Thursday, June 18, 2015

Today -100: June 18, 1915: Of gunboat diplomacy, slackers, and swell shells

Woodrow Wilson sends 3 warships to Mexico carrying 3 companies of Marines who the admiral in charge of the expedition is authorized to land to deal with the Yaqi Indians.

British Minister of Munitions David Lloyd George will introduce a bill to establish labor courts to fine munitions workers for “slacking.” Strikes and lockouts will be illegal. Profits will be restricted to pre-war profits + 25%.

As I mentioned, the German ambassador to the US sent an emissary on the arduous journey to Germany to convey his views about American reactions to the Lusitania sinking, because he rightly didn’t trust the security of cable traffic. Well, several US newspapers have been running rumors that that emissary, Dr. Anton Meyer-Gerhard of the German Red Cross, is actually Alfred Meyer of the German Privy Council, who was in the US on a secret arms-buying mission. Another version has Meyer or some other mysterious German traveling as Meyer-Gerhard’s assistant and the whole trip being a smokescreen to sneak him out of the country. The German ambassador will go to Acting Secretary of State Lansing tomorrow to formally deny any knowledge of this Alfred Meyer person. Lansing will formally accept that, because Count von Bernstorff... gave him his word.

William Jennings Bryan says the US’s military unpreparedness actually makes for peace; Europe demonstrates that deterrence doesn’t prevent war.

At the start of the zeppelin attacks on London, total blackouts of street lights were considered but rejected as creating more hazards (for example, making it difficult for fire trucks, police and ambulances to get around) than the actual bombing.

Rhyming Headline of the Day -100:

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