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Why We Are at War : Messages to the Congress January to April 1917   By: (1856-1924)

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WHY WE ARE AT WAR

Messages to the Congress January to April, 1917 by Woodrow Wilson, President of the United States, with the President's proclamation of war April 6, 1917 and his message to the American people April 15, 1917.

Harper & Brothers Publishers, New York and London. Published May, 1917

CONTENTS

I. A WORLD LEAGUE FOR PEACE Message to the Senate, January 22, 1917.

II. THE SEVERANCE OF DIPLOMATIC RELATIONS WITH GERMANY Message to the Congress, February 3, 1917.

III. REQUEST FOR A GRANT OF POWER Message to the Congress, February 26, 1917.

IV. WE MUST ACCEPT WAR Message to the Congress, April 2, 1917.

V. A STATE OF WAR The President's Proclamation of April 6, 1917.

VI. "SPEAK, ACT, AND SERVE TOGETHER" Message to the American people, April 15, 1917.

PUBLISHERS' NOTE

This book presents in convenient form the memorable messages to the Congress read by President Wilson in January, February, and April, 1917. They should be read together, for only in this way is it possible to appreciate both the forbearance and the logic of events reflected in these consecutive chapters of history. While the great war message of April 2d is obviously the most momentous, its full significance is not made clear unless it is read as the climax of the preceding messages and also in connection with the President's proclamation of a state of war on April 6th and his message to the American people of April 15th. While the approval of President Wilson was very naturally requested and obtained for the publication of these messages in collected form, the Publishers are responsible for the title and for captions. They have felt that they are rendering a service of permanent value by collecting and presenting these historic documents in the same form in which they have published President Wilson's When a Man Comes to Himself, On Being Human, and The President of the United States.

I

A WORLD LEAGUE FOR PEACE

Message to the Senate January 22, 1917

Gentlemen of the Senate:

On the 18th of December last I addressed an identic note to the Governments of the nations now at war, requesting them to state, more definitely than they had yet been stated by either group of belligerents, the terms upon which they would deem it possible to make peace. I spoke on behalf of humanity and of the rights of all neutral nations like our own, many of whose most vital interests the war puts in constant jeopardy.

The Central Powers united in a reply which stated merely that they were ready to meet their antagonists in conference to discuss terms of peace.

ENTENTE REPLY WAS MORE DEFINITE

The Entente Powers have replied much more definitely and have stated, in general terms, indeed, but with sufficient definiteness to imply details, the arrangements, guarantees, and acts of reparation which they deem to be the indispensable conditions of a satisfactory settlement.

We are that much nearer a definite discussion of the peace which shall end the present war. We are that much nearer the discussion of the international concert which must thereafter hold the world at peace.

In every discussion of the peace that must end this war it is taken for granted that that peace must be followed by some definite concert of power which will make it virtually impossible that any such catastrophe should ever overwhelm us again. Every lover of mankind, every sane and thoughtful man, must take that for granted.

I have sought this opportunity to address you because I thought that I owed it to you, as the council associated with me in the final determination of our international obligations, to disclose to you, without reserve, the thought and purpose that have been taking form in my mind in regard to the duty of our Government in these days to come when it will be necessary to lay afresh and upon a new plan the foundations of peace among the nations... Continue reading book >>




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