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THE STORY OF THE WAR
In the Austro-Russian campaign we know a few moves with more definiteness. First, an Austrian force invaded Poland; it was certainly more than one hundred thousand men, perhaps a quarter of a million. They met little or no resistance, and penetrated as far as Lublin, where they stopped or were stopped.
A few days after they had commenced the invasion a Russian advance developed in force from the direction of Odessa. The Russian progress into Galicia was at first unopposed. But near the river Bug they met and overcame a stiff resistance. A little farther on they defeated an Austrian army before Lemberg and entered that city. Advance-guards from this army pursued the Austrians towards Przemysl, on the river San. Some reports claim that the investment of this fortress has begun, others seem to contradict this. The Russians also reported that their cavalry had seized some of the passes of the Carpathians. These actions involved what we may call the Austrian Right.
The Austrian Center between Kawaruska and the frontier was already engaged with an army from Kiev; the victorious Russians turned north from Lemberg and caught this Austrian Center on the flank. Another heavy engagement is reported at Tomaszow, just over the border. The Vienna despatches admit severe loss and the Russians claim an immense victory. The remnant of this Austrian Center is reported to have retreated towards Jaroslav, on the San, hotly pursued by the Russians.
The Austrian Left, which we last heard of at Lublin, may have retired, and so have been involved in the battle at Tomaszow. Even if it has escaped defeat, it must be completely isolated and surrounded by overwhelming forces of the Russians. Its fate seems sealed. Cablegrams of the 16th report that the Russians have successfully crossed the San and are approaching Cracow. The river San offers a strong natural defense position for the Austrians, and the fact that they did not defend it indicates that their rout has been complete and overwhelming.
The despatches from Petrograd claim that in this campaign in Galicia about twice as many Austrians have been killed or captured as could by any chance have been on the firing line.
But, in spite of evident exaggeration, the Russians seem to have gained by far the most tangible victory of the war. The Aus
trians, their main army broken to pieces by the Russians and having suffered humiliating defeats in the Servian campaign, are practically eliminated as a factor in the military situation. The capture of Semlin by the Serbs must have done even more to shatter the prestige of the Austrian military caste than the loss of the Crown Prince's army in Galicia. A German diplomat is reported to have said that the Kaiser was going into this war carrying a corpse. Austria has lived up to his expectation.
If Russia can now clear the Germans out of Poland, she will be free to begin an advance into central Germany by the "short
route." Posen is the only strong fortress between her Polish frontier and the river Oder. She will not have to worry about East Prussia. With a few hundred thousand men there she can keep the German forces in their fortifications.
All reports to the contrary, it is extremely improbable that the Germans have as yet weakened their armies in the west to withstand the Russians. But unless her offensive in France very quickly succeeds—and all the present indications are that it has failed-she will have to adopt defensive tactics on both frontiers.
New York, September 16, 1914
DEMOCRATS WIN IN MAINE
The State of Maine holds its fall election nearly two months in advance of the other States of the Union. The result of the Maine election has therefore come to be regarded as an indication of the way public sentiment is running, and of the probable results in the November elections. Last week
the voters of Maine cast their ballots for Governor and for Members of Congress as well as for the Legislature and for local offices. The result was the election of the Democratic candidate for Governor, Mr. Oakley Curtis, by a plurality over Mr. Haines, the Republican candidate, and Mr. Gardner, the Progressive candidate. The vote on the Governorship shows that the Democrats are still in the minority in the State, for the Republican and Progressive vote combined exceeded the Democratic vote by several thousands. It is estimated that the Progressive vote in the State will aggregate from 18,000 to 20,000, which is about one-third the size of the Democratic vote polled for Mr. Curtis.
Maine sends four Representatives to Congress. Of the present incumbents three are Republicans and one is a Democrat. All four were re-elected. The lower house of the State Legislature has become Democratic, and the Democrats control the Legislature on joint ballot.
It ought to be no surprise that the traditionally Republican State of Maine should have elected a Democrat to succeed a Republican in the Governorship. The Repub
lican party is still under the control of the same forces which dominated it two years ago, and the revolt against those forces continues. The Democratic party, on the other hand, although it has not acquired a great deal of popular confidence for itself, is still under the leadership of President Wilson. Moreover, the war in Europe has tended to make Americans stand together, and has thus brought support to the Administration which it might otherwise not have received. There has been some revulsion of feeling against the Democratic party; whether just or unjust, on account of hard times; but the international crisis has done something to nullify this revulsion of feeling. Political sentiment changes rapidly in this country, but the Maine election is one of many indications that the Wilson Administration is in a strong political position.
SHOULD COLLEGES BE TAXED ?
Every State in the Union except one exempts from taxation property used by colleges for educational purposes. The one exception is the progressive State of California. That State proposes now to end the practice of taxing college property in the United States by adopting a constitutional amendment which will make such property exempt. This amendment has been adopted by the Legislature with but one dissenting vote. is now before the voters of the State, who will pass upon it in November. In accordance with the California practice, an opportunity is allowed to present the arguments
no longer exist. It is generally understood.
that Carranza is to remain at the head of a purely military government, that he is to summon a National Mexican Convention, which will select a Provisional President other than Carranza himself, and that an election for President and members of Congress will follow under the provisions of the Mexican Constitution.
There were really three reasons for occupying Vera Cruz: one was to exact reparation for an indignity. to the American flagwith the fall of Huerta this is no longer a necessity; the second was to prevent arms from reaching Huerta's forces, and, though unavowed, this was part of our Administration's view that the elimination of Huerta was the first step toward good relations with Mexico-this purpose was not of avail, and certainly it is now of no consequence; the third was to impress Mexico with the fact that the United States would not tolerate anarchy and misgovernment in Mexico-it is still open to question whether conditions in Mexico are such as to make it wise to withdraw before a government is established which the United States can accept as legal and just.
Naturally, the Constitutionalists and Mexico at large are impatient for the withdrawal of foreign troops from their territory. Apparently President Wilson has, or thinks he has, satisfactory assurance that conditions are ripe for taking the step. At least, it is a pleasure to record that in the occupation and government of Vera Cruz the United States has given a valuable lesson to Mexico in municipal order, in sanitation, and in disinterested control of a city to the benefit of its people.
There are two ways of helping. to send money for the relief of suffering, no matter who the sufferers may be; the other way is to send money for the relief of some special group of sufferers. For the relief of suffering without distinction of nationality or race there is one great organization-the Red Cross. For the relief of special groups or classes there are special committees or
organizations. Americans who have affiliations with one or another of the belligerent nations and who wish to contribute specifically to the relief of some one of them will have their own means of knowing how to do so. We should advise any one who wishes to: contribute to the cause of ameliorating human suffering wherever it may be found to send a contribution to the American Red Cross, Washington, D. C., or to the local branch of the Red Cross in the community in which the contributor lives.
There is one group of sufferers, however, who have a special claim upon the sympathy of the world. They are not belligerents, but they are suffering from the war as much as if they were participants in it. These are the non-combatant refugees from Belgium. Their country was not involved in the diplomatic issues that preceded the war. It had no quarrel with any of the belligerent nations, but it was in their way. Without having given any offense, it was invaded, many of its villages burned, many of its inhabitants made homeless. Its army was called upon to defend its soil against the invader, and in this way it became a belligerent; but in relation to the issues involved in the war Belgium is as neutral as the United States. Circumstances, however, have made Belgium suffer out of all proportion. No other nation involved has been so prostrated. Thousands of its inhabitants have now taken refuge in Great Britain, for there is no place for them in their own land. Others have fled to France.
There is therefore special reason why the plight of these Belgians should make an appeal to Americans. For the relief of these. Belgian refugees there has been formed in New York a Belgian Relief Committee. The firm of J. P. Morgan & Co. is the depository of the Belgian Relief Fund, and contributions should be sent to the care of that firm at 15 Broad Street, New York City. Checks should be made to the order of "J. P. Morgan & Co., for Belgian Relief Fund."
Rarely, if ever, in the history of the country has there been a more significant or beautiful historical commemoration than the centennial of the Battle of Plattsburgh, New York, September 6-11. The event had a double significance. It was a recognition It was a recognition not only of the successful defense of the
country in a moment of great peril, but also of the beginning of a hundred years of peace between Great Britain and the United States. Many eloquent tributes were paid to Commodore MacDonough and the brave men of the American fleet who successfully resisted the gallant Downie, commanding the British fleet; but beneath and behind all these tributes and every form of visible commemoration was the gladness of heart that for a hundred years two great nations had been at peace and that there stretched between them more than three thousand miles of boundary absolutely unfortified on either side. The battle was small, measured by the number of ships, men, and guns employed; it was great by reason of the superb courage which it evoked and the decisive character of its result. In the Revolution General Burgoyne attempted to divide the colonies by precisely the same route which the British forces took in.1814; this skillful strategic plan, which, if successful, would have imperiled the independence of the country, was defeated at Saratoga by Arnold and Schuyler, on Lake Champlain by MacDonough.
The exercises began on Sunday, September 6, with services in the church and at the Catholic Summer School at Cliffhaven; on Labor Day there was a parade by labor organizations and addresses by Mr. Gompers, Mr. Mitchell, and others; on Tuesday the interest centered at Vergennes, Vermont, where MacDonough's fleet was hastily built.
One of the most touching and impressive events of the celebration was in Riverside Cemetery, where Sir Charles P. Davidson, Chief Justice of the Superior Court of the Province of Quebec, made an eloquent address and placed a wreath on the graves of the American sailors who fell in the battle, while Mr. Hamilton W. Mabie spoke of Commander Downie, and placed a wreath on the grave of this gallant sailor, who was buried with honor by the people of Plattsburgh after the battle. On Friday, Centennial Day, addresses were made to great audiences by Mr. Daniels, Secretary of the Navy, and by Governor Martin H. Glynn, and a very interesting and effective historical address by President Thomas, of Middlebury College. Mr. Percy MacKaye read with his customary fire a poem descriptive of the battle. The exercises closed with a dinner at the Hotel Champlain that evening. Mr. Francis Lynde Stetson presided, and eloquent and moving addresses were delivered by Mr. Justice Riddell, of the
Supreme Court of Ontario, and Robert C. Smith, K.C., of Montreal.
The most picturesque feature of the celebration was the Pageant of the Champlain Valley, presented in a series of fifteen episodes, largely historical, but with poetic interludes which interpreted to great audiences the spirit of the beautiful landscape in the heart of which the pageant was staged. Many of the characters were taken by descendants of the original settlers. In more than one episode every participant was of the blood of the settlers, whose coming was dramatically presented. The study and in-. terpretation of the history of the Champlain Valley, stimulated by the pageant, illustrated anew the historical as well as the artistic value of pageants, adequately staged and' appointed. Miss Margaret Maclaren Eager, assisted by Miss M. Eager, created a series of dramatic scenes, to which it is but just to affix their names as the names of artists are affixed to pictures and the names of sculptors to statues.
The New York State Commission, of which Mr. Stetson was Chairman, not only prepared a programme which set the Battle of Plattsburgh in the foreground, but very skillfully evoked the deeper sentiment of the occasion, and made the lovely landscape in which all the exercises were unfolded a noble accessory.
There have been many centennial celebrations in this country during the past two decades, but none more picturesque and appealing than that which was recently observed with varied and interesting exercises in Baltimore, commemorating the writing of the "Star-Spangled Banner." This National hymn was born in the throes of battle, and the incidents which it describes were seen by its author; in the effort to secure the exchange of a friend who was a prisoner on a British ship he happened to be during the memorable night of the bombardment of Fort McHenry on the deck of the Minden, in a position from which the attack was vividly revealed in all its details.
Francis Scott Key watched with alternating hope and fear the flag floating over the fort, standing out clear in the light of rockets and bursting bombs, and then obscured by the smoke; and when the firing ceased Key had no means of knowing whether the flag
still waved. His imagination was fired by the striking episode; and part of the poem was written on the deck of the Minden, and finished as soon as Key landed. It was published in the Baltimore "American" nine days later, September 21, 1814. The flag which Key watched with such passionate interest was not the Star-Spangled Banner of to-day. It bore then fifteen stars and fifteen stripes, in accordance with an Act of Congress signed by Washington twenty years. before. The flag remained in this form for twenty-three years. It now bears thirteen stripes, representing the original colonies; but the forty-eight stars which appear on its surface register the development and expansion of the United States.
Although not in one sense the National anthem, the Star-Spangled Banner" has received special attention at the hands both of the army and the navy, and it has become dear to a host of Americans. Mr. Key adapted his song to an English air written to accompany "To Anacreon in Heaven" and sung at important meetings of the Anacreontic Society at a tavern in the Strand, London. The music was written by an Englishman, John Stafford Smith, and was published in his "Fifth Book of Canzonets, Catches, and Glees," about 1780. The tune cannot be sung, as the Austrian and English national hymns can be sung, by a great multitude with ease of memory and ease of voice; it belongs rather with the French "Marseil laise," though the tune lacks the bugle-like qualities of that stirring air.
A national anthem ought both to be simple in expression and to be set to simple music, and no doubt the time will come when such an anthem will be written by an American. The criticism often made that Americans do not know their own National anthem has a basis of fact; but the fact finds its explanation in the nature of the music. The army regulations prohibit the playing of the "StarSpangled Banner" as a part of a medley. One of the humiliations of Americans abroad is the playing by the great bands of "Yankee Doodle" after the Russian and Austrian hymns. The regulations also provide that when the President and Vice-President are formally received the bands shall play the "Star-Spangled Banner;" and that whenever it is played at a military station or at any place where persons belonging to the military service are present in uniform, all officers and enlisted men shall stand at attention. The