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SI  VIS  PACEM  PARA  PACEM!   If you want peace, prepare for peace! 平和を望むなら平和に備えよ









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THE YOMIURI SHIMBUN, Letters to the Editor, 15 Feb. 2004


Russo-Japanese War

could have been avoided


     I appreciated the series by Yomiuri Shimbun Senior Editor Hiroyuki Fuse on the Russo-Japanese War (“Legacy of war,” Jan. 29-31), which was informative.

    Another interesting feature of the Russo-Japanese War was the great moral and material support the Russians received from the German Emperor, William II, who not only encouraged his cousin, the czar, whom he addressed as “Dear Nicky” to fight the “Yellow Peril,” but also supplied much needed coal to the Russian fleet on its passage from the Baltic to the North Sea.

    The whole bloody war could have been averted if there had been an agreement at the Hague Peace Conference in 1899 to adopt binding international jurisdiction as a means to solving disputes between countries instead of going to war, an effort that Germany vehemently opposed, against the overwhelming majority of the nations participating, and which led to the failure of the Conference.

    In spite of that the International Court of Arbitration was created in 1899, and Japan expressed its willingness to put the dispute with Russia before the Court, which at the time consisted merely of a list of judges.

    Even today, Germany continues to be opposed to collective security, i.e. the organization of peace and security as spelled out in the UN Charter and a number of national constitutions, and it has not submitted to the jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice, an essential component for an effective System of Collective Security – not to be confused with collective self-defense.

Klaus Schlichtmann

Hidaka, Saitama Prefecture