CEF Soldier Detail

Captain Raoul Vennal

Regimental Number:
Survived War:
French Army
French Infantry
French Infantry
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Not Specified
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Not Specified
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Rank Regiment Unit Company
Captain French Infantry French Infantry

NO DEADLOCK SAYS FRENCH RESERVIST - Montreal February 11, 1916 - Captain Raoul Vennal, a French reservist, home on leave after 18 months with the French Army, believes the people of Canada and all Allied countries could do more than they realize to hasten the end of the war by refusing to buy any goods of German origin and by planning to excluded them after the war.

There is,he said, already evidence that the efforts in this direction in France and Great Britain had created considerable uneasiness among the merchants of Germany, who wanted peace before such a movement gained a headway that would be irresistible.

Is No Deadlock - Captain Vennal is not one of those who believe an unbreakable deadlock has developed on the western front in France.  He stated it was unbreakable as far as the Germans were concerned.  At the Marne, where the Germans had twice the number of men and fifty times the amount of artillery they failed to break through, and now with the Allies growing stronger, their hope is faint.

"But can the Allies break through the Germans?" he was asked.

"As soon as we are prepared to use gas on the same scale as they do, I think we will move." he answered.

More Gas Fighting -  "I believe we could move now, only the French desire to discover the very best protector against a new gas which the Germans are believed to be preparing on a large scale - the gas toxique.  This is a colourless gas with a smell something like apples and it kills.  The men are always uneasy after the first use of gas until they were provided with good lung protectors.

"the Germans use three kinds of gas lacrymogene, which has a smarting effect on the eyes of the soldiers affected, so they cannot use them for some minutes, and which the Germans use continually; the mixte gas, having both the properties of lacrymogene and toxique, and the toxique with cyanide as one of its components, and which the Germans have used so far only over certain sections of the trenches as an experiment, because it is very dangerous for them as well as for us."

Turpenite a Myth - When asked as regards the French turpenite, he stated he had talked with many well informed on chemicals and was told that turpenite was a myth.  In regard to bomb throwing he said: " The English and Canadian soldiers are very good.  Our men admire the way in which they through bombs and grenades.  They make sport of it and keep a tally of hits and misses." (Calgary Daily Herald - Feb 11, 1916)