- Project Runeberg -  Diplomatic Reminiscences before and during the World War, 1911-1917 /
345

(1920) [MARC] Author: Anatolij Nekljudov - Tema: War, Russia
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Full resolution (JPEG) - On this page / på denna sida - XIX. Sweden in 1915

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establish better and more trusting relations between
Russia and Sweden there was what I then called “the
case of M. Perrichon.” All my contemporaries probably
remember the amusing play of Labiche’s and his subtle
moral sense, demonstrating the fact that one is more
grateful to one’s neighbour for a boon that one has
conferred on him than for one received from him.
M. Perrichon sets himself to adore the young man he
thinks he has saved from falling over a precipice,
whereas he ends by hating him who effectually saved
his life, and who then fancied he had thereby deserved
the hand of Mademoiselle Perrichon.

When the Swedes behaved so kindly and with so
much delicacy towards the Russian refugees returning
from Germany by Sweden, I saw that the feelings of
hostility and distrust nursed in the country with regard
to my compatriots were anyhow partly melting away.
Later on this phenomenon became accentuated. The
admirable manner in which Sweden managed the
repatriation of our seriously wounded men was not
solely the work of the Swedish Red Cross and its noble
President, Prince Charles; the whole of Sweden seemed
to participate in it, and to do so effectually; our wounded
men carried away the best impressions of their journey
through Sweden, when entire populations turned out to
greet and pity the wretched Russians and to look on one
of the saddest and darkest sides of war. “The case of
M. Perrichon” assumed more and more its highest and
deepest meaning, which is that the good you do to others
cause you to know them better and finally to like them.

When I saw that events were seconding my efforts
and warding off the danger of an immediate collision
between Russia and Sweden I acquired the conviction
that one could and should build for the future and
endeavour to form closer and more trusting relations
between the two countries than had existed in the past.
The products of the admirable Swedish metallurgic
industry might replace in Russia some of the analogous

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