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From " Battles and Leaders of the Civil War” THE DECISIVE VICTORY AT GETTYSBURG Had Congress been able to put 10.000 regular troops in the field in 1861 there would have been no need of the drafting which was employed prior to Gettysburg. But no sooner had the Army of ’61 been organized and equipped than Congress, terrified at the thought of a standing army, caused each state to stop recruiting at once,
THE ARMY AND THE COMING
THE NEXT ARMY APPROPRIATION BILL ANALYZED-A MILITARY ESTABLISHMENT
FOR ANNUALLY BY THE PRESIDENT
JOHN S. GREGORY
THE Administration is going need one which can protect at least one of
to put before Congress in our coasts for a period of two months. December the most radical But with the Army we must in the military measures of a genera- country at large recognize one fundamental
tion. The proposed legisla- truth which is already abundantly clear tion will be in the form of the annual Army to the Army itself. Our present military and Navy appropriation bills, but the establishment is of no practical value as a framers of each bill, in response to the defense against any first class Power. If nation-wide demand for preparedness, have we are serious about adequate defense for given to them something of the character the country, if the people really believe of emergency measures. They are emer- the Nation and its institutions worth degency measures.
fending, then the Army must be more than It is inevitable but unfortunate that doubled in size, and military affairs in this such measures, of the gravest national country must be put on a new footing, moment, will be approached from some acquire a new dignity and value in popular quarters in a spirit of narrow politics and estimation. sectionalism. This is a time for states. The problem is not, shorn of its political manship and not for politics. And yet aspects, a complex one. It is as simple as already the issue is being confused and an example in elementary arithmetic. misrepresented in efforts to turn its strong And standards to gauge it by, events and tides to personal or party profit. For such conditions to prove it, precedents, exreasons the reluctance of the Administra- amples, warnings are to be found to-day tion to have the specific requirements of all over the rest of the civilized world, the Army and Navy bills generally adver- in China as well as in France; in Belgium tised before their presentation to the next and Russia as well as in Germany, in Congress may be appreciated.
Turkey, or in England. When it comes to actual preparedness For the purpose of national defense, as and questions of adequate defense, the national defense has been defined in this case of the Army is much more difficult war, we have no Army. If we would put than that of the Navy. In the Navy we the country into a condition of prehave a relatively high degree of defense paredness to defend itself we must start generally acknowledged. We have the in now to make an Army adequate to its units in existence. We do not have to in- defense, for it will be too late, after a not duce a new state of mind or create a new impossible war, for us to begin. What ostablishment. All we need do-though does an adequate Army, an adequate this is, indeed, a formidable undertaking- military system, mean? The War Deis to expand what we have, to scale it partment has been devoting itself for the higher in response to a demonstrable need. last six months to the answer to that quesFor either we need no Navy at all or we tion, and it thinks it has found an answer that will appeal to Congress and to the appropriations, but at the very outset people as reasonable. It is not the answer will the country stand paying approxithat the Army believes in as a whole; it mately one fourth of its income for military falls short of what military experts can purposes—with the Navy recommendademonstrate to be logical preparation for tions, a third of its income? the particles national menaces from In approaching this whole question the abroad again I which we ought to be on framers of the bill are trying to adapt our guard. But it hits with a high degree their advocacy of radical measures in the of judgment that middle ground where new legislation to the temper and characour national needs and our national tem- teristics of the country as they now are. perament meet.
We are not dealing with a Prussianized
public opinion; we are not dealing even A MILITARY ESTABLISHMENT OF 500,000
with a national state of mind like that of As the material of the bill shapes in France, created and maintained by the October, roughly the guiding idea is this: constant imminence of the national peril. The unit of change ought to be 500,000 We are dealing with a comparatively inert, men; that is to say, less than that is not a uninformed Americanism. The United material difference from what we now States as a whole has to-day a healthy have. More than that could not be man's intolerance of a doctor or a doctor's profitably used in the present condition prescription. A better figure would be of the country, economically, politically, that of a man who thinks himself to be and otherwise. The military experts can entirely healthy but who, to the skilled easily prove that we need an Army of eye of the specialist, is either tending to1,000,000 men. They under-estimate the ward, or actually suffering from, an undifficulty, in fact the impossibility, in our suspected organic disorder. present civic and economic phases of pre- The European war has been undeniably paredness of getting together and handling a kind of shock to our sense of immunity a body of this size. Its mere mobilization, and security. With its ravished Belgium concentration, and movement present prob- and its desolate Poland, its revelation of the lems which it will take us several years to weakness of the British polity, its examples master. The Germans have been at it for of the united fortitude and efficiency of two generations and hold the formula now France and Germany, it has suddenly as one of their most valuable military brought us next door to Europe. A new secrets. We should squander billions of consciousness is awakening, a new state dollars and a good many lives in trying to of mind is becoming evident with which, make a million volunteers mobile. In for the first time in two generations, it doing so we should almost certainly be may be possible to accomplish something creating more of a national menace than a of a practical effect in the way of generally national defense. We have got to scale understood national defense. down our first measures of preparedness Now the question is how to deal with 10 our limitations as they actually are. that growing state of consciousness. Com
pulsory universal service is one extreme: A STANDING ARMY OF 200,000
letting things go as they now are is the 'The War Department's idea of an in- other extreme. In between somewhere creer in the standing Army always avail- lies the right answer. We must take it for whle is to adjust it to needs which are con- granted that the object is to obtain the tinuing, and actual, on the continent and maximum of results with the minimum of in our insular possessions, and by that is expense in the way of money, time, and meant needs which are short of invasion oratory. Therefore we must recognize by a first-cla foreign Power. Two hun- that some remedies, however desirable or dred thousand men in the regular estab- necessary they may appear from some Hishment will satisfy these continuing points of view, are impossible of immediate Hemia onstabulary needs. That number or early realization. We hear, for example, will not mean doubling the present military a lot of advocacy of the Swiss system, which
is founded upon compulsory military in- unrealized disease of unpreparedness. Now struction in all the educational institutions put yourself in the place of the War Deof the country. Consider what the adop- partment and the Administration. Suption of this system would mean in this pose you are yourself concerned with some country. It means in the first place a loved one's health. You do not go out and Constitutional amendment-and Consti- get a quack with a glib remedy already tutional amendments in this country, prescribed. You do not put your faith without the actual imminence of foreign in labels unless you are sure of what is in invasion or something equally compelling the bottle. You are apt to get some one take years in fruition. Another way of who knows and understands the system adopting either this Swiss system or some of the patient and his history, and who will other Federal formula would be identical therefore adapt remedies to a familiar and legislation in all the states conterminous particular diagnosis. with the Federal Government, an idea In going before the country this autumn which is almost hopeless, as one confronts with recommendations for legislation we the towering clouds of vapor created by all can either (1) chill the whole thing, smother kinds of argument and debate which would the flame just starting, or (2) we can warm arise out of every state capitol in the land. it, kindle it. Why support a measure or Remember, this is a subject upon which measures which cannot be started for prevail the most violent differences of years? Such measures may be easier to opinion, fortified in selfishness, in preju- define and advocate. They make a fine dice, in politics, in religion, in emotion. sound in the ear but they are apt to lead
Consider what happens with a measure only to debate and smoke. Remember which has none of these drawbacks. Take the spirit of the American people so often the matter of negotiable paper or of uni- demonstrated in times past, self-centred, form divorce laws, the first at least being a incredulous, independent; they will not measure almost completely devoid of believe until they have got to believe. politics, or religion, or emotional considera- But when once they believe they come with tions. Yet upon such a desirable measure a rush. To advocate before the Sixtywe have never yet been able to get uniform fourth Congress measures so radical as to interstate legislation. As for the matter excite general opposition would be to kill of divorce, a man who is married in one popular interest in the whole subject of state is a bachelor in another, and a woman national defense. who is respected in one state is considered disreputable in another.
WHAT CONGRESS WILL BE ASKED TO DO It is all very well for your spellbinders to the forthcoming legislation, therefore, flip their fingers and enunciate panaceas: will fall short of the theories of those who, Swiss system, Australian system, Federal like Mr. Roosevelt, Mr. Gardner, or the organization, universal service, etc.; but younger officers of the General Staff, adin endeavoring to accomplish something vocate compulsory measures or a very for the common welfare we have got to large standing Army. On the other hand, consider the existing laws of the land, the they are entirely opposed to the Bryan existing temper and prejudices of the school of do-nothing pacifists.' Hitting people. In other words, we have got to between these two extremes, the Army understand what we have to work with. recommendations ought to appeal to the
Now just as a doctor connotes to the great body of public opinion which is not average healthy man, or the man who con- extreme and which is willing to welcome siders himself healthy, sickness and de- reasonable measures for national safety. pression, and just as such a person lumps The War Department, therefore, will together the agency of remedy with the ask Congress to increase the regular estabdisease and hates them both, so a country lishment to about 200,000 men, and, disLike this is apt to look askance upon those tributed over the various arms of the servwho are now prescribing military preven- ice, this is not a very great increase. It tive measures for our widespread but will advocate the upkeeping of the National Guard as an excellent Federal asset, them as he went back into his business as a kind of Americanized Landwehr. It world, his club, his church, or his local believes that it would be a mistake to try society would be an active agency in the to develop the National Guard on its educational process which must in this present lines of state control, for that country precede anything like national would result merely in the creation of conviction or advocacy of a new idea. forty-eight distinct little armies of widely Such seed would be bound to fall upon varying degrees of efficiency and avail- fallow ground. ability. Every militiaman costs the state
TO TRAIN MORE OFFICERS and national governments nearly twice as much as the regular enlisted man, and To direct this new United States Army he is about half as useful. No sound mili- a great many additional officers will, of tary system could be founded on such course, become necessary. The War Deshifting sands, but the existence of these partment has planned for such an emerunits more closely affiliated by an energized gency. The existing plant at West Point instruction under General Staff direction will admit only of an additional 50 per would make of the various state militias cent. of cadets. This will be asked for an excellent Federal asset.
and in addition some scheme will be de
vised whereby the military schools and AN ANNUAL CALL FOR VOLUNTEERS
the state-endowed colleges that have miliHow, then, leaving the National Guard tary clauses in their constitutions will be out of direct consideration as part of the organized in such a manner as to more available Army establishment on its prac- than supply the deficit. tical basis, as already defined, of 500,000, In this matter of what it takes to make how then are we going to supply the de- an officer the country needs education. ficit? By an act of Congress authorizing The Army service schools must be enthe President to call annually for a mini- larged and increased, for the highest type mum of 100,000 volunteers, to serve for of coördination is necessary between the a period-as yet undetermined-of weeks General Staff and subordinate officers in or months, and to be subject in time of modern war. In the German or French national need to service with the colors for armies a five- or ten-word order is sufficient three years.
to animate an army corps into perfectly Such a system would constitute an 80 reciprocating action, whereas under our per cent. advance over what we have to present system pages upon pages of orders day. It provides a sensible way to create could not accomplish the same result bea body of citizen soldiery of the right kind, cause of the lack of generally understood intensively trained, familiar with the terms and training. rudiments of military life, and adaptable Nor can we rely merely upon service to organization in large units. The plan schools to provide this training. They would not necessitate anything in kind do give a technical experience but we have much more radical than the recent Platts- perhaps more than a proportionate share burg encampment. It would simply mean of that already. The officers in our Army the nationalizing of that idea, which is need men more than they do maps. One much older than its successful operation at of the practical ideas in the new Army Plattsburg. It would mean simply pro- recommendations will be that officers shall viding the means annually wherewith have more service with their troops and 100,000 or more American citizens at that these troops shall be maneuvred and least could respond to the growing idea of associated in much larger bodies organized a military responsibility in their citizen- by territorial divisions. ship. And every one of those men, like If the 100,000 volunteers placed at the the 1,300 who came back from Plattsburg President's call by act of Congress are better men than they went, would become not annually forthcoming, that will not a radiating centre for the dissemination of be the Government's fault nor the Army's wholesome military ideas. Every one of fault. The responsibility will be placed