VIEWS FROM THE WATCH TOWER.
COULD THE HEATHEN DO WORSE?
GENERAL Alexel Nicolaevitch Kouropatkin, the famous soldier, upon whom Russia depends for the success of her army in the far east, is said to be the most popular officer in the Russian service, and is recognized as the Czar's best general. He was a boy of eighteen when he began his military career under Skobeleff and participated in all the brilliant engagements in the war against the Bokharans. Kouropatkin did not become well known in the Russian army, says Ernest Haskell in the New York Evening Post, until years afterward, when he was Skobeleff's favorite captain and chief of staff at Plevna, Turkestan, in the conquest of Khokand. Here is a picture of Kouropatkin as presented by the Indianapolis Journal:
"It has been twenty-two years since the capture of Geok Tepe; perhaps Kouropatkin has become less sanguinary with age. But if he should live to be a hundred and in that time should become as mild-mannered and soft-hearted as any humanitarian of the age, he could never live down the memory of that dreadful day. Geok Tepe was a fortress in Central Asia held by the Turkomans and besieged for a month by Russian forces under Skobeleff. Kouropatkin was the active commander, and when at last the stronghold fell he gave orders to give no quarter on account of age or sex. And here he added the crowning touch to the unlovely reputation as a human tiger which he had gained in the Russo-Turkish war.
"The words of an eye-witness give a faint idea of the glories of civilized warfare as exemplified by this famous general. He says: 'The whole country was covered with corpses. The morning after the battle they lay in rows like freshly mown hay, as they had been swept down by the mitrailleurs and artillery. Hundreds of women were sabered, and I myself saw little babies bayoneted or slashed to pieces. Many women were dishonored before being killed. The troops, mad with drink and the lust of fighting, were allowed to plunder and kill for three days after the assault.'"--Literary Digest.
FROM TALK TO ACTION.
"Hitherto Socialism has been a theory. It has been debated by doctrinaires; it has sometimes been applied in microscopic experiments, but never until now has it captured the government of a State as important as Saxony. There is no parallel to it in the history of civilization.
"It would seem to be good policy for the German Socialists to concentrate their efforts on making Saxony an object lesson in the value of their theories. Of course their road is not yet clear. The lower house of the Saxon Parliament is chosen by a complicated system of double election, and most of the members of the upper are appointed for life. Still these paper barriers cannot long stand against a determined popular majority of a hundred thousand. If the Saxon people really want Socialism they can get it.
"Like the other German States and the Empire itself, Saxony has advanced some distance in this direction already. The railroads and telegraphs are public property. The business which in this country is done by express companies, insurance companies and private savings banks is done there largely by public agencies, municipal, royal or imperial. If we should begin now to socialize our business affairs it would take us twenty years to reach the point at which Germany stands today.
"Since the State in Germany now does everything that it can do consistently with the maintenance of the present social system, the advocates of a new social system have no preliminaries to dispose of before putting their own theories to a complete test. They have waded through the shallows of public ownership of public utilities, and the next move must be to strike out into the deep waters of Socialism.
"It seems to be 'up to' the German Socialists to try this experiment in Saxony. A kingdom as populous as Ohio furnishes an ample field for a fair test. The great cotton mills of Chemnitz, the machine shops of Zwickau, the type foundries of Leipzig, the mines of the Erzgebirge, would be impressive examples of socialized industry if they were worked successfully by the State. Probably the success of such an experiment would complete the triumph of the Social Democrats in the German Empire, and it would certainly give a powerful impetus to their agitation throughout the world. On the other hand, its failure would, of course, have a dampening effect on the movement everywhere. But the Socialists must believe that their theories would [R3351 : page 116] work well or they would not hold them. They have been talking for a good many years with great effect. Now is their opportunity to act."--Literary Review.
DR. RUSSELL H. CONWEL SAYS CHURCH IS DYING
SLOWLY, BUT SURELY.
"In an address which was the feature of the fourth annual meeting of the Baptist Social Union of New York, Rev. Russell Conwel, D.D., pastor of the Baptist Temple of Philadelphia has declared that modern churches are dying slowly but surely, because of indifference of pastors and congregations.
"'The modern Christian Church,' he said, 'is becoming submerged because of laxity. Pastors are growing indifferent, and congregations are all the time becoming smaller. There are too many movements, too many office holders and differing phases of creed. The result is that the parent Church is dying. The only reason that a young man goes to Church nowadays is because he knows that his best girl is there.
"'The Y.M.C.A. is more prosperous than the Church, because it is made attractive by its books and gymnasiums, with a true Christian spirit. With hospitals and colleges the sectarian spirit is waning. Men who make large endowments, as a rule, stipulate that the institutions they help shall be non-sectarian. If the Church is to live we must get back to the first teachings of Christ.'"--Exchange.
THE TRIAL OF FAITH.
"The Edomite saint must have looked into birds' nests when he used the comparison, 'I said, I shall die in my nest.' That is what a good many people say. They build each a nest for himself, and not for a summer, but for a life. They say that they shall die in it after many years of enjoyment of it. But they need the treatment the mother bird gives her young. Her first step is to make the nest uncomfortable. 'As an eagle stirreth up her nest,' she mixes the thorny outside with the downy inside. So God, by his testing providences makes the place of rest one of unrest to us, and thus lures us out to trust ourselves to his care and guidance over untried ways. And so he brings us to a stronger, maturer, more useful life. The wind roots the tree deeper in the soil. The stormy waves cause the anchor to take a stronger grip. There are advantages in disadvantages. Disappointments have proven God's best appointments. Financial ruin has proved a man's salvation. Sickness has brought many highest health.--Dr. G. Hallock.