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The King at the Front

12 December 2014

December 11 1914

WE WERE all immensely pleased when we heard that his Majesty the King had returned home safe and sound. It was a patriotic act on his part to go over and visit his troops at the front, but it was a risk from which it might be known he would not shrink. His Majesty's safe journey to and fro has been the occasion of much bragging about our sea-power, but we strongly deprecate the excessive boastfulness which first found expression in the threat that we would dig the German ships out like rats from a hole. It was a grave risk that the King incurred, and the only proper feeling that we can express is one of thankfulness for his safe return. Before he left Flanders his Majesty conferred two decorations. He bestowed on the gallant King of the Belgians the Garter of which the German Emperor found himself unworthy, and upon Sir John French the Order of Merit previously held by Lord Roberts. Perhaps the most useful result of his visit to the front will turn out to be to have established before the eyes of the world the certainty that this country will stick to its Allies through thick and thin, until Belgium has been avenged, France satisfied, and German militarism ended once and for all. How long a time will be needed for the accomplishment of all this it is idle to anticipate, but, whether it be long or short, we mean, as an united people, to clench our teeth and see the business through.

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