New York Times Current History; The European War, Vol 2, No. 5, August, 1915
Author: Various
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Transcriber's Note:

Archaic spellings of place names have been retained as they appear in the original.

A table of contents has been provided for the reader's convenience.

The New York Times


A Monthly Magazine


AUGUST, 1915



The American Rejoinder

German and American Press Opinion

Austria-Hungary's Protest

Armenian, Orduna, and Others

Results of Submarine Warfare


American Preparedness

First Year of the War

Inferences from Eleven Months of the European Conflict

"Revenge for Elisabeth!"

A Year of the War in Africa and Asia

An "Insult" to War

The Drive at Warsaw

Naval Losses During the War

Battles in the West

France's "Eyewitness" Reports

The Crown Prince in the Argonne

Gallipoli's Shambles

Italy's War on Austria

The Task of Italy

Two Devoted Nations

Rumania, Serbia, Bulgaria, Greece

Dr. Conybeare's Recantation

The Case of Muenter

Devotion to the Kaiser

Scientists and the Military

Hudson Maxim on Explosives


"I am the Gravest Danger"


The Belligerents' Munitions

The Power of the Purse

Cases Reserved

New Recruiting in Britain

American War Supplies

Magazinists of the World on the War

Germany's Long-Nourished Powers

"To Avenge"

The Pope, the Vatican, and Italy

Are the Allies Winning?

Selling Arms to the Allies

War and Non-Resistance

"Good Natured Germany"

Italy's Defection

Apologies for English Words

Germanic Peace Terms

France's Bill of Damages

A French Rejoinder

Dr. Von Bode's Polemic

"Carnegie and German Peace"

Russia's Supply of Warriors

Austria and the Balkans

Italy's Publications in War-Time

Sweden and the Lusitania

A Threatened Despotism of Spirit

"Gott Mit Uns"

On the Psychology of Neutrals

Chlorine Warfare

Rheims Cathedral

The English Falsehood

Calais or Suez?

Note on the Principle of Nationality

Singer of "La Marseillaise"

Depression—Common-Sense and the Situation

The War and Racial Progress

The English Word, Thought, and Life

Evviva L'Italia

Who Died Content!

"The Germans, Destroyers of Cathedrals"

Chronology of the War


The American Note to Berlin of July 21

Steps Leading Up to President Wilson's Rejection of Germany's Proposals

The German Admiralty on Feb. 4 proclaimed a war zone around Great Britain announcing that every enemy merchant ship found therein would be destroyed "without its being always possible to avert the dangers threatening the crews and passengers on that account."

The text of this proclamation was made known by Ambassador Gerard on Feb. 6. Four days later the United States Government sent to Germany a note of protest which has come to be known as the "strict accountability note." After pointing out that a serious infringement of American rights on the high seas was likely to occur, should Germany carry out her war-zone decree in the manner she had proclaimed, it declared:

"If such a deplorable situation should arise, the Imperial German Government can readily appreciate that the Government of the United States would be constrained to hold the Imperial German Government to a strict accountability for such acts of their naval authorities and to take any steps it might be necessary to take to safeguard American lives and property and to secure to American citizens the full enjoyment of their acknowledged rights on the high seas."

The war-zone decree went into effect on Feb. 18. Two days later dispatches were cabled to Ambassador Page at London and to Ambassador Gerard at Berlin suggesting that a modus vivendi be entered into by England and Germany by which submarine warfare and sowing of mines at sea might be abandoned if foodstuffs were allowed to reach the German civil population under American consular inspection.

Germany replied to this on March 1, expressing her willingness to act favorably on the proposal. The same day the British Government stated that because of the war-zone decree of the German Government the British Government must take measures to prevent commodities of all kinds from reaching or leaving Germany. On March 15 the British Government flatly refused the modus vivendi suggestion.

On April 4 Count von Bernstorff, the German Ambassador at Washington, submitted a memorandum to the United States Government regarding German-American trade and the exportation of arms. Mr. Bryan replied to the memorandum on April 21, insisting that the United States was preserving her strict status of neutrality according to the accepted laws of nations.

On May 7 the Cunard steamship Lusitania was sunk by a German submarine in the war zone as decreed by Germany, and more than 100 American citizens perished, with 1,000 other persons on board.

Thereupon, on May 13, the United States transmitted to the German Government a note on the subject of this loss. It said:

"American citizens act within their indisputable rights in taking their ships and in traveling wherever their legitimate business calls them upon the high seas, and exercise those rights in what should be the well justified confidence that their lives will not be endangered by acts done in clear violation of universally acknowledged international obligations, and certainly in the confidence that their own Government will sustain them in the exercise of their rights."

This note concluded:

"The Imperial Government will not expect the Government of the United States to omit any word or any act necessary to the performance of its sacred duty of maintaining the rights of the United States and its citizens and of safeguarding their free exercise and enjoyment."

Germany replied to this note on May 29. It stated that it had heard that the Lusitania was an armed naval ship which had attempted to use American passengers as a protection, and that, anyway, such passengers should not have been present. It added:

"The German commanders are consequently no longer in a position to observe the rules of capture otherwise usual and with which they invariably complied before this."

To the foregoing the United States maintained in a note sent to the German Government on June 9 that the Lusitania was not an armed vessel and that she had sailed in accordance with the laws of the United States, and that "only her actual resistance to capture or refusal to stop when ordered to do so ... could have afforded the commander of the submarine any justification for so much as putting the lives of those on board the ship in jeopardy."

In support of this view the note cited international law and added:

"It is upon this principle of humanity, as well as upon the law founded upon this principle, that the United States must stand."

Exactly one month later, on July 9, came Germany's reply. Its preamble praised the United States for its humane attitude and said that Germany was fully in accord therewith. Something, it asserted, should be done, for "the case of the Lusitania shows with horrible clearness to what jeopardizing of human lives the manner of conducting war employed by our adversaries leads," and that under certain conditions which it set forth, American ships might have safe passage through the war zone, or even some enemy ships flying the American flag. It continued:

"The Imperial Government, however, confidently hopes the American Government will assume to guarantee that these vessels have no contraband on board, details of arrangements for the unhampered passage of these vessels to be agreed upon by the naval authorities of both sides."

It is to this reply that the note of the United States Government made public on July 24 is an answer.

Germany's reply of July 8 and President Wilson's final rejoinder of July 21—which was given to the American press of July 24—are presented below, together with accounts of the recent German submarine attacks on the ships Armenian, Anglo-Californian, Normandy, and Orduna, involving American lives, and an appraisal of the German operations in the submarine "war zone" since February 18, 1915, when it was proclaimed. Also Austro-Hungary's note of June 29, protesting against American exports of arms, and an account of American and German press opinion on the Lusitania case are treated hereunder.


BERLIN, July 8, 1915.

The undersigned has the honor to make the following reply to his Excellency Ambassador Gerard to the note of the 10th ultimo re the impairment of American interests by the German submarine war:

The Imperial Government learned with satisfaction from the note how earnestly the Government of the United States is concerned in seeing the principles of humanity realized in the present war. Also this appeal finds ready echo in Germany, and the Imperial Government is quite willing to permit its statements and decisions in the present case to be governed by the principles of humanity just as it has done always.

The Imperial Government welcomed with gratitude when the American Government, in the note of May 15, itself recalled that Germany had always permitted itself to be governed by the principles of progress and humanity in dealing with the law of maritime war.

Since the time when Frederick the Great negotiated with John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson the Treaty of Friendship and Commerce of September 9, 1785, between Prussia and the Republic of the West, German and American statesmen have, in fact, always stood together in the struggle for the freedom of the seas and for the protection of peaceable trade.

In the international proceedings which since have been conducted for the regulation of the laws of maritime war, Germany and America have jointly advocated progressive principles, especially the abolishment of the right of capture at sea and the protection of the interests of neutrals.

Even at the beginning of the present war the German Government immediately declared its willingness, in response to proposals of the American Government, to ratify the Declaration of London and thereby subject itself in the use of its naval forces to all the restrictions provided therein in favor of neutrals.

Germany likewise has been always tenacious of the principle that war should be conducted against the armed and organized forces of an enemy country, but that the enemy civilian population must be spared as far as possible from the measures of war. The Imperial Government cherishes the definite hope that some way will be found when peace is concluded, or perhaps earlier, to regulate the law of maritime war in a manner guaranteeing the freedom of the seas, and will welcome it with gratitude and satisfaction if it can work hand in hand with the American Government on that occasion.

If in the present war the principles which should be the ideal of the future have been traversed more and more, the longer its duration, the German Government has no guilt therein. It is known to the American Government how Germany's adversaries, by completely paralyzing peaceful traffic between Germany and neutral countries, have aimed from the very beginning and with increasing lack of consideration at the destruction not so much of the armed forces as the life of the German nation, repudiating in doing so all the rules of international law and disregarding all rights of neutrals.

On November 3, 1914, England declared the North Sea a war area, and by planting poorly anchored mines and by the stoppage and capture of vessels, made passage extremely dangerous and difficult for neutral shipping, thereby actually blockading neutral coasts and ports contrary to all international law. Long before the beginning of submarine war England practically completely intercepted legitimate neutral navigation to Germany also. Thus Germany was driven to a submarine war on trade.

On November 14, 1914, the English Premier declared in the House of Commons that it was one of England's principal tasks to prevent food for the German population from reaching Germany via neutral ports. Since March 1 England has been taking from neutral ships without further formality all merchandise proceeding to Germany, as well as all merchandise coming from Germany, even when neutral property. Just as it was also with the Boers, the German people is now to be given the choice of perishing from starvation with its women and children or of relinquishing its independence.

While our enemies thus loudly and openly proclaimed war without mercy until our utter destruction, we were conducting a war in self-defense for our national existence and for the sake of peace of an assured permanency. We have been obliged to adopt a submarine warfare to meet the declared intentions of our enemies and the method of warfare adopted by them in contravention of international law.

With all its efforts in principle to protect neutral life and property from damage as much as possible, the German Government recognized unreservedly in its memorandum of February 4 that the interests of neutrals might suffer from the submarine warfare. However, the American Government will also understand and appreciate that in the fight for existence, which has been forced upon Germany by its adversaries and announced by them, it is the sacred duty of the Imperial Government to do all within its power to protect and save the lives of German subjects. If the Imperial Government were derelict in these, its duties, it would be guilty before God and history of the violation of those principles of highest humanity which are the foundation of every national existence.

The case of the Lusitania shows with horrible clearness to what jeopardizing of human lives the manner of conducting war employed by our adversaries leads. In the most direct contradiction of international law all distinctions between merchantmen and war vessels have been obliterated by the order to British merchantmen to arm themselves and to ram submarines, and the promise of rewards therefor, and neutrals who use merchantmen as travelers thereby have been exposed in an increasing degree to all the dangers of war.

If the commander of the German submarine which destroyed the Lusitania had caused the crew and passengers to take to the boats before firing a torpedo this would have meant the sure destruction of his own vessel. After the experiences in sinking much smaller and less seaworthy vessels it was to be expected that a mighty ship like the Lusitania would remain above water long enough, even after the torpedoing, to permit passengers to enter the ship's boats. Circumstances of a very peculiar kind, especially the presence on board of large quantities of highly explosive materials, defeated this expectation.

In addition it may be pointed out that if the Lusitania had been spared, thousands of cases of munitions would have been sent to Germany's enemies and thereby thousands of German mothers and children robbed of breadwinners.

In the spirit of friendship wherewith the German nation has been imbued toward the Union (United States) and its inhabitants since the earliest days of its existence, the Imperial Government will always be ready to do all it can during the present war also to prevent the jeopardizing of lives of American citizens.

The Imperial Government, therefore, repeats the assurances that American ships will not be hindered in the prosecution of legitimate shipping and the lives of American citizens in neutral vessels shall not be placed in jeopardy.

In order to exclude any unforeseen dangers to American passenger steamers, made possible in view of the conduct of maritime war by Germany's adversaries, German submarines will be instructed to permit the free and safe passage of such passenger steamers when made recognizable by special markings and notified a reasonable time in advance. The Imperial Government, however, confidently hopes that the American Government will assume to guarantee that these vessels have no contraband on board, details of arrangements for the unhampered passage of these vessels to be agreed upon by the naval authorities of both sides.

In order to furnish adequate facilities for travel across the Atlantic for American citizens, the German Government submits for consideration a proposal to increase the number of available steamers by installing in passenger service a reasonable number of neutral steamers under the American flag, the exact number to be agreed upon under the same condition as the above-mentioned American steamers.

The Imperial Government believes it can assume that in this manner adequate facilities for travel across the Atlantic Ocean can be afforded American citizens. There would, therefore, appear to be no compelling necessity for American citizens to travel to Europe in time of war on ships carrying an enemy flag. In particular the Imperial Government is unable to admit that American citizens can protect an enemy ship through the mere fact of their presence on board.

Germany merely followed England's example when she declared part of the high seas an area of war. Consequently, accidents suffered by neutrals on enemy ships in this area of war cannot well be judged differently from accidents to which neutrals are at all times exposed at the seat of war on land, when they betake themselves into dangerous localities in spite of previous warnings. If, however, it should not be possible for the American Government to acquire an adequate number of neutral passenger steamers, the Imperial Government is prepared to interpose no objections to the placing under the American flag by the American Government of four enemy passenger steamers for passenger traffic between North America and England. Assurances of "free and safe" passage for American passenger steamers would then extend to apply under the identical pro-conditions to these formerly hostile passenger steamers.

The President of the United States has declared his readiness, in a way deserving of thanks, to communicate and suggest proposals to the Government of Great Britain with particular reference to the alteration of maritime war. The Imperial Government will always be glad to make use of the good offices of the President, and hopes that his efforts in the present case as well as in the direction of the lofty ideal of the freedom of the seas, will lead to an understanding.

The undersigned requests the Ambassador to bring the above to the knowledge of the American Government, and avails himself of the opportunity to renew to his Excellency the assurance of his most distinguished consideration.


The American Rejoinder


DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, July 21, 1915.

The Secretary of State to Ambassador Gerard:

You are instructed to deliver textually the following note to the Minister for Foreign Affairs:

The note of the Imperial German Government, dated the 8th day of July, 1915, has received the careful consideration of the Government of the United States, and it regrets to be obliged to say that it has found it very unsatisfactory, because it fails to meet the real differences between the two Governments, and indicates no way in which the accepted principles of law and humanity may be applied in the grave matter in controversy, but proposes, on the contrary, arrangements for a partial suspension of those principles which virtually set them aside.

The Government of the United States notes with satisfaction that the Imperial German Government recognizes without reservation the validity of the principles insisted on in the several communications which this Government has addressed to the Imperial German Government with regard to its announcement of a war zone and the use of submarines against merchantmen on the high seas—the principle that the high seas are free, that the character and cargo of a merchantman must first be ascertained before she can lawfully be seized or destroyed, and that the lives of noncombatants may in no case be put in jeopardy unless the vessel resists or seeks to escape after being summoned to submit to examination, for a belligerent act of retaliation is per se an act beyond the law, and the defense of an act as retaliatory is an admission that it is illegal.

The Government of the United States is, however, keenly disappointed to find that the Imperial German Government regards itself as in large degree exempt from the obligation to observe these principles, even when neutral vessels are concerned, by what it believes the policy and practice of the Government of Great Britain to be in the present war with regard to neutral commerce. The Imperial German Government will readily understand that the Government of the United States cannot discuss the policy of the Government of Great Britain with regard to neutral trade except with that Government itself, and that it must regard the conduct of other belligerent governments as irrelevant to any discussion with the Imperial German Government of what this Government regards as grave and unjustifiable violations of the rights of American citizens by German naval commanders.

Illegal and inhuman acts, however justifiable they may be thought to be, against an enemy who is believed to have acted in contravention of law and humanity, are manifestly indefensible when they deprive neutrals of their acknowledged rights, particularly when they violate the right to life itself. If a belligerent cannot retaliate against an enemy without injuring the lives of neutrals, as well as their property, humanity, as well as justice and a due regard for the dignity of neutral powers, should dictate that the practice be discontinued. If persisted in it would in such circumstances constitute an unpardonable offense against the sovereignty of the neutral nation affected.

The Government of the United States is not unmindful of the extraordinary conditions created by this war or of the radical alterations of circumstance and method of attack produced by the use of instrumentalities of naval warfare which the nations of the world cannot have had in view when the existing rules of international law were formulated, and it is ready to make every reasonable allowance for these novel and unexpected aspects of war at sea; but it cannot consent to abate any essential or fundamental right of its people because of a mere alteration of circumstance. The rights of neutrals in time of war are based upon principle, not upon expediency, and the principles are immutable. It is the duty and obligation of belligerents to find a way to adapt the new circumstances to them.

The events of the past two months have clearly indicated that it is possible and practicable to conduct such submarine operations as have characterized the activity of the Imperial German Navy within the so-called war zone in substantial accord with the accepted practices of regulated warfare. The whole world has looked with interest and increasing satisfaction at the demonstration of that possibility by German naval commanders. It is manifestly possible, therefore, to lift the whole practice of submarine attack above the criticism which it has aroused and remove the chief causes of offense.

In view of the admission of illegality made by the Imperial Government when it pleaded the right of retaliation in defense of its acts, and in view of the manifest possibility of conforming to the established rules of naval warfare, the Government of the United States cannot believe that the Imperial Government will longer refrain from disavowing the wanton act of its naval commander in sinking the Lusitania or from offering reparation for the American lives lost, so far as reparation can be made for a needless destruction of human life by an illegal act.

The Government of the United States, while not indifferent to the friendly spirit in which it is made, cannot accept the suggestion of the Imperial German Government that certain vessels be designated and agreed upon which shall be free on the seas now illegally proscribed. The very agreement would, by implication, subject other vessels to illegal attack, and would be a curtailment and therefore an abandonment of the principles for which this Government contends, and which in times of calmer counsels every nation would concede as of course.

The Government of the United States and the Imperial German Government are contending for the same great object, have long stood together in urging the very principles upon which the Government of the United States now so solemnly insists. They are both contending for the freedom of the seas. The Government of the United States will continue to contend for that freedom, from whatever quarter violated, without compromise and at any cost. It invites the practical co-operation of the Imperial German Government at this time, when co-operation may accomplish most and this great common object be most strikingly and effectively achieved.

The Imperial German Government expresses the hope that this object may be in some measure accomplished even before the present war ends. It can be. The Government of the United States not only feels obliged to insist upon it, by whomsoever violated or ignored, in the protection of its own citizens, but is also deeply interested in seeing it made practicable between the belligerents themselves, and holds itself ready at any time to act as the common friend who may be privileged to suggest a way.

In the meantime the very value which this Government sets upon the long and unbroken friendship between the people and Government of the United States and the people and Government of the German nation impels it to press very solemnly upon the Imperial German Government the necessity for a scrupulous observance of neutral rights in this critical matter. Friendship itself prompts it to say to the Imperial Government that repetition by the commanders of German naval vessels of acts in contravention of those rights must be regarded by the Government of the United States, when they affect American citizens, as deliberately unfriendly.


German and American Press Opinion


The German answer to the United States with regard to submarine warfare was reported from Berlin on July 10 as having caused the most intense satisfaction among the Germans and brought relief to them, for the mere thought that the submarine war would be abandoned would cause widespread resentment.

The Berlin newspapers printed long editorials approving the Government's stand and "conciliatory" tone. Captain Perseus, in the Tageblatt, said that the "new note makes clearer that the present course will be continued with the greatest possible consideration for American interests." The note "stands under the motto, 'On the way to an understanding,' without, however, failing to emphasize the firm determination that our interests must hold first place," in other words, that Germany "cannot surrender the advantages that the use of the submarine weapon gives to the German people."

The Lokal Anzeiger of Berlin commented:

"Feeling has undoubtedly cooled down somewhat on the other side of the water, and Americans will undoubtedly admit that it is not Germany that tries to monopolize the freedom of the seas for itself alone.

"In any event, we have now done our utmost and can quietly await what answer President Wilson and his advisers will think suitable."

George Bernhard in the Vossische Zeitung remarked that the publication of the note means "liberation from many of the doubts that have excited a large part of the German people in recent weeks. The note ... means unconditional refusal to let any outsider prescribe to us how far and with what weapons we may defend ourselves against England's hunger war."

What they considered the moderation of the note impressed most Berlin newspapers. Thus the Morgen Post said: "Those who had advised that we ought to humble ourselves before America will be just as disappointed as those who thought we ought to bring the fist down on the table and answer America's representations with a war threat."

Count von Reventlow, radical editor of the Tageszeitung, said: "The substance of the proposals is to create a situation making it unnecessary for Americans to travel to Europe on ships under an enemy flag," and the Taegliche Rundschau said that the "answer with gratifying decisiveness, guards the conscience of the nation in the question of continuing the submarine war," but it criticises the note for possibly going too far in making concessions, which "may prove impracticable and result in weakening the submarine war."

The unfavorable reception of Germany's note in the United States, as reported through English and French agencies, was read in Berlin with incredulity.

The Kreuz-Zeitung, the Tageszeitung, and the Boersen Zeitung expressed the belief that British and French news agencies had purposely selected unfavorable editorial expressions from the American newspapers for the sake of the effect they would have in Great Britain and France.

"Regarding the reception of the German note in America," the Kreuz-Zeitung said, "several additional reports from British sources are now at hand. Reuter's Telegram Company presents about a dozen short sentences from as many American papers. Were these really approximately a faithful picture of the thought of the American press as a unit, we should have to discard every hope of a possibility of an understanding. The conception of a great majority of the German people is that we showed in our note an earnest desire to meet, as far as possibly justified, American interests."

Like the Berlin press, German-American newspapers were unanimous in praise of the German note; to the New Yorker Staats-Zeitung it appeared a "sincere effort to meet the questions involved" and as "eminently satisfactory." The New Yorker Herold thought that any one with "even a spark of impartiality" would have to admit the "quiet, conciliatory tone of the German note" as "born of the consciousness in the heart of every German that Germany did not want the war"; that after it was forced on her she "waged it with honorable means." The Illinois Staats-Zeitung of Chicago declared it to be the "just demand of Germany" that Americans should not "by their presence on hostile boats try to protect war materials to be delivered by a friendly nation at a hostile shore." From the Cincinnati Freie Presse came the comment that Washington "has no business to procure safety on the ocean for British ships carrying ammunition."

The American newspapers were nearly unanimous in adverse criticism of the note. THE NEW YORK TIMES said that Germany's request was "to suspend the law of nations, the laws of war and of humanity for her benefit." The Chicago Herald declared that the German answer "is disappointing to all who had hoped that it would clearly open the way to a continuance of friendly relations." While the San Francisco Chronicle discerned in the note "an entire absence of the belligerent spirit," it found that "Germany is asking us to abridge certain of our rights on the high seas." To the Denver Post the reply was the "extreme of arrogance, selfishness, and obstinacy," while The Atlanta (Ga.) Constitution remarks that German words and German deeds are separate matters: "The all-important fact remains that since President Wilson's first note was transmitted to that country, Germany has given us no single reasonable cause of complaint." The Louisville (Ky.) Courier-Journal believes the German reply would carry more weight and persuasion "if it could be considered wholly and apart as an ex parte statement." "Without equivocation and with a politeness of offensively insinuating," the Boston Transcript concludes, "Germany rejects each and all of our demands and attempts to bargain with respect to the future."


Publication of the American note in Berlin was delayed until July 25, owing to difficulty in translating its shades of meaning. While German statesmen and editors expressed keen appreciation of its literary style, the press was unanimous in considering the note disappointing, expressing pained surprise at the American stand. Captain Perseus, naval critic of the Berlin Tageblatt, said that the note "expresses a determination to rob us of the weapon to which we pin the greatest hopes in the war on England," and indicates that the "pro-British troublemakers have finally won over the President." Count von Reventlow in the Tageszeitung complains of the note's "far too threatening and peremptory tone." The Kreuz-Zeitung says: "We are trying hard to resist the thought that the United States with its standpoint as expressed in the note, aims at supporting England," and Georg Bernhard of the Vossische Zeitung believes that yielding to President Wilson's argument means "the weakening of Germany to the enemy's advantage," adding that any one who has this in mind "is not neutral, but takes sides against Germany and for her enemies." The Boersen Zeitung says it is compelled to say, with regret, that the note is very unsatisfactory and "one cannot escape feeling that the shadow of England stands behind it." The New Yorker Staats-Zeitung says that the note is distinguished for its "clear language," and quotes the phrase "deliberately unfriendly" while noting the demand for disavowal and reparation. "Of quite unusual weight," the Staats-Zeitung says, "is the hint on the fact that the United States and Germany, so far as the freedom of the seas is concerned, have the same object in view." "Sharp and clear is it also explained" that after the end of the war the United States is "ready to play the role of an intermediary, in order to find a practicable way out." In fact, the note handed to the Government in Berlin "is at the same time meant for London," since it expresses itself as determined to protect neutrals "against every one of the warring nations." The New Yorker Herold is "certain that the complications will be settled amicably," while the Illinois Staats-Zeitung feels that "apparently our Government has a secret agreement with England intentionally to provoke Germany."

In praise of this note American press opinion is again nearly unanimous. The New York World says that "what the President exacts of Germany is the minimum that a self-respecting nation can demand." The New York Tribune calls the note an admirable American document. The Rochester Democrat and Chronicle says it is strongly put, but not too strongly, and the Boston Herald thinks there is no escape from its logic. The Philadelphia Public Ledger says "the final word of diplomacy has obviously been said," and the Administration cannot "engage in further debate or yield on any point." The Chicago Herald believes the note is couched in terms that "no intelligent man would resent from a neighbor whose friendship he values." The St. Louis Republic says: "One hundred and twenty-eight years of American history and tradition speak in President Wilson's vindication." The St. Paul Pioneer Press calls the note "a great American charter of rights," and the Charleston News and Courier declares that "we have drawn a line across which Germany must not step." The Portland Oregonian says: "If there was any expectation that the President's note to Germany would yield any measure of American rights or descend from the noble and impressive determination of the original warning to and demand upon Germany, it has not been fulfilled."

Austria-Hungary's Protest

An Associated Press dispatch dated London, July 16, says:

According to an Amsterdam dispatch to Reuter's Telegram Company it is stated from Vienna that the Austro-Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs sent a note to the American Ambassador at Vienna on June 29, drawing attention to the fact that commercial business in war material on a great scale is proceeding between the United States and Great Britain and her Allies, while Austria-Hungary and Germany are completely cut off from the American market.

It is set forth in the note that this subject has occupied the Government of the Dual Monarchy from the very beginning, and, although the Government is convinced that the American attitude arises from no other intention than to observe the strictest neutrality and international agreements, yet "the question arises whether conditions as they have developed during the course of the war, certainly independently of the wish of the American Government, are not of such a kind as in their effect to turn the intentions of the Washington Cabinet in a contrary direction.

"If this question is answered in the affirmative, and its affirmation cannot be doubted," according to the opinion of the Austro-Hungarian Government, "then the question follows whether it does not seem possible, or even necessary, that appropriate measures should be taken to make fully respected the wish of the American Government to remain a strictly impartial vis-a-vis of both belligerent parties."

The note continues:

"A neutral government cannot be allowed to trade in contraband unhindered, if the trade take the form and dimensions whereby the neutrality of the country will be endangered. The export of war material from the United States as a proceeding of the present war is not in consonance with the definition of neutrality. The American Government, therefore, is undoubtedly entitled to prohibit the export of war material.

"Regarding the possible objections that American industry is willing to supply Austria-Hungary and Germany, which, however, is impossible owing to the war situation, it may be pointed out that the American Government is in a position to redress this state of things. It would be quite sufficient to advise the enemies of Austria-Hungary and Germany that the supply of foodstuffs and war material would be suspended if legitimate trade in these articles between Americans and neutral countries was not permitted."

In conclusion, the Austro-Hungarian Government appeals to the United States, calling attention to the uninterrupted good relations and friendship between that country and the dual monarchy, to take the present note under careful consideration.


A dispatch from Vienna, via London, dated July 16, gives the following information from The Associated Press:

From a highly authoritative source at the Foreign Office a representative of The Associated Press has received an explanation of the motives that are said to have inspired the dispatch of the Austro-Hungarian note to the United States regarding the American traffic in war munitions.

The Austro-Hungarian statesman who spoke said that, although the facts upon which the note was based had been in existence for a long time, the communication was sent only now, when, after great victories in Galicia, it could not be interpreted as a cry for help from a land in distress. He disavowed in advance any idea that the note was sent at the request or inspiration of Germany, asserting that the step was taken spontaneously in the hope that, owing to the undisturbed friendly relations between Austria-Hungary and the United States, the note would be assured a sympathetic reception in the latter country.

"The note," said this statesman, "is inspired by friendly feelings of the monarchy toward the Union, where so many of our subjects have found a second home. It is the speech of a friend to a friend—an attitude which we are the more justified in taking because the relations of the two states have never been clouded.

"It might, perhaps, easily be a source of wonder that, since the basic grounds of the note have been in existence for months, the note was not sent long ago; but there is a reason for its appearance at this particular time. In view of the incredible rumors and reports about the condition of the monarchy which have been circulating throughout the United States, this note would surely have been interpreted at an earlier stage of events as a confession of weakness, as an appeal for help in distress. Today, when a rich harvest is being garnered throughout the monarchy, when talk of starving out Austria-Hungary therefore is rendered idle, when complaints of shortage of ammunition are heard everywhere else except in the allied central monarchies, there cannot be the slightest question of this.

"On the other hand, it might be asked why the note, under these conditions, was issued at all. With nothing to check the victorious progress of the central powers in sight, with their ability to meet pressure in the economic field demonstrated, it might well be thought that it is a matter of indifference to them whether America continues her policy or not. That, however, is not the case. The problems of international law which this war has brought up are of far-reaching importance. The solutions reached will be standards of action for decades to come.

"For eminently practical as well as theoretical reasons, therefore, the monarchy is forced now not only to concern itself with the questions of the day, but also to feel its responsibility toward the future interests of mankind; and for this reason the Government thought it necessary to approach the subject under discussion—the more so because it felt that the previous debate pro and con had not, as it wished, led to the desired result, and because it believed that numbers of arguments specially laid down in The Hague Convention hitherto had escaped consideration.

"It may, of course, be assumed that the note is a product of mature consideration, and was drafted after consultation with international law experts of the first rank. The absence of the slightest hostile intent in it against the Union is shown not only by the opening phrases, but by the fact that it was published only after it leaked out in the United States that there was no objection to its publication.

"The question of whether Austria-Hungary feels that she is being cut off by America may be answered unreservedly in the affirmative. The military monarchy can and will continue the war as long as necessary. The population will, as hitherto, suffer neither starvation nor material want. But there are other interests than those connected primarily with war which every Government is bound to consider, and unhampered trade relations with the United States are of the greatest importance to us.

"Finally, not only material, also I might say sentimental, interests play a certain role not to be underestimated among the people. Many warm friends of America among us are painfully affected by the fact that actual conditions give the impression that America, even though unintentionally, differentiates between the belligerents.

"Austro-Hungarian statesmen, conscious of the great role that America will be called upon to play in the future, would forget their duty if they neglected to do everything in their power to clear away the circumstances that shake the confidence of the bravely fighting armies and the whole population in the justice of America. It is clear that the war would have been ended long ago if America had not supplied our enemies with the means of continuing it.

"The assumption that the Austro-Hungarian note was sent at the wish of the German Government is incorrect. On the contrary, it is a completely spontaneous demonstration, inspired wholly by the Austro-Hungarian considerations. We hope it will be received and judged in America in the same spirit in which it was sent."


Theodore S. Woolsey, formerly Professor of International Law at Yale University, in Leslie's Weekly, for July 29, has an article entitled "The Case for the Munitions Trade." In part Professor Woolsey says:

In the midst of widespread industrial depression came a great war. This war intensified the depression. It cut off markets, raised freights, retarded payments, upset the whole commercial world and we suffered with the rest. Then shortly came a demand for certain products and certain manufactures caused by the war itself, varied, considerable, even unexpected. This demand grew until it became an appreciable factor in our industrial life, a welcome source of profit when so many other sources of profit were cut off. It was a good thing; at the same time it was a temporary, unnatural thing, and directly or indirectly it was based upon the desire of some of our friends to kill others of our friends. Accordingly people began to give this trade bad names. They called it unneutral, wrong, inhuman.

For the sake of our pockets we were adding to the sum of human suffering and slaughter, and they urged that, even if legally justified, ethically this trade was a blot upon our character as a humane and civilized people and must be stopped. Where does the truth lie? What can the munitions trade say for itself?

Naturally, it turns for justification first to the usage of other wars, to the recognized rules of international law. As expressed in Article 7, Convention XIII, of the 1907 Conference at The Hague, the law is as follows:

"A neutral power is not bound to prevent the export or transit, for the use of either belligerent, of arms, ammunitions or, in general, of anything which could be of use to an army or fleet."

The next previous article had prohibited a Government from engaging in this trade, so that the distinction between what the State and the individual may do is made perfectly clear, provided both belligerents are treated alike. To permit trade in arms with one belligerent and forbid it with another would be unneutral and illegal.

We permit the munitions trade with both belligerents, it is true, and yet, owing to the chances of war, the right to buy inures to the advantage of one only. Does this stamp our conduct as unneutral? Quite the contrary. To embargo munitions bought by one because the other side does not choose to buy would be the unneutral act. Germany doesn't buy because she cannot transport.

She cannot transport, because she does not care to contest the control of the sea with her enemies. Have we aught to do with that? To supplement her naval inferiority by denying to the Allies the fruits of their superiority would be equivalent to sharing in the war on the German side. Moreover, to assume and base action upon German naval inferiority in advance of any general trial of strength would be not only illegal, but even an insult to Germany. Notice that no complaints of our export of munitions have come from the German Government. To make such complaint would be to plead the baby act. Rather than risk her fleet by contesting the control of the sea, thus gaining her share of munitions imports, Germany has chosen to withdraw it behind fortifications, thus losing the munitions trade. Probably the decision is a sound one, but she must accept the results.

The opposition to the trade seems to come from two classes:

(1) German sympathizers who seek to minimize the advantage which sea power gives the Allies.

(2) Those who are governed by their emotions rather than by reason and respect for law. I would call the attention of both these classes to the usage, especially to the German usage, in other wars.

Professor Gregory, in an interesting article, gives statistics of the large German exports of arms to the British forces in the Boer war after the Boer trade had been cut off. In the Russo-Japanese war Krupp notoriously supplied both sides. In the Balkan war there was said to be competition between Krupp and Creusot in furnishing cannon. No state in the nature of things can satisfy its needs in war completely from its own resources. Every belligerent has bought, every neutral has allowed its citizens to sell, munitions since modern war began. England sympathized with the South in our civil war, yet sold to the North. She did the same in 1870 to France.

If the trade in munitions is to be forbidden, then every state must accumulate its own supply or greatly enlarge its arms manufacturing capacity, both wasteful processes. To say that a moderate trade is lawful which a big trade is not is like the excuse of the lady who thought her baby born out of wedlock did not matter because it was such a little one.

The critics of the munitions trade must note furthermore that in our own country that trade cannot be forbidden without explicit legislation.

At the outset of the Spanish war such legislation was passed, as a war measure, forbidding the export of coal or other war material at the discretion of the President. But by resolution of Congress of March 14, 1912, the 1898 resolution was so amended as to apply to American countries only. The reason for this distinction was, of course, to limit the danger of such exports of arms to our neighbor states, particularly to Mexico, as might endanger our own peace and safety. The general right to trade was left undisturbed.

But let us argue the question on ethical grounds alone. I can see no difference between a peace trade and a war trade from the humanitarian standpoint; between arming a neighbor by our exports in preparation for war and rearming him during war. In both cases we help him to kill. Now, if one regards all war as wrong, aid in waging war by trade in munitions, whether in peace time or war time, should be abhorrent to one's conscience. A Quaker gun is not only a paradox, but a sinful one.

Most of us, however, believe that a defensive war, against aggression threatening the life and liberties of a nation, is just and right. In the present war both parties claim to be fighting in self-defense. We are not their judge; we must take both at their word; what we owe both, ethically, is simply equality of treatment.

We help both alike in waging a just war. To do otherwise is to take part in their war. With the flux and flow of the contest which makes our trade valuable or worthless now to one side, now to the other, both ethically and legally we have nothing to do.

Armenian, Orduna, and Others

The diplomatic significance of the sinking of the Leyland liner Armenian on June 28 off the northwest coast of Cornwall is thus dwelt upon in a Washington dispatch to THE NEW YORK TIMES, dated July 2, 1915:

The lessons to be derived from the destruction of the Leyland liner Armenian off the English coast are expected to have a most important bearing upon the diplomatic controversy between Germany and the United States over the safety of human life in the submarine warfare.

It is believed here that the Armenian affair demonstrates that it is possible for German submarines of the latest types, when equipped with outside rapid-fire guns, to comply with the demand of President Wilson that the belligerent right of visit and search must be complied with before merchantmen and passenger ships are torpedoed.

Whatever the facts as to minor detail, the outstanding lesson of the affair is that a merchantman tried to escape capture and was finally forced to halt and surrender by a pursuing submarine, and the destruction of the liner by torpedo was not attempted until after those on board who survived the chase had an opportunity to take to the boats. It is evident that if the Armenian's Captain had heeded the warning shots of the submarine and halted the steamer he could have submitted to visit and search and in all probability the destruction of the Armenian could have been effected without loss of life. All international law experts agree that a vessel that refuses to halt when challenged by warning shots from a properly commissioned belligerent war vessel proceeds at her own peril.

In its broader aspects, the Armenian incident presents the most important lesson that has come out of the German undersea campaign for consideration by those engaged in the diplomatic controversy over the various acts of the German submarines—and the lesson is considered extremely vital in its bearing on the pending negotiations, because, if it is at all possible for submarines to exercise the right of visit and search and they actually proceed in accordance with that rule, the Germans may proceed with their warfare against merchantmen carrying contraband without running counter to the expectations of the United States Government. Occasional merchantmen may try to escape capture or destruction by disregarding warning shots, but that will be their affair and the responsibility for loss of life due to efforts to elude submarines, and caused during the period of continued efforts to escape, would not then rest upon the submarines.

The effective use of rapid-fire guns mounted on submarines in bona fide efforts to halt merchant steamers for purpose of visit and search is the important factor in the situation. A submarine not so equipped would find it difficult, if not impossible, to apply the rule of visit and search. Without the outside guns such a submarine would possess no other effective weapon than the torpedo. The submarine that carried no exterior armament could not compel obedience to its mandate for the merchant Captain to stop without firing a torpedo and thus risking the destruction of life with the sinking of the steamer, and a submarine with no outside armament might run the risk, as frequently contended by the German Admiralty, of bomb attack from the rails of the merchant steamer when going alongside of such a vessel.

A submarine like the U-38, which sank the Armenian, carrying one or more outside guns, capable of discharging various kinds of shell, from blank shots to shrapnel, represents an important evolution in the development of marine warfare. Such a craft has the equipment to enable her to visit and search a passing merchantman, and to provide for the safe removal of officers, crew or passengers from a challenged steamer, before the destruction of the vessel. It is only necessary for such a submarine to fire her torpedoes as a last resort for the destruction of the steamer. With her exterior guns a submarine like the U-38, upon meeting a merchant vessel, may fire one or more warning shots, as Captain Trickey of the Armenian says the U-38 did.[1] The raider, he said, fired two warning shots, and when he turned away from her and put on speed, the submarine's guns opened fire on him with shrapnel.

[Footnote 1: Captain Trickey, describing the destruction of his vessel, through which several Americans lost their lives, said on July 1 in Liverpool:

"We sighted the submarine about 6.48 o'clock Monday night, June 28, when we were about twenty miles west of Trevose Head, on the northwest coast of Cornwall. We were then about four miles away. She drew closer. She fired two shots across our bows. I then turned my stern to her and ran for all I was worth. The submarine shelled us all the time, killing several of the crew and cutting away several of our boats. The boats had already been swung out, and some of the men had taken up positions in them ready for the order to lower away. In some cases the falls were cut by shrapnel, and several of the men fell into the sea.

"A stern chase ensued, lasting for about an hour, the German shelling us unceasingly. My steering gear was cut and knocked out of order. One shell came through the engine-room skylight, and another knocked the Marconi house away. Still another shell went down the funnel, disabling the stokehole and making it impossible to keep up a full head of steam. Thirteen of my crew were lying dead on the deck, and the ship was on fire in three places. Then I decided to surrender. It was the only thing I could do. By this time the submarine had decreased the distance between us to about a mile.

"From the moment we surrendered the Germans acted fairly toward us and gave us ample time to get out of the ship. They even rescued some of the men—three, I think—who had previously fallen from the boats and were still afloat aided by their lifebelts. When we had got away from the ship the submarine fired two torpedoes into her and she sank at 8.07 o'clock. We remained in the boats all night and were picked up the next morning by the Belgian steam trawler President Stevens."]


Like the Armenian, the British merchantman Anglo-Californian refused to lie-to when signaled by a German submarine on July 2. Her crew of ninety-five included fifty Americans and Canadians. A Queenstown dispatch of July 5 gave the following account of the action:

The Anglo-Californian left Montreal for the British Isles on June 24. The submarine was sighted at 8 o'clock last Sunday morning. Captain Parslow ordered full steam ahead and wireless calls for aid were sent out. The submarine on the surface proved to be a far speedier craft than the steamer and rapidly overhauled her, meanwhile deluging her with shells. One shot put the wireless apparatus on the Anglo-Californian out of action. Finding that he could not escape by running for it Captain Parslow devoted his attention to manoeuvring his ship so as to prevent the submarine from using torpedoes effectively.

"Our Captain was a brave man," said one of the narrators. "He kept at his post on the bridge, coolly giving orders as the submarine circled around us vainly seeking to get a position from which it could give us a death blow with a torpedo. All the while the under-water boat continued to rain, shot and shell upon us, and at times was so close that she was able to employ rifle fire effectively.

"At last one shell blew the Captain off the bridge, killing him outright and terribly mutilating him. Just before that he had given orders to launch the boats, but this was very difficult under the shell fire. Several men were struck down while working at the davits. Ultimately four boats were got overboard and were rowed away until picked up."

The son of Captain Parslow, serving as second mate, was standing by his father's side when the Captain was killed. The son was knocked down by the violence of the explosion. Springing to his feet, he seized the wheel, and, as ably as his father had done, continued dodging the submarine. Another shell burst alongside him, shattering one of the spokes of the wheel, but young Parslow retained his post.

The wireless SOS calls that had been sent out at the first alarm had reached those able to give more than passive assistance, however, and British destroyers appeared. On their approach the submarine abandoned the attack and submerged. Young Parslow was still at the wheel when the destroyers came up.


An Associated Press dispatch from Liverpool, dated July 13, 1915, reported:

How an American ship is alleged to have been used as a shield by a German submarine for the sinking of another vessel is related by members of the crew of the American bark Normandy, which has arrived here from Gulfport, Miss.

The story is that the Normandy was stopped by a German submarine sixty miles southwest of Tuskar Rock, off the southeast coast of Ireland, Friday night. The captain was called aboard the submarine, whence his papers were examined and found to show that the ship was chartered by an American firm January 5.

The captain of the bark, it was asserted, was allowed to return to the Normandy, but under the threat that his ship would be destroyed unless he stood by and obeyed orders. These orders, it was stated, were that he was to act as a shield for the submarine, which lay around the side of the bark, hiding itself from an approaching vessel.

This vessel proved to be the Russian steamer Leo. Presently the submarine submerged and proceeded around the bow of the Normandy, so the story went, and ten minutes later the crew of the Normandy saw the Leo blown up.

Twenty-five persons were on board, of whom eleven were drowned, including three stewardesses. Those saved included three Americans, Walter Emery of North Carolina, Harry Clark of Sierra, and Harry Whitney of Camden, N.J. All these three men when interviewed corroborated the above story. They declared that no opportunity was given those on board the Leo for saving lives.

The Leo was bound from Philadelphia for Manchester with a general cargo.

The Captain of the Normandy told the survivors that he would have liked to signal their danger to them, but that he dared not do so, because his uninsured ship would then have been instantly sunk.

In a Washington dispatch to THE NEW YORK TIMES, sent July 13, appeared the following:

The State Department received a short dispatch late this afternoon from Consul General Washington at Liverpool, confirming the report that three Americans were among those rescued by the American bark Normandy at the time of the sinking of the Russian merchant steamer Leo by a German submarine off the Irish coast Friday night. This is the case in which press dispatches asserted that the submarine commander forced the Captain of the Normandy to use his bark as a shield behind which the submarine hid before firing the torpedo which sank the Leo.

The cablegram from Consul General Washington makes no mention of this phase of the affair, and does not show whether the German submarine gave any warning to the commander of the Russian merchant ship before firing the shot which destroyed the latter vessel. The official message says that the Normandy was stopped by the submarine, that the Normandy's papers were examined, and that she was allowed to proceed. The message added that the Normandy rescued three American citizens who were members of the crew of the Leo, and names them as Walter Emery, seaman, of Swan Quarter, N.C.; Harry Whitney, steward, of Camden, N.J., and Harry Clark, fireman, of 113 East Fifty-second Street, Seattle, Wash.


This is the official statement of Captain Thomas M. Taylor of the Cunard liner Orduna, concerning the attack made on his vessel by a German submarine off Queenstown, westbound, on the morning of July 9:

At 6.05 A.M., July 9, the lookout man on the after bridge rang the telegraph, at the same time pointing his hand downward and out on the port beam. The third officer was immediately sent aft to inquire what was seen. He returned quickly and reported both men had seen a torpedo pass across the stern from port to starboard, only ten feet clear of the rudder. In the meantime both the chief officer and myself distinctly saw the trail of the torpedo, extending from the stern to about 200 yards out on the port beam. About eight minutes afterwards the chief officer and I saw the submarine come to the surface about two points on the starboard quarter, a distance of about three-quarters of a mile, with five or six men on her deck, getting her guns ready.

I immediately ordered all possible steam, altered the course, and brought her right astern, when they began shelling us. The first shot struck the water abreast of the forecastle on the starboard side, about thirty feet off. The second dropped just under the bridge; third, abreast of No. 5 hatch, quite close alongside; fourth, under the stern, sending up a volume of water forty feet high; fifth and sixth and last shells all fell short. The firing then ceased, and the submarine was soon left far astern.

Marconi distress signals were sent out at once. We were thirty-seven miles south of Queenstown. I got a reply that assistance would be with us in an hour, but it was four hours before the small armored yacht Jennette appeared. I account for the torpedo missing the ship to their misjudging the speed, allowing fourteen knots instead of sixteen, which we were doing at the time. The torpedo passed only ten feet clear.

It was an ideal day for torpedo attack—light wind, slight ripple, clear weather. The periscope could only have been a few inches above water, for a very strict lookout was being kept at the time by chief and third officers and myself and four lookout men. However, we failed to see her before she fired the torpedo.

Not the least warning was given, and most or nearly all the passengers were asleep at the time. It was almost another case of brutal murder.

We had twenty-one American passengers on board.

A Washington dispatch of July 20 to THE NEW YORK TIMES announced:

The President and the Cabinet decided today to have an investigation made in the case of the British steamer Orduna, which was attacked by a German submarine on July 9 while on her way from Liverpool to New York. This action was taken following the receipt of a statement from W.O. Thompson, counsel of the Federal Industrial Commission, who was a passenger on the ship.

Mr. Thompson did not see any torpedo fired at the Orduna by the German submarine, and was unable to give first-hand testimony that the Orduna had been fired on without notice. It was determined, however, that the report of Mr. Thompson justified the Government in making an investigation.

Accordingly, Secretary Lansing wrote a letter to Secretary McAdoo, requesting that his department undertake the investigation, which will probably be intrusted to the Collector of Customs at New York.

At the State Department it was said that the attention of the German Government had not been called to the charge that the Orduna was fired on by a German submarine without warning. Any action of that sort, if taken, will follow the investigation which is now ordered.


Ambassador Gerard on July 15 formally transmitted to Washington Germany's admission of liability and expression of regret for the attack by a German submarine on the American steamer Nebraskan.

Secretary Lansing's announcement of the German memorandum follows:

Ambassador Gerard has telegraphed to the Department of State the following memorandum from the German Foreign Office relative to the damaging of the American steamer Nebraskan by a German submarine:

"The German Government received from newspaper reports the intelligence that the American steamer Nebraskan had been damaged by a mine or torpedo on the southwest coast of Ireland. It therefore started a thorough investigation of the case without delay, and from the result of the investigation it has become convinced that the damage to the Nebraskan was caused by an attack by a submarine.

"On the evening of May 25 last the submarine met a steamer bound westward without a flag and no neutral markings on her freeboard, about 65 nautical miles west of Fastnet Rock. No appliance of any kind for the illumination of the flag or markings was to be seen. In the twilight, which had already set in, the name of the steamer was not visible from the submarine. Since the commander of the submarine was obliged to assume from his wide experience in the area of maritime war that only English steamers, and no neutral steamers, traversed the war area without flag and markings, he attacked the vessel with a torpedo, in the conviction that he had an enemy vessel before him. Some time after the shot the commander saw that the vessel had in the meantime hoisted the American flag. As a consequence, he, of course, refrained from any further attack. Since the vessel remained afloat, he had no occasion to concern himself further with the boats which had been launched.

"It results from this that without a doubt that attack on the steamer Nebraskan was not meant for the American flag, nor is it traceable to any fault on the part of the commander of the German submarine, but is to be considered an unfortunate accident. The German Government expresses its regret at the occurrence to the Government of the United States of America and declares its readiness to make compensation for the damage thereby sustained by American citizens."

Results of Submarine Warfare


A London cable dispatch to THE NEW YORK TIMES, dated London, July 8, said:

Nearly 20,000 vessels have entered or left the port of Liverpool since the German submarine blockade began. This, said Sir A. Norman Hill, Secretary of the Liverpool Steamship Owners' Association, speaking at Liverpool yesterday, showed that the Germans had failed in their attempt to blockade British ports.

On these 20,000 voyages the Germans had captured or destroyed only twenty-nine ships, he continued. What did that represent? Ships which had sailed in and out of Liverpool had completed in safety 998 out of every 1,000 voyages upon which they started. That was a magnificent record, he held, of perils faced and overcome.


An Associated Press dispatch of July 22 from London remarked:

So far as British vessels were concerned, the German submarines drew a blank during the week ended yesterday. Not a single British merchant ship or fishing craft was sunk.

It was the first week since the war began that some loss to British shipping had not been occasioned by German cruisers, mines, or submarines.

During the week 1,326 vessels of more than 300 tons each arrived at or departed from ports of the United Kingdom.

The German war-zone decree went into effect on February 18. Since then the weekly losses of ships and lives from torpedoes have been as follows:

Week Ending Vessels. Lives. February 25 11 9 March 4 1 0 March 11 7 38 March 18 6 13 March 25 7 2 April 1 13 165 April 8 8 13 April 15 4 0 April 22 3 10 April 29 3 0 May 6 24 5 May 13 2 1,260 May 20 7 13 May 27 7 7 June 3 19 32 June 10 36 21 June 17 19 19 June 24 3 1 July 1 9 29 July 8 15 2 July 15 12 13 July 22 2 0 —- ——- Total 218 1,652

Of the two vessels torpedoed in the week of July 22, the Russian steamer Balwa was attacked on July 16. On the following day another Russian steamer, the General Radetzky, was torpedoed. Both hailed from Riga, and the crews of both were saved.


A record reported to have been compiled chiefly from British Admiralty sources since the sinking of the Lusitania was published by The New York American on July 13, showing that out of 122 ships sunk by German submarines in the war zone, every passenger or sailor was saved on all but 14. Following is The American's summary:

Total number of ships definitely reported sunk by German submarines in sixty-four days, since the Lusitania was torpedoed 122

Number of ships on which any loss of life occurred 14

[Note: Some of these fatalities occurred, according to British Admiralty reports, either from explosion of torpedoes or from upsetting of lifeboats, or from gunfire of submarines while the enemy ship was trying to escape.]

Total loss of life on 122 ships, from all causes 131


In a Berlin dispatch of July 14, by wireless to Sayville, Long Island, the following was given out by the Overseas News Agency:

During the month of June twenty-nine British, three French, one Belgian, and nine Russian merchantmen were sunk by German submarines.

The total loss of the Entente Allies by submarines, including fishing steamers, which mostly were armed patrol boats, aggregated 125,000 tons.

The loss of human life was remarkably small, the submarines using every precaution and giving ample warning and time for crews to leave their ships if no resistance was attempted.

The total of losses in ships of the Allies' merchant marine around the English coast in the period between February 18 (the beginning of the German submarine war zone) and May 18, as compiled from German data, was published in the Frankfurter Zeitung of June 6. This publication, the first issue from German quarters, contains also a list of the various allied ships sunk, totaling 111, together with the nationality and tonnage of each, and a charted map of the British Isles showing where each ship was sunk.

In describing the achievements of the German submarine against their foes—the neutral ships sunk are not included—the Frankfurter Zeitung's article says:

In the period of three months since the 18th of February, a day memorable for history, our submarines have inflicted on the enemy merchant shipping, in the first place the English merchant marine, a total loss of 111 ships with a displacement of 234,239 tons. The figures may, perhaps, not seem especially large in comparison with the gigantic number of merchant ships flying the flag of the enemy. But in this method of warfare the percentage loss of ships of our opponent as compared with his total does not count, but rather the fact that through the regularity and inevitableness of the marine catastrophes the enemy shipping shall be disturbed as poignantly as possible, and that there should as a result of this disturbance appear in the economic life of England phenomena similar to those which the English plan of the isolation of Germany aims at without, however, having succeeded in getting any nearer to its goal, owing to the inherent strength and power of adaptation of German business.

The rise of prices now prevalent in England, and the paralyzing of great branches of trade which could not occur in an England that really ruled the sea, may be attributed in chief part to this war of the submarines. The advantage of the insular position of England has been greatly lessened, thanks to this excellent German weapon, even if it cannot be completely eliminated. But if one compares with the total voyages of the English merchant shipping the losses of the English merchant marine, amounting to more than 100 ships in a period of exactly ninety days, and a tonnage of 216,000 tons, (from the totals mentioned above there must be deducted the shares of France and Russia,) then we must consider only that part of the British merchant marine that entered ports of the island kingdom in this period or left them; and one must bear in mind further that a large number of those ships is contained several times in the English statistics, since they do coast service.

But as valuable booty for our submarines particularly those ships are to be regarded that import any kinds of commodities to England. And statistics will later be able to show on the basis of these figures the great success of the German submarine warfare, as indicated by figures.

A glance at the map that accompanies the list of losses suffices to show that mine fields as little as great distances are factors of decisive importance in the activities of our submarines. The closing of the English Channel and of the North Channel (between Ireland and Scotland) has not prevented our boats from penetrating wherever there was booty. Even on the northwest coast of Scotland and out in the west of Ireland the German submarines have carried on a successful hunt. The numbers in the little circles on the map represent the successive ships on the list.

The Frankfurter Zeitung adds figures given by the British Admiralty on the same subject. These, it says, total 130 merchant ships with a registered tonnage of 457,000 tons, from the beginning of the war to May 26. Added to these, it says, are 83 fishing vessels with a tonnage of 13,585 tons, making a total of 213 ships with 470,585 tons. It says:

These figures, however, are certainly incomplete, inasmuch as up to March 16 there had already been announced 145 ships with a total tonnage of 500,000 as lost, and the figures published by us above, based upon authentic material, concerning the victims of our submarines in three months, contradict beyond any power of dispute the euphemistic presentation of the British Admiralty. Even so, however, the English list still shows that since the beginning of the submarine warfare, although in that period there was little to speak of in the way of activities of the German cruisers abroad, the damage done to the English fleet has risen according to the confession of the Admiralty itself. Since Feb. 18, that is to say, since scarcely more than a quarter of a year, according to the English figures, no less than 56 British merchant ships with a tonnage of 187,000 tons (that is to say, more than 40 per cent. of the total number of merchant ships designated as lost) have been sunk. But if instead of these English figures the German compilation, which is indubitably correct, be accepted, then the entire picture changes considerably in our favor.

In Memoriam:


[From Truth of London]

Young gallant soul, unversed in fear, Who swiftly flew aloft to fame, And made yourself a world-wide name, Ere scarce had dawned your brief career.

To glory some but slowly climb By painful inches of ascent, And some, hereon though sternly bent, Ne'er reach it all their life's long time.

But you—you soared as eagles soar; At one strong flight you flashed on high; The sudden chance came sudden nigh; You seized it; off its spoils you bore.

And now, while still the welkin rings With your unmatched heroic deed, To paean elegies succeed, The mournful Muse your requiem sings.

A requiem, yet with triumph rife! How not, while men their souls would give To die your death, so they might live Your "crowded hour of glorious life"?

Great hour, that knows not time nor tide, Wild hour, that drinks an age's sweets, Brave hour, that throbs with breathless feats, Short hour, whose splendours long abide.

American Preparedness

By Theodore Roosevelt

In an address at the Panama-Pacific Exposition in San Francisco, delivered on July 21, Colonel Theodore Roosevelt said:

I have a very strong feeling about the Panama Exposition. It was my good fortune to take the action in 1903, failure to take which, in exactly the shape I took it, would have meant that no Panama Canal would have been built for half a century, and, therefore, that there would have been no exposition to celebrate the building of the canal. In everything we did in connection with the acquiring of the Panama Zone we acted in a way to do absolute justice to all other nations, to benefit all other nations, including especially the adjacent States, and to render the utmost service, from the standpoint alike of honor and of material interest, to the United States. I am glad that this is the case, for if there were the slightest taint upon our title or our conduct it would have been an improper and shameful thing to hold this exposition.

The building of the canal nearly doubles the potential efficiency of the United States Navy, as long as it is fortified and is in our hands; but if left unfortified it would at once become a menace to us.

What is true as to our proper attitude in regard to the canal is no less true as regards our proper attitude concerning the interests of the United States taken as a whole. The canal is to be a great agency for peace; it can be such only, and exactly in proportion as it increased our potential efficiency in war.

Those men who like myself believe that the highest duty of this nation is to prepare itself against war so that it may safely trust its honor and interest to its own strength are advocating merely that we do as a nation regarding our general interests what we have already done in Panama. If, instead of acting as this nation did in the Fall of 1903, we had confined ourselves to debates in Congress and diplomatic notes; if, in other words, we had treated elocution as a substitute for action, we would have done nobody any good, and for ourselves we would have earned the hearty derision of all other nations—the canal would not even have been begun at the present day, and there would have been a general consensus of international opinion to the effect that we were totally unfit to perform any of the duties of international life, especially in connection with the Western hemisphere.

Unfortunately in the last few years we have as regards pretty much everything not connected with the Isthmus of Panama so failed in our duty of national preparedness that I fear there actually is a general consensus of opinion to precisely this effect among the nations of the world as regards the United States at the present day. This is primarily due to our unpreparedness.

We have been culpably, well-nigh criminally, remiss as a nation in not preparing ourselves, and if, with the lessons taught the world by the dreadful tragedies of the last twelve months, we continue with soft complacency to stand helpless and naked before the world, we shall excite only contempt and derision if and when disaster ultimately overwhelms us.

Preparedness against war does not invariably avert war any more than a fire department in a city will invariably avert a fire; and there are well-meaning foolish people who point out this fact as offering an excuse for unpreparedness. It would be just as sensible if after the Chicago fire Chicago had announced that it would abolish its fire department as for our people to take the same view as regards military preparedness. Some years ago I was looking over some very old newspapers contemporaneous with the early establishment of paid fire departments in this country, and to my amusement I came across a letter which argued against a paid fire department upon the ground that the knowledge of its existence would tend to make householders careless, and therefore would encourage fires.

Greece was not prepared for war when she went to war with Turkey a score of years ago. But this fact did not stop the war. It merely made the war unsuccessful for Greece. China was not prepared for war with Japan twenty-odd years ago, nor for war with the Allies who marched to Peking fifteen years ago.

Colonel Roosevelt then discussed in detail the cases of China and Belgium, comparing Belgium with Switzerland, and asserting that Switzerland would have met Belgium's fate if she had not been prepared to oppose invasion. Then taking up the case of China, he said:

She has acted on the theory that the worst peace was better than the best war, and therefore she has suffered all the evils of the worst war and the worst peace. The average Chinaman took the view that China was too proud to fight and in practice made evident his hearty approval of the sentiments of that abject pacifist song: "I Didn't Raise My Boy to be a Soldier," a song which should have as a companion piece one entitled: "I Didn't Raise my Girl to be a Mother," approval of which of course deprives any men or women of all right of kinship with the soldiers and with the mothers and wives of the soldiers, whose valor and services we commemorate on the Fourth of July and on Decoration Day; a song, the singing of which seems incredible to every man and woman capable of being stirred to lofty and generous enthusiasm by the tremendous surge of Julia Ward Howe's "Battle Hymn of the Republic." China has steadily refused to prepare for war. Accordingly China has had province after province lopped off her, until one-half of her territory is now under Japanese, Russian, English and French control.

The professional pacifists, the peace-at-any-price, non-resistance, universal arbitration people are now seeking to Chinafy this country.

During the past year or so this nation has negotiated some thirty all-inclusive peace treaties by which it is agreed that if any issue arises, no matter of what kind, between itself and any other nation, it would take no final steps about it until a commission of investigation had discussed the matter for a year. This was an explicit promise in each case that if American women were raped and American men murdered, as has actually occurred in Mexico; or American men, women, and children drowned on the high seas, as in the case of the Gulflight and Lusitania; or if a foreign power secured and fortified Magdalena Bay or the Island of St. Thomas, we would appoint a commission and listen to a year's conversation on the subject before taking action.

England and France entered into these treaties with us, and we begged Germany to enter into one, and, although Germany refused, yet if we were right in entering into them with England and France, we deprived ourselves of moral justification in refusing to fulfill their spirit as regards Germany. Personally I believe that it was absolutely necessary when the concrete case arose to repudiate the principle to which we had thus committed ourselves. But it was a shameful thing to have put ourselves in such a position that it had to be repudiated, and it was inexcusable of us to decline to follow the principle in the case of the Lusitania without at the same time making frank confession of our error and misconduct by notifying all the powers with whom we had already made the treaties that they were withdrawn, because in practice we had found it impossible and improper to follow out the principle to which they committed us.

First Year of the War

Military Resumes of Operations on All Fronts—August, 1914 to August, 1915

By Lieutenant Walter E. Ives

Formerly of the Royal Prussian Thirteenth Dragoons


By An American Military Expert

One Year's War




The first year of the European war has drawn to a close. A resume covering the military events it has produced brings to view two distinct phases of the campaign. The first phase comprises the period from Aug. 3 to Oct. 27, and consists of a tenacious effort to carry through the original plan of war of the German General Staff: to strike a crushing blow at France, and after putting her "hors de combat," to turn on the enemy in the East. The second phase comprises the time from Oct. 27 to the present, and consists in the pursuance of military aims forming the direct reversal of the original ones.

The campaign against France, in consequence of the German plan of strategy the first one to come into prominence, can, in its first phase, be divided into four periods.

The first period comprises the operations in Belgium, German Lorraine and Alsace, from Aug. 3 to Aug. 23, the day before the Battle for the Invasion of France, commonly, but incorrectly known as the battle of Mons.

The main blow at France was to come through Belgium. Five German armies out of eight were hurled against this gateway to Northern France. In Lorraine and Alsace the Germans were temporarily to remain on the defensive. The protection of Lorraine was intrusted to the Bavarian (Sixth) Army, that of Alsace to the remaining two armies.

The French plan of operation was to check the invasion of Belgium on the line Tongres-Liege-Longwy, where the Belgian Army, from a strictly military point of view, forming the advance guards of the French Army of the North, was holding strong positions, and with superior forces to strike at the German Army of Lorraine. The aim was, avoiding Metz, to reach the Moselle near Trier through the valley of the Saar, and to roll up the German Army of the North from its left wing. An invasion of Alsace was merely to satisfy political aspirations.

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