File No. 763.72119/817

The Chargé in Rumania ( Andrews ) to the Secretary of State


126. Referring to Department’s circular August 20, 4 p.m.1 The Prime Minister in reply requests me to transmit textually the following:

The Pope’s intervention at the hour when Prussia’s military prestige has not yet been destroyed by the efforts of the universe raised against it is dangerous and inopportune. This intervention tends to consecrate Germany’s supremacy which, through the Germans and Hungarians, has at the disposal of Berlin’s policy all the nationalities of the [Hapsburg] monarchy. In fact it seems to be dictated by the wish to save Austria-Hungary, a Catholic monarchy, by injuring the [Page 190] national positions of Italy and of the Roumanian and Slav people, whose greater number is Orthodox. It wants to render sterile our enormous sacrifices in the hope of delivering our brothers from under the Hungarian yoke. Thus, its success would imply the violation of the formal pledge taken by their allies when they solicited our military cooperation, which we have loyally and generously given and which twice already, in the course of this year, has contributed to those fierce fights to keep off from other fronts the concentration of digressive efforts; but besides the rights of Roumania, and from a general point of view, Austria-Hungary in its actual state cannot last, the historical principles on which it has been founded and which have provoked the present war, constitute an anachronism incapable of insuring the peaceful and quiet existence of a modern state. And the centrifugal aspirations of its different people will unfold in the midst of future Europe a danger of fermentation far worse than [that] of which Turkey has been [the focus] through the nineteenth century. Those who wish a lasting peace founded on justice cannot consider with sympathy the Pope’s proposal either in what regards its opportunity or its scope.

  1. Ante, p. 165.