Wilson and the Peacemakers: Combining Woodrow Wilson and the Lost Peace and Woodrow Wilson and the Great Betrayal

By Thomas A. Bailey | Go to book overview

CHAPTER EIGHT

THE FALLEN WARRIOR

"I would rather lose in a cause that I know some day will triumph than triumph in a cause that I know some day will lose."
WOODROW WILSON, September 12, 1912.


1

IT WOULD be an error to conclude that Wilson's tragic breakdown was due solely to the physical strain imposed by the tour. There were numerous other harassments -- some of the usual variety, some produced by postwar readjustment.

Domestic cares pursued the Chief Executive across the continent, and the presidential routine had to be carried on from the perambulatory White House. Time and energy had to be given to the approaching Industrial Conference in Washington, and to strikes, especially the steel strike.

Nor would foreign affairs stand still. The Mexican vexations continued unabated. The inflammatory Fiume problem again blazed its way into the headlines. While Wilson was in the Rocky Mountain area, the fanatical Italian poet, Gabriele d'Annunzio, seized this Adriatic port for his disappointed countrymen, and the fat was once more in the fire. Between speeches, Wilson had to concern himself with the Fiume affair, and even to prepare a cablegram to Paris expressing his amazement and distress that the Allied leaders should be acquiescing in Italy's grab.

Even the Democrats in the Senate were not standing too firm, and the Republicans were continuing their partisan maneuvers. Senator Penrose of Pennsylvania, whose own reputation was tainted, charged on the floor of the Senate that Wilson had improperly accepted gifts abroad valued at several million dollars. Such vicious misrepresentations must have been rasping to the spirit of the Princeton Puritan.

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