282 Starvation as a Weapon. the purpose of cutting-off the shipment of food supplies, but merely that of preventing the transport of war supplies. The great breach of international law of which England has made herself guilty, apart from her persistent laying of mines on the high seas, consists precisely in this abuse of the law of contraband. This attempt to starve out the German nation, based as it is upon its present unjustifiable premiss, is and must remain a wanton sacrilege of a most atrocious nature against the spirit of the laws that all nations have agreed to observe, and it entitles Germany to retort with the severest reprisals of which she is capable by means of the submarine war. In the event of a victorious issue in this war with England, one of the very first demands which must be made by the whole civilized world,—a demand for whose blessed consummation Germany is today battling with all her power, is this: England's relinquishment of the right of seizure at sea. Let us hope that the prophecy spoken by Dr. Oppenheimer may be fulfilled: "Pirates and filibusters like Francis Drake and Warren Hastings have created the British empire—and pirates and filibusters must the English remain—until such time as a stronger power overcome them." May Germany prove to be this liberating power ! x The course of the war up to the present time has proved at least this much: that so long as England remains the tyrant of the seas, all international law must be considered a sheer impossibility. It is only in opposition to England that this condition of absolute lawlessness upon the "free seas" may be done 1 An English periodical, "The Candid Review," which is a sort of mouthpiece of many leading members of the English Conservative Party, published an article in March 1915, entitled "Free the Fleet." This consisted of an extremely violent tirade against the London Declaration of 1909, the Hague Convention of 1907 and the Paris Declaration of 1856. Their complete abolition was demanded. We quote a few choice and quite delectable passages: "All these conventions are, in reality, dead," we read here. "This is not the moment for political debates or party conflicts, this is not the moment for public differences of opinion between us, in the face of the enemy, but this is the moment for freeing the fleet. We must see how we are able to get rid of all this rubbish"—that is to say, the conventions ! The Hague "Nieuwe Courant," commenting upon this, remarked: "Utterances of this sort in an influential political review are little disposed to induce a hopeful outlook for the future co-operation of Great Britain in abolishing the law of seizure at sea."
Breaches of Sea-Law by England. 283 away with forever. This war is above all things a war for the liberation of the seas! * For a clear-sighted and brilliant exposé of England as a rapacious pirate Empire, and the ancient bully with the big fleet, as well as the instigator of war among the Continental nations, Americans are recommended to read the famous work by Count zu Reventlow: "The Vampire of the Continent." CHAPTER XXVII. Breaches of Neutrality on the Seas by England and the Other States of the Triple Entente. Contraband of War. Blockades, etc. I. The mass of complaints, especially in relation to neutral sea traffic, grows from day to day. But as these complaints appear, for the greater part, in the foreign press and are very difficult to test as to their credibility, we are able to criticize them only to a very limited degree. The author confines himself in this book to the main charges against the English conduct of naval warfare and leaves it to neutral countries and to their newspapers to level their own charges against abuses by the English navy and violations of the XIII Convention of the Second Peace Conference. But this much is established. England, pursuing an 1 The decree of Napoleon I (21st of November, 1806) respecting the Continental Blockade, and his later observations in his reminiscences at St. Helena, suit the present English business methods as closely as though they had been coined for the occasion. "The behavior of England, which recalls that of the most ancient times of barbarism, has created for this power a monstrous advantage One must use its own method of fighting when all ideas of justice, all liberal feelings, all the results of civilization, are trodden underfoot!" And in another place: "The reproach posterity makes against Pitt is the detestable political school which he bequeathed them: unabashed Machiavellianism, profound unmorality, cold self-interest, a contempt of human relations and of a just outlook on the world." And to-day Charles Maurras ("Kiel et Tanger") writes of England as "Lord, exploiter and guardian of France!"—"One the leader, the other the led, the simple protégé" (page 191). Unhappy and deluded France!