ARE THEY OUT?
MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING. DASH AT ENGLAND, AND WHAT THEY HOPED TO DO. THE STORY SIFTED. CHEAPEST SCARE TO DATE. [By A. Spekct.] The shellintr of Scarborough and Hartlepool (by wiiall German jftiips—no doubt destroyers or li>;ht cruisers) is not -worth a second thought, though some citizens were grave about it this morning. It is, by the way, the second time that the, Entrli&h coast ha« been approached and shelled. The first shelling was suppressed altogether by the Censor. News of the present bombardment only reaches us through the Prime Minister's own sources of information. Now, what docs it amount to? Precious little ! It is true that some. German ve*s?ls must have emerged from Wilhelmshaveu or the Kiel Canal, crossed the North &ea undetected, and did what has been dene. If we consider what a long-rango blockade is—and this is a point on which the public mind is always hazy—we will find FomethinK to be thankful for. It is n clear indication that the Grand Fleot of Britain is drawn far back to its bases at Rosyth, Cromarty, and further north. No popular clamor about the "sacred soil" of Britain will move the adamantiiKi Churchill, or his equally adamantine Admiral, sir John Jelliooe, or the longheaded Chief of Staff, Sir C. E. Madden, to expoeo those priceless Dreadnoughts to (he fatuons risk of a continued cruiso at sea. So in this case the Grand Fk-et was not, on the scene, which is splendid reading. That appearance is what the. Germans would have liked. It probably was not a job for big ships at all. even if they could have come touth from tho Firth of Forth in time.
When Von Tirpitz planned ih<» dash to the English coast he could noly havvj had one idea, and that idea was* subtle enough. After th« first- shilling of tho English coast about two months ago the fast German ships retired before the English flotilla.* in the dark, throwing: out hundreds of mines. An English submarine came to grief on one of those. Holding-, as Von Tirpitz does (and not without soma reason), the fixed idea that a considerable section of the British public is panicky, he planned a .second naval a.ffront. hoping to get the " man in tho street" sufficiently excited to demand the of Mr Winston Churchill from office, just as German agencies secured the removal of Prince Louis of Battenher;r. Th« insido fitory what happened to Princo Louis is given in a note which appears below. Von Tirpitz probably hoped for more than a moral affront. The news of the first bombardment haviner been hushed up by tho Onpor. he sat down to his Enzlish newspapers (doubtless passed on to him daily by th" Nachrichtrn Bureau), and drew the deduction: "Ha. tho*o Enirlish! Afraid of publicity of my first tiny enterprise .' Very well," T will rive them another. T will fool them just, as they fooled m-? on August 27 when they .snared the Mainz " n d Koln out into tho Heligoland Bisht and F.ink thorn. This time I will briny: some of their Drendnotifrhts out, and—H'n. ha !—I will drop something in front of them which will do them no good !" Tho execution of th" plan—l am tolerably Mire that that was the. plan—would he easy. The fogs and storms of the North f-'ea would bo called in as allies. Under this pall something fast, if slender, would proceed rapidly across the water which some call the North S'ea. and some the German Ocean, but which is really a No Man's Pea. at present. Detection" of theso flyers in the log would not be easy, and. as was calculated, the enterprise got to the shores of Britain and fired on Scarborough, Hartlepool, and Whitley. Till that point success was with iheOerman. bnt, ns far as we can i«ee, helmed no Dreadnoughts on to fields of the German explosive which they term " T.N.T."— tri-iiitro-toleiimc. The High Commissioner states that only British '-flotillas" are en.inged, moaning destroyers or Hsht cruisers. Moreover, the situation is "developing.'' That means that, the Germans have not, yet got away scot free.
HAVE THEY COME OUT? j A rumor was flying round to-day that j the German fleet had come out in earnest. \ If the prevaricating Press Bureau and the ' Censor can bo trusted to speak one word ; of truth, 1 am fully prepared to say that, they have not come out. There "are a ; number of messages. Two cruisers bom- I horded Whitby, Germane, engaged We-t Hartlepool, Scarborough residents nV>, four German cruisers participated, and then the Press Bureau adds: "Important German movements are taking place in the j North Sea." ] Does this mean the. appearance of the i German High Seas Fleet? I think not. If j that were so, detachments wculd not have been made to bombard towns. Thero ie. only one reason why Von Ingrno!:l would pursne such n. course. Bv se->dine in his cruisers on Whitbv and Hartlepool he might, draw the British Fleet post haste, and then fall on them in some convenient way while they were rushing south. But, for reasons which aro cogent but too long to state now, I do not believe that this was the position at all. | THE TOWNS SHELLED. ! Of tho two towns shelled Hartlepool (perhaps West Hartlepool is meant) is ; the, more important. It is rituated en the south side of an almost insulated , promontory on the coast of Durham, and < it, has some Vry largo docks, which aro , defended by strong batteries. Pcir'nor- ■ ough, on tho coa.st of the West Riding of i'ork, is primarily a holiday resort, and clusters on and below a headland butting out into the North 'Sea. Its streets rise in tiers frcin th« shore in the form of an •'uinhitheatre. The. bay is used as a j shelter in easterly gales, and it is possible ! mat soiiw part of our flotillas was lying : there when the Germans arrived. THE OTHER EXTREME.
As tho falsehood which catches the democracy all tho timo and shapes the attitude of nations towards this war cr that, is so prevalent, one wakes up cheerfully in the morning to find one extreme or the other, and, with his tongue stuck in his cheek, explodes in laughter as he peruses tho following : Washington, December 7.—The New York 'Times' has a scathing article declaring that Germany is doomed to defeat, is bankrupt in statesmanship, and is under the moral condemnation of the civilised world. The articles urges the German people to recognise the incompetence of tho Kaiser's advisers, and overthrow him and them. The scathing article is only scathing bo far as knowledge or reason or a sense of humor can follow it. If the New York ' Times' had entered a littlo further into the bankruptcy of statesmanship, the moral condemnation of the world (meaning the " atrocitiei" and breach of treaties;, and reasons why the world should glimpse the position which it desires to show, one would laugh less and think more. But, beyond bald assertion, there is nothing to it. Below, in these notes, is given the latest war-time picture of Borlin, which can b« got from fairly reliable sources. Wo are m for a sarious war—a war which most b» realised even by the man in the street, dosrpite the meM&iea which rout
the Germans every dav. There is only one really scathing article yet, and that is by the London 7 Times' of latest date. It absolutely denounces the Censor, frankly realises the impossibility of giving the public anything liko the truth, and places the finger of derision on tho public—the Londoners who cannot go to sleep at night without reassurance of some dailv victory. So bad has the state of public opinion become that, even thi? morning, when the incontestable news of the bombardment of English towns came, many found consolation In the guesswork of the New York ' Times.' How does the New York ' Times' support its statements? It carefully refrains from saying. WHAT WE NEVER HEARD. Mails received this week bring some remarkable items so far not known. One striking item touches the resignation of Prince Louis of Batten berg. lb is embodied in a letter written to the London 'Times' of October 31 by Admiral Hay, senior officer in His Majesty's Navy- H a | tittle of what the Admiral says is true, the nation ought to go into sackcloth and ashes. In the first place, tho writer makes it clear that he hardly knows Prince Louis personally, and that he does not know whether he would be a pood First Sea Lord or a very bad one. Prom first-hand knowledge, however, he described the Prince an such a uniformly -successful handler of squadrons thHt, during many years of manoeuvres, other Admirals found ■ it Impossible to keep him in a tight place. IHo points out that at the time of the Morocco tension tho Prince was commanding at sea, and the same mutterings of pro-Germanism began to swell then. The writer asks whv, and thus answers himself : "It has often been ffated." ho says, "that tho public is a 'has?.' but I am not always sure of that; anyway, in this case the public have been got'at." Awful to contemplate', Britannia has had her leg pulled' But whence the source of thcee indefinite Obviously il is German—and it has boon well done." What an indictment! Admiral Hay. insinuates that tho Germany desiring t<> remove an excellent man from our Navy, knew their pnbli<\ Emissaries, perhaps paid by the Naehrichte-n Bureau, filled the mouths of* the Londoners with tho desired sußcest-ion. tho mutterings gr<nv. and the effect which the, enemy hoped for was achiever). Th" Londoners took the bait, and the nation lom, the bice man! SATURDAY'S MAP. In a thoughtful and well-reasoned not* a. correspondent. diFcusfie* the position in Belgium. <>n the. Aisne, and at St. Mihie.l. and contends that the British advance in certain points in Belgium, small as it i.-, is not unconnected with a crawler move. With this line of reasoning ] have every sympathy, hut have Jong realised the imj possibility of describing 'the moves an Belgium without the ?id of a map. This I map and the changes which are liking I place will appear on Saturday. [ THE BULWARK. When the; news of the loss of tho Bulwark arrived here the opinion was expressed in these notes that the exact cause of the explosion would never he known. T think 1 a:u a prophet, not without honor. '" Exports,"' says tho to-t cable, "are of opinion that the exact cause of the accidental ignition of ammunition will never be known" The story cf the loss of the Bulwark, as it is given io us through the Censor, does not need to be accepted with the credence which je dear to John Bull when the .'tory is ono calculated to soothe bis heart. A diver has been down to view the Bulwark —thirty divers are. mere Jikely. J/a«t time we heard of her she was broken in throe places, and foino fragments of the wreck could not have stood up on the sand so that the diver could view the cause of destruction from wateriiue to heel. This solitary diver, it is alleged, states that there were no visible marks of attack from the outside, which means that he found no pl.ifcee. bent inward. Ho does not state, however, whether he was able to examine all the plates or not; as a matter of fact, he could not have, done i-o. It, is a dark story. We can only wait lor fiTriher light frnai the London ' Times' and other Home papers. BERLIN A BLAZE OF LIGHT. Interest of quite another kind is furnished by 'The, Times' of November 2. It paints"a picture of Berlin in war time —a picture which has long been missing from the cables. Berlin, it- seems, is nichtly a b!a.-ve of light. The fog is pierced by oonntless arc lights, and shop lights, and lights on the housetops. The blaze stretches far out into the suburbs, and on till 3 o'clock each morning the public parks are illuminated, though not a, soul is to be seen. It is. it seems, a Government idea to produce an exaggerated cheeriness and artificial optimism, i But prices are mounting, and wages fast sinking. The pinch began to he felt about tho middle- of October, when the price of provisions took a rapid turn upwards, not with increases of a. pfennig or two, but with bounds of 10 to 20 pfennig [ per lb per day. Meat, milk, «ggs, and surar were the commodities first affected. Few soldiers were- to lie- seen, and tho excitement of the .first days of the war had dwindled away. The dominant feeling was one of inward hatred—especially of the English. A war of extermination was being waged officially against all French and English words. Su'.h names as '"Chateaubriand" and "beefsteak" no longer remain on the bill of faro. It was 'the writer says) quite ludicrous to find " Champignons a la maitro" changed into "Eiisrhe Chami Lnonon." Tho moro EOi'siblo part of tin populace, however, (!id not seem to he greatly keen on this war of words. THE UNADORNED INDIAN.
The true Indian is described in 'The Times' of November 11. It seems that he id fighting under extraordinary difficulties. Heine; often unable to speak any nut bis own. or the official Urdu, he finds it difficult lo get berk to bis battalion when the sires* of conflict separates him from it. With " i'cramv" it :6 different, for he can make himself tinderstood to the peasantry somehow, and receiver, his clue a? to roads, canal*, etc. Then, too, the. Indian receives rougher treatment from the foe. Letters found upon wounded men make it clear that the German military authorities havo specially charged their troops to inflict the scvercet possible punishment upen all forces whose civilisation they deny, and whose soldierly qualities they affect to despise. Hut. with all those handicaps, the Indian is fighting woll, a-:d ho finds a brother in tho Algerian. They are often associated in ni n ht opcrat ions. ' Tho Times' adds: "A word of caution should be uttered in regard to the amnzintr adventure* and exploit.-; which have been attributed to them. Such recommendations are desired neither by the officers nor by the men. . . . They have a just perspective of their work."and if they have been temporarily checked in one place they have marie (rood, and more than good, in another." THB; GERMAN TEMPER. A correspondent, writing from South Germany, givos us the superfluous news that Liecc and Nnmur are refortified. He is firmly "convinced that the German people will fiq'ht to a finish, and when they are forced to surrender it will not be for want of soldiers. T think that tlu's is Hie true view, and the. paragraph "Berlin a Blaze of Licrht," appearing in tbeae notes, tells a storv of its own. The correspondent says tliat the greatest dancer is the want of saltpetre. Nitrates for the manufacture of explosives come in la-ivest quantity from South America, and the?e c-n b? stopped on the ocean by British chips of war, but the correspondent perhaps forgets that very considerable qnan':"»s also come easily to Germany from Norway and Sweden. FOOL NEWS. Thev 1 is .rem" f'jol now? from the Polish side, but highly significant. o ticialn are "surprised" at the perseverance of the Austrian*. Perhaps not for the first time, although the confession has never been vouchsafed before. Also the Prussian Guard is now part of the Cracow garrison. Where will that Guard be next.' Troops euch as the Guard are not usually sent in to defend fortresses.
DURATION OF WAR Discussing the duration of the war, a ' Tunes ' correspondent says that the measure of the time that it will last is the measure of the energy which we display. " Five months after the commencement we find ourselves with five men training in England for every soldier at the front. What a confession of the national unpreparednoss!
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ARE THEY OUT?, Evening Star, Issue 15678, 17 December 1914
ARE THEY OUT? Evening Star, Issue 15678, 17 December 1914
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