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From The Saturday Review, 18 Aug.
The German sticks seem to be tying themselves up into something like a faggot. ^Esop himself could not have pointed the moral of union and strength more forcibly than their industrious neighbor who came to Baden in search of stray bits of wood which he might break up to light his fire. The regent of Prussia is influenced in his German policy by scruples which seem excessive to some of the wisest of his countrymen. His anxious respect for the rights of the princely houses is scarcely reconcilable with the permanent interests of the nation. As long as six-and-thirty sovereigns divide the federal territory, it is scarcely possible that Germany can assume her true position as the greatest of continental powers. The imperfect military, organization of the league can only be corrected by placing all the northern and western contingents under the absolute control of Prussia; and the scandals which hare occurred in Electoral Hesse prove that the authorized intervention of the same power is necessary to correct the abuses of civil administration. The prince of Prussia, or his successors, must hereafter overrule the misdirected delicacy which declines a patriotic duty because it seems to tend to personal aggrandizement; but nevertheless, the refusal to disturb German arrangements, on the invitation of France, was at the same time prudent and dignified. The impudent pretext which was put forward tojustiiy the seizure of Savoy furnished a sufficient illustration of the overtures which were addressed to the supposed cupidity ol Prussia. The pamphleteers of Paris showed, with imprudent logic, that the mediatization of Hanover and of Brunswick would furnish as legitimate a ground of compensation to France as the recent aggrandizement ol Piedmont; but the representative of Germany, even if he thougnt it desirable to reform the ancient tenure, was not disposed to pay a fine for enfranchisement to the lord ol the adjacent manor. There is reason to believe that, if the concurrence of Englanc could have been obtained, Prussia would not have been indisposed to resist by force the lawless and menacing annexation of Savoj and Nice. The immediate object of securing the Rhenish Provinces from invasion has, for the present, been secured at a cheaper cost, but one of the alternatives which are held out by France still presses upon Germany. Internal division, occasionally moderated by common fears, is better than actua dismemberment; but any serious attempt to create a sounder organization would probably be met by a revival of French preten•ion.
For the time, the princes of the confederation .si-i in to be cultivating the most harmonious relations. The king of Hanover, who lately allowed his minister to hold out a French alliance as a menace to Prussia, was frightened by the visit of Napoleon III. ;o Baden, and was won over by the loyal 'rankness with which the compliment was received and slighted. The grateful guests nvited the prince regent to complete the union of Germany by the renewal of friendly relations with Austria, and the interview of Toplitz seems to have led to an understanding which, in connection with the English armaments, accounts for the pacific language which has recently been employed by France. No foreign power will ever venture an attack on united Germany j and it seems probable that, at the present moment, an invader would be met by the whole force of the confederation. The permanence of the concord among the governments must depend on the removal of the causes which have hitherto produced constant dissension. It is possible that the emperor of Austria may have promised substantial concessions to Prussia, in reference to the Hessian question, to the composition of the Diet, and to the command of the federal armies; but if no serious change has been effected, the existing friendship will be as liable to accidents as any ordinary alliance between foreign states. It will be no hardship for France to wait till the re-opening of some standing quarrel again leaves an opportunity for external intrigue.
One statement, which is probably true, augurs well for the genuineness of the recent approximation between the governments. Austria is said to have acquiesced in the wise refusal of Prussia to guarantee the Venetian territory unless the expected Italian attack is supported by France.. Last year's experience has perhaps convinced the statesmen of Germany that there y no chance of aid from England in any war which may be directed against the independence of Italy. The reported intention of Austria to act against Garibaldi in Naples is menacing to the peace of the world, as it would furnish an excuse for the interference of France, and at the same time ensure the neutrality of England. If the contingency should unhappily arise, Prussia would probably attempt to confine the theatre of war within the limits of Italy. If France took the initiative against Austria, even on the Venetian frontier, the whole of the German Confederation would at once enter into the struggle; but, in a single-handed war between Austria and Italy, it would be unnecessary, imprudent, and unjust for Prussia to interfere. Venetia is, unfortunately, a constant source of danger to Europe, as it involves a standsession which is constantly menaced as it has beeu obstinately defended j yet it is certain that if Italy were abandoned, and Hungary effectually conciliated, Austria would become invulnerable.
ir.g antagonism between national feeling and growing divergence of internal policy. The lcg.;l right. It is impossible to blame the ' evils of duality will be reduced to the lowest government of Vienna for clinging to a pos- point if Austria begins to take the people
A growing confidence is felt in the new council of the empire. The special reforms which it will probably originate will be less significant and valuable than its own existence and the publicity of its discussions. All constitutional experience and much sound reason may be alleged in favor of elected assemblies, but it is more important that councils should assemble than that they should represent bodies of electors. Independence of opinion and freedom of debate, wherever they are found, correct the distinctive faults of an absolute monarchy; and, notwithstanding its imperfect organization and the indefinite nature of its functions, the council of the empire has already given a new character to the domestic policy of Austria. The Emperor Francis Joseph, though he has never yet displayed either intelligence or generosity, may perhaps have been taught by adversity to emancipate himself from the degrading influences of female narrowness and bigotry. He has submitted to hear some salutary truths from a portion of his nobility, and he may have begun to suspect that bis vast dominions by no means exist for the sake of himself, his courtiers,
into account, at the same time that the loyalty of the prince regent disarms the jealousy of the minor courts. By an understanding between the two leading powers, the grand dukes and the secondary kings might be forced or encouraged to adopt Prussian maxims of administration at home, and to acquiesce as obedient viceroys in the decision of their superiors on questions of peace and war. If the great central nation were once permanently united, French pamphleteers might
finally desist from publishing ne of the future map of Europe.
From The Saturday Review, 18 Aug.
THE CHINESE WAR. Wars have often" been compared to lawsuits, and the analogy has never been closer than in the case of the present dispute with China. A numerous section of the community will recognize but too familiarly the process of quarrelling without anger, of pursuing claims which it is not desired to enforce, of finding that every step in litigation renders it more difficult to abandon the suit, and, above all, of accumulating costs which bear a constantly increasing proportion to the value of the subject matter. In many instances, there is not even the miserable satisfaction of throwing the blame on the attorney, for it seems as if every stage in the proceedings had been justified by pru
and his priests. The relation of internal | dence or necessity. The perplexed client contentment to foreign policy must have ....
been impressed even on the dullest under
standing by the compulsory peace of Villafranca. Even after the disasters of Magenta and Solferino, the Austrian army in the Quadrilsteral outnumbered the exhausted enemy on the outside of the fortresses. The opportunity <jf a signal vengeance on the triumphant invader was unavoidably thrown
can only attribute his troubles to an overruling destiny, or, in other words, to the imperfection of human foresight, and to the mutual inability of different persons to understand one another's motives and intentions. When nation deals with nation, the difficulty is enormously increased, and it reaches its highest development in the relations between European nations and China,
away, because the continuance of the war i With barbarians, as with dogs and horses, for another month would have given time | it is possible to establish an intelligible mefor an insurrection in Hungary. The coun- dium of communication, either by elaborate
cil of the empire may possibly conciliate the different provinces by restoring their local rights, while the comparatively liberal policy which it will recommend in Germany may perhaps lay a solid foundation for harmony with Prussia. Up to the present time, the whole influence of Austria has been directed to the support of the petty princes, whose
fairness and benevolence, or by the more usual method of superior force. The peculiar civilization of China renders it necessary to adopt some formal or legal rules of intercourse, and yet it is impossible to apply even the lax international morality which has become traditionally established in Christendom. The Chinese authorities never fail to poire, in negotiation or in war, for paradoxical and unexpected results. The disputes at Canton, and the consequent display of English force, led to Lord Elgin's promising treaty, and the attempt to ratify the engagement produced the disaster on the Peiho. The results of the English and French expedition which lately left Hong Kong for the north are, for the present, extremely doubtful.
subserviency was in turn secured by the un- encroach on weakness, and they often pass popularity of their own administration. The over without resentment the hostile acts of great body of the nation, especially in the j foreigners; but it is unsafe to calculate either northern states, necessarily . looked for a on their presumption or on their endurance, counterpoise in Prussia, so that the natural The government of Pekin neither blusters rivalry of the two great monarchies was Bus- nor truckles according to any simple formula, tained and embittered by a permanent and j and accordingly it becomes necessary to pre
The majority of the few residents in England who possess any special knowledge of China deprecate an undertaking which maybe mischievous by its success as well as by its failure. It is asserted, with much plausibility, that the imperial government is the spring or regulator of a vast and delisate machine, which may at any moment become incapable of working. Notwithstanding temporary interruptions and local exceptions, ths rule of Pekin maintains order among a fourth part of the human race; and it is impossible to estimate the confusion which might be produced by the withdrawal of the central object of obedience. Provincial rebellions have long since been recognized by the Chinese mind as a customary exception to the general unity of the empire; but it is said that the humiliation of the government by the capture of Pekin would dissolve the allegiance of the subject population and produce a state of universal anarchy. A commercial war which led to the destruction of national industry would be as complete a mistake as an unreasonable demand which might drive a substantial debtor to bankruptcy. It may be conjectured that the ancient equilibrium of social order in China is too stable to be overthrown in a single campaign, and that the prophets of evil, like all other theorists on the same subject, are- too confident and dogmatic in their propositions. On the other hand, their views are supported by the moralists who, like Mr. Gladstone when he was out of office, regard a war for the purpose of forcing admission to China as a crime, which happens incidentally to be also a blunder. There is no doubt that it is highly unsatisfactory to attack a population which can never be induced to maintain the ordinary etiquette of hostilities. The natives are as willing to work for the invader us to serve their own government, and the mandarins themselves, at a short distance from the scene of action, interchange courtesies with the foreign officers. The governor-general of Canton has just granted to the English a perpetual lease of a piece of ground for the purpose of forming a camp opposite Hong Kong. The inquiry into the moral justification of the war would go deep into the principles of ethical philosophy, and
it ought to have been commenced at the time of the original collision, when Mr. Gladstone characteristically advocated the right of the Chinese to destroy the invader hy poisoning their wells. Even if the government of Pekiu were, in the first instance, entitled to shut up the empire with a wo.ll of hrass, it by no means follows that the treaties of Sir Henry Pottinger and Lord Elgin are to be regarded as waste paper, for the defence of a possession which may at a former time have been wrongfully acquired may often become both justifiable and necessary. Where so much may be said on both sides of the question, it is as well to leave it unsaid. The immediate occasion of the present war is also unfortunately in a high degree questionable, but in the middle of a campaign it is too late^to examine the merits 01 the quarrel.
In answer to the objection which is founded on the duty of maintaining the imperial government, a well-known writer in the Times, substituting his own experience for the ordinary function of discussion and criticism, asserts that the unity of the Chinese is a mere fiction, and that their most remarkable quality consists in their capacity for local or municipal organization. According to this theory, the government and mandarins of the capital arc mainly responsible for all acts of hostility to foreigners, and it is desirable to cripple their power and to punish their ill-feeling by a vigorous attack on Pekin. It must be admitted that the «ool indifference of the provincial authorities seems to show that it is easier to establish friendly relations in detail than to conclude a satisfactory arrangement with the empire as a whole. When one viceroy at the outbreak of a war leases ground for an enemy's camp, and another receives an English consul at his own invitation, the bonds which unite the official hierarchs with their august chief must be singularly elastic, if they are not already broken. The candid student inclines to cither opinion in turn, as it seems to be recommended by argument or authority; but, as a practical politician, he would probably refuse to take the most trivial step either on the hypothesis that China is a hive with its indispensable queen-bee at Pokin, or on the assumption that it is rather to bo considered as a vast federal republic. There is no more vulgar abuse of the great advantage of newspapers than the propensity to adopt positive opinions on insufficient grounds. Even the government has probably contented itself by issuing the most general instructions to Lord Elgin and to the naval and military commanders.
If it proves to be true that the entrance to thB Peiho is strongly fortified, it may be presumed that the generals and admirals will rather turn the defences than run their heads against a wall. The estimate which will be formed of their capacity will correspond with their success or failure even more closely than in ordinary wars, when the strategical conditions of the contest are ap- i proximatcly understood. After the result' of the two former wars, the country will not be tolerant of defeat, nor is it possible to suppose that any superiority of numbers can enable the Chinese armies to meet the allies in the field. The principal danger is to be dreaded from the climate, from the nature of the country, and from a calculated absence of resistance. Those who are responsible for the conduct of the campaign have, of course, considered the nature as well as the extent of the difficulties with which they will have to contend.
Civilians on this side of the world can only wish that the confederate armies may, if possible, act apart; and they may hope, with more confidence, that any measures which may be adopted will be short, sharp, and decisive. Experienced soldiers, who have taken a part in the former wars, believe that it is possible both to excite the Chinese into a state of national hostility, and to teach them to fight. The nation may regard the defeat of the Tartar troops and the humiliation of the imperial dignitaries with a toleration which would break down during a prolonged campaign. If the imperial government were familiar with the state of opinion in England, there might be found additional encouragement to resistance. Whatever philanthropists or utilitarians may assert, war, like punishment, can only be justified as the proper expression of righteous resentment. For the defence of freedom, for the redress of injuries, even for the reclamation of a disputed territory, it may be lawful, as it is natural, to resort to arms; but a war unaccompanied by the excitement of anger is repulsive to the conscience. No Englishman, with the exception of those who in China itself have had time to cultivate the antipathies of neighborhood and familiarity, desires to injure a hair of any Chinamans head, or to coerce his inclinations in any matter which is unconnected with the purchase of tea, and silk, and the sale of cutlery and Manchester fabrics. All free nations place a large confidence in their rulers and agents, and the responsible authorities have in this instance affirmed that the war is unavoidable. The announcement that it is at an end will bo accepted with far more readiness and satisfaction.
From The Saturday Review. NAPLES AND AUSTRIA.
The absurd report that Garibaldi had personally visited Naples illustrates the strangely anomalous relations which at present exist between the belligerents. The principal lieutenant of the invading general is elected to the Neapolitan Parliament. Naval officers resign their commissions in preference to undertaking service against Italians. The three-colored flag symbolizes the principles of both the contending parties, and the professed foreign policy of the royal government is, like the constitution itself, virtually dictated by Garibaldi. The ministers are probably doing their best to give reality to their cause, although it is defective in purpose, in meaning, and in basis, and wholly devoid of popular or military support; but the restored exiles, who are th» natural leaders of the Liberal party, almost unanimously advocate annexation to Piedmont, while the king, the court, and the reactionary portion of the army undoubtedly hope once more to establish an irresponsible tyranny under the patronage of Austria. The programme or manifesto of the government is like a column taken from a report of some dismal social science association. "Cardinal reforms of legislative principles," "amelioration of the condition of the poorer classes," " improvement of public instruction," " progress of material interests "—phrases of this kind may serve to amuse the leisure of idle gentlemen at Liverpool or Bradford, but the Italians will not oe regenerated by bits of stale abstractions which would be equally consistent with the constitutional principles of New York, Rome, or St. Petersburg. Soon after delivering themselves of their string of platitudes, the ministers have been obliged to proclaim a state of siege in the capital, and to dissolve the electoral committees. In other words, constitutional freedom is suspended by martial law, and when the crisis is over, the constitution itself will probably have disappeared. In a few days, it is highly probable that the army and the mass of the people will have declared in favor of the national cause. The rumor of Garibaldi's unopposed disembarkation in Calabria seems to be confirmed by the statement on the other side, that a few of his followers had been defeated at Reggio and pursued into the interior. The Neapolitan accounts of Sicilian affairs always bore a similar relation to the facts, and it is probable that even the constitutional telegraph may not have unlearned the art of official lying.
There are strong reasons for commencing the enterprise without delay, for the pressure on the Court of Turin is becoming too strong to be borne without recourse either to concession or to open resistance. More than 20,000 men, regularly organized and armed, have joined the liberating general from the Sardinian ports, and further connivance will probably be treated by Austria as equivalent to a declaration of war. If Naples were once in the possession of the national party, it would be almost impossible for any foreign power to interfere for the restoration of the dynasty; but as long as the king has a nominal throne and an army in the field, he may, in conformity with precedents, invite the support of an ally in his resistance to insurgents and invaders. The motives which may induce Austria to grant the aid which will probably be asked are neither obscure nor altogether blamable. There can be no doubt that Garibaldi entertains ulterior designs against Vcnetia, although it is improbable that he has indulged in rash and idle boasts of exploits to he-performed in a remote future. The declared enemy of every foreigner who holds a yard of Italian soil, his presence, whether at Palermo or at Naples, must be a menace to Austria and to Home. The position of Lamoriciere and of the French garrison may probably encourage the Austrian government in active opposition to an enterprise which must necessarily be unwelcome to France. There must be a strong temptation to attempt a recovery, at the expense of Italv alone, of the laurels which were lost in the Lombard campaign of 18o9. In short, the reasons for interference are so plausible and obvious as to account for the premature statements that the measure has already been formally announced.
Yet the arguments in favor of the justice and expediency of a prudent inaction are equally intelligible, and far more conclusive. For military purposes, it is evident that Austria would be stronger in defending the Mincio than in attacking the Neapolitan territory, even if security were previously obtained against any opposition on the part of France. The Quadrilateral can only be endangered by a large regular army, while in Southern Italy ligut columns, raw levies, and daring partisans would hamper the movements of the Austrian masses, and endanger their communications. The appearance of a foreign invader would, moreover, remove any lingering difference of opinion as to the right of Garibaldi to represent the cause of Italy and Naples. The moderate Liberals have at present a sufficiently untenable position, but they could scarcely persuade themselves or others that they were defending the constitution with the aid of an Austrian army. THIRD SEBIES. LIVING AGE. .V. >
If the auxiliary desired to conform to the
| letter or spirit of international law, his interference must take place on the demand of the existing government, and for the purpose of maintaining its authority; yet the constitutional king is at this moment imploring an alliance with Piedmont, of which the indispensable condition must be participation in a contingent war with Austria. There are some precedents which might seem to authorize foreign interference in favor of an absolute king, notwithstanding his own professions of devotion to a liberal consti
Itution. The French marched into Spain under the Duke of Angouldme on the wellfounded assumption that Ferdinand's professions of liberalism were unmixed perjuries. Two or three years earlier, the Austrians themselves had, with less ceremony, forced
I another Ferdinand to follow their own march into his own dominions when they suppressed
! the constitution of Naples. The lapse of forty years, the dissolution of the Holy Alliance, and the change which has taken place in the general feeling of Europe, have rendered practical interpretations of international law less openly lawless. An Austrian march on Naples might find a plausible excuse as an anticipation of the designs of a future enemy, but the personal intentions of Garibaldi can form no justification for the forcible enslavement of the partially liberated Neapolitans. If the Burtons have still adherents, an appeal to Austrian arms would probably produce the same effect on their persevering allegiance as the similar blunder and crime which was committed by a more respectable dynasty in Tuscany. Austria herself has no Italian sympathies to lose, and a rash enterprise would risk the breach of European relations which it would be dangerous to sacrifice. No English government, however sensible of the importance of German alliances, would attempt to thwart the universal feeling which would animate the country in a defensive war for the freedom and independence of Italy in opposition to an Austrian intruder. Ihe understanding which was established atToplitz can scarcely have included a promise of Prussian support in any such undertaking.
The difficulties of interference are so numerous that rapid action on the side of Gar ibaldi will probably place the independence of Naples beyond the reach of attack. His foresight in postponing the immediate annexation of Sicily is proved by every additional complication in which the Sardinian government is involved. A dictator who is not recognized by unfriendly powers evades the necessity of answering many embarrassing remonstrances. Count Cavour may to a certain extent protest, with more or less