MY MESSAGE TO THE KAISER.
The following powerful article written by Horatio Bottomly, (Editor of "John Bull") appeared in the. London "Sunday Pictorial" in December.
As this is the Christmas number of the people's Sunday paper —long waited for and now appreciated by the whole country—l do not think I can do better than send a message to the Kaiser. It may be a little early in point of (late, but nowadays, in order to adapt itself to the exigencies of modern conditions and to be in time to penetrate the utmost recesses of the world, every leading journal must be, literally, in •advance of the times. And so I will imagine that we are at Christmas — .Christ Mass — the period of Peace on earth and goodwill towards men. And I am impelled to address a Christmas message to the Kaiser. I wish the' Government would relieve me of this task. And, ere it be too late, I suggest that a fleet of 1,000 aeroplanes should be commissioned to fly over Germany on Christmas Day—over trenches and the tents, over the villages and the towns—distributing a phamplet explaining the power and might and inexhaustible resources of the British Empire ; explaining that we have scarcely yet begun .; that we have four hundresd millions of population, unlimited wealth and the control of the seas to draw upon ; and that, even without the aid of our splendid Allies, we can view with indifference and disdain the impudent challenge, by a depraved and brutal people, of the claim of the Anglo-Saxon race to lead in the van of human progress. Such a message, dropped literally, from the skies, would do more to counteract the campaign of lies with which the Germans have been fed for the past year than all the diplomatic circumlocution of the Foreign Office and the Press Bureau. But if the Government will not adopt the suggestion, then perchance—and more than probably —this message may reach the German people. Christmas ! Christmas and the Kaiser —how weird it sounds, as, in all truth, it is. And yet I remember last Christmas—God ! can it be that Thou has permitt-
Ed another twelve months of the tragedy-?—when, without formal truce, the voice of the angels called for the Allies, and the men ceased to kill; the thunder of the guns was silenced, the sword was returned to its scabbard; the "enemy"—forgetting for the "enemy"—rorgetting for the while, their arms, as children forgot their toys—and joining in a ballad which British and French
and Germans could all undeiv
stand, and sing together. It was a strange truee —but it was very human. And if only it had lasted for a week ! Then, indeed, might all'have heard the call ol' Bethlehem to amity and peace. But it was not to be ! And so, to-day, I desire to talk with the Kaiser, And. in doing so, I must remember that I am talking to a German, and to a Hohenzollern —which is the worst kind of Prussian. And I want, if I can, to speak the mind of the British people. I desire in all reverence, to proclaim the Peace of God—there can be no truce with Satan. Ho now, Kaiser Wilhelm, your attention, please-! Sixteen months have passed since by your insensate act the world was plunged into the agony of war. In this period you have witnessed the complete failure of your scheme.' At this moment there is not a
military expert in the world who believes that victory can ultimately fall to your army. This is the central fact of-the situation. In more than a year of desperate fighting, the physical bravery of your troops—which more than once has won the generous admiration of their foes —has failed to achieve a single item of your programme. On the East, the* armies of Russia are unbeaten. In the West your foes are held in check behind an invincible line of triple steel. Paris is safe.- Calais is beyond your grasp. Dover smiles at your failure. The coasts .of Britain defy you. Successive orgies of Teutonic "frightfulness" leave us unmoved, save to righteous anger and sterner determination. Meanwhile, your fleet, the. pet child of your ambition, skulks in hiding, cowed without a contest, beaten with scarce a skirmish. Our seamen rove the ocean at their pleasure, vainly scanning the horizon for a glimpse of your flag. Your submarines have failed to retrieve your naval fortunes, while the industrial and economic life of your people gasps in the grip of a maritime blockade. Abroad your proud dream of a Colonial Empire is a thing of dust and ashes. Only in the field of diplomacy can you point to any tangible success, and "diplomacy"' and duplicity are one. Bulgaria has turned traitor at your bidding. Greece cringes before your frown. In the Balkans, as in Belgium and in Asia Minor, you have sucteeded in establishing a reign of terror. But the end is not yet—or there. Accept this axiom. The resources of the British Empire—in men, money, and material—are inexhaustible. This is not hyperbole. It is economic fact. Your professors can confirm it. Yom> meri of commerce know it. Your statesmen suspect it. 'No enlightened Neutral doubts it. It is a demonstratable truth, and I make you a present of it—by way of Christmas greeting. Ah, yes, Christmas—you had i forgotten that, hadn't you ? [Since August of last year, and in [fact for much longer than that, you have been celebrating not Christ's Mass, but a hideous Devil's Mass, a veritable sacrifice of Satan. You have chosen the iPrince of Darkness for your capjtain.' Obviously, you know nothing of the Lord of Hosts —the God of Pity and of Power. His mandates you have set at defiance, His altars you have ravished ; His temples you have burned And he is the God of Battles. Not even the strident cacophony of war oan murder the melody of the Christmas chimes.
Just reflect for a moment. Who was it that brought to our land the legend of Santa Claus and the 'symbol of the Christmas tree? Sounds strange to-day, doesn't it? And it is all t he doing of this one man—-the Kaiser. He has perverted Santa Claus into aj messenger of Death and the Christmas tree into the gallows. Instead of presents for the children, the one brings bayonet amis
sword—and the other, crucinxioi
and torture. The Kaiser has killed Christmas. That is his eternal sin—and one for which there is no forgiveness. It is vain lor \\m to day to recall the Christinas tree to which, years ago he stretched out the hands of a happy child; or to which in later div«" lie led the CrownPnnce ol his body. All that is too late. Even if to-day, in the solitude of his closet, he repents of his infamies, it is still too late. His cry to' the throne of God for mercy will not be heeded. "A God all mercy is a God unjust." So come, Kaiser, to your Christmas feast. Sit down in that chair and let me introduce you to your nu<\sts. You do not see them ? \y a it—what is this venerable figure that approaches—with silent step —and sits beside you? Look-! It is a Belgian priest. Do you recognise him? Yes, you do. That gash in his side was the
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MY MESSAGE TO THE KAISER., Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXV, Issue 3528, 7 March 1916
MY MESSAGE TO THE KAISER. Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXV, Issue 3528, 7 March 1916
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