A Straight Deal
Part 3 out of 3
Once it was American. Now Tammany is Green Irish. I do not believe that I
need pause to tell you much about Tammany. It defeated Mitchel, a loyal
but honest Catholic, and the best Mayor of Near York in thirty years. It
is a despotism built on corruption and fear.
During our Civil War, it was the Green Irish that resisted the draft in
New York. They would not fight. You have heard of the draft riots in New
York in 1862. They would not fight for the Confederacy either.
During the following decade, in Pennsylvania, an association, called the
Molly Maguires, terrorized the coal regions until their reign of assas-
sination was brought to an end by the detection, conviction, and
execution of their ringleaders. These were Green Irish.
In Cork and Queenstown during the recent war, our American sailors were
assaulted and stoned by the Green Irish, because they had come to help
fight Germany. These assaults, and the retaliations to which they led,
became so serious that no naval men under the rank of Commander were
permitted to go to Cork. Leading citizens of Cork came to beg that this
order be rescinded. But, upon being cross-examined, it was found that the
Green Irish who had made the trouble had never been punished. Of this
many of us had news before Admiral Sims in The World's Work for November,
pages 63-64, gave it his authoritative confirmation.
Taking one consideration with another, it hardly seems to me that our
debt to the Green Irish is sufficiently heavy for us to hinder England
for the sake of helping them and Germany.
Not all the Green Irish were guilty of the attacks upon our sailors; not
all by any means were pro-German; and I know personally of loyal Roman
Catholics who are wholly on England's side, and are wholly opposed to
Sinn Fein. Many such are here, many in Ireland: them I do not mean. It is
Sinn Fein that I mean.
In 1918, when England with her back to the wall was fighting Germany, the
Green Irish killed the draft. Here following, I give some specific
instances of what the Roman Catholic priests said.
April 21st. After mass at Castletown, Bear Haven, Father Brennan ordered
his flock to resist conscription, take the sacrament, and to be ready to
resist to the death; such death insuring the full benediction of God and
his Church. If the police resort to force, let the people kill the police
as they would kill any one who threatened their lives. If soldiers came
in support of the draft, let them be treated like the police. Policemen
and soldiers dying in their attempt to carry out the draft law, would die
the enemies of God, while the people who resisted them would die in peace
with God and under the benediction of his Church.
Father Lynch said in church at Ryehill: "Resist the draft by every means
in your power. Any minion of the English Government who fires upon you,
above all if he is a Catholic, commits a mortal sin and God will punish
In the chapel at Kilgarvan Father Murphy said: "Every Irishman who helps
to apply the draft in Ireland is not only a traitor to his country, but
commits a mortal sin against God's law."
At mass in Scariff the Rev. James MacInerney said: "No Irish Catholic,
whatever his station be, can help the draft in this country without
denying his faith."
April 28th. After having given the communion to three hundred men in the
church at Eyries, County Cork, Father Gerald Dennehy said: "Any Catholic
who either as policeman or as agent of the government shall assist in
applying the draft, shall be excommunicated and cursed by the Roman
Catholic Church. The curse of God will follow him in every land. You can
kill him at sight, God will bless you and it will be the most acceptable
sacrifice that you can offer."
Referring to any policeman who should attempt to enforce the draft,
Father Murphy said at mass in Killenna, "Any policeman who is killed in
such attempt will be damned in hell, even if he was in a state of grace
that very morning."
Ninety-five percent of those Irish policemen were Catholics and had to
respect the commands of those priests.
Ireland is England's business, not ours. But the word
"self-determination" appears to hypnotize some Americans. We must not be
hypnotized by this word. It is upon the "principle" expressed in this
word that our sympathies with the Irish Republic are asked. The six
northeastern counties of Ulster, on the "principle" of
self-determination, should be separated from the Irish Republic. But the
Green Irish will not listen to that. Protestants in Ulster had to listen
in their own chief city to Sinn Fein rejoicings over German victories.
The rebellion of 1916, when Sinn Fein opened the back door that England's
enemies might enter and destroy her--this dastardly treason was made
bloody by cowardly violence. The unarmed and the unsuspecting were shot
down and stabbed in cold blood. Later, soldiers who came home from the
front, wounded soldiers too, were persecuted and assaulted. The men of
Ulster don't wish to fall under the power of the Green Irish.
"We do not know whether the British statesmen are right in asserting a
connection between Irish revolutionary feeling and German propaganda. But
in such a connection we should see no sign of a bad German policy." Thus
wrote a Prussian deputy in Das Grossere Deutschland. That was over there.
This was over here:--
"The fraternal understanding which unites the Ancient Order of Hibernians
and the German-American Alliance receives our unqualified endorsement.
This unity of effort in all matters of a public nature intended to
circumvent the efforts of England to secure an Anglo-American alliance
have been productive of very successful results. The congratulations of
those of us who live under the flag of the United States are extended to
our German-American fellow citizens upon the conquests won by the
fatherland, and we assure them of our unshaken confidence that the German
Empire will crush England and aid in the liberation of Ireland, and be a
real defender of small nations." See the Boston Herald of July 22, 1916.
During our Civil War, in 1862, a resolution of sympathy with the South
was stifled in Parliament.
On June 6, 1919, our Senate passed, with one dissenting voice, the
following, offered by Senator Walsh, democrat, of Massachusetts:
"Resolved, that the Senate of the United States express its sympathy with
the aspirations of the Irish people for a government of its own choice."
What England would not do for the South in 1862, we now do against
England our ally, against Ulster, our friend in our Revolution, and in
support of England's enemies, Sinn Fein and Germany.
Ireland has less than 4,500,000 inhabitants; Ulster's share is about one
third, and its Protestants outnumber its Catholics by more than three
fourths. Besides such reprisals as they saw wrought upon wounded
soldiers, they know that the Green Irish who insist that Ulster belong to
their Republic, do so because they plan to make prosperous and thrifty
Ulster their milch cow.
Let every fair-minded American pause, then, before giving his sympathy to
an independent Irish Republic on the principle of self-determination, or
out of gratitude to the Green Irish. Let him remember that it was the
Orange Irish who helped us in our Revolution, and that the Orange Irish
do not want an independent Irish Republic. There will be none; our
interference merely makes Germany happy and possibly prolongs the
existing chaos; but there will be none. Before such loyal and thinking
Catholics as the gentleman who said to me that word about "spoiling the
ship for a ha'pennyworth of tar," and before a firm and coherent policy
on England's part, Sinn Fein will fade like a poisonous mist.
Chapter XVII: Paint
Soldiers of ours--many soldiers, I am sorry to say--have come back from
Coblenz and other places in the black spot, saying that they found the
inhabitants of the black spot kind and agreeable. They give this reason
for liking the Germans better than they do the English. They found the
Germans agreeable, the English not agreeable. Well, this amounts to
something as far as it goes: but how far does it go, and how much does it
amount to? Have you ever seen an automobile painted up to look like new,
and it broke down before it had run ten miles, and you found its insides
were wrong? Would you buy an automobile on the strength of the paint?
England often needs paint, but her insides are all right. If our soldiers
look no deeper than the paint, if our voters look no further than the
paint, if our democracy never looks at anything but the paint, God help
our democracy! Of course the Germans were agreeable to our soldiers after
Agreeable Germany!--who sank the Lusitania; who sank five thousand
British merchant ships with the loss of fifteen thousand men, women, and
children, all murdered at sea, without a chance for their lives; who
fired on boat-loads of the shipwrecked, who stood on her submarine and
laughed at the drowning passengers of the torpedoed Falaba.
Disagreeable England!--who sank five hundred German ships without
permitting a single life to be lost, who never fired a shot until
provision had been made for the safety of passengers and crews.
Agreeable Germany!--who, as she retreated, poisoned wells and gassed the
citizens from whose village she was running away; who wrecked the
churches and the homes of the helpless living, and bombed the tombs of
the helpless dead; who wrenched families apart in the night, taking
their boys to slavery and their girls to wholesale violation, leaving the
old people to wander in loneliness and die; who in her raids upon England
slaughtered three hundred and forty-two women, and killed or injured
seven hundred and fifty-seven children, and made in all a list of four
thousand five hundred and sixty-eight, bombed by her airmen; whose
trained nurses met our wounded and captured men at the railroad trains
and held out cups of water for them to see, and then poured them on the
ground or spat in them.
Disagreeable England!--whose colonies rushed to help her: Canada, who
within eight weeks after war had been declared, came with a voluntary
army of thirty-three thousand men; who stood her ground against that
first meeting with the poison gas and saved not only the day, but
possibly the whole cause; who by 1917 had sent over four hundred thousand
men to help disagreeable England; who gave her wealth, her food, her
substance; who poured every symbol of aid and love into disagreeable
England's lap to help her beat agreeable Germany. Thus did all England's
colonies offer and bring both themselves and their resources, from the
smallest to the greatest; little Newfoundland, whose regiment gave such
heroic account of itself at Gallipoli; Australia who came with her
cruisers, and with also her armies to the West Front and in South Africa;
New Zealand who came from the other side of the world with men and money-
-three million pounds in gift, not loan, from one million people. And
the Boers? The Boers, who latest of all, not twenty years before, had
been at war with England, and conquered by her, and then by her had been
given a Boer Government. What did the Boers do? In spite of the Kaiser's
telegram of sympathy, in spite of his plans and his hopes, they too, like
Canada and New Zealand and all the rest, sided of their own free will
with disagreeable England against agreeable Germany. They first stamped
out a German rebellion, instigated in their midst, and then these Boers
left their farms, and came to England's aid, and drove German power from
Southwest Africa. And do you remember the wire that came from India to
London? "What orders from the King-Emperor for me and my men?" These
were the words of the Maharajah of Rewa; and thus spoke the rest of
India. The troops she sent captured Neue Chapelle. From first to last
they fought in many places for the Cause of England.
What do words, or propaganda, what does anything count in the face of
such facts as these?
Agreeable Germany!--who addresses her God, "Thou who dwellest high above
the Cherubim, Seraphim and Zeppelin"--Parson Diedrich Vorwerck in his
volume Hurrah and Hallelujah. Germany, who says, "It is better to let a
hundred women and children belonging to the enemy die of hunger than to
let a single German soldier suffer"--General von der Goltz in his Ten
Iron Commandments of the German Soldier; Germany, whose soldier obeys
those commandments thus: "I am sending you a ring made out of a piece of
shell.... During the battle of Budonviller I did away with four women and
seven young girls in five minutes. The Captain had told me to shoot these
French sows, but I preferred to run my bayonet through them"--private
Johann Wenger to his German sweetheart, dated Peronne, March 16, 1915.
Germany, whose newspaper the Cologne Volkszettung deplored the doings of
her Kultur on land and sea thus: "Much as we detest it as human beings
and as Christians, yet we exult in it as Germans."
Agreeable Germany!--whose Kaiser, if his fleet had been larger, would
have taken us by the scruff of the neck.
"Then Thou, Almighty One, send Thy lightnings!
Let dwellings and cottages become ashes in the heat of fire.
Let the people in hordes burn and drown with wife and child.
May their seed be trampled under our feet;
May we kill great and small in the lust of joy.
May we plunge our daggers into their bodies,
May Poland reek in the glow of fire and ashes."
That is another verse of Germany's hymn, hate for Poland; that is her way
of taking people by the scruff of the neck; and that is what Senator
Walsh's resolution of sympathy with Ireland, Germany's contemplated
Heligoland, implies for the United States, if Germany's deferred day
Chapter XVIII: The Will to Friendship--or the Will to Hate?
Nations do not like each other. No plainer fact stares at us from the
pages of history since the beginning. Are we to sit down under this
forever? Why should we make no attempt to change this for the better in
the pages of history that are yet to be written? Other evils have been
made better. In this very war, the outcry against Germany has been
because she deliberately brought back into war the cruelties and the
horrors of more barbarous times, and with cold calculations of
premeditated science made these horrors worse. Our recoil from this deed
of hers and what it has brought upon the world is seen in our wish for a
League of Nations. The thought of any more battles, tenches, submarines,
air-raids, starvation, misery, is so unbearable to our bruised and
stricken minds, that we have put it into words whose import is, Let us
have no more of this! We have at least put it into words. That such
words, that such a League, can now grow into something more than words,
is the hope of many, the doubt of many, the belief of a few. It is the
belief of Mr. Wilson; of Mr. Taft; Lord Bryce; and of Lord Grey, a quiet
Englishman, whose statesmanship during those last ten murky days of July,
1914, when he strove to avert the dreadful years that followed, will
shine bright and permanent. We must not be chilled by the doubters.
Especially is the scheme doubted in dear old Europe. Dear old Europe is
so old; we are so young; we cause her to smile. Yet it is not such a
contemptible thing to be young and innocent. Only, your innocence, while
it makes you an idealist, must not blind you to the facts. Your idea must
not rest upon sand. It must have a little rock to start with. The nearest
rock in sight is friendship between England and ourselves.
The will to friendship--or the will to hate? Which do you choose? Which
do you think is the best foundation for the League of Nations? Do you
imagine that so long as nations do not like each other, that mere words
of good intention, written on mere paper, are going to be enough? Write
down the words by all means, but see to it that behind your words there
shall exist actual good will. Discourage histories for children (and for
grown-ups too) which breed international dislike. Such exist among us
all. There is a recent one, written in England, that needs some changes.
Should an Englishman say to me:
"I have the will to friendship. Is there any particular thing which I can
do to help?" I should answer him:
"Just now, or in any days to come, should you be tempted to remind us
that we did not protest against the martyrdom of Belgium, that we were a
bit slow in coming into the war,--oh, don't utter that reproach! Go back
to your own past; look, for instance, at your guarantee to Denmark, at
Lord John Russell's words: 'Her Majesty could not see with indifference a
military occupation of Holstein'--and then see what England shirked; and
read that scathing sentence spoken to her ambassador in Russia: 'Then we
may dismiss any idea that England will fight on a point of honor.' We had
made you no such guarantee. We were three thousand miles away--how far
"And another thing. On August 6, 1919, when Britain's thanks to her land
and sea forces were moved in both houses of Parliament, the gentleman who
moved them in the House of Lords said something which, as it seems to me,
adds nothing to the tribute he had already paid so eloquently. He had
spoken of the greater incentive to courage which the French and Belgians
had, because their homes and soil were invaded, while England's soldiers
had suffered no invasion of their island. They had not the stimulus of
the knowledge that the frontier of their country had been violated, their
homes broken up, their families enslaved, or worse. And then he added: 'I
have sometimes wondered in my own mind, though I have hardly dared
confess the sentiment, whether the gallant troops of our Allies would
have fought with equal spirit and so long a time as they did, had they
been engaged in the Highlands of Scotland or on the marches of the Welsh
border.' Why express that wonder? Is there not here an instance of that
needless overlooking of the feelings of others, by which, in times past,
you have chilled those others? Look out for that."
And should an American say to me:
"I have the will to friendship. What can I personally do?" I should say:
"Play fair! Look over our history from that Treaty of Paris in 1783, down
through the Louisiana Purchase, the Monroe Doctrine, and Manila Bay; look
at the facts. You will see that no matter how acrimoniously England has
quarreled with us, these were always family scraps, in which she held out
for her own interests just as we did for ours. But whenever the question
lay between ourselves and Spain, or France, or Germany, or any foreign
power, England stood with us against them.
"And another thing. Not all Americans boast, but we have a reputation for
boasting. Our Secretary of the Navy gave our navy the whole credit for
transporting our soldiers to Europe when England did more than half of
it. At Annapolis there has been a poster, showing a big American sailor
with a doughboy on his back, and underneath the words, 'We put them
across.' A brigadier general has written a book entitled, How the Marines
Saved Paris. Beside the marines there were some engineers. And how about
M Company of the 23rd regiment of the 2nd Division? It lost in one day at
Chateau-Thierry all its men but seven. And did the general forget the 3rd
Division between Chateau-Thierry and Dormans? Don't be like that
brigadier general, and don't be like that American officer returning on
the Lapland who told the British at his table he was glad to get home
after cleaning up the mess which the British had made. Resemble as little
as possible our present Secretary of the Navy. Avoid boasting. Our
contribution to victory was quite enough without boasting. The
head-master of one of our great schools has put it thus to his schoolboys
who fought: Some people had to raise a hundred dollars. After struggling
for years they could only raise seventy-five. Then a man came along and
furnished the remaining necessary twenty-five dollars. That is a good way
to put it. What good would our twenty-five dollars have been, and where
should we have been, if the other fellows hadn't raised the seventy-five
dollars first? "
Chapter XIX: Lion and Cub
My task is done. I have discussed with as much brevity as I could the
three foundations of our ancient grudge against England: our school
textbooks, our various controversies from the Revolution to the Alaskan
boundary dispute, and certain differences in customs and manners. Some of
our historians to whom I refer are themselves affected by the ancient
grudge. You will see this if you read them; you will find the facts,
which they give faithfully, and you will also find that they often (and I
think unconsciously) color such facts as are to England's discredit and
leave pale such as are to her credit, just as we remember the Alabama,
and forget the Lancashire cotton-spinners. You cannot fail to find,
unless your anti-English complex tilts your judgment incurably, that
England has been to us, on the whole, very much more friendly than
unfriendly--if not at the beginning, certainly at the end of each
controversy. What an anti-English complex can do in the face of 1914, is
hard to imagine: Canada, Australia, New Zealand, India, the Boers, all
Great Britain's colonies, coming across the world to pour their gold and
their blood out for her! She did not ask them; she could not force them;
of their own free will they did it. In the whole story of mankind such a
splendid tribute of confidence and loyalty has never before been paid to
In this many-peopled world England is our nearest relation. From
Bonaparte to the Kaiser, never has she allowed any outsider to harm us.
We are her cub. She has often clawed us, and we have clawed her in
return. This will probably go on. Once earlier in these pages, I asked
the reader not to misinterpret me, and now at the end I make the same
request. I have not sought to persuade him that Great Britain is a
charitable institution. What nation is, or could be, given the nature of
man? Her good treatment of us has been to her own interest. She is wise,
farseeing, less of an opportunist in her statesmanship than any other
nation. She has seen clearly and ever more clearly that our good will was
to her advantage. And beneath her wisdom, at the bottom of all, is her
sense of our kinship through liberty defined and assured by law. If we
were so far-seeing as she is, we also should know that her good will is
equally important to us: not alone for material reasons, or for the sake
of our safety, but also for those few deep, ultimate ideals of law,
liberty, life, manhood and womanhood, which we share with her, which we
got from her, because she is our nearest relation in this many-peopled
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