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A Comprehensive and Authentic History of the War 
by Land, Sea and Air 


Book /. Military History of the War 
" 2. World Issues of the War 
" 3. America's Part in the War 



Author of Author of 

"Wonder of War on Land," "War for Human Rights," 

"Wonder of War in the Air," etc. , "Sinking of the Lusitania," etc. 

Fully Illustrated with Reproductions from Official 
Photographs, including Maps and Drawings 

No. 241 American Street 


Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1919, by Ifational Publishing Co., 
in the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at Washington, D. C. 


FEB 15 1919 



In presenting ''The World War for Liberty" to the public, the 
Publishers desire to state that it is an invaluable contribution to the 
permanent and abiding literature of the war. It is more. It is the 
Story of the War as a whole, written with an insight into the conflicting 
issues which makes it as remarkable as its clear and easy style makes 
it readable. 

The Editors are peculiarly fitted for their task. Dr. Francis Rolt- 
Wheeler has been writing books in co-operation with the American and 
European governments for many years, he has lived in France, in 
Russia and in the Balkans, he knows European capitals and politics at 
first hand. He has contributed widely to the literature of the war and 
possesses the confidence of military, naval and diplomatic authorities. 
Mr. Frederick E. Drinker is an American of the purest stock, a keen 
student of Americanism and a well-known writer. He has published 
widely on American phases of the war — his book on the Lusitamia is a. 
classic — and he possesses a wide outlook on the future of the United 

Many years must elapse before the conditions brought about by 
the world war can subside. For many years to come the issues dealt 
with in this book must necessarily be points in dispute. The world 
upheaval has been too great for its settlement to have final immediacy. 
New republics must be put on trial. New frontiers must beget new 
passions. Liberty is a plant of slow growth among peoples unaccus- 
tomed to it. ''The World War for Liberty" will do more than explain 
what has been, it will help to guide Americans to an understanding of 
the issues which still remain, and which, in one form or another, will 
trouble the world for many years to come. 





Collapse of the House of Hohenzollern — Downfall of Imperialism — Empires Totter 

and Kings Are Unseated — Gathering War Clouds — Estrangement of Serbia 

and Austria — Assassination of Archduke Francis Ferdinand — The Storm Breaks 

— Declaration of War 17 


The First Shots of the War — The Luxemburg Frontier — Defence of Liege — Per- 
manent Fortification Becomes a Useless Art — Siege Howitzers — Two Small 
Forts Stay the Onrush of the Hosts of Mars — Fall of Namur — The Archers 
of Mons — The Night of Charleroi 24 

The Greatest Fighting Retreat in History — Rival Strategies, German Mass-Drive 
and French Lozenge — British Exj^editionary Army Cut to Pieces — The Rag- 
ged Legion, Mobilized in Taxi-Cabs, That Saved Paris — Joffre's Tactics — 
How Foch Won the Victory in Half an Hour 38 



The Germans Hurled Back in Confusion — Von Zwehl and the Siege Guns — ^The 

Defeated Hosts "Dig in" to Get a Foothold — Crossing the Aisne, First and 

Second Phases — The Bombardment of Rheims — Vandalism of the Cathedral — 

Beginning of the Four Years' Deadlock 52 


Capture of Brussels — Siege and Fall of Antwerp — Exile — Atrocities of Aerschot 
to Louvain — The Battles of the Yser — Dixmude, Holding the Line — Ypres, 
the Key — Passchendaele Ridge — Poison Gas — The Chemin des Dames — 
Unconquered Belgium 64 

Both Sides Essay a Ruse at Mulhausen— The Bath of Blood at Altkirch— Strate- 
gical Value of the Vosges — Invading French Army Defeated at Luneville 
— Guerrilla Fighting — Failure of Campaign as a Conquest, Success as a Buffer 
Against Attack Toward Belfort 83 



The Franco-German Frontier — The German Crown Prince — Fearful Loss of Life 
at Fort Douaumont— The French 75's — Modern Artillery Methods — Changing 
Plans of Defence — Strategic Railways— St. Mihiel Salient — Nancy, Toul and 
the Southern Chain of Forts 93 




The To-and-Fro Swing of the Battle-Line for Three Long Years — Neuve 
Chapelle — The Labyrinth — Lens — No Man's Land — Barbed Wire Entangle- 
ments — Battles of Great Intensity for Minor Gains — Soissons — English Tanks 
Break Through the Hindenburg Line 104 


The Great Teuton Oflfensive of 1918 an Utter Failure — Foch Starts at Last — 
American Regiments at the Front — Chateau Thierry and St. Mihiel — Tactics 
of "the Pincers"' — Ludendorff Out-Maneuvered — The Kriemhilde Line — 
German Retreat, Rout and Disaster 117 


Mutual Invasions on the Eastern Front — Austrian Defeat at the Drina — Belgrade 
Changes Hands Four Times — Reorganization of Austrian Armies — Germany, 
Bulgaria and Turkey at the Rear — Fall of the Iron Gate — Surrender of 
Monastir — German Conquest of Serbia 129 


Italy's Entrance Into the War — Strategic Passes into Austria — The Dolomites — 
The Battles of the Isonzo — Aerial Railways in the Julian Alps — The Bridge- 
head of Goritzia — The Carso — Feats of the Bersaglieri — The Dead-Line to 
Trieste 140 


Sudden Smashing Descent of the Invaders Into the Italian Plains — Propaganda 
and Treachery — Venice Threatened — ^A Human Barrier to the Guns — Allied 
Rush to the Support — Italian Mastery of the Air — Collapse of Austria — 
Heights Re-won by Sheer Gallantry 149 

Civil War Questions in Greece — Port Desired by Germans as a Submarine Base — 
King Constantine and Yenizelos — Practical Impossibility of Transport Con- 
ditions — Fighting in Macedonia — Establishment of Allied Supply Bases — Final 
Collapse of Bulgaria 155 

Cossack Success at Lemberg — East Galicia Captured— Occupation of Przemysl — 
Turn of the Tide at Cracow — Debacle of Tannenberg — Battle of Lodz — 
Decisive Winter Campaign of the Masurian Lakes 162 



The Kaleidoscope of Divided Russia and Siberia — War Supplies in Vladivostock 

— String of Conflicts Along the Trans-Siberian Railroad — Czecho-Slovaks With 

Their Backs to the Wall — German-Made Revolt in Finland — Allied Troops on 

the Murman Coast 174 


German Seizure of Constantinople — Turkey in the War — The Impregnable Darda- 
nelles — Seven Months in a Hail of Fire — The Storming of Suvla Bay — The 
Three Great Assaults — Final Failure of British and Abandonment of the 
Campaign 183 

The Turkish Advance Towards Egypt— British Alliance With Arab Tribes- 
Failure of the Jehad — Campaign in the Holy Land— Greatest Cavalry War in 
Modern History — The Holy City — Capture of Damascus — The Mesopotamian 
Campaign, Capture of Bagdad 189 


The Attack on Tsing-Tao — Capture of Kiao-Chau— German Prestige in the Orient 
Lost at One Blow — Conquest of Solomon, Caroline and Marshall Islands — 
The Surrender of German New Guinea — ^No Teuton Naval Base Left in the 
Pacific 201 


Campaigns in Togoland, Kamerun, German East Africa and German Southwest 
Africa— Teuton Barbarities in Their Colonies— A Naval War Fought Two 
Thousand Miles From the Ocean — Boer Generals and Troops Bear the Brunt 
of Allied Battles in the Dark Continent 205 

Great Britain Blockades Germany on the First Day — Submarine Mines and Mine- 
Sweepers — Affair of Helgoland Bight — German Sea-Power Becomes a 
Mockery — Bombarding Inoffensive Villages — The Battle of Jutland — The Plug- 
ging of Zeebrugge — Shameful Surrender of Fleet 215 



France's Position as Naval Ally Bottled Up Austria — The Goeben and the Breslau, 

a Romantic Ruse of the Sea — British Bombardment of the Dardanelles — The 

Italian Fleet Takes Pola, Austria's Chief Naval Base — The Central Powers 

Barred From the Sea 227 



Tropical Adventures of the Konigsberg — The Emden, the "Terror of the East" — 

Australians Make the Germans. Walk the Plank — The Fight Off Coronel — 

Von Spec's Defeat of an English Fleet and the Terrible Revenge of the Battle 

of the Falklands 231 


The Strength and Weakness of Submarine Attack — Commerce Raiders — Sinking 
of Three British Cruisers by One "Fritz" — Underwater Boats and Neutral 
Ships — Torpedoing the Red Cross — Trying to Starve England Out — The Three- 
fold Queller of the Submarine 240 



Development of Types of Air-Craft — Dirigibles and Their Uses — Summary of Mili- 
tary Failure of Zeppelin Raids — The Difference in Aeroplanes Required for 
Bombing, Spotting, Reconnoissance and Combat — Aerial Strategy — Aces — 
Famous Feats of Daring 244 


The Rifle and Machine Gun— Light Artillery— The French "75"— Heavy Artillery 
— The "Big Bertha" and the Siege Howitzers — Aerial Guns — Bomb and Shell — 
Hand Grenade and Bolo — Gas and Explosives — Sapping and Mining 248 




Close of the Franco-Prussian War — Congress of Berlin — League of the Three 
Emperors — Triple Alliance — Dual Alliance — Fashoda Incident — Boer War 
Enmities — Moroccan Trouble — Tripoli and the Concert of Europe — Triple 
Entente 261 


Military, Political and Economic Conditions of the Twenty-eight Nations Aligned 
against Germany — Colonies of the Allies in Africa, Asia and Oceanica — 
Gradual Change in the World Sentiment During the War — Shipping as the 
Key to Victory 270 


The Empire as a Whole — England, Scotland and Wales — Ireland— Dominion of 
Canada — Newfoundland — Commonwealth of Australia — Dominion of New 
Zealand — Union of South Africa — Anglo-Egypt — India — Naval Bases — Imperial 
Aims Realized 277 


Congress of Vienna — Flemings and Walloons — Revolt for Independence — Inter- 
vention of the Powers — Perpetual Neutrality — Hunt for a King — Policy of 
Bismarck — German Treachery — "A Scrap of Paper" — Failure of "Frightful- 
ness" — Luxemburg 290 


Napoleon and the Map of Europe — Royalists and Republicans — Siege of Paris — 
War Indemnities and Alsace-Lorraine — ^Verdun and Frontier Fortification — 
"They shall not pass" — World Significance of the Battle of the Marne — The 
Genius of the War 298 


The Great Spiritual Drama — Garibaldi — Quirinal and Vatican — The Unholy Alliance 
— Meaning of "Italia Irredenta" — Adriatic Sea as the Key to the Mediter- 
ranean — The Red Week — The Perilous Decision — Forged Propaganda and the 
Piave 305 


Buffer States — Divisions of the Southern Slavs — Incessant Wars With Turkey — 
Bosnia the Fuse oi nie World Explosion — The Three Historic Assassinations — 
Serajevo the Match to the Fuse — The Allies' Inability to Prevent Balkan 
Disaster 313 



Race Barriers in Eastern Europe — Tragedy of Poland, Once a Master Powder — 

Polish Heroism in the War — Stubborn Lithuania — The Letts — Esthonia — High 

Standard of Czech Culture — Bohemia — Moravia — The Slovaks — Czecho-Slovak 

Forces in Siberia 321 


Shogunate and Samurai — The Restoration — Korea — Russo-Japanese War — The 
"Yellow Peril" — Old China — Boxer Rebellion — Manchuria — The Chinese 
Republic — Significance of Capture of Kiao-Chau by Japan — New "Spheres of 
Influence" in China 332 


Military, Political and Economic Conditions of the Three Empires and Their 
Bulgarian Link — The Berlin-to-Bagdad Railway — Colonies of the Central 
Powers — The Breakdown of the Kaiser-forged Chain and Appeals for a 
Separate Peace ^27 


Old Germany a Loose Confederation of States — Bismarck, "Old Blood and Iron" — 
Dropping the Pilot — Nietzsche and Treitsche — Bernhardi and Pan-Germanism — 
Kaiserdom and junkerism — War! — The Crucial Mistake — An Error in Race 
Psychology 344 



The Shadowy Holy Roman Empire — Franz Josef the Juggler — Sadowa — The Aual 

Monarchy, a Harlequin State and a Nation without a Soul — The Magyars — 

The Teuton Whip — International Trickery — The Treaty of Bucharest — Absolute 

Collapse From Within 355 


Bulgars a Tartar Stock — Meteoric Rise — San Stefano and "Great Bulgaria" — 
England's Compulsion of "Little Bulgaria" — Battle of Slivnitza — Montenegro — 
Tearing Up the Treaty of Berlin — Bulgaria a Bitter Foe to World Peace Plans. . 363 




The Terrible Importance of Constantinople and the Dardanelles — Asia Minor and 
the Armenians— Syria and the Holy Land — Mesopotamia, the Garden of Eden — 
The Arab Tribes and the Menace of Islam — Persia, the Land of Golden 
Opportunity '. 371 


Military, Economic and Political Conditions of Nations Who Either Stayed Com- 
pletely Out of the War, or Who, at One Time or Another, Were Secretly or 
Actively Allied to Both Sides — Their Effect on the Respective Belligerents .. 380 



Czar and Zemstvo — Moujik and Merchant — Trans-Siberian Railway — Japanese 

Checkmate — German Infiltration — Court Intrigue — Betrayal — Three-Headed 

Revolution — Shame of Brest — Litovsk — Ukraine — Bolshevism — Sanity of Mur- 

man and Siberia 386 



An Island of Latins Entirely Surrounded by Slavs — Bessarabia as a Second 
Alsace-Lorraine — Dobrudja, the Mouth of the Danube and the Port of Con- 
stanza — Half-Hearted Entrance into the War — Greater Roumania a Possible 
First Class Power ., 401 


Levantine Weakness — Result of Balkan Wars — King Constantine and Premier 
Venizelos Deadlocked — Macedonia a Bone of Contention Between Serbia, 
Bulgaria and Greece — Albania Coveted by Serbia, Greece and Italy — The 
Occupation of Saloniki 405 


Gustavus Adolphus and the Baltic — Scandinavia — Separation oi Norway and Sweden 
— Norway Pro-Ally and Sweden Pro-German in the War — Finland Taken 
from Sweden by Russia — Her Strategic Importance — 'German Intrusion and 
Local Bolshevism 410 


The Teuton Bullying of Little Denmark, With Schleswig-Holstein as Booty — Wide 
Difference in Spirit Between Schleswig and Holstein — Holland, the Hater of 
England — Feeding Germany on the Sly — The Kaiser Kindly Received 415 


A Single-Souled Nation With Three Faces and Three Languages, French, German 
and Italian — Geneva Convention and the Red Cross — Marvelous Organization 
for Defense— The Refuge of the Hunted— The Diplomacy of Independence... 420 



Futile Peace Efforts— Financial Depression— Aroused by German Barbarities- 
Work of Helping Hun Victims Abroad— German Spies and Propaganda- 
Protests Against U-Boat Attacks and the Killing of Americans— "The Strict 
Accountability Note"— Re-election of President Wilson— Germany's Broken 
Pledges — Armed Neutrality 425 



President Wilson's War Message to Congress — The Memorable War Declaration 

—The War Resolution— The Big War Program — German Ships Seized — Arrest 

of German Agents and Enemy Aliens — Big Loans to Allies — Raising the War 

Funds — How the Country Prepared 437 


The Regular Army and the National Guard — National Army Conscription Plan§ — 
Drafting of Citizens— Recruiting— Camps and Cantonments — Training of Sol- 
diers — France's Appeal for Men 448 


General Pershing and Staff Sent to France— Secret Sailings— From Camp to Seaport 
—Movement of Trains— The Use of Former German Steamships— A Record in 
Troop Shipments 457 

The Force in Foreign Waters— The Naval Reserve— Dogging the U-Boats— The 
Convoying of Troop Ships— Training Camps — Sea Planes and Chasers — A 
Remarkable Record of Service 464 


What American Hustle Accomplished — Engineer Wonder- Workers and Fighters — 
Supply Arrangements — Training Camps and Methods — ^The First American 
Army — Final Organization >j 473 


Organization— Their Glorious Past— First Overseas— In the Trenches— "American 
Shock Troops" — A Traditional Display of Heroism — On Marne and Meuse — 
Heavy Losses 480 


Organization — Financing — Behind the Lines — On the Battle Fronts — Mothers to 
All— Ambulance Service — Hospitals and Night Raiders — Real Dogs of War — 
The Red Star 488 



New Ideas in the Training of Soldiers — Protection of Health — Recreation — Educa- 
tion — The Y. M. C. A. — Huts and Canteens — The Salvation Army — Knights 
of Columbus 498 


The Capture of Cantigny— Chateau Thierry— An American Wall of Strength — 
Turning the Tides of War— The Heights of Ourcq— St. Mihiel— Sacrifice and 
Heroism — Swimming the Meuse Under Fire — Sedan and the Last Shots — 
Negro Troops Cited — Foch's Tribute to Americans — President Wilson's Christ- 
mas With His Soldiers in France 506 


Summary of Operations of the American Expeditionary Force as Cabled to 

Secretary of War Baker by General John J. Pershing on November 20, 1918... 515 


What the Central Powers Gave Up on Surrender — The Stern German Agreement — 

Austria's Sacrifice — Bulgaria — Turkey 530 


The Start Toward the Rhine — Heroic American Troops Comprise Third Army of 
Occupation — King Albert and the Queen of Belgium at Antwerp and Brussels 
— Marshal Petain at Metz — General Pershing in Luxemburg — Flags and Bunt- 
ing Fly — Enthusiasm Everywhere — Into Germany 538 


President Wilson Goes to Attend Paris Conference — Enthusiasm Marks His Arrival 
— Made Citizen of Paris — The Personnel of the Peace Conference — A League 
of Nations — The Terms of Peace — Plans for Enforcement 543 


There is a gripping need for such a book as "The World War for 
Liberty/' written, as it is, to show Americans the dark forces that 
were behind the war, the desperate gallantry of the nations who fought 
therein and the great goal of democracy which lies beyond. The book 
is needed because America and the Americans have entered upon an 
era of their history wherein they have become a world power. As such, 
world problems must be grappled with; as a self-governing people, 
Americans must understand those problems. 

This book is by no means a mere History of the Events of the War. 
It is this, but it is far more. It is a book designed to reveal the war. 
Every reader of the daily newspapers during the four years of the war 
realized that there were half-told questions of diplomacy, court 
intrigues, backstairs politics, racial antipathies and patriotic theories 
of every sort and description underlying the actual happenings on the 
field of battle. Some of these were fraught with vital importance, as 
when the overturn in Russia imperiled the Allies' cause, as when 
France and England compelled the abdication of King Constantino of 
Greece, as when America realized that honor demanded the drawing 
of the sword of justice. Such topics do not belong necessarily to a 
mere narrative history, but in the larger sense of a world war for 
Liberty, they are all-important. 

For this reason the Editors have placed the world war before their 
readers in three parts : Book I, which gives the military history of the 
war, as a historian would write it ; Book II, which gives the world issues 
of the war, as they bore on every country directly or indirectly involved, 
and in which will be found analyzed such topics as Alsace-Lorraine, 
Schleswig-Holstein, Italia Irredenta, Macedonia, Bessarabia, Dobrudja, 
the Czecho-Slovak and Jugo-Slav peoples, Bolshevism, Junkerdom and 
the rest ; and Book III, dealing with America's part in the war, showing 
I the sublimity of self-sacrifice with which the soldiers and people of the 



United States set their whole hearts to the task when once convinced 
that the call of war was the call of Eight. 

A cold, tame, impersonal record of such a war would not be an 
American book. It is because of a profound conviction that the war 
was inevitable, that it was forced on the world by selfish desires and 
unjustifiable aggression, that it wab, necessary for civilization and for 
the cause of liberty that peace-loving nations should beat the plowshare 
into the sword, that this book has been written. That it may further 
enlighten America and that it may enhance the pride of the people of 
the United States in the rightfulness of their cause is the aim and 
purpose of 

The Editors. 


In all the straggles of man against man and nation against nation 
since the beginning of time itself there has been no counterpart of * ' the 
World War for Liberty" which ended on November 11, 1918, with the 
collapse of the German Empire and the abdication of the autocratic 
Emperor William Hohenzollern, followed by his flight into Holland, 
leaving a train of desolation and ruin in his wake. 

No other great empire ever came to so sharp an ending and no 
emperor was more ignominiously driven from his throne. The vaunted 
power which he wielded was wrested from him and the conceit of 
Kaiserism and Junkerism which he personified was crushed to the 


Yet these are but incidents of the most momentous achievement in 
the world's history. The fall of German autocracy marked not merely 
the end of an empire but a decisive victory for forces of the universe 
holding to the principle that just governments derive their power from 
the consent of the governed. 

All down the ages the contest has been waged for acceptance be- 
tween the irreconcilable conceptions of government — autocracy and 
democracy. The German Kaiser — a mere creature of an intolerable 
system — would deny to men the right to govern themselves and by force 
of arms subject them to his will and perpetuate a decaying form of 

In the bygone days of ignorance and superstition it was part of 
the rudimentary political game for selfish class groups to make people 
believe that some arch conspirator, proclaimed a ruler, derived his 
authority from a just God, and that it was part of their religious duty 
to obey. Under the cloak of religion unscrupulous potentates prac- 
ticed inconceivable cruelties until an enlightened world demanded the 
separation of religion and State. 

Just as in the barbaric ages the Kaiser sought to convince his peo- 
ple and the world that a God-given power was his. He and his ilk 



dominated a peoples who had imbibed this teaching and accepted his 
imperial mandates. Those who refused to recognize his '* God-given 
right to rule" were proclaimed his enemies and the enemies of his 
people. The swing of his rule was circumscribed by the independent 
thoughts of millions outside of his domain. 

His forebears and the ring of which Kaiser William was the rep- 
resentative saw the circle growing smaller about them — saw nations 
rent and peoples fight to the death for freedom — and they began to 
create a fighting machine which would support them m their unhal- 
lowed positions and provide force to break the encroaching circle and 
overrun the earth. 

Peace-loving nations sought to avoid an inevitable conflict between 
the forces adhering to two diametrically opposed theories of govern- 
ment until the Emperor, with his military machine made ready, seized 
upon the unfortunate assassination of Archduke Francis Ferdinand, 
heir apparent to the throne of Austria, at the close of June, 1914, as a 
pretext for war and set out to subject peaceful nations. 

Thus started the struggle which involved twenty-eight nations of 
the world, having an aggregate population of nearly 1,600,000,000, or 
practically eleven-twelfths of the human race, entailing a loss of life 
approximating 10,000,000, with nearly three times as many wounded, 
and an estimated cost of $250,000,000,000. 

To those who would have a simple, understandable and compre- 
hensive story of the war, reciting the sacrifices and struggles of na- 
tions and the heroism of those who fought not for glory, but to defend 
their ideals and make men free, this volume is offered with the hope 
that it will prove a source of information and pleasure and fill a wide- 
spread need. 

Book I 







Collapse of the House of Hohenzollern and the Downfall of Imperialism— Empires Totter and Sings 
are Unseated— Gathering War Clouds— The Estrangement of Serbia and Austria— The Assassination 
of the Archduke Francis Ferdinand— The Storm Breaks— Declarations of War. 

"And everyone that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them 
not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house 
upon the sandr 

"And the rain descended and the floods came, and the winds blew and 
beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it." 

Matt. VII-26.27. 

SO fell the Imperial house of Germany on Monday, November 11, 
1918. With a crash that echoed 'round the earth it collapsed, 
bringing glorious peace out of the greatest struggle of men in all 

Builded, as was the house of that other foolish man, upon an un- 
stable foundation, the imperialistic structure of which William Hohen- 
zollern, Emperor of Germany, and his forebears were the architects, 
swayed and rocked in the world storms which swept about it and came 
tumbling to the earth a wreck. 

Two shots fired in the little city of Serajevo, Bosnia, on June 28, 
1914, pierced the ominous clouds which hung over central Europe threat- 
ening the peace and liberty of men, and marked the beginning of the 
storm, which in its gathering frenzy, rent the houses of Hapsburg in 
Austria and Romanoff in Russia; sent the Emperor Francis Joseph 
to his death, the unfortunate Czar Nicholas to an untimely grave; 
battered from their thrones King Constantine of Greece, King Ludwig 
of Bavaria, King Ferdinand and King Boris of Bulgaria, the Emperor 
Charles of Austria, and left seatless the German Kaiser. 

It gathered into the vortex of conflict twenty-eight nations of the 
world with a total population of nearly 1,600,000,000, or all but one- 
twelfth of the entire human race, cost 10,000,000 of lives and visited 
injury upon 17,000,000 more, besides involving untold suffering, and 
incalculable loss of property and the expenditure of more than 

2— W. L. 1*^ 


Christians and Jews, Mohammedans and Buddists fonght with and 
against each other; fathers were set against sons and brothers against 
brothers ; men burrowed into the ground, dived into the seas and soared 
into the air to gain points of vantage in the universal struggle which 
was brought about by the ambition of the Kaiser and the Junker 
classes of Germany to spread the mantle of Impeiialism over nations 
and create a world empire that would resist the growing forces of 
democracy over aU the earth. 

The ambition was one borne of generations of training and sought 
but an opportunity to give it sway. Nations are not longer permitted, 
however, to wage war for mere conquest, and even Germany, prepared 
and waiting to strike a blow at peaceful peoples, must needs find an 
excuse for stretching out her military arms and seizing coveted lands. 

The pretext for war was the assassination of the Archduke Francis 
Ferdinand, heir apparent to the Austrian throne, whose appearance 
in the little city of Serajevo, Bosnia, drew fire from the pistol of a 
Serbian fanatic. 

The Pretext for War. 

It was a beautiful Sunday morning in the Bosnian capital and the 
city was astir with expectancy. The Archduke, who had been attend- 
ing military manoeuvers in the vicinity, had announced his intention 
of inspecting troops in the city. The streets of Serajevo were thronged 
with picturesquely dressed men and women, for it was Serbian fete 
day. The Archduke and his consort, the Duchess of Hohenberg, had 
been met at the railway station by the local Governor and his staff 
and were slowly motoring through the crowded thoroughfares to the 
scene of the military inspection when a package fell upon the open 
hood of the royal car. The Archduke seized and tossed the bundle to 
the street where it exploded, injuring several lesser dignitaries and 
military attendants who were in an escort oar. 

The bomb thrower had been arrested, the Archduke had delivered 
an address and was on his way to visit the victims of the bomb when 
a second explosive missile was hurled at his car. When it failed to 
explode the man who threw it — a, Serbian student — rushed forward and 
began firing at the royal party. One bullet from his flashing pistol 
struck the Archduke in the neck, another marked the Duchess for its 


victim. Both became unconscious and died shortly after being removed 
to the Government House. 

How the assassination of an Austrian prince by a misguided 
Serbian student could be made a pretext for war is a story of intrigue, 
conspiracy and abuse of power involving the history of Austria and 
the German Empire and of races, and of the Balkan states with their 
wars and uprisings to throw off the yoke of autocracy and secure 
independence. The complexities of the situation as developed to this 
point in world history may be traced with interest in the chapters of 
this work dealing with the parts played by the various nations. 

Serbia, with her territory greatly increased by the war with Turkey 
in 1912-13, and her national spirit aroused, had become the scene of 
a '* Greater Serbia" movement, largely directed against Austria- 
Hungary, which held Bosnia, Croatia and Herzegovina, land which 
by Nationality and by speech were Serbian, and which in control of 
Austria barred Serbia from the sea. 

Serbia and Austria Alienated- 

The estrangement of Serbia and Austria was primarily due to the 
latter 's high-handed annexation of Bosnia in 1908 and the thwarting 
of Serbia's desire to secure an outlet to the Adriatic in 1913. Serbia's 
ambition was therefore not in keeping with Germany's plans for the 
Berlin-Bagdad railroad, which must run through Serbia, and conceived 
in the German mind the control of Serbia by Austria. 

The theory that a principal is responsible for the action of his 
agent was applied to Serbia, and the nation was held to be culpable in 
the assassination of the Archduke Francis Ferdinand, because the 
assassin was a Serbian, although an Austrian subject, and even though 
the crime was committed in Bosnia, under Austrian control. 

There were at the time four groups or divisions among the conti- 
nental powers. Germany, Austria and Italy were bound together in 
what was known as the Triple Alliance, and Great Britain, France and 
Eussia stood side by side in the Triple Entente. A smaller group, 
whose neutrality was guaranteed by treaties, was Belgium, Denmark, 
Holland and the Duchy of Luxemburg, sandwiched between Germany 
and France and Belgium, together with Switzerland. There were in 
a fourth group the Balkan nations, including Bulgaria, Servia, Monte- 
negro, Greece, Turkey and Roumania, more or less closely drawn to 


Russia, though Germany had secured a foothold in Turkey. With 
these stood the Iberian nations Spain and Portugal. 

The immediate train of events which gathered the war clouds over 
Europe goes back to the interference of other powers in the adjustment 
of affairs between Russia and Turkey in 1877. The nations had agreed 
upon a larger Bulgaria and an enlarged and independent Serbia, but 
at the Berlin conference, which Austria had taken the initiative in 
calling, Austria sought to have as much of the Christian territory 
of southeast Europe kept under the domination of the Turks. 

Fearing the influence of Russia with her increasing strength over 
Serbia, Montenegro and Bulgaria, and with the object of ultimately 
acquiring the territory- from the Turks, Austria secured by agreement 
at the conference a trusteeship over Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the 
right to temporary occupation and management of the territories. 

The Balkan War. 

Later, when Russia was defeated by the Japanese and the Young 
Turks reformed their government, Austria no longer fearing Russia, 
but feeling that the Turks might demand the evacuation of Bosnia, 
notified the powers represented at the Berlin conference that it had 
been decided to make Bosnia and Herzegovina part of the Austro- 
Hungarian Empire. Serbia's hope of getting an outlet to the Adriatic 
was blasted, and she was greatly embittered. 

Then came the war in which Serbia joined with little Montenegro 
and Greece to drive the Turks out of Europe. The great powers 
sought to prevent the conflict but without avail and the Balkan war 
is a matter of history. Serbia for her participation in the picturesque 
war was to secure as her share of conquered territory part of Albania, 
but again Austria stepped in, and working with Germany secured the 
operation of a plan which made Albania a separate state or principality 
with a German prince to rule over it. 

Serbia was further embittered and demanded of Bulgaria part 
of the territory assigned to that country to compensate her for the 
loss of Albania. Bulgaria stood upon her rights and the second phase 
of the Balkan war was precipitated, Serbia joining forces with Greece 
against Bulgaria. 

When the smoke of battle cleared away Serbia had acquired 


addiuional territory to the south, but she was still landlocked and cut 
off from the sea by Bosnia^ Montenegro and Albania. 

There was in consequence of these events a strong anti-Austrian 
sentiment in Serbia and Austria stood ready to chastise her belligerent 
neighbor. In fact, in August, 1913, a year before the great conflict 
started, Austria had communicated to Italy the fact that she proposed 
to attack Serbia. Italy refused to join with Austria in the attack and 
urged Germany to dissuade Austria from her purpose. Germany, 
thus made aware that she could not receive the support of Italy, de- 
clined to begin the war at that time. She hastened, however, to com- 
plete the Berlin-Bagdad railway and the rebuilding of the Eael canal, 
necessary tp her scheme of world-wide expansion. 

After the assassination of the Archduke Francis Ferdinand, how- 
ever, Germany with Austria formulated a policy which when adopted 
in connection with the tragedy would be sure to precipitate war. Ger- 
many's immediate connection is traced to a conference held in Potsdam 
on July 5, a week after the assassination, and which was attended by 
the Kaiser who hurried home from a hunting trip, together with 
statesmen, diplomatic, military, financial and industrial leaders of 
Geimany. At this time it was announced that Germany would be 
ready for war in a few weeks. 

Austria's Terms to Serbia. 

The demands presented to Serbia by Austria in reparation for 
the slaying of Francis Ferdinand provided for the unconditional 
acceptance of the terms within forty-eight hours and were regarded 
by world diplomats to be the most arrogant and insulting ever pre- 
sented by one nation to another. One of the provisions was that the 
Serbian government should compel the dissolution of the society 
Narodna Obrana (the chief society of the country for Serbian propa- 
ganda), as well as all other organizations that might engage in propa- 
ganda against Austria-Hungary, and to further eliminate from teach- 
ing and from the schools, anything which might serve to foment propa- 
ganda against Austria. It was demanded, too, that in bringing the 
slayers of the Archduke to justice and that in the suppression of the 
Pan-Serbian movement — the Greater Serbia idea — Serbia accept the 
collaboration of Austrian officials. 

Serbia accepted all of the demands on July 25, but denied to 


Austria the right to exercise judicial authority in Serbia. Diplomatic 
exchanges began at once between the various powers to avert war 
and Italy made it known that she was not in sympathy with the Austria- 
Hungary note to Serbia. 

Finally, on July 27, Austria issued a note in which she said that 
Serbia's acquiescence to her demands was unsatisfactory and ''filled 
with the spirit of dishonesty," and on the following day, July 28, 1914, 
declared war on Serbia. 

That Germany was bent upon war was made clear by ttie fact 
that when Sir Edward Grey, British Secretary for Foreign Affairs, 
sent peace proposals for a Council of Europe to both the Kaiser and 
the Czar, the Kaiser's answer was an order for mobilization and an 
ultimatum to Eussia to stop mobilizing. 

France and Italy had supported England in the proposal but this 
did not prevent Germany from demanding of France a statement as 
to her attitude in the event of a Russo-German war. This was on 
July 30, and the same day Austria invaded Serbia. On the following 
night military law was proclaimed throughout Germany and Eussia 
ordered a general mobilization. 

The Invasion of Belgium. 

Personal messages meanwhile passed between the Kaiser and the 
Czar, to both of whom King George sent appeals for peace, but on 
August 1, and while Austria was still negotiating with the Czar, 
Emperor William declared that "the sword had been forced into his 
hand" and declared war on Eussia. France, a lender of money to 
Eussia, and party to the Triple agreement, ordered a mobilization of 
military forces. 

There was no longer doubt that Europe was to be shaken by a 
great conflict nor was the possibility lessened when, on August 2, the 
Kaiser sent an ultimatum to King Albert of Belgium demanding free 
passage of his armies through Belgium. The same day German forces 
crossed the frontiers of Luxemburg and France, and Germany declared 
war on France. 

On August 4 the German troops invaded Belgium, though bound 
by treaty to respect and preserve the latter 's neutrality. Belgium 
appealed to England to preserve her neutrality and the latter demanded 
the withdrawal of German troops. Failing to obtain satisfaction Eng- 


land declared war on Germany to the latter 's dismay, the German 
Chancellor von Bethmann-Hollweg expressing himself as unwilling to 
believe that England would go to war "just for a scrap of paper,'' 
an expression that gave the world one of its first glimpses of how 
little honor had to do with the conduct of affairs in Germany. 

The die was now cast and the train of events started which led 
around the earth. Austria was already bombarding Belgrade, the 
plain of Luxemburg was overrun by Uhlans and the frontier guards 
of Lorraine were making their reply to the Kaiser's challenge. Europe 
was aflame. The storm had broken. 



The First Shots of the War— The Luxemburg Frontier— Defence of L16ge— Permanent Fortifications Become 
a Useless Art— Siege Howitzers— Two Small Forts Stay the Onrush of the Hosts of Mars— Fall of 
Namur— The Archers of Mons— The Might of Charleroi. 

THE utter disregard by Germany of the neutrality rights of in- 
nocent and peaceful Belgium was the incident of action at this 
critical moment which was destined to bind the whole world in bitter 

It was Germany's plan to crush France before Russia could mob- 
ilize and then turn eastward to crush the forces of the Czar. Time 
was an important factor in this military plan and unfortunately the 
quickest and easiest path over which the Germans could pass on their 
way to Paris was through Belgium. Therefore all consideration for 
the country of King Albert was thrust aside. In the German Reichstag 
the Imperial chancellor defended this course, and admitting the wrong 
declared, ''We are now in a state of necessity, and necessity knows no 

Hostile Entrance Into Belgium. 

Straightway one of the greatest horrors of all history began — the 
invasion and devastation of Belgium. The German forces had pre- 
i^iously entered the Grand Duchy of Luxemburg, which was in a state 
of disarmed neutrality under the protection of its neighbors. Its sole 
defence consisted of about 300 volunteers and gendarmes. 

When the vanguard of the German forces — several motor cars 
filled with officers and men — came into the once powerful city of Luxem- 
burg and demanded the right of passage through the little country, the 
Grand Duchess motored up and turned her car across the roadway to 
bar the soldiers' progress. She was ordered home and her chauffeur 
was compelled to turn away. A minister of State who had made protest 
was laughed to scorn and the gendarmes were swept aside. 

On August 4, when hostilities began, the Belgian army wag still 


© Underwood & Underwood, N. Y. 
WOODROW WILSON, President U. S. A. 

His record in the World War, for Democracy, is known throughout the world. 
His determined efforts brought forth results which were crowned with glory. 

© Underwood & Underwood, N. Y. 


Lorri'ini'^tVBisma'^Pk^ T^'i'q^ ^^''''^^A "^-^ opposed the yielding or Alsace and 
■h^^t^ lu^ -J ^?^ ,^'S- ^^ ^91S he said: "I make war, I make war The victorv 
IS to the side which lasts to the last quarter o( an hour " And Alsace and Lor^ 
raine were returned to France. "ywi- i\M^ Aibace ana j-.or- 

© Underwood & Underwood, N. Y. 

The international brains of tlie economic side of the war, the one man who 
was able to form a coalition cabinet in Great Britain, which fused every political 
party into a phalanx of united effort. 

From L nderwood & Underwuud, N. Y 

© Clinedlnst. Washington, D. C. 

Commander of the United States forces in France and Belgium. General 
Pershing was born in 1864, in Laclede, Missouri. Every inch of his six feet is 
fighting material. "Lafayette, we are here." — Pershing. The greatest four-word 
speech in history. 

© Underwood & Underwood, N. Y. 

Generalissimo of Allied Armies. "Leave it to Focli," they said ; and leave 
it to Foch they did. He outgeneraled the Germans, and the world knows the 

1, N. Y. 

General Haig's family tree dates back many centuries, and he comes from 
the very flower of Scotch stock. The virtues of the "Haigs of Bamersyde" were 
extolled by the poets in the thirteenth century. 

© Underwood & Underwood, N. Y. 

"Belgium, re-established in all its rights, will rule its destinies according to 
its aspirations and in full sovereig-nty." Prom his re-entry into Brussels address. 

© L'nderwuud & Underwood, N. Y. 

The General who led Italy's Army to glorious victory. 


in the process of mobilization along the river Dyle and covering the 
advance upon Brussels and Antwerp and there was no infantry to 
support the forts. Troops — the Third Division and a mixed Brigade, 
were rushed to Liege and the civic guard of the city joined the forces. 
This hastily mobilized force of probably 20,000 was set to defend the 

Gangs were put to work digging trenches and throwing up breast- 
works, and houses and buildings in the line of fire were leveled. The 
resistance of the Belgians aroused the ire of the Germans and from 
thence on the doom of the country was sealed so far as the Hun army 
was concerned. 

Germany had said, ''Let us go through your land and we will 
compensate you for damages when the war has been won. ' ' But King 
Albert, with an army of less than 200,000, prepared to defend his 
country and in answer to Germany *s proposal said to his people: **I 
have faith in our destinies. A nation which defends itself commands 
the respect of all. Such a nation cannot perish. God will be with us in 
a just cause. Long live independent Belgium!" 

German/s Plan for Entering Belgium. 

The First German Army of von Kluck was concentrated at a point 
along the Rhine above Aix-la-Chapelle ; the Second Army, in command 
of von Bulow, below the first; the third army, under the Duke of 
Wurtemburg, along the river Moselle; the Crown Prince's army was 
that on the frontier opposite Luxemburg; the Fifth Army, under the 
Crown Prince of Bavaria, outside of Metz, and the Sixth Army_at ai 
point some miles from Nancy, under General von Heeringen. "i 

There was no mystery about the German plan. It was the famous 
mass-drive at the centre and flanking movement at both ends, in so faifl 
as this might be possible with regard to the lay of the land. At th^ 
northern end, a very heavy German force had been gathered, for ifl 
would be necessary for the First, Second and Third German Armies to 
enter the battle-ground by the comparatively narrow defile between 
the Holland frontier and the Ardennes and then sweep out fan-fashion 
to the sea. It was the intention of the German High Command to send 
the First Army by forced march and the occupation of the Belgian 
railways to Brussels and Antwerp. The Second Army, to which were 
attached the heavy siege howitzers, was directed against the two pow- 
erful fortresses of Namur and Maubeuge. The third Army was to force 


the Moselle by Givet, not waiting for the reduction of Namur. This 
was like a great sickle sweeping the Belgians into the sea. 

It will be noted that the Third Army had the shortest distance to 
travel. This was designed because it was to form a junction with the 
mass-drive or ''shock" centre of the army. The Fourth Army, under 
the German Crown Prince, was designed to attack the French-Luxem- 
burg frontier (for this reason the violation of Luxemburg territory 
was a necessary part of the German plan), centering near Sedan. The 
Fifth Army, under the Bavarian Crown Prince, was to strike north of 
Verdun towards Rheims. Thus the Third, Fourth and Fifth Armies, 
were converging on Paris, with the whole driving force of the German 
Empire behind them. 

The Teuton Project Disarranged. 

The southern portion of the Fifth Army and the whole of the 
Sixth Army formed the southern flank. In this territory the Germans 
knew the enveloping movement to be impossible. In the first place, it 
was out of the question to overrun Switzerland as they planned to 
invade Belgium. That would take time, and delay meant disaster. In 
the second place, France had fortified the Verdun-Toul-Epinal-Belfort 
chain of fortresses with such strength that the Germans did not believe 
that the line could be forced without the greatly feared delay. The 
German Sixth Army, then, was a defensive army, designed to prevent 
a French invasion of the Rhine Valley through Alsace. This was a 
highly dangerous point, and von Heeringen was sent there as one of the 
keenest strategists in the German command. 

To recapitulate. The First and Second Armies were to sweep 
Belgium; the Third, Fourth and Fifth Armies were to drive on Paris; 
the Sixth Army was to hold its ground and prevent a French attack 
in Alsace. That was the plan. 

Little Liege disarranged the plan. Liege, the Marne, Ypres and 
the Piave are the four great names of the war. It will be well to con- 
sider Liege closely, for only those who have studied the war from the 
military point of view assign to it the importance that its defense 

Liege was what was known as a ''ring fortress," that is to say, 
the town itself was not fortified, but it was surrounded by a ring of six 
forts of the first order, Pontisse, Barchon and Fleron on the north and 
east; Loncin, Flemalles and Boncelles on the west and south. Between 


tliese and at points of less strategic importance were six smaller forts, 
or fortins, Evegiiee, Chaudfontaine, Embourg, Hollogne, Lantin and 

Tliese forts were moderately well armed, but the nine-incb gnns, 
ordered from Krupps several years before, had never been received. 
It afterwards became known that the German government had ordered 
Krnpps not to deliver the order. In the twelve forts there were four 
hundred guns, mainly six-inch and 4.7-inch guns, and eight-inch mortars 

Liege Fortifications Not Invulnerable to Siege Howitzers. 

Moreover, these forts had been built by Brialmont in what was 
the very latest fashion at the time he built them — but that was twenty 
years before the opening of the world war. Each of the six main forts 
was built as a triangle, commanding a strong natural position, and 
approached by a steep artificial mound. At the top of the earth slope 
was a deep ditch, the counterscarp of which was a masonry wall topped 
with wire entanglements. The entire earth slope, ditch and wall was 
exposed to heavy guns throwing shrapnel shell, as well as to machine- 
gun and rifle fire. Quick-firing guns, mounted in cupolas at each angle 
of the triangle, swept the sunken ditch with an enfilading fire. No 
troops could storm that ditch. On the main inner triangle was the 
infantry parapet, shaped something like a heart, pierced for rifle fire 
and with more machine-gun emplacements. In the hollow of that heart- 
shaped space, and sunk therein, rose a solid central mass of concrete, 
on and in which were the shelter and gTin cupolas for the heavier guns 
and mortars. The cupolas rose from the floor of the hollow, outside 
the central mass. They were invisible to the foe until raised by their 
inner machinery, but once raised, the turreted guns could fire their 
six-inch shells in any direction. When Brialmont built the forts they 
were absolutely impregnable. 

The impregnability of such fortifications as those of Liege, how- 
ever, was only in relation to the guns and howitzers of the period of 
1§94. They were still impregnable to direct-fire guns in 1914. Events 
proved that they were not invulnerable to long-range howitzers. As 
these "siege guns," or, more correctly, siege howitzers, were the domi- 
nating factor of the early part of the war, it is necessary to explain 
their tremendous importance, and to show how they changed the entire 
character of modern warfare. 


The difference between a gun and a howitzer lies in the fact that 
a gun depends largely for its destructiveness on its striking power or 
its velocity, while the destructiveness of a howitzer depends on the 
power of the exploding charge of its shell. The shell from a large gun 
travels with a muzzle velocity of over half a mile a second. It must 
have as flat a trajectory as possible to increase its striking power. 
A howitzer shell needs only just enough velocity to carry the high; 
explosive to the point desired. It flies with a high trajectory, being 
lobbed up in the air to drop almost perpendicularly on the point desired. 
A howitzer generally looks as though it were shooting at the moon. 

Now, Brialmont had built the ring of forts of Liege in such a way 
that every point which would give shelter to a howitzer of the power 
of his time could be swept by a six-inch gun, for, as has been shown, a 
gun has a far longer range than a howitzer. Moreover, the sunken 
forts of Liege, by reason of their hidden character, could laugh even 
at a naval gun. At the time of the building of these forts, the six-inch 
was the biggest howitzer. 

The Invasion of Belgium Begiin. 

Knowing this — for Belgium was honeycombed with German spies 
— the German High Command had sent 8.4-inch howitzers with the 
First Army, or, to speak more exactly, with that part of the First 
Army, under General von Emmich, to which was entrusted the reduc- 
tion of Liege. It was a mathematical problem, purely. The German 
High Command had reasoned that these large howitzers could be 
located at points behind small rises of ground, sheltered from the six- 
inch gunfire of the forts, and that they could reduce Liege. The famous 
siege howitzers, as has been said, were crawling on their way with the 
Second Army for the reduction of Namur and Maubeuge, where the 
Germans expected a fiercer resistance than Belgium could improvise 
tit Liege on the surprise attack, on the first day of the war. 

On the evening of August 3, 1914, though war had not yet been 
declared, the German forces crossed the Belgian frontier. At nine 
o'clock in the morning of August 4, the second advance line of von 
Emmich reached Vise, north of Liege and close to the Dutch frontier. 
The first shots of the war were exchanged with a Belgian guard. The 
Belgians then blew up the bridge across the Meuse at Vise and the 
Germans commenced to bombard the town. Early in the afternoon 


they crossed on a pontoon bridge. The armed invasion of Belgium begun. By evening, Liege was invested on three sides. 

Shortly before five o^clock in the evening of that day, cavalry 
patrols appeared before the little fortin of Evegnee. The fort barked 
defiance. Within the hour, infantry, light and heavy artillery appeared 
and, before darkness fell, the bombardment of Forts Barchon, Evegnee 
and Fleron had begun. By eleven o 'clock Chaudf ontaine was engaged, 
and by midnight, Fort Embourg. By three o'clock in the morning 
Fort Boncelles began to speak, and just as dawn broke, Fort Pontisse, 
in the far north of the ring, opened fire with its larger guns. Within 
twelve hours of the time that the first German cavalry had been sighted, 
every fort on the eastern side of the Meuse was engaged. 

The first infantry attack was against Fourt Embourg, one of the 
smaller forts. The supposedly unprepared Belgian infantry not only 
defended the fort with great gallantry, sweeping down the massed 
formation of the Germans by thousands, but counter-attacked with 
vigor. At eight o'clock the Germans were forced to withdraw. The 
first engagement of the war was won by Belgium. 

Heavy Losses by the Germans Before Liege. 

By noon, German troops had made nine attacks at one or other of 
the forts. They were beaten back every time. At least 15,000 men 
fell during the morning, without achieving any result. Briahnont's 
forts were too strong and the Belgians were too brave to fall under any 
mass attack, no matter how heavy and powerful. 

The howitzers, however, told another story. Shortly before noon 
of that day, August 5, the hoisting machinery of Fort Fleron, one of 
the larger forts, was put out of commission by a howitzer shell. The 
two smaller forts on either side, Chaudfontaine and Evegnee, could 
not close the gap. The Belgian infantry were eager to try and hold 
the gap by rifle fire, but General Leman realized that this would be 
folly. On this day, the Belgians had 22,500 against 120,000 Germans, 
a numerical superiority of almost six to one. What was still more 
disastrous, the railway from Herve into Liege, which had been guarded 
by Fort Fleron, fell into German hands. 

With the guns of Fleron silenced, the German howitzers which 
had been bombarding^ that fort now turned to the two little fortius, 
Chaudfontaine and Evegnee. Following the German policy of con- 


tinuous attack, fresh troops advanced constantly against the Belgian 
garrisons, which thus had no time for sleep and hardly any time for 
food. The howitzer shells dropped on the fortins and ripped away 
their stone, cement and earth protections as though these had been but 
cardboard. By the morning of August 6, the way into Liege was open 
from the east. General Leman, consulting with his officers at military 
headquarters, was almost captured. He escaped over a wall. General 
Leman promptly ordered the evacuation of the city by the infantry, 
and the follomng day, August 7, 1914, Burgomaster Kleyer and the 
Bishop of Liege negotiated for the surrender of the city. 

Heroic Resistance of the Belgians. 

The situation was excessively bad for the Germans. The High 
Command had given von Emmich forty-eight hours to take Liege. It 
had taken three days. But — as it turned out, a very large "but" — 
the western forts of Liege were not silenced. General Leman withdrew 
to these, announcing his intention to fight to the last gun. The 
importance of this decision may be grasped when it is said that Fort 
Pontisse controlled the Liege to x\ntwerp railway, Fort Loncin domi- 
nated the Liege to Brussels railway and Fort Boncelles swept the 
Liege to Paris railway. As long as those forts held out, the German 
army could not move. The city of Liege, indeed, had been taken by 
a three-day siege; the strategic fortress of Liege had not. Even the 
eastern conquest was not without its annoyances. When Chaudfon- 
taine could no longer fight, the commandant sent half a dozen locomo- 
tives at full speed into the tunnel from opposite ends, so that they would 
collide in the middle and block the tunnel. The Verviers to Liege rail- 
way, therefore, was also out of business for the transport of German 

The people of Liege, fearing that the Germans would wreak repri- 
sals on the city if the forts resisted, begged General Leman to sur- 
render. The heroic commander, knowing that each day's delay at that 
time was worth a week, or maybe a month, later, answered curtly, 

''The forts must hold!" 

The German High Command had not anticipated this resistance. 
Fort Pontisse and Fort Flemalles to north and south of Liege respec- 
tively, commanded the crossings of the Meuse. There was no satis- 
factory artillery position for the 8.4 howitzers. The reduction of the 


forts was attempted by infantry attack. At Pontisse, ten pontoon 
bridges were built across the Meuse by the Germans, with desperate 
courage, but, every time, the six-inch guns of the fort blew the bridges 
to atoms and the troops which had crossed were cut off and killed to 
a man. At Flemalles, the troops crossed, but the heavy artillery could 
not get over. Fort Boncelles, unprotected by the river, became "the 
stoke-hold of hell," as the Commandant was heard graphically to 
describe it. 

Without sleep, with little food, the Belgians fought on. The 8th, 
the 9th and the 10th still saw 120,000 Germans stopped by a Belgian 
army, now raised by reinforcements to 36,000 men. On the 10th, Gen- 
eral Leman had both legs crushed by falling masonry. He refused to 
go to a hospital, but was carried to his motor-car. He slept in it. He 
fought his forts from it. 

Von Emmich grew savage and desperate. He must send for help. 
The great siege guns, crawling south to Namur, had to be diverted 
and brought north to reduce those indomitable little forts. It took 
those wide-mouthed monsters three long days to crawl up to Liege. 

The Germans Steadily Advance. 

Such guns had never been seen before. They were Germany's 
great war secret. Their weight was seventy-one tons. Each gun was 
transported in four pieces, each part being dragged by three traction 
engines on caterpillar wheels, a fourth huge leader engine going ahead 
to test the road and to give an added pull to the three powerful tractors 
when going up hills. The calibre of the gun was 42-centimeter (16.4-inch) . 
The explosive force of one shell from these guns could destroy four 
city blocks. 

When these arrived. General Leman knew the end had come. He 
ordered the infantry to retire on the Dyle. With less than 100 men 
the hero awaited the final bombardment of Fort Loncin. Three shells 
were sufficient to destroy it. The great steel cupolas were uprooted 
like weeds, pieces of concrete larger than a room were sent flying like 
pebbles. General Leman was pinned under the wreckage, grievously 
wounded, but not fatally. 

It had taken Germany ten days to open the railways to the west. 
The northern wing of the fan, the right flank of the German armies, 
instead of sweeping out ahead of the mass-attack, was a week behind. 


Germany's whole initial manoeuvre was changed by the seven days' 
delay created by the three small forts. 

With the fall of the forts, the long-delayed tidal wave of graycoats 
swept over Belgium. The cavalry tried to force the Dyle at Haelen, 
at Tirlemont and at Eghezee, but were beaten off. The Belgians fought 
like heroes. At last, on August 14, the cavalry, which were only acting 
as a screen, were withdrawn, and the four German army corps which 
had been stopped at Liege began to thunder forward. Diest, St. Trond 
and Waremme fell, but the Belgians held fast again at Aerschot. Each 
day, yes, every hour, the Belgians* expected to see French troops coming 
up from the south or British troops landing at Ostend. Neither ap- 
peared. The Belgians feared that they were being sacrificed. 

The Belgian main army retreated on Antwerp, and the right wing, 
becoming a rearguard, covered its retreat at Louvain. Here a bitter 
battle occurred, lasting two days. Louvain fell to the Germans, but 
the Belgians retreated in good order, having safely covered their main 
army. On the 23rd a counter-offensive drove the Germans out of 
Malines. Still, each day, the Belgians expected the landing of British 
troops. None came. Notwithstanding, for three weeks the Belgians 
held back the German divisions striking northwards. That they were 
able to do so was because von Kluck's army was pivoting for a south- 
ern blow, realizing that the time could not be afforded for the outward 
sweep to the sea. 

British and French Forces Combine. 

Why had not the British arrived at Ostend? The real answer was 
simple. They had landed at Boulogne, the first transports arriving 
August 9. Rightly realizing that Germany's goal would be Paris and 
that Brussels was only a side-issue, the British military leaders decided 
to join with the French Army and take up such position as the French 
leaders should deem best. 

General Joffre, the re organizer of the French Army, was naturally 
the man for the supreme command. He showed his mettle as a strate- 
gist, rather than a tactician, by taking up what seemed to be a strong 
position in a right-angled position, with the corner of the angle at 
Namur. This was typical French strategj^, being the operative comer 
of a strategic square, a manner of handling armies which will be dealt 
with in detail in the next chapter, when showing the system in operation. 

Namur was chosen as the corner for two reasons, one that it was 

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© Underwood & Underwood, N. Y. 

Infantry were in the act of occupying an important hill when they were met 
with a strong counter-attack. The timely arrival of machine guns and supports 
restored the situation. 

British Official I'liotoKiapli. fc' t'nderwood & Underwood, N. Y. 


The British Red Cross stretcher bearers were only 600 yards from the enemy at the battle 

of Menin Road. Note the devastated condition of the country. 

;£) From Underwood & Underwood, N. Y. 
Showing how the Turkish forces in Palestine pursued their atrocious warfare. Sharpened 
stakes set at angles, steel hoops, ditches, etc., to injure horse and man. 

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•«oii^°'^^5 British Army Generals. They kept hammering the West Front hero- 

C^sbed tenaciously, until the Hindenburg and all other enemy iTnes were 

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Allies. v^ermany, evacuated by the Qerman army and occupied by the 


directly in the path of the advancing hosts, the other that, as a fortified 
place and well situated at the junction of the Rivers Sambre and Meuse, 
it had strong natural advantages. General Leman had held back the 
Germans for nine days with two forts; it was therefore possible that 
Namur, with the French army backing it, could hold out even longer. 
This reasoning was unsound. Fort Loncin had only held out for an 
hour or so, after the 16.4-inch howitzers had reached there. Namur 
had four forts and five fortius of the Liege type, constructed by the 
same engineer, defended by the same weight of guns. 

The next question was the proportion of numbers. The French- 
British forces on the right angle cornering on Namur were approxi- 
mately 300,000 men. Joffre had reason to anticipate the attack of a 
German army of 400,000 men, a serious enough disproportion in itself, 
but discounted by the fact that this army would be striking against a 
right angle and therefore unable to use the weight of a massed straight 
line. As a matter of fact, under von Kluck, von Biilow and von Wur- 
temburg combined, there were certainly 700,000 men and possibly 
800,000. Even had Liege justified confidence in fortification, this over- 
whelming superiority in numbers was more than a menace, it was a 
prophecy of disaster. 

Reduction of the Forts of Namur. 

The Germans, however, had learned a lesson at Liege. They were 
not going to waste time and men by infantry attack on the forts of 
Namur. Two of the 42-centimeter (16.4-inch) siege guns, such as the 
two which had finally reduced the Liege forts, were seen by Allied 
scouts rolling over the Belgian plains a day or two before the attack 
on Namur. They were probably used. But, in any case, the Germans 
had thirty-two 28-centimeter guns, large enough to fire from beyond 
the reach of the fortress guns. Namur was doomed before the first 
shot was fired. 

At sundown of August 20, the Germans were in position, and the 
Second Army trained its heavy artillery on the forts. The Belgian 
guns were outranged. It was merely wasting ammunition to answer. 
One long-continued hail of high-explosive shell fell on the forts. Stone 
was blown to powder, wooden beams to splinters, while the vacuum 
produced by the explosion of a shell did not kill or wound, but prac- 
tically fused flesh, bone and blood into pulp. Even under these condi- 
tions the forts of Namur held out until August 23, though, as will be 

3— w. L. • 


seen, the defense of the last two days meant nothing to the bulk of the 
German Army. Namur was settled in a few hours. Already, on the 
morning of the 21st, it was evident to the Germans that it could not 
stop their advance. The first clash between the Germans and the 
Allies was at hand, the fortified armor covering their operative corner 
having been incinerated in a tornado of fire. 

The battle was to join along Joffre's right angle, then, back of 
Namur, Charleroi being the actual corner. Lined up from the west 
was the British Expeditionary Force, a marvelous organization of 
fighting men, not civilian troops, like the French and German armies, 
but ''regulars." There were but 70,000 of these, and they took up the 
line from Conde through Mons to Binche. There, the Fifth French 
Army, with 120,000 men, under General Lanrezac, took up the line, 
holding the Charleroi corner and extending southeastward to Dinant. 
General Langle de Gary, with the Fourth French Army, also of 120,000 
men, continued the southern line until he conjoined with the Third, 
under General Ruffey, which did not enter into this particular campaign. 

Numerical Superiority of the German Army. 

Opposite the British Expeditionary Force of 70,000 men was von 
Kluck's First German Army with 250,000 men. Their disposition is 
of importance. Two army corps, or 100,000 men (a German Army 
Corps, on a war footing, carries a reserve which makes it larger than 
a French or English Army Corps), were to the west of the westernmost 
part of the British line; two corps, or 100,000 men, were facing the 
70,000 British ; and the fifth corps of 50,000 men was facing the weak! 
junction point between the French and British Commands. Von Biilow, 
with the Second German Army, also had five army corps, or 250,000 
men, against Lanrezac 's 120,000; the Duke of Wurtemburg, with the 
Third German Army, had the same proportion. Moreover, though 
this was not known until long after, two cavalry divisions, under Gen- 
eral von Hansen, had come through the Ardennes and were ready to 
pierce through and aid the German drive at the Charleroi corner. 

The disproportion in numbers, however, was not fundamentally 
as great as it was tactically. The Germans were throwing most of 
their force forward. The French were holding theirs back. Figures 
were never given out for this period, but the conditions of fighting 
show that on August 20 the Allies had about 1,100,000 men in the field 


(inclusive of Russia) and the Germans, 1,400,000. Germany's reserve 
military man-power, however, was far greater than that of the Allies, 
while the Allies' population-power, out of which trained man-power 
might slowly be brought, was greater than that of the Central Powers. 

A few cavalry skirmishes on Friday, August 21, marked the German 
realization that Namur was no obstacle. In the afternoon artillery fire 
began at Jemappes. Toward evening German artillery took up posi- 
tion against Charleroi and Thuin. A few shots were fired, to get the 
ranges. The stage was set for the Battle of Charleroi. 

The following morning, early, von Biilow attacked Charleroi in 
full strength. While it cannot be said that the French were unpre- 
pared, the reports from Namur, which showed that some of the forts 
were still holding, gave them little notice of the suddenness of the 
blow. Nor was the air scout work of the Allies yet sufficiently advanced 
to inform General Lanrezac of the forces opposing him. The Germans 
fought from six o'clock in the morning until nearly noon before they 
forced the bridge at Chatelet. Von Kluck swung sideways, between 
the British and French, and carried the bridge at Thuin, at two o'clock 

in the afternoon. 

Germans Win at Charleroi. 

The Fifth French Army, holding the point of the angle, was thus 
flanked on both sides. A hasty retreat was the only resort. Into the 
retreat, just as it began, plunged the mysterious von Hansen army, 
with two strong cavalry divisions. Lanrezac was on the point of anni- 
hilation. He fled, leaving behind him his wounded and many of his 
guns. It was a matter of minutes. Half an hour's delay would have 
caused the Fifth French Army to be surrounded and cut down. Satur- 
day evening was a wild flight, and midnight saw Charleroi in flames, 
although Turco and Zouave troops had charged back into the city 
several times and driven the Germans out in hand-to-hand fighting. 
The Germans failed before cold steel, but their artillery was irresistible. 

In order to shorten the line, the Fourth French Army promptly 
fell back on Philippeville, thus closing the gap almost created by von 
Hansen's impetuous push. Sunday, August 23, saw the French armies 
retreating rapidly, but in better order. The operative comer still held. 
None the less, the Namur-Charleroi battle was a decided victory for 

It has been stated that von Kluck had swung eastward, between 
the British and French lines, on Saturday afternoon, and had taken 


the bridge across the Sambre at Thuin. This not only flanked the 
French under Lanrezac, but it also flanked the British right. On the 
same day, moreover, von Kluck detached his cavalry and the western- 
most of his army corps. The cavalry he sent outward in a wide sweep 
beyond Tournai, the corps he put in motor transports and sent them 
on a forced advance west of Conde. Of both these movements, the 
British commander, Sir John French, was supremely ignorant. 

The cutting off of the British from the French, at Thuin, prevented 
direct communication between Lanrezac and Sir John French. The 
rout, which began at six o'clock in the evening, was of so complete a 
character that telegraph instruments were never set up. Two dispatch 
riders sent by Lanrezac to the British failed to arrive, being either shot 
or captured. German spies behind the lines cut Lanrezac 's wires to 

Retreat of the British From the Mons to the Mame. 

On Sunday morning, August 23, therefore, the British, holding the 
exposed Conde-Mons-Binche position, were uninformed as to the dis- 
aster at Charleroi. They did not know that their right flank was not 
3nly unprotected, but actually flanked by one of von Kluck 's arm^ 
corps. Von Kluck, with admirable restraint, held back from attacking. 
The church bells rang. The morning services proceeded without inter- 

It was nearly one o^clock before British cavalry patrols hastened 
back with the news of a German advance through the woods. A few 
minutes before half-past one, the battle of Mons began. It developed 
rapidly. By two o'clock, the British lines were being severely shelled, 
and Sir John French, anticipating the fire of 300 guns, found more 
than 600 marshaled against him. At half-past three the German 
infantry attacked in mass formation. Their rifle fire was poor. The 
loss of life was heavy. The Germans fell back, and artillery duels 
resumed sway. 

In view of later knowledge it becomes possible to understand why 
von Kluck did not rush the British position on that Sunday. He had 
advantage enough in men and guns to have done so. As a matter of 
fact, he did not try to take the Mons position. He was employing the 
whole of two army corps and the halves of two others to keep the 
British engaged, while the rest of his force was engaged in flanking the 
British on both sides. It was good tactics. 


Then, at five o'clock iu the evening, what Sir John French called 
**a most unexpected message from General Joffre by telegraph" told 
of the Charleroi disaster and revealed to the British commander that 
he was outnumbered on the fighting line by three or four to one and 
in imminent danger of being flanked on both sides. 

' Almost simultaneously came a second German attack. It was then 
that occurred one of the most curious of the psychic experiences of the 
war. German prisoners and British soldiers agreed that there sud- 
denly appeared, in the evening light, long lines of ghostly English 
archers, such as those of the wars of six centuries before, which ad- 
vanced across the Mons canal, shooting cloth-yard arrows at the Ger- 
mans. The attack suddenly lost its fury and died down. 

Dusk of that Sunday found the British Expeditionary Force in a 
desperate position. That evening the men of the Irish Rifles, the 
Middlesex Regiment, the Gordon Highlanders and other famous British 
regiments, held the advanced lines and even made brisk counter-offen- 
sives, to deceive the Germans, in their turn, to cause them to believe 
that the British were still unaware of the disaster at Charleroi. Such 
was the British situation, when in the cold gray of before-dawn on 
Monday, August 24, Sir John French ordered the great fighting retreat 
from the Mons to the Marne. 



The Greatest Fighting Retreat in History— Rival Strategies, German Mass^Drive and French Lozenge- 
British Expeditionary Army Cut to Pieces— The Ragged Legion, Mobilized in Taxi-Cabs, That Saved 
Paris— Joffre's Tactics— How Foch Won the Victory in Half-an-Hour. 

THE unliappy delay of the dispatch recounting the fall of Char- 
leroi, not received until 5 P. M. of that most important Sunday, 
August 23, 1914, left the British Expeditionary Force in an advanced 
position, twenty-four hours to the rear of the retreating French armies. 
This spelt one terrible word — Sacrifice. If the Germans were to be 
prevented from breaking through, if all Joffre's strategy was to be 
saved from hideous ruin, then the British Army must retreat slowly, 
fighting rearguard actions aU the way. It must allow itseK to be cut 
to pieces, bit by bit. The agony must be drawn out. Each day, each 
hour, was priceless. 

i The famous '' fighting retreat from Mons to the Mame" was a 
gigantic strategic plan, requiring the boldness of a big mind for its 
decision and the loyalty and courage of heroes for its carrying out. 
It meant the deliberate abandonment of a large section of Northern 
France and the establishment of a powerful line of defence pivoting 
on Verdun, the southern arm reaching to Belfort, the western arm to 
Paris. This decision of Joffre's was based upon the discovery that 
the fortifications of Namur could not support the G-reat Siege Guns. 
In that case, Joffre argued, the next line of defence along the lines of 
La Fere-Laon-Rheims was untenable. 

Sir John French had 80,000 men on the morning of the battle of 
Mons, including cavalry. Against him were 150,000 men under von 
Kluck, engaged in a frontal attack-, 50,000 men working forward to his 
left flank; and 20,000 cavalry, which had already flanked him on that 
fatal Saturday and Sunday, coming up on his left rear. In addition 
to these odds 100,000 men under von Biilow had driven through the 
Charleroi-Namur breach of the angle, as shown in the last chapter, and 



were massed on his right. Von Hansen's cavalry, acting as a harassing 
force to the flying Fifth French Army, was on his right rear. 

The English force of 80,000 men was facing a German army of 
300,000. Yet, despite this disproportion of numbers, the English dare 
not fall back on French support, for such action would smash all 
Joffre's strategy. The strategy saved France but cost England the 
flower of her army. To understand this necessity, the main principle 
of French strategy must be made clear. 

The principle of French strategy is the strategic square, or 'dia- 
mond, acting on the basis of a spring bent back to the utmost, which, 
when it is released, rebounds forward with tremendous force. Under 
this plan, the whole group of armies is divided into four parts, placed 
like the bases on a baseball diamond. One point, like second base, is 
pointed toward the enemy and is called the ''operative comer," two 
armies, like the first and third bases, respectively, are the "manoeuvr- 
ing masses," the last, corresponding to home base, is the "army of 
reserve. " It is a form of strategy based on achieving big results with 
the smallest possible number of men. 

German and Allied Strategy Compared. 

The principle of German strategy is that of hurling the largest 
possible force of men and metal on a given point in an opposing line, 
breaking the line, and as the ends of the line close in to try and piece 
it together again, flanking the converging ends, rolling the army in on 
itself and, in military language, "annihilating it." Given, as in the 
case of the beginning of the world war, a larger force and a heavier 
weight of metal on the German than on the Allied side, the German 
strategy is sure of success, provided the opposing forces are also in 
formation of line. 

Note, however, how Joffre 's strategy vitiates this plan. A big army 
must spread out over a long line. There is a definite limit to the 
amount of traffic a road or a bridge can carry in a given time. "When, 
therefore, the massed line strikes an opposing point, it is not necessarily 
heavier at that point than the defending force. Moreover, it is in the 
discretion of the defending general to swing his two armies of manoeuvre 
either to right or left, together, and strike the opposing force at an 
unexpected point. Therefore, the opposing force dare not weaken its 
whole line to help the middle which is in contact. 


Since the point of the diamond is only an advance point, it can 
retreat. Indeed, it is expected to do so. That is what it is there to 
do. But a retreat is not a flight. On the contrary, every mile taken 
to the rear shortens the transport of supply, and brings the point of 
the diamond back on the manoeuvring masses and the reserve army. 
It is like pulling an arrow back to its head. If the string then be 
released the arrow springs forward with tremendous energy. 

That was exactly this position of the Retreat to the Marne. The 
British Army was the point, at second base; Verdun was first base, 
Conde was third base, and Paris was home base. The British Army, 
as the operative point, therefore, dared not let the enemy flank it, 
for then von Biilow would break inside the square. It must retreat 
in the shape of an inverted V, fighting all the while at the apex and on 
both flanks, until it made connections with the masses of manoeuvre, 
who were also retreating. Being twenty-four hours behind in starting 
the retreat, there was a gap. That gap was the danger. 

The "Fighting Retreat" to the Mame. 

At 4 o 'clock in the morning, the retreat began. It was covered by 
a gallant attack on Binche, by a couple of regiments, designed to con- 
vince the Germans that the British were advancing. Few men re- 
turned alive from that charge. In the half-light the Germans attacked 
furiously, and Sir John French, fearing a charge along the whole line 
ordered the First Division forward as though to retake Binche. It was 
heavily punished, but the Second Corps withdrew on the Quarouble- 
Dour-Frameries line, the right, however, suffering heavy losses. 

The British cavalry were then brought into play, and General 
Allenby, who later was to become famous in the Palestine campaign, 
charged on the German flank. The 9th Lancers and 18th Hussars ran 
into a wire entanglement and were cut to pieces. The arrival of the 
19th Infantry Brigade somewhat strengthened the left, at a crucial 
moment, but the continued retirement of the French meant that the 
British must go, also. They were a day behind, and therefore exposed 
to the full fury of the foe. 

The night of August 24-25 found the British on the Bavai-Maubeuge 
line, and a slight slackening on the right showed that the German hoped 
to entice the British commander to make a stand there. Maubeuge was a 
fortress of the first rank, but, as Sir John French put the matter: **The 


determined attempts of the enemy to get round my left flank assured me 
that it was his intention to hem me against that place and surround me. 
I felt that not a moment must be lost in retiring to another position. . . . 
The operation, however, was full of danger and difficulty, not only owing 
to the very superior force in my front, but also owing to the exhaustion 
of my troops.** 

Indeed, by the morning of August 25, matters were grave for the 
British. Whereas, on Sunday morning. Sir John French had faced von 
Kluck*s army of 250,000 men, on Sunday afternoon this had been raised 
to 300,000 by the addition of von Hansen's cavalry and during Monday 
at least one army corps from von Bulow was attacking or preparing to 
attack, near Maubeuge. On the other hand, counting all branches, the 
British had raised their numbers to 82,500 men, less the casualties of 
Sunday and Monday, certainly not less than 7,500 men. The odds at 
this point, then, were 300,000 to 75,000. 

The British Army Greatly Exhausted. 

It has already been shown that the British Army was twenty hours 
in arrear of the retreat schedule, owing to the failure to communicate 
the fall of Charleroi, but it must also be mentioned that Joffre 's strategic 
plan of falling back to the Rhine inevitably forced on the British the 
longest distance to travel, for the line was pivoting on Verdun. Two 
things, only, were in the British favor. The first was that the Germans, 
trying to envelop, were all the time on the outside of the arc and thus 
had even further to go. Sometimes this makes a great difference, for 
modern armies can only travel on good roads. The other was that the 
railroads and the excellent highways of France were in Sir John 
French's hands, ready for use, if he could but cover his retreat. The 
Allied lines were shortening and strengthening with every mile south, 
the German lines were lengthening and weakening with every mile of ad- 
vance. The strategy of the square was in operation ; the spring was be- 
ing bent back. 

Tuesday, August 25, was a critical day. Sir John French gave the 
army only four hours ' sleep, and a detachment sent back to intrench the 
Le Gateau line did not have any sleep at all. Through the day the army 
retired steadily, fighting rearguard actions all the while. General 
Allenby's cavalry, though men and horses were dropping with fatigue, 
fought all the long day through. 


liate in the evening, amid all the confusion of trying to make camp, 
the First Division of the Fir^t Army Corps, under General Haig, was 
suddenly pounced upon by an advance guard of von Kluck's army, at 
Maroilles. Out of the night came sudden relief. A few companies of 
the Fifth French Army appeared, as though from nowhere, and helped 
the British. These French troops were off their road, for the main 
army was being pursued hot-foot by von Bulow. 

At ten o'clock Haig reached Landrecies, his men at their last gasp. 
Yet, before he made camp, Haig took the precaution of putting up barbed 
wire defenses and the machine guns were placed to command the entry 
to the little town. The men lay down to sleep. They had not slept ten 
minutes when a full division of the German 9th Army Corps was at 
them. Staggering like drunken men from weariness, the Guards Bri- 
gade drove back the foe with heavy loss. They lay down on the ground 
to sleep again, but, three hours later, Haig inexorably roused them to 
the rearward march again. It took seasoned troops to endure such ter- 
rible handling. 

The Glorious Stand of Le Cateau. 

That same evening, the Second Army Corps, under General Smith- 
Dorrien, found itself in eqiially desperate straits. It reached Le Ca- 
teau by a more westerly route, some battalions having marched thirty 
miles. Many of the men dropped to sleep without waiting for food. To 
wake them was almost an impossibility. Sir John French sent word to 
General Sordet's Cavalry Corps, asking for support. He received reply 
that the horses were too esjiausted to move. So, with constant attacks 
and skirmishes, passed the night of August 25-26. 

Stiff, haggard, hungry and nerve-racked the British Army stood to 
arms before daybreak of August 26, dogged will-power forcing a gal- 
vanic obedience to commands which had become impossible to 
fatigue-dulled consciousness. At the extreme left, a single division was 
compelled to resist a terrific attack from at least three Army Corps. So 
fierce and heavy was this drive that Smith-Dorrien reported it to be 
more dangerous to retreat than to stand. Words could not say more. 
Sir John French answered that if he must fight, he must, but to break 
off the action at the very first moment possible. He had not so much 
as a platoon to spare to send him. Fortunately, a loose body of French 
Territorials under General d'Amade was forming to the west and these 
kept Smith-Dorrien from being flanked. Somehow, anyhow — they 


never knew how themselves — one and a half British corps, at the break- 
ing point of exhaustion, fought five German corps, including some crack 
German troops, fresh for the fray. x\nd, when the whole Prussian 
Guards Cavalry Division charged one infantry brigade of 1200 men, 
it was thrown back "with heavy loss and in absolute disorder." If this 
seem too extraordinary for belief, it is to be remembered that these 
were the British ** regulars," not a militia army, and war has always 
fihown the marvelous power of veterans in staving off attacks, even of 
the most overpowering character. 

Against such enormous odds, no offset of gallantry and training 
could long endure, however, and at 3.30 in the afternoon, to escape 
annihilation, retirement was attempted. ''The movement," says Sir 
John French, "was covered with the most devoted intrepidity and 
determination by the artillery, which had itself suffered heavily. . . . 
Fortunately, the enemy had himself suffered too heavily to engage in 
an energetic pursuit." This was termed, even in the cold dispatches 
of Sir John French, "the glorious stand" of Le Cateau, and though 
it cost the British 5,000 men at least, enemy casualties were far 

On this same day, the French forces, which had been forming to 
the west, took rapid shape, and by the evening of September 26, Gen- 
eral Manoury's army, which was to do so much in saving Paris, pro- 
tected the British flank. When Smith-Dorrien dropped south, he was 
not alone, the French were beside him. Von Kluck 's enveloping move- 
ment, which had threatened the whole position for four continuous days 
and nights, was checked. 

Large Depletion of the British Expeditionary Force. 

The First Army Corps, under Sir Douglas Haig, however, was by 
no means out of danger. It had retreated on Guise, and, dangerous 
though the policy might be, a halt of several hours was made for food 
and rest. The army suffered from this delay next day, when the 
Second Munster Fusilliers were cut off and either killed or captured 
to a man. On the 28th, very heavy cavalry detachments of the enemy 
harassed the British, but the rear-guard actions were annoying rather 
than dangerous. On the 29th the First Corps halted near St. Quentin. 
(Lest the reader be confused by the names of the British generals, it 
may be said that there was but one British Army, commanded by Sir 


John French, comprising the First and Second Army Corps, com- 
manded respectively by Generals Haig and Smith-Dorrien.) 

General Joffre was at last in a position to come to the British 
relief. General Manoury, ^vith the Sixth French Army, moved up to 
cover the British left; the Fifth French Army, under Lanrezac, which 
had borne the brunt of the Charleroi fight, moved west to cover the 
British right. The British Army, what was left of it, retired without 
opposition to a point north of the Aisne between Compiegne and 
Soissons. Official figures have not been given out, indeed, they have 
been scrupulously withheld, yet there is reason to suppose that not 
more than 30,000 reached that line. Many detachments which were lost, 
or strayed, turned up later, but it is sure that over one-third of the 
British Expeditionary Force was on the casualty list after the heroic 
''four days' battle" which marked the first stage of the Retreat from 
Mons to the Marne. 

Military Wisdom of the Retreat to the Marne. 

It will be clear to the reader that two French armies had advanced 
to cover the British. They would therefore have to sustain the shock 
of stopping the pursuing German hosts. It came at once. In the west. 
General Manoury, knowing that his army was as yet loosely thrown 
together, and realizing the danger of being outflanked, only felt the 
German pressure and retreated slowly towards Paris, keeping von 
l^luck on the move. 

In the centre of the line, however, these tactics were impossible. 
Between Guise and St. Quentin, the Fifth Army (which at this point 
had its command transferred from General Lanrezac to General 
d'Esperey) not only stood ready for the contact with the oncoming 
invaders, but counter-attacked furiously, driving back the German 
Guard and the Guard Reserve Corps. The next day, the Germans were 
again checked at Rethel. 

This is not a history of military tactics, but of the war as a whole, 
so it will be better not to confuse the main issue by further tactical 
details of the retreat to the Marne. But, that the superlative strategy 
of Joffre in this campaign may be made clear, it is necessary to show 
why it was military wisdom to retreat so far. Ferris words the matter 
neatly when he says: *'Joffre was putting von Kluck on the horns of 
a dilemma of which it would be difficult to say which would be the more 


fatal: to assault Paris with all the Allied armies intact; or to refuse 
and attack those armies on ground that they had chosen." 

Just for a moment, let the first horn of the dilemma be considered. 
Paris could not be taken by direct assault ; that was out of the question. 
It would have to be invested all around. Now the ring of the outer 
forts of Paris has a circumference of nearly a hundred miles. It 
would take half a million men to invest Paris with a sufficiently strong 
wall of steel. Germany could not spare so many men, at least not with 
the Allied armies intact. Her line of communications would be broken 
at once, and that would be the end of it. 

The Allied armies, therefore, must be beaten first. But, to do so, 
the Germans had to defeat them on their own chosen ground, with 
reinforcements growing daily, with excellent railroad supply bases, 
with an intimate knowledge of the ground, and with a heavy mass of 
untired reserves behind. On the German side, the men were wearied, 
bad lost heavily, and their line of communication was long. 

Positions of the Opposing Forces. ' 

No matter which policy the German High Command adopted, Paris 
was at a dangerous point. She would either be the central point of 
attack, in which case the masses of manoeuvre would swing behind, or 
she would be the pivot of a central attack somewhere between herself 
and Rheims. On August 1, the government commenced to evacuate 
Paris ; on September 2, the diplomats and ministers left ; on September 
.3, the proclamation was made that the seat of the French government 
had been established in Bordeaux. 

The failure of the Germans to force Nancy, an engagement known 
as Le Grand Cournonne of Nancy, and which ended on September 4, 
Avas a determining factor in deciding the Germans to attack towards 
the western end of the line. General Sarrail, with the Third French 
Army, had succeeded in holding the pivotal point of Verdun, ever since 
the first day of the war — thanks as much to the amazingly bad general- 
ship of the German Crown Prince as to French gallantry — and the 
German decision to strike between Paris and Rheims was based upon 
the mistaken assumption that Joffre's reserves were behind Verdun, 
at the eastern end of the line. On that same day, September 4, French 
aviators reported that von Kluck was wheeling to the southeastward. 
Evidently, then, the main attack was not to be made on Paris. 


■ Just for clearness, it is well to review the opposed forces, naming 
them from the west, as before. First came the First German Army, 
under von Kluck, facing Paris; next came the Second German Army, 
under von Btilow; then came von Hansen's interposing force, now 
added to by two Saxon corps and the Prussian Guard; next came the 
Third German Army, under the Duke of Wurtemberg; next came the 
Crown Prince's Army. Facing these were, first, the now firmly organ- 
ized Sixth French Army, under General Manoury, which had been 
facing von Kluck in the retreat. It lay northeast of Paris. Next came 
the forces under General Gallieni, which formed Paris' defending* 
army, including the famous Ragged Legion of Paris. Next, to the 
rear, in reserve, was the British Expeditionary Force, now raised in 
force to nearly 100,000 men by continual reenf orcements from England. 
Next came the Fifth French Army, formerly under General Lanrezac, 
but now under General d'Esperey, facing von Biilow. Next came 
Joffre's surprise, the spiral of the spring, the army of reserve, a pow- 
erful, fresh, well-equipped army under France ''s greatest tactician. 
General Foch; it faced von Hansen. Next came the Fourth French 
Army, still under General Langle de Cary ; it faced the Duke of Wur- 
temburg. General Sarrail, with the Third French Army at Verdun, 
faced the Crown Prince of Germany, as he had done from the beginning. 

The Battle of the Marne Begins. 

The reader will do well to observe that the weight of numbers lay 
with the French. The Germans had added only the Saxon Corps and 
the Prussian Guard to the original line. France had added General 
Manoury 's Army, General Gallieni 's Army, the absolutely new French 
Seventh Army, under General Foch, and the British reinforcements. 
The odds were now about five to four in favor of the French. Besides 
which, they had the enormous advantage of position. 

The Battle of the Marne began on Saturday afternoon, September 
5, and the first offensive movement was taken by Manoury. Learning 
from air scouts that von Kluck was massing his men to the south, evi- 
dently driving at the gap between Paris and the Fifth Army, held by 
the British, Manoury decided to flank von Kluck. 

It took just one hour to give both Manoury and von Kluck an 
unpleasant surprise apiece. Manoury found that von Kluck 's artillery, 
especially when defending a small stream (the Ourcq), was a terrific 


obstacle to encounter, even when only reserves were behind it. Von 
Kluck found that Manoury's force was far more dangerous than he 
had supposed it to be. Manoury's sudden flank attack made hash of 
the plans of the First German Army. All that Saturday night, von 
Kluck 's men had to march back, to be ready to face Manoury in the 

Manoury, on his part, did not need to be told that von Kluck would 
recoil. Joffre shifted reserves to Paris. Every taxi-cab, motor bus 
and private automobile in Paris rushed troops to Manoury in the early 
dawn. Twelve and fourteen men piled into and onto a single taxi-cab. 
They hung on the outside, like insects on a leaf; they were packed, on 
the inside, like sardines in a can. But it was easier and quicker than 
marching. By 9 o'clock that morning Manoury's army had been rein- 
forced by 70,000 troops. The army was lamentably weak in artillery, 
however, for field guns cannot be loaded into taxi-cabs. All Sunday, 
notwithstanding, Manoury held von Kluck at a standstill. 

JofFre's Strategical Manoeuvre. 

That same Sunday morning, early, the British ambushed two 
bodies of cavalry, which von Kluck had posted as a precaution against 
a flank attack, if the British should move north. They did move north. 
They caught the cavalry by advancing through a wood. They turned 
shrapnel on them, like a blast from the pit. Into the struggling mass 
of men and horses the English cavalry swept and finished the rout. 

The fortress of Maubeuge fell on Monday, sending reenforcements 
to von Kluck, whose army was far stronger than that of Manoury. On 
Monday, therefore, von Kluck commenced to flank Manoury; on Tues- 
day he did flank him; on Wednesday he almost encircled him, and pre- 
pared to swallow him on Thursday. It was a most successful movement 
— for von Kluck. It remained to see whether it was a successful or a 
wise manoeuvre for the whole strategical plan of the German High 

Joffre, seeing his chance, bade the British feel out von Kluck 's left 
wing, not driving him back, but, if possible, decoying him forward. It 
is this manoeuvre, little understood, which gave rise to the mistake 
made by some magazine writers to the effect that the British failed to 
drive forward to help the French at the Mame. They didn't drive. 
They decoyed. Mark what this meant! It meant that all von Kluck 's 


army was being led westward, the northern wing by Manoury, the 
southern wing by the British. The German main attack was south- 
eastward. There was, therefore, a steadily thinning German line, and 
a highly dangerous gap was appearing between von Kluck and von 

The Fifth French Army, under d'Esperey, had been reenforced 
by three reserve corps and had become a powerful army of 250,000 
men. With the aid of English heavy artillery, lent for the purpose, 
this army steadily pushed back von Biilow on Sunday, Monday and 
Tuesday, crossing the Marne and holding the bridgeheads. Von Biilow 
was eager to flank d'Esperey '^s left, but every time he did so, he came 
in contact with the slowly advancing British. 

More Strategy by French Generals. 

Leaving the new army, Foch's Seventh Army (in some reports 
miscalled the Ninth), for the moment, it may be pointed out that on 
this same Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, General Langle de Gary had 
held firm, and General Sarrail could not be budged from Verdun. 
There was a tempting chance to drive forward and hit the Crown 
Prince a blow on Tuesday, but the commanders of both these French 
armies rejected it as weakening Joffre's main strategic plan. The 
blow was reserved for Foch. 

On Sunday, Foch, in command of one of the strongest French 
armies (300,000 men, including reserves), sagged back under the 
driving blows of von Hansen, though the latter had one of the weakest 
German armies (probably 225,000 men). On Monday, Foch sagged 
still further. On Tuesday, whether following the manoeuvre or whether 
suddenly embarrassed by his own tactics, the Seventh French Army 
bent back very awkwardly. General d'Esperey lent Foch an extra 
army corps to help cover his left. 

On Wednesday, at midday, the Germans were in full position to 
break through between Foch and Langle de Cary. Foch's left had 
stood firm, but his right had sagged back ten miles. Langle de Cary 
had stood firm. There was thus a ten-mile-wide diagonal gap between 
Foch's right and Langle de Cary's army. Von Hansen, wild with 
eagerness, thinned his line of all the men he could afford to hurl them 
into this gap, forgetting, as he did so, that he was thinning them at a 
very dangerous point, just where- the plateau of Champagne drops 
suddenly to the marshes of St. Gond. 


At midday, Jb'och, with a liait'-smile, ordered the Forty-second Divi- 
sion, one of the crack corps of the French Army, to fall back and rest. 
All that afternoon, while the skies grew blacker and blacker with a 
coming thunderstorm and the cannons rumbled louder than the thunder, 
the Forty-second Division lay grumbling on the grass with piled arms, 
hearing the battle only two miles away. And von Hansen, with the 
piercing of the line dangling before his grasp, ever sent more and more 
men to the southeast. 

At exactly four o'clock in the afternoon, the Forty-second Division, 
rested and eager, received its long-awaited orders. It was ordered to 
advance through the pine woods, and, taking up position among the 
trees, to charge forward at five o'clock to the minute. Meantime, an 
order was sent along the whole French line, bidding them stiffen their 
resistance at five o'clock, and be ready for a counter-attack. The 
spring was now drawn tight. 

Von Hausen's Wild and Panic-Stricken Flight. 

Came five o'clock! Out from the pine woods, shouting with the 
terrible joy of battle, leaped the Forty-second Division. For a moment 
the roar of French cries drowned the tumult of the artillery, and then 
unnumbered batteries of the ''Soixante-Quinze," the French 75-milli- 
metre gun, came galloping to the front. That was, throughout the war, 
the best field weapon, but never did the gunners work as they did that 

The Prussian Guard, thinned to a mere shadow of a line by von 
Hansen's impetuous attempt to force Foch's right wing, could give 
no more resistance to the French than a paper hoop gives to a circus 
rider. So furious was the French charge of fresh, well-rested troops, 
conscious that they were Victory's own thunderbolt, that the Prussian 
Guard had no time to flee. It was trodden underfoot. 

The shouting lines went through! 

The extra army corps which d'Esperey had lent to Foch, on the 
left, followed on the heels of the Forty-second. The very horses of 
the batteries seemed to know that they were galloping for France, and 
the guns whirled forward, unlimbered, fired, limbered and galloped 
forward again. The right flank of von Hansen's Saxon army was cut 
to pieces. 

German communication was excellent. In fifteen minutes voii 

4— W.L. 


Hausen learned that his right was broken. His whole army was thus 
practically entrapped in that gap into which Foch had decoyed him. 
Five minutes later, von Hausen learned that his line was pierced. The 
great German drive, to which forty-five years of unceasing military 
preparation had been given, halted, wavered and went to pieces. 

At twenty minutes past five, Foch hurled his reserves forward. 
No longer were the French retreating, no longer need they shame- 
facedly pass through villages they were deserting to the foe. The 
whole force of the strategic square was released. Flight, wild and 
panic-stricken, was von Hansen's only resource. He turned and fled, 
the vengeful furies of France close on his heels. 

The Finish of the Battle of the Mame. 

The thunderstorm, which had held off long enough to allow the 
French to charge and break the line, now broke over the heads of the 
Germans in a torrent of rain. Woe for their heavy artillery, then! 
The roads, rapidly turning to sticky mud, prevented escape, while the 
lighter 75 's could still pursue. The French red-trousered infantry, in 
the delirious fever of success, could not, would not stop. Hour after 
hour through that rainy night, the dripping trees saw a slaughter grim 
and great. Tens of thousands were slain, thousands of prisoners were 
captured, hundreds of guns fell into French hands and vast stores of 
ammunition became part of the prize. 

Midnight came. Foch was willing to halt, but, wise old soldier 
that he was, he knew the driving power of a victorious army. Von 
Hausen, who had allowed himself to be decoyed southwards, had a long 
way to go before he could regain touch with the German armies, which, 
on the same day, had been pushed northwards. Not until early morn- 
ing did the French officers compel the men to halt, and brave men who 
had fought all day and all night wept with rage that their hands were 
stayed, even then. Foch was inexorable. He had established his head- 
quarters in La Fere Champenoise, twenty-five miles in advance of his 
iieadquarters of the night before. He had established his connections 
>vith Langle de Gary on the right and d'Esperey on the left. Before 
him yawned a gap in the German line, where once von Hansen's army 
had been. 

By seven o'clock of the evening of the flight, von Kluck had 
received news of von Hansen's disaster. With the prize of Manoury's 


army practically in his hands, he was forced to retire, and that swiftly. 
Otherwise, Foch, advancing next day, could cut off the First and Second 
German Armies from the Third and Fourth. It was patent that Joffre 
planned such an offensive. Von Kluck, a really able general, saw his 
danger. Deep-cut with rage and chagrin, he withdrew his army from 
the terrible horseshoe into which Manoury had been forced, and re- 
treated all night long, northeastward. Von Biilow did likewise. 

When the morning of Thursday, , September 6, shed light enough 
for air scouts to reconnoitre, the full measure of Foch's hammer-blow 
became apparent. One German army had been annihilated, two were 
retreating in haste. Manoury had escaped from the dangerous trap 
by only a few hours; Paris was relieved; the British, practically 
untouched in the battle, were moving forward; d'Esperey was advanc- 
ing in full force; Foch, like a giant rejoicing in his strength, held an 
advanced position; Langle de Gary was on the move; and Sarrail, at 
Verdun, had held the pivotal key with a stubborn gallantry that resisted 
alike the mass of men and weight of metal. 

Paris was saved. The Allied armies were intact. The German 
drive was recoiling, whipped. The great conflict on the result of which 
the German Empire had placed its whole dependence was over. The 
Battle of the Mame was won ! 



The Germans Hurled Back In Confusion— Voa Zwehl and the Siege Gan»— The Defeated Hosts "Dig la" 
to Get a Foothold— Crossing the Alsne, First and Second Phases— The Bombardment of Rheim»— 
Vandalism of the Cathedral— Beginning of Four Years' Deadlock. 

IT happens not infrequently in war that the finest generalship is 
shown during a retreat, not during a victory. The British retreat 
from Mons to the Marne proved Generals French, Haig and Smith- 
Dorrien to be commanders of the most supreme ability. The same 
period showed up Lanrezac's weakness, and, as has been mentioned, 
he was superseded by General d'Esperey. 

The German retreat from the Marne to the Aisne, covering the 
period September 8-12, 1918, told the same lessons. General von Kluck 
demonstrated himself to be an able commander. Although Manoury, 
the British, and d'Esperey were all on his heels, he extricated his army 
in good order. He handled his rearguard actions with firmness and 
fierceness, though his troops were punished severely by the nimble and 
deadly French 75 's. He began his retreat, as has been said, on the 
evening of Wednesday, September 9, the day of the final victory of 
the Marne. 

That same evening, von Hansen was in flight, not in retreat. The 
French pursued him all night. He was unable to re-form at all. It 
was a most disgraceful rout. The German General Staff promptly 
forced von Hansen to relinquish his command, a pretext of illness being 
given, and the Saxon forces were divided between von Kluck and von 
Billow. The latter general had not been faced with any great difficulty 
in the first part of his retreat, for, during the four days ' Battle of the 
Marne, he had been forced steadily to the northward, holding his line 
in good order. 

When, however, Foch commenced to march forward on that drench- 
ing morning of Thursday, September 10, after the Victory of the 
Marne, von Billow's troubles commenced. Knowing every yard of the 



ground, Foch drove at the two flanks of von Billow's army, bending it 
in on itself. Ordinarily, this would be bad tactics, for such an arc 
strengthens the opposing army, but Foch knew that between the two 
horns of the enemy's forces were the Marshes of St. Gond. Now, 
marshes are a very different question before and after a heavy rain. 
Twenty-four hours before, von Biilow had not troubled much about the 
low-lying land. But a torrential downpour all night, and still continu- 
ing, made those marshes boggier every minute. Before evening, in 
ypite of the difficulty of moving his men, Foch turned von Billow's 
flank and almost the whole of two German army corps were flung into 
Ihe slimy mud. The French General magnanimously forbade the artil- 
lery to fire on the entrapped invaders. About 2,000 men perished, 
60,000 were made prisoners and forty large guns were taken. This 
quickened von Billow's retreat to the Aisne. Friday, September 11, 
was occupied by the two German commanders in taking up position3 
on the new line of defense. 

Germany's Defense of the Aisne. 

This line was of unexampled strength. A well-known strategist, 
writing of the Battles of the Aisne, says of the position; ''From the 
Ural Mountains to the Atlantic Ocean, there is no natural line so strong 
as that which was then taken up by the Germans." There were sev- 
eral minor shifts of line, but for clearness only that one will be men- 
tioned which formed the basis for the final intrenchment. This line 
ran, roughly, through Noyon, Vic-sur-Aisne, Soissons, Craonne, then 
dipped down towards Rheims, Ville-sur-Tourbe, Varennes and Forges, 
a small place on the Meuse, north of Verdun. 

The key of this position was a triangular wooded height known 
Si^ the Craonne plateau. The base of this triangle is the steep cliff or 
series of cliffs commanding the River Aisne, running from Vic to 
Craonne. Between Vic and Noyon the plateau slopes gently but domi- 
natingly down to the valley of the Oise ; on the east, between Craonne 
and Laon, it comes down sharply; while the slope to the north is grad- 
ual, facilitating German transport. From Rethel to Vic run bluffs 
from 400 to 700 feet high, overlooking the river, with natural spurs 
jutting out from point to point to enfilade the stream and banks. 

Events on the Aisne showed that the German General Staff had 
not been blind to the possibility of non-success in their first drive. The 


engineer corps of the several armies engaged in the attack did not join 
in the advance to the Marne. For more than a week, work had been 
proceeding night and day on the Craonne plateau, with the intention of 
creating an invulnerable fortress, strong as the Rock of Gibraltar. 
Long before the war, plans had been drawn up for the defense of the 
Aisne. The time had come for Germany to put them into effect. Every 
spur was bristling with guns and there was not a bridge which was 
not under the concentrated fire of both heavy and light artillery. 

It will be recalled that Maubeuge had fallen on Monday, Septem- 
ber 7, during the actual progress of the Battle of the Marne. The 
defense of Maubeuge was heroic, but, viewed from the movement of the 
war as a whole, its importance lay only in one fact. Its resistance kept 
General von Zwehl and the siege guns employed there so long that the 
heavy artillery employed in the reduction of that fortress was not 
available for any part of the Battle of the Marne. Had von Hansen's 
advance, for example, been protected by von Zwehl 's guns, Foch would 
have never been able to break through and the Battle of the Marne 
would have been a very different story. 

Guns Hauled by German Military Slaves. 

On Tuesday, September 8, the great guns commenced to crawl 
forward. On Wednesday came the German disaster, and, in the 
evening, the terrific rainstorm. Von Zwehl, who was well informed as 
to the plans of the General Staff, realized that after von Hausen's 
defeat, it was imperative that he should get his guns as rapidly as 
possible to the defensive lines on the Aisne. But the rain poured in 
torrents. The thirteen traction engines could not move the guns alone 
and von Zwehl set the infantry at hauling them, with long ropes, hun- 
dreds of men to a fourth part of a gun. Like the slaves of Egypt who 
built the pyramids, von Zwehl 's military slaves toiled under blows, 
curses and threats of death. During the last twenty-four hours of the 
march, the 18,000 troops and the guns covered forty-one miles. This 
seems incredible, but it v/as so. Human nature rebelled and red 
mutiny showed its head for a second, but von Zwehl had a nature as 
hard as the steel of his guns. Every murmurer was shot dead in his 
tracks. The death-potent monsters crawled on. The guns reached 
Laon at 6 A. M. of September 13, and before seven o'clock they were 
In position and in action. 


If von Zwehl had been a day later, the Germans would have lost 
the possibility of holding the Aisne, for, under that battle-scarred old 
warrior, was not only the heavy siege train intended for the reduction 
of Paris, but also most of the heavy artillery belonging to von Kluck's 
and von Billow's armies, which they had left in his charge in order to 
lighten their movements in pursuit of the supposedly fleeing French 
and British. But von Zwehl got there, and the stupendous roar that 
was mouthed across the Aisne Valley at seven o'clock that Sunday 
morning warned the Allied Forces that the heaviest artillery the world 
had ever seen was in position against them. It took four years to 
dislodge von Zwehl 's guns. 

The Crossing of the Aisne. 

Since the famous ''Crossing of the Aisne" by the British, on Sep- 
termer 13, 1914, has been pronounced "one of the greatest military 
feats in modern history," it is of interest to mark what was done and 
how it was done. The Aisne is a wide, unfordable, sluggish river. 
Every foot, yes, every inch, of it was under big-gun, howitzer, machine- 
gun and rifle fire. The guns were under the direction of von Zwehl, and 
no man alive understood artillery better. That same morning, more- 
over, the already enormous armies of von Kluck and von Billow had 
been reenforced by the arrival of a supporting army under Field Mar- 
shal von Heeringen, who was released from the Alsace-Lorraine cam- 
paign by the failure of the French to achieve more than a series of local 
victories at heavy cost. Von Heeringen at once took the position of 
generalissimo over von Billow and von Kluck. That put a masterly 
tactician in command of the operations on the Aisne. The British task 
was to cross the river and storm an impregnable height, against heavy 
odds, under a withering fire. 

A Third Army Corps, under General Pulteney, had been added to 
the army, the Second still being under Dorrien-Smith and the First 
under Haig. Sir John French, of course, was commander-in-chief. At 
daybreak, September 13, Pulteney 's corps advanced on Soissons. The 
engineers succeeded in putting a pontoon bridge across with a loss of 
half their number. Howitzer fire promptly destroyed the bridge. A 
regiment of French Turcos went across in rowboats and had a fierce 
struggle in the streets of Soissons, but achieved nothing. Pulteney 
then tried to cross by the destroyed bridge at Venizel. Under a hail of 


ehrapnel the engineers repaired the bridge and four regiments — or 
parts of them — crossed and gathered at Bucy-de-Long early in the 
afternoon, under the direct fire of the great hill of Vregny. There was 
no shelter, each minute meant deaths by scores, so Pulteney's men 
worked swiftly down into a little ravine and there intrenched. The 
heights frowned above them, but, at least, they were across the river. 
Few they were, and unsupported. 

The Second Army Corps, under Smith-Dorrien, tried to force the 
bridge at Conde, soon after daybreak. That was simply inviting anni- 
hilation, and had to be abandoned. The British gommander then 
divided his force into two detachments, east and west of the bridge. 
By pontoons, both got over. That was a case, also, of hasty intrench- 
ing. Deaths averaged a hundred a minute. A few men had been 
rafted over during the night near Missy, three at a time on a raft. It 
was courageous, but useless. For sixteen days those men had to stay 
in their dug-outs without food, their only water what they could snatch 
at night, between star-shells. 

Storming the Heights of the Aisne. 

An Irish and Scotch brigade of the First Corps, under Haig, fought 
like Paladins. The bridge at Arcy had been destroyed, but one girder 
still spanned the stream. Even under the most favorable circumstances, 
it would have been walking giddy enough to turn the brain. Under the 
hail of shell, of machine-gun fire and of rifle fire it was a feat appar- 
ently beyond the nerves of any man. The brigade went across it. Not 
a man hesitated, though many a hundred fell dead into the stream 
below. V, 

Sunday night beheld a lurid flame of battle hitherto unseen in the 
world. The whole length of the Aisne River cliffs was red as though 
under a Bengal fire flare from the continuous spitting of the guns. 
Searchlights played maliciously up and down, star shells and calcium 
balloons burst or floated above the valley. In that evil light, of red, of 
yellow and of ghastly white coruscations, amid the never-ceasing rever- 
beration of the cannonade, engineer companies worked to construct 
bridges, till the last man was killed, and then other companies stepped 
forward to take their place. In the teeth of a sinister hissing of bullets 
and shrapnel, small bodies of infantry moved forward to cross and 
join their comrades in the trenches on the other side. Most fell, but 
some got over. It took all the roar of the cannonade to overpower with 


its noise the sound of moaning that rose from the wounded in that 
stricken valley. 

To the east, that same Sunday, the Fifth French Army, under 
d*Esperey, crossed, without great difficulty. Their task lay ahead of 
them, for the Craonne plateau, at that point, sloped down to the plain 
rather than to the river. . 

Monday was notable for the German defense of a sugar factory, 
which was held in a manner worthy of the best traditions of war. The 
British attacked with two regiments, then with three, with four and 
with five. The Germans hurled them back. Twice the Teutons were 
driven out. Twice they forced their way in again. Not until the 
Guards were added and the Germans were outnumbered more than 
two to one did they give ground. Most of them died at their posts. 
That sugar factory held back an entire army corps for more than half 
a day. By evening, however, Haig had made good an intrenched posi- 
tion on the plateau itself, which held for more than three weeks of 
severe fighting. Haig never talks of himself, but he said once: "The 
greatest triumph the men under my command achieved in this war, 
in my opinion, was the storming of the heights of the Aisne." 

Western Phase of the Battle of the Aisne. 

Von Heeringen and von Zwehl were a difficult combination to out- 
manoeuvre. The next day, Tuesday, September 15, they launched a 
whirlwind counter-offensive against Manoury, with the Sixth French 
Army, intrenched at Nampcel, at the extreme west of the line. The 
French were crumpled up and thrown back like pieces of paper before 
a gale. The Germans regained control of the spurs guarding the Aisne 
near the Morsain ravine. 

There was no chance on the east, either, to catch the Iron General 
of the Guns napping. The Fifth French Army fought with great gal- 
lantry on Wednesday, but the natural steepness of the Craonne pla- 
teau, mounting that incredible quantity of guns, was too strong a force. 

On Thursday, Manoury, on the west, revenged himself and retook 
the quarries. This eased the pressure on the British line. Then von 
Zwehl 's artillery drove him out again. With each new attack, the 
Germans launched a fresh bombardment at the city of Soissons. At 
last Manoury managed to make a strong enough intrenchment to hold 
the quarries and that end of the line was deadlocked. 


These six days, then, September 13-18, constituted what may be 
called the Western Phase of the Battle of the Aisne. It proved, beyond 
a doubt, two things. Of these the first was that man-power alone, no 
matter of what courage and gallantry, cannot storm heights held by 
modem machine-gun fire. The other was that no direct gun fire, how- 
ever powerful, can force men out of well-made trendies. 

On the 18th, then, Manoury was in the quarries, the British Third 
Corps had some small bodies of men intrenched on the northern bank 
of the river, but could do nothing further ; the Second Corps was in a 
similar position ; Haig, with the First Corps, had secured a footing on 
the plateau, but could not advance, being unsupported; d'Esperey, with 
the Fifth French Army, had found Craonne impregnable. If the Ger- 
mans had not succeeded in their attack, they had done so in their 
defense. The deadlock was absolute. 

The Eastern Phase of the Battle of the Aisne centered around 
Rheims, and entirely different armies were brought into play. The 
defense of the Craonne plateau had been divided between the First 
German Army, under von Kluck ; the Second German Army, under von 
Billow, and the Seventh German Army, which had come up with von 
Heeringen. It had, also, the heavy siege trains, under von Zwehl. 
Opposing it, as has been shown, were the Sixth French Army, under 
Manoury; the British Army, under Sir John French; and the Fifth 
French Army, under d'Esperey. 

Futile Attempts to Dislodge the French Armies. 

On the line from Craonne to Metz were the German Third Army, 
under the Duke of Wurtemburg; and the Fifth German Army, under 
the German Crown Prince. Opposing them were, respectively, the 
Seventh French Army, under Foch; and the Fourth French Army, 
under Langle de Cary. 

The attack began suddenly on Friday, September 18, when the 
Duke of Wurtemburg threw his right wing forward against Foch, under 
the direct leadership of the generalissimo, von Heeringen. It was a 
sharp blow, well delivered, and Foch fell back. He took up a position 
at Souain and was hard driven to it to keep his line intact. However, 
the wizard-like handling of the French batteries of 75 's saved the day, 
and by nightfall Foch had brought up his reserves and Joffre had sent 
reenforcements. Foch, the master tactician, placed and intrenched his 


troops in such wise that they were not to be reached by the distant 
heavy artillery. If the Germans were to break into Rheims, they would 
only be safe if Foch were out of the way. Since artillery would not 
reach, they must carry Foch's position by assault. 

Against Foch's troops, lightly intrenched between Pouillon and 
the Mountain of Rheims, von Heeringen threw enormous masses of 
men. At irregular intervals, for four days and nights, the gray-clad 
battalions flung forward. But while the French had no such heavy 
artillery as the Germans, they had not acted in vain when they had 
ordered the Creusot works to turn out the 75-mm. guns by hundreds. 
Against German mass-drives those light field guns — much more power- 
ful than their three-inch calibre indicates — cut swathes of death. 

Again and again and yet again von Heeringen ordered the charge. 
As many times it was hurled back. The night of September 19-20 was 
the culmination. Four successive attacks were made on that one night. 
And when bright sunshine burst on the scene next morning, the French 
lines still stood firm, while, so far as the eye could see, lay little heaps 
and long lines of gray figures, some moving feebly, but most of them 

Two Thousand German Hussars Annihilated. 

The Battle of the Aisne, indeed, was over, but September 26 was 
to see an aftermath engagement which hurt German pride sorely. At 
dawn of that day all that were left of the redoubtable Prussian Guards, 
about 16,000 men, made a swift sortie to try and cut the railway line 
between Rheims and Verdun. A French aid scout, who was already 
in the air at daybreak, saw this move and warned his commander. 

Foch could think quickly. He ordered a regiment of cavalry at full 
gallop to occupy the small village of Auberive, just to annoy the ad- 
vancing Prussian Guards. Meanwhile, the light artillery, which were 
at Jouchery, five miles away, were ordered to come up at topmost 
speed, and the infantry, also, at the double. 

The Prussian Guard reached Auberive and the French cavalry 
rode forward prepared to the charge. The German commander was 
puzzled by this, for he feared that the cavalry might be only a screen 
for a large force behind. Accordingly, he halted and sent up air 
scouts to find out what was before him. This caused half an hour's 
delay, a vital half-hour. The scouts reported only a regiment of cav- 
alry ahead, but a detachment of artillery coming up from Jouchery. 


The German commander fumed at having been stopped by a mere 
regiment of cavalry, marched forward and captured Auberive within 
an hour. Before doing so, however, he detached 2,000 of the Death *s 
Head Hussars, one of the proudest cavalry corps in the German serv- 
ice, to surprise those French field guns coming up on the trot. They 
went, those Hussars, delighting in the certain seizure of the guns, for 
by no means could the French know of their approach. 

The French artillery did not know. But-, through a gap in the 
trees, the Hussars were seen not more than two minutes' ride away. 
Then came the value of manoeuvres. In ninety-four seconds — by the 
record of one of the artillery officers — the teams were unharnessed, the 
guns were in position and the gunners at their places. As the gun 
numbers fell into place, the Hussars charged at less than a hundred 
yards' range. The shrapnel burst. The line melted. Again the guns 
spoke, and there rose above their crackle, the cries of the wounded and 
the screams of horses in pain. A third time the battery fired. There 
were very few left now, not more than a hundred or so, but they were 
charging still. A fourth round and a fifth ! When the smoke cleared, 
neither man nor horse was standing. Four minutes had passed since 
the Hussars had been seen through a gap in the trees, and, of those 
2,000 gallant horsemen, nor man nor beast escaped. 

The Bombardment of Rheims. 

Meanwhile the infantry from Jouchery had come up at the double. 
Italian troops, only, can move faster than the French. The Zouaves 
had outstripped their comrades and were taking the Prussian Guards 
in the rear. Von Heeringen saw the failure of his plan. Foch had 
acted too quickly. Either he must abandon the Guard or make a 
frontal attack, to draw off Foch. It meant a loss of men with no 
purpose gained than to remedy a mistake, but there was no other way. 
A force of 3,000 men of the Guards Corps was hurled at the French 
line. They charged five times. * ' As they came up for the fifth assault, ' ' 
says a writer of that action, **a wild cheer of admiration broke out 
along the French line." But there was no appreciation of gallantry 
in the mouths of the 75 's and after the fifth assault only 125 men were 
left, most of them wounded. They surrendered honorably. 

Much has been written and said on the question of the bombard- 
ment of Rheims, as an open town, and of the vandalism of the Germans, 


who deliberately fired on its cathedral. The Germans reply that the 
town was defended, which made it liable to bombardment, and that its 
towers were occupied for observation purposes. The artillery lieuten- 
ant who claimed to have fired at the Cathedral claimed that he did so 
only as a warning, and fired only two shells. Richard Harding Davis 
produced abundant evidence to show that this statement was untrue. 
There is abundant evidence to prove that Rheims Cathedral was 
wrecked in a deliberate desire for vengeance. 

At the same time, it would be misleading to suggest that the Ger- 
mans did not have the right to fire on Rheims. They did. The town 
was defended. It had to be defended. As a railway junction of the 
highest importance, controlling the railway which sent all the supplies 
to Verdun, Foch could not possibly have abandoned it to the Germans, 
simply because of the beauty of the Cathedral. 

The Power and Capacity of Guns and Rifles. 

Moreover, Rheims has a historic value as the shrine of France, 
where her kings were crowned; and a romantic value because of its 
association with the Maid, Joan of Arc. For that reason, also, it would 
have been unwise to have allowed the Germans to occupy a city with 
so many memories for France. Often a sentimental reason is of the 
highest military importance in its relation to the morale of the army. 
No, Rheims could not be left undefended. If defended, it was unavoid- 
able that some shots might fall on the glorious Cathedral. But to 
make a definite mark of the Cathedral, as was done, that was Vandal- 
ism, ruthless and reckless barbarism, without a show of excuse. 

The deadlock on the Aisne established that new mode of war, 
known as trench warfare. The necessity of this merits a word. In 
what has been said in the foregoing two chapters with regard to the 
effect of the 42-centimeter siege guns on the forts of Liege, of Namur 
and of Maubeuge, it has been made clear that permanent fortifica- 
tions, even though made of steel-reenforced concrete, cannot resist the 
effects of modem high-explosive shells dropped from long-range, high- 
angle howitzers. 

At the same time, the British feat of crossing the Aisne and the 
German mass attacks on Foch*s lines near Rheims had negatived the 
old von Moltke theory that any place can be taken by storm, so long as 
the storming party was strong enough. 


Modem field artillery has changed all that. The French 75-nim. 
can fire fifteen shells a minute. Each shrapnel shell holds 300 bullets. 
That means that one gun can send 4,500 bullets a minute into an 
advancing army, the bullets scattering fan-wise after the burst of the 
shell. It only takes eight men to handle a 75-mm., including drivers. 
A machine-gun, handled by two men, fires 600 shots a minute, and in 
the hands of a good gunner its destructiveness is deadly. Modem rifles 
have a killing range at an almost flat trajectory of a thousand yards 
and a modern rifle will fire thirty shots a minute. 

It would not require a very large force to pour 100,000 bullets per 
minute into an advancing force. As any charge, no matter how good 
the cover, would take at least three minutes, it would face 300,000 
bullets. Even if only one out of every twenty bullets killed or wounded 
an enemy, the casualties on that charge alone would be 15,000 men. 

A trench, however, is curiously unattackable. It is not to be 
reached by direct gun fire at all. Even for dropping fire it affords 
only a very small target. In the first winter of the war, before new 
Artillery tactics had been built up (such as barrage, etc.), the trench 
was impregnable. Of course, that was true for both sides. If the 
French could not push the Germans back, neither could the Germans 
continue their drive onward. Open operations became impossible on 
the Aisne, except at a fearful cost of life, and, even with that cost, 
actions were not productive of any important result. 

Oifense and Defense in War. 

War, be it remembered, like all great forces in the world, is a 
balancing of opposites. At one period, attack is stronger than defense ; 
in the next, defense is stronger than attack. In the two months of 
August and September this change took place twice. 

When the war opened, the defense of the forts of Liege, Namur 
and Maubeuge was thought to be stronger than any attack which could 
be brought against them. The 42-centimeter howitzers destroyed that 
idea. The attack took the lead. 

Wars of attack mean quick and decisive engagements. Wars of 
antagonistic defense mean long and indecisive engagements. Had the 
Germans been able to carry all before them in a war of attack, the war 
would have been short. The moment that they were compelled to 
change it into a war of defense, it necessarily became long-drawn-out. 


It could not be otherwise. It could not become decisive until it turned 
again into a war of attack. How this came about will be treated in a 
later chapter, showing the shiftings of the battle-line, and the entire 
change of battle tactics. 

But, throughout all changes, the Aisne line never moved mate- 
rially. The Craonne plateau remained a German stronghold. Rheims, 
though always under fire of guns from near the Craonne plateau, 
remained a French stronghold. At various times, during the next four 
years, dispatches related this or that minor victory for either side. 
Often, by the use of maps drawn to large scale, the capture of a thou- 
sand yards would look larger than a victory which gained several score 
of miles, drawn to a small scale. This was highly confusing to the 
casual reader of newspapers and magazines, though, of course, it was 
unavoidable as picturing the news of the day, week or month. 

The essential thing to be remembered by the reader who wishes 
io gain a true picture of the war as a whole is that the main defensive 
line taken up by the Germans on the Aisne on September 12, 1914, was 
still in their hands in the summer of 1918. Not until the actual Allied 
drive which ended the war began, did the defenses of the Aisne fall. 



Capture ef Bnisselft— Siege «ad Fall of Antwerp— Exile— Atrocities of Aerthet to LonTaln— The Battles of 
the Yser— Dlzmude, Holding the Line— Ypres, the Key- Passchendaele Ridge— Poison Gas— Uncon- 
quered Belgium. 

SO far, the story of the war has lent itself to clean-cut and straight- 
forward narrative. The next phase was more complicated. It is 
(necessary to show why. There are four gaps in the mountainous and 
hilly country between Germany and Paris, one north of the Ardennes, 
near Liege ; one by the Luxemburg frontier ; one north of the Vosges at 
Nancy ; one south of the Vosges at Belf ort. Only the first two were in- 
volved in the drive on Paris. Their story has been told. The Germans 
drove at Paris, were stopped at the Mame, fell back and intrenched on 
the Aisne. So told, the matter is simple enough. 

The next group of moves was considerably more involved, but, if 
the main issues be kept clear, a tolerably consistent picture may be 
presented. The northward race to the sea resolved itself into two main 
desires. The first was the German desire to seize and hold as much in- 
vaded territory as possible. The second was the French desire to flank 
the German armies on the Aisne and cut one of their main railroads of 
supply. This railway ran on the western side of the Craonne plateau, 
up the Oise Valley and thence northwestward through St. Quentin and 
Maubeuge, dividing to Brussels and Liege. 

With this aim in view, Joffre took up a new strategical plan. As 
early as September 18, at the close of the Western Phase of the Battle 
of the Aisne, he had seen that the war had become one of defence. It 
had become static, rather than dynamic. If the Germans could not be 
forced out of their holes on the Aisne by frontal attack, then an attempt 
must be made to get in behind them, to cut their communication and 
hinder their sources of supply. By a combination of speed and organ- 
ization, there was a possibility that the main railroad might be strad- 
dled by Allied troops. 


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From the British point of view, a shift of plans was essential. The 
British Expeditionary Force had been sent over to help France at a 
very desperate pinch. It had done so. It had covered itself with undy- 
ing glory in the Retreat from Mons to the Mame. Now, however, that 
the Aisne had become a deadlock, it would be a mistake of organization 
for the British Army to be so far south, since its supplies were coming 
from England. If any troops were to be shifted northwards, the British 
should go. Thus they would be shortening their line of supply, saving 
time, men and material. 

Immediately, therefore, even while the Western Phase of the Battle 
of the Aisne was continuing, French troops began to replace the British 
in the trenches before the Aisne. It was not, however, until October 3, 
that the main body started, though small detachments had been steadily 
entraining for the north. When the Western Phase of the Battle of the 
Aisne came to a definite end, after September 26, it was clear that more 
men could be spared from this sector. The collapse of the Alsace- 
Lorraine campaign — which was a complete affair in itself and will be 
told in full in the next chapter — also released the troops which had been 
employed in the Vosges. 

Objectives of French and German Troops. 

But, while the French were seeking to turn von Kluck's western 
flank, the Germans were striving to force their way westward, not only 
to cover their line of communication, but, as has been said, to occupy 
and intrench themselves on as large a piece of invaded territory as pos- 
sible. The Germans and the French each suffered from a disadvantage. 
The French weakness lay in the fact that, being on the outside of the 
curve, they had a longer distance to travel, and, moreover, the lines of 
supply were not extensions of existing plans, but new ones. The Ger- 
man weakness lay in the fact that they dared not shoot out great masses 
of troops to the northwestward, for, if they did so, these individual 
mCasses might be surrounded and cut off. They were therefore com- 
pelled to build their line northwestward, block by block, not adding an 
army corps until it had been solidly founded on the corps to the south of 
it. The Germans, then, were driving northwestward. The French were 
pushing northeastward. Being in constant contact, the net result was 
that the line established was half-way between the two aims. If the 
Germans did not gain Calais, neither did the French and British suc- 

5— W. L. 


oeed in driving east far enough either to out the main railroad nor to 
save Antwerp. 

Leaving aside, for the moment, the actions which occurred in the 
formation of this north-making line, it is worth while, first, to consider 
the armies that made up the line itself. Beginning from the Aisne, 
northward, the first army to be encountered, naturally, would be that of 
Manoury, still intrenched in the quarries, but pivoting slowly so that 
the quarries became its right wing. The left wing, thus, would be try- 
ing to pinch in von Kluck 's flank. 

Line of Opposing Armies. 

Immediately north, and following the Oise Valley to Peronne, was 
General Castenlau with the Second French Army, which had been 
brought round from Lorraine. It was a well-equipped, seasoned army. 
In reserve and partly behind him, but still to the north, was a small 
group of Territorial units under General Brugere. North of this was 
the main French Army of the West, a newly constituted group under 
General Maud 'huy, occupying the line from Arras to La Bassee. From 
La Bassee to Ypres came the British Army, the Second Army Corps to 
the south, then the Third, with the First to the north. From Ypres to 
Dixmude was also a newly organized army, known as the French Army 
of Belgium, under General d'Urbal, which included a fine body of 
French marines under Admiral Ronarc'h. From Dixmude to the sea 
at Nieuport was the Belgian Army, which, after the fall of Antwerp, 
was strongly reenforced and became a magnificent line of defense. The 
German forces were greatly changed and altered at this time. Roughly, 
von Heeringen remained in charge of the Aisne defence, von Kluck 
faced Castelnau, von Bulow faced Maud 'huy, the Crown Prince of 
Bavaria faced the southern part of the British Army (which included 
three French divisions under General Bidon) and the Duke of Wurtem- 
burg faced the north of the British line, d'Urbal and the Belgians. 

One fact strikes the eye at once in this line from the Aisne to the 
sea. It is the fact that all of Belgium except a tiny comer from Nieu- 
port to Armentieres had come into the hands of the Germans. Yet, 
when von Kluck was compelled to swing south in the great attack at 
Mons-Charleroi, Tournai had been the westernmost point to which the 
Uhlans had swept. This needs explanation. 

On August 9, 1914, General von Emmich, in occupation in Liege, 


bui desperate because the forts would not give in, appealed for the 42- 
centimeter siege guns. On October 9, 1914, two months later, Antwerp 
fell after a nine-day siege. The story of those two months is a black 
one. It is a record of atrocities unparalleled in the history of the 
world. The acts of the Germans in Belgium were ferocious, filthy and 
foul. No apologist can excuse, no reason can condone, no indemnity 
can palliate the enormity of the guilt of that long-continued glut of 

It began almost from the very first week of the invasion. German 
arrogance had not dreamed that Belgium would dare to resist. German 
vanity received a sore blow when Belgium not only resisted, but did so 
with such gallantry that the great German Army was held back for 
nine days by the forts of Liege. German vanity was still more seriously 
wounded when the Belgians proved conclusively that, man for man, they 
were far better soldiers than the Germans. 

Surrender of Brussels. 

When, at Fort Embourg, the Germans came up under a white flag 
of truce and then treacherously attacked (this, once disputed, has been 
definitely substantiated), the Belgians turned and drove them back. At 
Wandre, on the 11th, the Belgians routed a German force and sent it 
flying helter-skelter over the Dutch frontier. The successful charge of 
one Belgian squadron of cavalry against six squadrons of Prussian 
cavalry carried on Germany's shame. At Eghezee on August 13, at 
Landen on the 14th, at Waremme on the 15th, and at Diest on the 16th, 
all German attacks were beaten off. 

The Belgian Army held the road to Brussels against odds of seven 
to one. On the 17th, the Queen and the ministers evacuated the capital ; 
and on the 18th, the Belgian Army fell back on Brussels, first punish- 
ing the Germans at Aerschot with terrible severity, though at enormous 
loss to themselves. One heroic detachment of 288 Belgians had but 
seven survivors. On the 19th, the Belgian Army took up positions in 
the woods, but air scouts reported the size of the German Army under 
von Kluck, not far away to the south, to be in such force that it was 
thought wiser to surrender the capital than to have it bombarded. 

On August 20, therefore, Brussels was entered by a parade march 
of 40,000 men, detached for the purpose from von Kluck 's army, an 
unwearied, fresh force. No military show was ever finer. Preceded 


by a scouting party of Uhlans, this army corps filed through Brussels, 
horse, foot, artillery and sappers, every unit complete. The infantry 
fell into the famous stiff-kneed '* goose-step" as they passed through. 
Two Belgian officers, manacled and fastened to the leather stirrups 
of two Uhlans, was Germany's delicate way of suggesting conquest. 
But the civil authorities had been urgent that the townsfolk should 
not give the Germans the least pretext for reprisals, and no outbreak 

Brussels was unharmed. The Germans contented themselves with 
fining the city $40,000,000, just as a fine of $10,000,000 had been put 
on Liege. London and Paris at once telegraphed to the Belgian 
Government a loan of $50,000,000, without interest. 

Brutalities of the Germans. 

Before passing on directly to the nature of the atrocities, a few 
dates and concise facts may be given, taken entirely from reports of 
official investigating commissions. At Orsmael and Neerhespen, August 
10, 11 and 12, an era of cruelty was begun, on the latter date a man 
being hanged head downward and burned alive. At Herrsfelt, August 
36, a peasant having protested to the Germans in the name of Chris- 
tianity, was carried into his house, his wife and family forced to 
sit around the table, their hands being nailed to the table and their 
feet to the floor by large spikes. At Aerschot, August 19, the town 
was turned over to the soldiers to do as they pleased, and there fol- 
lowed a three days' pillage, 150 people being massacred and brutalities 
of every description being wreaked on women and girls of all ages. 
The same day, Diest, Tirlemont, Schaffen, Lummen and Loenstede 
were similarly treated. The atrocities and mutilations in the village 
of Corbeek-Loo, August 20, cannot be cited on a printed page; their 
parallel is only to be found among the Apache Indians, and the latter 
spared women and children, which the Germans did not. On August 
25, in Hofstade, similar atrocities occurred. In Sempst, in imitation 
of Nero, the Germans poured petroleum on the clothes of innocent 
villagers and set them afire. The city of Termonde and thirty-seven 
villages were burned to the ground. On August 28, in Louvain, 7,000 
persons, many of them women and children, were packed into a riding 
school, where, like the Black Hole of Calcutta, more than 1,000 were 
stifled to death during the night. 


What was Germany's answer to the explosion of wrath which burst 
over the civilized world? On August 30, the Grerman General Staff 
issued an official communication, dated from Berlin, which said, in 
part: ''The barbarous attitude of the Belgian population in all parts 
has not only justified our severest measures, but forced them on us 
for the sake of self-preservation. '* 

Nor should it be thought that German atrocities stopped with 
Belgium. The French official report on atrocities committed within 
the French border during August and September brought to light not 
hundreds but thousands of similar oases, though the savagery of muti- 
lation was rarer than in Belgium. '*It can be stated," said the report, 
"that never has a war carried on between civilized nations assumed 
the savage and ferocious character of the one which at this moment 
is being waged on our soil by an implacable adversary. 

Terrible Destruction by the Huns. 

''Pillage, rape, arson and murder are the common practices of 
our enemies, crimes against women and children have been of appalling 
frequency, and the facts which have been revealed to us day by day 
at once constitute definite crimes against common rights punished by 
the codes of every country with the most severe and the most dis- 
honoring penalties, and which prove an astonishing degeneration in 
German habits of thought since 1870." 

Through many generations Belgium has been noted as a hive of 
industry, and one of the richest countries in the world. The fields 
were tilled like gardens, and everywhere was a civilization rich, warm, 
compadt and continuous. Everywhere were relics of the Flemish 
Renaissance, and in towns throughout the country was some of the 
finest brick and stone work of that period. Ancient church spires rose 
in all parts of this land of plenty, and in town and hamlet alike were 
masterpieces of Flemish tapestry and painting — ^the handiwork of 
Rubens, Vandyck, Bouts and Matsys. 

Old and beautiful cities were looted by the Germans, and many 
masterpieces of the middle ages were destroyed, never to be replaced. 
Louvain was the chief university town of Belgium, one of the intellec- 
tual centres of Catholic Europe. Its university was one of the oldest 
in Europe, and contained in its library many famous manuscripts. 
On the evening of August 26, while the Belgians occupied Malines, there 


*was a sudden outburst of rifle fire, and several Germans were hit. 
The Germans announced that it was a plot among the civilian populace, 
instigated by the Belgian government; the Belgians declared that a 
detachment of Germans, driven back from Malines, was fired upon in 
mistake by the German troops of occupation. 

An order was at once given by a Major von Manteuffel, who was 
in command, for the destruction of the city. The soldiers followed 
instructions as systematically as they could. Small incendiary tablets 
and fagots soaked in paraffin were thrown through windows broken 
by the destroyers. Houses were looted, and what the demons of de- 
stmction could not carry away they destroyed and threw into the 
streets. Presently the city was a blazing inferno. 

The university disappeared and with it the great library, the 
Halles with their noble arches became charred ruins, and only the 
walls of the great cathedral of St. Peter remained. Some of the noblest 
houses in the land became charred ruins, the town hall alone being 
saved. The salvation of this building is one of the mysteries of the 
destruction of the city. It, apparently, was to be destroyed along 
with the other historic buildings; when suddenly the German troops 
turned in and used almost superhuman efforts to save the historic 

Louvain Sacked and Destroyed. 

The destruction of Louvain was an act of vandalism surpassing 
anything which has come down to us from the history of the great 
fighting nations. Nothing the German people can ever do will make 
amends for the burning and sacking of this treasure city which neither 
time nor money can restore. 

The German soldiers went about their task of dynamiting the 
fair city deliberately and with malice aforethought. Nothing was 
spared, and the destruction of human beings was consummated with 
as little thought for the crime committed as would have prevailed if 
the whole thing had been but the make-believe destruction of a moving 
picture city and its make-believe inhabitants. The destroyers moved 
steadily from house to house and from institution to institution, with 
the fire brand ever active and efficient. After houses had been sacked 
the things that remained were put in stacks and burned. 

The sacking of Louvain marked the beginning of a period of de- 


struction of the peaceful cities of Belgium. Nothing but blood and 
lust was apparent in the thirst of the Germans for revenge. They 
killed everywhere, and thievery and destruction were as the bread of 
life to them. 

Learning that it would be impossible to hold the ancient city of 
Malines the Belgian troops had quietly left it, a few days after having 
captured it from the Germans. On the day following the destruction 
of Louvain the Huns, still drunk with wine and blood lust, suddenly 
began bombarding Malines. The roof and walls of the ancient cathedral 
of St. Rombaut, which dated from the thirteenth century, were riddled 
with shells, and the civilian populace fled in a panic. 

The firing ceased, but a few days later it was taken up with re- 
newed energy, the cathedral being completely destroyed, the bells 
which had rung out their sweet music for five centuries going down to 
destruction with the tower. Near the end of September when the scared 
inhabitants began to creep back to the city, there was a third bombard- 
ment, which resulted in a fire which raged furiously for days, com- 
pletely ravaging the city. 

Outrages by the Germans. 

The city of Termonde, another historic place with treasures in 
stone and lime, was also deliberately destroyed because the fines levied 
by the Germans were not instantly forthcoming. Hundreds of little 
towns were laid waste, the Germans managing the work of destruction 
in a most thorough and scientific manner. Soldiers wheeled tanks of 
paraffin up and down the streets, and the houses and places of historic 
value were sprayed with the liquid. Then the torch was applied, and 
the treasures of ages were wantonly destroyed. 

The work was ruthless and unnecessary. It was not for the ad- 
vancement of military strategy that Belgium was laid waste. If the 
treasure buildings of a nation be in the way of a military movement, 
then those treasure buildings must go. But in the case of Belgium 
but little destruction was the result of necessity. Louvain was laid 
waste at the leisure of the invaders, the destruction being carried on 
while the German army was the army of occupation. Malines and 
Termonde were bombarded merely as an outlet of blood lust, and 
because the Germans wished to teach the inhabitants that Germany 
must be obeyed. There was no defence by the inhabitants. 


Robbery, scientific and malignant, was one of the main objects 
in the destruction of the cities of Belgium. Louvain was plundered 
down to the last piece and farthing. An American writing of the 
destruction of Aerschot said: ''Quite two-thirds of the houses had 
been burned and showed unmistakable signs of having been sacked 
by the maddened soldiery previously. Everywhere was the ghastly 
evidence. Doors had been smashed ; windows had been broken ; furni- 
ture and pictures were wantonly destroyed ; mattresses had been ripped 
open with bayonets in a hunt for treasure; outer walls of houses 
were spattered with blood and pock-marked with bullets ; the sidewalks 
were slippery with broken wine bottles; the streets were strewn with 
women's clothing." 

Modern warfare does not permit of looting, much less does it 
permit of the making of warfare on civilians. The fact remains that 
civilian non-combatants were outraged by the invaders, and many 
were the cold-blooded murders done in the name of warfare which 
could no more be classed in that category than could the assassination 
of a ruler be called self-defence. 

Unmentionable Crimes by Drunken Soldiers. 

There were numerous alleged cases of murders of old people, 
and unarmed citizens were bayoneted and slain, sometimes on the 
charge of having firearms in their possession, sometimes purely as an 
exemplary measure. There were many crimes against women and 
girls, and the drink-maddened soldiers even went so far as to use the 
women and girls as shields as they invaded the cities. Many stories 
of horrible scenes and of mutilation cannot be recoimted. 

It has been definitely established that there were many sexual 
outrages, although a protest was lodged against this charge by the 
Germans. But the indictment of Germany and of Prussianism was 
complete. The findings of the Hague Convention as to the conduct of 
war and the rights of civilians were simply ignored. 

However Germany might deny, these things were definitely proved 
by the testimony secured by a special conunission appointed by Eling 
Albert, the findings of which were laid before President Wilson by a 
Commission consisting of Henry Carton de Wiart, Minister of Justice ; 
Messrs. de Sadeleer, Hymans and Vandervelde, Ministers of State, 
together with Count Louis de Lichtervelde, serving as secretary of 


the mission. Merely by way of illustration this incident of the report 
is given: 

''Near the village of Corbeck-Loo, on Thursday, August 20, German 
soldiers were searching a house where a young girl of 16 lived with 
her parents. They carried her into an abandoned house and, while 
some of them kept the father and mother off, others went into the house, 
the cellar of which was open, and forced the young woman to drink. 
Afterwards they carried her out on the lawn in front of the house 
and violated her successively. She continued to resist and they pierced 
her breast with bayonets. Having been abandoned by the soldiers 
after their abominable attacks, the girl was carried off by her parents, 
and the following day, owing to the gravity of her condition, she was 
administered the last rites of the church by the priest of the parish 
and carried to the hospital at Louvain." 

The German Time-Table Disarranged. 

Drink was undoubtedly one of the leading causes for the devasta- 
tion of the land through which the Germans tramped. The soldiery 
swilled heavy red wine with the same freedom that they drank light 
beer and light Rhine wines, and the results were disastrous. There 
was a reign of sheer murder, and the vandalisms of the seventeenth 
century were equalled, if not exceeded, by the sacking of Belgium. 

It will be remembered that the German general plan had been, at 
the first, to sweep through Liege unopposed, clear out Brussels and 
Antwerp in a few days, reach the sea and then strike south. The 
forces under General von Emmich were scheduled to move forward 
with the mathematical precision of a time-table. 

This time-table idea was at once the strength and the weakness 
of the German plan. As long as it operates, its scientific exactitude 
is the most perfect military ideal conceivable. But, on the other hand, 
the more exact and rigid is it, the more does it cause confusion when 
disarranged. Therein lies one of the great difference between the 
French and German handling of armies. The French is much less per- 
fectly ordered and therefore essentially weaker in actual operation, but 
it is vastly more flexible and therefore essentially stronger when 
the changing conditions of war bring about a reorganization. It is 
the difference between an iron bar and a piece of wire. The bar cannot 


be bent to a new shape until it is heated and hammered into that 
shape. The wire can easily be made to conform to any shape. 

Liege disarranged the German time-table. Von Emmich could 
not sweep to the westward, and much of von Kluck's armies could 
not pass over the railways held by the unbeaten Liege forts. The 
whole plan for the invasion of Belgium, therefore, had to go by the 
board, so that von Kluck might hurry down to Mons and get there 
in time to meet von Biilow. It was for this reason that only a small 
force was detached to make the parade march through Brussels. 

The moment that the defeat of the Marne was known in Germany, 
however, the General Staff realized that the main troops engaged in 
the drive would have all they could do to hold themselves on the Aisne. 
It was, therefore, in the highest degree dangerous to leave an unde- 
feated Belgian Army at Antwerp, the more so as there was a strong 
possibility that England would soon get reenforcements from overseas, 
first, volunteers, or Territorials, next the regulars and the native regi- 
ments from India, and, later, the Colonies. The rally for the Empire 
showTi in India and the British colonies had killed the German hope 
that England would find herself alone. A counter-attack by a Belgian- 
British force at Liege would cut the German railroad of supply. Ac- 
tion was imperative. 

The German Advance on Antwerp. 

Marshal von der Goltz was at once appointed Governor-General 
of Belgium and reserve corps were sent forward, under General von 
Besseler, who had been in command of the parade troops at Brussels. 
Definite figures as to the number of army corps actually in Belgium 
at this time are unobtainable, nor would they be of much service, 
for large numbers of men were employed in transport, in garrison 
duty, in reorganizing the Belgian towns and cities under German 
rule and in the general multifarious duties incident on the occupation 
of an enemy's country. Von Besseler, however, does not seem to 
have had a very large army at the first, probably not more than 125,- 
000 troops of the line. He had, however, the siege train which had 
been deflected from the advance to Namur, including two of the 42- 
centimeter siege guns. 

The German advance on Antwerp was' slow and measured, singu- 
larly unlike the German drive on Paris. There were two reasons for 


this. The first was that it was not a drive, but an onward march of 
occupation. The second was, that there was no need for haste. Ant- 
werp was first approached from the southwest, Audeghem fell on 
September 26, the same day as the German defeat near Rheims. Thus 
the end of the western phase of the Aisne and the beginning of the 
advance on Antwerp came on the same day. 

It is a mistake to present the Germans as idling through Belgium 
during September. They were not. They were devoting their whole 
force to sustain the armies driving on Paris. The moment that aim 
was deadlocked, they turned their attention to Belgium. 

On September 27 the little village of Lebbekke was attacked by 
a small force of Germans, which was repulsed. Instead of attacking 
with a heavier force a second time, the Germans withdrew and the 
western roads out of Antwerp were left free. There is no doubt that 
von Besseler could have invested Antwerp if he had wished. That 
he did not do so seems to have been a part of Marshal von der Goltz' 
plan. The Field Marshal did not want to destroy Antwerp, he wanted 
to occupy it, and to increase its importance as a strategic point. De- 
struction of the city, therefore, would vitiate his plans. He wanted 
to drive the Belgians out, not to slaughter them in the streets. For 
this reason the northern outlet by river and the western roads were 
left clear. Malines was bombarded that day. 

Forts of Antwerp Attacked. 

On September 28 Malines was again bombarded and the first 
general attack on the forts of Antwerp began. Antwerp was regarded 
as the most strongly fortified city in the world, with the possible 
exception of Paris, and, besides, it is peculiarly situated for defense. 
Two rivers, the Rupel and Nethe, swing round the city to the south. 
A circle of nineteen forts protected this line. A circle of eight inner 
forts supported them. On September 28, 29, 30 and October 1 von 
Besseler was held back by the River Nethe, partly owing to the diffi- 
culty of using his heavy guns owing to the low and muddy nature of 
the land, which made the building of concrete foundations difficult, and 
partly because von der Goltz was anxious not to inaugurate a reign 
of destruction. It would have injured his further plan. 

On October 3, the first detachment of British troops, numbering 
about 8,000 marines, arrived in Antwerp. They brought two large 


naval gxins, which were mounted on armored trains. The fighting 
became desperate, but it was marked that though the 42-centimeter 
guns were directed once or twice against outlying forts, their use was 
sparing and was not turned against the city itself. This rendered 
the fighting hand-to-hand and more furious. All that day, all night 
and until noon of October 4 the Germans fought to put a pontoon bridge 
across the Nethe River at Waelhem. They succeeded at last, and the 
fight passed on to Lierre, where it continued savagely. This was 
mainly a light artillery and infantry battle. 

]VIeantime, German aviators had been flying above Antwerp, drop- 
ping circulars which advised the Belgians to evacuate the city. Other 
proclamations were warnings to the British marines to retire and 
leave the city to ** peaceful occupation." On October 6 the Germans 
crossed in force and on October 7 the evacuation of the city began. 
It was a terrible exodus, a fearful flight. The condition of the refu- 
gees was pitiable in the extreme. Many fled to Holland, which could 
not organize relief for the tens of thousands which streamed over the 
border, lacking food and many of the essentials of life. The suburbs of 
Antwerp were destroyed, but this was done mainly by the Belgians 
themselves in clearing away ranges for their defensive guns. 

Surrender of Antwerp. 

On October 8 and October 9 the inner forts took up the cannonade, 
over the ruins of the suburbs. Some of them, notably Forts Three, 
Four and Five, were wrecked by the return fire. The people continued 
to flee, a few on railroads, more on tugs plying up the river to Holland, 
but by far the greater number on foot. About 200,000 people left 
Antwerp in these two days. 

By the morning of October 10 Antwerp was on fire. The oil tanks 
had been struck with shells and were blazing fiercely. The water 
supply had been cut off by the destruction of the main reservoir. At 
noon, on October 10, Antwerp surrendered. Without loss of time, the 
Germans were set at work putting out the fire and restoring order in 
the streets. On October 11 Marshal von der Goltz arrived from Brus- 
sels and found that his orders had been carried out. Antwerp had 
been taken after a fourteen-day siege and not more damage had been 
done than could be helped. As in Brussels, so in Antwerp, von der 


Goltz established an eflBcient well-ordered German rule at onoe. Within 
a week, the shops were open, the street cars were running, the bridges 
were temporarily repaired and life was in safety though under the iron 
heel of a severe martial supervision. 

A considerable part of the Belgian forces together with a brigade 
of British marines was cut off by the Germans and compelled to 
retreat across the Holland frontier, where they were promptly dis- 
armed and interned. The larger part, however, struck out westward. 
With Antwerp occupied, the Germans rushed up from the south. Some 
of the Belgian troops were cut off at Ghent, which the Germans entered 
on October 13. Others were compelled to flee along the coast when the 
Germans approached Ostend later on the same day. By October 14 
von Besseler 's army was divided into at least three parts, if not four, 
for Bruges, Thielt, Daume and Esschen were all seized on that day. 
When the Belgian and British troops were taken away from Ostend 
on October 15, that seaport, also, fell into German hands. The cavalry 
swarmed everywhere, and, as has been shown, the policy of "fright- 
fulness" was established to keep the Belgians in terror of any action 
against these small bodies of cavalry. By October 20 the Belgian- 
British line had been solidified from Nieuport to Ypres, and the rest 
of the line continued south as has been shown earlier in this chapter. 

Series of Vicious Engagements. 

This line, however, had not been attained without a number of 
very sharp actions, some of them large enough to be dignified with 
the name of battles. It would give them a disproportionate importance 
to relate them in detail, but a brief summary will show what was hap- 
pening between the Aisne and the sea during the time that Belgium 
was being overrun and Antwerp was being captured. 

On September 23, Manoury^s force tried to break in behind von 
Kluck to seize the railway junction at Tergnier. The blow failed, 
though it gave rise to a violent action at Tracy-le-Mont. On Septem- 
ber 26 the Germans retreated from Amiens and the first train from 
Paris arrived. Amiens was again in French hands. Then followed 
a series of most vicious engagements wherein the towns of Peronne 
and Albert were repeatedly taken and lost. This continued on until 
the first days of October. 


In turn, Arras became the center of warfare, and when war burst 
on that city, it was in its most dreadful form. On October 1 the 
French were driven out of Douai. On October 6 Arras was subjected 
to a heavy bombardment, many fine old buildings being destroyed. That 
same day, attacks having been begun on Lille, the engagement centered 
at La Bassee. On the 9th a party of Uhlans entered Lille, fighting 
began in the streets and bombardment began. But October 12 Lille, 
the capital of French Flanders, was in ruins, and the town surrendered 
on the 13th. Its resistance, which had lasted a week, however, enabled 
the Allies to consolidate their line just behind it. The British had 
thrown forward a force on the Lys to protect Ypres, but the main line 
was at the latter point. 

On October 15, 1914, therefore, the line, Nieuport-Dixmude-Ypres- 
Armentieres-La Bassee-Lens-Arras-Albert-Roye-*Lassigny-Noyon and 
thence along the Aisne, was firmly established. From Ypres to the 
Craonne Plateau, or rather to Verdun, was the huge smnging iron 
chain, which was to swing to and fro for the next four years. The 
granite wall of Verdun-Rheims has been spoken of, there remains to 
show the solidity of the Nieuport to Ypres support. 

Foch in Command of Armies North of the Aisne. 

When the Western Phase of the Battle of the Aisne had come to a 
close, that is, when the Aisne situation had definitely settled into a 
deadlock, at the end of September, Joffre made Foch the generalissimo 
of the French armies running north from the Aisne. It was his task 
to co-ordinate the activities of the armies of Castelnau, Brugere, 
Maud'huy, the division under Bidon, and the northern army under 
d'Urbal. He took up his headquarters at Doulens on October 3, and on 
October 8 Sir John French arrived there to prepare a joint plan. That 
plan revealed itself as a defensive, not an offensive, movement, and 
its salient points developed in the four battles of the Yser, of Lys- 
Ypres, of La Bassee and of Arras. A short notice of each of these 
will close the record of the establishment of the ''western front." 

The lands about the Yser Canal, especially those running north- 
ward from Dixmude to the sea, resemble Holland. They are below 
sea level and protected by dykes. Dixmude was the angle of this 
battle. On October 16 the 6,000 French marines under Admiral Ro- 


narc'h and 5,000 Belgians under General Meyser were ordered to hold 
the trenches for four days. The gallant sailors and soldiers held it 
for a fortnight, most of the time in trenches flooded with water, all the 
time in mist and pouring rain. 

On October 17 five Belgian batteries arrived north of Dixmude. 
Acting in co-operation with regiments of mounted Morocco troops and 
some of General d'Urbal's cavalry, a forward movement was made. On 
the 18th the Ostend road was taken, but it could not be held. On 
midnight of the 19th, the Allies were back in the trenches on the west 
side of the canal. All was readiness, on the German side, for a tre- 
mendous drive in the morning. 

That day, however, in response to an urgent message sent on the 
16th, there appeared off Nieuport several shallow-draught monitors, 
carrying long-range naval guns. (The story of these ''tanks" of the 
sea will be told in later chapters dealing with naval operations.) The 
villages in which the Germans had taken up quarters for the night 
were suddenly shelled with a terrific fire, the shots seeming to come 
by infernal magic from out of the fog-covered sea. 

The Germans Harassed. 

When morning broke, the Germans were in an excessively awk- 
ward position. If they intrenched to face the sea, they could be enfi- 
laded by fire from the Allied trenches on the canal, which ran at right 
angles to the ocean; if they intrenched against the army, the naval 
guns enfiladed or shot lengthwise along them. Naval balloons and 
hydroplanes directed the fire from the monitors. Moreover, the ships 
themselves were free from attack, for the Germans had no such artil- 
lery as could meet the range of a naval gun. The fire was exceedingly 
heavy. One monitor, alone, fired a thousand high-explosive and shrap- 
nel shells in a day, absolutely blotting out all possibe German infantry 
action for a space of three miles inland from the shore. 

That confined the German attack — and accordingly strengthened 
the Allied defence — to a four-mile front, between Eamscapelle and Dix- 
mude. On October 24 the invaders forced their way across the canal 
at heavy loss. Then the lock gates were opened, the waters entered 
and (frowned the invading Germans in hundreds. The fighting still 
went on, the trenches now obliterated, a wierd sort of a combat in a 
shallow lake, sometimes knee-deep, sometimes waist-deep in water. 


This was a fight of cold ateel, wheref or the Germnns showed little taste. 
By October 30 Ramscapelle was recovered; on November 3 the old 
trenches were retaken. The lock gates were closed and the country 
slowly drained clear. Then came the winter, with the Yser canal 
holding firm. 

The second of the battles which was coincident with the formation 
of the western front was that of Lys-Ypres. It began with an ambi- 
tious program, nothing less than the recapture of Bruges and Grhent. 
Sir John French believed that only a small force of Germans lay in 
the direction of Roulers, northeast of Ypres. On October 16 the British 
Army, which had consisted of two corps during the retreat from Mons, 
and of three corps on the Aisne, was increased by the addition of a 
fourth corps under command of General Byng. On October 17, four 
French cavalry divisions were added to Byng's somewhat incomplete 
corps and on the 18th the army advanced, almost to the Passchendaele 
Ridge, five miles west of Ypres. On the 19th the First Army Corps 
moved to Ypres. On the 20th air scouts brought back news of huge 
German armies moving upon Byng. 

General Byng's Desperate Position. 

The lightning-like concentration of these armies under von Deim- 
ling and von Fabeck was masterly work on the part of the German 
staff. They struck on the 21st and struck hard. The cavalry was 
forced back at once. Byng, very stubbornly, got into trenches on a 
line running roughly from Langemarck to Zillebekke and thence to 
Hollebekke. The whole plans of the British Army at this point had 

Yet there was reason for Sir John Frenches supposition that the 
Germans would be few in numbers towards the northeast. He had 
already sent Smith-Dorrien to the southeast and on the 17th — the day 
that the Byng forward movement was ordered — Haig reported further 
advance toward Lys impossible. He intrenched solidly in order to 
hold Armentieres and one of the most intense periods of fighting oc- 
curred at Croix Marechale and Neuve Eglise. For sixteen days the 
attacks never slackened. They dug in for the winter under a most 
terrific fire. 

Byng, however, was in a most desperate position. An order, taken 
from a German officer prisoner, stated mat General von Deimling, with 


three full army corps and reserves, was entrusted with the task of 
breaking through the line north of Ypres, and that 'Hhe Emperor 
himself considered the success of this attack to be one of vital im- 
portance to the issue of the war.'* The Germans did their best to 
make it so. 

This decisive action, sometimes called the First Battle of Ypres, 
came to a head on October 31. There were three British divi- 
sions against three Teuton army corps, and at the point of attack, the 
Germans c-ame on at odds of about six to one. By noon, the British 
First Division was broken, and the Royal Scots Fusiliers were sur- 
rounded and taken. Early in the afternoon, the British divisional 
headquarters was struck by a shell and six of the staff officers were 
killed outright. Two brigades were crumpled up, one on the right and 
the other on the left of the Seventh Division and for ten minutes 
there seemed no hope of recovery. Then, most amazingly, the capture 
of the small village of Gheluvelt by the Second Warwickshires, at the 
point of the bayonet, formed a tiny point of rallying. The line held 
for another hour and liberated a cavalry brigade which sacrified itself 
to make good the trenches for half an hour longer. As evening drew 
on, a powerful force of French cavalry came up. Though almost ex- 
hausted, they helped hold the line, dismounted, until dark. Four of the 
regiments which received their first baptism of fire on this terrible day 
were volunteers. 

Gallantry of British Soldiers. 

"No more arduous task," said Sir John French in his report, "has 
ever been assigned to British soldiers, and in all their splendid history 
there is no instance of their having answered so magnificently to the 
desperate calls which of necessity were made upon them. Words fail 
me to express the admiration I feel for their conduct, or my sense of 
the incalculable services they rendered." 

Their services that day, indeed, were incalculable. They had saved 
Belgium from becoming a German province and they had kept Ger- 
many from Calais, the sea, and a possible invasion of England. In 
revenge, the Germans bombarded Ypres at long range, destroying the 
famous architectural marvel, the Cloth Hall, a confession of failure 
of much the same character as their bombardment of Rheims Cathedral 
when thev were thrown back at that point by Foch. 

6— W. L. 


The third of these battles was that of La Bassee. Though im- 
portant in itself, it had far less tensity as a matter of strategy than 
the two northern battles of the Yser and Ypres. For, even if the Ger- 
mans pierced the line at La Bassee, it would gain them little. They 
would not dare make too deep a salient with powerful armies to the 
north and south. It was far more a trench battle. 

The main attack at La Bassee began on October 22, the day after 
the beginning of the First Battle of Ypres. The point was held by the 
British, with a heavy addition of Indian troops. These latter fought 
absolutely like demons, in spite of the new and unnatural method of 
warfare. The British were driven back. On October 24, the Gordon 
Highlanders, a famous fighting regiment, were driven out of their 
trenches. The Germans succeeded in seizing Neuve Chappelle on Octo- 
ber 27. The whole line was greatly confused at this time, some units 
of either side being intrenched in the lines of their opponents. There 
was little plan to this battle, it was fought out by regiments, even 
by companies. By October 29 the Allied troops were forced back to 
the La Bassee gate. For three days and nights the Germans attacked 
and attacked again. They could not budge the lines another inch. 
There Smith-Dorrien dug in for the winter. 

The Arras battle was similar. The main attack began on October 
20 and lasted for six days. Von Biilow, with heavy forces and a power- 
ful concentration of artillery, pushed Maud'huy back, fighting for 
every inch of ground, until he was within gun-fire of Arras. In this 
desperate need, Joffre hurried forward some reserves which had been 
held at Albert and relieved Maud'huy just in time to save the northern 
gate of Arras. Maud'huy dug in for the winter, likewise. 

Thus was formed the line -of the western front. The actions and 
engagements of the next five months were not the clash of armies, 
but the sorties of small groups of men. There were no great gains, 
no great losses. Shiftings of the front were measured in yards, not 
in miles. The capture or loss of a trench— which had absolutely no 
effect on the front as a whole— assumed the importance of a battle. 
Rifle and bayonet were laid aside for pickaxe and spade. 



Both Sides Essay a Ruse at Mulhaasen— The Bath of Blood at Altklrch — Strategical Value of the Vosges 
—Invading French Army Defeated at Metz— Guerrilla Fighting— Failure of Campaign as Conquest, 
Success as Buffer Against Attack Toward Belfort. 

NOW that the somewhat breathless recital has been made of the 
German invasion of Belgium, the smashing of the first line at 
Mons-Charleroi, the Battle of the Marne, the intrenchment of the 
Ai&ne and the establishment of the western front, it is possible to 
turn to another part of that first great moment of the opening of the 
world war. All that has been recounted heretofore is part and parcel 
of the same plan — the German drive on Paris. But, though the Kaiser 
went so far as to reserve a certain date and a certain hotel for his tri- 
umphal banquet, he never got there. 

Beginning also from the first day of the war there was a French 
drive. It was directed at the Rhine Valley and had for its chief pur- 
pose the occupation of Alsace-Lorraine, two provinces which had been 
taken from France by Germany as an indemnity after the war of 1871. 
It was a double drive, a northern attack into Lorraine, and southern 
attack into Alsace. 

In a preceding chapter it was stated that there are four gaps in 
the mountainous and hilly country of the Belgium-Luxemburg-France 
frontier. Those at Liege and Longwy were used by the Germans in 
their drive on Paris. The two lower gaps, respectively at the north 
and south ends of the Vosges mountains, were used by the French 
in their drive into Alsace-Lorraine. It must be remembered that the 
chain of the Vosges mountains, while itself a strong defensive line for 
France in the event of German attack, was likewise a strong defensive 
line for Germany in the event of French attack. And, while the French 
frontier was protected by the fortresses of Verdun, Toul, Epinal and 
Belfort, the German frontier was protected by the fortresses of Dieden- 



hofen, Metz, Strassburg and Neu Breisaoh. To these must be added 
groups of forts at Molsheim, Banzenheim and Basel. Behind these, 
and guarding the Rhine, were Germersheim, Mainz, Coblentz and Co- 
logne. (All of these were occupied by the Allies after the close of the 
war, as part of the conditions of armistice.) 

In order that the reader may understand the campaign more 
clearly, the movements of the armies will be traced in two parts, as 
they operated through each of these gaps. The southern or Alsace 
campaign will be taken first, the Lorraine campaign, second. But, 
before actually dealing with operations, it may be well to give the 
armies aligned on the two frontiers, as they developed in the course of 
the first three weeks. 

The OppoiinK Forces on the Alsace-Lorraine Frontier. 

The southernmost was the First French Army, under General 
Dubail, who was relieved of his conunand a few days after the war 
began and replaced by General Pan; it held the line from Belfort 
to Epinal. Then came the Second French Army, under General de 
Castelnau, holding the line as far north as Nancy; this was the army 
which, after the Battle of the Aisne, took up its place above Manoury 
and fought the Lassigny-Roye battles on the western front. North, 
again, from Toul to Longwy, came the Third French Army under Gen- 
eral Ruffey (later under General Sarrail) ; this moved north later and 
helped cover Verdun. North of Longwy came the Fourth French Army, 
under Langle de Cary, who held the eastern side of the operative comer 
on the Mons-Charleroi battle, and who, at the Battle of the Marne, held 
firm the line between Verdun and Foch's army. 

Opposing the forces were first the German Eighth Army, under 
General von Deimling, who, after the Alsace-Lorraine campaign was 
over, entrained and made the entire circuit of the western front, ar- 
riving to attack at Ypres a month later; this army faced the Gap of 
Belfort, resting on the forts at Basel on the Swiss frontier with its 
other end on the fortress of Neu Breisach. From Colmar to Saarburg, 
with Strassburg at its back, came the Seventh German Army, which 
army, as the reader will remember, after the Battle of the Marne was 
hurried round to the Aisne to support the diminished armies of von 
Kluck and von Biilow; this was under the command of General von 
Heeringen. From Saarburg to Metz came the Sixth German Army, 


under the Crown Prince of Bavaria; and, facing the Longwy gap, 
was the Fourth Army under the German Crown Prince. 

In spite of the attack on Liege, France could not believe that Ger- 
many intended to throw the main force of her armies through the 
neutral territories of Belgium and Luxemburg. Therefore, as an 
offensive defense — as well as an offense itself — she struck forward into 
Alsace-Lorraine. It is probable, also, that Joffre felt it to be a neces- 
sary response to French public sentiment. On Wednesday, August 
5, the day after the declaration of war, French troops crossed the 
German frontier. On August 7 a French brigade with cavalry and 
artillery occupied Altkirch, and on August 8, after a sharp but short 
fight with retiring German troops, entered Miilhausen in the even- 
ing. It was a patriotic and political success of the first water, but it 
was entirely unsound from a military point of view. 

Advance and Retreat of the French. 

In the first place, it was too easy. That, in itself, is often a sus- 
picious circumstances in warfare. In the second place, strategically, 
Miilhausen meant nothing. Neu Breisaoh lay fifteen miles to the north, 
with guns which completely controlled the valley of the River 111 (a 
tributary of the Rhine) over to Colmar and the slope of the Vosges; 
Basel lay to the southeast ten miles with a strong garrison, and there 
was a fortified point at Banzenheim, six miles to the east. The capture 
of Neu Breisach would have been a cause for rejoicing, Miilhausen, 
much less so. Moreover, in the excitement of the greeting which the 
Alsatians gave the French troops, the latter forgot that they were in 
an enemy's country. 

The Germans did not forget. They had only retired sufficiently 
to ''feel" the enemy, and air scouts had reported that the force of the 
advancing army was but small. All night von Deimling brought up 
and manoeuvred his forces. By the morning of August 9 he was ready. 
He attacked with a whole army corps from Neu Breisach; he sent 
two divisions simultaneously from the Forest of Hard, to which point 
they had been marched during the night; and he started, also at 
daybreak, a flank attack on the French from Sennheim. There was 
nothing to do but to retreat and to do it quickly. The French fell back 
after the first sharp encounter and intrenched lightly at Altkirch, only 
a few miles beyond the border. 


It is to this day an unexplained mystery why Dubail sent forward 
into Miilhausen a mere 20,000 men. He had a large army, 200,000 
men, if garrison troops be included, for France, in mobilizing, had 
concentrated her forces on the German frontier. The other part of 
his advance, the seizure of the Vosges heights, was better managed 
and by the 14th all the passes had been secured. The advance in the 
plain, however, was sternly disapproved by the French High Command, 
and General Pau, who had been a second choice for the Supreme Com- 
mand, took charge of the First Army. 

The Failure of General Pau. 

Pau handled his advance with entirely different tactics. Instead 
of advancing with a small force on a wide front, he attacked slowly 
and simultaneously from the Vosges and from Belfort, storming Thann, 
St. Blaise (where von Deimling was wounded) and Dannemarie, tak- 
ing Miilhausen on August 20. Here General Pau adopted a strong 
position on the Miilhausen-Sennheim-Thann-Col de Busang line and 
awaited attack. That night he received news of the disaster in Lor- 
raine, and realizing that he could do nothing unsupported and only 
stood the risk of losing a large part of his army by an overpowering 
force, he retreated to Altkirch, solidifying the tiny Col de Busang- 
Thann corner so solidly, however, that it remained in French hands 
until the end of the war. 

There was a terrific outcry in France concerning the abandonment 
of the Alsace campaign, and, had the military leaders in command been 
of less fame than Generals Joffre and Pau, it is more than probable 
that popular sentiment would have demanded some beheading in offi- 
cial ranks. But, by this time, the menace in the north was beginning 
to shape. Air scouts had reported the great concentration of the 
German armies on Namur, and the withdrawal of Pau's army from 
the Alsace campaign released more men for the north. 

The failure of Pau to gain a permanent footing in the Rhine 
Valley, it has been shown, was the news of a defeat in Lorraine, which 
would leave him unsupported. It was, of course, absolutely essential 
to any campaign in the south that the First and Second French Armies 
should unite on the further side of the Vosges. Why did this prove 
impossible? What had happened in Lorraine? 

The Second French Army, under General Castelnau, had proceeded 


with far more caution than the unhappy leader of the first campaign 
into Alsace. The Germans had been advancing on Longwy and Verdun, 
but not in great force. General Castelnau had thrown back several 
enemy attacks on Nancy. All these actions were of that type of mili- 
tary operation which is known as "feeling out the enemy." In other 
words, they were not battles, but only feints to draw out information 
as to the strength of the foe. How little this was understood in Paris 
was shown by an official announcement on August 15 that the Germans 
had been thrown back at Nancy, that the invasion of Belgium had 
been foiled and so forth. 

This simply demonstrated that the Germans were so cleverly en- 
veloping their advance in secrecy that, as late as August 15, France 
did not yet know where the chief danger lay. Lest this should seem 
strange, in view of all that has been said about the Belgian invasion, 
it is to be remembered that cavalry patrols, acting as a screen in ad- 
vance of the main armies, invariably cut telegraph and telephone 
communication. The world knew absolutely nothing as to the size, 
movement and plans of the German armies until several weeks later. 

French Successes in Lorraine. 

When, therefore, on August 15, General Castelnau advanced into 
Lorraine with the Second French Army, he had no reason to doubt 
the essential correctness of Joffre's strategy, for the Alsace-Lorraine 
invasion was an important part of the whole French plan. On Sunday, 
August 16, the French were in force at Avricourt, just across the Ger- 
man frontier on the main line from Luneville to Strassburg, which 
runs through Saarburg. On the same day the left wing of the First 
French Army, coming down from the Vosges passes, reached Schir- 
meck, on the Saales-Strassburg line (a German strategic railway) and 
captured 20 guns and 1,500 prisoners. The left wing of the Second 
Army had seized Fenetrange, a marshy region, but important as the 
railway junction from which diverged the Strassburg railway to Metz 
and Nancy respectively. 

It is worthy of notice that these tactics were excellently handled 
by Castelnau, for on Monday, August 17, Saarburg was menaced from 
north, west and south simultaneously. Near Lorquin, directly south 
of the important supply point of Saarburg, on the River Saar, a 
strong artillerj^ position had been taken up. That is, the position 


was strong, though, as afterwards proved, the French heavy artillery 
was as weak compared to the German as its light artillery was strong. 
On Tuesday, August 18, Saarburg was taken, with a sharp but 
not a heavy battle, and the main railway between Strassburg and Metz 
was broken. From a military point of view this was highly important, 
for Strassburg was the main supply of the advanced fortress of Metz. 
News was now beginning to filter through of the heavy German con- 
centration in the north, and this news justified Castelnau in the sup- 
position that a swift blow at the Rhine would cause a diversion of the 
German drive on Paris. It would, at least, he supposed, force the Ger- 
mans to weaken their main push by the necessity of sending reenforce- 
ments to the Rhine. On August 19, therefore, he pushed forward 
through Dieuze and Morhange. 

The Germans Retaliate. 

It stands to reason that, had the Germans wished to do so, they 
could have thrown strong forces across the line between Metz and 
Strassburg and held back the French advance on the very first day. 
That they did not do so, was evidently due to one of two causes, 
either that the armies available were not strong enough for the pur- 
pose; or that the French were being decoyed into a salient on which 
an attack would fall with greater force. The latter proved to be 

On Thursday, August 20, with absolute co-ordination, three Ger- 
man armies launched themselves on this horseshoe-shaped French ad- 
vance. The first struck south of Saarburg, the second at Dieuze, the 
third, the heaviest, at Pont-a-Mousson. Von Heeringen led the southern 
attack, the Crown Prince of Bavaria the central, and the Metz garri- 
son the northern. The latter, also, had a powerful quota of heavy 
artillery, as would be natural in garrison forces. Besides this, the 
Germans had the advantage of position. 

The Battle of Metz, as it was called, was appallingly short. Von 
Heeiingen's strategy, the artillery of Metz, and the overpowering 
forces that poured down from every direction like a gray tidal wave, 
formed an irresistible tempest of battle. The Seventh German Army 
swung in toward the slopes of the Vosges and formed an anvil on which 
the hammer of the Metz garrison fell and fell again. Compared with 
the immensely lengthy actions of the latter part of the war, Metz 


could not be compared for size. It was, indeed, a battle of the old 
sort, when armies fought for themselves on their own ground. 

But, though it was short and local, it was none the less decisive. 
The Pont-a-Mousson line was pounded to pieces in two hours. Less 
than an hour later the Bavarians tore through the French line at 
Chateau Salins. The Fifteenth French Division gave way ; the Germans 
claimed that it fled. Ten batteries and 9,000 men were taken prisoners. 

Castelnau was utterly taken aback at the strength of the troops 
opposing him, but he covered the hole made by the Fifteenth Division 
(which gallantly recovered itself next day) and drew to the rear. On 
the 21st the whole French left retreated to the frontier. On the 22nd 
it had been driven back to the strong position on the ring of hills 
near Nancy, known as the Grand Couronne, which figured a few days 
later in the Battle of the Mame. On the 22nd also the centre of the 
Alsace-Lorraine campaign, that is to say, the troops which had stormed 
the plain from over the passes of the Vosges, was compelled to with- 
draw, and Miilhausen was abandoned two days later. On the 23rd 
Luneville, well over the French border, was taken by the Germans, 
and Nancy itself was only saved by the French taking up the main 
defense line between the fortresses of Verdun, Toul and Epinal. 

General Joffre's Evacuation Order. 

Undoubtedly there would have been a counter-thrust, but for the 
woeful news which came from the north. That same Saturday, August 
22, when the two French Armies were driven back across the frontier, 
and the Alsace-Lorraine offensive was defeated, came the staggering 
news that the great fortress of Namur, intended to hold out for a week 
or two, had fallen in an hour. That evening, as Castelnau was taking 
up his position on Le Grand Couronne of Nancy, came the news of 
the French defeat at Charleroi and the collapse of the main operative 
corner. On Sunday, August 23, on the day that Luneville fell, came 
the news of the isolation of the British and the heroic defence at Mons, 
followed by the beginning of the retreat. 

There was but one thing for Joffre to do. He did it. In his com- 
munique of August 26, the bald facts were thus stated: ''The Com- 
mander-in-Chief, having to summon all the troops of the Mouse front, 
ordered the evacuation of the occupied territory. The great battle 
is engaged between Maubeuge and the Donon (the effort to hold there 


failed, as the reader will remember) ; on it depends the fate of France, 
and, with it, of Alsace. It is in the north that the Commander-in-Chief 
calls all the forces of the nation to the decisive attack. Military action 
in the Rhine Valley would distract from it troops on which victory 
might depend. It is necessary, therefore, to leave Alsace for the 
present. It is si cruel necessity which the army of Alsace and its chief 
have submitted to with pain, and only at the last extremity." 

Many histories of the war, especially those written in England 
and America, have given but little space and attention to this Alsace- 
Lorraine campaign, and, even in voluminous military accounts, the 
Battle of Metz is given a minor place. German histories of the war, 
however, regard the matter with very different eyes, and Hilaire Belloo, 
an English critic of tactics, envisions the effect of Metz so clearly that 
one cannot do better than quote his words. 

Views of an English Critic. 

''Here we have a nation," he writes of Germany, ''which has re- 
ceived within the first month of a war which it had proudly imposed 
upon its enemies, the news of two victories (Metz and Tannenberg) 
more startlingly triumphant than its most extreme expectation of suc- 
cess had yet imagined possible. 

*'Let the reader," he continues, "put himself into the position 
of a German subject in his own station of life, informed by a daily 
press which has come to be his sole source of opinion (like the Ameri- 
can). . . . Let him remember that this man has been specially tutored 
and coached into a complete faith in the superiority of himself and his 
kind over the rest of the human race. . . . 

"Let the reader further remember that in this, the Germans' 
rooted faith, their army was for them at once its cause and its expres- 
sion ; then only can he conceive what attitude the mind of such a man 
would assume upon the news from the West and the East in those days, 
the news of the avalanche in France and the news of Tannenberg. It 
would seem to the crowd in Berlin that they were indeed a part of 
something not only necessarily invincible, but of a different kind of 
military superiority from other men. 

"These, from what would seem every quarter of the globe, had 
been gathered to oppose him, merely because the German had chal- 
lenged his two principal enemies. Though yet far from being imper- 


illed by so universal a movement, he crushes it utterly, and in a less 
time than it is under arms he is overwhelmed by the news, not of his 
enemy's defeat, but rather of his annihilation. (It was thus that the 
German newspapers interpreted it.) 

"Miles of captured guns and hour upon hour of marching columns 
of prisoners are the visible effect of his triumph and the confirmation 
of it; and he hears, after the awful noise of his victories, a sort of 
silence throughout the world — a silence of awe and dread, which pro- 
claims him master. It is the anniversary of Sedan. 

''Only in an appreciation of this psj^chological phenomenon," 
writes Belloc, "can one understand the after development of the war. 
After the Battle of Metz, after the sweep down upon Paris from the 
SambrC; after the immense achievement of Tannenberg (which will be 
told in Chapter X of this volume), the millioned opinion of a now 
united North Germany was fixed. It was so fixed that even a dramatic- 
ally complete disaster might still leave the North German unshaken in 
his confidence. Defeats would still seem to him but episodes upon a 
general background, whose texture was the necessary predominance of 
his race above the lesser races of the world. 

' ' This is the mood we shall discover in all that Germany did from 
that moment forward. It is of the first importance to realize it, because 
that mood is, so to speak, the chemical basis of all the reactions that 
follow. That mood, disappointed, breeds fury and confusion; in the 
event of further slight successes, it breeds a vast exaggeration ; in the 
presence of any real thought by local advance, it breeds the illusion of 
a final victory. It is impossibe to set down adequately this intoxica- 
tion of the first German victories. 

"The line had swung down irresistible. . . . Not only had there 
fallen back before its charge all the arrayed armies of the French and 
their new ally, but also all that counted in the hopes of the defenders 
had failed. All that the last few years had promised in the new work 
of the air, all that a generation had built up of permanent fortified 
work, had been proved impotent before the new siege train. The bar- 
rier fortresses of the Meuse, Liege and Namur had gone up like paper 
in a fire. Maubeuge was at its last days. 

"The sweep has no parallel in the monstrous things of history. 
Ten days had sufiiced for the march upon the capital. Nor had there 
been in that ten days a moment's hope or an hour of relaxation. No 


such strain has yet been endured, so concentrated, so exact an image 
of doom. 

"All along the belt of that march, the things that were the sacra- 
ment of civilization had gone. Rheims was invested, the village 
churches of French Flanders and of Artois were ruins or desolations. 
The peasantry . . . had been massacred in droves, with no purpose 
save that of terror ; they had been netted in droves, the little children 
and women with the men, into captivity .... 

''But there was to come — it was already in the agony of birth — 
the moment, a day and a night, in which one effort rolled the wave 
right back (the Battle of the Marne). Thereafter, with the passage 
of many days, with the gradual broadening of vision and, in time, the 
aspect though distant, of slow victory, the creeping domination ac- 
quired over the mass of spiritually sodden things that had all but 
drowned the race, the pressure of the hand tightening upon the throat 
of the murderer, was released a certain high potential which those who 
did not know it could no more comprehend than a savage can compre- 
hend the lightning which civilized man regulates and holds in the 
electric wire. And this potential made, and is making, for an intense 
revenge. ' * 

It is in the light of this incredible spiritual arrogance that the 
atrocities in Belgium and Northern France can be understood. It 
was comparable to the use of the torture chamber by the Holy Inquisi- 
tion as a means of bringing heretics to God. It was this mental atti- 
tude which made Prussia dangerous and will keep her dangerous for 
manj^ years to come. Many things contributed to heighten and ag- 
grandize that arrogance, at the beginning of the war, but none more 
than the proud boast — true to the very last day of the war — that the 
tide of battle did not rage on German territory. This boast was only 
made possible by the impotent outcome of the French campaign in 
Alsace and Lorraine. 



The rraac*-G«nuui Fromtler— Tba Oemuia Crown Prince— Fearful L«h of LU« at Fort Douaumoat— Tb« 
Fr*ncli "TS'a"— Modem Artillery Method*— Changing Plana of Defeaf»-Strateflc Rallwara— St. 
Mlhlel Salient— Nanc7, Tool and the Sonthem Chain of Fortt. 

JUST as Ypres to Ostend was the solid embankment of Belgium 
against which the German generals, reckless of human life, hurled 
their tens of thousands of men; so Verdun was the French wall. It 
will give a true picture to represent Nieuport to Ypres, in the north, 
and Belfort to Verdun, in the south, as two granite walls, between which 
a heavy iron chain was swinging. The Germans could not knock down 
the walls. They did, from time to time, swing the chain. 

A word or two will explain the importance of Verdun. The Franco- 
German frontier, between Luxemburg and Switzerland, as it then was 
mapped, was almost a right angle, with the point of the angle directed 
toward Strassburg. The south to north side of this angle ran along 
the line of the Vosges Mountains and was impassable to heavy military 
transport. There was a narrow gap to the south, near the Swiss fron- 
tier. The east to west side of the angle is fairly flat land, being com- 
posed of the valleys of the Saar and Moselle Rivers. Since the forested 
hills of the Argonne protect the Luxemburg frontier, it is this valley 
which is the opening to the plains of Champagne and the road to Cen- 
tral France. 

Owing to the violation of Belgian and Luxemburg territory, the 
Germans had invaded and captured much territory in Northern France. 
Germany could have reached the plains of Champagne by a slightly 
different route, viz, by coming down the western side of Verdun, on 
the other side of the Meuse, and entering back of St. Mihiel, near Bar- 
le-Duc. Verdun, however, was again the corner to that move. As long 
as that fort was unreduced, it would be of no avail to pass it. 

Belfort-Epinal-Toul- Verdun was the stone wall, and the great 
swinging chain was moored at Verdun. Everything hinged on that one 
fort. When the Germans willingly lost 500,000 men at that one point, 



it was because they knew that one point to be the crux of the western 
front. France knew it also. Between 1870 and 1914 she had spent 
$1,500,000,000 in the Longwy-Verdun-Toul-Epinal-Belfort fortification 
line. Half of this money was wasted on works which the thitherto un- 
known siege guns rendered useless, the other half saved Verdun, which 
saved France. 

The Battle of the Grande Couronne of Nancy, on September 8 and 
9, 1914, has been told in its place as a part of the Battle of the Mame. 
It has also been shown that General Langle de Gary stood firm, thereby 
imperilling Foch. It is also to be noted that de Gary, with the Fourth 
French Army, did not join the pursuit of the fleeing Germans. It was 
his job to hold Verdun. He held it. 

Verdun's Wonderful Stand. 

On September 10, the battle-line ran due south from Verdun, turn- 
ing by Bar-le-duc and Vitry toward Paris. On the 11th the fleeing 
Germans were on a line running through Chalons and Epernay. On 
the 14th, the Verdun pressure was slackening, with the line running 
through St. Menehould. On the 18th, the Germans had been driven 
back to the Aisne, with Verdun relieved from fear of attack from the 

In all that has been said heretofore, the character of the Verdun 
defense has not been described, for it seems wiser to deal with that 
pivotal fortress as a separate entity. For the same reason, while the 
movements of the armies on either side of Verdun have been described, 
the Verdun Army has been left until now. The Third Army, at first 
under General Ruffey and later under General Sarrail, was at Verdun. 

From this it is clear that the beginning of the Verdun story lies 
with the movements of the Third French Army. Verdun being a right 
angle, it was open to attack either from the north, at the northeast 
angle, or on the east. It was confronted, therefore, by three German 
armies, when the Marne battle-line commenced to form. The northern 
side was confronted by the Fourth German Army, under the Duke of 
Wurtemburg, the angle by the Fifth German Army, under the Crown 
Prince of Germany, the eastern side by the Sixth German Army, under 
the Crown Prince of Bavaria. Verdun, therefore, had to sustain attack 
from three directions. This task continued without cessation during 
the four years of the war. 


It may have escaped observation that, up to this point, all such 
points as Liege, Namur, Maubeuge, and the German group, Metz, 
Strassburg, etc., have been spoken of as "fortresses," but that in this 
chapter the writer has called Verdun and Belfort ''forts." This 
change of phrase is intentional. It was around the beginning of 
September that all these fortresses became forts. 

The matter demands a little explanation, for it will explain why- 
Liege fell in nine days, Namur in an hour, and Verdun not in four 

The Construction of a Fortress. 

A fortress, in the sense of the word as used before the world 
war, was a fortified place, the fortifications of which consisted of a 
number of large and small forts erected on hills or strategic points 
arrounding a central point. The fire of these forts was so arranged 
that, if one of them should be stormed by the enemy, the attacking 
party would be under the fire of the forts on either side. No fort, 
therefore, could be attacked mthout the invaders being subjected to 
the concentrated fire of three forts. In addition to the fact that each 
fort was as impregnable as possible in itself, this system absolutely 
prevented any individual fort being surrounded and cut off from the 
others. All forts were connected with each other and with the central 
point by good roads, frequently by light railways for handling muni- 
tions and other supply. 

Liege and Namur were smashed to dust and splinters because the 
forts surrounding them were fixed. Once the huge howitzers got the 
exact range they could fire from tremendous distances and reduce 
the works at pleasure. The forts could not reply by direct gun fire, 
for the howitzers were always placed in trenches or behind low hills. 
As long as there were fixed forts which could be destroyed by high- 
explosive shells, so long were those forts but death-traps. Namur 
proved that conclusively. The attacking power directed against a 
fort was stronger than the defensive force. Old style fortresses were 

Verdun had ceased to be a fortress. In place of masses of ma- 
sonry, of earthworks, of disappearing cupolas, and the like, all the 
heights became a network of trenches, roads were multiplied, especial 
development being given to those which ran through woods and forests 
and were invisible from aeroplanes flying overhead. The great guns 


nestled in greenwood glades. Narrow-gauge gun railways ran in every 
direction like the web of an eccentric spider and no amount of aerial 
reconnaissance served to tell the Germans exactly what was hap- 
pening on that group of heights crowned by the citadel of Verdun. 
All the defenses thus were merged into one, and Verdun became one 
huge interlocked, intertwining fort, running up and down a dozen hills 
rather than a fortress composed of little forts. The same change, 
modified by the character of the ground, took place at Toul, Epinal 
and Belfort. In a minor sense, the same process was hastily carried 
out, at the beginning of the war, on the circle of hills near Nancy, 
known as Le Grand Couronne. 

Verdun lies distant from Paris 140 miles and from Toul 40 miles. 
The city of Verdun was never attacked, though bombarded, and 
throughout the four years of the siege, farm life continued peace- 
fully on the slopes and crops were garnered under the continuous roar 
of the guns. 

The Defense of Le Grand Couronne. 

The attack on Verdun took four phases, the first at Le Grand 
Couronne of Nancy, which was an attempt to circle both Toul and 
Verdun; the second at St. Mihiel, which was an attempt to circle 
Verdun from the east; the third at Ste. Menehould, which was an 
attack to encircle Verdun from the north; and the great frontal 
attack, designed to take the whole chain of hills by storm, at what- 
ever cost. 

The defense of Le Grand Couronne, as has been said, was one of 
the principal factors which decided the Germans to concentrate their 
forces on the western end of the Marne line, for they argued that Le 
Grand Couronne could never have been held by the French unless the 
defenders had the vast proportion of their forces at that eastern point. 
But this engagement — it was hardly a battle — is of the highest im- 
portance in its relation to Verdun and to the famous St. Mihiel salient 
which is inseparably associated with Verdun. 

The lay of the land rendered it imperative for Castelnau's army 
to be defeated first. If this semi-circle or crown of hills — more like 
a diadem than a crown — could be stormed, then Nancy would lie at the 
invaders' mercy. If the Nancy heights were taken, then the Germans 
would possess ideal gun positions for their heavy artillery, with 

Photo from Underwood & Underwood. N. Y. 
Tliis photograph was taken from the body of the German In the gray sweater at the 

left, on July 28, 1918. The three women operated 
about fifteen miles from Chateau Thierry. 

runs against the United States forces 


' iii^^^ 

i.^ V. >:'r . )-. ^ 


|k ^^^^fUjjf^i^if^m^ ^ 



Phcto by American Press Association. 
Members of a Russian Regiment of Amazons, who fought fiercely and with great tenacity 
in m,any battles on tha Riga front. 



T ... .^i,^ 



^ t •' 

I'hoto from Underwood & Underwood. 
This photograph shows two French soldiers carrying a wounded soldier back to a 
dressing station through one of the trenches in the Somme. 


Secretary McAdoo. Treasury. Secretary Daniels, Navy. 

© Underwood & Underwood, N. Y. © G. V. Buck. From Underwood & Underwood, N. Y. 

Secretary Baker, War. Secretary Lansing, Stale. 

© Underwood & Underwood, N. Y. © G. V. Buck. From Underwood & Underwood, N. Y. 

Tlieir deed.s will stand in history for all time. 

,c) Western JNewspaper Union Photo Service. 

A despatch dog clearing a barbed wire. These message bearers were sometinies invaluable 

in lighting zones. 

© Western Newspaper Union Photo Service. 


Many different types were u.sed in "No Man's Land" with good results. The photograph 
shows them starting out for a morning's training. 





















which to reduce the fort of Toul. The key to this situation, therefore, 
was Le Grand Couronne, this diadem of hills. 

The attack began in force on September 4. The actual forces 
engaged gave the Germans a preponderance of about three to one, and 
their heavy artillery was in the proportion of five to one, for it had 
been strongly reenforced with guns from the fortresses of Strassburg 
and Metz. Three to one, however, is not heavy odds when defensive 
positions are to be stormed, and in the ten days between Castelnau's 
occupation of the position and the beginning of the frontal attack, he 
had intrenched very solidly. 

The Kaiser Directing the Battle. 

Pont-a-Mousson, which had been retaken by the French two days 
before, was captured by the enemy on the 5th. On the 6th occurred one 
of the most dramatic pictures of the war. 

Suddenly, on the top of one of the hills overlooking the battle, 
there appeared a group of figures, seeming small in the distance, but 
all in glittering uniforms. After a pause one detached himself from 
the rest, and rode slowly forward. He was dressed in white, the 
gorgeous uniform of a Colonel of the White Cuirassiera. It was the 
kaiser. He was there in person, directing the battle and giving elab- 
orate instructions with regard to the Arch of Triumph which was to be 
erected in the streets of Nancy, through which he planned to ride a 
day or two later. 

If von Heeringen doubted the wisdom of this attack, as he well 
might have done, his only method of showing it was to hurl even 
larger masses of men from the south on the hills above Luneville. 
But Le Grand Couronne of Nancy was to teach a new lesson of warfare. 
It was to reveal anew what the Germans found at Rheims, namely, 
that the French 75 's, when intrenched, poured a mass of fire out of 
their slender throats against which mass drives were impossible. Von 
Heeringen and the Crown Prince of Bavaria first hurled hundreds, then 
thousands, then tens of thousands of men up the various steeps of Le 
Grand Couronne. Not once did those gray-clad masses effect a lodg- 
ment, at least none that were living did so. So terrible was the slaugh- 
ter on the day that the Kaiser watched and made his plans for a 

triumphal arch, that the next day, Sunday, in spite of the pitiful con- 

7— W. L. 


fession of weakness that it implied, von Heeringen asked for a trace 
to bury the German dead. 

The Bavarian forces fought with incessant savage onslaught, like 
interminable packs of wolves. If they could not carry the heights by 
sheer strength, they would carry it by the terrible policy of exhaustion. 
They might strew the hills with dead, but if the charges were con- 
tinuous, sooner or later French endurance could last no longer. There 
was a breaking point to the human frame. All day and night of the 
10th and of the 11th this hurricane attack beat and beat against the 
human-held cliifs of Le Grand Couronne. 

Crushing Defeat of the Germans. 

It is ever necessary to bear in mind the outstanding fact that vic- 
tories are won largely by the morale of the contending armies. These 
days, from September 6 to September 11, were days of great portent. 
That Sunday, September 6, when the Kaiser had stood on the hills 
above Nancy in his gay white uniform, was the Sunday when the fa- 
mous taxicab army poured through Paris and went to the aid of 
Manoury, entering into hand-grips with von Gluck. The four days 
that the Germans strove with desperation to force Le Grand Couronne 
were also the four days of the Battle of the Mame. The day of the 
last final despairing effort at Nancy was the day of von Hansen 's flight 
before the avenging hosts of France. Hour by hour this news was 
commg to General Castelnau, heartening his soldiers who staggered at 
their guns from exhaustion, hunger and strain; hour after hour the 
news reached the German officers — though it was not told to the men — 
that the drive on Paris was lost. 

The morning of the 12th came. It came richly to Castelnau 's 
army, with the glorious tidings of the victory of the Marne, it came 
agonizingly lest they, and they alone, should fail France at this crucial 
moment ; it came darkly over the loss of Champenoux and the sight of 
German heavy artillery toiling up to a slope whence they might expect 
a withering fire. 

"And, then,*' writes a French officer, "0 Prodigy! Calm fell. 
Over the whole of the stricken field brooded peace. The enemy gave 
up, retreated for good, abandoned ever;ji;hing, even Champenoux, so 
bitterly contested, and the entire front he had occupied. He fell back 
in dense columns, without even a pretense of further resistance." 


It was time. The French found 40,000 German dead on those 
slopes of destruction. All of Germany's force had to be turned to de- 
fensive tactics, if the line of the Aisne was to be held. One by one, 
St. Die, Luneville, Baccarat and Raon-1'Etampe were reoccupied by 
the French. Toward the south the Germans resisted stoutly, but could 
do nothing against the French, rested and flushed with victory; 
Remereville, Courbessaux, Drouvllle and the bloody "Wood of Crevic 
were retaken, and when, on September 22, the Western Phase of the 
Battle of the Aisne had ended, the French tricolor waved over the 
place where the Kaiser had stood, just a fortnight before, to plan 
his triumphal entry. So ended the German invasion of France at 
Nancy, or, as it may be easier to remember, the attack between the 
fortresses of Toul and Epinal. 

The Germans' Expensive Position at St. Mihiel. 

So much has been written of St. Mihiel, and the American public 
was so sadly misinformed concerning the ' ' wonderful feat ' ' of driving 
the Germans out of St. Mihiel in 1918, that it is of interest and im- 
portance to see how the St. Mihiel position appealed to Richard Hard- 
ing Davis, a most excellent American war correspondent, after the 
Germans had established themselves there. 

*'One expected to see at St. Mihiel," he wrote, '^an isolated hill, 
a promontory, some position of such strategic value as would explain 
why, for St. Mihiel, the lives of thousands of Germans had been 
thrown like dice upon the board. . . . Why the German wants to hold 
St. Mihiel, why he ever tried to hold it, why, if it so pleases him, he 
should not continue to hold it until his whole line is driven across the 
border, is difficult to understand. For him it is certainly an expensive 
position. It lengthens his lines of communication and increases his 
need of transport. It eats up men, eats up rations, eats up priceless 
ammunition, and it leads to nowhere, enfilades no position, threatens 
no one. It is like an ill-mannered boy sticking out his tongue. And 
as ineffective ! " 

The Germans stuck in the St. Mihiel salient for four years, not 
because of any military value in the position, but because of a. certain 
obstinate pride. The writer is convinced that French troops could 
have taken the salient any time during the four years that they wished 
to do so. There was no need to do so until the close of the war, when 


it became strategically wise to straighten the line for the resumption 
of a great offensive. When a newspaper correspondent in 1918 stated 
that ' ' the Americans had taken the St. Mihiel Salient, which had defied 
the armies of the world for four years" he was writing dispatches 
which would please the readers of his paper, but he was talking non- 
sense, just the same. 

From what has been said, it is obvious, therefore, that since the 
Nancy and St. Mihiel offensives had been without decisive result, the 
next German attack would be on the western side of Verdun. The 
main object, in this case, was to cut the main line to Paris. This, sooner 
or later, would compel the fall of Verdun, for, owing to the configura- 
tion of the land, it would be difficult to construct another railway over 
the hills to the southeast. 

Crown Prince's Tactics of "Nibbling the Line." 

When the storm of the Second Phase of the Aisne had passed by 
and Foch had convinced the Germans that the taking of the French 
trenches around Rheims was a task beyond their powers, the German 
Crown Prince, who had intrenched north of the Rheims-Verdun line in 
the Forest of Argonne, devoted himself to an attack on the eastern 
side of Verdun, driving towards Ste. Menehould. Rheims and Le 
Grand Couronne of Nancy had convinced the German leaders that mass 
drive tactics were useless against the fearful accuracy and speed of the 
French 75 's. Therefore — largely under the direction of General de 
Mudra, the former Commandant of Metz and an expert in fortress and 
mine tactics — the Crown Prince initiated that type of fighting which 
later became known as ''nibbling the line." 

The essential principles of this are simple. It consisted in driving 
"saps" (underground tunnels, or, sometimes, deep trenches) to within 
a few feet of the enemy's line. If underground, mines were exploded; 
if trenches, they formed the basis for a sudden grenade attack. Rarely 
more than four battalions were employed. Only a small sector was 
attacked. It was enough to seize a few hundred yards of the French 
first and second line trenches, consolidate them, fortify them, and work 
up the lines of supply. Then, ten days later, would come a bite at 
another point. There were forty of these attacks between October, 
1914, and May, 1915. 

In June and July, 1915, there were three really serious attempts 


to break through the French Imes. The first was stopped almost at 
once. The second — which lasted ten days — was more dangerous and 
the main railroad came under the fire of German heavy artillery. The 
third, also, had moderate success. During August and September, 
however, Sarrail cut out from under the famous Le Mort Homme Hill 
and compelled the Germans to give back. 

What may be called ''The World's Greatest Battle" began in 
February, 1916, and lasted for eighteen months. It was brought about 
by three things. The first was that the "nibbling at the line" tactics 
ceased to be of any value, because the French had learned how to do 
it better than the Germans and, in such tactics, the disproportion of 
numbers was of little account. The second reason was that the reor- 
ganization of munition conditions in France had enabled the French 
trenches to be as well supplied as the German. The third was the 
evidence that the St. Mihiel salient was a loss rather than a gain. 
Preparation of the Germans for a Great Attack. 
During the entire winter of 1915-1916, the German General Staff 
decided to concentrate on an actual storming of Verdun. It had 
become known that the Allies were planning a great offensive in the 
spring. The Germans felt that it was necessary to prevent this, or 
to offset this by a victory at the end of the winter. Moreover, there 
was a dynastic side to the affair. The Crown Prince of Germany had 
become a military joke. As the next Kaiser, it was intolerable that 
the war should leave his personality in such disrenown. For the sake 
of Hohenzollernism, it was imperative that the troops nominally under 
his charge should achieve a spectacular success. Moreover, if Verdun 
fell, an advance was possible into the plains of Champagne, with the 
seizure of Chalons. All winter, therefore, the Germans brought up 
guns and troops, ready for the great attack. 

In December, 1915, the Germans received strong reenforcements 
from troops no longer needed in the Serbian campaign. Sectors which 
had been held by one or two corps, now were held by six or seven. 
By the middle of February 440,000 men were facing Verdun, of whom 
320,000 were infantry. During the winter the Germans had built 
fourteen strategic railroad lines. The guns were numbered, not in 
scores, or hundreds, but by thousands. It was by far a bigger con- 
centration than Germany *s ijiitial drive to Paris. How the Germans 


regarded its importance may be seen from the words addressed by 
General von Daimling to liis troops just before the first attack was 
delivered: "Li this LAST offensive against France, I hope that the 
Fifteenth Corps will distinguish itself by its courage and its fortitude, 
as it has always done." 

The French line around Verdun may be said to have begun, west 
of the Meuse, at Malancourt, just below that hill significantly entitled 
Le Mort Homme (Dead Man's Hill). On the eastern bank of the 
Meuse it ran from Consenvoye to Brabant, then along the line of hills 
to Haumont and Caures Forest. There it turned round the angle 
slightly, holding the heights above Beaumont, the spur of the Cote 
du Poivre (The Steep of Pepper) and so eastwards, holding the low 
banks of the Ornes River by Fromezey and Gussainville and Fresnes 
round to St. Mihiel. Back of this line was a second line of defense, 
running through Forges, Haumont, Bezonvaux, and Hermeville. Back 
of this was the third line of defense, marked especially by Champneu- 
ville, Fort Douaumont, Fort Vaux and Haudigmont. 

Bombardment of Unbelievable Fury, 

It was a few minutes before four o'clock in the morning of Feb- 
ruary 21, 1916, that the great attack began. High-explosive shells 
fell like hailstones. Trenches w^ere buried, dugouts were ruined, trench 
shelters were blown to fragments. There was no question of holding 
the front lines. Within three hours there were no lines to hold. There 
was no question of remaining hidden in cover of the forest, by noon, 
trees had been stripped bare of their boughs and only twisted and 
scarred trunks remained. The very face of nature was distorted. One 
French correspondent described the scene after eight hours of bom- 
bardment as "storm-tossed ground rent into hills and hummocks like 
a frozen jumble of waves, with shattered tree stumps rising here and 
there like jagged teeth." 

On February 26 this driving of victims into the maw of Moloch, god 
of Destruction, seemed justified. The Brandenburg Regiment stormed 
the slopes of Douaumont with magnificent gallantry and seized the 
ruins. German General Headquarters announced "the capture of the 
fort of Douaumont, the northeastern corner-stone of the principal 
line of the permanent fortifications of Verdun." It was retaken by 
the French an hour later, lost again in the afternoon, regained in the 
evening, and night fell with Douaumont claimed by both sides. As a 


matter of fact, the dust-heap which once was Douaumont was held 
by none but corpses. The Brandenburgers held the trenches which 
they had made, although almost surrounded. No Canadian forces at 
Yprcs, Australians at Gallipoli, or French at Lens, fought more gal- 
lantly than did the Prussians that day. 

Just a few dates will show the continuance of this long-drawn- 
out agony. On February 26, 1916, the Germans captured Fort Douau- 
mont. On March 7 they reached as far as Fresnes. From March 
10 to April 12, without a moment's cessation, the Germans attacked 
Le Mort Homme. It cost 40,000 men, and then was not taken. On 
May 8, the Germans secured a footing on Hill 304 — which is the eastern 
end of Le Mort Homme. On May 22 the French, counter-attacking, 
recaptured Douaumont, but they held it only two days. Bavarian 
troops stormed the heights again. On June 6 the Germans occupied 
Fort Vaux, a notable advance, but one which subjected them to artillery 
fire. This was a case where victory was more costly than defeat. 
During June, July and August, the field defences of Thiaumont changed 
hands nineteen times. 

A very powerful offensive was started by the French in October, 
resulting in the recapture of Fort Douaumont on October 24, of the 
Haudromont Quarries on October 25 and of Fort Vaux on October 
28. For these gains the French paid heavily. Many thousands of chil- 
dren in France were made fatherless in those four days. In December 
the French drove forward steadily and a counter-attack by the Ger- 
mans on La Mort Homme failed, ending with their loss of Hill 304. 

The spring of 1917 saw a repetition of these tactics and August, 
1917, saw a French response. Douaumont and Le Mort Homme were 
still in French hands. By December, 1917, France had regained 100 
of the 120 square miles which had been taken by the terrific German 
drive of 1916, and practically all the strategic points were in their 
possession. The spring of 1918 saw the positions but little changed. 
During 1918 the whole face of the war changed, the story of which 
belongs in later chapters of this book. 

"They Shall Not Pass !" This motto of Verdun became the motto 
of France. It has become the motto of liberty. If France may be 
regarded as the Blessed Garden to which impious men desired to 
enter, then Verdun was the angel with a flaming sword that barred 
the way. 



Th« To-and-Fro Swing of th» Battle-Lino for Four Long Years— Neuve Chapelle— The Labyrinth— Li 

No Man's Land— Barbed Wire Entanglements— Battles of Great Intensity for Minor Gains— Soissons 
—English Tanks Break Through the Hindenburg Line. 

IN a previous chapter, the simile was given of the battle line as a 
huge iron chain swinging between Ypres and Verdun, for these two 
points did not change from the time of the first establishment of the 
line until the last great Allied offensive which ended the war. The 
farthest Allied advance, or the first defense line, was Antwerp-Namur- 
Givet-Montmedy-Metz-Saarburg-Colmar-Mulhausen. This broke at the 
first impact. The farthest German advance at the height of the first 
drive on Paris was Ostend-St. Omer-Arras-Amiens-Beauvais-Meaux- 
Coulommiers-Sezanne-Bar le Duc-St. Mihiel-Nancy-LuneviUe-St. Die- 
Altkirch. (The line did not run exactly through these points, but close 
to them. The names chosen are those of towns which will be found 
on any ordinary map.) 

All the fighting on the western front was within this zone. Drives 
and offensives were made by both sides at differing times. In this 
battle line, shaped like an unfinished letter " S, " there were three chief 
points of attack. There was first the German effort to pierce through 
to Calais, to cut off British communications and to essay an invasion 
of England, if possible. At the first curve there was the goal of pierc- 
ing through to Paris, leading from the Aisne by the route of Chateau- 
Thierry. At the second curve, there was the goal of piercing through 
to the Champagne plains by hammer-blows on either side of Verdun. 
None of these goals was far from realization. The line at Ypres was 
pierced once, by the use of poison gas; at their nearest the Germans 
were within forty miles of Paris and, even in the last year of the war, 
were bombarding the city with a long-range gun; in the third case, 
Verdun was once so nearly isolated that it was pocketed into a narrow 
salient only twelve miles across, with powerful German armies on 
three sides of it. 



The first winter of the war, that of 1914-1915, immediately after 
the deadlock of the Aisne, resulted in incredible hardships to both 
sides. Trench warfare was in its experimental stages. The trenches 
were full of icy mud and water. A typical action of that time was 
the German drive at La Bassee and Givenchy in December, 1914. The 
British were driven back, with heavy losses, the Germans suffering 
even more heavily. Yet, after two weeks' fighting, the old positions 
were regained. 

The first serious engagement after the establishment of the battle- 
front was what Sir John French called "the costly victory of Neuve 
ChapeUe.'' The British casualties in three days were 12,811. The 
net result of that action was to teach both sides the necessity of heavy 
artillery preparation before making an infantry attack on trenches 
sown thick with machine guns. 

The British had advanced a mile on a three-mile front, but they 
had failed to win the ridges which were the key to Lille. In this famous 
Battle of Neuve Chapelle it is important to realize how bitter was 
the fighting, and how small the advance. A pouch of one mile on 
a three-mile front, which does not secure strategic points, amounts 
to nothing. Yet this action cost both sides over 12,000 men. 

The Fiendish Huns Use Poison Gas. 

Once and once only in all the war did the Germans actually pierce 
the western front ; actually break the line, not bend it. They had one 
great chance, although this was achieved at the price of dishonor. 
"They sold their souls as soldiers," said Sir Conan Doyle, writing of 
this day, "but the DeviPs price was a poor one." The day of which 
he spoke was that one when the Germans pierced the line near Ypres 
by the use of poison gas, contrary to all the usages of war. 

About five o'clock in the evening of April 22, 1915, from the base 
of the German trenches and over a considerable stretch of the line, 
there appeared vague jets of white mist. Like the vapors from a witch 's 
caldron these jets gathered and swirled until they settled into a low- 
hanging cloud-bank, greenish-brown below and yellow above. This 
ominous bank of vapor, driven by the slight northeastern breeze, drifted 
slowly across No Man's Land just at the point where the British and 
French commands joined. 

The African troops, in the trenches, peering over the top of the 


parapet at this curious cloud, which, for the moment, gave them a 
temporary relief from the continuous bombardment, suddenly were 
seen to throw up their hands, to clutch at their throats and to fall to 
the ground in the agonies of asphyxiation. Many lay where they fell. 
Others, absolutely helpless against this diabolical agency, rushed madly 
out of the mephitic mist and fled in terror. The southerly drift of the 
wind caused the heavy vapor, heavier than air, to run along the French 
trenches like a slow-moving liquid. There was no withstanding it. 

The German artillery and infantry were ready. They followed 
the gas cloud, possessing masks for their own protection and took 
possession of the three successive lines of trenches (first, double and 
support) without a shot. They seized those long-held lines without a 
shot because those trenches were tenanted only by dead men, whose 
blackened faces, contorted figures and lips fringed with blood and 
foam from their bursting lungs showed in what agonies they had 

Then the hidebound German strategy of the textbook lost them 
all their advantage. Had the Huns dared, had they plunged forward 
boldly, had they thrown vast masses of cavalry into the opening caused 
by their poison gas, they might have reached Calais. 

Gallantry of Scotch and Canadian Regiments. 

For once in its career the British Army was in confusion. The 
green cloud of death was impervious to shot and shell. But, with the 
chance of a dash in front of them, the Germans stuck to their old 
tactics of turning round and flanking a cut-off army. They found 
themselves in the position of the man who, with bare hands, has 
clutched a thistle. The force they flanked was a mixed Scotch and 
Canadian force. 

The wind changed next day. Gas could not be used. Canadians, 
Scotch, Irish, English, Indians, fell on the enemy from the north; 
French, Moroccans, Senegalese sped at the German lines from the 
south. The Germans counter-attacked. The death-roll of that April 
26 was terrible. Of one of the Indian regiments, only seventy answered 
to their names that night, in another, only eleven. Another regiment, 
the Duke's, was caught on a hill. The cloud of gas settled around the 
elevation as the rising tide surrounds a rock. Finally two men stag- 
gered out, an officer and an orderly. Eveiy man save they two was 


dead. The officer died that night. Of all that regiment only one man, 
the orderly, survived. 

The sole thing which prevented a terrible defeat, one which might 
have changed the result of the war, was that on this, the first use of 
poison gas, it was not employed in cylinders carried by soldiers, but 
was emitted from large reservoirs by pipe-lines running from the 
trenches. It could not, therefore, follow an advancing army. Had 
the asphyxiating gas been perfected as it was toward the end of the 
war when it was used on that first day, the war might have been over. 
The Germans could have advanced without a shot and strolled over all 
the trench defenses, forts and everything else. Without masks, no 
soldiers could have fought back, no horses would have remained to 
handle the light guns. 

The Germans Advance Only a Short Distance. 

On May 5, when a heavy attack was made, the Germans found them- 
selves able to advance but a short distance. On Maj 8 the Germans 
advanced again. Their artillery work was of the first order, but the 
moment it came to infantry contact they failed. On May 10 a desperate 
charge was made towards Ypres, with gas and artillery concentration. 
It was blocked. The push continued daily without result, a last final 
effort being made on May 24. But, by this time, the British troops 
were all equipped with gas masks of one sort or another, and the lines 
held firm. 

The Germans had enjoyed the immeasurable advantage of more 
men, heavier artillery, the element of surprise and the fiend's brew of 
poison gas for a month. They had broken the Allied lines. They had 
every conceivable advantage of modern war, and some that civilized 
warfare had never even conceived. Yet, at the close of that month, 
though they had driven the British and Canadians back, they had only 
gained a maximum of three-mile penetration on a narrow salient ; they 
had failed utterly to take Ypres, and even some of the strategic points 
that they had gained they lost soon afterwards. 

Later, much later, the Allies decided that it would be Quixotic 
to continue the chivalrous attitude of declining to use poison gas, that 
since Germany had commenced such nefarious warfare, she must be 
met with the same. Asphyxiating gas, tear gas, mustard gas and a 
score of other types were exploded in shells. Gas became a part of 


the ordinary horrors of warfare, and respirators were developed and 
improved to keep pace with every new deadly and agonizing mixture 
devised by chemists. 

On May 1, 1915, began one of the most desperate hand-to-hand 
battles of the western front, being the French capture of an extraordi- 
nary system of trenches known as "The Labyrinth." It was a maze 
of trenches, dug-outs, mine galleries, bomb-proof shelters, machine 
gun nests and every device known to trench warfare at that time. The 
orders of the French were "to take it, inch by inch." They fought 
without stopping for 400 hours, one company stepping in as those 
who had gone before them fell out from exhaustion. The crack of 
the hand grenade, the crackle of machine guns and the roar of artillery 
never ceased for a second. The slaughter was fearful, for the trenches 
were so winding and confused that the capture of one was often a trap, 
since it could be swept by enfilading fire from another trench. Aside 
from wounded and missing, 2,000 French soldiers were killed outright 
in "The Labyrinth," but, at the end of 400 hours, the whole maze of 
trenches was in French hands. It was a gallant feat — but it had no 
appreciable effect on the line. 

Heavy Losses by the Germans. 

What was known as "The Great Champagne Off ensive "—though 
it was actually a three-fold offensive in Champagne, Artois and Flan- 
(jerg, — was another typical example of the terrible sacrifice of life 
required by trench warfare for moderate territorial gain. It began 
on September 25 as the greatest Allied effort since the beginning of 
the war. There was a distinct but moderate gain all along the line. 

The offensive in Artois produced but little more result. At a 
cost of 50,000 casualties, the British made a two-mile penetration on 
a five-mile front, in one of the most brilliant offensives of the early 
part of the war. The loss of the Germans was estimated at 150,000, 
inclusive of prisoners, and in Germany was regarded as a very serious 
blow. But the fact remains that the German line stood, and could not 
be pierced. The same drive captured the city of Loos, but the ob- 
jective of encircling Lens was not attained. The winter of 1915-1916 
settled down to that peculiar type of formal trench warfare which a 
year and a half of modern war had developed. 

It may aid the reader to visualize the world war if a brief ex- 


planation of the character of trench warfare be given. The world 
war, as was well said by Colonel Azan was a ''war of positions" rather 
than a war of movement. As positions, or field defenses, can only be 
beaten down by field artillery, when any change in position occurred 
it was the ability of the artillery to manoeuvre quickly which was the 
determining factor. Napoleon trusted to the legs of his soldiers, be- 
cause his battles were mainly infantry battles; a modern army must 
depend on the legs of the guns, which is to say, tractors and horses, 
and, still more importantly, railroads or highways with solid bridges. 
Mobility of heavy artillery became a chief urgency during the world 

Trenches, Positions and Fronts. 

It was because heavy artillery was the only agency that could 
destroy entrenched positions that it became so important, but like- 
wise, it was the positions themselves which constituted the powerful 
defense and which therefore were equally important. 

A trench is not a position. A trench is one of the defenses of a 
position. Hills, rivers, marshes and woods are strategic features which 
become positions, and these are of value in the double ratio that 
they are difficult to take by the enemy and easy of supply by the de- 
fense. A first-rate strategical position which is isolated by bad roads 
is the poorest sort of position, while a narrow canal with level banks 
on both sides, with good roads feeding it, may become a position 
of incredible strength. To illustrate, the lofty mountain chain of the 
Carpathians did not save Serbia, the narrow canal of the Yser did 
save the corner of Belgium. Some of the lofty crests around Verdun 
were taken, the low hill of Le Mort Homme resisted. 

Trench fighting begins with air reconnoissance. It is of no use 
attacking the enemy if one does not know where he is. To waste 
ammunition blindly is folly. Heavy artillery does not begin until exact 
maps have been prepared showing the enemy's gun positions, his sup- 
ply depots, the location of his highways and light railroads, the lines 
of his trench and dug-out systems and the supporting points of his 
reserves. Since heavy artillery is only of smashing value, it must know 
what to smash. Hence months may pass in preparing for an offensive. 
If the mapping is good, if the artillery is heavy enough and if there 
is plenty of ammunition, every enemy position should be destroyed, all 


the trenches leveled, and the forces of the enemy demoralized by the 
terrible concentration of fire. 

Infantry plays the principal role in the actual fighting. In trench 
offensive warfare there is little need for rifle fire, that is for defense ; 
there is little need for the bayonet, the shape of a trench does not 
permit of it. In the world war, the hand grenade, the revolver and the 
trench knife were much more widely used. 

The Conduct of Trench Warfare. 

Field and light artillery move forward with the infantry, as do 
also trench mortars and machine gun squads. Field artillery uses 
shrapnel, mainly, and is not designed to attack defenses, but to fire 
on troops. Cavalry, operating with the light artillery, is of little 
use in a war of positions. It is invaluable, however, in a war of 
movement, and when an enemy is driven from his positions by com- 
bined artillery and infantry attack, a bold cavalry dash may easily 
cut oif the enemy from making new positions and turn a mere retreat 
into a decisive victory. It is of infinite value in delaying reserves, 
cutting railways, breaking telephone and telegraph connections in the 
enemy 's lines, surprising and cutting off transports and convoys. 

The engineering corps, during the world war, attained an im- 
portance hitherto unknown. When on the offensive, the engineers have 
to advance with the infantry, to repair, relocate trenches, build up 
new defenses to run with new positions, in pursuit they have to repair 
bridges, make roads and recreate the conditions which enable the con- 
solidation of the new advanced line. 

Trench warfare, being a war of positions, its defensive character 
is of vast importance. 

A first line trench is an irregular line, the shape of which is 
determined by the character of the ground and the position of the 
enemy. It is almost never in a straight line, it is rarely in the 
waved line of the textbooks, though an effort may be made to conform 
to the same. Generally, in a hasty trench, a man is sheltered when 
seated, but can fire when erect. All trenches are cut into short pieces 
by traverses about sixteen feet apart. This prevents the enfilading 
of a line of trench if a small part is taken by the enemy, it also pro- 
tects each compartment of a trench from projectiles exploding in 
neighboring compartments. Special emplacements for machine guns 
are built, generally for oblique fire in the event of a hostile offensive. 


Behind the first-line trenches are the second-Une trenches, or dou- 
bling trenches, for the shelter and rest of men not on duty. Here are 
the dug-outs and in these second-line trenches the officers stay except 
during an offensive. 

In the world war no two sectors on the battlefront were alike. 
In most cases mine craters and shell holes created new opportunities 
of protective device, a hillock would change a whole face of the trenches, 
the possession by the enemy of a small rise of ground would necessi- 
tate a dozen different forms of transversal trenches. 

Behind this whole defense system comes the support trenches, in 
some cases reached by boyaux, generally sufficiently far behind the 
first line to make a very stiff defense in the case of the first line being 
taken by a hostile offensive. They average from a quarter to three- 
quarters of a mile behind the first line. 

New Type of War in 1916. 

At various points between these first line and support, zones are 
the shelters, observing stations, telephone posts and depots of all sorts, 
frequently only reached by boyaux or sunken roads. It is an important 
part of trench warfare to teach the troops to know thoroughly all the 
intricacies of this invisible maze of sunken streets when it is impossible 
to see where one is going. Signs and sentries must be posted every- 
where. Trench life, well organized, is by no means a time of waiting. 
It is highly active. There is a great deal to learn and more to do. 
Sapping and mining operations are constant. 

In the world war, co-ordination became the chief essential and, 
more than ever before in war, the great commander needed to be pri- 
marily a commander of organization. It is true that Foch was not 
Napoleon, but it is equally sure that Napoleon could not have been 
Foch. Haig proved himself a marvellously brilliant general, Pershing 
a first-class soldier, but the ability to co-ordinate a vast battlefront, 
to grasp movements of men by millions and of transports by tens of 
thousands of tons, in other words, to be the Supreme Commander, was 
characteristically and ideally in the hands of Foch. 

The beginning of 1916 saw a new type of war. A French captain, 
writing at this time, put the matter in a nutshell when he said: *'So 
long as the armies which face each other, with normal effectives on a 
depth that daily increases, continue to occupy the trenches which they 


hold at present, we do not believe in the possibility of carrying by 
assault a fortress whose centre can constantly change its position." 

The principal military feature of 1916 was the German attack on 
Verdun, which has been told in full in the chapter of that all-important 
point. The end of the second year of the war saw the Allies more 
confident, Germany more worried. England's greatest need was offi- 
cers, for most of her best blood had been killed in the first year of 
the war. France's greatest need was transport. Italy's greatest need 
was munitions. These were all built up to a high degree of efficiency. 

Beginning the Third Year of the War. 

The opening of the third year of the war witnessed a great Anglo- 
French offensive on the Somme. This was not a drive with intention 
to pierce the German lines, but a very large effort to seize Perrone, 
an important strategic and railroad point. Since the objective failed, 
the drive failed; since it secured twenty-seven important strategic 
points it was a victory. The casualties on both sides were very 
large, reaching 100,000 men on each side during the three and a half 
months that the steady pounding of the British and French continued. 

It was during this offensive that the "tank" first sprawled its 
reptilian way through and over the bloody slime of battlefields, spitting 
fire from its ungainly and toad-like sides. The first heavy tanks were 
incredibly ludicrous in appearance, advancing with a crawling waddle 
and, by their mere weight lunging over trenches, crushing walls to 
powder, smashing chevaux-de-frise to splinters and driving barbed 
wire into the mud. *■ ' Sliding along the ground on caterpillar wheels, ' ' 
says one writer, "they suggested the giant slugs of a prehistoric age. 
They had armored cheeks on each side of the head, above which guns 
stuck out like the stalked eyes of land crabs." 

"For six months the trenches on either side had remained un- 
broken. In sixty minutes two tanks, backed up by the French infantry, 
had driven the Germans back, captured a thousand prisoners, taken 
seveial score machine guns and frightened an entire German Army 
Corps into wild-eyed and headlong panic." 

Their construction had been kept a profound secret. The tanks 
made their first appearance in the engagement of Martinpuich, and the 
first one seen by the Germans crawled up on the village of Flers in 
the dawn of September 15, 1916. The successful advance on the Somme, 


during the next two months, was largely due to the use of tanks. From 
that time until the end of the war numberless new forms of tank were 
devised, a few larger, but some smaller. The French tank was more 
like an armored automobile, the Italian like a swiftly moving fort. The 
small ''whippet" tanks of the British, able to move as swiftly as 
infantry at the double, were of incalculable value. It will be remem- 
bered by the reader that French tanks preceded the infantry advance 
at Chateau Thierry, that Italian tanks held the bridgeheads at the 
Isonzo during the great retreat and saved the Italian armies from being 
cut off, and that the British whippets turned the scale in Belgium dur- 
ing the last drive of the war. 

Objects Achieved by the Battle of the Somme. 

The Battle of the Somme, lasting from May 19 to November 15, 
1916, was declared by many ''The Greatest Battle in History," in 
regard to the number of men engaged, the fierceness of the fighting, 
and the duration of the conflict. It was a victory for neither side, 
but Haig declared himself fully satisfied that it had achieved its 
three principal objects: (a) to relieve the pressure on Verdun; (b) to 
prevent any transfer of troops from the western front and thus aid 
the Allies on all other fronts ; (c) to wear down the enemy. But Haig, 
a conservative and modest soldier, admitted that "the enemy's power 
has not yet been broken," although he also declared that "a full half 
of the German Army, despite all the advantages of the defensive, sup- 
ported by the strongest fortifications, suffered defeat on the Somme 
this year." This is incorrect. It did not suffer defeat, but it sus- 
tained a disastrous repulse. 

The third year of the war resulted in little change on the western 
front. There were a great many different reasons for this. In the 
first place, the autumn of 1916 saw the entrance of Roumania into the 
war, and the resulting disaster. It marked the end of the Somme of- 
fensive. It saw the beginning of the Russian revolution. The spring 
of 1917 saw the break-down of Russia, and warned the Allies not to 
attempt too much on the western front. The early summer of 1917 
saw the entrance of the United States into the war, with the assurance 
to the Allies that the longer they stayed quiet, the stronger they would 
grow and the weaker Germany would become. 

In the autumn of 1917 the battle raged with unprecedented in- 

8— W. L. 


tensity in Flanders. Ypres was nearly taken by the Germans. August, 
September and October saw ceaseless fighting. Passchendaele Ridge 
was taken, lost again and retaken. Most of the front was a shambles. 
German and British fought with equal gallantry. But, in the long run, 
the Germans were beaten back. 

Lens, no longer a city, but a fort, with all its outskirts defended 
by an elaborate system of German pill boxes, known as "elastic de- 
fense," was fought for by the French and British for two months. 
The outskirts were reached, but the German occupation could not be 
broken. A new German offensive was launched at Verdun, without 
result. The chain vibrated all the time, it swung a little here and 
quivered a little there, but it could not be forced through. And, mean- 
time, day by day, American soldiers were reaching France, and great 
armies were being gathered into camps in the United States. 

The tanks broke the Hindenburg line at Cambrai, in the battle that 
raged there between November 20 and December 12, 1917. But, even 
with their aid, the British did not take Cambrai. Even with their aid, 
the chain did not break. On the contrary, it swung forward with the 
British and was pushed back again. 

The German Offensive in Spring of 1918. 

When 1917 closed, the Allies were stronger at every point, and the 
Germans growing weaker. It was an open secret that the coming 
spring must see a German offensive, it was obvious that this would 
be, if not the last, one of the last, for the Americans were coming over 
ever^^ day. The whole swing and balance of numbers had passed from 
the Central Powers. 

This spring offensive, which, there seems reason to believe, the 
Germans really believed would land them in Paris, was the result of 
two solid years ' preparation. It burst on March 21, 1918. All previous 
records of artillery bombardment were broken. For the first time in 
two years the Germans reverted to their old tactics of heavy massed 
drives. The results were sweeping. Within five days they had taken 
back all that the British had gained by the five months' Battle of the 
Somme, and they had even driven beyond their own positions before 
that great Allied offensive. 

On the French part of the line the smash was equally decisive. 
The defense held in the Oise Valley, but only by falling back. The 


Chaulnes-Lassigny-Noyon line bent, but, instead of falling away to the 
southward, the French stiffened along the Aillette and fell back to the 
east. By March 26 Roye had fallen and Lassigny was in German hands. 
Montdidier fell in the fighting of the first few days in April and the 
thrust toward Amiens became even more savage. 

In Flanders the German success also was great. The British and 
Portuguese were forced back on the Lys. On April 11 the British 
gave ground near La Bassee. On April 12 Merville was lost. A three- 
day fight at Neuve Eglise gained it for the Germans on April 15. The 
three points, known as ''the desperate three," Poelcappelle, Lange- 
marok and Passchendaele, were all taken on April 17. The fighting 
around Mont Kemmel, south of Ypres, rose to a fury not surpassed 
by any fighting of the war, and with its capture on April 26, Ypres 
seemed no longer to be tenable. By May 14, Hill 44, north of Kemmel, 
had changed hands eleven times, but the German offensive in Flanders 
was broken. The British-Belgian line was in terrible danger, Ypres 
was flanked, but with bulldog stubbornness the British refused to give 
way, and inch by inch they won the ground back. It was, perhaps, as 
the Germans declared, only desperation which kept the British firm. 
None the less, the line remained intact. 

The Offensive Halted. 

On May 28, this offensive broke forth at a third point, in Cham- 
pagne, and commenced with the same spectacular success. The Chemin 
des Dames was carried and the watershed of the Oise-Aisne fell into 
Ludendorff's hands. By June 2 the eastern half of Chateau Thierry 
was in their hands and the great salient had been developed. There, 
again, it was compelled to stop. 

The fourth phase in this offensive was productive of much smaller 
gain. It was an attempt, beginning on June 9, 1918, to draw to 
the south and to the west the battle lines that had been established by 
the first thrust toward Amiens and the third thrust towards Chateau 
Thierry. In some ways, it was, perhaps, the heaviest, though not the 
fiercest blow of all. Compiegne was the goal sought. If this objective 
could have been attained — and the Germans were very near it — the 
Picardy front would have given them a strategic front by which they 
might have pounded their way nearer to Paris. They gained seven 
miles, indeed, but French counter-attacks (in which the American Ma- 


rines participated) took back most of this ground and revealed, as 
nothing else could so well do, that the punch had reached its uttermost. 
Like all offensives, it had spent its force. 

It is perhaps difficult to realize the intensity of the German offen- 
sive of 1918, nor to grasp the importance of its stoppage. It had been 
of tremendous swiftness and great force. The line was far advanced. 
It ran near Ypres-Hazebrouck-Bethune-Arras-Albert-Amiens-Mont- 
didier-Compiegne-Soissons-Chateau Thierry-Rheims. But it was over. 
It had not taken Ypres. It had not moved the Belgian-British line 
toward Calais. It had not taken Arras. Most important of all, it 
had failed to reach Amiens. It had come to a most inglorious stoppage 
in front of Compiegne, it had found itself in a nasty pocket at Chateau 
Thierry, which it was not able to widen, and Rheims, of old, stood 
defiant, though a terrible gash had been made to the west of its 

If Amiens could not be reached, if the valley of the Oise was so 
stoutly held, since it was dangerous to follow further down Chateau 
Thierry on a long, narrow salient, there remained only the strategy 
of using the principal advance for a blow at Rheims. In the next 
chapter will be told this last German offensive and what happened 
to it. 

In leaving, then, this picture of the backward and forward swing 
of the battle line, one main fact stands out clearly. The Allies had 
held, and held successfully, the whole battlefront at all points. It 
had only been broken once — and that for forty-eight hours — by the first 
blast of poison gas at Ypres. The Germans had never been able to 
reach as far as the line of their first drive. Even before the arrival 
of the Americans, it had become evident that Germany could not win. 
It was a deadlock. Germany had lost the war, but the Allies had not 
won it. 

America's part lay largely, not in defeating Germany, but in 
enabling the Allies to gain a final victory. The part they played in 
driving the Hun from the fields of fair France and the devastated 
villages of Belgium belongs in the following chapter. 



The Great Teuton Offensive of 1918 an Utte' Fayure— Foci- Starts at Last— American Regiments at the 
Front— Chateau Thierry and St. Mihiel— Tactics of "the Pincers"— Ludeadorff Outmanoeuvred— The 
Kriemhilde Line— German Retreat, Rout and Disaster. 

ERMANY'S last offensive, her forlorn hope, her final desperate 
effort was launched on July 15, 1918. It was a stupendous drive 
in men and metal. From every rule of war, especially in remembrance 
of the previous drives of the four years previously, she should have had 
a first overwhelming success, followed by a slowing up. Contrary to 
every expectation, Allied as well as German, the drive was stopped at 
the start. It never got going at all. 

The explanation of this amazing result lies in five words — the 
mastery of the air. Von Moltke's military dictum had been the three 
words "power, speed and surprise.^' German power had been waning, 
the deterioration of morale had resulted in a diminution of potential 
speed and the element of surprise was gone. No longer could Germany 
launch an unseen army at any given point, as she had done with von 
Hausen's forces at the beginning of the war. Italian, French, English 
and American aeroplanes flew over her lines day and night. Scarcely 
a regiment could move, certainly not a division, and most assuredly 
not an army without every detail being wirelessed back from the sky to 
Allied headquarters. 

This offensive was designed to isolate Rheims, to create of that 
important outpost a narrow salient which could be swept with cross- 
fire. It was almost successful. On July 15, 16, 17 and 18, the Germans 
pushed south and east. By July 18, Rheims was a semi-circle ringed 
with steel, and the enemy was battering this semi-circle with a terrific 
weight of men and shell. Rheims had become a second Verdun, de- 
manding the same heroism to defend it. 

At this point Foch repeated the tactics he had used at the Battle 
of the Marne. Withdrawing in the direction of Epernay, he caused the 
Germans to believe that they were attaining their goal, namely, the 



isolation of Rheims. This bulge, however, lengthened the German 
line, which is only another way of saying that it thinned it. Instead of 
increasing the troops necessary to hold Rheims, which looked like the 
point of greatest danger, Foch detached armies from the defence of 
Rheims and sent them to Chateau Thierry, although the French and 
Americans had shown no sign of yielding. Then, on July 18, at the 
very time that the Germans were surest of success in pinching in behind 
Rheims, he delivered at Chateau Thierry an irresistible counterblow, 
with the whole force of the Americans, the French, and the newly ar- 
rived French reinforcements. 

Foch's Surprise Attacks. 

In order to get a clear idea of the Battle of Chateau Thierry and 
its co-ordinated attack on Rheims, it is necessarj^ to understand the 
position of the two armies, and the events of the preceding few days 
which had brought them into these positions. 

At terrible cost, during June, the Germans had gradually punched 
in a dent on both sides of Rheims. On June 18 they launched an infan- 
try attack, were allowed to come close to the defences and then three 
divisions were torn to pieces by a French barrage from guns whose loca- 
tion had not been guessed. A "surprise fire attack," as it was called 
by the Germans, on the morning of June 19, was equally disastrous. 
On June 23, having learned that the French troops were being moved 
from the sector near Bligny, the Crown Prince attacked there, only to 
find that the sector had been taken over by the Italians, who promptly 
proceeded to make mincemeat of the German First Army under General 
Fritz von Biilow. 

Three days later Foch inaugurated the series of minor shock of- 
fensives which an American war correspondent described as "giving 
the Hun the jumps." On June 26, the British bit into the line at Lys, 
east of Hazebrouck. On June 28, from an equally unexpected quarter, 
the British plunged in a mile deep on a four-mile front east of Nieppe 
Forest, taking four villages. The same day the Australians secured 
a minor victory near Merris, and the local gains near St. Pierre Aigle 
gave 1,000 prisoners to the French. On July 1 came the taking of 
Vaux and the Bois de la Roche by American troops. 

It would be unfortunate to give to the engagement at Vaux an 
importance disproportionate to the rest of the war, merely because the 


action was couductud by American troops, yet Americans rightly felt 
that this first ail-American encounter, so successfully carried out, had 
an interest of its own. 

The actual fighting took less than twenty minutes, but when it 
was over, hill, village and wood were all in American hands. 

All these minor actions were a part of Foch's pinccr tactics, which, 
as has been said, consisted of continuous small offensives, creating 
narrow salients, which were pinched out later. On Independence Day, 
July 4, 1918, the Americans fighting as platoons among the Australian 
troops, the combined forces took the village of Hamel and the trench 
system. The Australians, rough fighters themselves, had nothing 
but praise for their American comrades. There was nothing big, 
but what was done was well done. Again there was a small push 
southeast of Soissons on the 8th, another near Montdidier on the 9th, 
and the historic village of Corey in the Forest of Villers-Cotterets 
was taken by the French on July 11. Six other similar bites into the 
line occurred between that day and July 15. 

Then came the last German offensive ! 

The Final Attacks of the Hxms. 

The next three days were to mark the beginning of the end of the 
war. The part of the battlefront involved has become familiar to the 
reader and ran as follows : From Albert across the Somme to Moreuil 
on the River Aure, thence to Montdidier, which was in German hands ; 
thence in a southeasterly direction north of Compiegne, which was in 
Allied hands ; thence through Ribecourt to Soissons, in German hands ; 
thence in a wide pocket shaped something like a heart, with Chateau 
Thierry at the point and Rheims at the top of the opposite curve; 
and thence along the old line through the Argonne to Verdun. 

The German attack had three main objectives, two of them de- 
signed against Rheims, the third, a drive against Paris. The latter, 
however, was dependent on the success of the two former. The points 
of attack were southwesterly from the eastern side of Rheims and 
easterly from the deep pocket west of Rheims. This was a repetition 
of the tactics of the German Crown Prince around Verdun when trying 
to cut off that fortress by the establishment of the St. Mihiel salient 
and the drive at Ste. Menehould. The general strategy of this last 
offensive, then, was first, to isolate Rheims, and then to throw the 


whole of the line in the Chateau Thierry direction with the intention 
of crossing the Marne and driving westwards towards Paris. As ever, 
Paris was still the flame around which the German moth fluttered to 
its own destruction. 

For this oifensive of July 15, 1918, the German Crown Prince 
actually threw into the battle line, during the three days, a force of 
900,000 me;n. He kept 400,000 men in reserve. There were thus 1,300,000 
men available in the German line. This number had only become 
possible by thinning other parts of the front. Although Foch's whole 
battlefront was stronger in men than that of the Germans, on these 
sectors his forces were weaker. He had 600,000 French, 175,000 Amer- 
icans, 100,000 Italians and 75,000 British troops, inclusive of reserves. 

The "First Coup de Foch." 

The Allied troops were in four armies, all under French com- 
manders. Holding the important section east of Rheims was General 
Gouraud; his was an all-French army save for the addition of one 
division of American troops (27,500 men) held in reserve and one 
American negro regiment in the fighting line; his left wing rested on 
Prunay, part of the Rheims defenses. From Prunay, holding Rheims 
itself, and thence southwest down the line of the pocket as far west 
as Dormans (a few miles east of Chateau-Thierry) was the large army 
under General Berthelot; to which were attached an entire Italian 
Army Corps, two American divisions and a division and a half of 
British troops. From opposite Dormans, through Chateau Thierry 
and northwards round the pocket to a little beyond the Ourcq, came the 
army of General de Goutte, also with two American divisions acting 
with his troops. From thence north and west, past Soissons and the 
Aisne, came the army of General Mangin, two American divisions 
being attached to his army also. 

It was officially announced that seven American divisions and one 
negro regiment participated in this ''First Coup de Foch," in all 
cases attached to French commands and acting under French com- 
manders. This is not to be taken as meaning that the American troops 
were not led throughout by American officers, but that these officers 
operated under French direction and that the battle plans and tactics 
were all a part of the general French plan. The Battle of Chateau- 
Thierry and the beginning of the great Allied offensive happened be- 


fore the Americans were organized into a separate field army ''on 
their owai." The Chateau-Thierry offensive occurred on July 18, and 
by August 5 the Germans were in full flight. The American First 
Field Army was organized under General Pershing on August 11, 1918. 
It acted independently in the war as an army for three months to 
a day. 

The Germans commenced with initiatory successes. On the west 
they pierced the lines held by the Italians at Bligny, on the first day, 
but Berthelot closed the gap with reserves at once. They bent back 
the line to the east of Rheims, at Prunay, and then struck a rigid 
defense against which they could not move an inch. Gouraud 's defense 
of the line east of Prunay was extraordinary. It resembled in its char- 
acter the holding of the lines around Rheims by Foch during the 
eastern phase of the Battle of the Aisne. 

First and Second Days of the German Offensive. 

That same first day of the offensive there was a feint at Vaux, 
which seems to have been an error and not part of the original plan, 
followed by a heavier attack near Chateau Thierry on the sector held 
by the Americans. The Americans were forced back to Conde-en-Brie 
by a small force, 25,000 men, but they counter-attacked, driving the 
enemy back across the Marne and taking 1,500 prisoners. This was a 
neat piece of work, well done. 

The second day of the offensive was fiercest at Prunay. The 
attacks there were launched with an intensity and fury which resem- 
bled the earlier days of the war, but another quarter of a mile advance 
was all that the Germans could gain. Gouraud was the pivot of the 
whole offensive. If he wavered, Rheims was in danger. Like Sarrail 
at Verdun, he would not let them pass. On the western side the dent 
made at Bligny was made wider, Marfaux being taken. Berthelot, 
realizing the importance of holding his position and not wishing to 
sacrifice too many men, held the advanced trenches with artillery, 
withdrawing a mile and a half to^ strong positions on the edge of the 
Forest of Montague. 

The American positions near Chateau Thierry were again being 
attacked this second day, and with considerable force, but no impres- 
sion was made. A reenforcing French Army of reserve, under General 
de Mitry, came up and supported the junction between the armies of 


General Berthelot and General de Goutte, at which junction the Amer- 
icans were fighting. Efforts by the Germans to cross the Marne 
at Gland and Mareuil were thrown back with heavy losses. In the 
hands of American gunners, the French 75 's poured in a terrible fire. 
The third day of the offensive, July 17, 1918, the Germans regis- 
tered some small successes on their main battlefields near Rheims. 
To the east they forced Gouraud back to Beaumont, a mile to the rear 
of Prunay. To the w^est they reached the borders of the Montague 
Forest. This double advance, secured at terrible cost of life, was 
gradually drawing the net closer around Rheims, which had never 
been in such danger during the whole w^ar. From east to west, seven 
miles south of the city, the German lines were only twelves miles 
apart, a highly dangerous salient. If the Germans could pinch this 
out it would affect the whole battle line and release a vast force of 
men for the intended second push in the direction of Chateau Thierry. 

Foch's Brilliant Coup. 

In that direction, that is to say, in the sector where the Americans 
had found most of the fighting, the Germans again tried to reach Fes- 
tigny, the heaviest part of this day's attack being on the French 
end of the sector. The Crown Prince w^as not only thrown back, but 
one division of American and two divisions of French troops, acting 
together, took St. Agnan and Monhodon, the former being an all- 
American gain. 

On July 18, 1918, Foch struck. The movement had been kept a 
complete secret. There was not the least preparatory artillery fire. 
At 4:45 A. M., with no more artillery support than rolling barrages 
ahead of them, the whole line from Ambleng, six miles west of Soissons, 
to Bouresches, five miles northwest of Chateau-Thierry, went over the 
top. The Americans were concentrated at the pivotal ends of the 
line, near Soissons and Chateau-Thierry. The American troops in the 
southern sector fought with great spirit. In less than an hour they 
had advanced on and captured Torcy. The Americans acting from 
Ambleng, behind a support of French tanks, drove ahead with a vigor 
which surprised even the French. So swift, so irresistible was the 
attack that the French commander felt himself justified in ordering 
another advance at 9 o'clock, and yet another at noon. 

It was open warfare all along the line. The French cavalry, and 


especially some of the mounted African troops, enjoyed it tiiorougiiiy. 
Batteries handled by the Americans advanced with a dexterity equal 
to that of the French. 

General Mangin's army, in that one day, advanced six miles into 
the pocket, reaching as far as the River Crise, and took 9,000 prisoners. 
Compared with the effects of the huge three-days' offensive by the 
Germans, which reached a penetration of only five miles, this was 
enonnous. But, in the case of Foch's coup, the strategy" was more 
important than the territorial gain. This advance of six miles, on the 
northwest of the pocket, outflanked the German troops operating to- 
wards Chateau-Thierry in the southeast. If, then, the Germans con- 
tinued their effort toward the Marne, each mile of advance only put 
them in a tighter box. Instead of being in a position to pinch out the 
Rheims salient, thej^ found themselves tightly clipped in Foch's pin- 
cers on the two sides of the Chateau-Thierry salient. 

Results of Foch's Pincer Tactics. 

This prospect of defeat compelled the withdrawal of a part of the 
First German iVrmy under General Fritz von Below to support the 
armies under von Hutier and von Eben facing General Mangin. This 
relieved the pressure against the French on the eastern defenses of 
Eheims. The very next day, therefore, July 19, Berthelot sent forward 
the Italians and, with a gallant dash, they recovered Bouilly. That 
day Mangin contented himself with consolidating the positions he had 
secured, while General de Goutte advanced cautiously two miles along 
the Ourcq to strengthen his junction ^vith General Mangin. His right 
wing, at Chateau-Thierry, he left unchanged, holding its strong pivotal 
position. These two days' fighting, which netted 17,500 prisoners and 
several hundred guns, were typical of "pincer" tactics. There was 
no costly frontal attack. Foch was doing to the Germans in the 
Chateau-Thierry pocket, exactly what the Crown Prince had been 
trying to do to the French in the Rheims pocket. 

The last day of the month gave rise to some desperate fighting 
in which American and British detachments had their full share, re- 
sulting from a determined German endeavor to hold the Forest of 
Nesles, northeast of Fere. The Meuniere Woods also saw some gallant 
work by the Americans. They charged six times against German posi- 
tions, but were beaten back every time. 


The capture of Soissons on August 2, 1918, after one of the most 
desperate resistances of the entire offensive, was the determining factor 
of Mangin's whole advance, and when the French under Berthelot 
reached the River Vesle, near Fismes, on the evening of August 3, 
the whole battle line of the salient was won. The amount of stores 
and munitions captured during the advance of the first three days of 
August was incredible. At one point, alone, 300,000 heavy shells were 
taken, without counting rifle, machine gun and light artillery ammu- 

On August 4, the fifth anniversary of the beginning of the world 
war, American gunners held Fismes under their fire and American 
and Italian infantry, supporting French troops, occupied the outskirts 
of that important point on the Vesle River. The capture of Fismes, 
which occurred next day, was declared by the French commander to 
liave been due largely to the excellence of the work of the American 
engineering corps which threw bridges across the Vesle, though under 
heavy fire. American infantry entered and took the town on the 
evening of August 5. 

Operation of the Picardy Pocket. 

The line having thus been straightened between Soissons and 
Rheims, through Fismes, Foch's next coup was against a much deeper 
and larger pocket, which was known as the Picardy Pocket, since the 
old province of Picardy lay in that region. 

The actual operation of the Picardy pocket may be told briefly. 
Haig opened the ball. On August 8 he drove forward suddenly nine 
miles on a plateau south of the Somme and north of Moreuil. To the 
south, however, the French, under General Debeny, had found the 
Avre Valley held by heavy fire and had been compelled to proceed 
more slowly. Rawlinson with the British halted and turned slightly 
south. This pinched the Germans on the Avre, and relieved Debeny, 
who promptly flanked Montdidier. On August 10 the British and 
French pincers of Rawlinson and Debeny closed on Montdidier, which 
fell at once with a capture of 25,000 prisoners. British losses were 
slight, French losses heavy. 

On the southern flank of the retiring Germans the French advanced 
again, compelling a retirment to the fam.ous massif of Lassigny, pur- 
suit being so vigorous that the Germans failed to make a stand there. 


Meanwhile, to the north, Haig was driving fast and furiously, and, by- 
August 18, the Germans had been forced back to the line Albert- 

Satisfied so far, Foch continued his tactics of suddenly seizing 
small strategic points, one of the most important being the capture 
of Merville on August 19. It became clear during the last two weeks 
of August, however, that the German defense was weakened at all 
points. It became still further obvious that Foch had a preponderance 
of numbers. Like a star to all the armies shone the spirit of victory- 
leading them. The Germans were on the run. The old von Hinden- 
burg line was threatened. Back, back and ever back the Germans 
fell, losing prisoners every day, abandoning vast stores of materials. 

On September 18, just two months after the opening of Foch's 
great offensive, the British had stormed, seized and passed the Hin- 
denburg line north from Marcoing to Lens, the British and French 
were within five miles of it at all points and a-straddle of it at the 
impoitant point of La Fere. Meantime, the famous Lys salient was 
wiped out by the British, the Passchendaele Ridge was retaken, Ypres 
relieved and the whole line advanced beyond Armentieres. 

Working the Pincers at St. Mihiel. 

In SO general an advance, reaching from Ypres to Rheims, it was 
not to be expected that other parts of the battlefront would be idle. 
Foch knew well that there is no time so good for a blow as when an 
enemy is retreating. He would have liked to have followed up the 
Crown Prince's retreat, after the wiping out of the Chateau Thierry 
pocket, but, in order to do so, it was necessary to straighten out the 
line east of Verdun. The St. Mihiel salient, harmless hitherto, was an 
impediment to united effort. 

''The operation at St. Mihiel," wrote an Associated Press cor- 
respondent, ''was of the pincers type always used to nip off a salient. 
One claw of the pincers, some twelve miles thick, rested on the Moselle 
at about Pont-a-Mousson. (The reader will remember the importance 
of this point at the end of the Alsace-Lorraine campaign.) The other, 
about eight miles thick, rested on the heights of the Meuse at Haudio- 
jmont, a little to the east of the river. (This is a lower part of the 
defenses of Verdun.) The distance to be filled up between the claws 
of the pincers was about thirty miles, and the ground to be nipped off 
by them would be about 200 square miles. . . . 


"The iirst day's fighting saw the southeastern claw of the pincers 
advatice up to the lull limit assigned to it, but the western had to face 
more difficult ground and strenuous opposition. It too, however, 
reached its assigned position later in the day. 

The operation was conducted by General Pershing, with the first 
American Field Army (the first operation of an American army as 
such), and a French army under General Petain. French tanks were 
used in large mmibers. After the armies operating from the w^est and 
the southeast joined at Heudicourt, south of Vigneuilles, there was 
nothing for the Germans to do but surrender. In spite of their en- 
trapped position, however, several of the dug-outs resisted strongly. 
There was some savage though unimportant fighting on September 
14. Meanwhile, the rest of the line was pushing northwards and on 
September 18 Pont-a-Mousson was three miles within the French- 
Ameiican lines and the new battle front ran from Fresnes through 
Doncourt, Charey and Morville to Nomeny. The German frontier was 
only a mile away. 

The first phase of Foch's great offensive, therefore, had been the 
wiping out of four salients, in their respective order the Chateau- 
Thierry, Picardy, Lys and St. Mihiel salients. The second phase was 
also of the pincer variety but a huge pincers, one whose jaws went from 
the south of tlie whole battle line to the north. One jaw was at Laon, 
the other at Cambrai. 

The Germans Steadily Forced Back, 

Laon may be regarded as the apex of an equilateral triangle of 
which Soissons-Rheims forms the base. Petain had failed the year 
before to force Laon by frontal attack over the Chemin des Dames and 
the Ailette River. Foch took it, as usual, by the pincers method of 
working on both flanks, from the St. Gobain forest to the west, and 
from the Berry line from the southeast. On October 7 Berthelot had 
taken Berry-au-Bac, the supply point between Laon and Retliel, and 
Mangin had taken the greater part of the Chemin des Dames. This 
compelled the retirement of the Germans from the Aisne and the 
famous Craonne plateau which figured so largely at the opening of 
the war in the crossing of the Aisne. On October 13 Mangin took the 
St. Gobain massif after a severe fight, and the strongholds of La Fere 
and Laon fell immediately without any contest. 


After the wiping out of the Lys salient by the British, the Germans 
counter-attacked and were repulsed. On September 25, the 30th Amer- 
ican division was attached to the Third British Army under General 
Byng and on the 27th they advanced on a fourteen-mile front. This 
flanked the German hold on the coal fields of Lens which they evacu- 
ated on October 3, and on October 9 Cambrai was occupied by British 
and American troops. Thenceforward the St. Quentin and Cambrai 
lines operated together. 

This, it will be noted, created two nicks, into which the jaws of 
the pincers fitted. The southern nick was enlarged by Pershing's 
army, and on October 4 the Americans went over the Kriemhilde line, 
the rearmost German defense line south of the Belgian frontier. On 
October 7 the Americans — this was a bitter fight — drove the Germans 
from the heights holding the River Aire, and enabled a junction with 
Berthelot 's army which had taken Berry-au-Bac on the same day. Thus, ' 
for the first time since its investment in 1914, the cathedral city of 
Rheims was out of the range of German gunfire. It had been the recip- 
ient of shells almost daily for four years. 

The Allied Drive Gained Strength as it Advanced. 

Bitter was this fighting, although the Germans were in flight, but 
it was less spectacular than the amazing drive of the Allied lines 
through Belgium, when French, British and Belgian troops smote the 
Germans with a never-ceasing sweep of their sickle of steel and shell, 
all under the command of King Albert of Belgium. To give the events 
of this movement, day by day, would be only to give a series of names. 
Let a few great days suffice. 

On September 30 Roulers was taken by the Belgians and the 
British left the last end of the Passchendaele Ridge behind them for- 
ever. On October 2 General de Goutte's army joined this sector and 
the pincers began to close on Lille. The great Flanders offensive 
began on October 14 with a force that the Germans could not with- 
stand. They tried, for two days, but the advance on Courtrai and on 
Bruges jvas of a power invincible. 

Lille was retaken on the 17th and Douai on the same day. The 
port of Ostend was evacuated also on the 17th and the Belgian patrols 
entered Bruges, likewise. Next Zeebrugge fell. On October 19 the 
Allies reached the Dutch frontier. On October 20 the Germans began 


to leave Binissels. Holding the line— not from bravery, but to try 
and get as good terms as possible in an armistice— the Germans cried, 
"Enough! Enough!" By November 11 the Allies were at Ghent, 
with Antwerp and Brussels within reach. 

This flight went on through the whole battle line. With Cambrai, 
St. Quentin, La Fere, Laon and Bethel all gone, the Allied line pushed 
on beyond Maubeuge. On November 6 the First American Army took 
Sedan and the forts of Metz fell under range of the American naval 
guns. To the last week, yes, to the last day the Huns continued to pil- 
lage and slaughter, and left, wherever they could, incendiary bombs 
and infernal machines. 

Just as Mons and Charleroi had seen almost the beginning of 
the war in its larger sense, so the war ended there, for Mons was on 
the final battle line, held by the British as it had been held four years 

The world has seen some dramatic moments, but never since the 
finger of Fate peopled this spinning globe did it see a more dramatic 
moment than 11 o'clock in the morning of November 11, 1918. The 
oificers, all along the battle line, knew that the armistice had been 
signed. The soldiers did not. On the American front an artillery fire 
had been laid down at 9:30 o'clock and at 10:30 the boys went over the 
top. Every officer, every platoon leader had his watch in hand. At 
eleven o'clock to the second, from the North Sea to the frontier of 
Switzerland came the word from tens of thousands of officers ' throats : 

"Cease firing!" 

A silence, a dreadful silence fell. For several minutes the ears 
of all men were numbed. For the first time in four years the guns 
had ceased to roar. The air fell still. The power which regulates all 
words— whatever that Power may be or by what Great Name it may 
be caUcd, had said, "Let there be Peace!" And there was peace. 

Not that peace had been signed. It was but an armistice, though 
an armistice with drastic conditions. Yet it was peace, none the less, 
a peace that could not but come finally; a peace which justified the 
prayers of women and the life-blood shed by men; a peace which 
extinguished the flames of a four years' hell; a peace which blazoned 
on he world's sky the great cry of Browning: -God's in His Heaven; 
All's right with the world!" 



Mutual Invasions on the Eastern Front— Austrian Defeat at the Drina— Belgrade Changes Hands Four 
Times— Reorganization of Austrian Annies— Germany, Bulgaria and Turkey at the Rear— Fall of the 
Iron Gate— Surrender of Monastir— Conquest of Serbia. 

THUS far the story of the war has been told in definite continuity, 
so far as the Western Front is concerned, and the chief antag- 
onists have been Germany and France, with Belgium and Great Britain 
playing smaller, but all-important parts. It is necessary, now, to 
turn to the eastern front, and to treat as a single and complete whole 
the story of the Austrian-Serbian campaign as such. The diplomatic 
questions entering into this phase, the tangle of treaty relationships 
and the racial issues involved will be found in the Second Part of this 
book, treated in some considerable detail. Here, the war will be con- 
sidered as war, only. 

To gain a clear idea of the Balkan territory, draw a line from 
Venice to the mouth of the Danube, or, if the reader prefers, take 
the line of 45 N. parallel of latitude. Only the province of Moldavia, 
belonging to Roumania, will lie north of this. Draw another line 
from Naples to Constantinople, and, on the Balkan peninsula, only 
a very small piece of the Turkish Empire projects northward and this 
is distinctively Balkan; part of Albania, which is entirely Albanian, 
lies south of this, but Albania is classed with Greece. 

The Balkans may thus be regarded as a rough oblong, with the 
Adriatic Sea and the Black Sea respectively on the west and east, 
or shorter sides of the oblong; Turkey occupying the greater part of 
the southern side; Austria-Hungary and Russia facing the northern 
side. Now divide this oblong into three equal parts by drawing a 
perpendicular line one third of the way from the western end, and 
dividing the larger eastern end in two by a horizontal line. The square 
western end will be Serb, the northern eastern end will be Roumanian, 
the southern eastern end will be Bulgarian. In later chapters of this 

9— W. L. 129 


book the race questions mil be dealt with fully, but, for a rough mili- 
tary idea, let it be supposed that these three groups of peoples are 
approximately the same in number. It is one of the chief causes of 
trouble in the Balkans that the boundaries of territories do not agree 
with the boundaries of the lands occupied by those peoples. Much of 
northern Turkey is Bulgarian, much of southern Hungary is Serbian, 
much of eastern Hungary is Roumanian, and the Russian province of 
Bessarabia is Roumanian also. 

The Serbian campaign, then, in a word, consisted of the conquest 
of this western square of the Balkans by the Austro-Germans and the 
Bulgarians. Since Roumania did not enter the war on the side of 
the Allies until later, it follows that Serbia, at the opening of the war, 
was almost entirely surrounded by enemies. Her defeat was certain 
from the beginning unless Russia and Roumania came to her assistance 
from the east and north and Greece from the south. Since Russia was 
too much occupied to do so, since Roumania could not make up her 
mind whether to join the Allies or the Central Powers and since Greece 
played battledore and shuttlecock with her promises and her alle- 
giances, Serbia was deserted and left to her ruin. 

Difficulties Confronting Serbia. 

The operations in this theater of the world war were of a three- 
fold character. There was the Serbian-Austrian campaign on the 
west side of the square; the Serbian-German campaign on the north 
side of the square; and the Serbian-Bulgarian campaign on the 
southeast side of the square. 

The topography of Serbia, moreover, was not conducive to mili- 
taiy movements upon the scale needed in the world war. Her moun- 
tains, though well adapted to guerrilla warfare, were not disposed in 
such a fashion as to make a single chain, defensible at a few passes, 
in such a way, for example, as the Carpathian Range protects Hun- 
gavj. Moreover, the rugged nature of her country had an added 
disadvantage, that of transport. Roads were few and poor. Conse- 
quently, cross-country operations were extremely difficult 

nw^/T^^"™!""^;.^"^ *^^' ^^^ ^ ^"'^^^^ P^^^* i^ a" tte campaigns, 

through a neutral country and by one single railroad line, that run- 
nmg from Belgrade, through Nish, to Saloniki. Nish is one of the 


most important railway junctions in the whole Balkan peninsula. 
There the line from Saloniki, running north through Uskub, joins 
the groat transcontinental Paris-Vienna-Budapest-Belgrade-Nish-Sofia- 
Constantinople Railroad. All supplies for northern Serbia must pass 
through Nish, yet that junction was only thirty-five miles from the 
Bulgarian border. Moreover, the line from Nish south to Saloniki 
was in even greater danger at Vrania, midway between Nish and 
Uskub, for there it was within ten miles of the Bulgarian frontier. 
So far as military resources were concerned, comparisons are 
misleading. At the most, including reserve, the Serbs and the Monte- 
negrins together could not muster more than 300,000 men. Austria 
could summon 1,000,000 men and could call on Germany for aid. Aus- 
tria, as the invader, had the advantage of determining the point of 
attack ; Serbia, defending, had but the choice of determining the general 
line along which the attack must be met. 

War Begun Between Austria and Serbia. 

The military story of the Serbian campaign in the world war 
begins with July 25, 1914, on which day, with inexcusable arrogance, 
Austria refused to accept Serbia's answer to her ultimatum, and her 
minister left Belgrade. On July 26 the mobihzation orders were issued 
by Serbia and her army began to gather. On July 27 — war not yet 
having been declared — the Austrians crossed the Serbian border at 
Mitro\dtza, on the Save (just at the northwest corner of the square). 
Realizing what was coming, the Serbians blew up the bridge across the 
Danube and shots were exchanged. Though guns had been fired at 
Mitrovitza, this exchange of shots at the time of the blowing up of the 
great bridge over the Danube at Belgrade was regarded as the opening 
battle of the war. On July 28 Austria declared war, and there were 
skirmishes between Austrian and Serbian outposts on the Drina River. 

I On July 29 the bombardment of Belgrade began and the eastern phase 

' of the world war was in full swing. 

Finally, on August 12, 1914, behind the shelter of some small 
islands in the Drina River, opposite Loznitsa, the Austrians opened 
attack, with a concentration of heavy artillery. The small Serbian 
detachment replied gallantly, but the river bank on the Serbian side 
was not tenable, and with a tenth of their men killed in the first ex- 
change of fire the defenders retreated up the slopes and intrenched 


lightly on better natural positions. The Austrians threw up breast- 
works, dug trenches, threw across a pontoon bridge and crossed in 
force, in far gi-eater numbers than the Serbians had anticipated. 
An army corps and a half, about 70,000 men, entered Serbia at this 
point. On the same day a whole army corps crossed at Shabatz, on the 
Save, taking up position on a level plain. Four other crossings were 
made by smaller forces. 

On that (lay, first day of invasion, therefore, the Austrians had 
thrown across both sides of the right angle which formed the boun- 
daries of Serbia a force of about 160,000 men, well equipped and pro- 
vided with plenty of artillery. It may be remarked that, throughout 
the world war, Austrian artillery proved better than German, and that 
the best guns used on the western front came from the Skoda works, 
far surpassing those of Krupps'. 

Failure of the First Austrian Invasion. 

The advance began on August 14. The most important points for 
the Austrians to gain were the heights of the Tser Mountains, which 
separated their two largest armies. The Austrians stormed the 
heights. But, while the Serbians were inferior in numbers, they were 
far superior in fighting quality. Every soldier was a veteran of the 
two Balkan wars. They knew war, and modem war at that. The 
Austrian soldiers had never smelt powder. They broke at the first 
fire and ran. 

The Austrian artillery tried to cover the retreat, but, without the 
support of infantry, the guns could not advance. The artillery did its 
best, men and oxen tried to haul the guns over mountain paths and 
rocky trails, but the Serbians, at home in such fighting, rushed over the 
rocks yelling, and charged among the batteries with bayonets and hand 

In spite of this desperate resistance, the Austrian artillery gained 
command of parts of the Tser ridge. But there was neither time 
for profound intrenchment nor did the ground allow of it. Serbian 
control of the heights above the valleys absolutely precluded the forma- 
tion of a continuous battle line. Superiority of artillery was of little 
use to the Austrians, the battles were too much broken up by the saw- 
toothed character of the country. 


Fighting on the 17th and the 18th was much of the same character. 
At one point the Austrians advanced, at another they fell back. The 
important point, however, was that the Serbians absolutely prevented 
the union of the Austrian armies, which would have enabled the in- 
vaders to establish a solid, intrenched line on the Valievo plain. 

On the 19th the Austrian batteries were dislodged from the heights 
they had won on the Tser ridge. This put all the controlling points in 
Serbian hands again. On August 20, the Austrians in the valleys were 
in a hopeless case. The Serbians swarmed down on them. The Aus- 
trians fled, leaving arms, ammunition, guns, provision, prisoners, 
wounded and everything else, fleeing panic-stricken for the Drina River 
which they had proudly crossed in force ten days before. 

By the 21st only the Austrian army remained which had crossed 
to the north at Shabatz, over the Save. Three days ' sharp fighting dis- 
heartened this army also, and on August 24 the last Austrian trench 
was evacuated and the last unwounded Austrian soldiers retreated 
to their own country. The first Austrian invasion of Serbia had been 
an utter and a ghastly failure. Over 6,000 men had been killed, 4,000 
prisoners had been taken, together with 40 guns, scores of machine 
guns and huge stores of ammunition. The Serbian losses had been 
heavy also, 3,000 dead and 15,000 wounded. It had been a costly, 
though a glorious victory. 

Austria's Second Invasion Stopped. 

The Second Austrian invasion closely resembled the first. It 
began at the same points and resulted in the same tactics. Warned 
by the first defeat, however, the Austrian commanders contented them- 
selves with making and holding small gains. The fighting was fierce 
and personal. Old wartimes seemed to have come again. Huge stones 
were rolled down the hills on advancing troops, soldiers hid behind 
trees to stab or shoot individually, men grappled and fought with 
knives and teeth. Again the invasion was stopped. All attempts to 
gain the Valievo Plain were fruitless, but Austria had effected a 
lodgement on the Serbian side of the Drina. It had cost her 150,000 
men. Trench warfare at once commenced, as on the Aisne, with the 
resultant deadlock. 

For six weeks Austria prepared a third, and, as she supposed, a 
final blow. She realized to the full now, the difficulties that she would 


have to face. Day after day there poured across PImigary all the 
mountain artillery,*^ mules and Tyrolean troops that could be mustered. 
The regiments formed of peasants, which could be used in mass drives 
on the western front, were sent thither, and crack regiments were 
brought down from the Russian front. The first two invasions were 
to be but skirmishes, compared with this third campaign. 

The Third Invasion a Disaster to Austria. 

The great Austrian attack was launched on November 15, 1914, and, 
after several days of careful ''feeling out" the Serbian positions, 
overpowering masses of men, backed by a heavy concentration of ar- 
tillery, were hurled at this long defense line from three different points. 
On November 20 and 21 the center of the Serbian line resisted, being 
beaten back from mountain point to mountain point, but on the second 
day it collapsed. Elsewhere the line held and repulsed the Austrian 
advance. On the 24th the southern end of the line was broken. The 
army near Ushitze was compelled to retire as far as the Gionjagora 
Mountains, at the head of the Western Morava Valley. Only in the 
north, along the Kolubara River, had the Austrians not been able 
to advance. 

Under a new commander the Serbian Army changed its tactics. 
General Mishitch, believing that Balkan troops were better fitted for 
the Balkan form of fighting than for this defensive holding of line 
after line, with the suddenness of a thunderbolt shot the supposed 
discredited central araiies right at the very strongest point of the 
Austrian lines. It took a bloody three days to win Suvobor, but the 
Austrians were no match for the Serbians the moment the conflict came 
to close quarters. The first invasion had ended in a flight, the second 
in a rout, the third became a disaster. 

The news acted like strong ^vine. All along the Serbian lines 
the success intoxicated the men. They leaped from their trenches and 
fell on the Austrians, helter-skelter, every^vhere. Batteries lolloped 
forward and took up new positions on their own initiative, the cavalry 
galloped shouting over paths used only by goats and sabred the 
enemy at unexpected corners. Ravines suddenly became machine 
gun nests whence poured an enfilading fire on the fleeing Austrians. 

ihe colonel of a Serbian regiment begged his men to halt and rest. 
They shouted, -Fighting is meat and sleep!" and rushed on. There 


was no resisting such a storm of fighting. Even Valievo, though 
strongly intrenched, fell after six hours, broken remnants of once 
proud regiments ran like flurried hares to their old crossing places at 
Loznitsa and Shabatz. The mountain roads were a litter of dead and 
wounded, of rifles and knapsacks thrown away, of deserted guns, of 
ammunition, of stores, of transport wagons. 

Still set on victory, the Serbians swung north. The Austrians' 
made a firm stand around Belgrade. But now, not one, but all the 
Serbian armies were concentrating at this point. Here the Austrians 
fought bravely, but were forced back, foot by foot, mile by mile. 

P'or two days the Austrians held their lines. It was in vain, the 
Serbians felt themselves invincible. Old King Peter went to the front 
with his men. They charged and charged again, into the teeth of the 
wonderfully well-served Austrian artillery. At last only 10,000 Mag- 
yars were left to defend the hill of Torlak, above Belgrade. This was 
a battle to the death. In the swamps below and in the heights above, 
man strove with man. The shooting died away. The fight went on 
in the dark and silence. Men strangled and stabbed and clubbed each 
other there. As many Serbians fell as Magyars, but when dawn came 
there was not a Magyar left unwounded on that hill. 

Diplomatic Strife in the Balkans. 

The third invasion of Serbia was ended, but 100,000 Austrians 
never recrossed the Drina and Save Rivers. They lay buried — or 
unburied on Serbian soil or interned in Serbian prison camps. Many 
died of the virulent epidemic of typhus that swept over Serbia the 
following summer. It was the worst of the plagues that came during 
the world war, and in parts of Serbia the death rate was as high 
as half the entire population. America, among other countries, sent 
hundreds of thousands of dollars and threw a vast Red Cross force 
into the work, but they were all too few. The conquest that Austria 
could not make was done by the hand of disease. 

The summer of 1915 in the Balkans was one of diplomatic rather 
than military strife. Both sides tried to bribe Roumania, both sides 
tried to bribe Bulgaria, both sides tried to bribe Greece. Serbia was 
approached by Germany with a quite flattering offer for a separate 
peace, but she refused to consider it. In August Bulgaria signed a 
secret Alliance with Germany. 


In September General von Mackensen, who had been extraordinar- 
ily successful in his Russian operations, was sent down to take charge 
of the Serbian campaign. For a long time this was unknown. All 
the German dispatches still continued to associate von Mackensen's 
name with the Russian operations that the secret of preparation 
against Serbia might be well kept. The chancelleries of the Allied 
Powers grew suspiciously alert. On October 1, 1915, reports were 
sent out that German and Austrian officers were arriving in the Bul- 
garian capital. On October 3 Russia notified Sofia that friendly 
relations would be broken off unless all enemy officers left the city 
within 24 hours. Bulgaria returned no reply. The Russian minister 

left next day. _ 

But something louder than diplomacy, though not deadlier, was 
beginning to roar over and near Belgrade. The first shells flew on 
September 20 ; German aeroplanes began to appear in the Serbian sky. 
Day by day the shells grew more numerous and the black-crossed birds 
of evil omen flew thicker. On October 3, the day that Russia sent 
an ultimatum to Bulgaria, bombardment in the full sense of the word 
began and the departure of Russia's minister from Sofia chorded 
well in its dark augury with the death-storm of high-explosive shell. 

Germany Advances on Serbia. 

Serbia had defied Austria successfully. Three invasions had failed. 
She was not to be allowed to defy Germany. Von Mackensen had not 
planned in vain. Two huge armies faced the Save and the Danube, 
each of 150,000 men, picked veterans. Over 2,000 big guns had been 
brought down from Russia, to play their part. On her part, Serbia 
had not been idle. Nine months of comparative peace had been spent 
in digging trenches, fortifying positions, storing munitions and train- 
ing every man able to hold a rifle. Her armies, also, amounted to 
300,000 men. If Bulgaria kept out of the fray, the situation was 
almost equal, for the greater artillery force of the German-Austrian 
armies would be counterbalanced by the stronger position held by the 
Serbians. Von Mackensen, however, had the advantage of offering 
battle at whatever point he chose and therefore could concentrate more 
men at that point. 

On October 5, 1915, the Germans set themselves to destroy Bel- 
grade by long-distance bombardment. They first laid down a curtain 


of fire on the further side of the city to prevent the fli.^bt of the in- 
habitants, then shelled the city not only with high-explosive shells but 
also with inflammatory bombs. The city was set ablaze in a dozen 
places. On October 6, although two landing parties were killed to 
a man, the Germans finally crossed near the city. They brought their 
heavy guns over, raked the river and shattered all defensive works. 
On October 7 and October 8, the Austrian troops attacking on the 
west of the city, also secured entrance. Belgrade was taken October 
9, but the defending army retreated in good order to solidly built 
trendies. On the 9th, 10th and 11th, all along the Danube, Save and 
Drina Rivers, reserves poured over. Serbia was unable to fight on 
every point at once, and withdrew from the frontier to the fortified 
lines, which she held in spite of poison gas attacks, liquid fire and all 
the other ingenuities of horror that German chemists had invented 
to add to the terrors of war. 

Serbia Doomed Through Non-Assistance, 

Then, at Serbia's back, without notice, Bulgaria plunged into the 
fray. For a week, Balkan fighting tactics resumed their old sway. 
But, day by day, the Bulgars drove the Serbs back, outnumbered two 
to one, and on October 17 and October 20 they cut the main railroad 
from Saloniki to Nish at two points. The Serbians retreated to Ba- 
buna Pass, north of Uskub, which became known as one of the most 
heroic stands of the war. 

None the less, Serbia was doomed. With the main railroad cut 
no supplies could make their way up to the Serbs in the north. Von 
Mackensen drove on slowly, but remorselessly. The Serbs made every 
advantage they could out of the rocky and rugged character of the 
ground, but the terrific German artillery fire leveled the trenches. 
When those were untenable, the Serbs moved back and dug others. 
The artillery rolled on and commenced the destruction anew. Soon 
the Serbian artillery found itself short of shells. The Balkan tactics 
of savage personal onslaught, which had proved so potent during the 
three earlier Austrian invasions, were useless now. The Germans did 
not advance until they had made trenches that were sown with ma- 
chine guns and the machine gun knows no fear. The wild, reckless 
attacks of the Serbs might have been as destructive, had they reached 


the trenches. But they never reached. Shrapnel and machine g^un 
fire answered cold steel. 

In the south, Serbia was holding out with marvellous tenacity. 
The Austrian troops operating to the south, found tTiemselves halted 
at every point by the Serbs. The Bulgars, gnashing their teeth with 
rage, could get no farther. And meanwhile, steadily creeping up from 
the Mediterranean, a small French force sought to overthrow a Bul- 
garian x\rmy which stood between them and a junction with the Serbs. 
This army was under General Sarrail, the hero of Verdun. Once, 
indeed, he got so near as to hear the sound of the Serbian cannon, only 
ten miles away, in the heroic defense of the Babuna Pass. 

Serbia Conquered After Terrific Resistance. 

On November 2 the Bulgarian main army, supported by German 
artillery, opened the attack on Nish, the Serbian capital since the 
beginning of the war. The city was at that very time decorated with 
the Allied colors and flags were floating everywhere, for it was ex- 
pected that a large force of English and French troops would enter 
the city in a day or two. The French were doing their best. The 
British were down by Lake Doiran. On November 5 Nish fell, and 
with it came the surest evidence that all was lost for Serbia. Gen. 
von Mackensen now controlled all north Serbia, all of western Serbia 
was in Austrian hands, all of eastern Serbia was in the hands of the 
Bulgarians, and only a little corner in the south still kept up the heroic 

This centered at Babuna Pass, a point which will go down in 
history with the Pass of Thermopylae. Five thousand Serbs, without 
artillery, defied 20,000 Bulgarians, backed by German gunnery. ''Day 
after day and night after night," writes Reynolds, ''the little force of 
Serbians crouched among the deep shadows of the defile, sometimes 
without food, always under a heavy fire, now and again making the 
rock cliffs about them echo with bursts of their plaintive national 
folk-songs. After November 4, 1915, the Bulgarian attacks became 
more persistent, and their infantry would hurl itself into the pass; 
then the Serbians would spring up from behind rocks and ledges and 
throw themselves at their hated kinsmen (they are not kinsmen, how- 
ever) with naked bayonets, shouting such words in their foe's language 
as would send the flush of rage burning through the cheeks of men 


and make things red before their eyes. Again and again were these 
sanguinary hand-to-hand struggles enacted under the towering rock 
walls of those mountains, and again and again were the Bulgarians 
thrown back." 

They heard, every now and again, the sound of the French guns 
striving to reach them. A wind blowing from the south would seem 
to bring a promise of victory, a counter-breeze would carry away the 
hope. Sarrail and his French fought stubbornly and well, but they 
were few and the Bulgars were many. A stubborn French victory 
cost 4,000 men, but Bulgarian reenforcements arrived daily. The 
Serbs could hold Babuna Pass no longer and fell back on Prilep. And, 
steadily, Austrian armies, German armies and Bulgarian armies rolled 
on step by step. The Serbs now had no ammunition, no food. Winter 
lay chill on the high hills. On November 20, 1915, the last Serb 
force left Serbian land, not to return until the last year of the war. 

It was a blow of terrible portent to the allies. The main railroad 
from Berlin to Constantinople was open. German munitions and Ger- 
man troops could go to Turkey. Teuton lands stretched from the 
North Sea to the Dardanelles. The great goal of Pan-Germanism was 
in sight. Suez was threatened. The Holy Land awaited the rule of 
the Mailed Fist. Asia Minor, with all her riches, lay open for exploita- 
tion. The line to Bagdad could be rushed to completion, and India 
was menaced. All this and more was contained in the news that the 
French could not reach Babuna Pass and that Serbia, as Serbia, was 
no more. She was a conquered land, with not an inch of her soil 
remaining to her people. 



Italy's Entrance Into the War— Strategic Passes Into Austria— The Dolomites— The Battles of the Isonzo 
—Aerial Railways in the Julian Alps— The Bridgehead of Goritzia— The Carso— Feats of the Bersag- 
lieri— The Dead-Line to Trieste. 

THE diplomatic reasons which lay behind Italy's severance with 
the ''Unholy Alliance" and the question of ''Italia Irredenta," 
together with the political civil war which raged over the question of 
neutrality, are to be found in a later chapter in this book. Condensed 
into a couple of phrases it may be said that Italy entered the war 
oflSciaJly because "the independence of Serbia was considered by Italy 
as essential to Balkan equilibrium" and because while admitting soma 
concessions in the Trentino, "the Austro-Hungarian government per- 
sisted in its opposition to all our other demands, especially those re- 
garding the boundary of the Isonzo, Trieste and the islands." 

The Italian- Austrian frontier as it was at the opening of the war 
may be divided into five parts: The Rhaetian Alps from the Swiss 
border to the lower Trentino, with the passes near the Swiss border; 
the lower Trentino, where the mountains slope down toward the plain ; 
the eastern side of the Trentino or the Dolomite Alps; facing toward 
Vienna, the inaccessible heights of the Carnic Alps ; and facing toward 
the Balkans the foothills of the Julian Alps with the Isonzo River run- 
ning between the Italian border and the high ridge which runs down to 
Fiume. War between Austria and Italy, therefore, confined itself of 
necessity to mountain actions for the control of the passes through 
these rugged regions. Modem war requires modern artillery, which 
is enoimously heavy in itself and which requires a constant supply of 
heavy shells. The Italian War, therefore, was different in its char- 
acter and manner of operation from that of any other part of the battle 

On May 24, 1915, Italy's declaration of war against Austria- 
Hungary became effective. Austria retorted by aerial bombardment 
of Venice and the next day five Italian armies attacked the Austrian 



frontier at five different points. Commencing near the Adriatic, one 
army struck out along the railway to Monfalcone and succeeded in 
capturing that important point on June 10. Monfalcone being an im- 
portant railway junction and the seat of the electrical works which 
operate the light and power of the great Austrian port of Trieste, its 
seizure was of the highest importance. 

Next to the north, another Italian army invaded Austria by the 
Udine-Cormons Railroad and by June 4 had succeeded in gaining pos- 
session of the heights near the fortified city of Goritzia. A third army, 
striking in at the southernmost pass of the Camic Alps, was faced by 
a strong Austrian army near Tolmina, and the first serious battle on 
that front occurred on June 7, 1915. A fourth army, in the extreme 
north, swept the Austrians from Monte Croce and seized Feikofel. 

Sharp Fighting Between Italians and Austrians, 

In the Trentino, as the southern part of the Austrian territory is 
called, where it dips like a triangle into Italy, a fifth army advanced 
unchecked until June 17, when it found itself confronted by a strong 
line of fortifications between Rovereto and Mori. On the same day 
the armies advancing on the Isonzo River were brought to a sudden 
halt by an elaborate series of Austrian entrenchments, holding that river. 

By the end of July the Italian- Austrian conflict had advanced suf- 
ficiently to show that Goritzia was the Verdun of that whole campaign. 
The Italian cl^arges on the fortified lines on the Isonzo and the en- 
trenched camps of Goritzia were as desperate as the mass-drives of the 
Germans against the Rheims-Verdun-Toul line. Moreover, the de- 
fences of the Isonzo were tenfold stronger than any point on the western 

Approximately thirty important outpost positions were stormed 
during June and July, and August 1 found the Italians firmly estab- 
lished at several points on the east of the Isonzo River. The main de- 
fenses of Goritzia and Trieste were as yet untaken, and the main Aus- 
trian line of defense remained intact. The Austrian losses had been far 
heavier than the Italian, although the latter had taken the offensive. 

So picturesque was this fighting that one is tempted to stop and 
give incidents. Only one will be given, chosen by the writer because it 
portrays the wide difference between the fighting in this theatre of 
war and others which have been described. On the western front 


the battles began with mass drives and afterwards turned to trench 
warfare ; in the Balkans, irregular hand-to-hand melees were frequent. 
In the Dolomites, Alpine and Carso plateau fighting, there was far 
more of individual warfare and brilliant feats by small groups. It 
called for the high-hearted courage which Italian soldiers know so 
well to display. 

The incident in question was the capture of the peak of Zellenkoffel, 
a most important observation point for the direction of firing, but 
supposedly inaccessible. After the Austrians had lost Freikofel and 
Cresta Verde it became urgent to seize Zellenkoffel, on which the 
Austrians, with terrible difficult}^— even though not under fire— had 
succeeded in establishing an observation post. It was held by forty 
men. This was deemed sufficient force for the reason that the entire 
slope of the peak — it would be nearer the truth to say the sheer precipice 
of the peak — was swept by machine gun fire. 

Tyroleans Execute Marvelous Deeds. 

On the night of July 3, however, twenty-nine men, every one of 
them trained Alpine climbers, among them eighteen Alpine guides, 
who had spent their lives leading climbing parties up the most dan- 
gerous summits of the Alps, undertook the dislodgment of the Aus- 
trians on Zellenkoffel. They were roped. In the black dark, without 
showing a light or making a sound, the twenty-nine Alpinists climbed 
the thousand feet sheer. Not only that, but they actually pulled a 
machine gun up with them. 

The extraordinary daring of this mountain work was by no means 
confined to the Italians. The Tyroleans covered themselves with 
equal glory. The story of how a hundred Tyroleans cut an ice tunnel 
through the Monte Adamelle glacier in mid-July and seized the Tonale 
Pass ranks vnth the greatest of the Italian marvels. Both Austrian 
and Italian engineers and artillerists worked wonders in bringing to 
the top of supposed impassable mountains huge guns and howitzers, 
weighing over a ton. Beside such extraordinary examples of the 
miracles to be done by human power unaided by machinery, the build- 
ing of the Pyramids of Eg\'pt sinks into insignificance. 

The entire autumn and winter of 1915-1916 saw little change in 
the situation so far as great gains of territory were concerned. 
Six months' fighting in the Trentino had demonstrated that no fur- 


ther advance could be made there by Italy. Even if the Adige Pass 
were taken, with the enormous loss of life it would require, other 
passes lay behind, and still further north was the famous Brenner 
Pass which Austria could undoubtedly hold for ever. Along the Carnic 
Alps, on the northern frontier, the condition was practically the same. 
This left the Isonzo section as the one point against which all 
Italian efforts should best be directed, and similarly, on which all 
Austrian defensive tactics should be maintained. The battlefront, 
so far, had changed to little advantage on either side, except at Isonzo, 
where Italy had bitten in at two points toward the great defensive bar- 
riers of the Julian Alps. On the other hand, the Isonzo,. though the 
most vulnerable point, was of disheartening difficulty. None the less, 
unless the Goritzia defenses of the Isonzo were taken, it would not 
be safe for Italy to make an attack on Trieste. 

Goritzia Much Desired by the Italian Army. 

Goritzia is at the northern end of an oval plateau, north from 
which the Isonzo River enters a canyon. On the Italian side of the 
northern end of this oval stands the spur of Podgoro, which changed 
hands four times during that winter. Overlooking the bridgehead 
is the important height of Oslavia, which the Italians won in Decem- 
ber, 1915, lost in January, gained again towards the end of January 
and lost the month after. In the early winter the heights on the 
Italian, southern, end of this oval, San Michele and San Martine 
di Carso, also came into Italian hands. The whole of the opposite 
side of the oval, forming the line of the Julian Mountains, was never 
in danger. The Austrians held powerful trench and commanding ar- 
tillery positions all the time. Bombardments were continuous and 
without cessation. Both sides constantly strove to gain the advantage 
on this mountain slope or that. But all this time Goritzia remained 
in Austrian hands. 

Italian strategy, originally, had counted on the help of Serbia. 
The plan had been first, a checking of Austrian invasion at the moun- 
tain passes ; and second, a quick sweep into Istria and Dalmatia, with 
the occupation of the ports from which and by means of which the 
Italian armies purposed to join Serbia and invade Hungary. All this 
plan was negatived by the strength of the Austrian defenses at Goritzia 
and the Julian Alps. 


TIk' winter campaigns of 1915-1916 were attended with extraor- 
dinary difficulties. When the snows thawed in the spring, revealing 
layer upon layer of bodies, deposited on the snow in successive attacks ; 
hiyer upon layer of ever newly-built barricades, all sinking with the 
melting snow into an appalling tangle of barbed wire, stakes and 
human remains, it was difficult to imagine that such conditions could 
be surpassed on any part of the battlefronts. Fortunately, most for- 
tunately for Italy, the strong clear air of the mountains carried off 

The Italians Lose the Hard-Fought-for Trentino. 

The deadlock continued until May, 1916, with gains alternating 
on both sides, but in that month the Austrians concentrated all their 
forces for a drive in the Trentino region. The concentration of the 
bombardment began on May 15, 1916, and the town of Asiago was 
shelled from long-range shots fired from a 15-inch naval gun. The 
Alpine troops, suffering heavily under the bombardment of the 
trenches, charged forward three times, but the old story of human 
effort against machine guns brough the same old answer. The loss 
of life was enormous. The Austrian infantry charged also with great 
gallantry, and in far greater number than the Italian. They lost 
heavily also, but the preponderant masses of the Austrians were so 
great that the Italians had to abandon their lines. 

The Italians were driven from their positions, hurled back from 
the advance they had made into Austria and forced down the hill- 
sides, fighting for every yard of earth. By the end of the first week of 
the drive, all that the Italians had gained by a year's fighting in the 
Trentino was lost. On and down plunged the Austrians, with a terrible 
concentration of artillery until the Italian frontier was reached and 
crossed. By May 26, 1916, two Austrian armies were sweeping down 
into Italy, one attacking Arsiero, the other threatening Vicenza through 
Schio. By June 1 Asiago was evacuated by the Italians and the de- 
tendors took up a last position on the hills to the east. The Austrian 
advance now menaced the entire Venetian plain. 

It was a crucial week, the first week of June, for, in order that 
the drive mto the plain might be continued, the Austrians must forego 

r^ Ku'T' ^^^^^^^^^ ^^^r^i^g by their position of coming down 
the hdl. They must begin to fight in the open. The result was the 


adoption of Berlin tactics, rather than those of Vienna, namely, mass 
drives against trenches. But, as occurred over and over again in 
the world war, offensives of the mass drive character possess extraor- 
dinary potency only at the beginning, so long as they are under the 
protection of the vast curtains of fire* Heavy artillery, however, can 
never keep pace with the drive, and hence an offensive is compelled to 
slow up after a certain ratio of advance. 

This was exactly what happened in the Austrian advance from 
the Trentino. Austrian assaults on Italian positions on June 6 and 
7 were repulsed with heavy loss. The Austrian offensive had then 
gained 35,000 prisoners and 300 cannon, the latter a heavy blow to 
Italian efficiency. Casualties on the Italian side were placed at 80,000 
men. But the drive had spent its force. Posina, Arsiero and Asiago 
were within Austrian grasp, but the offensive lacked the driving force 
to grasp them securely. Vincenza was only twenty miles away, but 
those twenty miles were as unreachable as though the distance had 
been two hundred. 

The Tunnel of Monte Sabotino. 

The Italians counter-attacked furiously. Austrian consolidation, 
though good, was insufficient to do more than check the Italian offen- 
sive. It would only confuse the reader to treat of this counter-offensive, 
peak by peak, suffice it to say that between June 15 and August 15^ 
1916, the Italians regained nearly all the territory that they had lost 
during the Austrian offensive, and once more established themselves on 
strategic positions which defended the Venetian plain. The new battle 
line on that frontier was, on an average, not more than a mile or two 
from the frontier of Italy. 

Naturally, the Austrian offensive in the Trentino was synchronized 
with an Austrian offensive on the Isonzo, near Goritzia. In the latter 
campaign, however, the Austrians had no success. They lost many 
men and gained only a few minor heights. Naturally, also, the success 
of the responding Italian offensive would be paralleled with an offensive 
on Goritzia, to keep the Austrians engaged at both ends of the line at 
the same time. This was remarkably successful, resulting in the fall 
of Goritzia. 

During the summer a tunnel 838 feet long had been drilled in the 

solid rock through Monte Sabotino, without a hint of the operations 

in— w. L. 


having reached the Austrians. Suddenly, early in the morning of 
Aiiguf.t 6 the end of this tunnel was blasted clear and the opening 
vomited Italian soldiers. Men darted to every point of the mountain 
and set on fire the dry scrubby undergrowth. Masked by the low roll- 
in? smoke of the burning bushes, the Italians swarmed into and stormed 
the intricate series of tunnels, trenches and galleries which the Aus- 
trians had constructed on Monte Sabotino. The whole position, deemed 
impi egnable, was taken in twenty minutes, even before the full measure 
of the offensive had become known to the Austrian command. It was 
a lightning stroke and gave the Italians immediate command of a power- 
ful gun position. Every detail had been worked out in advance, and 
with the capture of Monte Sabotino, the tunnel swarmed with bat- 
teries as ants rush out of a hole made in an ant-hill. By noon, the 
western bank of the Isonzo was untenable for the Austrians, and, 
in one wild and victorious rush, supported by their artillery rapidly 
falling into place on Monte Sabotino, the Italians rushed Monte San 
Michele and secured absolute artillery control of the Goritzia bridge- 
head. Three days' fighting had gained them the territory for which 
they had fought more than a year in vain. 

Steady Advancement of the Italians. 

On August 9, 1916, occurred one of the most hotly contested 
battles in the whole world war, the fight on the bridge over the Isonzo 
at Goritzia. It was a breathless whirlwind of attack, so furious that 
the opposing regiments were all entangled in each other. Horse, foot 
and artillery fought in confusion. At last the Austrians broke and 
Goritzia fell into Italian hands. To the north a similar violent offensive 
carried the Italians within gunfire of the important point of Tolmino, 
but they could reach no further, nor did they shell the town. 

A winter marked by heavy snows put a stop to all big offensives 
from either side. Not a week passed without a minor engagement, 
of course, for in all mountain fighting, as has been shown, sometimes 
a small attack by a few men will succeed in gaining a height of great 
importance, either as an observation point, or, even more often, as a 
point from which cables may be stretched for an aerial railway, either 
to bring up provisions and shells or to send down wounded for hospital 
care in the valleys below. 

These aerial railways, like spiders ' webs flung from peak to peak, 


were the Italian highways of the war. Italian engineers are rightly 
accounted among the greatest in the world. Americans have not 
always realized that the standard of technical training in French and 
Italian universities is far and away higher than in German. A degree 
from Milan is worth three times as much as one from Heidelberg. 

The spring thaws of 1917 stopped fighting for nearly a month. 
It was not until the middle of May that hostilities recommenced on 
a large scale. May 14, 1917, brought about a somewhat curious situa- 
tion. So heavy was the bombardment that day that it presupposed 
the beginning of an Austrian offensive. The Italian commanders, 
however, had also planned an offensive on that day. 

Determining to take the bull by the horns, the Italians were thrown 
forward in the very fury of this terrific fire. This high-hearted au- 
dacity gained its reward. Unprepared for fierce infantry assault, 
four separate heights, which were supposed to be impregnable, were 
rushed by the Italians. It only took the Austrians forty-eight hours, 
however, to stiffen their resistance to such effect that the Italian drive 
was stopped. Twelve batteries of British artillery aided in this ad- 
vance, which was resumed three days later and continued in a tornado 
of fury for a fortnight. 

Several Important Events That Happened. 

The result was the same as the preceding autumn. The Italians 
advanced steadily and repulsed all counter-attacks. A most sensa- 
tional attack on a famous Austrian position at Castagnievizza resulted 
in the capture of a main highway suppljang the Austrian lines and also 
four strategic heights of commanding importance. But, by this time, 
the force of the Italian blow was weakening. Austrian counter-attacks 
began to show gains. South of Jamiano, the Italians were driven back, 
and during June the whole character of the battle operations in the 
Goritzia and Car so sectors was devoted to a straightening and strength- 
ening of the line. On the Trentino, likewise, artillery duels consumed 
the energies of both sides. 

Meanwhile, several important events had happened in the world 
war as a whole. Russia had gone to pieces. Greece was swinging to 
the Allies. Roumania had made up her mind to go against the Central 
Powers— and had suffered for it. Biggest and most important of all 
in its moral effect, the United States had declared war on Germany 


and tlie Teuton High Command was beginning to realize that it might 
not be all ''a bluff." 

The Asiatic nations, Bulgaria and Turkey, were beginning to 
wonder whether they had not picked the wrong horse to win. If Ger- 
many was to hold her allies in the Balkans and the Near East, it was 
necessary to secure another sweeping victory. To do so in the west had 
proved impossible, and, in any case, the influence in the Near East would 
be more potent if the victory were nearer home. 

Serbia had defied Austria until Germany undertook the campaign. 
Italy had defied Austria. Obviously, therefore, Germany must enter 
the campaign. From many points of view, but especially that of its 
effect on the Near East, Germany's next move must be a drive at 
Italy. With Treachery as her herald, Germany struck, and struck 



Sudden Smashing Descent of the Invaders Into the Italian Plains— Propaganda and Treachery— Venice 
Threatened— A Human Barrier to the Guns— Allied Rush to the Support— Italian Mastery of the 
Air— Collapse of Austria— Heights Re-won by Sheer Gallantry. 

FOR two years the world had stood amazed at Italy's relentless 
straggle on the Alpine heights and her feats of daring had become 
proverbial. Even when the Austrians had descended from the Tren- 
tino, she had succeeded in driving them back up the mountains with a 
loss of 80,000 men. Suddenly, with a fall that shook the Allied cause 
to its foundations, the Italian line broke and went to pieces. The Ger- 
mans and Austrians plunged down into the plain and for some weeks 
the issue as to whether Italy would be overrun by the Teutons trem- 
bled in the balance. 

Such a disaster could not come without sharp and definite causes. 
These causes were three in number, propaganda, treacheiy and over- 
confidence. Space is scant to go into the details of each of these, but 
a word or two must be said. 

German propaganda was the first force. For nearly a year the 
Italian troops on the Tolmino front had not been changed. It was 
known that the Italian plan of attack was southwards from Goritzia 
rather than northwards through Tolmino. This sector was generally 
quiet. The Italians had begun to fraternize with the Austrians. See- 
ing this, Germany and Austria drafted numbers of agents as soldiers 
in the Austrian lines with instructions to spread socialistic doctrines 
among the Italians. The crisis of this propaganda arrived when the 
Austrians printed forged copies of newspapers purporting to be the 
daily papers of Naples and Genoa, containing reports of socialist 
riots in those cities and of British troops, summoned to restore order, 
firing on defenseless women and children in the streets. 

The treacherous part in the demoralization of the Italian armies 
was done by the Camorrists. The Camorra, as is well known, is the 



most important political agency in Italy, a secret society with a sin- 
ister reputation, strongly inclined towards socialism, anarchy and 
pacificism. There is not a city in Italy that has not one or more 
branches of the Camorra, not a political party in which its agents are 
not found, not a branch of Italian life in any class that is unaffected. 
The Camorrists are fecund material for the growth of Bolshevism in 
Italy. They played their part in destroying the morale of the war- 
woarv soldiers. 

Defeat of the Second and Third Italian Armies. 

On Sunday, October 21, a heavy artillery fire began on the Plezzo- 
Tolmino front. Italian artillery observers soon recognized that the 
shells were mainly German rather than Austrian. Under cover of this 
bombardment, the Austrian regiments which had been fraternizing with 
the Italians were removed and German shock troops, fresh, rested 
and well-prepared, were substituted. On October 24, with unexpected 
abruptness, the Germans charged. The Second Italian Army, utterly 
demoralized, gave way at once. Some regiments fled, some threw down 
their arms and surrendered without fighting. They expected to find 
Austrian brotlier-socialists, they found German fighting men instead. 
Through the huge hole made by the failure of the Second Army, 
the Germans, supported by Austrians, burst in huge numbers. The 
line was not driven back. It was pierced. It is to be remembered 
that a battle line pierced is in a desperate case, for the armies on 
either side of the gap are immediately flanked, and a flanked army can 
be eaten up at leisure. This piercing tactics put the Germans to flank 
and rear of the Third Italian Army, which had fought heroically inch 
by inch for Goritzia and the Carso plateau. AU that gain had to 
be abandoned in a moment, or the army would be trapped and anni- 

The retreat of the Third Army ranks with the great military 
retreats of the war. ''The enemy maintained his terrific fire upon 
the Italian communications," wrote a spectator, "so that the troops 
withdrew into the tornado of shells of every kind that makes a hell 
of war. Gas shells loosed vapors that haunted the roads invisibly; 
acid shells set the men suddenly gasping and strangling; tear-produc- 
ing shells half blinded them. Nothing could have brought them help 
but the dozen rear-guard actions roaring and flaming at their heels, 
and superb and long-confirmed discipline." 


Tt was a masterly retreat, but none the less it was a terrible one. 
On October 27 the Italians saw that it was hopeless to try and hold 
any part of the line. On October 28 the Austrian-German armies took 
Goritzia. On October 30 Udine, which had been the Italian General 
Headquarters, fell into enemy hands, and the Austrians were pushing 
forward hard. Between them and Venice lay three rivers, the Taglia- 
mento, the Livenza, and the Piave, all running from the Alps to the 
sea. South of Venice flowed the Brenta River, running into the Dolo- 
mites north of Asiago. Any one of these rivers might be taken up 
as new defense lines by the Italians. 

On November 1 the Italians halted on the Tagliamento, and estab- 
lished a defense line, as strong as the rapid preparations would 
allow. But it could not be held. Too many guns had been left behind 
in the retreat. The army itself was only making connections with diffi- 
culty. The armies to the north, in the Venetian Alps, finding them- 
selves being flanked, had to surrender their long-held strategic natural 
fortresses and descend into the plain. 

Germans and Austrians Held by Piave Defenses. 

The Tagliamento line could not be maintained. On November 6 
the Germans and Austrians crossed in at least forty points, several 
Italian detachments being cut off. By November 8 the whole line of 
the Tagliamento was in German hands, and the number of prisoners 
taken since the beginning of the rout on October 24 had reached the 
appalling number of 250,000. Over two thousand guns had been cap- 
tured, a large proportion of Italy's heavy artillery. At this point a 
change was made in the Italian command, General Diaz replacing 
General Cadoma. It was Diaz's plan not to attempt to hold the River 
Livenza, which had few natural advantages, but to fall back on the 
third line, the River Piave. 

The second phase of the German invasion of Italy began with three 
simultaneous drives, one by frontal attack on the lower Piave, one by 
rear attack from the Trentino to Asiago and the third down the Cadore 
River (a tributary of the Piave) on the city of Belluno. As always, 
these drives began with successes. Asiago was taken on November 10. 
Belluno fell on November 11. But when, on November 12, the Austrian- 
German armies made a united attack and tried to pierce the Italian 
line at Feltre, where the River Piave turns, they were thrown back 


with heavy losses. Neither was the frontal attack signaUy successful. 
On November 13, indeed, the enemy crossed the Piave near Zenson, 
nineteen miles from Venice but, as a whole, the line resisted. The 
next day saw the fall of Feltre, menacing the whole Piave line. 

Reinforcements, however, were arriving hourly. Some of the 
crack French regiments were hurried to the Italian front and the Brit- 
ish sent batter}- after battery of artillery. The lower reaches of the 
Piave were deliberately flooded, and part of the battleground took on 
a curious resemblance to the inundated lands near Ypres. By this 
time the Italian troops realized that the single army which had mo- 
mentarily failed in its trust had been decoyed by lies and treachery. 
Moreover, they were defending their own soil, and they had abundant 
evidence of Allied help. 

Venice Saved From the Hun. 

Like a miracle, the small remaining part of the spirit of disaffec- 
tion was exorcised and fighting blood ran hot. The Austrians and the 
Germans hurled their men against the Piave defenses as they had 
at Verdun — and with the same result. They could not pass. They did 
succeed in establishing two menacing salients, one on the Brenta River 
near Valstagna, the other on Monte Tomba, controlling a crossing of 
the Piave. The French drove back the Germans at the former point 
on January- 20-23, 1918, and the Italians wrenched the Austrians from 
the height above the river on January 28-31. All the while the sound 
of distant shots could be heard in Venice and the bombing aeroplanes 
of the Central Powers sent load after load of explosive into the ancient 
city, for the impure joy of destruction. 

There was no early spring offensive by the Austrians for one good 
reason. Germany had found, time and again, that Austrian offensives 
alone were of little value. Even Serbia had driven Austria away. An 
Italian offensive must be German and Austrian combined. Germany 
could have no troops to spare for Italy unless she were successful on 
the western front. If successful there, then a drive would be made— 
not on the Piave, but west of the Trentino, in order to get at the metal- 
lurgical centre there, for Germany was desperately in need of metals. 
If unsuccessful, then the offensive would be a local Austrian affair, at 
some pomt into the Venetian plain. The Asiago Plateau was one of 
the chief points chosen. 


On June 15, 1918, the Austrians attacked. They were repulsed at 
once. The British on the Asiago Plateau, the French at Monte Grappa 
and the Italians at other points resisted stoutly. The Austrians claimed 
30,000 prisoners and 120 guns for the three days of the offensive, a 
puny result (even when thus exaggerated) compared with the an- 
nounced goal which was ''the conquest of the Italian plain." ''We 
expected you to put Italy out of the war," was the Kaiser's order to 
Emperor Karl. 

Italy then counter-attacked. Torrential rains aided the Italians, 
for the flooded Piave swept away the Austrian bridges and enabled 
Italian monitors to come up the river and add naval guns to the fight. 
On June 22 the Italian, French and British armies advanced all along 
the line. By July 5 there were 300,000 casualties recorded for the 
Austrians and on July 6 the Italians drove the last Austrian across 
the Piave. All along the line strategic points were stormed and taken. 
And then on, from day to day, up that dreaded Alpine stairway climbed 
the invader, always with the advantage of position, but never again 
to make a foot of advance. July and September saw Venice further 
and further from the menace of the Hun. 

Allied Forces Drive Austrians Out of Italy. 

Meantime, Germany's last offensive at Rheims and Chateau- 
Thierry had come. It had come and it had gone. It had found the 
Stars and Stripes among the banners on the battle line. If the 
American troops in the battle line were an obstacle, the millions drilling 
was a threat far more potent. It was the mass of men in uniform, those 
in the United States as well as those in Picardy and Champagne, which 
lamed the German drive. Each day's news in October told more and 
more clearly how Germany was slipping, slipping, on the brink of 
crushing defeat. No more reenforcements for Austria now! 

And then the thunderbolt! 

On October 24, thanks largely to united command, a terrific attack 
was made all along the line. The Italians drove at Monte Grappa, 
between the Brenta and Piave Eivers; the French, with British artil- 
lery, attacked on the Asiago Plateau; the British, with Italian and 
British naval support, attacked on the Lower Piave. In the great 
drive fifty-one Italian divisions, three British divisions, two French 


divisions, one Czecho-Slovak division and one lone American regiment 
attacked sixty-three Austro-Hungarian divisions. 

The drive began with terrific vim. On the first day 3,000 prisoners 
were taken ; on the second, 10,000, and on the third, 30,000. By October 
30 Monte Grappa had been captured, 33,000 prisoners being seized 
at that point alone. This cut the Austrian lines in two, and the Italians 
took full revenge for the preceding autumn, when their line had been 
pierced. The Austrians fled in confusion. From a rout it became a 
helter-skelter flight. On November 3 Trent had been taken and the 
Italians were in Udine. Chiefest of all, the Italians had secured their 
great goal throughout the war. They were in Trieste and the last 
Austrian was driven from Italian soil. 

Austria threw up her hands. Already, on October 27, when the 
drive was only three days old, Emperor Karl had ordered a military 
capitulation to General Diaz. On October 29 an Austrian captain came 
forward from the trenches with a white flag. On his rank becoming 
known he was curtly bidden to return. The Italian generals would 
deal only with properly accredited Austrian generals. On October 
30 General von Weber led forward a party of eight naval and military 
officers under a flag of truce. Finally, on November 3 General Diaz 
signed the armistice, to go into effect at 3 o'clock, November 4, 1918. 
Austria w^as out of the war. Turkey had surrendered four days before, 
Germany was to surrender a week later. 

Italy's military part in the war had been of vital importance to the 
Allies. She had stoutly kept the Germans and Austrians from pene- 
trating France by the southern door. She had compelled Austria to 
maintain a very long and costly line from Switzerland to the sea. She 
had taken hundreds of thousands of Austrian prisoners and forced 
the employment of an average of 1,500,000 Austrian troops on the 
Italian front, troops which might have turned the tide of battle in 
the west on some of the many occasions when the Allied line was 
stretched to its uttermost. Besides which, Italy had sent troops to the 
western front to the Monastir campaign. Stubbornly and gallantly 
she maintained her right to be classed as one of the ''Big Four" among 
the powers of the world who fought to save civilization from the blood- 
stamed hand of the Hun. 



Civil War Questions in Greece-^ort Desired by Germans as a Submarine Base— King Constantlne and 
Veneziios— Practical Impossibility of Transport Conditlons^Figbtlng in Macedonia— Establisbment 
of Allied Supply Bases— Final Collapse of Bulgaria. 

THE Saloniki campaign commenced by being one of the great 
Allied disappointments of the war. Begun hastily in the hope of 
coming to the relief of Serbia, and begun too late, it was an utter 
failure at the start. It remained for two years a question of heart- 
burnings and trouble and only toward the end did it justify its ex- 
istence. Few people, except military and diplomatic oflficials, realized 
its importance or the part it played, still less did the public realize, 
in the military quiescence of Saloniki, how difficult a part the garrison 
had there to play. 

AVhy were Allied troops sent to Saloniki in September and October 
of 1915? The answer to this question will go far to explain the com- 
plicated issues which revolved around that all-important sea-coast 
town of Macedonia, which has become one of the greatest fortified 
places of the world, a second Verdun or Gibraltar. 

First of all. Allied troops were sent to Saloniki to march north 
therefrom to the relief of Serbia, which had been invaded from the 
south by Bulgarian and German-Bulgarian armies, at the same time 
that it had been invaded on the north by a German Army and on the 
west by an Austrian Army. The history of Serbia's place in the 
war has been told in an earlier chapter. It will be remembered that 
on September 30 the bombardment of Belgrade by the Germans was 
in progress, that on October 3, the German invasion of Serbia began, 
and that, on October 13, the Bulgarians entered Serbian territory and 
stabbed their neighbors in the back. Compare these dates with the 
landings of Allied troops. The first French detachment landed on 
September 30, a British and French Division arrived on October 5; 
General Sarrail arrived on October 12, and the first advance was 
made October 14. 



It was just oue day after Serbia was beleaguered on all sides 
that the Allies started to aid her. This first hopeless thrust was the 
first phase of the Saloniki campaign. 

On November 20 the Serbian Army gave up its last vam hope and 
began that desperate and awful march over the snow-covered and path- 
les's mountains of Albania to try and reach the sea. The half-wild 
,loos of the neighborhood formed generally their only food. The Al- 
l)anians, frankly or secretly hostile, refused food to the Serbians on 
tlieir arrival and shot them from behind on their departure. It was 
a ghastly march. It was worse than Napoleon's return from Moscow. 
Those who did not find dogs to devour were found by dogs who de- 
voured them. Many men w^nt mad. More became so crippled from 
frost-bite, starvation and exposure that even though they reached the 
Adriatic, they never recovered. 

Impregnable Defenses Created at Saloniki. 

Yet, in this state, in order to escape the Austrians they were 
compelled to march from Scutari to Valona, dysentery-ridden every 
one, and in a state of feebleness that passes description. They died 
by scores in muddy places in the road, not having strength to lift 
their feet, and though the Allies fed them on the way, put ferries 
across the rivers, and in hundreds of cases carried the men on their 
backs, it was a wan and ghostly 130,000 men who finally reached 
Valona and were shipped to the island of Corfu to rest and recuperate. 

The second stage in the Saloniki campaign was the transforma- 
tion of that somewhat desolate spot on the Aegean sea as a great 
intrenched camp in the very heart of the Balkans. It was made more 
difficult by the intrigues of the Greeks, enemies of the most treach- 
erous sort, all the more dangerous because secret. Incredible labor 
and millions of dollars were spent in the creation of impregnable 
defenses, constructed not for this war alone, a fact in itself so remark- 
able that one well may pause to ask w^hy the Allies considered it worth 
while to make a new Gibraltar of Saloniki. 

There were many cogent diplomatic reasons. Saloniki has a 
good harbor, and forms an excellent naval base. It possesses the 
only railroad line running north to tap the Vienna-Constantinople 
Kailway. It is within reach of the important point of Monastir. It is 
handy to Constantinople. In the event of German or Bulgarian ambi- 


tions towards the Near East it would be a serious thorn in the side 
of such a project. Above all, it is one of the chief keys to the in- 
terior of the Balkans which are not approachable from the Adriatic 
Sea save by a few almost inaccessible passes through high and rugged 
mountains. It opens the Vardar Gate. 

Saloniki became necessary to British protection of Suez and 
India when the Berlin-to-Bagdad railway almost was realized. Great 
Britain made Saloniki the Gibraltar of the Balkans. With England's 
navy, it could never be taken from the sea; it would be at least as 
difficult as Verdun to capture from the land side. No matter what 
happened on the western front, Saloniki was one sure anchor in the 
stormy seas of Near East politics. 

Roumania Declares War on Austria-Hungary. 

The most trenchant question during the summer of 1916, when 
this huge intrenched camp had been constructed under conditions of 
perfect peace, not a shot having been fired at it, was the question of 
Roumania. The Allies were doing their best to bring Roumania in 
as their ally, the Central Powers were doing their utmost to keep 
her neutral. General Sarrail was eager to clinch the matter by a 
successful offensive up the Vardar River Valley. He was ready for 
the drive, but Roumania dilly-dallied for weeks. Whereupon, Bulgaria 
decided to influence Roumania to the other side by a successful offen- 
sive on her part, and, having accurate knowledge of the Allied move- 
ments from the Greeks — who always double-crossed both sides — the 
Bulgarians attacked from the west on August 17, 1916. The Serbs 
holding that sector were beaten back as far as Lake Ostrovo, but, by 
August 22, the French troops who had been waiting for the moment 
to start on Sarrail 's offensive, had come to the aid of the Serbs 
and all future Bulgar attacks were repulsed. This timely aid given, 
Sarrail advanced on the Vardar and captured a number of strategic 
positions from the Bulgars on August 22, while a strong counter- 
attack on the Struma was beaten back, the next day. 

These Allied successes had their effect. On August 27 Roumania 
declared war against Austria-Hungary and commenced the invasion 
of Transylvania, in the manner described in the next chapter. This 
was a political move, and a wise one in the event of success ; it was 
not a military move and a, most unhappy one in the event of failure. 


A powerful southern concentration, to take the Bulgars in the rear, 
would have strengthened the Allies immensely and given a relief to 
Serbia which might have staved off the fall of the nation long enough 
to enable the Allies to reach the beleaguered country in time to be 
of real assistance. 

Roumaniii thought only of herself and depended on the help of 
Russia. The outcome was disastrous. The fall of Serbia, the con- 
quest of southern Roumania and the isolation of the Allies at Saloniki 
were the result of lack of teamwork in the Balkans in the autumn of 
1916. The Central Powers had a common plan, the Allies had none. 
This lack of a plan was heightened by the treachery of Russia. 

Macedonia a Desert Land. 

The entrance of Roumania, although mishandled from a military 
point of view, was a great heartener for the Serbs, wiio had ever con- 
sidered that their reward from the war should be possession of Mace- 
donia, that central battleground of the Balkans which is claimed alike 
by Serbia, Bulgaria, Greece, Turkey and Albania. Macedonia, roughly, 
is that piece of land included in the Turkish vilayets of Saloniki, Mon- 
astir and Kossovo. It is about the same size as Belgium, Holland 
and Denmark together, and had at the time of this war a population 
of over 2,000,000, about one-half Bulgarian stock, one-quarter Turkish 
and the remainder divided between Serb, Albanian and Greek. To 
the Serbs the city of Monastir was one of their chief goals, and ac- 
cordingly, w^th Allied help, a drive was made, resulting in the capture 
of Monastir, November 17, 1916, just a year after the crumpled Serbian 
army was making its dreadful way to the coast after the conquest of 
their country. 

In December, 1916, the French entering Koritza reproclaimed 
the independent Republic of Koritza or Albania. That established a 
complication. A word or two may be said about Albania. It was 
created by the Conference of London in 1913, after the Balkan Wars 
and made a principality under the Prince of Wied. During a revo- 
lution in May, 1914 (before the opening of the world war) the German 
Prince was driven out, a republic proclaimed and Essad Pasha made 
President. In September, 1914, Albania declared war on the Austrians, 
and throughout the war Essad Pasha remained a loyal ally of the 
Entente, flying his nation's flag in Saloniki while his Albanian army 


of 600 men was brigaded with the French. Valona was occupied by 
the Italians. 

The principal issue of importance during 1917 was the enforced 
abdication of King Contantine of Greece on June 12, 1917. In one 
of the later chapters of this book, dealing with political and diplo- 
matic affairs ,in Greece the significance of this abdication is told 
in detail. From a military point of view it was of value since it 
added the Greek Army to that of the Allies, but it was of greater 
value in that it set to rest the constant fear that the Greek armies 
would knife the Allies in the back. 

A New Battle Front Established. 

At about the same time, Austria announced the independence of 
the whole of Albania under Austrian protection, on March 9, 1917; 
and on June 3, 1917, Italy proclaimed recognition of ''the unity and 
independence of the whole of Albania, under the shield and protec- 
tion of the Italian Kingdom," thus supplementing the provisional 
republic of Koritza or Albania, proclaimed by the French at Koritza. 
It may be mentioned that Italy's action was somewhat disingenuous, 
as in her secret treaty signed with the Allies before entering the 
war, the partitioning of Albania had been agreed upon. 

The arrival of the United States into the war in 1917 and the 
elimination of Russia and Roumania turned the attention of the Allies 
away from the problems of Serbia and Albania. The concentration 
of forces needed on the western front precluded the sending of any 
large army to Saloniki at that time. 

When the spring of 1918 made movements possible in Saloniki, 
however, a new face had come over the war. Instead of the promises 
of American troops, the soldiers themselves were beginning to arrive ; 
instead of mere threats in Mesopotamia, triumphs were being recorded. " 
There was no longer a Russian front, but there was a Bulgarian- 
Austrian front, facing the Italian occupation of Avlona on the Adri- 
atic Sea and also facing Saloniki on the Aegean Sea, reaching inland, 
in this latter case, beyond Monastir. 

Action on this front began on May 31, 1918, when Greek troops 
advanced and captured strong positions on the Struma River. A 
counter-attack on a Serb sector a week later was repulsed with heavy 
loss. The Allies had been on the ground too long for any of their 


defensive lines to be taken. Moreover, they had accumulated vast 
stores of supplies aiid munitions, they had built railroads, they had 
made highways, they had constructed stone bridges and were pre- 
pared to push the kind of campaign which two years before had 
been impossible because of the character of the ground to be cov- 

During June, the final snows being off the mountains and the 
spring mud having become only of normal depth, the Allies from the 
east and the Italians and French from the west commenced to extend 
their lines. On July 6, the Albanian campaign opened, on July 9 the 
heights near Pohani were carried and on July 10-11, after some sharp 
lighting, the Allies linked up a mile 210 miles long from Saloniki to 
the Adriatic Sea. A new battle-front had been established. 

Aim of the Saloniki Campaign Achieved. 

A battle-front is a very different thing from attacks radiating out 
from two centers. It is a menace. Once this line was forced, if it 
were strong enough not to be pierced, it could advance steadily. With 
thousands of transport mules, with the most modem mountain motor 
transports, with mountain batteries, with Italian skill in handling 
supplies by aerial railways, the campaign proceeded swiftly through 
the Albanian mountains. Meanwhile, British and Greek detachments, 
operating from the powerful base of Saloniki, were in a position to 
push north also. On July 15, the main Austrian defense line was 
reached, and a deep salient was driven in at Meran. On July 21, Point 
Tozi, a commanding strategical barrier, was taken. In August, further 
advance was made. 

The Bulgarian smash began on September 15. The whole Bul- 
garian front from Lake Doiran to the Vardar Valley fell almost at 
once, a line which had remained unbroken since the autunm of 1915. 
French, Serbian and Jugo-Slav troops led the drive. On September 
16, the first and second line positions fell. The Bulgarians were un- 
ready to withstand such a concentration of artillery as now faced them, 
still less were their transport conditions such as those that the Allies 
had built up in two long years of preparation. 

It only took two days more to pierce the third line positions and 
on September 18, a huge gap was broken in the Bulgarian line, north- 
east of Monastir, lea\dng the road open for an advance into Bulgaria. 

(S) Loin. Pub. Inf. From 1. F. S. 

A French Kun mounted on an American armored train and manned by U. S. heavy 


© Com. i'ub, Inf. 

Pr.«id.nt Wif'^^^^'^/S^^^^^"^^ PRESIDENT WILSON ON ARRIVAL. "'" ' ^^ ^■ 

President Wilson and President Poircare. in procession through the streets of Paris" and 

acknowledgmg the plaudits of the crowds. 

Photo I. F. S. 


These fine ships surrendered to the Allies. They were kept bottled up, practically, for 

four years and then steamed out and surrendered. 

Photo I. F. S. 
These German submarines are waiting to be escorted into Harwich, England, after their 
surrender. The German crews are seen standing on deck. 

From U. & U. 

Upper — General Pershin 
the town of Luxemburg:. 

Gene^lTeTiS^tS^DSsrS'ILl^mb^iS^ '" Luxemburg, passin 

, ^ , © Com. Pub. Inf. 

ana jjuctiess ot Luxemburg reviewing American troops in 

in review before 

The Hun started the use of poisonous gas, grenades, etc., and got strong doses of his own 
medicine thrown back on him. Then he wanted to quit. 

iintish Utticial Fhoto. 



© 1. r. 6. 

Royal Scots in open warfare. When they got the Huns out of the trenches they went 
after them with vigor and enthusiasm. 

© I. F. S. 
The Castle of Middachten, near Arnhem, Holland, owned by Count William Betinck. i 
friend of the ex-Emperor and with whom he stayed. 

il l'l!„.u. 

A German Cemetery ne^ Bethune, which was recaptured by The BHti'sh. 
The two pictures tell their own stories. 



The upper picture ^shows the firgt batch of Hun prisoners being brought in by American 
i-p H soldiers, and the lower an American outpost near bt. .Mime.. 




■ 1 i.i. i'upuiai be 

AluiiUily," .New York. 

Microphones such as tliat shown at the end of the dotted lines located no less than sixty- 
three German g-uns in one day. 

Frank Parker Stockbridge, who describes it in "The Popular Science Monthly" 
(New York, December), tells that the hiding-places of no less than sixty-three German 
guns were detected in this way in a single day. Says this writer, in an article entitled 
"How Far Off Is That German Gun?" 

"By the use of 'receiving stations' behind the lines, British and French military 
observers have been able to locate hundreds of German guns through the application 
of the science of acoustics. These stations are placed behind the Allied lines at points 
accurately determined, with the distance from each station to all others carefully 

"A receiving station may be nothing more than a microphone-receiver concealed 
under a rock. The receiver is connected by wire to a central station wfith which the 
other stations arc also connected. A simple clockwork device in the central station 
records the exact instant at which every sound is received at each receiving station. 

"The first sound is that of the shell passing overhead, since the projectile fired by a 
high-power rifled cannon travels faster than the speed of sound, which is normally 
1,123 feet a second, varying, however, with wind velocity and direction and the tem- 
perature and density of the air. The next sound recorded is the 'boom' of the gun, and 
then comes the sound of the exploding shell. 

"Careful corrections are worked out to allow for variation in the speed of the 
sound-waves due to atmospheric conditions. Then the difference in time at which the 
same sound was recorded from the different receiving stations is compared with the 
known distance from station to station. . . . 

"So accurate has this method proved that in almost every instance, when the work 
of the observers at the central station (which may be miles away from the receiving 
stations) is compared with photographs made from airplanes, showing the position of 
the same guns, there is not room for separate pinpricks to indicate the results of the 
two sets of observations. 

"In one day, recently, sixty-three German guns were located by this means, and 
destroyed by airplane bombs, although many of them had been so successfully camou- 
flaged that probably they never would have been discovered by any other means." 





A common scene before the troops at the front on all the battlefields in France and 



Photo I. F. S. 

Seeing the enemy without being seen. Keeping covered from the enemy in the air as 
well as on land, is also a necessity. 

© I. F. S. 
Coffee and sandwiches being- served to the soldiers. They not only bandaged their 
wounds and nursed them when sicli, but tliey also gave them food and drinl^ when they 
were hungry and tired. 

Always If a^y. were the famous US Marines, to go into action. Furthermore, they 
aiwajs ga\e a good account of themselves, and the Hun knows it. 


On September 23 the Serbians carried the huge massif of Drenska, 
commanding the important city of Prilep, and entered that city next 
day. The First Bulgarian Army, scarcely believing that this -strong- 
hold could be taken, fled in disorder. This cut off the Second Bul- 
garian Army behind Doiran, which, finding the First Army gone and 
its flank open, fled also. On September 25, Veles, the principal rail- 
way centre of old Serbia, was captured. 

The invasion of Bulgaria by the Allies commenced on September 
25, when the frontier was crossed near the fortress of Strumnitza, 
which fell next day. Uskub, the most important point in Southern 
Serbia, which had been used as the Main Headquarters for the Bul- 
garian Army, was entered on September 30. This opened a direct 
railroad line to Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, and it was evident that 
another two or three days would see Bulgaria overrun. The capture 
of Uskub also opened the railroad toward Nish and laid Bulgaria 
to the menace of invasion from that side. Germany could send no 
help, she was being driven back. Austria could give no help, Italy was 
at her heels. 

Although, only a month before. King Ferdinand had promised 
that he would never make a separate peace, the threat of revolution 
and anarchy in his capital forced his hand. On September 24 Bulgaria 
asked for an armistice. On September 29 the armistice was signed 
in Saloniki, the terms including the words ''The armistice means a 
complete military surrender, and Bulgaria ceases to be a belligerent.'* 
Arrangements were made for the military occupation of Bulgaria, 
and the re-occupation of Serbia. Almost the whole of the Balkan 
section of the Berlin-to-Bagdad railroad came into Allied hands. 
Ferdinand abdicated on October 4. 

There was still some fighting in this sector, for Austria had not 
yet surrendered. The naval base of Durazzo fell on October 2, 1918, 
from Italian and British naval attack, and Elbasan was taken by the 
Italians after a stubborn Austrian resistance. On October 13 the 
Serbians reentered their war capital at Nish and the ultimate aim of 
the Saloniki campaign had been achieved. 

11— W. L. 



Cossack Success at Lemberg-East Galicia Captured-Occupation of Przemysl-Turn of the Tide at 
Cracow-Debacle of Tannenberg-Battle of Lodz-Decisive Winter Campaign of the Masurian Lakes. 

THE opening of the war on the eastern front divided itself, from 
the very first day, into three parts. To the north, there was the 
German-Russian campaign, which began with the seizure of Czesto- 
chowa in Russian Poland and its supporting strategic point, Kalicz, 
both centering on Warsaw, a campaign which later extended northeast- 
wards to the great Battles of the Masurian Lakes. The second was the 
Austrian-Russian campaign, which centered on Lemberg and Przemysl, 
whereby two armies passed north of the Carpathian Mountains into the 
Galician plain; this divided, later, into two parts. The third was the 
Austrian-Russian (and later, Roumanian) campaign, which covered the 
fighting from Czernowitz south to the ever-changing lines of the Balkan 

Of these the Lemberg-Przemysl campaign was the first and the most 
central. It will make the strategy of the whole eastern front easier to 
understand if this dominating attack be made clear. 

First and foremost, the Austrian-Russian border does not march 
with the line of the Carpathian Mountains. That mountain range forms 
an arc, with the convex of the curve pointing towards Russia. The 
frontier follows this arc at an average distance of about eighty miles. 
In this belt of fertile Galicia, between the Carpathians and the frontier, 
lie the two important points of the town of Lemberg and the fort of 

Be it observed that Russia entered the war as coming to the support 
of her Slav neighbor, Serbia. The burden of attack, therefore, lay on 
Russia, not on Austria. This handicapped Russia seriously for three 
reasons: (1) Russian strategy was that of gradual retreat over her 
huge territory with flank cavalry and light artillery actions to cut off 
an ever-lengthening line of supply; (2) Russian mobilization had always 



been leisurely and slow; (3) Russian transport was notoriously weak, for 
she possessed few strategic railways and almost no organized motor 
transport corps, such as are needed for a modern army. 

For these three reasons Austria adopted partly the same tactics for 
Russia that she did, later, for Italy. She fortified and entrenched her 
naturally strong lines and awaited attack. The Russian invasion of 
Austria during the first few days of the war, like the Italian, later, was 
not due to Austrian weakness, but to an Austrian plan. In order to 
cover this line of defense, however, a separate Austrian army, under 
General Dankl, was marched forward to the northward, on Tomasov, 
to invade Russian Poland. Thus, should the Russian attack fail suffi- 
ciently to permit a counter-offensive, Dankl might encircle the Russian 
army, which had advanced on Lemberg and Przemysl and might take 
them in the flank or rear. 

Start of the War on the Eastern Front. 

The war on the Eastern front began quickly. On August 3, the 
day before the eastern war became a world war, both Germany and Rus- 
sia had invaded each other's territory. On August 5, both Austria and 
Russia had invaded each other 's territory. 

The Austrian First Army, under Dankl, at once took the offensive. 
It advanced into Russian Poland, meeting little resistance. The First 
Russian Army fell back on the River Bug, following typical Russian 
strategy. The line of the Bug, protected by the forts of Zamosc, was a 
strong position. The psychological effect of this retreat, however, was 
to convince the Second Austrian Army, holding Lemberg, that the Rus- 
sians were a weak foe, or at least, that in this war they purposed to re- 
tain their customary defensive strategy. 

On August 12, the Russian forces advanced slowly across the 
frontier. The dashing Austrian cavalry tried to face the Cossacks, but 
were swept away like straw before a tornado. The next day, August 
13, the important point of Sokal was seized. General von Auffenberg, 
secure in his supposed larger numbers and in his strong position, 
calmly awaited the Russian onslaught, which was seen advancing. 

Meanwhile, unknown to the Austrians, a powerful Russian Army, 
under General Brussilov, was advancing on Tarnopol from Odessa. It 
contained 250,000 men. On August 14 this little-expected army seized 
Tarnopol and joined with the Second Russian Army a few miles south 


of Brody. Not counting reserves, therefore, the Russians under Brussi- 
lov (who took charge of the campaign) were 550,000 against the Aus- 
trian 350,000. 

The movements of the various Russian armies at this point are a 
little obscure. All tactics were kept a profound secret. Some facts, 
however, are clear. On August 17, for example, Dankl was compelled 
to halt his pursuit of the First Russian Army, von Auffenberg was 
fighting frontier actions with Russky, and Brussilov was concentrating 
at Tarnopol. During this week Russky seems to have had a far larger 
force than the week preceding. There seems reason to suppose that 
when Tarnopol was invested, Brussilov lent an army corps to Russky 
to enable the latter to drive the Austrians out of all their forward 
positions and to hammer them back on Lemberg. Brussiloff was de- 
laj'ed a few days because, on crossing the Austrian border at "Woloc- 
ziska, all his railroad rolling stock became useless, as Austrian and 
Russian railroad tracks are not of the same gauge. 

Junction of Russian Armies Accomplished. 

Sunday, August 23, 1914, which was a notable day on the western 
front, when Charleroi was in flames and the British were battling at 
Mons, unwitting of the French disaster, was also a notable day on 
the east front. Both the Russians and the Austrians claimed victories. 
As a matter of fact, there were no notable victories for either side. 
The Austrians repulsed the steadily rolling rush of the Second Russian 
Army at one point, the Cossacks sent the Austrian cavalry flying to 
the rear at another. 

"What was reaUy going on was that the Russians were advancing 
with an exasperating slowness, while an aggressive and powerful Cos- 
sack cavalry screen was harrying the Austrians, and even flanking their 
main army. Behind the confusion thus created by his cavalry Brussiloiif 
was successful in achieving his desired goal, namely, the junction of his 
army with that of Russky. 

Russian mobilization was proceeding apace, but it was a very 
different matter from German mobilization. From Berlin every detail 
had been arranged beforehand; in the Czar's armies, arrangements 
were made on the spur of the moment. There was amazing complica- 
tion in the Russian lines. Had von Auffenberg been strong enough 


and daring enough to make a sudden advance, he might have been able to 
prevent the junction of the two Russian armies. 

To keep him from doing so was the work of the northern Russian 
army. Russky's steam-roller advance kept von Auffenberg on the alert 
all the time and the Cossacks, like hornets, gave his regiments no 
peace. Moreover, he could not tell what was happening behind that 
cavalry screen. That section of the country, moreover, being more 
friendly to the Russians than to the Austrians, little news of Brussiloff 's 
movements leaked out. This Cossack advance, supported by light artil- 
lery, was admirably carried out. Many points which could only have 
been taken by infantry after heavy fighting were seized with the 
quickness that is only possible in cavalry manoeuvres. Meantime, at 
the slow rate of eight miles a day, the main armies moved on. 

Strategical Position of Lemberg. 

A word or two as to the general tactics of the Battle of Lemberg 
will make it clearer to the reader than a record of the minor actions 
day by day. Lemberg, capital of the crown-land of Galicia, a rich, 
historic, university city of a quarter of a million population, lies out in 
the plain. It is a railroad point of the first magnitude. Six railway 
lines ran out of it. The River Dneister runs to the south of it, at a 
distance of fourteen or fifteen miles, the River Bug runs to the northeast 
at almost the same distance. It is on a plain between two river valleys. 
Behind it lie the Carpathian Mountains and the fortress of Przemysl. 
If strongly held, therefore, Lemberg might be a dangerous wedge, pre- 
venting the Russian advance. If weakly held, it could easily become an 
ineffective salient. 

Russian strategy in this case was clear. Since one Austrian Army 
had advanced northeastwards, in the direction of Russian Poland, and 
the other was seeking to defend Lemberg and Przemysl, the obvious 
aim of the Russians was to cut these two armies apart, if possible, and 
then defeat them one after the other. First, however, all means of 
escape must be cut off. Between August 26 and September 1 Brussiloff 
sent heavy Cossack divisions in advance to clear the way, drove his 
infantry by forced marches over a country without roads and seized 
the crossing of the Dneister, south of Lemberg. This gave him time 
to bring up heavy artillery to hold the stream. The river being thus 


fortified, there was no place for the Austrians to escape between the 
rugged heights of the Carpathians and the southern outlet of Lemberg. 
Meanwhile, Russky had been feinting with a large part of his army 
on the southern end of the Lemberg trenches, in order to give von 
Auffenberg the impression that the main Russian drive was to be made 
at that point. No sooner, however, did Brus&iloff close the southern 
outlet from Lemberg than the whole Russian conjoined armies swung 
sidewise and to the north, and Russky struck heavily on von Auffen- 
berg 's northern wing. It took no great amount of penetration for the 
Austrians to see their danger. If they delayed longer, in the hope of 
saving Lemberg, there was a grave probability that they would be 
surrounded. A bombardment would gain them nothing; it would only 
cause the destruction of the town, which, be it remembered, was in Aus- 
trian, not Russian, territory. Von Auffenberg evacuated Lemberg the 
next day, and on September 3, 1914, the capital of Galioia was in 
Russian hands. 

The Pall of Lemberg. 

The main purpose of this first Russian strategical plan, therefore, 
had been achieved. Not only had Lemberg fallen, but the First and 
Second Austrian Armies were cut off from each other. The Second 
Army, under von Auffenberg, compelled to retire on Przemysl, was 
forced to the utmost to hold itself against the Russian steam roller 
advance. It is to be seen, now, what had been happening to the First 
Austrian Army during this period of Russky 's and Brussiloff^s united 
effort, which resulted in the taking of Lemberg. 

The First Russian Army, under von Plehve, which had been re- 
treating towards the lower part of the River Bug, stiffened its defense 
during the last week in August, and commenced to counter-attack, skil- 
fully advancing with its left or southern wing, while holding firm with 
the right. The effect of this was steadily to cut off Dankl from the 
von Auffenberg armies around Lemberg and Przemysl. By September 
3 this action had become so marked that a Third (and it seems, a 
Fourth) Army was hurried up to fill the gap between the First and 
Second Austrian armies. This Army, afterwards called the Fourth, 
was under command of the Archduke Joseph Ferdinand. 

The Russian offensive against Dankl developed force on Septem- 
ber 4. Swampy ground and pressure on the south prevented retreat 


in that direction. The River Vistula hemmed it in on the north. 
DankPs retreat became a difficult military- problem, the front of his 
army being congested to a front of less than forty miles, and only 
bad roads behind him. Moreover, it was necessary for him to cross 
the River San while under pursuit, a feat accomplished by the Austrian 
commander with great skill. On September 6 the important town of 
Tomaszow was taken by the Russians. But Dankl, although hampered 
by congestion of transport, was all the better placed for rear guard 
actions. If the ground prevented a wide retreat, it also prevented a 
wide offensive. 

Decisive Russian Victories. 

The Austrians reached the River San on September 12. The river 
was heavily fortified throughout its length. At the south it was 
protected by Przemysl and Jaroslav; from thence, as it flowed north 
until it reached the wide river, the Vistula, it had been made the base 
of intrenchments. But the Russians were too close on the heels of 
the Austrians for the latter to be able to destroy all the bridges. The 
bridge at Kresnov was seized by the Russians, bringing the conflict 
to an immediate issue. The fighting on the San occupied a week, but 
it resulted in a decisive Russian victory. Losses were heavy, truly, 
but the amount of munitions and supplies that the Russians seized was 

Russian success continued. Grodel and Mocsiska fell into Rus- 
sian hands, cutting off the railroad communication to the east and 
south of Przemysl. On September 20 the fortress had been entirely 
surrounded. A fortnight's bombardment followed and then, on Octo- 
ber 2, the Russians offered to accept the surrender of the city. General 
Kusmanek, of the garrison, who had 100,000 men at his command, de- 
clared his intention of holding the city to the last man. Fighting be- 
came desperate, reaching a crisis on October 5, 1914. The Russians 
stormed in force and even carried one of the outer works. A slight, a 
very slight, additional push might have taken them into the city, but 
that added driving force was lacking. The main Russian attack was 
definitely repulsed with exceedingly hea^^ losses. Since storming 
would not serve, the Russians settled down to a steady siege. That 
gave the enemy time to recuperate. The Austrians, with German 
reenforcements arriving day by day, commenced to flank the Russian 
armies of investment. 


The tide began to turn. On October 18 a sharp action at Chyrow 
was disastrous for the Russians. At Nizankowice, the Austrians retook 
the hci-hts Far to the south, flanking Brussiloff's army, a German- 
^ustria'n army retook Czernowitz, the capital of the crown-land of 
Bukovina Filled with hope from these successes, the Austrians 
1-uinched a heavy counter-attack against Lemberg, hoping to drive a 
wedge between Brussiloff and Russky. In this they failed, though 
Jaroslav fell into their hands. Russian reserves having come up, a 
new offensive was begun and the Czar's armies retook Jaroslav on 
November 5 and, on the same day, also seized the important strategic 
point of Dandomierz. By November 20 the Russians were before 
Cracow and the larger part of Central Galicia was in their hands. 

Cracow, however, proved as impregnable as had Przemysl. Hav- 
ing fallen back on the strong defense line of the Carpathian Mountains 
from Przemysl to Cracow, and supported by heavy German reenforce- 
ments, the Austrian line not only became rigid, but from time to time 
during the early winter it drove back the Russians at one point or 

Russian Disaster at Tannenberg. 

So far the Galician campaign had been localized and waged on 
its own merits. It was an affair solely between Russian and Austrian 
armies. With the entrance of the Germans into those sectors of the 
battlefront, however, it took on a new phase. This strengthening of 
the Galician line Avas made possible by the German victory at the Battle 
of Tannenberg, a battle almost as important in the east as was the 
Battle of the Marne in the west. 

The main significance of the Battle of Tamienberg consisted in the 
fact that it stopped Russia's drive into East Prussia. It prevented 
the Czar's armies marching into Berlin. 

This battle can be easily understood by grasping two main facts. 
The hrst of these facts was the personality of Paul von Hindenburg, 
the second was the topography of the country in which the battle was 
fought. The two were closely interlinked. For more than twenty 
years von Hindenburg, who lived in Hanover, had made a special and 
exhaustive study of the section of the German frontier, known as the 
''Land of the Masurian Lakes." He had tramped the marshes on 
foot, ridden over their dangerous paths on horseback, deliberately 
tested the most tricky fords and crossings with a heavy motor car. He 


had drawn maps of the couutr>' vrith his own hands. In the General 
Staff College at Berlin he was an official lectarer on this subject. 

It was von Hindenburg's influence which had caused the Kaiser 
to countermand a plan to drain and reclaim the swamps, on the ground 
that their defensive value outweighed the agricultural gain which 
might result from drainage. When the war broke out, von Hinden- 
burg, a retired commander of 67 years of age, was put in charge of 
the army sent to defend this section, which he knew as well as a subur- 
banite knows his own back garden. 

Physical Character of the Masurian Lakes. 

The ''Land of the Masurian Lakes" may be classed as the most 
treacherous piece of land in Europe. It is a mixture of patches of 
sand, beds of clay, hard bogs, soft bogs, morasses, quicksands, lakes, 
marshes, ponds and patches of scrubby woodland. Within a mile, a 
straight piece of road will pass through two or three of these sections. 
A hundred yards of dry hard gravel which could bear modem artillery 
may, with absolute suddenness, change its character and be followed 
by a soft clay mud, which would mire a horse. Fords across brooks 
and lakes are death-traps, for of two of them, only fifty yards apart, one 
may be solid and safe, the other may be a quicksand. 

So much for the actual character of the ground in which the 
fighting was to occur. It remains now to see the general geography 
of the battleground. A north to south line will run almost through 
Konigsberg, Warsaw, Tamov (not far from Cracow) and Belgrade. 
The Russians had invaded GaUcia and had reached Cracow. They 
invaded East Prussia and reached almost to Konigsberg. Between 
these two points lay the great mass of Russian Poland, 

East Prussia, therefore, to use a military term, may be regarded 
as a salient thrust into Russian territory, flanked on one side by the 
Baltic Sea, on the south by Russian Poland, with the point of the salient 
facing towards Petrograd. The point of this salient is a border of 
approximately 150 miles. On the northeast comer runs a small river, 
the Xiomen. On the southeast runs a small river, the Narew. Russian 
armies mobilized at these two comers, the Army of the Xiemen under 
General von Rennenkampf, the Army of the Xarew under General 
Samsonoff. Each of these armies numbered about 200,000 men. 

The first Russian advance was of startling success. The Annv 


of tlio Niomon drovo straiii'lilway into OonnMi) lorrilory. A sini>-lo 
(lornmn Army C\H'ps statiouod at Kouigsborg hurriiHi forward to re- 
sist luMuuMdvampf. Tlio (lornians, howovor, oven with reserves, did 
not liavo inort' lliaii 7r),000 men, and Ihe short engagement at Stallu- 
ptihnen sliowed at onee that the h'ussians were in far too great foree 
for it to be military wisdom to olYer resistance. 

The (Jermans fell back i>n (lumbinnen. (hi August 20 came the lirst 
battle, but, after tifteen hours of stubborn fighting, the Germans with- 
drew to Insterburg. Witliin three days all the northern part of East 
Prussia was in Kussian hands, and Kennenkampf was witiiin striking 
distance of Kouigsberg. tlie most important point in East Prussia and 
the easternmost outpost of Teutonism. 

The Russians Invade German Territory. 

The Army o\' the Narew, which operated out from Warsaw, had 
two railroatl lines to hand, that on the west through iSllawa and 
Soldau, and a roundabout road through Osowieck, Lyck and Ortelsburg. 
The former was used for llie left wing of troops, the latter for the 
center and right wings and for supjilies. Against the Army of the 
Xarew the Germans could not present more than 75,000 men, a totally 
inade(juate t'oree. Therefore, in quick succession the Russian left 
wing, which advanced by the Mlawa road, took Soldau and Nieden- 
Imrg; the center debouched south from Ortelsburg and took Willen- 
berg; the right wing went north and seized AUenstein and Passenheim. 

The delinite location of the battleground was now beginning to^ 
be revealed clearly. In that country of lakes, bogs and swamps, it 
was the railroad lines and highways, instead of mountain heights and 
passes, which became the military points of strategy. Let the reader 
conceive a diamond-shaped rectangle of railroads, Eylau being the 
western point, AUenstein being the northern point, Soldau the southern 
point and Ortelsburg the eastern point. Tannenberg was in the middle. 
Five railroads fed the north-to-east sides of this diamond; only two 
railroads (those that have already been mentioned as used by the Rus- 
sians) fed the other three sides. The Russian advance, it will be re- 
membered, captured the eastern, northern and southern corners. The 
western corner w^as free. 

On August 22 this eastern junction was menaced by the Russians. 
If Eylau fell, with it would go control of the five northern railroads 


supplyirif.^ Komn-^hcru,. It would ir\v(t tho ntraf/jg'ic command of tho 
whoJo hfjction of tho Masurian lydkf^^^. If tho Gormann would navo tho 
situation immediate action was imperative. On that very day (hinaml 
von ilindenburg was sent to take command. 

Tlis :strate;<-ical plan was simple. Combininj^ all the (jftnuixn i'orcfiH 
available, he had about 150/KK) men. Aj^ainst him were two armies of 
2rX),000 men apiece. Obviously he could not allow them to make a 
junction. Each army must be attacked separately. 

General von Hindenburg's Forces Recover Lost Ground. 

Judjrinjr that the Germans would be in keenest anxiety with re^^ard 
to the Ru.H.sian threat at Koni^sber^, Samsonoff had thrown the strong- 
est jjart of his army to the center and right. Soldau was but loosely 
held. With his intimate knowledge of the only possible by-paths and 
trails through the swamps, and still possessing control of the Eylau 
railroad junction, von liindenburg attacked suddenly and sharjjly at 
Soldau, on 20, 1914. The point was carried by storm imme- 
diately. With extraordinary speed and with a knowledge of the ground 
so exact as to seem uncanny, von TTindenburg intrenched. 

The Russians counter-attacked with superior numbf^rs the next 
day, but the German stategist had so disposed his lesser force that 
the railroad was under so conc^mtrated a ftre that the Russian troops 
could not detrain. Moreover, every possible path through the bog 
was held by machine gun nests. The heavy Russian counter-attack was 
repulsed and Samsonoff thrown back. With Soldau thus firmly in 
German hands, not only was the southwestern side of the diamond 
secured, but the whole Mlawa line back to Warsaw was cut ofif. If 
Sam.sonoff could be forced to retreat, he had no railroad open save 
the single round-about line through Lyck, 

Meantime, von Hindenburg sent a part of his anny through the 
marshes up to Hohenstein, where he menaced the long-strung-out Rus- 
sian line which encircled the northeastern and southeastern sides of the 
diamond. At the same time he sent troops along the Eylau-Allenstein 
road. Supposing that the Germans were in equal force with himself, 
and realizing that he could not defend so lengthy an advance line, Sam- 
sonoff withdrew from AUenstein the next day. Thus, whereas on 
August 26, the Russians had held three junction points of the diamond- 
shaped rectangle of railroads, by August 28 they only held one — the 


easternmost. Control of Allenstein gave von Hindenburg control of all 
the railway facilities of the diamond, except the single eastbound 
line to Lyck, 

Bringing up regiments of the reserve, and using a few storm 
troops as the driving point, von Hindenburg swept outwards through 
the marsh around Allenstein, flanking the Russian army, a feat abso- 
lutely impossible unless every defile were plotted and every bog and 
treacherous place marked in the commander's mind as well as on the 
detail maps carried by the German officers. Thence he struck at Sam- 
sonoff — not from the western but from the eastern side of the railroad, 
forcing the Russians back along the line of road and driving them 
into the interior of the diamond. The reader will remember that the 
interior was little more than a welter of bog and swamp. 

Men, Horses and Guns Engulfed in the Mire. 

There was nothing but bog and swamp. Relentlessly and resist- 
lessly, von Hindenburg moved southward from Allenstein until at last 
he had taken Ortelsburg, the junction of the onl}^ remaining railroad line 
eastward or southward out of the diamond. The Russian troops stationed 
at Ortelsburg had been able to escape in part, but, in order to get away, 
they had left behind them nearly all their guns and munitions, and not 
a single locomotive or railroad car remained to transport the divisions 
which were thus marooned. 

Having put the Russians into a triangle from which there was no 
outlet, and controlling the railroads which ran along the two sides 
of that triangle, von Hindenburg struck with his main force, from 
Tannenberg, on the base of the triangle. 

Von Hindenburg had cornered the Russians like rats in a pit. 
From light artillery mounted on flat cars, from machine guns placed 
on the banks of the railroad, he poured shrapnel and bullets as a rain 
of death on the defenceless Russians. Striving to flee, companies, yes 
whole regiments floundered into bogs. 

Without considering the losses during the actual fighting, 20,000 
men were actually buried alive in the muck, and 30,000 men were taken 
prisoner in that small triangle alone. Of Samsonoff's huge army, less 
than 100,000 escaped the trap set by von Hindenburg, and those which 
remained were utterly demoralized, without supplies, without guns, 
without horses and in touch with Russia only by the single narrow line 


of railroad through Lyck. It was more than a disaster, it was a 
horror ! 

Von Hindenburg's knowledge of the country had stood him in 
good stead. He had routed Samsonoff with fearful loss, but his task 
was not over. Von Rennenkampf, with a Russian Army still superior 
in numbers to the German, was confidently awaiting a frontal attack. 
Von Hindenburg had no intention of risking the issue by such crude 
tactics. He was working in a swamp country, and he intended to take 
full advantage of his superior knowledge. Instead of striking directly 
at von Rennenkampf he circled northward toward Eydtkuhnen, with 
the intention of repeating his former manoeuvre and driving von 
Rennenkamp down into the treacherous Masurian Lake country. 

Von Hindenburg was then summoned to another part of the battle- 
front, in recognition of his marvellous success at Tannenberg, and 
General von Morgen took his place. The German advance into Russia 
was promptly countered, and Rennenkampf invaded Germany anew, 
once more taking Lyck. But, by October 13, the Germans had replied 
with a vigorous counter-offensive and the second invasion of East 
Prussia lasted but ten days. 

A third invasion in November reached but a small distance into 
enemy territory. At the conclusion of this winter campaign, the Rus- 
sians were definitely barred out from East Prussia. All future fighting 
in this section was on Russian soil. 



The Kaleidoscope of Divided Russia and Siberia— Poland— The Cossacks— The Ukraine— Vladivostock— 
String of Conflicts Along the Trans-Siberian Railroad— Czecho-Slovaks With Their Backs to the 
Wall— German-Made Revolt in Finland— Allied Troops on the Murtnan Coast. 

IT is necessary to preface any writing on the subject of the territorial 
and governmental changes in the erstwhile Russian Empire with 
a word of warning. Ever since the Bolshevist coup d'etat, and, to some 
extent, ever since the abolition of the Czar's regime, there was 
nothing definite in Russia. One may speak of the Ukraine, of the 
Don Cossacks, of the government of Omsk, and the like, as if they were 
separate entities. Up to the end of 1918 they were not so. These 
regions were merely nuclei of groups of people with similar senti- 
ments. They had no oflficial boundaries. They had no constitutional 
leaders. They had no national position. They had no diplomatic 

Finland and the Ukraine, alone, may be regarded as somewhat 
more clearly defined ; Finland, because she was a separate entity before 
being included in the Russian Empire; the Ukraine, because a vague 
frontier was defined in the treaty of Brest-Litovsk. But, since the 
armistice terms declared Brest-Litovsk treaties null and void, this fron- 
tier line, also, was largely a disputed and uncertain thing. Moreover, 
most of the dates given in contemporary records are misleading and 

The largest question with regard to the partition of Russia was 
that of Poland. It had been a European problem for several hundred 
years. The world war did not settle it, on the contrary, it made the 
complication more acute. The Central Powers allegedly made a free 
Poland on November 5, 1916. It took only a few weeks to show that 

•The dates given in this chapter are those of the Chronology in "Current History." It is to be 
remembered that the Russians do not use the same calendar as Americans. Some of the new republics 
dated their actions "Old Style," others "New Style." These dates are all New Style, but can only be con- 
sidered as approximate, not exact. 



this was a German trick to inveigle the Polish armies. On December 8 
the German and Austrian Governors-General decreed a provisional 
National Council, acclaiming the fact that Poland was freed from 
Russian despotism, but ignoring the fact that they were putting her 
under Gennan despotism. The Poles would have none of if. 

The next move with regard to Poland came from Russia, During 
the iirst month after the abdication of the Czar, the Duma decided to 
set Poland free. On March 29, 1917, the Provisional Government of 
Russia appointed a committee "to make the necessary arrangements 
for the separation of Poland from Russia and to determine the relation 
of the state to the Roman Catholic Church." This was eminently 
agreeable, but the Russian declaration had little more direct and ef- 
fective result than the German. Poland had already been divided by 
Austria, Germany and Russia. Both the new Russian and the German 
declarations dealt mth a part of Poland, not with Poland as a whole. 
The Poles would have none of this, either. It was seen, at once, that 
the efforts of both Germany and Russia were bids for Polish sympathy 
for their own ends. 

Free Poland a Necessity. 

Far more interest was accorded to President Wilson's declaration 

of the rights of all-Poland on January 19, 1917. More important still 
was the Allied recognition of the Polish troops as a national anny, 
thus definitely declaring that Poland was regarded by the Allies as 
a nation in being. This recognition of the Army was first made by 
France, June 4, 1917. 

• With a Polish Army fighting against the Central Powers, Germany 
could no longer continue the autonomy she had herself suggested. Ac- 
cordingly, on September 15, 1917, the "supreme authority" in Poland 
was transferred to a regency council of three members, appointed by 
the Kaiser of Germany, the Emperor of Austria and the Sultan of 
Turkey. It promised, however, a Polish King and a Polish Parliament 
after the war. This satisfied nobody. 

Next came President Wilson's "fourteen points," stated on Jan- 
uary 8, 1918. 

By the treat}^ of Brest-Litovsk, Russia ceded Poland to Germany, 
the action being taken by the Bolshevist representatives, who were 
in German pay. The Bolshevists announced on February 19, 1918, that 


they had been compelled to accept the terms and. the treaty was 
si^ed on March 3. On March 18, the Allies in a united statement 
answered this treaty with the statement : ' ' Poland, whose heroic spirit 
has survived the most cruel of national tragedies, is threatened with 
a fourth partition and, to aggravate her wrongs, devices by which the 
last trace of her independence is to be crushed, are based on fraudulent 
promises of freedom." 

The Polish Army Recognized by the United States. 

The summer of 1918 saw a curious situation in Poland. The 
Poles, as a whole, frenetically desired independence. Some thought it 
might come through the Central Powers, some through the Allies, some 
by independent military action. In addition to these three main divi- 
sions, there were Polish Legions with the Kaiser and Polish Legions 
with the Allies. Besides these, there were five strong personal political 
parties in Poland. To follow the mazes of Polish political intrigue 
would take a volume. What really happened was that the Poles began 
to see clearly that the Germans and the Bolshevists were their prin- 
cipal enemies, and the various disagreements began, to fuse into a direct 
hostility against these two forces. The beginning of the German de- 
feat increased this feeling and the Poles grew more aggressive, realiz- 
ing that all their hopes lay with the Allies. All this time, of course, 
Poland was being subjected to German atrocities. 

On November 4, seven days before the ending of the war. Secretary 
Lansing, for the United States, "recognized the Polish Army, under 
the supreme political authority of the Polish National Committee, as 
autonomous and co-belligerent." 

One cannot pass without mention the famous incident of the Poles 
captured by Austrian troops and sentenced to death, who declared 
that they did not wish an appeal for mercy from their Polish com- 
patriots to Austria. The words are too beautiful to lose. They said, 
in part: ''We cast unfalteringly into the lot our greatest asset, the 
fame of a Polish soldier, established upon his blood and that most 
beautiful legend of a Polish army reborn. 

"You are not to injure us with gifts requiring too great concessions. 
Do not permit our personal lot to weaken the united Polish front, for 
the verdict and the death penalty can only affect us physically. The 
sufferings undergone by our grandfathers and fathers we will continue 


as a national obligation, without complaint and without resentment, and 
with the sincere conviction that we are serving a free, united and in- 
dependent Poland." 

i Toward the end of October, 1918, Germany instituted an organized 
system of massacre in Prussian Poland. On October 24 the Polish 
National Committee proclaimed the union of all Polish territories 
subject to Germany, Austria and Russia. On November 9 the Polish 
Republic was proclaimed under the presidency of President Daszynski, 
on a territorial basis of Old Poland. War then recommenced against 
Germany, Austria and the Ukraine. The armistice was signed between 
the Allies and Germany on November 11. Poland was not one of the 
signatories. She severed relations with Germany on December 15, 
General Pilsudski assuming control of the government until the meet- 
ing of the Constituent Assembly in January. On January 1, 1919, a 
Polish army was marching on Berlin. Poland was also in arms against 
the Bolsheviki and sharp fighting was in progress, though of a scattered 
character. It was clear, none the less, that Poland as an independent 
state, was definitely formed. Later phases would be questions of 

The World War in the Ukraine. 

It is necessary next, in considering the partition of Russia, to 
trace the developments of the world war in the Ukraine. This is the 
southeastern section of Russia, and is populated by the Little Russians, 
sometimes called ''The Irish of Russia." The Ukrainians are a quick- 
thinking, gay, witty people, who were formerly the masters of Russia. 
The Great Russians, a heavy, group-moving northern people, conquered 
them centuries ago. There is a marked difference in race, customs 
and language. A large proportion of the writers, artists, musicians 
and intelligentsia of Russia were Little Russians; comparatively few 
were Great Russians, hardly any were White Russians. 

The Ukraine as a separate question in the world war came to the 
surface as a result of disintegration of Russia, the weakening of Aus- 
tria, and the strengthening of its former master, Poland. The 
Ukrainian People's Republic was proclaimed by the Rada or Parlia- 
ment, November 20, 1917, thirteen days after the Bolshevist coup 
d'etat. It was recognized at the Brest-Litovsk peace negotiations as 
a separate state, both by the Bolshevists and by the Central Powers. 
It claimed an area of 195,000 square miles, with a population approx- 

12— W. L. 


imately as large as that of France. It is one of the richest parts of 

Trouble began at once. The Ukranians or Little Russians — who 
have largely intermarried with Cossack blood — found themselves in 
harmonious relations with the Don Cossacks. For their part, the Cos- 
sacks of the Don, not being an industrial people in any sense of the 
word, and regarding war from its loftier and more chivalrous side, 
could not abide Lenine, Trotzky and all their works. They hated 
treachery and despised traitors. 

Demands of the Bolsheviki Refused. 

Consequently, Lenine find Trotzky sent an ultimatum to the 
Ukraine accusing the new state of a "double-faced and bourgeois 
policy" and declaring that the Ukraine was supporting the counter- 
revolution of the Don Cossacks under Kaledine. Lenine demanded 
that passage be given to armies of the Reds, that the Ukraine aid in 
warfare against the Cossacks, and that a Soviet government be organ- 
ized at once. Twenty-four hours were given for reply. None was 
made. Civil war formally began December 18, 1917. The Bolsheviki 
captured Odessa on January 26, and Orenburg on January 31. On 
the other hand, Rcumanian and Ukranian troops, acting together, took 
Kishineff, the capital of Bessarabia, on January 27. 

At the Brest-Litovsk negotiations, there were two delegations 
from the Ukraine, one representing the People's Republic, the other 
representing the Russian Bolshevist Soviets in the Ukraine. The Cen- 
tral Powers decided to deal with the former and a treaty was signed 
which made the Ukraine commercially a part of Austria-Hungary, but 
politically an entity of its own. This treaty was abrogated by the 
terms of the armistice between the Allies and the Central Powers. 

This selection by the Central Powers of the original Ukraine gov- 
ernment continued the bad blood between the Ukraine and the Bol- 
sheviki. The Red Guard invaded the Ukraine anew. Appeals for 
help were sent by the Ukraine to their new allies, the Austro-Germans. 
Accordingly, German armies commenced the invasion of Ukraine. 
Once settled in the country, they would not leave it, and instead of 
coming to the aid of the Little Russians, it speedily became evident 
that Germany was occupying the Ukraine, exactly as it would a con- 
quered territory. 


The next entanglement occurred between Ukraine and Romnania. 
Early in April, 1918, the Bessarabian Diet announced that it had voted 
by a large majority to join its territory to the Klingdom of Roumania. 
The Ukraine protested, as Bessarabia was largely populated by 
Ukrainians, and the sea-coast frontier was a matter of dispute. 

On April 18, Germany threw off its disguise of pretended friend- 
ship, and on April 26, General von Eichhorn, commander of the Ger- 
man Army in the Ukraine, proclaimed a ''state of enhanced protec- 
tion." On April 28 German soldiers entered the hall of the Rada or 
Parliament, dissolved it, arrested many of its members, and nominated 
General Skoropadsky to be Hetman of the Ukraine. 

Germany's Interference in the Ukraine. 

This Germanized and non-Ukrainian government of the Ukraine 
promptly proceeded to make peace with the Germanized and non- 
Russian Bolshevist government of Russia, negotiations beginning on 
May 10. Roumania, meantime, had been forced to an agreement of 
the Peace of Bucharest, closed on May 10, which put all her resources 
under the heel of Germany. This treaty, also, was revoked by the 
terms of armistice of November 11. Germany then interfered in the 
Ukraine-Russia peace meetings, feeling that it was better to keep all 
Slav forces antagonistic to each other for their better weakening. 
None the less, an agreement with regard to boundaries was reached 
on June 28. 

The enforced German occupation of the Ukraine set the whole 
country in arms. The revolt became a national rebellion. Germany 
was compelled to rush large numbers of troops to aid the alien Skoro- 
padsky regime. By the middle of July Germany had a new little 
first-class war on her hands. On July 31, Field Marshal von Eichhorn, 
the German Commander in the Ukraine, was killed by a bomb. Ger- 
man garrisons were beleagured at several points. The Mailed Fist, 
however, was sufficiently strong to retain Skoropadsky as Hetman. 
The surrender of Bulgaria and the collapse of Turkey, however, 
strengthened the hands of the anti-German Ukranians, and thus Ger- 
many was unable to get supplies. The close of German aggression 
came when the general armistice was signed on November 11, order- 
ing Germany to evacuate all territory which belonged to Russia as 
before the war. This left the Ukraine a separate state, recognized by 


the Central Powers, by Bolshevist Russia, and by Roumania, but not 
by anv of the '' Big Four. " 

The Don Cossack question may be briefly told. Cossack resent- 
ment against the Russian Revolution began from the beginning. The 
Cossacks had always received special military privileges from the 
Czar. The Provisional Government's plan for putting them on the 
same plane as the rest of the army was an affront to their dignity. 
From that time until the end of the war they were uniformly opposed 
to Lvoff, Kerensky and the Bolshevists. 

The Chaotic Conditions in Russia. 

Nothing could more clearly show the chaotic conditions in Rus- 
sia than the establishment of an Austro-German pro-Bolshevist Cos- 
sack government under General Krasnoff on May 29, 1918. This was 
an offshoot of the Skoropadsky action in the Ukraine. It was a mere 
announcement on paper, and never had any adherence among the 
people. On July 29 a treaty was signed whereby the two real Cos- 
sack governments, one of Rostov and the other of Astrakhan, recog- 
nized their complete and separate autonomy and agreed to help each 
other against all enemies and for the reconquest of their original ter- 
ritories. When the famous Ufa government was organized on Oc- 
tober 7, 1918, to replace ''the fallen Bolshevists" (who had by no 
means fallen) Cossack delegates were among those admitted to the 

Very characteristically, it was the Cossacks under General Deni- 
kine who put an end to the fiction of the Ukraine government under 
Skoropadsky. On November 20, 1918, nine days after the general 
armistice, the Ukrainian Government was overthrown and General 
Denikine entered Kiev. Three days later a courier from General 
Denikine's army was favorably received at Saloniki, reestablishing 
communication between the Cossacks and the Allied armies which had 
been broken a year before. Throughout the years, however, the Cos- 
sacks had been regarded as loyal to the Allied cause. 

Lithuania once stretched from the Baltic to the Black Sea. In 
a later section of this book the racial and diplomatic history of the 
Letts is told in some detail. In its relation to the world war, Lithuania 
as a separate state entered proceedings by a formal declaration of 
independence proclaimed by Lithuanian delegates at Stockholm, 


Sweden, on January 8, 1918. The Treaty of Brest-Litovsk gave Lithu- 
ania to Germany. 

On May 14, 1918, the Kaiser issued a proclamation recognizing 
the independence of Lithuania, but promptly asserting that it would 
be expected to aid Germany in the war. Lithuania was at this time 
entirely in German hands, all the peasant men and old women being set 
at work in the fields, all the girls commandeered and shipped to parts 
of the battle-line for the use of the soldiers. On September 10 an 
ofi&cial dispatch was received in Washington stating that Germany 
had finally organized the Baltic provinces into two parts, one the 
"military administration of the Baltic Provinces," with its capital 
at Riga, including the three provinces of Courland, Livonia and 
Esthonia, with provincial governments under a "Captain of Adminis- 
tration"; the second being the "Military Administration of Lithu- 
ania," with the capital at Vilna, divided into five districts. All this 
organization was thrown into the scrap-heap by the armistice of No- 
vember 11, which curtly told the Germans to evacuate Lithuania and 
the Baltic Provinces without delay. 

Internal Strife in Finland. 

The Finnish question was so completely a diplomatic, rather than 
a military issue, that it has been treated in detail in the later portion 
of this book. The military question began with the declaration of 
Independence of Finland by the Diet in November, 1917, the proclama- 
tion of that Independence in December, and the overthrow of the 
"bourgeois" government by Finnish Red Guards, or a variety of 
Bolsheviki, in January. German troops landed on February 21, 1918. 
On March 10, the Finnish Bolshevist Government and the Russian 
Bolshevist Government made a mutual treaty by which Russia ac- 
ceded independence to Finland. 

Dealing in a general manner, it may be said that White Finland, 
or the White Guards, represented the pro-Swedish and therefore the 
pro-German party. The clash was rendered keener by Sweden's 
seizure of the Aland Islands, belonging to Finland, but a strategic 
naval base for Sweden. The Swedish Parliament ordered the occu- 
pation of the Aland Islands on the ground that since the islands were 
populated by Swedes they needed protection against the atrocities of 
the Red Guards. On April 3, a German Army co-operating with the 


White Guards, landed in Finland. On April 15, Helsingf ors, the capital 
of Finland, was occupied hj German troops and, two days later, an- 
other army corps was landed in Helsingfors. The actual government 
(Bolshevist or Red Guard) moved its capital to Viborg. Fighting 
was bitter, but on April 30 the Germans and White Guards together 
took Viborg and massacred every Red Guard taken prisoner. This 
practically ended the independence of Finland, which had now be- 
come a German military administration. Germany and Russia then 
made secret treaties, the net result of which was that Russia should 
cede the Murman coast to Finland in return for certain important 
fortresses and strategic points in the south. 

A state of war was forthwith proclaimed in the province of Arch- 
angel, June 23, owing to the attempt of the Finnish Government (now 
Germanized) to take Kola. On July 7 the population of the Murman 
Coast broke allegiance with Russia and joined the Allies. On August 
2, Finland reiterated her Alliance with Germany. With the evident 
weakening of Germany, Finland began to see that she had chosen 
unwisely, a feeling which was all the more impressed on her by Allied 
successes to the north. Consequently, a general armistice was granted 
by the White Guard Government to all Red Guards and revolution- 
aries on November 1. Wlien the armistice was signed on November 
11, German troops were ordered to evacuate Finland. This left Fin- 
land in a divided state, with all the conditions favorable for con- 
tinued civil war. 



German Seizure of Constantinople-Turkey in the War— The Impregnable Dardanelles— Seven Months 
in a Hail of Fire— The Storming of Suvla Bay— The Three Great Assaults^Turkish Gallantry— Final 
Failure of the British and Abandonment of the Campaign. 

VIEWED from its military aspect, the entrance of Turkey into 
the war had a five-fold aspect. First and most important, there 
was the question of the guarding of the Dardanelles ; second, there was 
the territorial integrity of Turkey in Europe, with its Greek and 
Serbian frontier ; third, there was the opportunity of invasion of Egypt 
and the capture of the Suez Canal; fourth, there was the Caucasus 
frontier, with its interminable complications and the menace of Russia ; 
and, fifth, there was the Mesopotamian campaign. For these various 
purposes Turkey was able to place 2,000,000 men in the field, com- 
manded largely by Germans with Field Marshal Liman von Sanders 
in actual supreme command, and with German artillery and equipment. 
Besides this, the Turk had the reputation — which the world war only 
increased — of being one of the best fighting men in Europe. 

The question of the Dardanelles can be considered in two phases, 
its military and naval aspects. The latter will be told in one of the 
later chapters on Naval Warfare. For the present, the land attack 
will be considered as a single whole. It is the Gallipoli Peninsula which 
is under consideration. 

In some of the theatres of war the topography was difficult to 
follow. Here, it is of the simplest. The Gallipoli Peninsula is a 
mountainous strip of land only two and a half miles wide at its nar- 
rowest point and sixty miles long, controlling the Dardanelles for the 
whole length of the straits. There are few points in the world natu- 
rally so well adapted for defensive operations as the shores of the 
Gallipoli Peninsula. The beaches are narrow, with steep mountain 
slopes, often unscalable cliffs, rising to considerable heights. There 
are three main crests : (1) that of Achi Baba, situated within three miles 



and a half of the tip of the Peninsula; (2) Sari Bair on the western 
side of the Peninsula, eight miles to the north; (3) Kilid Bahr, a 
plateau with three strong forts conunanding the Narrows of the Dar- 
danelles, the most important of all. 

The defenses of the peninsula could be cut off at two points, one 
at the Isthmus of Bulair, between the Gulf of Saros and the Sea of 
Marmora,. and the other at a stretch of low country lying between the 
Sari Bair heights and those of Kilid Bahr. In order to achieve the 
former, conjoined naval action would be necessary both from the 
Gulf and from the Sea of Marmora, and the latter could not be attained 
without the capture of the Dardanelles. It was the latter severance, 
therefore, which was attempted. 

Unsuccessful Attacks by the Anzacs, British and French. 

The British planned landings which should at the same time rush 
the southern position of Achi Baba, and, if possible, also take Sari 
Bair entirely or occupy the belt of low country and the heights beyond, 
thus cutting it off from Kilid Bahr. Landings, however, were almost 
impossible. Along many miles of coast there' were no beaches. Every 
hillside along the whole coast was defended to the uttermost. Row 
upon row of barbed wire had been stretched along the beaches and 
even into the sea. Ever}^ inch of the coast was mined. The German 
artillery officers had studied the ground and there was not a possible 
landing which was not under heavy fire, both direct, cross and enfilad- 
ing. In addition to which, heavy batteries solidly mounted in the hills 
of the interior had all their ranges worked out in advance, ready to 
blow into atoms all boats beaching on the shore. 

The landing was done in three main parties. On Sunday, April 
25, 1915, just at dawn, the British landed at five beaches near the tip 
of the peninsula, with Achi Baba as their goal; the Australians and 
New Zealanders, or '^'Vnzacs," landed northeast of Gaba Tepe, at Sari 
Bair, having gone a mile and a half north of their designated point, 
and the French landed on the Asia Minor side, at Kum Kale, the latter 
being announced in the communique merely a feint, although the heavy 
casualties seemed to deny this. The losses at all points were des- 
perate. Numbers of boatloads were shot to a man before setting 
foot ashore. 


The fighting continued without cessation for three days, the French 
speedily leaving their Asian attack at Kum Kale and coming to the 
aid of the British. At the end of those three days, one third of the 
landing forces were killed or wounded, Achi Baba had not been carried, 
even the village of Krithia had defied all Allied advance, and the 
Anzacs were hanging on to a thin strip of shore by sheer nerve and 

Sir Ian Hamilton, the British commander, ordered attack after 
attack on Achi Baba, forming what were known as the First and Second 
Battles of Krithia and the First and Second Battles of the Anzac. 
No words could suffice to praise the courage of the Anzacs, but every 
word of praise should be repeated for the Turks, who proved them- 
selves not only gallant soldiers, heroes in their handling of desperate 
attacks and counter-attacks, but also the most chivalrous foes which 
the Allies encountered on the battlefield. The French Expeditionary 
Force fought with equal gallantry. It was all useless. The natural 
defenses, the marvellously intricate trench system, the powerful Ger- 
man artillery, and the daring of the Turks rendered it sure that long 
before the Allies could take those trenches inch by inch every man 
of the Allied forces would be killed. The battle casualties (not in- 
cluding an appalling hospital list) were 40,000 for the British alone in 
those three days, or more than the total losses of the three long years 
of the Boer War. 

Second Phase of the Gallipoli Campaign. 

This ended the first part of the Gallipoli campaign. The net 
result was that the French had been driven entirely off from the 
Kum Kale landing ; the British had dug themselves in on the tip of the 
peninsula, but were exposed to constant fire and an insuperable diffi- 
culty of landing supplies ; the Anzacs had dug in near Sari Bair and 
were holding on with their teeth. The Allies were out-numbered, out- 
manoeuvred, out-placed and out-fought. The British Commander saw 
his forces melting away under disease and Turkish attack and notified 
the military authorities in England that further frontal action would 
be suicidal. 

The second phase of the Gallipoli campaign was known as the 
Attack on Suvla Bay. This was an even bigger affair. Heavy reen- 
foroements had been sent from England, including several Indian hill- 


tribe regiments. The attack was to be fourfold. The main attack 
was to be at Suvla Bay, a few miles north of Anzac Cove, where the 
Australians and New Zealanders were holding fast. The troops estab- 
lishing the new landing here were to push rapidly across country, 
skirting the small Salt Lake and to seize Anafarta Ridge, at once tak- 
ing up artillery positions against Sari Bair. The second attack 
was to be an Anzac charge on Sari Bair itself. The third was to 
be an attack on the main railroad communications as they passed along 
the narrow Isthmus of Bulair leading from the Turkish Mainland to 
the Gallipoli Peninsula. The fourth was to be a. new assault on Krithia 
with the intention of storming the height of Achi Baba. 

The Suvla Bay landing on August 6, 1917, was a success, regarded 
as a landing only. The troops marched inland and took up moderately 
strong positions. The Sari Bair attack of the same day was repulsed 
with heavy losses. On August 7 the Turks realized that the troops which 
had landed at Suvla Bay and were threatening the Anafarta Ridge might 
become a serious menace, although the Ridge itself had no relation to the 
Dardanelles shores, wliich were on the other side of the peninsula. The 
Turks moved reenforcements and artillery with surprising vigor and 
very soldierly handling, and held the invaders back. At Sari Bair the 
Anzacs and the Indian troops charged up some of the steepest and 
most fiercely held slopes of the height, whose crest they were deter- 
mined to reach, and, though decimated, the survivors dug in. 

Complete Failure of the Allied Offensive. 

On August 9 occurred one of the bravest charges of the war. The 
Ghurkas and the New Zealanders actually carried HiU Q and Rhodo- 
dendron Ridge. But the German and Turkish artillery was ready. 
The men had just ten seconds to cheer their victory and then the guns, 
laid to command those very heights, poured in a storm of shrapnel, 
even before the attackers had time to dig themselves in one inch. 
The firing began and stopped with the precision of clockwork, and, 
synchronized to the minute, the Turkish troops, at least four to one in 
number, swept the survivors of the Ghurka and Anzac regiments en- 
tirely free from the slopes of Sari Bair. The Irish and Australians, 
meantime, had been fighting desperately on the Anafarta Ridge and 
had gained several heights, in many cases, to be expulsed immediately 


One last final attack was made on August 21. It told the same 
story. The Irish, English, Australian, New Zealand and Indian troops 
fought savagely. Officers sacrificed themselves with the men. But the 
soldiers facing them were not inferior in courage, they had the ad- 
vantage of position, they possessed plenty of supplies, and the Allied 
attack was crumpled. The slopes flowed with blood, but the Turks held 
to the death. 

The slaughter was terrific, and no military urgency could justify 
the continuance of the campaign. England had lost, counting killed, 
wounded, missing and invalided home close to 200,000 men, making 
it the most costly single campaign in history. Yet not one single ob- 
jective had been attained. Achi Baba had not been taken. Sari Bair 
had suffered only a temporary occupancy during a few minutes of one 
of its lower slopes and the main point, that of Kilid Bahr, had never 
been threatened at all. 

The Campaign Abandoned. 

Lord Kitchener was sent to find a way whereby the troops could 
be withdrawn without too much loss. Great praise was given to Sir 
Ian Hamilton's successor, General Monroe, for the manner in which the 
retreat was accomplished. On December 19, 1915, the Anzacs left the 
beaches at Anzac Cove and Suvla Bay, which they had held so tena- 
ciously and at such terrible sacrifice, and, on January 8, 1916, the 
British left the tip of the Peninsula. It was cold comfort to Britain 
to write with loud and fulsome praise of the way in which this oper- 
ation had been carried out. With a tremendous loss of prestige, at 
enormous expense, with a deplorable loss of life, the whole Gallipoli 
campaign was abandoned. The Turks proclaimed everywhere, and 
with truth, that "England had run away." Perhaps the saddest part 
of the whole affair was the knowledge that these heroic troops, than 
which none better ever stepped on the field of battle, might have saved 
Serbia had they been sent in time to help the tiny French force at 

The disaster had one good effect for the Allies. It showed the 
danger of divided command. It resulted in a closer understanding 
between the armies of France and Great Britain. That winter Sir John 
French resigned and Haig took his place. But this was locking the 
stable door after the steed was stolen. The world had witnessed Tur- 


key chase the Allies into the sea, and had seen Bulgaria stride rough- 
shod over Serbia. The failure of the Gallipoli campaign, coupled with 
the failure of the first Saloniki campaign, did much to prolong the 

It was not until nearly three years later that Turkey surrendered 
to the Allies as the result of the Mesopotamian and Syrian campaigns. 
The first clause in the armistice was the opening of the Dardanelles 
and the Bosphorus to the Allied Fleets. On November 9 British troops 
had again landed on the peninsula of Gallipoli and looked once more 
on these hillsides, still protected by barbed wire, the trenches of which 
were empty of men and the guns of whose forts were silent. On 
November 10 a British destroyer, followed by a French destroyer, 
cast anchor in the Golden Horn, their guns trained on Constantinople. 
On November 13 the Allied fleet steamed up the Dardanelles, beneath 
the forts whose guns had driven them back three years before, and 
in the early morning dropped anchor before Constantinople, two 
British battleships leading, then two French, two Italian, and a Greek 
vessel in the rear. Formal surrender of the famous ''Gate of the 
World" was made to the British General, Sir Henry Wilson, placed in 
command of the Allied garrisons in the forts of the Dardanelles and of 
the Bosphorus. The goal, at last, was won. The key of the Near East 
was in the hands of the Allies. 



The Caucasus Campaigns— Mesopotamlan Campaign— The Kut-el-Amara Trap— Capture of Bagdad- 
Turkish Advance Toward Egypt— Failure of the Jehad— Campaign in the Holy Land— A Cavalry 
War— The Sacred City— Capture of Damascus— Situation of Persia. 

THE futile invasion of the Gallipoli Peninsula by the Allies has 
hereinbefore been treated separately, for the reason that it had no 
effect on the fate of Turkey, and almost none on the war as a whole. 
It was very diiferent with the other Turkish campaigns, sometimes 
incorrectly called ' ' the campaigns of Asia Minor. ' ' Since Turkey was 
the chief factor upon one side, all these campaigns dove-tailed, more 
or less, into each other. Yet, as they were attacked from entirely 
different points by the Allies, and as their results operated in entirely 
different regions of the world, it will be better to consider each of 
them separately rather than to attempt to give the three simul- 
taneously in their chronological sequence. 

The campaign which will be treated first is that of the Caucasus ; 
which was, for the most part, a campaign between Turkey and Russia, 
and centered around the famous fortress of Erzerum. The second 
campaign to be considered will be the Mesopotamian Campaign, which 
dealt largely with the oil question and England's sphere of influence 
on the Persian Gulf; this was a war between Turkey and the British, 
and was marked first by the English defeat at Kut-el-Amara and by 
the Allied capture of Bagdad. The third campaign began with the 
Turkish effort to start a Jehad or Holy War, striking at Egypt and 
the Suez Canal, but which turned to the conquest of Syria; this was 
a war between Turkey and the combined British, French and Arab 
forces, and resulted in the occupation of Jerusalem and the capture of 

The Caucasus conflicts were begun by the Armenians. The most 
cruelly misgoverned of all peoples of the world, constantly subjected 



to plunder and wholesale massacre, seized the opportunity given by 
the opening of the world war to revolt against their Turkish masters. 
Every Armenian centre became a hot-bed of rebellion. Turkey re- 
sponded with her customary atrocities and Armenia called on Russia 

for help. 

Russia was preparing to invade Turkey, in any case, while Turkey 
was putting herself in readiness to seize Tiflis, the capital of the 
Georgians. The Turks had 140,000 men, well equipped and tolerably 
well officered, centered mainly at Erzerum and at Trebizond, the latter 
a port on the Black Sea. The Russians had 110,000 men, centered 
mainly at Kars and at Erivan, the latter a few miles north of Mt. 
Ararat, where legend declares Noah^s Ark to have rested after the 

The Battle of Sarikamish. 

As the mutual opposition of these three factors, Armenian, Turk- 
ish and Russian, combined to bring about one of the decisive battles 
of the war, the Battle of Sarikamish, the incidents of that engagement 
may be told briefly. On November 20, 1914, the Russians invaded 
Turkey, crossing the frontier near Sarikamish. They seized the Turkish 
town of Khoprikeui, thirty miles from Erzerum, and camped there. The 
Turks, lacking a railroad behind them, lost much time preparing to 
counter-attack. On December 14, however, the Turkish armies advanced 
and gave battle at four points. The Eleventh Turkish Corps attacked 
the Russians at Khoprikeui, and drove them back to Khorasan; the 
Tenth Corps crossed the mountains and threatened Sarikamish, the 
Ninth Corps advanced toward Kars, while two divisions of the First 
Corps marched from Trebizond through a blizzard toward Ardahan. 

The Russians then threw their whole weight against the Tenth 
Corps, drove them back, isolated them in the mountains and cut them 
off. This flanked the Ninth Corps. The Russians attacked savagely 
and of the 40,000 men of that corps barely 6,000 Turks struggled 
through to Sarikamish, where, in spite of their losses, they assaulted 
the small garrison vigorously. The handful of Russians in the town 
resisted long enough to allow the main army to reencircle the Turks 
and the rest of that army corps surrendered. The Battle of Sarikamish 
had annihilated one Turkish Corps, decimated another and broken 
up all the Turkish Campaign. The Eleventh Corps, however, was still 


active and vigorous, and the Russians had to give over pursuit, to 
shorten their own lines. 

The spring offensive resulted in a decided victory for the Rus- 
sians near the Persian-Russian-Turkish border on April 20, 1915. On 
April 30, a set battle began at Janik, on the east of Lake Van, result- 
ing in Turkish defeat, and on May 5, the important city of Van felJ 
into the hands of the Russians, the Armenian peasants and villagers 
aiding the invaders to the utmost of their power. 

This stimulated the Kurds and Turks to even more atrocious mas- 
sacres of the Armenians than had before been attempted. On May 
23, a joint official statement was made by all the Allied governments 
stating that "the inhabitants of a hundred villages near Van have 
been assassinated," and affirming that Turkey and each of her officials 
would be held personally responsible. The American ambassador told 
of one convoy of 18,000 women and children deported from their 
homes, of whom but 150 reached xlleppo. 

Inhuman Treatment of Armenians. 

''Day after day and night after night," wrote Ambassador Mor- 
genthau, "the prettiest girls were carried away; sometimes they re- 
turned in a pitiable condition. . . . Any stragglers, the old, the 
infirm and the sick, were promptly killed. Whenever they reached a 
Turkish village, all the local vagabonds were permitted to prey upon 
the Armenian girls. . . . They had been so repeatedly robbed that 
they had practically nothing left except a few ragged clothes and even 
these the Kurds took ; and the larger part of the convoy marched for 
five days almost completely naked under the scorching desert sun. 
For another five days they did not have a morsel of bread nor a 
drop of water. . . . Where there were wells, some women threw 
themselves into them. . . . The policemen forbade them to take 
a single drop of water. . . . 

"I am confident that the whole history of the human race contains 
no such horrible episode as this. The great massacres and persecu- 
tions of the past seem almost insignificant when compared with the 
sufferings of the Armenian race in 1915. . . . Previous persecu- 
tions seem almost trivial when we compare them with the sufferings 
of the Armenians, in which at least 600,000 people were destroyed 
and perhaps as many as 1,000,000." As Mr. Morgenthau, the American 


Ambassador, was a Jew, there is no reason to regard his figures as 
biased in favor of the Christian Armenians. In the English House 
of Commons the figures stated were ''not under a million Armenians 
massacred in cold blood." 

During this summer there were several sharp engagements be- 
tween the Turks and Russians, with varying success on either side. 
In September, 1915, the Grand Duke Nicholas Nicholaievitch was sent 
down to the Caucasus in order that the Czar and his ring could more 
easily betray Russia in the west. 

By midwinter Grand Duke Nicholas was ready for the attack. He 
planned nothing less than the capture of Erzerum, the Verdun of 
Asia Minor. The Russians had about 300,000 troops, the Turks about 
200,000. On February 8, 1916, Nicholas advanced from three points, 
Olty, Sarikamish and Melazghert. A blinding snowstorm was rag- 
ing, the temperature was 25 degrees below zero, and from Erzerum 
to the nearest Turkish railhead is 200 miles. After five days of fierce 
assault, the Siberian troops — of all soldiers those best adapted to such 
weather conditions — carried the outer forts. The fall of Erzerum on 
February 15, 1916, was of vast political influence in Persia and the 
Far East. 

Conquest of Turkish Armenia. 

Resting a while on this base, bringing up supplies, the Russians 
were ready to advance a couple of weeks later. On March 2, 1916, 
Bitlis, an important trade center, was taken, and a new menace put 
at the rear of the Turkish Army fighting against the British in Meso- 
potamia. Fighting now became tense all along the line, but Grand 
Duke Nicholas shifted his heaviest blows to the north, finally cap- 
turing the principal port of Trebizond on April 18, 1916. 

There remained now but one more important point for the Rus- 
sians to gain, that of Erzingan, the capture of which would open the 
way into the Asia Minor plains on the further side of the supposedly 
impassable barrier of mountains. On July 25, 1916, the strongly 
fortified city of Erzingan fell into Russia hands, completing the con- 
quest of Turkish Armenia, and opening the way to Constantinople from 
the east. 

It might be mentioned at this point that Russian armies had been 
operating southward toward Bagdad, through Persia. The city of 
Kermanshah, less than 200 miles from Bagdad, was taken on Feb- 


ruary 27, 1918, and Kasr-i-Shir'n, 110 miles from Bagdad, on May 10. 

At this point came three sudden surprises. The first was the 
smashing disaster to the British at Kut-el-Amara ; the second was the 
unexpected anti-Russian attitude of the Persian Kurds, combined with 
a strong pro-German movement m the Persian government; the third 
was a notable stiffening of the Turkish Army, made possible by the 
British fiasco at Gallipoli.. 

The second theatre of war in Asia Minor was Mesopotamia. The 
first move was quick and successful. One of the most important points 
in the east, to Britain, is the main pipe line of the Anglo-Persian Oil 
Company, a main source of supply for the British oil-burning super- 
dreadnoughts. This comes down to Abadam, almost opposite the 
Turkish village of Sanijeh. On November 7, a brigade of white and 
Indian troops attacked the antiquated Turkish fort of Fao. By No- 
vember 16 a fairly large body of troops landed, and on November 17 
a. Turkish force was met at Sahil and defeated. With the aid of 
river steamers, the town of Basra was taken on November 22. It was 
promptly prepared with defenses both as a land and naval base. 

The First Mesopotamian Venture of the British. 

On December 3, a small British and Indian detachment proceeded 
up the river to Kurna, fifty miles above Basra, where the Tigris 
empties into the old channel of the Euphrates, a point of strategic im- 
portance as it controls the Euphrates delta. The Turks promptly 
drove the British back. After this repulse, the British prepared to 
attack in force, and the date of attack was set for December 9. On 
December 6, however, Turkish officers appeared at the British camp 
and asked for terms. Conditions were refused and the Turks sur- 
rendered. The British intrenched heavily at Kurna, content with their 
first Mesopotamian venture since the oil pipe-line was safe, and all 
unwitting of the disasters which awaited them in the future. 

In the Orient, prestige is one of the most important factors. Much 
of the intense difficulty which was sustained by the Allies during the four 
years of the war in this part of the world, was due to the British defeat 
at Ctesiphon by Turkish troops, which resulted in the bottling-up of 
General Townshend and his army at Kut-el-Amara, on the Tigris. 
This was another case of General Gordon and Khartoum. An Ameri- 
can military expert hit off the situation very happily when he described 

13— W. L. 


the reason of this disaster as ''England's traditional blunder: sending a 
boy on a man's errand and being then forced to rush an army to the 
rescue of the bo}^ ' ' 

The only authoritative statement made concerning the causes and 
character of the early part of the Mesopotamian campaign was made by 
Prime Minister Asquith before the British House of Commons on 
November 2, 1915. He said, in part: "The object of the expeditionary 
force, which originally consisted of only one division (about 50,000 men) 
in the autumn of last year (1914) in Mesopotamia, was to secure the 
neutrality of the Arabs, to safeguard our interests in the Persian Gulf, 
to protect the oil fields and generally to maintain the authority of our 
flag in the East." 

British Defeated on Way to Bagdad. 

On December 1, 1915, less than a month after Asquith 's explana- 
tion, the British advanced toward Bagdad. They reached Ctesiphon, not 
anticipating alarming opposition, for, at that stage of the war, and in 
that outlying corner of the globe, air scouting was negligible. The 
British were depending mainly on cavalry scouts. Quite suddenly, at 
Ctesiphon, they found themselves faced by a powerful Turkish Army, of 
not Jess than 100,000 men. The British Army, which had been divided 
into two parts, one operating on the Tigris and the other on the Euphra- 
tes, and which, moreover, had been weakened by the necessity of leaving 
garrisons, and by sickness, did not have more than 30,000 men, more 
than a half of which were Indian native troops. .The Turks did not 
await the attack. With that dash which distinguishes the Turk in actual 
war, they charged the British. Their artillery was German and the bat- 
teries were commanded and trained by German officers. The English 
were smashed back, with casualties of 6,800 men on the first day. By 
land, on the river bank and by river boats, the British were routed. The 
retreat was panicky, and when a halt was made at Kut-el-Amara, eighty 
miles to the southeast, nearly two-thirds of the English and' Indian 
troops had been killed, wounded or made prisoners. 

At this unfortunate juncture, the Australian and New Zealand cam- 
paign at Gallipoli came to an inglorious end, and the British forces 
abandoned all attempts on the Dardanelles. The immediate effect of 
this was to release 300,000 Turkish troops for action on other fronts. Of 
these men three divisions (150,000 men) were dispatched at once to Kut- 


el-Amara, with the goal of investing the 10,000 British at that point 
and either capturing the post entire or starving the small force to sur- 
render by means of siege. Still more dangerous, the defeat of the 
British gave the Turks and Germans an opportunity of convincing the 
Arab tribes that England's power was gone, and that, thenceforward, 
they should throw their alliance to the Central Powers. Such an alli- 
ance would vastly strengthen the Turko-German advance on Egypt and 
the Suez Canal. 

In this desperate strait, England did as has been said — she ''sent 
an army to save the boy." It became a race between the transport of 
Turkish troops from Constantinople to Bagdad, and of English troops 
from India up the Persian Gulf and the Tigris to Kut-el-Amara. Had 
the Constantinople to Bagdad (or the Berlin to Bagdad) railroad been 
completed throughout, the issue would have been certain at once. On 
the other hand, had the Russians been able to advance into the plain, 
the English force would have been relieved immediatel3\ And it was 
all that General Townshend could do after his defeat at Ctesiphon on 
November 22, 1915, to intrench at Kut-el-Amara on December 5, repel 
all Turkish attacks and wait for relief. 

Fighting in Water Waist Deep. 

A strong British force reached Basra in December and started 
north up the Tigris on January 4, 1916. Two months ' fighting brought 
them to Es Sinn, only seven miles away from Kut-el-Amara, but the 
Turks were heavily entrenched and the British attempt to storm the 
position resulted in failure. On March 8, the Turks counter-attacked 
and took part of the British trenches, but were driven out again. Lack 
of water and sickness in the troops compelled General Aylmen to fall 
back, Kut-el-Amara still unreached. 

Then came the spring floods, submerging the land on either side 
of the Tigris for a considerable space, for the old supposed site of the 
Garden of Eden is a bottomless swamp in spring. None the less, on April 
5, General Gorringe, who had succeeded General Aylmer, attacked 
Unun-el-IIannah, using seasoned troops who had served on the Galli- 
poli Peninsula. After fierce fighting the trenches were carried, and 
the Turks driven back on their main defenses at Es Sinn. But heavy 
rains and floods came to the aid of the Turks. Turkish reports stated 
that 3,000 British were trapped and either drowned or killed by their 


exposure to Turkish fire. Both sides were wading in water to their 
waists. The British fought well and advanced steadily, but could only 
make a few hundred yards at a time, so stubborn was the Turkish 
resistance. General Townshond, in Kut-el-Amara, who had been com- 
municating by wireless throughout the siege, now announced that his 
provisions were running low. Five months' siege had consumed them, 
even on short rations. 

During the night of April 24, a relief ship was sent up the Tigris. 
It was a desperate venture, for the river banks were lined with Turkish 
guns. Moreover, during flood-times the bed of the Tigris changed con- 
stantly, like the Mississippi. The boat stranded. Another effort to 
get food to Kut-el-Amara by aeroplane was also a failure. 

Surrender of General Townshend. 

On the one hundred and forty-third day of the siege the following 
wireless report was received from General Townshend: "Have de- 
stroyed my guns, and most of toy munitions are being destroyed. Offi- 
cers have gone to Kliali to say I am ready to surrender. I must have 
some food and cannot hold out any more." A few hours later came 
a second message: "I have hoisted the white flag over Kut fort and 
towns, and the guard will be taken over by a Turkish regiment which 
is approaching. I shall shortly destroy wireless." This surrender 
included ' * a force of 2,,970 British troops of all ranks and services and 
some 6,000 Indian troops and their followers," closs to 10,000 men 
in all. Then came the summer, rendering military operations impos- 

The legendary Garden of Eden, a rich alluvial plain, once was the 
fertile grain country of the great Empire of Babylon. It had degen- 
erated into a swamp under Arabian and Turkish dominance. This, 
now, was drained by the British army engineers, highways were built 
and two railroads constructed, one up the Tigris banks towards Kut- 
el-Amara, the other up the Euphrates banks to Nasiriyeh, only ten 
miles from Kut. In this region the two rivers run parallel. "The 
Army sent to save the boy" now had become a veritable army. The 
troops decimated nnd weakened by the Mesopotamian summer were 
relieved and General Maude, a very able officer, took command. On 
December 13-14, 1916, General Maude drove in the Turkish defenses 
south of Kut. A few days later he reached the river, thus ensuring 
transport and supplies. 


At this point General Maude changed the campaign into a cavalry 
war. On February 27, he struck simultaneously from no less than 
seven points: river steamers on the Tigris, river steamers on the 
Euphrates, infantry from the camps near Kut, infantry from advanced 
trenches north of Nasiriyeh, and immense cavalry detachments sweep- 
ing out to the northeast and southwest of the valley of the combined 

The Turks were not ready for any such all-embracing plan and 
on February 28, 1917, Kut-el-Amara was occupied; on March 5, Lajij 
fell; on March 7, the Turks, supported by a couple of German regi- 
ments, stiffened on the Diala River, eight miles from Bagdad. Sud- 
denly, upon them fell swarms of cavalry, 4nd, a few hours later, light 
artillery. On March 11, Bagdad fell, and it was semi-officially an- 
nounced that two-thirds of the Turkish guns had either been captured 
or thrown into the Tigris. 

General Maude's Bagdad Proclamation. 

Whereupon, General Maude, in a proclamation which for dignity 
the greatness of speech deserves to be quoted in its entirety, pro- 
claimed that the British came to free the Arabs from the Turks that 
they "should prosper even as in the past, when your lands werfj 
fertile, when your ancestors gave to the world literature, science and 
art, and when the City of Bagdad was one of the wonders of tne 
world. . . . You are not to understand that it is the wish of the 
British government to impose on you alien institutions . . . but 
institutions of your own which are in consonance with your sacred 
laws and your racial ideals. . . ." At the same time, Persia was 
also brought under British domination. 

The summer of 1917 saw the steady strengthening of the British 
lines. The Russian Armies of the Caucasus, now reduced to the Kuban 
and Terek Cossacks and native Caucasians, all hereditary enemies of 
the Turks, succeeded in holding fast their defenses, possessing vast 
supplies of stores at Trebizond, Erzerum and Bitlis. Without mili- 
tary leadership, however, they could not advance. The chief value of 
the Caucasus Army lay in protecting the right flank of the British 
advance. Thus strengthened. General Maude annihilated the Eigh- 
teenth Turkish Army Corps near Samara on April 18, and the Thir- 
teenth Corps on April 30, in the Jebel Hamrin Hills. Thus Mosul was 


menaced when summer heat temporarily closed the campaign. It re- 
opened on September 29, when Ramadie, on the Euphrates, was cap- 
tured and another Turkish Army destroyed. Two months later Gen- 
eral Maude died of cholera. 

The next spring campaign was complicated by the Russian failure. 
The Turks marched north and retook all the territory seized by Rus- 
sia, even occupying the Russian port of Batum. None the less, on 
March 10, 1918, the British entered Hit, and, on March 28, the Turkish 
Army at Hit was wiped out. Before the resumption of the autumn 
campaign in Mesopotamia, Turkey was on her last legs and Germany 
was on the run. 

The third theatre of war was Syria, the Holy Land, and Egypt. 
The early part of this campaign began with the announcement of a 
Jehad, or Holy War, fomented by Germany. As, however, Moham- 
medan's the world over were well aware that the Sultan of Turkey was 
but acting as the mouthpiece of Germany, and the Kaiser was not en- 
titled to summon a Jehad, they refused to accept the call. 

Turkish Army Defeated With Heavy Losses. 

As easly as October 29, 1914, the Bedouins invaded the Sinai 
peninsula, and a small force occupied the Wells of Magdala on the 
road to the Suez Canal. This was a ''bluff," intended to keep as many 
British troops as possible tied down in Egypt, expecting a second at- 
tack. Camels were collected in thousands, and during the next three 
months a Turkish force — hardly an army — prepared to attack the Suez 
Canal. On February 1, 1915, British outpost forces met the oncoming 
Turks in three columns, one directed at Kantara, near the Nile Delta ; 
one near Ismailia, the railway junction to Cairo; and the third near 
Kubri, almost opposite to Suez. 

The Turks had counted upon a revolt in Egypt and a mutiny 
among the Indian troops. Neither occurred. On the contrary, the 
Eg\'ptians supported the English and the Indian troops fought well. 
In the three days' fighting, the British lost only 115 killed and wounded, 
while the Turkish losses were over 3,000. A third attempt was made 
by the Turks, on August 4, 1915, a division strong, but in the open 
terrain, machine-gun and rifle-fire was deadly, and more than half the 
Turkish Army was struck down almost without reply. 

The winter of 1916 saw the relief of Kut-el-Amara, and the fol- 


lowing March, 1917, witnessed the fall of Bagdad. Mesopotamia thus 
disposed of, Great Britain was willing to take up the Egypt-Syria cam- 
paign, and in June, 1917, General Allenby, a cavalry leader, was sent 
to take command. 

By this time a very powerful German-Turkish front had been 
established from Gaza, on the Mediterranean Sea, to Beersheba. Rail- 
way extensions had been built to support this line and good highways 
built behind it. Gaza was entrenched with all the science born from 
German experience in modern war. The difficulties of transport from 
Egypt to this defensive line lay with the English, just as in former 
engagements in this section, the barrier of the desert had been the 
chief difficulty of the Turks. 

General Allenby Enters Jerusalem. 

On October 27, 1917, the Gaza defenses were bombarded from land, 
and by long-range naval guns from the sea, British and French battle- 
ships operating in unison. On October 31, the first infantry attack 
was made on the outer defenses surrounding Beersheba. The resist- 
ance was very stubborn, but the British and Indians took trench after 
trench, although with serious losses. On November 7, under the heavy 
artillery of land and naval guns combined, the garrison at Gaza found 
it could no longer hold out. The city was evacuated and the British 
entered the same day. On the 7th also, the centre of the Turkish de- 
fense line was broken by grenade and bayonet charges, and the British 
reached Tel el Sheria. Hebron was taken November 10. A stand was 
made on November 13 at Junction station, the main railway point of 
Palestine, due east of Jerusalem, but, although the going was sandy 
and difficult, good artillery handling not only brought the field guns 
through, but even two batteries of the ''heavies" as well. The trans- 
port handling across the desert was marvelous. Junction station 
was occupied on November 14, and Joppa, on the seacoast, two days 
later. This cut the Turkish Army in two, without communications. 

On the other side of Jerusalem, the Turks resisted stoutly, driv- 
ing the English back, and on November 21, the British suffered a 
"serious reverse. General Allenby, however, had handled his cavalry 
in such a way that the Turks did not dare follow up their advantage, 
and he had forced the two Turkish Armies into a double-pointed angle 
which hampered every move they tried to make. 


Tlie British commander, instead of trying to force the pursuit to 
the east, halted until all the positions taken had been thoroughly con- 
solidated, until supplies had been renewed and his men and horses 
thoroughly rested, and then closed in on the roads controlling Jerusa- 
lem. On December 10 the British had isolated Jerusalem, and though 
there was firing from the outskirts of the city, not a shot was fired 
in return. Finally, on December 11, 1917, General AUenby made his 
entrance into Jerusalem. 

Thenceforward the conquest went forward with a steady and care- 
ful swiftness which was the result of combined cavalry dashes and 
infantry consolidation. On February 21, 1918, Jericho fell, and by 
April 1, the British armies prepared to advance on Aleppo. On Sep- 
tember 19, General Allenby renewed the campaign, breaking the whole 
Turkish line along a front of sixteen miles. Acting with the Hejaz 
Arabs as allies, the Turkish Army between the Jordan and the Medi- 
terranean was annihilated on September 22, and on September 26 
British cavalry reached the Sea of Galilee and occupied Tiberias. 

The culminating point of the campaign arrived with the capture 
of Damascus on October 1, 1918. This, with the landing of French 
troops at Beirut, enabled the completion of the Aleppo movenient, and 
that main point on the Constantinople-Bagdad Railroad was seized on 
October 26. Meantime, the Mesopotamian Army was marching on 
Mosul, and its fall could not be averted. 

With Bagdad, Mosul, Allepo and Damascus in Allied hands, with 
Bulgaria collapsed, Austria tottering and Germany retreating, Turkey's 
doom was sealed. On October 31 she surrendered. 



The Attack on Tslng-Tao-^apture of Kiao'Chau^German Prestige In the Oilent Lost at One Blow- 
Conquest of Solomon, Caroline and Marshall Islands— The Surrender of German New Guinea— No 
Teuton Naval Base Left in the Pacific. 

THERE was no uncertainty as to what side Japan would take in 
the world war, and no hesitation in declaring it. The Anglo- 
Japanese Alliance of 1905 provided for the maintenance of peace in 
Eastern Asia, and the preservation of the various "spheres of influ- 
ence" held by the great powers in China, through the preservation 
of the integrity of the Chinese Empire. On August 15, 1914, Japan 
sent Germany an ultimatum demanding the immediate withdrawal or 
disarmament of all G^erman warcraft in eastern seas, and the rendering 
up to JapaUj by September 15, the entire leased territory of Kiao- 
ChaU "with a view to the eventual restoration of the same to China." 
Germany returned no answer, and at the expiration of the time set 
in the ultimatum, on August 23, 1914, Japan declared war. 

Tsing-Tao, at the opening of the war, was a strongly fortified 
naval base, a city of 58,000, entirely Chinese and German. The mili- 
tary force in Tsing-Tao at the time of the Japanese declaration of 
war was but 5,000 men. Japan had a peace strength of 250,000 men 
and a war strength of 1,500,000. Also, the Japanese Navy was vastly 
larger than the German fleets in eastern waters. The day before the 
declaration of war, a fleet of a dozen first-class warships set out 
from Japan with transports carrying land forces of 22,980 officers and 

The bombardment of the five great forts around Tsing-Tao began 
on August 26 and by September 1 Japanese blue-iackets and marines oc- 
cupied several small islands in the bay. The first landing on Shan-tung 
Peninsula was made September 2, 10,000 troops being put ashore. 
This was not so mudi with the intent of direct attack as for the occu- 
pation of the leased territory. By September 13 the Japanese had 



taken Kiao-Chau, twenty-two miles inland from Tsing-Tao. China 
protested, but Japan replied that the railway was a German concession, 
o\vned and operated by Germans. Torrential rains flooded all the 
streams and prevented the Japanese from definite land advance. On 
September 23 a small British force arrived from Wei-hai-wei. 

The siege in proper, or rather the fighting therein, began on Sep- 
tember 26, 1914, the English joined in on September 28 and by Sep- 
tember 30 the outer fortifications were taken and Tsing-Tao was com- 
pletely surrounded. A direct assault upon the city was made, but was 
\dgorously repulsed. The Japanese commander, realizing that he could 
spare all the time necessary, made no second attack, but waited for his 
heavy artillery to advance, meanwhile settling his men down to strong 
defensive trenches. 

German Possessions in the Pacific Captured. 

During October mine-sweeping operations cleared Tsing-Tao har- 
bor, so that the big British and Japanese battleships could stand in. 
The garrison refused to surrender, and on October 31 there began a 
concerted bombardment from the ships and from the Japanese heavy 
artillery, which had taken up strong positions commanding the city and 
which had secured the exact ranges. Every defensive and protective 
structure was smashed into flinders by the weight of metal. There 
was no need to waste lives, the artillery was all-sufficient. The Japanese 
waited until November 6 for their first assault. All positions were 
taken with ease. The grand assault, set for November 7, was equally 
facile, and Tsing-Tao fell on November 7, 1914, with total Allied casu- 
alties of less than 2,000 men. 

There were several other important German naval bases and 
cable stations in the Pacific to be captured, however, and in this work 
the Australian and New Zealand ships of the British Navy took a 
leading part. German Samoa was the first point attacked by these 
forces. On August 15, 1914, an expedition sailed from New Zealand. 
As there were a couple of German battle cruisers known to be in those 
waters, the expedition steamed first for French New Caledonia, where 
three light British cruisers were waiting. On August 23 this fleet, 
now of considerable size, for a French battle cruiser and two Australian 
cruisers had joined it, reached Apia, on Upolu Island, off Samoa. New- 
Zealand Marines were sent ashore, but there was no resistance. 


*' Samoa proved a walk-over," wrote a correspondent to the Syd- 
ney Bulletin; "not a gun, not a ship, not a mine. A bunoh of school- 
boys with Shanghais and a hatful of rocks could have taken it. The 
German fleet that was supposed to be awaiting us hadn't been around 
for eleven months. Seemingly the German fleet has gone into the 
business of not being around ! " This was a trifle unjust, for that same 
German fleet gave a very good account of itself, as will be told in a 
later chapter. 

Germansr's Colonial Aspirations in the Pacific Defeated. 

The Caroline Islands were first taken by Japan, but were turned 
over to New Zealand forces in September, 1914. The next important 
point to be attacked was German New Guinea and Bismarck Archi- 
pelago, together comprising an area of nearly 90,000 square miles, 
almost half the size of Germany. The Australian Naval Reserve cap- 
tured the wireless station at Herbertshohe in New Pomerania on Sep- 
tember 12, 1914, after eighteen hours' bush fighting over a terrain of 
six miles. An Australian naval force, landing in German New Guinea, 
found much more vigorous resistance. The Australian Expeditionary 
Force decided to land the artillery. On September 13, however, Rahaul, 
the capital of German New Guinea, surrendered. Another party at 
Bougainville, in the Solomon Islands, took that point and captured 
there the governor of New Pomerania, who had fled thither. During 
October the wireless stations on the island of Yap and on Pleasant 
Island were taken over by British colonial expeditionary forces. The 
Marshall and Solomon Islands were likewise occupied on December 9, 
thus winding up the last of Germany's colonial possessions in the 

The importance of these apparently minor conquests is out of 
all relation to their size. Modern warfare must necessarily be con- 
nected with modern commerce. It is universally known that Germany's 
great desire was to extend her colonies. Colonial empire requires a 
navy. Modern warships — not being like sailing vessels — require large 
stores of coal or oil. No battleship can carry fuel for distant voyages. 
Therefore it is necessary to have coaling stations scattered all over 
the Seven Seas. Moreover, oceans are treacherous, and storms are 
beyond the mastery of man. Therefore it is necessary to have repair 
stations at naval bases all over the world. 


Furthermore, in times of war, the movements of fleets can only be 
regulated by movements of other fleets and by advices from home, 
therefore it is necessary to have wireless stations all over the world. 
A powerful German Navy without naval bases would rust itself away 
in impotent rage. Without fuel for its engines, without food and 
.water for the men, without the means of dry-docking, and without 
wireless communication, it would be helpless. 

With German hostility thus turned inveterately against Australia 
and New Zealand, it is not surprising that the Parliaments of both 
colonies should have gone on record as declaring that the Pacific colo- 
nies of Germany should never be allowed to return to German hands. 
The German islands in the Pacific had an aggregate area of territoiy 
reaching 96,000 square miles, about the same size as England, Scotland 
and Wales. Their population was about three-quarters of a million. 
The exports were valued at over $22,250,000 annually, Kiao-Chau and 
Samoa being the most productive and valuable. 

There was German retaliation, of course, such as the attack on 
Tahiti, but all these were purely naval matters and will be treated 
in later chapters. "What is above all things important to remember is 
that English and Japanese landing parties, both in the nature of 
expeditionary forces, put an end to Germany's colonial aspirations in 
the Pacific within four months of the first declaration of war. 



Campaigns in Togoland, Kamerun, and German East Africa— Rebellion in South Africa and the Campaign 
in German Southwest Africa— Teuton Barbarities in Her Colonies>— Naval War 2,000 Miles From the 
Ocean— Boer Generals and Troops in the Dark Continent. 

TriE German possessions in Africa, as a natural procedure, became 
points of attack upon the opening of the world war. There were 
four of these colonies: Togoland, a country the size of Ireland, with 
1,000,000 population, lying between the British colony of the Gold Coast 
and the French colony of Dahomey; Kamerun, a country almost as 
large as Germany, lying between the British colony of Nigeria and 
the French colony of French Congo, with a population of 2,750,000; 
German Southwest Africa, half as large again as Germany, lying be- 
tween the Portuguese colony of Angola and the British colony of Cape 
Colony, its whole inland border confronting the British protectorate 
of Bechuanaland, with the small population of less than 100,000; and 
German East Africa, almost twice as large as Germany, lying between 
Portuguese East Africa and British East Africa, its hinterland facing 
the Belgian Congo, with a population of 7,750,000. All these colonies 
were of very recent annexation, mostly dating from 1884. 

These colonies, since Germany was unable to protect them navally 
because of England's mastery of the seas, were open to land attack 
from the first. The various African campaigns, therefore, can be 
treated in four parts: the campaign in Togoland; the campaign for 
Kamerun; the campaign in German Southwest Africa, prefaced by the 
rebellion which was fomented in British South Africa; and the long 
and arduous campaign, almost worthy of being named a war, which was 
waged in German East Africa. To a far larger extent than was 
realized, the battles in Belgium, in France, in Serbia and in Poland, 
were battles waged for the winning of stakes in Africa and Asia. 
Had Germany been victorious, not only would the Allies have been 
forced to give up their gains, but, probably, Germany would have 



demanded enormous tracts of territory that had been held by the AlUed 

nations. - ■, - o j r\ 

The campaign in Togoland may be dismissed m a tew words. Un 
August 8, 1914, a British cruiser appeared off the port of Lome, the 
capital of Togoland, cleared for action, and pointed her guns at the 
town. Lome surrendered without firing a shot. The main German 
wireless station was at Kamina near Atakpame, some hundred or more 
miles inland, on high ground, where the climate was less deadly, and 
to this point the German garrisons at Lome retired. A British force 
invaded Togoland from the west, a French force from the east, on 
August 8 and 9. Having occupied all southern Togoland, the Allies 
marcned north and attacked the Kamina wireless station on August 25, 
driving the enemy from his intrenchments at once. On August 26 
Atakpame was taken and the Germans surrendered unconditionally. 
The Germans had counted on the natives taking up arms against 
the British. On the contrary, the natives hailed the Allies as their 

The British Repulsed in the Kamerun. 

The Germans were outnumbered almost to the same extent in the 
Kamerun, but this proved a much tougher nut to crack. England, 
starting operations with too small a force, got a sharp whipping at 
the beginning. On August 8 a British detachment left Kano, in the 
centre of Nigeria, and, after a seventeen days' march, reached Tepe, 
a Kamerun frontier station. A sharp engagement followed and the 
Germans fell back. On August 29 the British reached the station of 
Garua, on the Benue River, the main fortified point of the hinterland, 
and attacked in force on August 31. A murderous machine gun fire 
met them and the native troops fled. The British officers retired to 
the trenches and there 21 out of 31 officers were killed, including the 
lieutenant-colonel in command. The remainder of the British and 
natives fled. 

A second British expedition, which attacked the Germans at Nsana- 
kong, fared no better and had to escape through the bush. A coast 
expedition succeeded in securing a foothold at Archbong, August 29, 
1914, and the day after a German force successfully invaded Nigeria 
at Okuri. The first British attempt to take Kamerun by land had 
proved a dismal and utter failure. 

The next attempt was by sea. After considerable mine sweeping, 


the British cleared the channel to Duala, the capital of Kamerun. 
Under the cover of naval guns, the town surrendered and troops 
landed and took possession. The French seized one or two smaller 
ports on the coast. It took the Allies until October 26 to reach 
Mujuka, fifty miles in the interior. Buea, to which the German gov- 
ernment had retired, was taken early in November, and in December 
the railway line fell into Allied hands. The German seat of govern- 
ment was then transferred to Yaunde, a point arduous of access and 


So extraordinarily difficult was this country that the Allies could 
never have conducted military operations there had it not been for 
the aid of the natives, who hated their German masters. Sharp fight- 
ing, though on a very small plan, was continuous and finally, on May 
31, the British were ready to renew their attack on the important hin- 
terland point of Garua. The forts fell on June 10, 1915. 

Germany's Plans for a Rebellion in South Africa. 

Meantime the French were steadily pushing on toward Yaunde, the 
new capital, reaching the outer defenses on August 11. General Dobell, 
in charge of the campaign, was not able to take the strong point, but 
intrenched solidly, awaiting junction with the other Allied columns, 
mainly British, which had been operating at Garua and Mount Banyo. 
The German forces, seeing that they were almost surrounded, escaped 
to the tiny stretch of territory known as the Spanish Congo, where 
they were interned by the Spanish authorities. On February 18, 1916, 
the German garrison at Mora, in the extreme north, capitulated, com- 
pleting the conquest of Kamerun. The colony was put under the direc- 
tion of French authorities for the duration of the war. 

The conquest of German Southwest Africa was a very different 
matter. Grave political questions entered into its case. It will facili- 
tate an understanding of the difficulties in German Southwest Africa 
if Germany's plans to create a rebellion in South Africa be made 
clear, for they came near to success. The tale has a romantic flavor, 
even though it is found in the supposedly dry-as-dust pages of the 
official South Africa **Blue Book." 

This sober historic document deals with the- visions, prophecies 
and dreams of one Niklaas van Rensburg who, several years ago, ac- 
cording to the report, "had beheld the number 15 on a dark cloud from 


which blood issued, and then saw General de la Rey returning home 
without his hat. Immediately afterward came a carriage covered 
with flowers." This General de la Rey, so curiously envisioned by 
"The Prophet of Lichtonburg, " had commanded the Lichtenburg burg- 
hers in the Boer War and thereafter had become President of the 
Western Transvaal Farmers ' Association and the strongest man in the 
country. Pro-Dutch and pro-German farmers of the Transvaal, when 
the world war opened, saw a supposed fulfilment of the prophecy, 
realized a possible chance of revenge on England for the Boer War 
and 'counted on General de la Rey to lead a rebellion against British 
interests in the Union of South Africa. 

General Louis Botha, a former Boer leader, and President of 
the South African Union (it is notable that the British Empire had 
a Boer as President of one of its largest colonies), sent for General 
de la Rey a few days before the meeting scheduled for August 15, the 
day of prophecy, and urged him to allay the excitement. The day 
came. Everything was ready for rebellion. All expected de la Rey to 
break out into a speech of flaming nationalism. Instead, the Western 
Transvaal leader urged prudence and advised his followers to await 
the turn of events in Europe. Stupefied by this action, the Afrikan- 
ders allowed a resolution to be put through endorsing the government 
of the Union of South Africa. 

Conspiracy for Aiding German Ends. 

There were two other leaders, however, who were only using the 
"prophet" as a means for aiding German ends. These were General 
Beyers and Colonel Maritz. They had received German promises that, 
in the event of a successful revolt and when Germany was victorious, 
the Free State and the Transvaal should be restored to independence. 
Accordingly, Beyers and Maritz stirred up the people by a false report 
that "the prophet" had declared that September 15, not Augnist 15, 
was the date di^-inely set. 

The place chosen by Beyers and Maritz for the outbreak of the 
rebellion was Potchefstroom. Over l,fiOO armed men were in readi- 
ness. "There was an attempt to line up the prophet for theatric 
effect." remarks the official report with unaccustomed ^dvidness of 
sppeeh, "but. unfortunately for them, however, the seer declined to 


leave his home, saying that *it was not yet clear to him that that was 
his path.' " 

The signal for the revolt was to be the arrival of General Beyers 
and General de la Rey in the Potchefstroom camp. Beyers arrived on 
time, but on the appointed day, General de la Rey was only as far as 
Johannesburg. General Beyers, in a high-powered motor car, weiit to 
Johannesburg to fetch the leader. 

The rest of the story reads like a dime novel, only it happens to 
be true. That very day, as it chanced, a police cordon had been thrown 
around the city to try to trap three notorious desperadoes, known as the 
*' Foster Gang," who had been operating in Johannesburg and who were 
known to have seized a powerful car. The police were instructed to stop 
all cars, especially any containing three men. 

The Rebellion in Full Force. 

As Beyers' car with the chauffeur and two generals whizzed out 
of town, it was twice challenged by the police and ordered to stop. 
But neither de la Rey, who had arrived that afternoon, nor Beyers, 
who had arrived ten minutes before, knew anything about the "Foster 
Gang." They thought this summons to stop on the part of the police 
was an evidence that the British authorities had wind of their plan, 
and they ordered the chauffeur to put on full speed. When the car 
reached the outer cordon and refused to stop at a third policeman's 
summons, he tired at the wheels of the car. The bullet ricochetted and 
killed de la Rey. 

Nothing more dramatic could have occurred. It was the "15th," 
there was "a dark cloud from which blood issued," General de la Rey 
did "return without his hat" and the "carriage of floWers" was the 
funeral cortege. The report ran like wildfire that General de la Rey 
had been assassinated by the orders of the British Government. The 
"prophet" was curiously justified in every point. Since he had further 
declared that Botha would offer no resistance and that the revolution 
would be bloodless, thousands of burghers joined the cause of Beyers 
and Maritz overnight. The rebellion was on. 

The result of treachery soon showed itself. On September 26 
Colonel Grant and a small force of African Rifles and Transvaal Horse 
Artillery were trapped by two German battalions while on their way 
to a water hole. All the gun crews were wiped out before the little 

14— W. L. 


band surrendered, and it became known that Maritz had given the 
Germans the information which led to this disaster. General Smuts, 
Minister of Defense, ordered Maritz to give up his command. Maritz 
refused and sent an arrogant reply to the effect that he had made an 
alliance with Germany, which had ceded parts of the British territory 
(Whale Bay) to the South African Republic. General Botha replied 
by proclaiming martial law all through the Union on October 12, 1914. 
By the beginning of November the situation was made much worse 
by the formation of a strong though ill-organized force under General 
de Wet, one of the famous guerrilla leaders of the Boer War and an 
old rival of Botha. He was an excellent fighter and a man of enormous 
popularity, but he possessed neither organization nor discipline. Yet, 
by November 5, there were 10,000 men under arms following either 
Beyers, Maritz or de Wet. These were in separate commands, await- 
ing heavy Teuton reenforcements from German Southwest Africa. 
There was more than a little suspicion that Holland had shown herself 
kindly disposed to the rebels. 

The German-Made Rebellion Finally Put Down, 

Generals Botha and Smuts found the mass of the Boers loyal, 
none the less, and soon had 40,000 men in the field, disciplined troops 
with full equipment. Notwithstanding, the situation was delicate. It 
would scarcely do to force the Boers to fight against their owm kinsmen 
on behalf of the British. Botha abstained from forcing engagements, 
using his Boer troops mainly for the purpose of harrying the rebols, 
stopping their supplies and making life miserable for them generally, 
while, when any small armed clash was inevitable, he sent forward Brit- 
ish detachments. 

A battle of some importance was fought at Marquard, near Win- 
burg, when General Botha defeated de Wet with heavy losses. Of the 
2,000 men who had made a stand at Marquard it was reported that only 
28 men crossed the Vaal River, the rest either were killed, wounded, 
taken prisoner or dispersed. Pursuit was close, however, and on 
December 1, 1914, General de Wet was captured and imprisoned for 
high treason. General Beyers was trapped on the Vaal River and 
tried to s^vim on horseback across under fire. He was seen to fall, but 
was drowned before any one could come to the rescue. The last sally 
made by the rebels was on January 24, 1915, under Maritz. They 


were sternly repulsed and Maritz fled to German territory, where he 
was captured later. On February 3, 1915, the rest of the rebels sur- 
rendered, including ''the prophet of Lichtenburg. " The German-made 
rebellion in South Africa was over. 

The conquest of Southwest Africa was not so much a British vic- 
tory as a Boer victory. General Botha and General Smuts had prin- 
cipal charge of the campaign, Botha operating from the coast at Swakop- 
mund, which was the port of Windhoek, the capital, and Smuts 
operating from the southern frontier. A small British army struck in 
from Ijuderitz Bay, and a second small Boer Army attacked along the 
Nababas Railroad. The difficulties of the campaign were immense, not 
because of German opposition but because of the difficulty of the coun- 
try. The heat was terrific and the Germans, retreating, poisoned most 
of the wells. Botha's handling of transport, due largely to his thor- 
ough understanding of African conditions, was little short of miracu- 
lous. The total casualties for five months were under 2,000, including 
the men invalided home. 

The War in. German East Africa. 

Details of the campaign are not important. Botha advanced 
very slowly on Windhoek, making the most elaborate precautions 
against counter-attack. A few were tried, but the old general 
was never caught napping. He took two months to clear away both 
lines of railroad. On April 17 General Smuts made a junction with 
the Second Army under Colonel Van der Venter at Kalkfontein. On 
April 24 the British under General Mackenzie reached the railroad at 
Aritetis, thus making a junction with Smuts' armies. By May 5 the 
combined British and Boer Armies reached Windhoek from the south, 
ready to join Botha, who was comfortably intrenched on the north 
and west. On May 10 Windhoek announced itself ready to surrender 
and on May 12 British and Boer forces entered the capital. The next 
six weeks were spent in chasing the remaining German troops from 
one place to another and on July 9, 1915, Dr. Seitz, the German gov 
ernor, capitulated to Botha and Colonel Francke. It was a well-man- 
aged campaign, but a wholly one-sided affair. The Germans did not 
have a chance. 

The campaign, or rather the war, in German East Africa was more 
serious, more difficult and more prolonged. Moreover, it was exceed- 


ingly picturesque, giving rise to conditions of warfare such as had 
never been seen in the world before. To attempt to give the intricate 
topography of that huge country of German East Africa, and the 
details of the campaigns, would be out of proportion to their interest. 
A brief record will sufl&ce. 

The war opened with a vigorous effort on the part of the Germans 
to invade British East Africa and seize Mombasa, now a railroad ter- 
minus, but famous in history as that most woeful town in the world, 
which for decades had been the end of the Great Slave Road running 
from the interior of Africa, which had been beaten hard by countless 
naked feet trampling the blood-drenched earth. The army attacked 
in force, but was repulsed by a handful of British. In the end of 
October and November, 1914, the British having gained reenforcements 
from India, counter-attacked and seized the port of Jassin, from which, 
however, they were ousted by a large German force later. In the 
spring of 1915 there was heavy fighting around the shores of Lake 
Victoria Nyanza, in which, on the whole, the British gained distinct but 
not overpowering advantages. 

Boer War Generals Faithful to England. 

In that land of sleeping sickness and the tsetse fly, where malig- 
nant fevers of a dozen sorts abound, where the water seems to be espe- 
cially designed to sicken white troops, the principal difficulty found 
both by the German and the British lay in keeping the soldiers in 
half-way fit condition. It was largely because of this, and in recogni- 
tion of his splendid work in German Southwest Africa, that General 
Smuts, later in the year, was put in supreme command of all the forces 
operating in German East Africa. It was an outstanding monument 
to England's colonial policy that less than two decades after the Boer 
War she should be able to entrust her armies to the generals who had 
been the leaders of her foes. 

General Smuts, more accustomed to African climates and condi- 
tions, began to put matters in motion without delay. He adopted the 
same tactics as those which had proved so valuable on the other side of 
the continent, pressing forward slowly from all frontiers, isolating the 
enemy in the centre and cutting him off from all possible points of 
supply. In this work, the Belgians (from the Belgian Congo to the 
west), and the Portuguese (from Portuguese East Africa to the south), 


co-operated with the Boer and British troops working from the east 
and north. 

By the beginning of June, 1916, the Belgians had reached the 
southern point of Lake Victoria Nyanza, thus capturing the whole 
Ruanda section, the G-erman strongholds south of Tanganyika had been 
carried by the British, and the Boers and British had crossed the 
Kilimanjaro Range. Germany was fighting hard and cleverly, but 
both sides waged a cautious war, knowing the deadly effect of too 
great exertion in that climate and realizing that waste of ammuni- 
tion would be fatal, owing to the unprecedented difficulties of transport. 

General Smuts laid especial stress on the capture of the Usumbara 
Railroad running south from Mt. Kilimanjaro. Under General Van 
der Venter, this railroad was carried in two months' steady fighting 
and, after a most brilliant march across the famous Masai steppe, he 
came close to the Central Railroad, the goal of all the enclosing in- 
vasions. There was a three-day battle. May 9-11, 1916, with the main 
German Army, but General von Lettow-Vorbeck was forced back, fight- 
ing vigorously. The Boers marched on doggedly, pursuing the Ger- 
mans by forced marches, and caught them at last on the Central Rail- 
way, which was straddled at Dodoma Station on July 29. Thenoe 
General Van der Venter, operating under General Smuts, drove east to 
Mpwapwa, defeating the enemy anew. 

The End of German East Africa. 

A glance at the map will show the importance of this, for, with the 
British fleet at Dar-es-Salaam, the ocean terminus of the railroad, 
and General Van der Venter at Mpwapwa, supplies could be sent both 
ways, the road cleared and a line of transport established to the centre 
of the hostile country. It was essential, however, to occupy Dar-es- 
Salaam, which was captured from the land side on September 4, 1916. 
One should not forget, also, the picturesque hauling of small motor 
boats, fitted with guns, half across Africa, for ''naval battles" on the 
^^ictoria Nyanza, more than a thousand miles inland. 

The beginning of the end came when on August 26, 1916, the forces 
of General Smuts entered Mrogoro, the seat of the German Provisional 
Government, and the few remaining German officials fled to the "Hunger 
(^ountry," between the Ruaha and the Ruhnje Rivers. A swift pur- 
suit in the Uluguru Hills cost the fleeing Germans nearly all their 


artillery, but they broke away to the southeast. The Germans had 
no longer any hope of saving the colony, they only hoped to find some 
comer where they could intrench and defend themselves in the expecta- 
tion that the Germans would enter Paris and that they could declare 
that German East Africa had not been conquered. 

For more than a year they. defied forces of twenty times their 
number. The Boers marched south from the Central Railroad, the 
British struck westward from the sea at Kilwa Kivinji and the Portu- 
guese struck northward across the Ru\Tima River. Yet the fragments 
of the German armies hid in the guUies of totally unexposed mountains, 
and lived as outlaws on the game of the country. The man-hunt became 
an epic. Not until December 1, 1917, was the official announcement 
made of the final conquest of German East Africa and the last inch 
of Germany's colonies was gone. The Hun's hand was lifted from the 
Dark Continent, made darker wherever it had pressed, and the flags of 
the Allies rose triumphant (save for a few small black independencies) 
from Cairo to the Cape, from the western to the eastern seas. 



Great Britain Blockades Germany on the First Day— Submarine Mines and Mine-Sweepers— Affair of 
Helgoland Bight— German Sea-Power Becomes a Mockery— Bombarding Inoffensive Villages— The 
Battle of Jutland— The Plugging of Zeebrugge— Shameful Surrender of Fleet. 

ON the day that the world war broke out, August 4, 1914, German 
sea:power was destroyed. It needed not the firing of a shot. The 
British Na^^y closed the North Sea to the Germans so swiftly, so 
efficiently, and with such a terrible preponderance of power that the 
Kaiser's great battleships were doomed to rust in the Kiel Canal until 
their shameful surrender at the end of the war. Once and for all, Eng- 
land showed that her title to ''Mistress of the Seas" was absolute and 

Three principal factors entered into this crushing but silent defeat. 
The first was ships, the second was position, the third was men. Ship 
for ship and gun for gun, the British Navy alone, without her Allies, 
could have blown the combined navies of the Central Powers off the 
map, with the greatest ease. So far as position was concerned, she had 
all her home fleets in the North Sea and could compel the Germans to 
fight the question out in those narrow waters. So far as men were con- 
cerned, the British Navy was unlike an}i:hing else on earth ; it was not a 
service, it was a religion, and officers and men were devotees. Besides 
which, the British Nav^^ was made up of seamen, most of whom had 
spent their whole lives in the Navy, not of civilians who had taken a 
three or four years ' course on a battleship. 

Take the question of ships, first. England always maintained the 
theory of the two-power nav;^^, just as Germany sought to maintain the 
two-power army standard. In other words, Britain at sea and Germany 
on land sought to have naval and military forces, respectively, larger 
than those of any other two European powers. At the same time, in 
naval matters, even more than in military questions, it is not number 
which determines strength, but power. A few years renders an old bat- 



tleship obsolete, not because she is worn out, but because later craft 
have more speed, heavier armor and more powerful guns. 

This can be reduced to simple terms. A ship which possesses both 
greater speed and heavier guns than her adversary, can pound that 
adversary to pieces at leisure and without a particle of danger. She 
can steam continuously just out of reach of the enemy's guns and land 
shell after shell upon the foe. The weaker guns of her foe cannot reach 
her, the lower speed of her foe will not permit the older vessel to close 
up to a range where the lighter guns will carry. Thus a Super-Dread- 
nought can make hay of a Dreadnought. 

Germany did not begin to have a Navy until the Naval Armament 
Law was passed in the Reichstag in 1901. Thereafter she built quickly. 
But — and this is a very large "but" — Gei*many could only build ships 
after the British pattern. At best, even with her spies in the naval 
dockyards, she was therefore about two years behind England, for she 
could not learn the plans of new developments until England had worked 
them out. The most notable example of this was the Dreadnought, the 
famous ship which revolutionized all modern naval warfare, and the 
principle of which, in the two great sea battles of the world war, showed 
that England 's judgment had been sound. 

Germany Imitates Great Britain's Navy. 

The essential principle of the Dreadnought, launched in 1906, was 
that of the all-big-gun-ship. British naval builders argued that second- 
ary batteries (batteries of lighter guns) were unnecessary on a battle- 
ship. If all the weight were given to heavy g-uns, in turrets, she would 
either sink her enemy or have been sunk by the heavy guns of her 
enemy before the secondary battery could be brought into play. 

A battleship did not fight as a unit. The fleet was the unit. There- 
fore a battleship 's lighter guns should be mounted on lighter ships. This 
secret was so well kept (the Dreadnought was known as the "mystery 
ship") that it was not till she was actually in commission that the Ger- 
mans learned about her. They at once commenced to imitate the plan, 
but they were three years behind. At the opening of the war they were 
still three years behind, and when the first ship of the Queen Elizabeth 
was launched they were four years behind. The ships that England 
launched during the war were heavy enough to demolish the German 
Navy in themselves, without considering the rest of the fleet. 


"When the war broke out, England had twenty-two Dreadnoughts 
and super-Dreadnoughts against Germany's sixteen. All were in home 
waters. In super-battle-cruisers, England had nine and Germany 
three, but four of the British ships were in foreign waters, and one 
German vessel was abroad, leaving the North Sea fleet five battle- 
cruisers to two. In super-ships, then, the proportion was 27 to 18. 
Three of the German ships, the Konig, the Grosser Kurfiirst and the 
Markgraf carried ten 12-inch guns, a great deal weaker than the 13.5- 
inch of the British Iron Duke class, but half a knot faster. During 
the war, England put five ships of the Queen Elizabeth class in the 
water, all with 15-inch guns. These latter ships had a speed of 25 
knots against the 23 knots of Germany's heaviest ships. Thus the 
British Navy, at any time in the war, could outnumber, outrange, and 
outrun the German fleet. Germany could neither afford to fight nor 
run away. 

The British Naval Fleet's Great Advantages. 

Under these circumstances, Germany's only chance would be naval 
strategy. She would have to put the British Navy in a battle-line for 
bad manoeuvring. This she could not do, because England had the 
advantage of position. The North Sea is small, and there are only 
two ways out of it, one to the north, between Scotland and Norway, 
the other, through the Straits of Dover, between England and France. 
The distance between the Orkney Islands and Norway is only 300 miles 
across, the distance between the French and English coasts is only 21 
miles across. This left Germany only three alternatives: (1) to fight 
a general engagement in the North Sea; (2) to break out to the north; 
(3) to break out to the south. 

Considering the efforts to break out, first. A couple of days be- 
fore war was actually declared, that is to say, when it had become 
sure that war could not be averted. Admiral Jellicoe had gathered at 
a naval base in the Orkneys twenty-two Dreadnoughts and super- 
Dreadnoughts, a unit in itself heavy enough to outweigh the whole 
German Navy. In the Firth of Forth Admiral Beatty had five of the 
Super-Battle Cruisers, the class known as "the Cats," together with 
the most powerful of the light-cruiser squadrons and a destroyer flo- 

The distance from the middle of the line between Scotland and 
Norway was approximately 150 miles from Jellicoe 's base, 300 miles 


from Beatty's base, and 500 miles from Helgoland, Germany's nearest 
base. If, then, the Germans started from Helgoland, Jellicoe would 
have plenty of time to cork up the outlet and give battle, and Beatty 
would have plenty of time to take the German Navy in the flank and 
rear and pound all the smaller supporting vessels of the fleet to pieces. 
If the Germans detached a part of their fleet to fight Beatty, then they 
would be even still more hopelessly outnumbered by the heavy battle- 
ships under Jellicoe. 

Consider, next, the possibility of breaking out through the Straits 
of Dover. From Helgoland to the straits is 350 miles, from the Firth 
of Forth 400 miles, and the Orkneys 500 miles. Here the Germans 
had a start, and on a foggy night they could slip down the Holland 
and Belgian coasts and get a good lead on the northern fleets. But, 
on the Other hand, in the estuary of the Thames, 25 miles from the 
straits, Great Britain had collected all her pre-Dreadnought battle- 
ships, her armored cruisers, a flotilla of modem destroyers, and the 
old torpedo-boat fleet, to say nothing of submarines. 

The Naval Policy of Great Britain. 

It is true, as has been shown, that the German Dreadnoughts, 
super-Dreadnoughts and Battle Cruisers could make hay of these old 
ships, at long ranges. But suppose Germany tried to break through 
by mass-formation, in three- or even four-column line, nothing would 
be easier than for the English to strew the sea with floating short- 
life mines, and the German ships would be targets for torpedoes that 
could hardly be missed. The Teutons could not send out destroyers as 
a shield, for destroyers are not armored, and the pre-Dreadnought 
guns would punch holes in them like a pepper-box. Being compelled 
to steam straight, because of the narrowness of the channel, the extra 
speed of the destroyer — which is its sole protection — would avail 

If, to speak of the third possibility of attack on the Straits of 
Dover, the German super-Dreadnoughts lay off at long range and com- 
menced to pound the older fleet at its leisure, the operation would take 
considerable time, twenty-four hours at the least. But Beatty's de- 
etroyor flotilla would be down in fourteen hours and his Super-Battle- 
Cruisers in twenty hours. The Germans would be attacked in the rear 
again, and long before they could dispose of Beatty's fleet, Jellicoe 


would have come up, and the Germans would be encircled by three 

This same condition prevailed in the event of the third alternative, 
namely, a Grand Fleet engagement in the North Sea. If the Germans 
could be tempted out by the bait of a few small ships, if a squadron 
could be decoyed away from its naval base, then, maybe, the whole 
fleet would issue in support, but, even in that case, a flank attack cxDuld 
also be made to cut off Germany's retreat, and if the retreat were 
definitely cut off, then aU three British fleets could sally out to send 
every German craft to Davy Jones. 

The British naval policy was of the simplest, therefore. It con- 
sisted of three things : to cork the north and south outlets of the North 
Sea, to keep a constant and heavy patrol on vigil against raids, and 
as scouts in the event of a German dash, and to control blockade- 
running to German or supposedly neutral ports with contraband of 
war. Thus Germany's only hope became the mine and the submarine. 

There were only two North Sea engagements of any consequence, 
the Battle of the Bight of Helgoland, and the Battle of Jutland Bank. 
The Battle of the Bight was simply a decoy engagement, to test the 
strength and combativeness of the enemy. 

On August 24, 1914, British submarines on scouting duty reported 
that there was a large force of GeiTaan destroyers and light cmisers 
lying at anchor under protection of the guns of the Helgoland forts. 
Jellicoe decided to see if he could decoy these out, then pounce on them 
from the rear, and inflict as much damage as possible. It was to be 
a cruiser action. 

Decoy Plan of the British Successfxil. 

A British submarine flotilla, accompanied by two destroyers, the 
Lurcher and the Fired rake, were to steam to the northwest past Hel- 
goland. If chased, they should continue to the northwest, in which 
direction lay a strong Battle-Cniiser fleet. Due west lay a squadron 
of light cmisers, with the Arethusa and the Fearless considerably in 
advance and detached from the rest of the squadron, but accompanied 
by a flotilla of destroyers. Southwest lay another squadron of light 
ci-uisers. If the decoy was successful, as soon as the British sub- 
marine flotiUa had cleared Helgoland, the Arethusa and the Fearless 
were to steam due east, thus coming in on the rear of the German 


vessels which had oome out of Helgoland Bight to chas6 the submarines. 
A ranning fight should be made northwestwards, which would decoy 
the Germans into the range of the powerful guns and speed of the 
Battle Cruisers. Should a formidable German force come out, the 
British light cruiser squadrons to the west and southwest should close 
in after the Arethusa and the Fearless. 

The affair came off exactly as planned. On August 28, 1914, the 
eight British submarines, three awash and five submerged, accom- 
panied by the destroyers Lurcher and Firedrake, steamed past the 
island fortress. A German destroyer came out and had a look, then 
wirelessed in for the rest of the flotilla. Twenty-one German destroyers 
shot out of the bay at full speed after the submarines. A German 
seaplane circled up, and, probably, saw the British cruisers in the 
distance, for, immediately after, a German squadron of light cruisers 
move^ out to sup^port its flotilla of twenty-one destroyers. 

The Battle of the Bight of Helgoland. 

The Arethusa and Fearless played their assigned part in cutting 
off the chase of the German cruiser squadron, but speedily found them- 
selves in trouble. The German cruisers Ariadne and Strassburg con- 
centrated their fire on the Arethusa and had her partly crippled, when 
the Fearless came up and drew the Strassburg 's fire. At almost the 
same time a shot from the Arethusa carried away the bridge of the 
Ariadne and killed her captain. By this time, scouting German de- 
stroyers reported other British cruisers in the vicinity, and the Ariadne 
and Strassburg sheered off to the protection of the fortress, while the 
Fearless towed the Arethusa (which was on fire, and in a bad way), 
out of the scene of action. 

Meanwhile the destroyer flotillas had not been idle. The German 
destroyer V-187 dashed straight at the British destroyers, her flotilla 
behind her, but she was unready for the weight of steel which poured 
from the decks of the British destroyers, and she went down in a 
few minutes, her guns firing until the last minute, even until her decks 
were below the water and the water began to run into the muzzles 
of the guns. During the lull in the action, which lasted for about an 
hour until ten o'clock, the British destroyers. Goshawk and Defender, 
turned around and went to pick up the German survivors of the V-187, 
who were clinging to the wreckage. The German light cruiser Mainz 


came out to chase away these destroyers, and advanced so quickly that 
the men in the boats, at the rescue work, could not get back to their 
ships. In this predicament, suddenly beside the small boats popped 
up the British submarine E-4, opened, took the men aboard, and sub- 
merged. It was like a rescue in a fairy tale. 

The next phase in the battle came as a result of wireless calls 
for assistance from the destroyers Lurcher and Firedrake, with the 
decoy submarines, who stated that they were being chased by fast 
German light cruisers. The Arethusa, having put out the fire on 
board and made some repairs, though still in a shaky state, turned 
with the Fearless to give battle again. Then, out of the mist popped 
the protected cruiser Strasshurg, and the Arethusa and Fearless sent 
wireless calls for the battle cruisers in the northwest. Meantime the 
Strasshurg inflicted still more damage on the Arethusa, but got badly 
handled herself from the guns of the Fearless and the destroyers. The 
German cruisers Koln a.nd Mainz came to the aid of the Strasshurg. 
This made things look bad for the British, when down from the north 
bore two modern light cruisers, the Falmouth and the Nottingham, and 
the Strasshurg made off towards Helgoland, badly crippled. 

Victory for the British. 

This left the German Mainz and Koln against the two new foes, 
Falmouth and Nottingham, as well as the Fearless and the almost use- 
less Arethusa. The odds were too great and a concentrated fire on 
the Mainz began to tell. Then, majestically, appeared one of the 
"C^ts," the battle cruiser Lion, and all the chance for the Mainz was 
over. Fire broke out in her hold, the machinery stopped and a tor- 
pedo promptly finished her. She sank slowly, the Germans on her 
decks in perfect discipline to the last. 

By now the Queen Mary, of the same class as the Lion, appeared 
on the scene and went after the Koln. Against the super-battle- 
cruisers, with their high speed and 13.5-inch guns, the Koln had no 
chance. She sank under the heavy shells so quickly that British small 
boats coming up to the rescue found not a man afloat. The Ariadne 
fled, but was reported to have sunk before reaching port. Aside from 
loss in destroyers, the Germans had lost the Mainz, Koln, and prob- 
ably the Ariadne, while the Strasshurg was little better than a wreck. 
The British had not lost one major ship, but the Arethusa was in al- 


most as bad a condition as the Strasshurg, and the Fearless was badly 
knocked about. In terms of naval losses, the Germans had lost two 
ships, the British none. This confirmed the German naval officers hi 
their decision to keep their fleets indoors. 

Two raids were successfully made during foggy weather on the 
English coast, Lowestoft and Yarmouth, two fishing villages, being 
bombarded on November 3, 1914 ; and' Hartlepool and Scarborough 
being bombarded on December 16, 1914. This was a purely unneces- 
sary, useless, unjustifiable attack on the civilian population, women 
and children mainly being the victims, and it gained for the Germans 
the name of * ' baby-killers. ' ' 

The third raid Avas not so successful, from the German point of 
view. This was a mixture of raid and decoy. The German fleet was 
of good size and the ships were fast, but the English had still heavier 
and faster ships, the four "Cats" and light cruisers besides. On being 
discovered, the Germans turned toward Helgoland. One German ship, 
the Blucher, was sunk, after a gallant fight, and the British flagship, 
the Lion, was crippled and towed home. The Germans had concen- 
trated all their fire on her, both because of her position and because 
the sinking of the flagship would be the greater victory. 

The Battle of Jutland Bank. 

Sometimes an admission of ignorance is strength. The writer, 
therefore, does not hesitate to admit a certain amount of ignorance 
about the Battle of Jutland Bank. There is every indication that the 
true story of the Battle of Jutland Bank will remain more or less 
confused. The reader, therefore, is asked to regard the following ac- 
count as a skeleton, since it states only those facts that are known 
and admitted by both sides. 

The Battle of Jutland Bank was fought in the afternoon and 
evening of May 31. The Grand Fleets of both sides were engaged in 
the movements of manoeuvre, though not all were in the action. The 
lead in the entire affair was taken by Admiral Beatty's Battle Cruiser 
Squadron, consisting of the four "Cats," the Lion, Princess Royal, 
Queen Mary and the Tiger. Behind Beatty were two ships of the 
Second Battle Cruiser Squadron, the Indefatigable and the New Zea- 
land. Still further astern were the four Queen Elizabeth class battle- 
ships, the Barham, Valiant, Warspite and Malaya, forming the Fifth 


Battle Cruiser Squadron, under Admiral Evan-Thomas. The main 
British Grand Fleet, under Admiral Jellicoe, lay from fifty to sixty 
miles to the north. 

At 2.30 in the afternoon light cruisers sighted the enemy, and a 
scouting seaplane returned with the news that a German battle-cruiser 
squadron was in sight, consisting of the Derfflinger, Lutzow, Moltke, 
Seydlitz and Von der Tann, under Admiral von Hipper. The opening 
of the battle was that a British Battle Cruiser Squadron of six ships 
met a German Battle Cruiser Squadron of five ships, and that the 
Germans turned south to come under the protection of their own guns, 
fighting, however, a running fight as they did so. The English Battle 
Squadron of Queen Elizabeths, having but 23 knots speed to the 25 
knots of the battle cruisers, fell behind. 

Details of the Jutland Bank Battle. 

The First Phase of the Battle of Jutland Bank was that portion 
of the engagement between the time Beatty and von Hipper sighted 
each other until the time that the two battle cruiser lines came within 
reach of the German High Seas Fleet. Firing began at 18,500 yards' 
distance at 3.48 P. M., and between the two lines of huge battle cruisers, 
thus over ten miles apart, sharp fighting began between smaller ships, 
light cruisers pounding light cruisers and destroyers stabbing at each 

The German marksmanship was of the first rank at the beginning. 
The Indefatigable, hindmost of the six battle cruisers, was struck at 
3.55, seven minutes after the action commenced, and blew up. At 4.08, 
the four Queen Elizabeth battleships, led by the Barham, which had 
saved some miles from cutting across the corner, opened fire at 21,000 
yards range. Visibility was low, however, and the shooting was bad. 
At 4.18 the Queen Mary suddenly blew up, in exactly the same manner 
as the Indefatigable. 

(The British Admiralty declined to state the cause of the disaster 
to these two ships, other than to say it was not due to a mine, a tor- 
pedo, an enemy's shell or to unstable explosives on board. Even after 
the end of the war the matter was still kept an Admiralty secret.) 

At 4.42 the German High Seas Fleet was sighted in the distance, 
and Beatty realized that he could not afford to run slap into them. 
He turned northward, hoping that von Hipper would follow him, now 


that he had made a junction with his battleships. Thiis Beatty, in his 
turn, planned to decoy the pursuing Germans into the arms of Jellicoe 
and the Grand Fleet.' So ended the First Phase. 

It is evident, then, that in this First Phase the British were 
whipped and whipped badly. At the beginning they had six battle 
cruisers to four, and before the middle of the phase they had six 
cruisers and four battleships to four cruisers, yet the Germans sank 
(or something sank) the Indefatigable and the Queen Mary, while only 
the third ship of von Hipper 's line was seen to be on fire. 

The Second Phase of the battle was the northward turn and move- 
ment to meet Jellicoe. Since the speed of the battle cruisers was far 
higher than that of Evan-Thomas' battleships, as soon as the turn was 
made, the gap between Beatty and Evan-Thomas opened wide. This 
was intentional, for the four h.ea,vj Queen Elizabeths were expected 
to stand off the main German fleet until Jellicoe could reach the line, 
at which time the whole super-Dreaflnought Grand Fleet could fall 
into line-of-battle behind Beatty and in front of Evan-Thomas. At 
the same time, Jellicoe 's three battle cruisers, the Invincible, Inflex- 
ible and Indomitable, under command of Admiral Hood, were sent 
due south at full speed to take the head of the line in advance of 
Beatty and relieve the ' ' Cats ' ' a little. 

Terrific Engagement Rages. 

The four Queen Elizabeths, by reason of their heavy armor, al- 
though they had to face the whole force of von Hipper 's battle cruiser 
squadron and the fire of the leading battleships of von Scheer's fleet, 
stood the punishment bravely. Th(j English gunners were settling to 
the work, and hits were being registered on the enemy. On the other 
hand, as the battle stiffened, German shots went wild. 

By 6.15 the three battle cruisers under Admiral Hood s\vung in 
front of the Lion, the Invincible then being the head of the longest 
battleline of the heaviest ships that the world ever saw. Yet she had 
hardly taken her place at tho head of the line before there came an 
explosion as though a volcano had erupted, and the Invincible disap- 
peared in a murk of smoke and flame. The explosion was similar to 
those on the Queen Mary and the Indefatigable. On the other hand, 
one of von Hipper's battle cniisers was seen to be missing. 

Just about 7.00 P. M., the Grand Fleet, steaming at full speed, 


dropped into its place between the widely separated fleets of Beatty 
and Evan-Tliomas, and the head of the German colmnn snddenly fonnd 
himself nnder the guns of the whole British fleet. At the same time. 
Beatty, with the two ships of Hood's squadron in front of him, had 
succeeded in heading off the German line, or * 'forming a cap,'' as it 
is navally known. Another of von Hipper 's cruisers went down. 

The German commander, von Scheer, moved quickly. Swinging 
each ship independently, he turned from easterly course to westerly 
and threw his whole force of destroyers at fidl speed against the 
British line to cover the turning movement of his capital ships. Jelli- 
coe responded in kind and a most terrific destroyer battle was waged, 
in which the British immediately showed themselves the masters. This 
quite unexpected manoeuvre brought the German fleet suddenly within 
range of the four light-aiTuored cruisers, the Duke of Edinburgh. De- 
fetiec. JVarrior and BlacJc Prince, who ought to have been well out of 
the way of any such encounter. The Germans opened fire at short 
range. The Defence and Black Prince sank at once. The Warrior sank 
trying to make port. The Dule of Edinburgh escaped. 

The foggy night dosed down, studded with destroyer attacks, in 
which the British claimed that they sank two German capital ships and 
the Germans denied the claim. The British naval authorities were a 
unit in declaring that the German official account did not state its 
fuH losses (a very typical German habit 'i, but, none the less, the Ger- 
man Admiralty admitted the loss of the battle cruiser Lutsotc, the bat- 
tleship Pommern. and tlie light cruisers Wicsbadtn. Frauenlob. Elbing 
and Eostock. Of positive knowledge, however, two other battle cruisers 
were sunk and one more battleship of the Thuriugen class. 

The Battle of Jutland Bank was the most decisive and indecisive 
naval battle in history, decisive in that it frightened the Germans from 
ever daring to come on the sea again, indecisive because of the charac- 
ter of the action in itself. 

Its real result came on that day of shame and himiiliation. Xcv- 
vember 21. 191 S, when the German High Seas Fleet, in performing 
the Most Supreme Act of Cowardice known in the history of the sea. 
tamely steamed to the shores of the British Isles and surrendered with- 
out a blow. The first and main detachment held the Bauern. Germany's 
latest battleship, a copy of the Queen Elizabeth Class, as usual, imi- 
tated three vears late, the Grosser Kurfursi, Markgraf and Kronprins. 

15— W. L.* 


the Friedrich der Grosse, Konig Albert, Prinz-regent Luitpold, Kaiser 
and Kaiserin. The battleships were followed by the battle cruisers 
Derfflinger, Uindenburg, Seidlitz and the Von der Tann. Then came 
seven light cruisers and fifty destroyers. There were five great war- 
ships flying the Stars and Stripes in the grim line of Allied vessels 
receiving the surrender. 

And, crowning infamy, so low had the world ^s belief in German 
honor fallen that the Allied fleets were cleared for action, their guns 
bore on the surrendering vessels, ammunition was in the turret hoists, 
and the gun crews were at their posts. No one could trust to German 
honor. There was rejoicing that day in all lands where the German 
hand had lain, everywhere but on the sea. But sailors, all the world 
over, felt that sailordom was in some strange and terrible way befouled 
by this ignoble action. 

*'I'd hoped," said a British naval officer, 'Hhat they'd have scut- 
tled the ships half way across and gone to their deaths like men. But 
they're not that breed!" 

At sundown that day, the German flag was hauled down from Ger- 
man warships in a British anchorage and the naval crews which had 
brought them over slunk back to their disgraced homes. 



Austria Bottled Up by the rrench Nary— The "Goebea" and the "Bre«lau" a Romantic Ruae of the Sea- 
British Bombardment of the Dardanelles— The Italian Fleet and Its Operation on Pola and Durazzo— 
The Central Powers Barred for Europe's Great Inland Sea. 

JUST as the British Navy undertook to guard the northern coasts 
of France, so the French Navy assumed a major place in the protec- 
tion of British possessions in the Mediterranean against the German and 
Austrian navies. When the war broke out, Grermany had but two war- 
ships in the Mediterranean, and Austria, though she possessed nine 
battleships, was in no position to do battle with France, whose navy 
ranked as the fourth largest in the world. 

The two German vessels in the Mediterranean, however, began 
the war in most exciting fashion. These were the Goeben, a modern 
high-powered battle cruiser, with ten 11-inch guns and a speed of 
28 knots. France had four battleships of the Jean Bart class, but while 
these carried 12-inch guns, their speed was not over 20.5 knots, so 
that the Goeben could hit and run away. The other German vessel 
was the Breslau, a light cruiser of high speed, but light armor and 
small gun-power. Both vessels were remarkable for their fuel capacity. 

The war began on August 4, 1914. That evening British and 
French warships, knowing that the Goeben and Breslau were off the 
coast of Algeria, started to give battle. The German commander, 
realizing that his location was known, put the ship's band on a raft, 
ordering them to play German national airs. The battleships hunted 
for the raft — a hard thing to find at night in mid-sea — and the Goeben 
and Breslau escaped. 

They entered the neutral port of Messina, Italy, next day. The 
officers went ashore, made their wills, gave up their valuables to the 
German consuls, and, since the Italian authorities would not allow 
them to stay there more than 24 hours, according to international 
law, the two German vessels sallied out that night, their decks cleared 



for action, going, as every man on board believed, to their deaths. 
The British and French fleets had taken up positions at either end of 
the Straits of Messina. They did not come within the three-mile limit 
for fear of international complications. With cunning navigation, the 
Germans felt their way along the shore, escaped detection, in spite of 
the enemy's searchlights, and, when day came, steamed at full speed 
for Constantinople. 

Only the British light cruiser Gloucester spied them, and, greatly 
daring, she opened fire on the powerful Goeben, which could have eaten 
her up. The German commander, however, could not risk the chance of 
being disabled, even slightly, by a chance shot, when he had a powerful 
fleet at his heels, and so he sheered off from the engagement and two 
days later steamed through the Dardanelles. Without delay the ships 
were formally sold to Turkey, a violation of international comity. 
This was, practically, the casus belli under which Turkey was brought 
into the war. The Goehen and Breslau, later, aided the Turkish forts 
in the defence of the Dardanelles and, still later, took part in the bom- 
bardment of Russian ports. But their fate was yet to come. On Jan- 
uary 20, 1918, they made a sortie from the Dardanelles and ran into 
a fleet of British monitors, the tanks of the sea. The Breslau was 
sent to the bottom and the Goehen so badly injured that she had to be 

The Dardanelles Forts Attacked. 

The bombardment of the Dardanelles forts, the only important 
fleet- action in the Mediterranean during the world war, was against all 
naval precedent. The Russo-Japanese War had shown that land forts 
had a tremendous advantage, but the British and French felt that such 
guns as the Queen Elisabeth's 15-inch monsters more than outrivalled 
the advantage that land mounting gave to cannon of smaller calibres. 
The action began on February 19, 1915. The fleet was of great size 
and strength, and naval confidence in the long-range guns was at first 
justified, for, by firing from a range outside the farthest carrying 
power of the shells of the forts, the land defenses were battered down. 
The outer forts of the Dardanelles, such as Kum Kale on the Asian 
side and Cape Hellas on the European side were soon silenced. 

This allowed some mine-sweeping to be done, and on February 
26, the battleships were ready to attack the straits themselves. This 
was a bombardment of a very different order, for, in order to be able 


to attack, the ships would have to come within the range of the fort 
guns. On March 3 and March 4 a determined attempt was made to 
silence the land defenses by French and British ships which entered 
the straits, but, though the forts were struck many times and the ves- 
sels badly hammered, the forts were not put out of action nor were 
any of the ships sunk. On March 7 the Agmnemnon and the Lord 
Nelson made a desperate charge and silenced two of the smaller inner 
forts. Both ships were struck and losses were heavy, but neither of the 
craft was put out of action. 

Finally, on March 15, the main attack was made with the com- 
bined efforts of all the heavier ships. It may be interesting to show 
how powerful an attack this was. The battleships, Agamemnon, Prince 
George, Queen Elizabeth, Lord Nelson, Triumph and Inflexible steamed 
fairly up into the Narrows and attacked Chanak. An hour later the 
French battleships Sujfren, Gaulois, Bouvet and Charlemagne joined in 
the fray, and wdth splendid dash, ran into still closer range. This 
gave room for six more battleships, the Ocean, Swiftsure, Majestic, 
Albion, Irresistible and Vengeance, who tried to plunge further in. None 
of these had smaller armament than 12-inch guns. 

The Attack Unsuccessful. 

The Turks settled to their work and sent down quantities of 
floating mines. The Bouvet was struck by a mine and also received 
three heavy high-explosive shells, and sank, carrying most of her 
crew with her. The Irresistible, badly crippled by shell-fire, also ran 
into a mine; a destroyer took off her crew, but she sank that evening. 
The Ocean went to the bottom from a mine and shell-fire. The Gaulois 
was put in a bad way, with a hole between wind and water and her 
upper works shot into splinters. The Inflexible had been set on fire, 
most of her officers were killed or wounded, and she had to fall out of 
the line. At the end of the day the forts were firing — if not as strongly 
as ever, at all events, with terrible accuracy and penetration. The at- 
tempt to force the Dardanelles had failed. 

Afterwards, a story went abroad that the forts had used nearly 
all their shells and that if the attack had been repeated next day it 
would have been successful, but the Germans and Turks deny the 
story and there is no manner of proving it. In any case, the British and 
French commanders, without accurate knowledge of that fact, would 


not have been justified in exposing their fleets to such a terrible ham- 
mering as they had received. The Great Naval Powers had done their 
uttermost, and proved that, given enough shell for the land forts, the 
Dardanelles could not be forced. 

Other naval engagements in the Mediterranean were without im- 
portant effect in the world war, for Germany was impotent except for 
her submarines, and Austria was made helpless by the entrance of 
Italy and the Italian Navy into the war. There were many romantic 
incidents, such as the cutting of the great steel mine-holding cables 
that guarded the harbor of Trieste by an Italian lieutenant in a motor 
boat, and the consequent blowing up and sinking of two Austrian battle- 
ships, the Monarch and the Wien, at anchor there, by torpedoes 
launched from a second motor boat. Such events as these, however, 
had little effect on the great conflict itself. 

As long as the Mediterranean was kept open for trade, as long 
as transports could carry soldiers to Avlona and Saloniki, as long 
as the Suez Canal and Gibraltar were unchallenged, as long as troops 
could cross from Algeria to France without fear of a hostile fleet, so 
long were the fleets of France, England and Italy doing their needed 
bit to establish the cause of the Allies in the world. The submarine 
menace roved there, as it roved over the seas, but that is a matter to 
be dealt with separately. 

The capture of Pola and Durazzo gave the death-blow to Austria's 
naval hopes. France and Italy blocked the Austrian Navy and com- 
pelled it to skulk in land-locked harbors, just as the British Navy had 
shaken its fist in the face of the German Navy and dared it to come 
out and give battle. As naval factors, the Central Powers proved 
themselves insignificant, and nowhere was their failure more notice- 
able than in the Mediterranean, which in his blind arrogance before the 
war, the Kaiser had marked down for his own. 



The Tropical Adventures of the Konigsberg— The Emden, the "Terror of the East"— Australians Make 
the Germans Walk the Piank— The Fight Off Coronel— Von Spec's Defeat of an English Fleet and 
the Terrible Revenge of the Battle of the Falklands. 

SUCH forms of commerce raiding, and especially commerce raiding 
on neutrals, as were practiced on the high seas by Germany during 
the world war outdid the blackest deeds of the buccaneers. Actions 
such as the sinking of the Lusitania ''represent not merely piracy," as 
ex-President Roosevelt said, "but piracy on a vaster scale of murder 
than old-time pirates ever practiced. It is a warfare against innocent 
men, women and children traveling on the ocean." 

At the same time, it is to be remembered that there is such a thing 
as legitimate commerce raiding. According to international law, a 
naval vessel has a right to capture and make a prize of any vessel 
belonging to an enemy power, putting a prize crew on board and 
bringing the vessel under convoy to a home port. She may also sink 
an enemy vessel, providing that the passengers and crew are saved. 
To sink an unarmed vessel, with its passengers and crew aboard, even 
though belonging to the enemy, is not piracy, but murder. To sink an 
unarmed vessel belonging to a neutral country while saving passengers 
and crew is a matter to be settled by damages; to do so with persons 
aboard is piracy without any possible shadow of justification. 

The Emden may be taken as an example of commerce raiders' 
work, for not only was she rightly dubbed ''The Terror of the East," 
but her story is one of the most romantic in the history of the Seven 
Seas. It is too good a story not to tell, and the following account is 
pieced together from the story of the gallant Captain Miicke, who led 
R ragged landing party by steam, sail, sambuk, afoot and camel-back 
half around the world; and from an officer of the Australian cruiser 
Sydney, which sunk the ever-famous cruiser. 

*'0n August 11, 1914," begins the Odyssey of Captain Miicke, "we 
separated from the cruiser squad, escorted only by the coaler 
Markomannia. ... On September 10 we met the Indus, bound for 




Bombay, all fitted up as a troop transport, but still without troop 
That was the first one we sank. The crew we took aboard the MarJx 
mannia. . . . Then we sank the Lovat, a troop transport ship, and 
took the KaUnga along mth us. . . . 

"After a few days, capturing ships became a habit. Of the 
twenty-three which we captured, most of them stopped after our first 
signal. When they didn't, we fired a blank shot. Then they all 
stopped. Only one, the Clan Mattesen (September 21, 1914), waited 
for a real shot across the bow before giving up its cargo of locomotives 
and automobiles to the seas. . . . We had mostly quiet weather, so 
that communication with captured ships was easy. They were mostly 
dynamited or else shot close to the water line. . . . Mostly, the ships 
liocled over on their sides till the water flowed down the smokestacks, 
a last puff of smoke came out and then they were gone. . . . 

Prolific Commerce Raiding. 

"A few days later, by Calcutta, we made one of our richest 
hauls, the Diplomat, chock full of tea — we sank $2,500,000 worth. On 
the same day the Trdbhotch, too, which steered literally into our arms. 

' * Now we wanted to get out of the Bay of Bengal, because we had 
learned that the Er.iden was being keenly searched for. Near Rangoon, 
we encountered a Norwegian tramp steamer, which, for a cash consid- 
eration, took over all the rest of our prisoners of war. . . . Later on 
another neutral ship rejected a similar request, and betrayed us to the 
Japanese into the bargain. 

''On September 23, we reached Madras and steered straight for 
the harbor. We stopped, 3000 yards before the city. Then we shot up 
the oil tanks. ... By daylight, ninety sea miles away, we could still 
see the smoke from the burning oil tanks. Two days later we gathered 
in two more steamers, the King Lund and the Tyweric. . . . Every- 
thing went well, the only trouble was that the Markomannia didn 't have 
much coal left. . . . The next evening we got a steamer with 500 
tons of Cardiff coal, the Burresk, brand-new, from England on her 
maiden voyage, bound for Hong-Kong. Then followed in order the 
Riheria, Foyle, Grand Ponrahhel, Benmore, Troiens, Exfort, Gryce- 
fale, Samkt Eckhert and Chilkana. Most of them were sunk ; the coal 
ships were kept. The Eckhert was let go with a load of passengers and 
the captured crews. . . . 


"All this happone<i UtUiva October 20; then we sailed fiouthv;'.xr(iy 
to Doogazia, HouthwcHt of Colombo. . . . Now we went on toward 
Miniko, where we Hank two ships more. ... On the next day we 
found three steamers to the north, r/ne of them with much-desired 
Cardiff coal. On October 28 we raised our very practicable fourth 
smokestack (a dummy funnel devi.sed by the captain himself;. As a 
result we were taken for or French. 

"One night we started for Penang. . . . The harbor lies in a 
channel difBcult of access. AVe had to try it at rlaybreak. At high 
speed, without smoke, with lights out, we steered into the mouth of the 
channel. A torjjedo boat on guard slept well. (This was the French 
tf>rpedo boat MousqiMit, evidently fooled by the Emden's new dummy 
fourth funnel, which caused her to resem?jle the British crui.ser Torr- 
rnouth, which was on patrol duty in those seas.) 

"Inside lay a dark silhouette; that must be the war.ship! But it 
vrasn't the French cruiser we were looking for ... it was the 
Russian cruiser Jemtchung. There it .slept like a rat. Xo watch to be 
seem That made it easj' for us. (This was CTirninal carelessness in 
war times. Her captain was sjjending the night ashore, the decks were 
not cleared for action and no one aboard seemed cajjaV^le of acting with 
the lightning quickness that the urgency demanded.) 

"Because of the narrowness of the harbor we had to keep close; 
we fired the first torpedo at 4J'/J yards. Then, to be sure, things livened 
up a bit on the .sleeping warship. At the same time we took the crew 
quarters under fire, five shells at a time. There was a flash of flame 
on hoard, then a kind of burning aureole. After the fourth shell, the 
flame burned high. The first torpedo had .struck the ship too deep 
because we were too close to it, a second torx>edo, which we fired from 
the other side, did not make the same mistake. After twenty seconds, 
there was absolutely not a trac^i of the ship to l)e seen. . . . 

"Shortly afterwards an incoming destroyer was reported. It 
proved to be the French Mousquet. . . . The Frenchman behaved 
well, accepted battle and fought us, but was polished off by us with 
three broadsides. The commander of the torpedo boat lost both his 
legs by the first broadside. . . . He went down with his .ship as a 
brave captain, lashed fast to the mast. "We then started for the Cocos 

(So far, the Etory has been recounted from the German account 


in the Berliner Tageblatt, translated for the Current History Maga- 
zine of the New York Times. The next phase is from British Admiralty 
reports, rewritten by Bennet Copplestone in ''The Silent Watchers.") 
"At a point in the sea fifty miles east of the Cocos Islands," wrote 
Copplestone, "on the tropical night of November 8, 1914, two hostile 
naval forces were approaching, entirely ignorant of the nearness of 
the other. Coming up from Colombo was a fleet of transports . . . 
convoyed by the Australian light cruiser Melbourne. On the left, and 
hence nearer to the Cocos Islands (which lie west and a little south of 
Java), was the Australian light cruiser Sydney. At half past six in 
the morning, the Emden appeared off the Cocos Islands and, before 
the wireless plant was destroyed, the watching operators sent out a 
warning to all whom it might concern that a foreign warship was in 
sight. . . . The Sydney (which picked up the radio message) was 
manned only by raw naval recruits in the course of training, but had 
experienced naval officers on board." 

Engagement Between the "Sydnejr" and the "Emden." 

It may be interesting to compare the vessels. The Sydney was 
much more powerful than the Emden. She carried eight 6-inch guns, 
mounted on the one -calibre idea, so that five could fire on either broad- 
side, her lyddite shells weighing 100 pounds. The Emden carried ten 
4.1-inch guns, with shells weighing 38 pounds. The Sydney was new 
and fast, the Emden' s bottom was foul, having been in tropical waters 
without dry-docking for many months. It is not known just when 
the Emden found out the approach of the Sydney, but she rushed out 
of port in the hope of escape, without sparing the time to pick up the 
landing party sent ashore to destroy the wireless. As soon as he got 
out of the harbor, however, Captain von Muller of the Emden recog- 
nized the Sydney as a vessel both faster and more heavily gunned than 
his own. Escape, therefore, was impossible, his only chance was to 
rush his foe, hope to disable her and thus get away.- He steamed at 
full speed for the Sydney and opened fire at 10,500 yards, nearly ten 

"To the astonishment both of the captain and the gunnery lieu- 
tenant of the Sydney ... at this very long range for his small 4.1- 
inch guns, von Muller got within a hundred yards at his first salvo. 
It was wonderful shooting. His next was just over, and with his 


third he began to hit." One shell missed the captain by a few inches, 
glanced on the pedestal of the range-finder without bursting, cut off 
the leg of the operator and plunged overboard. Had it burst, it would 
have killed the captain and the gunnery chief, not to speak of ma- 
terial damage. 

' * The first salvo fired by the Sydney, immediately after the Emden 
opened, was much too far ; their second was wild and ragged, but with 
the third some hits were made. . . . Glossop (of the Sydney) hav- 
ing the fuU command given by superior speed, manoeuvred so as to 
keep out to about 8,000 yards ... to present the smallest danger 
space to the enemy. (This was largely owing to the possibility that 
if the Sydney were hit, the Eynden might escape.) The Emden' s first 
attempt to close in had failed, and when the Sydney's 100-pound shells 
began to burst well on board of her, the Emden' s one chance had disap- 
peared. During the first fifteen minutes the Sydney was hit ten times, 
but afterwards not at all; the Emden was hit again and again during 
the long-drawn-out two hours of the hopeless struggle. After twenty 
minutes, the Emden' s forward funnel went and she caught fire aft. Her 
steering gear was wrecked and she became dependent on the manipula- 
tion of her propellers. 

''After the lapse of about three-quarters of an hour, the Emden 
had lost two funnels and the foremast: she was badly on fire aft and 
amidships, so that, at times, nothing more than the top of the main- 
mast could be seen amid the clouds of steam and smoke. Her guns, 
now firing occasionally, gave out a short yellow flash by which they 
could be distinguished from the long dark red flames of the Sydney's 
bursting lyddite. Once she disappeared so completey that the cry 
went up from the Sydney that she had sunk, but she appeared again, 
blazing, almost helpless. ... At last von Muller, finding that his 
ship was badly pierced under water as well as on fire, put about again 
and headed for the North Keeling Island where he ran aground. The 
one remaining gun continued to fire until the last. . . ." 

The Sydney then chased the collier Buresh and settled with her, 
then returned to the wreck of the Emden, which was still flying the 
German flag. For a quarter of an hour, Glossop, of the Sydney sig- 
nalled by International Code and Morse, begging von Muller to sur- 
render. The German commander refused. Under his duty, Glossop 
was compelled to force submission. With a heavy heart he brought 


the Sudneij to witliiu 4,000 yards and smashed the doomed Emden from 
stem to steru. Not until late in the afternoon was the white flag run 
up. Several wounded men, including a doctor, managed to scramble 
ashore, without food and drink, and spent the night amid huge red 
hmd-crabs, with which the island was infested. They were rescued 
next morning by the British. 

The story now returns to the landing party, under Captain Miicke, 
left marooned by the sudden departure of the Emden. Some of the 
sea-fight had been seen from the shore. "I made up my mind," con- 
tinued Captain Mticke, 'Ho leave the island as soon as possible. In 
the harbor I had noticed a three-master, the schooner Ayesha.^^ The 
Germans seized her, provisions were taken for eight weeks, water for 
four. ''I sailed at first westward, then northward. . . . We needed 
eighteen days to reach Padang (in Sumatra), the weather was so rot- 
tenly cahn. . . ." After leaving Padang on November 28 (with 
many adventures) the Ayesha cniised until she met a German coaster, 
the Clioising. On December 16, 1918, the German landing party boarded 
the Clioising, and scuttled the Ayeslm, thus leaving no trace of their 

The "Emden's" Crew Return to Germany. 

' ' On the 7th of January, we sneaked through the Strait of Perim. 
That lay swarming full of Englishmen. We steered along the African 
coast, close past an English mine-layer. That is my prettiest delight, 
how the Englishmen wiU be vexed when they leam that we have passed 
smoothly by Perim. ' ' An armored French cruiser was sighted, but the 
four boats of the Choising set the German landing party ashore ''under 
the very noses of the unsuspecting Frenchmen. ' ' 

The Arabs of that section were at that time friendly to the Turks, 
and hence helped the group of German wanderers from the Emden. 
The worn-out men went up country to the highlands to rest and to give 
the fever patients a chance to recuperate. Two months later, in two 
small sailing sjambuks, provided by the Turkish government, Captain 
Miicke sailed from Hodeida (on the Red Sea) northwards. One of 
the boats ran on a coral reef, but with most of its passengers piled 
on the other small boat they reached Konfida. There a larger sjambuk 
was secured and they sailed on to Lith. At that point Captain Miicke 
engaged an overland caravan and, after several encounters with desert 


Bodonins, the party reached Damascus and took rail thence to Haidar- 
Pasha, the last station on the Asiatic side, where a German admiral 
awaited them. The hero of this Odyssey then stepped up to the ad- 
miral, lowered his sword, and reported, simply: 

''Beg to report, most obediently, Herr Admiral, landing corps of 
the Emden, 4A men, 4 officers, 1 surgeon." 

Thence to Constantinople and Germany. So ended the Odyssey of 
the Wanderers of the Emden, one of the strangest stories that has 
ever occurred on sea or land, ranking, in its multiplicity of interest 
and change, the Wanderings of Ulysses, as told by Homer. 

One of the queer happenings of the sea was the fate of the German 
cruiser Konigsherg which, in October, 1914, was hiding a little distance 
up the Rufiji River, in German East Africa. The British sank a collier 
across the mouth of the river to prevent the German boat from reach- 
ing the sea. The Konigsherg was invisible, by reason of dense jungle. 
The crew built powerful land defenses. For many months the British 
could do nothing. At last some aeroplanes arrived and these found 
out, from overhead, the exact location of the cruiser. Whereupon, 
British monitors, with heavy guns, directed a heavy dropping fire, the 
aeroplanes spotting the shells and wirelessing back corrections. On 
July 4, 1915, the cruiser was set on fire. On July 11, the bombard- 
ment was renewed and the screaming shells, flying high above the 
tropical forest, fell on the doomed craft, and she was smashed to 

Stories of Other German Sea Raiders. 

Space is too scant to permit the story of the Prins Eitel Friedrich, 
which, after roving the seven seas for seven months out from her 
home port of Tsing-Tao, and sending eight merchant ships to the bot- 
tom, one of them being an American vessel, put into Newport News, 
Virginia, for repairs, and was interned. A still more exciting story 
is that of the Dresden, which took part in the great sea-fights of Cor- 
onel and the Falkland Islands, but which was finally destroyed by the 
British cruiser Glasgow. The Moewe's record was even more spec- 
tacular. She left Germany on December 20, 1915, under Swedish colors, 
ran down the English Channel, raided the high seas, sank fifteen mer- 
chant vessels, captured the Appam and sent her to Norfolk, Virginia, 
and then returned back through the navy-infested North Sea into 
Wilhelmshaven with many prisoners and $250,000 in gold bars. 


The two great South Sea actions, the defeat of the British off 
Coronel, and the ensuing revenge and destruction of the German 
South Sea Fleet at the Falkland Islands, cannot be told in detail. A 
bare record of the facts must suffice. When war broke out, Admiral 
von Spee was stationed at the German Caroline Islands with the 
Scharnhorst and Gneisenau, two powerful battle cruisers. Each carry- 
ing eight 8.2-inch guns, their shells were almost three times as heavy 
as the 100-pound shells of the 6-inch guns mounted on the Good Hope 
and Monmouth, leading ships of the British squadron in those seas. 
Von Spee had also with him the Dresden and the Leipzig. 

The fight between the German and English squadrons was joined 
on November 1,* 1914, and lasted fifty-two minutes. By that time the 
Good Hope had been blown up and the Monmouth was on fire. Later 
that same night, the Nurnherg, coming up, poured a broadside into the 
the crippled Monmouth and sent her to the bottom. The Glasgow, 
unable to oppose the guns of the Scharnhorst and Gneisenau, and hav- 
ing the heels of them, made good her escape. 

German Battle Career on the Sea Ended. 

This naval disaster did more than annoy the British naval authori- 
ties, it enraged them, and they determined on a drastic revenge. They 
succeeded, in most amazing fashion, in sending the two powerful battle 
cruisers, Invincible and the Inflexible, from England to the Falkland 
Islands without anyone being the wiser. These were 27-knot ships, 
with eight 12-inch guns apiece, far outranging, outweighing and out- 
running von Spec's ships. They reached the Falkland Islands and 
went in to coal. Then, as luck would have it, the very next day, up 
came the Scharnhorst and the Gneisenau. On December 8, 1914, their 
funnels were sighted on the horizon. As they came nearer, the old 
British battleship Canopus, which had grounded, loosed a couple of 
pot-shots at a distance of six miles. Then, as though to give battle, 
out crept the hastily repaired Glasgow, the little Kent and the unim- 
portant Carnarvon. In the words of a German prisoner: "We laughed 
till our sides ached." 

"A few more minutes passed," says Copplestone, "and then, 
from under the cover of the smoke and the low fringes of the harbor, 
steamed grandly out the Invincible and the Inflexible, cleared for ac- 
tion, their huge turrets, fore and aft ana upon either beam, bristling 


with 12-inch guns, their turbines working at fullest pressure, the flag 
of Vice-Admiral Sturdee fluttering aloft. There was no more German 
laughter. ' ' 

The fight dragged on to great length, for Sturdee knew that he 
had the guns, he had the speed, he had the greater range. He knew 
that the Germans could gain no re-enforcements, and that he himself 
was far from any naval base to which he could repair in the case of 
a chance shot crippling one of his big ships. Besides, the odds were 
impossible. Though the Invincible was the leading ship and at one 
time received the concentrated fire of both German ships, she did not 
suffer a single casualty. ''And while she was being peppered almost 
harmlessly, her huge shells, which now and then burst inboard the 
doomed German vessels, were setting everything on fire between decks, 
until the dull red glow could be seen from miles away through the 
gaping holes in the sides. 

''Firing began seriously at 12.55 and continued, with intervals 
of rest for guns and men, till 4.16, when the Scharnhorst sank. . . . 
Every man in the Scharnhorst was killed or drowned. For nearly two 
hours longer the Gneisenau kept up the fight. ... By half past five, 
she was blazing furiously fore and aft, and at 6.02 she rolled over 
and sank. Her guns spoke to the last. She sank with her ensign still 
flying. . . . Those of the crew who remained afloat were picked up 
by boats from the cruisers and the Carnarvon, only 108 officers and men, 
all told, were saved.'* 

Meantime, the elderly cruiser Kent, the lame duck of the squadron, 
feeding her fires with ladders, doors, the officers ' furniture, tables and 
chairs from the captain's cabin, and — still more remarkable, with the 
boats — chased and caught the Niirnberg and sank her out of hand. The 
Glasgow, burning to revenge the disaster at Coronel, pursued the Leip- 
zig, and sank her also. Of all the German South Sea Squadron, only 
the light cruiser Dresden escaped. She fled without firing a shot, and 
her end came, at Robinson Crusoe's Island some three months later. 
The Battle of Falkland Islands ended Germany's battle career upon 
the open sea. 

ODT Wiii-U C- rzi -s-iiT stsjcjlsxjtb. 

So :ar as iucn^niies aie eoiui-cnied, the world war de^nitelv taught 
- - - — ': ■_- :-- It tanght that submarines are only moderately dan- 

g^j . . ets tmless they can be developed to snch a point that 

they can n^iie li-g" Tmder-water cmis^s at a mnch greater depth than 
is p:s5-:^r :; 117 " " -^. It taught that the snbmaiine 

c^-' ■ ^5-e^ ^i -- - jtLStinably, for the reason that it 

CA- - £ up tl- ngers and crew, not having any means of 

conveyug -^rzi to a home port. It tau^t that stibmarnies are highly 

i excessively threatening as mine-layers. 

. _rr to realize the submarine situation in the world war, it is 

ry to understand clearly the limitation of a submarine. First 

of au, a submarine nmning under water is blind, absolutely and entirely 

blini I: =tt: nothing, hears nothing, knows nothing. To continue, a 

5-:i_-r-:-T :ii.Ier water stores and can produce only a certain quantity 

of air, the supply in the very latest types at the dose of the war extend- 

" ~s' breathing for the crew. In the third place, in order 

: — . ;_. _ _irine may be kept as near as possible to the sp«iific 

gravity : ; — :.:rr, that it may rise and >i'nV by a ymall inclination of the 

planes, the =k±n or shell of the submarine must be thin This thiTi shell 

prevents the sntmarine from sinlrfnor to a great depth, not beyond 

eighteen or twenty fathoms at most, because if it went down deeper, 

the pressure of the wat^r would squash in its sides like a paper bag. 

The submarine is not an under-water boat. It is a surface boat 
which can go under the water for a time. The difference is highly impor- 
tant A submarine whose periscope, only, may be showing above the 
surface, leaves behind it a ripple and wake which can eaiy be seen 
from a hydroplane, especially in smooth water. In really rou^ water 



a submarine cannot operate at alL Moreover, owmg to the thir 
of its skin, it is not necessary to actually hit it with a depth, bomb. 
If the bomb bnrsts within twenty-seven feet on any side of it, the 
vacuum in the water caused by the explosion of the bomb paQs its 
X>late5 out <'not drives them in; in the same way that the windows of 
a house fall outwards when a bomb explodes in the street. 

Consider, for a moment, the three pc^sible lines of oi)eration for a 
submarine. Let it be supposed that an enemy fleet is steaming^ alon^ 
slowly on a calm sea, the ideal conditions for submarine attack. It 
runs as deep down as it dares, until somewhere near the fleet. Then 
it has to come up to within three or four feet of the surface to put its 
p»eri scope out of the water to find where to go. 

It win be lucky to escape observation then. Xine times out of ten- 
it win come up outside the outer ring of the fleet, the circle of destrov- 
ers. If sighted by them, the four-inch guns will begin to pop. K not, 
it may be sighted by the hydroplanes, flying overhead, to whom a sub- 
marine which has come close to the surface is as plain to see as thou^ 
it were awash. 

Battleships steam an eighth of a mile apiit. I: i= useless merelv 
to fire a torpedo in the general direction. The submarine must dive, 
therefore, and come up again, dose to some battleship. This time it 
cannot escape detection. In the space of a few seconds the commander 
of the submarine must si^t the victim, get the exact direction, figure 
out the speed at which she is traveling, make his calculations and fire 
the torpedo, for unless he does so in a few seconds, he will be assuredly 
snnk or have his periscope shot away, which is just as bad, for it means 
a blind groping until death comes, or until he is forced to come to the 
surface and be made prisoner. 

Suppose, however, that the torpedo has been fired. It is extremelv 
difficult to hit with a first shot. Suppose, also, ^lat the submarine 
escapes being hit the first time it appears above the surface, what then! 
It is doomed, just the same. The hydroplanes overiiead will keep an 
eye on the deadly man-made fish and will wireless to the destrovers 
its exact position. Bunning right over its ijath the destTover= w-n^ 
drop depth bombs every twenty-five feet A pkch of ofl and sometime. 
a floatmg but shattered body tell the rest of the story. 

i^w.^-£^^' °^^' -^ question of the submarine (of any type prior 


to the end of the war) as a commerce raider. Since space is at a pre- 
mium in a submarine, it is impossible for it to take off the passengers 
and crew of any vessel it captures. Equally it is impossible for it to 
carry enough men to put on board vessels so seized, as prize crews. 
Its only possible mode of capture is to sink the commerce vessel with 
all hands, allowing them to take to the boats, or not. This, however, is 
outside the pale of international law. It is not raiding; it is piracy. 
Germany's submarine policy aroused the vengeful detestation of 
the whole world because of its brutal disregard for human life. The 
fault did not lie with the commanders of the submarines, but with the 
conditions which of necessity belong to submarine usage. Submarine 
commerce raiding, of itself, cannot be made justifiable. It must be 
admitted, however, that many submarine commanders seemed to take 
a delight in acts which aggravated their offences, such as the sinking 
of neutral ships and even of Red Cross vessels with wounded men 


Amount of Shipping Sunk by German U-boats. 

Although the submarine was widely used by Germans during 1915 
and 1916, it was not until February 1, 1917, that Germany declared 
her intention of unrestricted U-boat warfare in the barred zones. The 
German plan was two-fold, to blockade England so that she would be 
starved out, and to sink a sufficient number of naval vessels to reduce 
Great Britain 's Navy until it was no larger than that of Germany. Such 
important factors as the sinking of the Lusitania and the Provence 
did not come under this head, and there is no need to burden the 
reader with the list of armed and unarmed ships sunk by submarines. 
It will serve the purpose best to give the figures for the entire 
war. The German U-boats sank during the four years of the war 
a total of 15,053,786 gross tons of shipping, of which over 9,000,000 
was British. The loss of life in the British merchant marine was 
15,000, the loss among other nations being proportionate. During the 
war period there was a total ship construction among the Allies of 
10,849,527 gross tons, while 2,392,675 was captured. The net loss dur- 
ing the war, therefore, among Allied and neutral nations was under 
2,000,000 tonnage, say five hundred ships averaging ocean liners and 
coasting craft together. 

According to figures issued by the British Admiralty from Ger- 
man sources, secured after the war, it was learned that 360 U-boats 


had been built, altogether, by Germany. Of these there were only 129 
remaining to be turned over to the Allies (including those interned 
as well as delivered), so that 231 U-boats had either been sunk or 
taken prisoner. Nearly all had been sunk. Full figures of the build- 
ing of submarines among the Allied nations have not been issued, but 
semi-oflScial reports show that, at the close of the war, the Allies had 
not less than 500 submarines against the 129 remaining to the Ger- 

The utter failure of the submarines to sink any American trans- 
ports was due mainly to the system of convoy. Twenty vessels, armed, 
with naval escort, including destroyers and seaplanes had little to fear 
from a submarine. One vessel of the convoy, might, by an off chance, 
be torpedoed, but the submarine, for reasons given above, could never 
escape. Chances such as that of the 11-19, which sank the three British 
cruisers, Aboukir, Cressy and Hogue, one after the other, right at the 
beginning of the war, could never happen again. 

Regarded navally, the submarine was a complete failure. It did 
not and could not turn the tide of a naval battle, it failed to serve its 
purpose as a commerce-destroyer after the convoy system had been 
established, it Avas impotent as a blockader of ports or harbors. Its 
principal value was found as a mine-layer, and therein it created, even 
to the end of the war, a serious difficulty. * ' The Fleet of the One-Eyed 
Death" which, Admiral von Tirpitz proclaimed, ''was to bring Eng- 
land to her knees, ' ' grew steadily more and more inept throughout the 
war, although the under-sea vessels themselves were being built upon 
more and more powerful lines. 

Just as a last flare, the world was astonished, two days before the 
close of the war, when the British battleship Britannia was torpedoed 
and sunk by a submarine near Gibraltar. It was evident that the fins 
of the submarine had been clipped, but that the menace was not over. 
Naval opinion, when the war ended, was in full agreement on the point 
that the submarine had not justified its existence in the world war, 
but that even a little more improvement would make it a threat to 
every ship afloat. The next naval war— should there be another— will 
tell the tale. 



Development of Types of Air-Craft— Dirigibles and Their Uses— Summary of Military Failure of Zeppe- 
lin Raids— Tlie Differences in Aeroplanes Required for Bombing, Spotting, Reconnoissance and Com- 
bat—Aerial Strategy->Aces— Famous Feats of Daring. 

AIR-CRAFT have created a new warfare. Nothing since the 
invention of gunpowder so revolutionized every phase of battle 
tactics. Combats in the air had practically no decisive effect in the 
world war, saving and only as these were necessary for the protection 
of aeroplanes which were on their proper business. The chief business 
of air-craft is two-fold: firstly, scouting; secondly, as the eyes of the 
heavy artillery. 

It was air-craft, and air-craft only, which made possible the use 
of the heavy artillery used in the world war. When a siege howitzer 
shoots over a hill, dropping its shells near a fort on the other side of 
it, how can the gunners teU if their shots are falling short, going too 
far, or missing to the right or left? Only by information from an 
observational captive balloon (such as the sausage or the kite), from a 
dirigible balloon, or from an aeroplane. When a long-range gun (and 
the Germans produced two, at least, with a range of sixty-five miles), 
even of moderate force, bombards a position ten miles away, the accu- 
racy of its fire can only be judged by an aerial observer, who signals 
or wirelesses back to the battery the necessary changes in the direction 
of the shots. 

There is one famous example of this. In the Russo-Japanese War, 
over a quarter of a million men lost their lives in the battle for 403- 
Metre Hill. Why? Merely because it commanded a view of the harbor 
in which the Russian fleet was lying. If the Japanese could have gained 
even a single observation post on this hill, they could have bombarded 
the fleets with their heavy batteries, and by the correction of the direc- 
tion which the observer could give, it would take but a few minutes to 
get the exact range. A modem aeroplane, even of an early type, could 
have avoided all this slaughter. 



Equal in value to the usefulness of air-craft as the eyes of the guns 
'vas their value as scouts. It was the business of the air squadrons to 
give information as to the enemy's movements, thus minimizing the 
dangers of surprise. If the enemy was gathering munitions or troops 
or stores at any particular point, it was evidence that a drive was being 
prepared there. The defending army could then strengthen its line at 
tliat point. If the enemy was thinning his line, by the gradual shifting 
of troops, the keen air scout could give information to the High Com- 
mand which might lead to a smashing counter-offensive at that thinned 
point and a consequent victory. 

There were two famous oases at the beginning of the world war 
where victories were won by the Allies which would not have been 
possible had the enemy possessed good air scouts. The first of these 
was at the Battle of the Marne, when Foch deliberately withdrew an 
entire division of men from the center of the battle and told them to 
rest in a field during the whole of that vital afternoon. Then, at five 
o'clock, he launched them against the thinned line of the Prussian 
Guard. Good air-scouting by the enemy would have warned the German 
general that a fresh division of troops was ready to attack his weakest 
point. The other case was the capture of Lemberg, at the beginning 
of the Russian campaign, when General Brusiloff came up with an 
army of 250,000 men from a direction where the Austrians did not 
anticipate a single soldier. One reconnoissance flight by an Austrian 
aviator would have given this information. 

No Man's Land of the Air. 

With these two main branches of aerial work in mind, it may be 
well to explain what is meant by "mastery of the air," a phrase which, 
of necessity, occurs constantly in all stories of the campaigns and 
battles of the world war. It is understood that between two opposing 
armies there is a patch of contested ground, which, as yet, has been 
seized by neither. This was called No Man's Land in the world war, 
after the trench warfare period had begun. 

It does not follow, however, that the line of trenches on the earth, 
which marks the boundaries of the opposing armies, is the same as the 
aerial border line. It is clear, for example, that if the Allies had 
stronger aerial squadrons than those of the Central Powers, they could 
keep the German aviators from ever flying over the Allied lines, while, 


at the same time, they c uld do so with a greater or lesser penetration 
over the German lines. If the German air squadrons were the stronger, 
the converse would be true. There was thus a No Man's Land of the 
air which did not run horizontally parallel to the No Man's Land of 
the ground. Mastery of the air consisted in having the No Man's Land 
of the air so far behind the enemy lines that defending aviators could 
!>-ee all that the foe was doing, while enemy aviators could see nothing 
in the opposing lines. 

An excellent example of mastery of the air occurred in the minor 
but important American success at Vaux, when the American troops 
drove the Germans before them like rabbits from a beaten glade, the 
Crown Prince not having any expectation of the attack. That whole 
section of the line was completely in the control of the air men of the 
Allies. Contrariwise, the success of the German drives of 1915 and 
1916 was due to the fact that the German flyers had air mastery of a 
larger portion of the front than did the overhead scouts of the Allies. 

The Zeppelin a Failure as a War Machine. 

For this reason it gives a false impression to speak of aeroplanes 
as winning this battle or that. They did nothing of the sort. They 
were an arm of the service, an essential arm, but a consideration of 
their services has no place in Military History, except in so far as they 
fought in each particular battle. To outline the respective values of in- 
fantry, cavalry, artillery, signal, engineer and aerial services in every 
engagement would be unending. The air work commends itself espe- 
cially to writing of flights as incidents, because of the opportunity 
for individuality in the aviator, but in no single case can it be said 
that air raids in themselves have turned the tide of battle or altered 
the progress of the war. 

The Zeppelin was even a greater failure as a war machine than 
the submarine. It, also, had been heralded by Germany as a means 
of subduing the French and British. Air raids on London were numer- 
ous, and attempts on Paris were not less so. The total casualties from 
all exclusively Zeppelin and Schutte-Lanz dirigible raids, so far as 
is known, was approximately 9,000 civilians, during the four years of 
the war. This is a great deal higher than any figures which were given 
out, pending the conflict, and undoubtedly includes minor casualties. 
Deaths are given as 831. 


The Inteliigence Department of the French Army announced that 
it had learned that 100 Zeppelins had been built by March, 1918. There 
seems reason to estimate that four more were constructed between that 
time and the end of the war, making 104 in all. Every Zeppelin built 
before the beginning of the war is known to have been destroyed. Of 
these 104 the destruction of 31 is definitely Imown, 9 were presumably 
lost but actual evidence was not forthcoming, 17 were so seriously in- 
jured as to be dismantled, 4 were employed as school ships. This ac- 
counts for 61 ships out of the 104, not including any which may have 
been lost by accident (such as entering a hangar) within the German 
lines. Without going into the cost of building Zeppelins (which is 
huge, owing to the amount of aluminum used) and the cost of train- 
ing Zeppelin crews, it is clear that, during the war, more than one-half 
were put out of business. Moreover, when it is realized that Zeppelins 
were little used, that they remained in their hangars for weeks, some- 
times months, at a time, and that their raids had no military value, the 
failure of the Zeppelin is demonstrated. 

There is a curious similarity between the Zeppelin and the sub- 
marine. Both developed, during the world war, to a high degree of 
efficiency, yet not in the military sense. Both added immensely to 
man's conquest of the air and man's conquest of the sea. Both are 
ripe with promise of great commercial scope and gain. And since, in 
this world, it often follows that out of evil some Guiding Hand may 
produce good, it may well be that the future will see over a world at 
peace, great craft of air and under-sea speeding on missions to bless 
instead of curse humanity. 



The Rifle and the Machine Gun— Light Artillery— The French "75"— Heavy Artillery— Tha "Big Bertha" 
and Siege Howltxer— Aerial Guns— Hand Grenade and Bolo— Gas and Explosives. 

NO matter how much the world may feel like congratulating itself 
upon the fact that victory perched upon the side of right in the 
great war, the bitter struggle of four years clearly demonstrated the 
age-old principle that force mil conquer. Three factors which are abso- 
lutely necessary to the making of a victorious army are man-power, 
resources and equipment. And these in the finality the Allies possessed. 

It required four years of concentrated effort to build up a military 
machine of such superior force and equipment as to bring defeat to the 
German hordes, but that is what the Allies did, and not the least of 
their success was due to the development of their arms and weapons 
of offense and defense. 

The whole history of the struggle offers no more interesting study 
than that of the arms, armaments and devices used by the opposing 
forces in their efforts to annihilate one another. 

When Germany plunged into Belgium she possessed what was 
conceded to be the very best arms and equipment that science and 
mechanics could supply. Her big guns reduced the forts of Liege and 
Namur and similar Belgian and French strongholds with a dispatch 
that startled the civilized world, and in the course of the long war she 
brought forth improvements which taxed the ingenuity of her opponents 
to resist. 

A detailed technical description of all the arms used during the 
four years of warfare would involve a story of science and mechanics 
covering practically all that is known of guns, gun-resisting materials 
and explosives and their effects, for practically everything that gave 
promise of offering some advantage to the opposing forces was given 
a thorough test by the military authorities. 

For this very reason much appeared regarding the wonderful 



weapons and devices of war which was not justified by their actual use 
nor by the facts. 

In considering the value of arms it should be remembered that the 
mobile fighting forces of the army consist of three main arms: the 
infantr}'-, field artillery and cavalry, and that the infantryman with 
his rifle and bayonet forms the backbone of the fighting force. 

The weapon of the infantryman is what is commonly called the 
automatic '' repeating rifle." There are many types of these guns, 
and while one may possess qualities of distinct advantage over another, 
the rifles used by the armies in the world-wide struggle all involved 
the same general convenience of construction — a mechanism which 
made it possible for the soldier to shoot in rapid succession from ten to 
twenty shots without reloading. 

Different Types of Rifles. 

At the outbreak of the war Germany used what was known as the 
''98" gun, which was in reality a Mauser rifle of the model of 1898, 
with a capacity of twenty to thirty shots a minute. It had a calibre of 
7.9 millimeters (.30 calibre), which was regarded as the smallest calibre 
that could be used with effect against the enemy. 

The American Army — the Expeditionary Force — used the standard 
United States rifle, which is actually the Enfield rifle, officially adopted 
by the Government, and which is of .30 calibre. The weapon is the 
magazine typo and is loaded with a clip on which are arranged car- 
tridges automatically fed into the firing chamber one after another. 
The gun has a high initial velocity and uses a pointed bullet, which 
gives what is known as a flat trajectory. This simply means that the 
bullet travels in a straight line within a prescribed range. The advan- 
tage of this is easily apparent to the layman when it is stated that the 
ideal rifle would be the one the path of whose bullet would at no range 
be higher than a man's head. 

The Austro-Hungarian troops were supplied with Krag-Jorgensen 
and Mauser rifles of older model than the German weapons, and which 
were inferior as to muzzle velocity and therefore less effective, while 
the Turkish Army was organized with three grades of infantry fire- 
arms. The first line was armed with the Mauser repeating rifle of the 
standard .30 calibre, while the second line carried a larger or .38 
calibre Mauser and the third line had a Martini-Henry rifle of ,45 


calibre. The cavalry, too, carried a Mauser .30 calibre repeating 
carbine, or short gun. 

The Bulgarians used an 8 millimeter repeating rifle, model of 1888, 
together with a Mannlichter rifle of the model of '95, while the Russians 
carried the model '91 repeating rifle of 7.6 millimeter, which, as the 
date indicates, was not as effective as the later models. 

England's infantry in the main was armed with the Lee-Enfield 
rifle, of .30 calibre, while the French used a Lebel of nearly .32 calibre, 
of the model of 1893. The Belgian infantry was armed with Mausers 
of 7.6 millimeters, while Italy used the Mannlichter-Caraco rifle, model 
1891. Serbia used the Mauser. 

Development of the Machine Gtin. 

By this it will be seen that the ''repeating rifle" was the weapon 
of all infantrymen and the principle involved in the construction of 
all was in the main the same. The gas generated by the discharge of 
one shell forced the next into place ready to be expelled, hence the 
term automatic, no operation being required on the part of the gunner 
to throw the shall into place or to dislodge the exploded one. 

Before the end of the war, however, and in building up the ulti- 
mately victorious military machine, the Allies had largely standard- 
ized their small arms and ammunition, and the Enfield rifle of one or 
several models constituted the main weapon of the infantry. At a 
range of 1000 yards a bullet from one of these rifles will penetrate a 
pine plank seventy inches thick. 

It is a matter of extreme interest in the development of small arms 
to note that the first of such weapons used by the fighting forces of the 
world was the *'gonne" or hand cannon, which was a tube mounted on 
a holder or stick, and fired by touching a match to a hole in the powder 
chamber. This was the forerunner of the wheel-lock and flint-lock guns, 
and one of the first of the latter was made by the Germans in the 
sixteenth century. 

The machine gun, which is the secondary weapon of the infantry, 
is a development of modem war, each regiment having a machine gun 
company with twelve guns. These weapons are vital necessities in the 
modern army and all of the forces in the war were provided with them. 
As in the case of the infantry arm, the machine guns are constructed 
upon the same principle, but vary as to the types in use. 


The machine gun of the United States Army and the Expeditionary 
Forces used in the field were the Browning and the Colt-Browning, 
with the Lewis gun prescribed for aviation service. The machine 
gun is supposed to deliver against the attacks of oncoming forces a 
rain of bullets equivalent to the fire of an entire infantry section. 

The machine guns may be divided into two classes: those having 
a rotary steel drum or cylinder in which a round of loaded shells is 
held, and those through which a strip or belt containing cartridges is 
fed. The guns are mounted on tripods and will shoot from 200 to 500 
shots per minute. The guns in warfare open sudden blasts of fire upon 
the enemy from concealed positions. The fire is of such intensity that 
well-launched attacks break down under them. 

It was against the nests of these guns that the American soldiers 
made such heroic advances at Chateau Thierry and in Belleau Wood. 
In the open the guns are particularly vulnerable and once located by 
opposing artillery must shift their positions or be blown to atoms. 
The guns shoot a regulation .30 calibre bullet. The weapons weigh 
from thirty to fifty pounds, complete with tripod. 

Importance of the Artillery. 

The force required to properly utilize the machine gun in warfare 
may be determined from the fact that a machine gun company with 
its 12 guns consists of 6 officers and 172 men, 12 of whom comprise the 
train required to supply the organization and furnish the ammunition. 
Nearly all of the countries at war utilized the Lewis machine gun in 
some branch of the service, but there were others, like the Vickers, 
utilized by the French Army. The Hotchkiss was also used by some 
of the aviation corps. The Vickers differed from some of the others 
in that it is water-cooled, it being necessary to have a cooling device 
on all types because of the intense heat generated by the rapid fire. 
Even with the cooling jacket it is necessary to give the machines "rest'* 
or time to cool after from 300 to 500 rounds have been fired. 

The artillery comes as an auxiliary of the infantry. It prepares 
the way for the infantry attacks, destroys the enemy's defenses — forti- 
fications and entrenchments — and protects the advancing troops with 
barrages or shell "curtains" that are timed to precede the advancing 
line. The mobile artillery consists of "mountain artillery,*' light field 
artillery, heavy field artillery and siege artillery. 


The experience of four years proved among other things that the 
most valuable asset of an army is sufficient and effective field artillery, 
end in this equipment the French forces proved their superiority over 
the Germans. The fame of the French " 75 " was heralded abroad early 
in the war and to the very end it proved a stumbling block to the ambi- 
tions of the Germans. The French ''75" is a three-inch field gun, and 
it is a fact of historic interest that the proof of value of such a compar- 
atively small bore, rapid-fire field gun was first established by the 
Boers against the British in the South African War. 

The Boers used what were termed pompoms against the heavier 
artillery of the British with deadly effect. They were the forerunner 
of the French "75," which is capable of delivering from twelve to 
sixteen shots per minute. Because of this rapid fire, in the develop- 
ment of her army just prior to the world war, France reduced the 
number of guns per battery from six to four, making up for the loss 
of pieces by the rapidity of fire and adding ammunition wagons to 
replace the guns. 

The Duty of the Artillery, 

The value of the artillery of this type in blazing the way for the 
advancement of the infantry may be judged from reports on the 
German advances made early in 1917 — in connection with what is 
known as the March offensive — when reports taken from German 
officers captured by the Allies showed that they had a gun for every 
fifteen men on the front. 

A military explanation of the advance shows the use made of the 
various types of arms in support of the infantry. An official report 
says : ' ' The first wave to cross No Man 's Land consisted of about 250 
men with light machine guns almost shoulder to shoulder. A hundred 
yards behind came another line of 250 men, then more machine guns. 
Next after an interval of two or three hundred yards, came light trench 
mortars and the battalion staff. Again a space of 200 yards, and then 
from prepared exits from the trenches the field artillery drove out 
into open column, forming lines of batteries as soon as possible." 

In general the artillery bombards the enemy's first, second and 
third lines, all gun positions, roads, villages, railway junctions, etc., 
follows this up with a rain of shrapnel and gas shells and then puts 
down a rolling barrage from the field guns, which starts when the 
infantry goes over the top. 


The three-inch gun — the French "75" — uses a projectile weigh- 
ing approximately 15 pounds and having a muzzle velocity of 1,700 
feet per second. These weapons became the artillery backbone of the 
Allied forces. A battery of four of such machines costs about $110,000 
and it costs about $20 to fire one of the guns once. When the United 
States Government began making these weapons to supply its Oversea 
forces it was necessary to give some of the guns the "destruction" 
test to determine how long they would last. Two guns were fired at a 
cost of $20 a shot until they were worn out. The test cost nearly half 
a million dollars, for it was demonstrated that a gun would discharge 
about 2,500 shots before it had to be rebuilt. 

After the three-inch gun comes the 4.7 field gun, which fires a pro- 
jectile weighing 60 pounds; then the six-inch howitzer, which uses a 
3.20-pound projectile, and lastly a nine-inch howitzer, which discharges 
« shell one-half larger. 

The Use of Caterpillar Wheels. 

The main difference between the howitzer and the field gun is 
that the howitzer has a shorter barrel in proportion to its length and 
can be aimed at a high angle to throw explosive shells into protected 
positions, intrenchments, etc. 

The developments which made possible the use of guns above nine- 
inch in the field during the war related more to the methods of mount- 
ing and transportation than to the improvement of the guns themselves. 

The three factors which made the use of such guns possible were 
the "self -laying track" on which they were moved, the tractor, to sup- 
plant horses, and the mount on which the guns were operated. Because 
of their weight it was manifestly impossible to draw big guns over 
soft fields and rough roads on ordinary or even specially designed 
extra heavy wheels. Germany and Austria must be given credit for 
first solving the problem. 

The advanced step was the use of caterpillar wheels. The veriest 
novice now knows that caterpillar wheels consist of ordinary wheels 
which run in a continuous shoe or belt with a broad surface. Briefly, 
an endless chain runs around the fore and aft wheels on either side of 
a four-wheeled vehicle. The contact surface of this chain or belt may 
be from a foot to two feet in width and it extends on the earth's surface 
from the greatest diameter of the front to the rear wheel, or the 


distance between the front and rear axles. It provides a long, wide bear- 
ing surface which passes easily over soft or rough surfaces. As some 
of the 30 centimeter and 42 centimeter guns which the Germans first 
used weighed from twenty to forty tons, the caterpillar wheels were 
uecessary to their transportation on other than regularly laid railroad 
tracks. Because of their weight also it required from thirty to forty 
horses to draw one of the huge guns. 

This problem was partly solved, however, by constructing the guns 
so that they could be demounted and moved in sections. An automobile 
tractor carried the artillery crew and tools and furnished the motive 
power, while a second car carried the platform and turntable on which 
the gun was mounted. The gun proper was carried on a separate car- 
riage or caterpillar wheeled truck. 

Up until the ''great war" such guns as the 42 centimeter weapon 
of the Germans had only been used on naval vessels and at fortified 
points where they could be set up on firmly built concrete bases. The 
development of the recoil principle, however, made it possible to use 
the powerful guns wherever they could be moved, and Italy, France, 
England and America at various stages of the war brought into use 
immense guns. 

Necessity of the Gun Recoil. 

The recoil principle is that in which the force exerted against the 
breech of the gun by the discharge of a shell is taken up in the gun- 
carriage or mount, instead of being against the ground or base on 
which the entire gun rests or is anchored. 

It has been applied to the construction of all large guns and almost 
everybody now understands it when the big gun, after being discharged, 
slides back under the force of the explosion and then slowly moves 
forward again into firing position. The perfection of a mechanical 
arrangement to take up this recoil made it unnecessary to have the big 
guns solidly attached or anchored and also made possible their mount- 
ing on turntables, so that they can be moved in any direction and the 
muzzles elevated at the required angle. 

The French went the Germans one better in the transportation of 
heavy guns and used armor-protected trains on which were mounted 
heavy howitzers. The United States also developed several guns of 
this character which were taken to France, and a number were in 
process of manufacture when the war ended. 


Probably the most interesting of these guns was the "Big Bertha*' 
which was set up by the Germans to bombard Paris from a distance 
of seventy-five miles. The fact that a gun could be made which would 
shoot such a distance was at first regarded as marvelous, but military 
authorities quickly demonstrated that the only thing that was really 
extraordinary about it was the fact that Germany had done it. 

What the German military authorities did in their efforts to 
frighten Paris was to set up in St. Gobain Forest a gun of the long- 
range naval type, putting in a concrete base on which to mount it. The 
greatest previous range of a gun was about twenty-five miles, and 
their mathematical experts figuring out the problems of air resistance, 
velocity, elevation, and using explosives of a high propulsive power 
and a projectile shaped to develop the minimum resistance in flight, 
had fixed an elevation which carried the shell upon discharge into the 
higher altitudes. Since the density of the air diminishes in high alti- 
tude, the resistance likewise decreases. What this means may be 
drawn from the statement that military authorities estimate that at 
height of about twenty miles each cubic foot of space contains only 
about 15 grains of air as compared with 534 at the ground. 

The Principle of Ballistic Efficiency. 

With this idea of decreased density or resistance in mind, it must 
be understood that the "ballistic efficiency" of the projectile was taken 
into consideration. The missile that possesses the power to cut its 
own path through the air has the greatest ballistic efficiency. A tennis 
ball would travel as far as a leaden missile of the same size under a 
similar propelling force if it were not for the fact that it has not the 
power to force its way through the atmosphere, hence it lacks what 
science calls ballistic efficiency. 

If, then, a projectile is propelled into the higher altitudes, its 
ballistic efficiency increases as the resistance of the rarified atmosphere 
decreases and it travels twice the distance in the upper arc, practically 
without resistance, and descends at a greater distance from the place 
of its original projection. In other words, it makes a longer arc in its 
flight by passing through the higher altitudes than if the gun were 
pitched at an angle to make the flight of the shell through the dense 
atmosphere closer to the earth's surface. Incidentally it has been 
estimated that the time required for the flight of a shell over a distance 


of seventy-five miles is about 175 seconds. The shells used in the 
bombardment of Paris were of an eight-inch type and weighed in excess 
of 300 pounds. 

Next to the astonishment created by the bombardment of Paris, 
the ''tanks" first used by the British on the Somme were the subject 
of the greatest interest and proved to be a vital factor in the offensive 
warfare of the Allies. The tanks were simply tractor engines of the 
"caterpillar" wheel type, armored and mounted with guns. England, 
Germany and France all developed types of these monsters, as did 
America, the United States, however, developing one-man tanks and 
creating tank companies to ride through the most closely defended 
sections and intrenchments. The Government was training entire regi- 
ments of ''tankers" when the war ended. 

The turreted or armored motor car was another device which 
added to the offensive power of the Allies. Every country had types, 
but the Allies had a greater force of them than Germany and her 
allies, Italy being unusually well equipped. Most of the armored cars 
were mounted with rapid-fire guns, although some types had three- 
inch field guns. 

Tracer Bullets for Day or Night. 

In keeping with the developments made in the use of guns were 
those made in the devising of shells and secondary equipment. Wire- 
cutters, which were like small two-wheeled chariots, in which scouts 
crept toward the enem^y lines and cut the wire entanglements. Shells 
that burst in the air and sent forth phosphorescent light to illuminate 
the enemy's line. Tracer bullets, which left a trail of light in the night 
or smoke in the day. These, however, were confined in their use largely 
to aviators. The need for such missiles was shown when the airplanes 
became offensive weapons and carried rapid-fire guns. There was no 
way to tell where a missile from a gun went. No dust or earth showed 
where the bullet struck and no distant range finder directed the fire 
of the aviator. To give him some sense of direction in firing his 
machine gun, a tracer bullet was devised by the Ordnance Department 
of the United States. In daytime this bullet was followed by a long 
trail of blue smoke; at night by a phosphorescent light. One shell 
containing such a bullet was set at regular intervals in the clip holding 
the regular shells for the machine gun. When one of these tracers 
went forth the airman could tell the direction of his fire. 


With the increased use of the airplanes and their bombing came 
the air-craft guns, which are rapid-fire guns of varying calibre, so 
mounted that they can be elevated for shooting into the air. Various 
carriages have been built for this purpose, but the ordinary quick-fire 
rifle and the machine gun have also been used with good effect. 

No story of modern armament would be complete without refer- 
ence to the hand-grenade which came into use in consequence of the 
progress made in trench warfare. The hand-grenade was used as far 
back as the sixteenth century by the French and during the recent war 
several types were evolved. There were in the main, however, two 
principal types. One type exploded with a time fuse, and the other, 
was discharged on striking the earth or other object at which it was 
thrown. One type had a time fuse which caused explosion of the 
grenade five seconds after the ignition of the fuse. The free end of 
the fuse had attached to it a ''match-tip" which was ignited by striking 
it with a ring worn by the bomb thrower. 

Germany's Devilish Gas Devices. 

One of the impact type had a lever attachment which was released 
when the bomb was thrown. When the lever is freed it releases a 
firing pin which strikes a percussion cap at impact, causing the grenade 
to explode. Another type with a time fuse has a friction pin which is 
jerked out when the bomb leaves the thrower 's hand. The pulling out 
of the pia ignites the fuse and explosion follows in five or six seconds. 

There is material for much study in mechanics and chemistry for 
those interested in the devices of the war. The greatest protest aroused 
by Germany was by her use of the poisonous gases in waging warfare 
against the Allies. 

The gas was first used in the spring of 1915, notably at Ypres. 
The earliest attacks were directed against the French lines, and results 
were secured by releasing chlorine fumes from cylinders into which 
the gases had been compressed. The fumes were carried by a favorable 
wind across the positions held by the French and thousands were suffo- 
cated or poisoned to such an extent that they were rendered useless as 
combatants for long periods. After gas masks were developed to 
protect the French and English soldiers from the chlorine fumes, the 
German chemists developed the use of phosgene instead of chlorine, 
and the masks devised to absorb the chlorine fumes were not effective. 

Finally, because the gfas clouds freed from compressed tanks could 

17— W. L. 


onlv be effective when the wind was in a favorable direction, the 
German military directors adopted gas shells containing substances 
which were vaporized by the explosion of the shell and scattered in 
minute drops over a large area. Tear bombs, sneezing-gas shells and 
shells containing mustard gas, with which American troops were bom- 
barded, were among their devilish devices. The mustard gas was 
extremely virulent and set up an intense irritation wherever it came 
in contact with the mucous membrane. The eyes, nose and throat of 
any unprotected person were literally made raw and pulmonary troubles 
were developed which frequently caused death. Blindness was frequent. 

Naturally the constant use of such gases must be met and the gas 
mask came into existence. A dozen forms were made, but at the end 
of the war the most effective device had been created in America and 
was being used by most of the Allied troops. This mask consists of a 
head covering having in it mica, glass or composition goggles, a nose 
clip to close the nostrils against the entrance of gas, an aluminum 
mouthpiece connected with a tube which is attached to a chemical box 
suspended from the neck. The chemical box contains a carbon or char- 
coal and other chemicals which neutralize the poisonous gases and the 
air breathed by the wearer is filtered through the box. 

The explosives used in the war were of as many types and grades 
as there were guns. In the main, smokeless powder has supplanted 
the slow-burning black powder of the old days. Picric acid, nitro- 
plycerine, guncotton and a dozen other chemical compounds were used. 
One of the most powerful explosives used was T. N. T., or trinitro- 
toluol, which may be described briefly as a triple-nitrated guncotton. 
Lyddite, used in the manufacture of Lyddite explosive shells, has as 
its basis picric acid, but the largest percentage of explosives are those 
formed of nitrated cellulose. 

The large quantities of nitrates required to make the necessary 
explosives formed a severe stumbling block to the Allies for a time, 
and there is a story of industrial romance in how American institu- 
tions and chemists made the necessary nitrates out of kelp or seaweed 
or extracted it from the air. The importance of nitrates, or nitrogen, 
will be better understood when it is stated that all explosives are 
nitrogen or nitrous compounds, and their deadly effect is the result of 
this liberty-loving gas to burst its bonds and scatter in every direction 
the elements which sought to restrain it. 

Book II 






Close of the Franco-Prussian War— Congress of Berlin— League of the Three Emperors— Triple Alliance— 
Dual Alliance— Fashoda Incident— Boer War Enmities— Moroccan Trouble— Tripoli and the Concert 
of Europe— Triple Entente. 

TO an American, there are certain questions involved in the Great 
War which are exceedingly difficult to understand. It is simple 
enough to see that Austria forced the war on Serbia in spite of the 
fact that Russia was supporting her Slav small brother, for the suffi- 
cient reason that Austria was backed up by Berlin. But this statement 
does not explain the motives of either Austria, Serbia, Russia or 
Germany. Still less easy is it to understand why an Austrian ultimatum 
to Serbia should embroil France and England, Italy's relation is even 
more puzzling, and, so far as Turkey, Bulgaria and the Balliians are 
concerned, most people are groping in the dark. 

The Key Points of the Situation. 

Information on these points becomes a matter of vital interest 
since America has a voice in trying to arrange a saitisfaotory compro- 
mise of the thousand-and-one bitter and black hostilities which have 
been caused or re-awakened by the war. It is not enough to know that 
Alsa^je-Lorraine, Schleswig-Holstein, Bosnia, Macedonia, Dobrudja and 
the Czecho-Slovaks are the chief problems of the war, it is necessary 
to know why these are the key points of the situation. There is no 
study so bewildering and so fascinating as that wherein races and 
nations are moved like pawns upon the great chessboard of the world. 

The United States is no longer isolated and alone, scorning to be 
interested in European affairs and as scornfully debarred from them. 
Willy-nilly, she has become a part of them, or, at least, has a part 
in them, and, since the American government is only the spokesman 
for Americans, it follows that every citizen, man or woman, in the 
United States should know what is being done and why. These world 
issues will be set forth here, as simply and as briefly as possible. 



There are five fundamental principles which create separaite na- 
tionalities. These are Kace, Language, Religion, Political History and 
Geographic Isolation. Sometimes, but rarely, these principles work 
singly, generally nations possess differing characters because of a 
mixture of these principles. On the other hand, these same principles 
may be the causes which disintegrate nations as well as uniting them. 

A few examples may serve to make this clear. Sweden and Den- 
mark are alike in Race, Language and Religion, but the Baltic Sea 
between them— which is Geographic Isolation— has given a slightly 
different Political History and made them separate nations. Switzer- 
land, on the other hand, is a combination of three types, different in 
Race and Language, but the Geographic Isolation of their Alpine home 
has given them a Political History which has fused them into one. 

Conditions Leading Up to the War. 

Again, the strength of Germany is a unity of Race and Language, 
while the weakness of Austria is that she is a mere collection of peoples 
with different temperaments, speaking different tongues. It is because 
certain provinces held by Austria are Italian in speech and tempera- 
ment that Italy claims them, it is because Bulgaria and Roumania are 
respectively Tartar and Latin Islands in a Slavic sea that fighting 
never ceases in the blood-soaked Balkans. 

In order to avoid confusion, it is well to fix a certain definite 
point from which to survey the conditions which led up to and caused 
the war, not only because they were the causes of the war but because 
they explain why each and every nation entered the war and what 
each nation hopes to gain thereby. There is no altruism in diplomacy, 
all wars are fought either to gain something or to defend something. 
England fought the Boer War as a war of aggression, France fought 
the Franco-Prussian War as a war of defence. 

The Great War is a sequel to two preceding wars, one, the Franco- 
Prussian War; the other, the Second Balkan War. It is absolutely 
impossible for a peace treaty to satisfy everybody, therefore all wars 
are but preludes to other wars. Peace is not a thing in itself, it is 
merely an absence or an abstention from war. 

The Franco-Prussian War was deliberately brought about by Bis- 
marck, not because of any personal enmity to France, but because the 
consolidation of German national unity was his goal, because the wars 


with Denmark in 1864, and Austria in 1866, had only partly achieved 
this end, and because he believed that a war with France would at 
once bring into the North GTerman Confederation, headed by Prussia, 
those South German States which had declined to join it in 1866. The 
master diplomatist of the century was right, and the victory over 
France in 1871 was the beginning of the German Empire. 

All wars end with treaties, defining the changed political and 
economic relations that have been brought about by the war. The 
Franco-Prussian War was closed by the Treaty of Frankfort and Bis- 
marck demanded a war indemnity of six billion francs ($1,200,000,000) 
the cession of part of Lorraine, all of Alsace and the fortress city 
of Belfort, near the Franco-Swiss border. The treaty, signed May 10, 
1871, compelled France to pay five billion francs ($1,000,000,000), 
ordered the occupation of French territory by a German Army until 
the debt was paid, deprived France of 5,000 square miles of territory 
with 1,500,000 inhabitants. Speaking of this in 1918, Lloyd George, 
Prime Minister of England, declared 'Hhis sore has poisoned the peace 
of Europe for half a century," and three days later President Woodrow 
Wilson affirmed that ''the wrong done to France by Prussia in the 
matter of Alsace-Lorraine has unsettled the peace of the world for 
nearly fifty years." 

Kicking the Turk Out of Europe. 

France paid the indemnity with an honorable dispatch which an- 
noyed Germany terribly, for Prussia had hoped to cripple her enemy 
for many decades to come. But France never forgot the unwarranted 
attack of Germany and the irrational seizure of Alsace-Lorraine, never 
forgot and never forgave. 

The Balkan Wars and all the attendant complications may be 
regarded as parts of a fifty-year-long process of kicking the Turk out 
of Europe. In 1871, to use the same date for a starting-point, Turkey- 
in-Europe was a vast state. It embraced the Black Sea coast as far 
north as the mouth of the Danube, included the Greek province of 
Thessaly and had a sea-line on the Adriatic confronting and menacing 
Italy. Bulgaria was a Turkish holding and much of Servia was in 
Ottoman hands. Bosnia-Herzegovina was also subject to Turkey. 

In 1875, the peasants of Herzegovina revolted on a tax question, 
and their Slavic brethren in Serbia, Montenegro and Austrian Dalmatia 


joined them. Owing to the holding of large quantities of Turkish bonds, 
the powers tried to make peace. England refused to join the powers. 
The next year Turkey sent a horde of Bashi-Bazouks, irregular mili- 
tary brigands, to murder the Slavic Christians, and 12,000 men, women 
and children were massacred in cold blood. England became indignant 
and moved against Turkey, while Russia, as the ''Big Brother" of the 
Slavs, declared war on Turkey. Seizing this opportunity Bulgaria 
declared her independence and it was a Bulgarian Army which first 
stopped the victorious Turkish general Osman Pasha. Russia and 
Roumania hemmed in the Turkish Armies and Turkey was severely 
vanquished in 1878. A treaty was signed at San Stefano which, how- 
ever, was modified three months later by the famous Congress of 

Result of the Congress of Berlin. 

In later chapters of this book, details will be given as to these 
treaties, but for a broad general view it must suffice to state that the 
great Congress of Berlin did the following things: (a) enlarged the 
territories of Serbia and Montenegro, (b) gave the administration 
of Bosnia and Herzegovina to Austria, while allowing them to remain 
nominally a part of Turkey, (c) extended northwards the frontier of 
Greece, though denying to the Hellenes the Hellenic island of Crete, 
(d) extended to the southward the Russian frontier in Asia Minor, 
at the same time compelling the Sultan of Turkey to promise reforms 
in Armenia, (e) cut the new Bulgaria of the Treaty of San Stefano 
in half, returning Macedonia to the Turks and making northern Bul- 
garia an autonomous state, (f ) created a new autonomous or self-govern- 
ing state of eastern Rumelia, (g) took Bessarabia from Roumania and 
gave it to Russia, in return taking Dobrudja from Turkey and making 
it a coast-line for Roumania, and (h) gave the island of Cyprus to 

It was a vicious arrangement, pregnant with future war. It begot 
the Bosnian question between Austria and Servia, which nearly brought 
about the world war in 1908 and which was the direct cause of the 
outbreak of the Great War of 1914. It angered Bulgaria and made her 
hungry for the sea. It left the Cretan quarrel unsettled and a sore spot 
between Greece and Turkey. It made Macedonia a subterranean mine 
to blow up the peace of Europe. It bred enmity between Germany and 


Russia which fouud echo in the Great War. Since Bismarck was the 
directing genius of the Congress, and succeeded in giving back to 
Turkey much of the territory which had been rightfully taken from 
her by the Treaty of San Stefano three months before, it made Turkey 
a friend to Germany. In the results of the Congress of Berlin may be 
seen the reasons why, at the outbreak of the Great War in 1914, Russia 
and Germany were foes and Turkey and Germany w^ere friends. 

The world war nearly broke out on October 7, 1908, when Austria, 
without rhyme or reason, audaciously announced the annexation of 
Bosnia-Herzegovina, thus tearing up the treaty of the Congress of 
Berlin., England fumed, but Germany took her place behind Austria. 
England was not ready for war, but immediately after the arising of 
this issue she doubled her navy building plans, having secured a three 
years* lead of all other navies by her Dreadnought principles, a matter 
discussed elsewhere in this book. Russia, also, was incensed by the 
seizure of Bosnia, but she had just been defeated in the Russo-Japanese 
War and was in no position to offend Austria and Germany. It is of 
interest to note that this was one of the ties which helped to make 
an Alliance between England and Russia. 

Macedonia Taken From Turkey. 

Macedonia, with its main port of Saloniki, now took the center 
of the stage. Greece, Turkey, Serbia, Bulgaria, Austria and Italy 
all wanted it. In 1912 a series of treaties between the Balkan States 
were made, local enmities were set aside and these states set their 
shoulders to the wheel to get ''reforms" for Macedonia, All diplomats 
knew that after Macedonia was wrenched from Turkey, the Balkan 
States would commence to quarrel among themselves over the spoils. 
The ' ' Concert of Europe ' ' — which is a term meaning the united action 
of the diplomatic offices or chancelleries of the Great Powers — ordered 
the BaU^an States to keep quiet. But Bulgaria had wonderful French 
artillery, while Turkey had recently undergone a military reorganiza- 
tion by the Prussian general Von der Goltz and possessed modern big 
guns from Krupps. The First Balkan War began on October 18, 1912. 
In fourteen days Turkey was utterly whipped in the north by the 
Balkan States, nine days later she was routed out of Saloniki by the 
Greeks. It took until April 22, 1913, however, before the gallant little 
army of Montenegrins reduced the great Turkish fortress of Scutari. 


The Treaty of London, closing this war, was signed on May 1, 1913. 
The efforts of the Balkan States had been successful. Greece had 
secured Crete. The Macedonian problem was settled so far as "The 
Sick Man of Europe" — a conunon name for Turkey — was concerned. 
Montenegro, Serbia, Bulgaria and Greece had each received new ac- 
quisitions of territory. But — there is always a "but" in treaties — 
Austria was dissatisfied, and she fomented trouble between the Balkan 
States so cleverly that four weeks later, on May 28, 1913, Serbia sent 
an ultimatum to Bulgaria. The case grew so serious that on June 8, 
the Czar begged Bulgaria and Serbia "not to dim the glory they had 
earned in common by a fratricidal war." 

To the Teutonic dream of a Berlin-to-Bagdad railway — a matter 
to be discussed in a later chapter — peace in the Balkans was a hind- 
rance. It meant a Slav barrier to German influence. So Germany set 
herself on the side of Bulgaria and fanned the flames of race hatred. 
Herein, largely, lies the explanation of the alliance between Germany 
and Bulgaria in the Great War. 

The Treaty of Bucharest. 

Thanks to German spurring, the Second Balkan War broke out 
on June 29, 1913, by a cold-blooded, unprovoked Bulgarian attack. It 
was arranged by Germany and was of a piece with Germany's invasion 
of Belgium thirteen months later. The war was as brief as it was 
vindictive, ferocious and bloody. Greece to the south and Roumania 
to the north smashed Bulgaria utterly. Armistice was signed a month 
later, on July 30, 1913. 

The Treaty, or as it is known, the "Peace" of Bucharest was 
signed on August 10, 1913, making a new map of the Balkans. The 
results were: (a) Turkey in Europe almost disappeared, (b) Roumania 
gained 2,687 square miles and 286,000 population at the expense of 
Bulgaria, (c) Serbia nearly doubled her territory and added 1,500,000 
inhabitants, also, largely at Bulgaria's expense, (d) Greece had done 
still better, gaining 18,000 square miles and 1,700,000 inhabitants, 
mainly at the expense of Turkey, and (e) Montenegro had gained a 
quarter of a million people. To offset these huge losses, Bulgaria got 
only 9,660 square miles and 125,000 inhabitants. This left Bulgaria 
ravished and wrathful, looking to Germany to aid her in revenge. 


The ''Peace" of Bucharest was the eastern cause of the breaking out 
of the world war. 

To make clear the alignment of the powers, great and small, in 
the Great War, there remains now only to show the upbuilding of 
the Alliance. The first of these was the unification of the loose con- 
federated state of Germany into the German Empire. The importance 
of this lay in the fact that Germany was a unit. Alliance between 
Germany and France was impossible as long as Alsace-Lorraine rankled 
Alliance between Germany and England was impossible because of 
Bosnia and Bulgaria. That left only Russia and Austria. Alliance 
with both at the same time was impossible because Austria and Russia 
were arrayed one against the other on all Balkan questions. It was 
necessary to make a choice. Bismarck figured that an alliance with 
Russia was an alliance between equals, while with Austria, owing to 
the civil dissension in that ramshackle empire, the ally would become 
a tool. Tools were useful. On October 7, 1879, Germany and Austria 
became allies. 

The Creation of the Triple Alliance. 

This undermined the rather dim "League of the Three Emperors," 
the rulers of Germany, Austria and Russia, which had been a matter 
of court intrigue and courtesy during the early seventies. This League, 
indeed, perished of itself in 1881 when Czar Alexander II was assas- 
sinated by terrorist nihilists. 

Curiously enough, it was at another comer of the world that trouble 
was renewed between the powers, and, this time, France was the 
aggressor. Possessing control of Algeria, France cast longing eyes 
at Tunis. On a flimsy pretext she sent an army into Tunis and, though 
her action was a menace to Italy, seized that African coast country 
and made it a French protectorate. France had dared to do this, for 
Bismarck had hinted that Germany would not interfere, Bismarck's 
intention being to sow the seeds of dissension between France and Italy. 
Rome was unable to interfere, for she was not a member of any 
alliance and she was not strong enough to attack France singlehanded. 

This Tunis trouble created the Triple Alliance. A few months 
after France had seized Tunis, the King of Italy visited his hereditary 
foe, the Emperor of Austria. He waived the ancient claims to "Italia 
Irredenta" — to be explained in a later chapter — and entered into a 


defensive alliance with Oormaiiy and Austria. The word defensive is 
important, for Italy refused to enter the ^vorld war in 1914 on the 
ground that the war was an aggressive war and she was not bound to 
keep the x")act. The treaty was signed on INTay 22, 1882. 

This disturbed the "balance of power in Europe" — a. phrase whicJi 
means that no coalition of nations shall be allowed to become so strong 
as to endanger all the other nations. Accordingly France loaned to 
Russia the sum of twelve billion francs, at various times, and in 1891 
a secret "Dual Alliance" was formed between Eussia and France. It 
was not officially announced for several years, but all the cJiancellerics 
of Europe knew that it existed. Its chief importance lay in the fact 
that Germany and Austria could not act either in the east or the west 
without having to defend their eastern and western borders simul- 
taneously. This was exactly what happened in the Great War. 

The Triple Entente Is Formed. 

In very truth, France should have come to the aid of Russia against 
Japan, in 1905, but, just at this moment, Germany, who wished to see 
Eussia defeated, threatened France in the question of Morocco: There 
was an Anglo-French agreement in Morocco and to push the matter to 
an issue meant a sea war for which Germany, with an inadequate na"^^ 
at that time, was quite unfitted. The Act of Algeciras tided over the 

Italy now was growing restive under the ''unholy" Triple Alli- 
ance, yet she saw an opportunity to use it. Eesentful at the seizure of 
Bosnia by Austria and a witness to the weakening of Turkey, Italy 
decided to seize Tripoli, the last of T]urkey's possessions on the north 
coast of Africa. She sent a forty-eight hours' ultimatum, and on 
September 29, 1911, Italy declared war. The contest was one-sided but 
a year elapsed before the Treaty of Lausanne, October 15, 1912, gave 
Tripoli to Italy. 

From what has already been said, it is evident thatj a new com- 
bination of forces had been formed, which became known as the ''Triple 
Entente." This was not a formal alliance. It was merely the inter- 
locking of two mutually supporting pacts, the Dual Alliance and the 
Anglo-French agreement, between France and Eussia and France and 
England respectively. To make this a time "Entente" the third side 
of this triangle was necessary, namely, an Anglo-Russian understand- 


ing. This resulted after the Russo-Japanese War. As long as Russia's 
aims for outlet to the sea were in the far east, that threatened England's 
sphere of influence in China and brought a new power into the Pacific 
Ocean, hence England must needs be Russia's enemy. When Russia's 
aims for an outlet approached the near east or the Balkans, she inter- 
fered with the plans of Germany and England became Russia's friend. 
Besides, England had steadily supported Slavic aspirations in the 
Balkans as against Teutonic aims. A secret Anglo-Russian agreement 
cemented the Triple Entente. 

When the Great War actually broke out in 1914 Germany, Austria, 
Bulgaria and Turkey possessed a similarity of interests. The reasons 
for their alliance were firm and strong, for the reasons already set 
forth. Likewise England and France had common interests afl had 
Serbia and Russia. The stage was set and the hostile forces arrayed 
when Germany rang up the bloody curtain in July-August, 1914-. Envy, 
hatred, malice and all uncharitableness found vent at the cannon's 



MlUtaiy, Political and Economic Conditions of the Twenty-lour Nations Aligned Against the Central 
Pew»rt— Colonies of the Allies in Africa, Asia and Oceanica— Gradual Change la World Sentiment 
During til* War— Shipping the Key to Victory. 


HOEVER is a human being at all is also a moral human being. 
In face of this truth, no isolated occurrences have any im- 
portance save as phenomena, and so it is with war.'' So sums up 
Doctor Nicolai in "The Biology of War," one of the few remarkable 
books that the world war has produced, whether his conclusions be ap- 
proved or not. In considering the relations of the Allied Nations this 
is the main issue to be remembered — that it was as a moral question, 
toainly, that the Allies entered the war. France entered the war purely 
for defense, England because her honor was concerned to support 
Belgium. Italy because she could not condone Austria's aggressions 
on the smaller Balkan Nations, and the United States because of 
Gennan atrocities and submarine piracy. 

The first war declaration was that of Austria against Serbia, 
July 28, 1914. This was, as yet, only a local war. France and Germany 
mutually declared war August 3, 1914. This rendered it a land war 
on both sides of Europe. Belgium and Germany mutually declared 
war the next day, August 4, 1914, and on the same day Great Britain 
declared war against Germany. This made it a European War. The 
United States declared war on Germany April 6, 1917. This made the 
conflict a world war, Japan having entered the fray on August 23, 1914. 

Adopting the classification of the State Department at Washington, 
there are forty-nine independent nations on the globe. There are 
five other small states whose independence is questionable, but they 
are small and may be left out of the count. Of these 49 nations, 24 
declared war against the 4 Central Powers. There were, thus, at the 
close^ of the war, 28 nations involved. Five had broken diplomatic 
relations with Germany, without declaring war, making 33 nations 
which were not at peace. Sixteen nations remained neutral, these six- 



teen nations, however, totalling less than one-sixteenth of the world's 
whole population. 

Of the 24 nations which were definitely aligned against Germany, 
two made a separate peace. Russia signed a peace treaty with the 
Central Powers on March 3, 1918, and Roumania did likewise on May 
7, 1918. Greece remained in confusion throughout the war, toward 
the end, however, the pro-Ally spirit of the people rising superior to 
the pro-German spirit of the court. 

Regarded from a militar^^ aspect, the war declarations of Brazil, 
Costa Rica, China, Cuba, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Liberia, Nicar- 
agua, Panama, San Marino and Siam had little effect on the result. 
The total number of soldiers sent overseas by these nations — some did 
not send a single man or a single gun — ^was negligible. The situation 
by states, therefore, at the end of the war may be summarized as fol- 
lows: Central Powers, 4; Allied Military Powers, 10; nations which 
joined the Allies by sympathetic declarations of war, 12 ; nations which 
joined the Allies by sympathetic severance of diplomatic relations with 
Germany, 5 ; nations which made a separate peace, 2 ; neutrals, 16. 

Immensity of Great Britain and Her Colonies. 

The British Empire, approximately, contains 11,705,900 square 
miles, inclusive of small islands, exclusive of a few protectorates which 
are practically independent, and exclusive of ' ' spheres of influence. ' ' It 
is therefore more than three times as large as the United States, Alaska 
and all other possessions included. Its population reaches the stagger- 
ing figure of 363,785,000, or almost four times as large as that of the 
United States. At the same time it would be absurd to draw an exact 
parallel between either areas or populations. For example, the area of 
the island of Kong Kong is 32 square miles, while the population is 
360,000 ; the area of Labrador is 120,000 square miles and the population 
is 4,000. Again, it is to be remembered that large parts of British 
Imperial Territorj'^ are almost exclusively native; Swaziland, for ex- 
ample, which has 100,000 Zulus to 900 whites. 

From the economic point of view the British Empire is immeasur- 
ably larger than any other power. Approximately her foreign com- 
merce, export and import combined, is $10,000,000,000 annually as 
against $6,000,000,000 for the United States, $5,000,000,000 for the Ger- 


man Empire, $2,500,000,000 for France and $2,000,000,000 for Holland. 
Indeed, if some of the protectorates of the British Empire be added 
(as the German Customs Union does) then the commerce of the British 
Empire is greater than that of all the countries and empires of Europe 
put together. 

From the military point of view, the British Empire showed an 
extraordinary ability to raise men during the war. On August 4, 1918, 
at the close of the fourth year of the war, the British Empire had 
raised 7,500,000 men, irrespective of her immense naval force. Her 
expenditures for military and naval purposes alone, during the war, 
were $34,210,000,000 and she lent in cash and credit to her allies the 
sum of $16,000,000,000. Without considering internal affairs, therefore, 
the British Empire has devoted fifty biUions of dollars to the war. 
The contributions of other nations, both in men and money, are small 
beside these figures. 

Siiperiority of Great Britain's Navy. 

So far as her navy is concerned, the British Empire has been mis- 
tress of the seas from the first day of the war. Without the aid of 
the French and Italian navies, both of the first class of excellence, she 
was ship for ship and gun for gun almost in a proportion of three to 
two against the combined navies of the Central Powers. During the 
war she put ten immense super-Dreadnoughts into the water, any one 
of them larger than the largest German battleship and armed with 15- 
inch guns, not to be found on any ship of the enemy navy. 

It is a truism that mercantile shipping was one of the dominant 
factors of the war. Throughout the four years of the conflict, three- 
fifths of the transport of troops, munitions, supplies and provisions 
were carried in British vessels. Even when the United States entered 
the war, according to Secretary Baker's statement, more than one-half 
the American troops were carried across in English ships. 

The second power in importance to enter the war with the Allies 
was the United States. As a large part of this book is given to 
America's share in the war, there is no need to duplicate the figures 

The Republic of France, with her colonies, ranks as the third power 
among the Allies. The total area of her possessions is 4,056,000 square 


miles, with a population of 89,435,000 or nearly as large as the popula- 
tion of the Continental United States. About 55,000,000 of these are 

The eoonomio strength of France lies not so much in her commerce 
as in her internal affairs. Even so, her foreign commerce reaches the 
figure of $3,650,000,000. Aside from Argentina, which did not enter 
the war, France is far and away the richest country per capita, more 
than twice as rich as the United States. Per head of population France 
at the opening of the war had $83,06 in bank, the United States had 
$39.58, the British Empire had $30.12, Italy had $26.97, and the German 
Empire had $21.84, less even than miserable Turkey. It was an open 
commercial secret that, at the opening of the war, Germany was on the 
edge of national bankruptcy. 

From the military point of view, the strength of France was almost 
incredible. She raised for war purposes 5,250,000 men, inclusive of 
native troops. Though robbed, at the outset of the war, of her principal 
coal and iron mines, within fourteen months of the opening of the war 
she was able to keep pace in munition manufacture with the unparalleled 
demands produced by modern war. In extraordinary expenditure she 
raised the sum of $16,000,000,000 and this in a manner which showed 
that her resources were not exhausted. Her navy held the Mediter- 
ranean, and the devotion of her women kept industry and agriculture 
at full blast 

Strength of Japaa and Italy. 

The fourth power was Japan, who declared war against Germany, 
August 23, 1914. As, however, she entered the war with the distinct 
understanding that her interests lay to the east, she is not to be re- 
garded as a complete military ally. Her area is only 245,000 square 
miles but her population is 81,000,000, the same size as the German 
Empire. Her internal economic strength is poor from the European 
point of view, being but $4.60 per capita, an utterly disproportionate 
figure, for it is based on stocks of money and Japan has an entirely 
different fiscal system. Her imports and exports, however, are also 
small, reachiQg but $700,000,000 annually. Her military and naval 
force is strong and her prestige in the East is enormous. 

The fifth of the Allied Military Powers was Italy, who declared 

18— W. L. 


war against Austria, May 24, 1915. Her area (including her posses- 
sions) is 2,000,000 square miles, about half that of France. Her 
total population is approximately 37,500,000. Italy has a foreign com- 
merce of well over $1,000,000,000 and possesses a considerable mercan- 
tile fleet. As a militaiy nation, Italy is of the first rank. Her soldiers 
are famous for their gallantry. From the point of view of modern 
war, Italy is sadly lacking in the ability to supply herself with muni- 
tions, mainly for industrial reasons. She was able to put 3,750,000 
men into the field, but was dependent largely on the AUies for military 
supplies. In aviation, she was foremost. Internal difficulties— related 
in the chapter on Italy — complicated her financial status several times 
during the war. 

Little Belgium comes sixth in size, though, possibly, first in what 
may be called the importance of sentiment. The area of Belgium and 
her colonies is 100,000 square miles and the population is 22,000,000. 
But Belgium cannot draw on her colonies in the same way that England 
can call on Canada, or France on Algeria. Belgium's only large colony 
is the Congo, unavailing as a military asset. Belgium herself has but 
an area of 11,000 square miles with a population of 7,500,000. 

Economically and industrially Belgium is an important nation. 
Her per capita wealth is low, largely because of her peculiar place 
among the nations, but her commerce movements are very large in 
proportion to her size, in fact, reaching the figure of $1,700,000,000. 
This is three-quarters again as much as Italy. The military side of 
Belgium is bound up with the question of her compulsory neutrality. 
Roughly, 120,000 men would be needed for fortress duties, giving a field 
army of 80,000. As a matter of fact, Belgium succeeded in building up 
a field army of 250,000 heroes, who saved a corner of their country from 
the Hun invasion. She has no navy. 

Statistics of Belgium and Portugal. 

Portugal, the seventh power in size, though far removed from the 
scene of conflict, came into the war gallantly, becoming a British ally on 
November 23, 1914, and declaring war on Germany May 19, 1915. A 
comparatively small country, of 840,000 square miles, she has a popu- 
lation of 15,000,000; of this, however, Portugal herself has an area of 
only 35,000 square miles with 6,000,000 population. Compared, for ex- 


ample, with Spain, she is advanced and progressive. Economically she 
is stable with a per capita stock of money of $28.66, and a foreign com- 
merce of $171,000,000 annually. She sent about 200,000 men to the front 
after the declaration of war (mainly line regiments), which she entered 
as an ally of England and because of the German submarine policy 
with regard to neutral shipping. 

Greece, the eighth of these nations, is small, having an area of 
45,000 square miles, a population of 5,000,000, a wretched economic sys- 
tem and a commerce which does not reach $60,000,000 annually. Her in- 
ternal affairs are pei-petually in a state of disquietude, and her army 
is perforated with politics. She did not declare war until November 
28, 1916, recalled it, declared war anew on July 2, 1917, and generally 
hindered the Allies as much as she helped them. 

Serbia, the ninth allied country, fought bravely but was soon out 
of the conflict, her territory having been taken by conquest. In the 
chapter on Serbia will be found the whole territorial question. Actually^ 
at the opening of war, she had an area of 33,000 square miles and 
a population of 4,500,000. Her economic condition was woeful and her 
conmierce only $125,000,000 annually. Her military aid was large, but 

Montenegro, the tenth and last of the nations which joined the 
Allies and which fought well, is a tiny kingdom of 5,000 square miles, 
less than half the size of Belgium, with a population of only 500,000. 
She declared war on Germany August 9, 1914. She is a primitive 
country of gallant fighters. 

Military Resources Compared. 

A comparison of the military resources of the Allies and of the 
Central Powers is in itself impossible. The population basis would 
be nonsense, for a large part of the British and French Empires and 
Belgian possessions were natives. Armies on a peace basis form a 
false comparison, for no two countries have the same basis of estimate 
nor the same training. Moreover, owing to the extraordinary differ- 
ences in mobilization and the fact that the Allies did not all enter the 
war at the same date, any set of figures would be misleading. It will 
be necessary once more to generalize. 

In the roughest possible way, and merely to give figures in gross, 


it may be said that the Central Powers, during the whole course of 
the war, put 12,000,000 men in the field (inclusive of active reserves). 
The Allies, including the United States, put 17,000,000 men in the field. 
But, on the other hand, on the first day of the war, Germany put 
3,000,000 on the western front when the Allies did not have 1,000,000, 
and she threw 1,000,000 on the eastern front when the Allied mobiliza- 
tion did not reach 500,000. The war began with a balance of three to 
one in favor of the Central Powers. At the end of the first year, 
Germany's proportionate strength had been reduced to from five to 
four. At the end of the second year the Allies were slightly stronger 
in the number of men engaged. When the United States declared war 
on April 6, 1917, the Allies were five to four and the addition of the 
American troops turned the scale definitely to the Allies. 

It is worthy of note that the success of Germany at the beginning 
and the defeat of Germany at the end bears a very close relation to 
these figures of comparative strength. Undoubtedly, the right did 
prevail, but not until right had become might. Undoubtedly, the Ger- 
man morale broke down, but not until the power of brute force broke 
it down. It would be living in a fools' paradise not to realize that 
the world's war was won by the side which was able to put into the field 
the largest number of fighting men, and the heaviest weight of metal 
in the storm of shot and shell. The moral issue counts for much, 
leadership counts for much, the spirit of an army counts for much, 
but the whole histor}^ of this war, internal and external, supports the 
famous military dictum that ' ' Providence is on the side of the heaviest 



The Empire as a Whole— England, Scotland and Wales— Ireland— Dominion of Canada— Newfoundland- 
Commonwealth of Australia- Dominion of New Zealand— Union of South Africa— Anglo-Egypt— 
India— Naval Bases— Imperial Aims Realized. 

THE British Empire exists by three forces, the gift of colonization, 
the force of a powerful navy, and the ingenuity with which it 
has interwoven its own interests with those of the world's commerce. 
In its colonial policy it has learned to administer rather than rule, in 
its naval policy it has learned to guard rather than conquer, in its 
commercial policy it has learned to dare the hazards of Free Trade 
instead of timidly shrinking behind the wall of Protection. 

The British Empire as it existed at the beginning of the war, 
did not assume its entirety until May 31, 1902, when the Peace Treaty 
of Pretoria was signed, ending the Boer War. The importance of this 
can scarcely be over-estimated when it is remembered that Boer gen- 
erals and Boer troops were England 's valued allies in the Great War, 
operating in the campaigns against German East Africa and German 
South- West Africa. 

Origin of the English People. 

From a strictly international point of view, the British Empire 
did not exist at all until January 1, 1877, when Queen Victoria was 
proclaimed Empress of India at the durbar of Delhi. This technical 
division, however, is calculated to mislead, for long before that time. 
Great Britain and Ireland, her colonies and her possessions were an 
empire in fact, if not in name. In order to set clearly forth the char- 
acters of these component parts of a widely scattered empire, it will 
be well to deal with them separately. 

The English are a people of Teutonic origin, with a slight, a very 
slight, sprinkling of Celtic blood, except in the two Celtic counties of 
Cornwall and Devonshire. The Angles were Danes, the Saxons were 
Germans, hence the Anglo-Saxon race is first cousin to the modem Ger- 
man and of the same stock. Its only admixture was that of the Normans, 
a French-speaking colony of Scandinavians, who were Teutons also. 
England, as such, took form in 1066 when the Norman invaders usurped 
the throne. 

Scotland is a country racially divided into two sharp and distinct 



parts, the Lowlands and the Highlands. The original inhabitants of 
Scotland, the Picts and the Scots (the latter of whom came from Ire- 
land) were Celts, and they were gradually pushed to the north by the 
intruding English. The Lowlands thus became occupied by English- 
speaking Teutons, the Highlands and islands were occupied by Gaelic- 
speaking Celts. James VI of Scotland became James I of England in 
1603, thus creating an alliance between two nations. Scotland is not a 
conquered country and possesses a number of curious privileges unique 
in the British Empire. 

Wales is a country predominantly Celtic, where the national tongue 
is widely spoken. It was always bitterly opposed to the Anglo-Saxons 
and to the Normans, but was finally conquered in 1283. In order to 
pacify the gallant Welsh, however, it remained a nominal principality, 
and, since 1301, the title and honors of Prince of Wales are associated 
with the recognized heir of the British Crown, 

The Modern Irish Question. 

Great Britain, thus, is to be considered as a historic unit of two 
races and two language groups, the English overwhelmingly the great- 
est in importance. Geographic Isolation has welded these three king- 
doms into one whole, utterly heterogeneous in themselves and each 
possessing a different religious problem besides, yet still able to think 
and act together. England is the spokesman for all. 

Ireland is a very different matter. To begin with, Ireland is 
mainly Celtic and has always been totally Celtic until the colonization 
of the north-east tip of the island, by Lowland Scotch, who, as has been 
shown before, are Teutons. These men, who settled in the ancient 
Kingdom of Ulster, are Presbyterians. They are called Orangemen 
because they supported the Protestant King William III (William of 
Orange), and are rancorous haters of the Roman Catholics, by whom 
more than two-thirds of Ireland is populated. 

The modern Irish question depends largely on the presence in one 
small island of these two irreconcilable groups, the one Teuton and 
Protestant, the other Celtic and Roman Catholic. It is further compli- 
cated by the fact that the Protestant minority is supported by England, 
which feeds the flames of animosity on the part of the majority. To off- 
set this, it should be added that the Ulstermen are loyal to Great 
Britain, are frugal, progressive and leaders of industrialism; the Irish 


are generally credited with being wasteful, indifferent to progress and 
but shiftless agriculturists. 

The history of Ireland cannot be written without controversy, be- 
cause neither English nor Irish historians tell the truth. A few facts, 
undisputed by both sides, must suffice. It is for the reader to draw his 
own conclusions. Ireland was conquered by Henry II in 1171. One 
hundred and fifty years later, Ireland had shaken off English control 
and was under her chiefs, again. Wherefore, in 1361, Edward III, a 
powerful monarch, divided Ireland into two parts, Irish Ireland and 
English Ireland, and drew up for its governance the famous Statute 
of Kilkenny. 

Oppression of Ireland. 

Some of the provisions in this statute show its tenor. Thus for an 
Englishman to marry an Irish girl was high treason, punishable with 
death. Any merchant selling a horse or a weapon to an Irishman 
was to be cut into pieces. For an Irishman to wear his own costume 
was punishable with imprisonment. Killing an Irishman was declared 
not to be a crime. No Irishman (except a selected list of families) 
was allowed to plead in court. Speaking Irish was made penal. This 
Statute was followed by English acts even more ferocious, some too 
disg-usting and bloody to quote. The natural result was that Ireland 
was in a state of constant rebellion and the gory history grew even 
more terrible. 

As if this were not enough, later centuries saw an effort to force 
Protestantism on Ireland, whether she would or no. The property of 
four hundred monasteries — most of them, poor — was confiscated, and 
the Protestant Reformers of England sent soldiers to desecrate every 
church, and destroy every holy relic they could find. When the staff 
of St. Patrick, which was believed to have been used by the Savior, 
was publicly burnt in the market-place of Dublin by the English author- 
ities, another link was forged in the chain of horror and hatred. 

Three risings were put down by an iron hand and food was con- 
fiscated, for '^only starvation," said the Lord Lieutenant, "can tame 
wild beasts." In 1798 all Ireland rose in rebellion, but could do nothing 
against the might of England. Every one of the leaders was either 
shot, hanged or died in prison. Matters smouldered until the Great 
Famine of 1845, where, for a while, England came to the rescue and 


sent over quantities of food. But the famine was beyond help. In 
whole districts not one soul was left alive, it was impossible to bury 
the corpses in others and one-third of the population of Ireland per- 
ished of starvation and disease between the years 1845 and 1849, or 
emigrated to America. Fenianism sprang up i mm ediately, but it was 
not widely supported by the disheartened Irish. 

With Mr. Gladstone and the Irish Land Act of 1870 begins the 
modem period when England strove, as she still is striving, to bring 
peace and content in Ireland. 

To discuss Home Rule is outside the scope of this book, but one 
may say, simply, that Home Rule is a phrase embodying the idea that 
the Irish, as Irish, should have some rights of their own in Ireland 
and that such rights can only be safeguarded by some form of self- 
government. Gladstone fought hard for Home Rule of a certain 
sort, but all his schemes were too little for Ireland and too much for 
England, so nothing came of it. 

The Sinn Fein Movement. 

The history of the succeeding thirty years and more, right up to 
the beginning of the war, throws much of the blame on the Irish side. 
Now that England was willing to grant some amelioration, the Irish 
could not agree on what they wanted, and this disagreement was due 
to the antagonism of the Orangemen. Once established in Ireland, 
they had a perfect right to be heard and to protect their own interests. 

In 1913, civil war threatened momentarily. Sir Edward Carson, 
the leader of Ulster, armed and equipped 50,000 men with complete 
artillery units, announcing his intention to set up a Provisional Govern- 
pient hostile both to England and to Ireland if the Home Rule Bill, 
then before Parliament, were passed. The Irish leaders declared 
that England winked at Carson's disloyalty, as it afforded a reason 
for refusing Home Rule to Ireland. This is a matter of controversy. 
Both sides produce contradictory documents. The truth is not publicly 

It is at this point that the Sinn Fein movement began to take a 
prominent place. In brief, it was and is a movement to develop in- 
dustry, agriculture, education, language and citizenship in Ireland, on 
the principle that the Irish are a free people. The aims are true, the 
principle is false. Ireland is a conquered people. 


In answer to the defiance of the Ulster Volunteers, however, the 
Irish commenced to raise and equip an army of Irish or National Volun- 
teers. The British government at once acted, and though there had 
been no law to prohibit the shipment of arms to Ulster, within three 
weeks England forbade any such shipments to Ireland. 

This was the situation in the first half of 1914. Ulster and Ireland 
growing more and more wide apart, as further arms were brought in 
secretly. English garrisons in Ireland were inorealsed and every 
preparation was made in the event of civil war. It is small wonder 
that the German agents in Ireland reported to the Kaiser that the 
situation in Ireland was so grave that if he started war with France, 
England was in too strained a position to dare to join in. In fact, 
July 30, 1914, the day Russia mobilized and Berlin prepared her 
ultimatum, was the day named for a debate in the British Parliament 
which might set Ulster and Ireland at each others' throats. 

Loyalty of a Conqxtered People. 

What happened? In view of the strained European situation the 
debate was postponed by mutual consent and on August 3, John Red- 
mond, leader of the Irish Party in Parliament, uttered a speech in 
which occurred the following words: "Today there are in Ireland two 
large bodies of Volunteers. One of them sprang into existence in the 
North. Another has sprung into existence in the South. I say to the 
Government that they may tomorrow withdraw every one of their 
troops from Ireland. I say that the coasts of Ireland will be defended 
from foreign invasion by her armed sons, and for this purpose armed 
Nationalist Catholics in the South will be only too glad to join arms 
with armed Protestant Ulstermen in the North. ' ' Carson was swift to 
endorse this policy. Loyalty is not required of a conquered people, 
but Ireland's representatives in Parliament offered it voluntarily. 

Carson might speak for all Ulster, but Redmond, certainly, did 
not speak for all Ireland. Recruiting was slow in Ireland and the 
efforts of the English recruiting sergeant were open to grave question. 
The Irish were willing to defend Ireland and the Empire, but not all 
of them were willing to fight against Germany in what they felt to be 
England's quarrel. England, though she soon came to a desperate 
need for men, did not dare enforce conscription in Ireland. The ever- 
recurring threats of it brought about the actual moment of the rebel- 
lion of 1916. 


No one who knows the facts of the case will deny that Sir Roger 
Casement and many leaders of the seven brotherhoods— headed by the 

Sinn Fein ^were in correspondence with Germany. Arms had been 

sent from Germany, financial as well as moral support obtained from 
Berlin. A conquered people, the Sinn Feiners argued, in seeking to 
free itself had an intrinsic right to seek aid wherever it could. England 
would not aid Ireland to become a Republic; Germany would do so. 
There was the issue in a nutshell. 

The Dublin Rebellion. 

The Irish Republic was proclaimed April 23, 1916. The banner 
of England was hauled down on the Dublin Post Office and the Green, 
White and Orange tricolor was hoisted in its place. Dublin Castle 
was seized. Seventy-one towns throughout Ireland were in the hands 
of the adherents of the Irish Republic by April 25. The Battle of Dublin 
began April 26, 1918. There were but 1,100 Irish against 60,000 sea- 
soned English troops. The gunboat Helga turned her guns on the city. 
Dublin was set on fiire. The fight raged for three days and nights 
continuously but on April 29 the leaders of the revolt surrendered to 
the English, and the First Irish Republic was at an end. 

Four days later three of the leaders, including President Pearse, 
were court-martialed and shot, the next day four more were executed, 
and, the day after, a boy paid the last penalty. On May 12 the remain- 
ing two of the leaders were shot, likewise. Sir Roger Casement was 
tried for high treason and hanged August 3, 1916. This was the end 
of the ''First Irish Republic" or "The Dublin Rebellion," according 
to the point of view of the writer, but it was not the end of Sinn Fein, 
nor yet of Ireland. 

Canada's place in the Great War begins with the great duel between 
the then two master powers of Europe — England and France — which 
is immortalized in the names Montcalm and Wolfe. This duel ended in 
1759, formal cession of Canada, which included New Brunswick and 
Prince Edward Island, being made in 1763. The Oregon Boundary 
Treaty of 1846 defined the lands of England and the United States 
respectively, in the west, and British Columbia— the name is worth a 
moment's thought— was occupied in 1858. The Dominion of Canada 
was proclaimed in 1867, and the Northwest Territories embracing in 
part the Provinces now known as Manitoba, Alberta and Saskatchewan 
were purchased from the Hudson's Bay Company in 1869. 


As has been shown, Canada sprang eagerly into the War and 
displayed a loyalty equal only to the gallantly of her soldiers. The 
story of the Canadians at Ypres, when poison gas was used for the 
first time, is one of the greatest epics of courage in human histor}^ 

None the less, Quebec's relation to the war belongs definitely 
to the class of world problems. The province of Quebec contains 
about one-quarter of the total population of Canada, yet it contributed 
less than one twenty-fifth of the total number of volunteers. Bourassa, 
the leader of the Quebec Nationalists, openly discouraged enlistment 
and declared that "it is the duty of England to defend Canada, not of 
Canada to defend England. " The reason of this feeling in the Province 
of Quebec lies in the fact that of its population of 2,000,000 people, 
over 1,600,000 are of French origin and not British. 

Loyalty of Australia and New Zealand. 

French Canadians are more French than France, just as British 
Canadians are more English than England. The disestablishment of 
the Roman Catholic Church in France and the rise of French liberalism 
found little echo in Quebec. The ''habitant" is intensely self-centred 
and jealous of his provincial integrity, and the war, to him, seemed 
remote. Conscription was forced in 1917 and a revolt of no small magni- 
tude resulted, a revolt so dangerous that all the news of it was censored 
out of the press. "When order was restored the citizens of Quebec were 
conscripted against their will, though, once under arms, they acquitted 
themselves well. There seems no sufficient reason for crediting the 
suspicion that German propaganda was influential in the matter. 

Australia has no such racial and religious complications as Canada. 
Holland explorers had (probably) sighted the land in the seventeenth 
century, but Captain Cook truly discovered New South "Wales in 1770, 
and in 1786 it became a convict settlement on the plantation system, 
criminals being transported thither for over fifty years. 

In 1850 the British Parliament issued an act allowing the Australian 
colonies the right to choose their own form of government, and New 
South "Wales becam.e a state after the Canadian pattern in 1856. Vic- 
toria, separated from New South Wales five years before, took the same 
step. Queensland became a separate colony in 1859, South Australia 
was of the vintage of 1856. Western Australia became a convict settle- 
ment after Botany Bay was abolished and attained partial freedom 


iu 1870 and powers similar to other Austrial states in 1890. The Island 
of Tasmania, or Van Diemen's Land, a dependency of New South 
Wales, was included in the 1856 agreement. The Northern Territory 
of Australia is not a state but a territory under the control of the 
Commonwealth government by permission of South Australia, in 1911. 
The Commonwealth of Australia, consisting of these six colonies, was 
proclaimed January 1, 1901, and controls the entire continent, including 
the island of Tasmania. 

The world will never hereafter fail to group Australia and New 
Zealand together in a dual alliance of heroism. The word ''Anzac" — 
which was taken from the initial letters of the A-ustralian and N-ew 
Z-ealand A-rmy C-orps — has become synonymous with desperate cour- 
age and high-hearted resolve. The story of the Gallipolis Peninsula, 
told elsewhere in this book, is a tale of deeds that rank with those 
of the Paladins of old time. 

England's Enlarged Interests in India. 

Yet, in truth, Australia and New Zealand are radically different 
in many ways. Melbourne and Auckland are almost the same distance 
apart as New York and Liverpool. Australia is largely a waterless 
desert. New Zealand is a country of sea-coast and mountain torrents. 
Australia is conservative, New Zealand is frankly a socialistic state. 
None the less, in spite of its doctrinaire ideas. New Zealand sent a 
larger proportion of volunteers in relation to her population than any 
other large colony of the British Empire. 

The Indian Empire is the most marvellous piece of administration 
yet achieved in the history of nations. Clive, Hastings, and their suc- 
cessors, in the name of a commercial venture, The East India Company, 
won India by the sword. By 1818, the company was supreme in India 
south of the Sutlej. During the next half -century, Bengal, Orissa and 
Bihar had been annexed, Oudh and Hyderabad were ruled by subject 
princes, the Central Indian chieftains were merely vassals and even 
the Emperor at Delhi was a puppet whose strings were pulled by the 
company. The conquest of the warlike Sikhs of the Punjab carried 
British power to the foot of the Himalayas. 

Then came ''The Year." The Sepoy Mutiny was not an Indian 
Revolution, far from it, for neither did the Punjab nor any part of 
South India take part in it. Yet it was exceedingly grave, for it took 


the character of a Holy War. The strife was bitter and bloody, and 
when the desperate fighting ended with the victory of the British 
troops, England realized that a more definite form of government than 
that of the East India Company was needed. In 1858 the sovereignty 
of India passed to the British Crown and in 1877 Victoria, Queen of 
Great Britain and Ireland, was acclaimed Empress of India. 

It may be well to point out that, since that time, England had stead- 
ily enlarged her Indian Empire. Harsh critics have alleged that 
"there has never been a time when England was not engaged in plan- 
ning or fighting a war of conquest," and, in a measure, this is true. 
For example, during the fifty years preceding the Great War, England's 
march in India runs as follows : in 1871 British India was 860,000 square 
miles ; in 1881, 875,000 sq. m. ; in 1891, 964,000 sq. m. ; in 1901, 1,097,000 
sq. m.; and in 1911, it was 1,093,000 sq. m. During the fifty years 
these additions have placed 50,000,000 more people under British rule. 

Loyalty of the Indian Empire. 

To say that there is never a time when there is not some discontent 
in India is a platitude, but it is more powerfully true to say that 
India has never been so well content. The Christians form less than 
two per cent, of the population of India, the racial mixture is far 
more complicated than the whole of Europe, there are four huge and 
vividly opposed religions to say nothing of internecine creed divisions, 
there are a dozen important and contradictory national aspirations, 
yet India is at peace and superbly governed. 

Instead of the policy of repression which England adopted in 
Ireland and in the English Colonies of America, which cost her the 
latter and has made the former a constant thorn in her side, England 
has steadily pursued in India the policy of understanding, help and 
enlightenment. The result is a tribute of loyalty which seems incredible. 
In the teeth of a well organized and heavily subsidized German propa- 
ganda to provoke a revolt, every part and comer of India stayed true. 

Turkey, incited by Germany, proclaimed a ''Holy War" of the 
Mohammedans against the Christians. India's answer was found in 
the resolutions of the All-Indian Moslem League pledging ''the loyal 
support of the imperial cause by the Mu&selmans of India." 

In 1915 Germany announced that the Indian troops had been 
coerced into the war and that England had been compelled to send 


increased white armies to India. The facts of the case are that Eng- 
land reduced the number of her garrisoned troops from 75,000 in 1914 
to 10,000 in 1918, the latter number being merely a skeleton to keep 
garrison posts together. As for coercion, most of the 325,000 troops 
given by India were furnished by native princes, who led their forces 
in person. The Sikhs from the Punjab are accounted among the bravest 
soldiers of the world, but the Ghurkas, Rajputs and Parthians also won 
glorious records in the war. 

India's financial support was large, the Nizam of Hyderabad alone 
personally contributing $10,000,000. India contributed half a billion 
dollars in voluntary contributions, and supported her own armies in 
the field. The students, among whom Germany counted most to foment 
disturbance, organized themselves into hospital units and the Kaiser's 
agents, having pocketed the money they were paid for their false reports 
as to India's mutinous condition, slunk away. 

England's Possessions in Africa. 

If India, the goal of Germany's propagandist efforts, proved so 
faithful, what must have been the feeling in Berlin at the outcome in 
South Africa? There, perhaps, of all corners of the empire, the Teu- 
tons might well have expected the outburst of flames of hate. It cannot 
be denied that if South Africa turned upon the Empire she could have 
found reasons a-plenty. 

The African possessions of the British Empire form three groups, 
the Union of South Africa and Rhodesia, British East Africa and the 
Nile countries, including the Soudan and Egypt, British East Africa, 
including Uganda, may be dismissed with a word. These two protec- 
torates possess a population of 7,000,000, are rich in resources, and, 
when the war broke out, they became the backbone of England's long- 
drawn-out war with Germany's most valuable colony, German East 

Honesty compels the statement that, viewed from the historical 
aspect, England's claims in South Africa are those of the usurper. 
Cape Colony was taken— not to say stolen— from Holland in 1795, a 
purchase treaty making this final in 1814. The population was nearly 
all Dutch. In 1828 the Dutch forms of law were abolished and English 
judges excluded Hollanders or Boers from a jury even when a prisoner 
and witnesses were Dutch. In many courts, the Dutch language might 
not be spoken. 


Meantime, year after year, the boundary was pushed north and 
ever north. As the English flowed in from the south, the Dutch were 
driven away from the coast lands. Then, in 1833, came tjie abolition 
of slavery, and since the compensation allotted to the Dutch planters 
and farmers was less than half the estimated value of the slaves, the 
colonists deemed that the Crown had arrogantly deprived them of 
valuable property. 

In 1834, without a word of warning, twelve thousand Kaffir war- 
riors, angered by the encroachment of the whites upon their territories, 
crossed the frontier, robbing, burning and murdering. The British 
governor sent troops to punish the Kaffirs and seized a section of their 
land. The missionaries interfered and forced the territory to be given 
back, a most unwise move, for the Kaffirs interpreted it to mean that 
the white men were afraid. This ill-advised action irritated the already 
exasperated Boers still more and led in 1836, to the Great Trek when 
all the Boers left Cape Colony and marched north to found the Orange 
Free ^tate and the South African Republic. 

The War in South Africa. 

Presently, after the First Zulu War, Natal became British Terri- 
tory and in 1877 the Transvaal was annexed. Then followed the second 
and greater Zula War at the end of which British power was seen to 
be supreme. Then came the discovery of gold in the lands held by 
the Dutch trekkers, and England's cupidity was excited anew. The 
Boer War was brewing. 

From a certain world-view England might be excused, but from 
no possible point of view could she be considered to be in the right. 
Even the English public felt this. Two absolutely contradictory princi- 
ples were opposed — national pride and commercial gain. The Boer 
claimed patriotism and independence, the Briton claimed the progress 
of civilization. 

The war, to England's surprise and discomfiture, demanded the 
output of vast armies, and the Boers, though few in number, inflicted 
many a defeat on Britain's best troops. The conflict ended in 1902, 
but England's victory was coupled with a great loss of prestige. The 
Treaty of Peace contained a promise of autonomy, and accordingly, 
in 1906 the Transvaal was proclaimed a self-governing colony. In 1910 
the Colonies of the Cape of Good Hope, Natal, Transvaal and the 


Orange River were united in the Union of South Africa. In its parlia- 
ment Boers and Britons sat side by side and General Botha, a Boer 
leader, was Prime Minister. Both English and Dutch were recognized 
as the official language and Dutch Law was adopted. Rhodesia, mean- 
while, remained under English control, in the hands of the British 
South Africa Company. 

In the history of the war, which is told elsewhere in this volume, 
one of the most significant facts is that the Commander of the forces 
which conquered German East Africa was General Smuts, a Boer, and 
a comrade of General Botha. As for Botha, though he had been com- 
mander-in-chief of the Boer Army when it was arrayed against Eng- 
land, in 1914 he swung the whole Dutch spirit of South Africa toward 
the British Empire. On September 13, 1914, the Parliament of the 
Union' of South Africa, strongly controlled by a Dutch majority, 
pledged the support of South Africa to the Empire. 

Events in Egypt. 

German troops had been mobilized on the colonial frontier, but, on 
Botha's assurance, England ignored the threat and all the British 
troops were withdrawn. A few German-made revolts were put down 
by the populace themselves, and German Southwest Africa was con- 
quered for the Empire by a Boer Army under General Botha, while, 
as has been said. General Smuts commanded the forces in the German 
East Africa campaign. Besides these bitter and costly campaigns on 
the African continent, South Africa shipped an expeditionary force 
of 60,000 troops overseas, and 10,000 Kaffirs were sent as laborers to 

In the Great War, Egypt was a vital question. The Kaiser had 
not only announced his intention of dining in Paris, but he had also 
announced his plans for Germanizing the Suez Canal. This meant the 
shutting off of India. The entire Palestine question, with General 
Allenby's capture of Jerusalem, can only be understood by remember- 
ing that the Holy Land is the northern buffer state to Egypt. 

The Mediterranean and Egypt question begins with the taking of 
Gibraltar in 1704. Malta, blockaded in 1800, was ceded by France to 
England in 1814. Thus England established a naval base at the en- 
trance of the Mediterranean and another in the middle of that great 
mland sea. She had also wished a canal across Suez, but English 


capital achieved the impossible, and the Suez Canal was opened in 
1869. Then came the Franco-Prussian war, and, simultaneously came 
the bankruptcy of the spendthrift Khedive of Egypt who had been 
paid for the rights to his territory by one-half the shares of the Canal. 
England bought them from him, and, in 1876 the Canal came under 
the dual control of England and France. 

A revolution broke loose in Egypt, still nominally a Turkish 
province, and the British fleet undertook to stop it. France feared 
complications with Turkey and the French fleet sailed away. The 
British warships opened their batteries. Dual Control was over. 
Thenceforward on English shoulders fell the burden of restoring order 
in Egypt. Not for a moment did England purpose the conquest of 
Egypt when the bombardment of Alexandria began, but an insurrection 
in the Soudan, under the Makdi, followed by the Soudanese invasion 
of Egypt and the murder of General Gordon at Kartoum, led to a war 
of reprisal which did not cease until "Kitchener of Khartoum" stood 
victorious on the field of Omdurman. 

Germany's Misjudgment of Great Britain. 

When the Great War broke out in 1914, Egypt was still nominally 
a Turkish province, but financially an English dependency. The diplo- 
matic question, however, was always ticklish, and it soon became evi- 
dent that the then Khedive was plotting with Germany. Since England 
was at war with Turkey, conquest would have been justifiable, but, by 
agreement between London and Paris, a protectorate was decided upon 
instead, the Eledive deposed and his uncle proclaimed Sultan. This 
protectorate has been recognized by the Allies, but not by the Central 
Powers. The Road to the East is now definitely in British hands, and, 
since British East Africa has fallen, there is no barrier to the com- 
pletion of Cecil Rhodes' great dream, the Cape-to-Cairo railway. 

Nothing looser, more heterogeneous and more scattering in type 
has ever been seen than the British Empire as it was when it entered 
the war. For this reason, largely,, Germany hoped on, even after it 
became evident that the British Empire had thrown its full force into 
the struggle. Yet Germany forgot one thing. She judged England's 
colonial possessions by her own. She did not know that the loosest 
bonds are the tightest ones when forged in the spirit of Justice, Liberty 
and Fair Play. She staked her all on Organized Might, she lost her 
all on Co-operated Right. ]9_w l 



CoBgress of Vienna— Flemings and Walloons— Revolt for Independence— Intervention ef the Powers- 
Perpetual Neutrality- Hunt_ for a King— Policy of Bismarck— German Treachery— Belgian Congo— 
A "scrap of paper"— Frlghtfulness and Atrocities— Luxemburg. 

4 4 /CHAMPION of human honor!" begins Eden Philpotts' glorious 
\^ sonnet to Belgium, and, in all that has been written and said 
of Belgium during the war, this is the key thought. Yet why this is 
true, why all the world has been stirred by the German aggression of 
Belgium, why it was one of the blackest crimes on the sooty pages of 
international piracy is a diplomatic question which demands careful 

There are two factors which determine the history of Belgium and 
her peculiar place in Europe and which entered actively into her 
relation to the world war. The first of these factors is external and 
strategical and depends upon her geographical position, the second 
is internal and racial. 

The strategical importance of Belgium lies in the fact that the 
chain of mountains which bridges Europe in a south-easterly direction 
is broken only in Belgium. From the Mediterranean, northwestward, 
the Maritime Alps, the Swiss Alps, the Jura Mountains, the Vosges 
Mountains and the forested hills of the Ardennes create a military 
barrier. Belgium is largely a country of plains, a natural battleground 
and was long known — in the days of cock-fighting — as the ** cockpit 
of Europe." 

It was the scene of the constant strife between Spain and the 
Netherlands. At the battle of Ramillies, in 1706, the English, under 
Marborough defeated the armies of Louis XIV of France, "the great 
monarch." The French King was forced to sue for peace, but the 
English asked such humiliating terms that he refused and went on 
fighting, turning the tide. Peace was made by the Treaty of Utrecht. 

A century later, Belgium was the scene of the close of Napoleon's 



career, when, at the Battle of Waterloo, in 1815, the English and Prus- 
sians met the French in the fatal plains of Belgium and inflicted a 
decisive defeat. A dozen historic battlefields could be named, all of 
which have been the scenes of battle during the present war. 

Belgium is of the highest strategical importance to France, for 
the frontier between the two countries is political, rather than geo- 
graphical, and therefore difficult of defence. To England Belgium is 
of strategical importance for it has always been held that her naval 
supremacy would be imperilled if a great power held the port of Ant- 
werp. To Germany, Belgium (and Holland) held out the tempting bait 
of a wide and rich seacoast instead of the small North Sea outlet she 
possessed before the war. 

Birth of Modem Belgium. 

It follows, therefore, that Belgium was coveted by Germany, by 
England and by France and that any two of these nations would be ready 
I to combine against the third should that third undertake a war of 
conquest. When Germany invaded Belgium in 1914, England joined 
France, not because of any emotional sympathy for Belgium — chancel- 
leries, like corporations, have no souls — but because a German Belgium 
would be an intolerable menace, laying the British Isles open to the 
risk of sudden invasion. 

The second factor, as has been said, was internal and racial. 
Small as is Belgium, she is inhabited by two widely different races, 
the Flemings and Walloons. The Flemings are the direct descendants 
of the Germanic barbarians who swept southward at the collapse of 
the Ancient Roman Empire, and who found the people of the low plains 
of the north and west an easy prey. They remain there still, thoroughly 
Teutonic in blood, language and culture. They are more German, even, 
than the Dutch. 

The Walloons, on the other hand, are Celtic in stock, greatly Latin- 
ized by French influence. They speak French, are possessed of the 
French spirit and Brussels ''the little Paris" is as French as the great 
city upon the Seine. 

The great Congress of Vienna, which dabbled with every kind of 
international juggling and had a finger in every pie, recreated the 
Kingdom of the Netherlands by joining Belgium to Holland, the reason 
of this action being the fear of French aggression which had been pro- 


duced by the incessant victories of Napoleon. But this, like many 
similar devices arranged by compromise, could not endure; while the 
Walloons had been willing to go in partnership with the Flemings, they 
could not trot in harness with the Dutch. 

Suddenly — as a matter of fact, incited by a patriotic song sung in 
an opera, — the Belgians revolted, secured the aid of such of the Flem- 
mings as were Roman Catholics and who had been harassed by the 
Protestantism of the Dutch, seized Brussels for themselves, erected 
barricades and drove out their rulers. On October 4, 1830, the Independ- 
ence of Belgium was proclaimed and a Constitutional Government 
formed. This was the birth of Modem Belgium. 

Belgium a Perpetually Neutral State. 

The "Hunt for a King" became a famous diplomatic affair. In 
the briefest possible words it may be said that France insisted on a 
French king for Belgium, England was determined on the Prince of 
Orange. The National Council of Belgium tentatively offered the crown 
to the Due de Nemours, son of the French Emperor Louis Philippe. 
Word was sent that the suggestion would be favorably received. A 
deputation set off for Paris to make the formal offer. Meantime, before 
the deputation arrived, the English Cabinet announced that it -would 
declare war on France if the offer were accepted, thus following out 
the policy that no great power should control Belgium. Louis Philippe 
was compelled to decline the crown on behalf of his son, and England 
succeeded in forcing Belgium to offer the crown to Prince Leopold of 
Saxe-Coburg, a famous German soldier, conditional on his marrying 
the daughter of Louis Philippe. Thus Germany, England and France 
could be considered as sharing the interests of the crown of Belgium. 

With this, the great powers recognized the independence of Bel- 
gium, and at the same time determined that Belgium should be with- 
drawn from international wrangling by being made *'a perpetually 
neutral state" at the same time pledging her ''perpetual neutrality 
and also the integrity and inviolability of her territory. ' ' Prussia and 
Austria, be it noted, were among the signers of this treaty, the pledge 
also having been signed by England, France and Russia. This treaty 
was renewed, enlarged and reinforced in 1839, exact and particular 
stipulations being made and sworn that no foreign armies should be 
allowed to cross Belgium for any purpose. To enable Belgium to dis- 


charge this duty she was allowed to inamtain an army and to fortify 
certain strategic points, especially Liege, Namur and Antwerp. 

In the Franco-Prussian War, England grew afraid that either one 
or other of the powers might seek to seize Belgium and by implied 
threats that she would espouse the refractory cause, she forced France 
and Prussia to sign compacts reaffirming ''their settled determination 
to maintain the independence and neutrality of Belgium as established 
by the treaty of 1839." In 1875 Bismarck renewed the same assur- 
ances. In 1907, at the Hague, Germany re-endorsed the principle, and 
in 1911, after the Germans had built strategic railways ending in 
fields facing the Belgian frontier, Bethman-Hollweg, the German Chan- 
cellor, at the outset of the war answered a Belgian protest with the 
words ^'Germany has no intention of violating Belgian neutrality." 

Germany Renounces Belgium's Neutrality. 

German treachery, in this case, grows steadily blacker as the time 
of the war approaches. After urging Belgium to modernize her fort- 
resses, Germany ordered Krupps not to send the guns that the Belgian 
government had ordered. German military books discussed the Belgian 
plains as the only line of attack on France. It became an open secret 
that Germany pooh-poohed the treaty of eighty years before, which 
was signed only by Prussia. Yet, in April, 1914, less than four months 
before the outbreak of war, Von Jagow, the German foreign minister, 
declared ''Belgian neutrality is provided for by international conven- 
tions and Germany is determined to respect those conventions." 

War broke out between Austria and Servia. On July 31, 1914, 
England officially questioned Paris and Berlin whether both powers 
would ''engage to respect the neutrality of Belgium, so long as no other 
power violates it?" France answered honestly that she would do so. 
Germany evaded reply, the foreign minister declaring that he must 
consult the emperor and chancellor before giving an answer. Next 
day England put the issue directly before Germany. The German 
ambassador countered with the question whether, if Germany assured 
England regarding Belgium, would England engage to remain neutral? 

On August 1, the German ambassador at Brussels stated to Bel- 
gium "you may perhaps see your neighbor's roof in flames, but your 
own house will not catch fire." The mHitary attache of the German 
legation, on the same day, telephoned to the editor of a famous Brussels 


newspaper, "You may deny in your largest type that Belgium has 
anything to dread." Yet, that very day, Germany invaded Luxemburg. 

On Sunday, August 2, 1914, the German minister appeared at 
the Belgian foreign ofiQce with the official communique from Berlin in 
answer to Belgium's request for further assurances that Luxemburg's 
violation was not a forecast of what might happen to her. Belgium 
asked for an assurance, she received an ultimatum. The document 
stated that Germany had learned that French forces ' ' intend to march 
through Belgium against Germany." This phrase constitutes what 
diplomats call an unsupported statement, and what Americans, gener- 
ally, call an impudent and bare-faced lie. 

The ultimatum was vicious in its terms. It demanded that Bel- 
gium allow the German armies to cross her soil, and that, in such 
event, Belgian independence would be restored after the war and 
payment given for damage done. If Belgium should refuse, the ulti- 
matum read: "Germany will to her regret be compelled to consider 
Belgium as an enemy." Twelve hours were given for the answer. In 
twelve hours' time, no one, neither France nor England, could reach 
Belgium to give aid. 

Belgium Staunch in Her Resistance. 

To the end of time let it be told that not one voice was raised 
in the Belgian Royal Council in favor of submission. Flemings and 
Walloons alike refused dishonor. The council debated all night as to 
the best means of resistance and in the gray dawn threw down the 
gauntlet in the following words: "We refuse to believe that the in- 
dependence of Belgium can only be preserved at the price of the viola- 
tion of her neutrality. If this hope is disappointed, the Belgian govern- 
ment is firmly resolved to repel with all the means in its power, every 
attack upon its rights." At the same time King Albert sent a telegram 
asking the diplomatic aid of England, Belgian pride forbidding an 
appeal for military help. 

This is still the morning of August 3. Sir Edward Grey, in the 
British House of Commons reviewed the whole Belgian situation. Eng- 
land's point of view may be judged from these, the official words of 
Britain's Foreign Minister: ''If, in a crisis like this, we run away 
from those obligations of honor and interest as regards the Belgian 
treaty^ I doubt whether, whatever material force we might have at 


the end, it would be of very much value in face of the respect that we 
should have lost." England was ready to draw the sword. 

On August 4, the next day, Bethmann-Hollweg, the German Chan- 
cellor, speaking before the Reichstag, made some startling statements. 
In his own words he admitted Germany's flagrant disregard of inter- 
national rights. He said: ''We are now in a state of necessity and 
necessity knows no law. Our troops have occupied Luxemburg and 
perhaps are already on Belgian soil. Gentlemen, that is contrary to 

the dictates of international law. The wrong — I speak openly that 

we are committing, we will endeavor to make good as soon as our 
military goal has been reached." 

England Ceases Relations With Germany. 

Then came the ''scrap of paper" incident. The British Ambas- 
sador at 7 o'clock in the evening of August 4 received his final message 
from London. He has since stated what his instructions were. In his 
own words : "I informed the secretary of state that unless the Imperial 
Government could give assurances by 12 o'clock that night that they 
would proceed no further with their violation of the Belgian frontier, 
I had been instructed to demand my passports, and to inform the Im- 
perial Government that His Majesty's Government would have to take 
all steps in their power to uphold the neutrality of Belgium and the 
observance of a treaty to which Germany was as much a party as 
themselves. ' ' Von Jagow replied that reconsideration was impossible. 
The British Ambassador (Lord Goschen) then proceeded to call upon 
the German Chancellor to make a formal farewell. 

Up to the very last minute Bethmann-Hollweg had believed that 
England would not fight. His spies had reported trouble in Ireland, 
incipient mutiny in India and a lukewarm spirit among a non-militaristic 
money-grubbing people. Giddy at the abyss into which Germany was 
falling, the chancellor lost his self-control and, during a twenty-minute 
harangue uttered the famous words: "Just for a word, Neutrality, 
a word which in war times has been so often disregarded; just for a 
scrap of paper. Great Britain is going to make war on a kindred 
nation ! At what price would that compact have b^n kept ! Has the 
British Government thought of that?" 

Goschen replied that England had thought of it. If Germany 
wished to speak of "life and death interests" he desired to "point out 


that it was a matter of life and death for the honor of Great Britain 
that she should keep her solemn engagement to do her uttermost to 
defend Belgium. That solenm compact simply had to be kept. Other- 
wise, what confidence could any one have with engagements with Great 
Britain in the future?" Bethmann-Hollweg raved in reply and the 
British ambassador, finding him "so excited, so overcome by the news 
of our action and so little disposed to hear reason that I (Goschen) 
refrained from adding fuel to the flame of further argument," turned 
on his heel and went away. The world war was begun. 

Bestiality of the Germans. 

No student of international politics will deny that Germany might 
defend the invasion of Belgium on the ground of military necessity but, 
certainly, no one will admit that Germany was justified for a single 
moment in the policy of " schreckliciiheit " or f rightfulness. The 
curious German psychology which gave birth to this horror will be 
dealt with in another chapter. Let it suffice here to say that this policy 
of *' f rightfulness " led to the Belgian atrocities, a page of unparalleled 
infamy, cruelty and bloody blame. Europe could not believe that any 
civilized people could be guilty of organized crimes which for ferocity 
outdid the Apaches and for coarseness outvied the dregs of the lowest 
slum. Yet national and international commissions of inquiry reported 
such atrocities that humanity stood aghast. It was officially proved 
that universal rape had been ordered, massacre had been made a mat- 
ter of daily military routine, torture — unknown since the Dark Ages — 
had been resumed and deportations continued until the very last day 
of the war. The assassination of Edith Cavell, an English nurse, 
though it aroused the world, was but one of a hundred similar cases. 
The name of Germany became an offence to the nostrils of civilization. 

And it failed. It all failed. Elsewhere in this book is told the 
siege of Liege and that extraordinary defiance of Fort Loncin and Fort 
Boncelles when the Belgians under General Leman held back Germany 
for ten days. Belgian gallantry saved the world from the trampling 
of the Hun. Moreover, by giving time for France to mobilize — which 
she did with extraordinaiy speed— by affording England the oppor- 
tunity to ship an expeditionary force across the Channel, Belgium saved 
herself. She was never conquered. From Ypres to the sea there re- 
mained a strip of Belgium, free, even to the last. Her king fought in 


the trenches with the soldiers. Her women and children died without 
a whimper. To be a Belgian was to be a hero. She had her reward — 
imperishable fame blazoned in gold on the book of the world's pride. 

The Grand-Duchy of Luxemburg was included from 1815 to 1866 
in the Germanic Confederation. By the Treaty of London, May 11, 
1867, it was declared neutral territory and its integrity and independ- 
ence assured. It has been held, at various times, by Burgundy, Spain, 
France, Austria, Holland and Belgium. At the opening of the Great 
War it was independent. The population is 260,000, Teutonic in origin 
and the language of the people is a German dialect. All the upper 
classes also speak French. It is a part of the German ZoUverein or 
customs-union, yet the cultured aspect is French, or rather, Belgian. 

When Luxemburg was invaded by the Germans on August 1, 1914, 
there was no chance of resistance. The Grand Duchess Marie Adelaide, 
hardly more than a girl (being but 20 years old), who drove her motor- 
car to the Adolf Bridge, on the frontier, and turned it crossways on 
the bridge and defied Germany, was taken prisoner and confined in 
her own palace. 

Thus was this minature kingdom of peace gobbled by the maw of 
war. Yet Luxemburg maintained her spirit of independence and when 
the war was ended held out hands of welcome to the victorious Allies. 
"Prussians we will never be!" is the refrain of Luxemburg's patriotic 
song, and Prussians they shall never be, now that Prussianism has 
been ground into the dust. 



Napoleon and the Hap of Europe— Royalists and Repabllcans— Siege of Paris— War IndemnitieB and 
Alsace-Lorraine— Verdun and Frontier Fortifications— "They shall not pass I"— World Significance 
of Battle of the Marne— Genius of the War. 

^inp^HE Flame that is France!" Such was the world's verdict in 
JL the year 1918. **A light nation, much given to dancing," was 
the description of France that appeared in many American school- 
books before the year 1914. The first has been derived from a knowl- 
edge of France and the French, the second was a part of that despicable 
propaganda whereby Germany tried to convince the world that she, 
and she only, was worthy of praise. It was Germany who hailed Eng- 
land as ''a nation of shopkeepers," it was Germany who nicknamed 
America ''The Land of the Almighty Dollar," it was Germany who 
coined the phrase "Barbaric Russia." The time has come for the 
world to give Germany her name, and it is simply ' ' The Hun ! * ' 

France was for centuries the intellectual centre of Europe. Her 
court was her glory. Napoleon made France the military centre of 
Europe. Her armies were her glory. This war has made France the 
spiritual centre of Europe. Her people are her glory. The France 
of today, after the war, is courtly in her culture, Napoleonic in her 
military affairs, democratic in her government. 

Because France is thus compounded, when the Third Republic was 
established in 1870, before the Siege of Paris in the Franco-Prussian 
War, it was called a ' ' republic without republicans. ' ' From the Ameri- 
can point of view, there is much that is true in the phrase to this very 
day. France has no parties, in the English and American parliamen- 
tary sense, she has factions based largely on personal leadership. In 
the forty years from 1875 to 1914 France had fifty cabinets or one every 
ten months. French politics was in a wretched state, the conservative 
class ignored it, the intellectual class despised it. Yet, no matter who 
may be in power, one thing continued, the sentiment that ''France is 
always France." For this very reason, when any issue arises which 
threatens France herself it taps a loyalty, a patriotism, a fire of devo- 
tion such as no other country in the world can produce. 



It cannot be too strongly emphasized that the Republics of France 
and the United States are dissimilar. Many people forget this. It is 
not unusual to find Americans asserting that the Republican form of 
government is the panacea of all evils, meanwhile forgetting that there 
are as many different kinds of republics as there are forms of monarchy. 

In an earlier chapter of this book, the Moroccan and Tunis questions 
were taken up with regard to the alliances of Europe. There is no 
need to enlarge, here, upon the colonies of France, save to mention 
that her African possessions alone comprise a territory larger than 
the United States, with a population of 32,000,000. When the war 
broke out Algeria sent troops of the highest military value overseas, 
while little Morocco, with an army as large as the United States Regu- 
lars, formed the most famous ' * storm troops ' ' of the Allies. Nor should 
the Senegalese be forgotten, soldiers at whose appearance the Germans 
always immediately broke and ran. 

Proofs of German Propaganda Before the War. 

Although unknown to the world at large, April 2, 1913, was an 
important date in the yet unborn Great War. On that date the French 
minister of war handed to the Minister for Foreign Affairs, ' ' an official 
secret report.'^ This was the result of several years of secret service 
work by the French, for, while other nations were wasting money on 
Hague conventions and the like, France was spending money in finding 
out what Germany was doing. The money was well expended. This 
secret report produced the proofs of German propaganda in every 
country of the world, it gave the details of the ''Holy War" plans of 
the Kaiser among the native populations of every French and English 
colony, it revealed the secret means of building up the German army, 
it suggested the certainty of the violation of Belgium and it uncovered 
the undermining of court influence in Russia by German intrigue. The 
immediate result of this report was the re-enactment by France of the 
law making three years, instead of two, the normal term in the army, 
and the stiffening of fortifications. 

Fiance thus knew, as all Europe knew, that the forces were shaping 
for war and she had, some years before, made an agreement with Eng- 
land, which, as it afterwards proved, saved the seas from spoliation 
and thereby saved the world from Germany. In 1907 and again on 
November 22, 1912, international agreements had been entered into 


between England and France whereby France should keep her main 
fleet in the Mediterranean, thus enabling England to retire all her 
ships therefrom except a small squadron, while France withdrew her 
fleet from the English Channel and the Bay of Biscay. United naval 
action was thus made possible at any time. 

Though war was pending several days, the actual break-out through 
Luxemburg and Belgium was sudden, so sudden that France did not 
have time to move part of her fleet to protect the northern coast. 
Moreover, if she had tried to do so, she would not only have left her 
Mediterranean and African possessions open to attack by the Austrian 
Navy, but she would also have weakened England's hand in the pro- 
tection of Malta, C5T)rus and the Suez. Accordingly, on August 2, 
1914, England's Foreign Minister, in response to diplomatic questions, 
officially assured the French Ambassador of Britain's support in the 
following words: ''I am authorized to give an assurance that if the 
German fleet comes into the Channel or through the North Sea to 
undertake hostile operations against the French coasts or shipping, 
the British fleet will give all the protection in its power. " As a matter 
of fact, at the time of speaking, all of England's home fleets were in 
the North Sea, ready. Without a blow struck, the war at sea was won. 
Germany dared not face the issue. So little did she dare, that, at the 
end of the war, she sheepishly and shamefully turned over to the Allies 
a complete navy that had never had the nerve to fight. 

Great Drive on Paris. 

That same day, Sunday, August 2, 1914, German troops crossed 
the French frontier at three different points. Germany's official excuse 
for declaring war on France was, in the terms of the German Ambas- 
sador's final paper, that ''French aviators have violated the neutrality 
of Belgium by flying over the territory of that nation." A further 
charge was made that aviators had dropped bombs in German territory 
(which was not true) and that was all. 

The war began with the great drive on Paris. Elsewhere in this 
book has been told the story of that fighting retreat and of the ''Thus 
far, and no farther!" of the Battle of the Marne. There, too, has it 
been told how the "Ragged Legion" saved Paris, and the famous 
mobilization of an army in busses and taxieabs. Paris was seriously 
threatened and on September 3, 1914, the capital of France was removed 


to Bordeaux (returning December 11, 1914). The government left 
Paris but the spirit of France did not, and the Kaiser's soup, awaiting 
him in the Paris hotel where he ordered dinner, had grown cold with 
four years of waiting. 

The position of France in the War is extraordinarily simple. She 
was attacked, absolutely without any cause, her territory was invaded, 
her townis and villages burned and pillaged, her women mistreated, her 
children slain. There was no bestiality conceivable by the minds of 
brutal men that was not wreaked upon her, all for no cause. France 
defended herself. Therein, to the eyes of Germany, lay her fault ; she 
defended herself so well that the Teuton could not break the line; 
there, to Germany, was her crime. The Hun defaced, deflowered and 
despoiled the land, but he could not scratch the soul. France said 
* ' They shall not pass ! ' ' and they did not pass. 

Verdun and Battle of the Marne. 

Verdun, however, stands out so strikingly in this war, that its 
significance needs presentment. From the strategical point of view, 
it is the northern angle of the chain of Franco-German fortresses. It 
is also the eastern angle of the natural Marne-Aisne line from Paris 
to Germany. It is the key angle. If this angle breaks, an enemy army 
can pour through to the plains of France. It cost France 300,000 men 
to hold it, but it cost Germany 500,000 men to fail. It cost far more 
than this, moreover, it cost Germany her army's belief in its invulner- 
ability. The supposed irresistible force had met the immovable object 
and Verdun stood while Germany fell. 

Yet — and this is the irony of Fate — had Germany done the less 
dishonorable thing and dared to attack France directly, had she struck 
at Verdun on the first day of the war, she would have won. The siege 
guns that reduced Liege and Namur would have smashed the fortifica- 
tions of Verdun to powder. Wlien at last she reached Verdun by her 
shameful circuitous path through a neutral country, the French artil- 
lerists had learned their lesson, the great guns of Verdun were moved 
from the forts and placed on railways, never firing twice from the same 
spot and the great siege guns were worth exactly nothing at all in that 
great two years ' battle. Cowardice begot defeat. 

Like Verdun, the Battle of the Marne, September 9, 1914, has a 
world significance. It was the decisive battle of the war. Germany 


believed that success lay in the first dash. She staked everything on 
that. Her attack was the result of forty years of preparation. Each 
day meant the weakening of her initial impetus, each day the strength- 
ening of the Allies. It was an all-French victory, for the English were 
not in contact with the enemy. Nor far from the birthplace of Joan 
of Arc the soldiers of Joffre and Foch turned the day. It was the poilu 
who determined the world's future. The war lasted four years longer, 
and many a time did the German menace loom great and near, but the 
back of Kaiserism was broken at the Battle of the Marne. 

While France's relation to the war is excessively simple — indeed, 
the simplest of all nations engaged in the strife, it is complicated by the 
question of Alsace-Lorraine, a very tough nut to crack. This is a sub- 
ject on which there are distinctly two sides. 

Concerning Alsace and Lorraine. 

To begin with, Alsace and Lorraine are two questions, not one. 
Like the Flemings and Walloons, in Belgium, the former occupying the 
plains and the latter the hills, so Alsace, a flood plain stretching along 
the valley of the Rhine, was overrun by the Germanic hordes, and is 
Teuton in blood and speech. The broken hill country of Lorraine acted 
as a check to the Teutonic tide, and the western part remained French 
in language and Latinized Celt in blood. In Alsace-Lorraine, taken as 
a whole, the German element is far the strongest. The official census 
(German) in 1910 showed a population of 1,634,000 speaking German 
and 204,000 speaking French. 

In the Middle Ages, both Alsace and Lorraine were loose parts of 
the so-called Holy Roman Empire, mainly Germanic. The Duchy of 
Lorraine, however, soon became French in character, with Nancy as its 
capital, a city distinctly French. France annexed Metz, Toul and 
Verdun in 1552, and the Duchy of Lorraine was formally annexed, at 
its own request, in 1766. Alsace, meantime, had become a French 
province as a result of the Thirty Years 'War, and the French Revolution 
cemented to France the few districts that were still semi-independent. 
From 1789 to 1870 Alsace-Lorraine grew steadily more and more 
French, though in the Rhine Valley, the interests were mainly German. 

At the close of the Franco-Prussian War, by the Treaty of Frank- 
fort, both provinces were demanded by Germany, even the French 
speaking section of Western Lorraine being taken, because of the 


military value of the great fortress of Metz. Over 50,000 of the French- 
speaking Lorrainers emigrated to France, and this movement has con- 
tinued ever since. 

For her part, Germany has conducted an arbitrary Germanization 
of the two provinces. In 1874, the use of French in the Provincial 
Assembly was forbidden and the municipal councils of Strassburg, 
Metz and Colmas had to be suspended for insubordination to German 
authority. In 1884, by an imperial law, the use of the French language, 
generally, was prohibited. In 1889, French was disallowed even by wit- 
nesses in a court of law. In 1900 the German civil code was introduced. 
Throughout this entire time, any person showing Francophile tendencies 
was apt to find himself in conflict with the authorities, new corporations 
destined to do business found that only German capital would be con- 
sidered, all exploitation of natural resources was in German hands. 
Over forty years of this system drove out most of the French-thinking 
people and filled their places with Germans. 

France Entitled to Alsace-Lorraine. 

From the historic point of view, France has a better claim to 
Alsace-Lorraine than Germany. From the racial and linguistic point 
of view, Germany's claim is the stronger. From the point of view 
of justice for an unrighteous spoliation in 1871, France considers the 
lost provinces an integral part of her empire ; from the economic point 
of view, the provinces are German. Strategically, Alsace-Lorraine in 
French hands would mean a wedge driven into the frontier of Germany ; 
politically, it would give Germany an admirable basis for constant spy 
work and internal political dissensions in France. 

There is yet a still further difficulty in relation to Alsace-Lorraine 
which it is well to state, because what appear to be slight differences 
often become national issues. It has been said that Alsace-Lorraine 
has been Germanized. This is true. But it has not been Prussianized. 
The Alsatians have a gift of humor. Such a spirit is fatal to Prussian- 
ism. The story of the Detwiller Rooster is a historic incident. 

In 1895, a peasant who lived in the little village of Detwiller, near 
Zabern, possessed a fine white rooster with a handsome red crest. 
Being French in sympathy, he dyed the rooster's tail blue, thus dis- 
porting in his barnyard the tricolor of France. The Kaiser's police 
protested. The peasant replied that the feathers had grown blue. 
Grave chemists examined the rooster's tail and pronounced the color 


to be dye. The police ordered the peasant to slay the fowl. He re- 
fused. So military orders were sent that the fowl should be sabred, 
which was done. But the howls of delight wkich echoed and re-echoed 
over Alsace-Lorraine and France about the Detwiller Rooster seriously 
lamed the dignified strut of the Prussian occupation. 

It was in this same district, in the little city of Zabem, moreover, 
that occurred the famous and grave Zabem incident. A certain Baron 
von Forstner, a Junker lieutenant of the Ninety-first Prussian Infantry, 
stationed at Zabern, incurred the hatred of the people. The street boys 
called him names in the streets. Von Forstner, in retaliation, prom- 
ised a ten-mark piece to any one of his men who should kill a Social 
Democrat civilian. The town grew restive. Whereupon the colonel of 
the garrison commanded the local magistrate to disperse a crowd. 
The magistrate refused. Whereupon the military charged and arrested 
fifteen civilians, including three judges and the state prosecuting at- 
torney. A storm of protest followed. The Governor-General of Alsace 
threatened to resign, and the Kaiser was compelled to send a sharp 
order censuring the military authorities. 

Antipathy of Alsace-Lorraine Towards Prussia. 

Von Forstner, however, was furious at the censure. He was re- 
moved to a small garrison town, near by, and there a lame shoemaker, 
a cripple, presuming on his physical weakness, made a caustic remark 
to a friend about Von Forstner, as the latter passed him on the street. 
The lieutenant drew his sword and slashed and wounded the cripple. 
There was an uproar. Von Forstner was tried by court-martial, de- 
clared guilty, he took an appeal and was promptly acquitted. Even the 
Reichstag felt that this was too much and passed a vote of censure on 
the government, by a vote of 393 to 54. The Zabem incident, however, 
crystallizing the growing estrangement between Alsace-Lorraine and 

During the war, moreover, Germany's high-handed proceedings, 
the atrocities, the spoliation and disregard for human rights definitely 
turned the people of Alsace-Lorraine against their German kin, even 
as it has disgusted the German Swiss, whom the Alsatians greatly 
resemble. There are currents and cross-currents pulling in every direc- 
tion in the two provinces. Alsace-Lorraine is a smouldering ember only 
too likely to fan another war at some time in the future. 



The Great Spiritual Drama— Garibaldi— Quirinal and Vatican— The "Unholy Alliance"— Meaning of 
"Italia Irredenta"— Adriatic Sea as the Key to the Mediterranean— The Red Week— The War Plunge 
—Forged Propaganda and the Piave. 

ITALY'S relation to the war is a tangled skein. An ally of Germany 
and Austria before the war, at the opening of the war she remained 
neutral and within a year became an ally of France and England. This 
change of attitude, which was of vital importance to the Allies of the 
world war, centers largely around the difficult question of "Italia Ir- 
redenta" or the unredeemed provinces of Italy. 

Modern Italy is a product of the Nineteenth Century. Before 
Napoleon conquered Italy, in 1805, the peninsula and the northern 
mainland was a confusion of small states and meaningless boundaries. 
Napoleon created a new Kingdom of Italy in the north, taking the crown 
himself. He swept away a host of Austrian princelets. He played 
p!itch and toss with Italian ideals, and set up a Kingdom of Naples 
whereof first, his brother, and later, Murat, was the king. He propped 
up the Pope on his temporal throne and then toppled him over and 
took him prisoner. When Napoleon fell, and at the Congress of Vienna, 
Metternich summed up the Italian situation in a historic phrase, * ' Italy 
is only a geographical expression." Pope Pius VII summarized the 
same situation at the same time when he said to the Doge of Venice, 
"nothing remains in Italy but my tiara and your ducal hat." 

Outwardh^, both these sayings were true; inwardly, both were 
false. Napoleon had found fifteen Kingdoms in Italy, he left but three. 
The Italians had learned the value of unity. Moreover, while the Aus- 
trian princelets had been reactionary, the French influence, new-born 
since the great Revolution of 1879, was progressive. Italy had learned 
the value of freedom of thought. When Austria sought to dominate 
Italy, the secret society of the Carbonari was formed, reaching a mem- 
bership of hundreds of thousands and including the most intellectual 
men of Italy. In Naples and in Piedmont, Austrian soldiers were 

^^^ 20— W. L. 


sent to search the houses, to arrest people without warrant, to imprison 
leaders without trial and to murder Carbonari agents without redress. 
This was the beginning of forty years of Austrian terrorism in Italy. 
A word must be said as to the "Holy Alliance," now better known 
to history as the ''Unholy Alliance." This was a paper drawn up in 
1815 by the then Czar of Russia while under the religious (?) influence 
of the notorious Baroness de Krudener. It was, to all intents and 
purposes, a ''League of Nations" declaring that "The three contracting 
Monarchs, conformably to the words of the Holy Scriptures, which 
command all men to consider each other as brethren, will remain united 
by the bonds of a true and indisoluble fraternity, and, considering each 
other as fellow countrymen, they will, on all occasions and in all places, 
lend each other aid and assistance." Metternich's comment on this 
mystic document was brief and to the point. ' ' Sign it, ' ' he said to his 
imperial master, "it means nothing and may be useful." It became 
Austria's club over Italy's head. 

Formation of a NeW Italy. 

Italy, however, had seen in the sky the hope of a free and united 
nation. For this Mazzini conspired. Garibaldi fought and Cavour 
negotiated. In 1848 King Charles Albert of Piedmont granted a liberal 
constitution to his people. Austria sent an army to enforce tyranny 
and defeated the Piedmontese, Charles Albert resigning his throne 
rather than accept the peace terms. The result was an Austrian repres- 
sion which Gladstone characterized as "an outrage upon civilization, 
upon humanity and upon decency." Charles Albert's son. King Victor 
Emmanuel II, however, with Cavour at his side, commenced to plot 
anew. He joined in the Crimean War, he won the help of France and 
forced war on Austria, defeating the ancient foe at Solferino in 1859, 
with the aid of French troops. 

Briefly to summarize the terms of the peace treaty, Venetia re- 
mained Austrian territory, but Lombardy was ceded to Napoleon III 
and by him ceded to Piedmont. The way was prepared for the union 
with other northern Italian states. Meantime, Garibaldi and the "two 
thousand" brought Southern Italy and Sicily, known as "The Two 
Sicilies," into the same frame of thought. Thus, in 1860, Parma, 
Modena, Romagna, Tuscany, Umbria, the Marches and the Kingdom of 
the Two Sicilies accepted the liberal constftution of Piedmont and ac- 


cepted Victor Emmanuel as their king. The first Italian parliament, 
which is the beginning of the Italy of today, convened at Turin in 1861. 
It is necessary, now, to touch on the religious question, which, 
in Italy, is not a question of religion at all. It is a matter of territory 
and centers around the temporal or territorial possessions of the Pope. 
The Papal States — ^be it said without criticism — were the worst gov- 
erned provinces west of Constantinople. In 1831 Pope Gregory XVI 
refused to allow a railway or a telegraph line to be built in the states 
over which he ruled, classical Latin was the only tongue taught in the 
schools, less than two per cent, of the people were literate, trial by 
justice was raie and deemed unnecessary, the press was muzzled and 
the police were used to force every man, woman and child into the 
confessional. In 1847 Pope Gregory died and his successor, Pius IX, 
proved himself a true leader. He was not only a deeply spiritual pre- 
late, but a true administrator and a man of broad view. He commenced 
to abolish the principal evils in the Papal States but was compelled to 
hold his hand for the reason that the people were not sufficiently ad- 
vanced to make good use of their liberties. The Papal States were not 

The Quirinal and Pope Pius IX. 

The unification of Italy in 1859-1861 deprived Pope Pius IX, or 
rather, the Papacy, of all its territorial powers except Rome and its 
immediate surroundings. Pope Pius protested, but all that he could 
do was to retain Rome, aiid this, only, with the aid of French bayonets. 
When France was compelled to withdraw her troops in 1870 to help 
in the Franco-Prussian War, the Italian armies breached the walls of 
Rome in 1871 and entered in triumph. By an overwhelming vote, the 
people of Rome supported the monarchy in this case. 

In May, 1871, the Italian Government — known in diplomatic par- 
lance as the Quirinal — passed the Law of Papal Guarantees. This 
gave the Pope $600,000 income annually from state revenues, entire 
control of the Vatican and Lateran palaces and grounds (which are 
large), the person of the Pope was declared sacred and inviolable, and 
his rights were set forth as those of a sovereign. Pope Pius IX refused 
to accept the money, declared that the spiritual ruler of the world could 
not accept conditions from a temporal king and immured himself and 
his successors in perpetual imprisonment in the Vatican. Italy has ever 


since felt that the Vatican was unwilling to accept fair terms and bitter- 
ness has always existed. It broke out twice, during the Great War. 

In a former chapter, dealing with Alliances, one of the international 
causes for Italy's resentment against France was found in the case 
of the establishment of a French protectorate over Tunis. There were, 
however, even deeper reasons which forced Italy to become an ally of 
her hereditary foe, Austria. These are entangled with the Quirinal- 
Vatican problem. 

It has been said that Pope Pius IX was confirmed in his holding of 
Rome by French bayonets. This meant that France and the Papacy 
together prevented the Italians from making Rome the capital. ' ' Rome 
or Death" was Garibaldi's cry, but the French defeated the Italian 
troops at Mentana in 1867. This defeat rankled. When, in 1870, the 
French troops were withdrawn and Victor Emmanuel seized Rome in 
1871, it was evident that France had not withdrawn willingly. More- 
over, French pilgrims to Rome, during the next thirt}^ years, constantly 
ii-ritated the Quirinal by references to the Pope-King, and the clerical 
party in France made no secret of its alliance with the Papacy. The 
creation of the Triple Alliance resulted. In 1887 Italy adopted a pro- 
tective tariff and in 1888 the commercial treaty with France was broken. 
Not until 1898 were commercial relations restored. Finally, the separa- 
tion of church and state in France in 1905 marked the collapse of cleri- 
calism and intimated to Italy that never again would armed France 
seek to restore to the Pope the territories held by Italy. 

The Italia Irredenta. 

With these interlocking complications made clear, the ground is 
prepared for an understanding of the problem of "Italia Irredenta." 
This is not one problem but three, dealing with three areas geograph- 
ically separated from each other and only partly populated by Italian- 
speaking peoples. These areas are Trentino, Kustenland and Dalmatia. 
Half of Trentino is Italian, half Austrian; one-third of Kustenland is 
Italian, one-third Austrian, and one-third Jugo-Slav; only the coast- 
line of Dalmatia is Italian, the rest is Jugo-Slav. 

Consider, first, the geographical character of these three areas, 
for geography often determines ethnic and political conditions. The 
Alps may be regarded as a great arch rising from the French Riviera 
to the south-western comer of Switzerland, curving around that border 


and approaching the Mediterranean again at the head of the Adriatic 
Sea, back of Trieste. This arch, however, is in two spans, for the 
great mountain range sends down a triangular spur into Italy, reaching 
almost as far south as Verona. This mountainous triangle is the South- 
ern Tryol, and the section north of the Brenner Pass is Austrian, 
while the section south of that pass, is Italian. It is this latter section 
which is know^n as the Trentino. 

Kustenland, including Istria and Izonzo, is a peninsula jutting 
into the Adriatic just east of the Italian frontier. It is a wild country, 
with steep mountain slopes rising directly out of the sea. It is of the 
highest strategical importance. Just as the Brenner Pass would be 
invaluable to Italy as a defence, so the port of Trieste, in Kustenland, 
is the natural outlet to the Adriatic. Pola, the great naval base of 
Austria, is at tbe tip of the peninsula, and Fiume, the Hungarian port, 
is at the point where the peninsula joins the mainland to the south. 
Although Trieste is an Austrian port, in 1900 (the latest census) sev- 
enty-four per cent, of the population was Italian. 

Italy's Claims and Aspirations. 

Dalmatia, if the islands be considered, joins Kustenland, and runs 
down one-half the length of the Adriatic. It consists of a fringe of 
rocky islands and the steeps of a rugged mountain wall. It is abso- 
lutely cut off from the back country by this mountain barrier, though 
modern railways — with difficult engineering — begin to link the Balkan 
interior with the sea. Roughly, the islands are Italian, the mainland 
Slav. " 

Italy's claim to the ''unredeemed" provinces is historically weak, 
so far as modern history is concerned. It is geographically strong. 
Culturally considered, Italy is strong in the Trentino, fairly strong in 
Istria, less so in Izonzo and weak in Dalmatia. 

Desparate and confused as are these claims, they are rendered ten- 
fold more bewildering by the fact that, at the outbreak of the war, 
Servia was against Austria and with France. But Servia, at the same 
time, was an ardent advocate of "Greater Servia" which laid emphasis 
on the Slavic note and which pointed out that Izonzo and Istria were 
mainly Slavic and Dalmatia entirely so. Italy's interests, therefore, 
were as definitely anti-Servian as they were anti-Austrian. She was 
not on either side of the fence. 


If this were not enough, Italy frankly admitted her intention to 
be master of the Mediterranean, a goal equally frankly annulled by the 
two great naval powers, England and France. Ferrero, the greatest 
of modem historians, an ardent Italian patriot, pointed out that the 
Adriatic was "a Roman and Venetian lake,^' and declared that ''unless 
we conquer Istria, every memory of Italy will fade froni those lands 
which, from the days of Augustus Caesar, have been Latin. It would 
be like unmaking the history of Italy.'* 

Italy Enters the War. 

Meantime, Grerman capital was developing Italian resources, the 
great Italian Commercial Bank at Milan was a German institution, 
and the powerful German propaganda found soil in business circles. 
This tended to make Italy pro-German. Yet she could never defend 
her strung-out line of coast against the three-power navy of England 
aided by the two-power navy of France, nor could she hope for favor- 
able partition of ''Italia Irredenta" as Austria's ally. This threw 
her into the arms of the Allies. From every point of view, Italy was 
in a tight box when Austria and Germany forced the world war on 
Servia and France respectively. 

The war had raged for nine months when at last Italy decided to 
throw in her fate with the Allies. The Battle of the Marne had been 
won, showing the strength of France ; the German Navy had been sewed 
into its sack, showing the power of England. But, on the other hand, 
Russia was seen to be a negligible factor, showing the strength of 
Germany ; the Balkans were overrun, showing the strength of Austria. 
From the Italian point of self-interest there was little to choose. 

Here, then, were three powerful parties in Italy, pro-ally, neutral 
and pro-German. But Germany did not want Italy to join the war; 
it meant naval and territorial complications. She wanted Italy to 
stay neutral, and, for a while, Italy did so. But Salandra, for the 
government, made a secret pact with the Allies concerning "Italia 
Irredenta." Then Giolitti "The Italian Clemenceau" dashed into the 
arena with the announcement that the Central Powers would make 
equally good terms. Civil war boded. At this juncture the great 
writer Gabriele d'Annunzio burst into perfervid oratory and inflamed 
Italy to war. On May 12, 1915 (nineteen days after Salandra 's secret 
pact) he said in a famous speech at Rome : "Since three days, I do not 


know what odor of treason begins to suffocate us. No, no ! We will 
not be a museum, a hotel, a winter resort, a horizon painted in Prussian 
blue for international honeymoons ! Sweep away, sweep away all this 
filth ! Cast into the sewers all putrified things ! Long live Rome with- 
out shame! Long live a great and pure Italy!" 

Italy's final moves toward war were swift. On April 25, 1915, the 
Salandra government formed the pact with the Allies, on May 3 the gov- 
ernment announced its denunciation of the Triple Alliance, on May 9 
the Syndicalists threatened a repetition of the anarchy of the Red 
"Week (June, 1914) if war were proclaimed, on May 13 the Salandra 
ministry resigned to force the issue, on May 15 the pro-German social- 
ists established a nation-wide threat of civil war, on May 16 the King 
invited Salandra to resume office, thus declaring himself in favor of 
war, on May 17 Griolitti left Rome, his life in danger, on May 23 Italy 
formally declared war against Austria-Hungary. 

Emperor Franz Josef Perturbed, 

The feeling of the Central Powers on the subject was expressed 
in Emperor Franz Josef's address to his troops on May 24. He said: 
' ' The King of Italy has declared war on me. Perfidy, whose like history 
does not know, has been committed by the Kingdom of Italy against 
both its allies. After an alliance of more than thirty years' duration, 
during which it was able to increase its territorial possessions and 
develop itself to a flourishing condition hitherto unthought of, Italy 
abandoned us in our hour of danger and went over with flying colors 
into the camp of our enemies. We did not menace Italy; did not curtail 
her authority; did not attack her honor or her interests. We always 
responded loyally to the duties of our alliance and afforded her our 
protection when she took the field. ' ' 

The next day Italy answered this with a long official justification 
of her action to the effect that 'Hhe Triple Alliance was essentially 
defensive and designed solely to preserve the equilibrium of Europe. 
. . . Austria-Hungary severed the treaty with her own hands. She 
rejected the response of Servia, which gave her all the satisfaction 
she could legitimately claim. She refused to listen to the conciliatory 
proposals presented by Italy in conjunction with the other powers in 
the effort to spare Europe from a vast conflict certain to drench the 
Continent with blood and to reduce it to ruin beyond the conception 
of human imagination, and, finally, she provoked that conflict." 


In that part of this book which deals with the military events of 
the war, the sudden invasion of Italy by Austria, after a long mountain 
campaign wherein Italy was the victor, has been told. The collapse 
of Italy, however, had little to do with her armies. It was caused, 
primarily, by a treacherous deal between German propagandists and 
Italian socialists, and one of the many means taken was the printing 
of forged newspapers with dates emanating from various Italian cities, 
the forgeries an exact replica in type of the papers themselves, showing 
that Civil War was raging in Italy (which it was not) and declaring 
that the government w^as preparing to sell itself to the Central Powers 
(which was absolutely without foundation in fact). At the same time, 
by cleverly working the pro-German commercial interests, the Teuton 
propagandists were successful in hampering the forwarding of provi- 
sions to the army, thus giving color to their schemes and sowing dis- 
content among the troops. 

German Lies Refuted. v 

The blow struck directly at the morale of the army, for the Italians 
themselves knew well that there were powerful pro-neutral and pro- 
German parties, as had been evinced by the countless strikes engineered 
by the ''Reds." At this moment of weakness, Austria and Germany 
together, having massed troops and munitions in advance, struck and 
struck heavily. The defense became a retreat, the retreat degenerated 
into a rout. 

No sooner, however, was the line broken than the news that these 
papers had been forgeries began to creep through the army, the propa- 
ganda was stamped as a fabric of atrocious lies and the treachery was 
uncovered. There was a swift reversal of sentiment. The Italians, 
gallant enough before, now performed prodigies of valor, and without 
a campaign plan, without adequate defence, having lost vast quantities 
of artillery and munitions in their hasty flight, they took their stand 
on the River Piave. The Germans were within sight of Venice, but 
between them and that goal stood, in serried ranks, the high-hearted 
courage of Italy. The Piave was as the Marne, they "did not pass." 
Germany might still seek her place in the sun, but across the entrance 
to the Italian plains was written in blood the words "No Thorough- 



Buffer States— Divisions of the Southern Slavs— Incessant Wars With Turkey— Bosnia the Fuse of the 
World-Explosion— The Three Historic Assassinations— Serajevo the Match to the Fuse— Allies' 
Inability to Prevent Balkan Disaster. 

HE who would tread the maze of the Balkans must avoid minor issues, 
he must endeavor to carve for himself broad roads and lay down 
for himself broad principles. In endeavoring to lead the reader along 
such lines, a definite policy is here adopted of bracketing that feature 
of the Balkan muddle with the country to which it is most closely 
allied. Thus the Bosnian problem is attached to Serbia, the Dalmatian 
problem to Italy, the Macedonian problem to Bulgaria, the Albanian 
problem to Greece and the Bassarabian problem to Roumania. 

Following out this plan, Serbia is taken as the nucleus of the 
Southern Slav or Jugo-Slav interests. Jugo-Slavia is an ethnic divi- 
sion, embracing Serbia, Old Serbia, Novi-Bazar, Serbian Macedonia, 
Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Croatia-Slavonia, Dalmatia, Temes- 
var, Styria, Carinthia, Carniola and Kustenland. Its area is 104,000 
square miles, approximately, or more than three times as large as 
Holland, Belgium and Denmark put together. The population is at 
least 15,000,000, with over 11,000,000 of tliis population Jugo-Slav. In 
other words, the Jugo-Slav group is about the same in number as the 
Scandinavian, including the entire populations of Norway, Sweden and 
Denmark. It is, therefore, with a possible first-class power that this 
chapter deals. 

Of all the many astonishing factors which enter into Serbian his- 
tory, certainly the most remarkable is the fact that for five centuries 
Serbia maintained her identity in spite of Byzantine, Turkish and 
Austrian domination. She possessed a strong literary tradition and 
a deep-rooted patriotism. She was ever and always a victim of Turkish 
greedy cruelty and misgovernment, and when, in 1804, these grew 
insupportable, she took to arms. The peace of Bucharest in 1812 pro- 



vided Serbia with a measure of autonomy, but the old fortresses, Bel- 
grade included, remained in Turkish hands. 

The revolt of Milosh, in 1815, led to liberation and the formation 
(under Turkish permission) of a liberal constitution in 1817. Black 
George, the hero of Serbia, was assassinated with the approval of both 
Milosh and the Turks. The next fifty years is a history of strife and 
unrest between the Serbians and the Turks, conditions which Austria 
did her most to foment, with the result that when the last Turkish 
troops were driven from Serbia in 1867, Austria had a solid hold on 
Serbia. The split between the two parties of Serbia continued un- 
abated, however, and, consequently. King Michael was assassinated 
by followers of the Black George dynasty. 

King Alexander Assassinated. 

Matters went on from bad to worse. Austrian and Russian in- 
trigue undermined what had been a sincere patriotism, even though 
a bloodily partisan one, and secret agents from Russia and Vienna 
continuously fed the flames of hate. On June 10, 1903, a revolution 
and sudden overthrow of the government was secured by the radicals, 
marked by one of the most horrible royal murders in history. Eang 
Alexander and Queen Draga — whom the people hated because they felt 
that the throne had been disgraced by the King's choice of a notoriously 
lewd woman of the baser sort — were murdered in their sleep, and the 
woman's body, stripped of all clothing, was thrown from a window 
of the palace onto a strip of lawn bordering the main street. There 
it remained for hours while the crowds gathered round and sang ribald 
songs about the dead. This scandalous, shocking and unclean crime 
estranged Serbia from every nation of Europe and the doors of every 
court were closed to the incoming King. 

The annexation of Bosnia-Herzegovina by Austria in 1908, as has 
been shown in a foregoing chapter, almost brought about a world war. 
It would have done so, without question, if Europe had been ready 
and if Serbia had not been so malodorous in diplomacy. As it was, 
the Bosnian compromise proved a matter of tricky adjustment. Turkey 
was compensated mth the cession of Novi-Bazar, which drove a wedge 
between Serbia and Montenegro. Russia stopped the outbreak of a 
Turco-Bulgarian war. Serbia got nothing. 

Truth compels the admission that the Serbians of Bosnia were plot- 


ting against Austria. It would, perhaps, be even more true to admit 
that Serbia was always plotting for a "Greater Serbia." In 1909 
occurred the famous Fried jung trial (and its antecedent treason com- 
plications) in which some evidence was brought that bombs were being 
prepared for use against Austrian authorities. There was no evidence 
that the Serbian government was aware of this. This is plenty of 
evidence, however, that the Serbian government viewed favorably "a 
disruptive propaganda in Austrian domains, ' ' to quote the official words 
of the Austro-Hungarian Red Book. 

However justifiable may have been the diplomatic moves which led 
to an alliance of Serbia, Montenegro, Bulgaria and Greece against 
Turkey, the alliance was absurd from an ethnical viewpoint. It did, 
however, do one thing, it made the powers realize that Serbia was 
the dominating factor of the Jugo-Slav interests. Moreover, it did 
something still more important, it rehabilitated Serbia in the eyes of 
the world. 

The Jugo-Slav Situation. 

The period between 1908, when Bosnia was annexed, and 1912, 
when the Balkan Wars began, had given rise to a curious change of 
aspect in the "Greater Serbia" question. Instead of spreading the 
doctrine that aU Jugo-Slav countries were to be made Serbian, the 
general feeling grew that Jugo-Slavia should become an entity in 

The more this angle of the subject was studied, the more value 
was it found to have. From the English and French point of view, it 
kept Italy from possessing both sides of the Adriatic. From the 
Italian point of view, it stopped Austrian aggression. From the Greek 
point of view, it placed an ally instead of an enemy on her northern 
frontier. From the Austrian point of view, however, it was a menace 
perpetually on her border. From the German point of view, it spelt 
ruin to the Berlin-to-Bagdad railway project. Thus, while Serbia 
concept of a Jugo-Slav state did. If the reader will bear this in mind, 
never reached the point of being a valuable asset to the Allies, the 
it will throw additional light on the manner in which the crime of 
Serajevo plunged the world into war, as partly explained in an early 

The Serajevo affair, as the fuse which ignited the bomb of the 


world war, deserves a little attention. Serajevo, the capital of Bosnia, 
is a picturesque semi-oriental city, dotted with mosques — many Bosnian 
Serbs are Mohammedans — with a population of 38,000, mainly Serbs, 
in spite of, the Austrian government's attempts to induce Austrian 
settlement since its annexation of the territory. It is a strong Jugo- 
slav center. 

On June 28, 1914, Archduke Ferdinand, Crown Prince of Austria, 
and his wife, the Duchess of Hohenburg (who was not of royal blood, 
and who had been denied the rank of ' ' Imperial Highness ' ' by the old 
emperor) came to Serajevo to make a state visit to the Bosnian capital. 
As Austrians they were disliked ; personally, they were hated. Nor was 
the Crown Prince better loved in Vienna or in Buda-Pesth. He was 
known to foster a scheme for raising the Slavs to federalized equality 
with the Germans and the Magyars. This was a subject of irritation 
to all three races. 

Some clue to the situation may be gained from the Archduke's last 
words: ''The fellow," he gasped, "will get the Golden Cross of Merit 
for this." As the Golden Cross is an Austrian Order, it is clear that 
the Archduke regarded the attack as being fomented from Vienna. One 
thing at least is clear, that neither in Berlin, Vienna, Buda-Pesth or 
Belgrade was there any great sorrow over the assassination. 

Why Was Archduke Ferdinand Murdered? 

There is already a whole literature of the Serajevo incident. The 
main points will be here condensed. There is the accusation that the 
assassination was managed from Belgrade, because the Serbians feared 
that the Crown Prince's visit might lead to a Bosnian acceptation of 
Austrian control, which would kill the "Greater Serbia" idea. There 
was the accusation that Buda-Pesth had sought the death of the Arch- 
duke, because his policies would break down the autocratic rule of the 
Magyar nobles. There was the accusation that Vienna was favorable 
to the plot because the German element in Austria resented being re- 
duced to an equality with the Magyars and Slavs, and, finally, there was 
the accusation that the whole affair was engineered by Berlin, which 
wanted some sort of an excuse for plunging Europe into war. 

Which of these is true will never be known. Such matters are not 
put on paper. It is the writer's opinion that the spirit of the murder 
was born in the "Greater Serbia" organization, for the Serbians have 


always chosen assassination as their weapon; that Austria sent the 
Crown Prince to Bosnia, disregardful of the risk, in order to raise 
some issue that could be turned to Bosnia's disadvantage; and that 
Berlin, secretly, provoked Serbo-Bosnian feeling to the extent of the 
direct act. 

It is highly important to remember that this crime occurred on 
June 28, 1914. Until July 20 — a curiously long time — there was no 
hint from Vienna that she was about to apply a match to the powder 
magazine of Europe. On the contrary, semi-inspired articles in the 
Austrian papers were moderate in tone and conciliatory. On July 20 
came a mild hint. The German Ambassador to England, in reply to a 
question from Sir Edward Grey, replied that he had no news from 
Vienna on the Serbian question, "but Austria was certainly going to 
take some step.*' 

Germany's Weak Excuse. 

On July 23, 1914, from a sky in which all the clouds seemed to have 
rolled' away, the thunderbolt was laujiohed. Austria, with the almost 
certain connivance of Germany, delivered an ultimatum to Serbia which 
was in the highest degree arrogant, domineering, bellicose and unjusti- 

It will be observed that the writer has said in the above paragraph 
"with the almost certain connivance of Germany." As this is the point 
on which hinges the huge controversy as to whether or no Germany 
started the war, it is necessary to give at least one document on each 
side. The German government asserted in the mouth of the German 
Ambassador at St. Petersburg: "The Imperial German Government 
had no knowledge of the text of the Austrian note before it was handed 
in and has not exercised any influence on its contents." Why, then, 
the delay of almost a month, if not to settle and arrange the issues 
between Vienna and Berlin? 

Moreover, again in Germany's words, on the very same day, in- 
deed, almost at the same hour that the ultimatum to Belgrade was 
forwarded, the Chancellor of the German Empire instructed the am- 
bassadors sissigned to Paris, London and St. Petersburg to state that 
"the acts as well as the demands of the Austro-Hungarian government, 
cannot but be looked on as justified." How could Germany indorse 
these demands if she did not know what they were? 


The reader is asked to observe that no controversial literature has 
been used in the above paragraph, the first statement is an official 
one made by the German Ambassador, the second is an official statement 
in the German ''White Paper." 

What was Austria's intolerable ultimatum? What was the note 
which ended an era in the world's history? What were these phrases of 
djTiamite ? 

Briefly, the note attacked Serbia for the Pan-Serbian propaganda, 
demanded a repudiation of the project in the official journal, ordered 
the dissolution of the "Greater Serbia" society (the Narodna Odbrana), 
compelled the dismissal from Serbian public service of all Pan-Serbic 
officials without regard to Serbia's admission of their guilt, forbade 
the smuggling of arms into Bosnia and, especially, ordered Serbia to 
accept in Serbia the trials of Serbians by Austrian officials. As William 
Stearns Davis puts it: ''The most deadly sting of this scorpion was 
in its tail." This was the phrase: "The Austrian government expects 
the reply of the royal (Serbian) government at the latest by 6 o'clock 
on Saturday evening, the 25th of July," 

The Meaning of Austria's Ultimatum. 

There are two main issues here. The first is that if Serbia assented 
to Austria's demands that Austrian officials should enter Serbia to 
judge Serbian subjects, such action would in itself constitute a relin- 
quishment of independence. It would end, at one stroke, Serbian liberty. 
The second was that forty-eight hours ' notice was a time far too brief 
to allow the Powers to intervene toward a peaceful settlement of the 
question. Put bluntly, it meant the direct annexation of Serbia, or war. 
Serbia, in despair, cried to her Slav Big Brother — Russia — and the 
cry was heard. 

Russia's first move was to beg for delay "to prevent^ the incalcul- 
able consequences. ... A refusal to extend the terms of the ulti- 
matum would be in contradiction with the very bases of international 
relations." Austria laughed. Germany, on the same day, July 24, told 
England that Austria's demands "can only be regarded as equitable 
and moderate." England, France and Russia protested anew. Berlin 


At her wits' end, Serbia agreed to everything except the relinquish- 
ment of her national liberty. The Serbian answer was a humiliating 
reply, it granted practically every issue, it even contained a tacit 
abandonment of the Jugo-Slav dream. The reply reached the Austrian 
minister at Belgrade at 5:45 P. M., a quarter of an hour before the 
lapse of the ultimatum. The reply was telegraphed to Vienna, being 
filed there at 5.58 P. M., two minutes before the close of time. 

It is generally asserted and credited that Austria did not even 
take the trouble to read and reply, but there is no proof of this. There 
could not be. There is definite proof, however, that there was no 
consultation over it. Twenty-eight minutes after the receipt of Serbia's 
reply — will the reader note, twenty-eight minutes to determine on the 
world war! — the German Ambassador at Belgrade informed the Ser- 
bian government that ' ' not having received a satisfactory answer within 
the time limit set, he was leaving Belgrade." 

Reorganization of the Serbian Army. 

It would be interesting — but useless — to follow the network of 
diplomatic communications during the next three days to July 28, 
when Austria formally declared war on Serbia, and Austrian guns fired 
the first shot. 

The Serbian campaigns are a part of the history of the war, what 
is here concerned are the world-issues, especially from their racial and 
political sides. The next great move was the declaration of Jugo- 
slavia, in place of Gi-eater Serbia, which was officially proclaimed by 
the Serbian government as its goal in December, 1914. The next move 
was the reorganization of the Serbian army, after its first overwhelm- 
ing defeats, and its rejoining of the Allies ' Forces at Saloniki in October, 
1915. This was followed by the reconvocation of the Serbian Skupts- 
china or Parliament by the Acting Government at Corfu, Serbia having 
been conquered and being then in the enemy's hands. 

From this point on, Serbia is scarcely a political entity during the 
war. A diplomatic and military understanding with the various South 
Slav peoples gave rise to a strong feeling on the part of the Allies that, 
in order to head off Teuton aspirations in the Balkans and to the south- 
east, to bar Germany from Turkey and to clip the Berlin-to-Bagdad 
railway project, Allied support of Jugo-Slav interests was of the first 
importance. France, quickly followed by England, declared herself 


as favorable to the Jugo-Slav ideal. Italy and Eussia had not officially 
done so. The United States was regarded by diplomats as favoring 
Jugo-Slav interests, though mainly in the form of presidential utter- 
ances which, however interesting, have no special diplomatic value, 
for Europe regards the United States Senate as the treaty-making 
body. So far as the war of 1914-1918 is concerned, however, it has 
changed the ''Greater Serbia" idea into the Jugo-Slav ideal and it 
has definitely swung the powers who proved victorious to the side of 
the Jugo-Slavs against the aggressions, respectively, of Austria, Turkey 
and Russia. 



Race Barriers in Eastern Europe— Tragedy of Poland, Once a Master Power— Polish Heroism In the 
War— Stubborn Lithuania— The Letts— Esthonia— High Standard of Czech Culture— Bohemia— Uoravla 
—The Slovaks— Czecho-Slovak Forces in Siberia. 

ON the eastern boundaries of the Teutonic peoples dwell the Slavs, 
with, here and there, an intrusion of the Mongolian or Yellow 
Race. As has been shown, to the south, largely owing to the fact that 
the Jugo-Slavs have been continuously oppressed, the various divisions 
of that group of peoples have not developed strong political individu- 
alities, Serbia and Montenegro excepted. But, when the various nations 
which extend along the Austrian and German frontiers northward, as 
far as the Baltic Sea, are considered, the direct opposite is true. 

There are six groups of these, the Czecho-Slovaks, the Ukrainians, 
the Poles, the Lithuanians, the Letts and the Esthonians. The 
Czecho-Slovaks, the Ukrainians and the Poles are Slavs. The 
Lithuanians and the Letts are ethnological puzzles, being neither Slav 
nor Teuton, and are classed as a separate racial stock, called the Baltic 
Race. The Esthonians are not Aryans at aU, but belong to that curious 
compound known as the Ugro-Finnic Race, which includes such scat- 
tered peoples as the Magyars of Hungary and the Finns of Finland, 
and which has the Tartars as cousins on one side and the Eskimo as 
relatives on the other. 

It needs, therefore, no great amount of penetration to discover 
that these peoples cannot all be united, save by some arbitrary and 
imperial system which would contain the seeds of future war. The 
pity of the situation is that certain of these peoples have imperial 
aspirations to hold the other races in subjection. It is an open secret 
that Poland, needing an outlet to the sea, wishes to arrogate authority 
over the Lithuanians certainly and over either the Letts or the Germans 
as she can best make communications to the Baltic. 

It will make the matter easier of understanding if the geographical 
and racial divisions of these separate peoples are considered, beginning 

321 21— W. L. 


with the north, and going southward until the Jugo-Slav demarcation 
is encountered. 

The Gulf of Finland— at the head of which is Petrograd— is the 
starting point. Both sides of this gulf are inhabited by people of the 
Finno-Ugric, which is a branch of the Mongolian or Yellow Race. The 
north shore is dominated by the Finns, the south shore by the Esthon- 
ians. Petrograd is not in Slavic Russia, but just at the point where 
the Slav and the Finnic races join. The province of Esthonia may 
roughly be regarded as the south shore of the Gulf of Finland, but 
the Esthonian peoples spill over into Livonia, the next province to the 
south. Livonia, inhabited by Letts, is the shore and hinterland of the 
Gulf of Riga. Courland, also inhabited by Letts, extends along the 
shore of the Baltic as far as the eastern border of Germany. 

Strategy of the Baltic Provinces. 

The three Baltic Provinces have a total area of over 34,000 square 
miles or twice as large as Switzerland, the total population is a trifle 
larger than that of Norway. About one-third of the population is 
Esthonian, more than a third Lettish, less than one-third German. The 
Russian admixture is slight. 

Strategically the Baltic Provinces are important. They form Rus- 
sia's only "window on the sea." Sea-power exists only via Lettish 
and Esthonian ports. Riga is a city with half a million inhabitants 
and the economic life of foreign trade in Russia lies mainly there. 
Yet Russia's cultural control is slight. 

Historically the German claim has a solid basis. The savage and 
warlike paganism of that part of Europe was conquered and Christian- 
ized by the Teutonic Knights of the Sword, a German crusading order, 
in the thirteenth century. In the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries 
these provinces became successively the prey of Denmark, Sweden and 
Poland. When Peter the Great defeated Sweden in 1721, the Baltic 
Provinces came under Russian control. For nearly two centuries 
Russia tried to set the Letts and Esths against the Germans and, 
though she failed to make them Russian, she succeeded in awakening 
their national aspirations. This was the situation at the opening of 
the war. During the war Courland fell into German hands and Esthonia 
and Livonia remained Russian until the revolution and collapse of 


Russia. From that time to the end of the war Grermany assumed the 
right to dictate to the Baltic Provinces but achieved nothing definite. 

I/ithuania was once a powerful kingdom embracing all of Black 
Russia, and at the beginning of the fifteenth century she held nearly 
a half of European Russia, her boundary running roughly on a line 
from Moscow to the Crimea. Lithuania then united with Poland and 
her history became Polish, but when Poland was broken up she fell 
under the dominion of the newly formed Russian Empire, where she 
has remained ever since. The White Russians, while not true Lithuan- 
ians, possess a strong admixture of this race. 

The Division of Poland. 

Modem Lithuania is considerably larger than the Baltic Provinces, 
larger than Holland, Belgium and Denmark £ut together. The popula- 
tion is nearly 7,000,000, with a little less than one-half of the Lithuanian 
Race. Politically the Great Russians dominate, the cultural influence 
is Polish and the commercial influence is German. Lithuania was under 
Russian control at the opening of the war but in the autumn of 1915 
Germany occupied the entire region. It was, therefore, conquered terri- 
tory at the close of the war. , This territory Poland claims, as does 
Germany. Lithuania proclaimed herself a Republic in December, 1918. 

Where is Poland? It would puzzle a student of history to say. 
The answer would depend on the century. Poland was once the master 
of Eastern Europe, Poland was the very center and flower of chivalry, 
Poland was a giant when Russia was a dwarf. The partition of Poland 
is without a parallel in the international sport of carving up your neigh- 
bor's lands. Prussia, Austria and Russia stole — the word is used 
purposely — stole her territories and divided them. Now, Germany is 
vanquished, Austria has disintegrated and Russia has become a shambles 
of anarchy. 

The national history of Poland has been long and glorious. She 
was Europe 's defence against the Turk. She saved Vienna, and more, 
far more, she saved Christianity in Europe. The power of the Moham- 
medan stopped at Poland. The Cross, in Polish hands, overbore the 

In the seventeenth century Poland was one of the largest geo- 
graphical states in Europe, extending from Posen (near Berlin) to 
Smolensk (near Moscow), and from Riga in the north to Bukowania 


on the south. She was the third largest state in Europe and stood fifth 
in population. At the beginning of the world war Poland did not exist 
as a state, yet its ethnographical group of twenty-one millions made 
it sixth among the Powers, being slightly larger than the population 
of Spain. 

Poland figured largely in the world war, not so much as Poland, 
but under territorial names, such as Silesia, which is German 
Poland, and Galicia, which is Austrian Poland. Yet Poland figured 
even more largely at the end of the war, for the reason that the Allies 
granted to the Polish armies in the field a belligerent status. In other 
words, a nation technically non-existent was recognized as existent 
and its armies were declared to be national armies by reason of their 
national spirit rather than their national integrity. Such an unpre- 
cedented state of affairs can only be understood by a knowledge of 
Polish history. 

Poland Defeats Both Sweden and Russia. 

Poland's importance as a land of national liberty begins in 1368 
when Casimir the Great gave a liberal constitution to Poland. He 
formed a Poland more advanced than any European nation except 
Bohemia and England. This constitution, though its weaknesses were 
to become apparent later, smashed feudal abuses and gained for Casimir 
the name of * ' The Peasants ' King. ' ' A century and a half later Poland 
and Lithuania defeated the famous czar, Ivan the Terrible, and at the 
Diet of Lublin, 1569, the two great kingdoms were joined with Warsaw 
as the capital. 

At this time Sweden was becoming a great power and in 1655 the 
Swedes invaded Poland, in order to recover the Baltic Provinces. The 
Czar seized the opportunity to invade Lithuania. Yet, by the aid of 
her great military leader, Sobieski, Poland defeated both Sweden and 
Russia at the same time. 

The Cossacks and the Ukrainians, however, had sided with Russia 
and aided by a huge army (for that time) of 300,000 Turks, Southern 
Poland was invaded in 1672 and overrun. The Treaty of Budziak gave 
the Polish Ukraine to the Sultan and guaranteed a yearly tribute. 
The Polish Diet, or parliament, refused to ratify the Treaty and in 
the famous Battle of Chocim, Sobieski led the Poles to victory and de- 
feated the Mohammedan armies. The throne of Poland being vacant, 
Sobieski was crowned king. 


Turkey, however, was to make one more attempt to bring Moham- 
medanism over Europe. With the avowed intention of putting to the 
sword every Christian who would not forswear his faith and bow the 
knee to Mohammed, the Sultan launched an attack on Vienna in June, 
1683. The Emperor of Austria fled. The Siege of Vienna is famous, 
and the defence was on the point of abandonment, having held out for 
58 days, when the King of Poland arrived on the scene with an army 
about one-fifth the size of the Turkish force and on September 12 of 
that year the power of the Turk in Europe was forever quelled. 

The lack of a hereditary monarchy was the cause of Poland's down- 
fall. Since the monarch was elective, the State was not stable, and 
every individual noble plotted for himself or his clique. The monstrous 
character of the Parliament, which did not rule by majority, but by 
unanimity, rendered it possible for one discontented noble to vitiate 
every advance. 

In this unfortunate condition, there occurred a rare event in the 
monarchical sky — two great personalities at the same time. Frederick 
the Great sat on the throne of Prussia, Catherine the Great on the 
throne of Russia. Maria Theresa, on the throne of Austria, had been 
bled white through wars with Frederick the Great over Silesia. Cath- 
erine and Frederick callously decided to partition Poland. The treaty 
was signed in 1772 and Poland was denuded of one-third of her terri- 
tory and a third of her population. The two powers generously (?) 
gave a strip of Little Poland to Austria. 

Wars of Catherine the Great. 

It would take up too much space to give the military complications 
of the next period. It will be enough to say that the death of Frederick 
the Great weakened Prussia, England was concerned with the revolu- 
tion of 1776 which gave the United States of America to the world, 
France was preparing for the Revolution of 1789, the Sweden of Gus- 
tavus Adolphus had dwindled. Only Catherine the Great remained as 
a forceful power. Turkey declared war on Russia in 1787, Sweden — 
of all weird alliances! — declared war on Catherine in the following 
year. The terrible empress first whipped Sweden and then, in 1790, 
got the better of Turkey. But, in those four years Poland and Prussia 
had been plotting against Russia and Catherine sought revenge. She 
provoked Prussia and Austria to meddle in royalist plans in France— 


that story is too long to tell — shrewdly set the southern Poles against 
the north and invaded Poland in 1792. The Prussian forces were 
speedily victorious and Catherine dickered with Prussia to partition 
Poland anew, remembering that Prussia had been beaten by France at 
Valmy and would need the salve of more territory. Russia cut the 
remainder of Poland in half and took three-quarters of the stolen land. 
Now comes the period of Kosciusko. This young nobleman, having 
fled from his country by reason of a love affair, joined the Americans 
in the War of Independence, fought in 1776 as a Colonel of Artillery, 
rose to the rank of Brigadier General and was publicly thanked by 
Congress. He returned to Poland and was active in its affairs. The 
second partition of Poland in 1793 stirred Polish patriotic sentiment 
and Kosciusko set the land aflame. At the head of volunteer and ill- 
armod troops he defeated the Russian forces of occupation, and the in- 
surrection spread all over Poland. 

The End of Poland. 

At first Kosciusko was extraordinarily and unexpectedly successful. 
He dodged, outfought and outmanoeuvred the Prussians, each week 
that went by seeming to bring back the hopes for an independent Poland. 

But Catherine of Russia was not dead, yet. She was too wise a 
ruler to send an insufficient force against Poland. She waited until 
all her armies had been brought back from the Turkish frontier and 
launched them in three different campaigns at the same time. On No- 
vember 10, 1794, at the Battle of Maciejowice, the Poles were cut to 
pieces and Kosciusko, falling wounded, exclaimed ' ' The end of Poland ! ' ' 
His prophecy was true, for what remained of Poland was there and 
then divided among the three hungry powers. 

Misfortune, moreover, was still to dog the steps of Poland. She 
turned her hopes on France and a Polish legion was sent to aid Na- 
poleon Bonaparte. When, like the tread of Mars himself. Napoleon 
thundered over Europe, Poland rejoiced. It was a false hope, even 
though the Countess Walewska, who had captivated Napoleon, sur- 
rendered her honor to him in response to promises for her country's 
sake, promises he never kept. The fall of Napoleon drove Poland 
deeper into the mire. 

Seventy years of misrule brought the Polish problem into the hands 
of Bismarck. The Iron Chancellor advocated a system of buying land 


from Polish landowners and selling it to Germans. It was a part of 
his famous ''infiltration" schemes. The plan succeeded, at first, but 
later the Poles turned the tables on the Germans and won more than 
they lost. 

German misrule in Poland was even worse than Eussian. In 1872 
German was ordered as the only langnage to be used in the schools. 
In 1883 German was ordered for religious instruction. In 1899 Polish 
teachers were forbidden to speak Polish in their homes. In 1902 it 
became known that thousands of school children were flogged annually 
for refusing to say the Lord's Prayer in German. In 1906 half a 
million school children went on strike. The brutality employed by 
Prussian officialdom was incredible at the time, though the events of 
the world war in Belgium show that such methods are a part of Prus- 
sian character. Several children were flogged to death and tens of 
thousands of families were driven to starvation by the levy of enormous 
fines. It was the greatest uprising of childhood since the days of the 
Children's Crusade. 

When the world war broke out, Poland was the battlefield of the 
east. German troops entered "Warsaw, August 5, 1915. "The atrocities 
perpetrated by the Germans in Belgium and France, "says one authority, 
**are mild compared with those committed in Poland." It is difficult 
to say anything more condemnatory. 

German Conquest a Nightmare. 

One story, however, may be told. In Czentochowa, a village of 
Russian Poland, is a small church containing the oldest known picture 
of the Virgin and Child in the world. It is a sacred relic. When the 
Germans reached that village, they tore the picture from its frame and 
dispatched it to Berlin, then put a vulgar portrait of the Kaiser in 
military uniform above the altar and forced the villagers at the bayonet- 
point to enter the church and kneel to the tawdry chromo above the 
desecrated shrine. 

By the autumn of 1916, the German conquest of the world was seen 
to be a nightmare from the fear of which all nations were awakening. 
In an effort to win back Poland, and to save something from a possible 
crash, the Central Powers declared the independence of Poland, defin- 
ing the new state, however, with vague boundaries which showed that 
Prussia intended to keep her own share of it, and merely robbing 


Russia. The Polish legions and the Polish councils scornfully refused 
to accept the bait. 

During 1917, the Allies announced their intention of restoring 
Poland to hei* foimer greatness. Details, of course, have not been 
formally announced, but during 1918 informal conferences suggested 
the restoration of Poland, from Russia; of West Prussia, Posen and 
Silesia, from Germany ; of Austrian Silesia and Galicia from Germany. 
This would give Poland a territory of almost the same size as Italy 
and a population of 35,000,000. But this arrangement, or for that 
matter, almost any other, leaves the Polish question a breeding-ground 
of future wars. 

If this last geographical boundary be borne in mind, however, 
it will at once make clear the question of the Czecho-Slovaks, whose 
territories are bounded on the north by Silesia and Galicia. These 
territories consist of three historic divisions with markedly different 
geographical characters. These divisions are Bohemia, Moravia and 
the Tatra, which last is the country of the Slovaks. 

The Story of Bohemia. 

Let it be said, at the outset, that Bohemia and the Bohemians are 
culturally as far advanced as Italy or the United States. It may sim- 
plify matters and keep the reader from falling into the mistake of 
confusing them with, say, the Slovaks or the Servians. Bohemia has 
a long and honorable history, possesses a marvellous literature, is a 
world-famous center for art and music and is the commercial and in- 
dustrial section of Austria. 

A powerful kingdom in the Middle Ages, Bohemia was trodden 
down by the Hapsburgs after the Thirty Years* War, which ended in 
1648. The Hapsburg policy was simple. It consisted in killing all the 
Czech nobles, confiscating their lands and giving them to Austrian 
Germans. The story of Bohemia is singularly like that of Ireland. The 
Czech language, in the eighteenth century was confined mainly to 
peasants. Then, however, the revival spirit of the nineteenth century 
aroused Bohemia— just as it did in Ireland— and a national revival 
began. Only, possessing a land rich in mineral wealth and being aligned 
against a weak and tottering state, the Czech revival rushed forward 
with tornado velocity. By the middle of the nineteenth century, the 
Czechs were more than holding their own ; when the war broke out, the 


Czechs were in political control of Bohemia and Mora\'ia and the Aus- 
trian Germans had been made to toe the mark. 

Bohemia and the Czech question differs utterly from the Polish 
problem. The nineteenth century saw the Poles growing less united, 
the Bohemians, more so. The Poles in German Poland were ever more 
and more under the heel of Prussia ; the Czechs, in Bohemia, were the 

The political situation at the outbreak of the war, therefore, had 
a great deal to do with Bohemia, though indirectly. Austria was aware 
that the empire was breaking up and she counted on war to unify the 
conflicting peoples. She saw the inevitable arrival of the time when 
the Czechs would demand an autonomous state and she realized that 
Prussian methods could only be put in force by Germany. In 1911, for 
example, the Austro-German minority in Bohemia came out point blank 
in the Prague disputes and announced their intention to work for a 
secession of Bohemia and Mora^^a from Austria to the German Empire. 

The Czecho-Slovak Territories. 

Moravia is a hill and plateau land, lying to the east of the high 
plateau of Bohemia — which overlooks the flat lands of Germany to the 
north and the Danube Valley to the south — and it is racially and his- 
torically allied to Bohemia. How little it may be inclined to love Austria 
may be gleaned from the fact that after the Thirty Years ' War it was 
so depopulated by massacre that every man was ordered to marry two 
wives. It shared in the Czech revival of Bohemia. 

The Slovak question is radically different. The Slovaks live in 
an infertile land of rugged mountains, the Western Cai*pathians are 
markedly backward in education and progress, little awakened to ideas 
of liberty and, since the Middle Ages, have been reduced to peasant- 
hood by the dominant Magyar or Hungarian nobles. They were — and 
for that matter still are — Czechs, but they are totaly unlike their 
kinsmen of Bohemia. 

The total area of the Czecho-Slovak territories is about three times 
the size of Switzerland. The total population is about 12,000,000, or 
as many as Norway, Sweden and Denmark together. Of these peoples 
6,500,000 are Czechs, 2,000,000 are Slovaks, the Germans are 3,300,000 
and the Magyars are only 200,000, but politically dominant in the lands 
of the Slovaks. 


Strategically, Bohemia, Moravia and Tatra are essential to Austria- 
Hungary, for they are its defensible frontiers. Vienna would be open 
to attack, and Buda-Pesth likewise, should the Czecho-Slovak states 
be separated from the empire. 

Economically, Bohemia, Moravia and Austrian Silesia are the 
richest parts of the Austrian Empire. Besides great agricultural 
wealth, the most important mineral deposits are situated there and 
those regions form the industrial center of the empire. Culturally, 
Bohemia is a powerful salient of the highest Slav thought thrust into 
Teuton civilization. 

The Czecho-Slovaks, therefore, like the Jugo-Slavs, have become 
a nation during the war, although nation they have none. At the begin- 
ning of the war the Austrian armies contained about 600,000 Western 
Slavs from Bohemia and the Carpathians. From time to time, during 
the war, about 300,000 deserted to their brother Slavs, the Russians. 
In the debacle of July, 1917, thfe Czecho-Slovaks fought like demons to 
stay the tide of Russian treachery and were eager to face the foe 

The shameful peace of Brest-Litovsk left these hundreds of thou- 
sands of patriotic Slavs stranded, but, at the word of Professor Mas- 
aryk. Chief of the Czecho-Slovak National Council, they reorganized 
and started their amazing march across Russia and Siberia to cross 
the Pacific and Atlantic with the hope of joining the armies in France 
to meet the Central Powers face to face once more. The efforts of the 
Bolshevists to disarm them is told in the chapter on Russia. 

Formation of the Czecho-Slovak Nation. 

On May 30, 1917, in the Reichsrat, the Czech Deputies proclaimed 
the resolution of their nation, including the Slovaks of Hungary, to 
unite in an independent state. On January 6, 1918, the same deputies, 
together with representatives of the Diets of Bohemia, Moravia and 
Silesia solemnly asserted the rights of Czech countries and announced 
that a peace treaty which did not give them freedom would mean the 
beginning of another war. On April 13, 1918, the Czecho-Slovak depu- 
ties met in formal conclave with Jugo-Slav representatives and plighted 
a solemn covenant not to desist from war until both parts of oppressed 
Slavdom had been freed and given national liberty. Typically enough, 
the laying of the foundation stone of the Czech National Theatre at 


Prague on May 16, 1918, became a formal alliance of the cultural inter- 
ests of all the groups of the Western Slavs. 

On June 30, 1918, France recognized the Czecho-Slovak nation in 
the following words: ''The Government of the Republic deems it 
equitable and necessary to proclaim the rights of your nation to inde- 
pendence. ... In the name of the government I express the sin- 
cerest wish that the Czecho-Slovak State may soon become, by the com- 
mon efforts of all the AUies, in close union with Poland and the Jugo- 
slav state an impassable barrier to Germanic aggression." 

On August 13, 1918, the British government stated : ' ' Great Britain 
regards the Czecho-Slovaks as an allied nation and recognizes the unity 
of the three Czecho-Slovak armies as an allied and belligerent army 
waging regular warfare against Austria-Hungary and Germany. Great 
Britain also recognizes the right of the Czecho-Slovak National Council 
as the supreme council of Czecho-Slovak national interests and as the 
present trustee of the future Czecho-Slovak Government to exercise 
supreme control over this allied and belligerent army." Other of the 
Allied governments followed later this recognition. The Central 
Powers, naturally, did not do so. 

From what has been said in the foregoing two chapters it is clear, 
therefore, that the world war produced an entirely new alignment of 
the countries Ij'ing along the eastern border of Teutonism. No matter 
how boundaries, in the future, may change a little to this side or to 
that, it means a new map of Europe, based on racial homogeneity 
instead of political theft. The splendor of the triumph lies in the fact 
that the Allies, notably England and France, saw in victory the oppor- 
tunity to help these aspirants to liberty instead of striving to enrich 
themselves at the expense of their weaker brethren. The world pro- 



Shogiinate and Samurai— The Restoration— Korea— Russo-Japanese War— The "Yellow Peril"— Old China 
—Boxer Rebellion— Manchuria— The Chinese Republic— Slgnlflcanee of Capture of Eiao-Chau by 
Japan— New Spheres of Influence In China. 

OUTWARDLY, the Japan of today is different in a thousand ways 
from the Japan of yesterday. Inwardly, Japan is the same. 
"The Ethiopian cannot change his skin nor the leopard his spots,** said 
a wise writer, many centuries ago. Japan can — and does — imitate and 
copy America and Europe, but she cannot be America or Europe. Cos- 
tumes and customs may change, facts and fancies may be interchanged, 
but the soul of the yellow man and the soul of the white man will remain 
different through all. This is no criticism. It would be as deplorable 
to make Japan a little America, as it would be to make America a 
greater Japan. 

Japan's internal history **has nothing to do with the case." The 
dynasty of the present Mikado was founded in 660 B. C. (so the claim 
runs) and reigned unbrokenly until 1585, when the Shogun, or Com- 
mander-in-Chief, usurped the governing power. In 1868 the Shogunate 
was overthrown and the Mikado rule was restored. This restoration 
was largely due to the anti-alien position of the Shogun government. 
Treaties of 1854 and 1863 — loth though one may be to admit it — were 
arrogant intrusions of western powers. In 1871 the feudal system was 
overthrown and in 1889 Japan received a liberal constitution. 

Japan's successful war with China in 1894 was brought about by 
China's intention to annex Korea. In 1898 Russia appropriated the 
Liao-tung peninsula, an act which was regarded by Japan as but a 
prelude to the seizure of Manchuria and Korea, which, in turn, would 
make Russia a sea-power on the Pacific and would menace Japan's 
very existence. The Russo-Japanese war of 1904 was the natural 
sequence. The defeat of Russia put Japan on the map as a first-class 



At the opening of the war, however, Japan was more afraid of 
Germany than of Russia. She had historic cause. At the end of the 
Chinese War, when the Japanese prepared to occupy the Liao-tung 
peninsula, which they had won, the German Minister at Tokio, pre- 
sented a note to the Japanese Foreign Minister. This read, in part: 
''Germany is strong, Japan is weak; what may follow your refusal of 
this advice is not difficult to foretell. ' ' The Hun, like the leopard, does 
not change his spots, either! 

Whereupon, when Germany seized Kiao-Chau Bay in 1897 on the 
flimsy pretext that it was in reparation of the murder of two German 
missionaries in the interior of Shantung, Japan had to keep quiet. 
When she saw the whole province of Shantung become a German 
' ' sphere of influence, ' ' she was still compelled to sit still and say noth- 
ing. To have Germany and Russia against her at the same time would 
have been too dangerous. 

Japan Wants a "Place in the Sun," 

To Americans, generally, the ''yellow peril" is something very 
real. Discounting many highly imaginary stories woven by the anti- 
Japanese propagandists in the United States, the fact remains that the 
Japanese laboring man could under-bid, under-cut and under-live the 
American laboring man at all points. American labor, especially on 
the Pacific coast, is savagely hostile to Japanese immigration. 

One more thing remains to be said. Japan, far more urgently than 
Germany, demands a "place in the sun." She will not be content until 
she gets it. The Mongolian race, if organized and equipped for war, 
could drive all the white races off the map of the Far East. It is well 
to remember that the munition plants in Japan are not inferior to 
those in the United States. It is well to remember that the Japanese 
are extraordinarily good soldiers and that they can march further on 
less food than any other army in the world. It is to be remembered 
that a Mongolian War would have a solidarity which no Alliance could 
equal. There may never be such a war, but as long as a Yellow Race 
and a White Race inhabit this planet the possibility of such a war 

The seizure of Kiao-Chau was Japan *s most signal act of the war. 
It was important, because it drove Germany from Shan-tung. It was 
far more important, however, because it linked Japan and China in 


an Alliance. Japan and Russia— whatever that word may come to 
mean in the next few decades— already have an agreement. The 
Anglo-Japanese agreement continues only to 1921. In January, 
1915, Japan asked China for a concession allowing her to connect Wu- 
chang by rail with the Kiukiang-Nanchang line. England stopped it. 
In June, 1915, there was tension between England and Japan over 
the stoppage of Japanese merchant vessels in Chinese waters. In the 
spring of 1918 a bitter controversy arose regarding Japan's interest in 
Oceania. At the close of the war, England and Japan, though allies, 
were not friends. 

Again, in 1917 and 1918 there were curious interchanges of notes 
between Germany, Mexico and Japan. The State Department made 
public only a few of these papers, and kept silence on those which 
dealt with Japan. It cannot be said that Japan, though an ally, is a 
friend of the United States. As Japan has a population of 76,500,000, 
not far short of the German Empire, she is a power to be reckoned with. 

The open Door in China, 

The world war has not touched China, except in the single matter 
of Kiao-Chau, which was a German ''sphere of influence." But he 
knows little of world-politics who does not know that the "Open Door 
in China" enters into every diplomatic question. The record of Euro- 
pean intrusion in China is staggering. Following on the atrocious 
"opium war," England annexed Hong-Kong in 1841. Russia quietly 
grabbed all the territory north of the Amur River in 1860, quite with- 
out cause. In 1874 France took Annam, and again, in 1885 seized 
Tonquin. In 1887 Portugal felt hungry and cut off Macao for herself. 
These are not small pieces. French Indo-China contains 16,000,000 

The merry game of international theft was not yet over. Germany 
seized Kiao-Chau in 1897, the Russians occupied Port Arthur in the 
same year, while the British "leased" Wei-hai-wei and Kowloon in 1898 
and France "leased" Kwan-chow Bay for a naval base in the same 
year The partition of China was the next step. 

America then formulated the "open door" policy, realizing that 
if the European powers divided China, it would minimize American 
influence on the Pacific. Russia and Britain, however, proceeded to 
punch holes in the "Open Door" policy while outwardly supporting it. 


The treaty of Portsmouth, which ended the Russo-Japanese war, 
did not divert Russia from the East, it only changed her mode of 
approach. Gradually she became dominant in Mongolia, an area of 
1,300,000 square miles. The Chinese Revolution of 1911 gave a further 
opportunity and on October 3, 1912, Russia added to her dominions 
a piece of territory as large as one-third of the United States. It was 
a big bite. In all, the Russian sphere of influence in China at the open- 
ing of war was a total of 1,821,000 square miles. 

It is rarely that Great Britain allows herself to be overlooked. 
In February, 1913, England had closed a practical suzerainty over 
Thibet which, with Sze-Chuan, Kwantung, and the provinces along the 
Yang-Tsi-Kiang, gave her a total of 1,199,800 square miles. France 
had Yun-nan, 146,700 square miles, and Germany had 55,900 square 
miles. Japan has a larger slice than any foreign power, possessing 
for her sphere of influence South Manchuria, Eastern Inner Mongolia, 
Pukien, and a section of Shantung, totalling 2,004,600 square miles. 

China's Economic Question. 

A sharp commercial clash occurred in March, 1914, between America 
and Japan, over a railroad rebate question which was regarded as 
discriminating against American cotton trade. One year later, Japan 
was compelled to yield the point. This factor is important, for Japan 
makes no secret of the fact that it is her ambition to dominate the 
commerce of the Far East. She regards it as her prescriptive right 
in view of the fact that she is the leading Asiatic power. There are 
many arguments in her favor. One of them is a powerful navy. The 
Philippines question has a queer window to the east, but is not germane 
to this book. 

The economic question in China is complicated in the last degree. 
The United States withdrew from the famous '^five-power loan" in 
deference to the wishes of President Wilson. It is generally agreed, 
now, that the President's fears were unfounded. America did, how- 
ever, make a large loan to China in 1916. 

At the close of the war China was a republic. The reader will 
remember that there are many different kinds of republics. The first 
alleged republic of China was constituted February 12, 1912. When 
Yuan Shih-Kai dissolved the Chinese Parliament in 1913 the republic 
ceased to be such in anything but name. In 1915 China speeded back 


to monarchy. On October 23, 1915, Yuan Shih-Kai was "appointed 
by Heaven to ascend the Throne of the Chinese Empire and to transmit 
it to his heirs for ten thousand generations." Yuan abdicated as Em- 
peror the following March but remained President. On May 10 Li 
Yuan-Hung was nominated President by the southern provinces. The 
following year was one of civil war. Yuan died on June 6, 1916, and 
Li Yuan-Hung became President. He promptly restored the Constitu- 
tion, the Parliament was convoked on August 1, 1916, and commenced 
to draft a Permanent Constitution. 

The year 1917 was a constant struggle, and though both political 
parties favored Germany, England succeeded in forcing China to break 
diplomatic relations. In 1918 the civil war confusion continued, and 
Chinese participation in the world war proved a false hope, for the 
north was set against the south, the royalists against the republicans, 
and each party was split into a thousand cliques. A few regiments 
were sent to France but only as an evidence of alliance. 

Over China hangs Japan, eager to bite off another piece of the 
Celestial Land, and over Japan hang the powers, equally greedy for 
themselves and all alike suspicious of Japan. Still further overhead 
hangs the United States, as little inclined to give Japan added territory 
as Japan is inclined to see the Allies increase their Asiatic holdings. 
Meanwhile, China gets nothing. Let no one deem the Chinese question 
settled I 



Military, Political and Economic Conditions of the Three Empires and Their Bulgarian Link— The Berlin- 
to-Bagdad Railway— Colonies of the Central Powers— The Breakdown of the Kaiser-Forged Chain 
and Appeals for a Separate Peace. 

THE world war, regarded as a whole, gave the student of world 
history one astounding surprise. This was the defection of all 
elements in the Central Powers which were not either Asiatic or Teuton. 
The phrase — **The Hun'* — which came to be the current appellation 
for the Central Powers, and which was largely based upon a parallel 
between the atrocities of the infamous Attila and of the German hosts 
in Belgium, has a much deeper root in history. The German-Austro- 
Hungarian-Bulgar-Turk alliance was not an alliance of one group of 
European nations against another, but an alliance of Teutonized Asia- 
tic barbarians against Europe. The statement that "America entered 
the war for the cause of civilization" is not a pretty preachment, but 
a vital and a sober truth. 

Without entering into the question of colonies, the home lands 
of the three empires and one kingdom, which constituted the Central 
Powers, contained almost 50,000,000 Asiatics. These armies of Asiatic 
peoples of Turk, Turko-Tartaric, Mongolian or Finno-Ugric race, were 
oflScered by Teutons and supplied with Teuton artillery. The Asiatic 
is the Leviathan to Europe, living hidden in his deep Oriental ocean. 
In that most marvellous book, the Old Testament, is summed up the 
dark, irresponsible enormity of Leviathan in the words of the Book 
of Job: ''Will he make a covenant with thee?'* The Teuton menace 
was the supposed covenant with Leviathan. 

In other chapters of this book, the individual characteristics and 
the history of the nations comprising the Central Powers have been 
stated, but in a general review of the whole Alliance it is well to observe 
that the war was really and truly a war of Civilization against what 
may be called Barbarianism rather than barbarism. Gilbert K. Ches- 


22— W. L. 


terton coined a great phrase when he spoke of the Central Powers as 
''veneered vandals." A Vandal, in the historic sense, was one who 
sought to destroy the evidences of civilization because they evinced 
a cultural state different from his own, and veneering is merely the 
covering of this desire with the trappings of the civilization he despised. 
"A solemn promise,'* says Chesterton, and one cannot refrain from 
quoting, "a promise, like the wind, is unknown in nature and is the 
first mark of man. It may be said with all seriousness 'In the Begin- 
ning was the Word.' The vow is the voice of Man, whereby he is 
known. It is not easy to mention anything on which the enormous 
apparatus of human life can be said to depend. But, if it depends on 
anything, it is on this frail cord, flung from the forgotten hills of yes- 
terday to the invisible mountains of tomorrow. On that solitary string, 
a man's word, hangs everything, all the principles by which human 
society has been made possible hitherto. On that solitary string the 
barbarian is hacking with a sabre which is fortunately blunt. ' ' 

Military Pre- War Superiority of the Central Powers. 

The Central Powers were extremely f ona, during the war, of boast- 
ing that "Germany had all the world against her, and was facing them 
all down." A curious boast, indeed, to pride oneself on having aroused 
the contempt, the dislike, and the resentment of the whole world. So 
might a duellist, convicted of foul play, boast that no gentleman would 
fight with him, so might a swindling merchant boast that no one would 
trade with him. This is the very quintessence of barbarism, to take 
pride in destroying every evidence of a civilization which is not theirs. 
There is one terrible proof, one trenchant comparison. Compare Ger- 
many's acts at the opening of the war when she was sure of triumph, 
and the Allies' acts at the end of the war, when they were sure of 
triumph I 

Viewed as a whole, the Central Powers represented a population 
of 150,000,000, a number vastly smaller than the populations aligned 
against them. Seven-eights of their population, however, was on the 
homeland, while, of the far vaster population of the British Empire 
and of the French and Italian possessions, only three-eights was avail- 

Viewed as a military unit, the position of the Central Powers was 
incalculably better than that of the Allies, especially in the event of a 


short war. Eastern and western battle-fronts were connected by good 
railways and transportation was reduced to a minimum. A German 
regiment might fight on the French frontier one week and on the 
Russiatn frontier the next. An English regiment fighting on the 
French frontier would have to cross the Atlantic Ocean, the whole 
of Canada, the Pacific Ocean, the broad wastes of Siberia and all of 
Russia to reach the place that its Prussian opponents had reached in 
a few days. 

Viewed as a military economic unit, the position of the Central 
Powers was ideal — for a short war. There were vast stores of grain 
on hand, Hungary was one of the best wheat countries in the world 
and countless millions of sheep grazed on the mountain slopes of Bul- 
garia and Turkey. The great military works of Essen in Germany 
and Skoda in Austria were able to turn out quantities of munitions 
and transport presented no serious diflSculties. 

Germany Wanted a Short War as Only Hope. 

As a social economic unit, the Central Powers were poorly equipped. 
Germany was bankrupt, or, at least, was on the very edge of a panic 
brought about by the reaction from a period of inflation. Austria- 
Hungary, in her divided state, had been in a state of money stress for 
twenty years, Bulgaria was new in the family of nations and had not 
been able to build up a sufficiency of credit, and Turkey had become so 
accustomed to the pawnshop method of getting money that she had 
forgotten both industry and trade. 

Factors such as these are matters of difficulty in a short war. 
They spell irretrievable ruin in a long war. Germany knew this well, 
and she knew that it was imperative for her to win the war quickly. 
She reckoned that if she tried to force her way by Verdun, she would 
be stopped, and every day's delay was vital. If she broke her treaties 
and went via Belgium, then the war might go quickly and Liege was 
the road to the coal and iron mines of Northern France. The blame 
for Germany's invasion of Belgium is by no means to be put entirely 
on the military authorities of Germany. The bankers knew, and said, 
that a short war was the only hope. 

The entanglement of the Central Powers with the Russian ques- 
tion, again, was an economic problem. The theory that the Czar willingly 
allowed himself to be pushed into war against Germany in order that 


he might deliver up the country afterwards is not supported by the 
evidence. Just what did cause this change in Russia's attitude will be 
dealt with in full hereinafter, but in the larger light of world issues 
it is clear that three things made the Central Powers seek an alliance 
with Russia during the war. These three were : the English blockade, 
the entrance of Italy into the war and the final victory of the Venizelos 
party over King Constantine in Greece. These three events shut off, 
in turn, the North Sea, the Adriatic Sea and the ^gean Sea. The 
Baltic Sea being included in the British blockade, this left the Central 
Powers without a single port. 

Thus came about Zeppelin and submarine raids. It is a gross mis- 
take — continuously made by American writers during the war — to sup- 
pose that Germany did not see the futility of her Zeppelin raids. With- 
out infringing on the military history of aviation, which is dealt with 
elsewhere in this book, it is worthy of mention here that the number of 
men killed in Zeppelin raids was fewer than the number of men in Zep- 
pelin crews lost by those raids. In other words, the Zeppelin was not only 
a huge monetary loss, but tactically, it was a military loss. Psycho- 
logically considered, it was an obsession, a part of the false ''fright- 
fulness" idea which is treated in the chapter on Germany. In actual 
fact, the Zeppelin raids were compulsory for the morale of the German 
public. It was necessary to show that while the seas might be block- 
aded, Gerhaany was not entirely hemmed in. 

Germanjr's Purpose in the Submarine. 

The submarine menace was a more potent weapon. Its purpose, 
however, was the same. It is foolish to blame the Germans for not 
having confined their submarine raids to enemy battleships. That was 
not their point. It really would have done but little good. A submarine 
attacking a cruising fleet has her fate sealed at once by the combination 
of hydroplanes, destroyers and depth bombs. The submarine was 
primarily an agent of frightfulness and a commerce destroyer. A true 
under-water cargo boat would have been a boon to Germany, but there 
was no such craft invented. The submarine was Germany's answer 
to the closing of the three seas. 

Toward the middle period of hostilities, the Berlin-to-Bagdad rail- 
way project took on a new form. During the summer of 1916, German 
engineers and German diplomats were working on the development of 


Southern Russian railways, with Constantinople held out as the bait. 
This somewhat ingenious idea gave Turkey a large section of the Bal- 
kans with an Adriatic shore, gave the Bosphorus to Russia, the Dardan- 
elles to Turkey and made of the Sea of Marmora a protected sea 
governed by the mutual interests of Russia, Germany, Bulgaria and 
Turkey. Moreover, the Central Powers were simultaneously planning 
this project, in various forms, with the Great Russians in Petrograd, 
the Little Russians in Kiev and the Cossacks in Odessa. There seems 
reason to believe that this hopeful scheme was hatched in Sofia for 
only by some such arrangement could Bulgaria get her fingers into the 
Constantinople pie. 

Germany's Waning Power. 

In the following chapter on Germany it will be shown how a Ger- 
man error in race psychology led to the entrance of England and the 
United States into the war. From the point of view of the Central 
Powers, however, the greatest psychological error was that of regard- 
ing the Russians as fellow-barbarians. Barbarous, indeed, they proved 
to be ; barbarians, they were not. The revolution which was fomented 
by Russian and Turkish emissaries recoiled on their heads and the 
Central Powers found themselves worse isolated than before. Diplo- 
macy might be able to do something with a venal court; it could do 
nothing with a seething hotbed of young republics, each with a different 

The Kaiser had forged the first link of the Berlin-to-Bagdad chain 
by his visit to "Abdul Hamid, his brother" in 1888. He forged the 
Austrian link by supporting the Bosnian annexation of 1908, and the 
Bulgarian link by being the enemy of England, which had demanded 
the Bulgarian relinquishment of the ''Greater Bulgaria" awarded by 
the Treaty of San Stefano. 

By a curious inversion of circumstances, Germany's partial success 
on the eastern front was the cause of the loss of her eastern prestige. 
When the Central Powers found it necessary to devote their whole 
force to the French and Italian fronts, the eastern nations regarded 
Germany's strength as waning, which it undoubtedly was. No longer 
had the Kaiser a long arm to reach into Asia Minor. England crept 
up to Bagdad. The cavalry of England and France swept up to An- 
tioch. Jerusalem fell into British hands. 


The Kaiser's power over Turkish thought dwindled and perished. 
The failure of German diplomacy in Greece and the reconstruction of 
Roumania taught Bulgaria that Germany was failing. The Kaiser's 
influence in Sofia guttered down to the socket and went out. The Berlin- 
to-Bagdad chain was broken. 

Moreover, the German colonial empire was no more. In Africa, 
"the land of the marvellous future," Germany possessed over 1,000,000 
square miles, or territories about the size of British India, with a 
population of 12,000,000. By January 1, 1918, every scrap of this had 
been conquered. 

German Territory Conquered by Allies. 

The conquests were as follows: Togoland, 33,700 square miles, 
captured by a Franco-British expedition, August 26, 1914; German 
Samoa, 1,000 sq. m., captured by New Zealand forces, August 30, 1914 ; 
German New Guinea, 90,000 sq. m., captured by an Australian expedi- 
tion, September 11, 1914; Caroline, Solomon and Marshall Islands, 
10,500 sq. m., captured by Japanese, October 7, 1914; Kiao-Chau, 200 
sq. m., captured by Japanese-British force, November 7, 1914 ; German 
Southwest Africa, 322,450 sq. m., captured by Union of South Africa 
troops under a Boer General, July 9, 1915 ; Kamerun, 300,000 sq. m., 
captured by a Franco-British force, February 18, 1916 ; German East 
Africa, 384,000 sq. m., captured by British-South African troops, De- 
cember 1, 1917. This settled the hopes of Germany's oriental allies. 
If she could no;t hold her own colonies, how could she be counted upon 
to undertake and carry out new obligations to them? 

The break on the Asiatic side of the alliance brought down the 
Central Powers in its fall. After Turkey and Bulgaria had sued for 
a separate peace and after the German hopes of Russian support had 
proved to be but leaning on a broken reed, the game was up. Had 
Germany been three times as strong as she was on the western front, 
had she still possessed stores of men and materials to draw on, it 
would have been of no use. Had the United States not been present 
at Chateau Thierry the result would have been the same. A long, 
drawn-out fight might have resulted, many more hundreds of thousands 
of gallant soldiers would have lost their lives on both sides, but Ger- 
many could not win, could never have won. 

Thirty years had elapsed since the Kaiser's visit to Abdul Hamid, 


thirty years of gradual preparation for the Teuton-Asiatic attack on 
modern civilization. The chain broke, as it ever does, at its weakest 
link. Not even Prussianism could put the Occident into the Orient, 
and Western Europe could not permit the Orient to march westward 
again. As an evil dream fades at the awakening born of sunlight, so 
the nightmare of Prusso-Turk barbarianism fled away at the light of 
righteousness that glittered on the bayonet-points of the Allies and the 
United States. 



Old Germany a Loose Confederation of States— Bismarck, "Old Blood and Iron"— Dropping the Pilot— 
Kletzsche and Treltsche— Bernhardl and Pan-Germanism— Kaiserdom and Junkerlsm— Wart- The 
Cmdal Mistake, an Error in Race Psychology. 

aWY^ do not make war against the German people, but against 

W Junker rulers of Germany," is a phrase which became cur- 
rent in America during the war, and which was nothing more or less 
than an ingenious piece of German propaganda. President Wilson, 
himself, at the time fell into the trap of repeating it. It was equivalent 
to saying *'We do not make war against Americans but against the 
American Constitution and the Congress of the United States." Mili- 
tarism was as much a part of the soul of the German people at the 
close of the war as popular representation was a part of the soul of 
the American people. 

The history of Germany is marked by one significant fact. In the 
great struggle for political liberty which marked the centuries of 
the Renaissance and the Reformation, the scattered German states 
played but little part. The top-heavy Holy Roman Empire — which was 
Catholic — and the feuds of the petty electorates, margravates and 

princelings— most of whom were Protestant prevented any united 

action. Germany had given birth to princes and to theologians. She 
had never given birth to patriots and liberators. 

The proof of this dissension lies in the fact that when Napoleon 
went through Germany like a tornado, he found nearly 300 principali- 
ties, dukedoms, free cities and what not, all an alleged part of the 
crumbling Holy Roman Empire. Only four states, said a contemptuous 
contemporary historian, ''were larger than a potato field." These 
four were Saxony, Bavaria, Wurtemburg, and Prussia. 

Prussia was the master spirit of Germany then, as she was at the 
opening of the world war. In the seventeenth century Frederick 
William ''the Great Elector," had created Prussia, turning two minor 



provinces into a military monarchy. Frederick the Great, who came 
to the throne of Prussia in 1740, was one of the great rulers of all time. 
He was a military leader of the first rank. He was also somewhat 
ruthless in matters of diplomacy. ''Take what you can,'* he wrote, 
''you are never wrong unless compelled to give it back." On another 
occasion he wrote "The Right is an affair only for the clergy." As 
has been shown in the chapter on Poland, he joined hands with Cath- 
erine the Great of Russia to make mincemeat of the territories which 
lay between them. 

For fifty years after his death Germany made little political prog- 
ress. When the beginnings of a liberal movement in Germany — a late 
and feeble copy of other nations — arose in 1843, Frederick William IV 
said of the proposed constitution that "he would never allow a blotted 
parchment to come between Almighty God and this land," meaning 
himself. The revolution of 1848 in France and the establishment of 
the Second Republic, suggested to the Prussians the possibility of 
imitation. There were a few street riots which alarmed the King suffi- 
ciently to induce him to convoke a national parliament to debate con- 
cerning a constitution. 

The Plan of Bismarck. 

The parliament degenerated into a professional debating society, 
and when, at last, it offered the crown to the King — who already had 
it — and tried to give it an imperial character, the King refused it on 
the ground that a crown given by plebeians was but "a crown of mud 
and wood." The whole project went to pieces and Carl Schurz and 
the leaders fled to America. Sixty-five years later, von Biilow was to 
say of his own nation that "despite the great qualities with which the 
German people is endowed, political talent has been denied it." In 
1858 Frederick William was removed to an asylum, his brain having 
given way. 

William I, "William the Silent," or "Kaiser Wilhelm der Grosse," 
came to the throne in 1858. He was bitterly unpopular. Not only 
that, but his prime minister. Otto von Bismarck, his minister of war, 
von Roon and his chief general, von Moltke, were hated even more. 
But there was something new in Germany, there was a man with a 
plan. The man was Bismarck, and the plan was the consolidation of 


Gemiany under Prussian leadership, rather than under Austrian, as 
all former efforts had been. 

Now, for the first time, a real movement against militarism began. 
The Prussian Chamber of Deputies in 1861 refused to vote the large 
appropriations demanded by the King for the strengthening of the 
army. William I showed some fear, Bismarck, none. On the contrary, 
in 1862 the Iron Chancellor offered to hold office in defiance of parlia- 
ment and to collect taxes without authority of law. It was then that 
he uttered his famous dictum: "The unity of Germany is not to be 
brought about by speeches, nor by votes of majorities, but by blood 
and iron." Protests by parliament were thrown into the waste-paper 
basket unread, the press was muzzled, local municipal bodies who dared 
to pass resolutions counter to the government were fined. In any 
country but Prussia this would have caused revolution, in Prussia it 
created admiration. 

The North German Confederation. 

The first blow for modern Germany was struck in 1864, when 
Bismarck seduced Austria into an alliance, and, thus strengthened, 
forced Denmark to abandon Schleswig-Holstein. Then Bismarck turned 
on his former ally, and, at the Battle of Sadowa in 1866, humbled 
Austria. This victory was potent. It compelled Austria to relinquish 
control of the South German States, Hesse-Darmstadt, Baden, Wurtem- 
burg and Bavaria. It did more. It enabled Prussia to take the lead 
in establishing the North German Confederation on August 18, 1866. 

The make-up of Germany both at the beginning and the end of 
the world war was a matter of such importance that it is necessary 
to give a little detail of the North German Confederation. It super- 
seded the Germanic Confederation, which, in turn, superseded the 
Confederation of the Rhine. The latter, also known as the League of 
the Germanic States was formed by Napoleon, July 12, 1806, when he 
abolished the Holy Roman Empire which had endured since 962 A. D. 
The Confederation of the Rhine ended with the collapse of Napoleon. 

The Germanic Confederation was constituted June 8, 1815, and 
comprised : Austria, Prussia, Bavaria, Saxony, Hanover and Wurtem- 
burg, Baden, the electorate and grand duchy of Hesse, Denmark, 
Holland, Saxe-Weimer, Saxe-Coburg, Saxe-Meiningen and Saxe-Alten- 
burg, Brunswick and Nassau, Mecklenburg-Schwerin and Mecklenburg- 


Strelitz, Oldenburg, the three Anhalts and the two Schwarzburgs, the 
two HohenzoUerns, Liechtenstein, Reuss, Schaumburg-Lippe, Lippe and 
Waldeck, and the free cities of Hamburg, Bremen, Frankfort and 

The North German Confederation was formed by Bismarck on 
August 18, 1866, and differed radically from its predecessors. The 
former confederations had been but loose aggregations of states but 
the union created by Bismarck was a stiff off'ensive and defensive alli- 
ance. It was, to all practical purposes, a single country, comprising 
Prussia, Saxe-Wiemar, Oldenburg, Brunswick, Saxe-Altenburg, Saxe- 
Coburg-Gotha, Anhalt, Schwarzburg, Waldeck, Reuss, Lippe, Lubeck, 
Hamburg and Bremen. In the course of the next two months, the 
Mecklenburgs, Hesse, Saxe-Meiningen and Saxony joined, and the first 
meeting of the North German parliament was held at Berlin, February 
24, 1867. 

Bismarck's Ingenious Statecraft. 

The Franco-Prussian War, as has been shown in a foregoing chap- 
ter on Alliances, was forced by Bismarck not because of any enmity 
to France, but because he felt the need of a war to bring into an active 
alliance those states of South Germany which had been in the Con- 
federation of the Rhine, but had refused to join the North German 
Confederation. Moreover, he was a shrewd enough statesman to realize 
that he must make large concessions. Thus, for example, Bavaria, 
Saxony and Wurtemburg were left as semi-independent kingdoms, with 
their own parliaments and control of their own armies in peace times. 
Questions of taxation, also, were left to them. 

Accordingly, when the Eang of Prussia was made Emperor in 
Versailles in 1871, he was not proclaimed Emperor of Germany. There 
is no such position. William I was proclaimed '' German Emperor,'* 
the distinction being that he held an imperial crown for the German 
people but not over the German States. On the other hand, the offices 
of King of Prussia and German Emperor were made inseparable, 
therefore, since the kingship was hereditary, the Kaisership was heredi- 
tary also. 

An even more ingenious piece of statecraft was Bismarck's parlia- 
mentary handling of the Reichstag and the Bundesrat. This is a ques- 
tion which had much to do with the world war. 

The Reichstag was supposedly a liberal parliament, originally con- 


sisting of 397 members, but gradually increased until on February 16, 
1918, the Bundesrat approved a bill increasing the membership of the 
Reichstag to 441. The members were elected by an almost universal 
male suffrage. But — and this is the essential point — the Emperor had a 
right to dissolve the Reichstag after a vote by the Bundesrat. Thus, 
no matter what the Reichstag might or might not have wished to do, 
if it ran counter to Kaiserism, it could be promptly dissolved, and the 
process repeated until a tame Reichstag was secured, one which would 
eat out of the Imperial hand. 

Since, then, the Bundesrat was thus all-powerful, it is necessary 
to understand the basis on which it is constituted. The Bundesrat was 
Bismarck's scheme for substituting imperial control for popular control. 
At the opening of the war (and at the close) it consisted of 61 members 
appointed by the governments of the individual states, but under such 
conditions that the delegates to this council were, of necessity, the 
choice of the kings, princes and grand-dukes of the empire. Officially 
Prussia had but 17 votes in the Bundesrat, but as the princelings could 
not but stand with the Kaiser and as a large proportion of votes was 
in the hands of the old North German Confederation, the Bundesrat 
was in the hollow of the Kaiser's hand. 

Junkerism a Part of the Political System. 

The parliaments of the several states, such as the Landtag of 
Prussia, bore much the same relation to the Reichstag and Bundesrat 
that the assemblies of the states of the United States bear to the 
House of Representatives and the Senate. Of this Landtag, the upper 
house was controlled solely by birth and wealth. The same principle, 
with certain modifications, prevailed in each state. 

Be it observed that this was Junkerism, and that Junkerism was 
not merely an excrescence foisted upon Germany by Emperor William II 
and his party but an essential, integral part of the political system of 
the empire from the great Kingdom of Prussia to the smallest princi- 
pality whose very name is unknown to most Americans. The junker, 
in the true sense of the word was a country magnate. If rich and 
powerful, he was like a noble of the old French regime— if only moder- 
ately well-placed, he was like an English squire during the Georgian 
period; if poverty-stricken, he resembled an Irish squireen. Whether 
rich, well-off or poor, however, marriage with a girl who had a suffi- 


oiently large dowry to support him as an army officer was the goal 
of every one. As social precedence was governed by military prece- 
dence, the wife of a sub-lieutenant would have social precedence over 
the jsdfe of a world-renowned scientist or of a millionaire merchant. 
*'This payment by means of social honor instead of by salaries," 
says Davis, "was part of the efficient Prussian system of getting the 
greatest possible results for the minimum public expenditure. It 
helped the Hohenzollerns to keep up a huge army on a relatively small 
military budget.'* It was the key to Junkerism, the prop and pillar 
of Prussianism. It explains the anomaly of a huge Prussian army in 
a bankrupt country at the opening of the war. 

Obligatoiy Service in the German Army. 

Moreover, every German was a compulsory soldier. The term 
of service in the First Line was seven years, two in the ranks and five 
in the reserve; in the cavalry and horse artillery, three in the ranks 
and four in the reserve. This took a young man's life from 20 to 27 
years of age. The period of the Landwehr or Second Line Army was 
five years in the first "ban" and seven years in the second "ban." 
He was still a reserve soldier to the age of 39. From that time on men 
passed into the Landsturm or home defence army until the age of 45 

The disproportionately large force of officers in time of peacg, 
which was the most distinguishing feature of German life before the 
war, was due to the fact that all these reservists could be called to the 
colors and immediately placed in active service under trained officers. 
This avoided the extraordinary difficulty that England encountered, 
when she raised an enormous volunteer army for the war, and the neces- 
sity under which the United States labored of employing officers whose 
terms of training had been very short compared with those in European 

Certain phrases become watchwords. One of these resulted from 
a cartoon in the London satiric weekly "Punch," which showed the 
Kaiser, William II, on board a ship bidding farewell to Bismarck. It 
was called "Dropping the Pilot!" The actual happening came about 
thus. When the Kaiser — ^he who brought about the world war — came 
to the throne, he felt the Iron Chancellor to be a stronger man than 
himself. He decided to reduce the powers of the Chancellorate. Bis- 


marck objected. The Kaiser insisted. "Am I to understand, your 
Majesty," asked the greatest statesman of the nineteenth century, 
' * that I am in your way ? " ' * Yes ! ' ' was the reply. Bismarck prepared 
to resign. The letter of resignation did not come fast enough. The 
Kaiser drove in haste to Bismarck's residence, summoned the aged 
statesman from his bed and commenced to bully him. Bismarck refused 
his commands. "I order it as your sovereign!" said the arrogant 
young monarch. ''The commands of my King cease at my wife's 
drawing-room," quoth the Iron Chancellor. Thenceforth William II 
was to walk uncounselled. He strode, head high, to defeat. 

Another pregnant phrase summarized Germany's position. "We 
need a place in the Sun ! ' ' This was neither vain boast, nor blind arro- 
gance. It was a terrible truth. Entering the list of powers at so late 
a date (1871) most of the territory available for colonial possession 
had been taken by other nations. Moreover, the huge military and 
naval expenses which had developed since 1901, the exorbitant social- 
istic pension schemes, the vast sums for local and municipal improve- 
ments had reduced Germany to a state of beggary. "What comes 
next?" asked a diplomatic agent of the head of the Reichsbank, the 
great financial institution of Germany. "Smash comes next I" was 
the reply. 

Germany's Pre- War Financial Condition. 


Naturally, Germany never published any financial documents show- 
ing her weakness. But neither did she publish any showing her sup- 
posed strength. Almost the only authoritative statement made during 
the war was that by Crammond, the great English expert, Secretary of 
the Liverpool Stock Exchange, who was asked by the London Chamber 
of Commerce to compare the English and German financial situations. 
His report may be colored, but the figures in the case may be taken 
as approximately true. 

At the opening of the war, Crammond pointed out, Germany had 
a gold reserve of $465,000,000, a war-chest large enough to meet her 
mobilization needs. The coined gold actually in the country was esti- 
mated at $1,000,000,000 (German sources of information). By March, 
1916, all the war-chest money had been spent, the four war loans had 
taken from the German people $11,600,000,000 and the Reichsbank 
held only $625,000,000 in gold. Against this gold she had issued $4,625,- 


000,000 notes, making a note insolvency of $4,000,000,000. Germany 
was thus, technically, bankrupt to the extent of four billion dollars to 
her people, at the middle of the war on notes alone, and was, moreover, 
presumptively bankrupt to the extent of eleven billion dollars in prom- 
ises to pay on bonds. 

Germany's investments abroad (including those in the United 
States) were $5,850,000,000, of which, at that time, more than half was 
unrealizable. (By the end of the war, all of it was unrealizable.) Her 
merchant shipping, consisting of 5,459,296 tons, was all either sunk, 
captured or misting in neutral and German harbors. Her credit in the 
world was gone, her commercial prestige ruined, and the value of the 
mark had declined to a vanishing point on the world's exchanges. Only 
crushingly heav}' indemnities levied on the Allied Nations could have 
saved Germany from an economic defeat. That was the secret which 
welded economic Germany behind the war party. The military defeat 
of Germany was not more crushing than the economic defeat she had 
brought upon herself. She waged the war as a cloak to hide her un- 
stable financial state, staking all on one throw. She lost. 

The Course of German Philosophy. 

Germany's "place in the sun," moreover, was closely allied to the 
great question of Pan-Germanism. In order to simplify this angle of 
the subject it will be presented under three heads, attached to what 
may be called the three prophets of that creed. These are Nietzsche, 
the prophet of the philosophy of Pan-Germanism; Treitsche, the 
prophet of the doctrine of Pan-Germanism, and Bemhardi, the prophet 
of the means of Pan-Germanism. The first was a philosopher, the 
second a professorial politician, the third a soldier. 

It is tempting to trace the course of German philosophy, but space 
demands only the briefest mention. In 1808, Fichte proclaimed the 
first article of the Pan-Germanic creed: "Germany is to the rest 
of the world as good is to evil." In 1844 von Fallersleben composed 
the national song: "Deutschland iiber alles, iiber alles in der Welt." 
(Germany over all, over all in the world.) Nietzsche presented the 
thesis of the Super-man, with the German playing that role, and im- 
piously tried to prove that Jesus of Nazareth was a German, a thesis 
which Chamberlain carried to the most literal alleged proof. True to 
the Hun spirit Nietzsche wrote, "This new law, my brothers, I give 


you, 'Become Hard!' " Of war he wrote: *'Ye shall love pea<je as a 
means to new wars— and a short peace more than a long." The 
Kaiser's pastor declared from the pulpit "God loves Prussia, He may 
love the rest of the world." This culminates in Kaiser Wilhelm's 
famous words ''Me und Gott!" in which he blasphemously placed him- 
self first. 

Treitsche was the historian of the HohenzoUems, and, as a pro- 
fessor of history in the University of Berlin, he was an inspired 
prophet. His lecture rooms were crowded, not only by students, but 
by high officials. In the years 1890-1900, intellectually he ruled politi- 
cal Germany by a marvellous oratory and by being the mouthpiece 
of Kaiserism and Junkerdom. When he said : "A state has no superior 
judge over itself and will make all its treaties with this tacit reserva- 
tion," he prepared the way for Bethmann-Hollweg^s "scrap of paper!" 
Of Belgium he wrote "It is not a nation, for it is mutilated by its 
very nature" (its neutrality). Of war, he prophesied grimly, "The 
living God will take care that war shall always return as a terrible 
medicine for the human race." 

German3^s Pet Project — Berlin-to-Bagdad. 

Bemhardi was but one of many military exponents of Pan-Ger- 
manism. As he is the best known of them, a few extracts will suffice 
to show the trend of German feeling in 1911. He said : "War in itself 
is a good thing. It is a biological necessity of the first importance." 
Of the Hague, he said: "Courts of arbitration are pernicious delu- 
sions." Of other nations he wrote: "The State is a law unto itself. 
Weak nations have not the same right to live as powerful and vigorous 
nations." Of wars of aggression he said: "The State is justified in 
making conquests whenever its own advantage seems to require addi- 
tional territory. " The Crown Prince Frederick William in 1913 capped 
this teaching when he wrote: "It is only by relying upon our good 
German sword that we can hope to conquer that place in the sun 
which rightly belongs to us. . . . Till the world shall come to an 
end, the ultimate decision must rest with the sword." 

The Berlin-to-Bagdad railway was the pet project of Pan-German- 
ism. It was a tremendous and a daring scheme, the completion of 
which, if Kaiser William II had but had patience to await, might have 
changed the whole tenor of the worid war. It is not necessary to go 


into the negotiations with Turkey regarding concessions. Let it be 
sufficient to say that it would have controlled all the Balkan nations 
through their commerce, it would have made Turkey a vassal, it would 
have given Constantinople to Germany, it would have given the Kaiser 
all that he wished to take of Asia Minor, it would have dominated the 
Black Sea and Southern Russia, it would have tapped the railways 
running into Palestine and made the Kaiser — what he proclaimed him- 
self — "The friend of friends of the Mohammedan peoples," it would 
have made Persia a vassal of Germany, it would have given Germany 
a wide Mediterranean sea-coast just across from the Suez Canal and 
it would have landed German armies at the Afghanistan gates of India. 
A place in the sun, indeed ! 

Germanjr's Policy of Frightfulness. 

It was with a realization of this terrible menace that the Anzacs 
spilt their blood like water on the slopes of the Gallipoli Peninsula, 
only to be beaten back at the last. It was because of this that Allied 
Armies hovered ready at Saloniki. It was because of this that Bul- 
garia's relation to the war was so important. It was because of this that 
Russia's coUapse was so alarming. It was because of this that England 
made alliance with the Arabs, and, in one of the most picturesque cav- 
alry campaigns in human history, spent two long and wearj^ years to 
struggle upw^ards from Egypt and from the Red Sea and from the 
Arabian Gulf, across stony wastes and supposedly impassable deserts, 
to win the last Crusade and plant the Cross in place of the Crescent 
on the ramparts of Jerusalem. When, later, British and Allied forces 
took Antioch and Bagdad, the Pan-German dream was broken. 

The German psychology, however, possessed one glaring fallacy. 
It supposed its own spirit to be the spirit of the world. Nowhere did 
this spirit show itself more utterly wrong than in the policy of "fright- 
fulness. ' ' Arguing that the German people, themselves, would be cowed 
by frightfuhiess, they proceeded on the basis that others would "be 
cowed similarly. Thus on August 22, 1914, General von Biilow pro- 
claimed in Liege: "It is with my consent that the commander-in-chief 
has ordered the whole town (Andenne) to be burned and that al)out 
one hundred persons have been shot. I bring this fact to the City of 
Liege so that citizens of Liege may realize the fate with which they 
are menaced if thev adopt a similar attitude." Or in Namur: "A 

23— W. L. 


German guard will take ten hostages in each street. If any outrage 
is conunitted in that street the ten hostages will be shot." Belgium 
only fought the harder. 

Admiral von Tirpitz, speaking of the submarine policy, said : "It 
is only a matter of time until we bring England to her knees." The 
sinking of the Lusitania was made the occasion of the casting of a 
medal of rejoicing in Germany. But the submarine only made England 
fight the harder, and the Lusitania question operated powerfully in 
bringing America into the war. 

Deeper and worse was the gospel of hate. ' * Gott strafe England ! ' ' 
(God punish England!) became the rallying cry. Lissauer's ''Hymn 
of Hate" became Germany's national war anthem and the composer 
was decorated by the Kaiser. Hear the doctrine of hate: ''The fire 
of righteous Hate is all aglow. We have but one war cry — ' Gott strafe 
England ! ' Hiss it in the trenches, in the charge. You German people 
at home, feed this fire of Hate! You mothers, engrave this in the 
heart of the babe at your breast! You thousands of teachers, teacli 
Hate'. You sacred guardians of the truth, feed this sacred Hate — " 
and so the horrid cry of vengeance rolls on, page after page. But 
Hate is a two-edged weapon. Curses come home to roost. 

The world-issue of Germany at the close of the war was that she 
was Germany, and that her people were German. The militarism of 
the German Empire was not something dropped down from above, it 
was of German origin. The concept of the German Super-man was of 
German begetting. The greed of Pan-Germanism was Germanic. 
The gospel of hate found voice and echo in German hearts. The soul 
of a nation is not a coat to be put on and off. At the close of the war, 
even as at the beginning, France was France, England was England, 
America was America and Germany was — Germany. 



The Shadowy Holy Roman Empire— Franz Josef the Juggler— Sadowa— The Dual Monarchy, a Harlequin 
State and a Nation Without a Soul— The Magyars— The Teuton Whip— International Trickery- 
Treaty of Bucharest— Absolute Collapse From Within. 

IT would be difficult to find an excuse for the existence of Austro- 
Hungary, that is, the Austro-Hungarian Empire as it was before 
the war. There was no racial reason, no linguistic reason, no strategic 
reason, no commercial reason, no cultural reason, no political reason. 
It had neither power, progress, nor respect. The ' ' polyglot empire ' ' and 
the ' ' ramshackle empire ' ' were its general descriptions. 

Back of every bewildering business, however, there is a story, 
behind the craziest group of effects there must be a group of causes. 
The Austro-Hungarian Empire did exist, and not only existed but sent 
three millions of fighting men into the world war. That Austria did 
this under the Teuton whip is admitted, but why it joined the Central 
Powers and how it held its inchoate condition together as long as it 
did is a puzzle of absorbing interest. 

Primarily, the Austrian problem was one of race divisions. There 
were nine several and distinct races (not peoples) inhabiting Austro- 
Hungary. Of these 12,000,000 were Germans, 10,000,000 Magyars, 
8,500,000 Czechs, 5,000,000 Poles, 4,000,000 Ruthenians, 3,750,000 Ser- 
bians 3,250,000 Roumanians, 2,500,000 Jews and 1,250,000 Slovenes. 
None of these were friendly with the others at the opening of the war, 
none spoke the same language, none were of the same political opinion 
and were united only on the one plane, that of mutual distrust. There 
was, however, a weak religious bond, for 78 per cent, of Austria and 
52 per cent, of Hungary were Roman Catholic. Austro-Hungary was 
considered by the Vatican as her main stronghold in Europe. This fact 
did much to cause irritation between the Vatican and the Quirinal, 
as has been shown in a foregoing chapter on Italy. 

Austro-Hungary was the crumbling remains of the old Holy Roman 



Empire, a shadowy and ill-named creation which had little to do with 
modem' Rome and nothing at all to do with ancient Rome. When 
Franz Josef came to the throne in 1849, all unknowing that he was 
to reign for sixty-seven years and die during a world war, it would 
have taxed even a European diplomat to say what were the lands over 
which the young monarch was to hold sway. Some of the lands had 
been obtained by conquest, some by purchase, some by compromise, 
some by marriage, some as the lingering remnant of a feudal system, 
some by secret pacts. Each of these districts had its own privileges, 
its own customs, its own laws, its own institutions, its own nobility, 
its own relation to the government and often its own language. 

Political Juggling of Franz Josef. 

Franz Josef was the opposite of a great statesman, he was a clever 
politician. He was a consummate adept in the difficult art of playing 
one party off against the other, while satisfying neither. Only once 
did Franz Josef attempt a consolidation of his empire and this was by 
the pro-German constitution of 1860-1861. The Magyars smashed ail 
hope of this. The war with Prussia in 1866 put Franz Josef at the 
mercy of Bismarck. A Saxon nobleman, Von Beust, who was a sharp 
enemy of Bismarck, undertook the reorganization of the empire along 
a line little liked by the Iron Chancellor. This reorganization was made 
in 1867 and continued, despite constant dissension, until the beginning 
of the world war in 191^4. "When it is remembered that Franz Josef 
held this scattered state together, from a mediaeval stained-glass court 
which simply bristled with every kind of shame, crime, swindle, de- 
cadence and scandal, it is evident that history must declare him to 
have been a political juggler of incomparable cleverness. 

First and foremost, it is to be understood that the abiding policy 
of the empire, since 1867, was that of uniting the two dominant races, 
the Germans and the Magyars, against the lesser races, Czechs, Poles, 
Ruthenians, etc. In order to make sure that the Germans and Magyars 
might not commence to squabble among themselves, the empire was 
divided in halves, Austria being handed over to the Germans, and 
Hungary'- to the Magyars. Franz Josef was not in any sense of the 
word Emperor of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. There was no such 
state. He was Emperor of Austria and Apostolic King of Hungary. 
Moreover, when in Hungary, he was no longer Emperor of Austria. 


*'A^a," says an ancient proverb of the city of Vienna, ''begins 
on the Ringstrasse," the principal street of that city. There is much 
truth in the proverb. Hungary was not European, as the word is gen- 
erally used. But then, the Magyars are not Aryans. They are neither 
Teuton, Latin, Slav nor Celt. They are allied to the Esths, the Finns 
and the Eskimo. So, in addition to the enormous difficulty of reconciling 
people of the same human family, Austria-Hungary had to try and 
bring together Orient and Occident. 

In the storm of criticism that fell on Austria-Hungary during the 
war, both from her allies and her foes, the Magyars and the question 
of Hungary always met with respect. Hungary has been built up 
historically from a broad aristocratic basis. The nobles were still the 
old type of aristocrat, in the Greek derivation of the word, the rulers 
because they were the leaders. The Magyar noble classes were among 
the most cultured gentlemen of Europe. As large land-owners, they 
established a prosperous free peasantry. They had the most unmiti- 
gated contempt for their Austrian neighbors and regarded the whole 
German race as distinctly low class. Hungary was an independent, 
liberty-loving land. On the other hand, she was not commercial nor 
industrial, save in the Jewish colonies which are large. Austria- 
Hungary as an empire was a political nightmare, Austria was a political 
bedlam, but the Hungarian assembly contrasted favorably with the 
government of any state in Europe. 

Austria-Hungfary Industries Managed by Germans. 

In the chapter on the Czecho-Slovak nations, emphasis has been 
laid on the high scale of culture in Bohemia and the very fair progress 
in Moravia. There, also, were to be found the industrial centers of the 
empire. On the other hand, the Ruthenian remained primitive and the 
Slovene was at a low scale of civilization. Austria-Hungary was a land 
of extremes. 

Economically, Austria-Hungary was poor. Her per capita stock 
of money was down to $12.08, her foreign commerce was low, out of all 
proportion to her population. Though mainly an agricultural country, 
her methods were so archaic that, though possessing a far richer soil, 
her crop yield per acre was only 58 per cent, that of Germany. Except 
for Bohemia, there was no industry that was not German-managed, and 
the profits all went to Germany. Hungary, while having few industries. 


still kept them in Magyar hands, just as all the railroads in Hungary 
were owned by the Magyar government. 

In spite of all this, or because of all this, as one may decide for 
himself, Austria finding Germany behind her, forced the war. How 
that was done, the ruthless character of the ultimatum and the Bosnia 
incident which lay behind it, have been treated in a foregoing chapter 
on Servia. The action of the Jugo-Slavs has fomid a place in the 
chapter belonging to that subject, the relation of the Czecho-Slovaks, 
likewise. The war, therefore, was not brought about by the Czechs, 
not by the Southern Slavs, not by the Roumanians, not by the Jews. 
It follows, then, that it was the result of the war spirit of the Austro- 
Germans and the Magyars. 

The Austro-German and the Magyar feeling was prevailingly one 
of hostility to Russia. Austria from first to last vehemently affirmed 
that Russia started the war. It was the Austrian contention that 
Serbians affairs had nohing to do with Russia, that Serbia would have 
yielded without war if it had not been for the support of Russia, that 
Russia had mobilized against the Austrian border at a time when no 
declaration of war had been made and that in its own terms ''the 
Serbian Kingdom was the torpedo which Russia has launched at the 
body of Austria." 

Austria Refused Russia's Request. 

In order to see Austria's position in the world war it is necessary 
to show her acts in relation to Russia, as well as Serbia. It has been 
shown how Austria served an impossible ultimatum on Serbia, at the 
same time giving so short a time for the reply, that it amounted to a 
declaration of forced annexation or war. During the 48 hours allowed 
for consideration Russia begged for time for her smaller Slav neighbor 
and was curtly refused. She then begged Austria not to cross the 
frontier ''until we had time to arrange matters." Austria replied that 
"having once launched the note she could not draw back." On the 
following day Russia proposed an interchange of views. To this, 
Austria never even replied. 

By now, the war between Austria and Serbia had begun. The 
Russian- Austrian question began to loom large. This was brought to 
a crisis by Germany, when on July 28 the German Imperial Chancellor 
excused to the British Ambassador his refusal to entertain the proposal 
of a conference of the powers on the ground that the quarrel between 
Serbia and Austria was "a purely Austrian concern, with which Rus- 


sia had nothing to do. ' ' The British Ambassador pointed out, in reply, 
that if it were a purely Austrian concern it was something with which 
Germany had nothing to do. 

At this point the rulers took up the dispute. The Kaiser, who 
had been away in Norway, on returning to Berlin, telegraphed to the 
Czar that he was "exerting all my influence to endeavor to make 
Austria-Hungary come to an open and satisfying understanding with 
Russia. ' ' England suggested to Germany ' ' to suggest any form of pro- 
cedure under which the idea of mediation between Austria and Russia 
could be applied." The German Foreign Office answered that it could 
not act in the matter lest pressure "should cause Austria to precipitate 
matters and present a fait accompli" (an irrevocable fact). The Austrian 
government, meanwhile, ignored English advances toward the localiza- 
tion of the war. 

The Kaiser's Arrogant Order. 

Austria not only mobilized but advanced to the Russian frontier. 
Russia, in return, was mobilizing. At the same time Russia offered to 
stop all military preparation if Austria would withdraw from her 
ultimatum the one condition which rendered Serbia a vassal. The 
Kaiser's reply to this was an arrogant order to demobilize on threat 
of war, an order which no self-respecting power could accept. No 
sooner had this been sent, and war between Russia and Germany been 
shown to be inevitable, than Austria, double-facedly, answered the 
Russian notes of several days before that it would be willing to discuss 
the terms of the Serbian ultimatum, knowing that it was then too late. 

This served its purpose. But what Americans did not realize at 
the beginning of the war was that the peoples of Austria-Hungary were 
eager for war. Western Europe hardly realized that Austro-Hungarian 
resentment to Serbia and hatred of Russia was as a living fire, that 
soap-box oratory was to be seen on street and village corner and that 
the drowsy patriotism which was always overlaid with local squabbles 
suddenly became of a white heat. It will be better understood by the 
reader if he remembers that patriotism is a spiritual temper and that 
peoples who are all the time alert for local patriotism can readily be 
set aright for imperial patriotism. 

It is so difficult, sometimes, to get the point of view of a distant 
country that von Scherbrand's description of the general argument may 



be worth quoting. He described the impassioned tale of the average 
Austrian stump speaker much as follows : ' ' That the old empire had 
been asleep for half a century, shamefully asleep, while down below to 
the southeast a cunning, boastful, malevolent dwarf had mocked them 
all, spat at them, challenged them a hundredfold; how it was time now 
to awake from inglorious sleep and to be up and doing; how this wicked 
dwarf, the Serb, had in his presumption at last murderously slain the 
man on whom Austria had built her hopes of a brighter future, of 
prouder days ; and how to the north, another neighbor, half bear, half 
man, but wholly evil, had encouraged and egged on this arrogant pigmy 
cO the last and final outrage, and how they, the men of Austria, must 
avenge the murder and see to it that nothing like should ever become 
possible again." Bands played patriotic melodies, apparently spon- 
taneous choruses sang martial hjonns. 

The Fall of Przemysl. 

It was all very dramatic. It is not so sure that it was all spon- 
taneous. The joints creaked a little. Certain it was that Count Berch- 
told, guiding the destinies of the Dual Monarchhy as a whole and Austria 
in particular, and Count Tisza, the Hungarian premier, were agreed 
upon war. A happy-go-lucky empire of scattered peoples plunged 
gladly into war. More than one wise observer, however, compared 
the Austrian situation with the Prussian situation in 1870. These said 
that, just as Germany had proved the Franco-Prussian war to unify 
Germanj^, so had Austria provoked the world war to unify Austria. 

Then came the "hungry spring" of 1915, when Nicholas Nicholaie- 
vitch came thundering down the Galician passes, and when Przemysl 
fell. That supposedly impregnable fortress was the empire's pride. 
When it fell, 100,000 men went into Russian captivity. Over 6,000 guns 
were lost. The Russians held 72 per cent, of Galicia, The following 
year, with the German-Russian intrigue and the treachery of Petrograd, 
saved Austria, and the advance of Germany into France, showing that 
she was not finally put out of the war by her defeat at the Marne, 
restored Austria's courage. The Roumanian invasion, which threat- 
ened Hungary, and the Italian invasion, which threatened Austria, bred 
bad blood between Austria and Hungary. The reason for the enmity 
' arose from the fact that while the Austro-Hungarian army was Magyar, 
Viennese direction sent almost the whole army to the Italian front to 


save Austria, and allowed Roumanian to rage, for a while, almost 
unchecked in Hungary. This rift in the lute was really never satis- 
factorily closed. 

In the summer of 1918 the conditions which led to the defeat of the 
Austrian offensive came to a head. These were respectively, from the 
Austrian point of view, the defection of the Poles, the defection of the 
Czecho-Slovaks, the Hungaro-Roumanian resentment and the Allied 
promises regarding Jugo-Slavia. Besides this, the evident weakening 
of the Central Powers and their sure defeat with the United States 
on the other side of the scale, rendered the retention of the Piave im- 
possible. None the less, Austria launched a desperate offensive, on 
orders from Berlin, and suffered a crushing defeat, losing, in casualties, 
a quarter of a million men. 

Turkey and Austria Ask for Armistice. 

The crash was at hand, and Austria, seeing this, reiterated the 
solidarity of the Dual Monarchy and on August 16, 1918, denounced 
the Allies' proclamation of a Czecho-Slovak nation. It may be re- 
marked, that, in the technical sense of international precedent, Austria 
had the better of the argument. 

The collapse of Bulgaria and the signing of an armistice on Sep- 
tember 30, 1918, followed by the destruction of the naval base at 
Durazzo by Allied Fleets on October 2, 1918, was the beginning of the 
end. The last week of October saw a general Austrian rout. On 
October 31, 1918, Turkey asked for armistice on terms amounting to 
unconditional surrender, and there was nothing left for Austria to do 
but to take a similar action on November 3, 1918. 

It can hardly be said, however, that when Austria-Hungary laid 
down her arms, she was still Austria-Hungary. On October 18 the 
Provisional Government of the Czecho-Slovaks, a part of the Austrian 
empire, declared her independence, and on November 2, the day before 
the armistice was closed between Austria and the Allies, the Czecho- 
slovak Republic was proclaimed, with Professor Masaryk president. 
On October 24, the Polish National Committee proclaimed the union 
of all Polish territories subject to Austria, Germany and Russia, a 
union which found definite form in the proclamation of a Polish Re- 
public on November 9, 1918, under President Daszynski. 

Finally, the Mid-European Union signed its Declaration of Inde- 


pendence in Independence Hall, Philadelphia, Pa., on October 26, 1918, 
with official delegates of the Czecho-Slovaks, Jugo-Slavs, Uhro- 
Ruthenes (Ruthenians of the old empire), Ukranians, Roumanians, 
people of Italia Irredenta, Greeks, Lithuanians, Albanians and Jews. 
The Poles withdrew from^ the Mid-European Union a few days later 
on the ground that the Ukrainian Government was holding a portion of 
Polish territory in Galicia and maintaining troops there. 

"^^'^len Austria-Hungary signed the armistice terms, therefore, she 
was no longer in existence as an empire. All that wa« left to her was 
part of the German side of Austria and the northern or Magj^ar part 
of Hungary. The Magyars, in the early part of 1918, had shown their 
evident intention of breaking with Austria. It can scarcely be said, 
therefore, that Austria-Hungary, as an empire and kingdom, was 
defeated. It collapsed. The mediaeval court of Vienna, like many an 
ancient form of life which cannot support the light, had been thrust 
into the sunshine of liberty. It writhed supinely and lay still. From 
its ashes. Phoenix-like, the new republics of Middle Europe rose. 



Bulgars a Tartar Stock— Meteoric Rise — San Stefano and "Great Bulgaria"— England's Compulsion of 
"Little Bulgaria"— Battle ol SUvnltza— Montenegro— Tearing up the Treaty of Berlin— Bulgaria 
a Bitter Foe to World Peace. 

THERE is one primary fact in the Balkans to be remembered, 
and that is that Bulgaria is not a Slav state. Though speaking 
a language which is largely Slavic, the Bulgars are near of kin to the 
Turks. They are an Asiatic, non-European and un-European race. They 
take kindly to Mohammedanism. They are intelligent, laborious and 
thrifty, while, at the same time, passionate and revengeful. Of the 
Balkan peoples they are the most advanced and the most homogeneous. 
Their territorial boundaries at the opening of the world war, however, 
did not correlate with their racial boundaries and therein lay one of 
the many troubles of the Balkans. 

Modern Bulgaria was one of the most extraordinary phenomena 
of nineteenth century history. It came into existence almost like an 
act of creation. Out of an obscure mass of Turko-Tartar serfs, there 
sprang into existence, in 1877, a vigorous, healthy, swiftly progressing 
nation. There is little that so angers the true Bulgarian as to be 
classed among the Slavs, and when Russians talked of *' Pan-Slavism" 
and included Bulgaria therein, he fairly frothed at the mouth. 

No two races could be more different. The Slav, before the war, 
was idealistic, easy-going, prone to dream, boastful and generous. 
The Bulgarian was sober, dour, practical, avaricious, laborious and 
dogged. ''The Bulgar on his ox-cart," says a national proverb, ''pur- 
sues the hare — and overtakes it." Give a people of this type a Great 
Idea, and add to the general stock an ability for solidarity and team- 
work in pursuit of that Idea, and the materials are ready for the forg- 
ing of a powerful state. Bulgaria must be reckoned with as a vital 
European factor. 

The Bulgarian "Great Idea" begins with Constantinople. It was 
the desire of the Bulgar to kick the Turk out of Europe and to be, 



itself, the Asiatic power holding the Dardanelles. It was the Bulgarian 
idea to have a Tartar Christendom. In order to do this, it was the 
Bulgarian Idea to reunite the whole Bulgarian race from the Black 
Sea to the Albanian Mountains and from the Danube to the ^gean. 
It was the Bulgarian Idea to scrimp, and save, and work and fight to 
that end, to root out Slav mischief-making among Bulgar peoples. 

Bulgaria was not above planning, finally, to dominate the Slav 
states, but that was not a part of the Great Idea. Roumania could 
keep her territory if she chose, but she must give up the Tartar-inhab- 
ited shore of Dobrudja, Turkey must give up her Turkish vilayets, 
Bulgarian Macedonia must be restored, Bulgarian Albania must join 
the greater nation. Such was the Bulgarian Great Idea, of the ' ' Greater 
Bulgaria'^ of the time preceding the Balkan Wars. 

Russia and Turkey at War. 

The rise of modern Bulgaria begins with Turkey's massacre of 
12,000 peasants on the Bulgarian Mountains, in 1876. This stirred 
Europe. Gladstone wrote a famous pamphlet entitled ' ' The Bulgarian 
Horrors." Serbia and Montenegro fell on Turkey. They were de- 
feated, and the Sublime Porte was about to institute new massacres 
there, also, when England gave a naval warning and the Czar put a 
pistol to the head of Turkey with the abrupt order to conclude an 
armistice with Serbia within forty-eight hours, or prepare to face 

In December, 1876, the powers met at Constantinople to give the 
Sultan some pointed advice. But the *'Sick Man of Europe" was 
slippery. Even while the diplomats were discussing, he granted a 
most extraordinary constitution to the people, liberal beyond believing. 
No one believed it, but the Sultan used the new constitution as a basis 
for delay, glibly remarking that as a constitutional sovereign now, all 
matters must be referred to the people. "When asked about Bulgaria, 
his ministers remarked with an air of innocence ''they had never heard 
the word!" Under pressure, they were induced to remember that it 
''was a geographical term for some part of the region north of the 
Balkans. ' ' 

On April 10, 1877, the Turks rejected the London Protocol and on 
April 24, 1877, Russia declared war. The Bulgarian troops proved 
to be of immense value and did much to bring the final victory. Fight- 


ing continued all 1877 and on January 31, 1878, the Turks accepted an 
armistice, the war being closed by the Treaty of San Stefano, March 
3, 1878. 

This treaty created Bulgaria. A huge state was mapped by the 
Treaty of San Stefano, which gave Bulgaria all the provinces of 
Turkey in which the Bulgars predominated and included a Mediter- 
ranean port. Three-fifths of the Balkan Peninsula was thus made into 
a new state under the name of Bulgaria. But — and this was the crucial 
point, the new Bulgaria was regarded as owing its creation to the Czar 
and therefore was deemed by the Powers a Russian sphere of influence, 
if not, indeed, a vassal state. 

The Congress of Berlin. 

England, always afraid of Russia, protested vehemently. The im- 
mediate result was that England threatened Russia and sent a navy 
to Turkey's assistance. It needed but a breath to start war between 
the two nations, though one was almost wholly a sea power and the 
other almost wholly a land one. Bismarck, looking on, said ''it was a 
little difficult to prophesy the result of a combat between an elephant 
and a whale. ' ' Russia became bellicose, and to give the Czar a hint of 
what he might expect, England called out her reserves and sent eight 
regiments of Sepoy troops of Malta. Russia climbed down and agreed 
to submit to the powers her reconstruction of the Balkans as provided 
in the Treaty of San Stefano. Thus came about the Congress of Berlin. 

Russia was quite willing to attend the Congress of Berlin, with 
Bismarck presiding, for Bismarck had carefully allowed the Czar to be 
confident of Russia's friendship. Meantime, Bismarck had found an 
equally great diplomat in Beaconsfield, the English Jewish prime min- 
ister, and true to his policy of aiding the most powerful, he swung 
the German and Austrian interests at the Congress in opposition to 

So far as Bulgaria was concerned, the effect was drastic. ''Greater 
Bulgaria" became "Little Bulgaria." The huge new state was carved 
into three arbitrary pieces : Macedonia, Bulgaria, and Eastern Rumelia. 
Macedonia was handed back to Turkey, Bulgaria was made ' ' an autono- 
mous and tributary principality," and Eastern Rumelia, as invented, 
was to be an autonomous province under the political and military rule 


of Turkey, but with a Christian governor. This latter state was plain 

Bulgaria, once constituted, however, at once grew dangerous. 
Austrian diplomats, who knew the Bulgars, preferred that the pride 
of the new nation should be taken down by some one other than them- 
selves. They chose Serbia as the cat to pull their chestnuts out of the 
fire. Egged on by Austria, Serbia declared war on Bulgaria. The two 
armies met at Slivnitza, and, to the Serbian surprise, instead of running 
away, the Bulgars fought like heroes. The battle was desperate and 
lasted three days and, in the end, the Serbian forces were cut to pieces. 
Bulgaria would have vanquished and taken Serbia but again the powers 
— always interrupting in the Balkans — stepped in. Austria threatened 
to aid Serbia, and warned the Bulgars that if they did not stop, they 
would have to face the whole Austrian Empire. This was manifestly 
unfair. Bulgaria gained nothing from Serbia, but in 1886 she did take 
the right of annexing Eastern Rumelia and there was no one to stop her. 

For ten years there was comparative peace while a really great 
minister, Stambulov, built railroads, taught modern agriculture, estab- 
lished schools, developed industry and generally proceeded to bring 
Bulgaria into line with the modern world. In true Balkan fashion, 
having made enemies, he was assassinated in 1895. The fact that 
King Ferdinand was a German prince, was generally regarded as being 
the reason why he wanted a true Bulgarian leader out of the way. 
He wanted to deliver Bulgaria, bound hand and foot, to Germany. 

Troubles in the Balkans. 

In a previous chapter it has been shown that Austria annexed 
Bosnia, without rhyme or reason, on October 7, 1908. But while there 
was no reason, there were precedent events connected with it. On 
July 28, 1908, Abdul Hamid, much against his will, admitted the 
''Young Turk" constitution. This will be explained in the chapter 
on Turkey. But, on October 5, 1908, the German Prince Ferdinand 
of Bulgaria took unto himself the title of "Tsar" and proclaimed the 
entire independence of Bulgaria from Turkey. Austria's seizure of 
Bosnia, was, in a measure, a Balkan retort. 

The war of Tripoli, dealt with hereinbefore both in the chapter 
on alliances and in the chapter on Italy, broke on September 29, 1911. 
From the Bulgarian point of view, its main importance was that it 


was a defeat for the "Young Turks." Albania revolted in the spring 
of 1912, as soon as the snow was off the mountains. The garrison 
of Monastir joined the insurgents. Turkey was in so entangled a state 
that the opportunity for knifing her was too good to lose. The Balkan 
States struck home for Macedonia. 

Macedonia is the racial cross-roads where all peoples of the Balkans 
meet. Its people were famous in history, being the Thracian armies 
which, under Alexander the Great, conquered the world. During the 
power of ancient Greece, Macedonia became Greek, during the Roman 
Empire, its inhabitants became Latinized, the great Slav invasions of 
the sixth and seventh centuries gave it a Slavic cast and when the 
Ottoman Empire brought the Turk to the gates of Vienna, Macedonia 
became Turkish in character as well as name. 

Alliance of Balkan States With Greece. 

Geographically speaking, the vilayets of Saloniki, Monastir and 
Kossovo represented Macedonia at the opening of the world war. Of 
Macedonia, the part which is mainly Serbian in character had an area 
of 15,000 square miles, that of Greek ascendancy, 14,000 square miles, 
that of Bulgarian, 7,000 square miles. If these three be averaged 
Serbian Macedonia, Bulgarian Macedonia and Greek Macedonia are 
each as large as Belgium. One does not speak of small territories when 
dealing with the Balkans. It is a common mistake to talk about 
the ''small states of the Balkans." As a matter of fact, they are large. 

So far as can be determined, the type-inhabitants of early Mace- 
donia, the Thracians — whoever they may have been — must have closely 
resembled that puzzling folk of the Balkans, who are variously known 
as the Vlachs, Wallachs, Kutzovlachs or Meglenians. The United States 
Bureau of Irnmigration has adopted the name Wallachs for this people. 
They speak a dialect of Roumanian. 

In 1912 the apparently impossible happened. The Balkan States, 
mutually hostile and enemies to the knife, formed an alliance, with each 
other and with Greece, undoubtedly managed by the ablest diplomat 
that the southeast of Europe had produced in many a decade, Venizelos, 
prime minister of Greece. 

The Concert of Europe told the Balkan Alliance to keep quiet. 
Again the impossible happened. The Balkan Alliance politely told 
the great powers to mind their own business and plunged into the war. 


Germany, confident that the Turkish Army with German officers and 
German artillery would whip the Balkan Alliance, allowed the matter 
to proceed. About 500,000 men on each side took the field. Christian 
fanaticism— though split into several parties— struck at Moslem fanati- 
cism and triumphed. French artillery, in the hands of Serbians and 
Bulgarians, proved better than German, Turkey, divided with herself, 
could only mobilize one-third of her expected strength. The war ended 
by the victoiy of the Montenegrins over the Turks by the siege of 
Scutari, on April 22, 1913. 

At this astounding result the Powers could keep away no longer. 
In a foregoing chapter on Serbia, it has been shown how the powers 
tried to intervene but were unable to prevent the outbreak of war 
between Serbia and Bulgaria on June 29, 1913, forced by a Bulgar 
attack (unjustifiable from a military point of view) before war had 
been declared. The powers, now, were afraid to intervene, for inter- 
vention meant world war. Russia, Germany and Austria would have 
supported Bulgaria ; France, England and Italy would have supported 

The Peace of Bucharest. 

Like an unexpected ghost, Roumania strode down from the north. 
She had waited until the Bulgarians were at hand-grips vnih their 
foes in the south and now appeared in the Bulgar 's rear. The Bul- 
garians were hopelessly overpowered and King Ferdinand could do 
nothing but give up the struggle. At the moment of her pride, the 
cup of Bulgaria was snatched from her lips by Roumania. The war was 
ended by the Peace of Bucharest. 

This so-called "Peace" has been analyzed earlier in this book, 
but from the Bulgarian point of view it may be pointed out that its 
net result was that Roumania, Serbia, Montenegro and Greece had made 
large gains, but Bulgaria had lost to Roumania a piece of territory 
more valuable and more populated than the bare strip which the powers 
gave her from the partition of Turkey. The Peace of Bucharest left 
four powers dissatisfied: Germany, Austria, Bulgaria and Turkey. 
That last sentence is of the highest and most poignant importance. It 
was^ precisely those four nations, Germany, Austria, Bulgaria and 
Turkey, who forced upon the world the greatest war in human history. 
They only waited eleven and a half months to do so. 


The caldron of war had spread from the Balkans to the whole of 
Europe. Bulgaria's position was complicated. She had no ethnic 
relations with either side. Her sentiments, however, were toward 
Germany and Turkey and against Serbia and the Allies. The real ques- 
tion to Bulgaria, however, was this : Had she a greater chance of gain- 
ing Macedonia and the Dobrudja for herself by remaining neutral or 
by going into the war; and, in the event of entering the war, which 
side would give her better terms ? 

Bulgaria commenced to dicker with the Allies, but demanded that 
Serbian troops evacuate Macedonia. This the Allies could not do under 
their agreement with Serbia. Germany, on the other hand, being against 
Serbia, agreed to give Macedonia to Bulgaria if she would win it with 
the sword. Then, in the autumn of 1915, the Austro-German drive 
against Serbia began. That forced Bulgaria's hand. Either she must 
join the Allies — which meant joining Serbia, an impossible action in 
view of the Allies' Macedonian promise to Serbia, or she must join 
the Central Powers. On October 14, 1915, Bulgaria declared war against 
Serbia, completing in fact the understood alliance which had existed 
since the beginning of the war, by which German troops had been al- 
lowed to pass through Bulgaria to the aid of Turkey. 

The Doom of Serbia. 

This put Serbia out of the war as a political unit. When the 
Teuton and Bulgar armies struck Serbia at the same time, she was 
doomed. By the spring of 1916, Bulgarian troops occupied the greater 
part of Macedonia. Meanwhile the Allied armies had occupied the port 
of Saloniki in Greek Macedonia, and in the autumn of 1916 began an 
offensive which led to the taking of Monastir, in the early days of 
December. The whole of the year 1917 was a deadlock, largely due to 
the action of Greece, a question which will be dealt with in a separate 

Came next the beginning of those black and bloody days in Eussia 
which, from the spring of 1917 until the end of the war — and after — 
were to stain the reputation of Russia with crime and treachery un- 
imagined and were to spread an unchecked Reign of Terror from the 
Caucasus to the frozen waters of the Arctic Ocean. 

It was not until 1918 that the Allies dared to move upon Bulgaria, 
for Roumania was a broken reed on which to lean and ever and always 

24— W. L. 


the rabidly pro-German Constantine, King of Greece, might obey his 
brother-in-law, the Kaiser, and launch a Greek army in the rear of the 
Allied forces at Saloniki. When, however, Venizelos got control and 
the advance was possible, it took but a very short while, exactly 
two weeks, before Bulgaria was brought to a state of collapse. In 
that time the Bulgarians had been split into two helpless segments, the 
Bulgarian government had been compelled to surrender and ask for 
a separate peace, King Ferdinand (a German Prince) had abdicated 
in favor of his son Boris, and Turkey was isolated from the Central 
Powers. The collapse of Bulgaria compelled the collapse of Turkey, 
and the shattering of Germany's eastern alliances dissolved into thin 
vapor the dream of Pan-Germanism. The Berlin-to-Bagdad railway 
scheme, as a Teuton project, was no more. 



The Terrible Importance of Constantinople and the Dardanelles— Asia Minor and the Armenians- 
Syria and the Holy Land— Mesopotamia, the Garden of Eden— The Arab Tribes and the Menace 
of Islam— Persia, the England-Russia Gage of War. 

THE Turk was the Orient in Europe. A Turkish gentleman weis an 
almost perfect friend, a Turkish ruler was an unmentionable 
atrocity. A Turkish soldier was a gallant and chivalrous foe, Turkish 
hordes of Bashi-Bazouks have committed barbarities only to be equalled 
by those committed by Germany in Belgium. In diplomatic guile the 
Turk had few equals, but it would tax omniscience to know what he 
meant. It is hard for the "Western nations to understand the Orient but 
it seemed harder for the Oriental nations to understand the West. The 
minds of the Turk and the European do not think on the same planes. 

During the Middle Ages, the Turk was Europe's greatest menace. 
The history of the last three centuries has witnessed the steady and 
continual weakening of the Ottoman Empire. It was in 1853 that Czar 
Nicholas I uttered a saying which became a diplomatic password. 
"Turkey," he said, '4s in a critical state. The country seems falling 
to pieces. We have on our hands a sick man, a very sick man. It will 
be a great misfortune if he should slip away from us before the neces- 
sary arrangements are made." The rest of Turkey's history, until 
the outbreak of the world war, was the carving up among the powers 
and the Balkan peoples of the possessions of the ' ' Sick Man of Europe. ' ' 

Abdul Hamid II, whose name became a synonym for all that was 
ignorant, wanton, rapacious and vile, came to the throne in 1876. From 
that date until 1908 Turkey was ruled exactly as though it were the ninth 
century rather than the nineteenth. Electricity was forbidden because 
the word ''dynamo" sounded like "dynamite" and chemistry was for- 
bidden because the symbol H2O (water) was regarded as a treasonable 
suggestion that H2, or Hamid II, was worth or nothing. Little did 
the Turks reck that these letters stood for "hydrogen" and "oxygen.*' 



In 1888 William II of Germany came to the throne. The very next 
year the Kaiser selected the Sultan of Turkey as the only great European 
monarch worthy of an official visit from him. It may be a matter of 
speculation as to what the Kaiser and the Sultan agreed, it is a matter 
of history what the Sultan, immediately after the Kaiser's visit, did. 
He launched upon the Armenians the most appalling series of massacres 
known to Europe for half-a-dozen centuries. 

The Armenian question was one of the issues in the world war. 
The Armenians are a mixed race. In their mountain region dwelt a 
primitive non-Aryan race, conquered in the early centuries of the Chris- 
tian era and earlier by Aryans closely allied to certain races in Hindu- 
stan. They became ardent Christians, and Armenia remained as a 
Christian island in the midst of Mohammedan rule. With a rich lan- 
guage and a good literature of their own, with independent mountain 
characters, under the isolated conditions, they were forced to become 
either struggling peasants or shrewd merchants. Oppression and mis- 
rule have been their portion for ten centuries. Throughout it all, they 
have maintained a love for liberty and a national spirit of independence 
which is marvellous to witness. 

Massacres of Armenians by Turks. 

The total number of practically pure Armenians is about 1,250,000 
and the land wherein Armenians predominate is about 80,000 square 
miles, or three times as large as Switzerland, between which two coun- 
tries there are numerous strong resemblances. It is a rich and valuable 
country, full of mineral resources, but quite undeveloped. This latter 
fact may explain the Kaiser's interest in Turkey and the Sultan's 
massacres as an excuse for breaking down by armed force the inde- 
pendent spirit of Armenia. 

For three years the Armenian massacres continued. Over 70,000 
Armenians were put to death because they were Christians. The Kurds 
were goaded to aid in the demon work. Village after village blazed. 
Orders were sent that women and children especially should be killed. 
The English people fumed and prepared to step in to stop the outrages, 
but the prime minister, Lord Salisbury, was neither a noble Gladstone 
nor an astute Disraeli. He kept one eye on Russia, another on Germany 
and sent mild protests to the Sultan, which Abdul Hamid received with 
profound submission and Oriental flattery— and threw into the waste- 


paper basket. Berlin's ambassador made daily visits to the Sultan's 
palace and the massacres went on. 

In 1888 the Kaiser made another visit to Abdul Hamid, ''his 
brother," as he called him. It is not polite to state what other people 
called him. The Kaiser then went on to Jerusalem. He went scarcely 
as a crusader, he took a Cook's tourist ticket! A contemporary com- 
ment of the trip was that "The Kaiser changed his religion as often 
as he did his uniforms." In that same year, in Damascus, the Kaiser 
announced Germany's policy in the east in the following words; ''His 
Majesty, Sultan Abdul Hamid, and the three hundred million Moham- 
medans who reverence him as Caliph, may rest assured at all times 
that the German Emperor is their friend." England and France, co- 
keepers of the Suez Canal, noted this remark and kept it in mind. 

Revolution of the "Young Turks." 

Even Turkey, however, could not stay the progress of time. Liberty 
is a stronger force in the world than even "the Red Sultan" or "The 
Great Assassin," or Abdul Hamid under any of his picturesque titles. 
Between 1906 and 1908, the constitutional party in Turkey, known as 
the "Young Turks," was gradually, though secretly, growing in power. 
The powerful Third Army Corps of the Turkish Army, ill-paid and dis- 
contented, was stationed at Saloniki. Suddenly, in July, 1908, the 
Young Turks with the Third (and a few days later, the Second) Army 
Corps at their backs marched on Constantinople. 

Abdul Hamid was taken unawares. The Sick Man of Europe, how- 
ever, was fully possessed of Oriental wiles. Overnight he changed his 
opinions, established a liberal constitution and made the "Young Turk" 
movement of no value aggressively, for all that they wanted was granted 
before they had a chance to ask it. Dervishes embraced Jewish rabbis 
and Christian priests in the street. It seemed like the millennium. 

"The Spider of Constantinople," to use another of Abdul's many 
names, was only craftily biding his time. On April 13, 1909, a counter- 
revolution broke out, the minister of justice was murdered and the 
"Young Turk" leaders fled. It was the last flash of the old days. 
The new regime lasted only twelve days. The Young Turks got the 
army together again and entered Constantinople. Abdul appealed to 

At this point Germany proceeded to double-cross Abdul Hamid, 


"my brother." The German Ambassador was bidden to point out that 
Germany was an ally of Turkey, but not necessarily of the Sultan. 
"Our alliance with Turkey is not a sentimental one," Chancellor von 
Buelow said tersely. 

The Young Turks promptly hanged forty of the leaders of the 
counter-revolution and received the pious opinion of the Sheikh-ul- 
Islam (the Mohammedan Pope) that Abdul was unworthy to be Sultan. 
Mohammed V was crowned and reigned in his stead. 

There was one weakness in the "Young Turk" party. That was, 
that they were still Turks. They copied Prussian methods and used 
them for Oriental ideas. The confusion was worse than before. Under 
the alleged ideal of constitutional principles, they insisted on the Otto- 
manization of all subject peoples, Armenians included. The massacres 
recommenced. Then came the defeat of Turkey in the Balkan Wars. 
The Peace of Bucharest, ten months before the Serajevo incident, found 
Turkey more subjugated and therefore more savage than ever. 

Closing of the Dardanelles by Germany. 

What, then, brought Turkey into the war! The answer is short, 
if not sweet — Germany ! It began with the closing of the Dardanelles. 
In such a medley of affairs as Turkish diplomacy presents it is valu- 
able to have official information. There is the best. The United States 
Ambassador to Turkey, Henry Morgenthau, has written of that famous 
afternoon when Germany, in the name of Turkey, closed the Dardan- 

"The Grand Vizier came out in answer to my request," wrote the 
American Ambassador. ' ' He presented a pitiable sight. His face was 
blanched and he was trembling from head to foot. When I asked him 
whether the news was true that the Dardanelles had been closed, he 
stammered that it was. 'You know this means war!' I said, and warned 
him that an American vessel, laden with stores for the Embassy was 
waiting to come in. The Grand Vizier excused himself and sent Djavid 
Bey, the Minister of Finance, out in his place. Djavid showed that 
the Cabinet knew nothing of the matter. He told me how it happened. 

"A Turkish torpedo boat had passed through the Dardanelles and 
attempted to enter the ^gean Sea. The British warships stationed 
outside hailed the ship, and found there were German sailors on board. 
The English Admiral at once ordered the torpedo boat to go back. This, 


under the circumstances (for it was after the declaration of war), he 
had the right to do. 

''Weber Pasha, the German General who was then in charge of 
the fortifications, did not consult the Turks, but immediately gave 
order to close the strait. Wangenheim (the German Ambassador) had 
already boasted to me that the Dardanelles could be closed in thirty 
minutes, and the Germans now made good his word. Down went the 
mines and the nets; the lights in the lighthouses were extinguished, 
signals were put up notifying all ships that there was no thoroughfare ; 
and this deed, the most high-handed which the Germans had yet com- 
mitted, was done. 

''And here I found these Turkish statesmen, who alone had author- 
ity over this indispensable strip of water, trembling and stammering 
with fear, running hither and yon like a lot of frightened rabbits, ap- 
palled at the enormity of the German act, yet apparently powerless to 
take any decisive action. I certainly had a graphic picture of the ex- 
tremities to which Teutonic bullying had reduced the present rulers 
of the Turkish Empire. And, at the same moment, before my mind 
rose the figure of the Sultan, whose signature was essential to close 
legally these waters, quietly dozing at his palace, entirely oblivious of 
the whole transaction. ' ' The Dardanelles had become a German strait. 

The Strategic Position of Constantinople. 

** Constantinople,'* says Stoddard, '*is the most significant city 
on earth. Strategically, it is the world's most important capital. Situ- 
ated at the key-point of the salt water river joining two seas and sunder- 
ing two continents, it serves at one and the same time as a toll-gate 
between the Black Sea and the Mediterranean, and as bridge between 
Europe and Asia." It is so all-important, so vital, that it is impossible 
to conceive a condition when it will not be hungrily desired by each and 
every one of the first-class powers of the world, or when its possession 
by a first-class power would not evoke the jealousy of all the others. 
Constantinople, by reason of its strategical position, can never escape 
the fate of being a world problem. 

It happens in events of world magnitude, sometimes, that those 
forces which seemed potent for greatest evil prove ineffective, while 
those which seem to have little importance become great issues. It is 
certain that Bethmann-Hollweg never expected his "scrap of paper" 


phrase to become a dominant factor of world thought concerning the 
war. It is no less certain that no one could have supposed a "Holy 
War" proclamation to 300,000,000 Mohammedans to fall as flat as a 
squashed paper bag. 

On November 13, 1914, the Sultan of Turkey, as Caliph, ordered a 
Jehad or Holy War, and the Sheikli-ul-Islam issued the Fetwa or dec- 
laration. It ran, in part, as follows: "(1) If lands of Islam are sub- 
jected to attack by enemies, must, in that case, young and old, in all 
parts of the earth inhabited by Mohammedans, take part in the Holy 
War? Yes! (2) . . . Is it necessary that all Mohammedans who 
live in enemy countries shall rise against their government and take 
part in the Holy War? Yes ! (This was for India's benefit.) (3) Will 
all those who refuse to rise ... be punished! Yes! (4) Will 
Mohammedans who live in lands of the enemy and who are forced to 
fight as soldiers against Islam be regarded as murderers and punished 
with the fires of Hell ? Yes ! ' ' And nothing resulted. Mohammedans 
all over the world knew that this was a Jehad dictated by Germany, 
a Christian power, and they distrusted every word and every move. 

Geography of Asia Minor. 

The story of the Gallipolis peninsula is a part of the history of the 
war, and is dealt with elsewhere in this book. Likewise, so is the story 
of the Turkish campaign in the Caucasus and the great battles of Erze- 
rum. But the strategic and political importance of Asia Minor demands 
a word. 

Asia Minor is the same size as Germany. Its population is ap- 
proximately 12,000,000, of whom three-quarters are Turks. It is a 
huge peninsula controlling the Black Sea, the Dardanelles and the 
Mediterranean. It is the highway to the east. It has a wide variety 
of sojl and climate, with some excessively rich sections. Its mountain 
rim is fabulously stocked with metals and minerals. Gold, silver, cop- 
per, lead, tin, iron and coal are in abundance. 

Like a vast isthmus between the Indian Ocean and the Mediter- 
ranean, interposes the desert of Arabia. From a line of latitude drawn 
east from Suez, Arabia is like a triangle, with the apex pointing into 
the mainland edge of Asia Minor. The base line of tliis triangle is 
desert. The western side is Syria, including Palestine or the Holy 
Land; the eastern side of the triangle is Mesopotamia, generally re- 


garded as the region where ancient writers believed the Garden of 
Eden to have been, and through whicli flow the rivers Tigris and Euph- 
rates, when Ninevah and Babylon once displayed their glories. Bag- 
dad is in Mesopotamia, on the Tigris. 

Syria is of the highest strategical importance. It is the main line 
of communication between Africa and Asia. It is a poor land, thinly 
populated. It is peopled entirely by Arabs, with Turkish officials and 
a few small Turkish garrisons. Strategically, it is all-important to 
England, and falling into English hands, during the war, it rendered 
Egypt unassailable. France, however, had a strong claim on Syria, 
especially to the north, railway concessions were in French hands, and 
a vast amount of beneficent educational work was done by French 
schools in Syria before the war. Racially, Syria is a part of the Pan- 
Arabian Idea, which, to a large extent, was supported by England 
during the war, when she made an alliance with the Arabs. It was by 
means of this alliance that she drove the Turkish garrisons out of 
Syria, and inflicted so crushing a defeat upon the Turkish armies under 
Teuton leadership that the German officers left their troops and fled. 

Description of Mesopotamia. 

Mesopotamia is one of the most fertile valleys in the world. The 
Assyrian and Babylonian Empires centered there. Again, in the days 
of Haroun-al-Raschid (of whom the Arabian Nights Entertainments 
tells) and the later Caliphs of Bagdad, it was the center of an Empire 
which reached clear from the borders of India across Egypt, embracing 
all of northern Africa and half of Spain. The Saracens and the Moors 
were but names of phases of these great Caliphate empires. Turkish 
invasion and government ruined the land and have kept it in poverty 
for five centuries. Fertile Mesopotamia, with a part of the irrigable 
'desert, is about the same size as France. Its population is approxi- 
mately 2,000,000, with a little more than one-half Arabs. There arc 
Kurds in the north, and Persians around Bagdad. The Turks hold the 
towns by officialdom and small garrisons but they have not dared to 
try to supersede the authority of the sheiks of the wandering tribes. 
Strategically, Mesopotamia controls the Arabian Gulf, a weak point 
in England's armor with regard to India. 

Arabia, for centuries nominally under Turkish rule, became inde- 
pendent during the world war. In November, 1916, the Grand Sheereef 


of Mecca, under British support, declared himself Sultan of Arabia. 
In size, Arabia is one-third the size of the United States or twice as 
large as France, Germany and Austria-Hungary put together. Aside 
from the possession of Aden, a British protectorate both before and 
after the war, Arabia has little political or strategical importance. As 
containing the sacred shrines of Mohammedanism, Mecca and Medina, 
it is of considerable diplomatic importance in the handling of Islamic 
affairs. Economically it is so poor a land as to be a liability rather 
than an asset to any European power. Culturally it is solidly Arabian, 
and proud of the wonderful civilization and culture which the Arabs 
possessed during the caliphates. 

Persia is the easternmost of the countries which come under the 
generic name of the Near East. During the war it was a battleground 
of minor civil war, which, however, hardly reached the point of being 
regarded as a world issue. In size it is larger than France, Holland, 
Belgium, Germany and Austria-Hungary together, but its population 
is only 10,000,000. 

Great Britain Gains Control of the Near East. 

Strategically, the Persian question was a Russian-English prob- 
lem. This became complicated before the war by a sharp conflict be- 
tween the British trade monopoly. In November, 1915, under German 
influence, the legislature ceased to operate. In 1916 and 1917 civil 
war continued. On January 30, 1908, the Anglo-Russian agreement 
was formally denounced by the Bolshevist government of Russia and 
on May 2, 1918, the Persian government sided with the Bolshevists. 
In July, 1918, the Persian authorities began to feel the heavy hand 
of England, and when the war closed British overlordship was practi- 
cally re-established. The subject is somewhat distant to demand much 
space, but the main issue lies in the internal conditions. The cultured 
Persians, though nominally dominant, are unable to make head against 
the lawless and warlike Turkomans, who are more susceptible to Turk- 
ish and German interests. 

The close of the war found British power in the Near East multi- 
plied a thousandfold. The collapse of Turkey had put the Dardanelles 
in Allied hands, and Britain held the naval sway among the powers; 
the Holy Land had been captured in a wonderful campaign and General 
AUenby, the British general, had won encomiums from the whole world, 


Christian and Mohammedan, for his administration of affairs in tJenisa- 
lem; France and England had taken Syria; the Armenians always 
looked to England for support and always found a friend there, ex- 
cept during the Salisbury regime ; Mesopotamia had fallen into British 
hands, and Bagdad was occupied; Arabia had become an independent 
sultanate under British protection ; and the collapse of Russia weakened 
Muscovite pressure in Persia. It would not be overstating the situa- 
tion to say that at the close of the world war Britain had gained control 
of the Near East. 



Military, Economic and Political Conditions of Nations Who Either Stayed Completely Out of the War, 
or Who, at One Time or Another, Were Secretly or Actively Allied to Both Sides— Their Moral 
Effect on the Respective Belligerents. 

THERE were three countries which, throughout the war, were a 
source of heart-burnings to both sides. These were Russia, Rou- 
mania and Greece. In all three cases one of the main factors was the same 
— the presence of a Teutonic prince on the throne, with a Teutonic wife. 
The Romanoff dynasty of Russia, or as it is more correctly termed, the 
Holstein-Gottorp-Romanoff dynasty, began in 1762 when the son of 
Prince Charles Frederick of Holstein married Anna, daughter of Peter 
the Great (of the old Romanoff family), and their son Peter III came to 
the throne. Czar Nicholas II, who was on the Russian throne when the 
war broke out, married Princess Alix of Hesse, a German princess, 
allied to the Hanoverian dynasty of England. 

King Ferdinand of Roumania was the nephew of Prince Carol, a 
Hohenzollern, who took the throne when the Roumanians deposed their 
native prince. He also had a German princess to wife, Marie, daughter 
of the Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. King Constantine of Greece 
was related directly to the Kaiser, came from the Schleswig-Holstein- 
Glucksburg family, was educated in a German military school and mar- 
ried the sister of the Kaiser. Thus a Slav empire, a Latin Kingdom and 
a Greek Kingdom were ruled by German princes. 

The reason of this is tied up with a highly curious position in 
European politics, ajoosition rarely understood by American statesmen. 
This is the necessity of working out, to the last degree, the marriages 
and inter-marriages of royal houses. A European diplomat must have 
his ''Almanach de Gotha" at his fingers' ends. 

According to a prevalent, almost universal, custom in European 
royalty, a royal personagge may only marry another person of royal 
blood. If he marries a commoner it becomes what is known as a 



morganatic marriage, legitimate and sacred, but annulling the rights of 
dynasties in Europe, so, at the time of the formation of the German Em- 
pire, the highly ingenious idea was conceived of allowing all the small 
duchies and principalities to continue to exist nominally. The effect of 
this was to create, or rather to continue, a vast number of German royal 

Many royal stocks — it might be a little invidious to name them — 
possess diseased blood, and any student of European history will be 
struck with the number of defectives (the Kaiser has a congenitally 
withered arm), idiots, degenerates and eccentrics to be found in royal 
families. The heir to a throne, looking about him for a bride, would 
probably have no reasonable choice among dynasties of the first order. 
Either there would be no one of suitable age, or the lady herself might 
not possess those qualifications which would suggest an heir and the 
continuation of a dynasty. German princesses, however, would be as 
thick as blackberries on a bush, and since there was little need of inter- 
breeding in Germany, owing to the score or more of ' * royal ' ' families, 
the stock had remained tolerably healthy. Hence the young prince 
would find a German bride, and German court influence would spring 
anew in a fresh field. 

The German Marriage Octopus% 

This is sufficiently important to look at a little closer. In Austria- 
Hungary, the Hapsburgs were a German family ; in Belgium, the King 
was German, a Saxe-Coburg, and his wife was a Bavarian ; in Bulgaria, 
Ferdinand was a Saxe-Coburg and his second wife a German Princess 
of Eeuss ; in Denmark, the King was from Schleswig-Holstein, and he 
mariied a German Princess of Mecklenburg; in England, the King was 
of the House of Hanover, his mother was of the German house reigning 
in Denmark, and he married a daughter of the Duke of Teck; in Ger- 
many, the Emperor was a HohenzoUern and married a Schleswig- 
Holstein Princess ; Greece has been shown above, German on both sides ; 
Italy had no German ruler, at least not for several centuries back and 
the King of Italy married a Montenegrin Princess ; Montenegro had a 
Montenegrin King and Queen ; in Holland, Queen Wilhelmina was of a 
German family and married a German Prince of Mecklenburg-Schwe- 
rin ; in Norway, the King was of the German house ruling in Denmark 
and Tiiarrlod a Princess of the house of Hanover, ruling in England; 


Portugal had recently become a republic, its last King was of the partly 
German house of Braganza-Coburg; Roumania has been given above, 
German on both sides ; Russia also named above, German on both sides ; 
Serbia a Serbian King, who married a Montenegrin Princess ; in Spain, 
the King was the daughter of an Austrian Princess and married an Eng- 
lish Princess of the house of Hanover ; in Sweden, the King was of 
partly French descent, and married a German Princess of Baden ; leav- 
ing, of all the monarchies of Europe, only Italy, Serbia and Montenegro 
without either a German King or Queen, or both. The German mar- 
riage octopus is the explanation of many of the curious diplomatic en- 
tanglements of the war. 

Rulers Not True to Their Countries. 

In a succeeding chapter, the treachery of the royal house of Rus- 
sia to the Allies is traced, but, viewed in the general light of Russia as 
an ally, it may be said that the course of the whole war was changed by 
the defection of the great Slav Empire. Germany's audacity in being 
willing to face France, England and Russia at the same time was better 
understood when it was realized how closely knit was the court intrigue 
between Berlin and Petrograd. The mere fact that an undermined Rus- 
sia, under Nicholas Nicholaievitch, and later, under Brussilov, was able 
to act as a powerful steamroller over Austria, only went to show how 
quickly the Central Powers would have been overwhelmed had Rus- 
sia's rulers been true to Russia, instead of to their relatives. In a sense, 
of course, they could not be. German Princes and Princesses were 
trained for that special purpose— to betray the thrones of Europe to 

Roumania was delivered to the enemy likewise, and, as is shown in 
a succeeding chapter, the King also was forced to abdicate. In the case 
of Greece, the King allowed the whole country to be plunged in civil 
war until the Allies compelled him to withdraw, taking his German 
Queen with him. The military result of this was that neither Roumania 
nor Greece could be counted on as Allies, however pro-Ally the peoples 
of the countries might be. 

To a greater or lesser extent the same was true of all the nations 
of Northern Europe, which were not only inter-related by marriage to 
Germany, but were inter-related by commerce. Norway and Sweden, 
Denmark and Holland were neutral, truly, but in two of the cases the 


sympathies were definitely pro-German, Denmark was afraid to move, 
and only Norway was pro-Ally, largely, again, because the King of 
England was married to an English Princess, albeit Hanoverian. There, 
again, the marriage question played its part. 

Spain and Portugal, however, played an entirely different role in 
the world war. The Iberian peninsula, like the Scandinavian penin- 
sula, consisted of two countries, one small and facing the Atlantic 
Ocean, one large and facing an inland sea. The coast peoples were mari- 
time, progressive and pro- Ally; the inland peoples were more agri- 
cultural, reactionary and pro-German. 

Portugal, at the opening of the war, was a republic. It had been 
an independent monarchy for seven centuries. Ever since the Middle 
Ages, Portugal and England had maintained a close alliance, due, not a 
little, to their mutual antagonism to Spain. The Methuen Treaty of 
1703 was Portugal's barrier against absorption by Spain, Portugal's 
consiant fear. In the Spanish- American War, this English Alliance 
was greatly prized by Portugal. 

German Overtures to Spain. 

From the very beginning of the war, Portugal rendered valuable 
aid to the Allies in the African and Asiatic colonies. The Allies re- 
sponded by convoying supplies and provisions. It was not until 1916 
that Portugal entered the war, and then it officially did so, not as a 
power against the Central Powers, but as England's ally. The final 
rupture with the German Government was not so much a declaration of 
war as the declaration that a state of war was in existence. In 1916, 
1917 and 1918 Portugal sent troops to the western front, where they 
acquitted themselves with remarkable gallantry. 

The Spanish- American War had drilled into Spain so deep a dis- 
trust of her officials, her leaders, her army and her navy, that the out- 
break of the world war was signalized in the once great Castilian Em- 
pire by as universal a protest for neutrality as was possible in that 
politically disrupted country. Teuton propaganda promptly proceeded 
to hold out to Spanish ambition the annexation of Morocco from France, 
the recovery of Gibraltar from England and the absorption of Portugal. 

These were glittering hopes and the Carlist party was ready to 
snatch the baubles so temptingly held out. The irreconcilable political 
cabals of Spain, however, forbade united action. If Spain were to enter 


the war at all, it could not be by a strong national feeling. That would 
have to be built up, little by little. The very strong Republican-Social- 
ists were pro-Ally, and the famous Francisco Ferrer case had warned 
the Spanish Government how dangerous it was to play with the Socialist 


During the first two or three months of the war, however, one very 
potent fact loomed up on the horizon. This was the blockade of the Ger- 
man fleet. Now, for Spanish purposes, a strong German- Austrian fleet 
was a prime necessity, for Spain was not connected with Germany by 
any contiguous territory. France lay between. Spanish influence 
wouM be mainly valuable to Germany on the Mediterranean. 

Then came Italy's entrance into the war. That ended all chance for 
Spain. It was necessary not only to be neutral but to keep her pro- 
Germanism down. The British Navy was a serious enough menace, the 
French Navy, at home, was worse, but the French-Italian naval com- 
bination in the Mediterranean made Spain's position hopeless. She 
had not a single Super-Dreadnought, only three Dreadnoughts with 12- 
inch guns and not one battle cruiser. With a corrupt political system, 
a country split into factions and the national spirit outwardly boastful, 
but inwardly despairing, the proud Don was forced to inaction. In no 
sense and in no part did Spain count in the world war. 

Germany's Vanity and Purse Destroyed. 

So far as the South American and Central American republics 
were concerned, together with a number of other smaller countries, 
their effect on the war was negligible. Their effect on the morale of the 
war, however, was not. As the world war drew to its close and nation 
after nation joined the cause of the Allies in protest against the ruthless 
savagery of German warfare, the atrocities in Belgium, the destruction 
of art treasures, the sinking of neutral merchantmen, with all hands on 
board, the fomenting of Armenian massacres and the like, Germany 
began to realize not only that the war was lost, not only that her mili- 
tary prestige was lost, but that the name of Germany had been befouled 
before the whole world. 

Two things were dear to the heart of Germany, her vanity and her 
purse. Her vanity in her strutting militarism, in her boastful conjur- 
ing with the German ''Gott," in her Pan-Germanic ideal, and her 
Super-man, was pricked by French, Belgian, English, Italian and Amer- 


ican bayonets. It was blown to pieces by hand grenades. The 
Marnc, Ypres, the Piave and Chateau Thierry smashed upon that 
vanity and trod it down. 

The second idol of Germany, her purse, was attacked by the other 
nations who took no part in the actual fighting. The markets of the 
world slipped away, bit by bit. Capitals which had looked upon Ger- 
man bankers as their financial leaders, began to wonder what was the 
value of the German mark. Countries which had given valuable con- 
cessions to German capitalists began to wonder where any German 
would be able to find capital after the war was over. 

Therein lay the importance of the alliance of the non-fighting na- 
tions. Modern life is built upon modem trade, and the close of the war 
saw the world aligned against a nation which had declared a bond to 
be but a ' ' scrap of paper, ' ' and had flown in defiance of civilization and 
common sense. World commerce might have pardoned Germany for 
being either knave or fool, she could never condone her for having been 

25— W. L. 

BLi5r RUSSIA. iiisu>*r'ERSTA>'r'i>"o a:td misukperstoop. 

Car aa4 X«Mst«*->M«Bjik xni MeiviiAAt— Tnas-SitKTun RaQwxy— Ja^aes« Checkmate — Gcrmin loll- 
ttati«k— CMit iBtriiTB^— Betrajml— TTins^^-HfAdiJsi K OT«lati«t— Sluune c^i Bnfst-Litov^— UXriiae— 
B«lsk«Tlsaa— Sa&itT ^t Maraua «ad Siberia. 

THAT form ot hysteria wkieli Audrey ov called "the red laughter 
of war'* \vas as curious a phenomenon of Kussia during the earfy 
years of the great condict, as the revolutionary hysteria of Bolshevism 
wa^ a phenomenon of world iimazement towards its close. These two 
involved issues lxx\ime all the more complicated when it is seen that the 
crimes of treachery and anarchy which stamped Russia during the 
four years of the war did not spring from her vices, but from her 
virtues. Paradoxical though it may seem, Knssia's faults sprang from 
too good a heart. 

In many cases, the relations of the several nations to the world 
issues raised by the war were the result of former alliances or historical 
adjustments of territory. There was practic^^lly nothing of the kind 
in the case of Russia. Her cause of entrance into the war was as simple 
as that of France, or perhaps. England. She entered the war to protect 
ber Slav "little brother" Serbia, an action necessitated by Germany *s 
support of Austria's aggressive ultimatunL 

The puzzle of Eussii^, and it must be admitted at the outset that 
it was one of the most intricate problems throughout the whole war, 
was an internal one. On which side was Russia, at any given time? 
Was the Czar betraying her? Was the Czar honest and only his coun- 
sellors treacherous? What part did the Czarina play! What was 
the meaning of the retirement of Nicholas Nicholaie\'itch? How did 
it happen that the Zemstvos. which started the revolution that over- 
tlirew the war, were the backbone of the army supply during the impe- 
rial regime? What were the policies of all these dift'erent revolutionary 
parties? How did it come about that the main and first revolution was 
bloodless, and that anarchy raised his wild-haired head afterwards? 
Was Bolshevism financed by Germany, and, if so, why did it overthrow 



German intereBts in Euesia? Such, and a thouBand other questionB, 
rise to the mind at once when thinking of Russia's part in the war. 

There were five stages through which Eussia passed during the 
war. These were (1) Eussia -%ith the Allies, (2j EuBsia under process 
of imperial betrayal, (3j Eevolutionarj* Eussia, (4) Bolshevist Eussia 
and (b) Divided Eussia. Each of these periods overlapped, both in 
place and time, so that sections of EussIel, at one and the same time, 
might be in any one of these five stages. The Eussian problem, as has 
been said, was an internal one, and her essential relations to the world- 
issues of the war were two-fold: first, her defection from the Allies; 
and, second, her cradling of Bolshevism. It will therefore be best to 
give a clear idea of the mental soil from which these two actions grew. 

Eussia, at the opening of the war, was governed simultaneously 
by two opposite and antagonistic governments. One had its origin in 
the Czar, the other had its origin in the jjeasant. In power they were 
about equal. One was autocratic, the other democratic; one was con- 
servative, the other liberal ; one was reactionary, the other progressive ; 
one was old, the other new. One was the Court, the other was the 

Meaning of the Zemstvo Movement. 

If once this Zemstvo question be clearly understood, much of the 
confusion regarding Eussia is swept away. The Zemstvo was the 
government of the people, for the peojjle, by the people of Eussia in 
actual operation. Every village was a democratic entity governed by 
itself, with a village council called the Mir, consisting of the peasant 
householders of the village. It was strictly peasant. Not even the 
land-owner, though he were noble, had a voice in the Mir. It had its 
headman of the village and its collector of taxes. 

A number of Mirs were united in a Volost, or canton, this being 
an assmbly of elected delegates from the Mirs. It also, therefore, was 
exclusively peasant in tyjje. The Volost elected a court of Justice 
which decided cases by Peasant Law, a code which was highly peculiar 
to itself and which had nothing whatever to do with the law-courts of 
the empire. The principle of local self-government was continued in 
the Zemstvos. These were of two orders, one for the district and one 
for the province or government. The Zemstvo was a representative 
body having five classes of members: land-owners, clergy, merchants, 
artisans and peasant delegates from the Volosts. 


At the top came the Duma, of which the members were elected by 
electoral colleges in each government. These colleges, in turn, were 
elected on the Zemstvo system with proportionate representation of 
the classes of nobles, clergy, merchants, workmen and peasants. In 
1906 the privileges of all the various parts of this essentially demo- 
cratic system were radically reduced by the Czar, but the system 
existed and returned in full measure during one period of the war. 
The essential thing to note is that Russia enjoyed a form of democratic 
government in which every peasant had the suffrage, and, since the 
meetings of the Mir were of the highest interest in the village, every 
Russian peasant was accustomed to popular representative government. 

The Czar's Autocratic Government. 

So far, so good. But Russia also possessed the autocratic govern- 
ment, the head of which was the Czar. His official title was ' ' Emperor 
and Autocrat of All the Russias." None the less, this autocracy was 
definitely limited. The legislative power of the Emperor (after 1905) 
could be exercised only in concert with the Duma and the Council of 
the Empire. The latter body contained representatives of the monastic 
dergy (black), the secular clergy (white), the colleges and learned 
societies, the chambers of commerce, the industrial councils, the gov- 
ernments or provinces and six members from Poland. There was, 
besides this, the Council of Ministers, or the Cabinet, and the Senate, 
which was the Supreme Court of Justice in addition to its other admin- 
istrative duties. The governmental officials of the various governments 
were under the imperial control, as was also the very powerful police 

It will thus be seen that working from the bottom up was a power- 
ful local system; working from the top down was a powerful central 
system. As the power of police and army was in the hands of the 
autocratic system, the local system might be held down ; as the taxation 
and financial questions were in the hands of the local democratic system, 
Tlie autocratic control might be kept down. Moreover, many Zemstvos 
had guardians of the peace which corresponded closely to one of the 
branches of the imperial police. It followed that a Zemstvo could do 
little w^ithout the governor, and, likewise, that the governor could do 
little without the Zemstvo. As, however, the one took authority from 
the people and the other from the Czar, these forces were always 


All the internal problems of Russian government, prior to the war, 
were born of the fact that Russian government was a careful balancing 
of these opposite forces. There was very much to be said in favor of 
such a system, provided that the balance could be kept even, but it was 
potent with every kind of mischief should one party or the other secure 

At the risk of repetition, it may be said agam, that the evils of 
tyranny lurked in the appointive system, wherein the courts, the gov- 
ernors, the army and the police were the creatures of the Czar and his 
ministers ; and that the evils of revolution and anarchy lurked in the 
local government system, wherein every peasant was trained to fight 
tooth and nail for his Mir, Volost, Zemstvo or Duma against the consti- 
tuted authorities. The former explains such tyrannies as the 
''pogroms" or massacres of Jews, the latter explains the revolution 
of 1916. 

Russian Revolution of 1916. 

So much for the machinery through which the spirit of Czardom 
and Russism respectively expressed themselves. It is necessary now 
to understand the spirit of Russia, and this can best be done by giving 
an impartial account of the motives and development of the Russian 
revolution. This is all the more necessary as nearly all the books and 
propaganda which have been written of the Revolution of 1916 have 
been done by Jewish hands. The reader does not need to be reminded 
that the Jewish viewpoint is not the Russian viewpoint. 

The Revolution of 1916 was a lineal but almost unrecognizable 
descendant of Nihilism. Early Nihilism was a movement among the 
nobles of Russia in favor of higher education. It began in the fifties. 
At that time, all forms of teaching were forbidden to nobles except a 
certain official routine. Women of noble families were allowed to attend 
only those schools where they were taught languages, music and court 

At this time Tolstoi was writing his gospel of humanity and the 
nobles took fire. To signalize their revolt against court formalities, 
the young nobles donned peasant clothing and the noblewomen (for- 
bidden by law. to walk on a street and required at the institutes to wear 
court dresses with low necks and long trains all the time, in order that 
they might be habituated thereto) cut off their hair, put on thick boots 
and made this a symbol of emancipation. This was the beginning of 


the short-haired woman type. The nobles went to all sorts of extremes, 
mixing with the peasants and trying to live like them, as did Count 
Tolstoi himself. This ill-balanced idealism achieved nothing. 

At first the police paid little attention to this intellectual revolt 
among the nobles, but, as it gained headway, they began to apply 
repressive measures. This increased the spirit of revolt, and some of 
the nobles began openly to ally themselves with the earlier movements, 
such as the Decembrists of 1820-1824, who had preached the theories 
of the French Revolution. 

An attempt on the Czar's life in 1866 increased the severity of the 
repression. Nihilism took on a different character and became bitter. 
This was the period when Prince Kropotkin was the intellectual leader. 
To read a book not passed upon by the local police, to wear short hair, 
to don a peasant's clothes, to talk to a suspected person, to criticise an 
official or to advocate public schools was ''revolution" and punishable 
with exile to Siberia. 

Assassination of Czar Alexander II. 

During the seventies the revolutionary movement spread, but was 
compelled to become secret. Police spies wormed their way into the 
organization and became members, finding means thus to betray their 
supposed comrades. The severity of the persecution steadily increased, 
and Terrorism was advocated by the "Central Committee" of a wing 
of the Revolutionary Party as the only argument that reactionary 
officials could understand. The autocratic tyrants hoped to quell 
liberty by fear. The Nihilists retorted that they should live under the 
dark shadow of Fear themselves. On March, 1881, Czar Alexander II 
was assassinated by a bomb, and the Terrorists openly rejoiced in the 


Under an evil counsellor, Pobiedonostzev, the new Czar, Alexander 
III, put into effect measures so stringent as to stamp out the Nihilist- 
Terrorist group. All the leaders, yes, all, were either hanged, shot or 
sentenced to Siberia. The effect was potent. Without leaders nothing 
could be done. The revolutionary movement of the eighties was driven 
into the ground. Sophie Petrofskaya, a noblewoman of royal blood, 
ixnd a score of others were hanged. Over 600 were banished to Siberia. 
The old Nihilism of the nobles became extinct. 

During the nineties a great change came over the revolutionary 


party. It had been begun by nobles, exclusively; it had been carried 
on into the Terrorist regime largely by younger nobles, with here and 
jthere a university student who w^as not noble born. Only one man of 
Jewish extraction ever secured a place among the inner councils. 
During the nineties, however, the revolution spread among the profes- 
sional classes, the merchant groups, the younger radical thinkers every- 
where. These were the ''intelligentsia," a word which has been mis- 
translated ' ' intellectuals. ' ' The true sense of the word is ' ' those willing 
to think." It included such different types as Prince Shakhovskvi, 
Professor Milyukoff and I. Petrunkevitch. It culminated in a huge 
student strike in 1899, and in 1900 the Minister of Education was 
assassinated. A dozen striking assassinations occurred during the 
next four years, the most notable being that of Von Plehve, Minister of 
the Interior, and Pobiedonostzeff 's right-hand man. 

The Crime of "Bloody Sunday." 

The years 1900 to 1904 brought about the third form of revolution. 
The first had been educational and Nihilistic, the second had been retal- 
iatory and Terroristic, the third was constitutional and Socialistic. A 
strong proportion of Jewish leaders, followers of less extreme social- 
istic theories, urged a revolution which should have a definite aim. 
Nihilism had been ridiculous despite the sublimity of its ideals ; Terror- 
ism had been inept, for lack of a plan. 

The inexcusable crime of ''Bloody Sunday," January 9, 1905, crys- 
tallized a strong constitutional movement into a definite rebellion. On 
that snowy Sunday, tens of thousands of workers, carrying ikons (sacred 
images) and led by Father Gapon, paraded before the Winter Palace 
to present a petition to the Czar. They were unarmed. The Grand 
Duke Vladimir, uncle of the Czar, ordered the troops to "fire and keep 
on shooting." Over 1,500 people, many of them dead and wounded, 
lay on the snow in front of the Winter Palace when the short afternoon 
was ended. 

Repression met with failure, as always. All Russia became indig- 
nant. Unions were organized all over the country. Every class and 
section of the land espoused the Social Democrat cause. The ' ' Autocrat 
of All the Russias" was forced to give way and the First Duma or 
representative parliament was called. It was a beginning, but a poor 
one, for the First and Second Dumas came to nought. This was the 


fault of both sides. The Duma representatives demanded reforms 
which were so sweeping as to be impossible, and thus drew down upon 
themselves imperial distrust. Stolypin, the Prime Minister, again 
laid a heavy hand on all liberals. 

The Third Duma, fairly representative of the spirit of the people, 
disillusioned and weary of anarchy, met November 15, 1907. It brought 
about a number of reforms, though its work was always hampered and 
curtailed in the Imperial Council. Gradually liberalism was spreading 
through Russia, a curious kind of liberalism which was without unity, 
which represented two-score of different parties, of all varieties of 
tJiought, from bloody anarchy to doctrinaire theory. Its principal 
characteristic, however, was Pan-Slavism. 

Pan-Slavism, originally, had nothing to do with territory. It 
resembled Pan-Germanism in nothing. It was, in all essentials, a 
movement for Slav culture. This is a most important matter to under- 
stand, because it is the explanation of Germany's influence in Russia. 

Efforts of Peter the Great. 

To begin with, the new Russian culture, originated by Peter the 
Great at the beginning of the eighteenth century, was not Russian in 
any sense. It was not even Slavic. It was Germanic. Peter the Great 
saw the progress of Western Europe and realized the backwardness of 
his own country. He decided to force the ideas of Western Europe on 
his people. Sooner or later such a policy spells disaster. It was 
England's mistake in Ireland. It was Germany's error in Poland. 
During the eighteenth century and the first half of the nineteenth, 
Russia tended German-wards. Then came the internal revolt, when 
Pushkin took the folk-lore of the Slav for his poetry and Tschaikowsky 
took the folk-songs of the Slav for a basis in his music. A true Pan- 
Slavism took root in the hearts of the Russian people. 

For a moment compare the Russian and the Irish situation. Just 
as England forced on Ireland governors of English extraction, designed 
to Englishize Ireland, so the Russian Czars (a German family, gener- 
ally marrying German princesses) forced on Russia administrators 
drawn from Germany. The Imperial Court was largely German. 
German and French, not Russian, were the languages of the imperial 

Pan-Slavism was definitely opposed to this. It advocated Russian 


officials for the Russian people. It desired the Russian language in 
the Russian court. It sought to retain Russian concessions for Russian 
captains of industry. It sought uniformity of tariffs, instead of a pref- 
erential tariff for Germany. Every Pan-Slavic movement, therefore, 
every internal development of Russia, each new public school built, 
was a direct blow at Germany. The Kaiser could not maintain his 
control over the Czar save by supporting his imperial brother in every 
effort to keep the people down. This brought about an impossible 
situation. It meant that the autocratic government was pro-German; 
the democratic government, pro-Slav. As always, the Zemstvo and the 
Court were on opposite sides of the fence. The Grand Duke Nicholas 
Nicholaievitch was a pan-Slav. 

Duplicity of Czar Nicholas II. 

When, therefore, the crime of Serajevo startled the world and 
Austria's aggression on Serbia set the world aflame. Czar Nicholas II, 
a man of no strength of character, was in an awkward position. If he 
definitely humbled himself before Germany, as he seemed to have 
wished, he knew that the whole Zemstvo-Pan-Slav forces of the empire 
would be aUied against him. He knew that Nicholas Nicholaievitch, 
the commander-in-chief of the army, would be against him. 

In the characteristic fashion of a weak man, the Czar proceeded to 
lie to both parties and to play a double game. He defied Germany 
openly and undermined Russia 's armies secretly. He wrote notes and 
made speeches declaring his loyalty to Russia, meanwhile sending pri- 
vate emissaries in munition factories to see that shells were made which 
would not explode. He secretly placea German officials as railroad 
heads to prevent the delivery of food supplies to the troops at the time 
wnen food was most needed. 

The Czarina informed the Germans of all Russian war plans, and 
when, in spite of all these handicaps. Grand Duke Nicholas Nicholai- 
evitch smashed the Austrian lines, the Czar promptly took him from 
his command and sent him to the Caucasus, where he could aid the 
Allies but little. This was not necessarily the blame of Nicholas II, 
it was a part of the imperial policy of two centuries' standing, and it 
was the natural result of a nine-tenths German Czar with an all-German 
wife, living in a German court mth German officials. Moreover, Rus- 
sianism meant revolution and Nicholas feared two things, assassination 


and dethronement. His weak-kneed policy, instead of saving him from 
either of these things, at last brought him both. 

It is obvious, therefore, that the war on Germany was a popular 
one in Russia, for it was also a war on pro-Germanism in the imperial 
reo-ime. It was a blow at the "black hundred." It was a national 
movement. All classes of thought, Democrats, Socialists, Constitution- 
alists, even some of the groups of Anarchists, joined in approval of the 
war. Such widely different men as Prince Kropotkin, Plekhanoff, 
Bourtzeff, Deutsch, and even Lenine (at first) endorsed the war. When 
it became known in November, 1914, that two of the Czar^s ministers, 
Maklakoff and Schcheglovitoff, had presented a secret report advising 
immediate agreement to a separate peace, the country fell into an 
uproar. The spring of 1915 found the people of Russia a unit for the 
war, but also found them growing more and more suspicious of the 
pro-German ring in Petrograd. 

Influence of the Monk "Rasputin." 

The summer of 1915 saw steady defeat of the Russian armies, due 
uniformly to the inefficiency of munitions and supplies. This inefficiency 
became acute when the Imperial party took the management of trans- 
port away from the Zemstvo. In August, 1915, there was a violent 
scene in Petrograd when Nicholas Nicholaievitch appeared before the 
Czar and accused him in point-blank terms of selling the country to the 
enemy. He threatened his august relative with dethronement. But 
the court cabal was too strong, and on September 8, 1915, the Grand 
Duke was relieved of his position as Commander-in-Chief and the Czar 
took the post himself. 

After that, matters became easy for the Germans' A month later 
they were at Warsaw and before the middle of November all the 
fortresses of the Russian frontier had fallen and German troops were 
at Riga, Dvinsk, Grodno, Brest-Litovsk and Czortkoff, a seizure of 
thousands of square miles of territory. All winter the line held. Grand 
Duke Nicholas, however, fighter and a strategist, achieved marvelous 
successes in the Caucasus and advanced on Erzerum. 

The year 1916, in Russia, centered around the dark figure of Gregor 
Novikh, the monk, who became known by the niclmame of '* Rasputin", 
(a rake, or person of bad morals). He was a man of extraordinary 
personality, a dissolute degenerate, but a possessor of hypnotic healing 


powers. The young Czarevitch was epileptic, the Czarina was hysteric. 
Rasputin promptly eased the pains of both and became an indispens- 
able attachment to the court. A peasant himself, he realized that even 
the imperial underhand methods of dealing with the armies would not 
suffice to stop the vast powers of Russia once they woke. He knew, 
what no one else in the court realized, that the All-Russian Union of 
Zemstvos and the Union of Towns were infinitely stronger than 
Czardom. If he were to keep his place, it was necessary that Germany 
should be victorious. Accordingly, Rasputin succeeded in arranging 
the appointment of Sturmer, a German, as Premier of Russia, in place 
of Goremykin, reactionary though the latter had shown himself. 

Treachery of Russia's Premier. 

Sturmer commenced operations at once. In 1916 he issued an 
order forbidding the meeting of any democratic societies and expelling 
groups from the army. He placed all liberal headquarters in the hands 
of the police. He removed from the cabinet, Sazonoff, Minister of 
Foreign Affairs, the only Pan-Slav of the group. Finally, under Ras- 
putin's suggestion, he appointed Protopopoff as Minister of the Inte- 
rior, with the design of staging a popular revolution of such a character 
that the liberal element itself would be obliged either to disavow it or 
to find themselves placed in a hopelessly unfavorable light. This would 
afford the excuse for a fresh access of repression. Stuimer also defi- 
nitely opposed General Brusiloff, apparently for no other reason than 
that the Commander of the Armies on the Austrian front was trying 
to do his duty in the cause of the Allies. 

When the Duma met, November 14, 1916, a storm broke loose. 
Even the president of the Duma, Rodzianko, a staunch conservative, 
denounced Sturmer, and declared that the Premier was selling Russia 
to the enemy. Miliukoff, leader of the Constitutional Democrats, pro- 
duced evidence of the treachery, and, not only that, but showed that 
Sturmer was receiving bribes from food speculators. Shuvaieff and 
Gregorovitch, respectively Minister of War and of the Navy, appeared 
at the Duma and supported the statements that Sturmer and Rasputin 
(which meant Czar and Czarina also) were negotiating with the enemy. 
Sturmer was forced out. Trepoff took his place. 

Protopopoff, however, was still active. He organized the secret 
police and trained them in machine-gun methods. He ordered the 


assassination of Miliukoff, but, at the last moment, the assassin, who 
was a Russian, repented of his treachery and revealed the plot. He 
fomented revolutionary disorders of contradictory and opposing char- 
acters in the unions of workers. Russia grew to hate Protopopoff with 
a mighty hate. Only Rasputin and the Czarina stood behind him. 

In the early morning hours of December 30, 1916, two motor cars 
drove up to the palace of Prince Yusupoff, whose wife was a cousin of 
the Czar. Among the men in the party were two ex-ministers of the 
Interior, Pavlovitch and Khvostoff, and also Vladimir Purishkevitch, a 
deputy in the Duma. Shots were heard, but the police did not dare 
force an investigation, on account of the high rank of Prince Yusupoff. 
A bundle resembling a human body was carried out and put into one 
of the motor cars. Next morning a hole was found in the ice of the 
frozen river Neva, beside which stood two galoshes splashed with blood. 
Further search revealed the body. It was that of Rasputin. 

The Successor to Rasputin. 

The funeral of Rasputin became even more significant than his 
death. Though a peasant and a monk, he was accorded imperial honors. 
The Czar and Protopopoff actually were among the pall-bearers. On 
the other hand, the people greeted the news with delight, as though a 
great victory had been won, and the newspapers even dared to publish 
all the details of the crime. Even the new Premier, Trepoff, would not 
punish the assassins. Protopopoff stepped into Rasputin's place, com- 
mencing spiritualistic seances whereat he claimed to be in psychic 
communication with the dead monk. Trepoff was removed for failing 
to seize Rasputin's murderers, as were also the Ministers of War and 
the Navy. Pro-Germans were put in their place. 

At last Protopopoff 's plans matured. He was ready to provoke 
the revolution, breaking up the army from within, and then, by a 
sudden coup, putting the whole Russian government into the hands of 
Germany. On February 27, 1917, 300,000 workmen went on strike in 
Petrograd. During the first week of March martial law was declared. 
x\ll seemed to be going as Protopopoff had desired. 

The pro-German Prime Minister, however, had made a mistake. 
He had counted on raising a storm which he could quell. He raised a 
hurricane, which he could not control, instead. March 9 was the date 
set by Protopopoff for the revolution. His plans miscarried. The day 


passed quietly. Everywhere the fostered revolt was becoming a real 
revolution. The workingmen were not in the streets raising riot, they 
were formally organizing. On the 10th the Council of Workers' Depu- 
ties was formed and the Duma suddenly passed a resolution stating 
"with such a Government the Duma forever severs its connections." 
The Czar answered with a decree dissolving the Duma. 

Sunday, March 11, Protopopoff showed his hand. He ordered the 
soldiers to start an organized "repression of the revolt." Then 
occurred the surprise. Unknown to the Prime Minister, on the Friday 
and Saturday previous, several regiments of the army had joined the 
Duma and the people. The Pavlovsk regiment was the first. On 
Sunday morning, only one regiment in Petrograd remained loyal to 
Protopopoff and the pro-German Czarina. The Czar, who may or may 
not have known all the details of the plot, was at the front. The loyal 
regiment charged on the crowds in the streets. The revolting regiments 
seized the motor trucks and artillery and charged back. Vast mobs 
gathered. Protopopoff 's newly armed police force joined the fray. 
It was a bloody Sunday. Protopopoff 's desire, of provoking anarchy 
seemed successful. 

Success of the Revolutionists. 

Monday saw an absolute change of front. On the Duma the red 
flag was flying. The soldiers refused to shoot the mobs, several regi- 
ments shot down their officers instead. The revolutionary regiments, 
after a sharp fight, captured the Arsenal. The jails and prisons were 
broken open and the prisoners liberated. Even the notorious Fortress 
of SS. Peter and Paul fell. The headquarters of the secret police was 
stormed, its defenders killed and the building burned to its foundations, 
together with all the records. There was little resistance. 

Rodzianko, the president of the Duma, sent numerous telegrams 
to the Czar, closing with the famous message: "The last hour has 
struck. Tomorrow will be too late if you wish to save your throne and 
your dynasty." To this there was no response. The revolutionary 
soldiers then demanded of the Duma what action it intended to take. 
Rodzianko showed his telegrams and declared openly for a constitu- 
tional democracy. This was deemed satisfactory. That evening, the 
Council of Workers ' Deputies admitted delegates from the revolution- 
ary regiments and the name of the body was changed to the Council of 
Workmen and Soldiers' Deputies. 


On the 12th Sturmer was arrested, and on the 13th Protopopoff 
gave himself up. Kerensky, the Socialist leader, saved the Prime Min- 
ister from lynching, fearing the effect of allowing mob violence to begin. 
Meanwhile the two committees, one of the Duma, and the other of the 
Council of Workmen and Soldiers' Deputies, worked furiously to 
arrange a programme. On the evening of the 14th a proclamation 
was made, beginning ''Citizens! The wonderful has transpired. Or 
Russia is dead. ' ' Both parties worked in harmony, reds and constitu- 
tionalists. On the 15th a Provisional Government was formed with 
Prince Lvoff as Premier. He had been head of the All-Russian Union 
of Zemstvos. Miliukoff, leader of the Constitutional Democrats, became 
Foreign Minister. Kerensky, the radical Socialist, was made Minister 
of Justice. That same day the Czar was forced to abdicate. The revo- 
lution was an established fact. On March 22, the United States recog- 
nized the new Russian Government, and on March 23, Great Britain, 
France and Italy extended the formal diplomatic recognition. 

Kerensky Made Provisional President. 

Troubles soon began. The first hitch was over the question of 
the war. The Duma urged renewal of the Russian offensive, the social- 
istic Council of Workmen and Soldiers' Deputies urged internation- 
alism and a congress for peace. The second hitch was over the question 
of a republic. Prince Lvoff, being a Constitutional Democrat and stand- 
ing for a Constitutional Monarchy, while Kerensky urged a republican 
form of government. Peace was patched up for a time, but on July 
20, 1917, Prince Lvoff retired from the premiership and Kerensky took 
his place. 

Germany's hand had begun to appear. On July 17, 1917, the 
Petrograd Bolsheviki made their first attempt to seize government 
power. Both the Duma and the Council were against them. None the 
less, between July 17 and 19, over 500 men, women and children were 
killed on the streets of Petrograd. On July 25, by a vote of 300 to 
11, the Council of Workers' and Soldiers' Deputies demanded that 
the Bolsheviki explain their alliance with Germany and demanded 
the arrest of Lenine and Zinovieff. The famous National Conference 
at Moscow, August 27-31, designed to formulate unison, only provoked 

On September 9, General Korniloff rose against the Provisional 


Government. On the 10th Kerensky dismissed Korniloff. The com- 
mander-in-chief declared his intention to resist. This precipitated a 
new crisis and the Provisional Government declared a republic, with 
Kerensky as Provisional President. 

The Preliminary Parliament of the Republic opened on October 8, 
1917. The Bolshevists left at once. On November 7th the Parliament 
came to an abrupt end, when the Bolshevists overthrew it and declared 
the arrest of Kerensky. The first Constituent Assembly under Bol- 
shevism was formally opened on January 18, 1918, and after a single 
day's session was dispersed by bayonets. Russia, delivered into the 
hands of the party she had never supported in any way, could do nothing 
but submit herself to be bargained for by Lenine, Trotzky and his ilk. 

Betrayal of the Russian People. 

On January 24, 1918, the Russian delegates to the peace confer- 
ence at Brest-Litovsk rejected the German terms. The Germans 
answered with a threat. On February 9 the Ukraine signed a peace 
treaty with the Central Powers. On February 10 the Bolshevists 
capitulated. Documents which came into the hands of the United States 
Department of State revealed, to quote officially, "Complete proof of 
what the world had long suspected, namely, that Lenine and Trotzky 
and other members of the Bolshevist Government of Russia were paid 
German agents, who were systematically betraying the Russian people 
— even the workingman whom they pretended to represent — and were 
working from first to last for the Imperial German Government under 
the direction of German officers in Petrograd. 

''These documents," says the official American report, ''show that 
the Bolshevist revolution was arranged for by the German Great Gen- 
eral Staff and financed by the German Imperial Bank and other German 
financial institutions. They show that the treaty of Brest-Litovsk was 
a betrayal of the Russian people by the German agents, Lenine and 
Trotzky; that a German-picked commander was chosen to 'defend* 
Petrograd against the Germans ; that German officers have been secretly 
received by the Bolshevist Government as military advisers, as spies 
upon the embassies of Russia's allies, as officers in the Russian Army 
and as directors of Bolshevist military, foreign and domestic policy. 
They show, in short, that the present Bolshevist Government is not a 
Russian Government at all, but a German government, acting solely 


in the interests of Germany and betraying the Russian people for the 
benefit of the Imperial German Government alone." 

That there should be no possible counter-revolution, the Bolshevists 
assassinated the Czar, killed all nobles at sight, instituted a Reign of 
Terror on every hand, and, even after the close of the war, from Novem- 
ber 10-15, 1918, instituted a wholesale massacre which, they boasted, 
''far outshone the massacres of St. Bartholomew's Eve." 

This deplorable picture must be closed with the remembrance that 
Bolshevism was not Russian, it was German. The headquarters of the 
Bolshevists were in Berlin. Public condemnation should not fall on 
the Russian people, but on the Judas who betrayed it and the Teuton 
paymaster of the thirty pieces of silver. It must not be forgotten that 
the Russia which was recognized by the powers was the Russia under 
Prince Lvoff, a constitutional democracy. Russia failed the Allies, 
she failed the world, but it was only because she was sold by her false 
rulers and her sham friends. 



An Island of Latins Entirely Surrounded by Alien Blood— Bessarabia as a Second Alsace-Lorraine— 
Dobrudja, the Mouth of the Danube and the Port of Constanza— HalJ-Hearted Entrance Into the 
War— Greater Roumania a Possible First-Class Power. 

RACIALLY, Roumania had nothing to do with the war. Unlike 
every other participant in the East, she conld afford to stay neu- 
tral so far as the sentiment of her people was concerned. She was nei- 
ther Teuton, Turk nor Slav. With Slavic Russia to the north. Teuton 
Austria to the northwest, Finno-Ugric Hungary to the west, Slavic Ser- 
bia to the southwest, and Tartar Bulgaria to the south, she was com- 
pletely isolated from her nearest of kin, the Italians. For the Rouma- 
nians, as their name shows, are the descendants of Roman legions and 
speak a Latin not much more removed from ancient Latin that modem 
Greek is different from ancient Greek. 

The Roumanian territorial problem, however, possessed some in- 
tricades. Greater Roumania, that is to say the territory in which the 
Roumanians predominate, included Bessarabia in Russia and Transyl- 
vania in Hungary. Besides this, much of Bukovina in Austria was 
Roumanian. This condition gave rise to neutrality at the beginning of 
the war, since, if Roumania were to gain in the great conflict, it would 
be necessary for her to find out from which side she could gain the 
greatest advantage. 

Modem Roumania, as she was at the opening of the war, consisted 
of two provinces, Wallachia and Moldavia, which united in 1859 under 
a native prince. In 1866 a bloodless revolution deposed and banished 
Prince Cousa, because of his high-handed methods, excellent though 
these had proved to be for the country. The crown was then offered to 
Prince Carol, a member of a sidebranch of the Hohenzollem family. 

After the Russo-Turkish War of 1877, Roumania was given the 
Dobrudja (a strip of waste land on the Black Sea) in exchange for 
southern Bessarabia, which was given to Russia. Roumania bitterly 

26— w. L. 401 


resented this. So did Bulgaria, from whom the Dobrudja had been 

As time went on, however, Roumania found that the possession of 
a direct frontage on the Black Sea and of the port of Constanza was of 
high commercial value. The Bulgarian frontier, however, ran too close 
to Constanza for Roumania 's liking, so, in 1913, in the Second Balkan 
War, Roumania invaded Bulgaria and compelled that country to cede a 
wide strip of territory to the south of Dobrudja, and also the fortress 
of Silistria on the Danube. Such was Roumania at the opening of the 

Roumania Declares War. 

So far as population was concerned, Roumania had an. area of 
53,000 square miles and a population of 7,500,000, with four- 
fifths of the population Roumanian. Five per cent, of the popu- 
lation was Jewish. The remainder, on the frontier, was colored 
with the nationalities they bordered. Eastern Hungary, including 
Transylvania and the Banat of Temesvar, had an area of 40,000 square 
miles, with a population of 6,000,000, of which almost one-half were 
Roumanians. Bukowina had an area of 4,000 square miles and a popu- 
lation of 750,000, of which one-third were Roumanians. Bessarabia had 
an area of 17,000 square miles and a population of over 2,500,000, of 
which the Roumanians numbered almost one-half. Northeastern Ser- 
bia had an area of 2,000 square miles, with a population of 40,000, one- 
third Roumanian. The total area of this whole section was about the 
same size as Italy, with a Roumanian population of 14,000,000, or twice 
as numerous as that of Norway and Sweden together. Were Greater 
Roumania create into a single state, therefore, she would be claimed as 
a first-class power. 

In the coldest possible terms, Roumania entered the war on the side 
which she thought would win, and declared, in her official declaration of 
war, that she had done so ''by the side of those who are able to assure- 
her realization of national unity. ' ' In addition to this somewhat sordid 
aim, Roumania pointed out that the Roumanians in Hungary had been 
continually mistreated, an admitted fact, and that Austria had pro- 
voked the war to change the status quo in the' Balkans for her own 
aggrandizement and in such a manner as to menace Roumania herself. 
The declaration of war was made by Roumania on August 28, 1916, and 
was greeted with satisfaction by the Allied Powers, who scrupled not 


to say that a Greater Roumania, the country of the ''Latins of the 
Danube, ' ' would be a valuable western European barrier to either Teu- 
ton, Bulgarian or Slavic aggression. 

As has been shown in the historical treatment of the Roumanian 
campaign, the Danube Latins chose her time badly. Roumania 's initial 
invasion of Austria proved a great military success, indeed, and the aid 
of Russia, shown by her occupation of the Dobrudja, was also a success. 
Both, however, contained seeds of weakness. Less than a week later a 
strong force of Germano-Bulgarian-Turkish troops, which had been 
quietly mobilizing in anticipation of Roumania 's decision, hurled itself 
into the Dobrudja, which, as has been said, is a sterile wind-swept heath, 
essential to Roumania as a coast-line. 

Germany Strikes at Rovunania. 

The Dobrudja fell almost at once under the smashing tactics of 
von Mackensen. The Roumanian troops continued to advance in Hun- 
gary until Germany was ready to strike there. The issue was not long 
in doubt. Germany hurled armies at three points simultaneously. Von 
Mackensen drove north. On December 6, 1916, Bucharest, the capital, 
fell into Teuton hands, and with it went one-half of Roumania. 

True to its own Hun character and its Bulgaro-Turkish alliance, 
the Austro-German occupation of Roumania (which was extended bit by 
bit to include almost the whole country) was handled in much the same 
manner as the occupation of Belgium. Over 1,100 Roumanians of 
Transylvania were sentenced to penal servitude. All Roumanian 
estates in Austro-Hungarian territory were confiscated. Bucharest was 
victimized by a Reign of Terror. Seventy-five of the national leaders were 
executed, following a summary court martial, several of them priests. 
The customary personal violence and attacks on convents were made by 
the German invaders. This continued until the German aggressors 
were finally driven out at the close of the war. 

The effect of the war on Roumania was extraordinary. Despite 
their Latin stock, in 1914 Roumania was far behind the European na- 
tions in her social state. She was still mentally in the Middle Ages, liv- 
ing in a feudal state with masses of untaught peasant tenants on the 
lands of the Boyars. Commerce was in the hands of the Jews, a perse- 
cuted caste. There was no peasant democracy, such as those of Bul- 
garia and Serbia. All the intellectual life of the country was in Buch- 


arest. Everything else was ''the provinces/' where the absentee land- 
lord Boyars seldom lived, but extorted their rents from Greek agents. 
Jewish and Armenian peddlers and usurers bled the Roumanian pea- 
sant of everything his noble had left him. 

The war necessitated the awakening of the peasant, and, 
being of a Latin stock, he was readily teachable. The reorgan- 
ization of the Roumanian Army, a fact brought about by the Allied oc- 
cupation of Saloniki, whither the Roumanian forces gathered, meant 
the leoro-anization of Roumanian character. By the close of the war, 
the Roumanian Army was not a collection of armed peasants, but an 
army of citizen soldiers, having learned the two great lessons of modem 
military life, namely, the value of discipline and the value of individual 
action. Roumania, under Germanic militaristic teaching might have be- 
come even more submissive; Roumania, under Allied teaching, became 
tinct with constitutionalism and the spirit of liberty. 

Roumania Redeemed. 

Meanwhile, the year 1918 brought into sharp relief the trouble that 
always exists between king and people when the king is of a different 
race than his subjects. King Ferdinand, nephew of the Hohenzollern 
Prince Carol, had married a German Princess, daughter of the Duke of 
Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. He played into the hands of Germany to the 
extent of accepting terms of separate peace, which was compulsorily 
ratified by the Roumanian Senate on July 6, 1918. The Peace itself, 
signed by Roumania and the Central Powers on May 7, 1918, gave the 
right of navigation of the Danube to the Central Powers and reiterated 
Bulgaria's possession of the Dobrudja. 

Ijike the former ''Peace" of Bucharest, this latter treaty was but 
a foundation for future war. The Roumanian people, in every way pos- 
sible for a conquered country, protested. The leaders of Roumania — 
such as were left alive — declared: "In the name of the Roumanian 
people we openly declare ourselves the allies of the Entente Powers, 
and we proclaim the Treaty of Bucharest null and void." 

The last phase came with the signing of the armistice when Ger- 
many was whipped, and the abdication of King Ferdinand ended 
German influence in the Latin state on the Danube. 



Levantine Weakness-Result of Balkan Wars-King Constantine and Premier Venizelos Deadlocked- 
Macedonia a Bone of Contention Between Serbia, Bulgaria and Greece-Albania Coveted by Serbia 
Greece and Italy— The Occupation of Salonikl. 

64/^REECE— the Neutral With No Friends!" Such was the 
VX phrase with which Polyzoides in 1916 summed up the result 
of the two years of civil war in Greece. It cannot, in honesty, be said 
that Greece's action was a surprise to those diplomats who were well 
informed on Balkan questions. Rightly or wrongly, throughout the 
Near East, Greece has always been regarded as tricky and untrust- 
worthy. It is no secret that Greece was despised by all nations border- 
ing on the Mediterranean, it is universally known that Greece was 
hated by all her neighbors to the north. The reason was simple. 
Greece, for many centuries, had manifested a definite objection to 
playing fair. "The slippery Greek" is a Levantine proverb. 

Greece has always been bitten with the madness of a ' ' Great Idea. ' ' 
National aspirations may sometimes be legitimate madness. No one 
holds Roumania to blame for wanting to put all the Roumanians under 
one flag. But Greece wanted far more. Sunk in the stupid notion that 
modern Greece is the inheritor of the Byzantine Empire, there has 
always been a strong Greek party which demanded all of European 
Turkey, control of Constantinople and the western part of Asia Minor, 
all of Macedonia, all of Albania, most of the Balkans and all the islands 
of the sea adjacent. There was neither rhyme nor reason in this 
desire. It was neither historically, racially, linguistically nor polit- 
ically sound. It had nothing but a decadent vanity on its side. 

With characteristic ingenuity, Greece had succeeded in pulling 
most of the plums out of the Balkan War pie with a minimum of effort. 
As a result of the treaties — not as a result of fighting — Greece had 
doubled her territory and almost doubled her population. Saloniki 
and Kavalla, second only in importance to Constantinople, were in 
Hellenic hands, and Crete was once more reunited to the motherland. 



With the outbreak of the world war, the Greek people at first found 
themselves in sympathy with the Allied cause. This was especially 
true of the coast peoples, who were followers of Venizelos, the Premier. 
For many years France and England had been friendly to Greece; 
during the Balkan Wars, Greece and Serbia had hung together. The 
two principal foes to Greece, namely, Bulgaria and Turkey, were on 
the opposite side. There seemed no doubt as to where the sympathies 
of Greece should stand. When, therefore, the Anglo-French fleet began 
its bombardment of the Dardanelles in February, 1915, it was with little 
compunction that the Allies asked the Hellenic Government to furnish 
an army to aid the naval attack. King Constantine promptly refused. 

For this refusal there were three reasons. The first was the char- 
acter of the King himself and of his entourage. King Constantine was 
not a Greek, but a German. Moreover, he was married to Sophia of 
Prussia, sister of the Kaiser. He was, therefore, the Kaiser's brother- 
in-law. Naturally, Cabinet ministers chosen by the King would be 
strongly influenced by pro-German leanings. 

Greece Refused to Assist the Allies. 

The second reason was the fear of invasion from the north, espe- 
cially by Greece's dark enemy, the Bulgars, a fear which was very 
potent with the inland peasants, as contrasted with the coast peoples. 
The third reason was the Macedonian question ; Greek Macedonia being 
solidly for neutrality, fearing the invasive possibilities of Serbian and 
Bulgarian Macedonia. King Constantine argued that the Allies would 
have their hands so full on the western and eastern fronts that they 
would not be able to spare an army to protect Greece against the Turko- 
Bulgarian invasion which would assuredly result from a declaration 
of war. 

Then came the entrance of Italy into the war. This was a matter 
of vital interest to Greece, for the Italian attitude to the Adriatic was 
definitely hostile to Greece. The inclusion of Italy among the Allies, 
therefore, strengthened King Constantine 's pro-German position, 
largely because of Albania. 

The Albanians are a race of about 1,000,000 people, mainly settled 
in Albania, an artificial State created by the Powers in 1913, after the 
close of the Second Balkan War. Albania, so constituted, was a band 


of rugged mountain-land, facing the Adriatic Sea, with Montenegro on 
the north, Serbia on the east and Greece on the southeast and south. 

Strategically, Albania is important as the Balkan outlet to the 
Adriatic. Therefore, Serbia and Bulgaria both wanted it. Italy was 
unwilling that a Balkan State should face her across the narrow Adri- 
atic. Greece was resentful of Italian desires, rightly claiming that 
Albania is more Greek than Italian. 

The story of Albania during the first two years of the war can be 
told in one word— anarchy. Albania was a ''horrible example" of 
international control. The Albanians are a proud, fighting race, wuo 
dislike the Serbs as much as they do the Greeks, and hate the Bulgarians 
more than either. During the war Austria occupied the hinterland of 
Albania and Italy dominated the ooast and the islands. 

Civil War in Greece. 

King Constantine's refusal of aid to the Allies created great hos- 
tility among the Allies, who promptly saw the mailed fist of the Kaiser 
leading his brother-in-law by the nose. To the diplomats of the 
Entente, therefore, it seemed wiser to try and induce Bulgaria to 
transfer her allegiance, for it was a well-known fact that Bulgaria had 
only entered the war with the aim of winning as much territory as 
possible. For this reason, the Allies went so far as to offer Bulgaria 
the whole of Macedonia, specifying those districts which were definitely 
Greek. The Allies, here, were imitating the Central Powers in dispos- 
ing of territories to which they had not the slightest right. 

There were two ways of regarding this offer. The Venizelists 
took it as a threat and warned Greece that if she persisted in standing 
off from the Allies she would be carved to pieces at the end of the war. 
The King and his party promptly took the offer as an affront and 
definitely acclaimed Germany as their hope. 

The Austro-German drive, in September, 1915, brought the crisis 
to a head. The Venizelists stood by Serbia. The King declared that 
entrance to the war on the Allied side would simply imbroil Greece 
in Serbia's impending fate. Venizelos was compelled to resign, the 
King dissolved the Venizelos ministry and appointed a pro-neutral if 
not, indeed, definitely pro-German cabinet. As the people of Greece 
were with Venizelos, this meant civil war. 

During 1916 matters grew more and more tense. The Allies 


promptly seized the greater part of Greek Macedonia, and, with Veni- 
zelist assistance, occupied several Greek islands. Constantine, now 
avowedly pro-German, turned over a Macedonian border fortress to 

the Germans in May, 1916. ,,. , . 

In the autumn of 1916 Venizelos fled from Athens and established 
a revolutionary government at Saloniki, under the official protection of 
the Allies. The coast peoples followed, and Greek Macedonia swung 
into line. Continental and Northern Greece stood by the King. On 
October 17, 1916, the Entente Allies formally recognized the Venizelos 
government at Saloniki as the government of Greece, the Greek fleet 
having been seized by the Allies six days before. 

Abdication of Kings Constantine and Ferdinand, 

The Allies, now, were thoroughly aroused and determined to stand 
no nonsense. On November 15, after two weeks of rigid blockade, 
Constantine found himself compelled to accept some stern demands 
made by the English and French. The diplomatic representatives of 
the Central Powers were curtly ordered to go, and went, under protest, 
on November 21. On November 24 the Allies delivered an ultimatum 
demanding disarmament of the Greek Army. The Government refused, 
on November 28. The next day Allied troopships, with a strong force 
aboard, landed in Greece. On December 1 the King publicly rejected 
the Allies' demands. On December 11, a still more drastic ultimatum 
was presented, expiring December 15. This meant peace or war with 
the Allies. The King knew that his people were steadily slipping away 
from him, and he was compelled to accept the ultimatum. At this time 
a new republic, known as Koritza, was established in Albania, on 
December 12, 1916. 

In the following spring, Constantine proceeded to strengthen his 
secret diplomacy with Germany and thought himself strong enough to 
dare to present a note to Italy insisting upon the withdrawal of Italian 
troops from Epirus. In May, documents came into the hands of the 
Allies showing that Constantine was still intriguing with his brother- 
in-law, the Kaiser. Wherefore, on June 12, 1916, the Allies demanded 
his abdication and the renunciation of the throne by the Greek Crown 
Prince, stating, however, that the second son, Alexander, would be 

[With Constantine 's intrigues thus definitely ended, the Allies' 


concern with Greece grew less. Saloniki was held as a base from which 
a Balkan campaign might be begun later, but, in the meantime, France 
was kept at her uttermost to hold back the German drives, Italy was 
at the stretch and Great Britain was facing serious trouble in Meso- 
potamia. There were no troops to spare for a Greek campaign. 

It was not until after American troops had begun to arrive in 
France that forces could be spared to send to Saloniki. By that time 
the Greek Army, no longer under the evil influence of the Kaiser's 
brother-in-law, had been reorganized, just as the Roumanian Army had 

When, on September 16, 1918, the Allied offensive started from 
Bulgaria, the result was a foregone conclusion. It took just twelve 
days to humble Bulgaria, and, on September 28, 1918, Bulgaria signed 
the terms of the armistice agreeing *'to evacuate all the territory she 
now occupies in Greece and Serbia." Ferdinand of Bulgaria (also a 
German prince) joined his German relative, the ex-King of Greece, and 
abdicated on October 4, 1918. Greece was not only freed of her foes, 
but relieved from the Bulgarian menace. 

The close of the war found Greece conjoint with the Allies, but not 
an ally. Mistrusted at the beginning, she was mistrusted to the last, 
her alliance being safeguarded by constant occupation by the fleets 
and troops of the Entente. Saloniki was still an Allies' port of occupa- 
tion, not a Greek port, when the world war came to an end. She had 
made alliances, she had not made friends. 



Gustavus Adolphus and the Baltic— Scandinavia— Separation of Norway and Sweden— Norway Pro-AUy 
and Sweden Pro-German In the World War— Finland Taken From Sweden by Russia— Her Strategic 
Importance— German Intrusion and Local Bolshevism. 

IT is wise to remember that less than three centries ago, Sweden, not 
Germany, planned to be the master of Northern Europe In 1630 
Gustavus Adolphus landed in Germany, forced an alliance with Pome- 
rania and made himself master of the Baltic coast. He advanced to 
Berlin and by means of Swedish cannon forced an alliance by which 
important fortresses in Germany were ceded to Sweden. Saxony made 
an alliance and at the Battle of Breitenfeld, the army of the Holy 
Roman Empire was put to flight. The Saxons occupied Prague, in 
Bohemia; Gustavus attacked Southern Germany. In 1632, having 
conquered Northern Germany, he entered Munich, and Bavaria was 
at his feet. It was Gustavus' ambition to create a Protestant Empire, 
hut he was killed at the Battle of Lutzen, and, since the Swedish suc- 
cesses had been of the Napoleonic character, due to one great military 
leader, all the Protestant Empire plans fell to shreds at his death. 

During the latter part of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries 
Sweden remained within herself, helpless before the growing strength 
of Prussia. It had been with the aid of Charles X of Sweden, indeed, 
that Prussia freed herself from the Polish Crown, but at the Battle of 
Fehrbellin, in 1675, the Great Elector turned on his former allies and 
drove them from Pomerania. From that time on, Sweden dwindled 
until all her possessions were lost save the Scandinavian peninsula 
itself. In 1809 Finland was snatched from Sweden and its history 
thereafter became a part of the vast Slav empire. 

The nineteenth century, however, transformed Sweden from a 
jjoor country into a rich one. The steamship and the railroad unlocked 
Sweden's vast mineral wealth, the discovery of the transmutation of 
water power into electric power gave Sweden a marvelous industrial 
opportunity. Norway, Sweden and Denmark ceased to be '^Scandi- 



navians," they became aggressively Swedes, Norwegians and Danes. 
This culminated in the violent separation of Norway from Sweden 
in 1905. 

At the opening of the war, Norway and Sweden were far apart, 
nationally hostile, but linked by the Scandinavian bond. Norway, 
primarily a coast people nation, with huge shipping interests — by far 
the largest merchant marine in the world in proportion to population — 
necessarily was compelled to be friends with the naval powers. Sweden 
considered herself the leader of all Scandinavian peoples and had never 
forgiven Russia. It was impossible for Swedish thought to favor an 
alliance which included Russia. The enforced Russification of Finland 
— a dark and bloody chapter — did more than anger Sweden. It made 
her fear for herself. It warned her that Russian Finland was just 
across the Gulf of Bothnia and that Russian invasion was an ever- 
present possibility. Russia had never ceased to seek an outlet to the 
sea. She might seize it by the Swedish route. There were a score of 
minor issues, but they all tended in the same direction, namely, to cause 
Norway to be pro- Ally and Sweden to be pro-German. 

Sweden's Support of Germany. 

The first two years of the war showed Sweden 's position very defi- 
nitely. In January, 1915, when the Germans had been compelled to 
dig in at the Aisne, or, to put the matter another way, when France 
had shown herself strong enough to hurl back the Teutons at the 
Mame, when England had absolutely blockaded the North Sea and 
when Russia was in the full tide of advance, Swedish politics took on 
H new turn. The "Activist" or pro-German propaganda was stopped 
by the government. Sweden would stay neutral if the Allies were 
likely to win, she would have plunged solidly into the war if Germany's 
initial success had been maintained. 

Even then Sweden constantly defied England. She alone retali- 
ated against England's somewhat high-handed proceedings on the 
high seas, seizing British mail-bags in reprisal and laying an embargo 
on Swedish exports to England. 

All the world knew that Sweden was Germany's main source of 
metals. None the less, the Allies were well aware of the strength and 
military efiiciency of Sweden's army and forebore from adding further 
battalions in hostile array against them on the western front. 


Sweden, likewise, forebore to force the issue. The picture of Ger- 
many's great fleet lurking in the Kiel Canal, afraid to come out and 
face the foe, told its own story of what might happen if a British- 
Norwegian fleet entered the Baltic. The Kiel Canal, as a plan, was a 
magnificent one, provided the German Navy were strong enough to 
play its part. But, with a navy afraid to give battle, no facility of 
waterways mattered. In view of the Allies' successes, Sweden was 
compelled to sing small. To help Germany as much as possible without 
violating neutrality was her part in the war. 

Finland, as constituted as a Grand Duchy under Russia at the 
opening of the war, was not a small country; it was larger than the 
whole of Norway. It was very scantily populated, however, having less 
than 3,000,000 people, seven-eighths of whom were Finns or Finno- 
Swedes. The pure Swedes were found only on the coast, but formed the 
aristocracy of those sections. The Finns are thrifty, intelligent and 
far advanced in education. They are intensely nationalistic, and 
possess a rich literature of their own. Racially, they are more closely 
tdlied to the Magyars of Hungary than any other European people. 
An offshoot of the same race stock is the Eskimo. Though politically 
under the rule of Russia at the opening of the war, Russia was hated, 
Russian cultural influence was small. 

Differences Between Russia and Finland. 

The breaking away of Finland from Russia was hastened by the 
Czar's action in 1899, when the Constitution of Finland was suspended 
and the country placed under a Governor General of famed brutality. 
The Russian Revolution of 1905 led to a restatement of Finland's 
autonomy, but the succeeding reactionism in Russia led to a new set 
of repressive measures in 1910. 

On March 21, 1917, the famous Restoration Manifesto was Russia's 
first definite sign that she dared no longer try and subjugate Poland. 
This Manifesto set aside all former laws and imperial edicts contrary 
to the Finnish Constitution, and amnestied all Finns (several thousand) 
who were imprisoned or exiled for religious or political offences. It 
closed with the phrase, ''We solemnly confirm to the Finnish people 
the integrity, based on the Constitution, of its internal independence 
and the rights of its national culture and languages. ' ' 

This sounded well, but was nonsense, none the less. Under the 


Constitution, the supreme governmental authority was vested in the 
person of the Czar. At the time of the Manifesto there was no Czar. 
To whom, then, did these governmental rights belong? The ensuing 
wrangle endured for many months, during which it became more and 
more obvious that there was no definite party in Russia with a pro- 
gramme susceptible of support by the Finns. Consequently, on July 
19, 1917, the Finnish Diet rejected the suzerainty of Russia. The 
retort was an order from Russia, received August 3, 1917, declaring 
the Finnish Diet dissolved. Moreover, the Russian Governor General 
issued a proclamation, "hoping to avoid the necessity of resorting to 
force." In view of Russia's previous handling of Finland, this was 
not an empty threat. The Finns, following their customary policy of 
passive, rather than active, resistance, submitted, but proceeded to 
make tax-gathering impossible, and compelled the maintenance of 
Russian garrisons throughout the country. 

Finland Declared an Independent Republic. 

The next change in Finland's affairs came upon the Bolshevist 
coup d'etat in November, 1917. When Kerensky fell, the Governor 
General left Finland, which was thus without Russian governorship. 
The Bolshevists failed to name any one to fill the post, and on Decem- 
ber 7, 1917, the Diet proclaimed Finland an independent republic. 
Sweden first, and afterwards, France, Norway, Denmark and Germany, 
recognized the republic. On January 9, 1918, the Bolshevist govern- 
ment also recognized the Republic of Finland, thus canceling all Rus- 
sia's claim to any form of over-lordship over the Finnish people. 

Then Germany commenced to interfere. On the pretext of saving 
the new Republic of Finland from Bolshevism, she sent troops to 
Finland toward the end of March, 1918, as soon as travel was possible. 
Two parties promptly formed in Finland, one independent, the other 
pro-German. A Finnish-German force attacked the Murman Railway 
(running from the Arctic Ocean to Petrograd) early in April. The 
Allies retorted by sending a detachment to operate with the Russian 
Red Guards (a strange mixture !) at Kem. On July 2, a Finno-German 
railroad was completed to Kem. The next day a German campaign 
started. The Allies replied by landing American and Anglo-French 
forces on the Murman coast. 

Realizing that a Finnish Republic would be an awkward ally, the 


German Kaiser decided to force a German prince upon Finland and 
compel it to become a monarchy. The Finns were given the choice of 
the Grand Duke of Mecklenburg or Prince William of HohenzoUern- 
Sigmaringen. The Diet proving opposed to both, the Germans arrested 
all those who were opposed to the plan, ninety-eight members in number. 

Early in September, Finland was compelled to submit to Germany 
and a treaty was signed whereby the entire force of the Finnish Army 
was placed at the disposal of Germany. On September 17, Prince 
Frederick Charles of Hesse declared his willingness to accept the 
crown of Finland. It may be remarked that the Fiimish people had 
not offered the cro^vn, only a Finnish chamber stuffed by Germans with 
all non-pro-German members in prison. This Diet ratified the choice 
on October 11, 1918. Aside from the imprisoned members, a large pro- 
portion of the Diet abstained from voting, thus technically making the 
vote null and void, the numbers voting for the monarchy not consti- 
tuting a majority. 

Ten days later Germany began her appeals for an armistice, and 
before the end of the month it became visible throughout Europe that 
Germany was defeated and was only striving to find some armistice 
terms which did not specifically state that she was whipped. Finland 
was not slow to see the weakening grasp of her new master. November 
1, 1918, ten days before the world war ended, the Finnish Government 
declared an armistice with the Finnish Revolutionists. So the war 
closed for Finland, a republic which had, under duress, called a German 
monarch to the throne. Come what might in the future, it had at least 
become an independent country, freed from the tyrannous yoke of 



The Teuton Bullying of Little Denmark, With Schleswlg-Holstein as Booty— Wide Difference im Spirit 
Between Schleswlg and Holsteln— Holland, tlis Hater of England— ''Netherlands Over-Seai Ttu»i" 
—Feeding Germany on the Sly— Kaiser Received as a Fueitive. 

MORE than any other nation of Europe, Denmark preserved a 
strict neutrality throughout the war. This was not due to the 
tact that Denmark was not vitally interested; it was due rather to two 
dominant factors. The first of these was the Scandinavian agreement 
whereby Norway, Sweden and Denmark agreed to keep out of the war, 
if possible ; the second was the internal condition of Denmark herself, 
with a pro-German aristocratic and army circle and an agricultural 
and ultra-democratic people, actively pro-Ally. Moreover, Denmark 
achieved the apparently impossible — she remained neutral without loss 
of self-respect. 

It is almost solely with regard to Schleswig-Holstein that Denmark 
had any relations with the war, and the Schleswig-Holstein question 
did not come to the fore until the latter part of 1918. Throughout the 
four years, however, it lurked in the background as a possible issue, 
and came prominently forward during preparatory Peace Table con- 

Schleswig-Holstein has always been controversial territory between 
the Germans and the Danes. In the Middle Ages Holstein was a 
German frontier against Danish incursions, while Schleswig was Danish 
in culture. At the beginning of the fifteenth century, the two Marks 
or provinces were united under a single ruler. When his line died out, 
the provinces passed by inheritance to the royal house of Denmark 
under the special condition that the Danish King should maintain it as 
a separate Grand Duchy, somewhat in the same fashion that Finland 
was attached to the Czardom of Russia. 

Towards the middle of the nineteenth century the old Danish royal 
house approached extinction. A genealogical question of great entan- 



glement arose, out of which it became clear that the Danes desired to 
incorporate the provinces as Danish provinces pure and simple. Ger- 
many objected. Denmark proposed a fair compromise, that Danish 
Schleswig should go to Denmark and G-erman Holstein to Prussia. The 
Germans dug up the so-called Indissoluble Union Act of 1420 and 
declared that the two provinces could never be separated. War began, 
which was stopped by the Powers in 1850. When the Danish royal line 
definitely became extinct in 1863, Bismarck came forward and pro- 
ceeded to expel the Danes from Schleswig-Holstein. Denmark, relying 
on England, resisted. England failed to come to her assistance. The 
result was predetermined. In 1864 Prussia seized Schleswig-Holstein 
and has kept the provinces ever since. 

Schleswig-Holstein Oppressed by Germany. 

In size, Schleswig-Holstein as defined at the opening of the war 
was approximately 7,340 square miles in area, two-thirds the size of 
Belgium. The population was 1,600,000, of which the Danes numbered 
only 150,000. Holstein was solidly German and Schleswig was sixty 
per cent. German. Strategically, the provinces were important, for 
the Kiel Canal runs along the southern border of Schleswig, at Kiel, 
while on the North Sea side, Holstein controls the mouth of the Elbe. 

One of the principal issues in Schleswig-Holstein, however, has 
nothing to do with territorial questions. It deals mainly with Hun 
interference in Danish culture. In 1889, it was forbidden to use Danish 
even in the schools of Schleswig. Schoolmasters were forbidden to 
teach children any Danish history prior to the Prussian conquest. 
Prussian military songs were compulsory at examinations. A child) 
who spoke Danish to his Danish schoolfellows in the playground was 
punishable by flogging. ''The tyrants of the birch rod" became 

This was bad enough, but the Hun could do yet worse. In 1888 
religious instruction was forbidden in Danish. The Lutheran ministers 
were State functionaries and were compelled to obey. No religious 
services could be held in Danish. A Danish pastor was sentenced to 
three years' imprisonment for having given the dying sacrament in 
Danish to an old Danish woman, although the evidence at the trial 
showed that she did not understand German. The Danish Free Church 
was forbidden. As late as 1907 further laws were passed, these forbid- 
ding the use of Danish in the courts and public assemblies. A lecture 


by the explorer Nansen, in Danish, dealing with North Pole explora- 
tion, was broken up by the Prussian police. When, therefore, it is said 
that Schleswig had been made sixty per cent. German, it is well to 
remember how this consummation had been brought about. 

The story of Schleswig-Holstein during the war is the terrible 
story of compulsory silence. Schleswig Danes were compelled to fight 
on the side of a foe they hated. Food was reduced to a minimum. 
Denmark, though conscious of the conditions in her lost provinces, did 
not dare to protest, lest this should lead to reprisals and plunge her 
into war. Among the allies, at various times, references were made 
to the Schleswig-Holstein question, sometimes frankly, more often in 
guarded utterance. The war closed with Denmark's skirts clear of any 
international difficulties, her attitude being that of a dignified expect- 
ance that the Allied victory would result in justice and liberty, 

Holland's Peculiar Situation. 

Holland, as a ''strictly neutral," is a very different story. Since 
no territorial question was involved, it is needless to go into Holland's 
early history, although it may be remembered that the Dutch Republic 
was one of the first great republics of the world's history. But Holland 
for years before the outbreak of the world war had seen the impending 
conflict, and, though not a rich nation, had built up a strong defensive 
army and navy. 

When, in August, 1914, Queen Wilhelmina announced the positive 
intention of Holland to stay neutral under any and all conditions of the 
world war, her decision was acclaimed by her people of all shades of 
opinion. When Germany tempted Holland with the bait of Belgian 
territory, she turned a deaf ear ; when the Allies suggested that a slice 
of Germany might march well with the coasts of Holland, that offer 
met with the same disregard. 

There was more than self-interest in Holland's position, however. 
There was sentiment, also. The Dutch are essentially a peace-loving 
people, strongly individualistic in type, and with a personal aversion 
to Prussian militarism. They were historic enemies in the past. On 
the other hand, there are strong cultural ties between Holland and 
Germany. The trade of the Rhine is a source of Holland's prosperity 
and Germany is Holland's best customer. So far as Germany was 
concerned, Holland was naturally neutral. 

27— W. L. 


The British question had another side. In perfectly plain terms, 
Holland hated England. Holland was the great early colonial empire 
of the world, but, little by little, England robbed her of the supremacy. 
Holland was the maritime leader of the world, but when Van Tromp 
hoisted a broom at his masthead to show that he swept the sea, the 
British promptly hauled it down. The Boer War fanned the flame to 
greater fury and England's alliance with Japan had a sinister menace 
to Dutch East India interests. Neither did England show any love 
lost for the Hollanders. 

The progress of the war produced in Holland a type of neutrality 
markedly different from that of Denmark. The latter country held 
aloof from the war. Holland could not. For one thing, Denmark, an 
agricultural people, could well remain self-contained. Holland, a trad- 
ing nation, was grievously injured by each succeeding day of the war, 
no matter which side possessed the advantage. 

The Netherlands Overseas Trust 

The question of food and supplies for Germany was a bitter issue. 
No one denied that Holland had a perfect right, as a neutral, to deal 
with Germany ; nor that she had a perfect right to deal with England. 
But that Holland should simply be a port of shipment for supplies to 
Germany, when Great Britain had made a blockade of the North Sea, 
was intolerable. It would be profitless to detail the innumerable con- 
troversies that cropped up throughout the entire war with regard to 
l^utch shipping. Much of it dealt with the vexed question of contra- 
band of war. Even the United States was entangled in this contro- 
versy and there were American seizures of Dutch shipping which greatly 
hurt the feelings of Holland. 

The principal world issue raised in Holland by the war was m 
connection with the ''Netherlands Overseas Trust," an English 
embargo on Dutch trade. The facts of the case were simple. During 
the first six months of 1914, Holland shipped to Germany 7,000 tons 
of butter, but, in the latter half of that year, after war had been 
declared, the shipments rose to 19,000 tons; cheese jumped from 6,000 
tons to 45,000 tons ; cocoa, from 1,000 tons to 3,000 tons ; eggs, from 
7,000 tons to 20,000 tons ; meat, from 6,000 tons to 40,000 tons, and so 
forth. When Dutch commercial circles calmly denied that they were 
provisioning Germany for the war, England raised Holland's veracity 


in question. The Netherlands Overseas Trust was formed, which was 
greeted in Holland with furious protest as a limitation of the commerce 
rights of a sovereign State. 

Lesser causes have plunged nations into war, but, as it chanced, 
simultaneously, Germany was arousing Dutch indignation by her com- 
merce violations with regard to submarine warfare and also by her 
Zeppelin flights over Dutch territory. Holland, eager to show England 
in the wrong, could not afford to declare herself on the side of an ally 
which was pursuing piracy on the high seas. 

In March, 1917, Great Britain went further. She insisted that a 
certain percentage of Dutch merchant tonnage should carry cargoes 
to Dutch destinations. This demand was promptly refused by the 
Government of Holland. Great Britain thereupon announced her inten- 
tion of confiscating forty Dutch steamers held in British ports. 
Scarcely had the resentment over this situation come to a crisis than 
the United States entered the war and the resultant commerce agree- 
ment again fell heavily on Holland. Without having definitely violated 
neutrality, Holland had suffered terribly in the war. She had done a 
great deal for Belgian refugees, she had given largely to Red Cross 
purposes. She had suffered hunger and poverty by reason of a block- 
ade which closed her ports, although the war was one in which she had 
taken no part. Her neutrality was not of a peaceful character. 

The flight of the ex-Kaiser to Holland, after the defeat of his 
armies and the signing of an armistice, put the Dutch Government in 
an awkward position, again, so far as was determined at the time, 
through no fault of their own. It was not shown at the time that 
Holland had invited the Kaiser. It was not within the province of 
Holland to refuse him admission, nor to expel him on her own volition. 
No official action was taken either to welcome him as royalty nor as a 
distinguished visitor. On the other hand, no official action was taken 
to intern him. Guards were posted, not to impede his movements, but 
to enable the Dutch Government to keep informed as to them. 

In the early part of December, 1918, the Dutch Prime Minister 
openly declared that the Kaiser's presence in Holland was regrettable, 
but that it was an accomplished fact. Right to the very beginning of 
the Peace conferences, Holland maintained the same position that she 
had held throughout the war, that of a country grievously injured by 
the world conflict, but neutral in the very letter of the law. 



A Slngle-Souled Nation With Three Faces and Three Languages, French, German and Italian— The Most 
Perfect Democracy Existing— Geneva Convention and the Red Cross— Marvellous Organization for 
Defence— Refuge of the Hunted— Diplomacy of Independence. 

TO see ourselves as others see us," is occasionally welL From 
the Swiss point of view of democracv^ the United States is left 
far behind. A Swiss will point out that the President of the United 
States, in war-time, possesses powers more autocratic than those which 
were borne either by the Czar of Russia, the Kaiser of Germany or the 
Sultan of Turkey. A Swiss will exclaim with horror at the president of 
a republic being also the Commander-in-Chief of the Army and the 
Navy, appointing his own cabinet, naming his own delegates to interna- 
tional conferences, taking over railroad systems, seizing international 
cables, ordering the passage of laws by Congress and trying to dictate 
to the people what party they shall elect to power in order that his per- 
sonal wishes may not be questioned. For Switzerland is a democracy. 

The Swiss, themselves, declare that their own absolute honest, non- 
party, non-boss government is the reason why they have succeeded in 
doing what has never been done elsewhere in the world, namely, creating 
a nation with a single soul out of three racial units, divided religiously, 
racially and linguistically, not only speaking three different tongues, 
but having cystoms wide apart from each other. Proceedings of the 
Central Parliament are printed in three languages, German, French 
and Italian. Of the population, which is nearly 4,000,000, the Protest- 
ants are over one-half. About 2,500,000 of the population is German- 

At the beginning of the war the Swiss ranked among the best sol- 
diers in Europe. Their army was at a high efficiency. In 1914 their 
national militia, in a far higher state of preparedness than the German, 
amounted to 200,000 men. Every strategical point of the frontier of 
Switzerland was fortified, and well fortified. Within the first six 



months of the war Switzerland expended over $20,000,000 on military 
purposes, a very large sum for so small a country. 

Germany tried bribes, big bribes ; they were refused. Germany 
made threats ; they were ridiculed. Germany established a very power- 
ful propaganda; its agents were kicked out of the country. Not even 
the German-Swiss could be organized into disloyalty. Situated on the 
Alpine crests, dominating the passes, Switzerland would be a dangerous 
foe to rouse. Germany looked longingly — but kept away. President 
Motta of the Swiss Confederation (for the year 1915) explained Switz- 
erland's position in the war tersely when he said: "Whoever violates 
our neutrality will force us to become the allies of his enemy.'* That 
ended it. 

It should never be forgotten that Switzerland is the home of the 
Red Cross. This was the result of the Geneva Convention of 1864, am- 
plified in 1906. During the present war, the work of Switzerland has 
been that of the Red Cross among nations. No figures have been com- 
puted to show the good she has done or the benefits she has conferred. 
To take one little point as an example: Throughout the war Switzer- 
land forwarded all mail for war prisoners of both sides, free of charge, 
at a cost to the Swiss Government of $2,000,000 yearly. 

Switzerland's Strict Neutrality. 

Switzerland, however, was far from being a tame nation. On the 
contrary, she protested sharply to Germany, when von Tirpitz inaugu- 
rated ruthless submarine warfare. She dealt swiftly with a most nefa- 
rious scheme instituted by Germany of side-tracking and delaying 
trains containing incurably wounded, who were being exchanged with 
similarly wounded German prisoners coming from France. She de- 
ported Russian Bolshevists in a summary fashion when she found 
German-made intrigue to set one canton against the other. Nor would 
she allow her French-speaking cantons to show any partiality towards 
the Allies. 

Switzerland has always been the gathering place of the oppressed. 
Every revolutionary and national movement in the world has had some 
of its leaders in Switzerland. Yet not in a single case has it been found 
possible to imbroil that mountain country. When Austria's armies 
descended into the Italian plains and Italy held them by the slenderest 
thread at Piave, either side was willing to make almost any promise to 


Switzerland if she would join. Austria, especially, worked hard in the 
German-Swiss cantons to precipitate a revolt. The answer of the Chief 
Magistrate of one of the cantons was characteristic : "Sir, I do not wish 
to think that I understand what you are implying, but I will say that so 
long as there is so much Evil being done in Europe, so long will Switzer- 
land try to achieve Good. ' ' 

Once the playground of Europe, during the war Switzerland became 
one vast asylum, hospital and convalescent home. Hunger pinched 
her sorely, for Switzerland is not a grain country, and has no sea-coast. 
Yet the nations did their best to send stores into Switzerland, for it was 
kno\\Ti that political writs did not run in that mountain land, that 
the German cripple would receive the same as the French, neither more 
nor less. The Allies scrupled not about provisions sent into Alpine 
supply stations, for they knew there would be no trans-shipment, as 
there had been in Sweden and Holland. Swiss honor could be trusted. 

Treaty Conferences Desired at Berne. 

Foremost, as always, in the cause of peace, it was Switzerland 
which was the first to reply to President Wilson's "feeler" towards a 
League of Peace. It was her ambition to have the final peace treaty 
conferences at Berne, as being, indeed, the eye of the cyclone, the one 
calm spot in all Europe where the delegates could meet without being 
on enemy soil. The plan, however, was vetoed by England and France, 
the latter, especially, being desirous that the Germans should be made 
to feel that Germany was a conquered nation. 

Finally, when after the close of the war, preliminary conversations 
and conferences suggested that Rhine-land provinces might be attached 
to Switzerland as German-Swiss cantons, semi-official statements were 
definitely put forth to the effect that Switzerland "was seeking no 
political aggrandizement." Secure in her mountain fastnesses, secure 
in her people 's patriotism, secure in her 600 years ' integrity, Switzer- 
land showed the world, through four years of war that a little nation, 
possessing not even a single seaport, could maintain herself in strict 
impartiality, ' * unspotted from the world. " 

Book III 






Futile Peace Efforts— Financial Depression— Aroused by German Barbarities— Work of Helping Hun Vic- 
tims Abroad— German Spies and Propaganda— Protests Against U-Boat Attacks and the Killing of 
Americans— "The Strict Accountability Note"— Re-election of President Wilson— Germany's Broken 
Pledges— Armed Neutrality. 

THE position of the United States in the period between the out- 
break of tlie war in the late summer of 1914 and her entrance 
into the conflict in the spring of 1917 was one of extreme difficulty. 

Not even her most ambitious statesmen wanted war and the policy 
of the nation had been to remain aloof from entangling international 
alliances and to steer clear of the troublous diplomatic seas of Europe. 
Our representatives were in the great capitals of Europe, but they 
were there to look after the interest of the United States and her 
citizens in foreign lands and not to help settle affairs which did not 
concern America. 

There were some who thought that the policy which caused the 
United States to rush to the protection of Cuba when the little island 
country was under the heel of Spain, justified immediate action when 
Germany overran Belgium, ignoring that country's right as a neutral. 
On the other hand there was a strong peace element. Both used their 
influence in "Washington : one to secure action and the other to enforce 
a pacific attitude. One of the staunchest of the peace advocates was 
Secretary of State William Jennings Bryan, whose attitude when the 
Government was compelled to resent the action of Germany and 
threaten war resulted in his resignation and the subsequent appoint- 
ment of Robert Lansing, of New York, as Secretary. 

Immediately after the outbreak of the conflict in Europe President 
"Wilson had issued a proclamation declaring the neutrality of the 
United States, and for a time there were protests made by the govern- 
ment to not only Germany, but to England and others involved in the 
struggle, against acts which were interpreted to affect our rights as a 
neutral. It was not until the German policy seemed to be directed 



against America and American institutions that the Government began 
its long series of inquiries and exchange of diplomatic messages which 
only ceased when all threats and appeals were disregarded by the 
Imperial German Government. 

The spread of the war through Europe had as one of its earliest 
effects on the United States the necessity for aiding citizens who 
were within the confines of the warring countries to their homes. 
Thousands of tourists and others in Europe on business were caught 
in the maelstrom and unable to secure money or obtain passports 
to guarantee their passage in safety from the stricken territories. 
The various representatives of the Government in all of the belligerent 
countries were besieged with applications for assistance and as the 
money exchanges were closed the United States was compelled to send 
funds for their relief. Early in August one of the government vessels 
sailed from New York with $5,000,000 to be used for the Americans 
stranded abroad and thousands of persons were returned on American, 
Italian and British steamers. 

American Commission for Relief of Belgium. 

The entire business world was affected by the breaking of the 
ties and stocks tumbled in the market and financial depression fol- 
lowed. Industrial and commercial interests, fearful lest the conflict 
spread, became sensitive and there was a tendency to extreme caution. 
Money became tight and the selling of foreign securities — those of the 
countries at war — and similar conditions nearly produced a panic. 
The New York Stock Exchange closed and the Clearing House issued 
certificates to prevent a raid upon the United States gold supply. 
There was practically no market for stocks and bonds and it was 
not for months that the conditions justified the reopening of the 

The improvement in the financial conditions was in a great 
measure due to the passage of the Federal Reserve Act and the es- 
tablishment of the Federal Reserve Bank system in November, 1916. 

The conduct of Germany in Belgium and France was early demon- 
strated to be of the most barbaric nature and Ambassador Gerard in 
Germany, and Brand Whitlock, Minister to Belgium, as the repre- 
sentatives of a neutral country, were quickly besieged with protests 
from the representatives and citizens of the invaded countries against 


the cruelties and injustices practiced by the German soldiers. Appeals 
were made for help for the refugees driven from their homes or whose 
farms, gardens and shops were destroyed or taken away from them. 

A Relief Commission was appointed with Herbert Hoover, an 
American engineer, as the active representative in Belgium, and wide 
solicitation was made for funds and clothing and food supplies to 
care for the victims of the Huns. Boat loads of clothing, flour and 
foodstuffs were sent from the United States, and the work was done 
under Government supervision, and in co-operation with the Red Cross. 

Ultimately Germany's attitude in the occupied territory compelled 
the withdrawal of Mr. Hoover and the work of looking after the 
sufferers was left in the hands of nations remaining neutral. The 
accomplishments of Mr. Hoover in organizing and conducting the 
relief work abroad were such as to lead to his later appointment as 
the Government's Food Director after war was declared on Germany 
and it was necessary to conserve supplies and food. All over the 
country during this period organizations and individual men and 
women assumed the responsibility of maintaining orphaned Belgian 
children and pledged weekly and monthly contributions for their main- 
tenance without reserve as to the length of time the burden should fall 
upon them. 

German Spies and Propaganda in the United States. 

For a time the whole mind of the country was concentrated on 
the reports which emanated from the war territories regarding the 
cruelties of the Germans and the suffering of innocent men, women and 
children and it seemed as though America would maintain her neu- 
trality and avoid war. 

The awakening as to Germany's purpose and the system which 
she was employing came with the discovery that her organization of 
spies and distributors of propaganda in the interest of a greater 
Germany and the perpetuation of German ''kultur" had secured a 
foot-hold in the United States and that attempts were being made to 
''Germanize" and to terrorize America. 

The story of the operation of these German spies and their in- 
trigues, if revealed in their entirety, would fill volumes. The very 
offices of the United States Government protected some of the German 
agents who operated under the direction of the German Embassy in 


Washington, or through paid Consular agents at various ports. Early 
in January, 1916, for instance, the fact was heralded to the world 
that wireless communication had been established with Germany and 
the first message was sent from the aerial station at Sayville, L. I., 
to Germany. 

Subsequent developments, some of which did not become public 
until after the war, showed conclusively that Germany had established 
wireless stations along our coasts and in Mexico and that her agents 
in charge of these stations were sending messages in violation of 
international agreements, or, after we entered the war, information re- 
garding our military and naval developments. 

Secret agents of Germany attempted to destroy ammunition fac- 
tories which were supplying England, France, Russia and Italy, and to 
cripple vessels plying between these countries carrying food, wearing 
apparel or metals which it was feared might be of value in a military 

Insidious Schemes of the Teutons. 

In San Francisco the Secret Service Agents arrested Franz Bopp, 
German Consul General, and Baron E. H. Von Schack, vice consul, and 
thirty others, who were indicted for conspiracy to blow up ammunition 
plants. Wolf von Igel, under Secretary of the German Embassy, was 
arre&ted in New York for complicity in an attempt to blow up and 
destioy the W^elland Canal. At Baltimore and at Hoboken large piers 
were destroyed as the result of the explosion of ammunition set off 
with bombs. 

Newspapers were purchased with money supplied by Germany 
and subsidized so that their columns would present stories calculated 
to create a favorable impression in behalf of the German Imperial 
Government. German-Americans occupying positions of trust and re- 
spect in their communities were found to be active propagandists. The 
German Singing Societies and kindred organizations were found to be 
merely agencies through which the German idea was to be developed 
in America. Millions of dollars were appropriated by the Imperial 
Government to pay spies and weak citizens of the United States who 
might be made to sacrifice their honor for a few dollars. 

One of the insidious schemes was the Germanizing of Mexico, or 
at least the arousing of sympathy for Germany in that country for 
the purpose of bringing on war with America and thus giving the 


United States sufficient trouble at home so that she would not attempt 
intervention in the affairs across the sea. It has already been men- 
tioned that the investigations proved that the wireless stations in Mex- 
ico were in control of Germany. 

But Mexico, in which a large amount of German capital was 
interested, was used as an agent also, to induce Japan to abandon 
her friendly attitude and relation with the Allies and join with Mexico 
in an attack on the United States. The revelations regarding this 
episode made by the Department of Justice include a dispatch trans- 
mitted by the German Foreign Minister Zimmerman at Berlin in 
January, 1917 — on January 19 — to German Minister von Eckhardt 
in Mexico City, in which the suggestion for the alliance was contained. 

Attempt to Embroil Mexico With the United States. 

Mexico for her reward was to receive financial support from 
Germany as well as secure for her portion of conquered territory part 
of Texas, New Mexico and Arizona. She was of course to participate 
in the glories of victory which Germany anticipated. 

The instructions to von Eckhardt were transmitted through the 
then German Ambassador, Count von Bemstorff at Washington, sub- 
sequently given his passports, and were made public by the United 
States Government as follows: 

''Berlin, January 19, 1917. 

"On the first of February we intend to begin submarine warfare 
unrestricted. In spite of this, it is our intention to endeavor to keep 
neutral the United States of America. 

"If this attempt is not successful we propose an alliance on the 
following basis with Mexico: That we shall make war together and 
together make peace. We shall give general financial support and it 
is understood that Mexico is to reconquer the lost territory of New 
Mexico, Texas and Arizona. The details are left to you for settlement. 

"You, are instructed to inform the President of Mexico of the 
above, in the greatest confidence, as soon as it is certain there will be 
an outbreak of war with the United States, and suggest that the Presi- 
dent of Mexico, on his own initiative, should communicate with Japan, 
suggesting adherence at once to this plan; at the same time offer to 
mediate between Germany and Japan. 

"Please call to the attention of the President of Mexico that the 


employment of the ruthless submarine warfare now promises to compel 

England to make peace in a few months. 


Among the particularly active agents were Captain Boy-Ed and 
Captain von Papen, military attaches of the German Government in 
America, who were given their passports and forced to leave the 
country. It was through Captain von Papen that much of the money 
passed which was used to pay the German spies, and what early doubts 
there might have been as to the extent of his activities was swept 
aside when, just at the close of the war, the British, after their advance 
in the famed Holy Lands, sent through to the United States copies of 
papers belonging to the Captain, which he had left behind when pressed 
by the British soldiers. He had apparently been sent to the great 
Eastern theatre of war to carry on his work for Germany with the 
Turks. The press of the British gave the Captain no time in which 
to gather up his papers and they were taken. Copies were forwarded 
to London and then sent to America. These papers furnished a link 
in the long chain of evidence against him and his kind. 

Forged American Passports for Germans. 

There was, for instance, the connection of von Papen with the 
activities of Hans Adam von Wedell, who late in 1914 devised a scheme 
to send German reservist officers in the United States back to their 
native land for service in the army, by procuring forged American 
passports for them. The scheme went wrong because when Wedell 
had sent one German home via Italy on a fixed passport the subject 
of the Kaiser fell into the hands of the British military authorities, 
who investigated the passport and von Wedel, whom the Department 
of Justice Agents learned was a nephew of Count Botho von Wedell, 
of Berlin, left the country. 

He had, however, set the plan and left a co-conspirator named 
Ruroede, or Rurode, to carry it out. The latter made the mistake of 
buymg a passport for his purposes from a Department of Justice 
Agent working on the case and his arrest followed. The plan was 
simple, as outlined by von Wedell, and as Ruroede attempted to carry 
It out It consisted of buying passports from native-bom and natu- 
ralized citizens who might "need money" and altering them to fit the 


German officers who were badly wanted at home. Such persons were 
to make application for passports and then sell them to Ruroede at 
prices ranging from $30 to $100, according to how badly the reservist 
was wanted at home or how much he wanted to get there. 

The most significant thing about this very simple case was the 
tracing by the Department of Justice Agents of correspondence and 
telegrams to show the connection of Ambassador von Bernstorff and 
Captain von Papen with von Wedell. 

Investigation of the Spy System. 

The extent to which Germany had succeeded in building up its spy 
organization in the United States was not, however, revealed in all 
its ramifications until the end of the war, when the Senate Committee 
investigating the activities of brewers and German propaganda brought 
to light facts obtained by the Department of Justice. A. Bruce Be- 
laski,, chief of the Department of Justice, testified before the Com- 
mittee that Germany had spent $7,500,000 for its propaganda campaign 
in the United States, which was taken from a fund of $27,000,000 held 
by fhe German Embassy in Washington. Letters from Count Bern- 
storff to German consuls throughout the country were read, showing 
that the German Ambassador had urged the consuls to have all Ger- 
man subjects get out of plants producing war materials for the Allies. 
Letters were also read to show that a relief bureau was established in 
New York to assist Germans and Austrians who would get out of the 
war supply plants, and that branches of the bureau were established 
in various cities. 

Chief Belaski testified that Captain von Papen, while military at- 
tache of the German Embassy, sent a letter to the German Consul 
in St. Louis, saying that two agents from the Brotherhood of Metal 
Workers in New York were trying to stop the shipment of ammuni- 
tion. One of the men mentioned, Samuel ScoUard, was among those 
aftei-ward indicted in the trial of Industrial Workers of the World in 
Chicago. It was shown that German agents attempted to purchase 
the Washington Post and other publications. 

Chief Belaski further testified that William Bayard Hale, who was 
sent to Berlin as a representative of the William R. Hearst publica- 
tions and as the representative of a news agency, was under contract 
as a confidential agent of the German Embassy, and that he was em- 


ployed also by a publicity organization created by Dr. Bernard Dem- 
berg, the German propagandist, at a salary of $15,000 a year and 
was under contract from the beginning of the war until June, 1918. 

A long list of names of German- Americans and others taken from 
a diary of Dr. Karl A. Fuehr, an agent of Germany brought to the 
United States by von Bernstorff, was read by the Department of 
Justice head to the Senate Committee. The list was designated in 
Dr. Fuehr 's diary as ''important list of names.'* They were supposed 
to be those of German sympathizers or persons who might be useful 
to Germany. 

One of the important revelations was that Bolo Pasha, executed 
in France as a spy, was in touch with the German Embassy in Wash- 
ington shortly after the war began. The beginning of the German 
propaganda was in 1914, Chief Belaski said, when Dr. Demberg and 
Dr. Albert formed an organization with offices at 1123 Broadway, New 
York, and made efforts to secure control of certain newspapers, among 
them the New York Sun. It was also sworn that Demberg 's notes 
showed that it was proposed to organize a society that was to conduct 
propaganda among the Irish in favor of Germany. 

The Justification for America Entering the War. 

So far as precipitating America into the war was concerned it 
was the submarine campaign that furnished the ''straw which broke 
the camel's back." The subject had been one of continued discussion 
for two years, or from the time that Germany announced the waters 
around Great Britain and Ireland, including the British Channel, con- 
stituted a war zone which might be passed through only with risk. 
In reply to this announcement the then Secretary Bryan issued a note 
to the Imperial German Government notifying it that America in- 
tended to hold the German Government to "strict accountability" for 
the sacrifice of any American lives. 

Germany had attacked half a dozen vessels of neutral countries 
on which were American citizens and through successive stages and 
with each recurring attack there had been diplomatic correspondence 
—protests from America and assurances from Germany— until the 
cross-Channel steamer Sussex, a French boat, was torpedoed and the 
lives of twenty-five Americans imperilled. 

This incident precipitated the first ultimatum of America to Ger- 


many. Secretary Lansing, appointed to succeed Secretary Bryan, is- 
sued a note to the German Government in which it was stated, "Unless 
the Imperial Government should now immediately declare and effect 
an abandonment of its present methods of submarine warfare against 
passenger and freight-carrying vessels the Government of the United 
States can have no choice but to sever diplomatic relations with the 
German Empire altogether." 

America had disputed the right of Germany to maintain or define 
any such war zone and contended that neutral vessels should, in ac- 
cordance with international usage, be visited and searched for evidence 
of violation of the laws of warfare before being attacked. Germany 
had in reply declared that the zone was established as a reprisal for 
the blockade which Great Britain had established with her war fleet 
and that if the United States would prevail upon Germany's enemies 
to abandon their methods of maritime warfare Germany would in 
return modify her submarine order. 

Sinking the Lusitania. 

President Wilson had sent an "identic" note to Germany and 
Great Britain suggesting the cessation of illegal activities and a dis- 
cussion and an agreement on the point. Germany replied that a defi- 
nite statement would be reserved until it was learned what obligations 
the British Government would assume in the matter. 

Meantime the British steamship Falaba was sunk by a submarine 
on March 28, when 163 lives were lost. Among these was one Amer- 
ican. Again on April 28 the American steamship Gushing was bombed 
by an aeroplane and on the first of May the American tank steamer 
Gulflight was attacked and sunk and three Americans were lost. 

On this eventful day the height of German arrogance was demon- 
strated by the placing in American newspapers of a notice to the 
public warning them against taking passage on the Cunard steamship 
Lusitania about to sail from New York. The agents of the German 
Government also sent personal notices to prospective passengers of 
national importance, warning them against sailing. Few, at that time 
accepted the notice or the personal notes seriously, believing them 
to be products of the mind of some person obsessed with the idea 
of danger. 

The warning was one, however, sanctioned by official Germany 

28— W. L. 


and German agents in America. The Lusitania went to the bottom of 
the sea, as already indicated, on May 7, off Fastnet, Ireland, with the 
loss of 1,100 persons, among whom were 115 Americans. 

Following in the wake of the other submarine attacks, the Lusi- 
tania sinking was made the subject of a new ''note" to Berlin which 
concluded with the utterance, ' ' The Imperial German Government will 
not expect the Government of the United States to omit any word or 
act necessary to the performance of its sacred duty of maintaining the 
rights of the United States and its citizens and of safeguarding their 
free exercise and enjoyment." 

The reply of Germany was that the Lusitania had "masked guns" 
aboard and that she, in effect, a British auxiliary cruiser, carried muni- 
tions and that her owners were in reality responsible for the loss of 
American lives since they risked passage through the danger zone. 
It was proved beyond dispute that the vessel was neither armed nor 
carried munitions, but that did not satisfy Germany, who was seeking 
for excuses to justify her acts. 

Germany's Unreliable Assurances. 

No satisfactory position was assumed by Germany in the Lusi- 
tania matter, though the Imperial German Government did admit 
its error in attacking the Gushing and Gulflight, promising to pay 
damages in the cases. 

It was during the exchange of notes on the submarine warfare 
that Doctor Dumba, the Austrian Ambassador at Washington, and 
representative of the German clique, interfered in the affairs of the 
country and was recalled at the instance of President Wilson. He had 
notified Berlin that the Secretary of State had intimated to Count von 
Bernstorff that the vigorous tone of the American notes were not to 
be regarded as too warlike. 

Another note of protest from America brought from Foreign 
Minister von Jagow what was in effect an address to the American 
people. The nature of the reply was of such tone as to indicate that 
it was the intention of Germany to use the submarine in a manner to 
compel America to use its power upon Great Britain to secure a 
modification of the severe blockade which was curtailing Germany's 
source of food supply. 

Other notes passed, but things reached such a stage that the 


controversy resolved itself into one for discussion between Count von 
Bernstorff and Secretary Lansing in Washington. In the meantime 
came a written statement from Count von Bernstorff to the effect that 
"Liners will not be sunk by our submarines without warning and 
without safety to noncombatants, provided the liners do not try to 
escape or offer resistance." 

These and other assurances had been given by Germany when, 
without warning Germany issued notice of a new submarine policy 
under which all armed merchant ships were to be sunk without warning. 

Germany's Prohibited Sea Zones. 

In the interim a formal conununication was submitted to Secre- 
tary Lansing by Count von Bemstorff in which Germany had agreed 
to pay indemnity for lives lost on the Lusitania, but the matter became 
dead-locked because Germany declined to admit the "illegality" of her 
act and desired a substitution of the word in the agreement. 

President Wilson, who had in the meantime been reelected presi- 
dent, largely on the strength of his conduct of affairs and because he 
had up to that time "kept the country out of war," had scarcely fin- 
ished an address to the United States C