Our diplomatic situation in 1899—William II visits the Iphigenie—The Hague Conference—Germany the only obstacle to the fulfilment of the humanitarian plans of the Tzar.
January 11, 1899. 
Impelled by a simplicity of mind that suggests vacuity, a great many French patriots imagine that our country cannot be equally hated by two nations at once. Seeing England threatening France every day in every way and by all the means at her disposal, these hypnotised patriots with fixed and staring eyes, see only England and nothing else! No matter what misdeeds Germany may commit, they scarcely trouble to turn towards her their inattentive gaze. Some of them, even, whose lips are tightened with anger when they think of London, smile with a vague feeling of good-will at the thought of Berlin. And yet the other enemy, the German, emboldened by our absorption, is more ready to oppress the weak, reveals himself as bolder and greedier, more cynical and exclusive, more violent in denying to others their rights. German influence may spread all over the world, but refuses to allow any other influence whatsoever to penetrate Germany. Prussia introduced the law of force because she was strong; she is now inaugurating a new system of human rights to the exclusive advantage of Germany. One newspaper, the Vossische Zeitung, has dared to say: “This system is unworthy of a civilised state and must lead to our being morally humiliated before the whole world.” But that is all.
When Germany perpetrates some particularly monstrous act, she is only “a civilising power spreading the greatest of all languages.” Moreover, Germany is the only nation that possesses a secular history; other nations have nothing more than a succession of irregular proceedings, tolerated by German generosity or indifference.
The German Emperor, King of Prussia, wages a victorious war against everything that is not German. He has just put to the sword the French terms in the Prussian military vocabulary. In vain these poor words pleaded the authority of the great Frederick, who introduced them into Prussia. In spite of his fondness for imitating Frederick the Great, William II has slaughtered the French expressions “officier aspirant,” “porte epee,” “premier lieutenant,” “general,” etc., etc. The massacre is complete, their exclusion wholesale; he leaves no trace of the enemy’s tongue. William II follows with marked satisfaction the anti-French movement of opinion in England. “England will chastise France,” he said to his Officers’ Club, “and then she will come and beg me to protect her.” Germany hates us with all her own hatred, added to that of England. She hopes for our defeat, but if we should win, she would come hypocritically to claim from us her vulture share of the spoil for her so-called neutrality.
February 9, 1899.