Item 02: Ellis Ashmead-Bartlett articles on the Gallipoli campaign, 1915 - Page 144
This is a remarkable and significant passage, because it entirely contradicts Mr. Asquith's statements In the House on November 2nd on the joint responsibility of the whole Cabinet for the Antwerp and Dardanelles Expeditions. If Mr. Churchill was not consulted, presumably neither were any of his lesser colleagues, and the majority of the Cabinet therefore heard nothing of the Expedition until it was actually a ''fait accompli', If the Cabinet as a whole were not consulted over Antwerp, we are entitled to ask how far were they consulted over the Dardanelles?
But very few have any clear conception of the early Naval operations off the Dardanelles undertaken before the army appeared on the scene. We must except the emphatic statements of the Prime Minister and Mr. Churchill that the 'operations were framed entirely by experts'. I do not wish for a moment to belittle these experts, but all expert opinion is only of value in the ratio of the data available for it to work on. Now what was the data available? It is locked in the archives of the Admiralty but in reality everyone who was out at the Dardanelles at the time knows it was almost nil. The essential points on which concise information was necessary were theses: (1) What new works and what new guns had the Turks erected under German supervision since the outbreak of the war? (2) What mobile artillery had they available to deal with destroyers and trawlers engaged in sweeping? (3) How far had German gunners been substituted for Turkish