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The Crisis of Our Fate.I


The Crisis of Our Fate. I The Minister of Munitions, in a sole0*111 j preface to his book ot War speech^* j whose publication succeeds his straigk ■ talk to the Trades Union CongreS^M leaves to those whom he j no further room for doubt, either as tto I the tremendous work which the natiOO ■ a has yet to do both abroad and at h» 2 or the issues which depend upon Otif 11 victory. He confesses himself, I twelve months of war, more strongjtl convinced than ever that Britain copl^l t nothave stood aside "without imperilH0^ I ]; her security and impairing her honour; I 1, and that, apa-rt from our solemn oblig^* I ) tions to defenceless Belgium, the well' I 1 being of humanity demands that tbe I I militarist system of the infantici^ I Empire" should be challenged a0, 1 ) destroyed. So much for the furtdament^ ■ i issues at stake. As to the nature of ot I ] task, Mr Lloyd George is equally expliclt. I I He points out that the Allies possess all 1 overwhelming preponderance in the ft material which goes to the making I equipment of armies, whether in I money or metals But,? after a year oi | war, he has the painful duty of informi^ ft us that this ma erial still has to 'be 1 mobilised and v.-ilised." He makes0° I pretence that tl has yet been doue. 1 He frankly confuses that the Allies did 1 not realise in i.me what the elaborate 1 preparation of a redoubtable and I sourceful foe required of them. Ilc 1 acknowledges that the Germanic forces I have still an overwhelming superiority 1 in all the material and equipment of vvaf, I On Britain, says Mr Lloyd George I must fall the brunt of the work yet to be I done, both in the factories and in tb I field. We are glad to note his tribute to 1 the gallant armies of the Tsar, which, iO I spite of their own deficiencies in equip" t ment, managed for more than a year to I absorb the energies of half the GerinaO I and four-fifths of the Austrian forces- I France," he continues, cannot be I expected to sustain much heavier but- I dens than those which she now bears witb I a quiet courage that has astonished an I moved the world." Italy is putting hef I full strength into the fight on her ov/V ft borders. There is only Britain left- ft Is Britain prepared to fill up the gap ?. 'l Is she prepared to cope with all the I possibilities of the next few months-io the West, without forgetting the East?" ft Upon the answer which is given to this I straight question by the British Govern- I ment and the British people will depend I the liberties of Europe for many 3 ft generation. 1 The Munitions Minister lays stress 011 1 the importance of the work of 11 the neI three months He looks to that wor I to decide the issues of the war. FraDkl he declares that he "sees no hope" » we are not allowed to equip our factories and workshops with adequate labour to supply our armies because we must not transgress regulations applicable to no mal times, or if practices are maintaine" which restrict the output of essential vgO material. The nation will be grated for the outspoken terms of this moving appeal, and will be quick to recognist that it imposes a personal duty on us all- It is not enough to suggest to our neigb bours the obvious methods by wbick their energies may be applied to tbe service of the nation's needs. Sucb counsels will be more weighty and more timely when every one of us has dis- covered, for himself or herself, the appropriate task and set to work upon it* In that discovery we look to our N ation Government to direct us aright. But it will beseem none of us to hold back moment longer where our individual path is clear. Only by the putting fortfr °f all our united strength can the de' ficiencies of the past be made good an^ the victories of a glorious future assured- We have asked for a declaration of tbe plain truth. We have received it iØ terms which admit of-no mistake. MaoY have complained of hesitation and delaf which they have laid to the charge 0 Ministers. Let there be neither on 0111 own part now. -u--




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