News from Bucharest “is invariably all skittles”

Basil Thorold Buckley, the Director of Military Intelligence, told Ralph Glyn that he was suspicious of the veracity of “secret” information passed to the British by the Romanians. Buckley was a cousin of Berkshire peer Lord Radnor.

General Staff
Director of Military Intelligence
War Office

17 Apr. 1916

My dear Glyn

Your request for maps is receiving attention, but I think you have in one case asked for something that does not exist.

We cannot understand the craze which exists (& has always existed) in the MEF Intelligence for news from Bucharest. It is invariably all skittles & we never can rely on it.
Here is a very fair sample of it. I have a similar thing from W Clayton on 24th March by bag to show what rotten stuff. Comes from the Romanian GS [General Staff]. The Germans know jolly well that the RGS pass it on to us. So they feed the RGS up with all sorts of lies.

Critical times in the House of Commons this week. I think LG [Lloyd George] may chuck his place in the Cabinet if the PM does not show he is strong enough to bring in Conscription. Old Leverson paid me a visit yesterday on return from Egypt. I was in an awful fright he would as to be re-employed in MI2C.

Best of luck.
Yrs ever
B T Buckley

SECRET (No. 1259)
From the Italian Information centre at BUCHAREST March 29th, information of Roumanian origin communicated with reserve:


I ARMY. (Enver Pasha) Constantinople, which includes I Corps: 1st Division = Chatalja. 49th Division = European Bosphorus. 50th Division = Asiatic.

II ARMY (Izzet Pasha) Uzun-Keupri, which includes only the II Corps: 4th Division = Ipsala = Uzun-Keupri. 6th Division = Uzun-Keupri.

III ARMY Siwas-Maras line. IX Corps: 17th Division, 28th Division, 29th Division. X Corps: 30th Division, 31st Division, 32nd Division. XI Corps: 18th Division, 33rd Division, 34th Division (annotated: ?wiped out). XII Corps: 36th Division, 35th Division (annotated with question mark).

And the following Divisions: 2nd Division, 3rd Division (annotated with question marks), 5th Division, 10th Division, 13th Division.
NOTE: The 14th and 15th Divisions of the IV Corps and two newly formed divisions of the Egyptian army are reported to be moving towards this district [annotated with question mark].

IV ARMY (Liman von Sanders) Lule Burgas. III Corps: 7th Division, 8th Division, 9th Division = Kirk Kilisse, area. XVI Corps: 11th Division, 12th Division – Adrianople [annotated ?going Caucasus).

XVII Corps: 19th, 20th, 23rd Divisions = Thrace. Two of these belong to the XVII Corps, it is not stated which one. [Annotated with question mark.]
NOTE: The 23rd Division has recently been re-inforced. [Annotated with question mark.]

VI ARMY (Von der Goltz?) XIII Corps: 37th, 41st and 38th Division and the newly formed 51st, 53rd and 54th Divisions. [Annotated with question mark.]

Dardanelles Army (Javid Pasha) Boghali. VI Corps: 24th, 26th Divisions [Annotated “going Caucasus?”]. VIII Corps: 25th and 27th Divisions [Annotated with question mark.]

Smyrna Group (Aivali and Smyrna). 21st, 46th 47th and 48th Divisions, recently arrived from FURI [Annotated with question mark.]

ADEN 22nd Division. [Annotated with question mark.]

YEMEN 39ths and 40th Divisions of the VI Corps.

2. A new sea-going submarine has recently arrived at CONSTANTINOPLE which is of the latest type armed with four 154 m/m guns.

3. Six 305 m/m guns have arrived at CONSTANTINOPLE for the GOEBEN.

4. A German man-of-war is superintending the collection of metal from exploded shells, especially in the Gallipoli peninsula.
It is stated that there are 14 submarines belonging to the central Powers cruising about in the Bosphorus [underlined and annotated with question mark] and Black Sea.

5. Field Marshal Mackensen has arrived at CONSTANTINOPLE.

Letter to Ralph Glyn (D/EGL/C32/28)

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