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bama claims undoubtedly prevented war between the two great branches of English-speaking peoples. This is, and is likely to remain for a long period, one of the capital instances of the submission of an international grievance to the decision of impartial arbitrators; but it is only one out of more than sixty international arbitrations in which the United States has been engaged. The first of these took place under the treaty with Great Britain of 1784, and from that day to the present hour there has scarcely been a decade in which some international question in which this nation has been interested has not been adjusted by this means. The American people, therefore, are in a position to stand for International Arbitration with absolute good faith. In urging it, we are only asking others to do what we have done ourselves.
The great work accomplished by the First Hague Conference was to make a resort to arbitration, on the part of the nations, easier than formerly. This result was obtained by assembling, so to speak, all the parts necessary for the creation of an arbitration tribunal, so that such a tribunal could be called into being much more readily than before. By creating permanent machinery, also, for The Hague Court, by providing a code of procedure, and by proposing an arbitration treaty, which committed the signatory powers to adopt arbitration in all suitable cases, an immense step forward was taken. It may well be hoped that the Second Hague Conference will develop still more the elements of permanence in The Hague Court which were planted by the action of the First Conference; so that out of these two International Conferences there may come not only a permanent tribunal that may be called into action upon request, but also a permanent tribunal that shall hold sessions at stated intervals, as a court of justice does, to dispose of any cases that may be brought to its bar. Such an outcome of the Second Hague Conference would be a most important step toward organizing the relations of the nations upon a peace footing.
Following the First Hague Conference an effort was made to secure the adoption, very widely, of general arbitration treaties; and it has been a matter of wide-felt regret that all of such treaties submitted to the United States Senate were so amended by that body as to make them unacceptable to the Executive Department. It ought not to be forgotten, however, that, as
amended by the Senate, the vote of that body in favor of these treaties was unanimous. It should always be remembered that the amendments proposed by the Senate involved a question of American Constitutional Law and not a question of an unfriendly disposition toward arbitration. The Senate is understood to have maintained that, under the United States Constitution, the Senate was not at liberty to deprive itself of the duty of assenting as to each particular question of dispute at any time to be submitted to arbitration. On the other hand, the prerogative of the President is, also, to be considered. It would be unbecoming in a layman to pass judgment upon a constitutional question of this character. But it is not unbecoming to point out, at this time, when the question is receiving fresh attention, that any new attempt to secure general arbitration treaties in which the United States is expected to join, ought to take cognizance of this position of the Senate, and to harmonize it, if possible, with the views of the President. It can scarcely be denied that upon the question of American Constitutional Law involved there is room for honest difference of opinion. Doubtless the Senate would decline to submit to arbitration any cause which it thought ought not to be so submitted; but the resort to arbitration must depend for a long time, if not always, upon popular satisfaction with the outcome of such cases as are submitted. It is most unlikely that this country would long willingly agree to arbitrate questions which any considerable proportion of the Senate should criticise as not suitable for arbitration. It is, therefore, quite as important from the point of view of favorable public opinion in this country to command the support of the Senate for the questions to be submitted to arbitration, as it may evidently be important from the constitutional point of view. I earnestly urge, therefore, that no effort be spared to meet this point in any general arbitration treaty that may be proposed hereafter. It gives me pleasure, in throwing open to discussion this general subject of arbitration, to welcome on behalf of the audience the distinguished speakers who are to take part in this meeting, and on behalf of the speakers, to welcome the audience to the discussion. Time was when, in order to carry thought instantaneously from place to place, some material substance, like wire, was essential; but now we know that the atmosphere itself may be so charged with messages of human thought that the senti
ments of the heart may be carried from ship to ship, and even from one shore of the ocean to another. It is such a message that we want to send forth from this Congress this afternoon on the subject of International Arbitration. We want the atmosphere of the round world to be so filled with the desire of the peoples for the peaceful arbitration of international disputes that no one having responsibility among the governments of men can fail to hear this popular and universal prayer; and we want this message to be worded so earnestly—and yet so persuasively, that all who hear it will give heed.
I have now the very great pleasure of introducing as the first speaker of this afternoon the Hon. Richard Bartholdt, Member of Congress from Missouri. Mr. Bartholdt was an organizer and is President of the American group of the Interparliamentary Union. He is the author of the resolution approved by this Union at St. Louis, upon which the Second Hague Conference was called; and is also author of the plan approved by the recent local conference of the Interparliamentary Union, which furnishes the basis of the recommendations of that Conference to the Second Hague Conference.
The Interparliamentary Plan
MR. CHAIRMAN, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN: If I could give a speech, I would make it to express my gratitude to you and your distinguished Chairman for this complimentary introduction, and also express my gratification at the contrast between this great Congress and its inspiring scenes, and that little modest home in St. Louis, where was written the resolution in response to which President Roosevelt has called the Second Hague Conference. This contrast makes me realize in full, as never realized before, that the pen is mightier than the sword.
Victor Hugo once said: "Peace is the virtue, war the crime of civilization." This great Congress of Americans, held on the eve of the Second Hague Conference, is to demonstrate to our own government as well as to the governments of the world that American public sentiment to-day is more pronounced than ever before, in favor of the virtue of civilization, Peace.
Peace to-day is but an armistice. The arbitrary will of one
ruler can disturb it at any moment and upon the least provocation. The people have come to realize that such arbitrary power should be circumscribed by binding international obligations. This would involve a surrender of sovereignty, true, but the sacrifice is asked to be made for the welfare of the people, for the cause of humanity and justice. It is a sacrifice that every individual must make to live in a civilized community of individuals; it is the same a nation should make to live in a civilized community of nations.
The world to-day is burdened with armament until armed peace has become more expensive than actual war was a generation ago. These vast armaments on land and water are being defended as a means, not to wage war, but to prevent war. It is one of the purposes of this great Congress to show that there is a safer way, a more economical way, and a way more in harmony with the culture and enlightenment of the twentieth century, to preserve the Peace of the world and secure it on a more permanent foundation. This way is as simple as the "Yea, yea,” of man, and it requires only the consent and the good-will of the governments. To-day they say: "Si vis pacem para bellum!" If you want peace, prepare for war. This Congress says in behalf of the people: "Si vis pacem, para pactum!" If you want Peace, agree to keep the Peace.
The First Hague Conference was called by the Czar of Russia to consider the question of armaments. It would have ended in failure if this program had been insisted upon, because it was starting the reform at the wrong end. No government was willing to give up any part of its war machinery which it believed to be necessary to safeguard its national security, nor would any of the governments agree even to the fixing of a future limit of armaments. Each believed that the other was actuated by some ulterior motive in the consideration of this plan, and the Conference came near being wrecked on the rock of mutual distrust. Eight years have elapsed since that time, but there is no reason to assume that the attitude of the European governments has undergone a change, though the evil has enormously grown. This is a great lesson for the Second Hague Conference. It should take up the work not where the First Conference failed, but where it succeeded. In other words, instead of wasting its time with an academical discussion of the
disarmament problem, it should proceed to perfect that plan of world organization which found its happy expression in the establishment of a world supreme court, the High Court at The Hague which I regard as by far the greatest achievement of the last century.
The plain people of all countries are clamoring for participation in government. True to American patterns, they insist on "the consent of the governed" being necessary even in matters of diplomacy, because here the question of war or Peace is always involved. Rightly understood, this merely expresses the longing of the people for more enduring Peace, and this longing gave birth to the great Interparliamentary Union, an organization now composed of over two thousand members of national legislative bodies who believe in substituting law and justice for force, or arbitration for war in the settlement of international disputes. All parliaments of Europe, save one, are represented in the Union, and, thanks to our initiative, the countries of Central and South America are now joining one by one. Since 1904 the American Congress, too, through its arbitration group, is a member of that great organization, and I am happy to say that the last three Conferences of the Union, held at St. Louis in 1904, at Brussels in 1905, and at London in 1906, were attended by American Congressmen in quite respectable numbers.
I am to speak of the plan which the Interparliamentary Union wishes the next Hague Conference to consider in the interest of the world's Peace. The three last meetings of the Union, at St. Louis, Brussels, and London, were almost exclusively devoted to the preparation of that plan. It is a program of most remarkable simplicity; and why? Because the members of the Union, being represented by the people and thus responsible to their electorates, are necessarily conservative, and, hence, unwilling to go beyond what is reasonable and timely and what the thirty-odd governments, to be represented at The Hague, will be in a position to concede and agree to, right now and without any further delay.
The plan of the Union is that the nations agree to keep the Peace by the simple means of an arbitration treaty which refers all minor controversies to The Hague Court for adjudication, and provides that even in cases of more important or vital differences the contending parties shall not go to war until the cause