E. Belfort Bax Justice October 1907

A Protest

Source: Justice, 5th October 1907, p. 9;
Transcribed: by Ted Crawford.

DEAR COMRADE, – Evidently the writer of the article quoted by you from the “New Age” doesn’t know much about Hervé’s position in the party when he says that Hervé stands alone against the unanimous voice of Socialists throughout the world as regards his anti-militarism. So far from this being the case, he is gaining ground so fast in France – and I may add in the other Latin countries – that Hervéism is becoming a force to be reckoned with by all Socialist leaders. This is proved, as regards France, by the recent Congress of the French party, as well as by the mass meetings lately held in Paris. Even in Switzerland, the classical country of the “citizen army,” the anti-militarist wing of the Socialist movement has become a force determining elections. It avails nothing on either side to deny that there is in this matter a distinct cleavage in the Socialist ranks. The resolution passed at Stuttgart, for which Hervé himself voted with both hands held up, was of the nature of an Eirenikon, albeit its tenor is certainly more interpretable, I think, in the “anti-militarist” than in the “citizen army” sense. The reason why some of our English comrades favour the citizen army is admittedly because they hope to see in it a revolutionary implement; other Socialists, myself among them, are convinced that they are deceiving themselves in this. The question is, of course, also bound up with that of patriotism versus that of anti-patriotism. However, these things maybe, there is no use in pretending a unanimity which does not exist, as does the writer in the “New Age.”

Before concluding, by the way, I should like, with your permission, to ask comrade Hyndman (re his letter) who are “those who differed” from him “at the time,” who have since developed an admiration for the policy of that wretched hack of the Paris Morocco syndicate, Delcassé, now, thank goodness, out of mischief – for ever, let us hope? Are they Socialists?

Yours fraternally,