Wednesday, October 03, 2018

Today -100: October 3, 1918: Of auxiliaries, evacuations, good progress, and reforming Prussia

Gen. Edmund Allenby captures Damascus. The Allies recognize Arab forces as official auxiliaries with the Allies. The Turks are supposedly putting out informal peace feelers.

Germany is preparing to evacuate Belgium, and the Allies are considering telling it that if it does its usual thing of destroying towns (as it leaves poor St. Quentin, poor Cambrai), they will do the same when they enter Germany.

Austrian Prime Minister Baron Max Hussarek von Heinlein tells the lower house of Parliament (Abgeordnetenhaus) that even with Bulgaria’s withdrawal from the war, the situation is not critical and “we are making good progress”. Also, Austria won’t give up its “right” to Bosnia-Herzogovina. Czech deputies heckle him throughout the speech.

In a textbook example of too little too late, the Prussian parliament finally agrees to almost equal suffrage, the almost being that people over 50 would get an extra vote. I’ve forgotten whether this abortive reform includes women’s suffrage and the NYT either doesn’t know or doesn’t think it important enough to inform us about. Kaiser Wilhelm, in his letter accepting Chancellor Count Georg von Hertling’s resignation, claims to be moving towards democracy: “I desire that the German people cooperate in a more effectual manner than hitherto in the task of deciding the destiny of the country.” He suggests that his new cabinet will include some actual Socialists, you know, the largest party in the Reichstag, and you know how much Willy must haaaaaate that.

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