File No. 763.72/6843
The Minister in Denmark ( Egan) to the Secretary of State
[Received September 15, 5.30 a.m.]
1214. German Social Democratic papers September 13, publish party report 1914–1917:
Strong point is made of party’s fight waged since war’s beginning for principle “no annexation nor indemnity” and says that Conservatives do not consider lives sacrificed in pressing Pan-German agitation. Democratization of Prussia must be pressed sharply, etc. The termination of the war is vital question for Empire. Decisions involved must not rest in hands of higher class, in whom people have no confidence. German people have long had their fill of such guardianship.
Report says further:
Party organization has as consequence of war suffered greatly and that state of siege has resulted in dissolution of party organizations in territory adjacent to frontier. Membership statistics follow: March 1914, 1,085,000, including 174,000 women; 1915, 585,000, 134,000 women; 1916, 432,000, 112,000 women; 1917, 243,000, 66,000 women. Report says subscriptions to socialistic press have sunk from 1,488,000 in 1914, to 762,000 in 1917, but speaks of great popularity of Vorwärts. Mention is made of tendency to discontinue socialistic subscriptions and take local papers after man of household has gone to front. There has also been great reduction in number meetings held. Expenses for last year 976,000, against income 583,000. Party refused, autumn 1914, to lend support to organization of boys’ military companies and laid down in September, 1914, following leading ideas: (1) The party press shall work against hurrah patriotism and chauvinistic inciters; (2) stand against annexation desires; (3) look into reports of war atrocities and the [Page 206] handling of prisoners and wounded; (4) in matters relating to industrial and social politics to act quickly and as leaders.
More comment in papers of 13th regarding Argentine telegrams, but is pretty well standardized. Following lead of Norddeutsche Allgemeine, Vossische says, “It can be assumed that German Minister had no intention of proposing brutal methods,” otherwise he could not have conducted his achieved satisfactory settlement. “Argentine Government and people need not be for one moment in dark as to intentions of America and her allies to make trouble between Germany and Argentine,” and adds that endeavor will fail. America and England wish to cooperate to bring about liberal Social Democratic majority, in the hope that Sweden will join their side either in form of actual hostilities or false neutrality. Agitation means employed by Entente is an imputation that Swedish Conservatives lean towards Germany and, when possible, work for entry of Sweden into war on Germany’s side.
Also that American report encounter between steamer Westwego and a number of submarines is untrue. Many papers print full-page announcement of call to arms of new Fatherland Party.