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domingo, 18 de octubre de 2009

The War that will End War







London :
FranJ(&0cil ^bhmr^Lion (auri








First Published October, 1914
Second Impression October, 1914
Third Impression October^ 1914







CRAFT - 29















THE cause of a war and the object of a war
are not necessarily the same. The cause of this
war was the invasion of Luxemburg and Belgium.
We declared war because we were bound by |
treaty to declare war. We have been pledged ,
to protect the integrity of Belgium since the
kingdom of Belgium has existed. If the Germans '
had not broken the guarantees they shared j
with us to respect the neutrality of these [
little States we should certainly not be at war J
at the present time. The fortified eastern
frontier of France could have been held against
any attack without any help from us. We had
no obligations and no interests there. We were
pledged to France simply to protect her from ,
a naval attack by sea, but the Germans had
already given us an undertaking not to make
such an attack. It was our Belgian treaty and
the sudden outrage on Luxemburg that pre-
cipitated us into" this conflict. No Power in the
world would have respected our Flag or accepted
our national word again if we had not fought.
So much for the immediate cause of the war.

But now we come to the object of this war. \
We began to fight because our honour and our


pledge obliged us ; but so soon as we are embarked
upon the fighting we have to ask ourselves what
is the end at which our fighting aims. We cannot
simply put the Germans back over the Belgian
border and tell them not to do it again. We
find ourselves at war with that huge military
empire with which we have been doing our best
to keep the peace since first it rose upon the ruins
of French Imperialism in 1871. And war is
mortal conflict. We have now either to destroy
or be destroyed. We have not sought this
reckoning, we have done our utmost to avoid it ;
but now that it has been forced upon us it is
imperative that it should be a thorough reckoning.
This is a war that touches every man and every
home in each of the combatant countries. It is
a war, as Mr. Sidney Low has said, not of soldiers
but of whole peoples. And it is a war that must
be fought to such a finish that every man in each
of the nations engaged understands what has
happened. There can be no diplomatic settle-
ment that will leave German Imperialism free
to explain away its failure to its people and start
new preparations. We have to go on until we
are absolutely done for, or until the Germans
as a people know that they are beaten, and are
convinced that they have had enough of war.

We are fighting Germany. But we are fighting
without any hatred of the German people. We
do not intend to destroy either their freedom or
their unity. But we have to destroy an evil
system of government and the mental and material
corruption that has got hold of the German


imagination and taken possession of German liism
We have to smash the Prussian Imperialism in-
thoroughly as Germany in 1871 smashed the"
rotten Imperialism of Napoleon III. And also
we have to learn from the failure of that victory
to avoid a vindictive triumph.

This Prussian Imperialism has been for forty
years an intolerable nuisance in the earth. Ever
since the crushing of the French in 1871 the evil
thing has grown and cast its spreading shadow
over Europe. Germany has preached a pro-
paganda of ruthless force and political materialism
to the whole uneasy world. " Blood and iron,"
she boasted, was the cement of her unity, and
almost as openly the little, mean, aggressive
statesmen and professors who have guided her
destinies to this present conflict have professed
cynicism and an utter disregard of any ends but
nationally selfish ends, as though it were religion.
Evil just as much as good may be made into a
Cant. Physical and moral brutality has indeed
become a cant in the German mind, and spread
from Germany throughout the world. I could
wish it were possible to say that English and
American thought had altogether escaped its
corruption. But now at last we shake ourselves
free and turn upon this boasting wickedness to
rid the world of it. The whole world is tired
of it. And " Gott ! " Gott so perpetually
invoked Gott indeed must be very tired of it

This is already the vastest war in history. It
is war not of nations, but of mankind. It is a
war to exorcise a world-madness and end an age.



I : .id note how this Cant of public rottenness
%j had its secret side. The man who preaches
cynicism in his own business transactions had
better keep a detective and a cash register for
his clerks ; and it is the most natural thing in the
world to find that this system, which is outwardly
vile, is also inwardly rotten. Beside the Kaiser
stands the firm of Krupp, a second head to the
State ; on the very steps of the throne is the
armament trust, that organised scoundrelism
which has, in its relentless propaganda for profit,
mined all the security of civilisation, brought
up and dominated a Press, ruled a national
literature, and corrupted universities.

Consider what the Germans have been, and
what the Germans can be. Here is a race which
has for its chief fault docility and a belief in
teachers and rulers. For the rest, as all who
know it intimately will testify, it is the most
amiable of peoples. It is naturally kindly, com-
fort-loving, child-loving, musical, artistic, intelli-
gent. In countless respects German homes and
towns and countrysides are the most civilised in the
world. But these people did a little lose their heads
after the victories of the sixties and seventies, and
there began a propaganda of national vanity and
national ambition. It was organised by a stupidly
forceful statesman, it was fostered by folly upon the
throne. It was guarded from wholesome criticism
by an intolerant censorship. It never gave
sanity a chance. A certain patriotic sentiment-
ality lent itself only too readily to the suggestion
of the flatterer, and so there grew up this


monstrous trade in weapons. German patriotism
became an " interest," the greatest of the " in-
terests." It developed a vast advertisement
propaganda. It subsidised Navy Leagues and
Aerial Leagues, threatening the world. Man-
kind, we saw too late, had been guilty of an
incalculable folly in permitting private men to
make a profit out of the dreadful preparations
for war. But the evil was started ; the German
imagination was captured and enslaved. On
every other European country that valued its
integrity there was thrust the overwhelming
necessity to arm and drill and still to arm and
drill. Money was withdrawn from education,
from social progress, from business enterprise,
and art and scientific research, and from every
kind of happiness ; life was drilled and darkened.

So that the harvest of this darkness comes now
almost as a relief, and it is a grim satisfaction in
our discomforts that we can at last look across
the roar and torment of battlefields to the
possibility of an organised peace.

For this is now a war for peace.

It aims straight at disarmament. It aims at a
settlement that shall stop this sort of thing for
ever. Every soldier who fights against Germany
now is a crusader against war. This, the greatest
of all wars, is not just another war it is the last
war ! England, France, Italy, Belgium, Spain,
and all the little countries of Europe, are heartily
sick of war ; the Tsar has expressed a passionate
hatred of war ; the most of Asia is unwarlike ;
the United States has no illusions about war.


And never was war begun so joylessly, and never
was war begun with so grim a resolution. In
England, France, Belgium, Russia, there is no
thought of glory.

We know we face unprecedented slaughter and
agonies ; we know that for neither side will there
be easy triumphs or prancing victories. Already,
in that warring sea of men, there is famine as
well as hideous butchery, and soon there must
come disease.

Can it be otherwise ?

We face, perhaps, the most awful winter that
mankind has ever faced.

But we English and our allies, who did not
seek this catastrophe, face it with anger and
determination rather than despair.

Through this war we have to march, through
pain, through agonies of the spirit worse than
pain, through seas of blood and filth. We
English have not had things kept from us. We
know what war is ; we have no delusions. We have
read books that tell us of the stench of battlefields,
and the nature of wounds, books that Germany
suppressed and hid from her people. And we
face these horrors to make an end of them.

There shall be no more Kaisers, there shall be
no more Krupps, we are resolved. That foolery
shall end !

And not simply the present belligerents must
come into the settlement.

All America, Italy, China, the Scandinavian
Powers, must have a voice in the final readjust-
ment, and set their hands to the ultimate


guarantees. I do not mean that they need fire a
single shot or load a single gun. But they must
come in. And in particular to the United States
do we look to play a part in that pacification of
the world for which our whole nation is working,
and for which, by the thousand, men are now
laying down their lives.



Europe is at war !

The monstrous vanity that was begotten by
the easy victories of '70 and '71 has challenged
the world, and Germany prepares to reap the
harvest Bismarck sowed. That trampling, drill-
ing foolery in the heart of Europe, that has
arrested civilisation and darkened the hopes of
mankind for forty years. German Imperialism,
German militarism, has struck its inevitable blow.
The victory of Germany will mean the permanent
enthronement of the War God over all human
affairs. The defeat of Germany may open the
way to disarmament and peace throughout the

To those who love peace there can be no other
hope in the present conflict than the defeat, the
utter discrediting of the German legend, the
ending for good and all of the blood and iron
superstition, of Krupp, flag-wagging Teutonic
Kiplingism, and all that criminal, sham efficiency
that centres in Berlin. Never was war so
righteous as war against Germany now. Never
has any State in the world so clamoured for


But be it remembered that Europe's quarrel
is with the German State, not with the German
people ; with a system, and not with a race.
The older tradition of Germany is a pacific and
civilising tradition. The temperament of the
mass of German people is kindly, sane and amiable.
Disaster to the German Army, if it is unaccom-
panied by any such memorable wrong as dis-
memberment or intolerable indignity, will mean
the restoration of the greatest people in Europe
to the fellowship of Western nations. The role
of England in this huge struggle is plain as
daylight. We have to fight. If only on account
of the Luxemburg outrage we have to fight.
If we do not fight, England will cease to be a
country to be proud of ; it will be a dirt-bath
to escape from. But it is inconceivable that we
should not fight. And having fought, then in
the hour of victory it will be for us to save the
liberated Germans from vindictive treatment,
to secure for this great people their right, as one
united German-speaking State, to a place in the

First we have to save ourselves and Europe,
and then we have to stand between German on
the one hand and the Cossack and revenge on
the other.

For my own part, I do not doubt that Germany
and Austria are doomed to defeat in this war.
It may not be catastrophic defeat, though even
that is possible, but it is defeat. There is no
destiny in the stars and every sign is false if this
is not so.


They have provoked an overwhelming com-
bination of enemies. They have under-rated
France. They are hampered by a bad social
and military tradition. The German is not
naturally a good soldier ; he is orderly and
obedient, but he is not nimble nor quick-witted ;
since his sole considerable military achievement,
his not very lengthy march to Paris in 1870 and
'71, the conditions of modern warfare have been
almost completely revolutionised and in a direc-
tion that subordinates the massed fighting of
unintelligent men to the rapid initiative of
individualised soldiers. And, on the other hand,
since those years of disaster, the Frenchman has
learnt the lesson of humility ; he is prepared
now sombrely for a sombre struggle ; his is the
gravity that precedes astonishing victories. In
the air, in the open field, with guns and machines,
it is doubtful if anyone fully realises the supe-
riority of his quality to the German. This
sudden attack may take him aback for a week or
so, though I doubt even that, but in the end I
think he will hold his own ; even without us he
will hold his own, and with us then I venture to
prophesy that within three months from now his
Tricolour will be over the Rhine. And even
suppose his line gets broken by the first rush.
Even then I do not see how the Germans are to
get to Paris or anywhere near Paris. I do not
see how against the strength of the modern
defensive and the stinging power of an intelligent
enemy in retreat, of whch we had a little fore-
taste in South Africa, the exploit of Sedan can


be repeated. A retiring German army, on the
other hand, will be far less formidable than a
retiring French army, because it has less " devil "
in it, because it is made up of men taught to
obey in masses, because its intelligence is con-
centrated in its aristocratic officers, because it is
dismayed when it breaks ranks. The German
army is everything the Conscriptionists dreamt
of making our people ; it is, in fact, an army
about twenty years behind the requirements of
contemporary conditions.

On the Eastern frontier the issue is more
doubtful because of the uncertainty of Russian
things. The peculiar military strength of Russia,
a strength it was not able to display in Manchuria,
lies in its vast resources of mounted men. A set
invasion of Prussia may be a matter of many
weeks, but the raiding possibilities in Eastern
Germany are enormous. It is difficult to guess
how far the Russian attack will be guided by
intelligence, and how far Russia will blunder,
but Russia will have to blunder very disastrously
indeed before she can be put upon the defensive.
A Russian raid is far more likely to threaten
Berlin than a German to reach Paris.

Meanwhile there is the struggle on the sea. In
that I am prepared for some rude shocks. The
Germans have devoted an amount of energy to
the creation of an aggressive navy that would
have been spent more wisely in consolidating
their European position. It is probably a
thoroughly good navy, and ship for ship the
equal of our own. But the same lack of



invention, the same relative uncreativeness that
has kept the German behind the Frenchman in
things aerial has made him, regardless of his
shallow seas, follow our lead in naval matters,
and if we have erred, and I believe we have
erred, in overrating the importance of the big
battleship, the German has at least very obligingly
fallen in with our error. The safest, most effec-
tive, place for the German fleet at the present
time is the Baltic Sea. On this side of the Kiel
Canal, unless I overrate the powers of the water-
plane, there is no safe harbour for it. If it goes
into port anywhere that port can be ruined, and
the bottled-up ships can be destroyed at leisure
by aerial bombs. So that if they are on this side
of the Kiel Canal they must keep the sea and
fight, if we let them, before their coal runs short.
Battle in the open sea in this case is their only
chance. They will fight against odds, and with
every prospect of a smashing, albeit we shall
certainly have to pay for that victory in ships and
men. In the Baltic we shall not be able to get
at them without the participation of Denmark,
and they may have a considerable use against
Russia. But in the end even there mine and
aeroplane and destroyer should do their work.

So I reckon that Germany will be held east and
west, and that she will get her fleet practically
destroyed. We ought also to be able to sweep
her shipping off the seas, and lower her flag for
ever in Africa and Asia and the Pacific. All the
probabilities, it seems to me, point to that.
There is no reason whv Italv should not stick to


her present neutrality, and there is considerable
inducement close at hand for both Denmark and
Japan to join in, directly they are convinced of
the failure of the first big rush on the part of
Germany. All these issues will be more or less
definitely decided within the next two or three
months. By that time I believe German Impe-
rialism will be shattered, and it may be possible
to anticipate the end of the armaments phase of
European history. France, Italy, England, and
all the smaller Powers of Europe are now pacific
countries ; Russia, after this huge war, will be
too exhausted for further adventure ; a shattered
Germany will be a revolutionary Germany, as
sick of uniforms and the Imperialist idea as
France was in 1871, as disillusioned about pre-
dominance as Bulgaria is to-day. The way will
be open at last for all these Western Powers to
organise peace. That is why I, with my declared
horror of war, have not signed any of these
" stop-the-war " appeals and declarations that
have appeared in the last few days. Every sword
that is drawn against Germany now is a sword
drawn for peace.



This is a war-torn article, a convalescent

It is characteristic of the cheerful gallantry
of the time that after being left for dead on
Saturday evening this article should be able, in
an only very slightly bandaged condition, to take
its place in the firing-line again on Thursday

It was first written late on Friday night ; it
was written in a mood of righteous excitement,
and it was an extremely ineffective article. In
the night I could not sleep because of its badness,
and because I did so vehemently want it to hit
hard and get its effect. I turned out about two
o'clock in the morning and redrafted it, and the
next day I wrote it all over again differently and
carefully, and I think better. In the afternoon
it was blown up by the discovery that Mr.
Runciman had anticipated its essential idea. He
had brought in, and the House had passed through
all its stages, a Bill to give the Board of Trade
power to requisition and deal with hoarded or
reserved food. That was exactly the demand of
my article. My article, about to die, saluted
this most swift and decisive Government of


Then I perceived that there were still many
things to be said about this requisitioning of
food. The Board of Trade has got its powers, but
apparently they have still to be put into operation.
It is extremely desirable that there should be a
strong public opinion supporting and watching
the exercise of these powers, and that they should
be applied at the proper point immediately. The
powers Mr. Runciman has secured so rapidly for
the Board of Trade have to be put into operation
there must be an equally rapid development of
local committees and commandos to carry out
his idea. The shortage continues. It is not
over. The common people, who are sending
their boys so bravely and uncomplainingly to
the front, must be relieved at once from the
intolerable hardships which a certain section of
the prosperous classes, a small section but an
actively mischievous section, is causing them. It
is a right ; not a demand for charity. It is
ridiculous to treat the problem in any other

So far the poorer English have displayed an
amazing and exemplary patience in this crisis, a
humility and courage that make one the prouder
for being also English. Apart from any failure
of employment at the present time, it must be
plain to anyone who has watched the present
rise of prices and who knows anything either at
first hand of poor households or by reading such
investigations as those of Mrs. Pember Reeves
upon the family budgets of the poor, that the
rank and file of our population cannot now be


getting enough to eat. They are suffering need-
less deprivation and also they are suffering needless
vexation. And there is no atom of doubt why
they are suffering these distresses. It is that
pretentious section of the prosperous classes, the
section we might hit off with the phrase " auto-
mobile-driving villadom," the " Tariff Reform
and damn Lloyd George and Keir Hardie " class,
the most pampered and least public-spirited of
any stratum in the community, which has grabbed
at the food ; it has given way to an inglorious
panic ; it has broken ranks and stampeded to the
stores and made the one discreditable exception
in the splendid spectacle of our national solidarity.
While the attention of all decent English folk
has been concentrated upon the preparations for
our supreme blow at Prussian predominance in
Europe, villadom has been swarming to the shops,
buying up the food of the common people,
carrying it off in the family car (adorned, of course,
with a fluttering little Union Jack) ; father has
given a day from business, mother has helped,
even those shiny-headed nuts, the sons, have
condescended to assist, and now villadom, feeling
a little safer, is ready with the dinner-bell, its
characteristic instrument of music, to maffick at
the victories it has done its best to spoil. And
villadom promoted and distended, villadom in
luck, turned millionaire, villadom on a scale that
can buy a peerage and write you its thousands-of-
pounds cheque for a showy subscription list, has
been true to its origins. Lord Maffick, emulating
Mr. and Mrs. Maffick, swept his district clean


of flour ; let the thing go down to history. Lord
Maffick now explains that he bought it to dis-
tribute among his poorer neighbours that is
going to be the stock excuse of these people
but that sort of buying is just exactly as bad for
prices as buying for Lord Maffick's personal
interior. The sooner that flour gets out of the
houses of Lord Maffick and Horatio Maffick,
Esquire, and young Mr. Maffick and the rest of
them, and into the houses of their poorer neigh-
bours, the better for them and the country.
The greatest danger to England at the present
time is neither the German army nor the German
fleet, but this morally rotten section of our

Now it is no use scolding these people. It is
no use appealing to their honour and patriotism.
Honour they have none, and their idea of pat-
riotism is to " tax the foreigner," wave Union
Jacks, and clamour for the application to England
of just that universal compulsory service which
leads straight to those crowded, ineffective
massacres of common soldiers that are beginning
upon the German war-front. Exhortation may
sway the ninety-and-nine, but the one mean man
in the hundred will spoil the lot. The thing to
do now is to get to work at once in every locality,
requisitioning all excessive private stores of food
or gold coins they can be settled for after the
war not only the stores of the private food-
grabbers, but also the stores of the speculative
wholesalers who are holding up prices to
the retail shops. Only in that way can the


operations of this intolerable little minority be
completely checked. Under every county council
food committees should be formed at once to
report on the necessities of the general mass and
conduct inquiries into hoarding and the seizure
and distribution of hoards, small and great.

Now this is a public work calling for the most
careful and open methods. Food distribution
in England is partly in the hands of great systems
of syndicated shops and partly still in the hands of
one-shop local tradesmen. It is imperative that
the brightest light should be kept upon the opera-
tions of both small and large provision dealers.
The big firms are in the control of men whose
business successes have received in many instances
marks of the signal favour and trust of our rulers.
Lord Devonport, for example, is a peer ; Sir
Thomas Lipton is a baronet ; they are not to
be regarded as mere private traders, but as men
honoured by association with the hierarchy of
our national life on account of their distinguished
share in the public food service. It will help
them in their quasi-public duties to give them
the support of our attention. Are they devoting
their enormous economic advantages to keeping
prices at a reasonable level, or are these various
systems of syndicated provision shops also putting
things up against the consumer ? With con-
certed action on the part of these stores the most
perfect control of prices is possible everywhere,
except in the case of a few out-of-the-way villages.
Is it being done ? Nobody wants to see the
names of Lord Devonport or Sir Thomas Lipton


or the various other rich men associated with
them in the food supply flourishing about on
royal subscription lists at the present time ; their
work lies closer at hand. What we all want is to
feel that they are devoting their utmost resources
to the public food service of which they constitute
so important a part. Let me say at once that I
have every reason to believe they are doing it,
and that they are alive to the responsibilities of
their positions. But we must keep the limelight
on them and on their less honoured and con-
spicuous fellow-merchants. They are playing as
important and vital a part indeed, they are
called upon to play as brave and self-sacrificing a
part as any general at the front. If they fail
us it will be worse than the loss of many thousands
of men in battle. Let us watch them, and I
believe we shall watch them with admiration.
But let us watch them. Let us report their
movements, ask them to reassure us, chronicle
their visits to the Board of Trade.

I will not expatiate upon the possible heroisms
of the wholesale provision trade. I do but glance
at the possibility of Lord Devonport or Sir
Thomas Lipton, after the war, living, financially
ruined, but glorious, in a little cottage. " I gave
back to the people in their hour of need what
I made from them in their hours of plenty," he
would say. " I have suffered that thousands
might not suffer. It is nothing. Think of the
lads who died in Belgium."

By all accounts, the small one-shop provision
dealers are behaving extremely well. In my own


town of Dunmow I know of two little shop-
keepers who have dared to offend important
customers rather than fulfil panic orders. They
deserve medals. In poor districts many such men
are giving credit, eking out, tiding over, and all
the time running tremendous risks. Not all
heroes are upon the battlefield, and some of the
heroes of this war are now fighting gallantly for
our land behind grocers' counters and in village
general shops, and may end, if not in the burial
trench, in the bankruptcy court. Indeed, many
of them are already on the verge of bankruptcy.
The wholesalers have, I know, in many cases
betrayed them, not simply by putting up prices,
but by suddenly stopping customary credits, and
this last week has seen some dismal nights of
sleepless worry in the little bedrooms over the
isolated grocery. While we look to the syndicated
shops to do their duty, it is of the utmost import-
ance also that we should not permit a massacre
of the small tradespeople. A catastrophe to the
small shopkeeper at the present time will not only
throw a multitude of broken men upon public
resources, but leave a gap in the homely give-
and-take of back-street and village economies that
will not be easily repaired. So that I suggest
that the requisitioned stocks of forestalling whole-
salers there ought to be a great bulk of such
food-stuff already in the hands of the authorities
shall be sold in the first instance at wholesale
prices to the isolated shopkeepers, and not directly
to the public. Only in the event of a local
failure of duty should the direct course be taken.


It must be remembered that the whole of the
present stress for food is an artificial stress due
to the vehement selfishness of vulgar-minded
prosperous people and to the base cunning of
quite exceptional merchants. But under the
strange and difficult and planless conditions of
to-day quite a few people can start a rush and
produce an almost irresistible pressure. The
majority of people who have hoarded and fore-
stalled have probably done so very unwillingly,
because " others will do it." They would
welcome any authoritative action that would
enable them to disgorge without feeling that
somebody else would instantly snatch what they
had surrendered and profit by it. It is for that
reason that we must at once organise the com-
mandeering and requisitioning of hoards and
reserved goods. The mere threat will probably
produce a great relaxation of the situation, but
the threat must be carried out to the point of
having everything ready as soon as possible to seize
and sell and distribute. Until that is done this
food crisis will wax and wane, but it will not
cease ; if we do not carry out Mr. Runciman's
initiatives with a certain harsh promptness food
trouble will be an intermittent wasting fever in
the body politic until the end of the war.

And the business will not be over at the end
of the war. The patience of the common people
has been astonishing. In countless homes there
must have been the extremest worry and misery.
But except for a few trivial rows, such as the
smashing of the windows of Mr. Moss, at Hitchin,


who was probably not a bit to blame, an attack
on a bakery somewhere, and some not very bad
behaviour in the way of threats and demonstra-
tions on the part of East End Jews, there has been
no disorder at all. That is because the people
are full of the first solemnity of war, eagerly
trustful, and still well nourished.

At the end unless the more prosperous people
pull themselves together it will not be like that.



I find myself enthusiastic for this war against
Prussian militarism. We are, I believe, assisting
at the end of a vast, intolerable oppression upon
civilisation. We are fighting to release Germany
and all the world from the superstition that
brutality and cynicism are the methods of success,
that Imperialism is better than free citizenship
and conscripts better soldiers than free men.

And I find another writer who is also being, he
declares, patriotically British. Indeed, he waves
the Union Jack about to an extent from which
my natural modesty recoils. Because you see
I am English-cum-Irish, and save for the cross
of St. Andrew that flag is mine. To wave it
about would, I feel, be just vulgar self-assertion.
He, however, is not English. He assumes a
variety of names, and some are quite lovely old
English names. But his favourite name is Craft,
Maximilian Craft and I understand he was born
a Kraft. He shoves himself into the affairs of
this country with an extraordinary energy ; he
takes possession of my Union Jack as if St. George
was his father. At present he is advising me very
actively how to conduct this war, and telling me
exactly what I ought to think about it. He is,


in fact, the English equivalent of those professors
of Welt Politik who have guided the German
mind to its present magnificent display of shrewd,
triumphant statecraft. I suspect him of a distant
cousinship with Professor Delbruck. And he is
urging upon our attention now a magnificent
coup, with which I will shortly deal.

In appearance Kraft is by no means completely
anglicised himself. He is a large-faced creature
with enormous long features and a woolly head ;
he is heavy in build and with a back slightly
hunched ; he lisps slightly and his manner is
either insolently contemptuous or aggressively
familiar. He thinks all born Englishmen, as dis-
tinguished from the naturalised Englishmen, are
also born fools. Always his manner is pervaded
by a faint flavour of astonishment at the born
foolishness of the born Englishmen. But he
thinks their Empire a marvellous accident, a
wonderful opportunity for cleverer people.

So, with a kind of disinterested energy, he has
been doing his best to educate Englishmen up
to their Imperial opportunities, to show them how
to change luck into cunning, take the wall of
every other breed and swagger foremost in the
world. He cannot understand that English blood
does not warm to such ambitions. When he
has wealth it is his nature to show it in watch-
chains and studs and signet-rings ; if he had a
wife she would dazzle in diamonds ; the furniture
of his flat is wonderfully " good," all picked
English pieces and worth no end ; he thinks
it is just dulness and poorness of spirit that


disregards these things. He came to England to
instruct us in the arts of Empire, when he found
that already there was a glut of his kind of wisdom
in the German universities. For years until this
present outbreak I have followed his career with
silent interest rather than affection. And the
first thing he undertook to teach us was, I
remember, Tariff Reform, " taxing the foreigner."
Limitless wealth you get, and you pay nothing.
You get a huge national income in imported
goods, and also, as your tariff prevents importa-
tion, you develop a tremendous internal trade.
Two birds (in quite opposite directions) with the
same stone. It seemed just plain common sense
to him. Anyhow, he felt sure it was good enough
for the born English. . . .

He is still a little incredulous of our refusal to
accept that delightful idea. Meanwhile his kind
have dominated the more docile German intelli-
gence altogether. They have listened to the
whisper of Welt Politik, or at least their rulers
have attended ; they have sown exasperation on
every frontier, taken the wall, done all the
showily aggresssive and successful things. They
were the pupils he should have taught. A people
at once teachable and spirited. Almost tearfully
Kraft has asked us to mark that glorious progress
of a once philosophical, civilised, and kindly
people. And indeed we have had to mark it
and polish our weapons, and with a deepening
resentment get more and more weapons, and
keep our powder dry, when we would have been
far rather occupied with other things.


But amazingly enough we would not listen to
his suggestion of universal service. Kraft and
his kind believe in numbers. Even the Boer
War could not shake his natural aptitude for
political arithmetic. He has tried to bring the
situation home to us by diagrams, showing us
enormous figures, colossal soldiers to represent
the German forces and tiny little British men,
smaller than the army figures for Bulgaria and
for Servia. He does not understand that there
can be too many soldiers on a field of battle ; he
could as soon believe that one could have too
much money. And so he thinks the armies of
Russia must be more powerful than the French.
When I deny that superiority as I do he
simply notes the fact that I am unable to

And when it comes to schemes of warfare then
a kind of delirium of cunning descends upon
Kraft. He is full of devices such as we poor
fools cannot invent ; sudden attacks without a
declaration of war, vast schemes for spy systems
and assassin-like disguises, the cowing of a country
by the wholesale shooting of uncivil non-com-
batants, breaches of neutrality, national treacheries,
altered dispatches, forged letters, diplomatic lies,
a perfect world-organisation of Super-sneaks.
Our poor cousin, Michael, the German, has
listened to such wisdom only too meekly. Poor
Michael, with his honest blue eyes wonder-lit,
has tried his best to be a very devil, and go where
Kraft's cousin, Bernhardi, the military " expert,"
has led him. (So far it has led him into the


ditches of Liege and the gorges of the Ardennes
and much hunger and dirt and blood.) And
Kraft over here has watched with an intolerable
envy Berlin lying and bullying and being the
very Superman of Welt Politik. He has been
talking, writing, praying us to do likewise, to
strike suddenly before war was declared at the
German fleet, to outrage the neutrality of
Denmark, to seize Holland, to do something
nationally dishonest and disgraceful. Daily he
has raged at our milk and water methods. At
times we have seemed to him more like a lot of
Woodrow Wilsons than reasonable sane men.

And he is still ~t it.

Only a few da^s ago I took up the paper that
has at last moved me to the very plain declarations
of this article. It was an English daily paper,
and Kraft was telling us, as usual, and with his
usual despairful sense of our stupidity, how to
conduct this war. And what he said was this
that we have to starve Germany not realising
that with her choked railways and her wasted
crops Germany may be trusted very rapidly to
starve herself and that, if we do not prevent
them, foodstuffs will go into Germany by way of
Holland and Italy. So he wants us to begin at
once a hostile blockade of Holland and Italy, c~
better, perhaps, to send each of these innocent
and friendly countries an ultimatum forthwith.
He wants it done at once, because otherwise the
Berlin Krafts, some Delbruck or Bernhardi, or
that egregious young statesman, the Crown
Prince, may persuade the Prussians to get in their


ultimatum first. Then we should have no
chance of doing anything internationally idiotic
at all, unless, perhaps, we seized a port in Norway.
It might be rather a fine thing, he thinks upon
reflection, to seize a port in Norway.

Now let us English make it clear, once for all,
to the Krafts and other kindred patriotic gentle-
men from abroad who are showing us the really
artful way to do things, that this is not our way
of doing things. Into this war we have gone
with clean hands to end the reign of brutal and
artful internationalism for ever. Our hearts are
heavy at the task before us, but our intention is
grim. We mean to conquer. We are prepared
for every disaster, for intolerable stresses, for
bankruptcy, for hunger, for anything but defeat.
Now that we have begun to fight we will fight if
needful until the children die of famine in our
homes, we will fight though every ship we have
is at the bottom of the sea. We mean to fight
this war to its very finish, and that finish we are
absolutely resolved must be the end of Kraftism
in the world. And we will come out of this war
with hands as clean as they are now, unstained
by any dirty tricks in field or council chamber,
neutralities respected and treaties kept. Then
we will reckon once for all with Kraft and with
his friends and supporters, the private dealers in
armaments, and with all this monstrous, stupid
brood of villainy that has brought this vast
catastrophe upon the world.

I say this plainly now for myself and for
thousands of silent plain men, because the sooner


Kraft realises how we feel in this matter the
better for him. He betrays at times a remark-
able persuasion that at the final settling up of
things he will make himself invaluable to us. At
diplomacy he knows he shines. Then the lisping
whisper has its use, and the studied insolence.
Finish the fighting, and then leave it to him.
He really believes the born English will. He
does not understand in the slightest degree the
still passion of our streets. There never was
less shouting and less demonstration in England,
and never was England so quietly intent. This
war is not going to end in diplomacy ; it is going
to end diplomacy. It is quite a different sort
of war from any that have gone before it. At
the end there will be no Conference of Europe
on the old lines at all, but a Conference of the
World. It will be a Conference for Kraft to
laugh at. He will run about button-holing
people about it ; almost spitting in their faces
with the eagerness of his derisive whispers. It
will conduct its affairs with scandalous publicity
and a deliberate simplicity. It will be worse
than Woodrow Wilson. And it will make a
peace that will put an end to Kraft and the spirit
of Kraft and Kraftism and the private armament
firms behind him for evermore.

At which I imagine the head of Kraft going
down between his shoulders and his large hands
going out like the wings of a cherub. " English-
men ! Liberals ! Fools ! Incurable ! How
can such things be ? It is not how things
are done."


It is how they are going to be done if this world
is to be worth living in at all after this war.
When we fight Berlin, Kraft, we fight you. . . .
An absolute end to you. Yes,



In this smash-up of empires and diplomacy,
this utter disaster of international politics, certain
things which would have seemed ridiculously
Utopian a few weeks ago have suddenly become
reasonable and practicable. One of these, a
thing that would have seemed fantastic until the
very moment when we joined issue with Germany
and which may now be regarded as a sober
possibility, is the absolute abolition throughout
the world of the manufacture of weapons for
private gain. Whatever may be said of the
practicability of national disarmament, there can
be no dispute not merely of the possibility but
of the supreme necessity of ending for ever the
days of private profit in the instruments of death.
That is the real enemy. That is the evil thing at
the very centre of this trouble.

At the very core of all this evil that has burst
at last in world disaster lies this Kruppism, this
sordid enormous trade in the instruments of
death. It is the closest, most gigantic organisa-
tion in the world. Time after time this huge
business, with its bought newspapers, its paid
spies, its agents, its shareholders, its insane
sympathisers, its vast ramification of open and



concealed associates, has defeated attempts at
pacification, has piled the heap of explosive
material higher and higher the heap that has
toppled at last into this bloody welter in Belgium,
in which the lives of four great nations are now
being torn and tormented and slaughtered and
wasted beyond counting, beyond imagining. I dare
not picture it thinking now of who may read.

So long as the unstable peace endured, so long
as the Emperor of the Germans and the Krupp
concern and the vanities of Prussia hung together,
threatening but not assailing the peace of the
world, so long as one could dream of holding off
the crash and saving lives, so long was it impossible
to bring this business to an end or even to propose
plainly to bring this business to an end. It was
still possible to argue that to be prepared for
war was the way to keep the peace; But now
everyone knows better. The war has come.
Preparation has exploded. Outrageous plunder
has passed into outrageous bloodshed. All Europe
is in revolt against this evil system. There is no
going back now to peace ; our men must die, in
heaps, in thousands ; we cannot delude ourselves
with dreams of easy victories ; we must all suffer
endless miseries and anxieties ; scarcely a human
affair is there that will not be marred and darkened
by this war. Out of it all must come one uni-
versal resolve : that this iniquity must be plucked
out by the roots. Whatever follies still lie ahead
for mankind this folly at least must end. There
must be no more buying and selling of guns and
warships and war-machines. There must be no


more gain in arms. Kings and Kaisers must
cease to be the commercial travellers of monstrous
armament concerns. With the Goeben the Kaiser
has made his last sale. Whatever arms the
nations think they need they must make for them-
selves and give to their own subjects. Beyond
that there must be no making of weapons in the

This is the clearest common sense. I do not
need to argue what is manifest, what every
German knows, what every intelligent educated
man in the world knows. The Krupp concern
and the tawdry Imperialism of Berlin are linked
like thief and receiver ; the hands of the German
princes are dirty with the trade. All over the
world statecraft and royalty have been approached
and touched and tainted by these vast firms,
but it is in Berlin that the corruption has centred,
it is from Berlin that the intolerable pressure
to arm and still to arm has come, it is at Berlin
alone that the evil can be grappled and killed.
Before this there was no reaching it. It was
useless to dream even of disarmament while these
people could still go on making their material
uncontrolled, waiting for the moment of national
passion, feeding the national mind with fears and
suspicions through their subsidised Press. But
now there is a new spirit in the world. There
are no more fears ; the worst evil has come to
pass. The ugly hatreds, the nourished mis-
conceptions of an armed peace, begin already to
give place to the mutual respect and pity and
disillusionment of a universally disastrous war.


We can at last deal with Krupps and the kindred
firms throughout the world as one general
problem, one world-wide accessible evil.

Outside the circle of belligerent States, and the
States which, like Denmark, Italy, Rumania,
Norway and Sweden, must necessarily be invited
to take a share in the final re-settlement of the
world's affairs, there are only three systems of
Powers which need be considered in this matter,
namely, the English and Spanish-speaking Repub-
lics of America and China. None of these States
is deeply involved in the armaments trade,
several of them have every reason to hate a
system that has linked the obligation to deal in
armaments with every loan. The United States
of America is now, more than ever it was, an
anti-militarist Power, and it is not too much to
say that the Government of the United States of
America holds in its hand the power to sanction
or prevent this most urgent need of mankind.
If the people of the United States will consider
and grasp this tremendous question now ; if
they will make up their minds now that there
shall be no more profit made in America or
anywhere else upon the face of the earth in raw
material ; if they will determine to put the vast
moral, financial and material influence the States
will be able to exercise at the end of this war in
the scale against the survival of Kruppism, then
it will be possible to finish that vile industry for
ever. If, through a failure of courage or
imagination, they will not come into this thing,
then I fear if it may be done. But I misjudge


the United States if, in the end, they abstain
from so glorious and congenial an opportunity.

Let me set out the suggestion very plainly.
All the plant for the making of war material
throughout the world must be taken over by the
Government of the State in which it exists ;
every gun factory, every rifle factory, every dock-
yard for the building of warships. It may be
necessary to compensate the shareholders more or
less completely ; there may have to be a war
indemnity to provide for that, but that is a
question of detail. The thing is the conversion
everywhere of arms-making into a State monopoly,
so that nowhere shall there be a ha'porth of
avoidable private gain in it. Then, and then
only, will it become possible to arrange for the
gradual dismantling of this industry which is
destroying humanity, and the reduction of the
armed forces of the world to reasonable dimen-
sions. I would carry this suppression down even
to the restriction of the manufacture and sale of
every sort of gun, pistol, and explosive. They
should be made only in Government workshops
and sold only in Government shops ; there
should not be a single rifle, not a Browning
pistol, unregistered, unrecorded, and untraceable
in the world. But that may be a counsel of
perfection. The essential thing is the world
suppression of this abominable traffic in the big
gear of war, in warships and great guns.

With this corruption cleared out of the way,
with the armaments commercial traveller flung
down the back-stairs he has haunted for so long


and flung so hard that he will be incapacitated
for ever it will become possible to consider a
scheme for the establishment of the peace of the
world. Until that is done any such scheme will
remain an idle dream. But him disposed of, the
way is open for the association of armed nations,
determined to stamp out at once every recru-
descence of aggressive war. They will not be
totally disarmed Powers. It is no good to disarm
while any one single Power is still in love with
the dream of military glory. It is no good to
disarm while the possibility of war fever is still
in the human blood. The intelligence of the
whole world must watch for febrile symptoms
and prepare to allay them. But after this struggle
one may count on the pacific intentions of at
least the following States : The British Empire,
France, Italy, and all the minor States of the
north and west ; the United States has always
been a pacific Power ; Japan has had its lesson
and is too impoverished for serious hostilities ;
China has never been aggressive ; Germany also,
unless this war leads to intolerable insults and
humiliations for the German spirit, will be war-
sick. The Spanish and Portuguese-speaking Re-
publics of America are too busy developing
materially to dream of war on the modern scale,
and the same may presently be true of the Greek,
Latin and Slav communities of south-east Europe
if, as I hope and believe, this war leads to the
rational rearrangement of the Austro-Hungarian
empire. 1915 will indeed find this world a
strangely tamed and reasonable world.


There is only one doubtful country, Russia,
and for my own part I do not believe in the
wickedness and I doubt the present power of that
stupendous barbaric State. Finland and a
renascent Polish kingdom at least will be weight
on the side of peace. It will be indeed the phase
of supreme opportunity for peace. If there is
courage and honesty enough in men, I believe it
will be possible to establish a world council for
the regulation of armaments as the natural
outcome of this war. First, the trade in arma-
ments must be absolutely killed. And then the
next supremely important measure to secure the
peace of the world is the neutralisation of the

It will lie in the power of England, France,
Russia, Italy, Japan and the United States, if
Germany and Austria are shattered in this war,
to forbid the further building of any more ships
of war at all ; to persuade, and if need be, to
oblige the minor Powers to sell their navies and to
refuse the seas to armed ships not under the
control of the confederation. To launch an
armed ship can be made an invasion of the common
territory of the world. This will be an open
possibility in 1915. It will remain an open
possibility until men recover from the shock of
this conflict. As that begins to be forgotten so
this will cease to be a possibility again perhaps
for hundreds of years. Already human intelli-
gence and honesty have contrived to keep the
great American lakes and the enormous Canadian
frontier disarmed for a century. Warlike folly


has complained of that, but it has never been
strong enough to upset it. What is possible on
that scale is possible universally, so soon as the
armament trader is put out of mischief. And
with the Confederated Peace Powers keeping
the seas and guaranteeing the peaceful freedom
of the seas to all mankind, treating the transport
of armed men and war material, except between
one detached part of a State and another, as
contraband, and impartially blockading all bel-
ligerents, those who know best the significance
of the sea power will realise best the reduction
in the danger of extensive wars on land.

This is no dream. This is the plain common
sense of the present opportunity.

It may be urged that this is a premature
discussion, that this war is still undecided. But,
indeed, there can be no decision to this war for
France and England at any rate but the defeat of
Germany, the abandonment of German mili-
tarism, the destruction of the German fleet, and
the creation of this opportunity. Nothing short
of that is tolerable ; we must fight on to extinc-
tion rather than submit to a dishonouring peace
in defeat or to any premature settlement. The
fate of the world under triumphant Prussianism
and Kruppism for the next two hundred years
is not worth discussing. There is no conceivable
conclusion to this war but submission at Berlin.
There is no reasonable course before us now but
to give all our strength for victory and the
establishment of victory. The end must be
victory or our effacement. What will happen


after our eifacement is for the Germans to

A war that will merely beat Germany a little
and restore the hateful tensions of the last forty
years is not worth waging. As an end to all our
effort it will be almost as intolerable as defeat.
Yet unless a body of definite ideas is formed and
promulgated now things may happen so. And
so now, while there is yet time, the Liberalism
of France and England must speak plainly and
make its appeal to the Liberalism of all the world,
not to share our war indeed, but to share the
great ends for which we are so gladly waging
this war. For, indeed, sombrely enough England
and France and Belgium and Russia are glad of
this day. The age of armed anxiety is over.
Whatever betide, it must be an end. And there
is no way of making it an end but through these
two associated decisions, the abolition of Krupp-
ism and the neutralisation of the sea.



At the moment of writing the war has not
lasted many days, great battles by land and
sea alike impend, and yet I find my steadfast
anticipation that Prussianism, Bernhardi-ism,
the whole theory and practice of the Empire
of the Germans, is a rotten and condemned
thing, has already strengthened to an absolute
conviction. Unforeseen accidents may happen.
I say nothing of the sea, but the general and
ultimate result seems to me now as certain as
the rising of to-morrow's sun. I do not know
how much slaughter lies before Europe before
Germany realises that she is fool-led and fool-
poisoned. I do not know how long the
swaggering Prussian officer will be able to
drive his crowded men to massacre before
they revolt against him, nor do I know how
far the inflated vanity of Berlin has made
provision for defeat. Germany on the defen-
sive for all we can tell may prove a very stub-
born thing, and Russia's strength may be, and
I think is, over-estimated. All that may delay,
but it will not alter the final demonstration


that Prussianism, as Mr. Belloc foretold so amaz-
ingly, took its mortal wound at the first onset
before the trenches of Liege. We begin a new
period of history.

It is not Germany that has been defeated ;
Germany is still an unconquered country. In-
deed, now it is a released country. It is a country
glorious in history and with a glorious future.
But never more after this war has ended will it
march to the shout of the Prussian drill sergeant
and strive to play bully to the world. The
legend of Prussia is exploded. Its appeal was to
one coarse criterion, success, and it has failed.
Nevermore will the harshness of Berlin over-
shadow the great and friendly civilisation of
Southern and Western Germany. The work
before a world in arms is to clean off the Prussian
blue from the life and spirit of mankind.

No European Power has any real quarrel with
Germany. Our quarrel is with the Empire of
the Germans, not with a people but with an idea.
Let us in all that follows keep that clearly in our
minds. It may be that the German repulse at
Liege was but the beginning of a German disaster
as great as that of France in 1871. It may be
that Germany has no second plan if her first plan
fails ; that she will go to pieces after her first
defeat. It seems to me that this is so I risk
the prophecy, and I would have us prepare our-
selves for the temptations of victory. And so
to begin with, let us of the liberal faith declare
our fixed, unalterable conviction that it will be
a sin to dismember Germany or to allow any


German-speaking and German-feeling territory
to fall under a foreign yoke. Let us English make
sure of ourselves in that matter. There may be
restorations of alien territory Polish, French,
Danish, Italian, but we have seen enough of
racial subjugation now to be sure that we will
tolerate no more of it. From the Rhine to East
Prussia and from the Baltic to the southern limits
of German-speaking Austria, the Germans are
one people. Let us begin with the resolution
to permit no new bitterness of "conquered
territories " to come into existence to disturb the
future peace of Europe. Let us see to it that at
the ultimate settlement the Germans, however
great his overthrow may be, are all left free men.
When the Prussians invaded Luxemburg they
tore up the map of Europe. To the redrawing
of that map a thousand complex forces will come.
There will be much attempted over-reaching in
the business and much greed. Few will come
to negotiations with simple intentions. In a
wrangle all sorts of ugly and stupid things may
happen. It is for us English to get a head in
that matter, to take counsel with ourselves and
determine what is just ; it is for us, who are
in so many ways detached from and independent
of the national passions of the Continent, not to
be cunning or politic, but to contrive as unanimous
a purpose as possible now, so that we may carry
this war to its end with a clear conception of
its end, and to use the whole of our strength to
make an enduring peace in Europe. That
means that we have to re-draw the map so that


there shall be, for just as far as we can see ahead,
as little cause for warfare among us Western
nations as possible. That means that we have
to re-draw it justly. And very extensively.

Is that an impossible proposal ? I think not.
There are, indeed, such things as non-irritating
frontiers. Witness the frontiers of Canada.
Certain boundaries have served in Europe now
for the better part of a hundred years, and grow
less amenable to disturbance every year. Nobody,
for example, wants to use force to readjust the
mutual frontiers in Europe of Holland, Belgium,
France, Spain, Portugal and Italy, and none of
these Powers desire now to acquire the foreign
possessions of any other of the group. They
are Powers permanently at peace. Will it not be
possible now to make so drastic a readjustment
as to secure the same practical contentment
between all the European Powers ? Is not this
war that crowning opportunity ? It seems to me
that in this matter it behoves us to form an
opinion sane and definite enough to meet the
sudden impulses of belligerent triumph and over-
ride the secret counsels of diplomacy. It is a
thing to do forthwith. Let us decide what we
are going on fighting for, and let us secure it and
settle it. It is not an abstract interesting thing
to do ; it is the duty of every English citizen now
to study this problem of the map of Europe, so
that we can make an end for ever to that dark
game of plots and secret treaties and clap-trap
synthetic schemes that has wasted the forces of
civilisation (and made the fortunes of the Krupp


family) in the last forty years. We are fighting
now for a new map of Europe if we are fighting for
anything at all. I could imagine that new map
of Europe as if it were the flag of the allies who
now prepare to press the Germans back towards
their proper territory.

In the first place, I suggest that France must
recover Lorraine, and that Luxemburg must
be linked in closer union with Belgium. Alsace,
it seems to me, should be given a choice between
France and an entry into the Swiss Confederation.
It would possibly choose France. Denmark
should have again the distinctly Danish part of
her lost provinces restored to her. Trieste and
Trent, and perhaps also Pola, should be restored
to Italy. This will re-unite several severed
fragments of peoples to their more congenial
associates. But these are minor changes compared
with the new developments that are now, in some
form, inevitable in the East of Europe, and for
those we have to nerve our imaginations, if this
vast war and waste of men is to end in an enduring
peace. The break-up of the Austrian Empire
has hung over Europe like a curse for forty years.
Let us break it up now and have done with it.
What is to become of the non-German regions
of Austria-Hungary ? And what is to happen
upon the Polish frontier of Russia ?

First, then, I would suggest that the three
fragments of Poland should be reunited, and that
the Tsar of Russia should be crowned King of
Poland. I propose then we define that as our
national intention, that we use all the liberalising


influence this present war will give us in Russia
to that end. And secondly, I propose that we
set before ourselves as our policy the unification
of that larger Rumania which includes Trans-
sylvania, and the gathering together into a con-
federation of the Swiss type of all the Servian
and quasi-Servian provinces of the Austrian
Empire. Let us, as the price greater Servia will
pay for its unity, exact the restoration to Bulgaria
of any Bulgarian-speaking districts that are now
under Servian rule ; let us save Scutari from the
iniquity of a nose-slashing occupation by Mon-
tenegrins and try to effect another Swiss confed-
eration of the residual Bohemian, Slavic and
Hungarian fragments. I am convinced that the
time has come for the substitution of Swiss
associations for the discredited Imperialisms and
kingdoms that have made Europe unstable for
so long. Every emperor and every king, we now
perceive, means a national ambition more organic,
concentrated and dangerous than is possible
under Republican conditions. Our own peculiar
monarchy is the one exception that proves this
rule. There is no reason why we should multiply
these centres of aggression.

Probably neither Bulgaria nor Servia would
miss their kings very keenly, and anyhow, I do
not see any need for more of these irritating
ambition-pimples upon the fair face of the world.
Let us cease to give indigestible princes to the
new States that we Schweitzerize. Albania, par-
ticularly, with its miscellaneous tribes has cer-
tainly no use for monarchy, and the suggestion


that has been made for its settlement, as a con-
federation of small tribal cantons is the only
one I have ever heard that seemed to contain a
ray of hope for that distracted patch of earth.
There is certainly no reason why these people
should be exploited by Italy, since Italy can
claim a more legitimate gratification. There, in
a paragraph, is a sketch of the map of Europe
that may emerge from the present struggle. It
is my personal idea of our purpose in this war.

Quite manifestly in all these matters I am a
fairly ignorant person. Quite manifestly this is
crude stuff. And I admit a certain sense of
presumptuous absurdity as I sit here before the
map of Europe like a carver before a duck and
take off a slice here and decide on a cut there.
None the less it is what everyone of us has to do.
I intend to go on redrawing the map of Europe
with every intelligent person I meet. We are
all more or less ignorant ; it is unfortunate but
it does not alter the fact that we cannot escape
either decisions or passive acquiescences in these
matters. If we do not do our utmost to under-
stand the new map, if we make no decisions,
then still cruder things will happen ; Europe
will blunder into a new set of ugly complications
and prepare a still more colossal Armageddon
than this that is now going on. No one, I hope,
will suggest after this war that we should still
leave things to the diplomatists. Yet the altern-
ative to you and me is diplomacy. If you want
to see where diplomacy and Welt Politik have
landed Europe after forty years of anxiety and


armament, you must go and look into the ditches
of Liege. These bloody heaps are the mere
first samples of the harvest. The only alternative
to diplomacy is outspoken intelligence, yours and
mine and every articulate person's. We have all
of us to undertake this redrawing of the map of
Europe, in the measure of our power and capacity.
That our power and capacity are unhappily not
very considerable does not absolve us. It is for
us to secure a lasting settlement of all the European
frontiers if we can. If we common intelligent
people at large do not secure that, nobody will.
If we have no intentions with regard to the
map of Europe, we shall soon be going on with
the war for nothing in particular. The Prussian
spirit has broken itself beyond repair, and the
north coast of France and the integrity of Belgium
are saved. All the fighting that is still to come
will only be the confirmation and development
of that. If we have no further plan before us
our task is at an end. If that is all, we may stand
aside now with a good conscience and watch a
slower war drag to an evil end. Left to herself a
victorious Russia is far more likely to help herself
to East Prussia and set to work to Russianise its
inhabitants than to risk an indigestion of more
Poles ; Italy may go into Albania and a new
conflict with Servia ; it is even conceivable that
France may be ungenerous. She will have a
good excuse for being ungenerous. Meanwhile,
German-speaking populations will find them-
selves under instead of upper dogs in half the
provinces of Austria-Hungary ; mischievous little


kings, with chancellors and national policies and
ambitions all complete, will rise and fluctuate and
fall upon that slippery soil, and a bloody and
embittered Germany, continually stung by the
outcries of her subject kindred, will sit down
grimly to grow a new generation of soldiers and
prepare for her revenge. . . .

That is why I think we liberal English should
draw our new map of Europe now, first of all
on paper and then upon the face of the earth.

We ought to draw that map now, and propagate
the idea of it, and make it our national purpose,
and call the intelligence and consciences of the
United States and France and Scandinavia to
our help. Openly and plainly we ought to discuss
and decide and tell the world what we mean to
do. The reign of brutality, cynicism, and secretive
treachery is shattered in Europe. Over the ruins
of the Prussian War-Lordship, reason, public
opinion, justice, international good faith and
good intentions will be free to come back and
rule the destinies of man. But things will not
wait for reason and justice, if just and reasonable
men have neither energy nor unity.

; ^ ta
toi^lfe/ 4& ^ali tcouir

'I'Utftr O3cfc

. vrt<&,.





The opportunity of Liberalism has come at
last, an overwhelming opportunity. The age
of militarism has rushed to its inevitable and yet
surprising climax. The great soldier empire,
made for war, which has dominated Europe for
forty years has pulled itself up by the roots and
flung itself into the struggle for which it was
made. Whether it win or lose, it will never put
itself back again. All Europe, following that
lead, is a-field for war. The good harvests stand
neglected, the factories are idle, a thin, uncertain
trickle of paper money replaces the chinking flow
of commerce ; whichever betide, defeat or
deadlock, the capitalist military civilisation up-
roots itself and ends. The war may burn itself
out more quickly than those who regard its
immensity think, but the war itself is the mere
smash of the thing. The reality is the uprooting,
the incurable dislocation.

Trying to map and measure that dislocation
is rather like one's first effort to think in sun's
distances. It is to transfer one's mind to a new
and overwhelming scale. Never did any time
carry so swift a burthen of change as this time.
It is manifest that in a year or so the world of


men is going to alter more than it has altered in
the last century and a half, more indeed than it
ever altered before these last centuries since
history began. Think of the mere geographical
dislocation. There is scarcely a country in Europe
that will not emerge from this struggle with
entirely fresh frontiers, sovereign powers will
vanish from the map, new sovereign powers will
come. In the disorders that are upon us and of
which this war itself is the mere preliminary
phase in uniform, inevitably there must be social
reconstruction. Who can doubt it ? Who can
doubt the break-up of confidence and usage that
is in progress ? Plainly you can see famine
coming in France, in Germany, in Russia. Does
anyone suppose that those sham efficient Germans
have fully worked out the care and feeding of the
madly distended hosts they have hurled at
France ? Does anyone dream that they have
reckoned for a check and halt ? Does anyone
imagine their sanitary arrangements are perfect ?
There will be pestilence. And can one believe
that whatever feats of financial fiction we con-
trive, their financial crash can be staved off, and
that the bankers of Hamburg and Frankfort are
likely to be shovelling gold next January in a still
methodical world ? The German State machine
has probably already done all that it was
ever made to do. It stands now exhausted
amidst the turmoil of its consequences. Its
mobilization arrangements are said to have been
astonishingly complete. Ten million men for
and against have been got into the field with


ammunition. Prussian Germany has carried out
its arrangements and committed the business to
Gott. German foresight has exhausted itself. If
Gott fail Germany, I do not believe that Germany
has the remotest idea what to do next. For
the most part those millions will never get
home any more. They will certainly never get
back to their work again, because it will have

When I think of European statecraft presently
trying to put all these things back again I am
reminded of a story of a friend whose neighbour
tried to cut his throat and then repented. He
came round to her with a towel about his neck
making peculiar noises. It was a distressing but
illuminating experience for her. She was a
plucky and resourceful woman, and she did her
best. " There was such a lot of it," she said.
" I hadn't an idea things were packed so tight

in us."

It is characteristic of such times as this that
much in the world, and, more particularly, much
in the minds of men, much that has seemed as
invincible as the mountains and as deeply rooted
as the sea, magically loses its solidity, fades,
changes, vanishes. When one looked at the map
of Europe a month ago most of the lines of its
frontiers seemed almost as stable as the coastlines.
Now they waver under one's eyes. When one
thought of the heritage of the Crown Prince of
Germany, it seemed as fixed as a constellation,
and now in a little while it may be worth as little
as a bloody rag in the trenches of Liege. In


little things as in great, one is suddenly confronted
by undreamt-of instabilities. The Reform Club,
which has been a cheerful and refreshing trickle
of gold to me for years, now yields me reluctantly
for my cheque two inartistic pound notes. My
other club has ceased the kindly custom of
cashing cheques altogether. One is glad that
poor Bagehot did not live to see this day. Each
day now I marvel to wake and find I have still
a banker. . . . And I perceive too, that if
presently my banker dissolved into the rest of
this dissolving world a thing I should have
thought an unendurable calamity a month ago
I shall laugh and go on. . . . Ideas that have
ruled life as though they were divine truths are
being chased and slaughtered in the streets.
The rights of property, for example, the sturdy
virtues of individualism, all toleration for the
rewards of abstinence, vanished last week suddenly
amidst the execrations of mankind upon a hurrying
motor-car loaded with packages of sugar and
flour. They bolted, leaving Socialism and Col-
lectivism in possession. The State takes over
flour mills and the food supply, not merely for
military purposes, but for the general welfare
of the community. The State controls the
railways with a sudden complete disregard of
shareholders. There is not even a letter to the
'limes to object. If the State sees fit to keep
its hold upon these things for good, or loosens
its hold only to improve its grip, I question if
there is very much left in the minds of men,
even after the mere preliminary sweeping of


the last two weeks, to dispute possession. Society
as we knew it a year ago has indeed already
broken up ; it has lost all real cohesion ; only
the absence of any attraction elsewhere keeps us
bunched together. We keep our relative posi-
tions because there is nowhither to stampede.
Dazed, astonished people fill the streets ; and we
talk of the national calm. The more intelligent
men thrown out of their jobs make for the recruit-
ing offices, because they have nothing else to
do ; we talk of the magnificent response to Lord
Kitchener's appeal. Everybody is offering ser-
vices. Everybody is looking for someone to tell
him what to do. It is not organisation ; it is
the first phase of dissolution.

I am not writing prophecies now, and I am
not " displaying imagination." I am just running
as hard as I can by the side of the marching facts,
and pointing to them. Institutions and conven-
tions crumble about us, and release to unprece-
dented power the two sorts of rebel that ordinary
times suppress, will and ideas.

The character of the new age that must come
out of the catastrophies of this epoch will be no
mechanical consequence of inanimate forces.
Will and ideas will take a larger part in this swirl-
ahead than they have even taken in any previous
collapse. No doubt the mass of mankind will
still pour along the channels of chance, but the
desire for a new world of a definite character will
be a force, and if it is multitudinously unanimous
enough, it may even be a guiding force, in shaping
the new time. The common man and base men


are scared to docility. Rulers, pomposities,
obstructives are suddenly apologetic, helpful,
asking for help. This is a time of incalculable
plasticity. For the men who know what they
want, the moment has come. It is the supreme
opportunity, the test or condemnation of con-
structive liberal thought in the world.

Now what does Liberalism mean to do ? It
has always been alleged against Liberalism that
it is carpingly critical, disorganised, dispersed,
impracticable, fractious, readier to " resign " and
" rebel " than help. That is the common excuse
of all modern autocracies, bureaucracies, and
dogmatisms. Are they right ? Is Liberal thought
in this world-crisis going to present the spectacle
of a swarm of little wrangling men swept before
the mindless besom of brute accident, or shall we
be able in this vast collapse or re-birth of the
world, to produce and express ideas that will
rule ? Has it all been talk ? Or has it been
planning ? Is the new world, in fact, to be
shaped by the philosophers or by the Huns ?

First, as to peace. Do Liberals realise that
now is the time to plan the confederation and
collective disarmament of Europe, now is the
time to re-draw the map of Europe so that there
may be no more rankling sores or unsatisfied
national ambitions ? Are the Liberals as a body
going to cry " Peace ! Peace ! " and leave the
questions alone, or are they going to take hold
of them ? If Liberalism throughout the world
develops no plan of a pacified world until the
diplomatists get to work, it will be too late.


Peace may come to Europe this winter as swiftly
and disastrously as the war.

And next, as to social reconstruction. Do
Liberals realise that the individualist capitalist
system is helpless now ? It may be picked up
unresistingly. It is stunned. A new economic
order may be improvised and probably will in
some manner be improvised in the next two or
three years. What are the intentions of Liberal-
ism ? What will be the contribution of Liberal-
ism ? One poor Liberal, I perceive, is possessed,
to the exclusion of every other consideration,
by the idea that we were not legally bound to
fight for Belgium. A pretty point, but a petty
one. Liberalism is something greater than un-
favourable comment on the deeds of active men.
Let us set about defining our intentions. Let
us borrow a little from the rash vigour of the
types that have contrived this disaster. Let us
make a truce of our finer feelings and control our
dissentient passions. Let us re-draw the map
of Europe boldly, as we mean it to be re-drawn,
an let us re-plan society as we mean it to be
reconstructed. Let us get to work while there
is still a little time left to us. Or while our
futile fine intelligences are busy, each with its
particular exquisitely-felt point, the Northclirfes
and the diplomatists, the Welt-Politik whisperers,
and the financiers, and militarists, the armaments
interests, and the Cossack Tsar, terrified by the
inevitable red dawn of leaderless social democracy,
by the beginning of the stupendous stampede
that will follow this great jar and displacement,


will surely contrive some monstrous blundering
settlement, and the latter state of this world
will be worse than the former.

Now is the opportunity to do fundamental
things that will otherwise not get done for
hundreds of years. If Liberals throughout the
world and in this matter the Liberalism of
America is a stupendous possibility will insist
upon a World conference at the end of this
conflict, if they refuse all partial settlements and
merely European solutions, they may re-draw
every frontier they choose, they may reduce
a thousand chafing conflicts of race and language
and government to a minimum, and set up a
Peace League that will control the globe. The
world will be ripe for it. And the world will be
ripe, too, for the banishment of the private
industry in armaments and all the vast corruption
that entails from the earth for ever. It is possible
now to make an end to Kruppism. It may never
be possible again. Henceforth let us say weapons
must be made by the State, and only by the
State ; there must be no more private profit in
blood. That is the second great possibility for
Liberalism, linked to the first. And, thirdly,
we may turn our present social necessities to the
most enduring social reorganization ; with an
absolute minimum of effort now, we may help
to set going methods and machinery that will
put the feeding and housing of the population
and the administration of the land out of the
reach of private greed and selfishness for ever.
^Wi ^H&dM ,, :<***>

(1M k I



It is evident that there is a very considerable
dread of the power and intentions of Russia in
this country. It is well that the justification of
this dread should be discussed now, for it is
likely to affect the attitude of British and American
Liberalism very profoundly, both towards the
continuation of the war and towards the ultimate

It is, I believe, an exaggerated dread arising
out of our extreme ignorance of Russian realities.
English people imagine Russia to be more pur-
poseful than she is. more concentrated, more
inimical to Western civilisation. They think of
Russian policy as if it were a diabolically clever
spider in a dark place. They imagine that the
tremendous unification of State and national
pride and ambition which has made the German
Empire at last insupportable, may presently be
repeated upon an altogether more gigantic scale,
that Pan-Slavism will take the place of Pan-
Germanism, as the ruling aggression of the

This is a dread due, I am convinced, to funda-
mental misconceptions and hasty parallelisms.
Russia is not only the vastest country in the


world, but the laxest ; she is incapable of that
tremendous unification. Not for two centuries
yet, if ever, will it be necessary for a reasonably
united Western Europe to trouble itself, once
Prussianism has been disposed of, about the risk
of definite aggression from the East. I do not
think it will ever have to trouble itself.

Socially and politically, Russia is an entirely
unique structure. It is the fashion to talk of
Russia as being "in the fourteenth century," or
" in the sixteenth century." As a matter of
fact, Russia, like everything else, is in the twen-
tieth century, and it is quite impossible to find
in any other age a similar social organisation. In
bulk, she is barbaric. Between eighty and ninety
per cent, of her population is living at a level
very little above the level of those agricultural
Aryan races who were scattered over Europe
before the beginning of written history. It is
an illiterate population. It is superstitious in a
primitive way, conservative and religious in a
primitive way, it is incapable of protecting itself
in the ordinary commerce of modern life ; against
the business enterprise of better educated races
it has no weapon but a peasant's poor cunning.
It is, indeed, a helpless, unawakened mass. Above
these peasants come a few millions of fairly well-
educated and actively intelligent people. They
are all that corresponds in any way to a Western
community such as ours. Either they are officials,
clerical or lay, in the great government machine
that was consolidated chiefly by Peter the Great
to control the souls and bodies of the peasant


mass, or they are private persons more or less
resentfully entangled in that machine. At the
head of this structure, with powers of interference
strictly determined by his individual capacity,
is that tragic figure, the Tsar. That, briefly, is
the composition of Russia, and it is unlike any
other State on earth. It will follow laws of its
own and have a destiny of its own.

Involved with the affairs of Russia are certain
less barbaric States. There is Finland, which is
by comparison highly civilised, and Poland, which
is not nearly so far in advance of Russia. Both
these countries are perpetually uneasy under the
blundering pressure of foolish attempts to " Rus-
sianize " them. In addition, in the South and
East are certain provinces thick with Jews, whom
Russia can neither contrive to tolerate nor
assimilate, who have no comprehensible projects
for the help or reorganisation of the country,
and who deafen all the rest of Europe with their
bitter, unhelpful tale of grievances, so that it is
difficult to realise how local and partial are their
wrongs. There is a certain " Russian idea,"
containing within itself all the factors of failure,
inspiring the general policy of this vast amorphous
State. It found its completest expression in the
works of the now defunct Pobedonostsev, and it
pervades the bureaucracy. It is obscurantist,
denying the common people education ; it is
orthodox, forbidding free thought and preferring
conformity to ability ; it is bureaucratic and
autocratic ; it is Pan-Slavic, Russianizing, and
aggressive. It is this " Russian idea " that


Western Liberalism dreads, and, as I want to
point out, dreads unreasonably. I do not want
to plead that it is not a bad thing ; it is a bad
thing. I want to point out that, unlike Prussian-
ism, it is not a great danger to the world at

So long as this Russian idea, this Russian
Toryism, dominates Russian affairs, Russia can
never be really formidable either to India, to
China, or to the Liberal nations of Western
Europe. And whenever she abandons this Tory-
ism and becomes modern and formidable, she
will cease to be aggressive. That is my case.
While Russia has the will to oppress the world
she will never have the power ; when she has
the power she will cease to have the will. Let
me state my reasons for this belief as compactly
as possible, because if I am right a number of
Liberal-minded people in Great Britain and
America and Scandinavia, who may collectively
have a very great influence upon the settlement
of Europe that will follow this war, are wrong.
They may want to bolster up a really dangerous
and evil Austria-cum-Germany at the expense
of France, Belgium, and subject Slav populations,
because of their dread of this Russia which can
never be at the same time evil and dangerous.

Now, first let me point out what the Boer
War showed, and what this tremendous conflict
in Belgium is already enforcing, that the day of the
unintelligent common soldier is past ; that men
who are animated and individualised can, under
modern conditions, fight better than men who


are unintelligent and obedient. Soldiering is
becoming more specialised. It is calling for the
intelligent handling of weapons so elaborate and
destructive that great masses of men in the field
are an encumbrance rather than a power. Battles
must spread out, and leading give place to
individual initiative. Consequently Russia can
only become powerful enough to overcome any
highly civilised European country by raising its
own average of education and initiative, and this
it can do only by abandoning its obscurantist
methods, by liberalising upon the Western Euro-
pean model. That is to say, it will have to teach
its population to read, to multiply its schools,
and increase its universities ; and that will make
an entirely different Russia from this one we
fear. It involves a relaxation of the grip of
orthodoxy, an alteration of the intellectual out-
look of officialdom, an abandonment of quasi-
religious autocracy in short, the complete aban-
donment of the " Russian idea " as we know it.
And it means also a great development of local
self-consciousness. Russia seems homogeneous
now, because in the mass it is so ignorant as to be
unaware of its differences ; but an educated
Russia means a Russia in which Ruthenian and
Great Russian, Lett and Tartar will be mutually
critical and aware of one another. The existing
Russian idea will need to give place to an entirely
more democratic, tolerant, and cosmopolitan
idea of Russia as a whole, if Russia is to merge
from its barbarism and remain united. There is
no cheap " Deutschland, Deutschland u'ber alles "


sentiment ready-made to hand. National quality
is against it. Patience under patriotism is a
German weakness. Russians could no more go
on singing and singing, " Russia, Russia over all,"
than Englishmen could go on singing " Rule,
Britannia." It would bore them. The tem-
perament of none of the Russian peoples justifies
the belief that they will repeat on a larger scale
even as much docility as the Germans have
shown under the Prussians. No one who has
seen the Russians, who has had opportunities of
comparing Berlin with St. Petersburg or Moscow,
or who knows anything of Russian art or Russian
literature, will imagine this naturally wise,
humourous, and impatient people reduplicating
the self-conscious, drill-dulled, soulless culture
of Germany, or the political vulgarities of Pots-
dam. This is a terrible world, I admit, but
Prussianism is the sort of thing that does not
happen twice.

Russia is substantially barbaric. Who can
deny it ? State-stuff rather than a State. But
people in Western Europe are constantly writing
of Russia and the Russians as though the qualities
natural to barbarism were qualities inherent in
the Russian blood. Russia massacres, sometimes
even with official connivance. But Russia in all
its history has no massacres so abominable as we
gentle English were guilty of in Ireland in the
sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Russia,
too, " Russianizes," sometimes clumsily, some-
times rather successfully. But Germany has
sought to Germanise in Bohemia and Poland,


for instance, with conspicuous violence and
failure. We " Anglicised " Ireland. These for-
cible efforts to create uniformity are natural to a
phase of social and political development, from
which no people on earth have yet fully emerged.
And if we set ourselves now to create a reunited
Poland under the Russian crown, if we bring all
the great influence of the Western Powers to
bear upon the side of the liberalising forces in
Finland, if we do not try to thwart and stifle
Russia by closing her legitimate outlet into the
Mediterranean, we shall do infinitely more for
human happiness than if we distrust her, check
her, and force her back upon the barbarism from
which, with a sort of blind pathetic wisdom, she
seeks to emerge.

It is unfortunate for Russia that she has come
into conspicuous conflict with the Jews. She has
certainly treated them no worse than she has
treated her own people, and she has treated them
less atrociously than they were treated in England
during the Middle Ages. The Jews by their
particularism invite the resentment of all uncul-
tivated humanity. Civilisation and not revolt
emancipates them. And while Russian reverses
will throw back her civilisation and intensify the
sufferings of all her subject Jews, Russian success
in this alliance will inevitably spell Westernisation,
progress, and amelioration for them. But un-
happily this does not seem to be patent to many
Jewish minds. They have been embittered by
their wrongs, and, in the English and still more
in the American Press, a heavy weight of grievance


against Russia finds voice, and distorts the issue
of this. While we are still only in the opening
phase of this struggle for life against the Prussian-
ised German Empire, this struggle to escape
from the militarism that has been slowly strang-
ling civilisation, it is a huge misfortune that this
racial resentment, which, great as it is, is still a
little thing beside the world issues involved,
should break the united front of western civilisa-
tion, and that the confidence of Russia should be
threatened, as it is threatened now by doubt and
disparagement in the Press. We are not so sure
of victory that we can estrange an ally. We have
to make up our minds to see all Poland reunited
under the Russian Crown, and if the Turks
choose to play a foolish part, it is not for us to
quarrel now about the fate of Constantinople.
The Allies are not to be tempted into a quarrel
about Constantinople. The balance of power in
the Balkans, that is to say, incessant intrigue
between Austria and Russia, has arrested the
civilisation of South-eastern Europe for a century.
Let it topple. An unchallenged Russia will be
a wholesome check, and no great danger for the
new greater Servia and the new greater Rumania
and the enlarged and restored Bulgaria this war
renders possible.

One civilised country only does Russia really
" threaten," and that country is Sweden. Sweden
has a vast wealth of coal and iron within reach of
Russia's hand. And I confess I watch Scandi-
navia with a certain terror during these days.
Sweden is the only European country in which


there is a pro-German militarist party, and she
may be tempted I do not know how strongly
she may not have been tempted already to
drag herself and Norway into this struggle on
the German side. If she does, our Government
will be not a little to blame for not having given
her, and induced Russia to give her, the strongest
joint assurances and guarantees of her integrity
for ever. But if the Scandinavian countries
abstain from any participation in this present
war, then I do not see what is to prevent us
and France and Russia from making the most
public, definite, and binding declaration of our
common interest in Sweden's integrity and our
common determination to preserve it.

Beyond that, I see no danger to civilisation in
Russia anywhere at least, no danger so con-
siderable as the Kaiser-Krupp power we fight to
finish. This war, even if it brings us the utmost
success, will still leave Russia face to face with a
united and chastened Germany. For it must be
remembered that the downfall of Prussianism
and the break-up of the Austro-Hungarian
Empire, will leave German Germany not smaller
but larger than she is now. To India, decently
governed and guarded, with an educational level
higher than her own, and three times her gross
population, Russia can only be dangerous through
the grossest misgovernment on our part, and
her powers of intervention in China will be
restricted for many years. But all our powers
of intervention in China will be restricted for
many years. A breathing space for Chinese


reconstruction is one of the most immediate and
least equivocal blessings of this war. Unless the
Chinese are unteachable and only stupid people
suppose them a stupid race the China of 1934
will not be a China for either us or Russia to
meddle with. So where in all the world is this
danger from Russia ?

The danger of a Krupp-cum-Kaiser dominance
of the whole world, on the other hand, is imme-
diate. Defeat, or even a partial victory for the
Allies, means nothing less than that.



- *fa-




This appeal comes to you from England at
war, and it is addressed to you because upon your
nation rests the issue of this conflict. The
influence of your States upon its nature and
duration must needs be enormous, and at its
ending you may play a part such as no nation
has ever played since the world began.

For it rests with you to establish and secure
or to refuse to establish and secure the permanent
peace of the world, the final ending of war.

This appeal comes to you from England, but
it is no appeal to ancient associations or racial
affinities. Your common language is indeed
English, but your nation has long since outgrown
these early links, the blood of every people in
Europe mingles in the unity of your States, and
it is to the greatness of your future rather than
the accidents of your first beginnings, to the
humanity in you, and not to the English and
Irish and Scotch and Welsh in you that this
appeal is made. Half the world is at war, or on
the very verge of war ; it is impossible that you
should disregard or turn away from this conflict.
Unavoidably you have to judge us. Unavoidable
is your participation in the ultimate settlement


which will make or mar the welfare of mankind
for centuries to come. We appeal to you to
judge us, to listen patiently to our case, to exert
the huge decisive power, you hold in the balance
not hastily, not heedlessly. For we do not
disguise from ourselves that you can shatter all
our hopes in this conflict. You are a people
more than twice as numerous as we are, and still
you are only the beginning of what you are to be,
with a clear prospect of expansion that mocks the
limits of these little islands, with illimitable and
still scarcely tapped sources of wealth and power.
You have already come to a stage when a certain
magnanimity becomes you in your relation to
European affairs.

Now, while you, because of your fortunate
position, and because of the sane and brotherly
relations that have become a fixed tradition along
your northern boundary we English had a share
in securing that while you live free of the sight
and burthen of military preparations, free as it
seems for ever, all Europe has for more than half
a century bent more and more wearily under a
perpetually increasing burthen of armaments.
For many years Europe has been an armed camp,
with millions of men continually under arms,
with the fear of war universally poisoning its life,
with its education impoverished, its social devel-
opment retarded, with everything pinched but
its equipment for war. It would be foolish to
fix the blame for this state of affairs upon any
particular nation ; it has grown up, as most
great evils grow, quietly, unheeded. One may


cast back in history to the Thirty Years' War,
to such names as Frederick the Great, Napoleon
the First, Napoleon the Third, Bismarck ; what
does it matter now who began the thing, and
which was most to blame ? Here it is, and we
have to deal with it.

But we English do assert that it is the Govern-
ment of the German Emperor which has for the
last 40 years taken the lead and forced the pace
in these matters, which has driven us English
to add warship to warship in a pitiless competition
to retain that predominance at sea upon which
our existence as a free people depends, and which
has strained the strength of France almost beyond
the pitch of human endurance, so that the
education and the welfare of her people have
suffered greatly, so that Paris to-day is visibly
an impoverished and over-taxed city. And this
perpetual fear of the armed strength of Germany
has forced upon France alliances and entangle-
ments she would otherwise have avoided.

Let us not attempt to deny the greatness of
Germany and of Germany's contributions to
science and art and literature and all that is good
in human life. But evil influences may over-
shadow the finest peoples, and it is our case that
since the victories of 1871 Germany has been
obsessed by the worship of material power and
glory and scornful of righteousness ; that she
has been threatening and overbearing to all the
world. There has been a propaganda of cynicism
and national roughness, a declared contempt for
treaties and pledges, so that all Europe has been


uneasy and in fear. And since none of us are
saints, and certainly no nations are saintly, we have
been resentful ; there is not a country in Europe
that has not shown itself resentful under this
perpetual menace of Germany. And now at
last and suddenly the threatened thing has come
to pass and Germany is at war.

Because of a murder committed by one of her
own subjects Austria made war upon Servia,
Russia armed to protect a kindred country, and
then with the swiftness of years of premeditation
Germany declared war upon Russia and struck
at France, striking through the peaceful land
of Belgium, a little country we English had
pledged ourselves to protect, a little country that
had never given Germany the faintest pretext
for hostility, and in the hope of finding France
unready. Of course, we went to war. If we
had not done so, could we English have ever
looked the world in the face again ?

And it is with scarcely a dissentient voice that
England is at war. Never were the British people
so unanimous ; all Ireland is with us, and the
conscience of all the world. And, now this war
has begun, we are resolved to put an end to
militarism in the world for evermore. We are
not fighting to destroy Germany ; it is the firm
resolve of England to permit no fresh " conquered
provinces " to darken the future of Europe.
Whatever betide, all German Germany will come
out of this war undivided and German still.
Her own " conquests " she may have to relinquish,
her Poles and other subject peoples, but that is the


utmost we shall exact of her. With the accession
of Austria, Germany may even come out of this
war a larger Germany than at the beginning.
We have no hatred of things German and German
people. But we are fighting to break this huge
fighting machine for ever this fighting machine
which has been such an oppression as no native-
born American can dream of, to every other
nation in Europe. We are fighting to end
Kaiserism and Kruppism for ever and ever.
There, shortly and plainly, is our case and our
object. Now let us come to the immediate
substance of this appeal.

We do not ask you for military help. Keep
the peace which it is your unparalleled good
fortune to enjoy so securely. But keep it fairly.
Remember that we fight now for national
existence, and that in the night, even as this is
written, within a hundred miles or so of this
place, the dark ships feel their way among the
floating mines with which the Germans have
strewn the North Sea, and our sons and the sons
of Belgium and France go side by side, not by the
hundred nor by the thousand, but by the hundred
thousand, rank after rank, line beyond line to
death. Even as this is written the harvest of
death is being reaped. Remember our tragic
case. Europe is full of a joyless determination
to end this evil for ever ; she plunges grimly
and sadly into the cruel monstrosities of war,
and assuredly there will be little shouting for
the victors whichever side may win. At the
end we do most firmly believe there will be


established a new Europe, a Europe riddened of
rankling oppressions, with a free Poland, a free
Finland, a free Germany, the Balkans settled,
the little nations safe, and peace secure. And
it is of supreme importance that we should ask
you now What are you going to do throughout
the struggle, and what will you do at the end ?

One thing we are told in England that you
mean to do, a thing that has moved me to this
appeal. For it is not only a strange thing in
itself, but it may presently be followed by other
similar ideas. Come what may, all the liberal
forces in England and France are resolved to
respect the freedom of Holland. But the position
of Holland is, as you may see in any atlas, a very
peculiar one in this war. The Rhine runs along
the rear of the long German line as if it were a
canal to serve that line with supplies, and then
it passes into Holland and so by Rotterdam to
the sea. So that it is possible for any neutral
power, such as you are, to pour a stream of food
supplies and war material by way of Holland
almost into the hands of the German combatant
line. Even if we win our battles in the field
this will enormously diminish our chance of
concluding this war. But we shall suffer it ;
it is within the rights of Holland to victual the
Germans in this way, and we cannot prevent it
without committing just such another outrage
upon the laws of nations as Germany was guilty
of in invading Belgium.

And here is where your country comes in. In
your harbours lie a great number of big German


ships that dare not venture to sea because of our
fleet. It is proposed, we are told, to arrange a
purchase of these ships by American citizens, to
facilitate by special legislation their transfer to
your flag, and then to load them with food and
war material and send them across the Atlantic
and through the narrow seas, seas that at the
price of a cruiser and many men we have painfully
cleared of German contact mines, to get war
prices in Rotterdam and supply our enemies.
It is, we confess, a smart thing to do ; it will give
your people not only huge immediate profits but
a mercantile marine at one coup ; it will certainly
prolong the war, and so it will mean the killing
and wounding of scores of thousands of young
Germans, Englishmen, Frenchmen, and Belgians,
who might otherwise have escaped. It is within
your legal rights, and we will tell you plainly now
that we shall refuse to quarrel with you about it,
but we ask you not to be too easily offended if
we betray a certain lack of enthusiasm for this

And begun such enterprises as this, what are
you going to do for mankind and the ultimate
peace of the world ? You know that the Tsar
has restored the freedom of Finland and promised
to re-unite the torn fragments of Poland into a
free kingdom, but probably you do not know
that he and England have engaged themselves
to respect and protect from each other and all
the world the autonomy of Norway and Sweden,
and of Sweden's vast and tempting stores of
mineral wealth close to the Russian boundary.


We ask you not to be too cynical about the Tsar's
promises, and to be prepared to help us and
France and him to see that they become real.
And this with regard to Scandinavia, is not only
Russia's promise but ours. This is more than a
war of armies ; it is a great moral upheaval, and
ou must not judge of the spirit of Europe to-day
y the history of her diplomacies. When this
w T ar is ended, all Europe will cry for disarmament.
Are you going to help then or are you going to
thwart that cry ? In Europe we shall attempt
to extinguish that huge private trade in war
material, that " Kruppism " which lies so near
the roots of all this monstrous calamity. We
cannot do that unless you do it too. Are you
prepared to do that ? Are you prepared to come
into a conference at the end of this war to ensure
the peace of the world, or are you going to stand
out, make difficulties for us out of our world
perplexities, snatch advantages, carp from your
infinite security at our Allies, and perhaps in the
crisis of our struggle pick a quarrel with us upon
some secondary score ? Are you indeed going
to play the part of a merely numerous little
people, a cute trading, excitable people, or are
you going to play the part of a great nation in
this life and death struggle of the old world
civilisations ? Are you prepared now to take
that lead among the nations to which your
greatness and freedom point you ? It is not
for ourselves we make this appeal to you ; it
is for the whole future of mankind. And we
make it with the more assurance because


already your Government has stood for peace
and the observation of treaties against base

Already the wounds of our dead cry out to



The Balkan States never have been a problem,
they have only been a part of a problem. That
is why no human being has ever yet produced
even a paper solution acceptable to another
human being.

The attempt to settle Balkan affairs with the
Austro-Hungarian Empire left out of the problem
has been like an attempt to deal with a number of
hospital cases in which the head and shoulders
of one patient, the legs of another, the abdomen
of a third had to be disregarded. The bulk of
the Servian people and a great mass of the Ru-
manians were in the Austro-Hungarian system,
and it was the Austrian bar to any development
of Servia towards the Adriatic that forced that
country back into its unhappy conflict with
Bulgaria. Now everything has altered. English
people need trouble no longer about Austrian
susceptibilities, and not merely our interests but
our urgent necessities march with the reasonable
ambitions of the four Balkan nations.

Let us begin by clearing away a certain amount
of nonsense that is said and believed by many
good people about two of these States. It is too


much the custom to speak and write of Servia
and Bulgaria as though they were almost hopelessly
barbaric and criminal communities, incapable of
participation in the fellowship of European
nations. The murder of the late King and Queen
of Servia, the assassination of Serajevo, the foolish
onslaught of Bulgaria upon Servia that led to the
break-up of the Balkan League, and the endless
cruelties and barbarities of the warfare in Mace-
donia, are allowed to weigh too much against the
clear need of a reunited Greater Servia, a restored
Bulgaria, and the reasonable prospect of a re-
habilitated Balkan League.

Now there is no getting over the hard facts of
these crimes and cruelties. But they have to be
kept in their proper proportion to the tremendous
issues now before the world. Let us call in a few
figures that will fix the scale. The Servian people
number altogether over ten millions, the Ruma-
nians as many, there are more than twenty million
Poles, and perhaps seven millions Bulgarians. The
Czechs and Slovenes total six or seven millions,
the Magyars exceed ten millions, and the Ruthe-
nians still under Austrian control four millions.
It is manifest to every reasonable Englishman now
that very few of these sixty or seventy million
people are likely to be socially and politically
happy until they have got themselves disen-
tangled from intimate subjection to alien rulers
speaking unfamiliar tongues, and it is equally
manifest that until they are reasonably content,
the peace of the rest of Europe will remain
uncertain. So that it is upon these regions that


the peace of England, France, Germany, Russia
and Italy rests.

The lives, therefore, of hundreds of millions of
people must be affected, for good or evil, by the
sane re-mapping and pacification of south-eastern
Europe. In that sane re-mapping and pacifica-
tion we are, in fact, dealing with matters so
gigantic that the mere assassination of this person
or the murder of that dwindles almost to the
vanishing point. It is surely preposterous that
the murder of an unwise young King, who sub-
ordinated his nation's destinies to a romantic
love affair, a murder done, not by a whole nation,
not even by a mob, but by less than a hundred
officers, who were at least as patriotic as they were
cruel, or even the net of conspiracy that killed
the Archduke Franz Ferdinand, should stand in
the way of the liberation and unity of millions
of Serbs who were as innocent of these things as
any Wiltshire farmer. All nations have had their
criminal and sanguinary phase ; the British and
American people who profess such a horror of
Servia's murders and Bulgaria's massacres must
be blankly ignorant of the history of Scotland
and Ireland and the darker side of the Red
Indians' destiny. If murder conspiracy was
hatched in Servia, were there no Fenians in Ireland
and America ? We English, at any rate, have not
let the highly-organised Phoenix Park murders
drown the freedom of Ireland for ever, or cause a
war with America. The sooner we English and
Americans clear our minds of this self-righteous
cant against the whole Servian race because of


a few horrors inevitable in a state of barbaric
disturbance, the sooner we shall be able to help
these peoples forward to the freedom and security
that alone can make such barbarities impossible.
It would be just as reasonable to vow undying
hatred and pitiless vengeance against the whole
German-speaking race (of seventy millions or
so) because of the burning and killing in Liege.
Stifled nations, outraged races, are the fortresses
of resentful cruelty. This war is no cinemato-
graph melodrama. The deaths of Queen Draga
and the Archduke Franz Ferdinand are scarcely
in this picture at all. It is not the business of
statecraft to avenge the past, but to deal with the
possibilities of the present and the hope of the

And the open possibility of the present is for
us to bring about a revival of the Balkan League,
and identify ourselves with the reasonable hopes
of these renascent peoples. In that revival
England may play an active and directing part.
The break-up of the first Balkan League was a
deep disappointment to liberal opinion through-
out the w r orld ; but it was not an irrevocable
disaster. The wonder was, indeed, not the rupture
but the union. And the rupture itself w r as very
largely due to the thwarting of Servia, not by her
associates, but by Austria. Now Austria is out
of consideration. For Rumania and for each of
the three Balkan Powers, there is a plain, honour-
able and reasonable advantage in a common
agreement and concerted action with us now.
There are manifest compensations for Greece in


Epirus and the islands and we can spare it
Cyprus. For Bulgaria there is a generous recti-
fication of Macedonia. The natural expansion
of the two northern States has been already
indicated. And should Turkey be foolish and
blunder at this crisis, then further very natural
v, and quite desirable readjustments become possible.
!What holds these States back from concerted
'action on our side now, is merely the distrusts
and enmities left over from the break-up of the
first Balkan League. They will not readily trust
one another again. But they would trust England.
They would sit down now at a conference in
which England and Russia and Italy were repre-
sented, and to which England and Russia and
Italy would bring assurances of a permanent
settlement and arrange every detail of their
prospective boundaries in a day. They would
arrange a peace that would last a century.
England could do more than reconcile ; she could
finance. And the attack upon Vienna and the
German rear would then be reinforced immedi-
ately by six or seven hundred thousand seasoned

Moreover, it is scarcely possible that Italy
could refuse to come into this war if a reunited
Balkan League did so. With the Servians in
Dalmatia it would be scarcely possible to keep
the Italians out of Trieste and Fiume, and long
before that earnestly awaited Russian avalanche
won its way to Berlin, this southern attack might
be in Vienna. The time when the scope of this
war could be restricted is past long ago, and every


fresh soldier who goes into action now shortens
the agony of Europe.

But it is not with the immediate military
advantages of a Balkan League that I am most
concerned. A Balkan League of Peace, for
mutual protection, will be an absolute necessity
in a regenerated Europe. It is necessary for the
tranquility of the world. It is necessary if the
Wiltshire farmer is to herd his sheep in peace ;
it is necessary if people are to be prosperous and
happy in Chicago and Yokohama. Perhaps
" Balkan League " is now an insufficiently exten-
sive word, since Rumania is not in the Balkan
Peninsula, and Italy must necessarily be involved
in any enduring settlement. But it is clear that
the settlement of Europe upon liberal lines
involves the creation of these various ten-to-
twenty-million-people States, none of them
powerful enough to be secure alone, but amount-
ing in the aggregate to the greatest power in
Europe, and it is equally clear that they must
be linked by some common bond and under-

There can be no doubt of the very serious
complication of all these possibilities by the
jerry-built dynastic interests that have been
unhappily run up in these new States. It is
unfortunate that we have to reckon not only with
peoples but kings. Such a monarchy as that of
Servia or Bulgaria narrows, personifies, intensifies
and misrepresents national feeling. National
hatreds and national ambitions can no doubt be
at times very malign influences in the world's


affairs, but it is the greed and vanities of excep-
tional monarchs, of the Napoleons and Fredericks
the Great, and so forth, that bring these vague,
vast feelings to an edge and a crisis. And it will
be these same concentrated and over individualised
purposes, these little gods of the coin and postage
stamp that will stand most in the way of a
reasonable Schweitzerisation and pacification of
south-eastern Europe. The more clearly this
is recognised in Europe now, the less likely are
they, the less able will they be to obstruct a sane
settlement. On our side, at least, this is a war
of nations and not of princes.

It is for that reason that we have to make the
discussion of these national arrangements as open
and public as we possibly can. This is not a
matter for the quiet little deals of the diplomatists.
This is no chance for kings. All the civilised
peoples of the earth have to form an idea of the
general lines upon which a pacific Europe can
be established, an idea clear and powerful
enough to prevent and override the manoeuvres
of the chancelleries. The nations themselves
have to become the custodians of the common
peace. In Italy, indeed, this is already the case.
The Italian monarchy is a strong and Liberal
monarchy, secure in the confidence of its people ;
but were it not so, it is a fairly evident fact that
no betrayal by its rulers would induce the Italian
people to make war upon France in the interests
of Austria and Prussia. I doubt, too, if the
present King of Bulgaria can afford to blunder
again. The world moves steadily away from the


phase of Court-centred nationalism to the phase
of a collective national purpose. It is for the
whole strength of western liberalism to throw
itself upon the side of that movement, and in no
direction can it make its strength so effective at
the present time as in the open and energetic
promotion of a new and greater Balkan League.

, Ja tffat uwrfq



VfaM*^ (



All the realities of this war are things of the
mind. This is a conflict of cultures, and nothing
else in the world. All the world-wide pain and
weariness, fear and anxieties, the bloodshed and
destruction, the innumerable torn bodies of men
and horses, the stench of putrefaction, the misery
of hundreds of millions of human beings, the
waste of mankind, are but the material conse-
quences of a false philosophy and foolish thinking.
We fight not to destroy a nation, but a nest of
evil ideas.

We fight because a whole nation has become
obsessed by pride, by the cant of cynicism and
the vanity of violence, by the evil suggestion of
such third-rate writers as Gobineau and Stewart
Chamberlain that they were a people of peculiar
excellence destined to dominate the earth, by
the base offer of advantage in cunning and
treachery held out by such men as Delbruck and
Bernhardi, by the theatricalism of the Kaiser,
and by two stirring songs about Deutschland and
the Rhine. These things, interweaving with the
tradesmen's activities of the armaments trust and
the common vanity and weaknesses of unthinking
men, have been sufficient to release disaster
we do not begin to measure the magnitude of



the disaster. On the back of it all, spurring it
on, are the idea-mongers, the base-spirited writing
men, pretentious little professors in frock coats
scribbling colonels. They are the idea. They
pointed the way and whispered " Go ! " They
ride the world now to catastrophe. It is as if
God in a moment of wild humour had lent his
whirlwinds for an outing to half-a-dozen fleas.

And the real task before mankind is quite
beyond the business of the fighting line, the simple
awful business of discrediting and discouraging
these stupidities by battleship, artillery, rifle and
the blood and courage of seven million men.
The real task of mankind is to get better sense
into the heads of these Germans, and therewith
and thereby into the heads of humanity generally,
and to end not simply a war, but the idea of war.
What printing and writing and talking have done,
printing and writing and talking can undo. Let
no man be fooled by bulk and matter. Rifles
do but kill men, and fresh men are born to follow
them. Our business is to kill ideas. The ultimate
purpose of this war is propaganda, the destruction
of certain beliefs, and the creation of others.
It is to this propaganda that reasonable men
must address themselves.

And when I write propaganda, I do not for a
moment mean the propaganda with which the
name of Mr. Norman Angell is associated ; this
great modern gospel that war does not pay.
That is indeed the only decent and attractive
thing that can still be said for war. Nothing that
is really worth having in life does pay. Men live


in order that they may pay for the unpaying
things. Love does not pay, art does not pay,
happiness does not pay, honesty is not the best
policy, generosity invites the ingratitude of the
mean ; what is the good of this huckster's argu-
ment ? It revolts all honourable men. But
war, whether it pay or not, is an atrociously ugly
thing, cruel, destroying countless beauties. Who
cares whether war pays or does not pay, when
one thinks of some obstinate Belgian peasant
woman being interrogated and shot by a hectoring
German officer, or of the weakly whimpering
mess of some poor hovel with little children in
it, struck by a shell ? Even if war paid twelve-
and-a-half per cent, per annum for ever on every
pound it cost to wage, would it be any the less
a sickening abomination to every decent soul ?
And, moreover, it is a bore. It is an unendurable
bore. War and the preparation for war, the
taxes, the drilling, the interference with every
free activity, the arrest and stiffening up of life,
the obedience to third-rate people in uniform,
of which Berlin-struck Germans have been the
implacable exponents, have become an unbearable
nuisance to all humanity. Neither Belgium nor
France nor Britain is fighting now for glory or
advantage. I do not believe Russia is doing so ;
we are all, I believe, fighting in a fury of resent-
ment because at last after years of waste and worry
to prevent it, we have been obliged to do so.
Our grievance is the grievance of every decent
life-loving German, of every German mother
and sweetheart who watched her man go off


under his incompetent leaders to hardship and
mutilations and death. And our propaganda
against the Prussian idea has to be no vile argu-
ment to the pocket, but an appeal to the common
sense and common feeling of humanity. We have
to clear the heads of the Germans, and keep the
heads of our own people clear about this war.
Particularly is there need to dissuade our people
against the dream of profit-filching, the " War
against German Trade." We have to reiterate
over and over again that we fight, resolved that
at the end no nationality shall oppress any
nationality or language again in Europe for ever,
and by way of illustration, we want not those
ingenious arrangements of figures that touch the
Angell imagination, but photographs of the
Kaiser in his glory at a review, and photographs
of the long, unintelligent side-long face of the
Crown Prince, his son, photographs of that great
original Krupp taking his pleasures at Capri and,
to set beside these, photographs pitilessly showing
men killed and horribly torn upon the battlefield,
and men crippled and women and men murdered,
and homes burnt and, to the verge of indecency,
all the peculiar filthiness of war. And the case
that has thus to be stated has to be brought before
the minds of the Germans, of Americans, of
French people, and English people, of Swedes
and Russians and Italians as our common evil,
which, though it be at the expense of several
Governments, we have to end.

Now, how is this literature to be spread ?
How are we to reach the common people of the


Western European countries with these explan-
ations, these assurances, these suggestions that are
necessary for the proper ending of this war ?
I could wish we had a Government capable of
something more articulate than " Wait and see ! "
a Government that dared confess a national
intention to all the world. For what a Govern-
ment says is audible to all the world. King
George, too, has the ear of a thousand million
people. If he saw fit to say simply and clearly
what it is we fight for and what we seek, his voice
would be heard universally, through Germany,
through all America. No other voice has such
penetration. He is, he has told us, watching
the war with interest, but that is not enough ;
we could have guessed that, knowing his spirit.
As a nation, we need expression that shall reach
the other side. But our Government is, I fear,
one of those that obey necessity ; it is only very
reluctantly creative ; it rests, therefore, with us
who, outside all formal government, represent
the national will and intention, to take this
work into our hands. By means of a propaganda
of books, newspaper articles, leaflets, tracts in
English, French, German, Dutch, Swedish,
Norwegian, Italian, Chinese and Japanese we
have to spread this idea, repeat this idea, and
impose upon this war the idea that this war must
end war. We have to create a wide common
conception of a re-mapped and pacified Europe,
released from the abominable dangers of a private
trade in armaments, largely disarmed and pledged
to mutual protection. This conception has


sprung up in a number of minds, and there have
been proposals at once most extraordinary and
feasible for its realisation, projects of aeroplanes
scattering leaflets across Germany, of armies
distributing tracts as they advance, of prisoners
of war much afflicted by such literature. These
ideas have the absurdity of novelty, but otherwise
they are by no means absurd. They will strike
many soldiers as being indecent, but the world
is in revolt against the standards of soldiering.

Never before has the world seen clearly as it
now sees clearly, the rdle of thought in the making
of war. This new conception carries with it
the corollary of an entirely new campaign.

How can we get at the minds of our enemies ?
How can we make explanation more powerful
than armies and fleets ? Failing an articulate
voice at the head of our country, we must needs
look for the resonating appeal we need in other
quarters. We look to the Church that takes for
its purposes the name of the Prince of Peace.
In England, except for the smallest, meekest
protest against war, any sort of war, on the part
of a handful of Quakers, Christianity is silent.
Its universally present organisation speaks , no
coherent counsels. Its workers for the most
part are buried in the loyal manufacture of flannel
garments and an inordinate quantity of bed-
socks for the wounded. It is an extraordinary
thing to go now and look at one's parish church
and note the pulpit, the orderly arrangements
for the hearers, the proclamations on the doors,
to sit awhile on the stone wall about the graves


and survey the comfortable vicarage, and to
reflect that this is just the local representation
of a universally present organisation for the
communication of ideas ; that all over Europe
there are such pulpits, such possibilities of gather-
ing and saying, and that it gathers nothing and
has nothing to say. Pacific, patriotic sentiment
it utters perhaps, but nothing that anyone can
act upon, nothing to draw together, will, and make
an end. It is strange to sit alive in the sunshine
and realise that, and to think of how tragically
that same realisation came to another mind in

Several things have happened during the past
few weeks with the intensest symbolical quality ;
the murder of Jaures, for example ; but surely
nothing has occurred so wonderful and touching
as the death of the Pope, that faithful, honest,
simple old man. The war and the perplexity
of the war darkened his last hours. " Once the
Church could have stopped this thing," he said,
with a sense of threads missed and controls that
have slipped away it may be with a sense of
vivifying help discouraged and refused. The
Tribuna tells a story that, if not true, is marvell-
ously invented, of the Austrian representative
coming to ask him for a blessing on the Austrian
arms. He feigned not to hear, or perhaps he
did not hear. The Austrian asked again, and
again there was silence. Then, at the third
request, when he could be silent no longer, he
broke out : " No ! Bless peace ! " As the
temperature of his weary body rose, his last clear


moments were spent in attempts to word tele-
grams that should have some arresting hold upon
the gigantic crash that was coming, and in his
last delirium he lamented war and the impotence
of the Church. . . .

Intellect without faith is the devil, but faith
without intellect is a negligent angel with rusty
weapons. This European catastrophe is the
tragedy of the weak though righteous Christian
will. We begin to see that to be right and
indolent, or right and scornfully silent, or right
and abstinent from the conflict is to be wrong.
Righteousness has need to be as clear and efficient
and to do things as sedulously in the right way
as any evil doer. There is no meaning in the
Christianity of a Christian who is not now a
propagandist for peace who is not now also
a politician. There is no faith in the Liberalism
that merely carps at the manner of our entangle-
ment in a struggle that must alter all the world
for ever. We need not only to call for peace,
but to seek and show and organise the way of
peace. ...

One thinks of Governments and the Church
and the Press, and then, turning about for some
other source of mental control, we recall the
organisations, the really quite opulent organisa-
tions, that are professedly devoted to the
promotion of peace. There is no voice from
The Hague. The so-called peace movement
in our world has consumed money enough and
service enough to be something better than a weak
little grumble at the existence of war. What is


this movement and its organisations doing now ?
Ninety-nine people in Europe out of every
hundred are complaining of war now. It needs
no specially endowed committees to do that.
They preach to a converted world. The question
is how to end it and prevent its recurrence. But
have these specially peace-seeking people ever
sought for the secret springs of war, or looked
into the powers that war for war, or troubled to
learn how to grasp war and subdue it ? All
Germany is knit by the fighting spirit, and armed
beyond the rest of the world. Until the mind of
Germany is changed, there can be no safe peace
on earth. But that, it seems, does not trouble
the professional peace advocate if only he may
cry Peace, and live somewhere in comfort, and
with the comfortable sense of a superior dissent
from the general emotion.

How are we to gather together the wills and
understanding of men for the tremendous necessi-
ties and opportunities of this time ? Thought,
speech, persuasion, an incessant appeal for clear
intentions, clear statements for the dispelling of
suspicion and the abandonment of secrecy and
trickery ; there is work for every man who writes
or talks and has the slightest influence upon
another creature. This monstrous conflict in
Europe, the slaughtering, the famine, the con-
fusion, the panic and hatred and lying pride, it
is all of it real only in the darkness of the mind.
At the coming of understanding it will vanish
as dreams vanish at awakening. But never will
it vanish until understanding has come. It goes


on only because we, who are voices, who suggest,
who might elucidate and inspire, are ourselves
such little scattered creatures that though we
strain to the breaking point, we still have no
strength to turn on the light that would save
us. There have been moments in the last three
weeks when life has been a waking nightmare,
one of those frozen nightmares when, with
salvation within one's reach, one cannot move,
and the voice dies in one's throat

WA, y\


&*d (jttfifA

<4 M


Brave Belgium


Author of " Leopold II., King of the Belgians," etc.
Decorative Cover, 6d. net. 56 pp

WHO is there with soul so dead that will not respond to the
deeds of valour, and the unflinching heroism of the gallant
defenders of Liege ? Go where you will in this England of
ours and Brave Belgium is on the lips of all. The land of the
Belgians has ever been the " cock-pit " of Europe, for on its
territory some of the world's greatest battles have been fought.
To-day, the greatest of all is being waged and no matter what
the outcome of it may be, brave little Belgium has assured for
her nation an imperishable record of great deeds of daring and
heroism of her soldiers and fortitude and self-sacrifice of her
people. The hour is propitious, then, for we in England to
know something of the history of the Belgians and her country ;
and who better qualified to introduce us than the author of
the life of the late Leopold II., King of the Belgians and uncle
of King Albert, the reigning monarch. In " Brave Belgium "
Dr. Rappoport has written a book teeming full of interest.
It deals in turn with the Soul of Belgium, the Country and the
People, Legislation, Religion, Public Education, Justice, the
Army, Military Education, Science and Art. A chapter on
Belgian History is perhaps one of the most important and
interesting in the volume for it gives the reader an illuminating
historical sketch from the time of Caesar to Charlemagne.
" Brave Belgium " is a book which every patriotic Britisher
must read.



Your Navy as a Fighting


(Author of " Fighting Ships," etc.)
Decorative cover^ I/- net. With explanatory Diagrams.







THIS little book is an attempt to produce an entirely non-
technical handbook for the use of those who, till this war came
along, did not interest themselves in naval matters. Till now
a vast number of people have taken the Navy for granted. It
has existed to them much as St. Paul's Cathedral exists. To
the great majority there has been no occasion to trouble about
anything, save perhaps one or two of the more picturesque
features of the Fleet. Now, however, after a hundred years of
peace the Navy is engaged in naval warfare, and the entire
situation is changed accordingly.

It is true that during this past century the Navy has been
engaged in various operations. In the Crimean War, for
instance, two considerable fleets were employed. Both before
and since our ships have bombarded forts and places, like
Algiers and Alexandria, but in all the hundred years there has
been no war between British fleets and the fleets of a foreign
Power. And so it comes about that all eyes are now upon the
Navy, which somewhere on the seas started facing the unknown
directly Austria sent her ultimatum to Servia.

So soon as that incident occurred everything which has
happened since became a vivid possibility. From that moment
the Fleet had to be on watch and guard lest Germany should
fall on us unawares. That she intended to attempt it was
perfectly well-known it had been known for years to all in

The British Navy, for which the public has paid, is now
undergoing the supreme test

The War Lord



Wrapper (with portrait) Jd. net. 96 pp>

THE German eagle has never really looked like the dove of peace, in spite of
all the German War Lord's whitewashing. The following pages will testify
how assiduous that whitewashing process has been. For twenty year*
William II. has passionately assured the world that the whole aim of the
German Empire is peace. With disgusting religiosity he has pleaded that
as the Divinely-appointed representative of God on earth he dare not
encourage the " criminal folly " of war. Yet to-day, without pretext, he
has driven all Europe to arms, and is drenching the earth with torrents of
innocent blood.

William II. showed at an early age the stuff he was made of. When
nineteen he wrote in the Golden Book of Alsace that the Ruler must be
supreme even over his own relatives. A little later he declared that for
Prussian nobles to oppose the king was " a monstrosity."

The Kaiser has never learned from great men : he has merely aped them.
Of old Prince Bismarck he merely absorbed brutality 5 of young Count
Herbert, boorishness. Of his illustrious grandfather, whose name was
always on his lips, he saw the assiduity rather than the genius. He has
prinked himself out in fragments of their wardrobe, the stern brutality of
this, the crude religiosity of that, a bit of ruthless world-ambition here, a
scrap of monomania there and so he presents himself, a sort of music-hall
impersonation of Greatness, for the polite wonder of the world. Under it
all shows forth the intellectual weakling. A bigger man would never have
" dropped the pilot," a wiser man would have kept his strutting heroics for
his own bedchamber.

To-day he stands revealed as the shameless prophet of a new Teutonism.
Treaties are broken, territory violated, floating mines strewn in the open
sea, women and children violated and slaughtered, non-combatants shot and
their houses burned. It is a simple creed, one very fashionable some centuries
ago among the savage cave-men and the barbarian pirates. It has the
drawback of commonly leading to a summary end, and like most of the
Kaiser's mental equipment, is extravagantly out of date.

Perhaps when a civilised and sane world has disarmed this crazy maniac
and herded him back into his cell we shall judge him less harshly ; but
meantime a perusal of the sanctimonious pratings collected here can only
increase our anger.


Little Wars


Pcap 4*0 cloth. 2/6 net. 115 pp.

With 20 photographs of battle-fields, and 80 marginal drawings

by T. R. Sinclair.

This book is a further contribution by Mr. H. G. Wells to
the difficult art of teaching children to amuse themselves.
In Floor Games he showed what could be done on the nursery
floor in the peaceful art of running towns, railways, and all
kinds of municipal and commercial enterprises in miniature.
Tn Little Wars he shows us the same general principles applied
to warfare. Here you will find no meaningless shifting of
groups of soldiers, every man is moved some definite step in
a carefully planned campaign. Mistakes quickly bring their
own punishment in loss of guns or soldiers, bad gunnery
for the guns really shoot wooden shot may lead to the utter
rout of one's army ; in a word every essential to good general-
ship in actual warfare is also required here before a victory
can be won. So much is this the case that the game has been
taken up in earnest by a number of prominent military men,
who find in it a really instructive substitute for the somewhat
dull and complicated Krieg-spiel of older days. In Mr. Wells's
own words :

" I offer my game, for a particular as well as a general end ;
let us put this prancing monarch and that silly scaremonger,
and these excitable ' patriots ' into one vast Temple of War,
with cork carpets everywhere, and plenty of little trees and
little houses to knock down, and cities and fortresses, and
unlimited soldiers tons, cellars-full and let them lead their
own lives there away from us. My game is just as good as
their game, and saner by reason of its size."




The war that will end war .W38

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