4th Bde galloped into the town. 1500 prisoners and 9 guns.
(Insert from 9 December 1917): After a furious bombardment and assault lasting 18 hours Bursheba fell into our hands.
Also a large quantity of stores and ammunition, over 1000 prisoners and many field guns, howitzers and machine guns etc.
Bursheba first town established by Abraham in Palestine.
Arabs received us well.
We push on towards Hebron.
J. A. Graham
(Zero) In position behind Bursheba.
Our job to hold up reinforcements. I cut the Turkish communications. Battle now in full swing.
(Insert from 9 December 1917): The fun commenced and the opening shot of the offensive was fired at dawn.
Our division traveled the 30 miles during the night and took up our positions in the rear of enemy’s lines, thereby cutting his communications by road and I rather fancy it took a lot of wind out of his sails.
We move out tonight to take up position in rear of Turkish lines at Bursheba. Great things are expected. Sheikh Abdulla and 150 irregular Bedowin troops armed with rifles and knives arrived last night. They are I believe to act as scouts.
The country in these parts is very mountainous (limestone).
(Insert from 9 December 1917): All in readiness for the big offensive. Our position was at a place called Asling 30 miles from Bursheba, which was strongly held by the Turks.
Today is (Z3)
I might mention that the most striking feature about this place is the great number of dead animals. Our airmen evidentially have done good work prior to our occupation.
Bombardment in full swing today is (Z4)
Lt Col Wilson CMGCG left us to take charge of 3rd Bde.
Very sorry to lose him. He was an excellent leader. Boys called him Nap.
J. A. Graham
A stunt to Matruk near the bottom end of Dead Sea to try and surprise a body of irregular troops.
Left Esani at 1700 for Asluj.
Another all night ride.
Arrived Asluj following day 0700.
There are several big buck barracks, stables, mosque and wells. It was here we blew up enemy’s railway line including three bridges and a viaduct.
Enemy destroyed all wells before evacuating. No water obtainable. A fine defensive position and one that threatens Bursheba from the rear.
We are on the enemy flank now and waiting to strike.
Jack Graham, ANZAC soldier, kept a diary from 1914-1918. Here it is, blogged 100 years later to the day....