by Stephen Bonsal ‧ RELEASE DATE: N/A
Here -- in diary extracts -- is an off-the -record analysis of the scene behind the scene during the months of the Peace Conference in 1918-19. Col. Bonsal served as interpreter for Wilson and Col. House; he was virtually House's alter ego, was sent to various parts of Europe (Austria-Hungary, the Balkans etc.) as reporter from a listening post. He spent many weeks in Berlin, and records his impressions. Conversations -- arguments pro and con -- the battle between principals before decisions were grudgingly reached -- the sense of defeat, of insecurity, the doubts as to the American collaboration going through, the recognition of the weaknesses of the Peace, the acceptance of the inevitability of ultimate trouble with mandates, with recarved Europe, all form parts of this disturbing but absorbing book. Bonsal knew everyone concerned, had the confidence of many, admired Wilson; but recognized his weaknesses, and felt Col. House to be one of the great men of all time. He reenforces Smut's statement; ""Not Wilson but humanity failed at Paris"". An important document, with relevance to tomorrow's problems. We wish to revise a statement made in the last issue - P. 197, in regard to THE BEST FROM YANK (Dutton-$3.50). We had not seen the book; we did not want to ignore it as we thought it was an important item, both as good merchandise and important for home consumption and better understanding. This on the basis of what everyone was saying. So -- we did something we have done only perhaps a half a dozen times in out dozen years of existence, -- we sized up the book on the basis of reviews, and put a notice in our Late Arrival section... Then -- before the final Ok had gone through, the book itself was available, and we disagreed with what other reviewers had said about the photographs omitted. We think there are some grand photographs -- we only regret that they had all been put at the end...We liked lots of the cartoons, even if we aren't GI's...We think the reproduction job on the whole extraordinarily successful...We didn't even mind the double columns...And we tried to catch the copy and delete the last part -- but we were too late. Or something slipped. Anyhow, it want through, and we are sorry...So we want to say again -- without reservations -- that we learned more about what the war seems to the men who are fighting it than we have from anything else we've seen. And we think it ought to be required reading for everyone who really cares about understanding what war today is like. For the rest of what we feel read the first part of the paragraph on P. 197 ... And -- we promise -- we won't do it again.
Pub Date: N/A
Page Count: -
Publisher: Doubleday, Doran
Review Posted Online: N/A
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 1945
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