Page:Britain's Deadly Peril.djvu/148

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from the point of danger, probably out of home waters altogether, and that the attack would be sprung upon us as a surprise. We do not know, and we do not seek to know, the exact position of the British Fleet, but we can be perfectly certain that, with the invention of wireless, the moment at which the Germans might have sprung a surprise upon us has gone for ever. There is good reason for believing that the Germans intended to strike at us without any formal declaration of war, and I have been informed, on good authority, that before war broke out, certain dispositions had actually been made which were brought to naught only by a singularly bold and daring manœuvre on the part of our naval authorities. No doubt, in the course of time, this incident, with many others of a similar nature, will be made public. I can only say at present that when the startling truth becomes known, further evidence will be forthcoming that Germany deliberately planned the war, and was ready to strike long before war was declared.

People who say that an invasion of our shores is impossible usually do so with the reservation, expressed or implied, that the effort would be unsuccessful—that is, that it could not succeed so far as to compel Britain to make peace. But, even if the Germans believe this as firmly as we do, it by no means follows that they may not make the attempt.

It is a part of the Germans' theory and practice to seek, by every possible means, to create a panic, to do the utmost moral and material damage by the most inhuman and revolting means, and it is more than likely that they would hold the loss of even fifty or sixty thousand men as cheap indeed, if, before they were destroyed, they could, if only