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PREFACE.

As in 1915 and in 1916 so in 1917 it is not possible to offer final opinions in matters relating to the conduct of the war which has been going on since July, 1914.

On April 6, 1917, the United States declared war against Germany and on December 7, 1917, declared war against Austria-Hungary.

The discussions upon international law at the Naval War College during 1917, conducted by George Grafton Wilson, LL. D., professor of international law in Harvard University, have given special attention to the breaking of diplomatic relations and to the outbreak of war.

Prof. Wilson desires to acknowledge valued cooperation of others in gathering and translating some of the documents.

Official and other documents relating particularly to the events leading up to hostilities and to declarations of war have been under consideration. The documents in this volume are among those discussed. Many of these documents are translated from foreign languages. In such cases the language of issue of the documents is usually the only oflicial text. While some of these documents are easily accessible, they are usually scattered; others have been published locally and have not yet appeared in any collection. The arrangement is, in general, chronological under the name of the State issuing the document. Since some of the documents relate to several subjects, the index has been made unusually complete in order that the volume may be easily serviceable.

As in previous years, the Naval War College desires to receive such questions as officers may deem worthy of consideration, and for such questions the documents herewith published may furnish many suggestions.

J. P. PARKER, Acting President, Naral War College. DECEMBER 26, 1917.

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