By M. Ryan Floyd (auth.)
Read or Download Abandoning American Neutrality: Woodrow Wilson and the Beginning of the Great War, August 1914–December 1915 PDF
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Extra resources for Abandoning American Neutrality: Woodrow Wilson and the Beginning of the Great War, August 1914–December 1915
P. ” What he feared was that the belligerents would not agree that the transfers were legitimate. If Britain captured and detained its ships, Standard Oil would lose large sums of money while prize courts considered the “AN AWFUL CATACLYSM” 21 ships’ fates. 53 In response to such requests, Bryan sat down with British Embassy Counselor Colville Barclay and discussed the transfer of ships to the United States. Bryan argued that American “trade was being completely strangled . . that the United States, though neutral, were being ruined .
41 Despite Grey’s and the ambassador’s arguments, Lansing maintained that the only document all governments should use as a basis for discussion was the Declaration of London. His stance irritated Spring-Rice, who reported to Grey that he was unsure that he had convinced Lansing of the British position. ”42 Despite Spring-Rice’s impression of Lansing, the Foreign Office had made a dent in the acting secretary’s resistance. In addition to his conversation with Spring-Rice, Lansing received a letter on October 20 from Page, who stressed that London was not going to change its policy: “The Declaration of London will not be accepted by Sir Edward Grey without amendment: First .
On the evening of September 3, Grey replied to Spring-Rice that he concurred with the president’s statement that a German victory would bring militarism to the US doorstep. He also clarified to Spring-Rice that Britain should do everything it could to prevent tension with the United States. ”72 This did not mean, however, that London was prepared to consider a negotiated solution to the war. The president and his advisors soon discovered that neither side was ready for peace because both Berlin and London felt confident of victory.