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Bights £ zsx&to>.3 REVIEW…


Bights £ zsx&to>.3 REVIEW OF THE YEAR A RECORD OF UNEXAMPLED NATIONAL EFFORT. A review of the year must once again be a record of war, for every brad of the nation's activities during the post twelve months has borne relation, direct or in- direct, to the tremendous oonffiot of nations in which the people of this country and the whole Empire have for nearly three and a- half years had their part. A year ago there were hopes, which seemed at the time to be reasonable, that 1917 might see the sad of the war and the dawning st peace. The close of this year, however, finds the nations still locked in the death-grapple, and there are no proopects at present of such a peace aa Britain and her Allies are striving for and are grimly determined to win. Not yet are there any signs of that dawning. There has been much talk of peace in various quarters. Such peace kites as have been flown from Berlin have shown a Ger- many unrepentant, still bent on a policy of aggression, and loudly declaring she will crush her enemies and compel them to agree to a "German peace." She has been en- couraged by the fact that, for the present at any rate, Russia is out of the war. It is by no means certain, however, that events on her Eastern frontier will go as she wishes. The Pope has put forward peace proposals, to which Germany and Austria have returned replies couched in vague generalities and studiously evading the mat- ters at issue. Count Czernin, the Austrian Foreign Minister, months a.go made a speech in favour of a limitation of armaments and the adoption of arbitration as a means of settling international disputes. The speech was regarded in some quarters as an indica- tion that Germany's chief ally was ready for peace, but with the Austro-German suc- cesses against Italy Count Czernin changed his tune and became as Prussian as t Prussians. It was clearly a case of "When the devil was sick." In this country, too, there has been talk of peace, but it is the talk, of a tiny minority; the great bulk of the nation is more determined tham ever to prosecute the war with energy, to put forth even greater efforts than hitherto, and not to be deterred by any hardship.. sacrifice how continuing the struggle until its anas are crowne d with victory and a just peace is secured. CABINET AND MINISTRY. I Mr. Lloyd George's Ministry has com- pleted a year of office, and in spite of occa- mom wcrasm," notabiy that which followed (fee Premier's remarkable speech in Paris, when he announced the formation of the AlKed War Council, it is still strong in Parliament and in the country. There have been changes in the War Cabinet. Mr. Arthur Henderson, who represented labour, has been succeeded by Mr. G. N. Barnes. The resignation of 9111. Henderson from the War Cabinet was the direct out- oeme of the controversy with regard to the Stockholm Socialist Conference. Mr. Hen- derson had visited Petrograd in the sum- mer, and in July, as Secretary of the Labour Party, he accompanied Mr. Ramsay MaoDonald to Paris on business connected with the proposed Conference. This action of his was criticised in the House of Com- mons, when it was contended I by some speakers that he ought not to continue as Secretary of the Labour Party if he were to remain in the War Cabinet. In the oourse of his reply Mr. Henderson expressed the view that participation in the Stock- holm Conference would help to smooth over Russian difficulties. At a Trade Union Con- ference on August 10 Mr. Henderson spoke in favour of sending delegates, and this Was agreed to by a large majority. On the following day his resignation from the War Cabinet was announced. Is a letter to him the Prime Minister declared that the Cabinet had been taken completely by surprise by his speech and that he had kept back from the Labour Party Conference a communication from the Russian Govern- ment stating that they regarded the Stock- holm Conference as a party concern, and its decisions in no wise binding upon the liberty or action of the Government. On August 21 the Trade Union Congress re- affirmed its decision to send delegates, but by a majority of only 3,000 instead of 1,296,000, as on the first vote. The deci- sion, however, could not be carried into effect, as the Government, like that of France, declined to issue passports. Sir Edward Carson has become a member of the War Cabinet, having been succeeded in July as First Lord of the Admiralty by Sir Eric Geddes. Sir Eric Geddes had gone to the Admiralty only two months earlier as Controller in connection with changes made by the constitution of a Naval War Staff, of which Sir John Jellicoe is Chief. General Smuts is understood to have a seat in the War Cabinet. The appointment of Mr. Churchill as Minister of Munitions in place of Dr. Addison (now Minister in Charge of Reconstruction) gave rise to some hostile criticism. Mr. Austen Chamberlain, who resigned the Secretaryship for India in July as a consequence of the Mesopotamia Commission Report, was succeeded by Mr. E. S. Montagu, who is now on a visit to India. Mr. Neville Chamberlain resigned in August from the Ministry of National Service, which had failed to justify the hopes entertained when it was first estab- lished. His successor is Sir Auckland Geddes, whoso task it n to provide man- power for the Armies without crippling the trades and industries of the country. The Air Board has 'been succeeded by an Air 1 Ministry with Lord Rothermere as Air Minister. I THE SUBMARINE WAR. I According to German calculation Britain was to have been brought to her knees and compelled to sue for peace many months ago as a result of the "unrestricted" sub- marine warfare which the Germans began on February 1, and have continued ever since, every now and then putting forward the date of our downfall by a month or two as the U-boats failed to fulfil expecta- I tions. The policy of sinking at sight with- out warning the mercantile shipping of the Allies and of neutrals as well has resulted in a situation of considerable gravity. We need for the supply of food and raw materials an immense amount of tonnage, while to our own home needs have to be added those of our AHies and our Armies abroad. Again, many ships will be needed to bring men and munitions from America, If we had at our command all the shipping that was afloat at the outbreak of war, with the addition of those which at the normal rate of building would have been launched since, we could ke-e-p every ton of it busily employed. The fact is. however, that more than half of our mercantile tonnage is con. stantly employed for military and naval purposes, ana, owing TO Taxing o. urn from the iiiduvtries to the Army and to difficulties with regard to material, our out- put of new merchant vessels has fallen far below the pre-war standard. This state of things prevailed until well towards the end of the year, but in August the Prime Minis- ter, announcing a speeding-up in the build- ing yards, stated that our output for this year would nearly reach the normal pre- war figure. Within the past few davs we have had the assurance of Sir Eric Geddes that the pre-war figure has been equalled. As to the total tonnage sunk by enemy sub- marines during the year, that can only be a matter of speculation, but it may be men- tioned that in his s peec h just referred to Mr. Liioya ueorge saia tnat aurmg Apru, our worst msnth. we lost 550.00f torn gross, and in July 330,000 tons gross Our nett losses since the beginning of unrestricted submarine mrin had, said tfcs Premier, been under ZSDJiOO tons a mofcth. These I figures, hswtrrer, disclose a sufficiently I serious position. Many statements as to the; destruction of German submarines have i been made during the year; none of them definite, unlœs one exoepts that by the Prime definite, Mkister, that five of the U-boats had been sunk on one day. Sir Eric Geddes, in a speech a week or two ago, said that the menace was held but not mastered. We must have more ships, he said, and appealed for more labour for the shipyards. THE FOOD SHORTAGE. I Largely owing to the sinking of merchani, I tonnage by submarines, there has been a scarcity of several articles of food. Lord Devonport, the first Food Controller, issued a scale of rations pf bread, meat, and sugar, appealing to all to conform to it. This was in February, and although on many occa- sions it has seemed that a compulsory system of rationing would be adopted, we have as yet been saved that, except with regard to sugar, of which each of ua may have half-a- pound a week and no more from the begin- ning of the New Year. Lord Rhondda suc- ceeded Lord Devonport as Food Controller in June, and, announcing that he was going to take the part of the consumer against the profiteer, he proceeded to fix maximum prices for a number of articles of food, of which by now there is quite a lengthy list. The fixing of prices, however, and the limita- tion of profits do not ensure plentiful sup- plies, and during the past few weeks long queues of people waiting outside shops for tea, butter, margarine, sugar and other com- modities have been a common spectacle in the poorer districts of large towns. Bread, the price of which had risen to a- shilling a quartern loaf, is now sold at ninepence, the State making good the financial loss to millers and bakers. In order to save bread we are asked to make every possible use of potatoes. Fortunately there is now a plentiful supply of these, in consequence of the great iaorease in the cultivation of waste ground as allotments in town and village. In the spring there was a pro- nounced scarcity of potatoes, and by an Order of the Food Controller they were only served on two days a week in public restau- rants, until the first of the 1917 crop came to ease the position. In furtherance of the campaign for making the country self-sup- porting in the matter of food, farmers have been appealed to to break up pasture land, and it is hoped that next year may see an additional 3,000,000 acres under cultivation. The Corn Production Bill, introduced by Mr. Prothero, the Minister for Agriculture, and passed into law, is designed to help the production of food. It protects the farmer by guaranteeing him a price for his wheat j for a term of years from 1918 to 1922. By this measure also the minimum wage for agricultural labourers was fixed at 25s. a week. While even greater efforts will be made next year to increase the home produc- tion of food, the duty of most rigorous economy is imposed upon all of us, and < during the past few weeks has been urged in a Food Eoonomy campaign, conducted with great energy by Sir Arthur Yapp. AMERICA IN. I However damaging the blows inflicted upon us aoUL our Allies by the desperate l German resort to unrestricted submarine warfare, it has had for us the very sub- stantial advantage of bringing America into the war, with all her magnificent resources in men, munitions, and money. When Ger- many announced her new policy, coupled with that studied insult to America con- tained in the permission to send one steamer a week to Falmouth, which vessel would be spared by the German U-boat commanders if certain conditions were complied with, it is hardly conceivable that the German Govern- ment can kave expected the United States to remain neutral. It seems likely that they had counted the cost, and had such confi- dence in their piratical policy that they ex- pected it to win the war for them before America could put forth her strength. This has to be added to the long list of German miscalculations, and it is not the least of them. For the submarine has failed to win the war, and America is energetically taking her part. Her Navy began at once after the declaration of war against Ger- many, and has been co-operating usefully with our own on this side of the world. The advance guard of her Army is in France, having passed unscathed through a deadly ambush of submarines on the way over. These earliest of the American soldiers reached France in June, the first battalions of the mighty hosts to follow in the spring and summer of next year. The Americans have adopted compulsory service, but before that happened young America had rponded! with S? t ?n di_d enthusiasm to the nation's call. Besides her naval and military efforts proper, our great Ally is building a mighty fleet of aeroplanes and training airmen. There are many people in the United States as well as in this country who believe that the war- will be finally won in the air. And America means that it shall be won by the Allies. THE GRIP OF THE NAVY. There has been no great naval potion during the year. The German Fleet, though it claimed to have won a victory at the Battle of Jutland in the previous year, has preferred to remain safely behind its mine- barriers rather than come out to seek another "victory" like it. But if there has been no great battle the Navy has been "our sure shield" throughout the year, keeping watch and ward upon the seas. Ite greatest victory of the war was won in August, I 1914, without the firing of a shot, when it swept German commerce from the seas. The position it then secured it has maintained. Germany is cut off from commercial inter- course with the rest of the world, with the exception of the small neighbouring neutral countries, which cannot supply her with a tithe of the things she needs. Her ships lie useless in their harbours, her people suffer ever-increasing hardship and privation, and she finds it more and more difficult to supply the needs of her Armies. This is the result of the grip of the Navy. Our men would, welcome the chance of a fight, but they are content in the meantime to do their duty, > even H tnax Ctuxy ue oury 7- wxrr* to many of them have come a. few crowded minutes of such glorious life as oame to the crews of the destroyers Broke and Swift on the night of April 20, when they caught a flotilla of six German destroyers on their way back from a Channel raid. They were two againat six, but they drove at the Ger- mana with such good purpose that they sank two of them and damaged others.' The tight lasted five minutes only, but in that time the Germans had received much more than they had any stomach for. They scuttled off home, and Channel raids have not been so frequent since. THE WESTERN FRONT. In a record of military operations during 6b& post ¡-.r the Western Front claims first attention. It is on the lins from the Belgian coast to Switzerland that the op- posing armi- are maaaed in greatest* num- bers; that tile German purpose of world- domimaltiqu lias been arrested and will sooner or later be finally defeated. At the beginning eI. the year the contending armies stood where they had been left when winter ended the Battle of the Somme and prevented the Allies from pressing home the victory they had won. The far-reaching nature of thoar success was seeia in the great German retirwnent which began in Febru- ary on the Autre, and extended over the whole of öM Sonne front. The enemy re- tired-to the Hindenburg Line, which had been prepared during the winter, and was deolared to bt enormously strong. In their retreat the Germans left ruin and devasta- tion behind them, levelling towns and vil- lages and destroving every vestige of culti- vation. The British and FreMh advanced. taking Bapaume, Peronne. and u"xy small towns and villages which bad been in Ger- man hands since the early meatihs of the war. The German retirement delayed the opening of the spring campaign of the Allies; bat not for long. CANADIANS AT VIMT JUDGE. On April 9 began the Battle of Arras, when the British attacked on a wide front, capturing in two days 11,000 pnfconers and over 100 guns. Canadians, fighting with magnifioent bravery, carried Vimr Ridge in triumph, and in a few days She British forces were within striking distM»e of Lens and St. Quentin. North-west and north- east of Rheims the Frenoh struck on a front of twenty-five miles, but though they gained some ground and destroyed the Ger- man defensive works by a violent bombard- ment, the- results of the offensive were oon- sidered disappoiDlting by the Frenoh Gov- ernment, and General Nivelle was succeeded in the High Command by General Pefcain, the hero of Verdun. NevertheJsss, during April the French haul of prisoners was over 20,000, with 175 guns; the British tale being nearly as many prisoners and 257 pins. The German casualties were exceedingly heavy, while those of the Allies wero com- paratively light. In May tAie Branch, stormed the Chemin des Dames, sooth of Laon, taking 8,000 prisoners. Thw snccesa had a brillant sequel iu October. The French had faced throughout the summer a German position the great natural strength of which had been vastly enhanced by the enemy's ingenious employment of the quar. ries of the district as a system of under- ground defences. These defences were bombarded by our Allies for weeks with their heaviest guns, but though the enemy knew this must be preliminary to an at- tack upon their poeitiona and concentrated great forces accordingly, they were unable to withstand the fury of the French ad- vance. The result of our Allies' victory was a big German withdrawal on this front. Meanwhile Sir Douglas Haig had con- jj tinned to strike with vigour and success. A fine victory was won at Meesinea Ridge on June 7, the storming of which followed the greatest mine explosion of the war. It had been estimated that to take position would entail a loss of 100,000 t?ou, but here again, owing to the wise dispositions made by the British command, the casualties were comparatively light. j TPRES AND THE RIDGES. The third battle of Ypree opeaad on July 31 with an attack on a front of fifteen miles, the French oo-operating on the British left. The German lines were pene- trated in places to a distance of two miles, and 6,600 prisoners were taken. Bad weather came to help the Germans and hinder the progress of the Allies. In August Langemarck, an important village near Ypres, was taken by the British after heavy fighting, and in the following month further ground was gained and a useful haul of prisoners captured on the Menin road. By a fine effort on a front of eleven miles near Verdun the French in August won back in two days positions the taking of which in 1916 had oost the Germans enor- mous casualties and many months of fight- ing- The Brtish successes so far had secured for them the possession of thres important ridges between Ypres and the Somme. There remained one more—the Ridge of Passchen- daele—which commanded the plains of Bel- gium right away to the towers of Bruges. Towards the end of September the attack on this position began, and Sir Douglas Haig delivered blow after mighty hammer blow at intervals of a few days. Every inch of the ground was contested by the Germans, but they have been driven further and | further back until at the present time nearly the whole of the Ridge is in our possession. j FIGHT FOR CAMBRAI. j One of the most remarkable victories of the war was that won by the British Third Army, under Sir Julian Byng on Novem- j ber 21. Between Arraa and St. Quentin a snrpriae attack, without preliminary bom- =t, was made on a front of ten miles. The advance was ted by a great fieei of Tanks, which made short work of the Ger- man defences. It was brilliantly successful. The Hindenburg line was shattered in several places, and the British advanoed to within three miles of Cambrai. The serious, ness of the defeat for the Germans was shown by the tremendous effort they made to recover the lost ground. In this they were partially successful. Attacking m greater force than at any time for two years on the Western Front, they recap- tured Bourlon Wood, a position which had created in the British line a narrow salient which it was found impossible to hold. It would appear also that to some extent the British had been surprised by the violence and strength of the enemy counter-attack. The matter has been the subject of questions in the House of Commons, and a War Office inquiry is to be held. I THE BLOW AT ITALY. 1 The heaviest military blow struck by the Central Powers during the year was against Italy. During the spring and summer our Ally had been making excellent progress against the Austriana, who, very hard pressed, made xrrsrent appeals to the Ger- -S>wig iw men. I-tn iimg wituci appeaiB naa no effect, but at the end of October, the Germans, having withdrawn many divisions from the Russian Front, went to the aid of the Austrians with 300,000 men. The Italians were heavily attacked on the Upper Isonzo, and, partly owing to weakness in one of their armies, a breaoh was made in the line, rendering necessary a general re- tirement. Before an impetaeus enemy ad- vance the Italians went back to the Taglia- mento. The retreat was excellently man- aged, and the enemy's hopes of crushing the army of our Ally were frustrated, but the Italians had loat in a few days all the terri- tory they had won daring the war, and more besides. German pressure continuing, it was found impossible to stand on the Taglia- mento, and a further retirement was made to the Piave, wherc-, British and French foroes now fighting side by nde with them, they hav for weeks splendidly withstood the heavy enemy assaults. I RUSSIA'S SORRY PLIGHT. Events on the Russian Front have gone unfavourably for the Allies. Following the Revolution in March, weakness and disorga- nisation began to permeate the Russian armies. Discipline vanished, desertions be- came general, and great bodies of troops re- fused to stand against enemy attack. Defeat and disaster were the erder of the day, ex- cept for a brief period in July, when Gene- ral a Korniloff undertook an offensive in Galicia. This began brilliantly, but un- happily the Russians gave war when the enemy attacked in his turn. Guns and munitions were abandoned, and Austria re- covered all the territory she had previously lost. In the north the Germans are masters of Riga, and but for the lateness of the season might have struck at Petrograd. At present Russia, war-weary and misgoverned, is in sorry plight. The men who have seized the reins of power in PetrogTad are idealists, or something very much worse.; They have arranged an armietise with Ger- many for the discussion of peace terms. I THE TAKING OF JERUSALEM. For the Allies the meet sheering news of the war in these later months haa come out of the East. Our misfortunes in Meso- potamia have been magnificently repaired by the army under Sir Stanley Maude, who entered Bagdad on March 11 having recap. tured Kut on his way. The Turks, out- generalkd, out-marched., and out-fought, were unable to arrest the onward march of the British, A brilliant victory was won later in the year at Ramadify on the Eu- phrates, whan a Turkish arajr was war- rounded and captured, bag and baggage. In November the British foroes were a dred miles north of Bagdad. The success of the operations reflected the greatest credit upon Sir Stanlqp Maude, whoje death from cholera on November 18 was a great loss to the Army and the Empire. In Palestine, too, the operations of our forces under the skilful generalship of Sir William Allenby have been highly successful. All Christendom was thrilled by the news that on December 11 the British general had en- tered Jerusalem. The taking of the Holy City was the climax to a series of brilliantly successful movements executed with the ob- ject of surrounding the city and capturing it without bombardment, which must have resulted in the destruction of places held sacred by the whole world. THE RUSSIAN REVOLUTION. 1917 will be memorable as the year of the Russian Revolution and the downfall of Tsardom. The Revolution began in Petro- grad on March 9, with riots arising out of thu acarcity of food. During the following days fighting took place in the streets be- tween the people and the police. The troops refused to fire on the people and went over to the revolutionaries. The Government was distrusted alike by the Duma and the people, and some members of it were sus- pected of having been corrupted by Ger- many. On March 12 the closing of the Duma was ordered by the Tsar. Its reply was in effect a request that the Tsar should ( abdicate. This he did on March 15, on be- half of himself and the Tsareviteh, announc- ing that he had resigned the supreme autho- rity to hi6 brother, the Grand Duke Michael. The Grand Duke accepted the Throne on oondition that his selection was approved by the people, .but later waived his rights, handing over flie sovereign power to the Provisional Government, pending the ) election of a constituent Assembly. Unfor- tunately the Provisional Government proved powerlem to restore order after the up- heaval can&d- by the Revolution, and t hp. condition of Russia has become during the year more and more chaotic. Serious mis- takes were made by those who came into power after the Revolution. Discipline was relaxed in the Army, and, owing to the, absence of strength and stability in the Government, anarchy reigned in domestic affairs. The Army refused to fight and be- came little better than a rabble. There was a mutiny of the Baltie fleet at Kronstadt, and of the Black Sea fleet at Sevastopol. Finland and the Ukraine claimed indepen- dence. In the country the peasants forcibly dispossessed landowners. Though there was a Government nominally in power, the real authority in Petrograd was the Soviet, or Council of Workmen and Soldiers' Dele- gates, who issued their orders to-the Govern- ment and to the Army. The strongest man in Russia appeared to be M. Kerensky, and he exerted himself strenuously to restore discipline in the Army and order in the country. In September a War Cabinet of five members was formed, with Kerensky as Prime Minister, and Russia was proclaimed a republic. The new regime seemed to be hopeful for Russia, but the forces of anarchy were too strong for Kerensky, and after a few weeks of heartbreaking effort his Gov- ernment was overthrown by the Soviet, whose leaders, Lenin and Trotsky, the for- mer as Premier, and the latter as Foreign Minister, seized power, and immediately began to treat with Germany for peace. The news as to the exact position of affairs is conflicting, but as these lines are being written Russians are fighting one another, and the prospects of their fighting again on the side of the Allies are not very bright. THE ZEPPELIN FAILURE. I There have been many air raids on this I country during the year. One, by which apparently the Germans hoped to beat their own record in "frightfulness." ended for them in disaster. On the night of October 19 I ten or more of the great airships crossed the coast-line. They flew at a great height, and. out of a wholesome respect for our defences in guns and aeroplanes stopped their en- I; gines M they approached their objectives, hoping to be able to drop their bombs with impunity. But they lost their way in the fog. It is believed that only one of them reached London, where three bombs were dropped. The engines of the airships froze in the intense cold, and could not be started again. The whole fleet was thus at the mercy of the wfnd, and was driven across the Channel into. France.. where they became I the prey (n tme rnmcn gunners -own airmen. Six of them, at anw rate, never got back to Germany. Moonlit; air raids on south- eastern coast townm and on London began this year, the Metropolis being visited on fine nights during the Harvest Moon pesiod. Other raids took place in- October and December. Great improveraents had been made in the Londsn defences, and in spite of continued at very few of the enemy airmen were able ts penetrans the bawage. There 'was a Strang pubtio demand for re- prisal raids ob Germany, and our airmen have on many occasions bombed mmMtiom works and pfaeee ei military importanee- beyond the enemy's frontier. I THE ALLIED WAR COUNCIL. Among other events of outstanding im- portance must- be mentioned the Irish Con- vention, composed 4 representatives of aft- parties, creeds, aM. interests, who held t^ heir bt meeting in BwMin on July 25, and. have met en mmmf sabaeq-tient occasions under the chairmanship of Sir Heraee Plunkett to consider the future government of Ireland. The Stan Feiners declined an invitation to eomi representatives to the Convention. A Bill for electoral reform has passed through the House of Commons to the House of Lords. It effects many impor- tant changes, chief ei which is the confer- ring of the Parliamentary Tote upon womea of thirty years of age. It also gives votes to eoldiers and.sadUss of nineteen years of age, and reduces the qualifying period for a vote to six months. On November 12 Mr. Lloyd George delivered a remarkable speech in Paris in which ke announoed the creation of an Allied War Council for the whole of the Western front, the Council to be assisted by a Central Military Committee, composed of representatives of France, Sreat Britain, and I. This speech followed upon the Italian retreat, and Mr. Eloyd George spoke strongly of the need for co- ordination among the Allies. He said we had had four wa. going on, instead of re- garding the war as one organic whole. A ?w days later, in reply to Mr. Asquith in the House of Commons, the Premier said the War Council wwtd have no executive power, and that the final decisions on matters of strategy and army movements would rest with t. aeverai Governments. Of Labour disputes during the year two call for reference. The South Wales miners threatened to "down tools" in consequence of the decision to "comb out" the young men who had entered the mines after the out- break of war. A ballot, however, proved the patriotism of the mi»ers, there being a great majority against the proposal. In November a lamentable strike of 50,000; aircraft workers occurred at Coventry. The question at issue was the recognition of the shop stewards. After a week the 41iipute was settled en the understanding that the matter shcftild be settled by negotiations locally. The recognition of the shop stewards has now been conceded kf the employers. WHAT WE ABE FIGHTING FOR. tI Within the last few weeks there has been much discussion as to the war aims of the Allies. In a letter to the "Daily Tele- graph," which has caused embittered con- troversy, Lord Lansdowne urged that these should be definitely stated. It will be in- teresting to note here some declarations on this subject made dnring the year. Speak, ing at Glasgow on June 29, Mr. Lloyd George said that we are fighting for the de- struction of Prussian military power, resto- ration and compensation for Belgium and Serbia, and the freeing of Mesopotamia and Armenia from the Turu and their entrust- raent to more eftpable hands to be ulwifli by the Peace Confers nee. in a speech to Con- gress in December President Wilson said the war will be won when the German people say through their pnsperly accredited repre- sentatives that they are ready for a settle- ment based on justiee and a reparation of the wrongs their wtflers have done. Mr. Asquith, speaking on the 11th of Decem- ber at Birmingham, repeated the declara- tion he made in November, 1914: "We shall not sheathe the sword until the military domination of Prussia is wholly and finally drstroyed." He also declared for the League of Nations and against an economic war after the war. "A dean peace," he aaid— "that is what the peoples of the Allied countries desire."