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that of opposition to Russian absorption of Manchuria. It remains to be added that Russia has not yet relaxed her grasp upon the provinces; that she is engaged in negotiating yet another Manchurian Convention with China; and that, according to the messages of a Special Correspondent of the Standard in China, she, in December, 1901, received another rebuff, this time from China herself. The death of Li Hung Chang, who, it is not unfair to say, was conspicuously Pro-Russian, has given opportunities to certain Chinese statesmen of, apparently, a sterner and more patriotic temper to block the negotiations and demand the fulfilment of the Czar's pledges for the handing back of the region to the Emperor, now on his return with the Empress-Mother to Peking. It is possible, therefore, that the next Blue Book on China will contain the story of a further abortive attempt by Russia to make a compact with China to the detriment of the Treaty rights of other Powers. Be that as it may, a study of the present Documents conveys the same lesson as was apparent in previous years—that the professions of the Czar's diplomatists cannot be accepted without reserve, and that their acts, so far as Manchuria is concerned, are inconsistent with their pledges, and are modifiable only in proportion to the opposition met with from China and the other Powers.

Of the remaining contents of the HANDBOOK attention may be called to the Despatches relating to the creation of a New Province on the NorthWest Frontier of India ; to the preliminary Returns of the Census ; the Budget ; His Majesty's Speeches from the Throne in the Imperial Parliament and the Federal Parliament of Australia; the Memorandum by the Secretary of State on the Navy Estimates; the like Document on the Army Estimates ; the Reports of the Committees on War Office Reorganisation, Army Medical and Nursing Services, and Yeomanry Organisation ; the Arbitration Convention on the Waima and “Sergent Malamine" incident ; the Reports from various West Indian Colonies; and, in the Commercial Section, Mr. Vice-Consul Sarell's valuable Report on Turkish Railways, and various Reports from our Consuls in China.

POLITICAL SECTION.

(All Articles are arranged alphabetically, and, where possible, are grouped under a general heading. Thus

matters relating to Africa including Bgypt and the Soudan-are dealt with in alphabetical order under Africa. Each section of the book is, therefore, as far as practicable, self-indexing; but on pp. 243-246 a full Index is printed which will facilitate reference to subjects upon which Official Documents have been published, and also to the leading points of the analysis in each case.)

AFRICA,

British Central Africa [No. 2722].-Mr. Commissioner Sharpe's Report for the year ending March 31st, 1901, says that the year had been a trying one for the Protectorate:

The country may be said to have two leading interests—viz., planting (mainly coffee) and trading, which consists to a large extent of the transport of goods of all descriptions, not only to the Protectorate, but to territories beyond. At the date of my last report it was already foreseen that the planting interest would suffer severely during the then coming year from a want of labour, almost the whole available supply in the Protectorate being used up by transport of merchandise through the Shire Highlands, from the Lower to the Upper Shire River. The development of transport work has been larger than was anticipated, and consequently planters have suffered more even than was expected. The result has been that a number of coffee plantations have been abandoned. Evidence of the existing state of affairs caused by the want of a railway through the Shire Highlands, and the consequent employment of every available labourer in carrying loads is seen in the fact that the exports from the Protectorate during the past 12 months (mainly coffee), instead of increasing have gone down in value from £79,300 to £38,700. Transport companies have done well, and have had, financially, & successful year; and the position briefly put is that while the Protectorate has come still more into favour as a route into Central Africa, the commercial development of the country itself has already begun to decrease. The existing means, moreover, for transporting goods have now been used to their utmost limit, and the transport trade cannot be much further increased without a railway. Waggon transport is made use of to some extent, but mortality among oxen and the awk-1

ward nature of the roads to be traversed render this a difficult and expensive method. More than one of the transport companies have proposed to bring in their goods for the Nyassa-Tanganyika Plateau from Lindi or Kilwa, ports on the German East African coast, by direct routes through German territory, passing to the north of the British Central Africa Protectorate, thus opening up a new route which would not traverse British territory. The decrease in exports is in coffee, which has fallen from £62,000 to £26,000. The cultivation of tobacco, though still an industry of no great importance, has increased, and the plant is now being grown on many plantations, as it seems to show a better profit than coffee at present. Provided that an arrangement can be arrived at with our South African possessions for the removal, so far as the Protectorate is concerned, of the duty of 2s. per lb. imposed on imported tobacco, there is a promising future for this product in British Central Africa if labour can be procured. At present most of the tobacco produced finds a market within the Protectorate. The amount of rubber exported is less than it was during the previous year, the value being £9,300, as against £13,100. A larger amount of rubber has, however, come in transit through the Protectorate from outside countries than during the previous year. The transit trade has increased from £31,000 to £51,000, a growth of over 60 per cent.; and this trade would very largely increase were there a railway. There is a fallingoff in the export of ivory, which now shows as an insignificant item. In the total imports of the Protectorate there is a falling-off of £29,971 (excluding specie), the figures being £146,063, as compared with £176,034. The total exports have fallen from £79,349 to £38,723, a decrease of £40,626 ; there is thus a net decrease of £70,597 on the total of imports (excluding specie) and exports for the year 1900-01.

East Africa Protectorate — Uganda Railway-Sir C. Eliot's Report [Cd. 769).

-On June 10th, 1901, Sir C. Eliot, His Majesty's Commissioner, in response to a request by Lord Lansdowne, sent a special report on the East Africa Protectorate, which he describes as follows:

The East Africa Protectorate consists at present of four provinces : Jubaland, Tanaland, Seyidiye, and Ukamba, the capitals of which are Kismayu, Lamu, Mombasa, and Nairobi, respectively. It also includes & certain amount of terri. tory between the north-western parts of these districts and Abyssinia, which has not yet been organised or brought under our administration. .

These provinces correspond roughly to natural divisions of the country. Jubaland, the north-easterly province, is the least civilised and productive of the four, and, but for the military operations rendered necessary by the murder of the Sub-Commissioner in November last, might have been dismissed as the least important. It is divided from Italian territory by the Juba River, and consists mostly of sandy soil, covered with a thick scrub of thorny acacias. There are occasional patches of open ground available for grazing, and also occasional lakes, but these latter are mostly not permanent, and are liable to dry up in warm weather. The district known as Gosha, on the bank of the Juba, possesses a rich black soil, and is very fertile. A small margin near the river is cultivated by the natives, and behind this is a dense forest, believed to yield rubber.

South of Jubaland lies Tanaland. The adjoining portions of the two provinces are very similar, both in physiography and population ; but on reaching the system of islands, which begins about 2 degrees south, we arrive at a new country, characterised by a deeplyindented shore, bordered everywhere by mangrove swamps, behind which extend india-rubber forests. Some of the islands —for instance, Lamu, on which is the town of the same name-are exceedingly fertile and covered with palm trees.

The most important feature of Tanaland, however, is the river from which it takes its name. The Tana rises near Mount Kenia, and, after descending various falls, becomes navigable for about 200 miles. It overflows every year, and forms on either bank a strip of rich cultivated land, much like Gosha, on the Juba.

The country beyond this strip is little known, but appears to be sparsely inhabited and covered with brushwood.

The coast-land from the mouth of the Tana to the German frontier forms the fertile district of Seyidiye, behind which rise the plateaux of Ukamba. The population he describes under three

headings: the Arabs and Swahilis, or coast inhabitants under Arab influence; the Bantu tribes, and the non-Bantus, such as the Masai, the Somalis and the Gallas. The power and influence of the Arabs are, he says, distinctly on the wane. The Bantu tribes are of low intelligence and lazy. Their inability to combine and their want of warlike training are guarantees for the preservation of peace. The intermediate tribe on the Kikuya escarpment are bolder and more disorderly; “but fortunately for us show no greater power of cohesion or disorganisation.” Of the other races Sir C. Eliot says :

The Masai are perhaps the most remarkable people of East Africa. They are sharply distinguished in manners and customs from their neighbours, and are believed to have come from the Nile region. Though a portion of the tribe have adopted a settled life, the greater number are still warlike nomads, who roam about over the Rift Valley and the plains between Kilima Njaro and Nairobi. They do not till the soil, but possess large herds of cattle; their food consists entirely of meat and their drink of milk or blood. Formerly they were a considerable power in East Africa, and a formidable obstacle for the earlier explorers. Their raids extended from Lake Baringo to the coast on one side, and from the middle of the present German East Africa to the Tana on the other, and they took toll from all caravans proceeding to the interior.

The spread of law and order has somewhat curtailed their exploits, but the men are still all warriors by profession. When youths they serve as pages, and from seventeen to twenty-five they are considered as Elmorans or warriors, after which age they are allowed to marry and settle down. All the work, except fighting, is done entirely by the women.

The Masai have an elaborate military organisation, and the Chief, or Lebon, exercises absolute authority over them. His power is based partly on superstition, for he is principal medicine man as well as commander-in-chief. On certain occasions he takes drugs, called Royal medicine, which it is believed would poison all other people, and then falls into a trance, during which he is thought to possess supernatural knowledge, both of the future and of what is happening in other places. It is said that his reputation for more than human wisdom is maintained by a very thorough system of espionage. The whole of the country known to the Masai is patrolled by runners, who are charged to observe everything they see and report it to the Chief, but, under pain of death, to no one else. Consequently, if it is proposed to attack a distant place, the Chief is able to give a detailed description of the locality and its inhabitants, and

when his warriors find that what they see villages when the men are away ; but exactly corresponds with what they had they sometimes show considerable audacity been told before starting, their super in unexpectedly rushing on a comparastitious awe is confirmed.

tively large force, spearing all they can, The Masai are found in both German and retiring as suddenly as they came. and British territory. When the last The Gallas, who are found chiefly in Chief, Batyan, died, a dispute arose Tanaland, appear to be akin to the between his sons, Lenana and Sendeyo, Somalis in race, and, like them, invaders as to the succession, and the tribe was from the north. Their incursions were divided. The former is now recognised earlier than those of the Somalis, before as Chief of the Masai in the British whose advent they were the dominant sphere, and the latter of those in the tribe. Afterwards they were driven southGerman. Sendeyo has several times had wards and occupied a distinctly inferior trouble with the German authorities, but position to the newcomers, though they has always been defeated. Fortunately claim a sort of lordship over the Wapofor us, Lenana's familiar spirit advised komo and some helot tribes. They are a him that he had better make peace with pastoral people, but no longer warriors. the white men, because they were in Another section of the Gallas live in vincible, and he has proved our best the little known country of Boran, into friend and ally among the natives. In which our administration has not yet return he receives about £6 13s. 4d. a been introduced, although it falls within month, which is a very moderate stipend the sphere of the East Africa Protecfor a monarch of such considerable torate. Native imagination attributes to powers, both real and imaginary. Though this district the riches and beauty of some I see no reason to anticipate that Lenana city of the “Arabian Nights.” Trustwill change his present attitude, I regard worthy accounts of it are meagre, but it the Masai as the most important and is undoubtedly rich in ivory, and the dangerous of the tribes with whom we inhabitants keep not only sheep and have to deal in East Africa, and I think cattle, but also horses, a unique feature it will long be necessary to maintain an among the natives of this side of Africa adequate military force in the districts who are averse to riding any animal. which they inhabit.

They are also said to have acquired some Like the Masai, the Somalis are a Christian rites from the Abyssinians. nation of warlike nomads, whose only To the races mentioned must be added occupations are keeping cattle and raid a large and increasing Indian element. ing. They are organised in several tribes, There has always been a considerable each under a Chief, who bears the mis trade between Western India, especially leadingly imposing title of Sultan, and Bombay, and East Africa, which has inhabit northern Tanaland and Jubaland, resulted in large settlements of Goanese, whence a kindred population extends up Parsees, Khojas, Bohras, and others both to Berbera and Cape Guardafui. The in Zanzibar and on the coast. In the principal tribes in East Africa are the last few years this immigration has been Herti, near Kismayu on the coast, who greatly augmented by the Uganda Railway, are more or less settled and friendly; the which, finding native African labourers Ogadens of the interior of Jubaland; and difficult to engage and entirely unsatisthe Biskayas, of Tanaland. Neither of factory, has imported many thousands the two latter have towns or villages, and of coolies. The Indians seem likely to both continually cause serious trouble to become like the Swahilis-intermediaries the Government by their raids.

between Europeans and natives, and if The Somalis are exceedingly intelligent. they were allowed by the Indian GovernWhen they visit towns they show a ment to settle would probably do much remarkable adaptability to the conditions to develop the natural resources of the of civilised life; they are not only traders, country by cultivating rice and practising but engage in large cattle transactions other forms of agriculture. which entitle them to the name of mer It is impossible to give any trustworthy chants; but each rising generation is statistics of the population of the Probrought up to believe that they cannot tectorate. The four provinces must contake their place as respected members of tain between a million and a million and the tribe until they have killed a man or a half inhabitants. The population of otherwise distinguished themselves by the unorganised territories has been consome warlike exploit. Neither is it easy jectured at 1,150,000, but this must be a to suggest any method of bringing them mere guess. under civilising influences, for they will not remain long in one spot. They

Sir O. Eliot then enters upon an exwander about with marvellous celerity in haustive description of the natural products the thick scrub, which I have already of the Protectorate, the rubber industry described, determining their movements

being that which seems to offer the best according to the varying positions of water-holes and pasture. As a rule, their

immediate opportunities. The mineral tactics are not bold. They rarely attack

| wealth of the Protectorate is an unknown fortified places, and usually surprise quantity. With such a mountain mass as

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