R2914-371 Views From The Watch Tower

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THE FRANKFURTER ZEITUNG, one of the most reliable newspapers of Europe, is the authority for the following report of an interview between the Czar and a German Admiral, while the Czar as the guest of Emperor William witnessed the maneuvers of the German fleet in the Baltic Sea,—the Admiral being in command of the fleet. It is important as showing the opposing arguments on the preservation of the world’s peace, which all men agree is desirable—essential.

We agree with the Czar’s line of argument, but hold that in the nature of things it is impossible of realization. The arming and drilling and building of ships will continue until the people of Europe are thoroughly awakened, when they will refuse to be fought and taxed, and a revolution in favor of Socialism will ensue—resulting, however, in Anarchy, as the Scriptures indicate, preparing the way for Christ’s Millennial Kingdom.

The conversation, as reported by the Zeitung follows:

Admiral—Your Majesty is pleased to confer too great an honor upon an old sea dog like me. I am delighted to think that your Majesty received a favorable impression of our army and navy, for, your Majesty may rest assured, we strain every nerve to keep the army and navy abreast of the times, which is the ideal thing for every good government to do.

The Czar—There I differ with you, Admiral. According to my own views the ideal thing to do would be to reduce standing armies and navies instead of keeping on increasing their strength. This so-called preparedness for war—arming on a great, and ever greater, scale is overburdening the peoples of Europe. All governments should strive to lessen their expenses for the army and navy. As long as they do the opposite, they are simply upholding and perpetuating an intolerable situation.

The Admiral—A humane and extremely generous thought, your Majesty, but—

The Czar—(interrupting)—not a thought only, Admiral. I am devoting my life to the realization of the peace idea.

The Admiral—Indeed, your Majesty’s big-hearted endeavors permit of no misinterpretation, but the other powers, your Majesty, the other powers. Your Majesty won’t believe for a moment that the other powers will find it to their interest to reduce their armies and navies!

The Czar—I am convinced that a condition such as I have outlined will serve the true interest and conform to the just aspirations of all the powers.

The Admiral—May it please your Majesty, don’t you think that a perfect army and navy, an army and navy ready to move against the enemy at a moment’s notice, so to speak—doesn’t your Majesty think that such weapons as those constitute the best guarantee of peace?


The Czar—In order to establish true and permanent peace it is absolutely necessary that the nations’

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war-preparedness, as constituted by their armies and navies, be limited. The nations durst not go on forever increasing their war strength and heaping up war material. There should be no further progress, so-called, in the art of killing men and animals, destroying ships, interfering with commerce, and laying waste provinces. All that has to stop. The nations want a rest; they have been clamoring for the cessation of war scares, produced by the announcement that A has better guns than B, or that X is building more and better ships than Y can afford to do—they have demanded a letup in war preparedness for twenty years! On that point the civilized nations are fully agreed, and international policy, my dear Admiral, will eventually compel the permanent peace. Policy, I say, and not armies and navies.

Admiral—I beg to assure your Majesty that my government, like that of St. Petersburg, strives for peace most earnestly. To preserve peace is its sincerest wish, believe me, your Majesty. But to preserve peace our army and navy must be in the best

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possible shape; we must increase and augment them steadily to keep pace with the growth of population and the armament of other peoples. Your Majesty knows the old saying: Si vis pacem para bellum. God forbid that we increase the army and navy with the idea of carrying war into our neighbors’ land. It’s all done in the interest of peace. For peace’s sake we are willing to make any sacrifice.


The Czar—Yes, I heard this story before. You compel your people to bleed itself to death to furnish ways and means for keeping up a tremendous force on land and sea, and for adding to it constantly in a manner heretofore, happily, unknown. Neither Napoleon I. nor Frederick the Great, neither Alexander nor Peter, neither Louis XIV., nor our own Catherine ever dreamt of such armies and navies in war time as are now established while Europe enjoys the blessings of peace. But all your arming and the whole immense apparatus afoot and afloat, eating millions day by day, don’t amount to a row of pins as an actual guarantee of peace. The nations of Europe are today as far as ever from declaring the permanency of peace. Despite your armies and navies, the blessings of a world’s peace are not yet within reach.

Admiral—True enough, your Majesty, armed peace demands great sacrifice; we have to pay heavily for the maintenance of peace by a grand army and navy, but your Majesty, the people are glad to contribute to the welfare of Europe even at considerable expense.


The Czar—Maybe, Admiral, but the thing can’t go on! The sacrifices demanded of the taxpayer are constantly growing, financial troubles, owing to the expense of the army and navy, are increasing day by day. I tell you, this thing spells disaster. The public welfare is threatened at its roots.

The Admiral—Your Majesty is pleased to leave many things, stamping armed preparedness as a blessing to the people, out of your calculations. Big armies and grand navies compel the nations to work and strive; they banish idleness and call for honest competition. Nowadays every people in Europe is trying to produce the best weapon, the finest ships.

The Czar—But it’s not humanity’s business to produce means of destruction. We were put upon this earth to build up, not to do the other thing. All the money spent for the army and navy above a certain necessary amount is money diverted from its real purpose, money invested in unproductive labor.

Admiral—Your Majesty was pleased to admire our fine quick-firing guns; you have seen those mysteries of the sea, boats that travel under water, the iron-clads yonder, our incomparable flotilla of torpedo-boats—all these wonders of twentieth century technique, are they not evidence of marvelous progress? Doesn’t your Majesty recognize that our people give their best thought, their brightest endeavors to the fatherland? I repeat it, in my humble opinion our army and navy is the best guarantee of peace, while the money invested therein pays abundant interest by the maintenance of peace. The people’s money could not be more profitably invested than in securing peace as we do.


The Czar (shaking his head)—Indeed, and what about those hundreds of millions you are spending for means of destruction, to-day labeled the “best and latest,” while to-morrow you must admit that they are valueless because something new, something to offset them, was invented? A fine investment, Admiral.

Admiral—I will not deny that we are frequently doomed to disappointment of the sort your Majesty referred to. But if your Majesty will permit me, I dare say the competitions of inventors benefits our home industry and consequently the people that live by industry and commerce.

The Czar—Your argument is illogical, Admiral. Powder and guns, torpedoes and sub-marine vessels, ships, not destined for commerce—all such things are false values; the persons engaged in their manufacture contribute neither to the world’s betterment nor to their own happiness. Ironclads, grapeshot, swords, and lances are not agents of progress by any means; their wholesale manufacture presupposes a deficit in the making of articles that stand for culture and economical advancement. Besides, it is easy to prove that the system of armed preparedness is largely responsible for the financial depressions that crop up from time to time in all countries turned into camps.

The Admiral—But, your Majesty, what has preserved peace during the last twenty and more years, if it was not our grand army? If we hadn’t been so well prepared as to number of soldiers and ships, as to the latest pattern of guns and other war material, hostilities might have broken out on several occasions.

The Czar—Hypothesis, my dear Admiral! There isn’t an atom of proof for what you say. I am convinced, on the other hand, that your grand collection of war material is a permanent menace to peace.

The Admiral—On that point I beg to differ with your Majesty, and the people, I am sure, think as I do. They love the army and value it for the protection it renders the nation. And for these services they are willing to pay.

The Czar—It is unfortunate that you and armed war preparedness enthusiasts generally will not see things in their proper light. As a matter of fact, standing armies and big navies are obstructing national development everywhere, and the people, staggering under the weight of overtaxation for army purposes, hate and loathe the institution, while fearing it at the same time. I tell you, Admiral, if things go on as they have been going, the catastrophe which you hope to avert will occur sooner than you think. The disaster will be awful—the thought of it might make an honest man shudder.

The Admiral—I beg your Majesty’s pardon. I am only an old sea dog trying to do my duty. Now duty, as I take it, compels the state to do everything in its power to keep the army abreast of the times, increasing and equipping it in the best manner possible, so that, in the hour of danger—


The Czar—No, no, no. It’s the state’s duty to avert war by other means than by laying up war material, that must necessarily lead to war. Don’t you

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know that the war of the future, of which we stand in such dread, may involve the whole world?

The Admiral—Is your Majesty thoroughly in earnest?

The Czar—Most thoroughly. I regard it as my sacred duty to secure permanent peace for the world by persuading the nations to disarm. At the same time I am not blind to the fact that this grand purpose can only be achieved by the co-operation of all civilized peoples.

This ended the conversation, the Czar rising and giving the signal for the dismissal of the fleet.


Those who reject the divine revelation, the Bible, are continually in trouble—contradicting themselves and each other. The following from the Chicago Inter-Ocean will trouble evolutionists. Yet the learned Professor by the change noted is, however, probably no nearer the truth than before. He confuses his reason and handicaps it by assuming a false premise, rejecting the inspired one.

The article mentioned follows:—


That Professor Ernst Haeckel, the distinguished German naturalist, and the world’s greatest living advocate of the biological theory of evolution, has reversed his views of half a century and taken a stand with Professor Rudolf Virchow in opposition to Darwinism is the startling announcement made in Paris.

It is stated that during his expedition to Java, begun last year, Professor Haeckel has found striking evidence in support of the theory, advanced for the first time only a few months ago by Virchow, that monkeys are descended from man, and not man from monkeys. That, in fact, monkeys are nothing less than degenerate humans.

“If Professor Haeckel has made any such discovery,” said Dr. Edward Grant Conklin, professor

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of zoology at the University of Pennsylvania, “or if he has recanted his former multitudinous writings and lecturings sufficiently to make any such statement it means that one of the most remarkable revolutions in biological science has taken place.

“I can not credit the announcement. It seems too extraordinary to believe that Haeckel, of all men, should take this stand. I do not know if he has returned from Java, but he went there to study and make further researches into the pithecanthropus erectus, discovered by Dr. Dubois, with a view to further substantiate the theories he laid down in his ‘Phylogeny,’ tracing the descent of man.

“Haeckel may have discovered fresh remains of the pithecanthropus; if so, their nature has not been announced, and I can not speculate upon them, but any fresh finds along that line can not fail to be of the utmost interest to scientists.”

To understand thoroughly the revolutionary change accredited to Professor Haeckel, it is only necessary to review briefly the history of his part in the exploitation of Darwin’s theory and the causes that led to his recent exploring visit to Java.

Ernst Haeckel, now professor of zoology at Jena University, was the first distinguished scientist to fully accept Darwin’s theory when the “Origin of Species” was published. The scientific world was trembling on the brink of the revolution he caused later by the publication of “The Descent of Man,” when Haeckel anticipated Darwin in his most far-reaching conclusions, and in a measure prepared the world for the startling doctrines hinted at in the “Origin of Species” and fully promulgated in “The Descent of Man.”

Since then Haeckel has been the most advanced among the evolutionists. He has long asserted that the history of man is complete in all its essential details, and that all that now remains to be done is to fill in here and there such concrete evidence as zoological and paleontological research shall reveal.

In his “Systematic Phylogeny,” a monumental work in three volumes, he made a theoretic systematic arrangement of the vegetable and animal worlds living and extinct on the basis of the law of evolution. The work has been called a vast pedigree tree, with man at the top and the lowest non-nucleated cell at the bottom. In this pedigree there were no empty or unaccounted spaces. Haeckel constructed hypothetical animals or organisms, and to him, in theory, there were no missing links.

Twenty-five years before the discovery of Dubois’ pithecanthropus Haeckel had forseen in his phylogeny such a creature, and he had christened it “pithecanthropus allus,” or the apelike man before language. He gave to it a place midway in the order of life between the highest ape and the lowest human.

In every library, in every language devoted to zoological works, there are books by the shelf-full bearing the name of Haeckel. They stand beside and support the “Origin of the Species” and “Descent of Man” and “Man’s Place in Nature” (Huxley). Haeckel has been the apostle of Darwinism, the most trenchant fighter in the years when the theory was battling for a right to existence in the scientific world. Virchow, the world-famous pathologist, found Haeckel in his fight against Darwinism, and now that the champion should go to the other extreme is incomprehensible to those who have followed his career.

Professor Ernst Haeckel is now sixty-seven years old, and is a native of Potsdam. For thirty-five years he made his home in the quiet, sleepy little town at Jena, except for occasional expeditions and trips to scientific congresses. He has been a prolific writer, and is a most accomplished artist. All the drawings and illustrations for his works have been made by himself, and their marvelous accuracy has made his books of two-fold value. The extravagance to which he has carried some of his theories and the imagination he has infused into his driest and most scientific dissertations have in a measure cut him off from absolute confidence on the part of his followers, but no naturalist has earned fame by harder work or deeper study.—Chicago Inter-Ocean.


The meridian of Greenwich, England, is everywhere accepted as the starting line from which to reckon longitude and time all over the earth, and all our maps and astronomical calculations are made accordingly. Suggestions have been made from time to time, however, that a better starting-line might be

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found. Some of the Italian scientists, for example, have seriously objected to Greenwich, on account of the clouds and bad weather that frequently interfere with astronomical observations there. They recommend that the civilized world adopt Jerusalem as the standard meridian, because the skies are clearer there, and the possibility of making Palestine neutral territory would eliminate political objections.


— December 1, 1901 —