In the end, I firmly believe that some method will be devised by which the people of the world, as a whole, will be able to insure peace, as it cannot now be insured. How soon that end will come I do not know; it may be far distant; and until it does come I think that, while we should give all the support that we can to any possible feasible scheme for quickly bringing about such a state of affairs, yet we should meanwhile do the more practicable, though less sensational, things. Let us advance step by step; let us, for example, endeavor to increase the number of arbitration treaties and enlarge the methods for obtaining peaceful settlements. Above all, let us strive to awaken the public international conscience, so that it shall be expected, and expected efficiently, of the public men responsible for the management of any nation’s affairs that those affairs shall be conducted with all proper regard for the interests and well-being of other Powers, great or small.
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An Address Delivered at the University of Berlin, May 12, 1910
I very highly appreciate the chance to address the University of Berlin in the year that closes its first centenary of existence. It is difficult for you in the Old World fully to appreciate the feelings of a man who comes from a nation still in the making, to a country with an immemorial historic past; and especially is this the case when that country, with its ancient past behind it, yet looks with proud confidence into the future, and in the present shows all the abounding vigor of lusty youth. Such is the case with Germany. More than a thousand years have passed since the Roman Empire of the West became in fact a German Empire. Throughout mediaeval times the Empire and the Papacy were the two central features in the history of the Occident. With the Ottos and the Henrys began the slow rise of that Western life which has shaped modern Europe, and therefore ultimately the whole modern world. Their task was to organize society and to keep it from crumbling to pieces. They were castle-builders, city-founders, road-makers; they battled to bring order out of the seething turbulence around them; and at the same time they first beat back heathendom and then slowly wrested from it its possessions.
After the downfall of Rome and the breaking in sunder of the Roman Empire, the first real crystallization of the forces that were working for a new uplift of civilization in Western Europe was round the Karling House, and, above all, round the great Emperor, Karl the Great, the seat of whose Empire was at Aachen. Under the Karlings the Arab and the Moor were driven back beyond the Pyrenees; the last of the old heathen Germans were forced into Christianity, and the Avars, wild horsemen from the Asian steppes, who had long held tented dominion in Middle Europe, were utterly