The 1904-5 Russo-Japanese War was hardly Russia’s finest military hour and its humbling at the hands of the rising Japanese set the scene for the 1905 revolution - a rehearsal for 1917. This is the story as its sub-title indicates of the war as seen by an outside observer - an Irish correspondent for the ‘New York Herald’ newspaper - (still in the hands of the legendary James Gordon Bennett - the man who sent Henry Morton Stanley to find Dr Livingstone) - who accompanied the Cossacks Russia’s fierce horse-soldiers under General Mischenko throughout the campaign. With more than a hint of ‘Boys Own Paper’ swagger McCullagh takes his readers through the war’s main battles from Mukden to the fall of Port Arthur. after which he and his Russian comrades fall into the hands of the victorious Japanese. The book concludes with an eerily accurate prophecy of coming Japanese supremacy in Asia - and also of their decline. ‘Success will bring satiety...time and wealth and factory servitude the great corroders of all martial virtue will gradually take the fine edge from off their valour’.
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