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that such an infliction would very speedily lead to a termination of hostilities without any very great nicety about the terms of the peace.”
If his Lordship could but have stopped at the word “Parliament,” and left prophesying to others, his argument would have found a powerful corroboration in the result of our late struggle.
The Times newspaper was misled in the same way. It is now pleased to rally the Americans on their tetchiness because they had not all the sympathy they thought they had a right to expect. The Times was not altogether so amiable in the summer of 1862. At that time General Lee was pressing General McClellan in the Peninsula, and the administration of Mr. Lincoln was hard bestead on every hand. On the 18th day of July in that year, the following sentence makes part of a very disgraceful editorial in that paper:
“ There is a feeling now becoming very general, that, if we cannot stop the effusion of blood by mediation, we ought to give our whole moral weight to our own English kith and kin, who have so gallantly striven so long for their liberties against a mongrel race of plunderers and oppressors. This is how our people put it.”
The Times would never have ventured on such balderdash, had it not known the bias of its readers; nor would Mr. Gladstone, unless persuaded that our cause was hopeless, have committed himself, a minister of the crown, by declaring, as he did, that Jefferson Davis had founded a nation.
All this is harmless now, if we only lay it rightly to heart, and profit by it as we should do. As an argument the more in favor of the Union one and indivisible, it is invaluable. Had the leading men of England, instead of persisting in regarding the United States as hardly a nation at all, and its government as an ephemeral affair, which the first blast of real resistance would blow away, taken the pains to inform themselves, they would not have been led into their present awkward predicament. A very little fair and unbiassed attention would have opened their eyes to the true explanation of the sudden apparition of the great dramatis persona that has just leaped full grown upon the stage.
We have attributed the blindness of Europe in regard to the power that was growing up on this side the Atlantic, in some degree, to the unfortunate view taken by M. de Tocqueville. That most amiable and enlightened man, having unconsciously afforded a certain support to the general misconception, it is but fair to allow him to express his own idea of what a government should be. With this view, we will close our article by quoting a passage written long after his visit to this country, and having no application to any particular community.
In the eighth volume (p. 374) of the Euvres complètes M. de Tocqueville thus defines liberty:
“ Liberty seems to me to hold in the political world the place of the atmosphere in the physical world. The earth is peopled with a multitude of beings differently organized ; yet all live and flourish. Alter the conditions of the atmosphere, they suffer; remove them out of it, they die. .... Change your laws, vary your manners, reform your creeds, modify your forms; if you can attain to this, that man shall have full liberty to do whatsoever is not bad in itself, and the certainty of enjoying in peace the product of what he has done, you have hit the mark.”
Now this is just what the people of the United States claim to have attained to. Every man is here at liberty to worship God when, where, and how he pleases, so that he does not annoy his neighbor, or interfere with his right to do the same thing. So in temporal affairs. He may get his living in his own way, and may change his occupation as often as he thinks best; what he earns is secured to him by laws binding alike on the rich and the poor, and making no invidious distinctions between classes or professions.
Here is the whole thing in a nutshell. This is the charm which has so puzzled the wise men of the East. This explains the ardor with which our yeomanry and artisans rushed to arms at the first insult to their national flag ; this it was which caused the hoards of the rich, as well as the lesser stores of those who were not rich, to be cast at the feet of the government when the look of things was darkest. The same key opens the still more astounding enigma, that an army of little less than a million of men was disbanded and mustered out of service as quietly as a gang of workmen go home to their dinner. Why not? These same men, or the far greater part of them, go back to comfortable homes and the welcome of the family fireside.
Our people, in upholding, and, in case of need, defending with their fortunes and their lives, the union of the States, act on the plainest principles of common sense. We know that in securing “the greatest happiness of the greatest number” we incur great dangers, not the least of which grows out of the very exuberant prosperity we enjoy. We are quite aware, also, that we must forego much that tends to refine and embellish society in some other parts of the world. The splendors of royalty, the gorgeous vestments and imposing ceremonies of a national church, the massive cathedrals which add so much to the landscape, and fill with a solemn pleasure those who enter them, are not for us. Enough if we can be spared the squalid poverty, the gross ignorance, and the debasing servility which too often present a painful set-off to these advantages.
ART. II.-1. Revised United States Army Regulations of 1861,
with an Appendix, containing the Changes and Laws affecting Army Regulations and Articles of War to June 25, 1863.
Washington : Government Printing Office. 1863. 2. Digest of Opinions of the Judge Advocate-General of the Army.
Washington : Government Printing Office. 1865. 3. Instructions for the Government of the Armies of the United
States. Prepared by FRANCIS LIEBER, LL. D., and revised by a Board of Officers of which MAJOR-GENERAL HANCOCK is
President. Washington : Government Printing Office. 1863. 4. The Duties of Judge Advocates. Compiled from Her Majesty':
and the Hon. East India Company's Military Regulations, and from the Works of various Writers on Military Law. By CAPTAIN R. M. HUGHES, 12th Regiment Bombay Army, Deputy Judge-Advocate-General, Scinde Field Force. London:
Smith, Elder, & Co. 1865. 5. A Treatise on Military Law and the Practice of Courts Mar
tial. By CAPTAIN S. V. BÈNET, Ordnance Department U. S. Army, late Assistant Professor of Ethics, Law, etc., Military Academy, West Point. New York: Van Nostrand & Co. 1862.
6. Observations on Military Law, and the Constitution and Prac
tice of Courts Martial. With a Summary of the Law of Evidence as applicable to Military Trials, adapted to the Laws, Regulations, and Customs of the Army and Navy of the United States. By WILLIAM DE Hart, Captain 2d Regiment Artillery. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1862.
Who, ten years ago, would have believed that within the subsequent decade one half the territory of the United States, the land of civil liberty, would be subject to military and martial law for a period of over four years, – that, in the vast expanse of country stretching from the Potomac, Ohio, and Missouri to the Gulf of Mexico, no other system of law would be recognized by the supreme power of the land, - and that not merely over the inhabitants of the territory so bounded would military law hold its sway, but over more than a million of our Northern citizens, educated under the milder rules of civil justice, and utterly unused to the laws and decrees of her more peremptory sister? Yet with so ready an obedience did this great mass of civilians suddenly become soldiers, and submit to every obligation of this new law, that one could hardly believe they had not sucked in its principles in the cradle, or studied them on the benches of the town school. A million of the greatest democrats in the world suddenly submitted to a despotism.
This was in fact a great step in self-government. For the necessary despotism of military rule implies the entire and unconditional obedience and subordination of the inferior to the superior. And this obedience was willingly rendered, not merely because of the ready wit of our people, and their adaptability to any and all circumstances, but because our soldiers felt that they were still the people, - that they were fighting no despot's war of self-aggrandizement or aggression, but that they, the people, were fighting a people’s war; and thus, while each man did not, like Harry Smith in the fray of the Clan Quhele and Clan Chattan, fight“ for his own hand,” yet each man did fight for himself, insomuch as he felt the people to be the rulers of the country, and himself, as one of these rulers, to be fighting a people's war for himself and all the rest. And thus, because of the very democratic feeling within him, the American sol
dier submitted to the absolute military discipline by which alone the end so dear to him could be secured.
Our country came suddenly upon this new system of law. We found ourselves, with almost no preparation, in a condition hitherto unexpected and unprovided for. Military and martial law we had read of, but were little experienced in, and we were forced suddenly upon their immediate exercise on a gigantic scale. We took the old laws, forms, and regulations provided for our little regular army, by which it had been governed through so long a time of peace, and applied them as well as we could to the great army of the present time, and to the great questions constantly arising under the laws of war. had not merely a war on our hands, but our enemies were also our fellow-citizens. The war was also a rebellion. Difficult questions became more embarrassed by this double relation. Much was left to the genius of our generals, governed in leading principles by the ruling power at Washington. There was more to be obtained from practical experimentalizing than from ancient theories and old practice. We had not merely to apply old principles, but to make new ones; and all this with a vast danger constantly pressing upon us, and the safety of the republic the supreme law of all.
Martial and military law are often confounded, while in reality distinct. Military law is a portion of the law of the land, by which the army is governed as a distinct organization. It has its own distinct laws and rules. Martial law, on the other hand, is that system of law which is enforced by a conquering army in territory of the enemy occupied by it, and in place of civil, or is declared by the sovereign power of the state in time of rebellion. Military law exists by force of statute ; martial law, by the custom of war alone. Military law exists both in peace and war; martial law, in time of war or rebellion only. Military law, strictly speaking, applies only to the army and those connected with it; martial law, to whole states and peoples. Military law relates only to the administration of criminal justice; martial law, in addition, affects the civil rights and status of entire populations. While one exists naturally and normally as the necessary system by which a peculiar class of men are governed, by a method peculiar to that class, and suit