 odd prisoners were found in dug-outs and hiding-places, not excluding the church towers. All through the fighting on the northern bank the n Germans practised with cunning their old device of lying doggo. Tanks Push Down Houses. The tanks, and especially the small and rapid species called whippets," are gain- ing much in favour, and in fact the whippets" are taking the place of the old cavalry for skirmishing in front of infantry, while the heavier tanks crush down the small outlying posts, and where they find machine-guns acting in a village they crush down the houses wth equal ease. Many of the tanks put out of action can be repaired. Tanks Always Say Yes." The best individual story is of a tank north of the Somme. It lost direction and got back to Treux, where an officer asked it to take up something to the front line. It answered Yes "—tanks always do. It did the job and was asked at the front trench to help with some tiresome enemy in front. It said Yes again, but demanded the help of a dozen infantry. With that bodyguard it set out, crosed the, hostile trench, and worked along it, finally accepting the surrender of 7 officers and 200 men. (Continued in Col. 6.)
CLEANING UP THE WOOD.
WAR STORIES. (Contin Hcd from Col. 2.) More About Tanks. The drive back of the Germans was pre- eminently a battle of tanks, armoured cars, and cavalry. The "whippets" played havoc against von Marwitz's Second Army. Many are the stories of their gallant deeds. Take for example the ad- ventures of six of them, which are said to have advanced in perfect line to attack a -battery of field guns which was proving very annoying. The story goes that the gunners lay upon them with open sights, and promptly put four of the whippets out of action for the moment. The other two spun round and scurried away, and the Hun artillerists were doubtless well pleased with themselves. Not for long though, for suddenly the two vanished tanks came whirring out of a cornfield in the rear of the battery, their machine guns squirting lead, and before the Germans could swing their guns round they were all killed or wounded. Then came a ponderous tank, curtseying over the ground like an old- time line-of-battle ship in a heavy swell to tend the wounded chicks and succour those within. American Dash. The French General Mangin has paid a warm tribute to the fighting dash of the American troops under his command. You went to the battle as to a feast." he says. Your magnificent dash over- threw and startled the enemy, and your indomitable tenacity stopped the return attack of his fresh divisions. You have shown yourselves worthy sons of your great country, and you have won the admiration of your comrades in arms. "Ninety-one guns, 7,200 prisoners, im- n mense booty, and ten kilometres of country reconquered—that is your share in the trophies of this victory. In addition you have gained complete confidence in your superiority over the barbarian, tha enemy of the entire human race, whom the children of liberty are fighting. To attack him is to conquer him. American comrades, I am grateful to you for the blood generously shed on the soil of my country." The Cavalry at Work. Neither in this nor in any other war (writes Mr. Philip Gibbs) have I witnessed so large a force of cavalry used in the old cavalry manner, mounted throughout. The whole scene was like one of the old fashioned battles of movement, with cavalry, guns, and infantry all in action on the open field. But there were differences. Aeroplanes circled overhead, watchful and armed, while from pits and the obscurity of woods the still more deadly machine- guns pumped bullets on the advancing troops as a gardener sprays flowers with a hose. A Packet of U-Boat Stories. Among the latest stories of the destruc- tion of enemy submarines is one of a short, stern fight in which a destroyer and a patrol boat played a principal part, the latter finally ramming the U-boat and cut- ting her in half. The destroyer was on the starboard bow of a convoy, and the patrol boat, having dropped back to urge on a straggler, was coming up astern, when the enemy submarine was located. The destroyer was the first to arrive over the spot where the enemy vessel submerged, and the shock of an impact was distinctly felt, but the damage inflicted was not sufficient to sink the submarine, whose periscope reappeared half-an-hour later. This time the patrol boat got in first with two depth charges, and following the heavy explosions the enemy submarine rcsa to the surface some fifty vards astern. Both the destroyer and the patrol boat registered three hits with shells, and the latter, putting her helm over, charged down on the doomed marauder, and with her ram cut her clean in half. For a moment the stern came to the surface and then sank, while the forward part remained for an instant poised in the water, bows downward, exposing the interior of the ship, before taking the final plunge. U-Boat Hits a German Mine. While cruising submerged, another U- boat. which had probably got out of her course, struck aft a German mine laid to trap one of our own submarines. Her engine-room quickly flooded, and under the weight of water her stern sank, while the bows protruded vertically out of the water. The only way of escape f,or the imprisoned crew was by the bow torpedo tube, which, being filled ready to fire, had to be first cleared of the torpedo. As the necessary tackle had not been damaged, the clearance was scon made. Members of the crew standing on each others shoulders up to the height of the tube formed a human ladder, by which some escaped. Rockets fired as distress signals wera answered by one of our patrol boats, which picked up seven men. Others would have been saved but for the fact that the sub- marine heeled over, filled with water through the open tube, and sank in fivo seconds.