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Nobel Birth of a November 11:
11 November 1864: Birth of a 1911 Nobel Peace laureate.
Alfred Hermann Fried
,
Austrian journalist active in Germany, founder of Die Friedenswarte
, received the award jointly with Tobias Michael Carel Asser (1838 - 1913), Dutch Prime Minister, originator of the International Conferences of Private Law at the Hague.

Alfred Hermann Fried was born in Vienna, but most of his activities have been in Germany. Since 1891 he has devoted his whole life to work for peace, one of the few men to do so. Fried, who was first a bookseller and then a journalist, is a self-educated man who, with true German persistence and application, worked his way up until he had mastered scholarly writing. He has probably been the most industrious literary pacifist in the twenty years prior to receiving the Nobel Prize.
      In 1892 Fried founded the Deutsche Friedensgesellschaft and for a time edited its journals. Since 1899 he has been publishing his own monthly periodical Die Friederswarte [1], which he has gradually turned into the best journal in the peace movement, with excellent leading articles and news of topical international problems. Fried has considered it his task to win over the German university faculties of international law and history to the cause of peace and to persuade them to contribute to his periodical, and, by 1911, he may be said to have succeeded.

According to Fried, the foundation of the peace movement should be the legal and political organization of international life. He finds the beginnings of an efficient organization in the existing international bureaus and wants new ones to be created for all fields of international relations. The existing international anarchy (armed peace) will gradually disappear with increased organization and be succeeded by an ordered state of peace. Because of this viewpoint Fried places less emphasis on combating war; the method generally employed by friends of peace, that of arousing disgust at the idea of war, is not in his opinion sufficient. Instead of fighting the symptoms of war, he wants first and foremost to fight its cause, namely, the anarchy in international relations. Fried has argued his theory in a work entitled Die Grundlagen des revolutionären Pacifismus (1908, later retitled Die Grundlagen des ursächlichen Pazifismus).

In addition to innumerable contributions to the Austro-German press, Fried has published a large number of individual monographs and books on pacifism. Among these are: Das Abrüstungs-Problem (1904); Der kranke Krieg (1909), a collection of his best leading articles in Die Friedenswarte; and Pan-Amerika (1910), a meritorious scholarly account of the efforts organized by the Pan-American Bureau [2] in Washington. His best known work is his Handbuch der Friedensbewegung (1905). It is an account of the fundamental problems of the peace movement, giving reports on peace conferences and the position of arbitration, and containing an interesting historical review of the peace movement, with biographies of outstanding friends of peace and a list of societies and other organizations belonging to the movement.

Fried's activism played a part in bringing about the Morocco Pact [3].


1. This replaced Die Waffen Nieder, published by Fried and edited by Bertha von Suttner.

2. The International Bureau of American Republics became the Pan American Union in 1910; today it serves as the secretariat of the Organization of American States (OAS) formed in 1948.

3. The latest of several Moroccan crises - brought on by European rivalry, especially between Germany and France, for territorial power in Morocco - had just been settled by the Convention of 04 November 1911, which provided that Germany would allow France a free hand in Morocco in exchange for part of the French Congo. [Of course the colonialists had no regard for the desires of the Moroccans or the Congolese].

Alfred Fried
Alfred Hermann Fried – Biography

Alfred Hermann Fried was born in Vienna, but pursued most of his active journalistic career in Germany. Leaving school at the age of fifteen, he worked in his native city as a bookseller, then a few years later went to Berlin where he opened his own press in 1887.

Influenced by Bertha von Suttner (Nobel Peace Prize for 1905) Fried became interested in the peace movement, founded the Deutsche Friedensgesellschaft, and edited its major publication, Monatliche Friedenskorrespondenz, from 1894 to 1899. Having persuaded Baroness von Suttner to serve as editor, he started a peace journal, naming it Die Waffen Nieder!, the title of the Baroness' famous 1889 antiwar novel. In 1899 this was replaced by Die Friedenswarte [The Peace Watch], which he edited and which Norman Angell (Nobel Peace Prize for 1933) called «the most efficient periodical of the Pacifist movement in the world». This publication, which was addressed to an audience of intellectuals, has had a continuous history to the present time; edited by Fried until his death in 1921, then by Hans Wehberg, it was moved to Zürich in 1933. In 1905 Fried founded another journal, Annuaire de la vie internationale, which reflected his growing interest in international cooperation, particularly as exemplified by the Pan-American movement and the work of the Hague Conferences.

The peace literature which flowed from his pen - reports, editorials, essays, pamphlets, books - was extensive, but he also contributed to the cause his capacity as an organizer. He was a member of the Bern Peace Bureau, secretary of the International Conciliation for Central Europe, and secretary-general of the Union internationale de la presse pour la paix.

The Hague Peace Conference of 1899 was a turning point in the development of Fried's philosophy of pacifism. Thereafter, in his appeals to the German intellectual community he placed more reliance on economic cooperation and political organization among nations as bases for peace, and less upon limitation of armaments and schemes for international justice. «War is not in itself a condition so much as the symptom of a condition, that of international anarchy», he wrote. «If we wish to substitute for war the settlement of disputes by justice, we must first substitute for the condition of international anarchy a condition of international order.»

Fried's efforts were partly responsible for the founding of the Verband für internationale Verständigung in 1911. His theory of internationalism did not preclude nationalism. In the Pan-American movement he perceived a model for the preservation of national identity within international organization. In keeping with this position, Fried defended Germany before World War I by chronicling Wilhelm II's positive attitude toward world peace and during the war by refuting what he considered to be unreasonable criticism of Germany in the French, British, and American press.

Fried was in Vienna when war broke out in 1914. Since pacifist activities there were curtailed by government censorship and intolerant public opinion, Fried shifted his organizational and journalistic work to Switzerland. He was active in efforts to ameliorate the conditions of prisoners of war and continued to publish Die Friedenswarte as a rallying point for international peace efforts. Accused of treason by the Austrian government, he was unable to return to Vienna until the war's end.

The war over, Fried published Mein Kriegstagebuch, a «diary» which he kept during the war years to record his sentiments and his activities, along with those of his colleagues in the peace movement; he expressed dissatisfaction with the peace settlement and organized a journalistic campaign against the Versailles Treaty; he tirelessly pressed the point in his propaganda for peace that the war was proof of the validity of the pacifistic analysis of world politics.

Fried lost what wealth he possessed in the collapse of Austria-Hungary and died in poverty of a lung infection in Vienna on 05 May 1921.

Selected Bibliography: Encyclopaedia Judaica. — Das Abrüstungs-Problem: Eine Untersuchung (1904) — The German Emperor and the Peace of the World (1912). — Die Grundlagen des revolutionären Pacifismus (1908) — Handbuch der Friedenshewegung (1905) — International Cooperation (1918) — Das internationale Leben der Gegenwar (1908) — Mein Kriegstagebuch (1920). — Pan-Amerika (1910) — The Restoration of Europe (1916)

Alfred Hermann Fried war ein Österreichischer Pazifist und Publizist. Geboren: 1864 Gestorben: 1921 Gründete und war der Herrausgeber der in 1891 in Berlin erscheinenden pazifistischen Zeitung »Die Waffen Nieder!«, ab 1899 wurde diese Zeitschrift »Die Friedenswarte« genannt. Weiterhin gründete er dir Deutsche Friedens Gesellschaft ind 1892. Bekam in 1911 mit Tobias Asser den Friedensnobelpreis für internationale Friedensbewegung. Flüchtete in die Schweiz als der erste Weltkrieg ausbrach. Einige seiner Werke: Blätter für internationale Verständigung und zwischenstaatliche Organisation Handbuch der Friedensbewegung (1911-13) Mein Kriegstagebuch (1918-20)

Samples of Fried's poetry:

ABSCHIED VON WIEN

Ich seh vor mir noch immer
Die nackten, leeren Zimmer.
Hier war ich sonst zu Haus.
Jetzt war es aus.

Ich seh verkratzte Stellen
Am Boden bei den Schwellen,
Wo man die Moebel schob,
Eh' man sie hob.

Als man sie fortgetragen
In diesen letzten Tagen.
Wo sonst der Spiegel stand
War an der Wand.

Ein heller Fleck zu sehen.
Das Bild wird nie vergehen,
Hart, wie es vor mir lag
Am letzten Tag.



ANTWORT


Zu den Steinen
hat einer gesagt:
seid menschlich

Die Steine haben gesagt:
Wir sind noch nicht
hart genug.

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Alfred Fried