The Present Plictical Situation and Prospects of War in Europe November 29, 1936

Emil Ludwig, November 29, 1936

“War in Europe is imminent because of the political philosophies peculiar to the prospective belligernets. I do not find the philosophic antithesis between fascism and communism, for these have in common the fact and aim of idealizing the state. Both Berlin and Moscow are more or less dictatorships. In both, fear is one of the mediums of governing.

“I do find antithesis, however, in the fact that Berlin, Moscow, and Rome sacrifice the individual to the state, whereas most other governments in Europe subordinate the state to the security of the individual. A second and more practical antithesis is the division of Europe into aggressive and defensive powers. On the defensive you have England, France, Russia, and most of the smaller nations; on the aggressive, Germany, Italy, and, in the Far East, Japan.

“The real tragedy is that pacific inclinations have caused the difficult position of the defensive powers. For ten years England disarmed and trusted to the League of Nations, forgetting that Europe is not an island and making the mistake of thinking that all nations are gentlemen. Today the archbishop of Canterbury can only pray that Hitler will wait two years until England is ready to fight.”

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