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fellow-creatures. The fact was, however, that from various causes, among which this may well be one, it was found impossible to get the Cape finances into order. Year after year the expenditure exceeded the revenue. Sir P. Wodehouse complained that he had no real hold on the Legislature, and could do no good. The Home Government found that it could not get from the Cape the pecuniary contribution to which it was entitled; while it must have seen that a suspended claim to that contribution involved that penalty on economy which we have described. As financial disorder is the root of every kind of disaster, we were likely to drift into some great calamity unless the undivided responsibility for the finance of the colony were imposed on one single authority capable of supporting it.
The question of defence was, as we have seen, involved in that of finance. Experience and Sir George Cathcart had taught us, that the true force for the control of a native frontier is in a well-trained police force. Settlers, if called on to perform this duty, become barbarous. Soldiers have not the flexibility for it, and (we believe) are demoralised by it. An armed police force alone can be educated into doing what it ought to do, and prevented from doing more. But the change from soldiers to police could not be effected at once. The sudden withdrawal of British soldiers from the Cape would of course have excited the whole native population, and left the colonists without means of protection. What was to be desired was a gradual diminution of the British troops, a simultaneous increase of the armed police, and such an alteration of the political constitution as would place the management of native affairs in the hands of persons who represented the intelligence of the colony, subject to this sobering condition that, if they rushed into a native quarrel, they themselves would have to bear the consequences, or at least a very serious part of them, instead of making it an occasion (as the last war had been) of enriching themselves at the cost of the Imperial Government.
Whether these reflections were present to the minds of Ministers on every successive occasion when they took a decision on this matter, we do not pretend to guess. But the course which they took was such as these reflections would suggest.
There were two points to be carried. First, the withdrawal of military assistance—if not total, at any rate to such an extent as to impose on the colony primarily the burden of selfdefence; next, the grant of political power. The connexion
of the two was as obvious to the colonists as to the Home Government. It must have been plain that they would never willingly accept Responsible Government if it meant the withdrawal of British troops. From a Governor it was almost certain that one or the other proposal would meet with all the opposition which was consistent with loyalty. Nobody who is worth much is without
That last infirmity of noble minds,' esprit de corps. And no Governor who feels himself capable of governing will readily abandon, for himself and his successors-representatives in the Colony of the Queen and country of Great Britain-his source of power and his source of splendour—the control of the civil service and the disposal of British troops. Therefore, that the Home policy had to be forced on the Governor and Colony with a certain amount of peremptory decision (of course the less the better), was an unavoidable condition of action at all. The matter was one of the points of unpleasant contact to which we have already referred, and had to be dealt with as such.
The first step, which was taken by Lord Carnarvon, was to announce a reduction in the number of troops stationed in the Colony and the prospective imposition of a rate of payment, on such a scale as would furnish an inducement to the Colony to enlarge their already efficient police force rather than to retain British soldiers. He added, that unless the payment was made the troops would be withdrawn. The Assembly said they could not pay, and Lord Granville said that the troops would be withdrawn, except such as might be required for Imperial purposes at Simon's Bay. To this decision Lord Kimberley adhered.
Meantime Sir P. Wodehouse had reported that the existing constitution was unworkable. We need not go into his reasons -we are not aware that they are matters of dispute. But he still considered that the grant of Responsible Government was premature, and Lord Granville deferred to his high authority. That is to say, Sir Philip was authorised to place before the Local Legislature this option— Give us a constitution under • which we can govern-or govern for yourselves. Before leaving his Government he put his own side of the alternative in the shape of a new constitution increasing the powers of the Executive. The Assembly rejected his proposal. Then his time of service being more than complete, he left the Colony; and Sir H. Barkly, experienced in every form of colonial constitution, was sent out under instructions to press the introduction of Responsible Government, which he did with success.
The propriety of these proceedings rests on the assumption that an increasing white population of 200,000 persons is ripe for self-government—and so far ripe for self-defence that it should be required to bear the first brunt of native troubles, only falling back on British troops when the exigency has become too great for its strength, and even then bearing a deterrent amount of the cost of war. If this is so, it readily follows that the bulk of the British troops should be steadily withdrawn. The withdrawal has, of course, to be tempered so as to suit the genuine exigencies of the Cape, and, while this is being done, there ought to be no difficulty in making with respect to Simon's Bay arrangements analogous to those which subsist between Canada and ourselves respecting Halifax. If this policy is right, it is clear that all that has passed places Her Majesty's Government in the best possible position for effecting it. Only it has to be remembered that unless it is really believed in the Colony that the troops are to go, there is no hope of securing an adequate police force. For ourselves we are disposed to believe that even a temporary Imperial subsidy towards the enlargement of such a force would be less mischievous than the continued employment of regular troops. And on this point we remark that the talk of more men from
England' is already leading some Colonial politicians to oppose the increase of that mounted police which is the backbone of the Colonial native policy.
And now what is the sum of all that we have said? The management of the natives is in the Cape Colony the cardinal question of government. We have endeavoured to show that in this respect the policy of England has been not perfect of course—in a matter of such difficulty it would be absurd to claim or expect perfection—but on the whole honourable, wise, and successful. We have not followed the assailant of the late Administration into the convict question, we have not noticed accusations of detail, nor gone out of our way to parry attacks made byinnuendo or juxtaposition, or to correct deceptive colouring. But we have endeavoured, first, to dispose of the general presumption of mismanagement which arises from the secession of the Boers who emigrated and the alleged discontent of those who remained in the Colony; and next, to exhibit fairly the conduct of the British Government in the four comparatively recent transactions in which it has been arraigned—the abandonment of the Orange River territory, the annexation of Basuto Land and the Diamond Fields, and the establishment of Responsible Government.
In doing all this it has been necessary for us to show that
the ideal picture of the Dutch Boers which is now presented to the world is almost as misleading as suppressio veri can make it, and that our inability to keep terms with them is due to a fundamental difference of principle in matters of humanity which is not to their advantage.
This article is a retrospective one, and longer than we could wish. But we cannot conclude it without a single caution, on the subject of Confederation. This is of course an object which Government will never lose sight of. But its dangers are great. It may be easy to confederate, but it is not so easy to confederate safely. A radical alteration in a system of native management which has kept the peace so long at Natal seems to be the very raison d'être of confederation between that colony and the Cape. Such an alteration may be called for by the progress of events; but it is a serious matter, and if it fails, will fail terribly. With regard to the Boers, it seems almost impossible to hope that they will ever loyally conform to our system of frontier management; while the alternative danger is that we may be dragged into theirs with all its discredit and disaster. To this the reviewer appears to reconcile himself without difficulty. It is inconceivable that Lord Carnarvon should do so.
The courage, decision, and humanity which he showed in the case of Langalibeli make it impossible to suppose that for a momentary appearance of advantage he would run the risk of such a calamity. He will not allow any terms which will make us guarantors of iniquity; and we fear that the Boer farmers must be greatly reduced by native victories, or greatly outnumbered by English immigration, before they agree in earnest to any other.
ART. VII.-1. La Sicilia nel 1876. Per LEOPOLDO FRAN
CHETTI e SIDNEY SONNINO. 2 volumes. Florence :
1876. 2. Relazione della Giunta per l'Inchiesta sulle condizioni della
Sicilia nominata secondo il disposto dell'Articolo 2 della
Legge 3 Luglio 1875. A BOOK remarkable for its spirit as well as for its substance
has recently been published in Florence. Disinterested public spirit is the more welcome in Italian citizens that instances of it are rare in Italian history; and practical patriotism, acting outside the boundaries of its native province, has hitherto been not so much uncommon as unheard-of in the peninsula.. Two Tuscan gentlemen of position and fortune, whose joint work we have placed at the head of this article, have devoted themselves to the difficult and ungrateful task of examining personally into the condition of Sicily, and have had the courage to publish fully and candidly the result of their investigations. They write without party bias as without provincial prejudice, and their words carry with them the sober conviction of truth. The picture which they draw is profoundly discouraging; but the fact that Italians have been found bold enough to declare the worst, and to warn Italy of the responsibility she assumed in the annexation of the Southern Provinces, is a ray of hope for the future.
When we use the word brigandage to describe the present state of anarchy in Sicily, we include in the same term many forms of the universal spirit of lawlessness and oppression, of which the outrages of organised bands of miscreants, acting under recognised leaders, are the most striking and terrible, but the least deep-seated and incurable symptoms. These, because less intangible, can be more easily met than the vague and shifting elements of disorder and violence of which they are but the natural growth and development. A radical cure is wanted; for, while the very conception of social relations rests, not upon public law, but upon private violence, the pursuit in detail of separate bands of brigands is as ineffectual as the attempt to extirpate some noxious weed by cutting off its shoots and suckers while leaving its fibres to ramify underground, strangling all other vegetation in their poisonous network. Five or six notorious chiefs, commanding each a band of from twenty to forty followers, represent what may be called the standing army of Sicilian brigandage; while behind them is massed an inexhaustible reserve, in which the whole population is linked together in various gradations of defiance to constituted authority. Thus, the numbers and zeal of the volunteers compensate—as England hopes that, in case of need, her citizen-soldiers will do—for the paucity of the regular forces. The rule of the brigands and their adherents-enforced by threats, by violence, by assassination, and, worse still, sanctioned by public opinion-is the de facto government of the island, against which the few officials whose consciences are as yet untainted by the general atmosphere of corruption are powerless to assert the dominion of the law. These are, however, the exceptions; in general, the authority of the executive is only perceptible when it has become an additional instrument of oppression in the hands of a dominant faction,