Cotton for German Ammunition

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THE appointment of Mr. Lloyd George as Minister of Munitions is a sign that the reconstituted Government has at length realised the serious importance of ammunition in warfare. The complement of Mr. George's work will now surely be the exclusion of materials of ammunition from our enemies. It is now many months since Mr. Runciman, President of the Board of Trade, whose special mission was to dear with commerce with the enemy, was implored to place cotton and cotton goods on the list of contraband; it was urged that only by this couise could the German troops be deprived of ammunition. But the attitude of mind which induced Mr. Runciman, some years ago, in criticising Lord Roberts efforts to bring the nation to apprehend the danger which menaced us, to wish to “apologise to our good friends the Germans,” appeared to have persisted. After much pressure, the Order in Council of March 14 was issued, apparently excluding cotton. The effect was nil. Cotton still poured into Germany, as appeared from returns chronicled in the Times of June 10, in answer to a Parliamentary question, where enormous increases in the exports of cotton and yarns into Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and the Netherlands in the figures for April, 1915, over those for April, 1914, were reported. Imports might have been stopped at once had cotton been declared contraband of war.

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RAMSAY, W. Cotton for German Ammunition . Nature 95, 432 (1915) doi:10.1038/095432a0

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