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object, which is agreed upon as in possession of the great Armennecessary to this day. Thus the ian fortresses of which Kars is the Duke of Argyll, one of the most most renowned, the command of copious and vehement abhorrers Russia in and beyond what is of "pro-Turkish " practices, holds called Armenia would have been that to ward off the Russian dom- complete but for some check; esination in Turkey is a cardinal pecially, it would have given that policy for England and the rest Power an easy mastery of the of Europe. In a little book pub- Euphrates Valley. That was a lished last summer, he suspects grave consideration with the then that Prince Lobanoff has betrayed trustees of the British empire, and in a certain despatch "the worst their main reason for insisting that indication of Russia's real inten- the Russian Armenian frontier, as tions : "She must mean, then, to defined in the San Stefano Treaty, stand alone in dealing with Turkey should be pushed back a little. At as she pleases,'” which would be the same time it was acknowledged unlawful and intolerable. Yes; that England's duty to herself here and the Treaty of San Stefano was accompanied by a duty to the was not only an indication of the Christian people restored to Turksame intention, but a most power- ish rule. The Cyprus Convention ful means of fulfilling it. There was entered into for the better fore something was done at Berlin performance of the one duty and by the Powers in congress to pro- the redemption of the other. Eng. tect a cardinal policy for England land was to defend Turkey from and the rest of Europe.
Russian dispossession in her AsiaYet it may be truly said that it tic provinces ; Turkey engaged "to was at Lord Beaconsfield's instance introduce necessary reforms into specially that tens of thousands of the Government, and for the proArmenian families who were taken tection of the Christian and other under Russian government by the subjects of the Porte in their terriSan Stefano Treaty were handed tories," and the English obligation back again to the Turk—which is depended on the fulfilment of the the head and front of Disraeli's Turkish obligation. “Yes; but, offending. Thus, and by the utter in short, the good government and neglect and failure of the Cyprus safety of those Christian peoples Convention (an insincere business), were risked upon the worthless he and his policy are responsible security of a Turkish promise." for those awful Armenian massacres. No; but on consideration of the The answer to this I am obliged to valuable security, to the Turks, of state with the utmost brevity, ask the quid pro quo. “Upon that? ing Maga's' readers to spend a Upon something hardly more subminute or two in making the best stantial, then, than Turkish vows. of them : the worst, too, if they The whole business was hollow and please, but the worst also. Left fantastic.
a show; the
The Duke of Argyll, one of the two last surviving members of the Cabinet which waged the Crimean war, defends that war on the same ground-by arguments that go to justify the revision of the San Stefano Treaty, which he ridicules and condemns. It is pretty to notice, by the way, that in defending the Crimean war the Duke can write—“ Antagonism to Russia on account of her exclusive claims was the inspiring motive of the war. The contest took of necessity the form of supporting Turkey." Why, certainly. But as to other contests of the same character which the Duke of Argyll did not wage!
parade of a grandiose scheme must that influence have been used doomed to disappear almost badly? Does not the Cyprus Consoon as seen—which it did, with vention imply an intention of using the massacres to follow."
it for good, or is there any reason As to them, we have already why it should not have been a considered whether it was unrea humane influence in the hands of sonable not to look for a recur Disraeli's successors ? Suppose Engrence of Bulgarian atrocities. For land as powerful at the Porte as she the rest, protection of the Christian used to be, in what way would Lord Armenians under the Cyprus Con- Salisbury and Lord Rosebery have vention was sincerely meant. If used her authority? Would the Lord Beaconsfield weak Armenians have been any worse off enough to take promises of reform than they are now, and would not from Turkey, all Europe has not England's position be a prouder one, proved strong enough, up to the if not a stronger one, than it is tomiddle of this month of February day? I believe I have already given 1897, in obtaining anything else. the answer to these questions. By But he was not content with the the continuance and honest use of promises.
We have heard that her lost influence and power, Enghe immediately appointed special land would have forestalled the consuls to watch over the treat Russian dictatorship under which ment of the Christian population, the Armenians perished and the and had he time to do much more? Sultan was shielded. How many months after the Con And now how is it, while the vention was signed did he remain ill turn which Lord Beaconsfield is in office? Not very many; and supposed to have brought upon the soon after he went out of office, Armenians is used against him so as we have also heard, his consuls violently here and so ingeniously were withdrawn by his successors, there—how is it that there is no and the plan failed because it was recollection of his services to the dropped: just as his whole policy Christians of the Balkans? Nofailed because it was first crippled body marks the good that Dizzy and then cast off. The collapse of did at Berlin toward ensuring the the Cyprus Convention must not independence of the liberated Balbe laid to Disraeli. Pertaining to
Pertaining to kan States; and yet it should be a policy which it was meant to remembered. Those States (one re-establish and confirm, it went may say it now without fear of with the abandonment of that being stoned) were not liberated policy, and the substitution of at San Stefano, but detached from nothing in its place—I call par- the Turkish empire and arranged ticular attention to this — which in the most convenient manner might either have protected Arme first for Russian use and then for nians from the Turks or the British Russian assimilation.
There are Government from Russian domin- people who still believe that a ation.
happier fate could not befall them. Let that be well considered in But assimilation is not liberation; all its bearings. Disraeli's critics and when the freedom, the indeshould ask themselves this ques- pendence, the self-confidence and tion: If the old policy ha been prosperity of these States are celere-established and confirmed, to brated, it should be remembered the restoration of England's pre that they were really liberated at dominant influence at the Porte, Berlin, and that Lord Beaconsfield
was the most earnest and deter- that the failures, humiliations, mined of their liberators. Much and misfortunes which have lately more from jealousy of the Russians overtaken Britain's prestige and than from love of the Bulgarians, authority are due to the bad much more as attorney and trustee abandoned policy? Can this be for the British empire than as a said fairly if, being found out to Divine Figure of any description- be bad seventeen years ago, this that must be owned. But when policy has never been replaced by we think of the intriguings, and a better? In that case, would not dragoonings, and kidnappings that the blame lie with those who failed the Bulgarians had immediately to to employ a part of the long interfight through, we find the trustee's val in devising a safer course, premorality as good as any in that ventive of these very grave failaffair. And at the same time we ures, humiliations, and misformark, in a possible confederation tunes ? If another course has of free States against Russian ab- been adopted, these results ensuing, solutism, an appreciable service to is the blame still Lord Beaconswhat in the time of that trustee field's? If we look only to moral was still the greatest as well as the results, is the influence of Russia freest empire in the world.
at Constantinople - which either What I should like to dwell the no-policy or the new policy upon most, however, I must be has let in-a finer moral spectacle content to put in a few words for than a Turkish Government under the reader's own meditation. It a dominant British influence was, all comes into two or three ques- and would be ?—would have been tions. The first is, Whether the lately, for example? And was not policy we have been discussing British influence paramount at the was dropped because it was bad, Porte the main point and centre of or whether it is called bad because the Beaconsfield policy? it was dropped? The second, Sup Other questions related to these, posing that the policy was dropped and equally to the purpose, imbecause it was bad, was the coun- mediately occur to mind. I contry left with no policy to succeed clude with a question of a different it? or if it was followed by a dif- sort. Upon any answer to the ferent one, what is the witness to above, can Lord Beaconsfield be its operation and effects ? The righteously condemned by the old policy was given up many Radical party, or be handsomely years ago; no Government has left for condemnation by the acted upon it since Lord Beacons- other? For both have to answer field went out of office, or bas ever the interrogations in the preceding thought of acting on it: that is paragraph. certain. Can it be said, then, FREDERICK GREENWOOD.
THE POLITICAL PROSPECT.
When Parliament was opened ing classes could be assured that on the 19th of January the politi- the matter was in train for settlecal horizon was singularly free from ment. Everything looked peaceclouds. Since that time it has ful and promising. But “the unbeen crossed by several, which, expected” was soon to play its though they may be trusted to dis- usual part in the evolution of appear without any serious atmos- human affairs. pheric disturbance, do nevertheless Mr Chamberlain's speech in the detract somewhat from the general House of Commons on Friday, satisfaction with which Unionists January the 29th, was the first six weeks ago regarded the politi- thing which jarred on the general cal outlook. Then the Arbitration sense of security which had hitherto Treaty with America seemed on prevailed. From this it appeared the point of being concluded that our relations with the TransAffairs in South Africa had calmed vaal were by no means such as to down. It had come to be gener warrant us in believing that no ally understood that Lord Salig causes for immediate anxiety still bury's management of the Turkish existed. If laws have been passed question had completely restored by the Transvaal Government conthe prestige of Great Britain in trary to the terms of the ConvenEurope, and that he had suc tion of London, and should there ceeded in bringing round all the be any intention of enforcing them, other Powers to his own views. a situation will arise, we are told, The last murmur against our policy "requiring all our prudence, all in Egypt had almost died away our impartiality, and all our before the brilliant success which patience." Statesmen do not use had attended it. The Venezuelan such words as these for nothing ; boundary question had been settled while the suggestion, emanating in a suitable manner. At home it from some irresponsible foreign is true that some uneasiness pre- wiseacre, that the question should vailed among Churchmen with re be submitted to arbitration, though gard to the coming Education Bill. it may be thought too ridiculous But it was not supposed that it for serious notice, is not to be diswould survive the introduction of missed as wholly free from dangerit. On the question of our military
ous or inconvenient consequences. defences and increase of the army Mr Chamberlain's speech was the Government had public opinion followed almost immediately by unmistakably on their side. An the news that the Anglo-American Employers' Liability Bill, one of Arbitration Treaty was in danger the leading measures of the ses of rejection, or at least that its sion, was expected to satisfy all acceptance depended on our conbut the most ultra-members of the sent to such amendments as robbed Labour party. An Agricultural it of all its value. The Cretan Relief Bill satisfactory to the rebellion has assumed such serious landed interest in general was proportions during the current already on the Statute-Book. The month that it must be ranked question of old-age pensions had among the events which have cast been intrusted to a small Com a shadow on the scene; though in mittee of experts, and the work- its present phase and in the atti
tude of the other Powers we have had deserved it. But though the an additional testimony to the con- principal offender on this occasion tinued success of our diplomacy. came out of his enterprise in such
In Parliament the very first a sorry plight, the mere fact that week of the session witnessed an he snarled at his master, and eruption of spleen in the Conser- found others sitting near him to vative ranks, which showed for hound him on, indicates the exthe thousandth time that political istence of a spirit in the Unionist loyalty is not proof against per- ranks which, though confined at sonal disappointment. Sir Henry present to a few comparatively Howorth has been trying for some insignificant members, requires time, without much success, to in- watching, as any real or serious duce the world to take him at his mistake on the part of the Govown valuation,--an object not so ernment might cause it to become very difficult of attainment if the troublesome
a possibility which aspirant will only avoid being a received some illustration from bore. This precaution the bon. the effect of Mr Balfour's speech member for Salford has neglected on the 1st of February in introto observe; the consequence being ducing the Financial Resolution that nobody except himself has preliminary to the Education Bill. ever dreamed of him in connection In this case the mistake was with Ministerial office, for which real one; but it is only on very in his own estimation, he is emi. rare occasions that the mistake of nently qualified. Sir Henry bided a Minister can excuse mutiny in his time, and watched for his
a party. opportunity; and on the 22d of During the whole autumn and January he supposed it to have winter it had been fully underarrived. But he only furnished stood that the bill was to be passed another example of the man who in time for the voluntary schools to goes out to gather wool and comes reap the benefit of it during the back shorn. He insinuated that present year. Mr Balfour had the release of the dynamiters by many opportunities of correcting the Home Secretary was the result this impression, and of moderating of a corrupt bargain by which was expectations based upon the lanpurchased the support of the Irish guage of himself and his colleagues, members for the Land Bill of last if he had thought it necessary to do session. Mr Balfour flayed him so. But he never uttered a word of alive. And then the unhappy caution, or dropped the slightest man only made matters worse by hint that the Government had not saying that he meant nothing ! made up their minds to pass the
bill by that date. When, there“For Michael CassioI dare be sworn I think that he is
fore, he was heard to say that he honest."
doubted whether it would be pos
sible to do so, something like conIf it is true that none smart so sternation was felt in the ranks of little as the foolish, the culprit on the party, not very much allevi. this occasion was a decided excep. ated by his subsequent expres
For he felt his punishment sion of “a hope" that the bill keenly; and when, on the Monday might pass by that time, or by following, the Ministerial state- his assurance that Government ment completely satisfied the would make an effort to accomplish House, everybody saw how well he that object. It seems at present
VOL. CLXI.--NO, DCCCCLXXVU.