« AnteriorContinuar »
co-operation with the Allies? break out into violence and By the Treaty of Paris they outrage against their unneighwere left to the tender mercies bourly neighbours. This was of their implacable enemies: the origin of the Bulgarian atrowhy? because, owing to the cities, for which Turkey was not bungling and blundering con- responsible, but England and duct of the war in the Crimea, Russia primarily were. We the gallant Turkish army, which submit, therefore, that in those had single-handed defeated the transactions which Mr GladRussian invaders in every en stone so recklessly used as a gagement until they were justification of Russia's attack joined and superseded by their on Turkey in 1877, no valid Western allies, was refused per reason is to be found for a mission to go to the relief of reversal of England's secular Kars, then sorely pressed by policy in the East. the Russians, until it was too The second reason assigned late. At last the indignant for that change is more plauprotests of the heroic com- sible — viz., the Armenian mandant of Kars, and the re- massacres ; and it may at once peated requests of Omar Pasha, be admitted that the Porte's prevailed, and that able general attitude in the matter has been was allowed to march to the in the highest degree unsatisrelief of the sorely beleaguered factory. It neither prevented, city, only, on arriving within nor repressed, nor inflicted sight of it, to see the Russian punishment, nor apologised for flag waving over it. Kars then the manifold murders and outthus became the great card for rages committed upon the Russia to play in the diplo- unhappy Armenians. Probably matic game at the Congress of the Sultan's Ministers did not Paris, and she willingly ex- dare acquaint Europe with the changed it for Circassia. The truth that the Turkish troops brave but uncivilised inhab- in those parts were ill-led, illitants of that unconquered fed, ill-clothed, and ill-paid, and country, seeing themselves thus were not to be trusted to fight sold into the hands of their against the Kurdish marauders, inveterate enemies, rather than by whom most of the crimes submit to that hated rule, fled, laid to the charge of the Turks to the number of some 40,000 were committed. souls, across the Black Sea to It should not be forgotten Bulgaria, where
where the Sultan that of the safeguards allotted to them land and against maladministration in houses;
but between Bul- Anatolia devised by Lord garians and Circassians no Beaconsfield—viz., the appointsympathy or amity could pos- ment of military consuls in the sibly exist, and the latter, as disturbed regions — had been time went on, only became abandoned by his successors, more and
more discontented and that a great moral check with their lot, and ready to against crime and outrage
had been thus removed out of had so long and consistently the way of Kurds and other played at Constantinople, and caterans.
that her place of power and While, then, admitting that influence there had become the persistent failure of Turkey vacant. Then followed perhaps to effect the promised reforms the most melodramatic stroke in her Asiatic provinces, and of diplomatic strategy since the unchecked perpetration of Napoleon pretended to adopt outrages in Armenia, justify the the Mussulman faith in Egypt. withdrawal of the friendly offices Without difficulty, with little due by England to her in virtue delay, but with all preparations of the cession of Cyprus, the carefully made, and the ground question of policy still remains rendered secure beforehand, the to be considered, and it does German Emperor stepped into not appear to us to be wise or the place at Constantinople patriotic in consequence of those vacated by England, an by deplorable events to execute a ostentatiously accepting the volte face in our Eastern policy, lavish hospitality ostentatiously and become accomplices with offered him by the Sultan, anRussia in her traditional pro- nounced to all the world that gress to the Dardanelles. in Germany Turkey had a fast
But it may be asked, How friend on whom she could rely does it appear that the weight for at any rate good offices, if and influence of England have not for_active military assistbeen thrown into the Russian
To render this more apscale ? The shortcomings of parent and more impressive, the Turkey, the bad faith and folly Empress appeared on the scene, of the Porte, may be demon- and at the great banquet sat strated and denounced, and yet on the Sultan's right hand. the old policy may be substan- After all this the Turks may tially maintained. Certainly: be pardoned if they thought and up to the period when the that Bulgarian atrocities and Russian nomination of Prince Armenian massacres were blotGeorge to the vice - throne of ted out of the
ted out of the page of history, Crete broke up the European and that the Sultan, victorious Concert, it was permissible to over Greece, and hand-in-hand take that view. But when the with Germany, need no longer two Conservative Powers, Ger- dread Russian aggression, or many and Austria, found them- the interference of the Western selves compelled to withdraw Powers. Nor would this imrather than consent to an in- pression be diminished by the equitable arrangement urged by Emperor's subsequent progress Russia in her own obvious in- to and demeanour at Jerusalem, terest, and England sided with The Crimean War, we all know, Russia, in spite of the legitimate had its origin in the conflicting protests of the Porte, it became claims of France and Russia manifest to Europe that Eng- about the Holy Places; but on land had abdicated the role she the recent occasion those an
tagonistic Powers were hardly of fanaticism against Turkey, in evidence at all.
which of late years has been Germany, and German Roman potent enough in this country Catholic or Protestant com to deflect her traditional Eastmunities, which figured in the ern policy, will have spent its public eye.
force, and England will reIt is hardly an exaggeration sume her position as guardian to say that by this masterly of the Dardanelles. Should manoeuvre the German Emperor that time
time arrive, in what has captured Constantinople, the condition will she find the Sultan, his splendid army, and Mediterranean? Will France Palestine. The great lift to at one end see her present conGerman commerce which will federate, Russia, predominant result from this happy coup de at the other? Or will the main is obvious; but, of course, triple alliance of Germany, it will be asked, Is this addition Austria, and Roumania have to German influence in the near succeeded in barring her exit East likely to last ? Making from the Euxine ? Something allowance for the mutability of will probably depend on the all mundane policies, we see no future management and governreason why it should not last ment of Crete. By placing, at for many years. Germany, in the instance of Russia, a Greek seceding from the Cretan con- prince and a member of the cert, had the active support of Greek Church at its head, the Austria ; and Austria, as is well four Powers have incurred a known, has the active support serious responsibility towards of the most powerful of the Turkey and Europe ; and, arguBalkan States, Roumania. With ing from the past, it is not very equal ingratitude and folly, easy to believe that if, enRussia after the fall of Plevna, couraged by Russia, or which she owed to the gallant without that encouragement, co-operation of the Roumanian Prince George one fine day army, threw over in the most proclaims the annexation of the cynical way the claims of Rou- island to Greece, any effective mania, and appropriated to her- steps will be taken to prevent self the territory coveted by her it. Then will have been set the ally. Of Austria's traditional shameful example of a small determination to prevent the Power, hopelessly defeated in an absorption by Russia of the unjust aggression on a powerBlack Sea, Constantinople, or ful neighbour, not only saved the Dardanelles, there is no from merited punishment by doubt; the German Emperor the interference of Europe, but therefore knows, and, what is actually rewarded for its misnot less important, the Sultan doing by an accession of terriknows, that behind Germany at tory diplomatically filched from Constantinople stand Austria the unjustly assailed and vicand Roumania.
torious Power. In time, perhaps, the wave On the other hand, the past
of Greece since she popularly called
the became a kingdom does not Eastern question will occur for warrant a belief that in her years to come. In arriving at hands Crete is likely to develop this comfortable conclusion the into an efficient naval or mili- admirable fighting qualities of tary station; and on a general the large and easily mobilised survey of the whole situation Turkish army has not been in the Levant, it is permissible overlooked, nor the probability to hope that, with the exception of its being officered in the — truly a large and serious future by German officers even exception — of the substitution more than is the case of Germany for England at Whether under German influConstantinople, and the gradual ence the Turkish extension of German commerce destined to undergo a
the expense of English rection, and become again a throughout the East, no revol- powerful factor in national utionary changes in what is defence, remains to be seen,