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THE HORRORS OF WAR. I

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THE HORRORS OF WAR. I The Russo-Japanese war, and the circum- stances in which it was brought to an end, Jhave afforded almost inexhaustible material rdtor reflection, and since the terms of peace -were arranged all sorts and conditions of men have been hastening to represent their -riew of the lesson which the war has taught. And yet, with the exception of the admira- tion which has been evoked by the the :magnanimity of the Mikado—as statesman- like and far-sighted as it was generous- -there is very little that is new in all that iJhas been said. When Count Leo Tolstoy ya that the soldiers neither require nor desire the fighting, that they cannot even •explain why they participate in it, he is only repeating that which was said by Oarlyle. Nearly all that can be said con- cerning the horrors and folly of war has "2>een said by John Bright, who again and .again pointed out that the advantages .which a nation may derive from war do not compensate it for the misery which -the struggle occasions-the loss of life, the Tast expenditure of money, the sufferings of the wounded, and the distress of the bereaved. But, notwithstanding all this, it may at any rate be said of the Russo- Japanese war that it has done more than any previous campaign to cause men to ask themselves whether or not there is a saner method of settling international dis- putes than that of referring them to the arbitrament of the sword, Never before have such prodigious efforts been made to bring a war to a close, and although the glory of their success is mainly President Roosevelt's, yet he could not have succeeded bad he not been supported by the public opinion of the civilised world, and pos- sibly to a larger extent than we are aware of by the influence of some European monarchs and cabinets. And now that it has been found possible to end a war, in the face of almost insuperable difficulties, it will probably be realised that something can be done, by the expansion of public opinion, to prevent wars from beginning.

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