Western Mail, Thursday 29 March 1933, page 2
Would You Serve Again?
"Then none was for the Party,
Then all were for the State,
Then the great man helped the poor,
And the poor man loved the great,
For Romans in Rome's quarrel
Spared neither land nor gold.
Nor son, nor wife, nor limb nor life,
In the brave days of old."-Macaulay.
My dear "Non Com.” - A witty Frenchman once said: "England is a land of free speech and letters to the editor." The remark would seem to apply to Australia also, if the way in which the troops are writing you on the above query is any criterion. I may as well live up to the Frenchman's estimate.
War is pretty ghastly, and it never was nor will be a business proposition. A fig for all the promises the politicians and stay-at-homes even made. We belong to the only great people in the world; the race with the highest ideals; the race that never yet broke its word. We stood by that "scrap of paper'' in '14 and because of that we went to war.
British ideals, methods and systems alone are worth fighting for, and those who properly appreciate them need no promise of personal gain to get into khaki. "A sane nationalism," as one of your corespondents put it, "is the only sound policy for us to adopt."
War is the use pf force. It seems wrong, stupid and criminal. Somebody said, "It doesn’t prove who's right, only who's left." But when it comes to a show-down we believe in it - every man-jack of us.
Let anybody challenge our White-Australia policy, for instance. "Scratch a Russian and you find a Tartar" runs the proverb. Scratch any civilised man or nation and you find the underlying savage.
The League of Nations is a splendid ideal, a fine institution, but it commands no men or guns and consequently, very little respect. Witness the deal China is getting. I wish the. League well; may it become a super State, vested with real authority and plenty of power. At present it isn't and is clearly not to be relied upon.
As long as the world believes in force, then, we must believe in British force – the best kind. With human nature as it is we need to be "Romans in Rome's quarrel” to the last, shot - and then use the butt.
Of course I would serve again!