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GEN. CHRISTIAN DE WET, NOW A GREAT CITIZEN OF BRITISH SOUTH AFRICA. (A dispatch of June 19, from Bloemfontein, reports that General De Wet has addressed a circular letter to his adjutants, in which he says:
"Let me tell you that you and I and every burgher can win the heart of the new government by our future conduct, and of this conduct I am not in the least doubtful.")
will experience a great revival in numbers, in wealth, in ambition, in influence, and in power; and that it will supply the hardy racial stock that must be relied upon for the pioneer work of redeem. ing for civilization the stubborn wilderness of South Af rica. All this is perfectly compatible with their remaining in the British Empire for an indefinite period, and with no small degree of contentment. But for the rude awakening of this war, they might, through sheer backwardness, ignorance, and sluggishness as a race, have lost their language and merged their identity. But this experience will have made them one of the self-conscious and assertive races. It is important to remember that they stipulated for the right to use their own language in schools, courts, and government proceedings. This, also, from their point of view, is a vital consideration. Hardly less vital, in the Boer estimation, is the victory in the matter of the political status of the native population, consisting principally of negroes of the Kaffir stock. The English disposition was to enfranchise the Kaffirs, who had been on their side in the war,-partly in deference to a sentiment of human equality, but principally in order to use them as a political makeweight against the Dutch in the future politics of the Transvaal as a self-governing colony.
The South African Dutch, however, have always been most tenaciously opposed to the admission of the native black races to political privilege, and the British completely yielded the point; that is to say, they agreed to leave it as a colonial question, to be dealt with, or not dealt with, by the white voters of the Transvaal when civil order is fully restored and local self-government goes into effect. In this country, at the close of the war, the North en
franchised the Southern negroes, and made the acceptance of their full political status a condition of the restoration of the States. In South Africa, on the contrary, the English victors were obliged to agree in advance that they would do nothing resembling the enfranchisement of the Transvaal negroes, but would leave the question to be dealt with locally. Of course, it need not be explained that slavery would be illegal and impossible under British sovereignty.
The Uitlander element of Johannes burg and that region will, of course, have full political privileges, without delay, in so far as it is made up of British subjects. Americans, Germans, and Frenchmen preferring to keep their allegiance will have simply such protection and such rights and privileges as they enjoy anywhere else under the British flag. For the development of industrial. conditions in South Africa, including the mining business, the new conditions will be far better, doubtless, than the old. Thus, if the state of affairs that will come into existence by virtue of the terms and stipulations contained in the agree. ment of peace could only have been brought about without war, it would have been a good arrangement for everybody immediately con. cerned, and an advantageous one indirectly for the world at large.
From the British Standpoint.
While it is true enough, as a matter of historical record, that the Boers won the honors in the war, and prescribed the conditions of peace, it is none the less true that there is nothing in any of the conditions that is either detrimental to British interests, or in any manner humiliating either to British arms or statesmanship. If the Boers had surrendered unconditionally, it would still have been good statesmanship for England to grant them, of her own free will, all the benefits and immunities that were secured by the treaty of Pretoria; for the most difficult conquest of all is that of men's minds and hearts. Thus, if the British had really ended the war at the time when they proclaimed it at an end,-which was in the early autumn of 1900, more than a year and a half ago, there would have remained the necessity of keeping the whole country garrisoned with troops, and England would have had on her hands permanently, not merely an Ireland in South Africa, but something much worse. As matters stand, large garrisons will not be needed in any part of South Africa. The fighting Boers have all duly presented themselves and made their submission, and taken the oath of allegiance. The English have fortunately learned to respect
trust the direction of South African affairs. Steyn, the late president of the Orange Free State, is one of the ablest men of our generation, and he is only one of a splendid group of men of vigor, character, intellect, and tenacity. The British Empire will make a great mistake if it does not, without much delay, frankly avail itself of the services of these men, whose heroic support of the cause to which they were pledged shows their capacity for patriotism, and demonstrates their right to remain the local leaders of the land which has produced them.
through that fatal temptation, always begotten of power, to deal in an arbitrary way with questions as they arise. The alienation of Ireland,—so costly and so humiliating to England,—grows out of a stubborn unwillingness to let the Irish manage their own affairs, -an unwillingness which amounts to something like an incurable mental or moral malady. This useless war against a few farmers in South Africa,-which is perhaps the biggest war that England has ever waged in her history, was wholly without cause, and altogether provoked by an arbitrary and tyrannical attitude. The Boers were ready to allow any and all points of difference to be settled by friendly arbitrators, and would have been willing enough to let fair-minded Englishmen themselves sit as sole members of the tribunal. It is not the English alone who do not grasp sound principles in dealing with peoples that come more or less under their control. Russia is weakening herself, as well as doing a moral wrong, by refusing to allow Finland to go on in its own happy, contented way. The Germans are only sowing the seeds of future trouble for themselves by their treatment of the Poles in East Prussia.
A monumental instance is our own Our Own reconstruction policy after the great war, when we committed the almost irreparable mistake of depriving the responsible Southern population of the conduct and control of its own affairs. The Philippine instance is not a parallel one, although many people in this country believe it to be. Nevertheless, in our dealing with the Philippine situation, it is prob able that at certain points and moments a good deal more exercise of tact in the treatment of individual Filipino leaders might have lifted some of the burden that our army has been compelled to bear, through so much hardship, and with so much of patience and humanity, under great provocation.
Here, of course, many questions of exact fact are involved, and it is not well to jump to conclusions. The Filipinos differ from the other peoples to whom we have been alluding in the fact that they are not a homogeneous people, with institutions of their own, with a history, a language, a literature, or a type of political life or organization. At much expense to ourselves, we are making a people of them, and instructing them in the principles and art of government all along the line, from the local township up to the general government of the archipelago. They They will gradually come to understand this, and at no distant future they will be happy, prosperous, and contented beyond most regions of the earth. In the end they must be free to be their own rulers. But first they must become a political entity.
Acting Governor Luke Wright rePhilippine ported last month that there was no fighting going on in any part of the Philippines, and that all portions of the archipelago were ready for organized civil government, excepting, of course, the islands and districts occupied by the Mohammedan Moros, who will for a long time keep the tribal organization and semi-independent life that they have always lived. The long Philippine debate in the Senate at Washington came to an end early in June, when the pending bill was passed by a vote of 48 to 30, all the Democrats voting against it, Senator Hoar and Senator Mason also voting in opposition. The bill, as explained heretofore in these pages, gives specific legislative authority for the work of civil government carried on by Governor Taft and the Commission, and provides in great detail for many matters that needed immediate action, such as land titles, the granting of franchises, mining permits, and the like. The Senate bill differs from the House bill in that it does not undertake to provide for the establishment of a Philippine legislative assembly, but only goes so far as to arrange for a census and the collection of various data as a preliminary basis for a future representative government. The Senate bill maintains a silver standard for the Philippines, while the House bill provides a gold standard. Various points of difference between the two bills will, of course, have found adjustment at the hands of conference committees.
Making a Party Issue.
The protracted debate was marked by a persistent and elaborate attack upon the conduct of the army in the Philippines, with the result of establishing the fact that no army in the history of the world has ever made so good a record under comparable circumstances. The Democrats in Congress, and also in various States, as shown in a number of platforms adopted in State conventions for use in the campaign of the present season, have agreed that they will make the Philippine question a distinct party issue. Their doctrine is that we should treat the Philippines as we have treated Cuba. They rest their case upon the pure assumption that there exists a political entity that they call the Filipino people, or the Filipino nation, as a distinct popu lation recognizing its own racial identity, its kin ship of aims and aspirations as well as of blood, and possessing a national patriotism, along with a clear and great ambition to become an inde pendent member of the family of nations. Senator Hoar's great and eloquent speech, masterly as an exercise in rhetoric, and most beautiful and exemplary in its manner and tone, was all de
veloped by a process of purely abstract, a priori reasoning. To be sure, it was adorned with many allusions to fact and references to history. But its structure was wholly abstract; and if its premises were at fault, it was a beautiful speech, a dialectic exercise, and nothing else.
HON. GEO. F. HOAR, OF MASSACHUSETTS, THE SENATE'S FOREMOST ORATOR.
Mr. Hoar says that we have been Senator Hoar's fighting in the Philippines for dominPosition. ion, and that the Filipinos have been fighting for liberty and for the establishment of an independent republic, and that our "practical statesmanship has succeeded in converting a people into sullen and irreconcilable enemies, possessed of a hatred which centuries cannot eradicate." But the facts are that the Filipinos are not fighting for a republic. Practically all those who are fighting at all are bandits. intelligent Filipinos, far from being sullen and irreconcilable enemies, are fast becoming enthusiastic in their affection for Governor Taft, and in their appreciation of the splendid spirit of justice, intelligence, and humanity that pervades his entire administration. The best way on earth, in fact, the only way,-to make a republic at some time in the future out of the Filipinos is to do exactly as we have been and are doing, namely, first, restore peace and order so that the plain man may live and work in security; and, second, create institutions of govern ment just as fast as possible. In the ordinary Filipino community to day there is no American at all except the school teacher, and the work he
is doing commands the ardent admiration of the Filipinos, who are begging us to send ten times as many American teachers, and to pay them twice as much, so that good ones may volunteer, and may feel justified in staying.
Under Spanish administration, which The Real is all the Filipinos have ever known anything about, the natives were robbed with or without pretense of taxation, denied ordinary justice, and maltreated in a thousand ways. All those abuses have disappeared. Even at this moment the sensible Filipino has no more desire to have the United States Government leave the archipelago than the sensible Egyptian peasant of the Nile valley desires to have the British withdraw from Egypt. Everything that makes life worth living to the Egyptian fellaheen has come through the British occupation. The American occupation of the Philippines is even more necessary and more desirable, because the conditions of the people are more arduous, and their ability of themselves to remedy those conditions is even smaller than was that of the Egyptian peasantry. There are not, probably, a thousand people out of the ten million native inhabitants of the Philippine Islands who are so lacking in practical sense and judgment as to attach at this moment the importance that Senator Hoar supposes they attach to a thing that every unbiased outside observer would declare to be both impossible and undesirable, namely, the exercise of independent sovereignty by the inhabitants of a group of islands who are not yet welded into a nationality, who have no common language, and who have no background of history.
There are Americans who oppose our The Land and being in the Philippines on the per. fectly understandable argument that we are not called upon to make such altruistic sacrifices. Those men are able to see that we are doing a marvelous work for the Filipinos; but they are not able to see that we are getting any commensurate benefit, either present or prospective, for ourselves. When Senator Hoar and the other "antis" talk about sullen and irreconcilable enemies, whose hatred cannot be eradicated in centuries," they are talking of a situation that is changing so steadily and so visibly that it would be safer to say months, or even weeks, than hundreds of years. The practical question of the friars and their lands is a hundred times more interesting to the Filipinos than Mr. Hoar's question of abstract sovereignty. Last month Judge Taft visited Rome, with full instructions to negotiate, on a business basis, at
the Vatican, for the purchase of the agricultural lands held by the religious orders, and for the withdrawal of the deeply-hated friars from the ecclesiastical and civil life of the Philippine Islands. The Pope received Judge Taft with every mark of consideration, and a committee of five cardinals, composed of Cardinal Rampolla, papal secretary of state, and Cardinals Vives y Tuto, Steinhuber, Gotti, and Vannutelli,-was immediately appointed to join the American. deputation in working out the details of an agreement. It promptly became known that Judge Taft's errand would be entirely successful, and that the land would be acquired by the Government, at a fair price to the ecclesiastical holders of the title, so that it could be made over on suitable terms to the native farmers who have heretofore tilled it as tenants.
American sovereignty that these matters can be adjusted and the way paved for Philippine progress. With the going into effect of the civil government act, the establishment of a good monetary system, and the granting of franchises so that railroads can be built and many other enterprises undertaken, the Philippines will enter upon a new era of prosperity. Our great orators like Senator Hoar will, within five years, be the eulogists of a transforming colonial policy which, for brilliancy of achievement in the Philippine Islands, must challenge comparison with anything ever done by any nation. Those who opposed our intervention in Cuba now praise it to the skies, and they will have another clearing of vision some day. As to the recent work of the army on the side of its show of force, it is not war but vigilant policing. It is the breaking up of the brigandage that is always apt to follow the last stages of guerrilla fighting. Brigandage has to be faced and put down, whether in the Philippines, or in Mexico, Spain, Italy, or Bulgaria. As a matter of practical policy, we are doubtless very near to the day when it will be wise to enlist Filipinos to a large extent in the army, and to intrust principally to them the work of subduing the marauding bands who, under pretense of patriotism, are really nothing but outlaws. It is intimated that a general amnesty proclamation may be issued as early as the fourth of the present month of July. One of the results of such a proclamation would be the immediate return of the Filipino prisoners who are at present detained on the island of Guam. Señor Llorente, who was Supreme Court Judge under General Otis' administration, and afterward governor of Cebu, has been made Governor of Samar, and will establish there a civil government on the scene of the recent disturbances.
Cuba and the
The depressed business condition of Special Mes- Cuba, and the discouraging outlook in the Senate at Washington for the passage of the Cuban reciprocity bill, led to the sending of a special message to Congress by President Roosevelt on June 13. In this message the President re-stated his well-known views, and urged Congress to come to Cuba's relief. A group of eighteen Republican Senators had joined the beet-sugar movement against reciprocity, and thus the situation had become very dubious. From the President's standpoint, the question at issue is not primarily an economic one, but one of public honor and good faith. Under the limitations imposed by the Platt amendment, Cuba is not, in the full sense, a foreign country, but is an American dependency.