a river in the northeastern part of China, in the basin of the Liao Ho. From Sept. 22 (Oct. 5), to Oct. 4 (17), 1904, the Sha Ho was the scene of a major battle of the Russo-Japanese War of 1904–05.
After the Russian defeat in the battle of Liaoyang of 1904, the Russian Manchurian Army, under the command of General A. N. Kuropatkin, retreated to the vicinity of Mukden (Shenyang) and to the south. The Japanese First, Second, and Fourth armies (up to 150,000 men, 648 field guns, and 18 machine guns), under the command of Field Marshal I. Oyama, came to a halt north of the T’aitzu Ho. Kuropatkin, after receiving reinforcements, which increased the fighting capacity of the Russian Army to 195,000 infantry (in reality 150,000, since the Sixth Siberian Corps arrived only at the end of the battle), more than 19,000 cavalry, 758 field guns, and 32 machine guns, passed to the offensive in accordance with the tsar’s orders to aid besieged Port Arthur and effect a turning point in the war. The operation was poorly organized: preparations were not kept secret and the choice of the area of the main thrust (in mountainous terrain) and the distribution of forces were unfortunate; moreover, the Russians had no maps of the terrain. The Japanese command, learning of the Russian plan, decided to meet the Russian forces in a prepared position, sap their strength, and then pass to the coun-teroffensive.
On September 22 (October 5), the Russian Army launched its offensive with the immediate objective of occupying the north bank of the T’aitzu Ho. The left wing. General A. Shtakel’berg’s Eastern Detachment, which constituted one-third of all the forces, delivered the main thrust over mountainous terrain against Penhsihu with the goal of enveloping the enemy’s right flank. The right wing, General A. A. BiPderling’s Western Detachment, which constituted one-fourth of all the forces, delivered an auxiliary strike at Liaoyang. Significant forces were held in reserve (one-fourth) and to protect the areas in the rear (onesixth). The Russian troops advanced slowly, and it was only on the morning of September 23 (October 6) that the right wing reached the Sha Ho and the left wing approached the enemy forward position. Stubborn attacks by the Eastern Detachment against the Japanese First Army in the passes resulted in significant losses and failure. On September 27 (October 10), the Japanese Second and Fourth armies passed to the counteroffensive and on September 29 (October 12) succeeded in pushing the Western Detachment beyond the Sha Ho. On September 30 (October 13), the Eastern Detachment also began to withdraw. In early October, the Japanese forces attempted to develop the offensive on their left wing, but they were repulsed by Russian troops. Weakened by extensive losses (up to 40,000 Russians and, according to Japanese figures, 20,000 Japanese), both sides passed to the defensive. A stationary front 60 km long formed south of Mukden.