The Problem of the Commonwealth

The Problem of the Commonwealth

The Problem of the Commonwealth

The Problem of the Commonwealth

Excerpt

Until August 1914 the question was often debated whether, if England were involved in some struggle between the militarist Powers of Europe, communities so remote and so pacific as the selfgoverning Dominions would take any active part in the struggle. That controversy has now been settled once for all. The Dominions were at least as remote from the storm-centre as the United States, and by declaring their neutrality, a declaration which the enemy would most gladly have recognized, might have placed themselves in the same position. A still easier course would have been to have confined themselves to the defence of their own territories against any attempt of the enemy to violate them. But the moment war was in sight such ideas were absolutely forgotten, except by a certain section in South Africa, whose attitude was promptly denounced by responsible ministers. The same men, who scarcely a dozen years before had been struggling manfully to detach South Africa from the British Commonwealth, now prepared to frustrate German plans for accomplishing that object. And no sooner was that end attained than South . . .

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