Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Today -100: March 21, 1918: Of seized ships and Fake News

Woodrow Wilson orders the seizure of all Dutch ships in US territorial waters, after failed negotiations in which neutral Netherlands tried to prevent its ships being used to carry troops and munitions, which its neighbor Germany would not be pleased about. Germany has threatened to retaliate by sinking ships bringing food to the Netherlands, but evidently Wilson considers a few starving Dutch people to be a price worth paying.

The editors of the German-language Philadelphia Tageblatt are on trial for presenting news in such a way as to favor Germany. The DA seems to be mostly quoting headlines. (The judge will direct a not guilty verdict because there was no “overt act.”)

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