Page:The voice of an oppressed people.pdf/60

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8. The fight for Right has been waged by the Czechs ever since they settled in Central Europe. For centuries they had to hold their own against Germany, Habsburg Austria and the Magyars; and, since Dualism was established, they have had to face Austria and Hungary united with Prussia-Germany. Bohemia has not been conquered by Austria—she joined Austria and Hungary as par inter pares; she is legally just as independent a State as Hungary, and by the same right. This right has been violated by the dynasty; the personal union has been changed viâ facti into a real union. But law and justice cannot be affected by material force or so-called historical necessities. Bohemia has been struggling against Austria-Hungary since 1867, and with the same right she continues her fight in this war. The Habsburgs have forfeited their rights in regard to Bohemia by their repeated and almost continuous treachery. Not the Czechs alone, but no nation can trust or accept Austro-Hungarian policy, for it is the policy of a single family, and only the advocates of mediaeval theocracy and absolutism can prefer the rights of one family to the rights of ten nations. The Prussian Germans, the Turks and Austria's royal agent in Bulgaria accept the Habsburgs, because they pursue the same antiquated dynastic aims; but if Europe is to be regenerated this immoral and obsolete tradition be finally overcome. The Allies, if we may judge from their answer to President Wilson, understand this. The great question is how their aims can be realised. There is only one way: victory on the battlefield can alone secure the victory of truth and humanity. Truth and humanity in the abstract are not victorious, if men and nations do not defend and protect them.