« ForrigeFortsett »
plaint stands at the head of Mr. Madison's “no proof might be wanting of their constatement of the grounds of war; it stands " ciliatory dispositions, and no pretext left at the head of his manifesto against our“ for continuance of the practice, the BriGovernment. His own words will best“ tish Government was formally assured of speak his meaning :- Without going " the readiness of the United States to enter " beyond the renewal, in 1803, of the war “ into arrangements, such as could not be " in which Great Britain is engaged, and “ rejected, if the recovery of the British sub" omitting unrepaired wrongs of inferior "jects were the real and the sole object. “ magnitude, the conduct of her Govern- " The communication passed without ef" ment presents a series of acts hostile to
ro fect." 66 the United States as an independent and The grievance here complained of is cer“ neutral pation.—British cruizers have tainly very great, and cannot be expected “ been in the continued practice of violat- to be borne by any nation capable of resist* ing the American flag on the great high- ance. If England were at peace and Ame“ way of nations, and of seizing and car- rica at war, and if the latter were to assume “ rying off persons sailing under it, not in the right of stopping our merchant vessels " the exercise of a belligerent right, found-at sea, and taking out of them by force any e ed on the law of nations against an ene- men whom her officers might choose to
my, but of a municipal prerogative over consider as Americans, what should we “ British subjects. British jurisdiction is say to the assumption ? And, would not 4 thus extended to neutral vessels in a si- your Royal Highness be ashamed to exer“ tuation where no laws can operate but cise the royal authority without the power " the law of nations and the laws of the instantly to punish such an affront to the “ country to which the vessels belong; and dignity of the Crown and the honour of the “ a self-redress is assumed, which, if Bri-Country? But, degrading as this impress“ tish subjects were wrongfully detained ment is to the national character of the " and alone concerned, is that substitution Americans, it cuts them still deeper by the * of force for a resort to the responsible real sufferings that it inflicts; by the ruin
Sovereign, which falls within the defini- which it occasions to thousands of families ; “ tion of war. Could the seizure of Bri- and by the deaths which it produces in the " tish subjects, in such cases, be regarded as course of every year. I have before stated * within the exercise of a belligereat right, that the number of impressed American
the acknowledged laws of war, which seamen is very great, or, at least, has so “ forbid an article of captured property to been stated in America, amounting to many “ be adjudged without a regular investiga- thousands, constantly in a state of the most « tion before a competent tribunal, would terrible bondage to them; and, as some are “ imperiously demand the fairest trial, daily dropping off, while others are im" where the sacred rights of persons were pressed, the extent to which the evil has
at issue. In place of such trial, these been felt in America must have been very rights are subjected to the will of every great indeed, during so long a war.
petty commander.—The practice, hence, Our corrupt news. papers, with the Times “ is so far from affecting British subjects at their head, are endeavouring to misrepre“ alone, that under the pretext of searching sent the nature of the complaint of America, " for these, thousands of American citizens, and thereby to provide the Ministers bea " under the safeguard of public laws, and forehand with a justification for war rather “ of their national flag, have been torn than afford her redress. Upon the part of “ from their country, and from every thing the President's manifesto above quoted, the " dear to them,-have been dragged on Times makes these observations:- She " board ships of war of a foreign nation," first complains of our impressing British " and exposed, under the severities of their os scamen, when found on board American " discipline, to be exiled to the most dis- 66 vessels : but this is a right which we “ tant and deadly climes, to risk their lives " now exercise under peculiar modifica" in the battles of their oppressors, and to " tions and restrictions. We do not at“ be the melancholy instruments of taking " tempt to search ships of war, however “ away those of their own brethren. - inferior their force to ours: and as to " Against this - crying enormity, which searching merchantmen, we do not even
Great Britain would be so prompt to “ do this, vaguely or indiscriminately; but « avenge if committed against hersell, the " upon positive and accurate information. 64 United States have in vain exhausted re- “ And practically, we apprehend, that the * monstrances and expostulations : and that • criminal concealment on the part of Ame
's rica, is a much greater nuisance to us, was released from our service by the Lords " than a wanton search on our part is to of the Adıniralty, in consequence of an ap" her. Let her, however, propose " such plication from the American Consul, while.
arrangements" on this head, as are cal. I was in prison for writing about the flog“ culated to effect the recovery of British ging of the Local Militia in the town of “ subjects, and she will find Great Britain Ely, and about the employment of German * far from averse to listen to her."
troops upon that occasion. This, Sir, is a tissue of falsehoods and And yet, Sir, in the face of all these misrepresentatious. The President does facts, has the hired writer the audacity, the not complain that we impress Brilish sea- the cool impudence, to assert, that we never men: he complains, that, under pretence of search American vessels for seamen, taking British seamen, we take American upon positive and accurale information."
This is what he complains of, With this instance of falsehood; of wilful, which is precisely the contrary of what is shameless falsehood, before them, one here stated. As to our not taking men out would imagine, that the public would of Arnerican ships of war, our Government never after be in danger of being deceived knows well, that America has no ships of by the same writer; but, alas! Sir, the war worth speaking of, and that she has cunning slave who sells his pen for this thousands of merchant ships. It is said purpose knows well, that the public, or, at here, that we do not search American mer- least, that that part of the public whom he chantinen“ vaguely and indiscriminately; wishes to deceive will never, till it be too “ but, upon positive and accurale informa- late, be able to detect him; he knows that 66 tion.'
One would suppose it impossi- his falsehood goes where the exposure selble for any man, capable of writing a pa- dom comes, and, if it come at all, he knows ragraph, io sit down 'coolly and state so that its arrival will be too late to prevent perfect a falsehood as this. But herein we the effect, to produce which is his object. have an instance of the length to which the He next calls upon America to propose hirelings of the English press will go in her arrangement, upon this subject; though supporting any thing which they are called in the very manifesto, upon which he is on to support. It is a fact, and this writer commenting, the President declares that knew it to be a fact, that any commander of an offer had been made to our Government any ship in our navy, when he meets an to enter into an arrangement, but that the American nierchantman at sea, does, or " communication passed without effect." may, go or send on board of her, and that it is going very far on the part
of America he does, or may, take out of her any per- to offer to enter into any arrangement upon sons, who, IN HIS OPINION, are Bri- the subject; for, why should not she say; tish subjects. That this is a fact no one as we certainly should say:
16 Take care of can deny; where, then, is the “ positive your own seamen; keep them from us in 66 and accurate information?" It is also a any way that you please; but, you shall, fact, that the Americans have frequently the seas, take nobody out of our vesasserted, that our officers have thus taken sels." Nevertheless, she has offered to out of their ships at sea many thousands of enter into arrangements, such," she says, American Citizens, under the pretence
could not be rejected, if the recovery their being British subjects. It is also a 66 of British Seamen was the sole object';' fact, which is proved by the books at our and yet this writer accuses her of the crimiown Adiniralty, that the American Go. nal concealment of our seamen! We have vernment, through its Consul in London, rejected this offer of an arrangement for has oblained the release from our fieet of a the prevention of British seamen from great number of American Citizens thus taking shelter in American ships; and, impressed, seized, and carried off upon the yet this writer accuses America of a desire high seas. It is also a fact, proved by the to injure us by making her ships an asylum same authority, that many of the Ameri- for British deserters! cans thus taken have lost their limbs in the Our Government say, that, if we do not compulsory service of England, a service exercise our power of searching American which they abhorred. It is a fact that I ships, and taking out our own seamen, our take upon me to youch for, that, amongst sea service will be ruined by the desertions the American Citizens, thus captured and to those American ships. For instance, a carried off, and forced into our service of British ship of war is lying at Plymouth, late years, were two grand nephezvs of Ge- and there are three or four American vesneral Washington, and that oue of the two sels in the same port. Numbers of the
seamen get on board the American ships ; | A people submitting to this cannot be called they get out to sea; and, if they cannot be free, and their country cannot be called inseized there, they go off safely to America dependent. Therefore, when the time or to any other part of the world, and are comes for entering on a treaty of peace with thus lost to our navy. There is no doubt, America, I hope your Royal Highness will Sir, but this might become a very serious resist all advice tending to a pertinacious evil, if not counteracted. But, are the adherence to the exercise of the power of Americans to suffer because (for whatever impressmeut; for, while that power is exreason) our sailors desert? And, above ercised, we shall, in my opinion, never all, are real American Citizens to be ex- have real peace with America. posed to impressment, to be sent to be shot The other point in dispute, namely, the at, to be conveyed to the West or East In- possession of the Floridas, or, at least, dies, to be made to end their days under that part of them which belongs to Spain, the discipline of an English man of war; is of inferior importance; but, I ain of are real American citizens to be exposed to opinion, that that point will not be easily all this because British seamen desert, and overcome, unless we are prepared to give because that desertion (a very serious crime) it up. America sees the possibility of Old may become extremely dangerous to us? Spain becoming a mere puppet in the hands I am sure your Royal Highness is too just of England, and she sees the almost certo answer this question in the affirmative. tainty of its becoming a dependent upon
The case must be new, because the rela- either England or France ; and, she wants tive situation of the two countries is a no- neither France nor England for so near a velty in the history of nations ; but, while neighbour. She has, in the adventures of we have an undoubted right to recover our Caplain Henry, seen the danger of having own seamen, if we can do it without vio- a neighbour on her Northern flank; and, lating the rights of other nations, we can the Floridas are not divided from her by have no right, in any case, to seize Ameri- immense deserts and lakes as Canada is, can Citizens. America says, I do not While the Floridas were held by the sleepy
want your seamen. I would rather not old government of Spain, America saw « have them. Keep them by what means little danger ; but, she will not, I am
you please. Take them wherever you convinced, suffer either England or France can find them in my ships; but, before to be mistress of those provinces,
you do it, produce proof of their being This is a point, therefore, which, in yours, and that, too, before a compelent my opinion, we should be forward in giv• tribunal.' Nothing can be fairer than ing up, and not get into a war with Amethis; but this necessarily sets aside all im- rica for the sake of Ferdinand, as we are pressments at sea, where there can be no continuing the war with France for his proof given, because there can be no tribu- sake. The revolutions going on in South nal, or umpire, to decide upon the proof; America it is the interest of the United and we contend, that, without the power of States to encourage and assist to the utmost impressing at sea, our navy would be of their power ; and, I should advise your greatly injured by desertion, and our Royal Highness to show an earnest desire strength thereby materially weakened. to avoid interference therein; for if, upon
This is the point upon which we are at the ground of supporting the authority of issue with America. Supposing the Orders Ferdinand, or, upon any other ground, in Council to remain repealed, and the you show a disposition to take part against Dispute as to that matter to be settled, this the republicans of South America, that is the point upon which, if not settled ami alone will be sufficient greatly to retard, if cably, we shall have war with the Ameri- not wholly defeat, all attempts at an accan States. It is the point upon which the commodation with America. Nay, Sirg people of America, who are something, are to speak freely my sentiments, I do not more sore; and I am convinced that it is a expect peace with America while we have point which they will not give up. They an army in Spain, or, at least, while there say, and they truly say, that it is a mockery is the smallest chance of our obtaining a for them to talk of their freedom and their settled ascendency in that kingdom; and I independence, if the very bodies of their really think, that every mile of progress citizens are liable to be taken upon the high that we are making there puts peace with seas and forced into the service of a foreign America at a greater distance. We, .in sovereign, there to be treated according to this country, or, the greater part of us, see the rules and regulations of that sovereign. no danger' in the increase of any power,
except the power of Napoleon, whose ter that I do not know of any pretension that ritories half envelop our coast, and whose America has put forward, in which I do armies are but at the distance of a few not believe she will persevere, to do which hours' sail. Not so the Americans. They the conduct of your Royal Highness's misee danger in the increase of our power, nisters is eminently calculated to give her ours being that sort of power by which they encouragement. are most annoyed. If they had their As to support from the people of Engchoice between us and France for a neigh- land in a war against America, your Royal bour in South America, they would not Highness will certainly have it, if the hesitate a moment in preferring France ; grounds of the war be clearly just; but, because her power is not of that sort which it would be very difficult for your ministers would be formidable to America. What to make the people perceive, or believe, she would wish, however, is to see South that the impressment of American seamen, America independent of Old Spain, and, any where, and especially in the very ships of course, of the masters of Old Spain ; of America, was necessary.56 to the honour and she is not so bliud as not to perceive," of His Majesty's Crown, and involved that the contest in Old Spain now is, who " the best interests of his dominions." shall have it under her control, England The people have now seen all the preor France.
dictions of the hireling prints, with regard For these reasons every victory that we to America, falsified; they have been told, gain in Spain will be an additional obstacle that America could not support herself for to peace with America, unless we set out a year without England, and they have by a frank and clear declaration, leaving seen her do it for a year and a half, and at South America to itself and the Floridas to the end of that time declare war. They the United States.
are not now to be persuaded that this goBefore I conclude, I beg leave to notice vernment can do what it pleases with that part of the Speech, recently delivered America. by your Royal Highness's order to the two It has been stated, with an air of triHouses of Parliament, wherein mention is umph, by the partisans of your ministers, made of the dispute with America. The that the opposilion are pledged to support part 1 allude to is this : “ His Royal a war against America, unless she is satis&c. Highness has commanded us to assure fied with the repeal of the Orders in Coun:
you, that he views with most sincere cil. But, the people, Sir, have given no
regret, the hostile ineasures which have such pledge; the manufacturers have given “ been recently adopted by the Govern- no such pledge ; and, the war will not be 6 ment of the United States of America a jot the more popular on account of its “ towards this country: His Royal High- having the support of that set of men who
ness is nevertheless willing to hope, that are called the opposition, and for whom € the accustomed relations of peace and the people have no respect any more than * amity between the two countries may yet they have for their opponents. The Or66 be restored; but if his expectations in ders in Council were a grievance to Ame" this respect should be disappointed, by rica, but not a greater grievance than the < the conduct of the Government of the imprisonment and captivity of her citi« United States, or by their perseverance zens; not a greater grievance than to « in any unwarrantable prelensions, he see her citizens dragged by force into a " will most fully rely on the support of service which they abhor, on so many ac“ every class of His Majesty's subjects, in counts, however pleasant and honourable it
a contest in which the Honour of His may be to our own countrymen. This griev“ Majesty's Crown, and the best interests ance was known to exist; and, therefore, 66 of his dominions, must be involved." if the Opposition have given a pledge to : This part of the Speech has been thought, support a war against America, unless she and with reason, to augur war; for, I am be satisfied with the repeal of the Orders not aware of “ any pretension" of America in Council alone, they have given a pledge that she will not " persevere" in. If pre- to do that in which they will not have the tensions to be put forward, to be now ori- support of the people. ginated, had been spoken of, there might I am one of those, Sir, who do not rehave been more room for doubt; but, in gard a great extension of trade as a benefit; speaking of pretensions to be persevered in, but, those who do must lay their account the speech necessarily refers to pretensions with seeing much of our trade destroyed already put forward; and, I repeat, Sir, for ever by a war with America. Three
or four years of war would compel her to war will be hereafter more fully dwelt become a manufacturing country to such an upon, but I cannot refrain from noticing extent as never more to stand in need of here, that the first effect of it appears to English goods ; so that, if your Royal have been the rescuing of Poland from a Highness's ininisters do insist upon exer- foreign yokc. This is what we did not excising the power of seizing people on board pect to see in our day; but, we have seen of American ships at sea, those persons many things that were unexpected; and who manufacture goods for America must we have many more yet to see. The moseek another market, for that is closed live of Napoleon in doing this good act against them for ever.
may be questioned. By me it shall not, as For many years, Sir, there has existed | I do not care a straw for his motive. The in this country, a faction perfectly despe- Polanders are likely to become free. The rate in their HATRED OF FREEDOM, cause of it I care very little about. Our They not only hate all free nations, but hired news-papers are taking infinite pains they hate the very sound of the word free to make their readers believe, that the dom. I am well satisfied that persons of campaign is going on exceedingly well; this description would gladly hear of the that the Russians are doing just what they murder of every soul in America. There intended to do; and that the French are is nothing that they hate so much as a man falling into a trap. So they told us in who is not a slave, and who lives out of the wars which ended at Austerlitz, Wugram, reach of arbitrary power. These persons Tilsit, and Berlin. Napoleon was, in all will be sorely grieved to see peace preserv- these cases, going on into a trap; and so, ed between the two countries on terms ho- it seems, he is now.The Russians have, nourable to America ; but, I am, for my we are told, resolved to act upon the “ depart, ready to confess, that with me it will fensive;" and, in pursuance of this resobe a subject of joy; I am ready to declare, lution, they have already retreated before that I see less reason than ever for an Eng- the French for nearly 200 miles, leaving. lishman's wishing to see the people of not only the towns and the whole country America humbled or borne down; and to their pursuers, but also vast magazines that it will grieve me exceedingly to reflect of warlike stores aud provisions. And this that England is taxed, and that English is called acting upon the defensive! Now blood is shedy for the purpose of enforcing suppose that Napoleon were to land at the power to impress American seamen; Southampton, with a view of marching to but this mortification I shall, I trust, be London by the way of Basingstoke, and spared by the humanity and wisdom of your chat our army stationed at Winchester were Royal Highness.
to make off a few hours before his arrival,
and get to Basingstoke, before hiin, and WM. COBBETT.
thence to make off again at his approach, Bolley, Tuesday,
and so on, should we call this acting upou 41h August, 1812.
the defensive? What a set of impudent ruffians are the conductors of the English hired press!
And what a shame is it to SUMMARY OF POLITICS.
the nation, that these ruffians should find NORTHERN WAR.--The war now go- readers! The Russians, according to their ing on in the North of Europe has, to a own account, have run away at the apgreat degree, eclipsed the war in the South, proach of the French nearly 200 miles ; and for this reason, that it must be pretty they have left every thing in the hands of evident, that, if Napoleon be successful in the enemy; they have not stopped to look the former, he will finally be successful in him in the face ; Napoleon pursues them the latter. The grounds of the war in as a hound pursues a hare; and yet these the North are to be seen in the correspond- English hirelings have the audacity to tell ence between the French and Russian mi- the people of England, that the Russians nisters, already inserted in the Register. are doing just what they ought to do, just The sole cause is, in fact, a refusal on the what they intended to do, and that, while part of the Czar to shut English commerce they are surrendering a whole kingdom inout of his dominions, which English com- to the hands of the French without firing a merce the Emperor of France is resolved shot, they are acting upon the defensive! shall be shut out of every spot to which his To defend a country means to keep an enemy influence extends, as long as he is at war out of it; to act upon the defensive, means with England. The progress of this to defend merely, and not to sally out to
I am, &c. &c.