Wobbly, the Rough-And-Tumble Story of An American Radical

By Ralph Chaplin | Go to book overview
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CHAPTER 18. WAR. "PRINT THE DAMNED
THING." FRANK LITTLE IS LYNCHED. REVOLU-
TION IN RUSSIA

THERE were Everett victory meetings from coast to coast when the verdict was announced. But the country was being covered with anti— I.W.W. propaganda. Tension increased, with the Wobblies making headlines that almost succeeded in crowding war news off the front pages of capitalist newspapers— almost, but not quite.

On the last day of January, only a few weeks before President Wilson's second inauguration, Germany announced the resumption of unrestricted submarine warfare. On April 2, in special session, Congress was asked for a declaration of war.

I had gone through my first agony of revulsion against the war in Montreal. During the interval between, I had reached some definite though unorthodox conclusions. I traced the whole plot back to the secret commitments made by Isvolski and Poincaré, which, I felt, made war inevitable. I blamed Woodrow Wilson for allowing this country to become entangled in European power politics. I was very bitter about that. I contended that it was a "capitalist war" camouflaged with plausible slogans, a secret conspiracy to strengthen the position of war profiteers and international moneylenders at the expense of weaker nations and, of course, at the expense of the exploited and betrayed proletariat of the world.

I had been working frantically on a new series of stickerettes. There were fifteen varieties, printed in as many languages. They were red and black—the I.W.W. colors. This time we were going to let the whole world know! One, titled "What We Stand For," summed up in a few slogans the creed of the I.W.W. Some of the

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