« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
the thing a matter of pride, and at seems to me, why the civil modes of tached incivility along with impassiv- address are become more uncommon ity to our national character, then form- among us than in some other couning.
tries. These are the principal reasons, as it
0. P. The Speaker.
THE SOUL'S SURRENDER.
If Thou wilt take my heart, o God,
And mould it to Thy will,
I shall be calm and still.
It is not great things Thou dost ask
of Thy disciples, Lord,
By helpful deed or word.
While some bear on the battlefield
The standard of the Cross,
Refined of earthly dross.
The grape is trodden in the press
To yield the quickening wine,
The brotherhood Divine.
There is no death save fear of death;
The soul that once is free
Then will I, Lord, await the end
With no unfilial dread,
G. Barnett Smith.
Weariness, if not despair, must be and death; a foreign relief force of the dominant feeling of the writer upon 2,000 men has not been heard of for a the Far East who takes up his pen once week; the famous but old-fashioned more, at this moment of latest and Taku forts, having fired upon the foreign greatest crisis to discuss British policy fleet at midnight, obviously by order of in relation to the Chinese Empire. A the Chinese Government, have been bomdozen, perhaps a score of writers in barded, blown up and occupied at a this country know the Far East well, serious loss of foreign life; the railways they have clearly foreseen what has are destroyed and all the telegraph been coming, they have persistently is- wires are cut-if the 250 Europeans in sued advice and warnings. As each Peking had been massacred eight days fresh rebuff or crisis has confirmed ago we should not know it yet; and all their prophecies they have redoubled the foreign buildings at Peking, except their appeals for something in the shape the legations, including the large Roof a definite, consistent and supported man Catholic Cathedral, upon the porch policy. For all the effect they have of which is an Imperial inscription had upon the Foreign Office they would hitherto supposed to guarantee it under have been more usefully employed in all possible circumstances from injury whitewashing its cellars.
at Chinese hands, and the buildings of Meanwhile, the great rival has with- the Chinese Maritime Customs, Chinese stood us to our face in the daylightproperty and the bulwark of such Chiand sown tares in our fields in the nese solvency as exists, have been night, and in the body we have tried burned. The Western world has never to preserve, the process of decay has found itself in such an embarrassing gone so steadily on that probably no position in China before, and if, as political antiseptic will now be able to seems probable at this moment, all the save it from dissolution. Suddenly, organized Chinese forces join in an atexcept to those who have cried from tempt to expel the foreigner, and the the watch-towers in vain-an appalling always simmering rebellions of the situation faces us;' every foreigner in south break into flame, as they are alPeking, including diplomatists, ladies most certain to do if the situation is and children, is virtually a prisoner, prolonged, it is impossible to foresee in imminent peril of outrage, torture the end or to say how the West is to 11 write on the 23rd of June.
re-establish its prestige and authority.
England has been for fifty years the expected from Lord Salisbury, the paramount Power in China. By the United States Government took the vast preponderance of her trade, the matter up and secured assurances of numbers of her nationals living and definite adherence to the "open door" trading there, her experience of the from every nation except Russia, whose East, her supply of capable adminis reply was characteristically vague and trators, her unquestioned command of unsatisfactory. But this was too late the sea highway thither, the position to prevent the absorption of Manchuria of leader has naturally fallen to her by a Power whose fixed policy is the among the nations. How she has ac prohibition of foreign trade, whereas quitted herself of this responsible and there was plenty of time, after the inproud task is sufficiently shown by the tentions of Russia were plain to all the facts of the situation to-day as sum world, to secure a general declaration marized above. The humiliation, the of open trade policy for all China forloss, the possible horrors, lie chiefly at ever, which no Power could have subthe door of England. Her paramountcy sequently abrogated except by force of is gone forever, beyond the faintest arms. possibility of retrieval. That the open Sooner or later order will reign once ings for her trade will be largely cur more in Peking, there will be some centailed is also no longer a matter of tral authority there, and the Ministers doubt. Our statesmen have been la of the Powers will once more be about mentably and conspicuously wanting their business-or other Ministers is in the energy necessary to the perform these are in their graves. Then Engance of their task, and as the most im land will have to profess a policy of portant problems have arisen during some kind, and make an effort of some Lord Salisbury's present Government, sort to carry it out. Beneath any polit is the Cabinet of to-day that has icy there are a number of axioms, and done, or left undone, most to bring this so far as these are borne in mind that injury upon the nation.
policy will stand a chance of success, Since Lord Salisbury has been in and so far as they are overlooked it office there have been several occasions will once more fail. Expert opinion when an intelligent appreciation of will differ somewhat, of course, conaffairs, backed by bold and straightfor- cerning these axioms, but upon most ward action, would have preserved the of them, all who know the Far East, integrity of China, kept for all nations will be in substantial agreement, and alike the huge actualities and greater my desire here is to set some of these potentialities of her trade and postponed plainly forth. Before doing so, howindefinitely, if not forever, the dangers ever, it is essential to recall to public of a war over her partition. The abil attention a few of the extraordinary ity of England to do this thing was far lapses from common sense and comgreater than that of any other country, mon energy that have characterized our for the simple reason that the world treatment of the Chinese problem durrealizes that we are by fixed policy a ing the last few years. So many other free-trading nation, and that our object exciting events have overlaid them is to maintain open markets for all. that they have probably passed out of The United States and Japan, with pos- public recollection. sibly Germany as well, would have Is it generally remembered, for insupported us in diplomatic action di stance, that the British Parliament rected to this end-indeed, when it be passed a resolution formally declaring came evident that nothing was to be the integrity of China to be a British
concern? It meant nothing, and no at the time, “I am profoundly conaction whatever was intended to follow vinced that although the statement as it. It was tossed as a sop by a policy- to the conclusion of a private treaty less Government to an uneasy House. may have been textually inaccurate, Could anything have been more dis- the broad fact is indubitable.” It might creditable to the British Empire than have been thought that the Foreign this bit of feeble bluff? The Cassini Office would have inquired privately Convention is even less likely to be into the sources of so very serious a recollected. In November, 1895, the rumor. On the contrary, it simply inTimes published a telegram from a formed Russia indirectly that she could correspondent in Hong Kong, stating not be allowed to possess herself of that a secret treaty had been signed Port Arthur. On the 8th of February, between Russia and China, by which 1898, Mr. (now Lord) Curzon reassured the former was conceded the right of the House of Commons as follows: anchorage for her fleet in Port Arthur, and the right to build railways across Up to now, Russia has done nothing Manchuria to Vladivostok and Port in respect of Port Arthur which she Arthur. The Russian Embassy in Lon- has not been perfectly entitled, under don at once declared these statements treaty rights, to do. Russia has sent
ships of war to Port Arthur; and if to be "absolutely unfounded.” On the
blame is to be attached to her for so do28th of October, 1896, the North China ing, Her Majesty's government must Daily News published the full text of be included in the accusation, for a this Convention, which was seen to fortnight ago we did exactly the same place the whole of northern China vir- thing (Cheers). The right to send tually under Russian protection-Rus ships of war to Port Arthur is sia might station any force she pleased with other Powers under the treaty of
a right which we enjoy together in this territory, raise and drill Chinese Tientsin, and when the occasion arises, levies, develop mineral resources, forti
we shall do it again. fy Port Arthur, Talienwan and Kiaochao; if she found herself in danger of On the 27th of March the "lease" of war, China bound herself not to cede Port Arthur by China to Russia was strategical points to any other Power, signed by Li Hung-chang, Chang Chihand Russia undertook to defend China tung and M. Pavloff, the Russian repreagainst other foreign encroachment. sentative in Peking, with the following Again and again the British Govern as its Article VI:ment denied the existence of this convention. Yet for six weeks the baggage The governments of the two counof the Russian Minister in Peking was tries agree that as Port Arthur is solepacked ready for his instant departure ly a naval port, only Russian and Chias soon as it was signed, and his car
nese vessels are to be allowed to use riages and 'mule litters stood ready all
it, and it is to be considered a closed this time in the courtyard of the Rus- cbant vessels of other Powers are con
port as far as the war and mersian Legation.
The Times felt com- cerned. pelled by courtesy, in view of the official Russian denial, to repudiate its Thus, within seven weeks the remark correspondent, but the English papers of the Under-Secretary in the House in the Far East persisted in the fact of Commons was shown by events to of the Convention, and, as I myself be as ignorant in fact as it was flippant knew this correspondent intimately and in form. The above "lease" was not the sources of his information, I wrote generally known until the 3d of June,
when the Times published it. At once several more pawns. Before this, too, Lord Salisbury telegraphed to the Brit- the British Government had commitish Ambassador in St. Petersburg to ted a blunder without parallel in modinquire if it was correct, and to instruct ern diplomacy for sheer ineptitude. The him, in that case, to point out to the country and the House of Commons Russian Government that Article VI had become very restless at the proswas "quite inconsistent with the spe- pect of the seizure of Port Arthur by cific assurances of the Russian Gov Russia and the apparent failure of Lord ernment and with our treaty rights in Salisbury to take any steps to prevent Chinese ports." This infantile belief this. Thereupon, besides the statement of that the Russian Government would Mr. Curzon quoted above about the ships, care a jot about "specific assurances" which was received with hearty cheers and “treaty rights" in a matter which of relief in the House, the Admiralty Russia had so close at heart as the circulated a list of ships' stations in the eventual mastery of northern China, Far East containing these words: “At when she knew perfectly well that a Port Arthur, Immortalité and Iphifew sarcastically turned sentences in genia." That is, we had two powerful a despatch would be all she would have cruisers at the danger-point to guard to bear for ignoring them, is of a piece our rights. Naturally the country was with too much of our diplomacy for much relieved and criticism ceased. years past. Of course Russia pooh- Shortly afterwards Russia requested poohed all the objections, with even that these two ships should be with. less consideration for our feelings than drawn, and by an act of folly without usual. One course alone would have equal, I repeat, in diplomatic annals, saved the situation. The treaty of they were withdrawn-forever. And Tientsin (1858) gives us “free and equal the country, after being quieted by the participation in all privileges, immuni news of their presence there, was posities and advantages that may have tively assured that their presence had been, or may be hereafter, granted by possessed no signification whatever! His Majesty, the Emperor of China to Once more a domestic storm broke the Government or the subjects of any upon the Government, and a dangerous other nation." Here was a clear issue discussion loomed ahead in the House. -the deliberate infraction by Russia of To stave off this to have something the old standing treaty rights of all to pacify its supporters with-the Govother nations. The British flagship--a ernment arranged with Japan, always more powerful vessel than any Russia ready to act with us in keeping China had on the spot-should have been or open, to occupy Wei-hai-wei when dered to enter Port Arthur, by Japan evacuated it upon payment of force if necessary, and to stay the remainder of the war indemnity by there until the affair was settled in China. Military and naval opinion, alaccordance with the Treaty of Tien most without exception has declared tsin, the Magna Charta of the West in this place to be useless to us; the Gov. China. Every student of the interna ernment was besought by one of the tional situation knows that Russia first authorities upon strategy not to would not have accepted the gage of put any valuable stores there to be capbattle; but even if she had, it would tured by the enemy or to keep the fleet have been better to fight her with the idle in defending them; ten thousand allies we should necessarily have had, men would be necessary to protect the on such an issue, than to postpone an place, and we have raised one solitary inevitable conflict until she had queened regiment of Chinese; a million sterling