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Field Operation - Zakka Khel, 1908. Bazar Valley Field Force.

Date: 1908

Division of the Chief of Staff. Army Headquarters. Mobilisation Branch. Case no. 672. "Confidential". 4to. Wormed and browned throughout, but fundamentally sound in the original cloth-backed boards, upper board creased. 134pp. G[overnment] [of] I[ndia] C[entral] P[rinting] O[ffice], 7-4-

Thirty copies only. Contains all of the official correspondence connected with the Bazar Valley Field Force's punitive expedition against the Zakka Khel including a memorandum on the strength of the Force and the "Scheme" and "Plan" of operations. From the time of the end of the Tirah campaign the Zakka Khel Afridis had "...remained the persistent enemies of tranquility and progress. Numerous raids in British territory were proved to have their origin in the Bazar Valley..." [Nevill Campaigns on the North West Frontier p.331]. Autumn of 1907 brought a renewal of activity, raids being carried out "... with such daring that even Peshawar city itself became the scene of wholesale robbery under arms. A military expedition was then sanctioned at the beginning of February 1908, "limited strictly to punishment of Zakka Khel, and not occupation or annexation of tribal territory." [Ibid.] Under the command of Major-General Sir James Willcocks the expedition was swiftly and efficiently successful, "Owing to the fact that no other Afridi clan joined [them]..., and the Mohmand Lashkars arrived too late, they stood no chance against the highly trained Division under my command. They never got a look in, and within a fortnight, what Punch did us the great honour of calling "Willcocks' weekend War" was over and we were back in Peshawar." [Willcocks The Romance of Soldiering and Sport pp.223-4]. The peace was to be short lived, however, as the Mohmand war-parties, stirred by their mullahs' demands for a jihad began the disturbances which were to lead to the necessity for the Mohmand Expedition.

Stock Code: MI16956