Friday, May 15, 2015

Today -100: May 15, 1915: A naked and unashamed monster, simulating humanity, but in fact a reversion to prehistoric barbarism

The State Dept screws up in sending Wilson’s note to the German government, so it winds up in the newspapers before the Germans receive it officially.

Headline of the Day -100 (Daily Telegraph):  

Kaiser Wilhelm and other German and Austrian royalty are struck off the roll of the Order of the Garter. British lords were threatening to resign from it and turn in their garters, and you know how British peers love their garters.

Likewise, Theodore Roosevelt has been dropped as an honorary member of both the League of Old German Students and the General German Language League.

The king of Italy refuses the Salandra government’s resignation.

The German Admiralty says the Lusitania was only hit by one torpedo. “The second explosion must be traced to the ignition of quantities of ammunition inside the ship.”

Vice President Marshall says that when a person boarded an English vessel like, say, the Lusitania, he was virtually on English soil and must expect to take the consequences. The general consensus is that Marshall should shut up now.

Charles Eliot, the retired president of Harvard, says that the German attacks on civilians “raise the fundamental question – how is the civilization of the white race to be carried forward?” He worries about how carrying out such attacks “brutalizes” German soldiers and sailors. See, British, French and Russian soldiers can fight “with the utmost fierceness from trenches or in the open, use new and old weapons of destruction, and kill and wound each other with equal ardor and resolution, and yet not be brutalized or degraded in their moral nature, if they fight from love of country or with self-sacrificing loyalty to its spiritual ideals,” but Germans can’t attack civilians, destroy towns, murder captives etc “without falling in their moral nature before the brutes.”

A meeting in London calls for Kaiser Wilhelm and his advisers to be put on trial. Colonial Secretary Lewis Harcourt says Germany “stood at the bar of the world a naked and unashamed monster, simulating humanity, but in fact a reversion to prehistoric barbarism.” I’m guessing he’s met a lot of German tourists on vacation at beaches in Spain.

Headline of the Day -100:

The US sends two warships to Mexico to “awe” the Yagui Indians, despite early reports of their attack on an American colony having been somewhat overstated.

All the ads in the NYT for straw hats lately really make me want a straw hat.

Ad in today’s NYT:

Would you like to hear the record that made England laugh, and sold a million copies? “Cohen on the Telephone” is just like Bob Newhart if he were doing a Yiddish accent and wasn’t funny.

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