by General von Lettow-Vorbeck
From the Preface
In all the German colonies, though but a few decades old, a life full of promise was discernible. We were beginning to understand the national value of our colonial possessions ; settlers and capital were venturing in ; industries and factories were beginning to flourish. Compared with that of other nations, the colonizing process of Germany had progressed peacefully and steadily, and the inhabitants had confidence in the justice of German administration. This development had barely commenced when it was destroyed by the world war. In spite of all tangible proofs to the contrary, an unjustifiable campaign of falsehood is being conducted in order to make the world believe that the Germans lacked colonizing talent and were cruel to the natives. A small force, mainly composed of these very natives, opposed this development. Almost without any external means of coercion, even without immediate payment, this force, with its numerous native followers, faithfully followed its German leaders throughout the whole of the prolonged war against a more than hundredfold superiority. When the armistice came it was still fit to fight, and imbued with the best soldierly spirit. That is a fact which cannot be controverted, and is in itself a sufficient answer to the hostile mis-statements. It has not been possible for me to give an exhaustive account of the operations of the German East African Protective Force. The existing material is insufficient, much has been lost, and even now I am unacquainted with various events, the actors in which have not yet returned home. My own records have for the most part been lost, and I had not the leisure to prepare a detailed description of the cam- paign in East Africa in addition to my other duties. My account is therefore necessarily incomplete. In the main I must rely upon my memory and on my personal experiences. Errors in detail are unavoidable. But in spite of this, the following account may not be without value, nor perhaps without interest, since it shows how what is up to the present the greatest drama in our colonial history was enacted in the head of him who was destined to conduct the military side of it. I have endeavoured to set down my recollections of East Africa as they actually are, and thus at least to present what is subjectively correct.
Here is the full Book
“My Reminiscences of East Africa” by General von Lettow-Vorbeck
My Reminiscences of East Africa: The East Africa Campaign of the First World War by the Most Notable German Commander