The Schemes of the Kaiser eBook

Juliette Adam
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 173 pages of information about The Schemes of the Kaiser.

O most generous Kleine Zeitung! it is sweet to differ.  On condition that we do not ask you to give us back the flesh that you have torn from our side, you are willing to extend to us your mild greetings of disinterested friendship, and I have no doubt that you are ready to forgive us the crime you have committed against us!

May 23, 1899. [4]

Amongst the most definite impressions produced by the general proceedings of the Peace Conference there are two which stand out:  one, that the diplomats invariably assert that it will not lead to any practical result, either as regards disarmament or the creation of an arbitration tribunal; the other, that all patriots who are enemies of Germany are filled with anguish at the sight of Germany endeavouring to direct its discussions.  In its practical results, the Conference will not go further than the splendidly magnanimous proposal of Nicholas II, having for its object the humanising of war, the development of arbitration as a remedial measure, and the possibility of conditional and partial disarmament.  All that will be accomplished might have been attained by the Tzar alone in case of war, in the event of proposals for arbitration, or by way of leading the Powers to recognise the economic dangers to which they expose their peoples by ever-increasing armaments.

June 27, 1899. [5]

We know what a struggle William II had to face on the subject of the canal from the Elbe to the Rhine, and what concessions he was compelled to make to the Prussian Chamber.  Moreover he had a stiff fight in the Parliament of the Empire with regard to the new relations with [Transcriber’s note:  which?] he proposes to establish between Germany and England and her colonies.  The agrarians of the Right and the Socialists found themselves united in violent opposition.  Herr von Buelow required genuine skill to avert the storm.

The Kaiser met with a very decided rebuff in the matter of what is called in Germany the “convicts’ law.”  It will be remembered that last autumn, in Westphalia, the Emperor had threatened the socialists that those who incited to strikes would be condemned to hard labour.  Such a threat is easily uttered, but difficult to enforce by process of law.  Under the conditions existing nowadays it does not do to speak of forced labour in connection with trades unions and strikes; nevertheless, in order to make good the word of the German Emperor, his Ministers tried to snatch a vote for a fight with the workers.  Baron Stumm, a factory king possessed of great influence with the Kaiser, had inspired him with hatred against industrial workers, just as others had inspired him with love for them at the beginning of his reign.  With all his swagger and bluster, William II is more a creature of impulse than of constancy.  All parties united to oppose his scheme, except those who are known in every Parliament as Mamelukes.  The former “Father” of the working classes, suddenly become their enemy, has experienced a personal defeat in this matter which is all the greater for the fact that the Socialists, while they rejoice at seeing it inflicted upon him by the Reichstag, will not forgive him for his “convicts’ law.”

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The Schemes of the Kaiser from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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