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our of the British flag, and the personal freedom of British subjects, which had been thus recklessly outraged? A mild and hesitating letter of remonstrance was written by Earl Granville, to which Count Bismarck replied, justifying the proceeding as one strictly within the rights of belligerency, and citing an English authority, Sir Robert Phillimore in support of his position; but adding in almost the tone of a gracious act of concession, that the German Government would compensate the owners of the vessels for their loss; and with this the British Government were satisfied, and the British press, some portions of which had spoken out very loudly at first, were silenced. In the interests of truth it behoves us, however, to make a brief remark upon this subject. In the first place, as, indeed, need hardly be pointed out, Sir Robert Phillimore, the author of a very valuable work on International Law, has not the province to lay down any dogma concerning belligerent, or neutral rights, or other subject of the kind, unless justified by the authority of the older jurists, who were the founders of the science; except, indeed, under exceptional circumstances under treaty, or municipal law. The right of embargo to which alone the German Government can appeal in its justification, is mentioned by Sir R. Phillimore, as well as by some, but not all of the earlier writers. But this power, the right of which is much disputed, is of a very different kind, and available under very different circumstances, to that usurped by the German Army in this case. Sir R. Phillimore, who speaks of the power by the

French term, le droit d'angarie, says: "It is an act of the state, by which foreign as well as private domestic vessels which happen to be within the jurisdiction of the state, are seized upon and compelled to transport soldiers, ammunition, and other instruments of war, in other words to become parties against their will to carrying on direct hostilities against a Power with whom they are at peace. The owners of such vessels receive payment of freight before hand. Such a measure is not without the sanction of practice and usage, and the approbation of many good writers upon International Law; but if the reason of the thing, and the paramount principle of national independence be considered, it can only be excused, and perhaps scarcely justified, by that clear and overwhelming necessity which would compel an individual to seize his neighbour's horse or weapon to defend his own life." Martens in his 'Droits des Gens' states: "The property of a neutral power which is found on the enemy's soil, whether moveable or immoveable, ought to be exempt from hostilities, the belligerent having no power over them," and then goes on to say, "It is doubtful whether the universal law of nations permits, except in cases of extreme necessity, the seizure (embargo) of neutral vessels which happen to be in our harbours at the time when the war breaks out, with the intention of employing them for the requirements of the fleet, paying them for their service. Usage has introduced the exercise of this right, but many treaties have abolished it," mentioning several, beginning with that of the Pyrenees, in 1659.

Nor were the above the only instances in which our known weakness of purpose exposed us to indignity and ridicule during the late war. Another visitation of retributive justice for our base desertion of Denmark, and in natural sequence to the disasters of Sadowa and Sedan. Russia taking advantage of the prostrate position of our ally, France, sent a peremptory note repudiating the stipulations of the Treaty of Paris as to the neutrality of the Black Sea. Lord Granville replied in a rather spirited letter, and sent Mr. Odo Russell to the German Court at Versailles to feel the way to their good offices on the subject, but without success. Mr. Odo Russell, however, emulated the the tone of his chief, and talked boldly about treaty obligations, what would be a casus belli, etc. But it was only talk. After the unmeaning formality of a Conference, the haughty demands of Russia were assented to, and Mr. Odo Russell, without being called upon for a word of explanation, was shortly afterwards promoted to the distinguished post of Ambassador at the Court of Berlin. So much for 80,000 men, and £80,000,000 of treasure sacrificed in the Crimea !

We cannot pass from this subject without acknowledging the manly conduct of Lord Denbigh and Mr. Cavendish Bentinck, who, at the time the Treaty of Paris was thus being smashed up, brought forward motions in the two Houses, urging that the occasion should be seized to withdraw from the mischievous declaration of neutral rights. They spoke in vain, however, failing to rouse the repre

sentatives of the two Estates of the kingdom from their habitual pusillanimous inaction.

If the facts and authorities above adduced, import anything, they amount to this, that an unconstitutional and unreasonable practice has crept into action amongst us in matters of Foreign Policy, which has resulted in great mischiefs, and will, in all probability, prepare the way for more, unless timely superceded; and that it is through the neglect and desuetude of the ancient constitutional functions of Parliament that this evil practice has originated and taken root. The remedy therefore is, properly, in the hands of Parliament, whose solemn duty it is to consider the question in all its bearings, with a view to the resumption of their high and responsible functions. But our dependence must not rest upon Parliament alone-Parliament, Court-ridden, and red-tape bound, which, through supineness, or a want of high purpose, is often apt to neglect measures of the most vital importance which do not appeal to it in the interests, and through the routine of party. Should Parliament, therefore, from any cause whatever, shew a hesitation or backwardness in this great national question, let the constituencies throughout the country, comprising the masses who suffer in

purse and in person for every error in our Foreign

Policy, put on the necessary pressure to awaken their representatives, or intending representatives, to a proper sense of their position. The next general election, which cannot be far distant, will be the time to put the question of Diplomatic Reform, as a test question, to all Constitutional Candidates.




THE entire conduct of affairs in reference to the Treaty of Washington has been marked, in a superlative degree, by all the errors of principle and practice, which have been spoken of as characterizing the recent diplomacy of this country; concession upon concession, in the vain hope of conciliating the good will of our insatiable and unscrupulous opponents; blundering after blundering, in working out the details of the arrangements arrived at, through a want of natural astuteness, trained intelligence, and clearness of expression on the part of the amateur diplomatists to whom the conduct of those important negociations was intrusted. It must be added (and this only makes the case the more deplorable and hopeless), that in all the errors. and blundering committed by us on this occasion, we have but followed precedents already too conspicuous in all our transactions with the United States; and most remarkably so in respect of the Maine Boundary, and North-West Boundary questions, in which, as will be shown, hereafter, we have always, after much able and conclusive argument in support of our own position, finished by yielding

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