Books Should Be Free is now
Loyal Books
Free Public Domain Audiobooks & eBook Downloads
Search by: Title, Author or Keyword

My Four Years in Germany   By: (1867-1951)

Book cover

First Page:

[Illustration: AN INVITATION TO ATTEND THE OPENING OF THE ROYAL ACADEMY.]

[Illustration: AN INVITATION TO A COURT BALL.]

[Illustration: SAFE CONDUCT FOR AMBASSADOR GERARD AND HIS FAMILY, UNDER THE SIGNATURE OF SECRETARY ZIMMERMANN, FEBRUARY, 5, 1917.]

[Illustration: AMBASSADOR GERARD SAYING GOOD BYE TO THE AMERICANS LEAVING ON A SPECIAL TRAIN, AUGUST, 1914.]

MY FOUR YEARS IN GERMANY

BY JAMES W. GERARD

LATE AMBASSADOR TO THE GERMAN IMPERIAL COURT

TO MY SMALL BUT TACTFUL FAMILY OF ONE

MY WIFE

FOREWORD

I am writing what should have been the last chapter of this book as a foreword because I want to bring home to our people the gravity of the situation; because I want to tell them that the military and naval power of the German Empire is unbroken; that of the twelve million men whom the Kaiser has called to the colours but one million, five hundred thousand have been killed, five hundred thousand permanently disabled, not more than five hundred thousand are prisoners of war, and about five hundred thousand constitute the number of wounded or those on the sick list of each day, leaving at all times about nine million effectives under arms.

I state these figures because Americans do not grasp either the magnitude or the importance of this war. Perhaps the statement that over five million prisoners of war are held in the various countries will bring home to Americans the enormous mass of men engaged.

There have been no great losses in the German navy, and any losses of ships have been compensated for by the building of new ones. The nine million men, and more, for at least four hundred thousand come of military age in Germany every year, because of their experience in two and a half years of war are better and more efficient soldiers than at the time when they were called to the colours. Their officers know far more of the science of this war and the men themselves now have the skill and bearing of veterans.

Nor should anyone believe that Germany will break under starvation or make peace because of revolution.

The German nation is not one which makes revolutions. There will be scattered riots in Germany, but no simultaneous rising of the whole people. The officers of the army are all of one class, and of a class devoted to the ideals of autocracy. A revolution of the army is impossible; and at home there are only the boys and old men easily kept in subjection by the police.

There is far greater danger of the starvation of our Allies than of the starvation of the Germans. Every available inch of ground in Germany is cultivated, and cultivated by the aid of the old men, the boys and the women, and the two million prisoners of war.

The arable lands of Northern France and of Roumania are being cultivated by the German army with an efficiency never before known in these countries, and most of that food will be added to the food supplies of Germany. Certainly the people suffer; but still more certainly this war will not be ended because of the starvation of Germany.

Although thinking Germans know that if they do not win the war the financial day of reckoning will come, nevertheless, owing to the clever financial handling of the country by the government and the great banks, there is at present no financial distress in Germany; and the knowledge that, unless indemnities are obtained from other countries, the weight of the great war debt will fall upon the people, perhaps makes them readier to risk all in a final attempt to win the war and impose indemnities upon not only the nations of Europe but also upon the United States of America.

We are engaged in a war against the greatest military power the world has ever seen; against a people whose country was for so many centuries a theatre of devastating wars that fear is bred in the very marrow of their souls, making them ready to submit their lives and fortunes to an autocracy which for centuries has ground their faces, but which has promised them, as a result of the war, not only security but riches untold and the dominion of the world; a people which, as from a high mountain, has looked upon the cities of the world and the glories of them, and has been promised these cities and these glories by the devils of autocracy and of war... Continue reading book >>




eBook Downloads
ePUB eBook
• iBooks for iPhone and iPad
• Nook
• Sony Reader
Kindle eBook
• Mobi file format for Kindle
Read eBook
• Load eBook in browser
Text File eBook
• Computers
• Windows
• Mac

Review this book



Popular Genres
More Genres
Languages
Paid Books