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UNIVERS



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lOE^AT



ADVENTURE



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THE LIBRARY

OF

THE UNIVERSITY

OF CALIFORNIA

RIVERSIDE



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DOROTHY G. PHILLIPS




BOOKS BY THEODORE ROOSEVELT

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THE GREAT ADVENTURE




J-'rom a photograph, copyright by Pirie MacT'onold

THEODORE ROOSEVELT



THE
GREAT ADVENTURE

PRESENT-DAY STUDIES IN
AMERICAN NATIONALISM



BY

THEODORE ROOSEVELT



NEW YORK

CHARLES SCRIBNER'S SONS

1918



C*J.



COPYWCHT, 1918, BY

CHARLES SCRIBNER'S SONS



Published November, 1918



COPYRIGHT, 1817, 1918, BY THK METROPOLITAN MAGAZINE CO,




TO

ALL WHO IN THIS WAR HAVE PAID WITH
THEIR BODIES FOR THEIR SOULS' DESIRE



FOREWORD

We should accept from Germany what our
allies have wrung from Austria and Turkey —
unconditional surrender. This ought to be our
war aim; and until this war aim is achieved the
peace terms should be discussed only with our
alHes and not with our enemies. In broad
outHne, it is possible now to state what these
peace terms should include: Restitution by Ger-
many of what she has taken and atonement for
the wrong she has done; her complete military
withdrawal from every foot of territory outside
her own Hmits; and the giving not of *' au-
tonomy" — a slippery word used by slippery
people to mean anything or nothing — but of
complete independence to the races subject to
the dominion of Germany, Austria, and Tur-
key (which means the creation of the free com-
monwealths of the Poles, Czecho-Slovaks, and
Armenians, and therefore the expulsion of the
Turk from Europe), the absolute freeing of Rus-
sia from the German stranglehold, and aid gen-
erously furnished by us to Russia, the retention



viii FOREWORD

by England and Japan of the colonies they have
conquered, the restoration and indemnification
of Belgium, the return of Alsace-Lorraine to
France, the creating of a Jugo-Slav common-
wealth, the joining to Italy of Italian Austria
and to Roumania of Roumanian Hungary.

When the manuscript of this volume was
turned in, and even up to the time of the revi-
sion of the last galley-proofs, it seemed that,
as regards the major part of what is above set
forth, I was taking substantially the position
to which, after much hesitation, much indeci-
sion, and much talking every which way, the
administration was tending steadily to come.
Apparently our government intended to fight
the war through to the peace of overwhelming
victory. Then, without warning, and apparently
without consultation with our allies, the Presi-
dent entered into a correspondence or negotia-
tion about peace terms with Germany, which
looked as if we had gotten back to the bad old
days when note-writing and conversation were
considered by Mr. Wilson as adroit and suffi-
cient answers to the sinking of the Lusitania
and similar German crimes. It was the atti-
tude of an untrustworthy friend and an irreso-



FOREWORD ix

lute foe, and If accepted by the nation would
have caused our people to forfeit their own
self-respect and the respect of all other nations.
However, the outburst of protest against the
President's action was such that he promptly
reversed himself again, and after having Invited
Germany's offer, repudiated it with indigna-
tion. We all trust that he will persevere in
this attitude; but we do not profess any cer-
tainty of conviction in the matter.

The Germans, while they are conducting
their mihtaiy retreat with formidable effi-
ciency, are carrying on an adroit peace offen-
sive, designed to save Germany from wreck
and leave her an unpunished menace to the
future of the world. They hope to succeed
by appealing to those leaders of the Allies
(especially in the United States) who are in-
firm of purpose and wavering of will.

What Is needed at this time is not the com-
pounding of felony by the discussion of terms
with the felons, but the concentration and
speedy development of our whole strength so
as to overwhelm Germany in battle and to dic-
tate to her the peace of unconditional sur-
render.



X FOREWORD

Moreover, our people ought emphatically to
repudiate the "fourteen points'* offered by
President Wilson as a satisfactory basis for
peace. We ought likewise to repudiate all of
his similar proposals (some of his utterances
have been satisfactory, but all of these have
been contradicted by his other utterances, and
no one can be sure which set of utterances will
receive his ultimate adherence). Some of these
fourteen points are mischievous under any in-
terpretation. Most of them are worded in lan-
guage so vague and so purely rhetorical that
they may be construed with equal justice as
having diametrically opposite meanings. Ger-
many and Austria have eagerly approved these
fourteen points; our own pro-Germans, paci-
fists, socialists, anarchists, and professional in-
ternationalists also approve them; but good
citizens, who are also sound American nation-
alists, will insist upon all of them being put
into straightforward and definite language —
and then will reject most of them.

Under these conditions I do not know what
action our government may now be secretly
planning or what course it will follow even in
the immediate future. But no matter what



FOREWORD xi

this action may be, the course' of conduct advo-
cated in this volume is in my judgment the
only course that can with honor and safety be
followed by the American people. Our present
business is to fight, and to continue fighting
until Germany is brought to her knees. Our
next business will be to help guarantee the
peace of justice for the world at large, and to
set in order the affairs of our own household.

Theodore Roosevelt.

Sagamore Hill, November 6, 1918.



CONTENTS

CBAFTER PAGE

I. THE GREAT ADVENTURE i

II. THE MEN WHO PAY WITH THEIR

BODIES FOR THEIR SOULS' DESIRE 9

III. THIS IS THE PEOPLE'S WAR; PUT IT

THROUGH 31

IV. THE SQUARE DEAL IN AMERICAN-

ISM 39

V. SOUND NATIONALISM AND SOUND

INTERNATIONALISM 64

VI. THE GERMAN HORROR 86

VIL SERVICE AND SELF-RESPECT 93

VIII. THE ROMANOFF SCYLLA AND THE

BOLSHEVIST CHARYBDIS loi

IX. PARLOR BOLSHEVISM 119

X. TELL THE TRUTH AND SPEED UP

THE WAR 129



xiv CONTENTS

CHAPTER PACE

XL BROOMSTICK PREPAREDNESS 143

XII. THE GOSPEL OF SPILT MILK 161



APPENDICES:




A. Acknowledgment


171


B. Disposition of the Nobel Peace
Prize Fund


173


C, Put the Blame Where It Belongs


179


D. The Terms of Peace; Speech on
Lafayette Day


190


E. Straight-out Americanism


197



THE GREAT ADVENTURE



CHAPTER I
THE GREAT ADVENTURE

ONLY those are fit to live who do not
fear to die; and none are fit to die
who have shrunk from the joy of Hfe
and the duty of Hfe. Both Hfe and death are
parts of the same Great Adventure. Never
yet was worthy adventure worthily carried
through by the man who put his personal
safety first. Never yet was a country worth
Hving in unless its sons and daughters were
of that stern stuff which bade them die for it
at need; and never yet was a country worth
dying for unless its sons and daughters thought
of life not as something concerned only with
the selfish evanescence of the individual, but
as a Hnk in the great chain of creation and
causation, so that each person is seen in his
true relations as an essential part of the whole,
whose Hfe must be made to serve the larger
and continuing life of the whole. Therefore
it is that the man who is not willing to die,
and the woman who is not willing to send her

I



2 THE GREAT ADVENTURE

man to die, in a war for a great cause, are not
worthy to live. Therefore it is that the man
and woman who in peace-time fear or ignore
the primary and vital duties and the high hap-
piness of family life, who dare not beget and
bear and rear the life that is to last when they
are in their graves, have broken the chain of
creation, and have shown that they are unfit
for companionship with the souls ready for
the Great Adventure.

The wife of a fighting soldier at the front
recently wrote as follows to the mother of a
gallant boy, who at the front had fought in
high air like an eagle, and, like an eagle, fight-
ing had died:

I write these few lines — not of condolence for
who would dare to pity you ? — but of deepest sym-
pathy to you and yours as you stand in the shadow
which is the earthly side of those clouds of glory in
which your son's life has just passed. Many will
envy you that when the call to sacrifice came you
were not found among the paupers to whom no
gift of life worth offering had been entrusted. They
are the ones to be pitied, not we whose dearest are
jeoparding their lives unto the death in the high
places of the field. I hope my two sons will live
as worthily and die as greatly as yours.



THE GREAT ADVENTURE 3

There spoke one dauntless soul to another!
America is safe while her daughters are of this
kind; for their lovers and their sons cannot
fail, as long as beside the hearthstones stand
such wives and mothers. And we have many,
many such women; and their men are like
unto them.

With all my heart I believe in the joy of
living; but those who achieve it do not seek
it as an end in itself, but as a seized and prized
incident of hard work well done and of risk
and danger never wantonly courted, but never
shirked when duty commands that they be
faced. And those who have earned joy, but
are rewarded only with sorrow, must learn
the stern comfort dear to great souls, the com-
fort that springs from the knowledge taught
in times of iron that the law of worthy living
is not fulfilled by pleasure, but by service,
and by sacrifice when only thereby can service
be rendered.

No nation can be great unless its sons and
daughters have in them the quahty to rise
level to the needs of heroic days. Yet this
heroic quality is but the apex of a pyramid of
which the broad foundations must solidly rest



4 THE GREAT ADVENTURE

on the performance of duties so ordinary that
to Impatient minds they seem commonplace.
No army was ever great unless Its soldiers pos-
sessed the fighting edge. But the finest natural
fighting edge Is utterly useless unless the sol-
diers and the junior officers have been through
months, and the officers of higher command
and the general staff through years, of hard,
weary. Intensive training. So likewise the
citizenship of any country Is worthless unless
in a crisis it shows the spirit of the two million
Americans who In this mighty war have eagerly
come forward to serve under the Banner of
the Stars, afloat and ashore, and of the other
mllHons who would now be beside them over-
seas If the chance had been given them; and
yet such spirit will In the long run avail nothing
unless in the years of peace the average man
and average woman of the duty-performing
type realize that the highest of all duties, the
one essential duty, is the duty of perpetuating
the family life, based on the mutual love and
respect of the one man and the one woman,
and on their purpose to rear the healthy and
fine-souled children whose coming Into life
means that the family and, therefore, the na-



THE GREAT ADVENTURE 5

tion shall continue in life and shall not end
in a sterile death.

Woe to those who invite a sterile death;
a death not for them only, but for the race;
the death which is insured by a Hfe of sterile
selfishness.

But honor, highest honor, to those who fear-
lessly face death for a good cause; no Hfe is
so honorable or so fruitful as such a death.
Unless men are willing to fight and die for
great ideals, including love of country, ideals
will vanish, and the world will become one
huge sty of materialism. And unless the women
of ideals bring forth the men who are ready
thus to live and die, the world of the future
will be filled by the spawn of the unfit. Alone
of human beings the good and wise mother
stands on a plane of equal honor with the
bravest soldier; for she has gladly gone down
to the brink of the chasm of darkness to bring
back the children in whose hands rests the
future of the years. But the mother, and far
more the father, who flinch from the vital task
earn the scorn visited on the soldier who flinches
in battle. And the nation should by action
mark its attitude alike toward the fighter in



6 THE GREAT ADVENTURE

war and toward the child-bearer in peace and
war. The vital need of the nation is that its
men and women of the future shall be the sons
and daughters of the soldiers of the present.
Excuse no man from going to war because he
is married; but put all unmarried men above
a fixed age at the hardest and most dangerous
tasks; and provide amply for the children
of soldiers, so as to give their wives the as-
surance of material safety.

In such a matter one can only speak in
general terms. At this moment there are hun-
dreds of thousands of gallant men eating out
their hearts because the privilege of facing
death in battle is denied them. So there are
innumerable women and men whose unde-
served misfortune it is that they have no chil-
dren or but one child. These soldiers denied
the perilous honor they seek, these men and
women heart-hungry for the children of their
longing dreams, are as worthy of honor as the
men who are warriors in fact, as the women
whose children are of flesh and blood. If the
only son who is killed at the front has no brother
because his parents coldly dreaded to play
their part in the Great Adventure of Life, then



THE GREAT ADVENTURE 7

our sorrow is not for them, but solely for the
son who himself dared the Great Adventure
of Death. If, however, he is the qnly son be-
cause the Unseen Powers denied others to the
love of his father and mother, then we mourn
doubly with them because their darling went
up to the sword of Azrael, because he drank
the dark drink proffered by the Death Angel.
In America to-day all our people are sum-
moned to service and sacrifice. Pride is the
portion only of those who know bitter sorrow
or the foreboding of bitter sorrow. But all
of us who give service, and stand ready for
sacrifice, are the torch-bearers. We run with
the torches until we fall, content if we can
then pass them to the hands of other runners.
The torches whose flame is brightest are borne
by the gallant men at the front, and by the
gallant women whose husbands and lovers,
whose sons and brothers are at the front. These
men are high of soul, as they face their fate
on the shell-shattered earth, or in the skies
above or in the waters beneath; and no less
high of soul are the women with torn hearts
and shining eyes; the girls whose boy lovers
have been struck down in their golden morning.



8 THE GREAT ADVENTURE

and the mothers and wives to whom word has
been brought that henceforth they must walk
in the shadow.

These are the torch-bearers; these are they
who have dared the Great Adventure.



CHAPTER II

THE MEN WHO PAY WITH THEIR

BODIES FOR THEIR SOULS'

DESIRE

IN a great war for the right the one great
debt owed by the nation is that to the
men who go to the front and pay with
their bodies for the faith that is in them. At
the front there are of course of necessity a few
men who, from the nature of the case, are not
in positions of great danger — as regards the
staff and the high command, the burden of
crushing responsibiHty borne by such men
outweighs danger. But as a rule the men who
do the great work for the nation are the men
who, for a money payment infinitely less than
what they would earn in civil life, face terrible
risk and endure indescribable hardship and
fatigue and misery at the front. These men
include the air fighters, who run the greatest
risk of all; and the fighting foot-sluggers, the in-
fantry, — the "doughboys, — " and the marines,

9



10 THE GREAT ADVENTURE

and the machine-gun men, who take the ter-
rible punishment when the tremendous thrusts
are made; and the engineers and the men in
the tanks and the men with the field-guns and
the heavier guns, and the men who manage
the gas — the work of all of whom is absolutely-
indispensable and who do it in hourly peril
of their lives; and the doctors and stretcher-
bearers who suffer the same dangers as the
men to whom they bring succor; and the
men who bring up the munition-trains — in
short, all who under fire join in the exhausting
and perilous labor which brings victory. These
are the real heroes. These are the men who
do the one great and indispensable task which
entitles them forever to be honored by all true
Americans.

The rest of us behind the lines are merely
supplementing their work. I have no patience
with the well-meaning, silly persons who now
and then announce that "saving will win the
war" or that "money will win the war" or
that "food will win the war." Let these good
persons speak the truth and say that Liberty
Bonds and Thrift Savings Stamps and the
production of food and munitions and the



THE MEN WHO PAY ii

practice of economy and the work done through
organizations like the Red Cross will all help
to win the war and are indispensable. But the
war will be won by the fighting men at the
front ! Every other activity in this nation is
merely auxiliary to theirs.

From General Pershing down the men of
our army overseas have won for themselves
deathless fame and have reflected the highest
honor upon this nation. I know personally
of division, brigade, and regimental commanders
who, in addition to high valor, have shown an
efficiency which puts them on a level with the
very best men of their rank in any service in
the world — I do not mention their names, merely
because to do so would probably do an injustice
to others equally good about whom I do not
know. As for the battalion and company and
platoon officers and non-commissioned officers
and rank and file, I do not think it is untruthful
or exaggerated to say that on the whole when
our troops have finished their training they
stand a little above the average of any other
army in the world to-day. The seven or eight
American divisions who did the murderous
fighting in July and August during Foch's



12 THE GREAT ADVENTURE

great counter-offensive established a record
such as only the few very finest troops of any
other army could equal, and which could not
be surpassed. Probably in our own history
nothing has ever quite come up to it, save in
certain actions during the Civil War. The
endurance, the valor, the efficiency, the fight-
ing edge of these men could not be surpassed.
Their losses correspond to their achievements.
(In the infantry regiment in which two of my
sons served, the colonel, the lieutenant-colonel,
the three majors, and almost all the captains
and lieutenants were killed or wounded; and
the loss was proportionally almost as great
among the enlisted men.) In addition to these
divisions there were two or three times as many
other divisions, across the seas or about to
cross the seas, who were composed of as fine
fighting material, and who by this time are
probably as efficient, but who had not at that
period been sufficiently trained to do the
heaviest assault work. But they have been
trained now; Pershing's army began its great
thrust, as a separate army, about a year and
a half after we entered the war. The actual
management of our oversea army work is now



THE MEN WHO PAY 13

excellent; and the quality of our troops is
really extraordinary.

The noted French sociologist Gustave Le
Bon writes me:

My compatriots have discovered an America of
which they had no idea. In addition to the hero-
ism of her soldiers she has revealed aptitudes for
scientific method and organization, the fruits of
her education, which have awakened our admira-
tion. Harbors, railroads, factories rise as if by
magic. Every one asks how such men were trained
and instructed.

Our men include Americans from every
section of the country and from every walk
of life. The son of the railroad president and
the son of the brakeman, the college graduate
and the man who left a plough-tail at the end
of the furrow, or threw down his pick and shovel
or his ax and saw, all stand on the same plane,
and do the same work and face and meet the
same dangers. The son of the wealthy man
who has been reared softly, and the son of the
man who has every day eaten his bread in the
sweat of his brow, look death in the eyes with
the same stern courage and do their hard grind-



14 THE GREAT ADVENTURE

ing work with the same grim efficiency. In
the intervals of work they are light-hearted
and they enjoy themselves greatly, snatching
the pleasures with an added zest, because peril
is so very near. Protestant and Catholic, Jew
and Gentile, men of old native American stock,
and men whose parents were born abroad or
who themselves were born abroad — no dis-
tinction whatever can be made among them
as they do their allotted tasks.

The moods in which they have accomplished
these tasks vary as widely as the tasks them-
selves. But the work is well done, whether
inspired by matter-of-fact acceptance of the
fact that the United States is at war and that
therefore it is up to the men of fighting age
to do the fighting men's job; or by the exalted
idealism of the young Galahad whose eyes are
open to the shining visions shrouded from duller
sight — and the young Galahads of this great
war when they have found the grail have too
often filled it with their own hearts' blood.

Some have been driven by a sense of duty
to do the best there was in them in a task for
which they have no natural desire. Others
eagerly welcome the chance to sweep straight



THE MEN WHO PAY 15

as a falcon at the quarry which may be death;
and these may come back with broken wings;
or they may never come back, and word may
be brought to the women who weep that they
must walk henceforth in the shadow. But
all alike have done their duty and more than
their duty; and their souls shall stand forever
in the glory of the morning; and all who dwell
in this land now, or who shall dwell in it in
the future, owe to them a debt that can never
be cancelled.

And the first instalment of payment on this
debt should be paid by the government to the
wives and children and dependent mothers left
by the man who goes to the front. The wife
who cheers him when he goes, and the children
whom he leaves behind when he goes, should be
amply provided for as a matter of mere justice.
I beheve that the state should in some way
endow motherhood anyhow; but there can be
no question of our duty toward the mother of
the children whose father has left her and them
to go to war.

We are fighting for our dearest rights. We
arc also fighting for the rights of all peoples,



i6 THE GREAT ADVENTURE

small or great, so long as they are well-behaved
and do not wrong others, to enjoy their liberty
and govern themselves in the forms they see
fit to adopt. We intend to try to help others,
but we know well that we cannot do so unless
we are able to do justice within our own bor-
ders, and to manage well the affairs of our
own household. Therefore it behooves us,
even now while we are bending all our energies
to winning the great war, also to look to the
future, and to begin to ponder the things that
we must do to bring greater happiness and
well-being and a higher standard of conduct
and character within our own borders when
once the war is through.

Surely all of us — ^and especially those of us
who stay at home and who are denied the op-
portunity to go to the front — ought to realize
the need in this country of a loftier idealism
than we have had in the past; and the further


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