The Schemes of the Kaiser eBook

Juliette Adam
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 203 pages of information about The Schemes of the Kaiser.

Being too weak a man to accept such responsibility as that involved in the scheme of military reforms, Von Caprivi has, so to speak, by his suppliant attitude towards the parties in the Reichstag, forced William II to assert himself.  In spite of his leanings towards prudent reform, the Emperor-King, whose pride we know, has found himself all of a sudden in a sorry plight on the question of the increase of the standing army.  The rising tide of public censure, mounting to the foot of the throne itself, found no one to hold it back but a bewildered lock-keeper.  And so the Emperor, with his helmet on his head, appeared upon the scene, to take charge of the damming operations.  On January 1 he addressed his generals, his enthusiastic officers (who, like all soldiers, have a holy horror of politicians), and said to them, “I shall smash the obstacles that they raise against me.”

Thus it happens that it is no longer Von Caprivi who confronts the Reichstag, no longer the hesitating successor of Bismarck, whom the country accuses of leading it on the path to ruin:  the Emperor-King takes charge in person.  Instead of being a question of policy and bargaining between the political parties, the question becomes one of loyalty.  In Parliament, the resistance of the country, instead of being a legitimate opposition intended to enlighten the sovereign, becomes revolutionary.  So now the Reichstag is compelled either to vote the scheme of military reform, or to be dissolved; Germany must either confirm her representatives in their obedience, or take the consequences of her hostility towards the Emperor and his army.  The Reichstag will submit, and Germany will humbly offer to her Sovereign an additional million of troops in the next five or six years.  William II will hasten their general submission by threats of war and revolution, as unlimited as is the field of his falsehood.

February 12, 1893. [2]

William II has left no stone unturned, and has displayed the utmost skill, in endeavouring to enfold in his influence the heir to the throne of Russia.  He has devoted to this end all the splendour that an Imperial Sovereign can display in the entertainment of his guest, all the resources of enthusiasm which he can lead his people to display in welcoming him, all his tricks of apparent good-will, all the fascination of a mind which is apt to dazzle those who meet it for the first time (although later on it is apt to inspire them with weariness by its very excesses), every manifestation of a wistful friendship which proclaims itself misunderstood.

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