Britain on war verge
Situation grows in gravity
Acts of war on French frontier
Germany is alleged to have sent an ultimatum to Russia and also to France.
The report comes from Rome but it is denied in London and apparently on authority.
It is, however, asserted that acts of war have been committed by Germany and by Russia.
We published a Nancy telegram stating that a German patrol had accidentally found itself on French territory.
The gravity of such an incident could be realised in the light of the knowledge that great bodies of French and German soldiery were facing each other and that a spark only was needed to create a conflagration which only rivers of blood would quench.
It was later reported that at Pagny sur Moselle the French frontier station, German troops have torn up the permanent way and placed guns in position.
This is French territory on the French bank of the Moselle.
The same has happened at other frontier stations and if these reports are well based, and they are given on the authority of The Times, then Germany and France will be at each other’s throats before many hours have passed.
A report was current in diplomatic quarters in London last night that Germany was asking France whether she intended to remain neutral. This was probably a test question for the purpose of justifying immediate action against France which, as already been suggested in the South Wales Argus, would be in accordance with Germany’s strategic plans in the event of war, dealing with France first and Russia afterwards.
It is apparently believed in Wilhelmstrasse that the conflict with France will be sharp but short and decisive and that in very little time Germany’s forces necessary for France’s humiliation will be available for the sterner work proceeding simultaneously against Russia.
Acts of war are not confined to the Franco-German border. A telegram reached the South Wales Argus last evening suggesting that Russia had actually commenced the invasion of Austria.
This report came from Berlin and as yet there is no further news on this development.
We gave the news as to Russia’s reported mobilisation of her army and navy and Germany’s intention of mobilising in reply yesterday and in Great Britain interest is, of course, centred on the question as to whether this country will be involved.
In this connection it is important to note that, following Canada’s patriotic declaration, the prime minister of New Zealand announced yesterday that his government would ask parliament and the people to do their duty so that the services of an expeditionary force could be given to the Imperial government should the latter be obliged to take part in a general conflict.
Reported ultimatum Russia given twelve hours French neutrality demanded A Semi-official statement is printed stating that the German ambassador announced to the Italian minister for foreign affairs that Germany had sent an ultimatum to Russia and France.
Russia is asked to suspend her order of mobilisation within twelve hours and France is asked to inform the Imperial government within 18 hours if, in the case of war with Russia, France would remain neutral.