Page:Patriotismchrist00tols.djvu/22

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16
PATRIOTISM AND CHRISTIANITY.

sions of warm sympathy which have been manifested once again with so much eloquence will add a fresh link to those which unite the two countries, and will I trust contribute to strengthen the general peace which is the object of our most constant efforts and desires."

The French President replies:—

"The telegram, for which I thank your Majesty, reached me when on the point of leaving Toulon to return to Paris.

"The magnificent fleet on which I had the great satisfaction of saluting the Russian pennant in French waters, the cordial and spontaneous reception which your brave sailors have everywhere received in France, prove gloriously once again the sincere sympathies which unite our two countries. They show at the same time a deep faith in the beneficent influence which may weld together two great nations devoted to the cause of peace."

Again, in both telegrams, without the slightest occasion, are allusions to peace which have nothing at all to do with the reception of the sailors.

There is no single speech nor article in which it is not said that the purpose of all these orgies is the peace of Europe. At a dinner given by the representatives of French literature, all breathe of peace. M. Zola, who, a short time previously, had written that war was inevitable, and even serviceable; M. de Vogué, who more than once has stated the same in print, say, neither of them, a word as to war, but speak only of peace. The sessions of Parliament open with speeches upon the past festivities; the speakers mention that such festivities are an assurance of peace to Europe.

It is as if a man should come into a peaceful company, and commence energetically to assure everyone present that he has not the least intention to knock out anyone's teeth, blacken their eyes, or break their arms, but has only the most peaceful ideas for passing the evening.

"But no one doubts it," one is inclined to say, "and if you really have such evil intentions, at least do not presume to mention them."

In many of the articles describing the festivities a naïve satisfaction is clearly expressed that no one during them alluded to what it was determined, by silent consent, to hide from everybody, and that only one incautious fellow, who was immediately removed by the police, voiced what all had in their minds by shouting, "Down with Germany!"