Permanent link to this item
The Evening Star SATURDAY, OCTOBER 31, 1914., Issue 15638, 31 October 1914
The Evening Star SATURDAY, OCTOBER 31, 1914.
ir i., su.ii.ira.’ tory t<> find tiiat fhe Prime .Minister has a. coptrd
The War and tho press.
the a<lvj--e that wc teiio.'i'cd to bim in oar issue
of the lOtli inst. The _-fiun ;h the High Ciiiimiis.'ir.ni-r iM'ltiru-il to (iniiemv the New Zealand Kxpeditimuivy For' c when it takes the field o> Europe wjo ri..w represent tin 1 •rhoh' t’r<‘f,- of this i 'on:ininii. amt not a section (however influential), as was at first pioiiosivi, So far mi good; hut the difficult ies of the- Prime Minister do not end with phuidu; Mr ScholcfieldV vi-'fcs at tin d isrosa! of (lie Press of the [)•_.!, limon. What will he the nature (if his instni: (tons ? Who will be entrusted with the distribution of his “ copy ’’ And iiow v.-iil the cost of This scrvt e i n apportioned ? it would n,,.. i o fair to ask 1 he State In bear the whole burden ; therefore Mr .Massey should put himself in ronimuni'-afciou with the Newspaper Proprietors’ Association and ascertain what proposals they art! prepared to make on the basis of a- joint contribution .front ! tho newspapers that tiro willing to avail themselves of the amended proposal. The preparation and distribution of a fortnightly letter, as has been suggested, are open to many objections. Firstly, there is the risk of delay in transit; next, no dependence cun he placed just now on the arrival of mailed matter at .scheduled times; and over and above ail there is no practicable way. it seems to us. of 1 adjusting the claims of the evening and morning papers to equitable treatment. Under all the- eixe-umstances, a- week-end cable-lotter, epitomising the movements of the Now Zealanders, whenever these are deemed worthy of special consideration, appears to be the most utilitarian way of dealing with the matter ; and here, again, the questions of cost and equitable treatment will require to be carefully handled.
Is the course of one of his speeches L> his fellow - countrymen Germany aruJ the Prime Minister (Mr Civilisation. Asquith) said: “ Fdr all “the illimitable suffer-
ings which now confront the world,
“one Power, and one Power alone, is “ responsible- and that Power is Ger- “ many.” 'J’lio signs of assent which greeted these words had scarcely subsided before they were again aroused by tin' Leader of the Opposition (Mr llonar Law), who said: “The head oi “the German Government had but to “whisper the word ‘Peace’ and then' “would have been no war. Ho did
“not speak that word. - ’ These two sentences sum up the most that lias been said in many speeches. We commend them to those whoso ideas on the origin of the war, its objects, and its progress are still unsettled. The man who at this late hour <>f the day questions the wisdom of resisting to the last man and the last ''hilling, whose conscience! will not permit him to sited blood in a righteous cause, who prates of Ins “spiritual security." and who fatuously remarks that- “if the King of Freedom were in “ any real danger, of course everyone' “would readily spring to arms” must be placed in that: category of burdens on the Empire to which we have previously made reference. It is not the least of tli" troubles to which the Empire is now subjected that the cnniinallv carclcs.' - , doctrines oi " .lake i( easy" and “There is no need to prepare ” secured such n hold of a majority <>r the people that the Empire barely escaped from plunging into the precipice upon whoso brink if had so long stood. Thanks id .British obstinacy and apathy, the nation was called upon to make ati army amid the burry and turmoil of conflict, and when the enemy were already rlnirid, ring at its gates. How many thousands ot bees the failure ot the ISritisli to recognise their obligations in tins ie!:Uion may have cost the nice ur do not know, but it is permissible io believe that the prolonged sanguinary and heart-sickening battles with which each morn begins and cadi evening ends might conceivably bave reached a crisis many (lays since had Lord Kitchener a month ago been able to land a million men in France rather than be compelled to wait to the. spring.
I hero are two phases "1 the eontlict on which the leader-- of public opinion have idem the out-ei placed special emphasis. Om is their insistence that it is riie moral ami spiritual factors involved that const!tide the vital and supremo element'd the eon test-; and the nilmr. ilint- Iho late and quality of the future civilisation are at stake. lids being so. Ihe tremendous nature ol the problem and its ultimate cheer upon men of every creed and race' and (lime are apparent. Germany lues nor, alone, nor oven primarily, challenged Franco. Hn«da, Belgium, and the llmisli Empire to a trial of military
ami naval strength, the outcome of which will be tiotliing morn sorions than a reu rra ngemoni of boundaries ami torritoriui iH’.-isossions, but she Ims challenged the continued existenci: of v.ho.t men iio.vo united to regard as ('itristiiin civilisation. Ad that, the Imperial Gorman Ciuvncellor (Herr Von IVtlimaiin. 1 follwog) bad lo say in ro-
'-potise -.> Mr Asquith's burning imlieti>-.<■ 11 r oi Gcinntn policy and mothods «n-• tFnt the Briti'-b I’nmo Minister’s sp.-ocli “ was a ntiHinidcrstamling of “civilisation wbi'li was indquo in tcc ■■ history of the world, and had trans- -■ jo ;■ res I the < nsi nd-,- td' tit" cause ot " lilx-riy to the German sword." AA t* commend this commoni ot tim iir.st a moii;; Genian statesmen to the t ii'.mgbtfn! eoiisidoration of our readers. !t explains much that hitherto may haro npnoarod ob-onro. It. succinctly. and with simple directum-:y, sfuios the stand:Knnt ot inod.'v;: (h'tnwiiy in relation to modern ( ivdisation. Cunt hero bo oven .* >ha<'m\ of hesitation as to the answer I hat Hoist: bo given 2 Th° German evangel is the evangel rlio sword, of naked ioree, of Mohammed i ranslerrod 1,0, h1v- - ior is not tlio sword of e.llaii to (hewi! on liolmir ol German f ‘ii’sarism r~-from iho .seventh to the i, lent loth ociitiiry. I'onco the conflict -ibis siuptyndoti- i octliet »f which, wo a.re afraid, many us have not yetgrasped tlv lull signilicanee --inrolve.s
;> M niggle spiritual and moral loirt's well as ilio.M- rha t ;; 10 ptreiy i.,;i fi.-rin I . Tils' Hint"i'ih! , in Inc t arc Km til" lII r iniii'ta lint the prize of conquest. Tin' Poei-lnnretiic (.Mr (tc.bcrt tiridgcsl inis expressed this portentous fad m flu- uords that the uar is " manifestly a var declared between Gbri-t ain I the devil.” The winds nil- simply ihe I’Jnglish c.quivalent lor those of tlm Imperial German I 'lie ncellor, who in turn lias only expressed in, startling brevity the soul oi that linv doen ins l which Ims been proclaimed by the Kaiser and bis advisers for a generation. Germans and Germany know veil that their evauyel is not that of Christianity, of tn*:' ov Miaukfitd, m>v ot any save themselves. U is sev. forth iu their teaching, it has been exposed by .British journalists and publicists, and d has shared the fate of all evangels, good and bad, .'into evangels were best proclaimed. ••Providence,” says IJernhordi, ‘'has set great tasks ■’before Ibe German people as tho '■greatest civilised people known to history.” Put he agrees that, it is neither a (hristhin Providence nor a C'lnistlan morality based on the law of love; " Love God above all things, and thy neighbor as thyself.” .Hut this law ” can claim no .significance for '•the relations of one country to
another. . . . Christian morality "is personal and .social, ami in its ’’nature cannot be political.” With the fruits of this doctrine fho world by now is shamefully familiar, 'they have been carried, into the uttermost parts of I lie earth, " Where there is no vi.-ion tho people east off restraint.’’ The decencies and amenities that differentiate the white from the black, and the civilised from the savage, have been cast to the winds. The natives of tho Congo and Nigeria are being taught io ravage and burn and kill; tlie unspeakable Turk is welcomed as an ally ; the blast of death and of horrors worse than death are sot free to desolate Northern Europe. This, then, is tho civilisation of tho sword. Vet I doubt not thro’ the ages one nu-roasing purpose rims, And the thoughts of men are widened with the process of tho suns. What Germany calls civilisation tho British Empire and the world generally call barbarism. And barbarism as a permanent state of being is an impossibility. Alan must bo under the reign of reason or ceaso to exist. His soul revolts in indignant rebellion against force as the arbiter of his destiny, and no'world dominion can'at this stage in human evolution establish
itself by the sword on iho ruins of Christian civilisation, not oven when helped by traitors in South Africa and Turks in Europe.
The Evening Star SATURDAY, OCTOBER 31, 1914., Issue 15638, 31 October 1914
Use these buttons to limit your searches to particular dates, titles, and more.
Print, save, zoom in and more.