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Title: The Blot on the Kaiser's 'Scutcheon

Author: Newell Dwight Hillis

Release date: October 1, 2007 [eBook #22821]

Language: English



E-text prepared by Suzanne Shell, Stephen Blundell,
and the Project Gutenberg Online Distributed Proofreading Team



The Blot On
The Kaiser's 'Scutcheon

By Newell Dwight Hillis

Each 12mo, cloth, net, $1.20

What Each Nation Has at Stake

Collected by Newell Dwight Hillis

Compiled, with Introductory Memorial Address
by Newell Dwight Hillis

Sermons for Church and Civic Celebrations

A Study of the Heroism and Eloquence of the Anti-Slavery

Studies in Culture and Success

Studies, National and Patriotic, upon the America of
To-day and To-morrow

Studies of Character, Real and Ideal

A Study of Social Sympathy and Service

Studies in Self-Culture and Character

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A Study of Channing's Symphony
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The Blot On
The Kaiser's 'Scutcheon



Author of "German Atrocities," etc.

New York Chicago
Fleming H. Revell Company

Copyright, 1918, by

Uniform with this Volume

German Atrocities
Illus., Cloth, $1.00 net

A Million and a Half Extracts from this book have been issued by the Liberty Loan Committee!

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I. The Arch-Criminal 11
1.The Kaiser's Hatred of the United States.
2.The Kaiser's Character Revealed in His Choosing the Sultan for His friend.
3.Pershing's Charges versus the Kaiser.
4.Who Taught the Kaiser That a Treaty Is a Scrap of Paper?
5.The Plot of the Kaiser.
II. The Judas Among Nations 31
1.The Original Plot of the Members of the Potsdam Gang.
2.The Berlin Schemers and Their Plot.
3.German Superiority a Myth That Has Exploded.
4.German Intrigues.
5.German Burglars Loaded with Loot Are the More Easily Captured.
6.Germans Who Hide Behind the Screen.
7.Must German Men Be Exterminated?
III. The Black Soul of the Hun 60
1.German Barbarism Not Barbarism to the German.
2.The German "Science of Lying."
3.The Malignity of the German Spies.
4.The Cancer in the Body-Politic of Germany.
5.Polygamy and the Collapse of the Family in Germany.
6.The Red-Hot Swords in Sister Julie's Eyes.
7.The Hidden Dynamite: The Hun's Destruction of Cathedrals.
8.The German Sniper Who Hid Behind the Crucifix.
9.The Ruined Studio.
10.Was This Murder Justified?
IV. In France the Immortal! 98
1.The Glory of the French Soldier's Heroism.
2.Why the Hun Cannot Defeat the Frenchman.
3."I Am Only His Wife."
4.A Soldier's Funeral in Paris.
5.The Old Book-Lover of Louvain.
6.A Vision of Judgment in Martyred Gerbéviller.
7.The Return of the Refugees.
8.An American Knight in France.
9.An American Soldier's Grave in France.
10."These Flowers, Sir, I Will Lay Them Upon My Son's Grave."
11.The Courage of Clemenceau.
V. Our British Allies 132
1."Gott Strafe England"—"And Scotland."
2."England Must Not Starve."
3.German-Americans Who Vilify England.
4.British vs. American Girls in Munition Factories.
5.The Wolves' Den on Vimy Ridge.
6."Why Did You Leave Us in Hell for Two Years?"
7."This War Will End Within Forty Years."
8."Why Are We Outmanned By the Germans?"
VI. "Over Here" 164
1.The Redemption of a Slacker.
2.Slackers versus Heroes.
3.German Stupidity in Avoiding the Draft.
4."I'm Working Now for Uncle Sam."
5.The German Farmer's Debt to the United States.
6."Sharper Than a Serpent's Tooth" Is an Ungrateful Immigrant.
7.In Praise of Our Secret Service.


Publisher's Explanatory Note

These brief articles are sparks struck as it were from the anvil of events. They were written on trains, in hotels, in the intervals between public addresses. During the past year beginning October 1, 1917, Dr. Hillis, in addition to his work in Plymouth Church, and as President of The Plymouth Institute, has visited no less than one hundred and sixty-two cities, and made some four hundred addresses on "The National Crisis," "How Germany Lost Her Soul," "The Philosophy of the German Atrocities," and "The Pan-German Empire Plot," the substance of these lectures and addresses being given in the book, "German Atrocities," heretofore published. These articles are illustrative of and supplementary to the principles stated in that volume.

While consenting to publication, the author was not afforded opportunity for full revision of this second volume, being again called over-seas just as this book was being put into type. This will account for the form in which the material appears.




1. The Kaiser's Hatred of the United States

It is a proverb that things done in secret soon or late are published from the housetops.

Certainly everything that was hidden as to the plots of the Potsdam gang is, little by little, now being revealed.

Nothing illustrates this fact better than that volume published in Leipsic in 1907, called "Reminiscences of Ten Years in the German Embassy in Washington, D. C."

When that aged diplomat published the story of his diplomatic career he doubtless thought that the volume prepared for his children and grandchildren and friends was forever buried in the German language. It never even occurred to the Councillor of the Ambassador, von Holleben, that the book would ever fall into the hands of any American. The very fact that an American[12] author found the volume in a second-hand bookstore of Vienna in 1914 and translated the three chapters on the Kaiser's representatives in the United States and the organization of the German-American League, must have roused the Foreign Department in Berlin to the highest point of anger.

Children and diplomats oftentimes unconsciously betray the most important secrets. No volume ever published could possibly have revealed matters of greater moment to Germany than this volume of reminiscences that sets forth the propaganda carried on in the United States by Ambassador von Holleben and his legal councillor for the furthering of the Pan-German Empire scheme.

No scholar can doubt the right of this old diplomat to speak. The Kaiser personally vouched for him by giving him this important duty. The honours bestowed at the end of his long diplomatic career tell their own story. Every page breathes sincerity and truthfulness. No one who reads this volume can doubt that this author gave the exact facts—facts well known to his German friends—in the recollections of his diplomatic career.

This diplomat tells us plainly that von[13] Holleben and himself were sent to the United States specially charged with the task of reuniting Germans who were naturalized in America with the German Empire.

It was their duty to organize secret German-American societies in every great city like New York and Brooklyn, Chicago and Milwaukee, Cincinnati and St. Louis, and to present to these societies a German flag sent from the hands of the Kaiser himself.

Their work, says the author, was based upon the fact that the Kaiser had passed a law restoring full citizenship in Germany to those Germans who had become naturalized citizens of the United States. When, therefore, these members of the German-American League formally accepted their restored citizenship their first duty was to the Fatherland and the Kaiser and their second duty to the United States and its Government. Indeed, this lawyer and author actually goes so far as to give extracts from von Holleben's speech before the German-American League in Chicago when he presented the society with a German flag and swore the members to the old-time allegiance.

He says that in some way the editor of the Chicago Tribune found out about this[14] meeting and wrote a very severe editorial, after which, he adds, that von Holleben and himself had to be more careful.

Concerning the Milwaukee meeting, he refers to a conversation which revealed his judgment that if ever there was trouble between Germany and the United States the war would partake of the nature of a civil war. The author not only gives an account of the conference held at the Waldorf-Astoria between Ambassador von Holleben, Professors Munsterberg of Harvard and Schoenfield of Columbia and himself, on the one side, and Herman Ridder on the other, but he gives the instructions from Berlin that Herr Ridder could only keep his subsidy from the German Government for the New Yorker Staats Zeitung by placing his fealty to Germany first and subordinating his Americanism, and that otherwise Ambassador von Holleben would found a rival German paper that would have back of it "unlimited resources, to wit: the total resources of the German Empire."

Here, then, is proof positive that the Kaiser began his efforts to establish a pro-German movement against the United States for several years before 1906 and[15] that he methodically kept it up until the war began.

Through it all he claimed to be our sincere friend; but he was then, as he is to-day, an implacable and relentless enemy, with a heart laden with hatred and bitterness.

2. The Kaiser's Character Revealed in His Choosing the Sultan for His Friend

Nothing tests manhood like the choice of a bosom-friend. Criminals choose bad associates.

Every Black Hand leader goes naturally towards the saloon, the gambling house and the dens where thieves congregate. Dickens made Fagin surround himself with pickpockets, burglars and murderers.

History tells us that Christianity has always kept good company. Its friends have been architects, artists, poets and statesmen. Christianity repeats itself through its friends in the Gothic Cathedral shaped in the form of the cross, in the Transfiguration of Raphael, the Duomo of Giotto, the Paradise Lost of Milton, the In Memoriam of Tennyson, the Emancipation Proclamation of Lincoln.[16] Christianity has never formed any close friendships with jails, gallows or slave ships. Men like Gladstone and Lincoln always kept good company; their friends have been scholars and heroes; but, in striking contrast, consider the friends selected by the Kaiser.

To the Kaiser came a critical hour; at that moment he was at the parting of the ways. It became necessary for him to make a choice of friends. Like every man, his isolation was impossible and friendship became a necessity.

The Kaiser had the whole world from which to choose. Yonder in London were King Edward and his son, the Prince of Wales. In France were certain statesmen and scientists like Curie. There was the old hero living in the capital of Japan and two ex-Presidents known the world around for their splendid manhood; and he could have made overtures of friendship to any one of these brave men; but in the silence of the night the Kaiser passed in review earth's great men, and finally selected for his close friend the lowest of the low—the butcher, unspeakable butcher—the Sultan of Turkey.

At that time the Sultan had just completed[17] the butchery of many Armenians. His garments were red with blood, his hands dripped with gore. His house was a harem; his hand held a dagger. The sea-wall behind his palace rose out of the blue waters of the Bosporus.

When an American battle-ship was anchored there and a diver went down he pulled a rope and was brought up, shivering with terror, and saying that he found himself surrounded with corpses tied in sacks and held down by stones at the bottom of the sea.

In that hour the Kaiser exclaimed: "Let the Sultan be my associate! I will go to Constantinople and sign a treaty with the unspeakable butcher."

And so the Kaiser took his train, lived in the Sultan's palace, signed this treaty, and hired the Sultan's knife and club, just as the Chief Priest Annas chose Judas to be his representative upon whom he could load the responsibility for the murder of Jesus.

Never was a friendship more damnable. Reared in a country that believed in the sanctity of the marriage relation and in monogamy, the Kaiser lined up with polygamy. The treaty that he made was thoroughgoing.[18] He sent out word to all Mohammedans, whether they lived in India or Persia, in Arabia or Turkey, that they must remember that the Kaiser had entered into a treaty to become their protector and friend. Having become a Lutheran in Berlin, he became a Mohammedan in Constantinople on the principle that "When you are in Rome do as the Romans do, and when you are in hell act like the devil"—a simple principle which the Kaiser proceeded to obey as soon as he reached Constantinople.

Every one knew that the Kaiser wanted to build a German railroad through to Bagdad and the Persian Gulf; this would give him an outlet for surplus goods to be sold in India. Serbia lay straight across the path, and he had to work out some scheme to attack Serbia. Then he needed the Sultan's friendship, and the end justified the means—and the end was the Bagdad Railroad.

But the Turk tired of being the Kaiser's tool; he wanted more land; the Armenian was in his way; the Turk was lazy, shiftless and a spendthrift. The Armenian was industrious and hard-working. The Turk's method of living made him poor. The gifts of the Armenian tended towards wealth.[19] Once in twenty years the Turk found himself a pauper and found the Armenian rich; the result was envy and covetousness on the part of the Sultan and his people. It became necessary to bribe the Turk to stand by the Kaiser and his Baghdad Railroad. The Kaiser's German officers, therefore, furnished the bribe.

"Let us go to this Armenian village, or that, and kill the people. We German officers will take the large houses of the rich merchants and move into them, and your Turkish soldiers can kill the old men, use the Armenian girls for the harem, and fling the little children's bodies into pits dug in the garden behind the house. We will enter the village in the morning as soldiers; when the night comes, as Germans and Turks, we will be the only people living in the Armenian village, and we will move into their stores and take possession of their houses and their looms."

"You cannot hang an entire nation," said Edmund Burke. "You must arrest the leaders and hang them." Burke was right as to the punishment of criminals, but he was wrong when it comes to murdering industrious and honest Armenians. You can[20] murder an entire nation, for the Germans and the Turks have practically done it. Ambassador Morgenthau has just said that the Kaiser and the Sultan through their forces have murdered nearly a million Armenians. But, soon or late, remorse and conscience will take hold upon these two unspeakable butchers with hands that drip with blood—the butcher Kaiser, the butcher Sultan, that represent earth's two murderous twins.

3. Pershing's Charges versus the Kaiser

Nothing measures a man so accurately as the names he gives to his favourite son. Most significant, therefore, is the fact that the Kaiser named his second son Eitel, or Attila. Who was this Attila who has captured the imagination of the Kaiser? He was a Hun who devastated Italy fifteen hundred years ago. The motto of this black-hearted murderer Attila the Hun was: "Where my feet fall, let grass not grow for a hundred years." When the Kaiser read Attila's story he exclaimed: "That is the man for me!" First, he named his favourite son for Attila the Hun. Second,[21] in sending his German soldiers out to China, and later in 1914 to Belgium, he gave them this charge: "You will take no prisoners; you will show no mercy; you will give no quarter; you will make yourselves as terrible as the Huns under Attila." Plainly the Kaiser knew his men. He knew that they were capable of outdoing even that monster Attila the Hun. So he sent them forth to bayonet babes, violate old women, murder old men, crucify officers, violate nuns, sink Lusitanias, and turn solemn treaties into scraps of paper.

Now over against the Kaiser's charge, black as hell, and big with death, witness Pershing's charge, reported loosely by a French boy, with his imperfect knowledge of English, translated out of the French newspapers on July 18, 1917. Pershing's brief address comes to this:

"Young soldiers of America, you are here in France to help expel an invading enemy; but you are also here to lift a shield above the poor and weak; you will safeguard all property; you will lift a shield above the aged and oppressed; you will be most courteous to women, gentle and kind to little children; guard against temptation of every[22] kind; fear God, fight bravely, defend Liberty, honour your native land. God have you in His keeping." "Pershing."

The difference between yonder lowest hell in its uttermost abyss and yonder highest heaven, where standeth the throne of a just God, is not greater than the chasm that separates that unspeakable butcher, the Kaiser, from General Pershing and the American soldier boys, who have never betrayed in France, the noblest ideals of service cherished by the people of the American Republic.

4. Who Taught the Kaiser That a Treaty Is a Scrap of Paper?

Each month of this war clears away some clouds and reveals Germany as wholly given over to crime and treachery. At the beginning of the invasion of Belgium, the Kaiser spoke of his treaty safeguarding the neutrality of that little land as a "scrap of paper." At the moment no one seems to have realized whence the Kaiser had that cynical expression. Now the whole damnable story has been made clear. Twenty-five years ago the Kaiser, in one of his addresses, used these words:[23]

"From my childhood I have been under the influence of five men—Alexander, Julius Cæsar, Theodoric II, Napoleon and Frederick the Great. These five men dreamed their dream of a world empire; they failed. I am dreaming my dream of a world empire, but I shall succeed."

Now why did the Kaiser over and over again proclaim his allegiance to Frederick the Great? How is it that he celebrates his ancestor, Frederick? This "scrap of paper" incident makes it all quite clear. The bitter waters gushing out of the Potsdam Palace go back to a bitter spring named Frederick the Great. The poisoned fruit that ripened in 1914 hangs on a bough whose trunk was planted by Frederick in far-off days.

Among many musty old German books recently published is a little book by that same Frederick. The Prussian king was writing certain notes for the guidance of his sons and successors, among whom is the present Kaiser. In his page of counsels Frederick talks very plainly about the breaking of treaties:

"Consider a treaty as a scrap of paper under any one of the following emergencies: First, when necessity compels it. Second,[24] when you lack means to continue the war. Third, when you cannot by any other means combat your ally or enemy."

Then Frederick raises one question: "If the interests of your army or your people or yourself are at stake or you have to keep your word on one hand and your pledge word and treaty is on the other hand, which path will you take? Who can be stupid enough to hesitate in answering this question? In other words, treaties are to be kept when they promote your interest, and shamelessly broken when you gain thereby."

The Kaiser, therefore, had from Frederick, his ancestor, this handbook on lying. In turn, the Kaiser gave this notion of the treaty as a scrap of paper to his Chancellor, Bethmann-Hollweg, who engraved, as has been said, "on eternal brass the infamy of Germany": "We are now in a state of necessity, and necessity knows no law. We were compelled to override the the just protest of Luxembourg and Belgian Governments. The wrong—I speak openly—that we are committing we will endeavour to make good as soon as our military goal has been reached. Anybody who is threatened, as we are threatened, and who is fighting[25] for his highest possessions, can have only one thought, how he is to hack his way through."

Guizot mentions "honour and fidelity to the pledged word" as one of the distinguishing elements of what is called "a civilized State." But this puts Germany among the barbarous savages. Three indictments and convictions have blackened the name of Germany throughout all the world. First, her atrocious and dishonourable methods of warfare; second, the carrying off into slavery of non-combatants, the Belgians and French, and third, the breach of the pledged word and the solemn treaties with other nations.

But at last we know that Frederick the Great, the ancestor of the Kaiser, was the author of the phrase, "the treaty is a scrap of paper." What was once in the gristle in the ancestor is now bred in the bone of the Kaiser and Crown Prince. That phrase, "a scrap of paper," holds the germ of a thousand wars. It spells the ruin of civilization. Not to resent it by war, is for the Allies to commit spiritual suicide.[26]

5. The Plot of the Kaiser

All the pamphlets issued secretly to the members of the Pan-German League invariably used Rome as their illustration. We are not surprised, therefore, to find that the German leaders called attention to the fact that it took two wars at intervals of some years to make Rome a world empire.

In like manner, therefore, the Kaiser and his Cabinet told the German people at home and abroad that the first war, beginning in 1914, would establish a Middle-Europe Empire extending from Hamburg on the North Sea to Bagdad on the Persian Gulf.

One of the pamphlets issued many years ago fixed the countries to be conquered about 1915, and distinctly mentioned Denmark, Holland, Belgium and North France, Poland and Rumania, Hungary and Austria, Serbia and Bulgaria, and the wheat granaries of Russia, with Turkey and Armenia.

The number of people to be conquered and included after the first war was fixed at 250,000,000.

The argument states that it will take but a few years to compact this Middle-Europe[27] Empire and that naturally Great Britain, Spain and Italy, to the west, with Norway and Sweden to the north, with Italy and Switzerland to the south, and of course Greece and Egypt would, from time to time, as crises came, fall inevitably into Germany's hand. Berlin, as the world capital, should by 1920 be the magnet, and the little particles of iron, named the Balkan States, would be drawn and held by this great German magnet in Berlin.

The first step to be taken and the first goal to be reached concerned, of course, the English Channel, the Dutch cities on the mouth of the Rhine, and the iron mines of Northern France. We know to an absolute certainty all the details of this plan.

For more than thirty years Germany had been organizing her army; she knew every road, inn, bridge, factory, shop, and wholesale store in Denmark and Holland, Belgium and France. In all of the larger ones she had German agents belonging to the Pan-German League toiling as workmen and every detail was planned out in advance.

In 1910 General von Bissing, one of the Kaiser's closest friends, was sent to Brussels. For years he spent the summer months apparently[28] at the watering places near The Hague in Holland and Ostend in Belgium, preparatory to the hour when Germany would seize Belgium and he assume his position as Governor-General, living in Brussels.

Men nearing death tell the truth. In January of 1917 von Bissing prepared a memorandum for the direction of Belgian affairs in His Majesty's name and according to his wish. This document contains the meditations of a dying man. The statements he makes, he says, contain the views that inspired his every act in Belgium during his administration.

In his last will and testament von Bissing, in the spring of 1917, advises the German Government in Berlin that the time has come to throw off all disguises. He says that at the beginning of the war it was probably good policy to deny that the Government ever intended to annex Belgium, but, he says, "now that we are victorious there is no reason why we should not publish to the world the fact that we never intend to give up one foot of the Belgian sea-coast, nor one ton of the Belgian coal, nor one acre of the French iron mines."

He says plainly: "The annual Belgian[29] production of 23,000,000 tons of coal has given us a monopoly on the continent which has helped to maintain our vitality. If we do not hold Belgium, administer Belgium in future for our interest and protect Belgium by force of arms, our trade and industry will lose the positions they have won in Belgium and perhaps will never recover them."

And what about Dutch cities and seaports? On page eighteen of General von Bissing's last will and testament he adds:

"Our frontier, in the interest of our sea power, must be pushed forward to the sea." This sentence makes it perfectly plain that a little later Germany intends to incorporate Rotterdam in her own customs union. "Belgium must be seized and held, as it now is, and as it is to-day it must be in the future. The conquest of Belgium has simply been forced upon us by the necessities of German expansion."

Von Bissing, however, recognizes the difficulty of annexing Belgium and securing the consent of the members who shall arrange the treaty of peace at the conclusion of the war, and this is his decision:

"Our best method, therefore, is to avoid, during the peace negotiations, all discussion[30] about the form of the annexation and to apply nothing but the right of conquest. Plainly Belgium's King can never consent to abandon his sovereignty, but we can read in Machiavelli that he who desires to take possession of a country will be compelled to remove the King or regent, even by killing him."

Von Bissing has torn off all masks. He himself states that he is speaking for the Kaiser, as his most trusted friend and counsellor. Germany intends, therefore, ultimately to kill King Albert of Belgium, and this carries with it that the Kaiser and his War Staff believe they have the right to kill any King or President who happens to stand in the pathway of their ambition. Every lover of mankind whose heart is knitted in with the poor and the weak will understand what that editor meant the other day when he said:

"The one duty of the hour, therefore, for America, is to kill Germans, that we may keep the rest of the world from being killed."




1. The Original Plot of the Members of the Potsdam Gang

Many historic meetings, big with social disaster, are recorded in history. Witness the meeting of the Athenian judges for the killing of Socrates. Witness the coming together of the priests and Judas for the piteous tragedy of the death of Jesus. Witness that midnight meeting of the conspirators in Florence for the burning of Savonarola. Terrible also the results of that meeting in the Potsdam Palace in 1896 that culminated in the Pan-German Empire scheme.

What began as a spark that day has ended in a world conflagration.

In retrospect the Kaiser and his associates had many events behind them to encourage the ambition to make Berlin a world capital, Kaiser Wilhelm the world emperor and all the other nations and races subject peoples.[32]

Beginning in 1860 with thirty-five millions of people and only fifteen billions of dollars, Germany had climbed to greatness upon iron steps, heated hot by war. Never did wars yield so large a return.

The war with Denmark had given Germany the Kiel Harbour, the Kiel Canal and a sea-coast for her ships.

The war with Austria had given Germany the rich coal provinces of Central Europe. The war with France had given Germany the iron mines of Alsace and Lorraine.

And here for the next war were Denmark and Holland, Belgium and northern France—so many jewel boxes that could be looted. To the eastward were Poland with her coal mines, Rumania with her oil fields and Russia with her wheat granaries. And once Central Europe became a Middle-Europe German Empire there was no reason why later on Germany should not extend her conquests to Russia on the east and England on the west, and then to North and South America.

It was a great scheme. Never was prize so rich. Never could obstacles be so easily swept away. To make Berlin a world-capital and Kaiser Wilhelm a world-emperor only two things were needed.[33]

Plainly the first thing to be done was to organize the Pan-German Empire League and educate the leading men of Germany—the ship owners, bankers, merchants and manufacturers, editors, ministers, priests and university professors.

Local branch societies were organized in all the large German towns and cities. Weekly meetings were held, papers read and reports made. Slowly people of the middle class were included in the league. Documents marked "Secret and Confidential" were distributed, setting forth the details of the scheme.

Full reports were made as to what Germany could make by seizing the fields of Denmark, the cities on the mouth of the Rhine in Belgium, the coal and iron mines of France, Poland and Russia, and also the undeveloped resources of the Valley of the Euphrates.

Careful statements were prepared as to the difficulties that must be surmounted, but always this lure was held out—that the poorest German who then had nothing, would when Germany was victorious become a landowner, live in a mansion and drive his own automobile. Then he would have[34] Russians and Frenchmen to wait upon him, since the German was a superman, intended for a patrician, while all other races were pigs, intended by nature to be bondsmen and plebeians.

"The rest of the world is amassing wealth, and when the fruit is ripe then we Germans will pluck it"—this was their motto.

Little by little the germ of world-ambition became a fever, burning in the soul of every German at home or abroad. It took twenty years to thoroughly inculcate every individual of the German race with this feverish ambition, but when 1914 came every German had gone over to the Pan-German scheme and was ready to die for it.

2. The Berlin Schemers and Their Plot

After all the Germans at home and abroad understood the Pan-German scheme of seditious intrigue in foreign countries and the vast web was spun and thrown out over all the cities and continents where the Kaiser's representatives were living, the second thing to be done was to make the plan clear by spreading it out like a great map. The method used, therefore, was pictorial.[35]

The Department of Publicity in Berlin became experts on geography. They began to issue illustrated maps so that the rudest German peasants and the German colonists living in Milwaukee or El Paso, in Rio Janeiro or Buenos Aires, in Brussels or St. Petersburg, in Melbourne or Calcutta, could easily understand the method and the goal.

Out of twenty maps issued in Berlin and reproduced by Andre Cheredame, no one is more important than the one marked "The Old Roman Empire." The simplest German miner understood the map at a glance and realized its meaning for the members of the Pan-German League. Here is old Rome marked world capital. Here is Cæsar Augustus called the first world emperor. Here is Carthage with its capital looted and Roman peasants remaining after the victory to move into rich men's houses and estates of North Africa. And here also were the maps of conquered Palestine, Ephesus, Athens and Corinth. To be sure the old Romans had to become soldiers, but, later, did not each Roman soldier live in the rich gardens around Thebes, Ephesus and Corinth?

Instantly the imaginations of the German peasants and workmen kindled. The Kaiser[36] was right. What had been in Rome must be in Berlin. The Elbe must succeed the Tiber. Berlin shall be the second world-capital. Our Wilhelm shall be the second world-emperor. Germania shall be written straight across Europe from Hamburg on the North Sea to Bagdad on the Persian Gulf. Germans alone shall be allowed to carry weapons, as once only the Roman was allowed to own a spear; only Germans shall be allowed to hold title deeds to lands, even as once only Romans could hold a field or a house in fee simple. Old Rome won by becoming a military State.

Did not the people of Rome go forth as soldiers and return with triumphal processions, with treasures of loot that took days to pass along the Appian Way, while the Romans stood cheering and the women and children sang and threw flowers in the path? Why should not the German army, between the reaping of the wheat in July and the threshing of the wheat in October, return from Brussels and Paris laden with treasure, while a second triumphal procession marched down Wilhelmstrasse?

The German peasants kindled at this dream. Why should the German have to[37] live always on bologna sausage, drink beer, eat sauerkraut and live in ugly houses when the people of Paris and London drank champagne, ate roast fowl, wore French laces and the finest English wools? It was a wicked shame. Surely the German was intended for something better than sauerkraut and beer!

"Two weeks and we will be in Brussels. Three weeks and we will have Paris. Two months and we will loot London."

This was the plan. How significant that letter, taken from the dead body of a German boy found in No Man's Land, near Compiègne.

"Within three days, Liebschen, we will be in Paris. I intend to bring you a pocketful of Paris rings and jewels, with Paris gowns and laces."

From the body of a German boy found near Lunéville was taken this letter saying that, with his three companions, he had picked out four French farms and left the houses standing, and that his friends and himself had picked out these farms as permanent homes. Later he added that Heinrich thought it would be much better for them to wait until they smashed England[38] and made Canada a German colony. Then they could own, not small French farms, but vast Canadian farms with a hundred tenants working for him in the valleys around Toronto and the vineyards of Winnipeg and orchards of Hudson Bay.

Most shrewd and cunning, the plotters of the Potsdam gang. They knew how to feed the fires of envy and avarice in the German people. Every few weeks they placed new material in the hands of every German at home and abroad. They reminded each poor peasant and foreign colonist that he was a superman, and that by day and by night he was to prepare for the time when he would become the head of all the people of the town or industry with which he was related. Poor Germans in foreign countries dreamed their dreams of the time when they would be appointed by the Kaiser and Foreign Minister to take charge of the village in Mexico, the mine in Chile, or when they would be the tax collector in some distant province.

We know now, from letters that have been found, that the German soldiers in France carried in their pockets a description by the German historian Curtius of the triumphal procession along the Appian Way,[39] when the Roman conquerors came home loaded with loot. These skillful German plotters printed at the bottom of Curtius's description the statement that each German soldier must look forward to a similar return from London, Paris and Brussels to march through the streets of Munich and Berlin.

What a dream was this German dream! What treasures were to be brought into Berlin! What marbles and bronzes of Rodin stolen from Paris! At last Berlin was to own beautiful paintings, for the treasures of the Louvre were to be the Kaiser's.

Never was there such a dream dreamed by peasants who soon were to become princes and kings and patricians. The German had exchanged the rye bread of 1913 for the "fog bank" of 1918; had given up German beer to grasp only empty, breaking bubbles. But it was a great dream while it lasted. In pursuance of his hope he sacrificed three million German boys, left dead in the fields of Flanders and France. He sent home four million German cripples. He filled the land with vast armies of widows and orphans.

It could not have been otherwise. There has never been, and never will be, but one world city—Rome; and there has never been[40] but one world-emperor—Cæsar Augustus. There is to be one universal kingdom—and that is the kingdom of God, the kingdom of love, justice, peace and good-will. The German has been pursuing a will-o'-the-wisp.

A world-kingdom will come, but no Kaiser will rule over that empire of love. In that world-parliament all the races shall be represented as equals; then the earth that has long been a battle-field shall become an Eden garden, where all are patriots towards the world-kingdom, and scholars towards the intellect, and self-sufficing towards the family, and obedient towards their God.

3. German Superiority a Myth That Has Exploded

Several years before the great war began a Dutch humorist wrote a play on German megalomania. He portrayed a German schoolroom in Prussia. Thirty or forty embryonic Prussians are at the desks and a Prussian schoolmaster is in the chair.

"Children, what is the greatest country in the world?"

All shouted vociferously, "Germany!"

"What is the greatest city in the world?"[41]


"Who is the greatest man in the world?"

"The Kaiser!"

"Should there ever be, children, a vacancy in the Trinity, who is best fitted to fill the position?"

"The Crown Prince!"

"Who are the chosen people of the good old German God?"

"The German people!"

Never was there a finer bit of sarcasm and yet the Germans were never able to understand the play. The Kaiser, the War Staff, the Cabinet, down to the last wretched creature working in the stables and the sewers, reading the play, exclaimed:

"What is the man driving at? Why, of course the Germans are the greatest people in the world—we admit it!"

Now, during the last few years the Germans have spent untold millions in propagating this myth of superiority, and yet the German intellect has never even had a second-rate position. Call the roll of all the tools that have redeemed men from drudgery and you will find that Germany's contributions are hopelessly inferior to the other nations.

The new industrial era began with the[42] locomotive and steamship; James Watt invented the one and Stevenson the other.

The new era of physical comfort began with the loom; a Frenchman named Jacquard and an Englishman named Arkwright made men warm for their work in winter. Garments within the reach of the poor man in forest and factory, field and mine, means the cotton gin, and that gin is the gift of an American. The sewing machine changed woman's position, but the world owes that to our own Elias Howe.

We owe the telegraph to an English inventor and, in part, to Morse. We owe the cable in part to Lord Kelvin and, in part, to Cyrus Field. We owe the telephone to Bell and the wireless to Marconi.

Holland invented the submarine, Wright the airplane, McCormick the reaper and Edison the phonograph.

An American invented the German submarine; an American invented the German torpedo; an American invented the German machine-gun; an American invented the Murphy button, the yellow fever antitoxin, the Dakin solution.

An English physician discovered the circulation of the blood, Jenner gave us vaccination,[43] Lister antiseptics, France the Pasteur serums and the Curie radio discoveries, while a Bulgarian, Dr. Metchnikoff, discovered the enemies of the blood.

It was from France, England and the United States that Germany stole the typewriter, the steel building, the use of rubber, the aniline dyes, reënforced concrete bridges, air-brakes, the use of electricity.

One of the most amazing volumes in the world is the "History of Tools and Machinery." We have all known for a long time that there is not one single German name among the eight great masters of painting that begins with Rembrandt and includes men like Velasquez and Giotto. We have long known that there is no German sculptor of the first class nor a German sculptor that is within ten thousand leagues of Rodin, Michael Angelo or Phidias. We have long known that Schubert and Schumann and Rubinstein and Haydn and Chopin were all Jews, and that three-fourths of the other so-called German musicians were Jews whose ancestors suffered such frightful political disabilities in Germany and were so regularly looted of all their property that they gave up their Hebrew names and took German,[44] just as now thousands upon thousands of Germans in this country, ashamed of their names, are Americanizing their family title.

The simple fact is that if a Jew will only write the creative music, like that of Beethoven, a German whose gift is detail will conduct the orchestra.

The German can standardize a machine, providing an Englishman, a Frenchman or an American will first invent it. The German will gather up the remnants and scraps and odds and ends in a clothing factory—but, oh, think of an American gentleman having to wear the coat that was cut by a tailor in Berlin or Munich! Having during ten different summers looked at their garments, all one can say is that the German men and women are covered up but not clothed.

For thirty years the Germans have paid their representatives to stand on the corner of the street and bawl out to every passer-by: "Great is the Kaiser! Great are we Germans! Let all people with cymbals, sackbut, shawms and psaltery cry aloud, saying 'Great is the Kaiser and all his people!'"

And now suddenly the myth has burst like a bubble. The delusion is exploded. The[45] Kaiser has found out that it is dangerous to blow too much hot air into a German bladder.

Measured around the stomach in the Hofbraus in the presence of a barrel of beer, the Prussian and the Bavarian are great; but the hat band requires the least material of any made in four countries.

For the time has come to confess this simple fact that for any one great tool, or art, or contribution to science created by a German there are four invented by either an American, an Englishman or a Frenchman.

4. German Intrigues

The spider's web stretched out over a flower bed with a great fat spider at the centre and the threads along which the spider runs to thrust its poisoned sting into the enmeshed butterfly is nature's most accurate symbol of the vast web of espionage lying over North and South America with secret threads that vibrated to the touch of the spider at the centre named Berlin.

In that web thousands of German-Americans were enmeshed. The records of our Secret Service concerning these German[46] enemies of the American Government read like a book of assassinations or like a history of the black arts. When the whole story comes to be told it will horrify the world.

The quality of the German-Americans that Berlin bribed is set forth in the reminiscences of Witte when he says that the Kaiser and the Foreign Department paid Munsterberg of Harvard University $5,000 a year salary and that Munsterberg was the most successful and efficient spy that the German system had ever developed.

In the long list of German agents are to be found the names of German-American bankers who received secret decorations and medals from the German Government; of German merchants who were partners in this country of firms in the Fatherland and were bribed by a ribbon and an invitation to the Potsdam Palace; of German newspaper men who were under German pay, and, most amazing of all, among the papers seized in the office of a German Consul was found a commission appointing this Consul in an American city to the office of Governor-General of one of the greatest States of Canada as soon as Canada became a German colony.[47]

Many of the threads from Berlin ran into the various cities of Mexico. A German head office was set up under the general direction of Zimmermann in Berlin and of von Bernstorff in Washington. Certain large institutions that did business in Mexico, working in the same field, were quietly elbowed out of Mexico, and an American company, ostensibly American, but controlled by Germans, took over the business of the other firms under special arrangement with Mexico. Pledges were given Mexico that as soon as Germany had reduced Canada and the United States to the position of German colonies, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada and California should be handed back to the Mexicans.

Millions were spent by the German Foreign Office as ordinary men spend dollars. The German spies, like Boy-Ed and von Papen, arranged to blow up American munition factories and held dinners waiting for a telephone message saying that the magazine had just exploded or the depot had taken fire or a scow had been sunk, after which they drank the health of the man who lighted the match.

German agents burned up wheat elevators[48] with hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of wheat; they fired warehouses, blew up bridges, wrecked munition plants, destroyed shiploads of food, dynamited the House of Parliament in Ottawa, sank the Lusitania near Ireland, spread glanders among the horses in Sweden, poisoned the food in Rumania, sank the ships of Norway, plotted against the Argentine Republic. Their spies, dynamiters, secret agents, were in every capital and country because it was their purpose to make Berlin a world capital, Kaiser Wilhelm the world emperor and to Germanize the people of the whole earth.

The web had as its centre the Potsdam Palace, but its black lines ran out into all the earth.

5. German Burglars Loaded With Loot Are the More Easily Captured

It seems that Germany has published, for the Spaniards, a list of treasures she has won. In the long calendar the reader finds that eight States—Belgium, France, Poland, Rumania, Russia, Serbia, Armenia, Italy—have all been looted.

The Germans claim they have spoiled over[49] three hundred first class cities, several thousand secondary cities and towns; they add that they have destroyed seventy-three cathedrals and looted them of their priceless treasures of statues, paintings, stained glass, vessels of silver and gold.

With brazen audacity the German pamphlet tells the Spaniards that they have seized so many hundred thousand watches, so many hundred thousand rings, so much treasure of diamonds and jewels, so many paintings from rich men's houses, and the long boast ends with the statement that they "obtained nearly five billions of loot out of western Russia and have assessed two billions more upon the farmers, villages and cities of Ukraine."

But the boast is an idle and empty boast. It is true that no army of the Allies has crossed the German frontier to permanently hold a city. But let no man think that Germany has succeeded because of the richness of her loot. There is a success that is failure. There is a victory that is defeat.

Macbeth killed Duncan and went to live in the palace of the dead king, but did Macbeth succeed? Was not his palace a brief halting place in his journey towards[50] remorse, insanity and the day when Duncan's friends in turn slew Macbeth?

The rich judges of Athens succeeded and Socrates failed. They went home to drink wine and feast, while Socrates went to the jail to drink a cup of poison. But who succeeded? The judges whose names are written low down and bespattered with dirt—or Socrates, whose name fills the sky and who has become the thinker for the world?

What if the Kaiser does boast of his successes to-day? So boasted Nero—sending Paul to his rags, crusts and the dungeon preparatory to the headman's axe. But it is Nero that lost out, and it is Paul who reigns a crowned king.

The chief priests celebrated their victory; at the close of the day, after they had succeeded in crucifying Jesus; but after nineteen centuries the murderers are unknown and almost forgotten, while that young carpenter rules over His Empire of Love.

To-day the Kaiser claims to have won the victory of "a superman." In that he has carried murder, arson, lying, rapine, lust up to the nth power, let us concede his claim. Not otherwise two hundred years ago the[51] Indian, with his scalping knife, his war-whoop and his tomahawk, was "a superman" in terms of savagery. Not otherwise the Spaniards under Bloody Alva were "supermen" in terms of rack, thumbscrew and instruments of torture.

But what savages once did in the little, the Kaiser and his men now do in the large. But because the Kaiser can publish a long list of wealth gained—by breaking his treaties, by murder, arson and lust—let no man think that he is successful.

The two Biddle brothers looted the Bank of England, but they became outcasts upon the face of the earth, and always the dungeon yawned for them, just as the Kaiser and von Hindenburg never sleep at night without a vision of an oak tree, a long bough and a hemp rope dangling at the end, for the hemp is now twisted that will one day choke to death the murderous Kaiser and his War Staff.

Let no patriot, whether he lives in Spain, Russia or the United States, forget that ours is a world ruled by men who were defeated.

To-day on the thrones of the world are the heroes, like Paul and Demosthenes; the martyrs who were burned with Savonarola[52] in Florence or poisoned with Socrates in Athens.

To-day, the soldiers of Marathon and Marston Moor, Gettysburg and the Marne now rule the world.

The treasure of the burglar and the brigand dissolves like snowflakes in a river.

Long ago the Hebrew poet said: "I have seen the wicked flourish like a green bay tree, and then I lifted up my eyes, and, behold! he was not." And when a little time has passed all lovers of liberty and humanity will exclaim: "During four years I have seen the Kaiser and von Hindenburg flourish as the green bay tree, and I lifted up mine eyes, and, behold! they were not. For the breath of His nostrils had slain them."

6. Germans Who Hide Behind the Screen

Two thousand years are a long time in terms of history.

Many damnable tools have been invented during these twenty centuries. The rack, the thumbscrew, the tomahawk, the fagot belong among these devilish instruments.

Cruelties so terrible have been devised[53] that old scholars often felt unwilling to believe that men were so low in the scale as to have been the authors of these methods of fiendishness.

In the hope, therefore, of keeping respect for man many scholars transferred all responsibility unto devils. They called in Satan and made him to be the father of hate and cruelty. They could not believe that Nero, Judas or Torquemada could conceive such wickedness. They therefore made the devil with his cloven feet and his long tail to whisper these cunning suggestions in the ear of the traitor. Thus the responsibility for unwonted cruelty was divided between the murderer and the devil who counselled the black crime.

Perhaps the most damnable thing that was ever suggested by the devil in two thousand years is this little object called the German soldier's token. Never did an object so small send forth cruelties so large and manifold.

The little disc is stamped out on thick paper for German privates and upon aluminum for the officers. At the top of this cardboard is the portrait of that awful being called by the Kaiser "our good old German God."[54]

Look at his white hair, the long beard and the great sword in the right hand, with the suggestion that since God uses the sword the German soldier must cut men to pieces also.

Beneath you see flames gushing up, suggesting to the German soldier that he is quite right in burning the houses of France and Belgium after he has looted them, and for flinging the dead bodies into the blazing rafters. Now read the words written beneath the face of the being the Germans call God.

"Strike them all dead. The Day of Judgment shall ask you no questions."

Strike dead old men and women! Dash the children's brains out against the stone wall! Violate young girls! Mutilate their fair bodies so that they will be unseemly when they are found by the husband or father. Burn, steal, kill—but remember that your Kaiser and the War Staff have promised to stand between you and God Almighty and the Day of Judgment! Even if Jesus did say, "Woe unto them that offend against my little ones," you must remember that your Kaiser and officers have promised you immunity on the Day of Judgment.[55]

That is what is meant by the sentence on page thirty-one in the German handbook of "War on Land": "That which is permissible to the German soldier is anything whatsoever that will help him gain his goal quickly."

Nothing better illustrates the total collapse of manhood in the Germans than this soldier's token.

A coward by nature, the German is afraid to kill and steal, and so he invented a screen behind which he could hide and named it "the soldier's token."

Going into a French village the Germans collect the women and children, order them to march in advance, shoot a few to terrorize the rest, and then, hiding behind this living screen, the Germans march forward. In this way they protect themselves.

The whole history of the human race contains no chapter of atrocity like the atrocity of the Germans. The history of the world contains no story of cowardice so black and damnable as the cowardice of the Germans. Out of cowardice the soldier's token was born.

And so the Kaiser and the War Staff invented this round piece of cardboard, with[56] the representation of God as going forth with His sword to kill men and with His flames to burn them and with the motto: "Strike them all dead, for the Day of Judgment will ask you no questions."

Therefore among the instruments of cruelty, called the rack, the fagot, the thumbscrew and the tomahawk, let us give the first place to the German soldier's token, the most damnable weapon that has come out of hell during the last two thousand years.

7. Must German Men Be Exterminated?

A singular revulsion of sentiment as to what must be done with the German army after the war, is now sweeping over the civilized world. Men who once were pacifists, men of chivalry and kindness, men whose life has been devoted to philanthropy and reform, scholars and statesmen, whose very atmosphere is compassion and magnanimity towards the poor and weak, are now uttering sentiments that four years ago would have been astounding beyond compare. These men feel that there is no longer any room in the world for the German.[57] Society has organized itself against the rattlesnake and the yellow fever. Shepherds have entered into a conspiracy to exterminate the wolves. The Boards of Health are planning to wipe out typhoid, cholera and the Black Plague. Not otherwise, lovers of their fellow man have finally become perfectly hopeless with reference to the German people. They have no more relations to the civilization of 1918 than an orang-outang, a gorilla, a Judas, a hyena, a thumbscrew, a scalping knife in the hands of a savage. These brutes must be cast out of society.

Some of us, hoping against hope, after the reluctant confession of the truth of the German atrocities, have appealed to education. We knew that Tacitus said, nearly two thousand years ago, that "the German treats women with cruelty, tortures his enemies, and associates kindness with weakness." But nineteen centuries of education have not changed the German one whit. The mere catalogue of the crimes committed by German officers and soldiers and set forth in more than twenty volumes of proofs destroys the last vestige of hope for their future. Think of the catalogue! Babies nailed like[58] rats to the doors of houses! Children skewered on a bayonet midst the cheers of marching Germans—as if the child were a quail, skewered on a fork! Matrons, old men and priests slaughtered; young Italian officers with throats cut and hanging on hooks in butchers' shops; the bombing of Red Cross hospitals and nurses and the white flag; everything achieved by civilized man defiled and destroyed—reverence for childhood and age, the sanctity of womanhood, the standards of honour, fidelity to treaties and all destroyed, not in a mood of drunkenness or a fit of rage, but on a deliberate, cold, calculated policy of German frightfulness.

The sense of hopelessness as to civilizing the German and keeping him as an element in the new society grew out of the breakdown of education and science in changing the German of the time of Tacitus. Plainly the time has come to make full confession of the fact that education can change the size but not the sort. The German in the time of Tacitus was ignorant when he took the children of his enemy and dashed their brains out against the wall; the German of 1914 and 1918 still butchers children, the only difference being that the butchery is now[59] more efficient and better calculated, through scientific cruelty, to stir horror and spread frightfulness. The leopard has not changed its spots. The rattlesnake is larger and has more poison in the sac; the German wolf has increased in size, and where once he tore the throat of two sheep, now he can rend ten lambs in half the time. In utter despair, therefore, statesmen, generals, diplomats, editors are now talking about the duty of simply exterminating the German people. There will shortly be held a meeting of surgeons in this country. A copy of the preliminary call lies before me. The plan to be discussed is based upon the Indiana State law. That law authorizes a State Board of Surgeons to use upon the person of confirmed criminals and hopeless idiots the new painless method of sterilizing the men. These surgeons are preparing to advocate the calling of a world conference to consider the sterilization of the ten million German soldiers, and the segregation of their women, that when this generation of German goes, civilized cities, states and races may be rid of this awful cancer that must be cut clean out of the body of society.




1. German Barbarism Not Barbarism to the German

Strictly speaking, the only man who thoroughly understands the cruelty of the Germans is the German himself. No American or Englishman, no Belgian or Frenchman has the gift of telepathy that enables him to know what is going on in the German mind that guides the German's hand in committing his horrible atrocities. Now and then, in a moment when he is off guard, an occasional German reveals the explanation, and we look in, just as John Bunyan's pilgrim saw the door into Hades opened by a little crack, through which he looked upon the flames. Not otherwise was it with that German in Baltimore, who recently exposed the German mind, and from the German view-point explained the Germans in their hour of brutality.[61]

During a most intimate and personal conversation with a banker, this German, the other day, explained his people's atrocities by saying that what is barbarism and atrocities to England, France or the United States is not barbarism at all to the Germans. In proof of this astounding statement the German gave this personal incident of his boyhood. He said that in his gymnasium there was another boy who had something that he wanted. When the opportunity came, being the stronger, he jumped upon the other boy, beat him up terribly and made him a cripple for life. On reaching his home he showed his parents what he had stolen, and he was patted on the back, praised for his might with his fists, and told that that was the method he was to follow in after life.

He insisted that this sort of thing was drilled into every German boy, and for that reason it never once even occurred to him that he had done wrong. "After I became a man I settled in America, and as I came to understand the spirit of American civilization it grew upon me that I had committed a crime, and now for twenty-two years, as some atonement for my sin, I have been[62] supporting that crippled man and his widowed mother."

The modern banker has become a sort of confessor, and to the banker many sins are revealed as once to the priest. Nothing is more significant than this German confession and his philosophy of the German atrocity. In his own written letter concerning that crime of his boyhood this German adds: "Had I remained in Germany no one would ever have thought of suggesting to me that I had done wrong, and it would never have entered into my head that I was under any obligation to the man I had maimed. In the light of American civilization I understand the difference, and I am seeking to atone for my sin, but all Germans have been taught, as I was taught. The Germans, therefore, in their campaign of frightfulness, are committing deeds which from the view-point of American civilization are barbarous, but from the view-point of Germans are not crimes at all."

The significance of this frank confession of a German, his story of how America had redeemed his soul out of the spirit of force and cruelty into the spirit of kindness, humanity and justice, reveals more of the real nature[63] of the German beast and the Potsdam gang than a thousand volumes on the philosophy of German atrocities. The simple fact is that the crimes of the Germans are abominable atrocities to us, but that intellectually and morally the German officer and soldier simply do not know what we mean by our horror and the wave of moral indignation that has swept over the earth. Jesse Pomeroy used to pull canary birds apart, and tortured children to death. But the boy was deficient in the nerve of humanity. He simply stared with blank eyes when the judge and the jury condemned him. He was incapable of knowing what the excitement over the dead body was about. On the side of compassion and humanity the German is, as it were, colour blind, is without musical sense, and the nerves of kindness and humanity are atrophied. The ordinary German prisoner when shown the bodies left behind after the flight of the German army simply looks blankly at the mutilated corpse and exclaims: "Well, what of it? Why not? Why shouldn't we?" and shrugs his shoulders, taking it as a matter of course. That is another reason why a great number of American business men, bankers, merchants,[64] manufacturers, scholars, statesmen, have reluctantly been forced to the conviction that the ten millions of German soldiers should be painlessly sterilized, that the German people (saving only the remnant who accept Jesus' idea of compassion and kindness towards God's poor and weak) should be allowed to die out of the world. Re-read, therefore, what this German has said about the teaching of his German parents and the German people in praise of cruelty, and how for twenty years now, redeemed by life in the United States, he has tried to make atonement by supporting the man whom he had crippled, and also his mother. Who shall explain to us the reason why German barbarism is not barbarism to the Germans? Why, this German shall explain it, through his personal experience as a criminal. But the day will come when the Potsdam gang and ten million German soldiers will stand before the judgment seat of God. And what shall be the verdict then pronounced? You will find it in the New Testament: "'Out of thine own mouth will I judge thee,' thou wicked and cruel German!"[65]

2. The German "Science of Lying"

For the first time in history a nation has organized lying into a science and taught deceit as an art.

At the very time when the diplomats of the world have refused any form of secrecy and insist upon publishing all international treaties and doing everything in the open, Germany has organized lying into a national science. Even Maximilian Harden, editor of Zukunft, openly acknowledges this in one of his editorials reproduced in the papers of Denmark and Holland.

Harden comes right out in the open. He tells the German people that at the beginning of the war it was necessary to say to the world that Germany was fighting a defensive war, that her back was against the wall, that those wicked enemies named England and France, Russia and Belgium were leaping upon her like wolves.

Of course, says Harden, at first that was good diplomacy, but now that we are successful, "Why say this any longer? Let the Kaiser and his Chancellor tell the world plainly that we decided upon this war[66] twenty-five years ago; that during all of these years we were preparing cannons and shells; that we drilled ten million men against 'Der Tag'; that we wanted this war, that we planned this war, that we forced this war and that we are proud of it."

With one stroke Harden has torn off the mask. He exhibits the Kaiser as the prince of liars. If his words mean anything, they mean that what has long been surmised is absolutely true, namely, that Germany wished some one would kill the Austrian Prince and Princess so as to start the war, for which Berlin had prepared everything, down to the last buckle on the harness of the horses.

General von Bissing is not less open. Dying men are not apt to tell lies. When he saw that the end was coming the Governor-General of Belgium prepared what he called his "last will and testament."

As a close and intimate friend of the Kaiser, he left a letter with his will asking the German Government carefully to consider his wishes. He says plainly that all of the statements that Berlin never intended to annex Belgium were pure camouflage. He urges the Berlin office to flatly declare its purpose never to give up a foot of the Belgian[67] coast nor an acre of the conquered territory of north France and Belgium.

"It is of no consequence," he says, "that we have given a solemn pledge not to annex Belgium. Why not tell the world that we will have failed in the one thing for which we set out if we evacuate Belgium? We need Belgium's coast line for our shipping."

He adds that Germany has used twenty-three million tons of Belgian coal and has taken as much more iron ore out of France's basin in Briey. "We cannot live and compete with France and England if we give up the coal and iron mines that we have conquered and the harbours that we have won."

Having affirmed, therefore, that the German Government lied at the beginning in claiming that they entered Belgium fighting a defensive warfare, General von Bissing cast about for some one behind whom he can hide as a screen and who can be used as an authority for lying. He finds his guide and leader in "The Prince," written by Machiavelli. That book has often been called the treatise on the art of lying. Never was such cunning exhibited. Never was the father of lies invoked with such skill as by the German leaders. In their sight truth is[68] contemptible, kindness is weakness, honour is a figment.

But the individual, the city, or the empire that builds its life on lies builds its house on sand. Soon the rains will descend and the floods come, the winds will blow, and the house will fall, and great will be the fall of it.

The German is like a thirsty man who tries to quench his thirst by drinking scalding water. He is like a hungry man who tries to satisfy his appetite by eating red-hot coals.

3. The Malignity of the German Spies

Disturbed by many events in their city, the Secret Service men guard very carefully the speakers for the Liberty Loan, the Red Cross or the Y. M. C. A. hut work. Fearing lest some German agent might injure the good name of their town, the Secret Service men of a certain community recently told the following incident, merely as a warning to all public speakers who might, by their words, arouse the enmity of half-balanced German fanatics. Because it was intended to put us all upon our guard, and because[69] no interest could possibly be injured, but many persons be benefited, the incident is here set forth in detail. The speaker was a young lawyer, of position, influence and fine education, who was serving his country during the period of the war.

"One morning I received my assignment through a sealed envelope. Experience told me that I was to take up the work of some other Secret Service man and complete the task. Of course, one Secret Service man does not know who else is in the service. Since the war began we go by numbers, rather than by our names. When I opened my envelope I found these directions: 'Go to No. —— ——. Wait until there is no customer in the tobacco store. Then put down on the counter two ten-cent pieces, and say to the woman, "I want that package of green leaf tobacco." When you have left the store, open the package, and you will find full directions therein.' I followed the instructions strictly, and out on the street I opened the package, and found a large key and a small one, with these words written: 'Go to No. so-and-so (mentioning a third-class little apartment house in one of the worst districts in the city). The large key[70] will open room No. 14. The small key will open a little writing table in the room. In the drawer of that table you will find full directions.'

"I soon found the apartment house, climbed to the second floor, found my large key turning in the lock, and the small key opened the drawer in the desk. In that drawer I found these words: 'The man we want is in the adjoining room. He will come in about seven o'clock, but he may not come until eleven or twelve. It is important that we have his testimony. Don't wound him seriously or kill him. You will find a hole bored through the door between your room and his. That hole is filled with putty, but underneath the putty is wax. Warm the wire in the drawer in the gas jet and melt the wax.'

"I waited until eleven o'clock for the man to come in. For a while he sat on the bed, with his back towards me. He was reading. Finally he lifted his pillow to shake it up, and I caught sight of a big revolver under the pillow. For several reasons I decided to do nothing until he had fallen asleep. I kept my ear glued to that little hole for one hour after he turned out his light. When[71] he was sleeping soundly I went into the hall, with my skeleton key turned the lock in the door, and then with my lantern in the left hand and my revolver in the right made one bound into the room, struck my light and my revolver into his face under the light and shouted: 'Hands up!' Within three minutes I had him handcuffed and within ten had him bound. In that room, when the police came at my call, we found enough chemicals and powerful explosives to have blown up the entire block. In his satchel were found incriminating letters, secret documents, and, with their help, we soon landed the entire crowd. All have now been taken care of. Their flames were stamped out before they were kindled." That one incident was only one of a series of closely-related dramatic events. Outwardly, life in that city is very safe, simple and straightforward, but as to the forces of evil, the anarchists, the I. W. W.'s and German plotters the patriot can only say that but for the Secret Service and the police and the Department of Justice, society could not go on for one single month.[72]

4. The Cancer in the Body-Politic of Germany

To-day, physicians and surgeons count the cancer man's deadliest enemy. Every year this baffling disease takes large and larger toll of human life. From time to time experts come together to plan its limitation, but meanwhile the terrible disease increases. Addressing a company of experts recently, a great physician exclaimed: "Even if we can stop its growth by radium, it still remains for us to get rid of the growth itself. There seems to be no way to lift the evil cells out save through the knife, after which nature must heal the wound. Science knows no other way." Plainly, no magic can be invoked. No miracle assists the surgeon. His one recourse is to the knife, and after that the healing forces of nature.

Let us confess that the knife has a large place in the extermination of social diseases. Militarism is a cancer on the German body-politic, just as slavery was once a cancer fastened on the fair body of the great South. That disease had fastened itself upon the South many years before the Civil War. Like a cancer, it spread its roots throughout[73] the whole social and economic structure of the Southern States. It poisoned trade. Its virus was in the body of law. It destroyed kindness and sympathy for the weak. Slavery debased the poor white working-man. It made the white fathers of mulatto children so cruel that they sold their own flesh and blood. Overseers became brutes. Slave drivers stood up and bid upon their own children in the auction markets. Slowly the disease spread. Men became alarmed. They tried everything excepting the knife held in the hand of war surgeons. Clay recognized the cancer in the body politic. He proposed compromise as a poultice. Garrison and Phillips proposed the amputation of the diseased limb. John Brown tried to put sulphuric acid upon the sore spots and eat it out through the flames of insurrection. Lincoln knew that it was a case of life or death. The Republic could not endure half slave and half free. All measures failed. Finally the god of war went forth and lifted a knife heated red hot and cut the foul cancer out of the body and saved the fair South. When many years had passed nature healed the wound and saved the life of the Republic.[74]

Germany, Austria and Turkey to-day are patients in a world hospital. It is plain that they are stricken with death. The foul cancer of militarism has fastened itself upon Germany. The cancer of autocracy is eating into the vitals of Austria. The cancer of polygamy is enmeshed in the life of Turkey. Of late the disease has been spreading. Now these surgeons, named Foch, Haig and Pershing, have been anointed by the ointment of war black and sulphurous, and, lifting their scalpel, these men have been ordained to cut out the foul growth from the body-politic of Germany. Perchance there is still enough vital force left therein to heal the wound after the disease has been removed. Meanwhile, the sick man of Turkey struggles. The patient hates the knife. The diseased body will not have the only instrument that holds possible cure, and yet, despite all his struggle, the disease must come out. Slowly the surgical process goes on. One root at Verdun was cut, and now another is being sundered in the West. Much blood flows, but the blood is black and foul. Every cell in the German body-politic seems to be diseased. Medicines must be found. The stimulants of sound[75] ethics and morals must be invoked—after that it is a question of the recuperative forces of intellect and conscience in the German people. These forces alone can heal the wound left after the foul cancer has been cut away. To-day, men with a large mind, blessed with magnanimity, kindness and good-will must stay their hearts upon history, that shows us that in the past in our own country slavery was a cancer cut out by the surgeons of war, and that after a long time the great South recovered its health, its beauty and its usefulness.

5. Polygamy and the Collapse of the Family in Germany

The unexpected influences of this war upon Germany herself is a striking consideration. Few men anticipated the far-off results of the Kaiser's alliance with the Sultan and his polygamous philosophy. During the past two years the German newspapers, magazines and debates in the Reichstag have been filled with startling suggestions concerning the family. The Berliner Lokalanzeiger, on March 7, 1916, published a statement urging that "every girl should be[76] given the right on reaching twenty-five years to have one child born out of wedlock, for which she should receive from the state an annual allowance."

Dr. Krohne, in his address before the House, says: "The decline of the birth rate in Germany has proceeded three times as fast as in the preceding twenty-five years. No civilized nation has hitherto experienced so large a decline in so short a time. Our annual number of births falls already to-day by 560,000 below what we had a right to expect. We should have to-day 2,500,000 more inhabitants than we have." Commenting thereupon, the Berliner Lokalanzeiger demands that "illegitimate children should be put socially and morally on a level with the legitimate."

When, therefore, the Kaiser cast about for an alliance with some man who could be his bosom friend and could love what he loves, the Kaiser chose the Sultan with his polygamy and the Moslem teaching with its harem. No British or French officer, therefore, was surprised when documents like the following began to be found on the dead bodies of young German officers. This document is a verbatim and absolutely accurate[77] copy of one of the many now deposited in the various departments of Justice and the War Departments in Havre and Paris:

"Soldiers, a danger assails the Fatherland by reason of its dwindling birth rate. The cradles of Germany are empty to-day; it is your duty to see that they are filled. You bachelors, when your leave comes, marry at once the girl of your choice. Make her your wife without delay. The Fatherland needs healthy children. You married men and your wives should put jealousy from your minds and consider whether you have not also a duty to the Fatherland. You should consider whether you may not honourably contract an alliance with one of the million of bachelor women. See if your wife will not sanction the relation. Remember, all of you, the empty cradles of Germany must be filled.

"Your name has been given us as a capable man, and you are herewith requested to take on this office of honour, and to do your duty in a proper German way. It must here be pointed out that your wife or fiancée will not be able to claim a divorce. It is, in fact, hoped that the women will bear this discomfort heroically for the sake of the war. You[78] will be given the district of ——. Should you not feel capable of carrying on the task allotted to you, you will be given three days on which to name some one in your place. On the other hand, if you are prepared to take on a second district as well you will become 'drekoffizier' and receive a pension. An exhibition of photographs of women and maidens in the district allotted to you is to be seen at the office of ——. You are requested to bring this letter with you."

This is an amazing document. Plainly the German family has broken down. But no household can be built on free love in 1918, just as no stone building can be erected on hay, stubble or sand. The German family has gone, and German society is tottering towards its final ruin.

6. The Red-Hot Swords in Sister Julie's Eyes

The history of heroism holds nothing finer than the story of Sister Julie, decorated by the French Government with the Cross of the Legion of Honour. She lived in the little village of Gerbéviller, now called "Gerbéviller the Martyred." On August 27th the[79] French army broke the line of the German Crown Prince and compelled the Huns' retreat. General Clauss was ordered to go northeast and dig in on the top of the ridge some twelve miles north of Gerbéviller. The Germans reached the village at nine o'clock in the morning, and by half-past twelve they had looted all the houses and were ready to burn the doomed city. The incendiary wagons were filled with the firebrands stamped 1912. Beginning at the southern end of the village, the German officers and soldiers looted every house, shop, store and public building, and then set fire to the town. At last they came to the extreme northern end, where a few houses and the little hospital over which Sister Julie had charge, were still standing.

About noon a German colonel with the blazing firebrand in his right hand stood in front of Sister Julie's house. It has been said that there are flaming swords in the eyes of every good woman. In that terrible hour the face of Sister Julie proved the proverb. She told the German officer that these few houses that were left were filled with wounded French soldiers, with here and there a wounded German. The Hun[80] answered that his men would remove the Germans who were wounded, but that the buildings must be fired. Behind him were several hundred buildings blazing like one fiery furnace. Sister Julie stood squarely across the path of the Hun. "While I live you shall not enter. You shall not kill these dying men. I swear it by this crucifix! Your hands are already red with blood. God dwells within this house. Look at this figure of Jesus, who said, 'Woe unto him that offends against one of my little ones. These shall go away into everlasting hell.' I myself will bear witness against you. You have murdered our fifteen old men. All their lives long these old men did us good and not evil. Look at the little girls you have slain. God Himself will strike you dead." General Clauss stood dumb. He was embarrassed beyond all words. Fear also got hold upon him. He turned and disappeared into a group of his soldiers. Two or three minutes passed by. A German colonel came to Sister Julie. He told her that the houses used for wounded soldiers would be spared by General Clauss provided Sister Julie would agree to continue her ministrations to the wounded Germans[81] lying in her hospital. As General Clauss already knew that this had already been done, and would be, the Germans marched away, leaving the hospital buildings uninjured. It was a victory of the soul of a noble woman.

One morning last summer Sister Julie showed her decorations. Her face was kind, gentle and motherly. Her atmosphere was peace and serenity. She seemed a tower of strength. It must have been easy for dying French boys in those rooms to have identified Sister Julie with Mary the Mother, who saw her son dying on the cross. Later on we met an aged woman of martyred Gerbéviller. She had been nursing in the hospital and had stood behind Sister Julie when she forbade General Clauss to light the firebrands. "What did Sister Julie say?" we asked the old woman. "Oh, sir, I do not know, and yet I do know. She told them that she would ask God to strike them dead. In that moment I was afraid of her. She seemed to me more to be feared than General Clauss and all his wicked army. I can tell you what our good priest says about Sister Julie." "And what is that?" The old woman could not quote the verse accurately,[82] but from what she said we were soon guided to a chapter in the old Bible, and there was the verse that described Sister Julie, with arms uplifted at the door of her hospital and denying access to General Clauss. The verse was this: "And lo! an angel with a flaming sword stood at the gate and kept the garden."

7. The Hidden Dynamite; the Hun's Destruction of Cathedrals

In one group of ruined cellars that was once a splendid French city, there is a beautiful building standing. It is rich with the art and architecture of the sixteenth century. The lines are most graceful and the structure is the fulfillment of Keats' line: "A thing of beauty is a joy forever." Such a building belongs not to the French nation, but to the whole human race. An architect like the man who planned this noble building is born only once in a thousand years. Every visitor to that ruined town asks himself this question: "Why did the Germans allow this building to remain?" An incident of the story of Bapaume throws a flood of light upon the problem.[83]

One year ago, when the Germans were retreating from Bapaume, they looted every house, burned or dynamited every building save the Hôtel de Ville. That city hall the Germans left standing in all its majesty and beauty. In front of the building they placed a placard containing in substance the statement that they left this building as a monument to Germany's love of art and architecture.

Secretly, however, in the cellar of this noble building the Germans buried several tons of dynamite. To this dynamite they attached a seven-day clock. They set the seven-day clock to explode at eleven o'clock one week after the Germans had retreated. These beasts worked out the theory that the largest possible number of British and French officers and public men would be inspecting the building at that hour of the day.

The plot was successful. Their devilish cunning was rewarded and their hate glutted. The clock struck the detonator, the dynamite exploded, blew the building and the visitors into atoms. Standing in the ruined public square, one sees nothing but that great shell pit where the earth opened up its mouth and swallowed a monument builded[84] to beauty and grandeur. This other building, therefore, that stands in the city fifty miles to the south of Bapaume is there for the sole reason that the seven-day clock failed to explode the dynamite—not because of any love of architecture that possessed the Germans. It is there to tell us that some part of the mechanism of death failed to connect.

In analyzing the German mind nothing is more certain than the fact that they lack a fine sense of humour and are often quite devoid of imagination.

As for sculpture, nothing can be more hideous than the statues of the fifteen Prussian kings that do not decorate, but simply vulgarize, the avenue leading towards Magdeburg. The vast broad statue of Hindenburg, to which the Germans come to drive nails and scratch their names in lead pencils, reminds one of the occasional public buildings in this country defaced by thoughtless and vulgar boys. Nor is there anything in the world as ugly as the German sculptor's statue of the present Kaiser out at Potsdam Palace, unless it be the statue of an Indian in front of a tobacco store down in Smithville, Indian Territory, though even this is[85] doubtful. It hardly seems possible that one earth only 7,000 miles in diameter could hold two statues as ugly as that of the Kaiser!

It is this singular lack of imagination and failure to understand the beautiful that explains the systematic destruction by the German army of the glorious cathedrals, the fourteenth century churches, libraries, châteaux and hôtels des villes that were the glory and beauty of France.

"If we cannot have these vineyards and orchards," said the Germans, "Frenchmen shall not have them."

So they turned the land into a desert. Not otherwise the German seems to feel that if he cannot build structures as beautiful as these glorious buildings in France that he will not leave one of them standing.

Next to the Parthenon in Athens and St. Peter's in Rome, perhaps the world's best loved and most admired building was the Cathedral of Rheims. There Joan of Arc crowned Charles IX; there for centuries the noblest men of France had gone to receive their offices and their honours. A building that belonged to the world. What treasures of beauty for the whole human race in the thousand and more statues in the[86] cathedral! How priceless the twelfth-century stained glass! What paintings which have come down from the masters of Italy! Whoever visited the library and the Cardinal's palace without exclaiming: "What beautiful missals! What illuminated manuscripts?"

Fully conscious of the fact that they were impotent to produce such treasures the Germans, unable to get closer to the cathedral than four miles, determined to destroy them. Day after day they bombed the noble cathedral. Gone now, too, the great stone roof! Fallen the flying buttresses, ruined the chapels. Perished all the tapestries, the rugs and the laces. Water stands in puddles on the floor. The cathedral is a blackened shell.

The victim of grievous ingratitude, King Lear, was turned out into the snow and hail by his wicked daughters; and the white-haired old king wandered through the blackness of the night beneath the falling hail. And, lo! the Cathedral of Rheims is a King Lear in architecture—broken, wounded, exposed to the hails of the autumn and the snow of the winter, through the coarseness and vandalism of the Germans.[87]

The German Foreign Minister put it all in one word: "Let the neutrals cease their everlasting chatter about the destruction of Rheims Cathedral. All the paintings, statues and cathedrals in the world are not so much as one straw to the Germans over against the gaining of our goal and the conquest of their land."

Never was a truer word spoken. The German lacks the imagination and the gift of the love of the beautiful. He would prefer one bologna sausage factory and one brewery to the Parthenon, with St. Peter's and Rheims Cathedral thrown in.

8. The German Sniper Who Hid Behind the Crucifix

For hundreds of years the French peasants have loved the crucifix. Many a beautiful woman carries a little gold cross with the figure of Jesus fastened thereto, and from time to time draws it out to press the crucifix to her lips. Even in the harvest fields and beside the road, travellers find the carved figure of the Saviour lifted up to draw poor, ignorant and sinful men to His own level.

One of the most glorious pieces of carving[88] in France was wrought in walnut by a great sculptor and lifted up on a tree in the midst of an estate, where the peasants, resting from their work, could refresh their souls by love and faith and prayer.

One day last summer, during the Teuton advance, a German officer stood beneath that divine figure. Mentally he marked the place. That night when the darkness fell a company of German officers returned to that spot. One of them climbed up on the tree. He found that the carved figure of Jesus was life size.

With the end of a rope a little platform was drawn up level with the foot of the crucifix. Two ropes were fastened to the outstretched arms of the Saviour. Another rope was fastened around the neck of Jesus, until the platform was made safe. Then a German sniper with his gun climbed up on the platform. He laid his rifle upon the shoulders of the Divine Figure, hiding his body behind that of Jesus. The German officer must have chuckled with satisfaction, for he knew that he had found a screen behind which a murderer might hide, and the German villain was quite right in his psychology.[89]

It was true that the French soldiers loved that beautiful figure. To them the crucifix was sacred. So beautiful were their ideals, so lofty their spirit, so pure and high their imagination, that they were incapable of conceiving that a German could use the sacred crucifix as a screen from which to send forth his murderous hail.

The green boughs of that tree hid the little puff of smoke. From time to time a French soldier would fall dead with a hole through his forehead. Once a French officer threw up his hands while the blood streamed from his mouth and he pitched forward dead.

At last the French soldiers understood. There was a sniper behind Christ's cross. The French could have turned their cannon against that tree, but instead they simply kept below the trench until the night fell. Then in the darkness some French boys took their lives in their hands and crawled on hands and knees across No Man's Land. Lying on their backs they cut the wires above their heads.

By some strange providence they dropped safely into the German trench and crawled ten yards beyond. Then they climbed into the tree, removed that glorious crucifix with[90] the carved figure, brought it back in safety and at daybreak turned their cannon on the tree and blew the platform to pieces.

Foul Huns had made a screen of that sacred figure, but the French were not willing to injure their ideals by shooting the crucifix to pieces.

To-day all the world despises the Germans. Nothing is sacred to them. Their souls are dead within them and when the soul dies, everything dies.

The German's body may live on for twenty years, but you might as well pronounce the funeral address to-day, for the soul of Germany is dead. Nothing but a physical fighting machine now remains.

Meanwhile, France lives. Never were her ideals so lofty and pure. That is why the world loves France. She has kept faith with her ideals.

9. The Ruined Studio

I have in my possession several photographs of a ruined studio. Some twenty or thirty Germans dashed into a little French village one day, and demanded at the point of their automatic pistols the surrender by[91] the women of their rings, jewelry, money and their varied treasure. At the edge of the village was a simple little summer-house, in which one of the French artists had his studio. He had been in that valley for three months, sketching, and working very hard. Knowing that they had but a little time in which to do their work as vandals, the Huns started to ruin the studio. With big knives they cut the fine canvases into ruins. They knocked down the marbles, and the bronzes; the little bust from the hand of Rodin was smashed with a hammer. The bronze brought from Rome was pounded until the face was ruined. One blow of the hammer smashed the Chinese pottery, another broke the plates and the porcelain into fragments. Then every corner of the room was defiled, and the pigs fled from their filthy stye. Across one of the canvases the German officer wrote the words, "This is my trademark." And every other part of the canvas was cut to ribbons with his knife. No more convincing evidence of the real German character can possibly be found than these photographs of the interior of that ruined studio.

Here we have the reason why the Kaiser himself, who knew the German through and[92] through, called his people Huns. Long ago the first Huns entered Italy. They found a city of marble, ivory, and silver. They left it a heap and a ruin. They had no understanding of a palace; they did not know what a picture meant, or a marble; they were irritated by the superiority of the Roman. What they could not understand they determined to destroy. That is one of the reasons why all the marbles and bronzes that we have in Italy are marred and injured. The head of Jupiter is cracked; the Venus di Milo has no arms; Aphrodite has been repaired with plaster; Apollo has lost a part of his neck and one leg. From time to time an old marble is dug up in a field, where some ploughman has chanced upon the treasure. Owners hid their beautiful statues, ivories and bronzes, to save them from the vandals. Unfortunately, the modern Huns rushed into the French towns, riding in automobiles, and sculptors and painters had no time to hide their treasures. The great cathedrals could not be hidden. The Kaiser in one of his recent statements boasted that he had destroyed seventy-three cathedrals in Belgium and France. It is all too true. From the beginning, the Cathedral[93] of Rheims, dear to the whole world, and glorious through the associations of Jeanne d'Arc, was doomed, because the Germans, having no treasure of their own, and incapable of producing such a cathedral, determined that France should not have that treasure. The other day, in Kentucky, a negro jockey came in at the tail end of a race, ten rods behind his rival. That night, the negro bought a pint of whiskey, and determined to have vengeance, so he went out at midnight, and cut the hamstrings of the beautiful horse that had defeated his own beast. Now that is precisely the spirit that animated the German War Staff and the men that have devastated France and Belgium, and every man who has witnessed these German crimes with his own eyes will never be the same person again. His whole attitude towards the Hun is an attitude of horror and revulsion. A certain noble anger burns within him, as burned that noble passion in Dante against those criminals who spoiled Florence of her treasures.

10. Was This Murder Justified?

One raw, December day, in 1914, an American gentleman, widely known as traveller[94] and correspondent, was in a hospital in London, recovering from his wound, received in Belgium. He was startled by the appearance of an old Belgian priest, and a young Belgian woman. The American author was travelling in Belgium at the time of the German invasion. Quite unexpectedly he was caught behind the lines, near Louvain. Having heard his statement, the German officer recognized its truthfulness and sincerity, and insisted that this American scholar should be his guest at the Belgian château of which he had just taken possession. The German had already shot the Belgian owner, and one or two of the servants, who defended their master. To the horror and righteous anger of the American, the German officer took his place at the head of the table, waved the American to his seat, and ordered the young Belgian woman to perform her duties as hostess. In that tense moment, it was a matter of life and death to disobey. That German officer had his way, not only with the young Belgian wife, half dazed, half crazed, wholly broken in spirit, but with the American whom he sent forward to Brussels.

Plunged into the midst of many duties in[95] connection with Americans and refugees who had to be gotten out of Belgium into England, this American author had to put aside temporarily any plan for the release of that young Belgian woman held in bondage. Later, when he was wounded, the American crossed to London for medical help. When the old Belgian priest and that young woman stood at the foot of his bed in the hospital in London, all the events of that terrible hour in the dining-room of the Belgian château returned, and once more he lived through that frightful scene. The purpose of the visit soon became evident. The old Belgian priest stated the problem. He began by saying that God alone could take human life since God alone could give it. He urged that the sorrow of the young woman's present was as nothing in comparison to the loss of her soul should she be guilty of infanticide. It was the plea of a man who lived for the old ideals. His white hair, his gentle face, his pure disinterested spirit lent weight to his words. Then came the statement of the young Belgian woman. She told the American author of the dreadful days and weeks that followed after his departure, that every conceivable agony was[96] wrought upon her, and that now within a few months, she must have a child by that wicked German officer. She cried out that the very babe would be unclean, that it would be born a monster, that it was as if she was bringing into the world an evil thing, doomed in advance to direst hell. That every day and every hour she felt that poison was running through her veins. She turned upon the old priest, saying, "You insist that God alone gives life! Nay, no, no, no! It was a German devil that gave me this life that now throbs within my body! And every moment I feel that that life is pollution. German blood is poisoned blood. German blood is like putrefaction and decay, soiling my innermost life." The young woman wept, prayed, plead, and finally in her desperation cried out, "Then I decide for myself! The responsibility is mine. I alone will bear it." And out of the hospital she swept with the dignity and beauty of the Lady of Sorrows.

A year later, in Paris, the French judge and court cleared the young girl who choked to death with a string the babe of the German officer who had attacked her. But since that time, all France and Belgium and[97] the lands where there are refugees are discussing the question—Where does the right lie? Has the French mother, cruelly wounded, no right? And this foul thing forced upon her a superior right? Which path for the bewildered girl leads to peace? Where does the Lord of Right stand? What chance has a babe born of a beast, abhorred and despised, when it comes into the world? The women of the world alone can answer this question.




1. The Glory of the French Soldier's Heroism

As much as the German atrocities have done to destroy our confidence in the divine origin of the human soul, the French soldiers have done to vindicate the majesty and beauty of a soul made in the image of God.

I have seen French boys that were so simple, brave and modest in their courage, so beautiful in their spirit, as to make one feel that they were young gods and not men. One day, into one of the camps, came a lawyer from Paris. He brought the news of the revival of the Latin Quarter. For nearly three years a shop near the Beaux Arts had been closed. During all this time the French soldier had been at the front. When the first call came on that August day he put up the wooden shutters, turned the[99] key in the lock, and marched away to the trenches.

Said the lawyer: "I come from your cousin. The Americans are here in Paris. Your cousin says that if you will give me the keys and authorize her to open the shop she will take your place. She can recover your business, and perhaps have a little store of money for you when you have your 'permission' or come home to rest. She tells me that she is your sole relative." The soldier shook his head, saying: "I never expect to come home. I do not want to come home. France can be freed only by men who are ready to die for her. I do not know where the key is. I do not know what goods are in the shop. For three years I have had no thought of it. I am too busy to make money. There are other things for me—fighting, and perhaps dying. Tell my cousin that she can have the shop." Then the soldier saluted and started back towards his trench. "Wait! Wait!" cried the attorney. Then he stooped down, wrote hurriedly upon his knee, a little paper in which the soldier authorized his cousin to carry on the business, in his name. Scrawling his name to the document, the soldier[100] ran towards the place where his heart was—the place of peril, heroism and self-sacrifice.

This was typical of the thousands of soldiers at the front, for French soldiers suffer that the children may never have to wade through this blood and muck. The foul creature that has bathed the world in blood must be slain forever. With the full consent of the intellect, of the heart and the conscience, these glorious French boys have given themselves to God, to freedom, and to France.

2. Why the Hun Cannot Defeat the Frenchman

One morning in a little restaurant in Paris I was talking with a British army-captain. The young soldier was a typical Englishman, quiet, reserved, but plainly a little excited. He had just been promoted to his captaincy and had received one week's "permission" for a rest in Paris. We had both come down from near Messines Ridge.

"Of course," said the English captain, "the French are the greatest soldiers in the world."

"Why do you say that?" I answered.[101] "What could be more wonderful than the heroism, the endurance of the British at Vimy Ridge? They seem to me more like young gods than men."

To which the captain answered: "But you must remember that England has never been invaded. Look at my company! Their equipment is right from helmet to shoe, so perfectly drilled are they that the swing of their right legs is like the swing of one pendulum. I will put my British company against the world. Still I must confess this, that, so far as I know, no English division of fifteen thousand men ever came home at night with more than five thousand prisoners.

"But look at the French boys at Verdun! As for clothes, one had a helmet, another a hat, or a cap, or was bareheaded. One had red trousers, one had gray trousers and one had fought until he had only rags left. When they got within ten rods of the German trench they were so anxious to reach the Boche that they forgot to shoot and lifted up their big bayonets, while they shouted, 'For God and France!'

"That night when that French division came back ten thousand strong they brought[102] more than ten thousand German prisoners with them to spend the night inside of barbed wire fences.

"The reason is this: These Frenchmen fought for home and fireside. They fought against an invader who had murdered their daughters and mothers. The Huns will never defeat France. Before that could be done," exclaimed the English captain, "there would not be a man left in France to explain the reason for his defeat."

3. "I Am Only His Wife"

Human life holds many wonderful hours. Love, marriage, suffering, trouble, are crises full of romance and destiny, but I question whether any man ever passed through an experience more thrilling than the hour in which he stands at the Charing Cross or Waterloo Station in London or in the great station in Paris and watches the hospital trains come in, loaded with wounded soldiers brought in after a great battle.

Often fifty thousand men and women line the streets for blocks, waiting for the trains. Slowly the wounded boys are lifted from the car to the cot. Slowly the cot is carried to[103] the ambulance. The nurses speak only in whispers. The surgeons lift the hand directing them. You can hear the wings of the Angel of Death rustling in the air.

When the automobile carrying two wounded boys moves down the street, the men and women all uncover while you hear whispered words, "God bless you!" from some father or mother who see their own son in that boy.

Now and then some young girl with streaming eyes timidly drops a flower into the front of the ambulance—pansies for remembrance and love—upon a boy whom she does not know, while she thinks of a boy whom she knows and loves who is somewhere in the trenches of France.

One morning a young nurse in the hospital in Paris received a telegram. It was from a young soldier, saying: "My pal has been grievously wounded. He is on the train that will land this afternoon. He has a young wife and a little child. You will find them at such and such a street. I do not know whether he will live to reach Paris. Can you see that they are at the station to meet him? That was his last whispered request to me."[104]

That afternoon at five o'clock, with her face pressed between the iron bars, a young French woman, with a little boy in her arms, was looking down the long platform. Many, many cots passed by, and still he did not come. At last she saw the nurse. The young wife did not know that her soldier husband had died while they lifted him out of the car.

The young nurse said that she never had undertaken a harder task than that of lifting the boy in her own arms and leading the French girl to that cot, that she might know that henceforth she must look with altered eyes upon an altered world. A few minutes passed by and then a miracle of hope had happened.

"I saw her," said the nurse, "with one hand upon his hair and the other stretched upward as she exclaimed: 'I am only his wife, France is his mother! I am only his wife, France is his mother! I give him to France, the mother that reared him!'"

4. A Soldier's Funeral in Paris

The two boys were incredibly happy. Two mornings before they had landed in[105] Paris. What a reception they had had in the soldiers' club from the splendid French women! How good the hot bath had seemed! Clean linen, a fresh shave, a good breakfast, a soft cot, plenty of blankets, twenty-four hours' sleep, and they had wakened up new men. The first morning they walked along the streets, looking into the shop windows; in the afternoon one of the ladies took them to a moving picture show, and now on the second day here they were, at a little table before the café in one of the best restaurants in the Latin Quarter, with good red wine and black coffee, and plenty of cigarettes, and not even the boom of cannon to disturb their conversation. Strange that in three days they could have passed from the uttermost of hell to the uttermost of safety and peace. "These are good times," said one of the boys, "and we are in them."

Then they heard a policeman shouting. Looking up, they saw a singular spectacle. Just in front of them was a poor old hearse drawn by two horses, whose black trappings touched the ground. Shabbier hearse never was seen. Strangest of all, there was only a little, thin, black-robed girl walking behind[106] the hearse. There were no hired mourners as usual. There was no large group of friends walking with heads bared in token of reverence; there was no priest; no carriages followed after. Saddest of all, there was not even a flower. What could these things mean? How strange that when they were so happy this little woman could be so sad.

Suddenly one of the soldier boys arose. He stepped into the street and looked into the hearse. There he saw these words: "A soldier of France." He began to question the woman. Lifting her veil, he saw a frail girl, and while the traffic jam increased she told her story. The soldier had been wounded at the Battle of the Marne. He was one of the first to be brought to Paris. He never walked again. "I am very poor; I have only one franc a day. We have no friends. I borrowed money for the hearse."

The boy returned to his fellows. "Fall in line, boys!" he shouted. "Here is a soldier of France. This little girl has taken care of him for three years on one franc a day. Line up, everybody, and tell the men to swallow their coffee and wine and fall into the procession. Go into the shops and say[107] that a soldier of France lies here." When that hearse began to move there were twenty men and women walking as mourners behind the body. Two soldier boys walked beside the frail little girl with her heavy crêpe. As the soldiers walked along beside the hearse the procession began to grow. On and on for two long miles this slowly moving company increased in number until one hundred were in line, and when they came into God's Acre they buried the poor boy as if he were a king coming in with trumpets from the battle. For he was a soldier of France.

5. The Old Book-Lover of Louvain

Among the fascinating pursuits of life we must make a large place for the collection of old books, old paintings, old missals and curios. Certain cities, like Venice, Florence, Rome, Naples, and Madrid, have been for a thousand years like unto the Sargasso Sea in which beautiful things have drifted.

Fifty years ago, men of leisure began to collect these treasures. Some made their way into Egypt and Palestine, and there uncovered[108] temples long buried in sands and ruins and all covered with débris. From time to time old missals were found in deserted monasteries, marbles were digged up in buried palaces. Men came back from their journeys with some lovely terra cotta, some ivory or bronze, some painting by an old master, whose beauty had been hidden for centuries under smoke and grime. The enthusiasm of the collectors exceeds the zest of men searching for gold and diamonds amid the sands of South Africa.

Fifty years ago a young scholar of Louvain won high praise because of his skill in dating and naming old pictures and manuscripts. When ten years had passed by, this scholar's name and fame were spread all over Europe. Many museums in different countries competed for his services.

The time came when the heads of galleries in London and Paris and Rome sent for this expert to pass upon some art object. During the fifty years this scholar came to know every beautiful treasure in Europe.

In the old castles of Austria, in a monastery of Bohemia, in the house of an ancient Italian family, in certain second-hand bookstores, in out-of-the-way towns he found[109] treasures as precious as pearls and diamonds raked out of the muck-heap.

When death took away his only son and left his little grandchildren dependent upon himself the old book-lover looked forward serenely into the future. He knew that every year his treasures were growing more and more valuable. Living in his home in Louvain he received from time to time visits from experts, who came in from all the cities of the world to see his treasures, and if possible, to buy some rare book.

Then, in August, 1914, came the great catastrophe, as came the explosion of Vesuvius that buried Pompeii under hot ashes and flaming fire.

One morning the old scholar was startled by the noise and confusion in the street. Looking down from his window he saw German soldiers, German horsemen, German cannon. He beheld women and children lined up on the sidewalk. He saw German soldiers assault old men. He saw them carrying the furniture, rugs and carpets out of the houses. He saw the flames coming out of the roofs of houses a block away.

A moment later an old university professor[110] pounded upon his door and called out that they must flee for their lives. There was only time to pick out one satchel and fill it with his precious manuscripts and costly missals. Then the two old scholars fled into the street with the grandchildren. Fortunately a Belgian driving a two-wheeled coal cart was passing by. Into the cart climbed the little grandchildren. Carefully the satchel filled with its treasures was also lifted into place.

At that moment a German shell exploded beside the cart. When the old book-lover recovered consciousness the cart was gone, the grandchildren were dead and of all his art treasures there was left only one little book upon which some scholar of the twelfth century had toiled with loving hands.

Carried forward among the refugees several hours later, Belgian soldiers lifted the old man into a train that was carrying the wounded down to Havre. In his hand the collector held the precious book. Excitement and sorrow had broken his heart. His mind also wandered. He was no longer able to understand the cosmic terror and blackness. A noble officer, himself wounded, put his coat under the old man's head and[111] made a pillow and bade him forget the German beast, the bomb shells, the blazing city. But all these foul deeds and all dangers now were as naught to the old man.

"See my little book," he said. "How beautiful the lettering! Why, upon this book, as upon a ship, civilization sailed across the dark waters of the Middle Ages. Look at this book of beauty. The ugliness of the tenth century is dead. The cruelty and the slavery of bloody tyrants is dead also. The old cannon are quite rusted away. But look at this! Behold, its beauty is immortal! Everything else dies. Soon all the smoke and blood will go, but beauty and love and liberty will remain."

And then lifting the little book the old collector of Louvain pressed his lips to the vellum page, bright with the blue and crimson and gold of seven hundred years, and in a moment passed to the soul's summer land, where no shriek of German shells rends the air, where wicked Germans have ceased from troubling and where the French and Belgians, worn by the cruelty of the Huns, are now at rest and peace.[112]

6. A Vision of Judgment in Martyred Gerbéviller

To-day everybody knows the story of Gerbéviller, the martyred.

To the northwest is that glorious capital of Lorraine, Nancy. Farther northwest are Verdun and Toul, with our American boys. The region round about the martyred town is a region of rich iron ores.

Some years ago, Germany found herself at bay, by reason of the threatened exhaustion of her iron mines in Alsace-Lorraine. The news that France had uncovered new beds of iron ore stirred Germany to a frenzy of envy and longing.

High grade iron ore meant a new financial era for France. The exhaustion of Germany's iron mines meant industrial depression, and finally a second and third rate position. Rather than lose her place Germany determined to go to war with France and Belgium and grab their iron mines. To break down resistance on the part of the French people, the Germans used atrocities that were fiendish beyond words. The richer the province she wished to steal, the more terrible her cruelties.[113]

At nine o'clock in the morning on August 27, General Clauss and 15,000 soldiers entered Gerbéviller. Ten miles to the south was the remainder of the German army, utterly broken by the French attack. Clauss had been sent north to dig his trenches until the rest of the German army could retreat.

Every hour was precious. The Germans remained in the little town from 9 a. m. until 12:30 p. m. They found in the village thirty-one hundred women, girls and children, fifteen old men (the eldest ninety-two), one priest and one Red Cross ambulance driver. Even the little boys and men under seventy had gone to the front to dig ditches and carry water to the French.

It took the Germans only two and one-half hours to loot all the houses and load upon their trucks the rugs, carpets, chairs, pictures, bedding, with every knife and fork and plate. At half-past eleven General Clauss was in the Mayor's house, when the German colonel came in and reported that everything in the houses had been stripped and that they were ready to begin the firing of the buildings.

The aged wife of the secretary to the Mayor told me this incident:[114]

"We find no weapons in the houses, and we find only these fifteen old men, one Red Cross boy, and this priest," said the colonel.

"Line up the old men then and shoot them," shouted General Clauss. "Take the priest as a prisoner to do work in the trenches."

The old men were lined up on the grass. General Clauss himself gave the signal to fire. Two German soldiers fired bullets into each one of the old men.

One of the heart-broken onlookers was the village priest. The Germans carried him away as prisoner and made him work as a common labourer; through rain and sun, through heat and snow, he toiled on, digging ditches, carrying burdens, working eighteen hours a day, eating spoiled food that the German soldiers would not touch, until finally tuberculosis developed and he was sick unto death. Then the Germans released him as a refugee, so the priest returned to Gerbéviller to die.

Then came the anniversary of the murder of the fifteen old men and of the one hundred and two women, girls and children. On the anniversary day of the martyrdom the noble Governor of the province assembled[115] the few survivors for a memorial service about the graves of the martyrs.

Knowing that the priest would never see another anniversary of that day the Prefect asked the priest to give the address at the memorial service. No more dramatic scene ever occurred in history. At the beginning the priest told the story of the coming of the Germans, the looting of the houses, the violation of the little girls, the collecting of the dead bodies. Suddenly the priest closed his eyes, and all unconsciously he lived the scene of those three and a half hours.

"I see our fifteen heroes standing on the grass. I see the German soldiers lifting up their rifles. I hear General Clauss cursing and shouting the command to fire.

"I see you, Thomas; a brutal soldier tears your coat back. He puts his rifle against your heart. When you sink down I see your hands come together in prayer.

"I see you, François. I see the two big crutches on which you lean. You are weary with the load of ninety years. I hear your granddaughter when she sobs your name, and I see your smile, as you strive to encourage her.

"I see you, Jean. How happy you were[116] when you came back with your wealth to spend your last years in your native town! How kind you were to all our poor. Ah! Jean, you did us good and not evil, all the days of your life with us!

"I see you, little Marie. You were lying upon the grass. I see your two little hands tied by ropes to the two peach trees in your mother's garden. I see the little wisp of black hair stretched out under your head. I see your little body lying dead. With this hand of mine upon that little board, above your grave, I wrote the words, 'Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.'

"And yonder in the clouds I see the Son of Man coming in His glory with His angels. I see the Kaiser falling upon Gerbéviller. I see Clauss falling upon our aged Mayor. But I also see God arising to fall upon the Germans. Berlin, with Babylon the Great, is fallen. It has become a nest of unclean things. There serpents dwell. Woe unto them that offend against my little ones. For, lo, a millstone is hanged about their necks and they shall be drowned in the sea with Satan."

The excitement was too much for the priest. That very night he died. Henceforth[117] he will be numbered among the martyrs of Gerbéviller.

7. The Return of the Refugees

The return of the refugees to Belgium and France holds the essence of a thousand tragedies. From the days of Homer down to those of Longfellow, with his story of Evangeline, literature has recounted the sad lot of lovers torn from one another's arms and all the rest of their lives going every whither in search of the beloved one, only to find the lost and loved when it was too late.

But nothing in literature is so tragic as the events now going on from week to week in the towns on the frontier of Switzerland.

When the Germans raped Belgium and northern France they sent back to the rear trenches the young women and the girls, and now, from time to time, those girls, all broken in health, are released by the Germans, who send them back to their parents or husbands.

Multitudes of these girls have died of abuse and cruelty, but others, broken in body and spirit, are returning for an interval[118] that is brief and heart-breaking before the end comes.

Three weeks ago an old friend returned from his Red Cross work in France. By invitation of a Government official he visited a town on the frontier through which the refugees released by Germany were returning to France.

It seemed that during the month of September, 1914, the Germans had carried away a number of girls and young women in a village northeast of Lunéville. When the French officials finished their inquiry as to the poor, broken creatures returning to France they found a French woman, clothed in rags, emaciated and sick unto death. In her arms she held a little babe a few weeks old. Its tiny wrists were scarcely larger than lead pencils. The child moaned incessantly. The mother was too thin and weak to do more than answer the simple questions as to her name, age, parents, and husband.

Moved with the sense of compassion, the French official soon found in his index the name of her husband, the number of his company and telegraphed to the young soldier's superior officer, asking that the boy might be sent forward to the receiving station[119] to take his wife back to some friend, since the Germans had destroyed his village. By some unfortunate blunder the officials gave no hint of the real facts in the case.

Filled with high hope, burning with enthusiasm, exhaling a happiness that cannot be described, the bronzed farmer-soldier stepped down from the car to find the French official waiting to conduct him to one of the houses of refuge where his young wife was waiting.

My American Red Cross friend witnessed the meeting between the girl and her husband. When the fine young soldier entered the room he saw a poor, broken, spent, miserable creature, too weak to do more than whisper his name. When the young man saw that tiny German babe in his young wife's arms he started as if he had been stung by a scorpion. Lifting his hands above his head, he uttered an exclamation of horror. In utter amazement he started back, overwhelmed with revulsion, anguish and terror.

Gone—the beauty and comeliness of the young wife! Gone her health and allurement! Perished all her loveliness! Her garments were the garments of a scarecrow.[120] Despite all these things the girl was innocent. But she realized her husband's horror and mistook it for disgust. She pitched forward unconscious upon the floor before her husband could reach her.

The history of pain contains no more terrible chapter. That night the dying girl told the French officials and her husband the crimes and indignities to which she had been subjected. Two other babes had been born under German brutality, and both had died, even as this infant would die, and when a few days later her husband buried her he was another man. The iron in him had become steel. The blade of intellect had become a two-edged sword. His strength had become the strength of ten. He decided not to survive this war. Going back to the front, he consecrated his every day to one task—to kill Germans and save other women from the foulest degenerates that have ever cursed the face of the earth.

8. An American Knight in France

Coming around the corner of the street in a little French village near Toul, I beheld an incident that explained the all but adoring[121] love given to our American boys by the French children. The women and the girls of that region had suffered unspeakable things at the hands of the German swine. Photographs were taken of the dead bodies of girls that can never be shown. The terror of the women at the very approach of the German was beyond all words. The very words "Les Boches" send the blood from the cheeks of the children. The women of the Dakotas on hearing that the Sioux Indians were on the war-path with their scalping knives were never so terrified as the French girls are on hearing the German soldiers are on the march. Even the little children have black rings under their eyes, with a strained, tense expression as they stand tremulous and ready to run.

On the sidewalk near me was a little French girl of about six, with her little brother, perhaps four years of age. Suddenly around the corner came an American boy in khaki. He was swinging forward with step sure and alert. The children turned, but there was no terror in their eyes and no fear in their hearts. They did not know the American soldier; never before had they seen his face, but his khaki meant[122] safety. It meant a shield lifted between the German monster and themselves. Forgetting everything, the little French girl started on a run towards the American soldier, while her little brother came hobbling after. She ran straight to the American boy, flung her arms around his legging, rubbed her cheek against his trousers and patted his knee with her little hands. A moment later when her little brother came up the American boy stooped down, lifted the boy and girl into his arms, and while they were screaming with delight carried them across to a little shop, and found for them two tiny little cakes of chocolate, the only sweet that could be had. The French children understand.

The German motto was: "Frightfulness and terrorism are the very essence of our new warfare."

Pershing's charge was: "You will protect all property, safeguard all lives, lift a shield above the aged, be most courteous to the women, most tender and gentle to the children."

In France our boys have lifted a shield above the poor and the weak, and, having given service, they are receiving a degree of[123] love beyond measure; but there is no danger that they will be spoiled by the adulation of the French women and children, who rank them with the knights and the heroes of old.

9. An American Soldier's Grave in France

One August morning I was in the wheat fields near Roye. Somewhere in that field the body of a noble American boy was lying. He was a graduate of the University of Virginia; his mother and his sister had a host of friends in my old home city, Chicago. Guided by a white-haired priest, out in the wheat we found at last a little mound with a part of a broken airplane lying thereupon. I pulled the rest of his machine upon his grave and learned that when the French boys picked him up they found that four explosive bullets had struck him while flying in the air after his victory over many German enemies.

With my knife I cut a sheaf of golden grain and an armful of scarlet poppies and said a prayer for the boy and his mother and his sister.

Standing there in the rain I wrote a letter[124] to those who loved him, saying: "When you see this head of wheat, say to yourself 'One grain going into the ground shall in fifteen summers ripen into bread enough to feed sixteen hundred millions of the family of men.' When you look at this pressed poppy, say, 'His blood like red rain went to the root to make the flowers crimson and beautiful for all the world; soon the fields of France shall wave like a Garden of God, and peace and plenty shall dwell forever there. "Without shedding of blood there is no remission." Wine means the crushing of the grapes. At great price our fathers bought Liberty.'"

Two thousand years ago Cicero, sobbing above the dead body of his daughter Tullia, exclaimed: "Is there a meeting place for the dead?" What becomes of our soldier boys who died on the threshold of life? This is life's hardest problem. Where is that young Tullia so dear to that gifted Roman orator? Where is that young musician Mozart? Where is young Keats? And where is Shelley? And where are young McConnell and Rupert Brooke and young Asquith? And ten thousand more of those young men with genius. Where also[125] is that young Carpenter of Nazareth, dead at thirty years of age?

The answer is in this: They have passed through the black waters and have come into the summer land. There they have been met by the heroes coming out with trumpets and banners to bring them into a world unstained by the smoke and din of battle. There they will write their books, invent their tools, complete their songs and guide the darkling multitudes who come in out of Africa, out of the islands of the sea, into the realm of perfect knowledge, love and peace.

10. "These Flowers, Sir, I Will Lay Them Upon My Son's Grave"

Last August, at an assembly in Paris, Ambassador Sharp held a little company spellbound, while he related several incidents of his investigations in the devastated region near Roye. One afternoon the captain stopped his military automobile upon the edge of what had once been a village. Surveyors were tracing the road and making measurements in the hope of establishing the former location of the cellar and the house that stood above it. An old gray-haired[126] Frenchman had the matter in charge. He had lost the cellar of his house. Also, the trees that had stood upon his front sidewalk, also his vines and fruit trees. His story as stated by Ambassador Sharp was most pathetic. The old man had retired from business to the little town of his childhood. When it became certain that the Germans would take the village, the man pried up a stone slab in the sidewalk and buried his money, far out of sight. A long time passed by. When the Hindenburg plans were completed, the Germans made their retreat. Among other refugees who returned was the aged Frenchman. To his unbounded amazement the old man could not locate the site of his old home. In bombarding the little village, the Germans dropped huge shells. These shells fell into the cellar, and blew the brick walls away. Other shells fell in the front yard, and blew the trees out by the roots. Later other shells exploding blew dirt back into the other excavations. Little by little, the ground was turned into a mass of mud. Not a single landmark remained. Finally the old man conceived the idea of beginning back on the country road, and measuring what he thought would have been[127] the distance to his garden. But even that device failed him. For the huge shells had blown the stone slab into atoms, scattered his buried treasure, and left the man in his old age penniless and heart-broken.

Long ago Dumas represented the man who had taken too much wine as trying in vain to enter his own home, explaining to his inebriated friend that the keyhole was lost. But think of a cellar that is lost! Think of shade trees, whose very roots have disappeared! Think of a lovely little French garden with its roses and vines, and fruit trees, all gone! "Why, the very well was with difficulty located," said the Ambassador. But after all, the loss of buried treasure that could never be found is only a faint emblem of the loss of human bodies and human minds. Think of the soldiers who have returned to find that the young wife or daughter whom they loved has disappeared forever! And think of the wives and sweethearts who have received word from their officers that the great shell exploded and killed the lover, but that no fragment of his body could be found! During one day Mr. Chamberlain and myself were driven through twenty-four series[128] of ruins, that once had been towns and villages, but where there was nothing left but cellars filled with twisted iron and blackened rafters. Already, men are anticipating the hour of victory and talking about the reconstruction of the devastated regions, the enforced service of a million German factories, building up what once they had torn down. But the restoring of houses, the restoration of factory and schoolhouse, of church and gallery, represent a material recovery. But the other day, a French woman was invited before the general who decorated the widow and praised her, returning to her the thanks of France, in that her last and seventh son had just been killed. Her response was one of the most moving things in history. "I have given France my all. These flowers, ah, sir, I have but one use for them. I will take them out, and lay them on my son's grave."

11. The Courage of Clemenceau

One Sunday afternoon, last August, in Paris, Alexandre, head of the Fine Arts Department of the Government, brought me an invitation from Rodin to visit his studio. We found the successor to Michael Angelo[129] turning over in his hand an exquisite little head of Minerva, goddess of wisdom, carved with the perfection of a lily or a rose. "He is always studying something," exclaimed the author. But what Rodin wanted us to see was his head of Clemenceau. When the covering was lifted, there stood the very embodiment of the man who is supreme in France to-day,—Clemenceau. The sculptor's face kindled and lighted up. "The lion of France!" How massive the features! How glorious the neck and the shoulders! Clemenceau makes me think of a stag, holding the wolves at bay, while his herd finds safety in flight. He makes me think of the lion, roaring in defence of his whelps. Our descendants will say, of a truth there were giants in those days, and among the giants we must make a large place for Clemenceau.

The invincible courage of Clemenceau is in the challenge he has just flung out to the enemies of France. Reduced to simple terms it comes to this,—"It is said that the Germans can get within bombing distance of Paris, or reach the capital, providing they are willing to pay the price. Well,—the Allies can break through the German line[130] and gain the Rhine, providing they are willing to pay the price. To destroy Paris means a price of 750,000 Germans at least. The probabilities are that so heavy a price would mean a political revolution in Germany. But what if Ludendorff gets to Paris? Rome was twice destroyed, and later the city of brick was rebuilt as a city of marble. Nearly fifty years ago the people of Paris destroyed their own city, at an expense of hundreds of millions of francs. The motive back of the destruction was the desire to replace an old and ugly city by a new and the most beautiful city in the world. Fire destroyed Chicago, intellect rebuilt it,—earthquake and flame levelled San Francisco, courage restored the ruins. Enemies may destroy Paris, genius and French art and skill and industry and will, will replace it. Our eyes are fixed on the goal, namely, the crushing of Prussianism. What if Paris must decrease? It will only mean that civilization in France, and humanity, will increase." Reduced to the simplest terms, that is the substance of Clemenceau's appeal. Never was there courage more wonderful. Not even Leonidas at Thermopylæ ever breathed nobler sentiments. That is why[131] Paris is safe to-day. That is why France is secure. That is why we await with confidence and quietness the next great offensive for the Germans.

In her darkest hour what France and the world needed was a hero, a man of oak and rock, a great heart, a lion,—and the world found such a man in Clemenceau. Nothing fascinates the listeners like tales of courage. Not even stories of love and eloquence have such a charm for children and youth. Many of us remember that in our childhood the crippled soldier of the Civil War became a living college, teaching bravery to the boys of the little town. For months Clemenceau has been going up and down France, heartening the people. This Prime Minister with his great massive head, the roaring voice, the clenched fist, is an exhilarating spectacle. That hero of Switzerland, William Tell, left behind him a tradition that it meant much to him to waken each morning and find Mont Blanc standing firm in its place. Not otherwise all patriots, soldiers, and lovers of their fellow men to-day can look on the great French statesman and patriot and gather comfort and courage from the fact that he still stands firmly in his place.




1. "Gott Strafe England"—"and Scotland"

At the crossroads near the city of Ypres is a sign-board giving the directions and the distances to various towns. One day the Germans captured that highway.

There was a man in the company who had lived in some German-American city of the United States. He knew that but for England Germany would have gotten through to the Channel towns and looted Paris. Climbing up on the sign-board that German-American wrote in good plain English these words: "God —— England!"

That afternoon the Australian and the New Zealand army pushed the Germans back and recaptured the highway. Among other soldiers was a Scotsman named Sandy.

He read the sign, "God —— England!" with ever increasing anger. Finally he flung[133] his arms and legs around the sign-post, pulled himself up to the top and, while his companions watched him, they saw him do a most amazing thing.

They were cheering him because they expected him to rub out the word "England." But not Sandy! Holding on by his left hand, with his right Sandy added to the words "God —— England!" these words, "and Scotland."

He felt that it was an outrage that Scotland should be overlooked in any good thing. Blessed was the people who had won the distinction of being hated by the German, and therefore Sandy added the words "and Scotland"!

Now Scotland deserved that high praise. When the historian comes to write the full story of this great war it will make a large place for the words "and Scotland." Wonderful the heroism of the British army! Marvellous their achievements! But who is at the head of it? A great Scotsman, Sir Douglas Haig.

What stories fill the pages of the achievements of English sailors ever since the days of Nelson, standing on the deck of the Victory, down to the battle of Jutland! But[134] that gallant Scot, Admiral Beatty, holds the centre of the stage to-day. There came a critical moment also when a man of intellect and a great heart must represent Great Britain in her greatest crisis in the United States, and in that hour they sent a Scotsman, Arthur James Balfour, philosopher, metaphysician, theologian, statesman, diplomat and seer.

And what shall one more say save that the finances of this war have been controlled by a Scotch Chancellor of the Exchequer, and her railways organized by a Scotch inventor. Wonderful the achievements of England—that "dear, dear land." Marvellous the contribution of Wales, through men like the Prime Minister, Lloyd George!

Who can praise sufficiently the heroes of Canada, Australia and New Zealand? In Ireland, for the moment, things are in a muddle. "What is the trouble with the Emerald Isle?" was the question, to which the Irishman made instant reply: "Oh, in South Ireland we are all Roman Catholics, and in North Ireland we are all Protestants, and I wish to heaven we were all agnostics, and then we could live together like Christians."[135]

But Ireland will soon iron out her troubles. To the achievements of the various people of the great British Empire let us make a large place for the contributions of Scotland. The Germans hate with a deadly hatred any country and any race that has stopped them in their headlong career towards crime.

But the next time that a German-American has gone back to Berlin and has reached the western front and puts up a sign reading "Gott strafe England" let him not fail to add these words, "and Scotland."

2. "England Shall Not Starve"

Despite all warnings, rumours, and alarms, no dire peril known to passengers disturbed our voyage. The nearest approach came on a morning when the ship was two hundred miles off the coast of Ireland.

The steamer was making a letter S and constantly zigzagging, when suddenly the lookout called down that there was a rowboat dead ahead. With instant decision the officer changed the ship's course and we passed the life-boat a half mile upon our right.

The usual rumour started up and down[136] the deck that there were dead bodies in the boat, but the petty officer answered my question by saying that it was 2,000 lives against one possible life that every drifting boat must be looked upon as a German decoy; that if the steamer stopped to send sailors with a life-boat to investigate it would simply give a German submarine a chance to come up with torpedoes. At that very moment one of the men beside the gun sighted a periscope and a moment later the gun roared and then boomed a second time and then a third. Because the object disappeared, all passengers said it was a submarine, but the officers said it was a piece of driftwood, tossed up on the crest of a wave.

That night, on deck, a close friend of the purser came for an hour's walk around the deck. The memory of those three shots rested heavily upon his mind.

It seemed that some months before he had been a purser on an East Indian liner. On the home voyage, twenty-four hours after they left Cairo, when well out into the Mediterranean, this officer went below for an hour's rest. Suddenly a torpedo struck the steamer. The force of the explosion[137] literally blew the purser out of his berth. Grabbing some clothes, he ran through the narrow passageway, already ankle deep in rushing water. The great ship carried several thousand soldiers and a few women who were coming home from India or from Egypt. Despite the fact that all realized the steamer would go down within a few minutes, there was no confusion and the soldiers lined up as if on parade.

The boat went down in about eight minutes, but every one of the women and children had on their life-preservers and were given first places in the life-boats that had not been ruined by the explosion.

The purser said that he decided to jump from the deck and swim as far as possible from the steamer, but despite his struggles he was drawn under and came up half unconscious to find himself surrounded with swimming men and sinking rowboats that were being shelled by the German submarine. Suddenly a machine-gun bullet passed through his right shoulder and left an arm helpless. For half an hour he lay with his left arm upon a floating board, held up by his life-preserver. The submarine had disappeared. At distances far removed[138] were three of the ship's boats and one raft. It was plain that there was no help in sight.

Near him was a woman, to whom he called. The purser told the woman that he had been shot in the right arm and could not help her nor come near to her. She answered that it was good to hear his voice.

The water was very cold. He began to be alarmed and reasoned as to whether the cold water would not stay the bleeding. From time to time he would call out to the woman to keep up hope and courage and not to struggle, but at last he saw she was exhausted. With infinite effort, swimming with his left arm, he managed to draw near to her.

"Is drowning very painful?" the woman asked.

"No," answered the officer. "Once the water rushes into the lungs one smothers."

To which the English girl answered, "Then I think I will not wait any longer. Good-bye! Good luck!"

Utterly exhausted she let her head fall over and in a moment the life-preserver was on the top and that was all that he saw.

"The next thing I remember," said the[139] officer, "was waking up to find a nurse trying to pour a stimulant down my throat."

A destroyer had come up in response to the signals for help and picked up the survivors.

For months he was in the hospital before he could be carried to England. Even now he was not able to lift a hat from his head with his right arm, but he could write a little. This was his first voyage to test his strength to prove to the Government that he could take his old task as purser.

"How did you feel, purser, when you heard that cannon roar this morning against that submarine?"

You should have seen the fire flash in the man's eyes.

"How did I feel?" answered the officer. "I felt like a race-horse snuffing the battle from afar. Let them sink this ship—I will take another. Let them sink every steamer, I'll take a sailing vessel. Let them sink all our sailing vessels, we will betake ourselves to tugs.

"We have 5,000 steamers that come and go between any Sunday and Sunday. Some are old cattle-boats, some are sea tramps and some are ocean hounds. They have carried[140] 10,000,000 men and 20,000,000 tons of war materials, and 8,000,000 tons of iron ore and $3,000,000,000 worth of goods.

"We have lent six hundred ships to France and four hundred ships to Italy. Our ancestors smashed the Spanish Armada. Our grandfathers baffled Napoleon and their sons defy the Hun and his submarine.

"When I go down my son will take my place. When Germany beats England there will not be an Englishman left to tell how it happened."

Then, leaning over the railing of the ship, the officer pointed to the setting sun, and lo, right out of the sea, sailing into our sight, came a fleet of English merchantmen, laden with wheat, and the purser said:

"By God's help, England shall not starve."

3. German-Americans Who Vilify England

The biography of Grant holds many exciting incidents. One of them concerns a spy who nearly wrecked Grant's plans. It seems that a rumour came saying that Sheridan had been defeated at Winchester. A telegram[141] came a few minutes later saying that Sheridan was recovering from the disaster. Meanwhile, Grant noticed one of his young assistants was endeavouring in vain to conceal his pleasure over the news of Sheridan's defeat. That feeling seemed inexplicable to Grant. The Commander-in-Chief had three armies—Sherman's in the South, Sheridan's in the Valley of the Shenandoah, and his own army of the Potomac. How could a young aide rejoice over Sheridan's defeat without down in his heart wanting Grant defeated, the Union destroyed, and secession made a success? Grant became more and more alarmed. He told one of his associates to follow this youth, whom he feared was a spy. Shortly afterwards the man was discovered sending signals, was tried, the proofs of his treason uncovered, and finally he was executed.

To-day certain German-Americans never tire of announcing their Americanism. Their favourite expression is: "Germany was the Fatherland, but the United States is the wife." Not daring, therefore, to attack our Government, afraid to confess that they want Germany to succeed, and when that time comes expect to hold certain offices under[142] Germany, they spend all their time vilifying Great Britain. There is one absolute and invariable test of the German-American's treason to this country, and that is bitterness towards England, because England is doing all she can to prevent Germany's victory. One thing has saved this country during four years, giving us a chance to prepare—Great Britain's fleet, holding Germany's battle-ships behind the Kiel Canal. To-day our Republic is defended by three armies—General Pershing's, Marshal Foch's and Marshal Haig's. But whenever a German-American vilifies Haig and attacks England you may know that down in his heart he wants Pershing defeated, the United States conquered, and Germany made victorious. The German-American who vilifies Great Britain is angry because Great Britain has prevented Germany from loading a million German veterans upon her six or eight thousand passenger ships, freight ships, sailing vessels and war fleet, and sailing to New York and assessing fifty billion dollars indemnity upon us.

In a certain Western State a German professor of electricity resigned from his institution. He was receiving about $3,000 a[143] year. Many months passed by. One day this man was heard defaming England. "England has destroyed the freedom of the seas. England controls Gibraltar and the Suez Canal. England is the great land pirate. England is the world butcher." A Secret Service man followed the German professor, and found that he was working as fireman at the wireless station of that great city. This German professor of electricity had resigned a $3,000 a year position to work for $75 a month as fireman. As soon as he found that the United States Government was upon his track he fled to Mexico. This spy's camouflage was love for the United States, but his treason was revealed through his hatred of England. That man should have been arrested at dark, tried at midnight, and shot at daybreak.

There is a newspaper reporter in this country. This German-American was caught by a trick. Another reporter faked a story, writing out on his typewriter an account of several German submarines getting into the harbour of Liverpool and blowing up half a dozen English steamers and killing several thousand Englishmen, and this German-American reporter lifted his hands into[144] the air in glee, and in the presence of half a dozen fellow reporters shouted: "I knew it! I knew it! I knew the Germans would smash Hades out of them!" In that moment he revealed his real attitude towards the United States. Any man that wants Admiral Beatty defeated wants the American transports sunk and American soldiers murdered. That reporter should also have been arrested at dark, tried at midnight, and shot at daybreak.

In another city there is a young Irish writer. He fulfills all the proverbs about the crazy Irishman. In connection with the Sinn Fein conspiracy this young writer proposed a toast to the memory of Sir Roger Casement, the success of the revolution, and poured forth such bitterness upon England as cannot be described by those who hate ingratitude towards a country that has given us a chance to prepare. Wherever that man goes he carries hate with him towards Great Britain. His atmosphere is malign; his presence breathes treason towards England. That is another man who should have been arrested at dark, tried at midnight, and shot at daybreak. No man can serve God and Mammon. No man can be faithful to the[145] United States who hates England and loves Germany. He must love the one and hate the other; he must hold to the one and despise the crimes of the other. No man can serve God and the Allies, Germany and the devil, at one and the same time.

4. British vs. American Girls in Munition Factories

To-morrow morning at eight o'clock one million British girls will enter the munition and related factories. To-morrow afternoon at four o'clock another million girls will enter the same factories, to be followed at midnight by the third shift of women.

These factories average forty feet wide, and end to end would be 100 feet in length. The roar of the machinery is never silent by day or night.

In one factory I saw a young woman who was closely related, through her grandfather, to a man in the House of Lords. Her arms were black with machine oil, her hair was under a rubber cover, she wore bloomers. Her task was pouring two tons of molten steel into the shell moulds. The great shells passed from the hands of one girl to another[146] until the fiftieth girl, 1,500 feet away, finished the threads into which the cap's screw was fastened.

Every twenty-four hours these women turn out more small calibre cartridges than all England did the first year of this war. Every forty-eight hours they turn out more large cartridges than all England did the first year of this war. Every six days, with the help of men not fit for the battle front, they turn out more heavy cannon than all England did the first year of this war.

They have sent 17,000,900 tons of ammunition to the front. Their shells are roaring on five battle fronts in three continents. When the British boys thrust their huge shells into the cannon these boys literally receive the shells at the hands of the millions of English girls who are passing them forward.

Wonderful the heroism of the British soldiers! The reason why the men fight well at the front is because there are women at home worth fighting for. In all ages battles have been won, partly by the strong arm of the soldier, but chiefly by the heart that nerves the arm. That is why John Ruskin once said that "the woman in the rear generally wins the victory at the front."[147]

It stirs one's sense of wonder to find that all classes and all social conditions are represented in these factories. Thousands of young school-teachers have left the schoolroom behind, closed the book and desk and gone to the factory. Tens of thousands of young wives and mothers have left their little children with the grandmother. Many rectors and clergymen and priests, unfit for service at the front by reason of age, work all day long in the munition factory. Many a professional man crowds his work in the office that he may reach the factory for at least a few hours' work upon shot and shell.

One day in France, as I was entering the factory, I saw perhaps twenty young women come out, hurry across the street to a building where two old crippled soldiers were taking care of the little children. These young mothers nursed their babes, looked after the other children and then hurried back to the factory. Every minute was precious; every day was big with destiny. Their young husbands and brothers and lovers, when the German push came, must have their cartridges and shells ready and in abundance.

Watching these women with their strained,[148] anxious faces—women who cut each thread in the shell with the accuracy of the expert—you could see the lips of the woman murmuring, and needed no confession from her that she was silently praying for the man who would use this weapon to defend her beloved France, her aged mother and her little child.

When the beast is slain and the Potsdam gang tried and executed for their crimes, and the boys come home with trumpets and banners, the ovations will be for the soldiers; but after the soldiers have had their parade and their honour and their ovation on the first day of the triumph, there should be a second great parade, in which, while the soldiers stand on the streets and observe, and the merchants and working men and the professional classes stand as spectators, down the street shall march the munition girls, who fashioned the weapons with which the soldiers slew the common enemy.

For while the boys at the front have defended liberty the girls at home have armed the soldiers. Neither one without the other could have made the world safe for democracy.

Through the imagination these women[149] have a right, while they toil, to watch the shell complete their work. The smith who forges the chain for the ship's anchor has a right to exult when he looks out through his imagination upon the great boat held firm by his chain in the hour when the storm threatened to hurl the craft upon the rocks. The inventor has a right to say: "That granary full of wheat is mine; I invented the reaper." The physician has a right to rejoice over the battle and victory over the youth whose life was saved by the surgeon's skill. Not otherwise, the munition girl has a right when the long day of battle is over to say: "I safeguarded that cottage; I lifted a shield above that little child; I built a wall against the cathedral and the gallery and the homes of yonder city."

For American girls of vision there is nothing that they so much desire as the immediate condemnation by our Government of 10,000 luxury-producing plants in this country, which should immediately be taken over by our Government for munition purposes, and before the daybreak of the first morning there would be ten million American girls standing before the doors, trying to break their way in to obtain a chance to[150] fashion the shells that would protect American boys in danger at the front.

5. The Wolves' Den on Vimy Ridge

The bloodiest battle of 1917 was fought on the slopes of Vimy Ridge. That ridge is seven and a half miles long and is shaped like a dog's hind leg. Lifted up to an elevation of several hundred feet, the hill not only commands an outlook upon the German lines eastward, but protects the great plains that slope westward towards the English Channel.

To hold that ridge the Germans constructed a vast system of trenches, barbed wire barriers, Portland cement pill-boxes and underneath the ridge, at a depth of sixty feet, they made their prisoners dig a gallery seven and a half miles long, with rooms for the officers opening out on either side of the long passageways.

One morning the Canadian troops started up the long sloping hillside, under skies that rained cartridges, shells and gas bombs. So terrific was the machine-gun fire that some cartridges cut trees in two as if they had been cut with a saw, while others did not so[151] much strike the Canadian boys as cut their bodies into two parts.

Lying upon their faces they crawled up the hillside, cutting the wires as they crept forward. Not until the second afternoon did the shattered remnants reach the German trench that crowned the hillcrest. Then they plunged down into the trench, while the Germans rushed down the long stairs into the underground chamber and fled through the lower openings of their long gallery northward towards safety.

Not until the Canadian officers led us into one of those German chambers did we understand the black tragedy. The room was shell-proof. The soft yellow clay was shored up by rough boards. All around the walls were bunks. In that chamber the German officers had kept the captive French and Belgian girls. There were two cupboards standing against the wall. One was made of rough boards; the other was a large, exquisitely carved walnut bureau for girls' garments. When the German officers fled from the trench above they had just time to escape to the lower shell-proof rooms, grab some of the treasure and flee. Unwilling to give these captive girls their freedom,[152] since they could not have the girls they determined that their French and Belgian fathers and sweethearts should not recover them.

There was just time during the excitement of the flight to unlock the door, rush in and send a bullet through each young woman. A few minutes later the Canadian boys swarmed through the long connecting chambers and side rooms.

In one of those rooms they found these young women now dead or dying. Gas bombs had already been flung down and the rooms were foul with poisoned air. Protected by their masks the Canadian boys had time to pick up these girls and carry them up the steps into the open air, where they laid them down on the grass in the open sunshine. But help came too late. Beginning with an attempt to murder the souls of the girls the German officers had ended by slaying their bodies.

An officer saw to it that the official photographer kept the record of the faces of these dead girls. Once they must have been divinely beautiful, for all were lovely beyond the average. One could understand the pride and joy of a father or lover when[153] he looked upon the young girl's face. The slender body made one think of the tall lily stem, crowned with that flower named the face and glorious head. Strangely enough they seemed to sleep as if peace had come, after long pain. Plainly death had been longed for.

Weeks passed by. The photographs of the dead girls were shown in the hope that if possible word might reach their parents, but no friend had been found to recognize them. One day a Canadian officer, making slow recovery in a hospital near the coast, was asked by his nurse for the photograph.

It seemed there was a Belgian woman working in the hospital. Her village had been entirely destroyed. Her home was gone and all whom she loved had disappeared. By some accident the Red Cross nurse remembered this photograph and decided to show it to the Belgian woman who had passed so swiftly from abundance and happiness to the utmost of poverty and heart-break. Almost unwillingly at first the woman looked at the print. A moment later she held the picture out at arm's length, rose to her feet, then drew it to her lips and hugged it to her breast.

With streaming eyes she almost shouted,[154] "Thank God! Julia is dead! Thank God! Julia is dead! Now I know there is a God in Israel, for Julia is dead, is dead—is dead! Thank God! Thank God!"

Though for a long time the doves had been in the clutches of the German hawks; though for a long time the lambs had been in the jaws of the German wolves; when all else failed death came and released the lovely girls from the clutch of German assassins.

6. "Why Did You Leave Us in Hell for Two Years?"

For British soldiers it had been a long trying day on Messines Ridge. For many nights the boys had been coming up towards the front trenches. The next morning at 3:50 they were to go "over the top"; a feat which they accomplished, driving in a mile and a half deep, on a long, long line, only to be stopped by four days and nights of rain that drowned the trenches and drove them back out of the flooded valley to the hillside. Because the Germans knew what must come the next day, the German cannon were trying to bomb out the British guns.

That night—tired out—we drove back[155] eighteen miles behind the line for one good night's sleep. After dinner an English lieutenant told me this tragic tale:

"It was an April night last spring. All day the wind and fog and rain had been coming in from the North Sea. The chill and damp went into the very marrow of the bones. When night fell a few of us officers crept down the long stair into a shell-proof room. There we had our pipes and gossiped about the events of the day and talked with the French captain, our guest, who was spending a week studying our sector. Finally the time came when we must go back into the trench to take our turn in the rain.

"We were putting on our raincoats, when in my happiness I said, 'Well, men, you should congratulate me. One week from to-night I shall not be here in this rain and mud. I shall be home in England and have my little wife and my baby girl. Just one week! It seems like seven eternities instead of seven days and nights!'

"I little dreamed the little tragedy that I had precipitated. My colonel was very kind. He told me that he would have his permission in three more months. The rest of the boys also said nice things. Suddenly we[156] realized that the French captain was acting very strangely and saying excited things with his back towards us. We did not know how we had insulted him, nor could we understand what had happened. Finally my colonel said to him:

"'Captain, I hope you will have your vacation soon and have a chance to go home and see your family.'

"He turned on us like a crazy man. He put his fists in the air, he half shouted and half sobbed at us.

"'How do you men dare talk to me about going home? Your land has never been invaded, nor your families ruined. Home! How can I go home? The Germans have had my town for a year. In their retreat they carried away my little girl and my young wife, and now the priest has gotten word to me that in six weeks my little girl and my young wife will both have babes by the German beast who carried them off.'

"And then the Frenchman cursed God and cursed the devil! Cursed the Kaiser and cursed the Fatherland. Oh, it was so terrible. Doctor, I often wonder how Americans could have left the women and girls of Belgium and France in hell for two and a[157] half years, while you men stood in safety and in peace."

The historian will find it hard to answer that question. History will have it to say that England was the good Samaritan who helped the Belgians who had fallen among thieves, while Americans were among those who passed by on the other side.

7. "This War Will End Within Forty Years"

A New Zealand officer was giving directions to a group of his soldiers. They were in the field at the foot of Bapaume. The immediate task was that of cutting and rolling up the barbed wire. In that territory the Germans had left trenches foul with fever, wells filled with the corpses of men and horses, springs polluted with every form of filth, but worst of all, the barbed wire entanglements. Every sharp point was covered with rust and threatened lockjaw. Looking in every direction, the whole land was yellow with the barbed wire. The work was dangerous. The rebound of the wire threatened the eye with its vision, threatened the face and the hand, and all the soldiers[158] were in a mood of rebellion. In an angry mood, the officer exclaimed, "There are a hundred million miles of German barbed wire in France!"

And when later I asked the first lieutenant how long this war would last, he made the instant answer, "This war will continue forty years more! One year for the fighting, and thirty-nine years to roll up the wire."

Because every soldier at the front hated the wire entanglements, that bright sentence ran up and down the entire line from Belgium to the Swiss frontier. And for men of experience there is more truth in the statement than one would at first blush think. It will take one more year for the fighting, but it will take thirty-nine years more to grow the shade trees. Five centuries ago the French began to develop the love of the beautiful. On either side of the roads running across the land they planted two rows of poplars, oaks or elms. When long time had passed the fame of the French roads and the shade trees went out into all the earth. Under these trees the French farmer stopped his cart, fed his horses and refreshed himself beneath the shade. Under these trees the old men at the end of their[159] career rested themselves, and gossiped about old friends that had gone.

And when the German found he could not hold the land and enjoy the shade trees, the splendid orchards, the purple vineyards, he determined that the Frenchman should not have them, and so he lifted the axe upon every peach and pear, plum and grape, cherry and gooseberry tree. Perhaps it was as black a crime to murder the land as it was to murder the bodies of the farmers, since the soul is immortal.

"One more year of fighting and thirty-nine years" not to roll up the wire, but to rebuild the cathedrals and churches, the colleges and universities, the halls of science, the temples of art, the mills for the weaving of cotton and linen and wool, and above all for the rebuilding of the railways, the reconstruction of the canals and the bridges, great and small. But the most grievous loss is the human loss. Think of 1,500,000 crippled heroes and poor wounded invalids in the land of France alone! Think of another 1,500,000 young widows, or lovers and mothers! Gone the young men who promised so great things for the French essay, the French poem, for the paintings[160] and the bronzes! Dead the young lawyers, physicians and educators! Gone the young farmers and husbandmen! Perished 1,000,000 old people and 500,000 little children, all dead of heart-break. The German beast has been in the land. Like a wolf leaping into the sheepfold to tear the throats of the young lambs and the mother ewes.

What! Thirty-nine years more to recover ruined France and Belgium, Poland and Rumania? France will never be the same again. The scar of the beast will abide. That is why no man of large mind and great heart will ever make friends with a soldier from Germany, will ever buy an article of German stamp, so long as he lives, will ever read another German book, or support another German business. It is our duty to forgive the transgressor who is repentant, but it is a crime to forget the unspeakable atrocities, the devilish cruelties of the German Kaiser, the German War Staff and the German army, with its 10,000,000 criminals.

8. "Why Are We Outmanned by the Germans?"

Many thoughtful men have lingered long[161] over the despatches announcing that Great Britain called thirty thousand farmers to the trenches, thus threatening the loss of a part of her harvest. One of the British editors and statesmen explains this event by the frank statement that for the moment the Allies are outmanned, and will be until another million Americans reach France. Many men are puzzled to understand what this means, but the explanation is very simple. The combined population of Germany, Austria, Hungary and Bulgaria is not far from 140,000,000. To this must be added seventy millions of conquered and impressed peoples of Belgium, Poland, Rumania, with the Baltic provinces of Russia, Ukraine and other regions. Over against this population stands the 125,000,000 living in Great Britain, France, Italy, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the English people of South Africa, and India, and the Isles of the Sea. Concede, therefore, that the army of six millions of Allies are over against six millions of Germans. Why are we outmanned?

Back of that British editor-statesman's statement lies a most dramatic fact. Our Allies keep their treaties, and will not use[162] German prisoners to fight against their brothers. Therefore the six million of Allies' soldiers have no support behind them. But the Germans impress all conquered peoples and lifted into the air if the observer had a glass powerful enough, he would behold back of the German six millions another six millions of impressed prisoners and conquered peoples, who support the German army. These men, driven forward by an automatic pistol and the rifle, work within half a mile of the rear German trench. They dig ditches, fill shell holes, repair roads, bring up burdens, care for the horses, scrub the mud from the wagons, and the slightest neglect of the task means that they are shot down by the German guards. All this releases the German soldier from the deadly work that breaks the nerve, and unfits a man to go over the top. That means that the German soldier can fight eight hours, and have sixteen for rest and recreation.

But over against this German army fighting eight hours, with the deadly work wrought by several million of impressed servants and slaves, stands the Allied army. But our men after eight hours of active service[163] must then begin to dig ditches, fill shell holes, repair bridges, clean the mud from the wagons, bring up the munitions, and this deadly work for eight hours, added to their eight hours of active service, means only eight hours for sleep and recovery, while the German has sixteen hours off duty for recovery and sleep. The Allies keep their treaties, and do not ask a German prisoner to fight against his brother. The Allies obey the laws of right and wrong, but the Ten Commandments are a great handicap in time of war. Is there any one who supposes that six million of Allied soldiers, working sixteen hours a day, are as fresh and as fit as six million Germans, working only eight hours a day? That is why the situation is so perilous. Fortunately victories are not won by muscle without but by the soul within. The sense of justice in the heart lends a form of omnipotence to a youth. In a moral universe, therefore, we must win. The great problem is, how to carry on until we can get another million Americans across to France, with full equipment, and fifty thousand aeroplanes.




1. The Redemption of a Slacker

Out on the Ohio River there is a large steel town. During the last few years many foreigners who have the Bolsheviki spirit have crossed the ocean and found work in the great shops and factories. Little by little the foreign newspapers have developed the spirit that has now ruined Russia, and is here under the American name of the I. W. W. movement. In this steel city was an anarchist, with real power to move the mobs. The mere mention of the name of Carnegie or Rockefeller was to him like waving a red flag in the face of a bull. In the evenings it was his custom to climb upon a box at the corner of the street, close to a little park, and tell his hearers that all the wealth in the rich man's house was created by the workman's muscle. He made no allowance for the inventor, for the organizer, for the risks taken by the man who[165] built a factory. A few weeks ago this anarchist laid down a newspaper, containing an account of the trial of the I. W. W. leaders in Chicago. That night, becoming alarmed, lest he himself be caught in the drag-net, and perhaps forced to enlist as an enemy alien, this agitator disappeared, leaving behind him his board bill, laundry bill, tailor's bill, not to mention many other forms of indebtedness—a disappearance that led every one of his creditors to give up any and all faith in the American Bolsheviki movement.

Now there was a young boy of about twenty-three who had long been listening to this agitator. When, therefore, the second night after the anarchist's disappearance came, this young man, who aspired himself to be a leader of the mob, climbed up on the soap box, at the corner of the little park, and began to speak to the same old crowd.

"Think of it, my friends! Just think of it! Think of some soldier coming in here and making me enlist! I have no grudge against the Germans. I don't want to kill them. My forefathers were all German! My name is German. And I am an American all right, all right! Still, I don't propose to have anybody tell me what I must do. If I want[166] to enlist, I will enlist, and if I don't, I won't! I'd like to see some Government agent come along and grab me for the draft! When he comes, he'll hear a few things from me, and then some!"

At that point a man lifted up his hand and said: "Now you may stop right there!" Throwing back his coat collar, he showed a little metal badge. Climbing up on the box, the stranger took the young anarchist by his shoulder and half choked him, saying: "So you want to have the people see some one take you to the draft office? Well," said the officer, "now's the time for them to see him, and I'm the man. And you people," he went on, "just take a good look at this fellow. It'll be the last chance you're going to have, for he will be in jail to-night, and to-morrow we will decide whether or not he has been opposing the draft. If he has, he stands a good chance of being shot." Blowing a little whistle, the officer dragged the young anarchist to the edge of the street, half lifted and half kicked him into the police wagon, which soon disappeared. The enemy aliens who remained behind were stupefied, partly with astonishment and partly with terror. Aliens began to say,[167] "What will come next?" That night a number more of pro-Germans disappeared from this town with its steel mills.

The next morning, at ten o'clock, the officer entered the jail. "Get a move on you, young man!" he said brusquely. "You're going up to the court to be examined to see whether you are a slacker or a traitor. In the one case you will be interned and in the other case you will be hanged or shot."

The young anarchist was on his feet in a moment. "But, officer, aren't you going to give me a chance to enlist?"

"Young man, this Government does not want traitors to enlist, nor pro-Germans."

"I am not a pro-German this morning," cried the excited man. "I have thought the whole thing over last night. I did not sleep a wink. I think this Government is the best government in the world. And I am willing to fight for it."

The officer was astounded. "Well, my young enemy," he exclaimed, "a dungeon seems to have had a good effect upon your mind. What has regenerated you? Was it the cold water or the corn bread? Or the steel door before your dungeon? Or was it the bad air in your cell? Or possibly it was[168] the fear of death, or God Almighty, or future punishment. Come now, out with it!"

It was a thoroughly frightened boy who stood half an hour later in the prisoner's dock. "Give me some book on the Government of the United States," he exclaimed to the judge. "And give me a week in which to show that I am in earnest, and I will then volunteer." The judge was very grave. "Young man," he said sternly, "any boy that will eat the bread of the United States, that will enjoy the liberty of this country, and has had all the chances to climb to place that have come to you, and refuses to enlist, has something wrong with him, and it is only a question of time when he comes to the judgment day." To this the young man made the answer that he had been lazy, careless and ignorant; that he had allowed himself to become the tool of the runaway agitator, and then once more he asked that he might have a chance to enlist. With the help of friends, the judge and the draft board finally let him off and sent him to a camp for three months' intensive training. Then came the news that his company had been sent over seas, and within a short time thereafter in the list of casualties the name[169] of this young foreigner appeared. But one letter reached this country, and that letter was notable for this sentence: "For the first time in my life I have had young Americans for my companions. The boys in my company have had a college education and they have taught me bravery, truth, self-sacrifice, kindness and chivalry. I have learned more in two months at the camp than in all the rest of my life put together. The companionship in my company and in my camp have saved my soul." It is this that explains the redemption of the slacker.

2. Slackers versus Heroes

Going through the long communication trench, between the ruined city of Rheims and an observation lookout, with its view of the German front trench, we passed several soldiers digging an opening in the soft white marl, into a parallel trench. The captain in charge called my attention to a French poilu. His hair was quite black, save for the half inch next to the scalp and that was white as snow. If one had lifted up his hair and estimated his age by the last two inches of the jet locks the poilu would have been[170] about thirty-five, but the hair, pure white at the roots, and a glance at his face told us that he was fifty-five to sixty.

"He passed inspection," said the captain, "by dyeing his hair, and several weeks ago he broke the bottle of dye. Now he is half scared to death for fear he will be thrown out, because he is at the beginning of old age. Still I have no better soldier, no stronger, braver man. But I am hoping much from a friend in Epernay, to whom I sent for a bottle of black hair dye."

So long as the Frenchmen have that spirit France will never be defeated.

Many weeks ago I was in a manufacturing town near Pittsburgh. The wind was sharp and chill. All overcoats were turned up at the collar. On a box stood a young Australian lieutenant. His cheeks held two fiery spots. He was telling the story of the second battle of Ypres. While he talked you walked with him the streets of the doomed city, you heard the crash of the great shells as they smashed through the public buildings; you witnessed the burning of the Cloth Hall and shivered as the noble structure fell. One laughed with him in his moments of humour and wept over the[171] sorrows of the refugees. He pleaded with the Welshmen and the Cornishmen, and told them that the motherland was bleeding to death and that now every boy counted. He flogged his hearers, scoffed at them, praised them, wept, laughed, reviled, transformed and finally conquered them.

At the close, shaking hands with him, lo! he was burning with fever, with skin hot and dry. "Lieutenant, you should be at the hotel, in bed. You will kill yourself speaking in this cold air."

"Well," he answered, "there are plenty of our boys who are perfectly sound who will be killed inside of three months. I have the t. b., (tuberculosis), but I believe that I can pull through a year. I have enlisted over one hundred coal miners from Wales and iron-workers from Cornwall. I am willing to die for the motherland, after a year of t. b., since my pals will be dead within three months through bullets. And when I die I want to die with the consciousness that I have kept my manhood."

I left that poor, wounded, half-dead young soldier with the feeling that I had been in the presence of a superior being.

Over against these heroes stand the[172] slackers. There are hundreds and thousands of young men from allied countries who are of draft age, who find refuge in this land. There are other thousands who have been exempted, one because he has a flat instep, another because he has had trouble with his eyes or his teeth; or has tuberculosis, in its initial form, or is a victim of bronchitis. Most of these men owe it to their country and themselves to tear up their exemption papers. They earn their living in this country, working ten hours a day, but they will not work six or eight hours a day for Old England, thus releasing some young man to go to the front.

The question is not whether the youth has an exemption paper. The heart of the question is, Has he any moral right to accept an exemption? This war is being fought by untold thousands of soldiers who could obtain half a dozen exemptions. They prefer to run the risk of death in six months, to looking after their own hides and keeping well away from danger for the next six years or sixty. No one who has been in the coal regions or in the great mines of the Rocky Mountains but realizes that there are an enormous number of allied slackers in[173] this country. They have left their country to its dire peril at a moment when Old England is bleeding to death—when every man counts and when the cripples, the invalids, the old men, the women, everybody who can give four hours or eight of work a day should enter the great war offices or commissary departments and do office work, and thus release the stronger men for their work at the front.

The time has fully come when Americans should ask themselves the question whether or not they have a moral right to support with money that could be far better used, in the war stamp purchases or Red Cross work, all these slackers and cowards, at a time when the motherland asks them to throw away their exemption papers, in an hour when civilization, liberty and humanity are treasures trembling in the balance.

3. German Stupidity in Avoiding the Draft

Following the revolution of 1848 in Germany, multitudes of people fled from Prussia and Bavaria, and these fugitives, settling in the United States, organized colonies that[174] grew until there were often one hundred families in a single community. Strangely enough, as the years went on, these Germans forgot the iron yoke they once had borne, until, when many years had passed by, it came about that time and distance lent a glamour to the landscape of the far-off Fatherland. Occasional letters from their relatives kept them in touch with the old German home. At last they quite forgot the militarism, the poverty, the cruel limitations and the hypocrisy of Germany. Familiarity also with the institutions of the Republic bred a kind of contempt. Through the imagination Germany became an enchanted land. When, therefore, war was declared these German-Americans came together in their clubs, beer gardens and German churches, to pledge unswerving fealty to the Kaiser and to the militarism from which once they had fled as from death itself.

Last summer brought the Government draft to the young men of one of these German colonies. The week was approaching when the German boys must have their physical examination. American officers, American physicians and the members of the[175] draft board were already in session in a certain town. One Sunday a German-American physician appeared in that community. That night some twenty or more young German-Americans met that physician. He told them plainly how deeply he sympathized with their unwillingness to turn their guns against their own German cousins and relatives in the Fatherland. Out of pity and compassion had been born his plan to save their limbs and perhaps their lives, and also to serve the Fatherland and the beloved Kaiser. "I have here," said the physician, "a certain heart depressant. It will slow your heart like the brake on an automobile. It is a simple coal-oil product. It is quite harmless. It was made by the well-known German firm of Baer & Company, chemists, and it is so cheap. I shall see to it that you are rejected for the draft. And—think of it!—only twenty-five dollars! For that little sum I will keep you from being wounded or killed. You will each one give me twenty-five dollars; then I will give you this bottle, holding five grains for Monday, ten grains for Tuesday, fifteen grains for Wednesday, twenty grains for Thursday, twenty-five grains for Friday, and on Saturday[176] you will be rejected." Ten minutes later the necromancer had juggled twenty-five dollars out of the pocket of each newly drafted boy and into his own right-hand pocket.

On Saturday these young men appeared before the draft board and the Government physicians. All the boys were in a dreadful condition nervously. Now the heart would drop to forty, and then at the slightest exertion run up to two hundred and twenty. All were dizzy, nauseated, yellow and green, feverish. But the Secret Service men knew every detail of what had taken place, and all the facts were in the hands of the draft board. A certain farmer's son, young Heinrich H——, was first examined. The United States physician counted a pulse that varied from forty to two hundred and twenty. The physician kept his face perfectly straight. "Marvellous heart! Regular as a clock! Strong as the throbbing of a locomotive. Seventy-two exactly! Absolutely normal. I congratulate you, young men, upon your fine heart action. A man is as old as his heart engine. A boy with a heart like yours ought to live to be a hundred years old. All you need is a change of climate. France[177] will do the world for you. You may need a little heart stimulant, but I think that nothing hastens the pulse beat like a few rifle balls and bomb shells from Hindenburg." He sent every one of the twenty boys into the service, but separated them, one going to Camp Ayer, in Massachusetts; one to Camp Bliss, in El Paso, Texas, and the rest to camps in States between. In one Middle West community a German father and son went so far as to deaden pain through cocaine and then cut off the finger of the right hand. It is generally understood that both the father and son are now in two widely separated penitentiaries, reflecting each in his own cell upon the folly of treason and the crime of becoming a traitor to the kindest and best Government that has ever been organized upon our earth.

4. "I'm Working Now for Uncle Sam"

The long transatlantic train came to a dead stop at the division station in that great Southwestern State, where one was surrounded by sage-brush, the sand, the distant foot-hills and the far-off mountain range.[178]

One of the Pullman cars showed signs of a hot box, and a moment later the wheel burst into a mass of flame. In the thirty minutes' wait for repairs I made my way into the room where the conductors, engineers and firemen met. On a little table I found a copy of the address given before the railroad men of El Paso, Texas, by Secretary McAdoo.

I called the attention of the different men to the address, to the clarity of the reasoning, the simplicity of the argument, the strength of the appeal and the glowing patriotism that filled all the pages. The pamphlet had been worn by much reading. It was covered with the black finger prints of busy men who had been working around the locomotives and tenders.

Plainly Mr. McAdoo's speech had made a profound impression upon these employees. Having first of all called the attention of the large group of men to the creative work of Alexander Hamilton, the first Secretary of the Treasury, who struck, as Daniel Webster said, "the dry rock of national credit and abundant streams of revenue gushed forth," I asked these men whether there had been in one hundred and[179] twenty-five years any forward movement in finance that was comparable to the benefits derived from the national reserve bank law, under Secretary McAdoo, a law that not only had prevented a panic in this country during this war, but had raised more billions within four years than the total cost of the Government in the first century of our existence.

Late that afternoon, on the train, the conductor sought me out. In the midst of the discussion he drew out a roll of bills. He told me that in those mountain towns many of the ranchers did not buy their tickets at the stations.

To use his expression, "They had it in for the railroads." "They pay me their fare in cash, and when I give them the receipt they tear up the receipt and wink at me. I always feel," he said, "like resenting these actions, because I know that they are incitements to petty theft, but now," he said, "I have my chance. I always tell them," said the conductor, "that money belongs to Uncle Sam. He runs this railroad, Uncle Sam takes this money.

"With it he will buy guns for the American boys at the front and build ships to carry food that will feed these soldiers. I[180] would rather lose that right arm than take one penny of money that belongs to Uncle Sam. This is my job to run this train. I tell my crew every day that we must make the coal produce every possible pound of steam, that every waste must be saved, and every pound of energy used and that we must run this train so as to help win this war."

From morning till night I found that conductor was preaching that sentiment. His words were directly traceable to the words of Secretary McAdoo at El Paso, Texas. That single speech transformed these men.

Measured by the results—truth that transforms life and changes conduct and character—that was a truly great speech. We must all hope much from this new sense of devotion to the interests of Uncle Sam.

5. The German Farmer's Debt to the United States

There are literally thousands of small German colonies in different parts of this country. In one far distant State is a community settled by about two hundred German families, who took up the land immediately after the Civil War.

By some good fortune they settled in[181] what is now one of the very richest sections in the United States. Land that they bought for $1.25 an acre is now worth $250 an acre. In that community there are two German churches.

Both pastors came from Germany, both were educated in German colleges, both read German newspapers and both insist upon carrying on a colloquial German school, with German teachers, German text-books and German standards.

Little pressure was brought to bear upon these farmers during the First Liberty Loan. By many devices they succeeded in getting their boys away before the draft registration. While it was never proved technically that they had all pledged themselves not to oppose Germany, morally this is known to be the fact.

October of 1917 came and the Second Liberty Loan was on. One day all these farmers received a printed card, saying there would be a meeting on Monday night, in connection with the Second Liberty Loan. "I find you made no subscription whatsoever to the First Liberty Loan. There are reasons why I think it best for me to advise you to attend this meeting."[182]

Every German farmer read that card several times. Who was this stranger who was coming into the community? Was he a Secret Service man? How did he find out that there had been a secret meeting of the Germans immediately after war had been declared against Germany? Each farmer began to ask himself: "Has any one quoted me?" Each one decided to attend that meeting.

The meeting began at precisely seven o'clock. Only one man who had received the notice was absent, and his son brought a message concerning his father's absence. The stranger arose in his place, but left it uncertain as to whether he was a Secret Service man, a banker or a patriot interested in his country. He began with substantially these words:

"Men, you are all German-Americans. I find that not one of you subscribed to the First Liberty Loan. You came to this country poor men. This Government sold you Government land for from a dollar and a quarter to two dollars and a half an acre. But you seem to have forgotten one thing. Your title deed to your farm rests upon your loyalty as citizens of the Republic. Whenever you refuse to support the people of the[183] Republic you have by your own act annulled the title deed of your land.

"If you refuse to support your Government in this war, you are a traitor, and when this is proved you will be shot. If secretly you have been sending money to the Kaiser to buy guns with which to kill American boys you have forfeited the title deed to your farm. Your property has become again the possession of the Government and people of the United States."

By this time these farmers had their mouths open, and their faces became tense and alarmed. When his words had had time to sink in, the stranger went on: "I have here a statement as to the number of acres in each farm owned by each man in this room. The first man's name is Heinrich ----; you own 320 acres of land. It is worth at least $75,000. There is no mortgage on this farm. Heinrich, I think you had better buy $2,500 worth of Liberty Bonds. I am simply advising with you as a friend. I have made out an application for you, and all you have to do is to sign it.

"My advice to every one of you is that you buy from three to five per cent, of the value of your farm. I want to say incidentally[184] that I trust that there will never again be held a secret meeting of the Germans in this room to discuss the best way to avoid supporting the United States Government in this war against Germany, and how you can best help the Kaiser."

That little sentence worked like magic. Every farmer in the room rose to his feet in his anxiety to rush forward to the table. Men literally struggled to see who should sign up first. Their enthusiasm for the United States Government was as boundless as it was sudden in its manifestation.

Remember that there were only two hundred farmers in the room. And yet there are the best of reasons for believing that the men in that room bought that night nearly $200,000 worth of Liberty Bonds.

6. "Sharper Than a Serpent's Tooth" Is an Ungrateful Immigrant

One of the things that no patriot can ever understand is the ingratitude of the Germans who fled from the Fatherland to escape German militarism and autocracy.

Lecturing in a Western State, I met a banker who had returned from a schoolhouse in a rural district where he had been[185] talking about the Liberty Bonds to a German audience. One old German refused to attend this meeting. He was very bitter in his attacks upon our Government. He had made no subscription to the first two Liberty Loans; he had refused to help in the campaign for the Red Cross Fund; he insisted that he paid his taxes and that was all that the Government had any right to demand from him.

He went one step further: The old man said that he had not read a single American newspaper since the war began, and that nothing but a German newspaper should cross his threshold until the war ended. Not until that banker descended upon this pro-German with the indignation of an outraged patriot did the rich old farmer capitulate.

The story of that German is typical. He came to this country about 1859. When the homestead act was passed he received from the United States one hundred and sixty acres of land in the very centre of one of the richest States in this Union, and his one hundred and sixty acre farm is now worth about $100,000.

When he ran away from Germany he[186] was receiving twenty cents a day. He rose at daybreak, cleaned stables, milked cows, toiled in the field, began his milking after dark, worked sixteen hours a day, had nothing to eat except what could not be sold by his employer. He was a German plebeian, with no chance ever to improve his condition. He was ignorant, stupid, a mere beast of burden.

So the German boy slipped across the line into Holland, came steerage to this country, slept among the rats of the ship, but the people of the United States welcomed that miserable refugee. The American school, without any charge, gave him four months' instruction every winter until he was twenty. The American people gave him a farm as a free gift. This Republic educated his children, his grandchildren and enriched them with land, office, honours and wealth. Once he hated autocracy and militarism in the Fatherland—but in 1918 he loved them.

No sooner did the Kaiser invade Belgium and commit rape upon that land than this German farmer passed through a revulsion. Whatever the Kaiser did was right. If Germany did a thing it was proper. Germany had a right to break her solemn[187] treaties; Germany had a right to sink the Lusitania; if Germany was out of iron ore she had a right to invade France and steal her iron mines. What had been crimes suddenly became virtues.

Fleeing from the German tyrant in 1859, in 1918 the old farmer turned upon the United States that had befriended him.

"If I have to make my choice, I choose the Kaiser."

Mentally, it seems absurd. Morally, his was a monstrous position. But blood was thicker than water. Gratitude had no place in his heart.

This old German regarded the gift of his farm by our people as a sign of weakness. The Republic gave him a homestead because he was a superior man. He actually had a belief that Germany would soon overrun the world; that the Kaiser would soon be enthroned in Washington; that some German in Iowa would supersede the Government in Des Moines, and he was simply getting ready, having made friends with the Kaiser's Government, to receive reward when the United States became a German colony.

Who can explain the obsession?

It is clear that the German-Americans had[188] been drilled for forty years through their German newspapers in these ideas. Little by little they have been alienated from the institutions of the Republic. Slowly they have been led to believe that Berlin is soon to be a world capital and Kaiser Wilhelm the world emperor, while only Germans shall be allowed in this country to hold office or land, while all Americans become tenants and servitors thereto.

Plainly this is what Siebert meant in his book, published five years ago in Berlin:

"When we have reached our goal Germany must see to it that no race save the German race can have a title deed in land or carry weapons, just as in the first world empire no one but a Roman was allowed to own land or have a sword or spear."

7. In Praise of Our Secret Service

Of necessity our Secret Service work is carried on in silence and without blare of trumpets. The achievements of the Department of Justice cannot be proclaimed from the housetops. Everybody knows something about the crimes committed by the German agents. These spies, loyal with their lips, have in their hearts plotted innumerable[189] crimes against our Government. They have dynamited our factories and warehouses; they have burned shops and planted bombs on ships; they have thrown trains from the track; they have poisoned the horses and mules upon the transports en route to France; they have fouled the springs of knowledge through their hired reporters; with all the cunning developed by long practice, they have spread their insidious and perilous influences into the remotest regions of the land. But over against these spies and secret agents have stood the United States Secret Service men, and with everything in favour of the German plotter, our defenders have beaten the German at his own game.

War was declared against Germany on April 6, 1917. One Sunday night two or three weeks later a large company of German-Americans belonging to the secret German league met in their accustomed place of assembly. There were several hundred Germans present, but among them were three Secret Service men. The German lawyer who opened the meeting was very bitter. Having made certain that only German sympathizers were present, he went on to[190] say that the occasion of this war could be traced to Wall Street. Certain rich bankers and American plutocrats had loaned perhaps a billion dollars to England. Since the war was going against England, these rich men were afraid that they would lose their investment. In their emergency they forced war upon Congress. The speech was clever, specious, cunning, shrewdly calculated to stir up passion. And the speech was applauded to the echo. The second speaker made a no less skillful appeal to the prejudices of the members of the secret German-American league. Since the war was a money war, originated by Wall Street, the Government could be defeated as to its plans only by money. Therefore, every member of the league must make his contribution; no one present but must give at least ten dollars. And, he added, in view of the fact that it was Sunday night and that some might be without money, and since no checks could be accepted, there were several German bankers present, who would be glad to advance money to the members who wished to make cash contributions. The Germans had provided in advance against every possible emergency.[191]

Then came the opportunity for the Secret Service men. The first one arose and began with an apology for a German brogue that in reality he was assuming. He spared no words in praising the first two speakers. "What a wonderful man was the Kaiser! What victories von Hindenburg had achieved! The Fatherland was standing with back against the wall. How wicked a nation was France, and Poland! What a black heart England had!" He pictured Germany as a lamb with fleece as white as snow, and a huge Belgian wolf jumping at the lamb's tender throat. "What an ambitious man was President Wilson. How eagerly had Congress waited until Germany was weak, and then rushed in to grab the fruits of war!" When this man sat down his hearers were in a state of rapturous upheaval. But scarcely had his voice ceased echoing in the air when the second Secret Service man arose. Having complimented the first two speeches by the German plotters, he said that he thought he represented the members in expressing the judgment that the third speaker had made a speech that was unrivalled in its statement as to the duty of the members toward the Kaiser and the[192] beloved Fatherland. The second Secret Service man, therefore, moved that it be the sense of the meeting that the member who had just spoken be made secretary of the meeting, be custodian of the funds just contributed. In five minutes he had all the secrets of the meeting safely lodged in the hands of the first Secret Service man. At this point the third representative of the Government arose and nominated the second Secret Service speaker, who had just taken his seat, as teller to count the funds, and in recognition of this man's gifts the teller immediately afterwards appointed the third Secret Service man assistant teller. During the next three hours, in the secrecy of their own meeting, over twenty prosperous and influential Germans committed themselves against this Government.

About midnight the secretary and the two tellers turned over to the two Germans who had made the two big speeches at the opening of the meeting the entire collection, which amounted to thousands of dollars. But at half-past twelve, as these two Germans were entering their hotel, four Secret Service men tapped them on the shoulder and promptly relieved them of the aforementioned[193] thousands. One of these men is now working out his sentence in a Southern penitentiary and the other in a Western penitentiary. Their sentences were for twenty-eight years. The other men who defended Germany and attacked the United States are serving terms—some long and some short. It is a proverb that the wicked flee when no man pursueth. But Dr. Parkhurst coined a striking sentence when he added: "The wicked man makes better time in fleeing when the righteous Secret Service man pursues him with a sharp stick."

Printed in the United States of America

Transcriber's Note:
Minor typographical errors have been corrected without note.