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G. E. O. Knight

The Golden Eagle Publishing Co., Fetter House, Fetter Lane, London E.C.4, © 1934
This digitized version © 2009 by The Scriptorium.


[3]
Preface

It is a pleasure to me to write a few words to the twentieth Edition (20th thousand) of Mr. G. E. O. Knight's most excellent brochure in its revised form. Mr. Knight has a perfect understanding of the difficulties confronting the new Germany, and, what is equally important, he possesses a fair and independent judgment. We Germans feel grateful to him, and to all our English friends who have taken the trouble, at no little expense and inconvenience to themselves, to study our revolution without prejudice. I hope sincerely that this pamphlet will be read all over England, and that it will help towards a better understanding between Great Britain and Germany.

Baronesse von der Goltz.      
Rogzow,
      über Belgard/Pers, Pom,
            Germany.

August 10th, 1934.

[4=blank] [5]
A Personal Note

For some time past, a handful of Englishmen and women, all pro-German, and each anxious to see a better and more intimate understanding between the two countries, have found themselves considerably handicapped in their work of reconciliation by the report of happenings in the German Reich which have gained impetus without any manifestation of disapproval from official German sources. Not that we wish it to be thought that it would redound to the dignity of the German or any other Government to go out of their way to refute statements which on the face of them are manifestly absurd and published to serve political ends. But the hard fact has to be faced that Germany to-day is culturally isolated from the rest of the world. In the main, this is due to the new form of government now found in Germany, obviously a matter that concerns the Germans alone, and no part of our business to discuss. But we do not think that Germany is giving of her best to-day. No doubt this is attributable to the fact that she has been torn by internal strife and the haunting fear that Communism and other subversive forms of government are even yet capable of doing the country infinite harm unless a strong hand is [6] used to keep them in check. Whereas German culture was formerly the admiration and inspiration of every thoughtful man and woman the world over, there has been a serious setback during the last two or three years in her contribution to letters. We think that this is but a passing phase. In the meanwhile, we can but work for the cause of Anglo-German amity, conscious of the fact that with the lifting of the clouds, we shall secure the aims we have in view - Justice for Germany and World Peace.

The Committee of the Friends           
of Germany.     
      July 6th, 1934.

[7]
Foreword

Who is behind the present unparalleled anti-German campaign in this country? What are their motives? All the facts point to the existence in the principal cities of Europe and America of a world-wide organisation whose object is to bring discredit on a country which has suffered more during the last twenty years than can ever be recorded. The present orgy of calumny and abuse is pitiful, to use no stronger word. The most sinister aspect of the campaign is the attempt, through the Press of the world, to overthrow the existing European order and tradition and place the Communists in power. How often must it be repeated that there is no alternative to the Hitler regime in Germany but Communism. Once Communism gets control there it will speedily spread its evil influence to every country in Europe. I can scarcely believe there is a responsible Englishman who wishes to see the German Reich fall into the hands of Communists. Every article that appears in the London and Provincial Press to-day against Germany and its Government is a direct incitement to the Communists. If anyone questions the truth of this statement let him read the exulting Communist Press, [8] who boast of having every country on their side in so far as Germany is concerned. The British Press will one day realise the significance of what they are now doing and curse the day they countenanced the anti-German campaign. It is a double-edged weapon full of the gravest consequences, perhaps not so much to England for the time being, but certainly to Germany's nearest neighbours, destined to become impregnated with the Communist theory of government once it establishes itself in the German Reich.

      London, E.C.4. G. E. O. K.
July 5th, 1934.


[9]
In Defence of Germany

1.

If one is to judge from the facts of history, it will be seen that Nations are not for long permitted to run their respective lives and affairs without outside interference. The last twenty years alone suffices to prove the truth of this much under-emphasised fact. Since the Armistice, the various European countries have adopted measures against Germany that aimed at the virtual ruin and degradation of the people and country. It is true that the policies pursued have brought economic havoc to the world at large, and created a situation the end of which is as yet difficult to determine. Just as Germany was blamed before the War for wanting a war, so was she blamed for the War itself. She had grown prosperous, and needed a strong navy to defend her economic and political interests. England watched her every movement as a cat watches a mouse. She saw, or fancied she saw, her markets threatened everywhere. Germany's growing influence was a continuous source of anxiety to British statesmen and industrialists. A five year anti- [10] German newspaper campaign was inaugurated in London; this led to considerable bitterness and misunderstanding on both sides of the North Sea. The ground, it seems, was slowly being prepared for bigger things; the seeds of hatred and mutual mistrust among them. Parliament did not interfere with the "glorious and hard won liberties of the British Press." The armaments racket was in full blast; war-mongers reaped no inconsiderable pecuniary gain for their patriotism. "We want eight and we won't wait," was the temper of the country in general. No one will ever forget it. The ex-Kaiser was caricatured everywhere and became the laughing-stock of Great Britain. The spy mania was rampant. When the War actually came, it needed little effort on the part of Whitehall to convince the British public that Germany, and Germany alone, was responsible for the outbreak of hostilities. No one but a lunatic thinks so to-day. While some of the more foolish among us are sighing for a return to the status quo ante bellum, others are clamouring for yet another war with Germany for some as yet unspecified act of atrocity she has committed, or will commit if she be permitted to re-arm. At the conclusion of the last war, the European nations had a glorious opportunity of shewing their mettle and vindicating their honour in the matter of disarmament. The question had been before the League of Nations for many years. Con- [11] ference after Conference has been held to no good purpose. The old double game of lying and shuffling so sickened the German Delegation that Germany left the last Conference and the League of Nations convinced that the European nations never had the slightest intention of disarming then or at any other time. Now, of course, Germany is blamed for the failure of the Conference.

2.

A world-wide reorganisation of the political and economic systems of every country seems to be called for. The present cannot for long endure, the edifice is cracking most ominously and will soon be tumbling about our heads. Unless we are very careful, the forces against us will prove too much for statesmen, and not alone Europe, but the world in general, will be engaged in the greatest holocaust yet vouchsafed man to wage. The spectre of Communism stalks every land. The fact that we have no obvious solution to hand for our present overwhelming difficulties is enough to indicate the bankruptcy of Parliament and politicians. A change of heart may go a long way towards solving some of our problems, but will the on-coming tide abate its fury while men are thinking about things? The Germans are still a very great people, possessing an independent will, indomitable energy and courage, [12] with an undying love for their country, a people who, in their dynamics, occupy themselves more with kinetics than statics.

3.

A casual glance at the columns of the Press of this country is disturbing, to say the least. Not a few of the old, wartime stories and their variants are again in evidence, and every conceivable device known to war-mongers in particular and their allies in general is being used to stir up the worst passions in the least intelligent portion of the population - men and women who have no opportunity, time, inclination or even money to combat anything that is being circulated. To find a parallel to the present newspaper talk, one has to go back to the years preceding the outbreak of hostilities in 1914. For long the yellow Press of Great Britain was conducting a newspaper campaign against Germany, clamouring for more battleships, more guns, and a bigger army, aye, even for conscription, to meet the "expansionist" policy of Imperial Germany.

There is scarcely a newspaper or review in this country that will open its columns to the realities of the German situation; indeed, anything that is favourable to the Hitler regime is turned down with the deepest scorn, while the contributor himself is roundly accused, or silently suspected of being in the pay of the Reich.

[13]
4.

The British Press is virtually unanimous in agreeing that our erstwhile enemies are out for revenge, that the members of the Nazi Government are thugs, thieves, liars and even murderers; that nothing good can ever come out of the German Government; that it would be better to march into the country now and crush the Nazis rather than wait until they have re-armed. Almost every item of news is falsified and exaggerated to meet the exigencies of a lying campaign.

5.

Politics are at the root of the evil. The ex-Allies and Associated Powers are naturally anxious to save their faces for the failure to carry out their part of the Treaty of Versailles. What better excuse for their not so doing than that Germany is re-arming? Germany, they tacitly argue, must not be allowed to rise from her ashes, or if she does, it must not be under the leadership of demagogues.

The principal Labour organ of London sees in the German "dictatorship" an attack on the "freedom" enjoyed by British "wageslaves" of this country. It damns every form of tyranny save that exercised by the Trades Union Congress. It hates the British Communists and expels them from membership of the National [14] Labour Party, but a German Communist is a brother, and his arrest and incarceration in a Concentration Camp a crime against civilisation! The Jews of Germany, no matter whether they be leaders of the German Communist Party or men engaged in "big business," must on no account be touched by the brutal Nazis!

6.

Before the revolution of March 1933, the Jews in the Reich overran many Government Departments, and enjoyed the highest privileges in every profession and calling. They were the principal organisers of the German Communist Party, and became identified with every one of the warring political sects in the country. In every way they proved themselves eminently capable business men and politicians. Many had grown very wealthy. Nearly every German war profiteer was a Jew; the native German seems to have regarded with feelings of shame and horror the idea of making money out of his country during times of great distress. It is not denied that the Jews are clever and amiable people, that they have contributed very materially to science, literature, art and music. That one per cent of the population of Germany should impose their rule and culture - however eminent that culture may be - on seventy million native-born Germans is un- [15] thinkable, to use no stronger word. Modern Germany will not have it. It is obviously inimicable to the best interests of the country, and if the reader objects, then he must ask himself whether a Government of Jews in the House of Commons would be tolerated in this country, and if so, for how long. So when the Nazi worm turned, and the services of many Jews were dispensed with, Jewry throughout the world rose in arms and through the medium of the Press and public meetings in London and the provinces, denounced the German Government in violent terms.

The Germans have assumed control of their country, and for weal or woe they mean to maintain their position. The German people are perfectly entitled to possess what form of government they please; it ill becomes us to dictate to them.

7.

The time is drawing nigh when the position of foreign correspondents should be dispassionately reviewed by the Foreign Offices of all countries. Some sort of understanding or convention is necessary. It is notorious that foreign correspondents are not above abusing their privileges. The temptation to exaggerate the truth; the restrictions put upon them by representatives of their own countries, the harm done by news-editors who insist upon [16] "frightfulness," and not faithfulness in telegraphic reports, are matters that need investigation. I would feel disposed to make it a legal offence for any foreign correspondent to send false or exaggerated accounts of happenings when his sole object is to do harm to that country because his own Government is pursuing a policy calculated to bring discredit upon it for political purposes.

The British Foreign Office is well aware that not a few men attached to newspapers in foreign countries are employed for purposes of espionage. In the course of my wanderings round the European capitals I have met newspaper men who openly boasted of having been employed in this and that country's secret service, who have accepted the hospitality of people whom they later on wantonly betrayed. That, you will argue, is all part of the business. But it seems to me a pity that foreign correspondents should not be above suspicion and devote themselves to their specific jobs and to their specific jobs alone.

8.

Recent happenings in Germany have not redounded to the prestige and interests of British foreign correspondents accredited to that country, and although Fleet Street has obscured the real issue, it is felt everywhere that irreparable damage has been done the call- [17] ing of a foreign correspondent by men whose sense of duty has been obscured by their insensate quest for sensation, wilful lying, and even espionage. If men want to pursue the role of a spy, it would be better and more honourable for them and their country if they carried on their work without camouflaging themselves as foreign correspondents. The British Government do not offer protection to the professional spy, although he is in the service of the State. He knows the conditions attached to his office and takes all risks. Columns of the most pathetic sob-stuff were recently printed and published in a well-known London morning daily when its Berlin correspondent was bundled out of Germany, lock, stock and barrel. Questions were asked in the House of Commons about the " indignity and outrage," and Sir John Simon was pretty hard put to it when called upon to reply. The Foreign Minister, of course, did his best for the deported man, but he also had Germany to consider - and satisfy.

9.

British foreign correspondents at present in Germany have been placed in an invidious position, and there are few among us to-day who envy them their job, or who would like to accept it, were it offered. Never was the status of a British foreign correspondent in Germany [18] lower than it is to-day, and it will be many years, I fear, before the stigma attached to the profession is removed. If the innocent suffer with the guilty the fault lies with the employers of men quite unsuited to their posts. It is of international importance that only the very best and most trustworthy men shall be employed as foreign correspondents of newspapers.

10.

International Jewry, at the moment, would seem to be destroying the best in British journalism, and that in a cause which is both worthless and futile. If British journalism is to sink to the level of the gutter, the fault will certainly be found at the door of the Jews.

11.

Convinced that the Press of this country was conducting a political campaign against Germany, I resolved to go to Berlin and make free and independent investigations on the spot. I was determined to do pretty much as I pleased when I got there, and no one interfered with my movements. I found Germany, comparatively speaking, a free country, much freer than some of its neighbours. My own views were not always acceptable to my friends, among whom I can count Jews and Gentiles, Nazis and Com- [19] munists, Democrats and Socialists. I discovered that being a Nazi does not preclude one holding views that few Labour men of my own country would express to their "comrades " of the National Labour Party! Young Germany is keenly interested in social and political questions; I wish to goodness the British working man showed the same interest and intelligence in matters that pertain to his welfare. My visits to the Concentration Camps were full of interest, and recalled the days of my own internment in the Dual Monarchy during the War. Consequently I felt I could regard myself as something of an authority on Concentration Camps in general. I was up to all the tricks of the Camp Commanders at Sonnenberg and Oranienburg, where I made free and personal contact with many of the prisoners, without any interference from the Camp Commanders or their assistants. Indeed, I let it be known to the responsible authorities that unless I was privileged to do as I liked within reason, I would not accept the invitation extended to me to visit the Camps. I was also much struck by the many Workers' Lagers I visited, and the splendid efforts now being made by the German Government towards ameliorating the lot of the unemployed. I saw no murders of Jews or assaults upon their persons. Order and cleanliness were everywhere. Courtesy and kindness from all and sundry favoured me wherever I went. My private [20] conversations with Jews were illuminating. They did not bear out what the British newspapers suggested. Mountains had been made out of molehills, melodrama out of comic opera. The majority of the "assaults" were committed by over-zealous youths, and in nearly every instance they consisted of "ratting" unfortunate men who were not particularly respectful towards the new regime. Physical harm very little, mental, perhaps much. The laws relating to the freedom of movement of Jews are substantially the same as those of other people. Much of the trouble that has arisen has nothing to do with the domiciled German Jew, many of whom are still employed by the Government in various spheres of usefulness. There are about 80,000 undesirable Jews that Germany wants to get rid of for all time, and willingly would she deport them all to Great Britain or the United States of America if the request were made. These are the Jews who since the Armistice have penetrated the country and created a situation that has wrought considerable social and political harm in Germany. Among these undesirables are murderers, ex-convicts, potential thieves, fraudulent bankrupts, white slave traffickers, beggars of every description that beggar description, and political refugees. Many have come from the Baltic States, others from Poland, and not an inconsiderable number from Russia.

[21] The Jewish question in Germany, as indeed elsewhere, will naturally be settled sooner or later. The best possible solution to the present impasse is to treat all Jews as aliens, as indeed they are in tradition, race and culture, and to extend to them the same privileges, courtesy and consideration as those granted to all foreigners.

12.

The Press of the world, speaking generally, has made no attempt to interpret the views of the German Government on the Jewish or any other question. The campaign of "assaults" had the effect of keeping thousands of tourists out of the country, and there was scarcely an hotel or pension in Berlin last summer that was not empty. The handful of British and American subjects who had been roughly treated by some Nazi youths in mistake for their own countrymen for not giving the Nazi salute was made the occasion for diplomatic protests, but not a word was printed here of the apologies offered by the German Foreign Office; one looked in vain for any such generous gesture from Fleet Street.

Things have cooled off a bit since I left Germany insofar as the Jewish question is concerned. The British public, ever slow to understand the truth, is now asking nasty questions. Was it all true? Who was behind the [22] "atrocity" stories? Is the British Press controlled by Jews? In whose hands lies the power of Fleet Street? Was the propaganda campaign a smoke screen to cover up the failures of the Disarmament Conference? Did the Jewish armament interests of Great Britain see an opportunity of scaring the public into believing that unarmed Germany was preparing for a war of revenge? Should the public be permitted to know that Germany is the only country that has honoured the Treaty of Versailles?

13.

Of Herr Hitler's peace policy I cull the following from an address given by the Reich Chancellor on October 14th, 1933, and which speaks for itself: -

      "I speak in the name of the entire German nation when I say that all of us most sincerely desire to root out an enmity whose sacrifices are out of all proportion to any possible gain.
      "The German people are convinced that their honour has remained pure and unstained upon a thousand battlefields, just as they see in the French soldier only their ancient but glorious opponent. We, and the whole German nation, should all be happy at the thought that we could spare our children and our children's children what we ourselves as honourable men have had to watch in the long and bitter years and have, [23] ourselves, had to suffer. The history of the last hundred and fifty years, with all its various changes and chances, should have taught both at least one lesson; that important and permanent changes can no longer be purchased by a sacrifice of blood. I, as a National-Socialist, and all my followers, absolutely refuse, however, by reason of our national principles, to acquire, at the cost of the life-blood of those who love and are dear to us, men and women of a foreign nation, who, in any case, will never love us. It would be a day of untold blessing for the whole of humanity if the two nations could once and for all banish the idea of force from their mutual relationships; the German nation is prepared to do this.
      "While boldly asserting the rights which the treaties themselves give us, I will, however, declare equally boldly that in future there will be for Germany no more territory conflicts between the two countries.
      "After the return of the Saar Basin to the Reich it would be insanity to think of a war between the two States. For such a war there could no longer be, from our point of view, any reasonable or moral excuse.
      "For nobody could demand that millions of young lives should be destroyed in order to correct the present frontiers. Such a correction would be of problematical extent and even more problematical worth."

Continuing his address, Herr Hitler said:
[24]

      "Earlier German Governments trustfully joined the League of Nations in the hope that it would prove to be a forum for a fair adjustment of national interests, but, above all, for honest reconciliation between former opponents. But the prerequisite for this was the recognition of the final restoration of the equality of rights of the German nation. The German nation took part in the Disarmament Conference on the same condition. To be disqualified to the rank of a member without equal rights of such an institution or conference is an unbearable humiliation for a nation of sixty-five millions with a sense of honour, and for a Government with an equally strong sense of honour.
      "The German nation has more than fulfilled its obligations with regard to disarmament. It is now the turn of the highly-armed States to fulfil similar obligations to no less extent. The German Government does not take part in this Conference in order to haggle for a few guns or machine guns for the German nation, but to co-operate as a factor with equal rights in the general appeasement of the world. Germany has no less right to security than other nations.
If the English Minister, Mr. Baldwin, represents it as obvious that, for England, disarmament can be understood only as the disarmament of the more highly-armed States simultaneously with an increase of England's armaments up to a common level, then it would be [25] unfair to overwhelm Germany with reproaches if, as a member of the Conference with equal rights, she maintains the same view in her own case. Germany's demand in this respect cannot constitute any menace to the other Powers. For the defensive works of other nations are constructed to withstand the most powerful offensive weapons, while Germany does not demand any offensive weapons but only those defensive weapons which are not forbidden even in future but sanctioned for all nations. And in this case, too, Germany is ready from the start to be satisfied quantitatively with a minimum which is out of all proportion to the gigantic stocks of offensive and defensive weapons of our former opponents. The intentional disqualification of our nation, however, contained in the fact that an obvious right is granted to every nation in the world and denied only to us, is felt by us to be the perpetuation of a discrimination that is intolerable for us. I already stated in my peace speech in May that under such conditions we should, to our regret, no longer be in a position to belong to the League of Nations or to take part in international conferences."

14.

If I were asked what is uppermost in the minds of the average man and woman in Germany to-day, I would unhesitatingly answer - [26] the fear of invasion. What have Germany's neighbours done to dispel this fear complex? An unarmed Germany is an anachronism and the greatest danger to the peace of Europe.

15.

There were some seven thousand political prisoners interned in the whole of Germany in August, 1933. Of this number, about seven hundred were Communists interned in Oranienburg. The site of this camp is that of a disused brewery; there is no question of the place being large enough for the men and their one hundred guards. Not more than one hundred of the seven hundred internees belonged to the intelligentsia class. The remainder were workers, not a few of whom were mentally deficient. Some had already served terms of imprisonment for offences other than political, among whom Jews predominated. The discipline in the camp was of the robust kind. Every man had some kind of work to do, but this was not always enforced. The camp rose at 6 a.m. and all lights were out at 9.30 p.m. The meals consisted of breakfast, dinner, supper with meat served daily except on Fridays. There was a dispensary attached to the camp and a German doctor was in charge. Severe cases of illness were sent to the local hospital. On an average, ten men reported themselves daily to the doctor, and it was generally found that of [27] this number only two or three needed treatment. Various trades were carried on within the camp, such as carpentry, tailoring and shoe-making. Part of the camp was set off for bathing. Shower baths and facilities for sun bathing were shown me. There was also a splendid sports ground. The sleeping apartments consisted of wooden beds and straw mattresses, with three blankets for each prisoner. The working hours were from 7 a.m. to 11.30 a.m., and from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. A library was in course of being introduced. Visitors were allowed once a week, and were received in the dining room which accommodated some three hundred people. There were apartments set apart for music and dramatic performances. In addition to receiving free board and lodging, each of the prisoners was drawing Rm.10 to Rm.12 per week, which represented his unemployment allowance pay. Instruction in ethics, religion, the new form of Government in Germany, history, languages were given daily to those who desired to attend. There was little or no crime among the men in the camp. Good order prevailed among all classes. The guards ate the same food as the prisoners, and were subject to the same discipline as the internees, although they were Government officials. One of the guards was a Prince of the House of Hesse! Letters and parcels were subject to censorship. In not one case out of many thousands received had it been found necessary to [28] destroy any parcel or letter forwarded. Newspapers were permitted and smoking allowed. When a prisoner desired to light his pipe or cigarette, he had to go to a guard detailed off to supply lights for the prisoners, as no matches were permitted prisoners. Services were held every Sunday, and the majority of the prisoners availed themselves of the opportunity. No objection was raised by the authorities to me taking photographs of both camp and internees. The men looked in splendid physical condition. Having heard so many dreadful stories of brutal treatment being meted out to the Communists in this particular camp, I asked some of the men to confide in me and tell me the truth of these allegations. Not a few laughed "at the bloody capitalist liars of your country!" I took fifteen men at random and asked them to strip in my presence. I wanted to see if they bore any marks of violence about their persons. I saw nothing indicative of bad treatment. When I asked if I could help any of the prisoners in any possible way, a young Communist stepped forward and in pathetic tones enquired if England could now send raw materials to Germany to get work started once again in the Fatherland!

16.

It is not necessary for me to give any details of my visit to the Concentration Camp at Son- [29] nenberg, for exactly the same conditions prevailed there as at Oranienburg.

17.

Stories of starvation of prisoners in German Concentration Camps having been circulated throughout the world, I append herewith the diet of prisoners since the date of their internment. Both at Oranienburg and Sonnenberg I took occasion to make enquiries into the starvation reports, and found them lacking in truth. Save for the loss of personal liberty, no complaints were forthcoming, in spite of the fact that every opportunity was given the men to speak to me privately and without fear of being overheard by officials. Here is the daily prison menage: 1,000 grammes of bread, 500 grammes of potatoes, meat, except on Fridays, soup (Sauerkraut), tea or coffee, vegetables (cabbage or potatoes), fish (Fridays). Those on the sick list are dieted in accordance with the orders of the resident doctor. [For our readers not familiar with the metric system, Scriptorium notes: 1,000 grammes = 1 kilogram = 2.2 pounds, 500 grammes = just over 1 pound.]

18.

The Workers' Lagers are wonderful examples of what a Government can do for the unemployed. These are voluntary institutions run solely by the German Government, and the camps are scattered all over the country, about 5,000 all told. At the time I left Germany, [30] (August, 1933) there were more than 300,000 men and women working in various spheres of usefulness. At Bernau I was shown over a Lager that contained 276 men, all of whom were engaged in agricultural work. They had converted an old mill into a barracks which were to form the future headquarters of the workers. In addition to free board and lodging, each of the workers received 30 Pfennigs per day. All the men I saw were enjoying excellent health. The discipline, while strict, was not of a military character.

The object of these Workers' Lagers is to raise the morale of the men who have known years of unemployment. In each camp the worker stays for 40 weeks, and the period will be renewed on application of the worker and with the permission of the Government. Preference is always given to those young men who are really likely to pursue the life of a farmer. What I saw of the Workers' Lagers in various parts of Germany convinced me that the Government is doing an excellent work and one which the British Government could emulate with advantage to the community.

19.

Everywhere one goes on the Continent one finds mistrust and disillusionment. The fear of invasion is rampant in France. It is common to Germany, Belgium, Poland, Russia; [31] it permeates the Balkan States, it is to be found as far afield as the Americas. No nation seems capable of ridding itself of this fear. It is not a product of Fascism, it is not peculiar to Democracy. It may be a symptom of our mechanical age, the fear of a rival inventing some easy and damnable lethal weapon that will destroy whole populations without reply. The malaise is briefly referred to by newspapers, who, in their turn, fear to let the public know the truth of things political and the possibility of a new war. It is everywhere taken for granted that our pro-French policy is the correct one, that the isolation and encirclement of Germany must be pursued at all costs. We seem to have learned nothing from past experience. France, the hysterical young lady of Europe, wants "security." So does Germany and England, and Belgium, and Russia, and every nation in the world. Why French "security"? What about British security? Who is going to guarantee the security of Russia, Poland, Czecho-Slovakia, Tibet, etc.?

20.

It has become patent to the meanest intelligence that if the whole world were to support France and grant her all she demands in the way of security, that country would still insist on arms and ammunition in the last resort. France is well aware that she cannot now rely [32] upon the promises of nations to support her in her eagerness to keep intact the Treaty of Versailles. The security cry does not deceive the meanest intelligence. It is French armament interests that France demands Britain to guarantee. It needs little emphasis to say that France is the most powerful nation in the world just now, and she alone, if she felt so persuaded, could march into Germany at any moment and invoke the Treaty of Versailles for taking possession of every vantage point in the Reich, and England could not plead the Locarno Pact in reply to her action. To-day French 'planes could lay waste Berlin, Munich, Hamburg, the Ruhr, Hanover and every city in the Reich with scarce a response from the German people. She could dictate her own terms; in a few words, France is so strong militarily that unaided she could crush Germany within twenty-four hours and emerge from her triumphs with no apparent loss to her power as the greatest military force in Europe.

21.

When one begins to realise the manifold forces at work against Germany to-day, with that country insisting upon re-armament if others fail to disarm, one is appalled at the impudence of the claim that Germany will be responsible for a disturbance of the peace. Ever since the Peace treaties, France has pursued a [33] policy which in every respect is identical to that she followed before 1914 - a combination of formidable groups to support her own political ends. Pro-Jewish France has used all her influence to destroy the political and economic aspirations of anti-Jewish Germany. Germany left the League of Nations because that organisation can no longer be regarded as providing machinery for the preservation of peace. Its whole procedure, as events have proved, is too cumbrous and dilatory, it possesses no effective means of exercising its authority.

22.

First and foremost, Germany wants peace and friendship with France in particular and the world in general. The concord she demands of France must be based on goodwill and understanding, there must be a sincere regard for each other's interests, and an end put to the ancient feuds that have wrought such incalculable mischief in Europe. It was a thousand pities that France rejected the offer of a peace pact made by Germany. The accord with Poland may be the cause of the contemptuous tone of the French reply.

Germany has no need for the League of Nations at the present time, and in no circumstances will she rejoin that organisation until her demands are satisfied. Her abandonment of the League is the consequence of the refusal of equality implied in the attitude of the highly [34] armed powers in the Disarmament question. Germany's demand for practical equality does not mean that Germany wants heavy tanks, heavy mobile guns, or bombers, or other arms which, according to the stipulations of the proposed Convention, will be abolished in the future. But it does mean that Germany wants at once those arms which, being of a defensive character, will be definitely retained under the Convention, and that she wants these arms from the beginning in quantities sufficient for her security.

It is quite clear that as long as this equality is not granted, international control of arms would be a one-sided affair, directed against Germany alone.

23.

The question is being asked - Why was unarmed Germany invited to sit in consultation with the heavily armed powers? That she consented to do so must prove goodwill and a desire for a common understanding. Germany accepted because she thought she would be able to make her whole weight felt on the side of the Disarmament cause. It will be seen that Germany's participation made it very difficult for the highly armed powers to get away without some appearance of disarmament. Germany's reason for refusing to participate further in the deliberations was quite simple - [35] there had been a crisis in the Disarmament Conference in May, 1933. This crisis had been overcome by Germany granting a concession in regard to the reorganisation of the Reichwehr. After that, the Conference unanimously adopted the MacDonald plan as "a basis for the future Disarmament Convention" (June 8th, 1933). This resolution went much farther than the previous resolution, which was adopted soon after the MacDonald plan. During the recess of the Disarmament Conference, secret negotiations took place between the Governments of the highly armed powers in which Germany was not invited to take part. The results of these negotiations were the proposals made by Sir John Simon in his celebrated speech on October 14th, 1933. As is well known, these proposals introduced an entirely new element into the whole of the Disarmament question in the form of a trial period for Germany, and thereby constituted a vital modification of the MacDonald plan which only four months previously had been unanimously adopted by the Conference in all its main features. Faced by these questionable tactics, there was no option for Germany but either to capitulate and re-open negotiations on questions which had already been settled or to leave the Conference altogether in the conviction that such methods of negotiation would never lead to real Disarmament.

Germany left the Disarmament Conference.

[36]
24.

Since all the above was written, events in Germany have greatly increased the political and economic uncertainties of Europe. The encirclement of Germany is almost a fait accompli. The country is now politically, economically, and culturally shut off from the rest of the world. Every conceivable issue has been confused and discussion now rages round not how to prevent Germany re-arming, for rearmament by the Reich is a foregone conclusion and the exercise of a legitimate right, but how more and more to spread the gospel of hate and restore pre-war anti-German alliances. We are back to the bad old days. Since the War, Germany has not been given even a dog's chance to set her house in order. The gentlemen who made the Treaty of Versailles must now be thinking hard and furiously how best to get Germany out of the mess they themselves have created for that country. It requires little vision to see that nearly all of Germany's present day troubles arise from the most objectionable clauses of the Treaty, and as a pro-German, I shall never cease shouting this from the house-tops until justice is done the German people. As I understand things at the moment, Germany is faced by the alternatives of standing aloof from the rest of the world if she can, and working out her own destiny by the strength of her own political and [37] economic systems - an Ishmaelite among the nations of Europe - or taking part in the future of the world and helping to bring order and peace into it. I doubt she can stand alone for long. I doubt any nation can hope to achieve anything worth while single handed. I am confident that Herr Hitler is aware that an insane nationalism leads the world nowhere. To my mind there is no greater crime than to fire a people with ideas of their own super-eminent superiority. Incalculable harm has been done the world in the promotion of the idea among the peoples. A magnified sentiment of national pride always despises humanity at large. We saw it in the last War, the doctrine involved every nation in the direst peril. No country to-day is free of the scourge. It is useless blaming Germany for this complex as some of her foes are too prone to do. Nationalities-by-mutual-rights obtain the world over, and while they dominate every issue, I can see little hope for the realisation of humanity's emancipation. They forced themselves on the World Economic Conference, they smashed the Disarmament Conference. And they will smash every well-meant political and economic issue and lead to further bloodshed unless they are scotched in time.

Herr Hess, in a speech to a congress of East Prussian Nazis on July 8th, 1934, made an appeal for frankness. Inter alia, he said:

      "I appeal to the front line comrades of the [38] war, on both sides. Be frank. We felt then we were real men; we sometimes had pleasure in a life which was in direct contrast to the effeminacy which civilisation and over-civilisation bring; we felt ourselves better men than those far behind the front; we felt ourselves the defenders of the nation, the guardians of its future. We sometimes had happy hours, and tried to live every minute of them double. But be frank. We felt the fear of death. We saw it probably in more powerful form than any men before us. We crouched in dug-outs, waiting for the disintegrating impact. We held our breath when our trained ears heard the grenades whistling, the trench-mortars rumbling through the air towards us. Our hearts beat fit to burst as we vainly sought cover against machine-gun fire. We thought to suffocate beneath our gas-masks. We struggled through sodden trenches, froze in shell holes. We were then nearly desperate. We heard the shrieks of the wounded, saw the gassed men writhing, met blinded men staggering along, heard the last rattle of the dying. Among the piled corpses of our comrades we lost our last hope of life. We saw the widows and orphans, the cripples, the sickly children, the starving women. Be frank. Did we not all ask ourselves: What is the use of it all? Must it be so? Cannot mankind be spared this in future? But we held out - on both sides.
      "Now I take up this question, and call it [39] accusingly to the world - as front-line soldiers to front-line soldiers, as the leaders of a nation to the leaders of other nations. Must it be so? Can we not with good will spare mankind all this?"

How shall we answer Herr Hess? With the usual lies of Germany's bad faith? I hope not.