17 OCTOBER 1914, Page 12


[To THE EDITOR Or THE " SPECTATOE."] SIR,—Dr. Holland Rose hits the right nail on the head in his letter in your issue of October 10th. Just as Sir John French cannot in war lay all his cards on the table, so in diplomacy premature disclosures are absolutely fatal to success. The curse of this country for some years past has been the noise made in Parliament and in the Press by a group of wealthy and leisured men giving—quite innocently, no doubt—shelter and support to alien emissaries seeking to destroy the founda- tions of this realm under the cloak of religion and "Christian fellowship." Englishmen, whose forefathers served before the mast at Trafalgar, and fought through the Peninsular War and at Waterloo, may therefore be forgiven for daring to place on record in the plainest terms their determination that this country shall never again be at the mercy of political guides who, without troubling to go to the root of the matter, or even making inquiry from those who have access to the dossiers at New Scotland Yard, have deliberately set them- selves to weaken the defences of the United Kingdom in the face of the enemy. Belgium is now suffering unmeasured agonies because the patriotic efforts of Lord Roberts, and the warnings of Lord Cromer and Mr. Blatchford, have been ridiculed and successfully thwarted by the partisans of the so-called "Anglo-German Friendship Committee," wilfully ignoring the evidence of patent facts. Everywhere we find homes plunged into mourning, and thousands of widows, orphans, refugees, and men maimed for life by wounds thrown upon the world. One cause of this is that the British electorate has been persistently and skilfully drugged with opiates prepared by apothecaries in Berlin. And as a result our small Army was insufficient to strengthen Belgium and save her from invasion and the horrors of blood- shed and spoliation. It is, Sir, no answer for the dupes of the Kaiser to whine at public meetings : " We have taken part in conferences and served on committees with nice, kind German clergymen. We are now encouraging recruiting. We are providing cigarettes for the soldiers. We are entertaining refugees at an hotel down the street." Surely we may say to such : " You cannot be allowed to evade the awful responsi- bilities of your campaign against the increase of the Navy and the strengthening of the Army. It is upon the wage-earners and manual labourers that war strikes its heaviest blows. It is the rank-and-file of the nation who are now suffering from your wanton escapades, and quack prescriptions, and ignor- ance. The day of reckoning is at hand."—I am, Sir, &c.,