by Richard van Pelt, WWI Correspondent
Capital Journal Headlines:
Italian Feeling Against Austria Becoming Intense
Compact Which Binds Germany, Austria and Italy an Unnatural One
Italy Is Austria’s Traditional Enemy
While France . . . Is Firm Friend
With 200,000 Men and 500 Airships France Is Ready
Germany’s Action Depends On Russia Ultimatum Is Sent
Austrians Beaten In First Battle With Heavy Losses
The War Begins in Los Angeles: “Two men are near death today as the result of a riot between Austrians and Serbians in the Slavic section of the city. . . . The riot is said to have been the outcome of a fight the previous night. According to members of the Austrian colony, the Serbians deliberately planned an attack, and, 200 strong, invaded the Austrian section, firing guns and throwing bricks.”
“Austrians In Portland May Be Ordered Home”: Portland, Ore., July 30. – Local subjects of Emperor Francis Joseph were holding themselves in readiness today to return to their native land to take up arms in the Austro-Serbian conflict, following the publication here of an official announcement issued by the Austrian consulate notifying them to prepare for duty. There are about 600 Austrians in Portland liable to military service.”
“Ford Will Bar Aliens”: “Henry Ford, president of the Ford Automobile company, will have none but American citizens in his employ.”
Local notes of the day:
The salmon catch near the Columbia river bar is improving. Monday night most of the boats got from 700 to 801 pounds, and one boat got 3300.
Editorializing, the paper wrote the following:
KAISER CONTROLS SITUATION
UNDOUBTEDLY the situation in Europe is entirely within the control of Kaiser Wilhelm. As Austria’s ally and adviser he has but to say to her “the matter must be settled amicably,” and Austria will quit, for without the backing of the German emperor she would be helpless. If then war comes, that is a general war, it will be because the kaiser willed it. When the vast interests, the dreadful carnage, the wrecked treasuries and homes made desolate by death the misery and appalling horror of it all are taken into consideration, it may well be asserted that no man before ever had so tremendous a responsibility thrust upon him. It is up to him to say whether a half million lives or more shall be sacrificed on the red fields of war. It is up to him to say whether mothers’ tears shall flow; whether the youth and flower of European manhood shall be sacrificed as a penalty for the killing of two persons, perhaps by a crazy fanatic, or at least by one for whom none of those who must be sacrificed in case of war was in any way responsible. It is up to him to say whether a grinding and intolerable debt shall be added to the burden the people of Europe must carry a debt that will draw interest and bear heavily upon all, for perhaps hundreds of years. It is up to him to say whether the vulture of War shall feast upon the vitals of all Europe and the jackals of Hunger and Want stalk gaunt flanked and ravening through the land. It is up to him to decide these things, and surely no man had ever before so grave a matter placed upon him. As he decides, the story will go down on the pages of history as a victory of modern ideas over those of the middle ages a victory of Right over Might, or as a return to the days when the masses sacrificed their lives in war at the behest of the few; when Might was Right and humanity was at the beck and call of the few, the rulers of the earth, who smilingly sent countless thousands to kiss the scarlet lips of Death amid the surgings of doubtful and desperate battle.
Packer Cudahy says meat prices will make a big jump if the war in Europe becomes general. This was a useless bit of information, as the public is well aware the meat trust will jump prices whenever the occasion seems to offer even the shadow of an excuse for so doing.
As reported on the editorial page of the Oregon Statesman:
During the time of war scares, a lot of rot passes as news – like a report that a high official has told a United Press reporter that the whole German army would be mobilized in twenty-four hours, unless the Russian czar should back up, etc. The high German official was probably a clerk in a department, and perhaps that is what he said. And perhaps not.” However, the front page of the next edition headlines: “Censorship is Ordered Over the Telegraph” “This is interpreted here,” the paper goes on, “as implying preparations for German mobilization and it is believed that a few hours will decide whether Europe is to be plunged into universal warfare.
On the Statesman’s editorial page, under the heading “End of the World” the editor writes:
“Scripture prophets” will be plenty from now on till the threatened war in Europe has passed away, with their senseless predictions of “the end of the world,” all based on their expositions of certain passages of scripture. But we look out on the outside world, and find it heedless of these predictions, and the prophets themselves, while using the press to spread their views of the near approach of the end of the world, in pamphlet form, are always careful to have printed with their books or booklets the words, “Copyright – All rights reserved;” as though they had no expectation of the immediate collapse of the world, and would enjoy the profits of authorship for a few years longer.