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Sir John Nixon, 1915. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Sir John Nixon, 1915.
Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

  • General Sir John Nixon is appointed Commander-in-Chief of British and Indian Forces in Mesopotamia
  • Allied naval forces attempt to secure a passage through the Narrows at the Dardanelles for a second time. Six British and four French battleships bombard Turkish defences on the shore destroying two of them. Minesweepers successfully clear a path in front of the fleet until the leading battleships reach a line of undetected mines. HMS Ocean, HMS Irresistible and the French warship Bouvet are sunk, with the loss of 620 French sailors on one vessel.
  • In Turkey March 18 is observed as Martyrs’ Day, in remembrance of Turkish soldiers fallen in action
  • The Leader reports that Australian troops at the military hospital in Mena are suffering from pneumonia and disease. Those in camp are battling boredom and are anxious to get to the front line:

Nurse King, daughter of Ald. and Mrs. King, of Orange, is at present engaged in the strenuous task of nursing our sick Tommies in Egypt. This estimable lady is attached to the military hospital at Mena, which is under the supervision of Colonel Surgeon N. R. Howse, V.C. There is a deal of sickness amongst the troops, mostly pneumonia cases, and Nurse King is attending to fourteen tents, each containing fourteen patients. She is in good health herself, which news will be received with pleasure by her legion of friends in Orange.

A private letter received in Orange from an artilleryman at Mena, Egypt, says that deaths are of more than weekly occurrence in camp from pneumonia and disease. All the men are anxious to go to the fighting line. The monotony is depressive, and relief is found in hilarity and chorussing in camp. They expected to be on their way to actual service destination by the middle of this month.