Stead William Thomas - The United States of Europe

Author : Stead William Thomas
Title : The United States of Europe On the eve of the parliament of peace
Year : 1899

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Preface. In the year 1898 two strange things happened. It is difficult to say which was more unexpected. In the West the American Republic, which for more than a hundred years had made as its proudest boast its haughty indifference to the temptation of territorial conquest, suddenly abjured its secular creed, and concluded a war upon which it had entered with every protestation of absolute disinterestedness by annexations so sweeping as to invest the United States with all that was left of the heritage of Imperial Spain. In the East a Sovereign, autocrat, commanding the bayonets of four millions of trained soldiers and the implicit obedience of one hundred and twenty millions of loyal subjects, amazed and bewildered mankind by formally and publicly arraigning the armaments of the modem world, and summoning a Conference of all the Powers to discuss practical measures for abating an evil which threatens to land civilised society in the abyss. Many other things happened in 1898, but nothing for a moment to compare with the significance of these two immense events, which, each in its own way, constitute landmarks in the evolution of the human race. The Peace Rescript of the Tsar of Russia, the Treaty of Peace extorted at the sword's point from prostrate Spain—these two strongly contrasted documents constitute together one of the paradoxes of History. It is the pacific Republic which makes war, which multiplies its army fourfold, and which seizes by the right of conquest the. colonial possessions of Spain. It is the Imperial autocrat of a military empire who impeaches the .war system of the world, and, himself the master of a thousand legions, invites the nations to a Parliament of Peace. ...

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