By a great man, however, we mean a man who, because of his spiritual gifts, his character, and other qualities, deserves to be called great and who as a result earns the power to influence others.
The aspect of congresses and such meetings generally to which I attach the greatest importance is the discussion. That is why people assemble: to hear different opinions, rather than to pass resolutions.
There are many members of parliament present here who know as well as I do that, if a man has not already been converted, it will require a great deal more than a letter of appeal to achieve conversion.
Indeed, whenever a new idea is developed, as for example ballooning, warfare immediately takes possession.
But I feel convinced, and I venture even to prophesy in this regard, that the time will come when there will also be a minister of peace in the cabinet, seated beside the ministers of war.
I would have thought it possible to choose delegates for these larger conferences who, even if they could not speak the principal languages, could at least understand them or could have friends seated beside them who could keep them informed on essential points.
There is one criticism which cannot be leveled at interparliamentary conferences but which is applicable to a great extent to peace congresses: the meetings waste time.
As a result of my study, I came to the conclusion that a common supreme authority was undesirable.
I would rather propose a bureau somewhat similar to that which we have in the Universal Postal Union.
Naturally, business and pleasure can be readily combined, but a certain balance should exist, and the latter should not predominate over the former.
There are in most states one or two ministers of war, one of whom is the minister of naval affairs.
Waging war we understand, but not waging peace, or at any rate less consciously so.
Warfare has been marvelously developed. It will soon be impossible to raise it to further heights.
We have long possessed the art of war and the science of war, which have been evolved in the minutest detail.
A sign that a peace association is going adrift is its exclusion of other political parties, with whom it could collaborate effectively on most of the problems besetting the cause of peace.
Indeed; peace literature is almost exclusively read, though to good effect, by pacifists, while what is needed is the canvassing of those who have not so far been won to the cause.
It has since been agreed that speeches given in English will be translated into French and vice versa, and even into German and Italian when necessary. No doubt translations into Esperanto will also soon be in demand.
Nevertheless, this type of propaganda has a special value, for it serves to convince those who sign the appeal, of the necessity for carrying on propaganda; so a corps of propagandists, if I may use the term, is thus trained.
On the other hand, the waging of peace as a science, as an art, is in its infancy. But we can trace its growth, its steady progress, and the time will come when there will be particular individuals designated to assume responsibility for and leadership of this movement.
Peace congresses often start by dealing with some of the less important questions in excessive detail, so at the end there is no time to discuss the most important problems.