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ROUND THE CAULDRON, Issue 15642, 5 November 1914
ROUND THE CAULDRON
No Y. (For the ' Evening Star '—Copyright.) [By E. S. Hole.] ITALY'S NEUTRALITY. There is a growing sense of doubt throughout Italy as to the wisdom of her present policy of inactivity, and influential voices aro beinu raised lor a closer confidence between tho Government and the people in regard to tho line of policy which is being and may be pursued later. Tho German interest" in the. same question manifests an uneasiness which is justified, and which might almost be calka a con-science-stricken fear of Norm-sis. The 'Taegliche Rundschan' fears that the influence of England, w'hich lias hitherto met with small siicees*. will now iiKvt with loss resistance. That journal detlares that | should Italy take any action against Gc-r- ---| many she would lose her position as a j,Grcu.t Power, and lux capacity to conclude I any future alliance. It attempts to justify | this extraordinary statement by saying: " A great Power which, by the order of i another Power, breaks its own treaties ceases to bo an independent Power even by increasing its own territory. Italy would mako a false step if, basing the netion either on French sympathy or English naval power, i'he were to act without consideiing that infidelity produaw _ bad fruits even in polities Italy will wait to make- her decision after the first decisive battle with France, if she has not already resolved upon it." The writer of tho foregoing, which indicates a state of panic fear, half-cajoling, half-threatening, accuses Italy in the first- portion of " bad faith" if "she does not adhere to a treaty which Germany itself dissolved, and in the last sentence implies an accusation of calculating cowardice to Italy, which is at least as noble a nation as Germany.' The ' Comievodella Sera,' of Milan, reviews tho situation generally, and accuses the Italian Foreign Minister" of being completely out of touch with Italian popular aspirations and ambitions. It concludes by saying:
" It, is a Foreign Minister who, with much sceptism, but with much ostentation, has worked to create the present position of Italv. He has methodically broken the thre'ad of the wise precautions which wtro ordered for our greater security in Emopo, and has finally led us to the brink of tho abyss without letting hits ambassadors or his secretaries know or see anything. It is not to his credit that we saved ourselves. It is therefore evident that ho will not bo tho best instrument to inaugurate a new history of our international policy." The ' Comiere delln. Sera ' recently printed that tho Minister had been obliged to seek -epose on account of his health. But this was a pitiful euphemism. The man who Font intimidations to Servia and to Greece, who made tho fantastic Allw-nian improvisato, who sought tho precipitate renewal of the Triplo Alliance, who raised enmity and diffidence in place of alliance and sympathy, '"cannot retain the faith of the nation in the hour of peril ; ho must either retiro voluntarily or be invited to resign." " *•
A further indication of the trend of thought here is the fact that even the extreme pacific Socialists are not demanding neutrality, but rather the convocation of Parliament to confirm the action of the country—be it wnat it may—although, of course, neutrality is. the desire of this particular section. Further, the deputies Bugenio Chieso, Colajanni, Siglueri, Pansim, Caraccni, FiroHni, Auteri-Bodetta, and Mazzolani, ail belonging to the Republican Group in the "Italian Chamber of Deputies, together with the two Socialists Area and De Felice GiufTrida, have sent to the President of the Council a lotter asking him "if he decs not believe the moment lias coma to convoke the Italian Parliament, in order' that it may give the Government instructions in regard to the crave effect* oi the- international conflict." To this request the eleven this comment: "The Chamber contends that the national representatives, in the historical hours in which the supremo rights ct" nations, the liberties of people, ami justice are contested, have iho right to assume the full responsibilities . determining the direction of the- country and of interpreting its conscience. It therefore pronounces, in the name of the Italian people and oi tho civil power, a most solemn protest against the brutal violence of the Austrian and German Empires, which have unchained ilio horrors of war and of general economic ruin, and so dishonoring Europe. The Chamber (through theso <lt s.itia>) affirms that the neutrality oi Italy cannot be a felony against the 'reactionary coalition which has risen to .attack the principles of national aspirations and tendencies of the peaceful industrial life of t.hc Italian democracy, and the rights of independence. which have been violated in Scrvia, France, and Belgium, and the righteousness of which until now England and Russia are upholding before the world. We record our opinion that Italy has been violated in her national rights by Austria in tho Alps, on the eeas, in the Tr?ntiuo. and threatens our future by the sam > course of aggression which to-day covens Europe with blood. Wc invito the Government to act according to the principles, rights, dignity, and intcjests of our country, of civilisation, 'and of hi! inanity.''
During rr.j short stay in this country I have observed many indications that the lovo of right in Italy is much more- than n more phrase, and ner affection for ring la:.'d is an real as her recognition that \\v are engaged in a righteous war. Koine, September 20.
ROUND THE CAULDRON, Issue 15642, 5 November 1914
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