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which the Allies will be able to accumulate on that front. Consequently it is, to say the least, extremely doubtful whether the results on the Western front can be decisive for the Allies.

Now, the mere fact that any doubt about it exists is enough to make it the duty of the Allies to take the precautions which wisdom enjoins against this new possible blunder, which this time would be beyond remedy. They must therefore understand that, to win the war, they must enter upon military operations elsewhere than on the Western front. As I hope to show, such supplementary operations are comparatively simple to undertake.



In his reverberating speech at Paris on November 12, 1917, Mr. Lloyd George performed the service of proclaiming aloud the military blunder of the Allies, which he justly characterized as 'inconceivable,' - in having fixed their attention solely on the Western front. I quote the essential passages of this speech which particularly merit the notice of American readers. But I must call attention to the fact that, although Mr. Lloyd George did fully realize the vital nature of the Danube front from the military standpoint, he did not grasp its capital political importance, as is shown by his speech of January 5, 1918, in which he sanctions the maintenance of the integrity of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. I allude further to this speech at the end of my article.

There is one feature of this war which makes it unique among all the innumerable wars of the past. It is a siege of nations. The Allies are blockading two huge empires. It would have been well for us if at all times we had thoroughly grasped that fact. In a siege, not only must every part

of the line of circumvallation be strong enough to resist the strongest attack which the besieged can bring to bear upon it: more than that, the, besieging army must be ready to strike at the weakest point of the enemy, wherever that may be. Have we done so? Look at the facts.

The enemy was cut off by the Allied navies from all the rich lands beyond the seas, whence he had been drawing enormous stores of food and material. On the east he was blockaded by Russia, on the west by the armies of France, Britain, and Italy. But the south, the important south, with its gateway to the East, was left to be held by population of Belgium, its armies exhausted the forces of a small country with half the by the struggles of three wars, and with two treacherous kings behind, lying in wait for an opportunity to knife it when engaged in defending itself against a mightier foe.

What was the result of this inconceivable blunder? What would any man whose mind was devoted to the examination of the

whole, not merely to one part, of the great actly what did happen. While we were battlefield, have expected to happen? Exhammering with the whole of our might at

the impenetrable barrier in the West, the Central Powers, feeling confident that we could not break through, threw their weight on that little country, crushed her resistance, opened the gate to the East, and unlocked great stores of corn, cattle, and minerals, yea, unlocked the door of hope all essential to enable Germany to sustain her struggle.

Without these additional stores Germany might have failed to support her armies at

full strength. Hundreds of thousands of splendid fighting material were added to the armies which Germany can control added to her and lost to us. Turkey, which at that time had nearly exhausted its resources for war, cut off from the only possible source of supply, was reëquipped and resuscitated, and became once more a formidable military power, whose activities absorbed hundreds of thousands of our best men in order to enable us at all to retain our prestige in the East. By this fatuity this terrible war was given new life.

Why was this incredible blunder perpetrated? The answer is simple. Because it

was no one's business in particular to guard the gates of the Balkans. The one front had not become a reality. France and England were absorbed in other spheres. Italy had her mind on the Carso. Russia had a thousand-mile frontier to guard, and, even if she had not, she could not get through to help Serbia, because Roumania was neutral. It is true we sent forces to Saloniki to rescue Serbia, but, as usual, they were sent too late- when the mischief was complete. Half of those forces sent in time nay, half the men who fell in the futile attempt to break through on the Western front in September of that year- would have saved Serbia, would have saved the Balkans and completed the blockade of Germany.

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You may say that is an old story. I wish it were. It is simply the first chapter of a serial which has been running to this hour. . . .

When we advance a kilometre into the enemy's lines, snatch a small shattered village out of his cruel grip, capture a few hundreds of his soldiers, we shout with unfeigned joy. And rightly so, for it is the symbol of our superiority over a boastful foe and a sure guaranty that in the end we can and shall win. But what if we had advanced 50 kilometres beyond his lines and made 200,000 of his soldiers prisoners and taken 2500 of his best guns, with enormous quantities of ammunition and stores?


Fundamental strategic errors, then, have been committed. The responsible cause of these errors is very simple. The leaders of the Entente, with the assurance born of their misconstruction of actual European conditions, of which they have afforded so many proofs, deeming themselves sure of their position, have obstinately refused to listen to the few men who are aware of the real object with which Germany entered on the war, and therefore of the means which would permit effective opposition to her success.

The same reason explains why Mr.

Lloyd George's speech of January 5, 1918, contains the heartrending contradictions and technical blunders to which I deem it my imperative duty to call the attention of my American readers. If his declarations relative to war-indemnities should be followed by a practical application, France, on the signature of the treaty of peace, would be condemned to absolute bankruptcy, and the value of the French bank-note would vanish with magical rapidity.

On the other hand, the declaration concerning the maintenance of the integrity of the Austro-Hungarian Empire is utterly at variance with the principle laid down by the Allies, that the different races must be permitted to decide freely concerning their own destiny. Now, the Czechs and JugoSlavs want no more of the Hapsburgs or of Austria-Hungary. Why compel them to remain subject to the yoke of Vienna, which, as all those familiar with the Central European problem are well aware, is unable to escape from the grip of Berlin? They know equally well that it is altogether impossible to place the slightest reliance on AustriaHungary, which is not a nation, which is not even a state, but which is, in reality, a system of ultra-reactionary oppression, operating for the benefit of the German-Magyar hegemony of Europe. As for the Hapsburg dynasty, for centuries past it has broken its word as freely as the Hohenzollerns have broken theirs. Not the slightest credit can be given to its signature by

any sane person.

On the other hand, if Austria-Hungary is allowed to exist, the promises of integral restitution made by Mr. Lloyd George to Roumania, Montenegro, and Serbia, are valueless, because incapable of fulfillment by reason of the contiguity of the Austro-German mass. Nor has the promise of restitution of Alsace-Lorraine any greater value.

Such restitution could not be permanent unless Pan-Germany is definitively crushed, that is to say, unless AustriaHungary disappears.

It is not pleasant to place one's self in opposition to the almost universal concert of approval which has greeted Mr. Lloyd George's declaration in the Allied countries; but I cannot consent to conceal a truth of which, in my judgment, it is indispensable for the Allies to be informed. For twenty years I stood alone in proclaiming the PanGermanist peril, and the impending war in exactly the shape which it has assumed. I shall stand alone, if I must, in telling you this: Mr. Lloyd George's peace terms are either unrealizable or can result only in a terrible deception of the Allies which would cause them to lose the war by making Pan-Germany triumphant.

If the enormous political blunders which I am forced to point out have been committed by Mr. Lloyd George in his peace programme, it is still for the same old reason: he has neglected to consult the real experts, that is, the Englishmen who have given long study to the problem of Central Europe. To consult these men is an absolute necessity, for at this moment there is not in the whole Entente any political leader, any diplomat, who is personally thoroughly conversant with this question of Austria-Hungary, the thorough comprehension of which requires about twenty years of study.

What has Mr. Lloyd George done? He has consulted Sir Edward Grey, Mr. Asquith, and Mr. Henderson, who certainly have never been to Austria-Hungary to make serious investigations. Whereas, Mr. Lloyd George would assuredly never have been guilty of the serious errors that I am indicating, if he had chosen to listen for one hour to the only three Englishmen who, to my knowledge, have given genuine study


to the Austro-Hungarian question on the spot, for many months: Sir Arthur Evans, Mr. Seton-Watson, and Mr. Wickham Steed. The last-named gentleman was for ten years before the war the remarkably able correspondent of the Times at Vienna. His service of information was so well organized that it was to him that the French and British embassies applied for information on a multitude of matters, which they were utterly unable to procure for themselves. It is, therefore, contrary to elementary common sense, to say nothing of British interests, not to place the greatest reliance on his opinion as to the proper solution of the problem of Central Europe.

All the foregoing leads us to insistence upon the urgent necessity of this step: to revise the revision of the waraims of the Allies as set forth in Mr. Lloyd George's programme; for that programme embodies technical blunders which make it either infinitely hazardous or practically unworkable.


It will be enough, I believe for every right-thinking American to know that Mr. Lloyd George made these no less justifiable than alarming statements concerning the strategic blunders of the Entente in November, 1917, or after forty months of warfare; and that in the forty-second month the same Lloyd George was guilty of the technical political blunders which I have pointed out, in connection with the Allies' terms of peace this will be enough, I say, to convince every such American that the conduct of the war, and the preparation for peace, so far as it has developed at present as well in the military as in the political aspect, can no longer be tolerated.


One of the greatest services that the United States could render to the Al

lies in Europe would be to say to them: 'We, the United States, are determined to wage war to the limit by all the means at our disposal, but we do not propose that our men and our money shall be wasted to no avail. Henceforth the war must be carried on, and peace prepared for, in accordance with seriously considered, and hence truly scientific, plans, as well in the intellectual as in the material domain, and as well from a political as from a military standpoint.'

I am well aware that you Americans, by the very force of circumstances, have much to learn from our military leaders in order to be able to carry on effectively this great war in which you have become involved so suddenly; but you have special advantages over the Allies in Europe, which should be utilized. Your distance from the other side of the Atlantic gives you the necessary interval of space to avoid being hypnotized by the special views of each of the Allies, and hence to see the conflict as a whole, which is most essential. Having never been obliged up to the present time to take sides in European political questions, you have none of the old-time erroneous ideas with regard to them which are held by the Allied diplomats in Europe - archaic ideas which are the initial cause of all the diplomatic set-backs of the Allies. You have therefore nothing to forget. That gives you an immense chance of avoiding many disastrous blunders.

As it is certain that you have no predetermined plan, and as you are seeking honestly the actual truth, you will inevitably find it if you follow the method of your great captains of industry, all of whom know that, in order to accomplish anything important and efficacious in a province with which

they are not familiar, they must begin by applying to the 'expert.' Of course, the expert is not infallible: he may, like all of us poor mortals, be mistaken; but when he really deserves to be called an expert, be avoids, with certainty, the commission of such monumental blunders as those heaped up by the European Allied leaders simply because they did not realize the necessity of consulting experts. Now, there are among the Allies experts on each of the great questions presented by the war and the peace that is to ensue, who are neither politicians, nor diplomats, nor soldiers, but who must be consulted because they know these questions, root and branch, for the very simple reason that they have studied them long and freely. To be sure, these men are far from numerous, but I declare that they do exist. If you Americans demand that henceforth a call shall be made upon men of real competence, and that there shall be no more discussion about phrases, but solely about carefully studied realities, you will confer upon all the Allies a tremendous service, which will bring us considerably nearer to victory.

All these advantages are peculiarly yours, Americans. If you choose to make the utmost use of them, you will then be, in many instances, in a position to play the part of a beneficent arbiter between the European Allies. Although their leading minds, having been taken unawares, have not conducted the war as they should have done, they are honest, well-meaning men. Your advice will certainly be welcomed provided they feel that it is invariably dictated in the interest of a mutual, decisive, complete victory - the only sort that can ensure peace for many years to come, and save civilization.



April 7 [1917]. WELL, I must confess that, even after war has been declared, the skies have n't fallen and oysters taste just the same. I never would have dreamed that so big a step would be accepted with so much equanimity. It is due to two causes, I think. First, because we have trembled on the verge so long and sort of dabbled our toes in the water, that our minds have grown gradually accustomed to what under other circumstances would be a violent shock. Second, because the individual units of the Navy are so well prepared that there is little to do. We made a few minor changes in the routine and slipped the war-heads on to the torpedoes, and presto, we were ready for war. One beauty of a destroyer is that, life on board being reduced to its simplest terms anyhow, there is little to change. We may be ordered to 'strip,' that is, go to our Navy yard and land all combustibles, paints, oils, surplus woodwork, uniforms, etc.; but we have not done so yet.

We were holding drill yesterday when the signal was made from the flagship, 'War is declared.' I translated it to my crew, who received the news with much gayety but hardly a trace of excitement.

April 13.

There is absolutely no news. We are standing by for what may betide, with not the faintest idea of what it may be. Of course, we are drilling all the time, and perfecting our readiness for action in every way, but there is a total ab

sence of that excitement and sense of something impending that one usually associates with the beginning of war. Indeed, I think that the only real anxiety is lest we may not get into the big game at all. I do not think any of us are bloodthirsty or desirous of either glory or advancement, but we have the wish to justify our existence. With me it takes this form - by being in the service I have sacrificed my chance to make good as husband, father, citizen, son, in fact, in every human relationship, in order to be, as I trust, one of the Nation's high-grade fighting instruments. Now, if fate never uses me for the purpose to which I have been fashioned, then much time, labor, and material have been wasted, and I had better have been made into a good clerk, farmer, or business man.

I do so want to be put to the test and not found wanting. Of course, I

know that the higher courage is to do your duty from day to day no matter in how small a line, but all of us conceal a sneaking desire to attempt the higher hurdles and sail over grandly.

You need not be proud of me, for there is no intrinsic virtue in being in the Navy when war is declared; but I hope fate will give me the chance to make you proud.

April 21.

I have been having lots of fun in command myself, and good experience. I have taken her out on patrol up to Norfolk twice, where the channel is as thin and crooked as a corkscrew, then into dry dock. Later, escorted a sub

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