Slicing of the Melon

The Dawn of the "Millennium of Peace"

Addressing German troops in 1900, Kaiser William II encouraged them in the following bold words which might have caused a few brows rising among the rulers from the European Christian past :

"Just as the Huns a thousand years ago, under the leadership of Attila, gained a reputation by virtue of which they still live in history, so may the German name become known in such a manner in China that no Chinese will ever again dare to look askance at a German."[7]

While the leader of the highly civilized German nation sets a simple practical goal to learn from the Huns, a contemporary American ideologist Prof. J.W.Davis adds a theological spin to the subject:

"China needs protection and guidance, even to the point of wise compulsion... China will be delivered from its effete civilization and will come under the power of those motives which have their source in the vital truth of the Christian revelation."[8]

And here is what Senator A. Beveridge of Indiana had to say to his colleagues about the U.S. foreign policy and its underlying principles:

"God has not been preparing the English-speaking and Teutonic peoples for a thousand years of nothing but vain and idle self- contemplation and self-admiration. No! He has made us the master organizers of the world... that we may administer government among savage and senile peoples."[9]

Such were the dominant opinions of the day. Racial superiority over the "savage and senile peoples" coupled with irresistible desire to convert it into cash were viewed as legitimate manifestation of "the motives which have their source in the vital truth of the Christian revelation". It was not a shortage of oxygen, fresh water of arable land, but rather progress in the range of naval vessels, accuracy of fire and destructive force of projectiles, that suddenly rendered the planet too small. Old countries on the world map were rapidly changing their colors, and familiar human fallacies like "the Millennium of peace", "wise compulsion", "end justifies the means", etc. have found amazingly broad practical implementation.

[7] Hannah Arendt. The Origins of Totalitarianism. Meridian Books, 1958, p. 185
[8] R. O'Connor. The Spirit Soldiers. G.P.Putnam's Sons, 1973, p. 28
[9] Ibid., p. 29