Sunday, August 10, 2014

Today -100: August 10, 1914: A great work of revenge

Fog of War (Rumors, Propaganda and Just Plain Bullshit) of the Day -100: The Germans are (falsely) reported to be holding the governor of Liège and the bishop of Liège hostage, and will execute them if the forts continue to resist.

French troops have occupied Altkirch and Mülhausen in Alsace.  Gen. Joffre says that those troops are “pioneers in a great work of revenge” (for the defeat by Prussia in 1870).

French troops invade German Togoland from its colony Dahomey (now Benin) at the other end of Togoland from where British troops are invading from their Gold Coast colony.

Fog of War (Rumors, Propaganda and Just Plain Bullshit): A two-paragraph story reports in the first paragraph that Belgium has taken prisoner Prince George, nephew of Kaiser Wilhelm, and in the second paragraph that there is no such person as Prince George.

Fog of War: A two-paragraph story contains reports from two different sources saying that Kaiser Wilhelm is 1) driving to the front in Alsace, and 2) at Aix-la-Chapelle to join the army (probably not in a pick-up-a-rifle sort of way).

Fog of War??  A Belgian newspaper claims that the Grand Duchess of Luxembourg went to personally bar German soldiers entering the capital, and a German officer pointed a gun at her.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Sazonov tells the Duma that Austria started this war, and Russia’s conscience is clear.  Austria provoked internecine war between the Slavs, but “thanks be to God, she will not ruin the work of Slav unification.”

Dr. Roque Saenz Peña, President of Argentina, dies.

Two farmhands, a German and a Frenchman, employed at a farm in New Jersey, fight a duel over the relative merits of the armies of their home countries.  If you can call it a duel when they’re using shotguns and shooting from behind a cow shed and a chicken coop, respectively.  The German tricks the Frenchie into emptying his shotgun at a hat on a pitchfork, but they are stopped before anyone gets hurt.  “Both were reservists in their respective armies and it was believed a desire for target practice as much as anything else led them to fight.”

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