Page:Ambassador Morgenthau's Story.djvu/67

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43
AMBASSADOR MORGENTHAU'S STORY

to my family that, in this mysterious Near-Eastern diplomacy, the nations talked to each other with acts, not words, and I instanced Baroness Wangenheim's explanation of these diplomatic vacations as a case in point.

An incident which took place in my own house opened all our eyes to how seriously Von Sanders regarded this military mission. On February 18th, I gave my first diplomatic dinner; General Von Sanders and his two daughters attended, the General sitting next to my daughter Ruth. My daughter, however, did not have a very enjoyable time; this German field marshal, sitting there in his gorgeous uniform, his breast all sparkling with medals, hardly said a word throughout the whole meal. He ate his food silently and sulkily, all my daughter's attempts to enter into conversation evoking only an occasional surly monosyllable. The behaviour of this great military leader was that of a spoiled child.

At the end of the dinner Von Mutius, the German chargé d'affaires, came up to me in a high state of excitement. It was some time before he could sufficiently control his agitation to deliver his message.

"You have made a terrible mistake, Mr. Ambassador," he said.

"What is that?" I asked, naturally taken aback.

"You have greatly offended Field Marshal Von Sanders. You have placed him at the dinner lower in rank than the foreign ministers. He is the personal representative of the Kaiser and as such is entitled to equal rank with the ambassadors. He should have been placed ahead of the cabinet ministers and the foreign ministers."