Page:MKGandhi patriot.djvu/97

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82
AN INDIAN PATRIOT

whom he was well-known. Again he was disappointed, Mr. Jameson laughing at the idea. "You Indians," said he, "know nothing of war. You would only be a drag on the army; you would have to be taken care of, instead of being of help to us." "But," replied Mr. Gandhi, "is there nothing we can do? Can we not do ordinary servants' work in connection with the Hospital? Surely that will not demand very great intelligence?" No", he said, "it all needs training."

Disappointed, but not discouraged, the Indian leader applied to his friend, Mr. Laughton, who received his suggestion with enthusiasm. "That's the very thing," he said, "do it; it will raise your people in the estimation of us all, and it will do them good. Never mind Mr. Jameson." So another letter was written to the Government, but this, too, failed.

Meanwhile, the pressure of disaster, and the unexpected developments of the War, were surely modifying the attitude of Natal. Everyone was needed. Briton and Boer were locked in a death-struggle, with the Garden Colony as the prize.

Events followed one another quickly. "It was upon October 30th that Sir George White had been