powerful enough to perform its share and guarantee the safe conduct of the Army to the seat of operations. In other words, that combination between the two forces of the Crown for immediate oversea action had not been thought out.

We have begun the remedy, but only begun it. Exit a Board of Admiralty whose only horizon was the sea, what is on it, what is over it, what is under it all deep studies, no doubt. Exit the blue-water school, the no-possible-invasion school, the sleep-quietly-in-your-bed school. Enter a strong man with the experience of modern war branded in his mind, and with the knowledge that in war nothing is impossible. Enter a man who will see that the cogs of our war machinery, lying apart for so long, will now gear and mesh together to allow of movement at top speed. No reform in our Navy can compare with the one that gave us a Naval War Staff: Let us hope that its labours, co-ordinating with the Army War Staff, will re-establish our position as a Power in the eyes of the War Councils of Europe. The proceedings of our own War Council (misnamed the Committee of Imperial Defence) must indeed give food for thought to a student of strategy. Our War Minister rightly preaches the doctrine of the offensive, and boldly asserts that hostile shores are our frontiers. Mr. Churchill, shackled by peace-mongering political supporters in introducing his proposals for increased naval armaments, was careful to say they were for defensive purposes, and on no account should we be the aggressors, on no account should we strike the first blow. This surrender of the initiative, which is everything in war, will cost us dear, and with the lesson of Chemulpo before us we are right to have a margin of battleship power. But where does the principle of strategy come in which advises our Dominions to construct and control their fancy navies when the very existence of those Dominions will be fought out in European waters? Who in the Cabinet could possibly have consulted the Imperial Defence Committee upon the removal of the capital of India (the possession of a sea Power) to the inland centre at Delhi? If in war the capital of a country is the objective of an enemy, we have assuredly shortened the march of one possible foe by 1000 miles.

Delhi already exhibits to the archaeologists seven cities, the tombs of as many conquerors. Cocksure Cabinet Ministers, who despise the brains of an army and navy when placed at their service, will assuredly pay the penalty for such contempt some day. This is the story of Heligoland once more.

Never in our history have we been brought more closely face to face with possibilities of danger to our Empire, or at a period when we were so unprepared to meet it. We live in an age

when weak States exist only on the good will of their neighbours; when international disputes end in a rectification of frontier at the expense of weaker States. Within the last 100 years forty States have vanished from the political arena. With all the loose gunpowder about, have we ever contemplated that a war upon our outer land possessions, where the Navy would be unable to cooperate or act, would, if successful, cripple us for life, and blot us out of existence as a world-Power? As land proprietors on the Eastern Hemisphere, we hold two steps on the march to our prize possessions in India. We hold them so weakly that they are a positive temptation to a surprise attack. Gibraltar, the first step on the march eastward, can now be rendered futile as a naval base in five minutes unless we hold the large fringe of the bay of Algeciras. What if France, in declining our entente as valueless, suggested a deal with Spain over Morocco at our expense? Not that the fortress could be taken, but its raison d'être as a naval base could be obliterated. A military position similar to Torres Vedras and Lisbon, requiring 50,000 men to protect this naval base, is enjoined under certain possible conditions. What, again, in the forthcoming débâcle of Turkey, is to prevent the Powers of the Triple Alliance allotting to Austria or Germany Asia Minor and Syria as a 'place in the sun'? What reinforcement should we require in Egypt-the second step to India? When shall we cease to blind our eyes to the fact that Russia's eyes are not off Persia, or even India? But, to crown all, what is to hinder the Continental Powers, in their earth-hunger, from sinking their differences and combining to rob the champion landgrabber of the world, who has such a weak sword wherewith to defend his possessions? There is no reason to say such a combination is impossible. It was accomplished in 1895 without our knowledge or suspicion-perhaps the most prodigious snub ever offered to a first-class naval Power. The march of science has taught us that strategic points in a theatre of war are now not measured in miles but in minutes, and that Powers can mass their forces at those points with inappreciable loss of personnel. Napoleon in 1812 lost more men going into Russia than he did coming out. Russia in 1904 moved an army twice as large as Napoleon's over five times the distance with infinitesimal loss. It would be well to examine what is the power of our sword to meet any single one of the threats adumbrated above. Each one singly would practically denude our shores of the best part of the striking force of our Army, and weaken the Navy called upon for convoy duty. Should we not have an organisation which should be prepared to face the hostile combination? A defeat or a check at any one of our links of communication would assuredly bring down a swarm of cormorants eager for the spoil, and double our difficulties.

It cannot be too strongly impressed upon a people that it is one thing to declare war and make war, but it is organisation alone that enables a Power to wage war-that is, to meet the huge wastage demanded by war.

In establishing the numbers of the land forces of our Empire we can be quite certain that the idea of economy prevailed over that of positive security. Unfortunately the minimum which was fixed for ordinary safety has not been reached by many thousands. The numbers so determined are well known. A 'striking force' of 160,000, including all Reserve soldiers; a 'Territorial Force' of 315,000 men for the defence of our shores in the absence of the former. The latter to be mobilised only after the departure of the former. Both forces, as we know, are recruited on the voluntary system. The Regular Army as a peace machine is a perfect model, which will lose in its value when flooded with Reservists short of training and requiring some 1800 officers to complete fully all cadres for requirements when mobilised for war. It has the finest officer corps in the world at present, trained and taught by men who have learnt by war experience that nothing but the best will do.'

The Territorial Army starts with a handicap, which must positively re-act upon the efficiency of the Regular Army when mobilisation takes place. No fewer than 1800 officers and 41,000 men are wanting to complete its Peace establishment. To make this force into anything approaching fighting efficiency nothing but efficient officers will suffice; and who is to carry this out? The task must devolve on officers drawn from the Regular Army. You cannot make an officer in a month, or thirty months. The efficiency of an army is determined by its corps of officers and N.C.O.s. 'The Army means its officers,' says Frederick the Great.

'The most promiscuous murderer in the world is the ignorant military officer.' Mr. Haldane, in his enthusiasm, when he inaugurated the Territorial Army on a voluntary basis, hoped to find some 900,000 men rush to the call of a patriotic duty. He is stated to have said: 'A nation in arms is the only safeguard for the public interest.' As Lord Haldane in 1911 he told us that only after another war will the nation accept compulsory service.' No man has made a more supreme effort to provoke that war, if military weakness in a nation, as we know, invites aggression. The recent flight of our late War Minister from the dovecot of peace across the North Sea bearing an olive branch has got its answer. The twig reposes in the pigeon-hole where arbitration and peace-mongering documents are relegated, and two new Army Corps and a host of ships arise to put the next matter of contention beyond dispute.

In matters of diplomacy inside the velvet glove is often found the mailed fist.

But assuredly we do not require another war to learn the lesson bequeathed to us by the last. The lessons that Providence periodically gives us by means of epidemics and disasters and wars are for the profit and benefit of a future generation. The appalling calamity of the Titanic has awakened us to the fact that, with all our supposed mastery of science, there is a shortage of knowledge in ship construction, boat equipment, and organisation. The lessons to be learnt from a prolonged and inglorious war only ten years ago were written down when redhot from its experiences. That war will be child's play to the next which Lord Haldane apparently invites, and yet we are now relatively in a weaker position to wage a war than we were ten years ago. Our reserve strength to meet war wastage is based on pure sentiment. The science and teaching of war, like other sciences, tells us that the gap between the professional and the amateur widens every day. The more science enters into warfare the more perfect must be the training of the men who handle the machine of war-the Army. The Territorial Force, which at present is a mirage and a delusion, must be made a reality, and as such one that can draw on the life-blood of the manhood of the nation. What absolute butchery awaits those of our citizens within whose bosom beats the heart of a Britisher, and who would flock to the colours at the country's call of danger! It is an absolute sin to rely upon the untrained spirit of a manhood for the security of the Fatherland. Train that spirit to arms and you will assuredly evolve the soul of a conqueror, and woe to the foe that meets it.

The first and most difficult task of a statesman is the preservation of the national or militant instinct intact among the virtues of the people. Our Ministers instruct us exactly in the opposite spirit. They shirk telling the citizen what is the first duty he owes to his country, and what is the penalty that awaits the neglect of this duty. We are positively invited to believe that the teachings of a live Colonel of Yeomanry are to overrule the lessons bequeathed to us by a dead Caesar.

This Under-Secretary of State for War (now our War Minister) must be quite sure of the ignorance of his countrymen on military matters, and also of their representatives, or he would not have had the audacity to submit a muster roll in Parliament which includes in his papier-mâché army no less than 78,000 men of the new National Reserve. Surely he must know that fully half of these men are past the age of active service. there no younger material to fall back upon? Not that we veterans cannot put up a fight with our backs to a wall when wanted; but nowhere, out of the Old Testament, can one read


of old-age pensioners being borne on the strength of a military muster-roll. Though I am personally rising sixty-five, I am by no means the patriarch of my own company.

Who is going to disperse this cloud of apathy and enlighten the nation as to its responsibilities? The upper classes know and do not care. The middle classes do not know but should care. The lower classes neither want to know nor care. Who is going to quicken this mass of inertia and awaken the nation, not only to its sense of duty but to the extent of its liabilities? Ministers are courageous only in their posthumous diaries. No great political improvement, no great reform, either legislative or executive, has ever been originated in any country by its rulers. The seed of the reform comes from the people, fertilised by education, and fructified by experience. The rulers eventually assume the credit, but only after much pressure from without has the reform been carried through. Nations, like men, prefer their passions to their interests. Fortunately for our land, we have inherited many passions which if directed into a proper channel may further the national interest, but the hands that should guide the current towards a duty too often are but a clog.

We seem to have at present a superfluity of grandmothers of both sexes, tendering nothing but petticoat advice. The mouth of the professional sailor or soldier, while serving, is muzzled. Now that the mantle of preferment, hitherto held by a Commander-in-Chief of the Army, has fallen upon a political Polemarch, subordinate officers would be unwise to express an opinion at variance with the policy of their Chief. War, the supreme test of national virtue, would of course again wake us up to a sense of our shortcomings, but our war problem is a problem of peace. Why are we again to learn our lesson from the mouth of hostile cannon?

To eradicate the spirit of indiscipline that permeates the youth, to further the spirit of action and adventure which was once a religion, to rid ourselves of the base metal which has been allowed to saturate our armour, and to realise that 'the life of a citizen belongs to his country' is surely the rôle of our teachers. In old days we know that the possession of a personal weapon and the mastery of its use could not fail to inspire the virtue of physical courage in the individual who handled it. That virtue was the basis of the strength of our armour of old. Thrice stronger is the armour of a nation whose sense of moral courage prompts its manhood to undergo the self-denial necessary for training to modern weapons, and to get full value from the physical courage it has inherited. That is the basic foundation of the new armour of our day.

W. G. KNOX, Major-General.

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