John MacLean Internet Archive                                                    Transcribed by the John MacLean Internet Archive

Great Britain and Germany

by John Maclean

Source: Justice 5th December 1908, p.5
Transcription: Ted Crawford
HTML Markup: Brian Reid
Copyleft: John MacLean Internet Archive ( 2007. Permission is granted to copy and/or distribute this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License

The Kaiser interview (second edition), and the article by Herron in the November “Social-Democrat,” seem to lead to opposite conclusions. The interview goes to prove that Germany is preparing for a blow at Britain: Herron concludes that international finance, controlling the Great Powers, would never permit of such an attack.

I stated the Herron argument some time ago in “Justice,” and I still feel convinced it is a sound one. Nobody in our movement would for a moment deny that productive capitalists in Germany wish to cripple Britain. But would they be able to raise the necessary finance? That is a question that only the great money-lenders could answer. These apart, I believe Hyndman might be induced to tackle the question, as the highest authority.

However, granting that the Germans could get the finance, would they get the trade in case of the rout of Britain? To my mind this is as thorny a question as the previous one.

We all know how the Yankees pushed their trade in South Africa during the Boer. War. Their Panama Canal will soon be in use, and this will enable them to trade more freely in the Pacific and the Indian Oceans. Japan will also gain by the opening of the same canal. Even leaving the rise a native capitalism in India (after the expulsion of Britain) and China out of consideration, the flow of the world’s surplus capital into these countries during a European conflict would, together with the opening of the Panama, make the Pacific the centre of commercial gravity. With or, without war, there are numerous signs of this actually happening within next decade.

This possibility must soon have a sobering effect on Germany and Britain, and I will not be surprised to see a Pan-Anglo-Saxon Political Trust to corner the world’s, trade or at least, prevent the Asiatic races predominating.

No doubt, far-seeing economists and politicians in Germany are fully aware of this and will do their best to avert the disappointments even of a successful war.