New York Times
RADICALS AT WORK FOR
Well-Financed Propaganda Has Ample Quarters and Staff and Is Flooding Country
TAKES IDEAS FROM RUSSIA
—Proposes Council of Soldiers' and Workmen's Delegates Here to Run the War
A group of men and women, representing all shades of radical and pacifist opinion, have combined to carry on a campaign in this country to create sentiment in favor of peace along lines advocated by the most radical and visionary of Russia Revolutionists. In other words, the peace which they will agitate for in every part of the country will be just such a peace as persons best informed as to the views of the Kaiser and his absolutist followers say the German Government favors. It is not denied by some persons prominent in the new propaganda that if Germany should cease its submarine warfare they would advocate the United States deserting the Allies and concluding a separate peace with Berlin.
In this new peace-at-any-price organization are a number of Germans and a great many radicals of other origin. The organization is called the People's Council of America and is said to have the support of various organizations, such as the Collegiate Anti-Militarist League, two members of which were convicted last week of conspiracy to obstruct the military laws of the nation; the Emergency Peace Federation, which was so busy in the days immediately preceding the declaration of war against Germany, and the so-called American Union against Militarism.
The People's Council, as they call it, apparently has strong financial backing. It has a large suite of rooms in the Educational Building, at 70 Fifth Avenue, where a score of stenographers and secretaries are busy sending out letters and literature urging, among other things, the organization in the United States of a "Soldiers' and Workmen's Committee" such as now exists in Russia.
Goes to Russia for Peace Ideas.
In one of the pamphlets now being mailed broadcast occurs this statement:
"It is hoped that our own People's Council will voice the peace will of America as unmistakably and effectively as the Council of Workmen's and Soldiers' Delegates in speaking for Russia."
Another document which is being mailed says that the organization is working for "an early, general and democratic peace, to be secured through negotiation and in harmony with the principles outlined by the new Russia." while in another place it denounces the President, by plain inference, when it is stated that "America has yielded the honor of leading in peace and is now a participant in the international carnage."
"Every day," another propaganda sheet issued in the name of the organization says, "the constitutional rights free speech, free press and free assembly are being assaulted."
At the offices of the council it was frankly stated that the intention of those behind the agitation was to flood the country with propaganda, and that speakers and agitators would be sent to every part of the country. Joseph D. Cannon, a labor leader, has been delegated to agitate among the miners of the West; A. W. Ricker, a magazine editor, will try to gain a foothold for the organization among the farmers of the Northwest; James D. Maurer, the Pennsylvania labor agitator, will devote his efforts to the great labor centres in the State, while Professor L. M. Keasbey of the University of Texas and an Australian preacher named Gordon will try to bring the South into line against President Wilson and in favor of a peace which it is generally admitted is such a peace as the Germans would now accept.
Some of the people who are listed as "hard workers" in the organization are David Starr Jordan, who is the Treasurer; L. P. Lochner, the man who is generally credited with having persuaded Henry Ford to back the peace ship venture; the Rev. Dr. Judah L. Magnes, Algernon Lee, and Morris Hillquit, the Socialists who failed to get passports to Europe recently, where they wanted to attend the so-called Stockholm conference; Max Eastman, editor of a radical pamphlet; J. Schlossberg, a labor leader; Fola La Follette, a daughter of the Wisconsin Senator; Professor W. L. Dana of Columbia University, who, it was said at the offices of the organization, is also a prominent member of the Collegiate Anti-Militarist League; Mrs. Emily Greene Balch, and a score of other persons of similar views, and all of them violent opponents of the military policies of the Wilson Administration.
A Sample of the Propaganda
Here is a sample of the letters which the council is scattering over the country.
Dear Friend: You will rejoice with us at the evidence of a powerful and rapidly growing sentiment for peace. The success of the First American Conference for Democracy and the Terms of Peace, and its remarkable climax at Madison Square Garden, have sent a ray of hope to hosts "that sat in darkness.'
You stood nobly by the Emergency Peace Federation, and I thank you again for your support. The federation is one of several organizations now being merged into the larger and more powerful movement represented by the People's Council. I am sure you loyal support will continue into the new organization.
The Organizing Committee of the People's Council is undertaking a tremendous task. The People's Council meets on August 4. Before this time we must secure delegates to the Peoples Council from which the thousands of organizations of workers, farmers, women, clergymen, anti-militarists, Socialist, single taxers, &c. We must send out organizers to explain the purpose of the council. We must arrange hundreds of public meetings, and flood the country with literature.
Fifty thousand dollars is needed before Aug. 1. We want 25,000 one dollar bills. A dollar contribution from 25,000 people means ten times more than the same amount from large contributors.
Will you not send us $ 1 ? Send more if you possibly can. Get your friends interested — urge them to contribute — and do let us count on you. Yours very sincerely.
That the activities of the organization will be closely watched by the Federal authorities can be stated on authority. Because of its evident strong financial backing and because it is out for the avowed purpose of attacking the policies of the Government and to stir up discontent over the conscription law, the proper authorities say the council "will bear watching," although its activities will in no wise be interfered with so long as it stays "within the law."
Members of the council admit that if they had their way France would not recover Alsace-Lorraine, Belgium would receive no indemnity for the destruction which the Germans have wrought, the Lusitania would be unavenged — in other words, the world would get a "German peace."