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Philip Dru: Administrator

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<SPAN name="XXVIII"></SPAN> <h1 align="center" style="margin-top: 2em;font-variant: small-caps">Chapter XXVIII</h1> <h2 align="center" style="margin-top: 2em;font-variant: small-caps">An International Crisis</h2> <p>The Administrator did nothing towards reducing the army which, including those in the Philippines and elsewhere, totalled five hundred thousand. He thought this hardly sufficient considering international conditions, and one of his first acts was to increase the number of men to six hundred thousand and to arm and equip them thoroughly.</p> <p>For a long period of years England had maintained relations with the United States that amounted to an active alliance, but there was evidence that she had under discussion, with her old-time enemy, Germany, a treaty by which that nation was to be allowed a free hand in South America.</p> <p>In return for this England was to be conceded all German territory in Africa, and was to be allowed to absorb, eventually, that entire continent excepting that part belonging to France.</p> <p>Japan, it seemed, was to be taken into the agreement and was to be given her will in the East. If she desired the Philippines, she might take them as far as European interference went. Her navy was more powerful than any the United States could readily muster in the far Pacific, and England would, if necessary, serve notice upon us that her gunboats were at Japan&#8217;s disposal in case of war.</p> <p>In return, Japan was to help in maintaining British supremacy in India, which was now threatened by the vigorous young Republic of China.</p> <p>The latter nation did not wish to absorb India herself, but she was committed to the policy of &#8220;Asia for the Asiatics,&#8221; and it did not take much discernment to see that some day soon this would come about.</p> <p>China and Japan had already reached an agreement concerning certain matters of interest between them, the most important being that Japan should maintain a navy twice as powerful as that of China, and that the latter should have an army one-third more powerful than that of Japan. The latter was to confine her sphere of influence to the Islands of the Sea and to Korea, and, in the event of a combined attack on Russia, which was contemplated, they were to acquire Siberia as far west as practicable, and divide that territory. China had already by purchase, concessions and covert threats, regained that part of her territory once held by England, Germany and France. She had a powerful array and a navy of some consequence, therefore she must needs to be reckoned with.</p> <p>England&#8217;s hold upon Canada was merely nominal, therefore, further than as a matter of pride, it was of slight importance to her whether she lost it or not. Up to the time of the revolution, Canada had been a hostage, and England felt that she could at no time afford a rupture with us. But the alluring vision that Germany held out to her was dazzling her statesmen. Africa all red from the Cape to the Mediterranean and from Madagascar to the Atlantic was most alluring. And it seemed so easy of accomplishment. Germany maintained her military superiority, as England, even then, held a navy equal to any two powers.</p> <p>Germany was to exploit South America without reference to the Monroe Doctrine, and England was to give her moral support, and the support of her navy, if necessary. If the United States objected to the extent of declaring war, they were prepared to meet that issue. Together, they could put into commission a navy three times as strong as that of the United States, and with Canada as a base, and with a merchant marine fifty times as large as that of the United States, they could convey half a million men to North America as quickly as Dru could send a like number to San Francisco. If Japan joined the movement, she could occupy the Pacific Slope as long as England and Germany were her allies.</p> <p>The situation which had sprung up while the United States was putting her own house in order, was full of peril and General Dru gave it his careful and immediate attention.</p> <p>None of the powers at interest knew that Dru&#8217;s Government had the slightest intimation of what was being discussed. The information had leaked through one of the leading international banking houses, that had been approached concerning a possible loan for a very large amount, and the secret had reached Selwyn through Thor.</p> <p>Selwyn not only gave General Dru this information, but much else that was of extreme value. Dru soon came to know that at heart Selwyn was not without patriotism, and that it was only from environment and an overweening desire for power that had led him into the paths he had heretofore followed. Selwyn would have preferred ruling through the people rather than through the interests and the machinations of corrupt politics, but he had little confidence that the people would take enough interest in public affairs to make this possible, and to deviate from the path he had chosen, meant, he thought, disaster to his ambitions.</p> <p>Dru&#8217;s career proved him wrong, and no one was quicker to see it than Selwyn. Dru&#8217;s remarkable insight into character fathomed the real man, and, in a cautious and limited way, he counseled with him as the need arose.</p>
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