Page 0013


famine and cold should do their appointed


It had been held by many neutral

observers that if France and Belgium continued to hold the Ruhr, Germany, deprived of three-fourths of her coal supply,

must in the end inevitably yield. That she

did not do so was no doubt due, as Premier

Poincare asserted in a reply to Baldwin, to

a hope that British and other outside

influence would bring about a modification

of the French and Belgian policy.

As winter drew near, the Germans at

last realized the futility of such hopes and

decided to give way. A change in the

German Government took place, and on

September 24, the new Chancellor, Stresemann, announced the unconditional abandonment of "passive resistance" to the

French and Belgian occupation of the Ruhr.

Continuance of resistance would mean, he

said, that Germany would "bleed to death"

and that the relations of the occupied districts with the Republic would be threatened. "In the course of battle," said he,

"it sometimes becomes necessary to evacuate

a fortress because it requires too many

men, too much food, and too much ammunition to defend it."

Meanwhile, economic conditions in Germany had gone from bad to worse. The

cost of sustaining the idle workmen in the

Ruhr was estimated at eight quadrillion

paper marks, and much more serious was

the prostrating effects of that occupation

upon various forms of German industry.

The value of the mark had sunk so low as

to be infinitesimal. By October a dollar

was worth 160,000,000 marks, and a street

car ticket cost 10,000,000 marks. The

total amount outstanding had reached

figures beyond any real human understanding. It seemed incredible that such

money could pass at all. Grave disorders

took place in various parts of the Republic.

Dictatorial powers were given to Herr

Gessler, the Minister of Police.

General anarchy seemed to threaten the

whole country. On the one hand stood the

extreme Communists, who held that the

revolution had never gone far enough; on

the other hand stood the Monarchists, who

wished to restore a monarchical form of

government. The strength of the Monarchists was revealed in many ways, notably

by a great meeting at Nuremberg, Bavaria,

early in September. Two hundred thousand

persons were reported to have attended,

and the exercises centered around a field

mass held over the bodies of those who fell

in the Great War. Prominent in the

gathering were the gray-shorted Fascisti

led by Herr Hitler.

Field Marshal Ludendorff reviewed the

marching multitude, and turning from the

review to Prince Ferdinand, eldest son of

the former Kaiser, he presented him with a

silver goblet filled with wine and said:

"I hail your Majesty." Herr Hitler sounded

the keynote of Bavaria's "Monarchy Day,"

saying: "We need another revolution in

Germany, not like the Socialist, Bourgeois

and Jewish revolution of 1918, but a

Nationalist revolution of today, to restore

Germany's might and greatness. We can

save Germany from internal and foreign

foes only through blood and sword. We

need a revolution, bloodshed, and a dictatorship."

Separatist movements developed in Bavaria and the Rhine region. In the last

week of October rebels seized a number of

the Rhine cities, and an independent

Republic was proclaimed at Aix la Chapelle

and other places. French influence had

undoubtedly fostered this Separatist movement, for the French were anxious to break

up Germany and to erect an independent

Rhenish state to serve as a buffer against

any new German war upon France.

If the Separatist movement triumphed

it would undo an accomplishment that had

for centuries been the dream of German

patriots. During the Middle Ages and

down to the third quarter of the nineteenth

century Germany was split up into many

mutually jealous and often hostile states,

and Germany was an easy prey to foreign

invaders like the Swedes and the French.

As early as the time of Martin Luther

Germans like Ulrich von Hutten and

Franz von Sickingen dreamed of uniting all

Germans into one great nation, but many

generations passed before the dream could