Sivut kuvina
PDF
ePub

The enemy

The appearance of these works river, now remained to be disposed was sufficiently formidable; and of. So quiet had this general kept the hills, which they covered, himself, and so carefully were his could be ascended only by á men concealed from observation, narrow road, commanded by artile that it was at first doubtful whelery, and numerous stockades and ther he had not quitted his works, breast-works filled with men, ap- and retired in silence. On its parently all armed with muskets. being ascertained however, that he As soon as the artillery and rockets still maintained hisoriginal ground, had made an impression upon the preparations were made for immeenemy's works, and silenced several diately attacking him. On the of his guns, the troops advanced to morning of the 5th December, the the assault. The 1st Bengal troops intended for this service brigade, consisting of the 13th and under general Cotton, were carried 38th regiments, was directed to across the river by the flotilla, and advance by the beach, and storm landed somewhat higher up the the height in front, and the six river than the stockades, a rocket companies of the 87th regiment, brigade, and a mortar battery which had advanced through the having been established during the jungle to the right, drove every night, on a small island in the thing before them on that side. channel, within range of the Nothing could surpass the steadi- enemy's works, and opening their ness and resolute courage displayed fire at day break. in this attack. Scarcely a shot speedily retreated from his position was fired in return to the enemy's on the river ; but, on taking poscontinued vollies. The 38th re- session of it, it was discovered that giment, which led, first entered they had a stockaded work about the enemy's entrenchments on the half a mile in the interior, comheights, driving him from hill to pletely manned, and mounted by hill

, over precipices which could guns. Brigadier Armstrong, coonly be ascended by a narrow stair, lonel Brodie, and colonel Godwin, until the whole of the formidable immediately moved upon its centre position, nearly three miles in ex and right; general Cotton himself tent, completely carried. led the royals to the left, and During the attack, the flotilla, the work was instantly carried, whose cannonade had been most the enemy leaving three hundred usefully effective, pushed past the dead on the field, and dispersing works, and succeeded in capturing in every direction. From three all the boats and stores which had hundred to three hundred and been brought down for the use of fifty muskets were taken, having

been abandoned by the enemy. The two divisions which had The whole of the defences were been advancing along the eastern set

on fire. bank of the Irrawaddy were now Thus, in the course of four days, completely dispersed, with the loss the immense army of Ava, which of their artillery, ammunition, had threatened to envelope Prome, military stores, and the bravest of and swallow up the British troops,

Only the right had melted away like a vapour, division under Sudda Woon, stock and sir A. Campbell was at liberty aded on the western bank of the to mareh upon the capital, still

was

the army.

their troops.

though we could not overlook those concerned, the employment of dangers, those inconveniencies, and such means would be strictly, I that inexpediency, in a case in might_say epigrammatically, just. which remote interest and doubtful The Foreign Enlistment act was policy were alone assigned as mo- passed in the year 1819, if not at tives for war, we would cheerfully the direct request, for the especial affront them all, in a case-if it benefit, of Spain. What right, should arrive where national then, would Spain have to comfaith or national honour were con- plain if we should repeal it now, cerned. Well, then-a case has for the especial benefit of Portugal? now arisen, of which the essence The Spanish Refugees have been is faith, of which the character is harboured in this country, it is honour; and, when we call upon true ; but, on condition of abstainparliament, not for offensive war, ing from hostile expeditions against

- which was proposed to us in Spain : and more than once, when 1823 but for defensive arma such expeditions have been plan-' ment; we are referred to our ned, the British government has abstinence in 1823, as disqualify interfered to suppress them. How ing us for exertion at the present is this tenderness for Spain remoment, and are told, that, because warded ? Spain not only harwe did not attack France on that bours, and fosters, and sustains, occasion, we must not defend but arms, equips, and marshals the Portugal on this. I, Sir, like the traitorous refugees of Portugal, proposers of the amendment, place and pours them by thousands into the two cases of 1823 and 1826, the bosom of great Britain's nearest side by side, and deduce from them, ally. So far, then, as Spain is when taken together, the exposi- concerned, the advice of those who tion and justification of our general would send forth against Spain policy. I appeal from the warlike such dreadful elements of strife and preparations of to-day, to the for- destruction, is, as I have admitted, bearance of 1823, in proof of the not unjust. But I repeat, again pacific character of our counsels ; and again, that I disclaim all such I appeal from the imputed tame- expedients ;-and that I dread ness of 1823, to the message of to- especially a war with Spain, bénight, in illustration of the nature cause it is the war of all others in of those motives, by which a go- which, by the example and practice vernment, generally pacific, may of Spain herself, such expedients nevertheless be justly roused into are most likely to be adopted. Let action.

us avoid that war if we can, that “ It has been suggested, Sir, is, if Spain will permit us to do so. that we should at once ship off But in any case, let us endeavour the Spanish refugees, now in this to strip any war-if war we must country, for Spain ; and that we have of that most formidable and should, by the repeal of the Foreign disastrous character the hon. and Enlistment act, let loose into the learned gentleman (Mr. Brougham) contest all the ardent and irregular has so eloquently described, and spirits of this country.

which I was happy to hear him pedients I disclaim. I dread and concur with me in deprecating, as deprecate the employment of them. the most fatal evil by which the So far, indeed, as Spain herself is world could be afflicted.

Such ex

“ Two honourable members in- parliament. No peace was in those sist that the French army in Spain days thought safe for this country has been, if not the cause, the en- while the crown of Spain continued couragement, of the late attack by on the head of a Bourbon. But Spain against Portugal; that his were not the apprehensions of those majesty's government were highly days greatly over-stated ? And culpable in allowing that army to is the Spain of the present day enter into Spain, that its stay there the Spain of which the statesmen is highly injurious to British in- of the times of William and Anne terests and honour, and that we were so much afraid? Is it indeed, ought instantly to call upon France the nation whose puissance was exto withdraw it.

pected to shake England from her “I do not see how the withdraw- sphere ? No, Sir, it was quite ing the French troops from Spain another Spain-it was the Spain, could effect our present purpose. within the limits of whose empire The French army in Spain is now the sun never set- it was Spain a protection to that very party“ with the Indies” that excited the which it was originally called in jealousies and alarmed the imaginato put down. Were the French tions of our ancestors. army suddenly removed at this “ It would be disingenuous, inprecise moment, I verily believe deed, not to admit that the entry of that the immediate effect of that the French army into Spain was, in removal would be, to give full a certain sense, a disparagementscope to the unbridled rage of a an affront to the pride, a blow to the fanatical faction, before which, feelings, of England :--and it can in the whirlwind of intestine strife, hardly be supposed that the governthe party least in numbers would ment did not sympathize, on that be swept away.

occasion, with the feelings of the “ So much for the immediate people. But I deny, that, queseffect of the demand which it is pro- tionable or censurable as the act posed to us to make, if that demand might be, it was one which newere instantly successful. But, cessarily called for our direct and when with reference to the larger hostile opposition. Was nothing question of a military occupation of then to be done ?Was there no Spain by France, it is averred, that, other mode of resistance, than by a by that occupation, the relative direct attack upon France-or by situation of Great Britain and a war to be undertaken on the soil France is altered ; that France is of Spain? What, if the possession thereby exalted and Great Britain of Spain might be rendered harmlowered, in the eyes of Europe:

less in rival hands--harmless as reI dissent from that averment. garded us-and valueless to the

“ I do not blame those exaggera- possessors ? Might not compensations; because I am aware that tion for disparagement be obtained, they are to be attributed to the and the policy of our ancestors recollections of some of the best vindicated, by means better adapted times of our history ; that they are to the present time? If France the echoes of sentiments, which, occupied Spain, was it necessary, in the days of William and of in order to avoid the consequences Anne, animated the debates and of that occupation, that we should dietated the yotes of the British blockade Cadiz ? No. I looked

though we could not overlook those concerned, the employment of dangers, those inconveniencies, and such means would be strictly, I that inexpediency, in a case in might say epigrammatically, just. which remote interest and doubtful The Foreign Enlistment act was policy were alone assigned as mo- passed in the year 1819, if not at tives for war, we would cheerfully the direct request, for the especial affront them all, in a case-if it benefit, of Spain. What right, should arrive where national then, would Spain have to comfaith or national honour were con- plain if we should repeal it now, cerned. Well, then-a case has for the especial benefit of Portugal? now arisen, of which the essence - The Spanish Refugees have been is faith, of which the character is harboured in this country, it is honour; and, when we call upon true; but, on condition of abstainparliament, not for offensive war, ing from hostile expeditions against

which was proposed to us in Spain : and more than once, when 1823 but for defensive arma such expeditions have been plan-' ment; we are referred to our ned, the British government has abstinence in 1823, as disqualify- interfered to suppress them. How ing us for exertion at the present is this tenderness for Spain remoment, and are told, that, because warded ? Spain not only har we did not attack France on that bours, and fosters, and sustains, occasion, we must not defend but arms, equips, and marshals the Portugal on this. I, Sir, like the traitorous refugees of Portugal, proposers of the amendment, place and pours them by thousands into the two cases of 1823 and 1826, the bosom of great Britain's nearest side by side, and deduce from them, ally. So far, then, as Spain is when taken together, the exposi- concerned, the advice of those who tion and justification of our general would send forth against Spain policy. I appeal from the warlike such dreadful elements of strife and preparations of to-day, to the for- destruction, is, as I have admitted, bearance of 1823, in proof of the not unjust. But I repeat, again pacific character of our counsels; and again, that I disclaim all such I appeal from the imputed tame expedients ;-and that I dread ness of 1823, to the message of to- especially a war with Spain, benight, in illustration of the nature cause it is the war of all others in of those motives, by which a go- which, by the example and practice vernment, generally pacific, may of Spain herself, such expedients nevertheless be justly roused into are most likely to be adopted. Let action.

us avoid that war if we can, that “ It has been suggested, Sir, is, if Spain will permit us to do so. that we should at once ship off But in any case, let us endeavour the Spanish refugees, now in this to strip any warif war we must country, for Spain ; and that we have of that most formidable and should, by the repeal of the Foreign disastrous character the hon. and Enlistment act, let loose into the learned gentleman (Mr. Brougham) contest all the ardent and irregular has so eloquently described, and spirits of this country. Such ex which I was happy to hear him pedients 1 disclaim. I dread and concur with me in deprecating, as deprecate the employment of them. the most fatal evil by which the So far, indeed, as Spain herself is world could be afflicted.

“ Two honourable members in- parliament. No peace was in those sist that the French army in Spain days thought safe for this country has been, if not the cause, the en while the crown of Spain continued couragement, of the late attack by on the head of a Bourbon. But Spain against Portugal; that his were not the apprehensions of those majesty's government were highly days greatly over-stated ? And culpable in allowing that army to is the Spain of the present day enter into Spain, that its stay there the Spain of which the statesmen is highly injurious to British in- of the times of William and Anne terests and honour, and that we were so much afraid? Is it indeed, ought instantly to call upon France the nation whose puissance was exto withdraw it.

pected to shake England from her "I do not see how the withdraw. sphere ? No, Sir, it was quite ing the French troops from Spain another Spain it was the Spain, could effect our present purpose. within the limits of whose empire The French army in Spain is now the sun never set -- it was Spain a protection to that very party “with the Indies" that excited the which it was originally called in jealousies and alarmed the imaginato put down. Were the French tions of our ancestors. army suddenly removed at this “ It would be disingenuous, inprecise moment, I verily believe deed, not to admit that the entry of that the immediate effect of that the French army into Spain was, in removal would be, to give full a certain sense, a disparagement-scope to the unbridled rage of a an affront to the pride, a blow to the fanatical faction, before which, feelings, of England :--and it can in the whirlwind of intestine strife, hardly be supposed that the governthe party least in numbers would ment did not sympathize, on that be swept away.

occasion, with the feelings of the “ So much for the immediate people. But I deny, that, queseffect of the demand which it is pro- tionable or censurable as the act posed to us to make, if that demand might be, it was one which newere instantly successful. But, cessarily called for our direct and when with reference to the larger hostile opposition. Was nothing question of a military occupation of then to be done!--Was there no Spain by France, it is averred, that, other mode of resistance, than by a by that occupation, the relative direct attack upon France-or by situation of Great Britain and a war to be undertaken on the soil France is altered ; that France is of Spain? What, if the possession thereby exalted and Great Britain of Spain might be rendered harmlowered, in the eyes of Europe : less in rival hands--harmless as reI dissent from that averment. garded us--and valueless to the

“ I do not blame those exaggera- possessors? Might not compensations; because I am aware that tion for disparagement be obtained, they are to be attributed to the and the policy of our ancestors recollections of some of the best vindicated, by means better adapted times of our history ; that they are to the present time? If France the echoes of sentiments, which, occupied Spain, was it necessary, in the days of William and of in order to avoid the consequences Anne, animated the debates and of that occupation, that we should dietated the yotes of the British blockade Cadiz ? No. I looked

« EdellinenJatka »