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Newspaper Page Text
GERMANY WOULD PROFIT BY DRAWING U. S,.
INTO WORLD WAR, SAYS BERESFORD
BY EDWARD L. KEEN.
(United Press Staff Correspondent.)
(Copyright, 195,-016 United Press.)
(Copyrighted in Great Britain.)
London, Feb. 23. "Germany will
sink no American ship unless by de
sign. The German torpedo finding
as its mark the hull of an American
vessel will have been aimed and fired
from Berlin. If an American mer
chantman is sunk it will be for the
express purpose of dragging America
into the war."
The speaker was England's best
known and best kwed sailor Ad
miral Lord Charles Beresford. His
name probably more than any other
carries to Americans the picture of
the typical British sea fighter. He is
to Englishmen what Bob Evans was
to Americans. Also he is one of the
clearest naval thinkers of the age.
He made the above reply to the great
est quesJon of the moment here the
one put hy Americans a hundred
"Do you think Germany is trying
to force America into war?"
His statement is the first in which
any important personage connected
with British naval affairs has dis
cussed this phase of the war.
"I don't share the opinion of some
of my countrymen that the Germans
are fools," said Lord Beresford. "I
don't favor their having that defense
when the day of reckoning qomes.
Every move of any magnitude Ger
many has made to date has been
made deliberately and thinkingly. She
must gfve an accounting on that
basis. The controlling intellects of
Germany know that the sinking of an
American ship, though apparently an
accident, would be an event of the
first magnitude. They know as well
as you that it would be a shell ex
ploded in thef magazine of American
"I don't predict to what extremes
Germany will go. But I am confident
she -will not leave to the judgment of
a submarine commander the issue of
whether or not America is to join the
ranks of her enemies."
"What possible motive could the
kaiser or his advisers have in seeking
to involve America?" I inquired.
"Possibly British phychology isn'
the best in the world at this partic
ular moment for analyzing Teutonic
motives," he replied. "But I will
venture two possible answers:
"First, with America in the war,
Germany would be in a better posi
tion to quit The kaiser would be
able to save his face with his people
on the ground that the entire world
was then against him, and Germany
might hope to do down in history as
having enacted the under-dog role.
Sympathy for the under-dog is often
given without analyzing the dog's
morals or considering the fact that
he really deserves to be under.
"The second, and I believe the like
lier reason, is the fact if America
should participate in the war, she
would necessarily participate in the
peace negotiations. It is unlikely
your country would be invaded op
would suffer to the extent our allies;
have. Therefore, America would,
enter the negotiations without the.
poignant hatred naturally affecting,
those countries whose homes havi
been invaded, cities and farms deso
lated and people massacred. Then,
too, Americans don't have the repu
tation of being revengeful. You are
what shall I call it easy, just as
we Britishers are.
"But with this so obvious, .why wHl
not America avoid the clash?" I
"Young man," answered Lord Ber'
esford, "your nation is a. democracy.
The weakness if 'every democracy is
that it desires peace above all else
and in its determination to maintain
peace often goes to absurd, lengths. .
Democracy is always more Jealous tJf