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not devastated, should relinquish her claim against Germany for the benefit of the devastated countries. Then we could count as a contribution to a common cause that which was spent for munitions and for fighting purposes in this country by England. But England, besides paying the balance due on the loan, should repay us, as a contribution to the common cause, that which we spent in her country for munitions and for shipping.
I do not make these remarks in a spirit of narrow criticism. Nor am I unmindful of the great sacrifices that the English people made so nobly and unstintingly in the World War. But I do believe that those behind the Balfour note should give full consideration to all of the facts involved in the case, and not make it appear that the United States is ungenerous in her position. We were ready and willing to have gone to the bitter end despite what the cost might have been to us. We made no bargain then for our continuance in the struggle, and we want no one to set a value upon our contribution.
In my opinion, it is useless to consider either the German reparation or the readjustment of the interallied debts by themselves, because they are but two symptoms of a disease that lies deeper. These problems should be treated as a whole so as to leave all peoples in the various countries free to go back to work under conditions that will cause them
to look forward with hope and not backward with hate.21 The adoption in the Act of February 9, 1922 of the prohibition against cancellation of Allied indebtedness to the United States will make it impossible for the debt commission created by the Act to consider proposals for cancellation. Any further appeals to the United States for cancellation must therefore be based upon the hope of having the Act of February 9 amended in that respect. A glance at the cost to the American taxpayer involved in such an amendment will show the improbability of the success of any agitation in favor of the amendment. The portion of the war loans raised in the United States which was applied to meet in part America's cost of the war is roughly one-half of the total loans, which aggregated in round numbers $20,000,000,000, the other half having been loaned to the Allies. For the service of the loans the Victory Liberty Loan Act established a sinking fund on July 1, 1920 and the law permanently appropriates for each fiscal year until the debt is discharged an amount equal to the sum of “21 per centum of the aggregate amount of such bonds and notes outstanding on July 1, 1920, less an amount equal to the par amount of any obligations of foreign Governments held by the United States on July 1, 1920," plus "the interest which would have been payable during the fiscal year for which the appropriation is made on the bonds and notes purchased, redeemed, or paid out of the sinking fund during such year or in previous
It will be noted that the indebtedness incurred by the United States to make the foreign loans is not cared for by the sinking fund, as Congress contemplated that foreign repayments would provide for that part of the debt.23
21 Congressional Record, September 13, 1922, Vol. 62, No. 231, p. 13539. 22 40 U. S. Statutes at Large, p. 1312.
The Treasury Department calculates that the cumulative sinking fund will retire the funded war debt of the United States, less the amount representing the foreign obligations held by the United States on July 1, 1920, in about twenty-five years. It has been further calculated that the amounts required to meet the sinking fund and interest charges on the half of the debt applied to American war expenses will average an aggregate payment of $685,000,000 annually for a period of twenty-five years.25 As the Act of February 9, 1922 places a limitation of a similar period of twenty-five years for the repayment of the foreign debt, and as the principal and interest charges are substantially the same in both cases, it will be seen that the cancellation of the Allied debts to America will involve the payment by American taxpayers of an additional $685,000,000 annually for a period of twenty-five years. Concretely, that is the proposition with which any American administration will be faced which undertakes to bring about an amendment of the Act of February 9, 1922, so as to authorize the cancellation of the Allied indebtedness to the United States.
GEORGE A. FINCH.
See Section 3 of the First Liberty Loan Act, April 24, 1917, 40 U. S. Statutes at Large, p. 35; Section 3, Second Liberty Loan Act, September 24, 1917, ibid., p. 288; and Section 7, Victory Liberty Loan Act, ibid., p. 1312.
44 Annual Report of the Secretary of the Treasury, 1920, p. 114.
* A paper read at a dinner of the Council of Foreign Relations in New York City, February 8, 1921 by Dr. C. E. McGuire.
GERMAN WAR TRIALS REPORT OF PROCEEDINGS BEFORE THE SUPREME COURT IN LEIPZIG
August 8, 1921 The Treaty of Peace with Germany contains the following provisions:
ARTICLE 228 The German Government recognizes the right of the Allied and Associated Powers to bring before military tribunals persons accused of having committed acts in violation of the laws and customs of war. Such persons shall, if found guilty, be sentenced to punishments laid down by law. This provision will apply notwithstanding any proceedings or prosecution before a tribunal in Germany or in the territory of her allies.
The German Government shall hand over to the Allied and Associated Powers, or to such one of them as shall so request, all persons accused of having committed an act in violation of the laws and customs of war, who are specified either by name or by the rank, office or employment which they held under the German authorities.
Persons guilty of criminal acts against the nationals of more than one of the Allied and Associated Powers will be brought before military tribunals composed of members of the military tribunals of the Powers concerned.
In every case the accused will be entitled to name his own counsel.
ARTICLE 230 The German Government undertakes to furnish all documents and information of every kind, the production of which may be considered necessary to ensure the full knowledge of the incriminating -acts, the discovery of offenders and the just appreciation of responsibility.
In accordance with Article 228, lists of accused persons were prepared by the principal Allied Governments, and a final list was compiled and presented to the German Government, on the 3rd February, 1920. This list contained a very large number of names, and amongst them were those of many of the principal military and naval leaders in Germany.
The German Government represented that if the Allied Powers insisted 1 British Parliamentary Command Paper, No. 1450. For the texts of the decisions, see Judicial Decisions, infra, p. 674 et seq.
upon the surrender of the persons accused, grave political difficulties would ensue, which might seriously imperil the government's existence. By way compromise, therefore, they proposed that the accused persons should be put upon trial before the Supreme Court of the Empire in Leipzig.
An Inter-Allied Commission, appointed to examine this proposal, reported that the offer of the German Government was compatible with the execution of Article 228 of the Treaty of Peace, and the Allied Governments accordingly decided that without taking any part in the trials, so as to leave full and complete responsibility with the German Government, they would leave to that Government the duty of proceeding with the prosecution and judgment upon the understanding that the Allies would thereafter consider the results of these prosecutions and whether the German Government were sincerely resolved to administer justice in good faith. If it should be shown that the procedure proposed by Germany did not result in just punishment being awarded to the guilty, the Allied Powers reserved in the most express manner the right of bringing the accused before their own tribunals. (See text of note, Appendix I).2
In pursuance of this decision, certain cases were selected for submission to the Supreme Court at Leipzig, and on the 7th May, 1920, an abridged list containing 45 names was handed to the German Government with a note communicating to them the decision of the Allied Governments and the conditions of their acquiescence in this proposal. To this list the British Government contributed the names of seven persons, who were charged with grave outrages against the laws of war. The names of these persons and short particulars of the outrages with which they were charged were as follows:
(1) COMMANDER HELMUT Patzig, who was charged with having sunk, without warning, the British hospital ship Llandovery Castle and with having subsequently fired on and sunk the boats containing the survivors with the consequent loss of 234 lives.
(2) LIEUT.-COMMANDER KARL NEUMANN, who was charged with having torpedoed, without warning, the British hospital ship Dover Castle, when homeward bound from the eastern Mediterranean fully laden with sick and wounded with the loss of six lives.
(3) LIEUT.-COMMANDER WILHELM WERNER, who was charged with having sunk the British S. S. Torrington, and with having subsequently drowned the whole of the crew, with the exception of the master, by submerging while they were on the deck of the submarine.
(4) KARL HEYNEN, who was charged with ill-treating prisoners of war at the Friedrich der Grosse mine.
(5) CAPTAIN EMIL MÜLLER, who was charged with ill-treating prisoners of war at Flavy-le-Martel camp.
2 Printed in SUPPLEMENT to this JOURNAL, p. 195.
(6) & (7) HEINRICH TRINKE and ROBERT NEUMANN, who were charged with ill-treating prisoners of war at the working camp at Pommerensdorf Chemical Works.
After receiving the abridged list of accused persons, the German Government represented to the Allied Governments that difficulties were being experienced in obtaining evidence against the persons accused by reason of the fact that much of the evidence and information necessary to secure conviction was in the possession of the Allied Governments. A general conference was accordingly held at Spa on the 9th July, 1920, at which it was arranged that the Allied Governments should collect and provide statements of the evidence against the persons whose names appeared in the abridged list and transmit them to the Oberreichsanwalt (Public Prosecutor) in Leipzig.
H. M. Government immediately put in hand the completion of the evidence against all the persons whom they had named, and, on the 26th October, 1920, a printed volume containing the evidence in the cases in which they were immediately concerned, was handed to the German Ambassador in London for transmission to the Oberreichsanwalt in Leipzig.
In due course the German Government intimated that they were in a position to proceed against four of the persons named by the British Government, namely:
Lieut.-Commander Karl Neumann.
At a later date (June, 1921) the German Government further intimated that as a result of the enquiries made into the case of Commander Patzig, they had decided to put upon trial two officers serving in the same submarine, Lieutenants Dithmar, an officer in the German Navy, and Boldt, a retired officer of the German Navy, who appeared to be implicated and responsible for a part in the outrage with which Patzig was charged.
The question how best to make available at the trial of the accused the evidence of the British witnesses was one which presented considerable difficulty.
Three of the cases to be tried involved the ill-treatment of prisoners of war at prison camps in Germany, and in these cases a conviction was only likely to be obtained if a large number of witnesses could be collected and pro