Sir Claude Wade

Wade had been given control of a diversionary force that was to probe the Khyber Pass in support of the main thrust at the Bolan Pass. The object was to force Dost Mohammed to divide his forces. To this end, Wade attacked Fort Ali Masjid on 22 July 1839 and captured it after four days fighting, little over four months from when the formation of his force was begun. At almost exactly the same time, Ghazni fell to the British coming through the Bolan Pass. These twin defeats led to a collapse in support for Dost Mohammed. The road to Kabul was clear from both directions and other than small skirmishes, the first phase of the war seemed to have completed its objectives.

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by Stephen Luscombe