Слике страница
PDF
ePub

under arms, with an equal number with cellent railroads, seems to have directed in easy reach, the whole appearance of a series of heavy blows against what we the fighting seems to show that the have suggested was the Rumanian adforces which she sent through the vance guard, compelling most, if not all, passes of the Carpathians and Transyl the Rumanian detachments to fall backvanian Alps were comparatively small; ward and, at several points, driving them hardly more than a covering force, de back to, or across, the geographical signed, first to fix the fighting line be frontier of Rumania, which runs along yond Rumania's own territory, thus spar the mountain tops, often at elevations of ing her the ruin and desolation which over 5,000 feet. It is clear that Falkenhave become a part of modern warfare; hayn, by this advance, immediately inand, at the same time, serving as an ad curs the strategical disadvantage under vance guard, behind which much more which Rumania had labored: if he gets considerable Rumanian forces could through the passes, he thereby cuts up later be built up to meet the counterat his armies, which may then be attacked tack from the Teuton side which was in detail from the Rumanian side. naturally to be expected. Austria-Hun Further, while it would seem likely that gary seems to have been caught com the rapidity with which he drove in the pletely off her guard; to have had al Rumanian advance guards was due to the most no armed forces in Transylvania; concentration upon them of heavy artilno doubt, the few who were there were lery, against which they could make no elderly men, practically of the quality corresponding reply, having run ahead of of militia. Austria-Hungary has been their heavy guns; yet, as he climbs up losing men far too heavily on the Russian the mountain slopes, Falkenhayn will and Italian fronts to make it likely that find it increasingly difficult to bring his she would have left any considerable heavy artillery effectively to bear. Every force of good troops in Transylvania, on

mile he advances will make his progress a line which she evidently thought en more difficult and at the same time tirely immune from attack.

more hazardous. So even light Rumanian forces were If he actually gets through the Rumaable to get pretty far forward in the first nian wall he will thereby lay himself open two or three days, capturing cities which to new dangers: separate attacks, served are like Teuton islands in the sea of by the admirable system of strategic railmixed Magyar, Rumanian, and Slavonic roads which Rumania owes to her first populations. Between Transylvania, Hohenzollern King, and which, intimately which belongs politically to Hungary, and linked with the Russian railroad system, Rumania there are several easy passes; could rapidly bring up reinforcements through three of these railroads cross from the depots of Southern Russia. On at moderate elevations: the Gyimes, the other hand, every mile the Rumanians Tomos, and Red Tower Passes; other draw backward brings them nearer to passes are crossed by good roads. None their bases of supplies, and so is likely to the less, armies going through in either stiffen their resistance, and to give larger direction are inevitably cut up into frac opportunities to their heavier guns. tions by the hills which separate the Another consideration points the same passes, and find themselves in mutually way. We do not know even approximateinaccessible valleys on the other side. ly how large Falkenhayn's force is, but Practically, they cannot act together. with the enormous and continuing losses

General von Falkenhayn, who seems of the Teutons on the Russian and Somme to have been put at the head of the fronts, following on the tremendous Teucounterblow against Rumania after his ton losses at Verdun, it seems highly imsomewhat abrupt dismissal from the post probable that any considerable force of of German Chief of Staff, took full ad first-class troops should have been availvantage of this inherent weakness in the able for the drive against Rumania. If position of the Rumanian invading Rumania can continue a resistance equal armies, and, served by a network of ex to that which she has already put up, it

seems very likely that we shall see Falkenhayn's drive exhaust itself, as the Crown Prince's far more formidable drive against Verdun exhausted itself. In the circumstances it seems probable that Rumania may be able to hold her own. If she does no more than this it will be immensely profitable to the Entente Powers, since it means a steady diversion from the main battle fronts of large Teutonic forces, which neither Germany nor Austria-Hungary is in any position

to spare.

One is inclined to say that Falkenhayn's drive against Rumania was dictated rather by political than by sound strategical considerations; that its purpose was rather to punish Rumania for defying the Central Empires than to achieve any real military advantage. For, even in the very improbable event of Rumania's being overrun as Serbia was overrun a year ago, this, while impairing the prestige of the Entente cause, would not inflict upon them any considerable military injury, so far as the major operations of the war cerned, while, at the same time, it would very seriously injure the cause of the

Teutonic Empires, by eating up carefully husbanded reserves, whom it is now completely impossible to replace.

While not touching Rumania geographically, the fighting on the Macedonian line before Saloniki has, indirectly, a very important bearing upon Rumania's military problem, in that it immobilizes the bulk of the Bulgarian Army, numbering on this front perhaps 250,000 to 300,000 men, who might, were they free to move, invade Rumania across the Danube. But they are not free to move; if they were withdrawn to the north, the armies of the Entente Powers would instantly follow on their heels, and would, if the movement continued, shortly find themselves in possession of Sofia and of the railroad from Hungary to Constantinople, along which a stream of munitions constantly runs to the armies of the Sultan.

To sum up, whether, for the moment, the Rumanian armies are moving westward or eastward on the Hungarian front, their presence there, and the presence there of Falkenhayn's forces, is a very valuable asset for the powers of the Entente.

are

con

The Dangerous Plight of Greece

By the Editor

G*

(REECE, caught in the maelstrom

of the European war, has been thrown into a state of political

chaos bordering more and more upon tragedy. King Constantine's determination to hold Greece neutral in circumstances where neutrality is impossible has brought him and his people into a plight as painful as war, yet without any of war's satisfactions. His tragic dilemma is indicated in the simple statement that his wife is Kaiser Wilhelm's sister, and that the vast majority of his people, with ex-Premier Venizelos, their idolized leader, are heart and soul with the Entente Powers. Add to this the presence of the British and French armies, invited to Saloniki a year ago to

aid Greece's ally, Serbia, with their growing suspicion of King Constantine's German affiliations, and the subsequent course of events is already explained.

The Allies have distrusted Constantine and his Cabinets from the first, and still distrust them, perhaps unjustly; this suspicion explains the high-handed manner in which they have imposed their will upon him, compelled the demobilization of his army, occupied his capital, confiscated his navy.

The Greek people, if we may judge through the voice of Venizelos, have not doubted the sincerity of their ruler; but they have for many months been telling him, with increasing boldness and severity, that his vain attempt at neutrality

[ocr errors]

was leading them into ruin. This popular note of admonition reached its climax, first in the remarkable manifesto adopted by a mass meeting in Athens, and printed in full at the close of the present article; and later in the deliberate organization of a provisional Government, with Venizelos at its head, for the avowed purpose of carrying Greece into the war on the side of the Entente Allies.

Thus is revolution added to the harrowed nation's other troubles; not an ordinary revolution, apparently, but one whose object, thanks to the rare patriotism of its leader, is simply to compel the King to do the people's will. For of the most memorable features of this whole strange situation is the patriotic self-abnegation of Eleutherios Venizelos, the man whose honorable leadership has made him more powerful than the King, yet who declares, even now, that he will support any Cabinet appointed by the King which will honestly fulfill Greece's treaty obligations as an ally of Serbia and make war upon Bulgaria.

When we look for the cause that has stirred Greece to revolution it is not far to seek. While the nation's hands were tied a Bulgarian army came early in September and occupied the Macedonian territory which Greece had won in the second Balkan war. Kavala was captured, with its forts, and the garrisonthe Fourth Army Corps—was taken prisoner in a body and carted away to Goerlitz, in Prussian Silesia, while the population fled from the invaders by thousands, destitute and starving. The Greek commandant stated that he was ordered to give up the fortress of Kavala to the advancing German and Bulgarian troops without resistance.

So the Germans hold neutral Greek prisoners, the Bulgars hold Greek territory, the Allies hold Athens, Piraeus, and Salokini; the Venizelist rebels hold Crete, Mitylene, Samos, Chios, and the other islands, while Constantine holds a throne without sovereignty.

Before leaving Athens on Sept. 25 to place himself at the head of the revolutionary movement in Crete, M. Venizelos thus summed up the situation: Already we have suffered all the agonies

of a disastrous war, while remaining neutral, We have had ten months of mobilization with all the consequent hardships to the families of the men mobilized, while both Balkan wars included only thirteen months, with greater funds available for the relief of the families of the soldiers. Our boundaries have been invaded; towns, crops, and farms have been destroyed, and all horrors enacted. We have had all the financial burden of

war and the cost of maintaining a useless mobilization. The morale of the army, which three years ago was at the topmost pitch, has been destroyed by inaction and is now completely gone. Then we had a victorious, now we have a beaten, army

We have even over an entire army corps of Greeks held prisoners of war in a foreign country and already we have paid the Bulgars an immense war indemnity, amounting, in military equipment, property destroyed, and loot of the Greek cities occupied, to over $40,000,000. And, finally, we are perhaps on the verge of making now, at last, that war which we have not fought, but have paid for in blood, tears, and treasure.

At the same time M. Venizelos published the following statement regarding the object of the revolt of which he and Admiral Condouriotis were about to take command:

The betrayal of Kavala after the loss of Fort Rupel, Seres, Drama, and of the greater part of Greek Macedonia has brought matters to such a crisis in the very existence of my country that I can no longer resist the cry of my compatriots calling me to help them and save them from extermination at the hands of Bulgaria.

I can no longer wait. I have exhausted in vain every means of inducing those who govern Greece to take up arms in defense of their country. I have offered to support unconditionally any Ministry in Greece that should be ready to carry out the policy of intervention-the only policy compatible with the national interests of Greece.

Do not think I am heading a revolution in the ordinary sense of the word. The movement now beginning is in no way directed against the King or his dynasty. This movement is one made by those of us who can no longer stand aside and let our countrymen and our country be ravaged by the Bulgarian enemy. It is the last effort we can make to induce the King to come forth as King of the Hellenes and follow the path of duty in the protection of his subjects.

M. Venizelos and Admiral Condouriotis landed in Crete on Sept. 26, and on that day, amid the plaudits of the troops and the populace, a Provisional Government was then established, “ with full authority to organize the forces of the country

stricken and with bleeding hearts, each new moment forms new wounds deep in our souls, which so short a time ago were proud in a united and victorious Greece, my Government has been obliged to order you to leave the ships upon which you brought the news of the freeing of our liberated brothers; you came with tortured hearts and eyes wet with tears, every man faithful to his oath, to the side of your King.

I thank you and congratulate you, O my faithful sailors. I thank you, not only as King and chief of the fleet, but as the representative of the fatherland you love so much, to which you have given so much, for which you are ready to give and suffer all.

May our hopes soon be realized and may the hours soon come when you will be able to return to your ships. The holy ikons that have protected you in the past will protect you in the future, and the glorious flag, once more caught by the winds of the Greek seas, will bring hope and consolation wherever Greek hearts beat.

with the object of joining the Allies and fighting by their side against all their enemies." On Oct. 12 the Provisional Government was strengthened by the addition of a third member, General Zimbrakatis, as Minister of War, and preparations were made to order the mobilization of the Greek Army. On Oct. 17 the Entente Allies formally recognized the new Government, at the same time wihholding recognition from King Constantine's latest Cabinet, headed by Professor Spyridon P. Lambros. All the outlying portions of Greece have rallied swiftly to the Venizelos Government. Apparently only Athens and the Peloponnesus remain predominantly loyal to King Constantine, and here the Entente Powers are laying an increasingly heavy hand on things.

Their most drastic measure in the month just past was the seizure of the Greek fleet. Vice Admiral d'Artige du Fournet, commander of the AngloFrench feet in the Mediterranean, presented an ultimatum demanding that Greece hand over to the Entente Powers the entire Greek naval fleet, except the armored cruiser Averoff and the battleships Lemnos and Kilkis, by 1 o'clock on Wednesday, Oct. 11. The Admiral further demanded that the three warships to be retained by Greece be disarmed and their crews reduced to one-third of the regular complement; that the forts on the seacoast be dismantled, and that the two which command the mooring place of the allied fleet be turned over to the Admiral. On Oct. 17 King Constantine issued the following Order of the Day:

Officers, Sailors: In these hours, when,

At the same time the Allies took control of the Greek police, and demanded that Greek citizens be prohibited from carrying arms, that the sending of war munitions to Thessaly be stopped, and that the embargo on Thessalian wheat be listed. Again the Cabinet complied. The French and British also took possession of various buildings in Athens for their own use. These acts of high-handed precaution against betrayal were followed by anti-Entente riots in Athens. The French Admiral and the French Minister were greeted on the street with jeers and hisses, and a crowd before the British legation shouted “Down with England!” For a time there was danger of bloodshed, but a few hundred French marines with machine guns quelled the disturbances. Meanwhile the revolution is making rapid headway all over Greece.

Address of the Greek People Admonishing

Their King

Following is the text of the remarkable address to King Constantine which form er Premier Venizelos drew up and which was approved by a great concourse in Athens oil Aug. 27, 1916. is an example of plain speaking to an enthroned ruler it is doubtful whether it has its equal in history:

are

IRE:

You the victim of persons who destroy the work of the revolution

of which we are today celebrating the seventh anniversary, and to re-establish their system of corrupt government have not hesi

S

tated to exploit the respect which the nation owes to the Crown and the love it bears for you, and are ready to imperil the work of regeneration achieved by five years of labor and two glorious wars in order to strike at

ADDRESS OF THE GREEK PEOPLE ADMONISHING THEIR KING

237

we

see

one of those who co-operated in that work. Elections are due to take place so that You are the victim of your military advisers, the people may have national representation, who, taking a narrow military view and but these elections alone cannot give a saluanxious to establish a system of absolutism tary solution of the question now in issue. which would make them in effect masters of So long as you permit, Sire, an unworthy the country, have convinced you that Ger use to be made of your name as an enemy many will emerge victorious from the Euro of a great political party, what good can pean war.

come from these elections which under such Finally, you are the victim of your natural conditions do no more than mask an undeand human weakness. Accustomed to ad clared fratricidal war? How could the Libmire everything German, astounded by this eral Party carry out its policy should it unparalleled military preparation as by every judge it necessary to do more than observe other German organization, not only have benevolent neutrality, as the Entente Powyou believed in German victory, but you have ers rightly ask of us, since the criminal desired it. You hoped that after a German conduct of the General Staff has literally victory you would be able to concentrate in dissolved the army and rendered Greece inyour own hands the whole power of Govern capable of fighting? For you must learn ment and sweep aside our system of liberty. that even if your Government were to pro

Today we see the consequences of these nounce for intervention by the Greek Army blunders. Instead of expanding in Asia you would no longer find an army to lead Minor, Thrace, and Cyprus; of ending for to victory. ever our quarrels of more than a thousand

Proclamations of the association calling years with our national enemies; of creating itself the Pan-Hellenic Association of ReGreece great, powerful, and rich, fulfilling servists, professing their readiness to shed our loftiest national dreams,

the their blood anew at a sign from you, in no Bulgars invading Greek Macedonia, occupy way correspond to the reality. . These ing Seres and towns and forts, and making proclamations are made because those who prisoners of detachments of the Greek Army make them have been assured Greece will there, without our being at war, declared or never depart from the neutrality policy not declared, with the invader.

adopted, and, above all, the manner in which While we receive them with the irony this policy has been followed has provoked of frier.dly assurance, we see them seize

a very grave malady in the national orour munitions of war, which cost us hun ganism. dreds of millions, and which the General

We do not say this malady is incurable, Staff criminally abandoned after our gen

but to treat it the forces of the nation must eral demobilization. Although our national

be concentrated, not divided. This reunion enemy has mobilized, this war material was

of forces must be carried out at once, for left concentrated in towns near the frontier,

tomorrow may be too late. Leave to others and so became easy prey of the invading

the role of party leader, to which those who neighbor.

exploit your throne would debase you, and From the position in which we placed

boldly face the enemy. Greece we see her today reduced again to a

By impious and

satanic action they have tried, and, unhapposition to which she was cast down before

pily, with success, to divide the national the revolution. Instead of Greece being re

forces, from the union of which alone the spected by friends and redoubtable to foes,

nation's soul expects health and the greatness we see her today pitied by the one and

of the fatherland. * despised, scorned, and chastised by the other. Ignorant of the vital conditions of Apply yourself at once with your Governthe group of powers in which alone Greece ment, and helped by us all, to revise the can. I do not say grow, but even live as a

national sentiment weakened by prolonged free State, they are driving her to an as

mobilization, the teaching of the barracks, sured catastrophe.

and the poison of the foreign propaganda, so Today's demonstration has been summoned that Greece may once again have an army, to express the grief of the nation's soul so that when the circumstances demand itand to manifest in perfect order the nation's

and we

are sure they will demand it-it anguish and anger at the misfortunes into

will be able to defend her vital interests, so which the country has been led and is still

far as they may be safeguarded side by being led by the present policy. This dem

side this time with powerful allies, tradionstration seeks to enlighten you and to

tional protectors and benefactors of Greece. persuade you that, in spite of perfidious ef You will see by today's demonstration that forta, the nation does not approve what the Liberal Party is not the enemy of the has been done, whatever they may say who Crown, nor the enemy of the royal house, surround you; to appeal to your love of the nor the enemy of yourself. It is only the fatherland to find the strength to break respectful guardian of free institutions, and with the evil influences which, as we said, will suffer no one to injure them. That is exploit the love of the people for you, and the true interest of the Crown, and only which are dragging you, and with you your those who are exploiting the Crown seek royal house and Greece and the nation, to a to persuade you to the contrary. They are national catastrophe.

your worst enemies.

*

« ПретходнаНастави »