Monday, July 13, 2015

Today -100: July 13, 1915: Of u-boats, recruiters, insults to war, censors, and munitions

British Ambassador to the US Sir Cecil Spring-Rice, who was a guest at J.P. Morgan’s mansion when Frank Holt/Erich Muenter forced his way in and shot the banker, was held up the next day as he left the Morgan estate on his way to the William D. Straight mansion (evidently all the ambassador does is visit investment bankers). Anyway, 6 men in a car passed his limo, stopped and stood in the road, but his chauffeur just drove right at them and they scattered. Highway robbery or proof that Muenter had confederates?

Negotiations between Germany, Austria and Romania have reached the ultimatum stage. The Teutons would like Romania to enter the war on their side, but would settle for an announced policy of neutrality and the free flow of equipment from Germany to Turkey. They’ve offered various bribes such as territory and better treatment of ethnic Romanians in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, but now they’re giving Romania a deadline of one month.

A German u-boat stops an American ship, the Normandy, which was sailing from Gulfport, Louisiana to Liverpool, and orders it to act as a shield for the u-boat to sneak up unseen on a Russian ship heading for Manchester and sink it.

It is rumored that Ottoman Sultan Mehmed V has died and the Young Turks are covering it up. He hasn’t and they aren’t.

Someone who says he is a lieutenant in the British Army, and for all we know actually is one, is arrested in Los Angeles for breaking US neutrality laws by recruiting soldiers for the British Army. He is not the first, nor will he be the last. I don’t know if these people are really working for the British government.

Spain bans public discussion of Spanish neutrality in the war.

Headline of the Day -100:

A letter to the NYT from Richard Harding Davis, the Spanish-American War war correspondent who helped create Theodore Roosevelt’s Rough Rider myth, complains about Jane Addams’ claim that soldiers on all sides in the European war get drunk before battles because they really don’t like killing people.

Mexican Gen. Pascual Orozco forfeits his $7,500 bail when he doesn’t appear in court in El Paso, having skipped into Mexico. Er, skipped bail, probably not literally skipped.

The city of Philadelphia will start censoring all magazines sold in the city.

90,000 British workers have “voluntarily” registered to work in munitions factories.

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