GENERAL BOTHA'S TASK. A WATERLESS DESERT.
CAPE TOWN, March 30.
The latest dispatch concerningthe opera- tions of the Union forces in South-Wcst Africa states that the Germans have blown ni.« the railway line in the Aus district by mean- of dynamite.
General Botha, who is in command,
no,-,- faci'-d by a waterless desert, and each march increases his difficulties. More ox cr, the enemy are wc'l equipped, and arc probably more numerous than was originally supposed,
DE WET COMMITTED.
CAPE TOWN, March 30.
General Christian de Wet, one of the leaders of the recent rebellion, has been committed for trial on a charge of treason.
INDEMNITY BILL PASSED.
CAPE TOWN, March 30.
The -South African House of Assembly lias passed the third reading of the In- demnity Bill, which provides for the punishment of the burghers who took part in the recent rebellions led by Colonel Mar.te, the hte General Beyers, «nd Gene-
ral De Wet.
AN IMPORTANT CAPTURE.
CATS TOWN. March 3L
An official dispatch -published in Cape Town to-day concerning the operations of the South African Union forcea against the Germans in South/West Africa, sayfc: -"Colonei van der Venter has captured the camp of the enemy at Platbcet, ¿50 miles from Ukamai, where he secured a great quantity of, clothing, ammunition, horses, and livestock. The Union forces now hold many important positions to the cast of the Great Karras Mountains, where there is an abundance of grass and water.''
GENERAL WAR CABLES,
GIFTS FROM SYDNEY. '
LONDON, March 30.
The Queen to-day inspected the war chest giftä donated by citizens of Sydney for the forces at the front. Her Majesty thanked Lady Coghlan (wife of the Agent General for New, South Wales) for the generosity displayed by the donors.
BRITISH TREASURY BILLS.
LONDON. March 30.
The Imperial Government has ' invited tenders for Treasury bills to'the amount of £15,000,000, .with à currency of six months, to replace Treasury billa for the same amount falling due on April 10.
LONDON, March 31.
American Wheat.-Tiie visible supply -of American wheat is 71,507,000 bushels.
Chicago "Vlav options were quoted to- day from ". 131 cents to 153t ccnt3 per bushel. July options were, quoted from 121} cents to 123} 'cents 'per- bushel. ¡'
MAN WHO MOVES OUR
TRANSPORT GENIUS AT THE
Mr. Churchill's remarkable tribute in the House of Commons to the new Director of Transports at the Admiralty, Mr. Graeme Thomson, thrust publicity on a man who would have been well content to continue his work in obscurity.
"The credit for these (transport) arrange- ments," said Mr. Churchill, "lies very largely with Mr. Graeme Thomson, the head of the Transport Department and one of the discoveries of the war, a man who stepped into the place when the emergency came and has organised and presided over transactions the like of whieh were never contemplated by any State in history."'
'"The greatest transport officer since Noah" is the laughing expression fre- quently heard at the Admiralty when Mr. Thomson's name is mentioned.
Mr Thomson rose from clerk to Director in the record time of three months. He was a superintending clerk in October, Civil Assistant Director in November, and obtained his present position in the follow-
ing month. A tall, soldierly-looking man with the face of a diplomat, the forehead of a thinker, a square chin, and a bushy moustache, Mr. Thomson's appearance ton Sveys the impression of a rare combination 'of organising ability, accuracy, judgment,
resource, and rapid assimilation of ideas.
"The greatest strain on the department was undoubtedly during the first fortnght of the war,'' he said in an interview last month, "when we had to arrange for the dispatch of the ExpeditionaryForce." Not only has Mr. Thomson to move large bodies of troops, frequently at a moment's notice,
but it is his duty to see that the supplies
of the fleets are constantly miintained. The organisation of the colliers for the coaling of ships at sea alone is no easy task. "I
have to keep in mind every vessel in that
big auxiliary fleet of transports," Mr. Thomson added, "and I may say that we require every ship that we now have."
Mr. Thomson ¡s of Scottish descent and I
was born in Cheshire 39 years ago. He was
educated at Winchester and New Col-
lege. Oxford. He entered the Admiralty in 1900 as a higher division clerk.
RECRUITING AT WAYVILLE.
The military authorities reported on
Wed-nesoViy that they had that day ex- amined 27 volunteers, and that 23 passed as fit and four were unfit.