The Ambassador in Germany (Gerard) to the Secretary of State

My Dear Mr. Secretary: Count Andrassy, leader of the opposition to Tisza in Hungary, has been here for some time. He lunched with us one day and I had a talk with him in German (Oswald Villard please note). Andrassy is rather old and tired but his wife is full of energy and ambition and pushes him on. Andrassy’s father, Prime Minister, was originally a great friend of Germany.

It is possible that Andrassy through German influence may be made Minister of Foreign Affairs instead of Burian. This is to be the first step in a German Coup d’ État to take place on the death of Francis Joseph—the throne successor to be given Austria alone, and Prince Eitel Fritz, the Kaiser’s favorite son, to be King of Hungary with possibly a Czech kingdom in Bohemia.

Andrassy had an audience with the Kaiser here. Andrassy is apparently a friend of America and is also for peace.

Tirpitz is out with a statement practically demanding war with America. I am surprised that the newspapers were allowed to publish it. If it was not allowed to go out of here it should be published in America.

Germany will probably come out with a strong note about Poland, refusing help and saying harvest sufficient. This is not true as to food for babies who cannot live on rye and wheat, but need condensed milk.

The treatment of prisoners is going from bad to worse. The Chancellor and Foreign Office can do nothing against the Military.

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Hoover, Professor Kellogg, and I are all very much discouraged about Polish and other relief questions. The Germans are getting more and more disagreeable about these matters, even tho’ they are for the benefit of Germany. Warwick Greene, of the Rockefeller Foundation, being a new arrival is more hopeful but that will soon wear off.

The trial and execution of Captain Fryatt was a bad bit of work. I am glad to say I suspected some railroading would be done and covered this Embassy well by sending Two notes to F. O. demanding date of trial and right to name an advocate.

. . . The Germans are getting a blacklist of their own. One Barthmann an American who sells American shoes in Germany wanted to get his pass stamped to go to America, and permission to come back, and was told that would only be done if the Chamber of [Page 693] Commerce (Handels-Kammer) consents. You see the connection, no American goods for Germany.

The Jews here are almost on the edge of being “pogrommed”. There is great prejudice against them, especially in naval and military circles, because they have been industrious and have made money. Officers openly talk of repudiating the war loan which they say would only mean a loss for the Jews.

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How about sending me a letter of Credence to the King of Bavaria? Our Ministers used to be accredited there. There is no legal objection, as I am named Ambassador to Germany, a place which does not exist, either politically or geographically. [sic]

I have talked with Zimmermann about it, and he said there was no objection to the letters to those German Govts. to which our Ministers had been formerly accredited. It was merely a matter of friendliness and courtesy. As the Centrum or Catholic party holds the balance of power, is unfriendly to America and centers in Bavaria, I should like to meet Bavarians etc. on a proper footing.

The Germans say they have new and horrible inventions which will end the war soon.

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There was no office copy accompanying the letter from the President to the Emperor, concerning Poland,30 and so I could not know exactly how it was couched. I have rumors that instead of being headed “Great and Good Friend” as has been the custom in the past, it was headed “Your Majesty”, and this has caused quite some feeling. I suggest immediate investigation.

Yours ever

J. W. G[erard]