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- left so
the Wa: Department sent them on their the papers had ceased to talk of floods. way to Columbus with full power to take From Parkersburg, W. Va., to New Orcharge of relief operations.
leans, Major Normoyle had the flood relief The next day the Secretary himself and organized, and this with less than 200 offiGeneral Wood left.for the scene
cers, of whom many were non-commisquickly that Major Rhoads, the President's sioned officers — sergeants and corporals. aide, went in a full dress uniform that was State governors, health officers, town offimeant to grace a White House tea. cials, relief committees, the national guard,
“We can't guarantee any schedule,” all did tremendously effective work. But said the railroad officials.
the ability to organize to meet catastrophe "I don't care a continental about lay with the army; and letters from goverschedules," answered the Secretary. "All nors, health officers, and commercial orgaI want is to get to Ohio in the best way nizations in all parts of the flood district you can get me there."
testify that the people who were in the It was a slow trip. The floods delayed stricken country realize what the little the special, but in spite of this he was handful of army officers and doctors did. able to get in touch with the state and Mr. Garrison saw it, too. I think it local authorities and to straighten out the must have been what he saw in the flood channels of communication and relief. emergency that made Mr. Garrison tell But in a way what the Secretary saw was me how much impressed he was that we more important than what he did.
have 3,500 men
the officers of the Almost as soon as Major Normoyle and United States army-trained to emergency Captain Logan left Washington a train of and responsibility, men who can be called supplies left Chicago. The Major tele- upon to do anything from establishing an graphed officials of the Pennsylvania Rail- accurate and efficient custom house at a road urging that it be rushed. It even had Philippine port to revising the laws of right of way over passenger trains. Cuba or to handling epidemics and floods, Officers at all the posts near the disaster and who incidentally at any time are ready were notified to report for duty, and the to risk their lives in any of these services. engineers, all the way from West Virginia To give an added incentive to efficiency to St. Louis, were asked to collect river the Secretary is carrying out a plan to steamers, launches, scows, etc.
make merit the sole criterion of promotion. Of course, the flood in Ohio and Indiana He is sending out letters to all officers of had done its worst before the army officers a certain grade with a set of questions arrived on the scene, but in the trail of the for them to answer. The questions all flood follow epidemics. This year they refer to the fitness of the officers who never came. They were nipped in the bud. have become eligible for promotion to the Down the Muskingum and Scioto came higher grades of the army. In the past hospital relief ships, loaded with doctors there has been talk of "swivel chair” and vaccine for typhoid, small-pox, and officers who attained high rank by their spinal meningitis. They organized the residence in Washington and not by service local health authorities, planned a defence with their commands. Whether this talk against epidemics, left the towns fortified, is justified of the past or not, it ought to and moved on. And while the army doc- have no foundation for the future because tors (the navy and the marine corps were it is not likely that an officer who has long also represented) were organizing the held a pleasant and easy post in Washingdefence against epidemics, Major Nor- ton will get the same endorsement from moyle, with his relief plans, got ahead of his fellow officers as a man who has been the flood. All the way down the Missis- with his regiment
with his regiment — or with as much of sippi, where breaks were likely to occur, his regiment as the present scattered were steamers, launches, and scows. They condition of the army allows. The men rescued thousands of people and the who get the endorsement of their fellow officers provided food and shelter for tens officers will be the men who are recomof thousands — all this going on long after mended for promotion.
The Secretary talks freely, fluently, in the ninety millions theory.: He thinks enthusiastically about the army and he that so far as the army is concerned: a takes a great pride in the efficiency with well equipped enemy could take the which it does all the extraordinary services Philippines or Alaska. Even our coast that it is called upon to perform. But cities are not protected, Jn answer to like everyone else who has looked at the a recent article about our; coast defences question seriously he realizes that it is Mr. Garrison was frank: enough to tell not prepared for war. It is truly an army
the blunt truth about them: 0. of peace. That might not be as bad a situation as it is if it were not for a peculiar security through fortifications alone" are des
All systems of coast defense which look to
tined to be of little usé in time of real war. cherish, the delusion that if you hand an
The fortifications are only a part of the defense, American a rifle you have made him a
and while they are lentirely adequate for the thoroughly competent soldier.
purpose for which constructed, they are fixed Mr. Garrison explains this state of defenses, effective only over the area within mind in some such way as the following, range of their guns; beyond this range an
, for he is fond of making his points by enemy is entirely free to operate, unless he is concrete illustrations or anecdotes:
opposed by mobile troops, You will see a man in the morning and
It was to demonstrate the fact that the he will tell you that he is against war
great mass of fortifications guarding Boston
was helpless to prevent the capture of that city expenditures. He doesn't believe in mili
by land attack that the Massachusetts man tarism. He does not know much about
Quvres of 1909 -werë “held. The attacking the army and he does not want to know
troops were landed at New Bedford, and any more. In the course of the day he occupied Boston from the rear. This is feasible hears that some of his Mexican invest- at any of our seacoast: cities, unless the coast ments have been disturbed by the revolu- defenses are supplemented by an adequate tion in that country. When you meet mobile force. The well-trained and armed him in the evening he is all excited.
soldier on his feet is the determining element, "What's the Government thinking about?"
and any country which trusts itself to defenses he says. “We'll have to go in there and
unsupported by a mobile army is destined
to disaster. straighten things out."
You remind him that even if we should The Secretary knows that we have no wish to intervene in Mexico, we are not mobile army. That part of our army very well prepared to do so.
which ought to be mobile is normally “I don't know about the army," he'll fixed in small detachments in an absurd answer, “but there are ninety million people number of posts, though at present behind Uncle Sam. I guess that's enough." on account of the Mexican situation there
Not an hour after Mr. Garrison told me is a mobile force of about 12,000 men at this I had it amply verified. I took Galveston. Both for economy and effilunch with a well informed resident of ciency many of the army posts should Washington. Something in the despatches be abandoned and the troops concentrated from Tokio had angered him. He thought into tactical units and kept in a state of
. that there was no more reason why we preparedness. According to the military should be anxious to mollify public opinion plans of the General Staff of the army, in Japan than there was for them to about 80 per cent. of the present posts mollify public opinion here. He was should be abandoned. But this measure quite belligerent. Remembering the Sec- does not meet with the approval of Conretary's story, I asked him:
gress. The places in which these many “If we should have a war what should posts are situated do not want to lose we do for an army? Ours is not prepared them. Every state is bent upon keeping to fight.” “Fight them with ninety all that it has. This situation Mr. Garrimillion people," he answered, “what son inherited from his predecessor. When more do you want?"
I asked him what he was going to do about The Secretary does not believe much it he reminded me that the doing had
be authorized by Congress. But he ad- pride in the showing of the Illinois regimitted that he had been thinking over a ments in rifle practice or maneuvres or solution. He lighted a cigarette and in in war; perhaps in every state some some such colloquial manner as this enthusiasm for the army would grow up. pointed out a path of procedure:
Whether a plan based upon this line Suppose we consolidate into one all of reasoning will popularize the army or the posts in every state. That is a big whether it will have to be done some reduction to begin with. Suppose we other way, one thing is certain: there is have in every one of the consolidated at present an almost unlimited field of posts enough troops to make an economi- popular ignorance about the army. cal and effective tactical unit for military It is not unusual to find men who know purposes. Suppose we locate the posts in a fair amount about the navy. Almost adjoining states so that their garrisons can everyone knows the name of a half dozen quickly and easily get together for man- battleships and remembers the picture of euvres or mobilize for active service. It the Governor's daughter or niece christenis not a perfect military plan? Perhaps ing the ship named after his state. not, and neither is this a perfect military He may even have been aboard and seen country. It is not even a perfected plan the silver service which the state presented. at all, but in general on some such basis But not one man in a hundred knows we might reduce the cost and improve the what regiments are on the Mexican border serviceability of the army. Even the ini- or could tell whether there is such a thing tial expense of the consolidated posts would as the forty-eighth infantry. mean little actual outlay, for the profits It is interesting to see a man speculating from the sale of the abandoned forts upon the constructive possibilities of a
a should almost or entirely take care of it. task when the routine and the details
These state posts fall naturally into of his business are as multifarious as another scheme about which the Secre- those of the Secretary of War. A tary thought out loud a little.
It is a man in that position really holds three scheme to popularize the army. This he
This he cabinet positions. He is Colonial Secreconsiders is one of the particular tasks tary, Minister of Public Works, and of his office. It is a subject which makes Secretary of War.
Secretary of War. The direction of the him a little more animated than usual. insular governments of the Philippines, He swung round in his chair and pointed Guam, and Porto Rico is a part of his task. in the general direction of the Washington The dams and locks and levees on the baseball field and then he explained the navigable rivers all over the United States connection of "the Senators" with the are built by the United States army United States army. Every afternoon engineers, and the dredging of our harbors out in the baseball park are four or five and the building of breakwaters is in their thousand people yelling themselves hoarse charge. The Panama Canal Zone and for Washington. None of the men they all the operations on it are under the are yelling for are Washingtonians. Prob- jurisdiction of the War Department. I ably half of them never saw Washington sat in the Secretary of War's office once, until they were hired to play ball. But when Mr. Stimson was Secretary, while they have Washington on their shirts a half-dozen questions came in to him to and Washington's interest and support be settled. They varied from legal points is theirs. The Secretary has a notion in the Philippines to railroad rates on the that if every state had a regiment or two Isthmus. None of them had anything in its post, these organizations might get
to do with the army. The same is true the sympathy and interest of at least one now. A man who simultaneously became state and the army would have forty- the president of the biggest engineering eight chances of popularity whereas now corporation in the world and the legal it is so scattered that it makes little appeal adviser to the King of Siam would have to the public imagination anywhere. Per- no more heterogeneous duties than fall haps Illinois, for example, would take upon our Secretary of War.
A not impossible turn of fortune might a sincere desire to have its aims and have made Mr. Garrison either the head actions known to the public. His office of a great corporation or legal adviser to door is open to the press. He takes a the court of Siam. Many able lawyers good deal of trouble himself to satisfy have become the receivers of great cor- all legitimate inquiries about the affairs porations and run their affairs, and Ameri- of the War Department. But there is can lawyers have been advisers to the no publicity man in the office, no one Siamese court.
whose business it is to watch for events As it was, a turn of fortune, most unex- in the department that properly would pected to him, gave Mr. Garrison a task
make news. about the size of both of these with the There are a good many men in Washingadministration of the army thrown in. ton who become famous because of their
Our insular possessions came into our peculiarities. They maintain outward and hands through the army. The civil gov- visible characteristics on which the public ernment which succeeded the military mind is fixed. It is easier, for example, governors, and which still maintains about to make cartoons of Senator La Follette 12,000 troops in the Philippines, is under and Speaker Clark than to make one of Mr. the jurisdiction of the Secretary of War. Underwood. Everyone knows that the Not a great deal of fighting goes on there Senator wears his hair pompadour and now but in this connection Mr. Garrison that the Speaker has a Missouri hat. told me an interesting story that Briga- There is nothing peculiar about Mr. Undier-General Scott had told him:
derwood. He has no intentional or inadThe Sultan of Sulu came to New York. vertent advertising eccentricities. Neither (The Sultan came from the Mohammedan has Mr. Garrison. He is a well built man tribes of the Southern Islands from whom of medium height, with a little more flesh the Spaniards and later the Americans than he would have if he could have have defended the more numerous but found time to play golf more often than he less warlike Tagalogs and Visayans who has. But he is, nevertheless, a vigorous make up the main population of the looking man. He is clean shaven, wears Philippines and among whom are the gold spectacles, and he has a pleasant educated and politically ambitious.) Some but business-like manner. He is the kind reporter asked the Sultan what would of man you would expect to find in an happen if the Americans should withdraw inner office on Broad Street, New York, or from the islands. The Sultan, with out- La Salle Street, Chicago. It is interesting stretched hands and a smile, said:
to see such a man transferred to Wash“We take 'em."
ington surroundings. For, although his At present, however, the Philippine predecessors were New York and Chicago problems are chiefly legal and adminis- lawyers, their presence did not give the trative, not military, and the same is true War Department any metropolitan apof the questions that the Porto Rican pearances. As I went across the open Government refers to Washington. It is square to the old building of 'gingerbread" because of the great amount of this legal architecture that houses the State, War, work from the foreign possessions that the and Navy departments, the big stone Secretary of War is, almost necessarily, steps were crowded with clerks and a lawyer.
colored messengers watching the parade In large affairs, even in private cor- of Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show go by porations, nowadays it is wise to have a Near the entrance of the building is an ingenerous attitude toward the gatherers formation desk and, every twenty or of public news. In the government ser- thirty feet beyond, down the corridors is vice, of course, it is more necessary than a little table with a Negro messenger elsewhere, for the Government's work sitting by it. The Secretary's outer office is the public's business. Mr. Garrison is is open to the public. Every five or ten in thorough sympathy with what seems minutes a guide brings in a group of sightto be the policy of this Administration – seers, and in a sing-song voice points out
the clock that has served the War De- want merely to draw my breath and my partment since 1853, the flag that was salary here and have the honor of being fired on at Fort Sumter, General Wash- in the Cabinet. When I leave here I ington's sword, and the paintings of various' want to leave things better than I found generals and former secretaries. There is no them." air of active business, common in the offices I repeated this to one of the dozen or of our great cities, until you penetrate two men who had had an opportunity to to the Secretary's inner room. Even that see Mr. Garrison intimately in Washington. room has not that trim, efficient look “More than that,” was his comment. that the offices of presidents of industrial “If Mr. Garrison does not think he is concerns usually have. But Mr. Garrison doing a good service he will leave. I don't himself is business-like. He has a pleasant think he cares at all about the honor and cordial manner, but it does not delay part of it.
. him in getting down to the business of the "A previous President on one occasion occasion. If he sees what the point of removed a man from a minor Federal office your remarks is going to be before they for instigating a newspaper article unare fully developed he will answer with- favorable to the President's party. The out waiting for the end, and similarly, removal was made over the protest of the when he is outlining his own ideas, he will Cabinet officer under whom the offender stop and say:
served. It is inconceivable that Mr. Gar“You see where that would lead? I rison would remain in office after such an do not have to develop it any further.” occurrence, just as it is inconceivable that
While we were talking, General Wood Mr. Wilson would issue such an order.” came in with a paper for the Secretary. But this kind of thing the Secretary In the friendly little conversation that would not say about himself. There followed, Mr. Garrison said that he had is nothing spectacular about him - not heard some Washington gossip to the the faintest trace of demagoguery. Even effect that the order to stop the use of his cordial welcome of newspaper repreinfluence to advance the rank of officers sentatives, I think, is more duty than had been instigated by General Wood. pleasure. He considers it a part of his That caused a little smile from both of task, and when he talks about what he them, for the truth is, the General knew hopes to do in the administration of the nothing of it until it was issued. Of War Department he mentions himself in course, he is in sympathy with it, but his relation to the problems before him. people make a mistake in judging the new He does not speak of the problems in Secretary who think that he is in any way their relation to him. kin to a dummy director.
Indeed, I do not think it is likely that The praise or the blame for the adminis- he could play to the galleries if he wanted tration of the War Department while he to. He is the kind of man who becomes is Secretary will belong to Mr. Garrison: a large figure in the public imagination and in saying that there can be no dis- because of what he has accomplished and paragement of General Wood, or of Colonel not from any spectacular or dramatic Goethals, or of the Governor of the instincts, or from any personal peculiariPhilippines, or of any other responsible ties. He looks like what he is, an able man whose work is under the jurisdiction lawyer from the eastern part of the of the War Department.
United States. He is more like a lawyer What the Secretary has already done than like the popular idea of a judge. He and the plans that he has for the future has been a judge and has the judicial temlead one to believe in a remark Mr. Garri- perament, but he accents the deciding son made in answer to a reference to his part of the judicial functions. Weighing new honors.
matters is not a hobby with him, but a He said rather impatiently: “I don't means to an end.