Education and International Relations: A Study of the Social Forces That Determine the Influence of Education

Education and International Relations: A Study of the Social Forces That Determine the Influence of Education

Education and International Relations: A Study of the Social Forces That Determine the Influence of Education

Education and International Relations: A Study of the Social Forces That Determine the Influence of Education

Excerpt

Twelve years ago today I was in Europe, along the Chemin des Dames. I had felt the call to "make the world safe for democracy." A native of Wilson's own state, I had a holy idealism for democracy, and having read broadly among historical novels, I felt the glory of the war crusade. I was nineteen years of age then. Six months later I was twenty-nine. That much time at the front had taught me something about warfare besides its glory. Then bronchitis started me home, but a German torpedo interfered and showed me a bit about war on the sea. Subsequently, back in America, I reëntered the army through the Student Army Training Corps and there, after the war was over, I learned the science of preparing for war. All together it was an illuminating experience for a young man of ideals who had believed in an orderly world, a "Christian" world.

It was a shaking experience. Life had to be reëvaluated in terms of death, of devastation, in terms of hatred and bitterness. Of course, young men will always enter war in the game spirit, but they cannot continue long to kill fellow men and lose their comrades in this spirit. They must be reconditioned to a less humane outlook or they will break. The front and extensive contact with poilus who had seen four years of it set me to wondering. This war situation betokened relationships between nations that had been completely outlawed between individuals and groups within every nation. I knew something of the literature of the various warring groups and previously had not distinguished very much between them as to worthiness of ideals. All seemed to be wholesome, to be seeking about the same things in life but in . . .

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