Page images
PDF
EPUB

a

re

trol of the Supply and Trans- Minute of 1st January 1905, port Corps from the Military paragraph 26), had scarcely Department of the Government taken up his office in India to the Commander-in-Chief. before he made proposals for It is pretended that the Secre- reorganising the system of tary of State had become aware army administration.

There by an incidental disclosure can be little doubt that these in this correspondence of the proposals, as well as failure of the Government of vised minute which he wrote India to have fully prepared in April 1904, were known to for mobilising the four divi- the Secretary of State, if not sions which until recently to the Secretary of State in have been accepted, with the Council. It is rumoured, approval of the Home Govern- moreover, that while Lord

, ment, as the force to be held Curzon was in England in ready for an emergency on the 1904, trusted agents of Lord North-West frontier of India. Kitchener were pressing his It is suggested that this failure views on army questions on is due to a system of “dual Mr Brodrick and other memcontrol,” which Mr Brodrick bers of the Government; and assumes to have existed hitherto the Press, which repeatedly in the administration of the announced the Commander-inIndian Army. It is matter Chief's intention to resign unof common knowledge that fin- less he got his own way, was ancial reasons alone prevented utilised for the same purpose. the full preparations for mobil. Hence we find Mr Brodrick, ising these four divisions. The in this despatch which purSecretary of State in Council ports to ask the Government knew this better than any of India to review the present one else, and was responsible system, begging the question for it. (See Sir E. R. Elles's at issue, and assuming from Minute of January 24, para- the outset that the Indian graphs 2, 3, 4, &c.) To bring organisation involved dual conit up now, as if it were a lâches trol, and was bad. on the part of the Government Readers of Maga' will have of India due to organic defects acquired a sufficient knowin the administration, is not ledge of the constitution of quite ingenuous.

the Government of India to It is evident, from a careful enable them to appreciate the perusal of the “initiating" issues in the controversy from despatch of December 2, 1904, the able article by Mr G. in the light of the correspond- Forrest in our number for ence now published, that the August. They will have obSecretary of State was moved served that in the Military to action not by these or any Department the system is exoriginal discoveries, but by actly the same as in any other some motive power in the back- department of the Government. ground. Lord Kitchener, it The Governor-General-in-Counappears (Commander-in-Chief's cil is the supreme authority in

[ocr errors]

con

all. For convenience of busi- and to whose notice he is bound ness the work is distributed to bring any order or matter among the Members of Council. which he thinks requires conThe Viceroy takes the Foreign sideration. In addition to this Office portfolio. Another mem- safeguard there are rules of ber takes the Financial work. practice which ensure that Another the Home Office. An- the heads of Provinces shall other the Public Works, and so not be overridden without the on. Finally the Military Mem- Governor-General's concurrence. ber, who has always been a Every Governor, Lieutenant soldier, takes charge of matters Governor, and Chief Commisconnected with the Army. But sioner, moreover, and à fortiori there is another Extraordinary the Commander-in-Chief, has Member of the Council, the Com- immediate access to the Govermander-in-Chief, who hitherto nor-General by letter, or, if has had no special department possible, by word of mouth,assigned to him. He is the a privilege which, so far as the executive head of the Army, heads of Provinces are and his position on the Council cerned, is freely exercised. If has been rather for the pur- the Commander-in-Chief, who pose of advising the Govern- is constantly with the Goverment of India on military nor - General and sits on the matters and of adding to the Council, does not communicate dignity of his office, than for freely with his Excellency when the despatch of any particular he thinks his work is delayed business.

or impeded in the departments It is impossible, and it would of the Government with which be absurd to attempt, to bring he has to deal, it is entirely his every detail of the administra- own fault.

It will be seen, tion before the whole Council. then, that the relation of the Hence it follows that each Commander - in - Chief to the member in his own depart- Governor-General - in - Council ment, the Military Member has been hitherto identical with as well as the others, must that of any of the Provincial dispose of

ques

Governors to the same supreme tions and matters of routine. authority-with this difference, But he does this not of his own however, that he is given a authority, but as representing seat on the Council

, and can the Government of India. There speak and vote in support of are sufficient safeguards against his own proposals, which none any misuse of this power. In of them can do. the first place, the Secretary in

see what are each department is not the the faults which Lord Kitsecretary to the member in chener finds in the system he charge, but the secretary to the has found existing in India, Government of India, and in and what is the organisation that capacity has direct access he proposes to substitute for it. to the Governor-General, upon The bugbear of “dual control whom he waits once a - week, stands in the forefront of Lord

many smaller

Let us

now

no

The respon

Kitchener's attack, as it does in power of selection for appointthe Secretary of State's initia- ments and for promotion, subtory despatch. “A great deal ject only to the right which of foolish criticism has of late every man has to appeal to the been poured forth regarding Governor-General - in - Council divided responsibility." This against alleged injustice, a right remark of Mr Forrest, in the which few officers in the army article already referred to, is would care to exercise except apt to the controversy in the in very extreme cases. The present case. In every effici- Military Department of the Gov.

Ꮎ ent Government there must be ernment has disposed of all busia division of labour, and there ness which must come up from must be a controlling power to the Commander-in-Chief to the co-ordinate the work of the Governor - General-in - Council, separate divisions.

Unless a and has also been intrusted with man is to be an autocrat, re- the administration of the great sponsible to one, every spending departments which

, official must be subject to that exist to supply the army with controlling power. This divi- all it needs-ordnance, commission of business, sometimes sariat, transport, remounts, necessary even within a great clothing, military buildings, department of the Government, and fortifications. so long as it is a real well- sibility of the Commander-indefined division, is not “dual Chief on the one hand and that control” in the sense implied of the Military Department of by Lord Kitchener and Mr the Government on the other Brodrick. The test of an has been clearly defined. An organisation is whether it con- examination of Lord Kitfounds or defines responsibility. chener's minute will show that If the man responsible for con- what aggrieves him is not ceiving any particular measure, “dual control,” but control of or for failing to carry out any

If his proposals are particular measure, can be modified, or criticised, or immediately marked down,

down, jected by the Government, then there is no dual control in the he raises the cry of “dual conbad sense.

When things are trol.” He points to the other so mixed up, as they are in Members of Council and asks if nearly every branch of English it is unnecessary to have a deadministration, that mis- partment of Government to chievous order or a failure in control the Members in charge action cannot be laid to the of the Home, Finance, and account of any one in particu- other departments of civil adlar, that is "dual control." ministration, why is it neces

Now, in the Indian War Office sary to control the Commanderthere has been nothing of the in-Chief? The analogy is unkind. The Commander-in-Chief sound to start with, as those is at the head of the command Members of Council have no and discipline of the troops, separate executive functions. and has practically uncontrolled They are controlled, moreover,

any sort.

re

a

in the exercise of their powers of Council. He places himself by the Governor-General and by as Commander-in-Chief on the the collective Council, and are same footing as regards the checked, as Lord Curzon points Government of India as the out, by the power and influ- Military Member of Council, ence of the Local Governments whereas his functions as Comwhom they cannot ignore, and mander-in-Chief are altogether to which there can be nothing apart from his seat on the analogous in the case of the Council. On the other hand, army. The fact is that Lord he separates the Military MemKitchener confuses his posi- ber from the Government. tion as Commander - in - Chief Thus he represents the military with his extraordinary and system existing in India by a anomalous position as Member diagram of this kind

[ocr errors]

GOVERNOR-GENERAL-IN-COUNCIL.

.

Military Member responsible

Commander-in-Chief responfor the administrative,

sible for command and work of the army.

executive work. So far as the Military Member Commander-in-Chief, but not is concerned this is a false quá Commander-in-Chief: Lord

division, as he has no separate Kitchener seems unable to existence and is part and parcel grasp

the distinction. He of the Governor-General-in- says an analogous position in Council. So, indeed, is the England would be

[blocks in formation]

a

“ The Army Council would adds, “that any one in England occupy separate building would consider this an ideal from the Secretary of State ; system of army administrathey would be held to be re- tion.” Probably not, but they sponsible for the efficiency of would very soon have the the army for war; and their Army Councillor out of the spokesman would be a member Cabinet. of the Cabinet co-equal with When Lord Kitchener talks the Secretary of State, but yet of the Military Member of receiving the orders of the Council as omnipotent in miliGovernment through the tary matters he is, we are medium of the Secretary of compelled to say, exaggeratState. . . . I do not think,” he ing. The Governor-General-in

as

Council is, subject to the con- The Local Governments, when trol of the Secretary of State consulted, had proposed certain for India, 'omnipotent in mili- alterations. The Commandertary matters. But the Military in-Chief was asked for his conMember is only omnipotent in currence in those alterations. so far as he is a member of He did not reply, and now the Government.

turns to attack the system as Next, the system is attacked responsible for the delay, and

responsible for enormous blames the Government for not delays and endless discussion. acting on what could have “ No needed reform can be

be been nothing but headquarters' initiated, no useful measure gossip. Mr Forrest quotes the can be adopted, without being following passage from Sir subject to vexatious and, for George Chesney: “No change the most part, unnecessary of equipment, no military work, criticism, not merely as regards is carried out without the opinthe financial effect of the pro- ion of the Commander-in-Chief posal, but as to its desirability being formally obtained in writor necessity from the purely ing. Almost all changes arise military point of view.” One out of proposals initiated by would have expected numerous the Commander-in-Chief himexamples to have been cited self; and, apart from the to prove this railing accusa- formal correspondence, there tion. The records of the Com- will always be between mander-in-Chief's office could reasonable men full and have produced them easily, free personal discussion.” had they existed. But what It is to be feared that the instances have we adduced by reasonable men were wanting Lord Kitchener ?

One only,
in this case.

In fact, it is eviin which the delay was caused dent from Lord Kitchener's by his leaving a reference un- tone, and from the Military answered. He was asked by Member's minute, that he the Government of India would have no truck on any whether he concurred in cer- terms with Sir E. R. Elles. tain views. He did not reply, He had condemned the system and the matter was delayed. even before he had experience He calls this a delay caused of it, and was not inclined to by the absence of a “mere red- help it to work. We hesitate tape official concurrence,” and to write in this tone of Lord he says that every staff officer, Kitchener. But there are so both at army headquarters and many signs of petulance, of in the Military Department, dislike of criticism and control knew that he was ready to of any kind, and of an unconcur.

The matter was one willingness to receive the orders of great importance, no less of the Government through the than his own scheme for the recognised channel, that it is new distribution of the troops, necessary to speak out. (See involving the weightiest con- Sir E. R. Elles's minute, p. 34, siderations of internal policy. et passim.)

a

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »