Page:The Bohemian Review, vol1, 1917.djvu/76

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is no Germanism in Austria that could be considered as a unit as against the Germanism of the German Empire. On the contrary, entire Germanism with its fragments in Switzerland or Poland, yea, even with such small fragments as, for instance, the Transylvania Saxons, all certainly form a real synthesis of various races and provinces.”

Then Deputy Pernerstorfer speaks about the Germans of Vienna, admonishing them to cultivate their national pride and patriotism: “The Germans of Austria in future must never remain neutral when the fate of Germanism is in the balance. Therefore it is necessary to fight with the greatest possible ardor every endeavor to create a particular Germanism which would seek to accomplish its destiny, even if only in theory, independently of the German Empire. Similarly it is necessary to fight the endeavor to advocate a universal new Austrianism which is being born today in mystic ecstasies, and in which all the nations of the Empire are supposed to melt away without leaving a trace.” At the end of his article Pernerstorfer defines the position of Germans in Austria as follows: “In solving the problems of Austria in the future we Germans will play an important role. We shall only have a lasting success if we never lose our internal coherence with the rest of the German nation, and if we do not fall into a de-national fantasy, which would only make us an object of ridicule to the other nationally conscious nations of the Empire. But we must also see to it that our external alliance with the German Empire, should be knit more firmly together, this alliance which in this war has become a partnership for life and death.”

In subjecting Deputy Pernerstorfer’s article to a close scrutiny one finds that he speaks surprisingly little about the Slavs of Austria. He cannot have overlooked them, as he has been engaged with them for years in a struggle to preserve German supremacy in Austria. It is true that at the beginning of his article he speaks about the bonds of unity “between these two great Empires,” but it cannot be supposed that he means to include the Slavs also, of whom it cannot be said that they desire fusion with the German Empire, as, according to his assertion, is the case with the Austrian Germans. That this is so evident from the fact that subsequently, in several places, he speaks exclusively of the Austrian Germans who, he asserts, must in future throw in their lot with the Germans of the German Empire. From this would not the inference that Pernerstorfer prefers a unification of all the Germans to a federalistic Austria be justified?

Would it be far from the truth to say that the leader of the German Social-Democrats is singing Austria’s swan-song?

Current Topics


It is very fortunate for people of Bohemian race in this country that the entrance of the United States into the European war finds them so well organized. For theirs is a difficult position. Coming from Austria, as they do, they might be suspected of attachment to the German cause, if they were not in a position to make their real sentiments known to the American people in unmistakable terms. The work performed by the Bohemian National Alliance since its organization shortly after the outbreak of the war has made the public authorities and intelligent citizens of this country well acquainted with the point of view of men who came from Bohemia. The officers of the Alliance, however, realized the need of still greater activity on their part now that the United States under the leadership of President Wilson decided to take a hand in the fight for humanity and democracy.

From every city where there is any considerable number of Bohemian people telegrams poured upon the president commending his vigorous stand and assuring him of absolute loyalty of citizens of Bohemian birth. And what goes for more, officers of the Alliance appealed to their membership to prove their patriotism by enlisting their young men in the army. What has been done in Chicago in this respect, is told elsewhere in this issue. Mr. Vojta Beneš, organizer of the Alliance, proceeded on a circular tour through Bohemian settlements in the western states, and in his addresses emphasized the fact that now the cause of the United States and the cause of Bohemia are one and the same and that fighting for America is fighting for the liberation of Bohemia. He lectured in the following cities and towns: San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, Portland, Spokane, Omaha and Aberdeen, S. D. Mr. Joseph Tvrzicky, the Bohemian secretary of the Alliance, made shorter trips from Chicago to deliver stirring appeals in favor of enlisting promptly, so as to get to the trenches before the war was over. He spoke in St. Louis, Detroit, Minneapolis and St. Paul. Fráňa Klepal, before joining his batallion in Canada, gave several talks in Cleveland, Chicago