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COALITIOPJ VARFARE D'J!:Ii.

IG

TXE A L L I E D 1YTER'IE:iTIOP.i

IN HORTII RUSSIA, 1915-1919

A t h e s i s p r e s e n t e d t o t h e Facul'q o f t h e U.3. Army


Command and General. S t a f f ' Colle,qe i n p a r t i a l

f u l f i l l m e n t of t h e requirements f o r t h e
degree

IUSTER OF IIILITARY ART A!!3 SC1E::CE

by
BRUCE S. EEALS, 3 M USA I, 9.h., Auburn U n i v e r s i t y , 1974

F o r t Leavenviorth, !imsas 1981

MASTER OF MILITARY ART AND S C I E N C E


THESIS APPROVAL PAGE

Name of c a n d i d a t e T i t l e of t h e s i s

Bruce S . B e a l s , hWJ. USA C o a l i t i o n Warfare During The A l l i e d

I n t e r v e n t i o n i n North R u s s i a , 1918-1919. Approved by: T h e s i s Committee Chairman


.t.--.

Member, Graduate F a c u l t y Member, Consulting F a c u l t y

Accepted t h i s day of D i r e c t o r , Graduate Degree Programs.

/$d

&

1981 by

The o p i n i o n s and conclusiions expressed h e r e i n a r e t h o s e of t h e s t u d e n t a u t h o r a n d do no:t n e c e s s a r i l y r e p r e s e n t t h e views o f t h e U . S . Army Command and General S t a f f College o r any o t h e r government agency. (References t o t h i s s t u d y should i n c l u d e t h e f o r e going s t a t e m e n t s . )

C O A L I T I O N WARFARE D U R I N G THE ALLIED INTERVENTION I N NORTH


R U S S I A , 1918-1919,

by Major Bruce S . B e a l s , I N ,

105 p a g e s ,

Two months b e f o r e World War I ended, t h e P r e s i d e n t of t h e United S t a t e s , along w i t h t h e l e a d e r s of Great B r i t i a n , France, I t a l y , and s e v e r a l o t h e r A l l i e d n a t i o n s , committed n e a r l y 20,000 s o l d i e r s t o w a r i n North Russia. Almost a y e a r a f t e r t h e a r m i s t i c e on t h e Western Front A l l i e d t r o o p s were s t i l l f i g h t i n g i n t h e snowy wastes of a far o f f , s t r a n g e l a n d , f o r u n c l e a r and ambiguous r e a s o n s .
T h i s t h e s i s examines t h e background t o t h e i n t e r v e n t i o n , t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s between t h e A l l i e s , t h e A l l i e d m i l i t a r y operat i o n s , and t h e r e a s o n s f o r t h e u l t i m a t e f a i l u r e of t h e North

Russian E x p e d i t i o n a r y Force. The s t u d y f o c u s e s on t h e decis i o n s t h a t l e d t o t h e i n t e r v e n t i o n a t Archangel, t h e command r e l a t i o n s h i p s between t h e p r i m a r y m i l i t a r y and p o l i t i c a l p l a y ers, and the i m p a c t o f t h e unique c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f each o f t h e A l l i e d f o r c e s on t h e conduct of combat o p e r a t i o n s a g a i n s t t h e Bolsheviks. Source m a t e r i a l f o r t h i s s t u d y has been t a k e n from t h e accounts o f American, B r i t i s h , and Canadian o f f i c e r s , a f t e r - a c t i o n rep o r t s , and u n i t h i s t o r i e s . Other i n f o r m a t i o n comes from French, C a n a d i a n , A u s t r a l i a n , E n g l i s h , and American s o u r c e s . The impact o f t h e extremes of weather, v a s t n e s s of t h e c o u n t r y , u b i q u i t o u s n a t u r e of t h e enemy, l e n g t h of supply l i n e s , l a c k of f i r e s u p p o r t , confusion of t h e command s t r u c t u r e , and d i s t i n c t motives of each of t h e A l l i e d f o r c e s a l l combined t o s p e l l t h e i n e v i t a b l e f a i l u r e of t h e A l l i e s i n North Russia. T h i s t h e s i s s c r u t i n i z e s each of t h e s e elements and concludes by d i s c u s s i n g t h o s e c r u c i a l f a c t o r s t h a t i n f l u e n c e d t h e c o a l i t i o n warfare e f f o r t .

1IAPS:

Xllie.:

S x p e d i t i o n s t o !!cssiz

1918-1920.

P-rea o f O;;erat.ion

Archangel Provirice

i.

!
'

A L L I E D EXPEDITIONS TO RUSE 1918 1920

(West P o i n t Atlas o f American Wars)

Intro -d u c t i o n I n 1 959 Nikita Khrushchev said i n L o s h g e l e s , "We remember t h e g r i m days when American s o l d i e r s went t o o u r s o i l , headed by t h e i r g e n e r a l s t o h e l p our klhite Guards combat t h e new r e v o l u t i o n . . . A l l t h e c a p i t a l i s t c o u n t r i e s of Europe a n d America marched on o u r c o u n t r y t o s t r a n g l e t h e new revolution...Never have any of o u r s o l d i e r s been on American s o i l , b u t your s o l d i e r s wer on Russian s o i l . Those a r e t h e f a c t s . " ? Overshadowed by t h e t e r m i n a t i o n of t h e F i r s t World War, t h e Bolshevik R e v o l u t i o n , t h e League o f Nations d e b a t e , and P r e s i d e n t l;Jilsonfs post-war p o l i t i c a l problems, t h e North Russian E x p e d i t i o n has been viewed as a sideshow t o 'the "Great Warff and h a s r e c e i v e d l i t t l e a t t e n t i o n . The e n t i r e

e p i s o d e , from t h e d e c i s i o n s t h a t l e d t o t h e i n t e r v e n t i o n i n e a r l y 1919 t o t h e e v a c u a t i o n of f o r c e s i n t h e f a l l of
1 9 1 9 , w a s c h a r a c t e r i z e d by extremes of motive, p e r s o n a l i t y ,

t e r r a i n , and w e a t h e r ,

Thc? m i l i t a r y o p e r a t i o n s i n t h e

Archangel r e g i o n proved t o be as d i f f i c u l t as any i n modern history. F i g h t i n g i n extreme c o l d , seemingly e n d l e s s for-

e s t s of f i r and p i n e , and f a c e d w i t h l i t t l e or no hope of resupply o r reinforcement, the A l l i e s b a t t l e d t o survive a g a i n s t t h e b r u t a l Russian elements as w e l l as n u m e r i c a l l y superior Soviet forces. These f a c t o r s , combined w i t h t h e

almost i m p o s s i b l e command r e l a t i o n s h i p s , d i v e r s e p o l i t i c a l c o n s i d e r a t i o n s , and e s s e n t i a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n s o c i a l and c u l t u r a l t r a d i t i o n s , l e d t o a campaign wrought w i t h overoptimism, n a i v e t e , i g n o r a n c e , and p e r i o d i c d e s p e r a t i o n .

The s e e d s o f resentment and l a c k of c o o p e r a t i o n between t h e A l l i e s were p l a n t e d i n t h e misinformation and absence o f o b j e c t i v e and d i r e c t i o n c e n t e r e d around t h e purposes g i v e n

f o r the intervention.

These s e p a r a t e and v a r i e d m o t i v e s ,

coupled w i t h a b e w i l d e r i n g command r e l a t i o n s h i p were u l t i mately r e f l e c . t e d i n t h e conduct o f m i l i t a r y o p e r a t i o n s . To

a g r e a t e x t e n t , t h e s u c c e s s or f a i l u r e o f t h e A l l i e d c o a l i t i o n was determined b e f o r e t h e f i r s t s o l d i e r s t e p p e d a s h o r e

a t Archangel.
T h i s t h e s i s f o c u s e s on t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s between t h e

A l l i e d m i l i t a r y f o r c e s involved i n t h e rdorth Russian exped i t i o n and t h o s e elements of t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s t h a t u l t i mately c o n t r i b u t e d t o t h e outcome o f t h e c o a l i t i o n e f f o r t against the Soviets. One method of judging t h e f i n a l

r e s u l t s of t h e c o a l i t i o n endeavor would be t o c o n s i d e r t h e campaign i n t h e c o n t e x t o f v i c t o r y or d e f e a t .


If such a

method i s s e l e c t e d , t h e n t h e a s s o c i a t i o n o f t h e American, French, and o t h e r n a t i o n a l f o r c e s under t h e command o f B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s s h o u l d be regarded as an a b j e c t f a i l u r e . The A l l i e d f o r c e s d i d n o t accomplish t h e i r a s s i g n e d m i s s i o n s o f l i n k i n g up w i t h t h e Czechoslovakian Corps a n d s u b s e q u e n t l y c r e a t i n g a m i l i t a r y atmosphere i n which t h e a n t i a o l s h e v i k f o r c e s could d e f e a t t h e S o v i e t s . The u l t i m a t e e v a c u a t i o n

o f a l l A l l i e d f o r c e s from North R u s s i a i n l a t e 1 9 1 9 , and t h e ensuing v i c t o r y o f t h e Red f o r c e s s e r v e s t o emphasize t h e degree of d e f e a t s u f f e r e d by t h e A l l i e s .


2

If t h e f i n a l a p p r a i s a l i s based on t h e s u c c e s s or

f a i l u r e o f p l a t o o n s , companies, and i n d i v i d u a l s t o overcome d i f f e r e n c e s i n language, t a c t i c s , equipment, a n d combat experience, i n a h o s t i l e land, then the A l l i e d e f f o r t should be a s s e s s e d as a resounding accomplishment.
T h i s t h e s i s a t t e m p t s t o l o o k beyond t h e more obvious

problems normally a s s o c i a t e d w i t h c o a l i t i o n w a r f a r e .

National

i n t e r e s t s , i n t e r n a t i o n a l p o l i t i c s , and p a t r i o t i c chauvinism
a l l have an i m p o r t a n t p a r t t o p l a y i n any m u l t i - n a t i o n a l
military operation.

Perhaps more i m p o r t a n t t h a n t h e s e m a n -

i f o l d elements a r e t h e i n d i v i d u a l , seemingly i n s i g n i f i c a n t i n c i d e n t s , p e r c e p t i o n s , and circumstances t h a t i n f l u e n c e t h e u l t i m a t e outcome o f an engagement, b a t t l e , campaign, or war. The o b j e c t i v e s of t h e A l l i e d i n t e r v e n t i o n seem t o be as
~~~ ~ ~~~~~ ~ ~~~

numerous as t h e n a t i o n a l f o r c e s who p a r t i c i p a t e d .

~.~~

'With t h e

Bolshevik Revolution o f November, 1 9 1 7 , and t h e subsequent s i g n i n g o f t h e T r e a t y o f Brest-Litovsk i n March, 1 9 1 8 , t h e A l l i e s saw d i s a s t e r around t h e c o r n e r . The t r e a t y between

t h e Germans and t h e nevr r e v o l u t i o n a r y government would r e l e a s e an e s t i m a t e d one hundred a n d f o r t y - s e v e n German and

Austrian D i v i s i o n s f o r duty on t h e 'Western F r o n t .

Winston

C h u r c h i l l , t h e n B r i t i s h L l i n i s t e r o f Munitions, t o l d t h e

a I m p e r i a l W r C a b i n e t , "Above a l l t h i n g s r e c o n s t i t u t e t h e
fighting front i n the East...If discerned t o the w a r . we cannot...no end can be

W must n o t t a k e 'No' f o r an answer e


It2

e i t h e r from America or from Japan.

Another c o n s i d e r a t i o n was t h e A l l i e d war m a t e r i a l t h a t had been provided t o t h e Russian government p r i o r t o t h e Bolshevik R e v o l u t i o n .


T h i s huge s t o c k p i l e o f equipment and

s u p p l i e s was s u p p o s e d l y s t o r e d i n warehouses and dumps i n Archangel a n d was v u l n e r a b l e t o c a p t u r e by German t r o o p s o p e r a t i n g from F i n l a n d . A d d i t i o n a l l y , t h e r e was t h e q u e s t i o n o f t h e Czechoslovakian Corps. T h i s u n i t , once p a r t o f t h e I m p e r i a l Russian

Army, had been i s o l a t e d i n R u s s i a a f t e r t h e f a l l o f t h e Czar and had begun a march t o V l a d i v o s t o k i n March, 1918, f o r t h e purpose o f r e d e p l o y i n g t o t h e Western F r o n t . This i d e a was By

f u l l y s u p p o r t e d by t h e A l l i e s , e s p e c i a l l y t h e French. May, 1918, t h e Czechs were i n c o n f l i c t w i t h t h e S o v i e t s along t h e Trans-Siberian railway.

Although t h e Czech Corps

c o n t r o l l e d long s e c t o r s o f t h e r a i l r o a d , t h e y were s p l i t i n t o two e l e m e n t s , s e p a r a t e d by S o v i e t f o r c e s , The p l i g h t

of t h e Czech Corps and t h e d e s i r e on t h e p a r t of t h e A l l i e s


t o i n t r o d u c e t h e Corps i n t o a c t i o n of t h e Western F r o n t was o f f e r e d as a n o t h e r r e a s o n f o r i n t e r v e n t i o n . Among t h e A l l i e d t r o o p s t h e r e seemed t o be a good d e a l o f c o n f u s i o n as t o t h e i r purpose i n North R u s s i a . The

announcements o t h e m i l i t a r y a u t h o r i t i e s v a r i e d and d i d n o t c l e a r l y s t a t e the object of the expedition. B r i t i s h General

H e a d q u a r t e r s p u b l i s h e d a pamphlet for t r o o p consumption w i t h t h e f o l l o w i n g r e a s o n s f o r t h e A l l i e d a c t i o n i n North R u s s i a :


1. To form a m i l i t a r y b a r r i e r i n s i d e which t h e R u s s i a n s c o u l d r e o r g a n i z e themselves t o d r i v e Out t h e German i n v a d e r .
A

2. To assist t h e Russians t o r e o r g a n i z e t h e i r army by i n s t r u c t i o n , s u p e r v i s i o n , and example on more r e a s o n a b l e p r i n c i p l e s t h a n t h e o l d regime a u t o c r a t i c d i s c i p l i n e .

3 . To r e o r g a n i z e t h e food s u p p l i e s , making up t h e d e f i c i e n c i e s from a l l i e d c o u n t r i e s . To o b t a i n f o r e x p o r t t h e s u r p l u s s u p p l i e s o f goods, such as f l a x , t i m b e r , e t c . To f i l l s t o r e s h i p s b r i n g i n g food, thus maint a i n i n g t h e economical s h i p p i n g p o l i c y ,

American f o r c e s were informed t h a t t h e y were s e n t t o R u s s i a " t o guard m i l i t a r y s t o r e s which may s u b s e q u e n t l y be needed by Russian f o r c e s , and t o r e n d e r such a i d as may be a c c e p t a b l e t o t h e Russians i n t h e o r g a n i z a t i o n o f t h e i r own s e l f - d e f e n s e . ,,4 F i n a l l y , because t h e r e seemed t o be continued confus i o n as t o why A l l i e d s o l d i e r s were dying i n North R u s s i a ,
B r i t i s h Headquarters i s s u e d t h i s proclamation:

There seems t o be among t h e t r o o p s a v e r y i n d i s t i n c t i d e a o f what we a r e f i g h t i n g f o r h e r e i n North Russia. T h i s can be e x p l a i n e d i n a few words. W a r e up a g a i n s t Bolshevism, e which means anarchy pure and s i m p l e . Look a t R u s s i a a t t h e p r e s e n t moment. The power i s i n t h e hands of a few men, mostly Jews, who have succeeded i n b r i n g i n g t h e c o u n t r y t o such a s t a t e t h a t o r d e r i s n o n e x i s t e n t . Bolshevism has grown upon t h e uneducated masses t o such an e x t e n t t h a t R u s s i a i s d i s i n t e g r a t e d and h e l p l e s s , and t h e r e f o r e we have come t o help her g e t r i d of the disease t h a t is e a t i n g e h e r u p . W a r e n o t h e r e t o conquer R u s s i a , b u t we w a n t t o h e l p h e r a n d s e e h e r a g r e a t power. When o r d e r is r e s t o r e d h e r e , we s h a l l c l e a r o u t , b u t only when we have a t t a i n e d o u r o b j e c t , and t h a t i s t h e r e s t o r a t i o n o f Russia.
T h i s w a s t h e d i r e c t o p p o s i t e o f w h a t t h e Americans had

been i n s t r u c t e d .

It i s n o t s u p r i s i n g t h a t f r i c t i o n , sus-

p i c i o n , a n d misunderstanding between t h e A l l i e s w a s developing


5

from t h e s t a r t .

The c o n f u s i o n and ambiguity o v e r t h e a c t u a l

purpose o f t h e i n t e r v e n t i o n would become one more f a c t o r i n a s e r i e s of i s s u e s t h a t would l e a d t o a f r u s t r a t i n g and d i f f i c u l t campaign. The answer t o t h e q u e s t i o n o f s u c c e s s or f a i l u r e seems t o be found i n t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s t h a t formed between t h e Allies. The p e r s o n a l i t i e s , n a t i o n a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , and

customs o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l s and u n i t s i n v o l v e d i n t h e exped i t i o n p l a y a most i m p o r t a n t r o l e i n t h e subsequent development o f t h e A l l i e d a f f i l i a t i o n . Among t h e commanders t h e r e vras incompetence as w e l l as b r i l l i a n c e ; genuine c a r e for t h e w e l f a r e o f t h e t r o o p s as w e l l as c a l l o u s n e s s ; and p r o f e s s i o n a l i s m as w e l l as c a r e e r -

ism.

For t h e i n d i v i d u a l s o l d i e r t h e r e were, among o t h e r

problems, q u e s t i o n s about medical c a r e , mail from home, drunken commanders, p r o f i t e e r i n g among r e a r detachment t r o o p s ,
and c o n s t a n t j e a l o u s y o v e r t h e q u a n t i t y and q u a l i t y o f food

and s u p p l i e s . The s t r a i n of combat a g a i n s t a f a n a t i c a l enemy, i n a wretched l a n d , i g n o r a n t o f purpose and f i g h t i n g i n t h e shadow of t h e a r m i s t i c e on t h e \Jestern F r o n t , r e s u l t e d i n m u t i n i e s , d i s o b e d i e n c e , and i n t e r - A l l i e d r e l a t i o n s t h a t were strained t o the l i m i t . Nerves and p a t i e n c e were s t r e t c h e d

t o t h e p o i n t t h a t t h e American commander r e q u e s t e d t h a t t h e ',...present cable...aith f o r c e be e n t i r e l y r e p l a c e d as e a r l y as p r a c t i an adequate f o r c e commensurate w i t h i t s m i s s i o n ,


6

s u p p l i e d and equipped s o t h a t i t can o p e r a t e i n an American way. , I 6 Chapter t h r e e e x p l o r e s t h e major combat a c t i o n s between September 1918 and t h e e v a c u a t i o n from Archangel i n O c t o b e r ,
1919.

The f o c u s of t h i s c h a p t e r i s n o t on "Grand S t r a t e g y "

o r d e t a i l e d r e p o r t s of f r i e n d l y and enemy o r d e r o f b a t t l e .
The small u n i t a c t i o n s and r e l a t i o n s between t h e l e a d e r s and s u b o r d i n a t e s of t h o s e p l a t o o n s and companies a r e t h e s u b j e c t
of t h i s e x a m i n a t i o n .

The engagements on t h e Archangel-Vologda

r a i l r o a d , The Vaga R i v e r , a n d t h e Dvina R i v e r are r e c o u n t e d ,

f o r i t was t h e s e b a t t l e s t h a t accounted f o r t h e m a j o r i t y of
A l l i e d combat i n t e r a c t i o n or, as i t i s c a l l e d t o d a y , i n t e r operability.
T h i s t h e s i s draws on t h e d e s c r i p t i v e a c c o u n t s

of s e v e r a l of t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s i n t h e s e a c t i o n s .

Through

t h e i r r e m i n i s c e n c e s one i s a b l e t o feel t h e a d m i r a t i o n , d i s g u s t , c a m a r a d e r i e , and f r u s t r a t i o n born o u t of t h e need t o t r u s t your l i f e t o a s o l d i e r o f another n a t i o n a l i t y , i n a s t r a n g e l a n d , u n d e r t h e most arduous c i r c u m s t a n c e s , i n a m u t u a l l y misunderstood war.

I t was t h e s e i n t e r p e r s o n a l

t r a n s a c t i o n s , on t h e s o l d i e r t o s o l d i e r l e v e l , t h a t p l a y e d s u c h a key role i n t h e s u c c e s s o r f a i l u r e of c o a l i t i o n comb a t i n t h e e x p e d i t i o n t o Archangel.

Although t h e war w i t h Germany ended on 11 November, 1918, t h e l a s t A l l i e d f o r c e d i d n o t d e p a r t Archangel u n t i l 12 Octob e r , 1919. Albeit the o r i g i n a l j u s t i f i c a t i o n s f o r interven-

t i o n were c e n t e r e d on Germany, n o t one German p r i s o n e r was


7

taken i n DJorth Xussia, n o r was t h e r e any evidence of German involvement i n t h e combat a c t i o n s a g a i n s t t h e A l l i e s . In

t h e e n t i r e conduct o f t h e North Russian e x p e d i t i o n t h e r e was no f i r m c o n n e c t i o n between t h e S o v i e t s a n d t h e Germans. The r e l a t i o n s h i p s between t h e A l l i e d p a r t i c i p a n t s were formed o u t of t h e p o l i t i c a l and m i l i t a r y a c t u a l i t i e s of t h e moment, and r e s u l t e d i n a c o n t r a d i c t o r y a n d confusing s e t of circumstances w i t h i n which t h e A l l i e d m i l i t a r y commanders were f o r c e d t o a c t .
V i t h t h i s i n t r o d u c t i o n , we shall

approach t h e q u e s t i o n of c o a l i t i o n w a r f a r e d u r i n g t h e A l l i e d i n t e r v e n t i o n i n North R u s s i a , and t h e background t o


that intervention.

Motes

1. N e w York Times, 2 0 September, 1959.


2 . E.M.

H a l l i d a y , The l a n o r a n t Armies, Award Books, New

Yorlc, 1964, Pg. 1 6 .


. . . 3 . A . , C h r o n i c l e r ( J o h n Cudahy), Archangel- The American W r a With Russia_, A.C. NcClurg & Go., Chicago, 1924, P a . 31.

5 . Cudahy, Op. C i t . ,

Dg. 31-32.

6 . George Evans S t e w a r t , S t e w a r t P a p e r s , Report o f Expedit i o n t o t h e I h r m a n Coast, S p e c i a l C o l l e c t i o n s , United e S t a t e s H i l l t a r y Academy L i b r a r y , West P o i n t , N w Y O P k .

CHAPTER 1

Background t o t h e I n t e r v e n t i o n

I n o r d e r t o understand t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s between t h e A l l i e d f o r c e s d u r i n g t h e e x p e d i t i o n t o North R u s s i a , one must look a t t h e circumstances and d e c i s i o n s t h a t l e d t o t h e commitment of m i l i t a r y f o r c e s . The e n t i r e complexion o f t h e war i n Europe changed on 3 March 1918, when a S o v i e t Government d e l e g a t i o n , headed by Leon T r o t s k y , n e g o t i a t e d a s e p a r a t e peace w i t h Germany. Since

Movember, 1 9 1 7 , when t h e Bolshevik dominated S o v i e t government took power from t h e Kerensky government, t h e A l l i e s had been i n a c o n s t a n t s t a t e o f e x a s p e r a t i o n over S o v i e t a c t i o n s . The

s e c r e t t r e a t i e s between R u s s i a , B r i t i a n , France, I t a l y , and Japan were published by t h e new S o v i e t government. The war
But

d e b t , incured by t h e C z a r i s t government, was r e p u d i a t e d .

t h e most s e r i o u s breach between t h e S o v i e t s and A l l i e s was t h e s e p a r a t e peace s i g n e d a t Brest-Litovsk. The r a m i f i c a t i o n s


Of

t h i s a c t were c r i t i c a l t o the A l l i e d cause.

The Germans would

now be a b l e t o t r a n s f e r approximately f o r t y d i v i s i o n s from t h e E a s t e r n t o t h e Western f r o n t .


T h i s would allow t h e Germans t o

enjoy a numerical s u p e r i o r i t y of n e a r l y 2 1 7 d i v i s i o n s t o t h e A l l i e d s t r e n g t h of 173 d i v i s i o n s , o r a l i t t l e more than a two m i l l i o n man d i f f e r e n c e .


1

I t w a s a p p a r e n t t o A l l i e d m i l i t a r y l e a d e r s , and p o l i t i c i a n s ,
t h a t t h e s i t u a t i o n was grave.

I n l a t e hIarch, 1 9 1 8 t h e GemanS
10

began an o f f e n s i v e on t h e Xestern F r o n t t h a t succeeded i n pushing t h e B r i t i s h back n e a r l y t h i r t y m i l e s . More than e v e r ,

i t appeared c r i t i c a l t o r e c o n s t i t u t e an E a s t e r n Front and s t o p

t h e t r a n s f e r of German t r o o p s and m a t e r i e l from Russia.

As

t h e f u l l impact of t h e g r e a t German o f f e n s i v e began t o be f e l t , t h e p l a n n e r s and p o l i t i c i a n s had v i s i o n s of German p r i s o n e r s being r e l e a s e d i n R u s s i a t o r e i n f o r c e u n i t s on t h e :destern Front. These v i s i o n s became nightmares as t h e A l l i e s pondered

t h e p o s s i b i l i t y o f t h e s e p r i s o n e r s being armed and equipped


w i t h t h e very weapons and s u p p l i e s t h a t t h e A l l i e s had provided

t o t h e C z a r s A r m y , s u p p l i e s t h e n s t o c k p i l e d a t a number of Russian p o r t c i t i e s . Winston C h u r c h i l l , then B r i t i s h M i n i s t e r

of Munitions, t o l d t h e I m p e r i a l W r Cabinet t h a t : Above all a things reconstitute the fighting f r o n t i n the East... cannot... no end can be d i s c e r n e d t o t h e w a r .
2

If we

There were o t h e r reasons f o r i n t e r v e n t i o n b e s i d e s t h e potent i a l m i l i t a r y advantage t h e Germans would enjoy w i t h t h e s h i f t

of t r o o p s from East t o West, and t h e p o s s i b l e s e i z u r e by t h e S o v i e t s of t h e p r e c i o u s w a r s u p p l i e s a t Archangel and Vladivostok. There w a s t h e p l i g h t of t h e Czechoslovak Corps. I n t h e s p r i n g of 1 9 1 8 , f o l l o w i n g t h e s i g n i n g of t h e T r e a t y of Brest-Litovsk,

a f o r c e of approximately 40,000 Czech s o l d i e r s


This unit,

was making i t s way from t h e Ukraine t o Vladivostok.

which had been f i g h t i n g t h e Germans as p a r t of t h e I m p e r i a l

Russian A r m y , was t o become part of an i n t e r e s t i n g and absurd p l a n t h a t would e v e n t u a l l y be a key element of t h e A l l i e d i n t e r 11

v e n t i o n i n Archangel.

For t h e moment, t h e Czech l e g i o n vas

making f o r t h e p o r t o f Vladivostok where i t would embark f o r France and t h e i l e s t e r n F r o n t , v i a t h e United S t a t e s .


I t was

i n t e n d e d t h a t upon a r r i v a l i n France t h e Czechs would t a k e t h e i r p l a c e i n t h e t r e n c h e s under French command. The Czech s i t u a t i o n p r e s e n t e d s e v e r a l i n t e r e s t i n g problems, n o t t h e l e a s t o f which was g e o g r a p h i c . The Czech Corps

w a s s p r e a d o u t along t h e Trans-Siberian R a i l r o a d , from Kiev t o V l a d i v o s t o k , w i t h l i t t l e o r no communication between s u b - u n i t s . The p r o s p e c t o f an armed, organized m i l i t a r y u n i t , p r e v i o u s l y loyal t o t h e C z a r , t r a n s i t i n g t h e h e a r t o f R u s s i a posed a d i f f i c u l t p o l i t i c a l question t o the Soviets.

On 1 4 I k r c h , 1 9 1 8 ,

t h e S o v i e t Government gave o r d e r s t o a l l o w t h e Czechs t o d e p a r t f o r t h e P a c i f i c Russian p o r t , altered. On 2 6 larch t h e o r d e r s were

The Czech Legion w a s e a s i l y t h e l a r g e s t group o f A l s o , most

armed a n d d i s c i p l i n e d t r o o p s i n R u s s i a a t t h e time.

o f i t s s e n i o r o f f i c e r s were Russian a n d s u s p e c t e d t o be antiBolshevik. The f o r c e could become a t h r e a t t o t h e new S o v i e t

l e a d e r s h i p , e s p e c i a l l y i f i t l i n k e d up w i t h t h e Cossacks o r t h e Japanese i n S i b e r i a . The amended o r d e r s , i s s u e d by Joseph S t a l i n , P e o p l e ' s Commissar for N a t i o n a l i t i e s , s t a t e d t h a t t h e Czechs were t o move t o Vladivostolc, " n o t as f i g h t i n g u n i t s b u t as groups
O f

f r e e c i t i z e n s , t a k i n g w i t h them a c e r t a i n q u a n t i t y o f arms f o r s e l f defense a g a i n s t t h e a t t a c k o f c o u n t e r - r e v o l u t i o n i s t . , , 3 Between 26 i k r c h and 1 4 A p r i l t h e Czechs moved eastward i n a r a t h e r s p o r a d i c manner, t h e i r r a t e o f transit depending on t h e

w h i m s and a t t i t u d e s o f t h e l o c a l S o v i e t a u t h o r i t i e s .

Some l o c a l

l e a d e r s ignored Moscow.l's i n s t r u c t i o n s while o t h e r s a t t e m p t e d t o e n f o r c e them t o t h e l e t t e r . The movement was f u r t h e r com-

p l i c a t e d by t h e Japanese l a n d i n g a t Vladivostok on 5 A p r i l . Lenin assumed t h a t t h e Japanese a c t i o n s were p a r t o f an A l l i e d i n v a s i o n and o r d e r e d t h a t t h e Czechs n o t be allowed t o proceed. On 10 A p r i l Lenin was informed t h a t t h e Japanese l a n d i n g s were completed a n d two days l a t e r he c a n c e l e d t h e o r d e r h a l t i n g t h e Corps' movement.
4

On 14 A p r i l t h e Czechs decided t h a t no more arms would be s u r r e n d e r e d and t h a t t h o s e v o l u n t a r i l y s u r r e n d e r e d p r e v i o u s l y would be recovered. They also i n t e n d e d t o o b t a i n c o n t r o l of t h e

t r a i n s and f u e l i n t h o s e a r e a s where t h e i r f o r c e s were l o c a t e d .


The Czech l e a d e r s h i p informed t h e S o v i e t s t h a t t h e only r e a s o n
f o r t h e i r movement t o Vladivostok w a s t o g e t t o France and h e l p

t h e A l l i e s , and t h a t t h e Corps r e t a i n e d "old b r o t h e r l y f e e l i n g s towards Russian democracy." But, " i n the event of i r r e s p o n s i b l e

elements engaging i n o p e r a t i o n s a g a i n s t Czech u n i t s , t h e y w i l l be met w i t h due r e s i s t a n c e . "


5

lilhile t h e Czechs were i s s u i n g t h e i r r e s o l u t i o n t o t h e S o v i e t s , t h e B r i t i s h and French were d e b a t i n g how t h e Czechs s h o u l d be employed. The French d e s i r e d t o c o n t i n u e w i t h t h e

o r i g i n a l p l a n t o t r a n s p o r t t h e Czechs from Vladivostok t o France. The B r i t i s h , who were t o f u r n i s h t h e t r a n s p o r t , doubted t h a t t h e e f f o r t r e q u i r e d was r e a l l y worth i t and f e l t tha.t t h e Corps might p l a y a more i m p o r t a n t r o l e w i t h i n Russia. Options i n c l u d e d

moving n o r t h t o :.;urmas;c a : r c h a n s e l o r c o n c e n t r a t i n g i n cA Siberia. A n o t h e r p l a n c a l l e d for a l i n k cg m'th

a Cossack
HOT;: t h e s e

l e a d e r such as Semenov, o p e r a t i n a i n t h e E a s t . G

B r i t i s h p l a n s would c o u n t e r t h e renewed German p r e s s u r e on t h e

! i e s t e r n F r o n t was n o t v e r y c l e a r .

A s a c o n s e q u e n c e , Clemen-

ceau d i s a g r e e d w i t h t h e S r i t i s h proposal and pushec: for adopt i o n o f t h e F r e n c h plan.

On 1 A p r i l t h e B r i t i s h biar O f f i c e i n f o r m e d t h e Czechoslo-

vak !,!ational C o u n c i l , t h e p o l i t i c a l r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f t h e
Czech l e g i o n , t h a t i t had d o u b t s a b o u t t h e f e a s i b i l i t y o f g e t t i n 2 t h e Corps from S i b e r i a t o Europe v i a t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s ,
and p r o p o s e d t h a t t h e Czechs be used t o a s s i s t t h e J a p a n e s e i n

S i b e r i a or t o p r o t e c t t h e S o r t h ?,ussian Yhite Sea p o r t s frorn German a c t i o n s . B o t h t h e Czech Z a t i o n a l C o u n c i l and t h e

F r e n c h opposed t h i s i d e a . A t t h e end of A p r i l an i m p o r t a n t change i n t h e F r e n c h p o s i t i o n prom3ted t h e Permanent i . : i l i t a r y R e p r e s e n t a t i v e s o f The Supreme !Jar C o u n c i l t o d i s c u s s t h e q u e s t i o n o f t h e Czech Corps. The r e s u l t o f t h e c o u n c i l m e e t i n g was a J o i n t ?!ate

(P!o.

2 5 ) s t a t i n g t h a t t h e f a s t e s t way t o remove t h e Czech

Corps xas t o s e n d t h o s e t r o o p s t h a t had n o t p a s s e d e a s t of

Oms!:

t o h r c h a n z e l and !.Iurmanslc 7;fhile t h e r e m a i n d e r o f t h e Czech The n o t e added t h a t

forces should continue t o Vladivostok.

w h i l e t h e Czech t r o o p s were : ? / a i t i n g t o embar!< f o r F r a n c e t h e y c o u l d be p r o f i t a b l y employed i n d e f e n d i n g Archamgel, ITurma?sk, and t h e : u n n :ra Railway.


A s a r e s u l t of t h i s a p p r e n t A l l i e d

14

compromise, a B r i t i s h i n s t r u c t o r s t a f f was s e n t t o Plurnanslc i n Iflay t o t r a i n and o r g a r i z e t h e Czechs f o r t h e subsequent mission of defending t h e North Eussian p o r t s .
H.

General Tasker

B l i s s , t h e American r e p r e s e n t a t i v e a t t h e s e d i s c u s s i o n s ,

a b s t a i n e d from t a k i n g a p o s i t i o n p r i m a r i l y because of P r e s i d e n t W i l s o n ' s view t h a t t h e Permanent M i l i t a r y R e p r e s e n t a t i v e s s h o u l d n o t become i n v o l v e d i n p o l i t i c a l m a t t e r s . 7 I n a d d i t i o n t o the i n s t r u c t o r s t a f f , the B r i t i s h assigned

a m i l i t a r y mission o f 560 o f f i c e r s , a machinegun company, an

i n f a n t r y company, and an e n g i n e e r company, all t o be g a r r i s o n e d


a t I~lurmanslc. The t r o o p s would guard t h e p o r t while t r a i n i n g
was conducted f o r t h e Czechs.
T h i s f o r c e , cornnanded by LIajor-

General Maynard, was composed of t r o o p s belonging t o a p h y s i c a l c a t e g o r y s o low as t o r e n d e r them u n f i t f o r d u t y i n France.


At

t h e same t i m e , General Idaynard saw h i s command as more t h a n j u s t


a t r a i n i n g and s e c u r i t y c a d r e .

When ready t o t a k e t h e f i e l d , "

General !laynard w r o t e , " t h e whole f o r c e was t o endeavor t o j o i n


hands w i t h t h e p r o - a l l y

f o r c e s i n S i b e r i a , and then t o a s s i s t in There was a s u b t l e

opening up a new f r o n t a g a i n s t Germany.

y e t i r r e v o c a b l e change i n t h e o r i g i n a l concept of t h e movement of t h e Czechs Corps t o t h e Western F r o n t and t h e opening o f a second f r o n t talcins p l a c e ,
What was i n i t i a l l y i n t e n d e d t o be a

b a s i c movement o f f o r c e s from one t h e a t e r of o p e r a t i o n s t o a n o t h e r t h e a t e r was t a k i n g on a much b r o a d e r meaning. Not only

'were A l l i e d f o r c e s b e i n g i n t r o d u c e d i n t o North R u s s i a and S i b e r i a , b u t t h e q u e s t i o n of who t h e s e f o r c e s would be f a c i n g Pras i n t h e


15

minds of both t h e A l l i e s and t h e new S o v i e t l e a d e r s . The h i g h e s t body developing A l l i e d p o l i c y on t h e CzechS o v i e t q u e s t i o n vras t h e Permanent M i l i t a r y R e p r e s e n t a t i v e s o f t h e A l l i e d Supreme tlar Council. body The p e r s o n a l i t i e s o f t h i s

warrant a t t e n t i o n f o r i t vras t h e y who formulated t h e

i n t e r v e n t i o n i n North R u s s i a as p a r t o f t h e grand s t r a t e g y f o r d e f e a t i n g t h e Germans. They a l s o c r e a t e d t h e g e n e r a l r e s e r v e ,

decided on t h e d i s p o s i t i o n of t h e American Army, a n d determined s h i p p i n g p r i o r i t i e s t o d e a l v r i t h t h e German submarine t h r e a t . The men a s s i g n e d as Permanent M i l i t a r y R e p r e s e n t a t i v e s were d i s t i n g u i s h e d g e n e r a l o f f i c e r s who n o t only were arnong t h e most famous of t h e i r c o u n t r i e s ' martial l e a d e r s b u t were

also l o y a l t o t h e i r p o l i t i c a l m a s t e r s .

They met t h r e e t i m e s

each week i n V e r s a i l l e s and d i s c u s s e d methods for p r o s e c u t i n g t h e war.

I t was a t t h e s e meetings t h a t t h e concept o f a Russian

i n t e r v e n t i o n was born. The members i n c l u d e d F r a n c e ' s Idaxime 'Veyand, f u t u r e Commanding General o f t h e French Army and an i m p o r t a n t f i g u r e i n t h e d e f e a t and s u r r e n d e r o f t h e French i n 1 9 4 0 . r e p r e s e n t a t i v e vras General Henry H . IJilson. Great B r i t a i n ' s

Xilson vrould become

Chief o f The I m p e r i a l S t a f f and l a t e r be a s s a s s i n a t e d by I r i s h t e r r o r i s t s i n 1922. L u i g i Conte Cadorna s a t i n for I t a l y , b u t

because h i s c o u n t r y was a l a t e e n t r a n t on t h e A l l i e d s i d e , and he had been t h e Commanding General of The I t a l i a n A r m y a t t h e time of i t s d e f e a t i n October, 1 9 1 7 , he had l i t t l e t o o f f e r a t the sessions. L i e u t e n a n t General Tasker H . B l i s s was 'iloodrow
16

':iilson's

representative.

B l i s s had g r a d u a t e d from ::jest P o i n t

i n 1875 and was c o n s i d e r e d an i n t e l l e c t u a l w i t h i n t h e Army.


I e had been promoted d i r e c t l y from major t o b r i g a d i e r g e n e r a l H

d u r i n g t h e Spanish-American Wr ca.nd as C h i e f - o f - S t a f f a

had

planned t h e m o b i l i z a t i o n of t h e American Army i n 1917. 9 The s u b j e c t o f an A l l i e d i n t e r v e n t i o n i n R u s s i a began t o be d i s c u s s e d by t h e Permanent X i l i t a r y R e p r e s e n t a t i v e s Tvrhen

i t became obvious t h a t a s e p a r a t e peace between t h e Germans


and t h e R u s s i a n s vras i n t h e making.
General bleyganci s u g g e s t e d

t h a t a Japanese f o r c e , s u p e r v i s e d by a n A l l i e d Commission, s h o u l d occupy t h e Trans-Sib'erian Railway from V l a d i v o s t o k t o Narbin, T h i s a c t i o n would deny Germany a c c e s s t o A l l i e d sup-

p l i e s , as well as a sea p o r t on t h e P a c i f i c c o a s t o f R u s s i a .
B l i s s informed S e c r e t a r y o f 'Jar Newton D .

Baker o f Ileygand's

proposal.

"The i n t e r v e n t i o n , I t w r o t e B l i s s , "over a l a r g e p a r t

of S i b e r i a , o f a l a r g e Japanese Army, r a i s e s t h e q u e s t i o n of when

and how t h e y can be made t o g e t o u t .

I have o f t e n thought t h a t

t h i s war, i n s t e a d o f b e i n g t h e 1.ast one, may be o n l y t h e b r e e d e r of s t i l l more.


tllo

I n r e t r o s p e c t , t h e s e were p r o p h e t i c words by

a concerned and i n t e l l i g e n t o f f i c e r . a The recommendation vras forwarded t o t h e Supreme W r Council

f o r President Wilson's approval.

:Wilson r e j e c t e d t h e p r o p o s a l

because he f e l t t h a t a u n i l a t e r a l J a p a n e s e move i n t o S i b e r i a would o n l y s e r v e t o a n t a g o n i z e t h e R u s s i a n s . The B r i t i s h were e a g e r t o i n t e r v e n e i n R u s s i a . They knew

t h a t a world-vide S o v i e t sponsored p r o l e t a r i a n r e v o l u t i o n would


17

have a d i r e i n p a c t on t h e e m p i r e , e s p e c i a l l y I n d i a .

In late

1 9 1 7 t h e B r i t i s h began sending l i m i t e d s u p p o r t t o s e v e r a l a n t i -

3olshevilc e l e m e n t s i n R u s s i a , and t h e i m p o s i t i o n o f :laynard's f o r c e a t Murmansk i n s u r e d B r i t i s h c o n t r o l o f t h e primary s t a r t i n g p o i n t f o r any i n t e r v e n t i o n i n Northern European R u s s i a .

The

o n l y problem was t h e l a c k of t r o o p s needed t o c a r r y o u t a n i n t e r v e n t i o n i n a c o u n t r y as v a s t as R u s s i a . Sorflehow, Yoodrow

Vlilson, P r e s i d e n t o f t h e one n a t i o n t h a t had n o t been b l e d w h i t e by f o u r years o f t r e n c h warfare, must b e coaxed, c a j o l e d , or i n t i m i d a t e d i n t o p r o v i d i n g American men f o r a m i l i t a r y i n t e r v e n t i o n i n North R u s s i a . ! Y i l s o n ' s m a n i n R u s s i a was h n b a s s a d o r David R . F r a n c i s . During t h e early p a r t of 1918 F r a n c i s had become i n c r e a s i n g l y concerned a b o u t t h e removal o f A l l i e d s t o r e s from Archangel by the Soviets. The Reds d i d n o t pay for t h e s u p p l i e s n o r d i d t h e y

inform t h e A l l i e s f o r what p u r p o s e s t h e y were s e i z i n g t h e materiels. F r a n c i s informed t h e S o v i e t a u t h o r i t i e s t h a t t h e A l l i e s

d e s i r e d t h a t t h e s t 0 r e s b . e r e t a i n e d f o r use on t h e V e s t e r n F r o n t , b u t he r e c e i v e d no r e p l y from Xoscoe. These m i l i t a r y s u p p l i e s ,

which i n c l u d e d small arms, s h e l l s of all t y p e s , t r u c k s , a r t i l l e r y , barbed w i r e , c o p p e r vrire, and metal p i g s for t h e p r o d u c t i o n o f a r t i l l e r y , were needed on t h e Vlestern F r o n t , and t h a t , p l u s t h e

f a c t t h a t t h e S o v i e t s a p p a r e n t l y had no i n t e n t i o n o f paying for


t h e goods t h e y t o o k , i r k e d F r a n c i s . The s e n i o r diplomat was
Of

concerned t h a t t h e s t o r e s would fall i n t o t h e hands Gerrflans a n d would be used a g a i n s t t h e A l l i e s .

the

He a l s o viewed

18

t h e S o v i e t a c t i o n s as nothing more t h a n common t h i e v e r y and f e l t s t r o n g l y t h a t t h e A l l i e s should i n t e r v e n e t o p r o t e c t their interests.


A t t h e end of Nay, 1 9 1 8 , Vice Counsel F e l i x

Cole s e n t a d i s p a t c h from h i s p o s t a t Archangel t o t h e S t a t e Department d i s c u s s i n g h i s opinion of an i n t e r v e n t i o n i n Diorth Russia. Cole f e l t t h a t he was c l o s e t o t h e p u l s e of t h e people

and vras d i s t u r b e d by t h o s e who were c a l l i n g f o r m i l i t a r y a c t i o n .

On 1 June Cole s e n t t h e following message: I n t e r v e n t i o n w i l l begin on a small s c a l e b u t r;rith each s t e p forward w i l l grol;r i n scope and i n i t s demands f o r s h i p s , men, money, and m a t e r i a l s . . . The ground f o r l a n d i n g an i n t e r v e n t i o n a r y f o r c e has n o t been p r o p e r l y prepared. The n o r t h of Russia i s nowhere n e a r as pro-Ally as i t might b e . . . I n t e r v e n t i o n i n t h e n o r t h of Russia w i l l mean t h a t we must f e e d t h e e n t i r e n o r t h of R u s s i a c o n t a i n i n g from 500,000 t o 1 , 5 0 0 , 0 0 0 p o p u l e t i o n , I n t e r v e n t i o n can n o t reckon on a c t i v e s u p p o r t from Russians. A l l t h e f i g h t i s o u t of Russia...!o c h i l d can e v e r be convinced t h a t it i s spanked f o r i t s own b e n e f i t . . . . I n t e r v e n t i o n w i l l a l i e n a t e thousands o f anti-German Solsheviks...Every f o r e i g n i n v a s i o n t h a t has gone deep i n t o R u s s i a has been swallowed u p . . I n t e r v e n t i o n w i l l n o t engage t h r e e Germans i n R u s s i a t o every one A l l y . . . I n t e r v e n t i o n w i l l b e l i e all o u r promises t o t h e R u s s i a n people made s i n c e October 2 6 , 1917. W w i l l l o s e t h a t e moral s u p e r i o r i t y over Germany which i s a tower of s t r e n g t h t o us everywhere,. ..And a f t e r a l l , u n l e s s we a r e t o invade t h e whole o f R u s s i a , we s h a l l n o t have a f f e c t e d t h a t p a r t of R u s s i a where t h e populat i o n i s massed, mainly t h e c e n t e r and t h e s o u t h where t h e i n d u s t r i a l , rflininn and a g r i c u l t u r a l s t r e n g t h of R u s s i a l i e s . . . . Yi

...

Ambassador F r a n c i s r e c e i v e d a copy of C o l e ' s d i s p a t c h b u t


d i d n o t a c c e p t h i s p o i n t of view b a s i c a l l y because C o l e ' s

o p i n i o n s r a n c o u n t e r t o h i s own recommendation t o i n t e r v e n e .
A s i t happened, t h o d i s p a t c h from Cole d i d n o t a r r i v e i n Vash-

ington u n t i l 1 9 J u l y , a f t e r the f i n a l decision t o intervene


19

had a l r e a d y b e e n made.

On 3 J u n e t h e Permanent t ; I i l i . t a r y
with

R e p r e s e n t a t i v e s i s s u e d J o i n t TJote No. 31 which d e a l t t h e s i t u a t i o n a t Xurmansk and A r c h a n g e l .

The n o t e a d d r e s s e d

c o n c e r n Over F i n n i s h c o o p e r a t i o n w i t h Germany and F i n n i s h des i g n s on N o r t h R u s s i a .


I t also d i s c u s s e d t h e a v a i l a b i l i t y o f

t h e Czech Corps t o s e r v e i n t h e N o r t h and t h e p o s s i b i l i t y of

t h e Germans e s t a b l i s h i n g a s u b m a r i n e base i n t h e E.lurmanslc area. Host i m p o r t a n t l y , i t s t r e s s e d t h e n e e d t o k e e p t h e

r e g i o n o u t of German hands t h r o u g h t h e i n t r o d u c t i o n of Allied forces.

On t h e a s s u m p t i o n t h a t a c e r t a i n number of Czechs

would b e a v a i l a b l e for d u t y a t A r c h a n g e l , t h e B r i t i s h , F r e n c h ,

I t a l i a n s , and U n i t e d S t a t e s would s e n d four t o s i x b a t t a l i o n s ,


w i t h equipment a n d s u p p l i e s , t o t h e a r e a of Ikmm.nslc/Archangel.

The e x p e d i t i o n was t o be u n d e r B r i t i s h command. G e n e r a l B l i s s c o n c u r r e d w i t h t h i s Note b a s e d on h i s u n d e r s t a n d i n a of V i l s o n ' s c u r r e n t p o s i t i o n r e g a r d i n g t h e o c c u p a t i o n of the northern ports. !.iilson s u p p o r t e d e f f o r t s t o k e e p t h e

Germans o u t and t o s e c u r e A l l i e d !Jar m a t e r i e l , b u t he opposed t h e c o n d u c t o f m i l i t a r y o p e r a t i o n s from t h e p o r t a r e a s i n t o t h e i n t e r i o r of R u s s i a . He also u n d e r s t o o d t h a t A l l i e d p a r t i c i p a -

t i o n would b e a p p r o s i m a t e l y e q u a l t o i n s u r e t h a t .the U n i t e d S t a t e s f o r c e ~ r o u l dbe no more than one o r two b a t t a l i o n s .


12

The ? r e s i d e n t ' s p o s i t i o n , as p e r c e i v e d by B l i s s , vras b e s t e x p r e s s e d b y an e a r l i e r message from !:'ilson "...Russia's i n which h o s a i d :

m i s f o r t u n e s impose upon u s a t t h i s t i m e t h e o b l i -

g a t i o n of unslwerving f i d e l i t y t o t h e p r i n c i p l e o f R u s s i a n t e r 20

r i t o r i a l i n t e g r i t y and p o l i t i c a l independence.

9u.t t h e T r e s -

i d e n t i s h e a r t i l y i n sympathy w i t h any p r a c t i c a l m i l i t a r y e f f o r t which can b e made a t and from r,;urmanslc or A r c h a g e l , b u t such e f f o r t s s h o u l d proceed i f a t all upon t h e s u r e sympathy of t h e Russian people a n d should n o t have as t h e i r u l t i mate o b j e c t any r e s t o r a t i o n o f t h e a n c i e n t regime or any o t h e r i n t e r f e r e n c e w i t h t h e p o l i t i c a l l i b e r t y o f t h e Russian g e o p l e . ,113
I t s h o u l d be understood t h a t along w i t h t h e vague i n s t r u c -

t i o n s from his Cormacler-in-Chief,

B l i s s had no s e n i o r p o l i t i c a l

r e p r e s e n t a t i v e a t t h e Council t o c o o r d i n a t e w i t h o r c o n s u l t , A f t e r t h e F i r s t S e s s i o n o f t h e Supreme 'Tar C o u n c i l , i n Novemb e r , 1917, 'Vilson r e f u s e d t o be p e r s o n a l l y r e p r e s e n t e d and a l l d i s c u s s i o n s of t h e P r i m e M i n i s t e r s had t o be s e n t t o !.lashington f o r 1!/ilson's a p p r o v a l , a f t e r t h e i r a d o p t i o n by t h e o t h e r s .
This

arrangement was n o t only d i f f i c u l t f o r B l i s s b u t made for an environment of d i s t r u s t , confusion and misunderstanding.


This

arrangement h e l p s t o e x p l a i n t h e time l a g i n communications between B l i s s and WLlson and demonstrates how easy i t was f o r t h e B r i t i s h and French t o p r e v a i l on t h e q u e s t i o n of t h e Horth Russian i n t e r v e n t i o n . On 1 J u n e , two days b e f o r e t h e Supreme Vlar Council ended

i t s d e b a t e on J o i n t Plote No. 31, Vilson a u t h o r i z e d d i v e r t i n g


t r o o p s from France t o 1.lurmansk.

He a l s o detached t h e USS

Olympia, Dewey's f l a g s h i p a t Idanila E a y , t o Uorth Russian waters.


a S e c r e t a r y of W r Newton D . Baker, i n one of t h e few
"I
21

disagreements he e v e r had w i t h 'Vlilson, l a t e r s t a t e d :

convinced him t h a t i t ( t h e d i v e r s i o n o f t r o o p s ) was u n v i s e ,

e b u t he t o l d m t h a t he f e l t o b l i g e d t o do i t anyhow because
t h e B r i t i s h and French 'viere p r e s s i n g i t on h i s a t t e n t i o n s o
hard and he had r e f u s e d s o many o f t h e i r r e q u e s t s that t h e y

were beginning t o f e e l he was n o t a good a s s o c i a t e , much l e s s a good A l l y . " 14


Wilson had p r e v i o u s l y expressed some w i l l i n g n e s s t o send American t r o o p s t o North R u s s i a i f Foch agreed t o t h e d i v e r sion.

Lord M i l n e r , t h e S e c r e t a r y o f S t a t e f o r Var i n t h e D r i t h a t he had spoken 'with Foch

t i s h government, informed i:!ilson

a n d t h a t he was aware o f t h e importance of t h e North Russian

m a t t e r a n d was w i l l i n g t o a l l o w t h e d i v e r s i o n of American forces. i3ilner f u r t h e r asked that an American f o r c e of t h r e e

b a t t a l i o n s of i n f a n t r y and machineguns, two b a t t e r i e s of a r t i l l e r y , t h r e e companies of e n g i n e e r s , a n d t h e r e q u i r e d medical


a n d a d m i n i s t r a t i v e s u p p o r t be d i s p a t c h e d . l 5 The f o r c e would

be under B r i t i s h command. :>:hen S e c r e t a r y o f \!ar Balter and t h e Chief of S t a f f , Peyton


C.

March, saw I.:Iilner's r e q u e s t t o Wilson t h e i r f i r s t r e a c t i o n

vJas s u r p r i s e t h a t B l i s s had accepted t h e p r o v i s i o n f o r B r i t i s h


command o f t h e A l l i e d f o r c e . They were also s t r o n g l y opposed Baker s e n t

t o t h e employment of such a l a r g e American f o r c e .

a telegram t o E l i s s a s k i n g about t h e q u e s t i o n o f command and


i n s t r u c t i n g B l i s s t o p e r s o n a l l y speak t o Foch about t h e d i v e r s i o n of American f o r c e s f r o m t h e ::Jestern F r o n t . 1:fhen B l i s s

l e a r n e d t h a t X i l n e r had i n c r e a s e d t h e l e v e l of American t r o o p
22

commitment from t h e one t o two b a t t a l i o n s proposed a t t h e L'ar C o u n c i l , he was i n d i g n a n t .


3 l i s s saw Foch, as i n s t r u c t e d , and

l e a r n e d t h a t because of t h e improving s i t u a t i o n on t h e :Vestern F r o n t t h e d i v e r s i o n of one o r two b a t t a l i o n s would n o t h i n d e r t h e American e f f o r t i n France. 16 The argument a b o u t t h e s i z e o f t h e American f o r c e c o n t i n ued throughout June, b u t c u r i o u s l y , t h e q u e s t i o n of comma?ci
d i d n o t o f f i c i a l l y come up a g a i n .

From 2 through 4 J u l y t h e

Supreme ';Tar Council met a t V e r s a i l l e s where t h e y h e a r d a r e p o r t on t h e North Russian s i t u a t i o n from S i r E r i c Geddes, F i r s t L o r d o f The Admiralty. General F r e d e r i c k C Korth R u s s i a .
His r e p o r t e x p r e s s e d t h e views of Major

. Poole,

t h e o v e r a l l E r i t i s h commander i n

Poole f a v o r e d expansion o f t h e e n t i r e plan for

an i n t e r v e n t i o n and f e l t t h a t an A l l i e d o c c u p a t i o n was necess a r y i n o r d e r t o r e t a i n " b r i d g e h e a d s i n t o R u s s i a from t h e

n o r t h from which f o r c e s can e v e n t u a l l y advance r a p i d l y t o t h e c e n t e r of R u s s i a , .

..

,,I7

B l i s s , who had been s u s p i c i o u s o f t h e B r i t i s h i n t e n t i o n s

all a l o n g , was a p p a l l e d by Poole's c o n c e p t o f t h e o p e r a t i o n and

s r o - t e S e c r e t a r y o f ':!ar Baker t h a t t h e B r i t i s h p r o j e c t was t o o a m b i t i o u s and vague.


B l i s s f e l t t h a t the b e s t the A l l i e s could

hope for was t o h o l d o n t o t h e n o r t h e r n p o r t s d u r i n g w i n t e r anci stated that:

"Our A l l i e s want t h e United S t a t e s t o commit it-

self t o e x p e d i t i o n s t o v a r i o u s p l a c e s where, a f t e r t h e war, 'tlley

alone will have any s p e c i a l i n t e r e s t s . .

.,318
23

N e i t h e r Baker o r I.Iarch saw any v a l u e i n a North Russian

e x p e d i t i o n b u t t h e P r e s i d e n t n e v e r t h e l e s s decided t o honor
the B r i t i s h request f o r three infantry battalions.

aalcer

l a t e r said:

"The e x p e d i t i o n was n o n s e n s e from t h e b e g i n n i n g

and al'ways seemed t o m t o be one o f t h o s e s i d e s h o w b o r n o f e

d e s p a r a t i o n and o r g a n i z e d f o r t h e p u r p o s e o f k e e p i n g up home morale..

..

I1

19

On 1 7 J u l y V i l s o n f o r m a l l y n o t i f i e d t h e A l l i e d governments o f h i s d e c i s i o n . The U n i t e d S t a t e s government, t h e

message s o l e m n l y s t a t e d ,
...y i e l d s , also t o t h e judgement o f t h e Supreme Command i n t h e m a t t e r o f e s t a b l i s h i n g a small f o r c e a t Hurmansk, t o g u a r d t h e m i l i t a r y s t o r e s a t K o l a , and t o make i t s a f e f o r X u s s i a n f o r c e s t o come t o g e t h e r i n o r g a n i z e d b o d i e s i n t h e n o r t h . B u t . . . i t c m go no f u r t h e r . . . . I t i s n o t i n a p o s i t i o n , and has no e x p e c t a t i o n o f being i n a p o s i t i o n , t o take p a r t i n organized i n t e r v e n t i o n i n a d e q u a t e f o r c e f r o m . . .i.:urnanslc and A r c h a n g e l . It... w i l l . . . f e e l obliged t o withdraw t h e s e f o r c e s , i n o r d e r t o acid them t o the f o r c e s at the western f r o n t , i f t h e p l a n s . should develop i n t o o t h e r s i n c o n s i s t e n t with t h e p o l i c y t o which t h e Government o f t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s f e e l s c o n s t r a i n e d t o r e s t r i c t i t s e l f . 2o

..

The P r e s i d e n t had d e c i d e d t o p r o v i d e t h r e e b a t t a l i o n s of i n f a n t r y and t h r e e companies o f e n g i n e e r s t o t h e N o r t h R u s s i a n expeditionary force.


The m a t t e r was c l o s e d .

T h i s , i n essence,

was how a p p r o x i m a t e l y 4,500 American men o f t h e 3 3 9 t h I n f a n t r y


Regiment, t h e 3 3 7 t h F i e l d H o s p i t a l and t h e 3 1 0 t h E n g i n e e r B a t t a l i o n , u n d e r B r i t i s h command, became i n v o l v e d i n one of t h e most f u t i l e a d i l l - a d v i s e d m i l i t a r y o p e r a t i o n s i n A n e r i c m history
~

'Xilson t<rould, l a t e r i n t h e summer

O f

1 9 1 8 , c i r c u l a t e an

24

aide-memoir6 amonf; t h e A l l i e s i n which he attempted t o j u s t i f y


h i s d.ecision t o send AmerFcan t r o o p s i n t o Russia.
T h i s paper,

e l o q u e n t and sometimes c o n t r a d i c t o r y , p u t f o r t h t h e ar&ument


that:

M i l i t a r y a c t i o n i s admissable i n R u s s i a , as t h e Government of t h e United S t a t e s s e e s t h e circums t a n c e s , only t o h e l p t h e Czecho-Slovaks consoli d a t e t h e i r f o r c e s and g e t i n t o s u c c e s s f u l coope r a t i o n w i t h t h e i r S l a v i c Itinsmen and t o s t e a d y any e f f o r t s a t self-government or s e l f - d e f e n s e i n which t h e Russians themselves may be w i l l i n g to a c c e p t a s s i s t a n c e . Vhether from Vladivostok or from Murmansk a n d Archangel, t h e only l e g i t i m a t e o b j e c t f o r which American or A l l i e d t r o o p s can be employed, i t s u b m i t s , i s t o guard m i l i t a r y s t o r e s and t o r e n d e r such a i d as may be a c c e p t a b l e t o t h e R u s s i a n s i n t h e o r g a n i z a t i o n of t h e i r OVM self-defense... t h e United S t a t e s i s glad t o cont r i b u t e t h e small f o r c e a t i t s d i s p o s a l f o r t h a t purpose, 21.

25

NOTES

1. R i c h a r d G o l d h u r s t , The M i d n i g h t Yar, :Iew York, 1.IcGral.i-


H i l l , 1970, pg. 3 .

2 . E.N.

H a l l i d a y , Op. C i t . ,

py.

16.

3. James Bunyan, I n t e r v e n t i o n , C i v i l ',;ar and Communism i n


R u s s i a , April-December 1918, J o c u m e n t s anu i , l a l ; e r i a l s ,
B a l t i m o r e , J o h n s Hopkins P r e s s , 1 Y 3 G , P z . 8 1 .

4 . John S i l v e r l i g h t , The

V i c t o r s ' Dilemma, New


34.
83.

YOrK,

::ley-

b r i g h t and T a l l e y , 1 9 7 0 , P g . 5 . m n y a n , Op. C i t . ,

Pg.

6 . R i c h a r d H . U l l m a n , AnRlo-Soviet R e l a t i o n s , 1917-1921,
Vol. I: I n t e r v e n t i o n and The War, P r i n c e t o n U n i v e r s i t y
7 . George F. Xennan, S o v i e t - A m e r i c a n R e l a t i o n s , 1917-1920,
V o l . 11: The 3 e c i s i o n t o I n t e r v e n e , P r i n c e t o n U n i v e r s i t y
P r e s s , 1958, P g . 146.

8 . Hajor G e n e r a l S i r C .

and S t o u g h t o n , N . D . ,

Maynard, The ;.Iurmans!c V e n t u r e , Hodcer Pg. 1 2 . Pg. 4 .

9 . G o l d h u r s t , Op. C i t . ,

10. P e y t o n C . March, The PIation a t !!Jar, New York, l ) o u h l e u a y , D o r a n , 1 9 3 2 , Pg. 100.


11. P a p e r s R e l a t i n g t o t h e F o r e i z n R e l a t i o n s o f t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s , 1918, Russia. U.S. Government P r i n t i n , ? O f f i c e , 1 9 3 2 , Vol 11, Pg. 477-404. Vashington D . C . , 1 2 , Kennan, O p. C i t . ,

Pg.

365-367.

L i f e and L e t t e r s , VOl 13, Ray S t a n n a r d B a k e r , Vioodrow V i l s o n : ' i 8 : A r m i s t i c e . New Yoric. Doubleday. D o r a n , 1 9 3 9 , P,g. 1 c
14. I b i d . , Pg. 147.
Tg.

1 5 . Kennan, O p . C i t . ,

368.

1 6 . F r e d e r i c k P a l m e r , rlevrton i . B a k e r : ) America a t !.:ar, D O d d , Head & C o . , N I York, 1 9 3 1 , ' 0 11, Pg. 317. ew $1 1 7 . F o r e i g n R e l a t i o n s , 1 9 1 8 , R u s s i a , Vol 11, Op. C i t . , 2 4 3 , 246.
?g.

26

IS. Palmer, 0 9 . C i t . , ? g . 319.


1 9 . B a k e r , V o l 8 , Op. Cit.,

Pg. 284.

2 0 . Foreign R e l a t i o n s , 1918, S u s s i a , V o l . P,g. 2 8 7 - 2 9 0 .

TI, O p . C i t . ,

2 1 . S t a n l e y S . J a d o s , Documents on Russian-American R e l a t i o n s , Washington, D . C . , C a t h o l i c i l n i v e r s l t y 01' America, 1 Y 6 5 , Pg. 51-52.

27

CHAiiTER 2 . . The R e l a t i o n s h i p s 3etween T h e A l l i e s

The 3 3 9 t h I n f a n t r y Regiment served :.rith The N o r t h Russian E x p e di t i ona r y Force f o r r e l a t i v e l y i n c o n s e q u e n t i a l reasons.


The conman<er o f t h e 3 3 9 t h , C o l o n e l George Evans S t e w a r t , !./as

one o f t h e few American o f f i c e r s iwho had s e r v e d i n Alaska, m d t h e r e g i m e n t was c o n v e n i e n t l y encamped f o r e n b a r k a t i o n on t h e London-Aldershot


C a n a l i n S u r r e y , England.

The u n i t had b e e n

r e c r u i t e d at F o r t C u s t e r , T:!ichigan i n 1 9 1 5 and was composed p r i m a r i l y o f d r a f t e e s and o f f i c e r s from t h e mid-western p a r t o f America. The 3 3 9 t h was p a r t o f t h e 8 5 t h D i v i s i o n an6 when

t h e y a r r i v e d i n E n g l a n d i n t h e summer o f 1 9 1 8 , i t was w i t h t h e h i g h and n o b l e m i s s i o n o f k i l l i n g Germans on t h e b a t t l e f i e l d s

o f France.

On 6 h g u s t , 1 9 1 8 , a message marked " S e c r e t " a r r i v e d f o r


S t e w a r t from t h e !iar O f f i c e i n London.

I t i n f o r m e d him t h a t

t h e 3 3 9 t h I n f a n t r y Iiegiment, 1st B a t t a l i o n , 3 1 0 t h E n g i n e e r Regiment, 3 3 7 t h F i e l d H o s p i t a l Company, and 3 3 7 t h Ambulance Company s h o u l d be p r e p a r e d for immediate s e r v i c e i n Russia.

I t also i n s t r u c t e d S t e w a r t t h a t :
KO animals will b e talcen, b u t a l l v e h i c l e s , s a d d l e r y , and h a r n e s s w i l l accompany t h e u n i t s : t h e u n i t s w i l l mobilize i n accordance with D r i t i s h mobilization s t o r e t a b l e s ; B r i t i s h p e r s o n a l equipment w i l l be i s s u e d and any American equipment w i l l be t u r n e d i n at A l d e r s h o t ; t h a t Russian r i f l e s , Russian patt e r n Lewis g u n s , and R u s s i a n p a t t e r n C o l t machineg u n s w i l l be i s s u e c : i n l i e u o f t h e E n f i e l d r i f l e s t h a t t h e Americans have t r a i n e d vrit:?; and American o f f i c e r s w i l l be i s s u e d , f r e e o f c h a r g e , a s p e c i a l
28

:.iixter k i t a t the cocmence7ent o f t h e :.;inter i n tk,c theeti-e o f o:x?rc.tions. 1

O n 9 l . u ~ u s t o n l i d e n t i a l ai-der i:o C
i cam Ex?e c! i ti o n a r y Force

1, > ; e a d q u a r t e r s ,

f o rxally 6e s i zi1a t e c! the hne r i c 2.3

u n i t s as > a r t o f the IIurmansk Expeditionawy "orce zu?d a:cFoifi-Le~ C o l o n e l Stewar.l; as t h e corni:,andinz o i ' f i c e r o f the detac?:::.ent.

It ?rovic:,ec!

t h e 339th Ivith 1 , C O O pairs

of s k i s , 5 , 5 0 0 ;airs
c r o s s cct s--U.i,
c)

o l srAovi shoes,

7 , 5 0 0 wir,ter r , o c c a s i n s , 50 l o n ;

50 i c e t o n z s , ancl s l i ? - o n z a r n e n t s of ?.:bite n a . t e r i e l t o r x k e

the t r o o 9 s l e s s C . i s t i n g u i s h a S l e on tlie sno'vi.

Stewart an2 h i s nen v e r e n o t h a p p y a b o u t having t o g i v e


wp t h e i r 2ersona.l

%e&ro r t h e E n f i e l e r i f l e s .

One o f f i c e r n o t e d :

' Y o s t d i s h e c r t e n i n g of a l l irere t h e R u s s i m r i f l s s i s s u e d to t h e i n f a n t r y . The;. '.;ere x m u f a c t u r e r ; i n o u r c o u n t r y Sy t h e m i l l i o I > for t h e use of t l k ? I m p e r i a l A m y ; Lon2 , aw!c:.:arG Jieces , vith flinsy b o l t :-,echanisrns t h a t f r e c u e n t l y jm:nec;. These l;rea-,ons h a 2 n e v e r 'seen tarseted by the Anerica>.s, and t h e i r s i g h t i n g s y s t e m 1mre c a l c u l a t e d i n R u s s i m p a c e s i n s t e 2 . d o f y a r d s . T h e y had a loir v e l o c i t y and .;;ere t h o r o u g h l y u n s a t i s f a c t o r y . The u n r e l i a b i l i t y o f the r i f l e l p r i a e arm o f t h e i n f a n t r y , was a n i r c g o r t a n t f a c t o r i n t h e l o m r i n g o f A l l i e d m o r a l e . 13 1

? r i o r t o d e p a r t i n g f o r :!orth

R u s s i a -the order r e q u i r i n x t h e

t u r n - i n of p e r s o n a l g e a r was r e s c i n d e d , b u t the R u s s i z n :jea-

pons ;./ere i s s u e d .

The o t h e r members o f G e n e r a l ?ool I s A l l i e c ! E : q e d i t i o n a r g


F o r c e viere
ZL~I

i n t e r e s t i n g c o l l e c t i o n of f i x h t i i ? g

ineil f r 0 i . G

several countries. i n f a n t r y 3ri2a.de

The a r i t i s h c o n t i n g e n t c o n s i s t e c of an The b r i g a c e was

numbering n e a r l y 4500 men.

made up p r i m a r i l y o f 2 o y a l S c o t s and "sritish s o l d i e r s c l a s s i -

f i e d as cate,Tory C 3 .

T h i s c l a s s i f i c a t i o n meant t h e y viere

u n f i t f o r t h e a r d u o u s t a s k s o f f i e l d o p e r a t i o n s , but c o u l d

perform g a r r i s o n or g x r d duty.
!.:ound

!.;any o f t h e s e men wore

s t r i p e s won i n F r a n c e and Selgiurn.'

Also i n c l u d e d i n

t h e 3 r i t i s h s t r e n g t h vas a g r o u ? o f t h r e e o f f i c e r s and s i x s e r g e a n t s from t h e A u s t r a l i a n I m p e r i a l F o r c e s . These men had

b e e n s p e c i a l l y c h o s e n and t r a i n e e t o a c t as a d v i s o r s t o t h e

'Yhite X u s s i a n Army troops.

Later i n t h e ca!npaign, o v e r o x e
5

hundred A u s t r a l i m s :iould v o l u n - t e e r f o r d u t y i n K o r t h R u s s i a
as p a r t o f t h e Dritis!i Army.

The B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s were o f tYxo b a s i c a r o u s s .

One con-

s i s t e d of o f f i c e r s ,who had s e e n combat on t h e i J e s t e r n F r o n t and were i n N o r t h R u s s i a b e c a u s e they twere p r o f e s s i o n a l mili t a r y men o r l o v e d a d v e n t u r e . The o t h e r g r o u p ~was made ug

o f o f f i c e r s viho had n o t s e e n c o n b a t a d viewed t h e ?:orth


R u s s i m o p e r a t i o n as an o p p o r t u n i t y t o make a nane f o r themselves. A f t e r all, the :iar s p p e a r e d t o be comin.? t o an end

and t h i s m i g h t be t h e i r o n l y c h a n c e t o g a i n a r e p u t a t i o n t h a t
mi,c$it

p r o v e v a l u a b l e a f t e r t h e 7:rar.

The Frer.ch e l e m e n t i n c l u d e d a p p r o x i m a t e l y 970 f:len o f t h e


2 i s t C o l o n i a l I n f a n t T y s a t t a l i o n , v i t h t v o m a c h i n e p n sec-

t i o n s an6 tvo s e c t i o n s o f s e v e n t y - f i v e 7 . i l l i m e t e r a r t i l l e r y attachec':. The 2 i s t C o l o n i a l vas a d i s t i n g u i s ! i e d u n i t tha%


30

had s e e n sorne o f t h e most v i o l e n t f i g h t i n s on the ' ? e s t e r n F r o n t at Chemin d e s 3arnes i n 1917. The u n i t had b e e n so

decirnatec! t h a t i t !ras d e a c t i v a t e d i n F r a n c e anc! t h e n r e a c t i vated f o r t h e Korth Russian e x p e d i t i o n . :;any o f t h e riren v:ho

j o i n e d the 2 1 s t b e f o r e d e p a r t i n g F r a n c e had j u s t a r r i v e d frcrn t h e Middle E a s t and vere i n v e r y p o o r h e a l t h .


6

From Canada came t h e 1 6 t h S r i g a d e Canaciian F i e 1 6 A r t i l l e r y .


The B r i g a d e c o n s i s t e d o f t h e 6 7 t h and 6 8 t h F l a t t e r i e s v i t h s i x

e i g h t e e n pounders each.

The ariga.de had 497 o f f i c e r s and men


ill

who h a d , f o r t h e most p a r t , s e r v e d

France.

These v o l u n 7

t e e r s had an e x c e l l e n t r e p u t a t i o n as g u n n e r s and harcl f i . z h t e r s .

The f o r c e also i n c l u d e d 860 S e r b s , 1 , 1 8 9 I t a l i a n s , 449 P o l e s ,


5 J a p a n e s e , 43 Icoreans, 262 C h i n e s e , and an u n r e c o r d e d number

o f S o u t h Africans, L i t h u a n i a n s , F i n n s , anci a n t i - a o l s h e v i k
White Russians.'
One e s t i m a t e p u t s t h e t o t . a l number of A l l i e d

F o r c e s at 1 , 4 2 4 o f f i c e r s and 25,GlG e n l i s t e d men.'

The con-

bat o r d e r o f b a t t l e i n c l u d e d one regirnent o f American infant r y , one b r i g a d e o f a r i t i s h i n f a n t r y , one b a t ' t a l i o n of F r e n c h i n f a n t r y , two s e c t i o n s o f F r e n c h a r t i l l e r y and machineguns,

one b r i g a d e of C a n a d i a n a r t i l l e r y , one armored t r a i n , one 155


and one 77 m i l l i m e t e r Russiarr holviitzers, f o r a t o t a l o f a b o u t
9,500 f r o n t l i n e troops.

10

The 3 3 9 t h a n d i t s

s u p p o r t t r o o p s d e p a r t e d England a b o a r d

t h e Tydeus, IJagoya, and Somali on 27 A u g u s t , 1918.

An in-

f l u e n z a e p i d e m i c b r o k e o u t at once and n e a r l y 500 of t h e


5 , 5 0 0 Americans were s i c k .

A f t e r e i , g h t d a y s at: s e a a11
51

32

Stewart t o d i v e r t h i s force t o Archangel.

12

Upon t h e i r a r r i v a l , t h e Americar.s f o u n d t h e s i t u a t i o n somewhat d i f f e r e n t from what t h e y had e x p e c t e d .

On 4 September t h e

t r o o p s h i p s docked a t A r c h a n g e l and on t h e 5th, t h e 2nd J a t t a l i o n , 3 3 9 t h I n f a n t r y T,e,yiment e s t a b l i s h e d t h e i r camp a t Smolney B a r racks. The 3 r d B a t t a l i o n carne a s h o r e the same day a n d moved

O u t ifiimediately for t h e r e l i e f o f t h e f o r c e s l o c a t e d on t h e
Archangel-Volosda r a i l w a y .

On 7 September t h e 1st Z a t t a l i o n

eiabarlied on two b a r g e s , towed by B r i t i s h t u g s , and moved up t h e

Evina R i v e r t o w a r d s a l i n k - u p w i t h B r i t i s h f o r c e s o p e r a t i n g
n e a r Berezink.
13

The s i c k 'diere u n l o a d e d from t h e s h i p s and t r a n s p o r t e d t o t h e Russian Red C r o s s h o s p i t a l a t A r c h a n g e l .

The American rnedical

o f f i c e r , K a j o r J o n a s Lonely, a s k e d t h e B r i t i s h f o r a s s i s t a n c e b u t ivas t o l d t h a t t h e B r i t i s h h o s p i t a l ~ i o u l dtake o n l y t h e American o f f i c e r s and t h e e n l i s t e d Glen would have t o s t a y on the ships. Longly r e f u s e d t o make any d i s t i n c t i o n b e t m e n t h e

o f f i c e r and e n l i s t e d men and i n f o r m e d t h e a r i t i s h that he would open an American h o s p i t a l . The young m e d i c a l o f f i c e r ' s a c t i o n s
POOle,

'were b l o c k e d by t h e s t a f f o f G e n e r a l

b a s e d on t h e lack Longly

of Arxrican m e d i c a l s u p p l i e s , personnel., and equipment.

went t o the American Rec! C r o s s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e i n Archa-igel and explained the s i t u a t i o n .

Almost a t o n c e , t h e d e p u t y c o r m i s s i o n -

er, ?.ir. C . T .

~ Y i l l i a n st u r n e d o v e r f i v e Red C r o s s h o s p i t a l t r a i n s

t h a t c o n t a i n e d t o n s o f m e d i c a l s u p p l i e s t h a t had been s e n t .to

2 u s s i a p r i o r t o t h e 3olshevi;c B e v o l u t i o n .

T; v o l u n t e e r n u r s e s !o
33

a i d e d Longly, one of whom would l a t e r be awarded t h e F l o r e n c e N i g h t i n g a l e Iledal f o r h e r s e r v i c e s i n Archangel.

14

A f t e r e s t a b l i s h i n g t h e h o s p i t a l K a j o r Longly r a i s e d t h e American f l a g o v e r i t , i n v i o l a t i o n o f General P o o l e ' s o r d e r s .

Poole had p r e v i o u s l y d e c r e e d t h a t o n l y t h e Union J a c k would be

flown i n Archangel.

>!hen a B r i t i s h s t a f f o f f i c e r appeared a t

t h e American h o s p i t a l and o r d e r e d Longly t o h a u l Cown t h e S t a r s and S t r i p e s , Longly produced some armed g u a r d s and r e f u s e d . That a c t i o n ended t h e d e b a t e and Longly proved t o be t h e o n l y A l l i e d o f f i c e r t o win an argument w i t h General Poole c o n c e r n i n g 15
which f l a g would b e flown. The c o a l i t i o n r e l a t i o n s h i p g o t o f f t o a rocky s t a r t and went downhill r a p i d l y . The Americans observed t h a t many of t h e

B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s wore t h e i n s i g n i a o f h i g h rank b u t drew pay o f

lower g r a d e s .

T h i s p o l i c y was a p p a r e n t l y t o i n s u r e t h a t t h e The a r i t i s h

B r i t i s h always o u t r a n k e d t h e i r American A l l i e s .

promoted s u b a l t e r n s t o L i e u t e n a n t Colonel and made s e r g e a n t s i n t o temporary m a j o r s . General Poole wanted t o be c e r t a i n t h a t i f

and when t h e i n t e r v e n t i o n became a l a r g e s c a l e A l l i e d o p e r a t i o n t h a t t h e E n g l i s h would b e f i r m l y i n c o n t r o l o f i t . 1 6 The Americans a l s o complained t h a t t h e B r i t i s h took food i n t e n d e d f o r t h e s i c k a n d wounded a n d s e r v e d i t i n t h e s e r g e a n t ' s messes.
T h i s might have been overlooked e x c e p t t h a t t h e wounded

were f e d a s t e a d y d i e t of t e a , jwx, and b r e a d .

The s i t u a t i o n

was made worse vihen Colonel Stewart r e c a l l e d an American medical


o f f i c e r f o r r e f u s i n g a S r i t i s h o f f i c e r ' s o r d e r t o have American
34

medical p e r s o n n e l d i g l a t r i n e s f o r t h e 3 r i t i s h o f f i c e r ' s quarters. There were also c h a r g e s t h a t t h e B r i t i s h n e g l e c t e d s e v e r a l Americans and r e q u i r e d them t o do o r d e r l y d u t i e s . Finally,

Colonel S t e - x w t c o u r t - m a r t i a l l e d one American s o l d i e r f o r r e f u s i n g t o do s c r u b work i n a Yritish h o s p i t a l .

The e s t a b -

l i s h m e n t o f t h e American r e c e i v i n g and c o n v a l e s c e n t h o s p i t a l s i n Archcangel c u r e d most of t h e s e problems.

17

The 3rd B a t t a l i o n , 339th I n f a n t r y moved d i r e c t l y from t h e s h i p s t o t h e Archangel-Vologda r a i l r o a d l i n e . The m i s s i o n o f

t h e 3 r d Z a t t a l i o n was t o move s o u t h along t h e r a i l r o a d t o Obozerskaya and relieve p a r t of t h e French 2 1 s t C o l l o n i a l 3attalion. Obozerskaya was l o c a t e d a p p r o x i m a t e l y 70 m i l e s s o u t h From Obozerskaya t h e 3 r d B a t t a l i o n was t o c o n t i n u e

o f Archangel.

s o u t h along t h e r a i l r o a d t o v e r s t 466%. and make c o n t a c t w i t h t h e French. When t h e 3 r d B a t t a l i o n , commanded by Najor C h a r l e s 3 . Young, c o n t a c t e d t h e French B a t t a l i o n , t h e o f f i c e r i n charge came o u t

o f h i s dugout and i n d i c a t e d t h a t he e x p e c t e d a Russian a r t i l l e r y a t t a c k a t any moment.

LIajor Young o r d e r e d t h e American


pOSi-

t r o o p s d i s p e r s e d and began t o r e l i e v e t h e French of t h e i r tion.

That n i g h t t h e American's s u f f e r e d t h e i r f i r s t c a s u a l t y

*A v e r s t was .66 o f a m i l e o r 1 , 1 6 4 y a r d s . Each v e r s t on t h e r a i l r o a d was marked, w i t h t h e numbers g o i n g from s o u t h t o north. 35

o f t h e campaign, a s o l d i e r s h o t i n t h e l e g by a s e n t r y who f i r e d w i t h o u t w a i t i n g f o r a response t o h i s c h a l l e n g e .


a t t h e p o i n t t h a t t h e doughboys f u l l y r e a l i z e d t h a t :
I t was

"Guard

duty a t Archangel was aiming now t o be a r e a l war, on a small s c a l e b u t i n t e n s i v e . " 18

How were t h e s e Americans drawn i n t o combat, under B r i t i s h


O f f i c e r s , n e a r l y 100 m i l e s from Archangel, where, a c c o r d i n g t o P r e s i d e n t Wilson, t h e i r d u t i e s were l i m i t e d t o performing "guard duty"?
T h i s q u e s t i o n i s key t o a n examination o f t h e

r e l a t i o n s h i p between t h e A l l i e s . The command r e l a t i o n s h i p between Colonel S t e w a r t and Gene r a l Poole w a s b a s i c a l l y e s t a b l i s h e d by P r e s i d e n t \ L t l s o n ' s d e c i s i o n t o commit American t r o o p s under B r i t i s h command.
1

This

s i t u a t i o n became c l e a r e r a f t e r t h e Americans a r r i v e d i n Archangel. Immediately a f t e r S t e w a r t s arrival a t Archangel, Ambas-

s a d o r F r a n c i s c a l l e d him t o h i s apartment where t h e ambassador asked S t e w a r t i f he had any o r d e r s f o r him. Stewart r e p l i e d

t h a t he d i d n o t . F r a n c i s t h e n asked what o r d e r s S t e w a r t had

received.

S t e w a r t s a i d h i s o r d e r s were t o r e p o r t t o General F r a n c i s responded:

P o o l e , t h e commander of t h e A l l i e d Forces.
'I1

i n t e r p r e t our policy here.

If I s h o u l d t e l l you n o t t o

obey one o f General P o o l e ' s o r d e r s what would you do?" r e p l i e d t h a t he would obey F r a n c i s .
19

Stewart

F r a n c i s had c o n t a c t e d t h e S t a t e Department e a r l i e r a n d r e q u e s t e d t h a t t h e r a n k i n g o f f i c e r be p u t Itin c l o s e touch" w i t h


him.

When t h e S t a t e Department informed General March, Chief


36

o f S t a f f , o f F r a n c i s ' r e q u e s t , March s t a t e d t h a t he d i d n ' t want


t h e ambassador t o have anything t o do w i t h t h e t r o o p s .

The

S t a t e Department, through Assistant S e c r e t a r y o f S t a t e Long informed P r e s i d e n t Wilson o f March's a t t i t u d e and i n a subsequent W r Council meeting, Wilson o r d e r e d March t o inform a
S t e w a r t t o comply with F r a n c i s ' r e q u e s t .

On 13 September F r a n c i s
"It i s

r e c e i v e d a telegram from t h e S t a t e Department s t a t i n g :

i m p o r t a n t t h a t you a n d Colonel S t e w a r t s h o u l d keep i n c l o s e p e r s o n a l touch.

You a p p r e c i a t e , o f c o u r s e , t h a t i n m i l i t a r y

m a t t e r s Colonel S t e w a r t i s under General Poole. ,,20 The command r e l a t i o n s h i p was f u r t h e r complicated when, on
17 September, S t e w a r t r e c e i v e d a c a b l e from American P I i l i t a r y

Headquarters i n London i n response t o a r e q u e s t f o r guidance i n what must have been an ambiguous and c o n t r a d i c t o r y p r e d i c ament. The c a b l e s t a t e d :

Reference your telegram following, r e p e a t e d f o r


your i n f o r m a t i o n a n d guidance. for tactical
purposes and f o r a d m i n i s t r a t i v e m a t t e r s i n v o l -
ving t h e e n t i r e command he i s under t h e j u r i s -
d i c t i o n o f A l l i e d Gommanders. S u p p l i e s w i l l
be f u r n i s h e d by t h e E r i t i s h . I n m a t t e r s of
i n t e r n a l a d m i n i s t r a t i o n he w i l l be g o v e r n e d
o u r own o r d e r s , r e g u l a t i o n s , and i n s t r u c t i o n sby21 .

...

O 1 4 October t h e war o f f i c e r e c a l l e d General Poole t o n England, o s t e n s i b l y t o c o n f e r on f u t u r e o p e r a t i o n s . The p r i -

mary reason f o r P o o l e ' s d e p a r t u r e 'was because Ambassador F r a n c i s had informed t h e S t a t e Department of P o o l e ' s i n t e r f e r e n c e s i n Russian p o l i t i c a l a f f a i r s a n d o v e r o p t i m i s t i c reports. The S t a t e Department c o n t a c t e d t h e B r i t i s h Foreign

O f f i c e and informed them t h a t i f Poole continued t o medcile i n


37

Russian domestic a f f a i r s , "The 'Jnited S t a t e s shall be comp e l l e d t o c o n s i d e r 1;rithdrawal o f American t r o o p s from B r i t i s h s u p e r i o r demands.... ,,22 The B r i t i s h could n o t a f f o r d t o have t h e Americans w i t h draw a t t h i s p o i n t , and r e p l a c e d P o o l e w i t h N a j o r General
'Vlilliam Edmund I r o n s i d e

as Commander-in-Chief

of t h e North

Russian A l l i e d E x p e d i t i o n a r y Force. O 8 November, 1 9 1 8 , t h r e e days b e f o r e t h e a r m i s t i c e , n t h e one man who c o u l d have most d i r e c t l y i n f l u e n c e d t h e r o l e of American t r o o p s d e p a r t e d Archangel. Ambassador F r a n c i s

was talcen ill and l e f t R u s s i a f o r a p r o s t a t e o p e r a t i o n i n


England.
His replacement, De!:/itte C l i n t o n Poole (no r e l a t i o n

t o General P o o l e ) former Charge d ' A f f a i r s i n Finland d i d n o t have t h e i n f l u e n c e o r a u t h o r i t y o f F r a n c i s .


With t h e depar-

t u r e o f F r a n c i s came t h e t o t a l s u b j u g a t i o n o f t h e American f o r c e s t o B r i t i s h command a u t h o r i t y . General I r o n s i d e proved t o be s t r i k i n g l y d i f f e r e n t from Poole. T o t a l l y d e d i c a t e d t o t h e m i l i t a r y and l i t t l e i n t e r -

e s t e d i n p o l i t i c s , I r o n s i d e s e t about t o p o s i t i o n h i s f o r c e i n a more f a v o r a b l e s t a n c e f o r t h e coming w i n t e r and i n e v i t a b l e Bolshevik a t t a c k s .


A s t h e new Commander-in-Chief

inspec-

t e d h i s A l l i e d f o r c e s he noted t h a t if i t were n o t f o r t h e l'untrained c o n d i t i o n of t h e United S t a t e s i n f a n t r y i n t h e Archangel F o r c e " , he would n o t have been f o r c e d i n t o p u t t i n g t h e C 3 c a t e g o r y S c o t s i n t o t h e l i n e a n d could have k e p t them f o r Archangel g a r r i s o n d u t y .

*'

I-Ie also observed t h a t ;


38

"The United S t a t e s t r o o p s were o f f i n e


physique, b u t t h e y had no .experience o f
war and when t h e y a r r i v e d t h e i r m i l i t a r y
t r a i n i n g :.ras most i n p e r f e c t . They had
been drawn from D e t r o i t and had t h e ad-
vantage o f p o s s e s s i n g many men o f Rus-
sian and P o l i s h e x t r a c t i o n , which gave
them t h e advantage o f having many i n t e r -
p r e t e r s , of whom t h e r e was a g r e a t l a c k
i n t h e o t h e r two c o n t i n g e n t s , 1124 On one of h i s f i r s t v i s i t s t o an American u n i t i n t h e f i e l d , I r o n s i d e viewed t h e doughboys i n e x p e r i e n c e f i r s t hand. I n h i s words: "The whole company was l i n e d o u t , p e e r i n g
i n t o t h e f o r e s t w i t h t h e i r arms a t t h e
r e a d y . No c l e a r i n g s had been made f o r even
a modest f i e l d o f f i r e , I e x p l a i n e d t o t h e
company commanrkr what he s h o u l d d o , s o t h a t
a few s e n t r i e s c o u l d watch w h i l e t h e remain-
d e r o f h i s men r e s t e d or took t h e i r meals.
H e s t a r e d a t m i n obvious amazement and
e then b u r s t out vrith, 'what!, r e s t i n t h i s
h e l l i s h bombardment! A t t h e moment a few
shells were f a l l i n g v i d e i n t h e f o r e s t .
They had a l o t t o l e a r n , . , 1125
~ ~

I r o n s i d e I s d e a l i n g s w i t h Colonel S t e m . r t may have i n f l u enced h i s o p i n i o n of t h e American s o l ~ d i e r . S h o r t l y b e f o r e

Poolefs d e p a r t u r e f o r England and I r o n s i d e ' s assumption of


command, I r o n s i d e v i s i t e d Stcywart w i t h t h e i n t e n t i o n of aslci n g t h e American c o l o n e l t o assume command of t h e A l l i e d f o r c e s on t h e railaiay f r o n t . T h i s element was composed o f

Americans, French, and D r i t i s h t r o o p s . I r o n s i d e found Ste7;iart i n h i s o f f i c e a t t h e Archangel


Y.M.C.A.

A f t e r t h e i n i t i a l g r e e t i n g s , S-teTwart launched i n t o

a s e r i e s or" c o m p l a i n t s a b o u t h i s problems i n a d m i n i s t e r i n g h i s
troops ':!hen
t h e y viere s o w i d e l y d i s p e r s e d . Steyvart a l s o c i t e d
39

t h e l a c k of a r t i l l e r y , e n g i n e e r s , and medical elements.

Iron-

s i d e took t h i s o p p o r t u n i t y t o o f f e r command of t h e railway

column t o S t e w a r t .

The American c o l o n e l sat s i l e n t l y f o r


He s t a t e d t h a t i f he l e f t

s e v e r a l minutes, t h e n r e f u s e d .

Archangel he would be exceeding h i s i n s t r u c t i o n s . p r e s s e d t h e i s s u e , b u t S t e w a r t would n o t budge.

Ironside The B r i t i s h

commander could n o t understand how a s o l d i e r who had been awarded The Medal o f Honor f o r heroism d u r i n g t h e P h i l l i p p i n e insurrection-the e q u i v a l e n t o f The V i c t o r i a Cross could re-

f u s e an o f f e r f o r a combat command.

I r o n s i d e l e f t S t e w a r t and

went immediately t o t h e commander of French f o r c e s , Commandant Lucas, who accepted t h e o f f e r w i t h o u t h e s i t a t i o n . 26 Stewart a p p a r e n t l y took h i s i n s t r u c t i o n s t o remain i n Archangel q u i t e l i t e r a l l y .
H e v i s i t e d t h e American u n i t s a t

t h e f r o n t twice o n l y d u r i n g t h e e n t i r e North Russian campaign.


H e a t t e n d e d t h e f u n e r a l s e r v i c e f o r t h e f i r s t American c a s u a l -

t i e s on t h e r a i l r o a d f r o n t and made an i n s p e c t i o n t o u r t o t h e Dvina f r o n t , where he l o s t a m i t t e n and accused a j u n i o r o f f i c e r of s t e a l i n g i t .


The m a t t e r was s e t t l e d when t h e m i t t e n was
27

found where i t was dropped by t h e c o l o n e l .

S h o r t l y a f t e r I r o n s i d e ' s v i s i t t o S t e w a r t and F r a n c i s ' dep a r t u r e for England, Colonel S t e w a r t c a b l e d American Headquart e r s i n London w i t h t h e f o l l o w i n g message: November 14 1 9 1 8 Men of t h i s command have performed most e x c e l l e n t s e r v i c e under t h e most t r y i n g c l i m a t i c c o n d i t i o n s o f c o l d , snow, wet and miry marshes ( t u n d r a ) . Having had former s e r v i c e i n A l a s k a I do n o t
40

contemplate v r i t h equanimity t h e e f f e c t on t h e numerical s t r e n g t h of m y command o f f i e l d s e r v i c e i n t h e A r t i c under t h e most p r i m i t i v e and u n s a n i t a r y c o n d i t i o n s u n l e s s d i c t a t e d by u r g e n t and i m p e r a t i v e m i l i t a r y n e c e s s i t y . A l l i e s have n o t been r e c e i v e d w i t h t h e h o s p i t a l i t y t h e obj e c t of t h i s e x p e d i t i o n vrarranted. A c e r t a i n amount o f d i s t r u s t o f motive e v i d e n t l y permeates Russian mind. The original. o b j e c t o f t h i s exped i t i o n no Longer e x i s t s . The w i n t e r p o r t o f Archangel w i l l be p r a c t i c a b l e f o r n a v i g a t i o n twenty t o t h i r t y days l o n g e r and t h e n c l o s e s u n t i l June. M i n f e r e n c e i s p l a i n y Immediate consideration requested. Stewart S t e w a r t s a w t h e problems t h a t would come about Iviith t h e o n s e t of w i n t e r . He a l s o f e l t t h a t w i t h t h e s i g n i n g o f t h e

a r m i s t i c e on 11 Uovember any reason for remaining i n North R u s s i a vras voided. The war was o v e r on t h e Western Front and

t h e Germans no l o n g e r posed a t h r e a t t o t h e A l l i e s o r t h e i r

supplies.

S t e w a r t ' s a p p a r e n t motive i n sending t h e message of

14 November was t o f o r c e a d e c i s i o n on e v a c u a t i o n b e f o r e t h e

p o r t o f Archangel was f r o z e n f o r the w i n t e r of 1918-1919.


Stewart r e c e i v e d a r e p l y on 1 December s t a t i n g t h a t t h e dispo-

s i t i o n of t r o o p s i n North R u s s i a

Tias

going t o be cliscussed. upon

t h e convening o f t h e peace conference and that t h e B r i t i s h f e l t


t h a t t h e p o r t would be open u n t i l December.

Once t h e p o r t was
29

c l o s e d i t would be f e a s i b l e t o w i t h d r a w through I.lurmanok,

The Americans were n o t t h e o n l y A l l i e d f o r c e q u e s t i o n i n g t h e reasons f o r c o n t i n u e d f i g h t i n g a f t e r t h e a r m i s t i c e .


The

French, upon h e a r i n g of t h e c e s s a t i o n of f i g h t i n g on t h e (Vest e r n F r o n t , r e f u s e d t o c o n t i n u e t o perform combat d u t i e s . commander o f t h e French f o r c e s , Commandant Lucas, convinced
41

The

t h e French t r o o p s t h a t t h e Kmerica?s could n o t h o l d o f f t h e Russians w i t h o u t t h e a s s i s t a n c e o f t h e French s o l d i e r s .

3e-

cause t h e French a n d Americans admired a n d r e s p e c t e d each o t h e r , t h e French responded and took up t h e i r arms.
A s mentioned p r e v i o u s l y , t h e 2 1 s t C o l o n i a l :vas r e c o n s t i -

t u t e d a f t e r i t was v i r t u a l l y d e s t r o y e d i n France.

Xany o f t h e

men who f i l l e d t h e b a t t a l i o n ' s ranks were n o t v o l u n t e e r s or

were taken from o t h e r u n i t s i n t h e French A r m y ,

tiany o f t h e

men, l i k e t h o s e i n t h e B r i t i s h c o n t i n g e n t , had been wounded or s u f f e r e d from s e r i o u s a i l m e n t s a c were not; f i t f o r a c t i v e comn!


b a t duty.

I n s p i t e o f t h e s e shortcominc2s, t h e u n i t f o u g h t

bravely i n the period p r i o r t o the armistice.


As t h e Russian :.rinter approached, t h e French s o l d i e r s be-

gan t o complain, l i k e t h e Americans, t h a t t h e a r i t i s h s u p p l i e d t h e i r o m t r o o p s w i t h b e t t e r f o o d , equipment, and h e a l t h c a r e than t h e i r a l l i e s . The French a.lso complained about t h e B r i -

t i s h o p e r a t e d m a i l s e r v i c e and l a c k o f i n f o r m a t i o n from France.

The B r i t i s h r e p l y t o a l l o f t h e s e c h a r g e s was t h a t t h e y t r e a t e d

all o f t h e A l l i e d f o r c e s i n t h e scme manner.


Another problem was t h e v e r y h i g h i n c i d e n c e o f v e n e r a l d i s e a s e among t h e French t r o o p s . From December 1918 through

I h y 1 9 1 9 t h e r e were 109 c a s e s of v e n e r a l d i s e a s e v e r s e s 38

o t h e r non-combat r e l a t e d i l l n e s s e s .

The reason f o r t h i s h i g h

r a t e , according t o t h e French, 7vas t h e r e f u s a l on t h e p a r t of


B r i t i s h Headquarters t o a l l o w the o p e r a t i o n o f p r o s t i t u t e s ,

i n s p e c t e d and s u p e r v i s e d by t h e French m i l i t a r y a u t h o r i t i e s .
42

T h i s a c t i v i t y , r o u t i n e l y a c c e p t e d by t h e French, :./as d e s i g n e d t o keep up t h e French n o r a l e 'xhile c o n t r o l l i n g d i s e a s e . The

3 r i t i s h d i s a p p r o v a l was s e e n by t h e French as a r i d i c u l o u s o b s t a c l e t o good h e a l t h and c h e e r f u l n e s s . F i n a l l y , when a b a t - t a l i o n of Y o r k s h i r e s staged a sh0r.t mutiny and t h e 3 r i t i s h blamed t h e i n c i d e n t on t h e bad example

of t h e French t r o o p s , t h e French m i l i t a r y and governnent r e a c ted. The French c i t e d a l l o f t h e p r e v i o u s a c c u s a t i o n s and s a i d

t h e absence O F a f o r m a l d e c l a r a t i o n o f war a g a i n s t t h e E u s s i a n s , argued a g a i n s t t h e French b e i n g i n t:orth Russia.

In a d d i t i o n

t o t h e s e a c c u s a t i o n s a French p o l i t i c i a n claimed t h a t t h e Ameri c a n t r o o p s w r e " t o t a l l y c o n t m i n a t e d by 3 o l s h e v i k i d e a s " , and i n t u r n s e t a bad exanple f o r t h e French t r o o p s . 3" The Ameri-

c G n s r e t u r n e d t h e f a v o r by c l a i m i n g t h a t i t was t h e French, n o t t h e Y a n k s , i.iho were contaminated. For t h e most p a r t , t h e

Americans and French g o t a l o n g we11 a t t h e i n d i v i d u e l s o l d i e r level. .One member of t h e 339th rei;ieinbered t h e French as: lmah-sheen
I

who s t r o k e d t h e i r f i e l d p e t s w i t h p r i d e and poured s t e a d y l i n e s of f i r e i n t o t h e p i n e woods ywhere lay

., , t h o s e

gunners i n b l u e on t h e r a i l r o a d

t h e Reds who were e n c i r c l i n z t h e Aiiericans I : : i t h r i f l e a d machinegun f i r e . EIo;,i t h e Yankee s o l d i e r s l i k e d t h e n . And many a pl.easant d r a u z h t t h e y had from t h e b i g pinaud c a n t e e n t h a t always came f r e s h from t h e huge c a s k . I-Iovi c o u r t e o u s l y t h e y t a u g h t t h e doughboy machine gunner t h e litt l e arts o f d i g g i n g i n and r e J o i c e d a t t h e r a p i d progress o f t h e American.31 The Canadians were a p p r e c i a t e d and l i l t e d by a l l of . t h e

Allies.

T h i s could have been because t h e y had t r a d i t i o n a l

t i e s w i t h e a c h of t h e major members o f t h e e s p e d i t i o n or
43

b e c a u s e t h e y :.rere a r e a l i t i v e l y sinall u n i t t h a t p r o v i d e d t h e

n o s t c r i t i c a l e l e m e n t of combat s u p p o r t - a r . t i 1 l e r y .
T h e C a n e d i m o p i n i o n o f t h e Americsn s o l d i e r :!as,

in

many r e s p e c t s , t h e - s a n e as t h e i3ritish view.

The command in^

o f f i c e r o f t h e 6 8 t h Z a t t e r y , ?!aJor Yalter I-'.yLe, admired t h e i A m e r i c m s as good a l l i e s , b u t f e l t t h a t ; " t h e new, u n t r i e d i n f a n - t r y w i t h .;rhom ?re a r e a s s o c i a t e d i n our work, vere v e r y g r e e n s n d i t was v e r y l i f f i c u l t t o a r r i v e at a p r o p e r unders t a n d i n g o f c o n d i t i o n s . I, 3 2 On t h e o t h e r h a d , t h e Americans looked on t h e C a n a d i a n s
as

"tough g u n n e r s s e a s o n e d and s c a r r e d by f o u r
y e a r s o r b a r r a g e s and bombardments i n F r a n c e ,
r a t h e r keen f o r t h e a c v e n t u r e o f Forth Russia
7;ihile f i g h t i n g v r a s on arld t h o r o u g h l y 'fec! u ,
;' when t h e r e 'a a l u l l i n t h e e x c i t e m e n t .
;s ! A One o f t h e t r a i t s - t h a t ~ - t h e n e r i c a n s d i d n o t admire i n t h e Canadians was t h e i r p r o 2 e n s i t y t o s t r i g t h e R u s s i a dead o f a n y t h i n g of v a l u e , s u c h as b o o t s - a n d h i g h f u r h a t s . American o f f i c e r observec! t h a t t h e C a n a d i a n s v e r e l i k e , " s c h o o l b o y s on a h i l a r i o u s ! i o l i d x y e Yet t h e r e
was n o t h i n g d e b a s e d or v i c i o u s a b o u t t h e s e
C a x t d i a n s , They were u n d e l i b e r e . t e , unpremed-
i t a t e d m u r d e r e r s , who had l e a r n e d w e l l t h e
n i c e l e s s o n s o f 1 a and 1oo:;ec: upon k i l l i n g
wr as t h e climax o f a d a y ' s a d v e n t u r e , a ~:ielcom-
ed 'orec& i n t h e tedium o f t h e cull n i l i t a r j ~
r o u t i n e . Generous h e a r t e d , h a r d y , x h o l e s o u l e d
murderers.... It24 The r e l a t i o n s bet:,reen t h e C a l a d i a n s aid I 3 r i t i s h :.rere u s u a l l y g o o d , p r i m a r i l y b e c a u s e of t h e t r a d i t i o n a l c u l t u r a l 2nd ; 3 o l i t i c a l t i e s t h e t.,;!o c o u n t r i e s en2oyeld. One

'The one e::ce;?tion


r,L :

o c c u r r e d i n e a r l y iIarch, 1 9 1 9 , f o l l o i i i n g a mutiny by t h e Yorlcshires and French and an a l l e g e d r e f u s a l of t h e Ameri c a n s t o r e t u r n t o duty a t t h e f r o n t . The Canadians, norbegan t o

m a l l y c o n g e n i a l t o B r i t i s h command a u t h o r i t y ,

complain because t h e y were n o t g r a n t e d t h e same allowances


as t h e S r i t i s h .

In A p r i l ,

General I r o n s i d e c o r r e c t e d t h e

situation and stated:

"The Canadians o u t h e r e , e s p e c i a l l y

t h e A r t i l l e r y B r i g a d e , have been t h e backbone of t h e expedition.


ii35

It i s p o s s i b l e t h a t t h i s i n c i d e n t l e d Canadian Prime M i n i s t e r S i r Robert Bordon t o inform 3 r i t i s h S e c r e t a r y o f S t a t e f o r War, Winston C h u r c h i l l , on 18 Nay, t h a t : "Beyond q u e s t i o n i t i s i m p e r a t i v e t h a t t h e C a n a d i a n Forces now at Archangel s h o u l d be withdrawn w i t h o u t d e l a y . Nany of t h e s e t r o o p s were s e n t i n t h e f i r s t i n s t a n c e f o r i n s t r u c t i o n a l purposes. D o u b t l e s s t h e y have n o t o b j e c t e d t o t h e a c t i v e s e r v i c e which has been s u b s t i t u t e d for t h e o r i g i n a l . purpose. R e c e n t l y , t h e r e has been u n f o r t u n a t e e v i dence of keen resentment on t h e i r p a r t . However, I have no r i g h t t o s p e a k f o r t h e o t h e r s b u t I do i n s i s t t h a t t h e Canadians s h a l l be withdrawn immediately. 1136

...

V i t h i n t h r e e i~ieelcs, on 11 J u n e , t h e C a n a d i a n s were on t h e i r way home from PJorth Russia.

The r e l a t i o n s h i p s between t h e major A l l i e d p a r t i c i 2 a n t s were determined by s e v e r a l f a c t o r s , Among t h e s e were; t h e

cloudy command arrangement which caused misunderstanding and resentment, t h e i n d i v i d u a l p e r s o n a l i t i e s of t h e m i l i t a r y a n d p o l i t i c a l l e a d e r s involved i n t h e e x p e d i t i o n , t h e basic
45

c u l t u r a l and s o c i a l d i f f e r e n c e s 5et:reen

the Allies, a d the

v a r i e d and d i f f e r i n g o b j e c t i v e s t h a t e a c h n a t i o n u n d e r s t o o d as t h e r e a s o n for m i l i t a r y a c t i o n i n ?,forth R u s s i a .

For G e n e r a l s P o o l e and I r o n s i d e t h e r e was no q u e s t i o n o f


who was i n command. of t h e A l l i e d F o r c e s . From t h e i r p o i n t o f

v i e w , t h e y had b e e n g i v e n t h e m i s s i o n t o l e a d an A l l i e d e x p e d i t i o n by t h e Permanent i d i l i t a r y R e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . Inherent i n

t h a t task was t h e t a c t i c a l employment, o r g a n i z a t i o n , administ r a t i o n , and s u p p l y o f t h o s e f o r c e s a s s i g n e d . Those f o r c e s

would r e a c t t o B r i t i s h p e r o g a t i v e s and t h e commanders o f t h o s e f o r c e s would b e s u b j e c t t o t h e same a u t h o r i t y as i f t h e y were o f f i c e r s i n t h e E n g l i s h Army. slightly different.

The American p e r s p e c t i v e was


? r e s i d e n t I;'ilson's i n -

A p p a r e n t l y , i t !.;as

t e n t t o s a t i s f y t h e demands o f t h e E r i t i s h by s e n d i n g American
~~

F o r c e s t o t h e PJorth R u s s i a n E x p e d i t i o n a r y F o r c e .
~

B u t , a.t t h e

same t i m e , he s o u g h t t o have some c i v i l i a n c o n t r o l of t h e o p e r a t i o n a l a s p e c t s of t h e campaign by i n s t r u c t i n g i:!arch t o i n f o r m


~~

t h e American cominander t o s t a y " i n c l o s e t o u c h " w i t h t h e h e r i c a n Ambassador. C o n s e q u e n t l y , t h e American P r e s i d e n t had

c r e a t e d a conmand r e l a t i o n s h i p t h a t would a l l o w U n i t e d S t a t e s Army t r o o p s t o be u s e d i n o f f e n s i v e o p e r a t i o n s a g c i n s t R u s s i a n s o l d i e r s , comnianded by B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s .


A t t h e same t i m e , he

f o r c e d t h e local commander i n t o a p o s i t i o n where he was respoiis i b l e t o t h e s e n i o r m i l i t a r y o f f i c e r o f a n A l l i e d n a t i o n , and

also t h e s e n i o r American p o l i t i c a l o f f i c e r p r e s e n t .

I n essence,

t h e commander o f t h e American F o r c e s :.!as i n a n iEp0ssibI.e s i t u ation. 4G

The p e r s o n a l i t i e s of t h e commanders and p o l i t i c i a n s involved played a c r i t i c a l p a r t i n t h e A l l i e d c o a l i t i o n . 'The B r i t i s h ,

and e s p e c i a l l y General P o o l e , tended t o be overbearing and overconfident. One American o f f i c e r noted t h a t t h e

. . . p hilosophy of P;orth Russia and G a l l i p o l i ; t h i s attachment o f t h e B r i t i s h mind t o a n a s t r i c t e d f a i t h i n England and h e r i m p e r i a l d e s t i n y t o r u l e t h e peoples of t h e rrorld, contemptious of obstac l e s and d i f f i c u l t i e s and p e r i l s i n unknown a l i e n l a n d s t h a t appear very r e a l t o o t h e r t h a n B r i t i s h mental p r o c e s s e s . '1:Ie'll j u s t r u s h up t h e r e and r e e s t a b l i s h t h e g r e a t Russian A r m y reorganize the vast f o r c e s o f t h e T s a r ' , said an e b u l l i e n t o f f i c e r i n England, wearing t h e red tabs and hatband of t h e General S t a f f . 'One good A l l i e d s o l d i e r can outf i g h t twenty B o l s h e v i k s ' was t h e u s u a l b o a s t O f t h e commanding o f f i c e r (General Poole) i n t h e e a r l y days o f t h e f i g h t i n g . rt37

The Americans, on t h e o t h e r hand, were i n i t i a l l y represent e d by t h e e q u a l l y f o r c e f u l Ambassador F r a n c i s .


A f t e r h i s de-

p a r t u r e , t h e submissive Colonel S t e w a r t was a l l t h a t s t o o d between t h e B r i t i s h o f f e n s i v e p l a n s and t h e s t a t e d p o l i c y of u s i n g American t r o o p s f o r g a r r i s o n guards i n Archangel.


It is

easy t o be c r i t i c a l o f Colonel S t e w a r t who, i n t h e words of General I r o n s i d e .


'I.

..was worrying about

h i s p o s i t i o n , should

an a r m i s t i c e be Signed i n Europe."

To be f a i r , one must ac-

knowledge t h a t t h e American c o l o n e l had t h e i n s i g h t and concern f o r h i s troops t o request evacuation before the closing of t h e p o r t s .
I t a p p e a r s t h a t he attempted t o inform h i s su-

p e r i o r s i n London of t h e m i l i t a r y a n d p o l i t l c a l r e a l i t i e s of Archangel b u t e i t h e r d i d n o t do i t f o r t h r i g h t l y enough o u t o f r e s p e c t f o r h i s s u p e r i o r s o r was s o overwhelmed by circums t a n c e s t h a t he was unable t o c l e a r l y a r t i c u l a t e i n t h e f a c t s


47

of t h e moment. The b a s i c c u l t u r a l and s o c i a l d i f f e r e n c e s between t h e A l l i e s had a g r e a t impact on t h e r e l a t i o n s between t h e m i l i t a r y forces. The h i g h l y s t r u c t u r e d system o f t h e B r i t i s h o f f i c e r

c o r p s , w i t h i t s obvious c l a s s consciousness a n d s o c i a l s t r a t a o r i e n t a t i o n , c o n t r a s t e d s h a r p l y w i t h t h e more analogous American and French t r a d i t i o n s . The i d e a of taiting food from hospi-

tal r a t i o n s and p r o v i d i n g i t t o an o f f i c e r ' s mess was n o t o n l y a l i e n t o t h e American concept of concern f o r t h e common s o l d i e r ,


but

reminded many o f t h e American t r o o p s o f abuses t h a t had The French also had

o c c u r r e d e a r l i e r i n United S t a t e s h i s t o r y .

d i f f i c u l t i e s w i t h t h e B r i t i s h approach t o c e r t a i n q u e s t i o n s o f s o c i a l or p o l i t i c a l s i g n i f i c a n c e . 'These d i s p a r i t i e s stemmed

from long s t a n d i n g customs and t r a d i t i o n s as well as t h e p o l i t i c a l c l i m a t e that had i n f l u e n c e d the-'French A r m y d u r i n g t h e years since 1914. F i n a l l y , t h e r e l a t i o n s between t h e A l l i ~ e swere a f f e c t e d by t h e p e r c e p t i o n s of n a t i o n a l o b j e c t i v e s by t h o s e p e r s o n a l i t i e s most d i r e c t l y involved i n t h e conciuc-t of t h e e x p e d i t i o n . The

o r i g i n a l aims of an Allied-Czech link-up o p e r a t i o n , s e c u r i t y of A l l i e d s u p p l i e s , and development of a E a s t e r n Front a g a i n s t n t h e Germans no l o n g e r had a p p l i c a t i o n a f t e r t h e s i g n i n g of t h e armistice. Almost immediately t h e Americans and French q u e s t i o n e d

t h e need t o remain i n Xorth Russia and e i t h e r r e f u s e d t o c o n t i n u e the f i g h t o r requested evacuation. The 3 r i t i s h p o s i t i o n


was

expressed by General Finlayson, commander of t h e DVina R i v e r


4%

Force.

"There w i l l be no f a l t e r i n g i n o u r purpose t o reclove


2nd

t h e s t a i n of Eolshevism from R u s s i a

c i v i l i z a t i o n . ,138

Gen-

e r a 1 I r o n s i d e saw h i s m i s s i o n , a f t e r t h e a r m i s t i c e , i n t h e
f o l l o w i n g terms:

" l t seemed t o me t h a t t h e A l l i e s would now p r o -


ceed w i t h t h e l i b e r a t i o n o f F i n l a n d , P o l a n d ,
Es'chonia, L i t h u a n i a , L a t i v a , and perhaps even
the Ukraine. The nevi Russian Empire which would
emerge would b e something much smaller t h e n i t
had been i n t h e o l d i m p e r i a l days, hoyvever s t r o n g
t h e S o l s h e v i k s became. t.Iy t a s k was s t i l l the one
o u t l i n e d t o m by S i r Henry 1;:ilson e t o hold. t h e
f o r t u n t i l t h e P r o v i s i o n a l Governnent c o u l d organ-
i z e i t s f o r c e s . A p r o p e r s e t t l e m e n t of t h e Russian
f r o n t i e r s i n Europe could be made o n l y after t h e
d e f e a t of t h e Eolsheviks

It i s n o t s u r p r i s i n g , c o n s i d e r i n g t h e many o p p o r t u n i t i e s
f o r m i s u n d e r s t a n d i n g , d i s a g r e e m e n t , and c o n f u s i o n , t h a t t h e A l l i e s r a i l e d t o produce a u n i t e d , harmonious c o a l i t i o n .

It

i s also n o t s u r p r i s i n g , t h a t t h e c o m p l e x i t i e s o f t h e command
r e l a t i o n s h i p s , p e r s o n a l i t i e s , n a t i o n a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , and s t r a t e g i c and p o l i t i c a l o b j e c t i v e s all impacted upon t h e coiiibat e f f e c t i v e n e s s and e f f i c i e n c y o f the A l l i e d elements, Ultimately,

t h e s e problems i n f l u e n c e d t h e s u c c e s s of m i l i t a r y OperatiOnS,

o u r n e x t area o f i n t e r e s t .

49

IIotes

1. George Evans S t e w a r t , R e g o r t of E x p e d i t i o n t o The I-iurman


C o a s t , S p e c i a l C o l l e c t i o n s , U n i t e d States X i l i t a r y Acader,y,
!:Jest P o i n t New Y o r k .

2. I S i d .

Cables.
. .

3 . A . C h r o n i c l e r ( J o h n Cuclahy), A r c h a n g e l , The American ?Jar V i t h R u s s i a , A . C . McClurg & Co., C h i c a g o , 1924. Pg. 6 3 .

4 . I b i d , Pg. 51.

5 . P e t e r B u r n e s s , The F o r g o t t e n !Jar i n K o r t h R u s s i a , A u s t r a l i a n Defense J o u r n a l , No. 2 2 , i < a y / J u n e 8 0 , P g . 31.


6 . P.

F a c o n , Les t h t i n e r i e s Dans Le C o r p s E x p e d i t i o n n a i r e F r a n c i s e n R u s s i e Du Nord, 1918-1919, Revue d ' H i s t o i r e IJonderne e t Contemporaine , Vol. XXIV, P a r i s , J u l y - S e p t 1 9 7 7 , Pg 450. . . . . . . . Leonid I..S t r a k h o v s l c y , The C a n a d i a n A r t i l l e r y B r i g a i e i n
7. Morth R u s s i a , 1918-1919, The C a n a d i a n H i s t o r i c a l Review,
V o l . X X X I X . 1 9 5 8 . The U n i v e r s i t v o f T o r o n t o P r e s s . T o r o n t o .
Canada, Pg; 1 2 6 - i 2 7 .

8 . G r e a t B r i t i a n , A r m y , The E v a c u a t i o n o f Morth R u s s i a , 1 9 1 9 ,
H i s M a j e s t y ' s S t a t i o n a r y O f f i c e , London, 1920.
9. Facon, Op. C i t . ,
10. Cudahy, Op. C i t . ,

Pg. 456.
Pg.

53.

11. C a p t J o e 1 R . Moore, L i e u t . H a r r y H . Nead, L i e u t . Lewis E . Jahns, 3 3 9 t h U . S . I n f a n t r y , The H i s t o r y of The American E x p e d i t i o n F i g h t i n g t h e B o l s h e v i l c i , Campaigning i n North Russia, 1918-1919, P o l a r Bear P u b l i s h i n g C o . , D e t r o i t , 1 9 2 0 , P g . 15.

1 2 . H a l l i d a y , Op. C i t . ,
13. S t e w a r t , Op. C i t

Pg. 28-29.

., C a b l e s .
Pg. 1 6 .

1 4 . Xoore, Mead, J a h n s , Op. C i t . ,

15. G o l d h u r s t , Op. C i t . , Pg. 99.


1 6 . 13oore, tlead, Jahns, Op. C i t . ,
Pg.

17.

1 7 . I b i d . , P g . 17-19.

12. I b i d . , Pg. 19-21.


50

. . . . ,

19. David R . F r a n c i s , R u s s i a 1918, S c r i b n e r ' s ~ o2C I - c2 C Yr, i i l


I _

. .

From t h e American Embassy, A p r i l

20. 21

S t e w a r t , Op. C i t Ibid., Cables.

., Cables.

22. Ibid, 23.


24. I b i d . , 25.
2G.

Tg. 28.

I b i d . , Pg. I b i d . , Pg.

32.

33-34.

27. Goldhurst, Op.

Cit.,

Pg.

139.

28. S t e w a r t , Op. C i t . ,
29. I b i d .

Cables.

30. Facon, Op. C i t .

? g , 459-474.

31. Noore, Kead, J a h n s , Op. C i t . ,


- ~-32. -

Pg. 231-232.

Canada, U n i t H i s t o r y , K o r t h R u s s i a n E x p e d i t i o n a r y Force l G t h Briil;ade, C . F . A . , 110 d a t e .

33. cudaizy, Op. C i t . ,

Pg. 52.

34. I b i c l . , Pg. 5 2 .
3 5 . S t r a k h o v s k y , Op. C i U . ,

PG. 141.

36. I b i d . , Pg. 1 4 3 .
37. 3% *
39.

Cudahy, Op. C i t . . , pg. 4-5.


Ibid., Pg. 37.

I r o n s i d e , OD. Cit., 22. 5 6 .

51

Chapter Three A l l i e d i,!ilitary Operations

A p a r t i c i p a n t i n t h e Plorth R u s s i a n e x p e d i t i o n d e s c r i b e d
t h e A r c h a n g e l area i n t h e f o l l o v r i n g manner:

The P r o v i n c e o f A r c h a n g e l s t r e t c h e s from t h e Norwegian f r o n t i e r a c r o s s t h e A r c t i c Ocean e a s t o f t h e Ural i!lountains o f S i b e r i a . I t i n c l u d e s t h e Kola P e n i n s u l a , which l i e s ywell n o r t h o f t h e A r c t i c C i r c l e , and t h e f u r t h e r most p o i n t s o u t h i s below s i x t y - t w o d e g r e e s l a t i t u d e . The t o t a l area i s s i x t i m e s t h a t o f t h e a v e r a g e American s t a t e , I t i s a pove r t y d i s t r e s s e d and c h e e r l e s s , d e s t i t u t e r e g i o n , which d u r i n g t h e r e i g n of t h e Romanoffs, l i k e S i b e r i a , was o f t e n a p l a c e of e x i l e and asylum f o r p o l i t i c a l d i s s i d e n t s . Var accent u a t e d t h e p o v e r t y of t h e p r o v i n c e and t h e o n l y i n d u s t r y i s a.t t h e p o r t o f A r c h a n g e l , where l a r g e t i m b e r m i l l s , oxwned m o s t l y by S r i t i s h c a p i t a l , l i n e b o t h s i d e s of t h e harb0r.l

T h i s same o b s e r v e r e x p l a i n e d how I v a n The T e r r i b l e f o u n d e d the port during the sixteenth century. been a S r i t i s h t r a d i n g p o s t . contrasts.

I t had, s i n c e t h a t t i m e ,

A r c h a n g e l was a c i t y o f s t a r k

Greek Orthodox p r i e s t s , w i t h t h e i r l o n g r o b e s , and

t h e o n i o n domed c a t h e d r a l , s h a r e d t h e same s t r e e t s w i t h modern

b u i l d i n g s , e l e c t r i c l i g h t s , and an u p - t o - d a t e

tramway.

Before

t h e war A r c h a n g e l P r o v i n c e had a b o u t t h r e e hundred and f i f t y thousand people, with about s i x t y thousand r e s i d i n g i n the c i t y o f Archangel. The o n l y o t h e r p o p u l a t i o n c e n t e r s of con-

s e q u e n c e were ' l i n e g a , a t t h e n o r t h e r n m o s t bend i n t h e P i n e g a R i v e r , v;ith p e r h a p s t h r e e t h o u s a n d i n h a l a i t a n t s , and S h e n k u r s k , two hundred m i l e s s o u t h o f Archangel on t h e Vaga River, w i t h

52

about f o u r thousand r e s i d e n t s ,

T h e r e n a i n d e r o f t h e ? r o v ~ i n c es 1

p o p u l a c e were f o u n d i n small v i l l a g e s o f t!,ro or t h r e e h u n d r e d l o g h o u s e s , much l i k e t h e c a b i n s o f t h e Ainerican f r o n - t i e r , The i n h a b i t a n t s o f t h e s e small s e t t l e m e n t s yvere p r i m a r i l y

p e a s a n t s , or m o u j i k s , who c l e a r e d t h e area f o r a. fevi hundred


y a r d s a r o u n d t h e i r h o u s e s and a t t e m p t e d t o grow !.Theat, f l a x , and p o t a t o e s d u r i n g t h e s h o r t growing s e a s o n . During t h e !;in-

t e r t h e p e o p l e r e m a i n e d i n d o o r s and s p e n t t h e m a j o r i t y o f t h e i r t i m e s i t t i n g a r o u n d large o v e n s or f i r e p l a c e s , d i s c u s s i n g t h e weather. One o f f i c e r o f t h e 3 3 9 t h I n f a n t r y Regiment n o t e d :

To t h e doughboy p e n e t r a t i n g r a p i d l y i n t o t h e
i n t e r i o r o f X o r t h R u s s i a , w h e t h e r by r a i l r o a d
or by b a r g e or by more slow-moving c a r t trans-
p o r t , h i s f i r s t i m p r e s s i o n !:/as that o f an end-
l e s s e x p a n s e o f f o r e s t and svianp \with h e r e and
t h e r e an a r e a o f h i g h e r l a n d . Never a l o n g
p e a s a n t ' s h o u s e on t h e t r a i l was s e e n . They
Fe1.v were t h e improved
lived i n villages. roads;^^- -These x-oads-~-ran-f r o r v i l l a g e t o v i l l a g e
t h r o u g h p i n e vioods, c r o s s i n g s t r e a m and wide
r i v e r s by wooden b r i d g e s a n d c r o s s i n s swamps,
where i t was t o o much t o c i r c u i t them, by c o r d -
u r o y . The s o l d i e r saw a..people s t r u g g l i n g w i t h
n a t u r e as he had h e a r d o f h i s g r a n d f a t h e r s s t r u g -
g l i n g i n p i o n e e r days i n America.;!

A r c h a n g e l P r o v i n c e was a p p r o x i m a t e l y t h r e e hundred and t h i r t y t h o u s a q d s q u a r e m i l e s o f t u n d r a and t h i c k f i r f o r e s t s ;

an area almost as l a r g e as F r a n c e and Germany combined.


Through t h e p r o v i n c e c u t numerous r i v e r s and s t r e a m s , t h e larg e s t being t h e Dvina. Archangel, l i k e t h e r e s t of riorth Russia, The p e o p l e were p r i m a r i l y o c c u p i e d The c l i m a t e

was n o t i n d u s t r i a l i z e d .

w i t h f i s h i n g , t r a p p i n g , f a r m i n g , and w o o d c u t t i n g .

was humid a n d warn i n t h e summer and s u b - z e r o i n t h e l o n g


53

winter.

S t a r t i n g i n October t h e n i g h t s l e n g t h e n u n t i l , by conver-

l a t e December t h e y a r e a l m o s t t w e n t y - f o u r h o u r s l o n g .

s e l y , d u r i n g t h e summer months, p e r i o d s o f s u n l i g h t l a s t from e a r l y morning u n t i l l a t e at n i g h t , J o h n Cudahy, an American

o f f i c e r on t h e A r c h a n g e l f r o n t , w r o t e :
" L i f e became a v e r y s t a l e , f l a t d r a b t h i n g
i n t h e v a s t s t r e t c h e s o f c h e e r l e s s snow
r e a c h i n g f a r a c r o s s t h e r i v e r t o t h e murky,
b r o o d i n g s k i e s and t h e encompassing s h e e t e d
f o r e s t s , so g h o s t l y and s o s t i l l , where
d e a t h prowled i n t h e shadows. S t r o n g men
were made cowards by t h e c u m u l a t i v e d e p r e s -
s i o n of t h e unbroken n i g h t and i t s crushi ng
i n f l u e n c e on t h e s p i r i t : f o r t h e s e v e r e s t
b a t t l e s of t h e campaign were f o u g h t d u r i n g
t h e c o l d b l a c k months o f v i i n t e r . " 3

The n a t u r e o f t h e t e r r a i n and weather was t o h a v e an i m p o r t a n t i m p a c t on t h e u l t i m a t e outcome o f t h e A l l i e d or,erations. The A l l i e s b e l i e v e d o f f e n s i v e o p e r a t i o n s had t o b e

c o n d u c t e d e i t h e r p r i o r to t h e c l o s i n g o f t h e p o r t i n l a t e November or f o l l o w i n g t h e s p r i n g thaw i n l a t e ?.larch. Once

t h e h a r b o r 'was i c e d i n f o r t h e w i n t e r t h e r e would be no r e s u p p l y or r e i n f o r c e m e n t from E n g l a n d , and i n o r d e r t o cond u c t o f f e n s i v e o p e r a t i o n s , a c o n s t a n t and r e l i a b l e s u p p l y

o f men and m a t e r i e l must be a v a i l a b l e .

The w i n t e r f r e e z e

also p r o h i b i t e d t h e movement o f S r i t i s h g u n b o a t s on t h e r i v e r s
u p s t r e a m from A r c h a n g e l . This e f f e c t i v e l y denied t h e A l l i e s

a p r i m a r y s o u r c e o f f i r e s u p p o r t and t r a n s p o r t a t t h e most

remote p o s i t i o n s .

This reduction of f i r e support and n o b i l i t y ,

r e s u l t i n g from t h e s e v e r e w i n t e r c o n d i t i o n s , became one o f t h e p r i m e f a c t o r s d e t e r m i n i n z t h e t a c t i c s and o v e r a l l s t r a t e g y of


54

t h e ? ; i n t e r c a n p a i a n of 1 9 1 8 - 1 9 1 9 .

I n t h e opening d a y s o f O c t o b e r , 1 9 1 3 , t h e Alliec! Fosit i o n s resembled t h e f i v e f i n g e r s o f a hand w i t h t h e p a l n n t Archangel. From e a s t t o rest .the small f i n g e r reached u i n e g a

on t h e P i n e g a R i v e r ; t h e second, T o u l g a s on t h e Dvina R i v e r : t h e t h i r d , Shenkursk on t h e Vaga R i v e r ; t h e i n d e x f i n g e r , Obozerskaya, on t h e Archangel-Vologada r a i l w a y ; a n d t h e thurnb, Onega, on Onega E a y of t h e ?!hite Sea. There tias l i t t l e coiilEach

munication or c o n t a c t between t h e o u t l y i n g p o s i t i o n s ,

" f r o n t " as I t was c a l l e d , ' a i n f a c t =an advance p o s t of a ws s e r i e s of b l o c k h o u s e s , somewhat l i k e t h e s:nal2 riooden f o r t s of t h e American f r o n t i e r , These o u t p o s t s were u s u a l l y grouped ae-

around a v i l l a g e or group of small towns l i k e Shenkursk.

tween t h e " f r o n t s " was an a l m o s t i m p a s s a b l e b a r r i e r of f o r e s t ,


b r u s h , and svrarnp-like

t u n d r a w i t h nunerous ~STriSii streaEis~CSid-

lakes interspersed.
Between September and October t h e A l l i e s had moved r a p i d l y o u t from Archangel i n an a t t e m p t t o d r i v e t h e a o l s h e v i l i s o u t o f Archangel P r o v i n c e b e f o r e t h e o n s e t o f w i n t e r . General

Poole, d e s p i t e h i s l a c k of p o l i t i c a l f i n e s s e , was a good tact i c i a n and r e c o g n i z e d what must be accomplished i f h i s f o r c e s

.;{ere t o push s o u t h from Archangel and s t i l l be a b l e t o naint a i n c o n t a c t b e t v e e n h i s f l a n k e l e m e n t s and a c e r t a i n d e g r e e

o f r e a r a r e a s e c u r i t y a t Archangel.

He was aware t h a t as t h e

f i n g e r s between t h e r a i l r o a d and Dvina f r o n t s opened he was o f f e r i n g t h e enemy a n o p p o r t u n i t y t o s t r i k e through t h e m i d d l e


55

and e i t h e r envelop his Slan!cs or d r i v e s t r a i z h t t o 9.rchangel itself. The E n t s a River s e r v e d as an east-west h a r r i e r beDvina f r o n t and t h e small r i v e r

tween t h e r a i l r o a d f r o n t and

t o w of Kodish vras t h e key p o i n t t h a t would s e r v e t o p r o t e c t


h i s flanks.

Poole also recognizec! t h a t S e r e z n i k , a t t h e junc-

t i o n of t h e Vaga a n d Dvina R i v e r s was v u l n e r a b l e t o a Red a t t a c k a n d , i f c a p t u r e d , would c u t o f f h i s f o r c e s t o t h e south. T h e r e f o r e , i t must be s e c u r e d as soon as p o s s i b l e ,

The i d e a o f t a k i n g Volosda b e f o r e w i n t e r was abandoned

early i n t h e campaign.

Poole decided i n s t e a d t o t a k e P l e s e t -

skaya, a r a i l c e n t e r halfway between Archangel a n d Vologda.


Although t h e t e r r a i n was d i f f i c u l t and t h e A l l i e s were numeri c a l l y i n f e r i o r , Poole's p l a n was w e l l conceived a n d by t h e time w i n t e r a r r i v e d t h e A l l i e s h e l d Onega i n t h e w e s t , Obozers k a y a on t h e r a i l r o a d , Kodish on t h e E m t s a , Shenkursk on t h e

Vaga and Toulgas on t h e Dvina. 4

On 5 September t h e 3 r d B a t t a l i o n of t h e 339th I n f a n t r y
Regiment had moved, a t B r i t i s h i n s i s t a n c e , d i r e c t l y from t h e docks o f Archangel to t h e r a i l r o a d f r o n t . A f t e r an a l l - n i g h t

t r a i n r i d e , t h e b a t t a l i o n a r r i v e d a t Obozerskaya where t h e y were t o r e l i e v e t h e advance elements of t h e French 2 1 s t Colonial Battalion.


A member o f t h e American u n i t noted:

Obozerskaya, about one hundred m i l e s s o u t h o f Archangel, i n a few d a y s took on t h e appearance of an a c t i v e f i e l d base f o r a g g r e s s i v e advance on t h e enemy. Here were t h e r a p i d assembling o f f i g h t i n g u n i t s ; of t r a n s p o r t and s u p p l y u n i t s ; of r a i l r o a d r e p a i r i n g crews, Russian, under B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s ; o f s i g n a l s ;
56

o f armored a u t o m o b i l e , o u r n e a r e s t a p p r o a c h
t o a t a n k , which s t u c k i n t h e mud and b r o k e
t h r o u g h t h e f r a i l Russlci b r i d g e s and was
u s e l e s s ; of t h e f e v e r i s h c l e a r i n g and smoothi n g of a l a n d i n < %f i e l d n e a r t h e s t a t i o n for o u r s u p p l y of s p a v i n e d a i r p l a n e s t h a t had a l r e a d y done t h e i r b i t on t h e !.!estern F r o n t ; o f t h e improvement o f o u r f e r o c i o u s - l o o k i n g armored t r a i n , w i t h i t s c o a l - c a r mounted n a v a l guns, b u t t r e s s e d w i t h s a n d b a g s and p r e c e d e d by a similar c a r b r i s t l i n g w i t h machine g u n s and Lewis a u t o m a t i c s i n t h e hands o f a m o t l e y crew of P o l i s h g u n n e r s and i t u s s k i g u n n e r s and a D r i t i s h s e r g e a n t or t . ~ / o . ~

" A l l p a t r o l s must be a g g r e s s i v e and i t must be i m p r e s s e d on all ranks t h a t we a r e f i g h t i n g an o f f e n s i v e war, and n o t a d e f e n s i v e o n e , A l l p o s t s must b e h e l d t o t h e l a s t as vre do n o t i n t e n d t o g i v e up any ground which we have made good.

These o r d e r s from C o l o n e l Guard, B r i t i s h commander o f

l'A"

F o r c e on t h e r a i l r o a d f r o n t , were i n t e n d e d t o s a t i s f y G e n e r a l F i n l a y s o n and C o l o n e l S u t h e r l a n d , P o o l e ' s d e p u t y an?, f r o n t commander. The growing American and F r e n c h g r a v e y a r d s a t

Obozerskaya v e r i f i e d t h e o f f e n s i v e n a t u r e o f t h e b a t t l e s on the railroad front. On 2 8 S e p t e m b e r , F i n l a y s o n a p p e a r e d a - t S u t h e r l a n d ' s headq u a r t e r s a n d , a p p a r e n t l y n o t s a t i s f i e d v i t h t h e tempo o f comS a t , o r d e r e d a n iinmediate advance down the r a i l r o a d t o V e r s t s
453 a n d 455, a b o u t t e n m i l e s s o u t h o f Obozerskaya.

S u t h e r l a n d tasked one company of F r e n c h i n f a n t r y and tvro companies of Arnericar i n f a n t r y , s u p p o r t e d by i'olish gunners

manning f i e l d z u n s and t h e armored t r a i n t o make a c o o r d i n a t e d a t t a c k on t h e R u s s i a n p o s i t i o n s and s e i z e a. key r a i l r o a d b r i d g e .


57

iSajor Charles D .

Young was i n char,ge o f t h e 3rd 3 a t t a l i o n ,

and i n a c c o r d a n c e i::ith S u t h e r l a . n d ' s p l a n , divicied two of h i s companies i n t o s e p a r a t e f o r c e s t o c o n d u c t a c o n v e r g i n g f l a n k


a t t a c k on t h e Red p o s i t i o n s ,
I-Ie also d e t a c h e d a machine gun

s e c t i o n a n d twenty-one o t h e r Americans t o m a n t h r e e S t o k e s m o r t a r s t o s u p p o r t t h e F r e n c h , who were -to a t t a c k d i r e c t l y down t h e r a i l r o a d .


I t i s n o t e d t h a t t h e Americans a s s i g n e d

t h e m i s s i o n o f manning t h e S t o k e s m o r t a r s had n e v e r u s e d or b e e n t r a i n e d on t h e s e \weapons p r i o r t o this o c c a s i o n .


7

The Americans x e r e t o move i n t o t h e i r a t t a c k p o s i t i o n s

d u r i n g t h e n i g h t and commence t h e a s s a u l t a t f i r s t l i g h t .

At

t h e same t i m e , t h e P o l e s and Americans would s u p p o r t t h e F r e n c h i n f a n t r y 5 y f i r e as t h e y made a f r o n t a l a s s a u l t , down t h e r a i l way, on t h e enemy f o r t i f i c a t i o n s and b r i d g e . S u t h e r l a n d ' s plan seemed s i m p l e enough i n c o n c e p t , b u t
t h e e x e c u t i o n was t o p r o v e t o o complex and h e n c e a f a i l u r e .
A r e c o n n a i s s a n c e o f t h e r o u t e t h e Americans x e r e t o take t o

t h e a s s a u l t p o s i t i o n s had n o t b e e n p e r f o m l e d b e c a u s e o f t h e

s h o r t n o t i c e g i v e n t h e Americans by C o l o n e l S u t h e r l a n d .

Only

o u t d a t e d f o r e s t e r ' s maps were a v a i l a b l e and t h e most a c c u r a t e i n t e l l i g e n c e o n t h e enemy t r o o p d i s p o s i t i o n s had been p r o v i d e d


by

l o c a l ? w o o d c u t t e r s who were a t b e s t d i s i n t e r e s t e d a n d at

w o r s t p r o - D ~ l s h e v i k . ~An American o f f i c e r n o t e s :
"It i s a s t o r y t h a t was t o be d u p l i c a t e d o v e r anC: o v e r by o n e American f o r c e a f t e r a n o t h e r on t h e various fronts i n the rainy fall season, oneratina u n d e r B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s who t o o k desparate chances and a c t e d on t h e t h e o r y t h a t ' y o u A m e r i c a n s , I as
58

C o l . S u t h e r l a n d s a i d , ' c a n do i t somehow, you lcnovr. ' And as, t o numbers, :.fhy, ' t e n Americans are as good as a hundred S o l o s , a r e n ' t they?"I9

The Americans moved o u t i n t h e e a r l y evening and soon became l o s t . The narrow f o r e s t t r a i l s , c u t by t h e e n g i n e e r s

o f P e t e r t h e G r e a t , q u i c k l y became deep w i t h c l i n g i n g , s l i m y mud and bog t h a t f o r c e d men t o t h e i r knees. c e r s present recounts:


So t h e a t t a c k e r s went f o r t h o v e r unknown ground, and soon were stumbling i n a b l a c k n e s s s o dense

One of t h e o f f i -

t h a t one f i l e could n o t s e e even t h e o u t l i n e of t h e preceeding f i l e . The s i n k i n g bog made t h e march d i s t r e s s i n g l y arduous, y e t f o r hours t h e company k e p t r e s o l u t e l y o n , when, w i t h o u t warni n g , t h e f o r e s t p a r t e d and t h e sodden way t e r minated i n a wide s h e e t of open water.1
The Americans t u r n e d back and reappeared on t h e r a i l r o a d , n e a r

t h e i r o r i g i n a l p o i n t o f d e p a r t u r e , a t about 0630 hours on t h e morning o f 29 September. action report that: The a t t a c k w a s made a t about 0630. Few o f t h e enemy were met and t h e y immediately r e t i r e d . The i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d by L i e u t . May, Commandi n g t h i s column, from t h e a d j u t a n t , 'A' f o r c e ,
(Capt. G r i f f e n , B r i t i s h A r m y ) as t o l o c a t i o n s
o f machinegun emplacements and t r e n c h e s was found t o be i n a c c u r a t e , and t h e r e was a l a c k of i n i t i a t i v e on t h e part of t h e o f f i c e r i n command, ( G r i f f e n ) i n t h a t he d i d n o t immed i a t e l y , by r e c o n n a i s s a n c e , inform himself as t o t h e exact l o c a t i o n of the p o s i t i o n s e l l The French a t t a c k , supported by t h e P o l i s h and America1 gunners, succeeded i n d r i v i n g t h e Reds o u t
O f

Major Young recorded i n h i s a f t e r -

t h e i r position

b u t , as soon 2s t h e a r t i l l e r y c e a s e d , t h e enemy r e t u r n e d t o occupy t h e i r entrenchments.


A p l a t o o n from

"1" Company was

dispatchec! t o r e i n f o r c e t h e French and was imnediatelY


59

a t t a c k e d by t h e R u s s i a n s .

T,wo p l a t o o n s from "?:I1' C o n p a y

moved f o r w a r d a l o n g - x i t h t h e r e m a i n d e r of "I" Comcany m.d t h e enemy was t u r n e d b a c k by 1500 h o u r s . The A l l i e s had t a k e n

t h e b r i d g e d i s p i t e t h e f a i l u r e o f S u t h e r l a n d ' s o r i g i n a l plan. The a c t i o n r e s u l t e d i n 2 Americans k i l l e d , 1 8 wounded,


and 11 m i s s i n g .

French t r o o p s s u f f e r e d :

11 wounded, aqd

11 m i s s i n g .

S e v e r a l o f t h e American a n d F r e n c h s o l d i e r s

r e p o r t e d as m i s s i n g : r e r e , i n f a c t , c a p t u r e d by t h e enemy duri n g one of t h e f i e r c e R u s s i a n c o u n t e r a t t a c k s . Rccoreing t o

C a p t a i n Joel ; : o o r e , commander of one o f t h e e l e m e n t s a t t e m p t ing the unsuccessful flankinz attack: t h e c a s u a l t i e s :.!ere s u f f e r e d by t h e resol u t e platoon at the bridge. But the e i g h t Others <who Twere :+rounded, two o f thein m o r t a l l y , owed t h e i r unfortunate condition t o t h e a l t o g e t h e r unnecessary and i l l - a d v i s e d attempt by C o l . S u t h e r l a n c ! t o s h e l l t h e b r i d g e w h i c h was b e i n g helc! b y his^ o m ~ ~ t _ r o o p s . He had t h e p a n i c k y ic:ez t h a t t h e E e d Guards :/ere
coming or s o i n g t o come a c r o s s that b r i d g e and
o r d e r e d t h e s h r a p n e l which c u t up t h e p l a t o o n of
"i.I" Coinpany v i i t h i t s h a i l o f l e a d i n s t e a d of t h e
Reds who had h a l t e d 700 yards a-vay and t h e m s e l v e s
were s h e l l i n g t h e b r i d g e b u t t o no e f f e c t . Iiot
o n l y t h a t , b u t when Col. S u t h e r l a n d was i n f o r m e d
t h a t h i s a r t i l l e r y was g e t t i n g h i s o m t r o o p s ,
he f i r s t a s k e d on one t e l e p h o n e f o r a n o t h e r q u a r t
o f w h i s k e y and l a t e r c a l l e d up h i s a r t i l l e r y
o f f i c e r and o r d e r e d t h e d e a d l y fire to l e n g t h e n
range.12

~~~

Many of

~~

~~~

~-

A t t h i s p o i n t C o l o n e l S u t h e r l a n d o r d e r e d a :.!ithdra!.:el,

t h i n k i n g t h a t t h e Reds had c a p t u r e d t h e r a i l r o a d b r i d g e .

k j o r J. C r o o k s T J i c h o l s , ;rho had j u s t r e p l a c e d i.!ajor Young

as t h e commander o f t h e 3 r d 3 a t t a l i o n , countermanded t h e
o r d e r a n d f o r two n o r e d q s and n i g h t s , ;.:ith t h e a s s i s t a c e
o f t h e F r e n c h , h e l d on -to t h e t h r e e r9ile.5 o f advance t h a t
SO

had been g a i n e d .

The Reds would hsve t o v d t u n t i l t h e

f o l l o v i n z y e a r t o r e g a i n c o n t r o l of t h e b r i d z e . 13 The advance on P l e s e t s k a y a began t o slorr i n October. The

A l l i e s a t t e m p t e d t o push s o u t h along t h e r a i l r o a d b u t discove r e d t h a t t h e Reds had c o n s t r u c t e d s t r o n g f o r t i f i c a t i o n s and viere supported by Iieavj a r t i l l e r y and armored t r a i n s . They

also began t o u n d e r s t a n d t h a t t h e t e r r a i n i n Xorth R u s s i a gave

a d i s t i n c t advantage t o t h e d e f e n d e r .

T h e heavy f o r e s t s ,

s'w~~p bogs, and meandering s t r e a m and t r a i l s severely r c s t r i c t -

ed c r o s s c o u n t r y movement and f o r c e d t h e a t t a c k e r t o remain on t h e major r i v e r s a i d r o a d s . The d i f f i c u l t t e r r a i n also pro-

vided i d e a l l o c a t i o n s and m a t e r i e l f o r d e f e n s i v e p o s i t i o n s t h a t were formidable a g a i n s t even a n u m e r i c a l l y s u p e r i o r f o e . On 1 6 October t h e eneniy c o u n t e r a t t a c k e d a g a i n s t "I" Company o f t h e 3rd E a t t a l i o n i n t h e v i c i n i t y of v e r s t 445 and i n f l i c t e d moderate c a s u a l t i e s .

I n t h i s a c t i o n t h e French re-

f u s e d t o f i g h t because they had g o t t e n word o f t h e proposed a r m i s t i c e of t h e ':Jestern F r o n t . A f t e r about one hour t h e

French, a t t h e u r g i n g of t h e i r b a t t a l i o n commander, r e j o i n e d t h e Americans. The French were c o n s i d e r e d e x c e l l e n t f i z h t e r s

by t h e Americans and B r i t i s h , b u t had a tendency t o b a l k a t

awkward t i m e s .

A s t h e a r m i s t i c e cane and went, t h i s propen14

s i t y became more f r e q u e n t .

The Archangel-Vologda f r o n t would e s s e n t i a l l y s t a b i l i z e


i n October, 1 9 1 8 , and remain so u n t i l t h e s p r i n g o f 1 9 1 9 . The

A l l i e s would n o t be a b l e t o advance any f u r t h e r than v e r s t 4.45,


61

a b o u t t d e n t y m i l e s s o u t h o f Obozerskaya.

T h e r e would be many

small u n i t a c t i 0 r . s w i t h minor g a i n s and l o s s e s , u s u a l l y r e s u l t i n g i n t h e c o n s o l i d a t i o n of a f o r m a l l y o c c u p i e d p o s i t i o n . The S o v i e t s s t r u c k t h e f i r s t blow o f s p r i n g on !::arch 1 7 ,

a t t h e v i l l a g e o f E o l s h i e Ozerlci on t h e r o a d between Obozers k a y a and Onega.

The m o t i v e b e h i n d t h e enemy o f f e n s i v e was

t h e p r e v e n t i o n o f r e s u p p l y from ; k m m n s k and t o p r o d u c e a t h r e a t t o t h e A l l i e d rear a t O b o z e r s k a y a . B o l s h i e O z e r k i , l o c a t e d a b o u t t w e n t y m i l e s w e s t o f Obozer-

skaya, was g a r r i s o n e d by a s m a l l F r e n c h , American, a n d A l l i e d

Russian f o r c e .

By c o i n c i d e n c e , C o l o n e l Lucas, t h e F r e n c h com-

mandant and R a i l r o a d F r o n t Commander, w a s a t Chekuevo, l o c a t e d between B o l s h i e O z e r k i and O b o z e r s k a y a , when t h e a s s a u l t came.

Lucas, e s c o u r t e d by an American patrol, d e p a r t e d i m m e d i a t e l y


f o r Obozerskaya. About one v e r s t o u t s i d e o f O b o z e r s k a y a t h e

p a t r o l was a t t a c k e d a n d d i s p e r s e d .

Lucas a r r i v e d i n Obozer-

s k a y a t h e n e x t d a y w i t h a f r o s t b i t t e n l e f t hand and was i n formed t h a t General I r o n s l . d e had r e l i e v e d him and was t a k i n g charge of t h e operation.

15

The a t t a c k a t B o l s h i e Ozerlci c a u g h t t h e A l l i e d f o r c e o f a b o u t 50 men by c o m p l e t e s u r p r i s e ,

On 18 ?:larch, a b o u t 1 2 0 0

h o u r s , t h e French o f f i c e r i n charge s u r r e n d e r e d the g a r r i s o n a f t e r a w e l l c o o r d i n a t e d enemy a r t i l l e r y and i n f a n t r y a t t a c k , The A l l i e d p r i s o n e r s were taken t o Vologda and h e l d u n t i l e a r l y May when t h e y w e r e r e l e a s e d as p a r t c h a n g e . 16
62
Of

a p r i s o n e r ex-

Both t h e A l l i e s and t h e S o v i e t s b r o u g h t un s u b s t a n - t i a l amounts o f i n f a n t r y and a r t i l l e r y f o r t h e coming b a t t l e .

General I r o n s i d e committed n e a r l y 600 American, Z r i t i s h , F r e n c h ,


T o l i s h , and A l l i e d R u s s i a n t r o o p s .

By 2 3 :larch, when t h e So-

v i e t s began t h e i r main a t t a c k , t h e A l l i e s :;!ere well dug i n ,


t h o r o u g h l y s u p p l i e d w i t h f o o d and arnmunition, and s u p p o r t e d by French-Russian a r t i l l e r y p i e c e s w i t h a i r p l a n e o b s e r v a t i o n . 17
96th

The S o v i e t a s s a u l t , c o n d u c t e d by t h e 2nd iiosco:.;,

S a r a t o v , and 2nd Kazan R e g i m e n t s , c o n t i n u e d u n t i l 4 A p r i l . A f t e r a s e r i e s of s a v a g e a t t a c k s , c o u n t e r - a t t a c k s , l e r y d u e l s , t h e enemy r e t i r e d .

and a r t i l -

The b a t t l e 'was t h e h i g h p o i n t

o f A l l i e d c o o p e r a , t i o n and c o o r d i n a t i o n and p r o v e d t o he v e r y c o s t l y t o the S o v i e t s . The i n t e n s i t y o f combat was c o i i s i s t a n t l y

f i e r c e and one o b s e r v e r n o t e d :
T h e Americans had n e v e r had s u c h s h o o t i n g . They
knet- t h e enemy losses were g r e a t from the numbers
of b o d i e s f o u n d and from s t a t e m e n t s of p r i s o n e r s
and d e s e r t e r s , L a t e r account s of o u r Americzi
s o l d i e r s who were ambushed and c a p t u r e d , t o G e t h e r
.with s t a t e m e n t s t h a t a p p e a r e d i n B o l s h e v i k n e m -
p a p e r s p l a c e d t h e l o s s e s v e r y h i g h , T h e old Rus-
s i a n g e n e r a l massed up i n all o v e r s e v e n t h o u s a n d
men i n t h i s s p e c t a c u l a r and w e l l - n i s h s u c c e s s f u l
t h r u s t . find h i s l o s s e s from k i l l e d i n a c t i o n ,
lwounded, m i s s i n g and f r o s t b i t t e n YIere a d m i t t e d
13
by t h e rjolshevilc r e p o r t s t o b e O v e r two thousancl.

The o n l y n o t e o f A l l i e d d i s c o r d o c c u r r e d when sorm P o l i s h t r o o p s r e f u s e d t o advance agai?,:jt


the Soviets,

An

American o f f i c e r p r e s e n t drelw h i s p i s t o l , t ! i r e a t e n e d t o s h o o t t h e P o l i s h o f f i c e r s , and t h e u n i t t o o k up tlie a t t a c k w i t h o u t further hesitation. 19 S o l s h i e O z e r k i 1;m.s t h e l a s t rlajor b a t t l e f o r tile A n e r i 53

c a n s i n ;:orth Russia..

A r t i l l e r y e x c h a n z e s sJnd g a t r o l l i n g

a c t i o n c o n t i n u e d u n t i l A p r i l , b u t l a r z e r s c a l e t r o o r , movements v e r e r e s t r i c t e c ! b y t h e coming o f s g r i n g a i d s u b s e q u e n t
so?;,qy g r o u n d c o n d i t i o n s .

A l t h o u g h o f f i c i a l orders had n o t

a r r i v e d , t h e v i t h c i r a ~ w a l o f American f o r c e s seemed a s s u r e d . C o n s e q u e n t l y , t h e companies of t h e 3 3 9 t h b e g m p u l l i n g b a c k t o A r c h a n g e l and, :.:ere r e p l a c e d by A l l i e d R u s s i z n s t r a i n e d ane commanded by t h e 2 r i t i s h .

G e n e r a l T o o l e viewed t h e f o r c e on t h e Dvina R i v e r as t h e key t o t h e e n t i r e campaign i n N o r t h 2 u s s i a . I-!e f e l t t h a t Kot-

l a s must b e talcen p r i o r t o t h e o n s e t o f ..:inter i n o r d e r t o


move on t o Viatlta and a l i n k ug > v i t h t h e Czech C o r p s i n t h e spring. I n S e p t e m b e r , when t h e 3 3 9 t h I n f a n t r y a r r i v e c ! i n

A r c h a n g e l , P o o l e a l r e a d y had a f o r c e l o c a t e d a t Bereznilc, 150

m i l e s s o u t h e a s t o f A r c h a n g e l on t h e Dvina R i b e r .

From i3erez

nilc, l o c a t e d a t t h e j u n c t i o n o f t h e 3 v i n a and t h e Vaga r i v e r s ,

i t was a b o u t 2 5 0 miles t o K o t l a s .

P o o l e ' s "C"

F o r c e , coinposed

o f %GO i 3 r i t i s h i n f a n t r y , 110 R u s s i a n i n f a n t r y , 3 5 L i t h u a n i a n
i n f a n t r y , and one s e c t i o n o f 1 8 p o u n d e r s , maimed by R u s s i a n g u n n e r s , ':/as opposec: by a b o u t 2000 Red Guards h e a d q u a r t e r e d at
T o u l g a s , 40 n i l e s u p s t r e m i from Sereznii:.

F i v e days a f t e r d e p a r t i n g Archa??:el,

t h e men o f t h e 1st E n r o u t e , two

B a . t t a l i o n , 3 3 9 t h I n f a n t r y a r r i v e d a t Eereznilc.

doughboys d i e d o f i n f l u e n z a a c ' w r e b u r i e d upon a r r i v a l a t n! t h e r i v e r v i l l a g e t h a t s e r v e d as h e a d q u a r t e r s f o r "C" F o r c e .


64

One company o f Americans wa.s l e f t a t J e r e z n i i c f o r s e c u r i t y and t h e r e m a i n c k r o f t h e f o r c e moved s o u t h a l o n g t h e Ljvina and 'Jaga r i v e r s t o j o i n t h e " C " Force.
The enemy d e c i t i e d to

make h i s s t a n d a t S e l t z o , t h i r t y m i l e s u p s t r e a m from Eereznilc


and well o v e r two hundred m i l e s s o u t h e a s t o f A r c h a n g e l .
This

was t o be t h e l i m i t o f t h e A l l i e d advance on t h e Dvina R i v e r .


To On t h e f n o r n i n g o f 1 9 S e p t e m b e r , less t h a n t w weeks a f t e r
t h e a r r i v a l o f t h e Americans, t h e b a t t l e f o r S e l t z o bezan.

The

v i l l a g e sat n e a r t h e a v i n a , on t h e s o u t h w e s t e r n s i d e o f t h e r i v e r , s u r r o u n d e d by swamp and p e a t b o g s .


The o n l y e a s y
ap-

Droach was a l o n s a narro!v road t h a t p a r a l l e d the r i v e r and e n t e r e d t h e v i l l a g e from t h e n o r t h . The eneniy d e n i e d t h i s

a p p r o a c h by f l o o d i n g i t and f o r c e d t h e A l l i e s t o a t t a c k a c r o s s t h e open s7;iamp. One company o f American i n f a n t r y d e p l o y e d and About 1500 y a r d s

began t o wade t h r o u g h t h e waist d e e p marsh.

from t h e v i l l a g e t h e S o v i e t s opened ug w i t h machineguns a n d


artillery. ;Without maps, a r t i l l e r y s u p p o r t , o r p r o t e c t i v e

c o v e r , t h e Americans bunched t o g e t h e r and t r i e d t o d i g i n w i t h o u t drowning i n t h e mud.


20

A n o t h e r company o f Royal S c o t s and Americans tnoveci t h r o u g h

a w o o d l i n e on t h e f l a n k o f t h e v i l l a g e i n a n a t t e m p t t o a E s i s t
t h e Americans c a u g h t i n t h e o p e n , The f l a n k i n g ' f o r c e rras

t a k e n u n d e r f i r e by t h e Red a r t i l l e r y and f o r c e d t o t a k e c o v e r t o avoid d e s t r u c t i o n .


A s night arriver?, the

txo A l l i e c ! e l e -

ments f o u n d t h e m s e l v e s pinnec! down by S o v i e t a u t o m a t i c ?ma.pons and i n d i r e c t f i r e and u n a b l e t o r e t u r n t h e f a v o r . Cecause


65

o f t h e A m e r i c a n ' s p o s i t i o n i n t h e open swamp, e a c h time t h e y a t t e m p t e d t o maneuver o r taice t h e enemy u n d e r f i r e , t h e y were s u b j e c t e d t o i n t e n s e small a r n s and machinegun f i r e .
A l s o , t h e A l l i e s had no a r t i l l e r y a v a i l a b l e f o r t h e i r ovm u s e .

The 1st D a t t a l i o n commander, L i e u t e n a n t C o l o n e l J m e s C o r b l e y , had b e e n a b s e n t from t h e e n t i r e fight.

For t h e

b e t t e r p a r t o f t h e d a y , and i n t o t h e n i g h t , he was t r y i n g t o
g e t t h e A l l i e d R u s s i a n e r t i l l e r y , l e d by B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s , t o move up and s u p 9 o r t t h e t r a p p e d i n f a n t r y e l e m e n t s . After

spending an e n t i r e n i g h t caught i n t h e open, t h e Anericans f i n a l l y were a b l e t o maneuver towards t h e v i l l a g e when t h e


A l l i e d a r t i l l e r y began t o f i r e .
A t the sane tine, the A l l i e s

t o o k s e v e r a l S o v i e t g u n b o a t s t h a t had b e e n : s r o v i d i n g t h e enemy
w i t h e f f e c t i v e s u p p o r t s i n c e t h e s t a r t of t h e b a t t l e u n d e r

fire.

':!ith

t h e i r i n d i r e c t f i r e s u p p o r t f a l l i n g on S e l t z o , t h e

X l l i e s advanced and. d r o v e o u t t h o s e Red G u a r d s that had n o t

already evacuatgd,

i.101:'

hoyvrever, t h e A n e r i c a n s end S c o t s 'Yere

tL&en u n d e r f i r e by t h e g u n b o a t s that p r o v e d t o b e beyond t f l e r a g e of the Allied a r t i l l e r y .


21

The A l l i e s q u i c k l y abmdonec! S e l t z o t h e morning ester .the attac!;


and moved d o w n s t r e w , t o v a r d T o u l g a s . T h i s d e c i s i o n iias
?OF-

made by t h e a r i t i s h command b a s e 6 on i n f o r m a t i o n t h a t t h e

u l a t i o n o f Shen!cursk d e s i r e d a l a r g e A l l i e c ! force t o be p r e s e n - t durinn, t h e w i n t e r t o h o l d o f f the S o v i e t s .


The f a c t t k c t

t h e A l l i e s were o b v i o u s l y o u t g u n n e d on t h e 5 v i n a mi.2h-k have

also had some b e a r i n g on t h e d e c i s i o n .

The lac!< o f 3 r i t i s h
66

naval support

OR

the 3 v i n a : / s c result o f a staff d e c i s i o n .a


The E r i t i s h m o n i t o r s had been ;.rithc:ra;:'n,

nade i n A r c h a n g e l .

f e a r f u l o f b e i n g c a u z h t by t h e i c e t h a t : / s e x p e c t e ? t o b e g i n .a forming i n O c t o b e r but a c t u a l l y d i e n o t come u n t i l mid-l:ovenher. The w i t h d r a w a l o f t h e m o n i t o r s had been o r d e r e d i?y P o o l e ' s Force Weadquarters.

s t a f f vri-thout t h e knowledge o f t h e "C"

C o n s e q u e n t l y , t h e g u n b o a t s iviere n o t a v a i l a b l e f o r r i r e support

or t r a n s p o r t of t h e Seltzo force following the b a t t l e .

.. .:any

o f t h e A l l i e d s o l d i e r s Tirere s u f f e r i n g from t r e n c h f o o t and $;rounds b u t had t o be c a r r i e d o u t or


:,rail:

u n d e r t h e i r own power Generd Ironside,

b e c a u s e o f t h e d e p a r t u r e of t h e p n b o a t s .

who was G e n e r a l P o o l e ' s d e p u t y a t t h e t i m e , r e c o r d s :


. I r e c e i v e d a n u r g e n t telegram from G e n e r a l
F i n l a y s o n . A p p a r e n t l y , on h i s a r r i v a l a t t h e
Dvina h e a d q u a r t e r s he h a l f o u n d t h a t t h e 3ri-
t i s h g u n b o a t s on t h e r i v e r had b c e n v i i t h d i w m
. w i t h o u t n o t i f i c a . t i o n h a v i n g b e e n made t o
t h e commander on t h e s p o t . The 2 o l s h e v i k
ships.,.had suddenly returned...and subjected
our d e f e n c e s t o a heavy boinbarlment, .The
enemy s h i p s had s t o o d o u t s i d e t h e range o f
o u r f i e l d - g u n s a n d much o f our p r e c i o u s w i n t e r
c o v e r had b e e n d e s t r o y e d . I took ?he t e l e g r a m
o v e r t o G e n e r a l P o o l e , who s e n t f o r t h e a d n i r a l
t o come and e x p l a i n , T h e r e follo'wed a sorlievihat
h e a t e d a r g u m e n t , !which ended i n t h e admiral pro-
ducing a pa per from h e a d q u a r t e r s , a u t h o r i z i n g
t h e w i t h d r a w a l o f t h e g u n b o a t s . . .The s t a f f had
o m i t t e d t o i n f o r m t h e Dvina Column.22

..

..

..

The Dvina f r o n t e v i d e n c e d some o f the same c h a r a c t e r i s -

t i c s as t h e r a i l r o a d f r o n t .

On b o t h f r o n t s t h e r e ~:oulC:i i e

f i e r c e f i g h t i n g w i t h a v a r i e t y of mai2ons, a l t e r n a t e advance

and r e t r e a t , anl c l a i l y c a s u a l t i e s ,

!!"en

the

two s i d e s

met,

t h e y f o u g h t w i t h e v e r y t h i n g they !lad i r , c l u d i n & , i n

i?u;Gst,

c, 7

1 9 1 9 , mustard. m d l a c h r y n a t o q g2.s.

22

The p r i m a r y d i f f e r e n c e

between t h e t:io f r o n t s ';;as

t h e t o t a l i s o l a t i o n e x p e r i e n c e d on
'Xth the freezing of the

t h e Dvina f r o n t d u r i n g t h e w i n t e r .

r i v e r s , t r a n s p o r t a t i o n was l i m i t e d t o t h e h o r s e drawn s l e d or
"Drosky".

The extreme l e n g t h o f l i n e s o f communication a n d

t h e u b i q u i t o u s n a t u r e o f t h e enemy made d u t y on t h e Dvina a?d Vaga r i v e r f r o n t s l o n e l y and p e r i l o u s .


A t t h e same t i m e t h e S e l t z o o p e r a t i o n iwas t a k i n g p l a c e

a g a i n s t s t i f f S o v i e t o p p o s i t i o n , two p l a t o o n s o f 11 C o n p m y ,
3 3 9 t h I n f a n t r y e n t e r e d Shenkurslc vri-thout f i r i n g a s h o t .

Shen-

kurslc was t h e s e c o n d l a r g e s t c i t y i n t h e P r o v i n c e and o c c u p i e d

a cornmanding p o s i t i o n on a h i g h b l u f f above t h e Vaga R i v e r .


I t s f o u r t h o u s a n d c i t i z e n s were t h o u g h t t o be a n t i - B o l s h e v i k
p r i m a r i l y b e c a u s e o f t h e i r p r o s p e r i t y and s o c i a l l i n k s w i t h

t h e Noscow a r i s t o c r a t s ,

Shenlcurslc had been a f a v o r i t e summer

r e s o r t b e f o r e t h e war and vras "a g e n e r a t i o n removed from mouj i k p o v e r t y and e n c h a i n i n g i g n o r a n c e , and c o n s c i o u s l y S u p e r i o r

t o t h e humble l o g h u t s t h a t below n o r t h and s o u t h t r a i l e d t h e r i v e r . ,,24

On 1 9 September a r e c o n n a i s s a n c e element c o n t i n u e d s o u t h
a l o n g t h e Vaga t o l o c a t e t h e enemy.
A t Rodvino, a small v i l -

l a g e t e n m i l e s from Shenkursk, t h e f o r c e o f a b o u t 100 Americans


and 50 A l l i e d R u s s i a n s came under f i r e from b o t h s i d e s o f t h e

river,

The R l Z i e d f o r c e ' s p a d d l e b o a t was h i t and beached al-

most i m m e d i a t e l y .

C a p t a i n O t t o Odjard, t h e f u n e r i c m comman-

d e r , o r d e r e d an a t t a c k a c r o s s t h e beach and drove o f f t h e Red


65

f o r c e s t h r o u g h a c o m b i n a t i o n of s u r p r i s e and a u d a c i t y r a t h e r t h a n s u p e r i o r numbers or f i r e p o w e r .

Odjard's A l l i e d f o r c e c o n t i n u e d t o push o u t f r o m Shenk u r s k i n a n e f f o r t t o secure the a r e a around t h i s i m p o r t a n t river city.


A s w i n t e r a p p r o a c h e d , and t h e p r o s p e c t of t h e

f r e e z e became more imminent, t h e s e c u r i t y element rras f o r c e d t o vrithdraw t o U s t Padenga, a small v i l l a g e f i f t e e n x i l e s s o u t h o f Shenkursk. T h i s v i l l a g e was t o b e t h e f a r t h e s t

p e n e t r a t i o n of t h e main body of t h e A l l i e d E x p e d i t i o n a r y F o r c e . F a l l ended w i t h Genera.1 Poole f a i l i n , 7 t o o b t a i n a n y of h i s objectives ,


"A" F o r c e , on t h e Archangel-Vologda
Of

railway,

was h a l t e d n e a r O b o z e r s k a y a , S O m i l e s s h o r t

Ilesetskqra
VOlOgda.

and a l m o s t 200 miles from t h e i r o r i g i n a l o b j e c t i v e of


On t h e D v i n a ,
ItCl'

F o r c e had talcen S e l t z o , t h e n withdrawn t o

T o u l g a s , and was n e a r l y 2 0 0 m i l e s from K o t l a s , i t s f i r s t g o a l . Between IfAtt and I 1 C " F o r c e s a g r o u p of S r i t i s h , l h i e r i c m , F r e n c h ,

and A l l i e d X u s s i a n s were f i a h t i n g n e a r Kodish on t h e E i n t s a


River. T h i s A l l i e d e l e m e n t , "i;" F o r c e , was u n d e r tile conrna?d

of C o l o n e l Henderson of t h e famous "l3la.clc !.!atc!i" ReZi::ient,


D u r i n g t h e l a t e r p a r t o f September i . t f o u g h t numerous small b u t b i t t e r engagements t o s e c u r e t h e viilnerrable c e n t e r a g a i n s t enemy p r o b e s .

A t the

sane t i m e t h a t t h e s e b l o o d y a c t i o n s v e r e t a k i n z

p l a c e n e a r A r c h a n g e l , S e c r e t a r ; , of S t a - t e 2 o S e r t Lansin:: 5ras c o n c l u d i n g t h a t ? . i l i t a r y e c t i v i t i e s i n :lorti1 Russia 've1-e


63

futile,

On 26 Septex!:er,

Lansin.:

cablec'. Hi::bass&Or T r m c i s :

I t i s i n the opinio!; o f t h e C,overnrnent or' t h e


U n i t e d S t a t e s p l a i n t h a t no g E t h e r i n g o f my
e f f e c t i v e f o r c e s by the R u s s i a n s i s ho;jed f o r .
!.ie s h a l l i n s i s t that the o t h e r g o v e r n m e n t s , 3 0
f a r as OUi' c o o p e r a t i o n i s c o n c e r n e d , t h a t all
m i l i t a r y e f f o r t i n F o r t h e r n R u s s i a be g i v e n kip,
e x c e p t t h e g u a r d i n g o f t h e ?arts t h e m e l v e s and
as much c o u n t r y round a b o u t them as i m y d e v e l o p
threa-ter?ing c o n d i t i o n s , 2 5

D e s p i t e t h i s c l a r i f i c a t i o n o f t h e Axericar? r o l e , u n i t e d S t a t e s f o r c e s were f i g h t i n 2 deep i n t h e i n t e r i o r of n u s s i a an<

. .

would c o n t i n u e t o f i z h t u n t i l 1 9 1 9 .

An3aasador F r a n c i s , heed-

l e s s o f L a n s i n g ' s i n s t r u c t i o n s , a l l o w e d 3 r i t i s h connar,ders t o

use American t r o o p s x i t h l i t t l e o r no regard f o r C o l o n e l Ste'wa r t ' s p o s i t i o n as t h e c o m a n d e r o f Uni.ted States F o r c e s .


Fr2n-

c i s , who h a r b o r e d a n i n t e n s e p e r s o n a l h a t r e c ! for B o l s h e v i s m , states:


I s h a l l e n c o u r a g e An!erican t r o o p s t o p r o c e e d t o s u c h p o i n t s i n t h e i n t e r i o r as X o t l a s , Suiihonn, and Vologcla as a t t h o s e p l a c e s , as ire11 as P e t r o grad and i.losCol//i, are s t o r e d war s u p p l i e s !ihich t h e S o v i e t Government, i n v i o l a t i o n of i t s p r o n i s e s and a g r e e m e n t s , t r a n s f e r r e d from A r c h a n g e l . F u r t h e r m o r e I s h a l l e n c o u r a x e Anericarr t r o o p s t o obey t h e commands o f C-eneral T o o l e i n h i s e f f o r t t o e f f e c t a j u n c t i o n with t h e C z e c h o s l o v a k s an6 t o r e l i e v e them from t h e mennce !rhich s u r r o u n d s them; t h a t menace is n o E i n a l 1 y B o l s h e v i k s b u t 2,5 i s v i r t u a l l y i n s p i r e d a ? d i r e c t e d by Germany. n.
?he t h r e a t from G e r m a n y ';!as

o f f i c i a l l y ended on 11 iiovernT h i s ::ate

ber, 1915, w i t h t h e s i g n i n g of t h e 2 r : n i s t i c e .

-as

a l s o t h e be,ginning o f t h e v i n t e r c a n p z i g n i n X o r t h R u s s i a .
G e n e r a l T o o l e d e p a r t e d f o r England on 14 O c t o b e r and G e n e r a l I r o n s i d e b e c a n e t!ie z c t i n g Commander-in-Chief b e l i e v i n - : tihat
70

i f ? o o l e r e t u r n e d z t a l l , i t w o u l d n ' t be u n t i l a f t e r t h e

s p r i n g thzw.
V i s i t s

I r o n s i d e who, u n l i k e Poole , hati made nilmerous

t o t h e f r o n t u n d e r s t o o d t h e c i i l i t a r y problems t h a t had
He saw t h e f u - t i l i t y o f a t t e m o t i n g a l i n k

been l e f t t o him.

up w i t h t h e Czechs and d e t e r m i n e d t h a t h i s most immediate

task was t o e s t a b l i s h t e n a b l e d e f e n s i v e p o s i t i o n s f o r t h e v i n -

ter.

S h e l t e r and p r o t e c t i o n f o r h i s t r o o p s were h i s b i z g e s t

p r o b l e m s , and he d e c i d e d t h a t a. s e r i e s o f l o g b l o c k h o u s e s , p r o t e c t e d by b a r b e d - w i r e
and manned b y machj.ne.2un c r e w s

s h o u l d be e s t a b l i s h e d b e f o r e t h e o n s e t o f wj.nter.

He a l s o

r e a l i z e d t h a t a l a r g e s c a l e conmitment o f A l l i e d t r o o p s from
t h e home c o u n t r i e s was h i g h l y u n l i k e l y and t h a t h i s l o n g r a n g e

p l a n s s h o u l d p r o v i d e f o r t h e e v e n t u a l e v a c u a t i o n of A l l i e d

f o r c e s from N o r t h R u s s i a .
~

IWith
~

t h e s e f a c t o r s i n mind, I r o n ~

s i d e i s s u e d o r d e r s t o e a c h of h i s f o r c e s t o p r e p a r e f o r d e f e n -

s i v e o p e r a t i o n s d u r i n g t h e w i n t e r months.

On 11 November, w h i l e t h e r e s t o f t h e w e s t e r n w o r l d was
r e j o i c i n g i n t h e n e w o f t h e a r m i s t i c e on t h e 'Western F r o n t ,
B Company, 3 3 9 t h I n f a n t r y , a company o f Royal S c o t s , and a

s e c t i o n of C a n a d i a n A r t i l l e r y were f i g h t i n g a d e s p e r a t e b a t -

t l e on t h e D v i n a R i v e r , a t T o u l g a s , some f i f t y m i l e s s o w t h

of B e r e z n i k . 27

One American o f f i c e r e x p l a i n s , "Toulgas was t h e

d u p l i c a t e of t h o u s a n d s of similar v i l l a g e s t h r o u g h o u t t h i s p r o vince. I t c o n s i s t e d of a g r o u p o f low, d i r t y log h o u s e s hud-

d l e d t o g e t h e r on

a h i l l , s l o p i n g down t o a b r o a d p l a n . .
Or'

..

,128

The same o f f i c e r r e c o u n t s t h e commencement

the b a t t l e :
71

On t h e mornin2 o f ;loveraber 1 1 t h vrhile some o f t h e men were s t i l l engaged i n e a t i n g t h e i r b r e a k f a s t s and w h i l e t h e p o s i t i o n s ..rere o n l y a b o u t h a l f manned, s u d d e n l y from t h e f o r e s t s s u r r o u n d i n g t h e u p p e r v i l l a g e t h e enemy emersed i n a t t a c k f o r m a t i o n . A l l h a n d s 'were i m m e d i a t e l y m u s t e r e d i n t o p o s i t i o n t o r e p e l t h i s a d v a n c i n g wave o f i n f a n t r y . I n t h e neant i m e t h e 9010 a t t a c k e d w i t h a b o u t f i v e hundred men from our r e a r , h a v i n g made a t h r e e c!ay march t h r o u g h x h a t had b e e n r e p o r t e d as i m p a s s a b l e swamp, Hundrees o f t h e enemy a p p e a r e d as i f by magic from t h e f o r e s t s , svmrmed i n upon t h e h o s p i t a l v i l l a g e and i m m e d i a t e l y took possession. Inmediately the h o s p i t a l v i l l a g e 'was i n t h e i r h a n d s , t h e Do10 t h e n commenced a d e s p e r a t e advance upon o u r g u n s . 2 9 The S o v i e t s d e p l o y e d i n t o squad a t t a c k f o r m a t i o n s and b e g a n . t h e i r a s s a u l t on t h e A l l i e d p o s i t i o n s . An i'merican

Lewis gun crew opened f i r e and slowed t h e a t - t a c k e r s u n t i l t h e Canadian g u n n e r s c o u l d s:rin;: enemy. t h e i r 'xeapons a b o u t t o f a c e t h e

F i r s t L i e u t e n a r t John Cudahy, a p l a t o o n l e a d e r i n 3

Compmy, d e s c r i b e s t h e Canadian a c t i o n s : They s:rore f i n e , f u l l c h e s t e d , C m a d i a n b l a s p h e n i e s t h a t were a g l o r y t o h e a r , cramned s h r a g n e l i n t o t h e i r g u n s , encl t u r n e d t e r r i 5 l e b l a s t s i n ~ t ot h e incoming rnasses t h z t e x p l o d e d arnong -thein m d s h a t t e r e d t h e n i n t o g h a s t l y Cismenbered c o r p s e s and h u r l e d bloocl and human f l e s h :.ride i n t h e a i r i n s i c k e n i n g , s p l a t t e r i n g a t o m s . T h e more :ieight o f t h o s e a p p r o a c h i n q g r e a t numbers irould have shaken and t u r n e d o r d i n a r y t r o o p s , f o r t h e o n s l a u z h t was n o t s t o p p e d u n t i l l e s s t h a n 2 i f t y y a r d s from t h e g u n s ; b u t t h e C a n a d i a n s v e r e n o t o r d i n w y men and t h e y gave n o t t h e s l i g h t e s t hope o f b e i n 3 t u r n e d . 30 The f i g h t for T o u l g a l a s t e d f o u r d a y s a q d t h e t i d e of b a t t l e f l o x e d a l t e r n a t e l y i n f a v o r o f t h e A l l i e s znc! t h e R e * s . On t h e s e c o n d day o f t h e ensagement t h e S o v i e t s b r o u g h t f i v e z u n b o a t s doi.rn r i v e r f r o n S e l t z o m d sihelled t h e A l l i e d ? o s i t i o n s : r i t h r e l a t i v e i r , ? u n i t y from t h e s h o r t e r - r z n z e C z w 6 C i m
75's.

On t h e mornir.2 o f t h e f o u r t h :a t ~ 2 l a ' t o o n s of . h e r :y o
72

i c a n s , l e d by L i e u t e n a n t Cudahy , li..a.de a c o u n t e r a t t a c k or, t h e

n a i n enerny f o r c e .

m i l e t h e Royal S c o t s h e l d t h e ~ r i , : : ~ ~ i ~ y

A l l i e d p o s i t i o n s and p r o v i d e < a b a s e o f f i r e , t h e Americans maneuvered throu,qh t h e t h i c k f i r f o r e s t i n z. s u r n r i s e f l a n k

attack.

Taking f u l l advantage o f t h e i r unexpected a s s a u l t ,

t h e small A-mericsn e l e m e n t s e t t h e enemy o b s e r v a t i o n 3 o s t s

a f i r e and t h e r e s u l t i n g e:cplosions d e c e i v e d t h e Red C u a - 6 ~as


t o t h e actual s i z e aiid s t r e n g t h o f the A l l i e d f o r c e .

Conse-

q u e n t l y , t h e S o v i e t s fled i n p a n i c b e f o r e what t h e y a p : > a r e n t l y t h o u g h t vas a t l e a s t an A l l i e d r e g i m e n t .


Cudahy rem.arks:

The Americans d a r e d no-t p u r s u e , f o r t o c:o s o


would have r e v e a l e d t h e i r t r u e s t r e n g t h , a i d
they, were ou t n u r h e r e d f o u r t o one. E e s i d e s ,
t h e y !.rere t o o e l a t e d a t b e i n g r i d o f t h e enemy
t o g i v e him t h e c h a n c e t o r e t u r n t o t h e a t t a c k .
They c o n t e n t e d t h e m s e l v e s w i t h t2!<inz p r i s o n e r
t h o s e s t r a g g l e r s vrno c o u l d n o t k e e p p a c e 7;rith
the leaderless rabble t h a t dispersed i n t o the
forest,31
~ ~

..

The A l l i e s had s u c c e s s f u l l y h e l d o f f a m a j o r S o v i e t a t t a c k ,

a l l e g e d l y l e d by T r o t s k y h i m s e l f , and had ! ; i l l e d C h i e f Com~iand e r Foukes, one o f t h e a b l e s t Red Guard l e a d e r s . 32 I n acliition

t o a g r e a t number of d e a d , wounded, a.nc: c a p t u r e d , t h e S o v i e t s l o s t the w i l l t o f i g h t ,


a t l e a s t f o r t h e moment.

The A l l i e s

h a 6 s u f f e r e d a b o u t one hundred c a s u a l . t i e s owt o f t!ieir S i x huncired m a n f o r c e , w i t h t h e Royal S c o t s t a k i n g t h e ishment.


1.10rSt

pun-

T h e a a j o r i t y of t h e A l l i e d k i l l e d a n d :.rounded . ? e r e

t h e r e s u l t o f enerng s h e l l i n g r a t h e r t!mn small arms f i r e .


L i e u - t e n a n t Cudahy e x p l a i n s t h a t : "It v/as noon v h e n t h e b l o c k h o u s e was h i t . It
crumpled l i k e p a p e r u n d e r t h e i m p a c t , a i d one

73

m a n , drenched r . r i t h a w e l t e r o f b l o o d , was s e e n t o drag himself from t h e wreckage and craTwl back t o t h e p r i e s t ' s house. S h e l l s , t o s s i n z g e y s e r s of d i r t =and d e b r i s , s t r u c k a l l around, and ploughed a deep c i r c u l a r furrow v i t h i n a r a d i u s of f i v e y a r d s of t h e d e a t h house, Ivihere seven Americans sat w i t h blanched f a c e s and s e t t e e t h , c o u n t i n g t h e seconds between -the hideous s u c c e s s i v e whine o f t h e plunging s h e l l s and w a i t i n g s i l e n t l y f o r c e r t a i n d e s t r u c t i o n . 1 1 3 3

The n o r t h e r n h a l f o f Toulgas was burned because t h e A l l i e s


d i d n o t have enough men t o occupy t h e e n t i r e v i l l a g e and be-

cause an a t t a c k e r could u s e t h e small houses f o r o u t p o s t s a n d c o v e r i n t h e e v e n t of a renewed a s s a u l t . t h e d e s t r u c t i o n o f t h e hamlet: The f i r s t snow f l o a t e d down from a d a r k f o r e boding s k y , d r e a d announcer o f a c r u e l a r c t i c w i n t e r . Soon t h e houses were r o a r i n g flames. The woman s a t upon h a d - f a s h i o n e d c r a t e s wherein w e r e all t h e i r most p r i z e d household goods, and abandoned themselves t o a paroxysm o f weeping d e s p a i r , while the c h i l d r e n shrieked s t r i d e n t l y , v i c t i m of a l l t h e r e a l i s t i c h o r r o r s t h a t only childhood can c o n j u r e . Nitchevoo, f a t e had dec r e e d t h a t t h e y should s u f f e r t h i s burden, and s o t h e y a c c e p t e d i t w i t h o u t q u e s t i o n . Rut when we thought o f t h e brave chaps whose l i v e s had been talcen from t h o s e flaming homes, for our c a s u a l t i e s had been heavy, n e a r l y one hundred men k i l l e d and wounded, vre s t i f l e d our compass i o n and looked on t h e b l a z i n g scene as a j u b i l a n t bonfire.34 Following t h e Toulgas b a t t l e t h e enemy made p e r i o d i c probes t o t e s t t h e c o n s t a n t l y improving A l l i e d d e f e n s e s . i n g December t h e 3 1 0 t h EnEineers a s s i s t e d t h e i n f a t r y and a r t i l l e r y i n t h e c o n s t r u c t i o n of w i n t e r q u a r t e r s a n d f o r t i f i cations. The S o v i e t s a t t e m p t e d a m a j o r a t t a c k i n l a t e JanAn o b s e r v e r d e s c r i b e s

3ur-

u a r y , 1 9 1 9 , and a j a i n i n February, b u t were d r i v e n o f f by t h e A l l i e s on b o t h o c c a s i o n s ,


74

The supremacy o f t h e d e f e n s e '.?asbecorflina e v i d e n t as w i n t e r a r r i v e d i n :lorth R u s s i a .


Y i t h the advm-tage o f l a r g e ,

well b u i l t and s u p p l i e d l o g b l o c k h o u s e s , s u r r o u n d e d by b a r b e d

wire and p r o t e c t e d by s e v e r a l machine gms, t h e A l l i e s c o u l d


e f f e c t i v e l y h o l d o f f t h e n u m e r i c a l l y s u p e r i o r enemy. Despite

the S o v i e t s advantage i n l a r g e c a l i b e r a r t i l l e r y ,

t h e extreme

c o l d and d e e p snow made o f f e n s i v e o p e r a t i o n s a l n o s t i m p o s s i 3 l e . Vhen an attack : ' a s a t t e m p t e d t h e r e s u l t s were u s u a l l y i n c o n c l u -

s i v e and c o s t t h e f o r c e c o n d u c t i n g t h e o f f e n s i v e a c t i o n an e x c e s s i v e number of c a s u a l t i e s .
The r e s o u r c e f u l n e s s of t h e Americans ? r m also becorninz

very obvious.

An o f f i c e r n o t e d :

I n a few h o u r s - o r few d a y s a t m o s t , t h e
Americans s o l d i e r would have dug i n s e c u r e l y
and made h i i n s e l f r u d e l y c o i n f o r t a b l e . T h a t
r u d e c o m f o r t !;;auld last t i l l some E r i t i s h
o f f i c e r d e c i d e d t o ' p u t on a b i t o f a show'
or t i l l t h e Reds i n overwhelming numbers o r
w i t h tremendous a r t i l l e r y pounding o r both
combined, c o m p e l l e d t h e y a n k s t o f i g h t them-
s e l v e s i n t o a. new p o s i t i o n and go t h r o u g h
t h e A r c t i c r i g o r s of t r e n c h work a g a i n i n
z e r o w e a t h e r f o r a few d a y s . 35

The Americans a l s o had a c e r t a i n i n g e n u i t y f o r making a quick p r o f i t . One o f f i c e r r e t u r n i n X t o A r c h a n g e l from t h e

v r i l c 1 . s o f Y o r t h R u s s i a compl.ained:

And o v e r a c r o s s t h e h a r b o r a t B a k a r i t z a , ( f i r c h -
zingel) a w e l l - f e e S u 3 p l y Coi:lpmy .:latched o v e r
m o u n t a i n s o f r a t i o n s ~ n c ls u ; > p l i e s t h a t her! been
b r o u g h t all t h e way from far o f f h e r i c a ; s u p
p l i e s and l i t t l e gooc? t h i n g s and cor.iforta t h a t
would hab-e h e a r t e n e d and b r o u g h t n e v l i f e and
hope t o t h e l o n e l y , abandoned !nen on t h e f a r
f i s h t i n & l i n e s i n t h e snow. These s u p p l i e s
n e v e r r e a c h e d -the f r o n t , b u t t h e Supnly Company,
v r i t h A m r i c a n bus i n e s s s h r e v d n e s s and Arne r i c a n

75

a p t i t u d e f o r t r n d i n g , a c q u i r e d % r e a t 5undles
of r u b l e s , and a.t t h e ma.rlcet p l a c e conver'tec!
t h e s e i n t o s t a b l e s t e r l i n g , and c a n e o u t of
R u s s i a i n t h e s p r i n g t i n e < w i t h p l e a s a n t men-
o r i e s o f E tea-ist :.!inter; l i k e w i s e a small
f o r t u n e s e c u r e l y h i d i n t h e i r o l i v e dra.12
b r e e c h e s . 35

I t d i d n ' t t a k e 1on.g f o r t h e more e n t e r p r i s i n g s o l d i e r s of the

E x p e d i t i o n a q r F o r c e t o f i n d a way t o make t h e most o f . t h e i r advantageous p o s i t i o n .


T h i s o p p o r t u n i s m had t z k e n p l a c e i n

p r e v i o u s Yiars and : ~ o u l d s u r e l y be r e p e a t e d i n c o n f l i c t s t o come. The S r i t i s h also had t h e i r s h a r e o f t a i n t e d l o a i s t i c a l a c t i v i t i e s i n firciiangel, One American o f f i c e r estimated t h a t

t h e B r i t i s h G e n e r a l H e a d q u a r t e r s had s i x hundred s u r p l u s o f f i c e r s and f o r t y -thousa-ld c a s e s o f S c o t c h ib-hislcejr c a c h e d i n Archangel, The Arnerican d o e s n ' t s a y what p u r p o s e t h e whiskey
~

was i n t e n d e c i ~ ~ o s e r v e , b u t - s t a t e s r t h a t , t "Some o f t h e o f f i c e r s had come f r a n k l y i n search o f a ' c u s h y j o b ' i n a zone t h e y t h o u g h t s a f e l y removed f r o n p o i s o n g a s e s and bombardments and all t h e h i d e o u s muck o f t h e t r e n c h e s . O t h e r s , much t o t h e i r d i s g u s t , had been s e n t t o t h e p o l a r r e g i o n s b e c a u s e some one i n H e a d q u a r t e r s had t h o u z h t t h e y p o s s e s s e d some p e c u l i a r q u a l i f i c a t i o n t o command o r ' g e t o n ' w i t h i m a g i n a r y R u s s i a r e g i m e n t s t h a t were t o s p r i n g t o t h e A l l i e d S t a n d a r d . " 3 7 The c o r r u p t i o n o f A r c h a n g e l had i t s e f f e c t s on t h e Russians as Twell as t h e A l l i e s . On 11 December, 1 9 1 8 , s o l d i e r s

of t h e A n g l o - S l a v i c L e g i o n m u t i n e d a t Nevslcy a a r r n c l c s i n Archangel, Colonel Sutherland, . i n command o f A l l i e d f o r c e s i n

A r c h a n g e l s i n c e h i s r e l i e f on t h e railway f r o n t , o r d e r e d Colo n e l S t e w a r t t o p r o v i d e t h e American t r o o p s s t a t i o n e d a t O l g a


76

B a r r a c k s t o a s s i s t i n p u t t i n g doywn t h e mutiny. H e a d q u a r t e r s Company, 339th I n f a n t r y moved o u t and took up p o s i t i o n s on P e t r o g r a d s k i S t r e e t w i t h f o u r Lewis guns and three trench mortars.
A t e x a c t l y 1400 h o u r s Colonel S u t h e r -

l a n d gave t h e o r d e r t o commence f i r i n g i n t o t h e windows and


d o o r s of t h e b a r r a c k s . A f t e r a b o u t f i f t e e n minutes t h e nwti-

n e e r s , h o l d i n g a w h i t e f l a g , came. o u t of t h e b a r r z c k s s s d surrendered. There were no American c a s u a l t i e s and Colonel

S t e w a r t , i n h i s o f f i c i a l r e p o r t , s t a t e s t h a t t h i r t e e n of t h e r i n g l e a d e r s s u f f e r e d d e a t h under o r d e r s of t h e Russian Comnand. 3a Another American o f f i c e r ' s v e r s i o n of t h e a c t i o n i s

more e m b e l l i s h e d t h a n Colonel S t e w a r t ' s o f f i c i a l a c c o u n t : Meanv/hile G . N . Q . had o r d e r e d o u t t h e American IHQ I Company t r e n c h m o r t a r s e c t i o n and a s e c t i o n of t h e American iinchine Gun Conpnny to t r y bomb and b u l l e t argument on t h e S . B . A . L ' s (AngloS l a v i c Legion) who were b a r r i c a d i n g t h e i r barr i c k s and p o i n t i n g machine guns from t h e i r windows. Promptly on t h e m i n u t e , a c c o r d i n g t o o r d e r s , t h e n a s t y , and t o t h e Americans p i t i f u l l y d i s a g r e e a b l e j o b , was begun. I n a s h o r t time a w h i t e f l a g f l u t t e r e d a s i g n of submission. A few minutes later t o t h e immense d i s g u s t o f t h e doughboys, a company of E n g l i s h Tommies who by a l l r u l e s t o r i g h t and r e a s o n s h o u l d have been t h e ones t o c l e a n up t h e mutinous mess i n t o which t h e B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s had g o t t e n t h e S.B.A.L.'s, now hove i n t o s i g h t , coming up t h e r e c e n t l y b u l l e t - w h i s t l i n g b u t now d e a d l y q u i e t s t r e e t , w i t h r i f l e s s l u n g on t h e i r s h o u l d e r s , c r a w l i n g along s l o w l y at s i x t y t o t h e minute pace - i n s t e a d of a r i o t c a l l double t i m e , and s i n g i n g t h e i r i n s u l t i n g v e r s i o n o f 'Over There t h e Yanks are Running, Running, everywhere, e t c . ' And t h e i r o l d fishmonger r e s e r v e o f f i c e r - he wore C o l o n e l ' s i n s i g n i a , wiped o f f h i s r.fhislcey svieat i n unconcealed r e l i e f . [His b a t t l e o f Archangel had been c u t s h o r t by t h e Americans....'Ve a r e bound t o comment t h a t we b e l i e v e i t n e v e r would have o c c u r r e d i f a t a c t f u l , h o n e s t American

77

some B r i t i s h o r d e r s - n o t rnanytc be s u r e -
c o u l d b e . W f o r t u n a t e l y had b l u f f s enough
e A stormy t h r e a t
t o offset the bull-dozings, by a s n e e r i n g , d r u n k e n o f f i c e r t o t u r n t h e
C a n a d i a n a r t i l l e r y on t h e bloornin' Yanks
c o u l d be met by a c o l d - a s - s t e e l r e j o i n e r t h a t
t h e S r i t i s h o f f i c e r iiould p l e a s e r e a l i z e h i s
d r u n k e n c o n d i t i o n and t a k e bac!c t h e s n e e r i n g
t h r e a t a n d come a c r o s s 7v;ith a r e a s o n a b l e
o r d e r o r s u f f e r t h e immediate c o n s e q u e n c e s .
And t h e n u s u a l l y t h e tvo c o u l d co-o i e r a t e ,
Such i.s a p a r t n e r s h i p war i n c i d e n t . 5 9 American t r o o p s viewed t h e i 3 r i t i s h h e a d q u a r t e r s i n Archa n g e l 2s t h e s o u r c e o f many p r o b l e m s . doughboys who were s e n t on temporar:r Zany c l a i m e d t h a t duty w i t h t h e 3ritish

o f f i c e r had b e e n i n c h a r g e of t h e S.B.A.L.
Americans know how t a c t l e s s and b u l l - d o z i n g

were k e p t i n d e f i n i t e l y and t h e Arrerican h e a d q u a r t e r s had a


tendency t o f o r g e t about its s o l d i e r s . Some American o f f i c e r s

f e l t C o l o n e l S t e w a r t had l o s t t o u c h w i t h h i s b a t t a l i o n and

company commanders b e c a u s e t h e h e r i c a i ? uni.'is were s h i f t e d


~~ ~ ~~ ~ ~~~~

a b o u t A r c h a n e e l P r o v i n c e w i t h o u t any c o n s i d e r a t i o n g i v e n t o t h e 3 3 9 t h R e g i m e n t a l Commander,
One o f f i c e r r e p o r t e d :

He had a d i s c o u r a g i n g t i m e e v e n i n z e t t i n g his few g e n e r a l o r d e r s d i s t r i b u t e d t o t h e American t r o o p s . No wonder t h a t o f t e n a n American o f f i c e r or s o l d i e r r e p o r t i n g i n from a f r o n t by order of permission of a S r i t i s h f i e l d o f f i c e r , d i d n o t f e e l t h a t American H e a d q u a r t e r s was h i s real, h e a d n u a r t e r s and i n p u r e i g n o r a n c e was g u i l t y of - o m i t t i n g some d u t y or f a i l i n g t o comp l y w i t h some A r c h a n g e l r e s t r i c t i o n t h a t had been o r d e r e d by American H e a d q u a r t e r s . A s t o g e n e r a l o r d e r s from American C e a d q u a r t e r s d e a l i n g with t h e a c t i o n o f t r o o p s i n t h e f i e l d , t h o s e were s o few a n d o f so l i . t t l e i m p r e s s i v e n e s s t h a t t h e y have been f o r g o t t e n . 40
T h i s same o f f i c e r f e l t t h a t C o l o n e l Steviart, a l t h o u g h

u n a b l e t o i n f l u e n c e t h e t a c t i c a l employment, t r a n s p o r t , s u p p l y ,
78

or m e d i c a l c a r e o f a good p o r t i o n o f h i s command, s h o u l d
have d i r e c t l y c o n t r o l l e d t h o s e u n i t s a n d o f f i c e r s i n A r c h a n g e l . Somehow t h e doughboy f e l t t h a t t h e v e r y l i m i t e d
and much c o m p l a i n e d a b o u t s e r v i c e o f h i s own

American S u p p l y U n i t , t h a t l i v e d f o r t h e most
p a r t on t h e f a t o f t h e land i n B a k a r i t z a ,
s h o u l d have been c o r r e c t e d by h i s commanding
o f f i c e r who s a t i n American H e a d q u a r t e r s , And
t h e y f e l t whether c o r r e c t l y o r n o t , t h a t t h e
c o u r t - m a r t i a l s e n t e n c e s of Major C . G . Young,
who a c t e d as summary c o u r t o f f i c e r at Sinolny
a f t e r he was r e l i e v e d o f his commmd i n t h e
f i e l d , were u n n e c e s s a r i l y harsh. And. t h e y b l a -
med t h e i r c o n n a n d i n g o f f i c e r , Colonel S t e w a r t ,
f o r n o t t a l ; i n g n o t e o f t h a t f a c t when he re-
viewed and a p p r o v e d themed1

General I r o n s i d e attempted a l i i a i t e d o f f e n s i v e i n l a t e December t o t a k e E m t s a , a l a r g e v i l l a g e halfway betlween Verst 445


011

t h e R a i l r o a d F r o n t and ? l e s e t s k a . y a .

Xe f e l t t h a t b y

o c c u p y i n g E n t s a i n t h e west a n d Shenkurslc i n t h e e a s t , he
woulcl be s e c u r e f o r t h e r e m a i n d e r o f t h e w i n t e r .

I r o n s i d e p l a n n e d a c o o r d i n a t e d t h r e e - p r o n g e d attack a g a i n s t E m t s a u s i n g f o r c e s from t h e Onega R i v e r Fr0n.l;; t r o o p s From t h e Vaga F r o n t t o t a k e X o d i s h ; and e l e m e l i t s from t h e


Railway F r o n t t o a t t a c k s o u t h t o w a r d s P l e s e t s ! c a y a .

Ironside

'was s u r e h e would be s u c c e s s f u l b e c a u s e all i n t e l l i g e n c e rep o r t s i n d i c a t e d . t h a t t h e S o v i e t s were e x h a u s t e d and undermanned.


,ipar.y, The o f f e n s i v e began on 2 9 December rrhen "G" Cor--

339th

I n f a n t r y and some R u s s i a n v o l u n t e e r s moved up t h e Onega R i v e r and engaged a s t r o n , % Red f o r c e at T u r c h a s o v a .


G y 31

3ecember
79

"G"

Company vrithdrey:: a f t e r s u f f e r i n g heavy c a s u a l t i e s .

The

F r e n c h F o r e i g n L e g i o n u n i t , made up o f R u s s i a n v o l u n t e e r s commanded by F r e n c h o f f i c e r s , d e l a y e d t h e i r a t t a c k a l o n g t h e r a i l w a y f r o n t when t h e y d i s c o v e r e d t h e y d i d n o t have t h e c o r r e c t t y p e o f snowshoes and would n e e d an a d d i t i o n a l f o r t y e i g h t hours t o reach t h e i r d e s t i n a t i o n . The S o v i e t s r e a l i z e d

i m m e d i a t e l y t h a t t h e A l l i e s were p r e p a r i n g a major a t t a c k a n d s h e l l e d t h e r a i l l i n e w i t h a p p r o x i m a t e l y 1,500 r o u n d s o f art i l l e r y , f u r t h e r h a l t i n g t h e French advance.


42

Hearing o t h e c a n c e l l a t i o n o f t h e French a t t a c k , I r o n s i d e r u s h e d t o t h e f r o n t t o meet w i t h C o l o n e l L u c a s , t h e F r e n c h commander. I r o n s i d e l e a r n e d t h a t Lucas had v i o l a t e d


A t al-

o r d e r s by n o t c o o r d i n a t i n g p l a n s w i t h t h e Americans. most t h e same moment Companies "E" a n d "K"

o f t h e 3 3 9 t h , sup-

p o r t e d by C a n a d i a n A r t i l l e r y , began t h e i r attack on KodiSh.

Two t h o u s a n d Red Guards d e f e n d e d K o d i s h and t h e i r r e s i s t a n c e was s t r o n g e r t h a n e x p e c t e d . f o r w a r d and s e c u r e d Kodish. The Americans pushed s l o w l y

They a c c o m p l i s h e d t h e i r m i s s i o n

d e s p i t e t h e f a i l u r e o f t h e F r e n c h and w i t h o u t a s e c o n d s u p p o r t -

i n g a t t a c k t h a t was s u p p o s e d t o be nade by a machinegun company o f the K i n g ' s L i v e r p o o l Regiment. The B r i t i s h u n i t

f a i l e d t o show up f o r t h e a t t a c k b e c a u s e , as G e n e r a l I r o n s i d e

p u t i t , "The C o l o n e l i n q u e s t i o n had succurnbed t o t!ie f e s t i v i t i e s of the season." was d r u n k , 4.3 I n 0-ther w o r d s , t h e 3 r i t i s h commander

A f t e r the a b o r t i v e l i m i t e d o f f e n s i v e i n l e t e December,
80

I r o n s i d e became c o n c e r n e d w i t h J u s t n a i n t a . i n i i - 3 h i s p r e s e n t positions.

!<is most v u l n e r a b l e o u t p o s t !'ms a t Shenlcurst.

A c c o r d i n g t o C o l o n e l S t e w a r t t h e v a l u e o f t h i s Vaza R i v e r v i l l a g e was i t s s u b s t a n t i a l number o f w e l l - b u i l t d v e l l i n g s t h a t p r o v i d e d shelter f o r A l l i e d rmn and material. 44 A l l i e s o c c u p i e d t h e C i t y , w i t h o u t r e s i s t a n c e on 18 S e p t e m b e r , 1 9 1 8 ,


and t h e S o v i e t s n e v e r s e r i o u s l y t h r e a t e n e d t h e o c c u g a t i o n f o r c e

u n t i l t h e end o f December.

I3y J a n u a r y , 1 9 1 9 , a l m o s t 2000

American, Z r i t i s h , C 2 n a d i 2 n , and A l l i e d R u s s i a n s o c c u p i e d
Shenkursk. The A l l i e s e s t a b l i s h e d t h r e e s e c u r i t y o u t p o s t s
2 ~ 1 dK i j n i

s o u t h of Shenkursk, Visorka Gora, U s t ?adenga,

Gora,

for t h e p u r p o s e o f e a r l y :.rarning. 45
On t h e morning o f 1 9 J a n u a r y t h e S o v i e t s begaii an attack
t h a t would p r o v e t o be t h e t u r n i n g p o i n t o f t h e i n t e r v e n t i o n . L i e u t e n a n t H a r r y Nead, a l o n g w i t h f o r t y - f i v e men from "A" Company, 3 3 9 t h , was l o c a t e d a t l l i j n i G o r a , t h e s o u t h e r n most Allied strongpoint. attack: L i e u t e n a n t Ilead t e l l s o f t h e i n i t i a l

On t h e morning o f t h a t f a t a l n i n e t e e n t h day o f J a n u a r y , j u s t a t dawn t h e e n e m y ' s a r t i l l e r y which had been s i l e n t now f o r s e v e r a l weeks, opened up a t e r r i f i c bombardment on o u r p s i t i o n i n X i j n i Gora. T h i s a r t i l l e r y wan c o n c e a l e d i n t h e d e n s e f o r e s t on t h e o p p o s i t e bank o f t h e Vaga f a r beyond t h e range o f o u r own a r t i l l e r y . A f t e r a b o u t an h o u r ' s v i o l e n t s h e l l i n g t h e barr a g e s u d d e n l y l i f t e d . I n s t a n t l y , from t h e d e e p snow and r a v i n e s e n t i r e l y s u r r o u n d i n g u s , i n p e r f e c t a t t a c k f o r m a t i o n , arose h u n d r e d s o f t h e enemy c l a d i n w h i t e u n i f o r m s and t h e a t t a c k was
011.46

Mead and h i s men h e l d o f f t h e a t t a c k w i t h t h e i r machine81

guns u n t i l i t

! a Ys

o b v i o u s t h a t t h e y were a b o u t t o be o v e r r u n .

A s t h e Yanks e v a c u a t e d t h e o u t p o s t and headed for U s t P a d e n g a ,

t h e n e x t A l l i e d p o s i t i o n , t h e S o v i e t s c c t down t h e Americans w i t h r i f l e and a u t o m a t i c weapons f i r e .


O f t h e f o r t y - f i v e men

Mead had i n N i j n i Gora t h a t morning, o n l y he and s e v e n o t h e r s

made i t t o U s t P a d e n g a .

Nead q u i c k l y r e a l i z e d t h a t he would

n o t be a b l e t o d e l a y a t U s t Padenga o r c o l l e c t h i s wounded o r
dead,

H e and t h e r e m a i n d e r of h i s men moved d i r e c t l y t o V i s -

o r k a Gora, t h e l a s t o u t p o s t b e f o r e S h e n k u r s k .

The R e d s , n o t

r e a l i z i n g t h a t U s t P a d e n g a had been a b a n d o n e d , a t t a c k e d t h e empty v i l l a g e w i t h a r t i l l e r y and g r o u n d t r o o p s . The C a n a d i a n

a r t i l l e r y , a l o n g w i t h t h e r e m a i n i n g s o l d i e r s o f "A" Company, t o o k t h e enemy u n d e r f i r e from V i s o r k a Gora and i n f l i c t e d heavy c a s u a l t i e s on t h e S o v i e t a t t a c k e r s .

O 20 J a n u a r y t h e n

Reds made t h e i r a t t a c k on V i s o r k a Gora w i t h an e s t i m a t e d 1000

men. 47

The C a n a d i a n a r t i l l e r y s t o p p e d t h e enemy by f i r i n g

s h r a p n e l r o u n d s i n t o t h e oncoming waves o f S o v i e t s o l d i e r s . The B r i t i s h command a t S h e n k u r s k o r d e r e d t h e A m e r i c m s


and C a n a d i a n s t o e v a c u a t e Visorlca Gora on 2 2 J a n u a r y and r e -

t r e a t t o Shenkursk.

The enemy had s u r r o u n d e d S h e n k u r s k and

i t a p p e a r e d t h a t t h e y were a t t e m p t i n g t o c u t t h e e s c a p e r o u t e
t o t h e n o r t h and a n n i h i l n t e t h e A l l i e d t r o o p s . The f o r c e a t

Visorlca Gora w i t h d r e w t h r o u g h t h e S o v i e t s and t h e n h a l t e d for

a r e s t a t Spasslcoe, a small v i l l a g e a b o u t four m i l e s s o u t h


of S h e n k u r s k . The enemy o c c u p i e d b o t h s i d e s o f t h e Vaxa and L i e u t e n a n t Xead 82

had g o t t e n between S p a s s k o e a?l S h e n k u r s k .

t e l l s o f t h e -withdra:Yal: Ye f i n a l l y d e c i d e d t h a t u n d e r c o v e r of d a r k n e s s a n d i n t h e c o n f u s i o n a n d mamy movements t h e n on f o o t , 'vie c o u l d p o s s i b l y n a r c h s t r a i g ! i t up t h e r i v e r r i g h t between the v i l l a g e s , and t h o s e on one s i d e viould m i s t a k e u s f o r o t i i e r s on t h e o p p o s i t e b a n k . Our p l a n workerJ t o p e r f e c t i o n a n d 'vie g o t t h r o u g h s a f e l y w i t h one s h o t b e i n g f i r e d by some s u s g i c i o u s eneny s e n t r y , b u t iwhich d i d u s no harm, 2nd we c o n t i n u e d s i l e n t l y on o u r v a y 48

The comnand a.t Bereznilc saw t h a t t!ie S'nenkurslc f o r c e would have t o b r e a k o u t or S e d e s t r o y e d . C o l o n e l Sharman, t h e C a n a -

d i a n a r t i l l e r y commander, anti commander o f t n e Vaga i i i v c r

f o r c e , infornied Colonel G r a h m , t h e B r i t i s h cocimander at Shenk u r s k , t h r t he :ias

a u t h o r i z e d t o abandon Shenkurslc i m m e d i a t e l g .

Graham o r d e r e d t h e e v a c u a t i o n t o b e & i n a t m i d n i g h t , 2 4 January.


The o r d e r d i r e c t e d e a c h i n d i v i d u a l

ev2.cuate o n l y :./hat

h e c o u l d c a r r y on h i s p e r s o n .

A l l equipnent, suy,plies, r n t i o n s ,

and h o r s e s were t o b e l e f t b e h i n d , unharmed.

To destroy t h e s e

i t e m s c;iould o n l y a l e r t t h e enemy o f t h e g e n d i n g e v a c u a t i o n , The B r i t i s h a l s o o r d e r e d t h e C a n a d i a n s t o l e a v e t h e i r zuns and t h e Americans t o abandon t h e i r -xounded, b o t h b e i n g t o o


d i f f i c u l t t o c n r r y o u t under t h e c i r c u n s t m c e s .
30th the Ca-

n a d i a n s mc! Americans d i s o b e y e d t h e o r d e r .
A t miclni,ght t h e column moved o u t on a sinall lo,&n,~

trail

a v o i d i n g t h e main r o a d headin;! t h e enemy.

n o r t h , :ihich had been c u t by


AlliPC;

S h o r t l y a f t e r d e p a r t i n g , t v o comixmies o f

Russians d e s e r t e d t o t h e enemy, b u t a p p a r e n t l y d i d n o t b e t r a y
the evacuation.

L i e u t e n a n t ;.lead, a member o f t h e r e n r ;uard

explains:
83

Hour a f t e r h o u r !.re f l o u n d e r e d and s t r u g z l e d t h r o u g h t h e snolvr m d b i t t e r c o l d . The a r t i l l e r y m d h o r s e s ahead o f u s had c u t t h e t r a i l i n t o a net:.iorl; o f h o l e s , s l i d e s , a i d d a > g e r o u s p i t f a l l s r e n d e r i n g o u r f o o t i n g s o u n c e r t a i n and t r e a c h e r o u s t h a t t h e wonder i s t h a t -we e v e r succeeded i n r e g a i n i n g t h e r i v e r t r a . i l a l i v e . A t this t i m e !.re were all ,wearing t h e S h a c k l e t o n b o o t , a b o o t designee', by S i r E r n e s t Shackl e t o n of A n t a r c t i c farr,e, arld :.iho :.;as one o f t h e a d v i s o r y staff i n Archangel. T h i s b o o t , which was w a r m and c o m f o r t a b l e f o r one remaining stationary, , :!as v e r y i m p r a c t i c a b l e a n i w e l l n i g h u s e l e s s for m a r c h i n z . .Some of t h e men u n a b l e t o l o n g e r c o n t i n u e t h e n a r c h c a s t away t h e i r b o o t s and k e p t g o i n g i n t h e i r stocici n g f e e t , . .:./ith t h e r e s u l t t h a t on t h e fOllOwiiig day many were s u f f e r i n g from s e v e r e l y f r o s t b i t t e n feet.50

..

..

A t 1700 h o u r s on 25 J v l u a r y t h e column a r r i v e d a t Sheg-

o v a r i , a p p r o x i m a t e l y 2 0 m i l e s t o t h e n o r t h , where two p l a t o o n s

of " C " and '9'' Companies, 3 3 9 t h I n f a n t r y were w a i t i n g .

These

p l a t o o n s c o n s t i t u t e d t h e g a r r i s o n a t S h e g o v a r i and had been a t t a c k e d by a n enemy f o r c e on 21 J a n u a r y i n m a t t e m p t t o c u t t h e A l l i e d l i n e of communication. The enemy 'was d r i v e n o f f , Immediately a f t e r t h e

d e s p i t e heavy l o s s e s t o t h e Americans.

A l l i e d column a r r i v e d a t S h e g o v a r i t h e enemy a g a i n a t t a c k e d .

The C a n a d i a n s , who had l o s t f o u r o f t h e i r s i x g u n s d u r i n g t h e r e t r e a t , t u r n e d t h e r e m a i n i n g two on t h e enemy and s t o p p e d t h e assault.


A t dawn on 26 J a n u a r y t h e column c r o s s e d t h e

Vaga a n d b u r n e d S h e g o v a r i as t h e y d e p a r t e d . Cudahy w r o t e ,

L i e u t e n a n t John

.., "Shegovari

!7as added t o t h e sum o f R u s s i a n

v i l l a g e s f e d t o t h e fires o f t h e A l l i e d c a u s e . . . . ' '

51

From S h e g o v a r i t h e A l l i e s w i t h d r e w t o V i s t a v k a , a b o u t f i v e m i l e s s o u t h o f K i t s a and n e a r l y t h i r t y - f i v e m i l e s from


84

Dvina Force H e a dqu art ers a t S e r e z n i k .

The A.llies dug i n a t

Vistavlca and h e l d o f f numerous enemy i n f a n t r y and a r t i l l e r y

a t t a c k s u n t i l 9 X a r c h , 1 9 1 9 , ?when ne'v d e f e n s i v e p o s i t i o n s were e s t a b l i s h e d at !<itsa. The A l l i e d p l a n was t o h o l d o f f t h e

enemy on t h e Vaga as f a r s o u t h as p o s s i b l e u n t i l t h e s p r i n g thaw c m e i n A p r i l , and t h e n rrithdraiv t o A r c h a n g e l , b u r n i n z e v e r y t h i n g i n t h e i r wake. 5 2


The p e r i o d from iinrch u n t i l t h e

d e p a r t u r e o f t h e Americ2.n t r o o p s i n J u n e vas kno:.in as t h e spring defensive.

O 17 April 3 r i g a d i e r G e n e r a l ! i i l d s P . R i c h a r d s o n E r r i v e d n

i n A r c h a n g e l t o t a k e conmand o f a l l American f o r c e s i n :!orth R u s s i a and s u p e r v i s e t h e i r e v a c u a t i o n . R i c h a r d s o n !lad s e r v e d

i n A l a s k a and :;/as b e s t knoirn f o r his c o n s t r u c t i o n o f t h e "Eicha r d s o n I-Iighway"

Along w i t h G e n e r a l Iiicharcison c a m . t h i r t y -

f i v e o f f i c e r s and 265 e n l i s t e d men o f a railroad company t o

a s s i s t i n t h e t r a n s p o r t o f American f o r c e s .
The d e c i s i o n t o w i t h d r a w American f o r c e s T a a r e s u l t o f ws

t a l k s t h a t began i n J a n u a r y .

One o f t h e f i r s t items discussec':

a t t h e p e a c e c o n T e r e n c e i n P a r i s was t h e problem o f t h e Russian


intervention.
iIarshal Foch p r o p o s e d t h a t an A l l i e d f o r c e ,

com-

p o s e d p r i m a r i l y o f A m e r i c a n s , march on Liosco~w and d e f e a t t h e

B o l s h e v i k s once and for a l l . 5 3

1Vlilson responded t o F o c h ' s 2 r o -

p o s a l by o f f e r i n g his o p i n i o n t h a t S o l s h e v i s m c o u l d n o t be b r o u g h t u n d e r c o n t r o l by f o r c e .

On 2 2 J a n u a r y :.lilson i n v i t e d

a l l t h e i n t e r e s t e c l p a r t i e s t o a c o n f e r e n c e at P r i n l c i p o , on t h e
85

S e a o f Xarmora n e a r T u r k e y ,

!./ilson hoped t h a t t h e c o n f e r e n c e

would undo 3 o l s h e v i I c c r e d i b i l i t y a n d g i v e t h e p o l i t i c a l proc e s s i n R u s s i a a n o p p o r t u n i t y t o emerge. The o n l y problem

was t h a t t h e E o l s h e v i k s were t h e o n l y R u s s i a n s t o a c c e p t t h e
invitation. The p e a c e t a l k s ground t o a h a l t i n F e b r u a r y when t h e
B r i t i s h Prime I . ! i n i s t e r Lloyd George d e g a r t e d for London t o

d e a l w i t h c i v i l strikes following the E n g l i s h g e n e r a l e l e c t i o n , Clemenceau 'vas s h o t and wounded i n a n a s s a s s i n a t i o n a t t e m p t , and b!ilson returned t o the United S t a t e s . Enroute

t o America !./ilson h e l d a m e e t i n g w i t h Ambassador F r a n c i s who


was a l s o r e t u r n i n g t o America foll.ovring s u r g e r y i n E n g l a n d .

F r a n c i s d e t a i l e d h i s p l a n f o r an A l l i e d i n t e r v e n t i o n t h a t would d e c i s i v e l y d e f e a t t h e B o l s h e v i k s . Francis describes

t h e meeting w i t h t h e P r e s i d e n t i n h i s p a p e r s :

I o u t l i n e d my recommendation a b o u t R u s s i a t o him. I-Ie r e p l i e d t h a t s e n d i n g American s o l d i e r s t o R u s s i a a f t e r t h e a r m i s t i c e had been s i g n e d would be v e r y u n p o p u l a r i n America. I ventured t o d i f f e r w i t h him; I e x p r e s s e d t h e o p i n i o i i t h a t many o f t h e 2 , 0 0 0 , 0 0 0 s o l d i e r s he had i n Europe were d i s a p p o i n t e d t h a t t h e a r m i s t i c e xas s i g n e d b e f o r e t h e y c o u l d engage i n a b a t t l e . I said ' y o u c o u l d g e t 50,000 v o l u n t e e r s o u t o f t h e
2 , 0 0 0 , 0 0 0 of American s o l d i e r s ~ V J 1rouI.d b e
~ O g l a d t o go t o R u s s i a . . . . I54
':iilson t o l d F r a n c i s he had d i s c u s s e d h i s recomnendetion 7;rith Lloyd George and Clemenceau and t h e y b o t h indica.t,ed i f o r d e r e d t o R u s s i a , t h e B r i t i s h and F r e n c h s o l d i e r s would r e f u s e t o go or m u t i n y .
A s a r e s u l t o f grorwing p r e s s u r e f r o m t h e Congress and h i s
8,5

ovn assessment o f t h e s i t u a t i o n , 'Yilsor. x i r e d S e c r e t e r y o f

;Jar D z k e r , on 16 F e b r u a r y , t o r e c a l l t h e American .troo?s f r o n


i!orth Russia. On 18 F e b r u a r y S a k e r , i n t h e i:!evr York Times,

e x p l a i n e d t h a t t h e d i s p a t c h o f 7 2 0 v o l u n t e e r s for r a i l r o a d d u t y i n Russia was t o "assure g r e a t e r safet:r

for J m e r i c a n

f o r c e s and f a c i l i t a t e t h e prompt ~ ~ ~ i - t h c l r a v of . lt r o o p s i n ?!orth i~

Russia a t t h e e a r l i e s t o p p o r t u n i t y . t h a t vieather c o n d i t i o n s i n
the spring permit. C h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y , t h e American t r o o p s

l e a r n e d a b o u t t h e v i t h d r a m . 1 p l a n s throug!i ,the ne:ispapers r a t h e r t h a n from t h e i r commandin;: o f f i c e r .


T h e !!ar

Denartment

f a i l e d t o inform Colonel S t e v a r t o f t h e d e c i s i o n .

Eighteen days p r i o r t o t h e a r r i v a l o f General Richardson

an a l l e g e d m u t i n y o c c u r r e d i n t h e ranks o f A n e r i c a n f o r c e s ,
p e r h a p s e v i d e n c i n g t h e i r d e c l i n i n g morale,
O n 30 K a r c h ,

1919,

"I" Company, 339th I n f a n t r y , commanded by C a p t a i n :-Iorz,tio G .

Yinslovi was p r e p a r i n g t o move from Smolny Z a r r a c k s i n Archa n g e l t o t h e Rai1wa:r Front. There had been some d i s c o n t e n t
Iiiail

among t h e t r o o p s b e c a u s e o f d e l a y s i n

s e r v i c e and t h e

r e c e n t d i v i s i o n o f t h e coispany as a r e s u l t o f e. f i r e i n t h e i r barracks.

n! The company was o r d e r e d t o pack t h e i r equipment a: loac!


t h e i r s l e i g h s i n p r e p a r a t i o n f o r t h e novement t o t h e f r o n t . The f i r s t s e r g e a n t and s e n i o r p l a t o o n l e n d e r n o t e d a c e r t a i n d i l a t o r i n e s s i n t h e s o l d i e r s r o u t i n e an< o v e r h e a r d a n u n j c r

o f men c o n p l a i n i n g a b o u t h a v i n g t o 2 0 t o t h e f i z h t i n g f r o n t
$7

While R u s s i a n t r o o p s remained i n A r c h a n g e l and d r i l l e d . Capt a i n Winslow a r r i v e d , l i s t e n e d t o t h e g r i e v a n c e s , and t h e n c a l l e d C o l o n e l S t e w a r t t o i n f o r m h i m o f t h e problem. R e g i m e n t a l Commander i m m e d i a t e l y h e l d a m e e t i n g a t t h e


w i t h t h e members o f
I1I"

The
Y.M.C.A.

Company where he read them The A r t i -

c l e s o f War, i n f o r m e d them o f t h e c u r r e n t m i l i t a r y s i t u a t i o n i n N o r t h R u s s i a , d i s p e l l e d all rumors, and answered any q u e s t i o n s posed t o h i m .


Whether i t was t h e A r t i c l e s o f I a or Yr

S t e w a r t ' s s p e e c h t h a t c o n v i n c e d t h e t r o o p s t o move o u t for t h e f r o n t is n o t recorded. R e g a r d l e s s , f o l l o w i n g t h e m e e t i n g , "I"

Company b o a r d e d t h e t r a i n s f o r t h e Railway F r o n t .
T h e f o l l o v i i n g d a y , 31 Elarch, t h e a r i t i s h r e l e a s e d a c a b l e

i n London w i t h t h e s t o r y o f an a l l e g e d m u t i n y of American troops i n North Russia.


The B r i t i s h ':Jar O f f i c e u r g e d men t o

v o l u n t e e r f o r d u t y i n N o r t h R u s s i a where i t was a l l e g e d t h a t t h e i r E n g l i s h comrades had been l e f t u n s u p p o r t e d by t h e m u t i n o u s Americans. 56 There f o l l o w e d an immediate i n v e s t i g a t i o n by t h e A c t i n g I n s p e c t o r G e n e r a l , American F o r c e s i n N o r t h R u s s i a . q u i r y produced t h e f o l l o w i n g f i n d i n g s : The c o n c l u s i o n s o f t h e i n s p e c t o r 'were t h a t from s u c h e v i d e n c e as c o u l d be o b t a i n e d t h e a l l e g e d mutiny was n o t h i n g l i k e as s e r i o u s as had been r e p o r t e d , b u t t h a t i t was o f s u c h a n a t u r e t h a t i t c o u l d have been h a n d l e d by a company o f f i c e r o f f o r c e . The i n s p e c t o r recoc!ii,ended t o t h e Commanding G e n e r a l , American F o r c e s , ;forth R u s s i a , t h a t t h e m a t t e r b e dropped and c o n s i d e r close^!.^^ C o l o n e l Stelwart s t a t e d t o t h e p r e s s , r,-,on his a r r i v a l i n t h e United S t a t e s t h e folloiving J u l y :
88
H i s in-

I dic? not have t o t a k e any c1iscii;linary a c t i o n a g a i n s t e i t h e r an o f f i c e r or s o l d i e r o f t h e reniment i n c o n n e c t i o n :.rith the m a t t e r , s o you m a y Judge t h a t t h e r e p o r t s t h a t have agpeared have been v e r y , v e r y g r e a t l y e x a g g e r a t e d . Every s o l d i e r connected w i t h t h e i n c i d e n t perforiried h i s d u t y as a s o l d i e r . And as fa.r as I concerned, I t h i n k t h e m a t t e r should be c l o s e d .

The Americans :./ere not- t h e o n l y Allieci t r o o p s accused o f mutinous b e h a v i o r ,

I n February

b a t t a l i o n o f Yorltshire3 Gen-

r e f u s e d t o r e l i e v e an A%?rican unit on t h e Onega F r o n t ,

eral I r o n s i d e personally i n t e r v e n e d a n d conduc-Led t h e c o u r t nartial of t h e trio S r i t i s h s e r g e a n t s who led t h e mu.ting.


s i d e s e n t e n c e d t h e n t o be s h o t b u t t h e i r s e n t e n c e s !!ere

Ironcon-

muted t o l i f e i n p r i s o n m e n t because of s e c r e t i n s t r u c t i o n s f r o n
t h e King, f o r b i d d i n g t h e d e a t h penalty, The 23.s'~ French Col-

onial. E a t t a l i o n r e f u s e d on z e v e r a l o c c a s i o n s t o r e t u r n to t h e

front, basing t h e i r a c t i o n s on t h e l a c k o f a formal d e c l a r a t i o n o f war a g a i n s t t h e S o v i e t s . Even t h e Poles refused t o


59

f i g l i t when t h e S r i t i s h j a i l e d t h e i r p r i e s t .

I n l a t e A p r i l t h e 3rd IIorth R u s s i m R i f l e Regii:lent r e l i e v e d


the Americans a t T o u l g a s .

Before t h e Americans a r r i v e d j a c k

i n Archangel, on 25 A p r i l , t h e iiussians had murdered t h e i r o f f i c e r s , and d e f e c t e d t o t h e Eeds, Ironside put together a

f o r c e o f 3 r i t i s h i n f a n t r y and C a n a d i a a r t i l l e r y and re.toolc


Toulgas i n 1.iay. effort
7i . ; as

For a l l p r a c t i c a l p u r p o s e s the c o a l i - t i o n

f i n i s h e d and t h e '?Tar i n !:or-th R u s s i a h t hecorne a a!

Rritish affair.

The f i r s t .Americans d e p a r t e d i n :lay alon::

..

w i t h t!ie Yyench.
89

A s e c o n d ~ i - o u pof y a n k s enbar!ied on 3 June f o l l o w e d b y the

C a n a d i a n s on 11 J u n e anc! the remainin.2 American combat troo2,s on 1 6 and 27 J u n e . l e f t on 2 3 A u g u s t . Senei-a1 R i c h a r d s o n and h i s h e a d q u a r t e r s The & i e r i c a n s had s u f f e r e d 109 k i l l e d i n

a c t i o n ; 35 died as a r e s u l t o f :.iounds suffereci in e c t i o n ; 10C d i e d as a r e s u l t of a c c i d e n t s o r d i s e a s e ; and 305 were :,iounde6. The 3ritisii x e r e t o have one more o p p o r t u n i t y t o offencl t h e i r American A l l i e s . ';:hen t h e c!oug:?boys a r r i v e d i n F r m c e
SO

and a t t e m p t e d t o cash i n t h e i r E n g l i s h pounds s t e r l i n g t h e y

found that t h e r a t e of exchange a t i.!hich they had b e e n p a i d


was o n l y a p p l i c a b l e i n S o r t h Russia..

Consequently, the troops

of the P!orth R u s s i a n E x p e d i t i o n a r y F o r c e r e c e i v c c : feyver dol-

lars t h a n t h e i i - f e l l o w s o l d i e r s :,:ho

had f o u g h t i n F r a n c e a d

had b e e n p a i d i n f m e r i c m o r F r e n c h c u r r e n c y . 61

90

NOTES

1.
2.
3.

Cudahy, O p. C i t . ,

PI. 41.
Pg. 157.

I4oore, Head, Jahns, Op. C i t . ,


CI:dahy, Op. C i t . ,
Pg.

159, 47,

4. G o l d h u r s t , Op. C i t . ,

Pg. 1 0 2 .
Pg. 2 1 .

5.
6.

Moore, I.Iead, J a h n s , Op. C i t . ,


Ibid.,

Pg. 2 1 .
Cit.,

7.

Cudahy, O p .

Pg. 89.

8.
9.

H a l l i d a y , Op. C i t . ,

Pg. 53.

Moore, :,lead, J a h n s , Op. C i t . ,P<T. 2 4 .


Pg. 90.

1 0 . Cudahy, Op. C i t . ,

11. Stewart, Op. C i t . , Vologda R a i l e a y O p e r a t i o n .


12.

Noore, Mead, J a h n s , Op. C i t . ,

P g . 2G.

13. I b i d . ,
14. I b i d . ,

Pg. 2G.
Pg. 2 8 . Bolshieozerkie.

1 5 . Stewart, O p , C i t . ,

16. I b i d .
1 7 . Noore, Nead, Jahns, Op. C i t . ,
18. I b i d . Pg. 1 9 2 .

Pg. 1 9 0 .

1 9 . S t e w a r t , Op, C i t
20. G o l d h u r s t , Op.

., B o l s h i e o z e r k i e .
?g.

cit.,

107.
Pg.

-_ 21. hoore, i I e a d , J a h n s , O p . C i t . ,
22. 23.

33-34.

I r o n s i d e , Op. C i t . ,

Pg. 34-35.
P g . 34.

Burness, Op. C i t . ,

24. Cudahy, Op. C i t . , 2 5 . S t e w a r t , Op. C i t . ,


26.

Pg. 1 7 5 .
Cables.

Francis, O p . C i t . ,

Pg. 274.
91

XOTES

27.

Cudahy, Op. C i t . ,

Dg.

141.
Pg. 105.

28.
29.

?:Ioore, !.!cad, J a h n s , OF. C i t . ,


I b i d . , Pg. 105-105. Cudahy, Op. C i t . , I b i d . , Pg. 155.

30. 31. 32. 33. 34 * 35. 36. 37. 38. 39,

? g . 145-145.

i.loore, !:!cad, J a h n s , Op. C i t . ,


Cudahy, Op. C i t . ,

Pg. 103-109.

Pg. 150.

Moore, Mead, J a h n s , On. C i t . , Pg. 1 0 9 .


I b i c l . , Pg. 114. Cudahy, Op, C i t . , I b i d . , Pg.
76,

Pg.

76.

S t e c r a r t , 02. C i t , . R e p o r t of K u t i n y of Anglo-Slavic L e g i o n .

Xoore, ;.lead, J a h n s , Op. C i t . ,

Pg. 179.

40. I b i d . , Pg. 45.


41. 42, 43.
Ibid.,

Pg. 45.
Pg.

G o l d h u r s t , op. C i t . , I b i d . Pg. 169.

168.

44. S t e w a r t , Op. C i t . , 45. 46. 47.


Ibic!,

Shenkursk.

Shenlcurslc.

i i o o r e , !.Iead, J a h n s , Op. C i t , ,

Pz. 136.

G o l d l i u r s t , op. C i t . ,

Pg. 174.
Pg. 139.

48

:.Ioore, I.;eacl, Jalins, O p . C i t . ,


Tg.

4 , Ihid., 0.

142.

50. 51. 52.

Ibid.,

Pg. 143.

Cu?ahy, 012. C i t . ,
.. ; . o o r e , i.iea:!,

PZ. 186.

Jahns

Op. C i t . ,

? g . 3.49.

9%

PiOTZS

53.

G o l d h u r s t , 02. Cit.

?z. 1 Z O .

54. 55.
56.

F r a n c 5 s , Oi;. Cit., I g . 310.


The !!ew Yorlc Times, F e b r u a r y 1 9 , 1919,

Xoore, :Iea.d, J a l i n s , O p . Cit., Pg. 2 2 5 .


Ibid, , p , 227. I'sid., PJ. 225-22F.
G o l d h u r s t , Op. Cit., P y . 196.
..

57.

58.
59 a
60.

l.!arch, 03. Cit., P g . 150.

61.

G o l d h u r s t , Op. Cit., P.2. 2 1 1 .

93

Even b e f o r e t h e d e p a r t u r e o f t h e Ai:?ericans, French, aid


C a n a d i a z s , t h e 3 r i t i s h 7;;ere c o n s i d e r i n g t h e e v a c u a t i o n o f i : o r t h

Russia.

On 4 A p r i l General I r o n s i d e receivecl a ca5le f r o n t h e

Va.r O f f i c e s t a t i n g :
A l t h o ~ i g hyou a r e c u t o f f from your c o u n t r y by the i c e , you are n o t fo~got%en. '.:hatever n a y be t h e p l a n o f a c t i o n tovrerds 3 u s s i a deci::ec?

on by The League o f i.!ations, we i n t e n d t o rel i e v e you a t t h e e a r l i e s t p o s s i b l e moment, and e i t h e r b r i n g t h e 1whole f o r c e a!.ray or re!Jlace you by fresh men. You xi11 be baci; home in time t o s e e t h i s y e a r ' s h a r v e s t g a t h e r e d i n , i f you con i n ue t o d i s p l a y t h a t undaunter?. S r i t i s h s p i r i t . .

. .E'

Two s g e c i a l c o n t i n g e n t s o f a.bout 5 , 0 0 0 men e a c h were b e i n g p r e p a r e d i n England t o r e i n f o r c e t h e 3 r i t i s h t r o o r ; s onee

the o t h e r R l l i e n d e p E r t e d .

Each o f t h e s e b r i g a d e s i z e u n i t s

was composed o f two b a t t a l i o n s o f ' i n f a n t r y , one mac:iine gun


battalion, one b a t t e r y of f i e l d a r t i l l e r y , two light t r e n c h

n o r t a r b a t t e r i e s , one f i e l d e n g i n e e r congany, one s i g n a l


pay,
D a r t

a n d one h o r s e t r a n s u o r t

conpcny.
L

COG-

T h e u n i t s :.rere t o 5e-

f o r Archangel on 1 and 15 Kay.

A General S t z T f re301-t

to

General Henry Y i l s o n , Chief of t h e I m p e r i a l General S t z f f ,

s tat e d :
D i f f i c u l t y has been e x p e r i e n c e d i n o b t a i n i n g 6o:i:e of the p e r s o n n e l , e s p e c i a l l y i n f a n t r y , ! ? o y ~ 2A m y S e r v i c e Corps a n d Royal Army Xeciical Corps. I t is hoped 'notiever, t h a t t h e ? u b l i c qige2.1 f o r v o l Lmteers nade on the 9 t h of April ? r i l l produce t h e nuizbers r e q u i r e d f o r b o t h c o n t i n g e n t s . 3

Only e i g h t C.ays b e f o r e the p u b l i c c a l l f o r v o l u n t e e r s t o j o i n

a PTorth "Lissim r e l i e f force, the 3 r i t i s h T r e s s r e ; m r t e i t h e


94

allegeci m t i n y o f American t r o o r s

E t

iirchang;el.

The r e r i u e s t

f o r v o l u n t e e r s b r o u g h t i n v e t e r a n s o f '.-e 'Vestern Front, r z : L,, r e c r u i t s , and former CanadiLq mci A u s t r a l i a n s o l d i e r s .


m.

Lnese

t r o o p s were o r g a n i z e d and t r a n s p o r t e d t o Archaqgel V;here tney


q u i c k l y deployed on t h e Dvina a i d Railway F r o n t s .

O n 7 July I r o n s i c l e ' s l a s t hope f o r a n e f r e c t i v e R u s s i a n


f i g h t i n g . f o r c e Taied away when a b a t t a l i o n o f former aols!levik p r i s o n e r s and d e s e r t e r s t u r n e d on t h e i r Z r i t i s h o f f i c e r s 2nd k i l l e d them. I r o n s i d e ,wrote l a t e r , "The mutiny.. .had caused me

a g r e a t e r shock t h a n I l i k e d t o a d m i t , even i n m i n n e r n o s t y
thoughts.
I no';; f e l t a d i s t i n c t urge t o e : c t r i c a t e myself a n d m y

t r o o p s as q u i c k l y as I c o u l d . ,,4 On 15 J u l y t h e E r i t i s h Genoral S t a f f Q r o p o s e u a t i m e t a b l e . f o r t h e e v a c u a t i o n o f t h e e n t i r e Archangel Force, One. b r i g a d e

would d e p a r t 21 September, a n o t h e r on 2 1 O c t o b e r , and a l l Z r i t i s h s h i p p i n g !/auld be c l e a r of t h e :;'bite Sea by 1 2Jovember.

General-Lronside f e l t t h a t t h e conduct of t h e e v a c u a t i o n c o u l d be f a c i l i t a t e d b y B r i t i s h announcernent o f h e r p o s t eva.cuation policy.


If t h e B r i t i s h planned t o c o n t i n u e s u p p o r t o f t h e 10-

c a l government t h e n large amounts of f o o d a n d . m a t e r i e 1 would be needed.


T h i s show of c o n t i n u e d s u p p o r t would r e a s s u r e t h e

l o c a l Russians a n d reduce t h e chance o f i n t e r f e r e n c e by t h e S o v i e t s or p r o - A l l i e d Russian f o r c e s .


I f t h e government i n -

tended t o d i s c o n t i n u e s u p p o r t t o North R u s s i a t h a n large numb e r s of a n t i - B o l s h e v i k s would r e q u i r e e v a c u a t i o n a l o n g :.:it;? the B r i t i s h troops. I n t h i s c a s e i t was n o t l i k e l y t h a t t h e


5
95

B r i t i s h rvould be allowed t o vfithdra;.f unmolested.

On

August I r o n s i d e s u b n i t t e c ' . h i s p l a n o f e v a c u e t i o n

t o t h e IVar O f f i c e , I t c a l l e d f o r t h e e m b a r k a t i o n o f 2 6 , 5 0 0 s o l d i e r s and c i v i l i a n s i n f i v e s e p a r a t e movements between 20 August ancl 2 1 Septen!;er. 6 On 10 A u g u s t , t o g a i n t i m e for t h e

e v a c u a t i o n , I r o n s i d e n o u n t e d h i s l a s t o f f e n s i v e w i t h t h e nerrly arrived relief f o r c e .


::!ith a r t i l l e r y s u p p o r t and a n o b s e r v a -

t i o n b a l l o o n t o a s s i s t i n t h e c o n t r o l o f t h e b a t t l e , an a l l
E r i t i s h b r i g a d e a t t a c k e d a n enemy f o r c e on t h e D v i n a , n e a r

Seltso.

The s u r p r i s e a s s a u l t , t h e f i r s t t o use mustard gas

i n ? I o r t h R u s s i a , r e s u l t e d i n two t h o u s a n d enemy p r i s o n e r s , e i g h t e e n f i e l d g u n s c a p t u r e d , and l a r g e amounts o f mimunition and s u p p l i e s d e s t r o y e d .

became o b v i o u s t o G e n e r a l I r o n s i d e t h a t t a e S o v i e t s c o u l d no-t h i n d e r the Uritish : r i t h d r a ! ~ i l . On 2 0 September E r i t i s h t r o o 9 s began b o a r d i n 2 t h e transp o r t s f o r hone.

The a t t a c k was s o s u c c e s s f u l t h a t i t

The following day I r o n s i d e s u p e r v i s e d t h e


The A l l i e d Rus-

d e s t r u c t i o n of B r i t i s h m i l i t a r y e q u i p m e n t .

sian commander begged t h e B r i t i s h cornnander t o allor.? h i m to


keep t h e m a t e r i e l b u t I r o n s i d e was s u r e i f he d i d n o t d e s t r o y

t h e equipment i t avould f a l l i n t o t h e hands o f t h e S o v i e t s . On 27 September G e n e r a l I r o n s i d e and t h e l a s t t r a n s p o r t cleparted Archangel.


3 r i t i s h c a s u a l t i e s for t h e e n t i r e o p e r a -

t i o n nurnberecl 1 9 F o f f i c e r s and 677 e n l i s t e d men k i l l e d o r rrounded. 3

The X o r t h R u s s i a n i n t e r v e n t i o n i s a c l a s s i c exani-,le of
$6

v h a t happens :;;hen p o l i t i c a m and aenerals c1i;ell on t h e c e r t a i n t y o f v i c t o r y ra.i;her thnn t h e p o s s i S i l i t y o f d e f e 2 . t . ? r e s i d e n t ':ilson v i s u a l i z e d American t r o o p s g m r d i n g the s u g p i y

d e p o t s a t A r c h a n g e l and l i v i n g off t h e R u s s i a n c o u n t r y s i d e .

C h u r c h i l l t h o u g h t t h e Czechs would na!:e

quic!:

ivorl: o f t h e Dol-

slheviks and e f f e c t a r a p i d l i n k un w i t h .tile A l l i e d f o r c e s .

G e n e r a l P o o l e e n v i s i o n e d d i s c i p l i n e d A l l i e d t r o o p s rzarchizz on Xoscolw snc: d i s p e r s i n g t h e Red r a b b l e . Gene:-a1 I r o n s i d e haci a. h c t t e r g r a s p o f t h e m i l i t a r y s i t u a t i o n i n :!orth tion. R u s s i a t h a n any o t h e r c h a r a c t e r i n t h e i n t e r v e n remind some

H i s d e s c r i p t i o n of R u s s i a ' s v a s t n e s s r:i$t

h e r i c a n s o f t h e i r most r e c e n t e x p e r i e n c e Iwith m i l i t a r y o p e r a t i o n s i n remote a n d h o s t i l e l a n d s :


To m e i t as l i k e a g r e a t s t i c k y p u d d i n g , a
hand c o u l d b e t h r u s t e a s i l y i n t o i t . Every-
where i t z z v e way so l o n g as t h e t h r u s t con-
t i n u e d . Immediately the t h r u s t ceased t h e
mass began t o c l o s e s t e a d i l y on t h e h a n d ,
?wrist, and a . m . T h e r e t h e n came a t e r r i b l e
f e a r t h a t t h e hand c o u l d n e v e r b e ' v i i t h d r a v m .

Segarding the f l a v r s i n t h e A l l i e d c o a l i t i o n e f f o r t s , many c o u l d h e e x p l a i n e d by t h e f a i l u r e o f t h e p l a y e r s t o acih e r e t o The P r i n c i p l e s o f The A l l i e s cbmmitted i n a d e -

-:Field ;Ianual ( R I ) 100-1, t h e Army, s t a t e s : "The P r i n c i g l e s o f \Jar are f u n d m e n t a l c o n c e p t s , t h e r e s u l t o f c e n t u r i e s of t r a d i t i o n and e x p e r i e n c e . These p r i n c i p l e s a r e i n t e r - r c l a t e d a n d , d e p e n d i n g on t h e c i r c u m s t a n c e s , n a y t e n d t o r e i n f o r c e one a n o t h e r , or t o be i n c o n f l i c t . C o n s e q u e n t l y , t h e e m p h a s i s on any p a r t i c u l a r p r i n c i p l e or g r o u p o f p r i n c i p l e s r : i l 1 v a r y w i t h the situation." The P r i n c i p l e s i n c l u d e : O b j e c t i v e , Offerisive, I.iass, Economy o f F o r c c , I:aneuver, U n i t y o f C o m a n d , S e c u r i t y , S u r p r i s e , and S i m p l i c i t y .
97

q u a t e f o r c e s , u n d e r e s t i m a t e d t h e enemy, f s i l e d t o d e f i n e t h e m i l i t a r y commitment, d i d n o t g e n e r a t e p o p u l a r R u s s i a n s u p p o r t , and had no s i n z l e d e f i n i t e o b j e c t i v e . Every m i l i t a r y o p e r a t i o n must have a c l e a r l y d e f i n e d , d e c i s i v e , and a t t a i n a b l e o b j e c t i v e . The A l l i e d i n t e r v e n t i o n

i n Piorth R u s s i a

had none.

The c o n c e p t o f t h e o b j e c t i v e must There i s

g o beyond p l a c e names l i k e Shenkurs!c a n d T o u l g a s .

also t h e need f o r a m o r a l o b j e c t i v e .

In Russia, the Allied


Unlike

s o l d i e r n e v e r f u l l y u n d e r s t o o d '::hy he vras f i g h t i n g .

t h e B r i t i s h a t ?,Ions, t h e F r e n c h a t Verdun, t h e Americans a t

Chateau-Thierry,

or f o r that m a t t e r , t h e S o v i e t s i n X o r t h

R u s s i a ; t h e i n d i v i d u a l t r o o p e r d i d n o t have a moral p u r p o s e i n h i s a c t i o n s o t h e r than personal s u r v i v a l .


and g e n e r a l s , i n t h e i r warn and c o m f o r t a b l e

The p o l i t i c i a n s

war rooms, f a i l e d

t o s e l e c t and c o o r d i n a t e s t r a t e g i c o r e t h i c a l o b j e c t i v e s f o r the military forces of t h e i r nations. Because o f t h e s i z e o f PJorth R u s s i a , t h e n a t u r e o f t h e t e r r a i n and enemy, t h e i n a d e q u a c y o f h i s own f o r c e s , and t h e
lack o f c l e a r p o l i t i c a l o b j e c t i v e s , G e n e r a l T o o l e ar,d l a t e r

G e n e r a l I r o n s i d e were u n a b l e t o p l a n , i n i t i a t e , and t o s u s t a i n offensive action. I n t h e i r a t t e m p t s t o assume t h e o f f e n s i v e , I n f e c t e d w i t h over-optimism,

they v i o l a t e d o t h e r p r i n c i p l e s .

P o o l e f a i l e d t o c o n c e n t r a t e h i s f o r c e s a t t h e c r i t i c a l times and p l a c e s f o r c o n c l u s i v e r e s u l t s . I n s t e a d , he c h o s e t o d i s -

p e r s e h i s u n i t s on s e v e r a l f r o n t s a n d a t t e m p t e d an advance on
t h e enemy from d i f f e r e n t d i r e c t i o n s a t t h e same t i m e . This
98

s t r a t e g y iiiight have Seen s u c c e s s f u l on a b a t t l e f i e l d Tvrhere maneuver and m o b i l i t y 'viere p o s s i b l e .

In t h e ~vioodsof Xort:?

R u s s i a , where d e c e ? t i o n mcl s u r p r i s e v e r e d i f f i c u l t t o ac!iieve, t h e p r i n c i p l e o f mass 'was paramount. Except at t h e p l a t o o n or company l e v e l , t h e A l l i e s i,Tnored t h e concept of c o n c e n t r a t i n g f o r c e s t o achieve combat s u p e r i o r i t y at t h e d e c i s i v e p o i n t . iUliec: u n i t s s p r e a d o u t

t o t h e e a s t , s o u t h , and west of Arc!iany:el, r a r e l y c o o r d i n a t e d t h e i r o p e r a t i o n s , a n d becane v u l n e r a b l e t o e n c i r c l e m e n t !jy t h e enemy.


T h i s c o n s t a n t t h r e a t fro::\ a l l s i d e s h a d a psycho-

l o g i c a l as w e l l as m a t e r i a l impack on t h e e f f e c t i v e n e s s of t h e A l l i e d s o l d i e r and his commanders. Econorny o f f o r c e was a p r i n c i p l e used repeatedly and s u c c e s s f u l l y by S o v i e t s b u t overlooked by t h e A l l i e s . A l l i e c Y o f f i c e r s could n o t understand V i h y t h e enemy,
. . ..

ilany

ryith

super-

ior nunbers and a r t i l l e r y , d i d n o t d r i v e t h e Allies into t h e


!:rhite Sea. mission. The S o v i e t s were m a s t e r s i n the'economny of f o r c e

Based on t h e i r m i l i t a r y and^ p o l i t i c a l e x p e r i e n c e ,
At
.. ...

t h e Bolsheviks d e a l t vrith t h e most s e r i o u s t h r e a t f i r s t . t h e t i n e of t h e FIorth Russian i n t e r v e n t i o n , t h e

soviets

irere

...
f a c e d w i t h a g r e a t e r menace from t h e ':Jiii,te Russian f o r c e s i n t h e s o u t h and ea.st t h a n frocl the A l l i e s i n Archasgel Trovince. Some m i g h t argue t h a t of al.1 t h e p r i n c i p l e s , u n i t y of command was s e r v e d b e s t .
True, the Allies d i d invest the

S r i t i s h commanders : . r i t i i a u t h o r i t y o v e r all of t h e m i l i t a r y

forces.

'?hat t h e 3 - 1 ~ l i sZ c n e r a l s f a i l e c l t o do : a coordinztie h ;s
'9
7

t h e a c t i o n o f all t h o s e f o r c e s t o ? i a r d s a common o b j e c t i v e . The r e l a t i o n s h i p s between t h e A l l i e s d i d n o t l e n d t h e m s e l v e s

t o a u n i f i e d command.

The i n a b i l i t y o f one command t o d i r e c t f o r c e i n a c o a l i t i o n e f f o r t was One

and c o n t r o l a m u l t i - n a t i o n a l

a d i r e c t r e s u l t of the diverse n a t i o n a l objectives. American o f f i c e r n o t e d :

There a r e r a c i a l d i f f e r e n c e s , r a c i a l p r e j u d i c e s
r a c i a l d i s p a r i t i e s , and r a c i a l a s p e r i t i e s t h a t
c a n n o t b e g a i n s a i d even u n d e r t h e i n f l u e n c e o f
m i l i t a r y d i s c i p l i n e , and e x p e r i e n c e has shown
t h a t s o l d i e r s y i e l d a more r e a d y o b e d i e n c e t o
l e a d e r s who s p e a k t h e i r own l a n g u a g e ; ung%rs t a n d
t h e philosophy of their d a i l y l i v e s , . . , .
The same o f f i c e r commented on t h e B r i t i s h f a i l u r e t o g a i n t h e r e s p e c t and a l l e g i a n c e o f t h e i r A l l i e s by s t a t i n g t h a t t h e i r ,

.. . m u d d l i n g ,

b l u n d e r i n g , and f u d d l i n g , t h e l a c k o f u n d e r -

s t a n d i n g , t h e b r u t a l a r r o g a n c e and c o l d c o n c e i t , and a p p a r e n t
h e a r t l e s s n e s s and want o f sympathy t h a t are f o r e v e r B r i t i s h ,
a l i e n a t e d t h e othe.r, m i l i t a r y f o r c e s .
I f t h e r e was one p r i n c i p l e chat t h e A l l i e s d i d f o l l o w
I

i t was s i m p l i c i t y , L a c k o f i n t e l l i g e n c e , i n a d e q u a c y o f f o r c e s ,
. and r e s t r .i c t i o n o f movement, f o r c e d t h e A l l i e s t o d e v i s e s i m -

p l e p 1 a n s . a n d methods o f o p e r a t i o n .

Added t o t h e s e r e s t r i c t i o n s

were l o n g l i n e s o f communications, p o o r t r a n s p o r t , l a c k o f f i r e s u p p o r t , and u n b e l i e v a b l y h a r s h weather c o n d i t i o n s . were o p e r a t i o n s orders m i s u n d e r s t o o d . Seldom

I t was more f r e q u e n t

t h a t i c ; o l a t e d commanders e i t h e r f a d l e d t o c a r r y o u t o r d e r s from h i g h e r h e a d q u a r t e r s or m o d i f i e d them f o r t h e i r own p u r poses,

1oc

O f a11 t h e s e i r f l p e r f e c t i o n s i n t h e A l l i e d c o a l i t i o n e f f o r - t ,

t h e w o r s t <was t h e f a i l u r e t o s y n c h r o n i z e t h e i r n a t i o n a l i n t e r e s t s i n t h e North R u s s i a n i n t e r v e n t i o n . Woodrow V i l s o n wanted

t o s e e a democratic Russia.

France wanted h e r war loans r e p a i d .

The B r i t i s h d e s i r e d t r a d e c o n c e s s i o n s and p r o t e c t i o n f o r h e r empire. These d i v e r g e n t p o l i t i c a l motives i n e v i t a b l y i n f l u e n c e d

t h e A l l i e d commanders i n t h e f i e l d and r e s u l t e d i n d i f f e r i n 2 and sometimes c o n f l i c t i n g m i l i t a r y approaches t o t h e problems f a c e d i n 'North R u s s i a . The l o n g range impact of t h e f a i l u r e o f a c o a l i t i o n war-

f a r e i n North R u s s i a i s d i f f i c u l t t o judge.

Unquestionably,

t h e e x p e d i t i o n e x p e r i e n c e s c o n t r i b u t e d t o some American d i s t r u s t and d i s l i k e o f t h e B r i t i s h .that c o n t i n u e d i n t o t h e f i r s t y e a r s o f t h e Seco'nd World War. The B r i t i s h contempt f o r A m e r '

---Lean m i 1i t a r y a ' ~ i t y li

was^

~ e i . ~ n - t ~ ~ r l y ~ o ~ f the--fcdcfiia b 1e fse;tby

c a p a c i t y o f t h e United S t a t e s t o produc'e'weapons a n d e s s e n -

t i a l war s u p p l i e s .

The c o a l i t i o n e f f o r t mounted d u r i n g t h e
.~ .

Second kJorld \Jar i s n o t h i n g s h o r t of a . m i r a c l e . b o n s i d e r i n g i t i n c l u d e d t h e same cast of c h a r a c t e r s as t h e Morth''Russian i n t e r v e n t i o n , a s c a n t t w e n t y - t h r e e y e a r s Later.'. '.The' c r u c i a l f a c t o r c o n t r i b u t i n g t o t h e t u r n a b o u t was t h e u n i t y of o b j e c t i v e s h a r e d by t h e A l l i e s i n t h e i r b a t t l e a g a i n s t Germany.
It

was t h i s v e r y element t h a t was m i s s i n g i n t h e p o l i t i c a l and


m i l i t a r y f a b r i c of t h e North Russian E x p e d i t i o n a r y Force. George F. ICennan s u g g e s t s t h a t t h e Cold "Jar began w i t h t h e A l l i e d i n t e r v e n t i o n i n North R u s s i a .

H e maintains that t h i s
101

i n c i d e n t was t h e cause t h a t t u r n e d t h e Coirmunist l e a d e r s awzy from t h e 'Yest and f o r c e d t h e witiidravral of o n e - s i x t h of t h e w o r l d ' s p o p u l a t i o n from t h e i n t e r n a t i o n a l p o l i t i c a l and economic s c e n e . l 2 O t h e r s have claimed t h a t A l l i e d a c t i o n s had l i t t l e impact on f u t u r e 5 o l s h e v i k p o l i c i e s . ':'hichever theory

one wishes t o a c c e p t , t h e f a c t s of t h e i n t e r v e n t i o n remain unchanged. The A l l i e d c o a l i t i o n e f f o r t s f a i l e d . They f a i l e d

because n a t i o n s w i t h clifferi.ng a n d d i s t i n g u i s h a b l e i n t e r e s t s
d i d n o t r e s o l v e t h e s e d i f f e r e n c e s b e f o r e engaging i n j o i n t

military operations.

The A l l i e s committed m i l i t a r y u n i t s t o

b a t t l e , w i t h o u t a common o b j e c t i v e and w i t h o u t a r e s o l u t i o n of n a t i o n a l d i f f e r e n c e s . These b a s i c flairs i n t h e c o a l i t i o n

e f f o r t contribu%ecl t o t h e f a i l u r e o f t h e A l l i e d E x p e d i t i o n t o North R u s s i a ,

102

NOTES

1. Great B r i t i a n , A r m y , O p . C i t . ,
2. I b i d . , Attached P a p e r G .

Attached Paper

F.

3 . Ibid.

4. I r o n s i d e , Op. C i t . ,
5.

Tg. 1 6 0 .

Great B r i t i a n , Army, Op. C i t . ,

A t t a c h e d P a p e r R.

6 . I b i d . , A t t a c h e d P a p e r U.

7 . B u r n e s s , Op. C i t . ,
8 . George E .

Pg. 34.

S t e w a r t , The White Armies o f Russia:

A Chronicle

of C o u n t e r r e v o l u t i o n and A l l i e d I n t e r v e n t i o n , I:ew Yoric,


1 9 3 3 , P g . 204. 9 . I r o n s i d e , Op. C i t . ,

Pg. 130.
74-75.

10. c u d a h y , Op. C i t . ,
11. I b i d . , Pg. 74.
1 2 . Kennan, Op. C i t . ,

Pg.

Pg. 470-472;-

103

BLBLIOGRAPHY

Canada, Unit H i s t o r y , IJorth R u s s i a n E x p e d i t i o n a r y F o r c e , 1 6 t h B r i g a d e , Canad2an F i e l d A r t i l l e r y , T o r o n t o , No d a t e . G r e a t B r i t i a n , Army, The E v a c u a t i o n of N o r t h R u s s i a , 1 9 1 9 , His N a j e s t y l s S t a t i o n a r y O f f i c e , London, 1920. George Evans S t e v r a r t , S tewa--\ r a p e r s , R e p o r t o f E x p e d i t i o n to t h e I4urmanslc C o a s t , S p e c i a l C o l l e c t i o n s , U n i t e d S t a t e s b i i l i t a r y Academy L i b r a r y , i!est P o i n t , IIew Yorlc. P a p e r s R e l a t i n g t o t h e F o r e i g n R e l a t i o n s o f The U n i t e d S t a t e s 1 9 1 8 , R u s s i a , U.S. Government P r i n t i n g O f f i c e , V a s h i n g t o n D . C . 1 9 3 2 , Vol. 11.

B OOKS

. .

Ray S t a n n a r d Baker, ?!oodrow Vlilson: L i f e and L e t t e r s , V o l . 8 : A r m i s t i c e , Mew Yorlc, Doubleday, D o r a , 1939.

. t e e s B?dlnyg~,~ I n t e r v e n t i o n , C i v i l lVar and Communism i n R u s s i a ,


~ ~

April-December 1 9 1 8 , Documents and ILaterials, B a l t i m o r e , J o h n s Hopkins P r e s s , 1936.


A. C h r o n i c l e r ( J o h n C u d a h y ) , A r c h a n g e l The American ;/ar !:/ith R u s s i a , C h i c a g o , A . C . McClurg & Co., 1924.

David R. . F r a n c i s , R u s s i a from t h e American Embassy, A p r i l !w 1916-November 1 9 1 8 , Pe York, S c r i b n e r s , 1 9 2 1 , R i c h a r d G o l d h u r s t , The H i d n i g h t !.la.r, New York, ~ ~ I c G r a w - l - I i l l ,1 973
E.M. H a l l i d a y , The I g n o r a n t A r m i e s , Ne7;r Y o r k , Award Boolcs, Ist E d i t i o n , 1964.

! . / i l l i a m Edmund Lord I r o n s i d e , A r c h a n g e l , 1918-1920, London, 1953.


George F. Kennan, Soviet-American R e l a t i o n s , 1917-1920, V o l . 11, The D e c i s i o n t o I n t e r v e n e , P r i n c e t o n g n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1958. P e y t o n C . Narch, The N a t i o n at 1932.
:jar,

Xevr Y o r k , Doubleday, D o r a n

104

H a j o r G e n e r a l S i r C, I k y n a r d , The i~iurmansk V e n t u r e , London, I-iodder and S t o u g h t o n , No date. C a p t . Joel R . Pioore, L i e u t . H a r r y U. iIead, L i e u t . L e v i s E . J a h n s , 3 3 9 t h U.S. I n f a n t r y , The :-!istory of the American E x p e d i t i o n F i g h t i n g the D o l s h e v i k i , Campaigning i n X o r t h R u s s i a , 1918-1919, D e t r o i t , P o l a r 3ear P u b l i s h i n g Co., 1 9 2 0 , F r e d e r i c k P a l m e r , Newton D . E a l t e r : Dodd, Mead, 0 Co., 1 9 3 1 . Americ at Y!ar,

Xevr Y o r k ,

J o h n S i l v e r l i g h t , The V i c t o r ' s D i l e m m a , N w 'fork, ' f e y b r i g h t a d e T a l l e r y , 1970.

George E . S t e w a r t , The :rhite A r m i e s of Z u s s i a : A C h r o n i c l e o f C o u n t e r r e v o l u t i o n and A l l i e d I n t e r v e n t i o n , ?rev1 Y o r l c , 1 9 3 3 .


Leonid I. Stra!chovs!cy , The O r i g i n s of American I n t e r v e n t i o n i n N o r t h R u s s i a , P r i n c e t o n U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1937. R i c h a r d K. U l l n a n , Anglo-Soviet R e l a t i o n s , 1917-1921, Vol. I : I n t e r v e n t i o n and The ]:Jar, P r i n c e t o n U n i v e r s i t y T r e s s , 1961.
J OURVALS

P e t e r B u r n e s s , The F o r g o t t e n !Jar i n Prorth R u s s i a , A u s t r a l i a n D e f e n s e J o u r n a l , 110. 2 2 , Xay/June 1 9 3 0 . .. P . Izacon, Lev;r N u t i n e r i e s Dans L e C o r p s E x p e d i t i o n n a i r e F r a i i c a i s en R u s s i e Du Kord, 1918-1919, Revuee.d' ; I - I ~ ~ t Q i r e . : ~ , l o n de t n e er Contcmporaine, V o L . XXIV, P a r i s , July+ep;19?7. ,

Leonid I . S t r a l t h o v s k y , The Canadian A r t i l l a r y . : B r i g a d e i n Y o r t h R u s s i a , 1918-1919, The Canadian N i s t o r i a l : . Revi.w;,U o l . XXXI::, 1 9 5 8 , The U n i v e r s i t y o f T o r o n t o P r e s s , T o r o n t o , Canada.

..

.. . . .

. ,. ~ . .

105