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authority but also actually give aid and comfort to the besieged Spanish garrison. Two German vessels went to a neighboring port and materially assisted the Spanish by firing upon Filipino troops which were co-operating with the Americans.
The climax came when the German ships committed a particularly flagrant breach of Dewey's orders, and Dewey curtly informed the German Admiral that if he wanted war he could have it, there and then. The German thereupon consulted the British commander, Admiral Chichester, and strove to inveigle him into concerted action against the Americans. The Englishman's reply was, that he was acting under orders the purport of which were known to only himself and Dewey, and he thereupon moved the British squadron to a position between the German and American ships, so that the German Admiral, with his superior force, could not attack Dewey without firing over the British vessels. There is no doubt that Chichester's orders from the British Government were, in case of a clash between the German and American fleets, to place himself and his ships at Dewey's command.
PRINCE HENRY'S PROPAGANDA Thus foiled, the Kaiser tried new tactics. He sent his brother, Prince Henry, to America, ostensibly on a mission of courtesy and friendship, but in fact to found and promote a German propaganda in the United States. A vast German-American League was formed, with semimilitary organization, the chief objects of which were to keep alive devotion to the Fatherland, to prevent Germans here from becoming Americanized, and to remind them that under the anomalous laws of Germany they were still German subjects despite the fact that they had formally
renounced allegiance to the Kaiser and had sworn allegiance to the United States. That system of “dual allegiance" was purely a German device, recognized by no other country. !
A system of exchange of professors between German and American universities was also arranged, and several active German propagandists secured election as permanent professors in American universities, where they busied themselves with the insidious extension of German principles and interests to the utmost possible degree.
AGAINST THE MONROE DOCTRINE With the development of the German Colonial Empire and the vast extension of German commerce, the need of some German possessions in America was felt. The acquisition of such a holding was barred by the Monroe Doctrine, and therefore German opposition to and denial of that American principle were incessant. While other European governments either tacitly or in terms recognized and respected it, Germany alone persistently refused to do so in any way, but habitually referred to it with contempt.
During the administration of President Roosevelt three attempts were made by Germany to discredit the Monroe Doctrine and to injure the interests of this country. One was in connection with Venezuela. Germany put forward certain claims against that country, and purposed to send a naval and military expedition thither to invade the country and seize upon a part of it at least until the claims should be satisfied. Our government had not objected to the collection of just claims by proper methods, but to this, which savored of conquest for the satisfaction of probably spurious claims, it did object. The President therefore informed
the German Ambassador that when the German expedition reached Venezuelan waters, it would find waiting for it the American line of battle fleet, under command of Admiral Dewey. The German expedition was not sent.
MEDDLING AT PANAMA Another attempt to thwart American policy and to impair American interests was made by Germany at Panama. When negotiations were undertaken by our government for a treaty with Colombia, giving us the right to construct the Isthmian Canal, German influences prevailed upon the Colombian Minister, Mr. Concha, to refuse to make the treaty; and he finally quitted his post at Washington, and went to Germany, rather than complete the negotiations. His successor, Dr. Herran, did negotiate a treaty, but German influence at Bogota was directed against it, and ultimately prevented its ratification. Meantime efforts were made to persuade Colombia to grant a canal concession to a German company.
It was during that same administration that a treaty was made with Denmark for our purchase of the Danish West India Islands. It was ratified by our Senate, and by the Lower House of the Danish Parliament; but it was defeated in the Upper House, notoriously through German influences and intrigues.
THE TRIBULATIONS OF A NEUTRAL POWER
America's Attitude toward the War, and the Attitude of the Belligerents toward America - German Disregard of Treaties — American Insistence upon International Law - Questions of Contraband and Blockade - Restraints of Neutral Trade - The Use of Neutral Flags by Belligerents - Germany's Submarine Warfare in Violation of International Law - The Lusitania Infamy - German Perjuries — “Strict Accountability" - The Sussex Case — American Warnings to Germany The Falaba, Cushing, Gulflight, Nebraskan, Arabic and Other Vessels - German Evasions — American Patience Exhausted — The Arming of Merchant Ships — Severance of Diplomatic Relations - Declaration of War.
“THE UNITED STATES,” said President Wilson in his neutrality note to the Senate on August 14, 1914, "must be neutral in fact as well as in name.” It was. But its neutrality did not save it from serious and distressing tribulations at the hands of belligerents who had no regard for neutrality, who reckoned good faith a weakness, and to whom treaties and international law were mere scraps of paper.
The Secretary of State on August 6 caused inquiries to be made of all belligerents whether the Declaration of London, of 1909, would be respected as the law of naval warfare. Germany and Austria-Hungary replied in the affirmative, but Great Britain, France and Russia submitted certain modifications, enlarging the list of contraband and reconstructing the rules for prize courts. In view of this disagreement of the belligerents, the United States then announced that it would insist upon the rights of this country and its citizens as defined by international law and treaties, regardless of the Declaration of London. Great Britain
on August 5th and 13th issued lists of contraband articles, which it would not permit to be carried into German ports; practically all “conditional” contraband being thus made absolute. Similar lists of contraband were issued by the other belligerents.
Early in the war some controversy arose with Germany over the treatment of armed merchant vessels, our government holding that they should be treated as merchant vessels so long as the arms were for defense only, and Germany insisting that they should be treated as warships. The dispute was left for the time unsettled. Some controversy also arose with Great Britain over her interference with our commerce, in the course of which the British Government pointed out that it was following the rules laid down by our own government during the Civil War.
GERMANY'S SUBMARINE WAR The abandonment of international law in naval warfare was announced by Germany on February 6, 1915. The German Government then proclaimed that the high seas surrounding the British Isles, including the whole of the English Channel, were a war zone, and that on and after February 18th every enemy merchant ship found therein would be destroyed without regard for the safety of passengers and crews. That meant that the long-established rule providing for visit and search before seizure of destruction was to be ignored, and that vessels were to be torpedoed on sight, even without warning, without any attempt to ascertain their real character or that of their cargoes. It was also stated that neutral ships would be in danger of the same treatment, since it would not be possible in all cases to discriminate between them and enemy vessels. The reason for this astounding proclamation of piracy