Official Statements of War Aims and Peace Proposals, December 1916 to November 1918

By James Brown Scott | Go to book overview

that a state of belligerency exists between the Czecho-Slovaks and the German and Austro-Hungarian Empires and that the Czecho-Slovak National Council is a de facto belligerent government clothed with proper authority to direct the military and political affairs of the Czecho-Slovaks. It has also recognized in the fullest manner the justice of the nationalistic aspirations of the Jugo-Slavs for freedom.

The President is, therefore, no longer at liberty to accept the mere "autonomy" of these peoples as a basis of peace, but is obliged to insist that they, and not he, shall be the judges of what action on the part of the Austro-Hungarian Government will satisfy their aspirations and their conception of their rights and destiny as members of the family of nations.

Accept, Sir, the renewed assurances of my highest consideration. (Signed) ROBERT LANSING.


GERMAN COUNTER-REPLY TO PRESIDENT WILSON

Chargé d'Affaires of Switzerland to the Secretary of State1

LEGATION OF SWITZERLAND, WASHINGTON, D. C.

October 22, 1918.

DEPARTMENT OF GERMAN INTERESTS.

SIR:

By direction of my government, I have the honor to transmit herewith to Your Excellency the original German text of a communication dated October 20, 1918, from the German Government, which has today been received from the Swiss Foreign Office. I beg to also enclose an English translation of the communication in question as transmitted to the Swiss Foreign Office by the German Government with the request that it be forwarded to Your Excellency's Government.

Please accept, Sir, the renewed assurances of my highest consideration.

(Signed) F. OEDERLIN, Chargé d'Affaires ad interim of Switzerland. His Excellency,

ROBERT LANSING, Secretary of State, Washington.

____________________
1
Official U. S. Bulletin, October 23, 1918.

-429-

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