This nation, however, strengthened by 15,000,000 Germans in Austria, would be the greatest bearers of culture in the wide world—the nation with the best technical equipment of all others, glowing with ambition, with military training second to none, and gifted with an immense rate of increase as regards population. This nation would be forced to lay down her arms, lying as it does between the overbearing gigantic realm in the east and the warlike French to the west. The idea is incomprehensible. The universe would behold a competition in armaments such as it had never seen.
A victorious Germany, on the other hand, would become less and less military, since she would not need to arm herself to such an extent as now. She is already chiefly an industrial country. Her desire is to be wealthy, and wealth invariably smothers military instincts. Germany has set up far greater ideals as regards social developments than other countries, and all she asks is to be left in peace calmly to carry out these plans in the future. German militarism can only be conquered by the victory being on her side, since she has no thought of military supremacy, but simply of founding a new economical organization in Europe.
By EMIL VERHAEREN.
Translation by Florence Simmonds.
[From King Albert’s Book.]
Sire: This request to pay my respectful homage to you has given me the first real pleasure I have been permitted to feel since the good days of Liege. At this moment you are the one King in the world whose subjects, without exception, unite in loving and admiring him with all the strength of their souls. This unique fate is yours, Sire. No leader of men on earth has had it in the same degree as you.
In spite of the immensity of the sorrow surrounding you, I think you have a right to rejoice, and the more so as your consort, her Majesty the Queen, shares this rare privilege with you.
Sire, your name will be great throughout the ages to come. You are in such perfect sympathy with your people that you will always be their symbol. Their courage, their tenacity, their stifled grief, their pride, their future greatness, their immortality all live in you. Our hearts are yours to their very depths. Being yourself, you are all of us. And this you will remain.
Later on, when you return to your recaptured and glorious Belgium, you will only have to say the word, Sire, and all disputes will lose their bitterness and all antagonisms fade away. After being our strength and defender, you will become our peacemaker and reconciler. With deepest respect,
Financing the Allies and Small Nations Preparing for War