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The German Government must emphatically repudiate the assertion. The German Government, however, thinks it of little avail to enter into details in the present stage of affairs, more particularly as the Government of the United States omitted to substantiate the assertion by reference to concrete facts.
The German Government will only state that it has imposed far-reaching restraints upon the use of the submarine weapon, solely in consideration of neutrals' interests, in spite of the fact that these restrictions are necessarily of advantage to Germany's enemies. No such consideration has ever been shown neutrals by Great Britain and her allies.
The German submarine forces have had, in fact, orders to conduct the submarine warfare in accordance with the general principles of visit and search and the destruction of merchant vessels recognized by international law, the sole exception being the conduct of warfare against enemy trade carried on enemy freight ships encountered in the war zone surrounding Great Britain. With regard to these, no assurances have ever been given to the Government of the United States. No such assurances are contained in the declaration of Feb. 8, 1916. The German Government cannot admit any doubt that these orders were given or are executed in good faith. Errors actually occurred. They can in no kind of warfare be avoided altogether. Allowances must be made in the conduct of naval warfare against an enemy resorting to all kinds of ruses, whether permissible or illicit.
But apart from the possibility of errors, naval warfare, just like warfare on land, implies unavoidable dangers for neutral persons and goods entering the fighting zone. Even in cases where the naval action is confined to ordinary forms of cruiser warfare, neutral persons and goods repeatedly come to grief.
The German Government has repeatedly and explicitly pointed out the dangers from mines that have led to the loss of numerous ships.
The German Government has made several proposals to the Government of the United States in order to reduce to a minimum for American travelers and goods the inherent dangers of naval warfare. Unfortunately the Government of the United States decided not to accept the proposals. Had it accepted, the Government of the United States would have been instrumental in preventing the greater part of the accidents that American citizens have met with in the meantime.
The German Government still stands by its offer to come to an agreement along these lines.
As the German Government repeatedly declared, it cannot dispense with the use of the submarine weapon in the conduct of warfare against enemy trade. The German Government, however, has now decided to make a further concession, adapting methods of submarine war to the interests of neutrals. In reaching its decision the German Government is actuated by considerations which are above the level of the disputed question.
The German Government attaches no less importance to the sacred principles of humanity than the Government of the United States. It again fully takes into account that both Governments for many years co-operated in developing international law in conformity with these principles, the ultimate object of which has always been to confine warfare on sea and land to armed forces of belligerents and safeguard as far as possible noncombatants against the horrors of war.
But although these considerations are of great weight, they alone would not under present circumstances have determined the attitude of the German Government. For in answer to the appeal by the Government of the United States on behalf of the sacred principles of humanity and international law, the German Government must repeat once more, with all emphasis, that it was not the German, but the British, Government which ignored all accepted rules of international law and extended this terrible war to the lives and property of noncombatants, having no regard whatever for the interests and rights of neutrals and noncombatants that through this method of warfare have been severely injured.
In self-defense against the illegal conduct of British warfare, while fighting a bitter struggle for national existence, Germany had to resort to the hard but effective weapon of submarine warfare.
As matters stand, the German Government cannot but reiterate regret that the sentiments of humanity, which the Government of the United States extends with such fervor to the unhappy victims of submarine warfare, are not extended with the same warmth of feeling to many millions of women and children who, according to the avowed intention of the British Government, shall be starved
and who by sufferings shall force the victorious armies of the Central Powers into ignominious capitulation.
The German Government, in agreement with the German people, fails to understand this discrimination, all the more as it has repeatedly and explicitly declared itself ready to use the submarine weapon in strict conformity with the rules of international law as recognized before the outbreak of the war, if Great Britain likewise was ready to adapt the conduct of warfare to these rules.
Several attempts made by the Government of the United States to prevail upon the British Government to act accordingly failed because of flat refusal on the part of the British Government. Moreover, Great Britain again and again has violated international law, surpassing all bounds in outraging neutral rights. The latest measure adopted by Great Britain, declaring German bunker coal contraband and establishing conditions under which English bunker coal alone is supplied to neutrals, is nothing but an unheard-of attempt by way of exaction to force neutral tonnage into the service of British trade war.
The German people knows that the Government of the United States has the power to confine the war to armed forces of the belligerent countries, in the interest of humanity and maintenance of international law. The Government of the United States would have been certain of attaining this end had it been determined to insist, against Great Britain, on the incontrovertible rights to freedom of the seas. But, as matters stand, the German people is under the impression that the Government of the United States, while demanding that Germany, struggling for existence, shall restrain the use of an effective weapon and while making compliance with these demands a condition for maintenance of relations with Germany, confines itself to protests against illegal methods adopted by Germany's enemies. Moreover, the German people knows to what considerable extent its enemies are supplied with all kinds of war material from the United States.
It will, therefore, be understood that the appeal made by the Government of the United States to sentiments of humanity and principles of international law cannot, under the circumstances, meet the same hearty response from the German people which such an appeal otherwise always is certain to find here. If the German Government, nevertheless, is resolved to go to the utmost limit of concessions, it has been guided not alone by the friendship connecting the two great nations for over one hundred years, but also by the thought of the great doom which threatens the entire civilized world should the cruel and sanguinary war be extended and prolonged.
The German Government, conscious of Germany's strength, twice within the last few months announced before the world its readiness to make peace on a basis safeguarding Germany's vital interests, thus indicating that it is not Germany's fault if peace is still withheld from the nations of Europe. The German Government feels all the more justified in declaring that responsibility could not be borne before the forum of mankind and in history if after twenty-one months of the war's duration the submarine question, under discussion between the German Government and the Government of the United States, were to take a turn seriously threatening maintenance of peace between the two nations.
As far as lies with the German Government, it wishes to prevent things from taking such a course. The German Government, moreover, is prepared to do its utmost to confine operations of the war for the rest of its duration to the fighting forces of the belligerents, thereby also insuring the freedom of the seas, a principle upon which the German Government believes, now as before, that it is in agreement with the Government of the United States.
The German Government, guided by this idea, notifies the Government of the United States that German naval forces have received the following order:
"In accordance with the general principles of visit and search and the destruction of merchant vessels, recognized by international law, such vessels, both within and without the area declared a naval war zone, shall not be sunk without warning and without saving human lives unless the ship attempt to escape or offer resistance."
But neutrals cannot expect that Germany, forced to fight for existence, shall, for the sake of neutral interests, restrict the use of an effective weapon, if the enemy is permitted to continue to apply at will methods of warfare violating rules of international law. Such a demand would be incompatible with the character of neutrality, and the German Government is convinced that the Government of the United States does not think of making such a demand, knowing that the Government of the United States repeatedly declares that it is determined to restore the principle of freedom of the seas, from whatever quarter it has been violated.
Accordingly, the German Government is confident that in consequence of the new orders issued to the naval forces the Government of the United States will also now consider all impediments removed which may have been in the way of a mutual co-operation toward restoration of the freedom of the seas during the war, as suggested in the note of July 23, 1915, and it does not doubt that the Government of the United States will now demand and insist that the British Government shall forthwith observe the rules of international law universally recognized before the war, as are laid down in the notes presented by the Government of the United States to the British Government Dec. 28, 1914, and Nov. 5, 1915.
Should steps taken by the Government of the United States not attain the object it desires, to have the laws of humanity followed by all belligerent nations, the German Government would then be facing a new situation in which it must reserve to itself complete liberty of decision.
The undersigned avails himself of this opportunity to renew to the American Ambassador assurances of highest consideration.
NATIONAL GUARD ORDERED TO MEXICAN BORDER
WASHINGTON, June 18, 1916.
Text of the telegram sent by Secretary of War Baker to governors of states calling out the militia:
Having in view the possibility of further aggression upon the territory of the United States from Mexico and the necessity for the proper protection of that frontier, the President has thought proper to exercise the authority vested in him by the Constitution and laws to call out the organized militia and National Guard necessary for that purpose.
I am, in consequence, instructed by the President to call into the service of the United States forthwith through you the following units of the organized militia and the National Guard of the State of which the President directs shall be assembled at the State mobilization point (or at the place to be designated to you by the commanding general, department) for muster into the service of the United States (here is inserted the allotment from each State). Organizations to be accepted into the Federal service should have the minimum peace strength now prescribed for organized militia. The maximum strength at which organizations will be accepted, and to which they should be raised as soon as possible, is prescribed in Section 2, Tables of Organizations, United States Army.
In case any regular battalion or squadron now recognized as such contains an insufficient number of organizations to enable it to conform at muster to regular army organization tables, the organization necessary to complete such units may be moved to mobilization camp and there inspected under orders of the department commander to determine fitness for recognition as organized militia by the War Department.
Circular 19, Division of Military Affairs, 1914, prescribes the organizations - desired from each State as part of the local tactical division, and only these organizations will be accepted into service.
It is requested that all officers of Adjutant General's department, Quartermaster's Corps and Medical Corps, duly recognized as pertaining to State Headquarters, under Table 1, Tables of Organizations, Organized Militia, and not elsewhere required for duty in State administrations, be ordered to camp for duty as camp staff officers.
Such numbers of these staff officers as the department commanders may determine may be mustered into the service of the United States for the purpose of proper camp administration and will be mustered out when their services are no longer required.
Where recognized brigades or divisions are called into service from a State, the staff officers pertaining to these units under Tables of Organizations, United States Army, will be mustered into service and also the authorized inspectors of small arms practise pertaining thereto.
Except for these two purposes of mobilization camp service and of the prescribed staff practice service with tactical units, officers of State Headquarters, under Table 1. above mentioned, will not be mustered into service at this time.
If tactical divisions are later organized, the requisite additional number of staff officers with rank as prescribed for division staff will, as far as practicable, be called into service from those States which have furnished troops to such division. Acknowledge,
NEWTON D. BAKER,
NOTE ACCEPTING GENERAL CARRANZA'S PROPOSAL AND STATE
MENT DISCLAIMING INTERVENTION
WASHINGTON, March 13, 1916. Note forwarded to General Carranza by the United States Government accepting his proposal of a reciprocal agreement for the pursuit of bandits across the line dividing the United States and Mexico:
The Government of the United States has received the courteous note of Señor Acuna, [Carranza's Minister of Foreign Affairs,] and has read with satisfaction his suggestion for reciprocal privileges to the American and Mexican authorities in the pursuit and apprehension of outlaws who infest their respective territories lying along the international boundary and who are a constant menace to the lives and property of residents of that region.
The Government of the United States, in view of the unusual state of affairs which has existed for some time along the international boundary, and earnestly desiring to co-operate with the de facto Government of Mexico to suppress this state of lawlessness, of which the recent attack on Columbus, N. M., is a deplorable example, and to insure peace and order in the region contiguous to the boundary between the two republics, readily grants permission for military forces of the de facto Government of Mexico to cross the international boundary in pursuit of lawless bands of armed men who have entered Mexico from the United States, committed outrages on Mexican soil, and fled into the United States, on the understanding that the de facto Government of Mexico grants the reciprocal privilege that the military forces of the United States may pursue across the international boundary into Mexican territory lawless bands of armed men who have entered the United States from Mexico, committed outrages on American soil, and fled into Mexico.
The Government of the United States understands that, in view of its agreement to this reciprocal arrangement proposed by the de facto Government, the arrangement is now complete and in force, and the reciprocal privileges thereunder may accordingly be exercised by either Government without further interchange of views.
It is a matter of sincere gratification to the Government of the United States that the de facto Government of Mexico has evinced so cordial and friendly a spirit of co-operation in the efforts of the authorities of the United States to apprehend and punish the bands of outlaws who seek refuge beyond the international boundary in the erroneous belief that the constituted authorities will resent any pursuit across the boundary by the forces of the Government whose citizens have suffered by the crimes of the fugitives.
With the same spirit of cordial friendship the Government of the United States will exercise the privilege granted by the de facto Government of Mexico, in the hope and confident expectation that by their mutual efforts lawlessness will be eradicated and peace and order maintained in the territories of the United States and Mexico contiguous to the international boundary.
LANSING'S NON-INTERVENTION STATEMENT
Secretary of State Lansing also issued this statement:
In order to remove any misapprehension that may exist either in the United States or in Mexico, the President has authorized me to give in his name the public assurance that the military operations now in contemplation by this Government will be scrupulously confined to the object already announced and that in no circumstances will they be suffered to infringe in any degree upon the sovereignty of Mexico or develop into intervention of any kind in the internal affairs of our sister republic. On the contrary, what is now being done is deliberately intended to preclude the possibility of intervention.
COMPLAINT AGAINST MEXICO
[Delivered by Secretary of State Lansing to Mexican Ambassador Designate Arredondo in reply to General Carranza's message demanding the withdrawal of United States troops from Mexico.]
DEPARTMENT of State, WASHINGTON, JUNE 20, 1916.
SIR-I have read your communication, which was delivered to me on May 22, 1916, under instructions of the Chief Executive of the de facto Government of Mexico, on the subject of the presence of American troops in Mexican territory, and I would be wanting in candor if I did not, before making answer to the allegations of fact and the conclusions reached by your Government, express the surprise and regret which have been caused this Government by the discourteous tone and temper of this last communication of the de facto Government of Mexico.
The Government of the United States has viewed with deep concern and increasing disappointment the progress of the revolution in Mexico. Continuous bloodshed and disorders have marked its progress.
For three years the Mexican Republic has been torn with civil strife; the lives of Americans and other aliens have been sacrificed; vast properties developed by American capital and enterprise have been destroyed or rendered non-productive; bandits have been permitted to roam at will through the territory contiguous to the United States and to seize, without punishment or without effective attempt at punishment, the property of Americans, while the lives of citizens of the United States who ventured to remain in Mexican territory or to return there to protect their interests have been taken, and in some cases barbarously taken, and the murderers have neither been apprehended nor brought to justice.
It would be difficult to find in the annals of the history of Mexico conditions more deplorable than those which have existed there during these recent years of civil war.
It would be tedious to recount instance after instance, outrage after outrage, atrocity after atrocity, to illustrate the true nature and extent of the widespread conditions of lawlessness and violence which have prevailed.
During the past nine months in particular, the frontier of the United States along the lower Rio Grande has been thrown into a state of constant apprehension and turmoil because of frequent and sudden incursions into American territory and depredations and murders on American soil by Mexican bandits who have taken the lives and destroyed the property of American citizens, sometimes carrying American citizens across the international boundary with the booty seized. American garrisons have been attacked at night, American soldiers killed and their equipment and horses stolen; American ranches have been raided, property stolen and destroyed, and American trains wrecked and plundered.
The attacks on Brownsville, Red House Ferry, Progreso Post Office and Las Peledas, all occurring during September last, are typical. In these attacks on American territory Carranzista adherents, and even Carranzista soldiers, took part in the looting, burning and killing. Not only were these murders characterized by ruthless brutality, but uncivilized acts of mutilation were perpetrated.
Representations were made to General Carranza and he was emphatically requested to stop these reprehensible acts in a section which he has long claimed to be under the complete domination of his authority. Notwithstanding these repetitions and the promise of General Nafarrote to prevent attacks along the international boundary, in the following month of October a passenger train was wrecked by bandits and several persons killed seven miles north of Brownsville, and an attack was made upon United States troops at the same place several days later. Since these attacks leaders of the bandits well known to both Mexican civil and military authorities as well as to American officers, have been enjoying with impunity the liberty of towns of Northern Mexico.
So far has the indifference of the de facto Government to these atrocities gone that some of these leaders, as I am advised, have received not only the protection of that Government but encouragement and aid as well.
Depredations upon American persons and property within Mexican jurisdiction have been still more numerous. This Government has repeatedly requested that the de facto Government safeguard the lives and homes of American citizens and furnish the protection which international obligation imposes, to American interests in the Northern States of Tamaulipas, Nuevo Leon, Coahuila, Chihuahua