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happened. To a certain extent Prince of Denmark, and was using his influence Bismarck-who, at the present day dis- to preserve its integrity, while all the cussed in his domineering aggressiveness while treacherously undermining it. and unscrupulous methods of policy, His policy was much the same with presents a close resemblance to the regard to Austrir, whose reasonable great Emperor-has also adopted the suspicions of Prussia he lulled by practice of making curious confidences, representing himself as anxious to not indeed to the world at large, but bring the troublesome Bund under the to the eading personages with whom joint control of the two great German he has to deal. M. Klackzo, who has states, who would rule Germany in had good opportunities of studying this concert. Yet during this period he statesman, gives the following account was secretly plotting against Austria, of his impression of his character :- and bent on annexing the Elbe pro“No one can doubt his prodigious vinces, together with the valuable talent in dissimulation, and the su- port of Kiel, for his own country ; preme art with which he dresses up and finally excluding Austria from the truth. He has the genius to Germany.
The King of Hanover is know how to give his frankness all believed to have been similarly bethe pol cal virtues of fourberie. Very trayed by delusive communications cunning and astute as to means, he from Prussia. It may also be noted as has also shown extraordinary impul- a curious circumstance illustrative of siveness and indiscretion." In some in- the Prince's ways, that Lord Salisbury's stances, however, his indiscretions were account of his interview with the no doubt calculated and intentional. Prince at Berlin, in November last, The wild way, for instance, in which he when on his way to the Conference, used to talk of the designs of Prussia for has never been published, although the future, and the proposals he made, Lord Odo Russell mentions in a deor at least insinuated, as to a division spatch that “his Lordship has reof spoils between Prussia and France, ported to Her Majesty's Government drew from the Emperor frequent the impressions received from his "asides” to Mérimée, who accom- visit ;” and that it was his own panied them in their walks up and pleasing duty" to state that the down the terrace of the Chateau and reception of the plenipotentiary was the sands, “What a mad fellow it is !” most cordial ; that his visit gave It is said that Bismarck had also his pleasure; and Prince Bismarck recogprivate opinion that the Emperor was nised its " value and importance; and, "the embodiment of misunderstood in conversation with leading men, had incapacity.” However that may have paid the highest tribute to his Lordbeen, there was certainly a method in ship’s great qualities as a statesman his madness which afterwards bore and as a negotiator." It is possibly fruit, for the temptation gradually only Lord Salisbury's modestý which worked on Napoleon, and led him to prevents this flattering certificate from think that, after all, a re-arrange- being given to the world ; but it may ment of Europe by France and Prussia also be suspected, from the Prince's to the advantage of each was a more confidential outbursts on other occafeasible scheme than it had at first sions, that he took the opportunity of seemed.
overwhelming the Plenipotentiary by This indeed has been the course his effusive candour as to his own of Bismarck's tactics throughout his schemes for the settlement of all whole career.
In the preliminary European difficulties, so that he might Schleswig-Holstein negotiation he de- bind him over not to divulge anyluded both Lord John Russell and thing which passed. M. Boucher, in the Danish minister at Berlin with the his Récits de l'Invasion, gives some idea that he himself was a true friend amusing particulars which he received
No. 213.- VOL. XXXVI.
from M. Thiers, after that gentle- spire; yet is he not absolute master, man's visit to the Prince at Ver- with a powerful country and a great sailles, which throws some light on army at his back, and Europe tranhis affable terms with visitors. Lean- quil? What, then, has he to fear? ing with both arms on the table, Why should be constantly disguise Bismarck suddenly interrupting the his thought, and seem to go straight business discussion which was going when he means to turn to the left, on, asked permission to smoke a cigar, and vice versâ ? Ah, what a marvellous which was of course granted; and he conspirator he makes !” Upon which then relaxed into a gossiping con- M. d'Ideville remarked, “Yes, and versation, full of anecdotes and remin- you have been a conspirator too!" iscences upon all sorts of subjects, and “True," said Cavour ; but I could beguiled M. Thiers into a similar not help it; it was absolutely necesstrain of lively talk. When, after a sary to keep things secret from time, M. Thiers wished to resume the Austria. But your Emperor will requestion on which he had
come, main for ever incorrigible. I knew it Bismarck seized him by the hand, and long ago. At this moment he could exclaimed pathetically, “No, let me march right on, openly fulfilling his continue yet a little while ; it is so end. But no! he prefers to throw delightful to find oneself once more people off the scent, and to go off with a civilised being." In Lord a sudden track-to conspire, in Salisbury's case it was about ten fact—to conspire always! This is the o'clock at night that the interview turn of his genius; it is the métier he took place, and it may be imagined professes; he examines it like an that he also was received as a civilised artist, as a dilettante, and in this rôle being, with whom it was the Prince's he will ever be first." Another witdelight to commune heart to heart, and ness, who knew the Emperor well, said that the results of the talk were some- of him—“He is a man of events; what more discursive and intimate confident to folly in his destiny, in his than would be suitable for record in star, he had the conviction that at the a Blue Book. Anyhow, the fact right moment fate would take care to remains that Lord Derby resolutely deliver him from embarrassment. It refuses to let it come to light.
was chance alone which made him a Perhaps, on the whole, the person- great man in the eyes of the vulgar. age who has most cast discredit on A bonheur insensé, an unparalleled luck, modern diplomacy, and diverted it to has saved him up to this day, and he evil uses, is the Emperor Napoleon III. has allowed himself to be led by In the Journal d'un Diplomat en events." Italie, M. Henri d'Ideville, who was There can be no doubt that this at a critical time attached to the was Louis Napoleon's character to French embassy at Turin, gives a
It was as a conspirator graphic picture of his august master's that he snatched his crown, and in all habits with regard to foreign affairs. his career he acted in the same spirit. He says that Napoleon, though During the Crimean war he was confull of good intentions,
tinually hatching diversions from setréveur borné, and always mys- tled arrangements and points of policy; terious and reserved
and when peace was arrived at he plans, as to which indeed he was went round insidiously to the Russian fluctuating and uncertain up to the side, and deprived the Allies of some last moment, when his ideas might of the conditions which were essential take an unexpected direction. “ Do to a permanent settlement, and the you see,” said Cavour one day to want of which have since given rise D'Ideville, “your Emperor will never to complications which might have change; his fault is always to con- been prevented if taken at the right
time. His liberation of Italy was blessing for the world, as a matter accompanied by plots against its of fact, the system which has actually unity ; his policy as to the Pope, been practised in recent years is of a capricious and vacillating, embar- very different character, and has been rassed the Italian government; and associated with very different motives though he afterwards got it Venetia, and objects. A rampant spirit of it was only to serve his own pur- aggression and covetous desire has poses, and to give him importance in been at work; and though some of Europe. He also felt that his posi- the objects aimed at may have been tion would be strengthened by a justifiable enough, the means adopted conflict between Prussia and Austria, were in too many cases inconsistent whichever might win, and for years he with sound code of internadid all he could to bring one about. tional law. Any one who looks back In 1850, while President of the to the general course of diplomatic Republic, whose open policy was a policy on the Continent after the professed desire for peace, he sent establishment of the Second Empire, his friend De Persigny on a private must see that it led the way in a mission to Berlin to sound the King, restless meddlesomeness which has and suggest that the Prussians should produced a general unsettlement of seize an early opportunity of getting the conditions on which alone the up a war with Austria. At the end
peace of Europe can be steadily preof 1855 the Emperor sent the Marquis served. As it happened, the liberation of Pepoli on a similar errand, to point of Italy has turned out well, but the out that “ Austria represented the way in which it was accomplished by past, Prussia the future; and that, as foreign intervention, and the price to long as Austria stood in the way, which the assisting power helped itself, Prussia would be condemned to a were certainly perilous precedents; state of inaction which could not and there can be little doubt that the satisfy her, for a higher destiny germs of disturbance which were thus awaited her, and Germany expected sown had their development in the her to fulfil it.” In 1861, during the confiscation of the Danish Duchies King of Prussia's visit to France, a by Prussia, and the subsequent exclugrand scheme was started of great sion of Austria from the German Conagglomerations of territories by the federation, Lord Russell, in comthree races, Roman, Slavonic, and menting on the Treaty of Gastein, Germanic, and there was talk of said very truly, “All rights, old and France extending her frontier in the new, whether based upon a solemn direction of Belgium and Holland. agreement between sovereigns, or on When the Austro-Prussian war the clear and precise expression of the curred, Napoleon expected to be able popular will, have been trodden under to interpose as mediator, and that it foot by the Gastein Convention, and would be easy to obtain a territorial the authority of force is the sole power extension of France. In this, how- which has been consulted and recog
was disappointed, and it nised. Violence and conquest, such was his rankling resentment against are the chief bases upon which the Prussia for its curt refusal of his dividing Powers have established the demands in 1866 which led up to Convention.” Austria had a terrible the war of 1870.
penalty to pay for her connivance in On the whole, then, it would appear this outrage, and its effects are by no that, though the ideal of diplomacy means exhausted. It is curious now which is held up as an example of its to look back upon the wonderful perfection by Mr. Gladstone and M.
project of a Congress with which the Guizot, would no doubt, if it were Emperor Napoleon startled the world successfully carried out, be a great in 1863. It was a dream of the first
Buonaparte that Europe ought to be troubles of Europe in the vain hope formed into a vast Empire to which of settling them by “the deliberations he was to give laws dated indifferently of a Congress which would consist of from Paris, Rome, Moscow, Berlin, demands and pretensions put forward Vienna, and Madrid ; and that hence- by some and resisted by others, so that, forth any contention among European there being no supreme authority in States was to be deemed civil war. such an assembly to enforce the deNapoleon III. was smitten with this cision of the majority, the Congress conception, but knew of course that it would probably separate, leaving many had failed in his uncle's case, and of its members on worse terms with was still more impracticable in these each other than they had been when days. But he thought he might they met," was clearly expressed in make good play for himself and Lord Russell's incisive despatch, which France by getting up the plan of a at once exploded the bubble. Ungeneral Congress to settle offhand all fortunately it left a sting in the the difficulties of Europe. It is true Emperor's breast which he had not the that at the close of the Congress of magnanimity to forget; and the breach Paris, when everybody was for the between England and France which time sick of war, there was a feeling ensued was fatal to Danish interests. in favour of taking means to check it In the case of the war between France as much as possible; and with that and Germany arising from the question view a protocol was adopted, in which as toa German candidate for the Spanish it was recommended that States be- throne, the point in itself was nothing tween whom any serious difference more than a reproduction of the might arise, should seek mediation dialogue of the retainers of the rival by a friendly Power before appealing houses of Verona-“Do you bite to arms.
Lord Clarendon expressed your thumb ?” “I do bite my thumb, a hope that this “happy innovation sir." “Do you bite your thumb at might receive a more general appli
“ No, sir, I do not bite my cation, and thus become a barrier thumb at you, sir, but I bite my against conflicts which broke forth thumb." And it is a pity that Engbecause it was not always possible to land, Russia, and Italy did not step give explanations." This happy inno- in like Benvolio, and cry, “ Part, vation remains, however, a mere paper fools, put up your swords ; you know figment. It is impossible to imagine not what you do." Again, the hollow any cases to which it would have arrangement, for the neutrality of been more applicable than in regard Luxemburg which was made in 1870, to the pretext of the spoliation of and the recent Eastern protocols, may Denmark by Prussia, the struggle be taken as other examples of the between Prussia and Austria, and the vapoury character of international subsequent war between Germany and intervention for the protection of France; yet no serious attempt was public interests. The ministerial explamade by the neutral Powers to apply nation was that a collective guarantee the rule. If Napoleon had been loyal had rather the character of a moral and sincere in the professed desire for
sanction than a contingent liability to universal peace with which he sum- go to war, and that, unless all were moned the abortive Congress, he might, agreed, no one party was called upon in conjunction with England, have to do anything. done much to arrest events which Lord Derby the other day laid down have caused great mischief to the prin- a sort of programme of diplomacy ciples of good faith and mutual con- which deserves attention. He said, sideration among nations; but it was “ We have to consider not only one not to be. The intense folly of the particular point, but what is the state plan for raking up all the latent of matters over the whole world; and
we have to consider also the risk of The moral of all this business is involving ourselves in hostilities in in fact to be found in the comment any one part of the world where of the Bishop of Fréjus on the prothereby we might disable ourselves posal of the Abbé de Saint-Pierre for from even necessary defence in some à European Diet (the precedent for other place where our interests are Louis Napoleon's fantastic congress), much more threatened." And then to make peace all over the world, he added : “I say this only in a gene- to the effect that one thing was wantral and theoretical manner, for my ing, to send a troop of missionaries own part, having attended to foreign to dispose the heart and spirit of politics for a great many years. Not princes. The truth is, that in many convictions have been so perma- the present day diplomacy is passing nently impressed on my mind as that through a transition stage. The old of the utter incapacity of the—I do system of diplomacy was essentially not say average man-but of the wise personal, and took account of only a man, to foresee coming events.” As narrow range of persons and interests. to the latter part of this statement. It was effective, because it was entirely though Lord Derby no doubt drew it under the control of those who worked from his own personal experience, the it, and was directed by them to desubstance of it had already been finite and well-understood aims. It anticipated by Mr. Nassau Senior, was, in fact, a general agreement bewho imagined a plan for training tween some half-a-dozen gentlemen as Foreign Office clerks, who were to to their common interests and mutual be periodically required to prophesy relations, and was conducted on their the issue of existing political “ques- behalf by trusty experts, who enjoyed tions,” and upon their success, as their masters' confidence, and know tested by subsequent events, was to exactly what they wanted. The gradual depend their promotion to respon- development of popular rights and sible office; and also by Lord Pal- opinion has now upset the old system merston, to whom the observation did -at least in our own country. The not apply, for he always looked nation will not trust itself blindfold to forward. He said,
Lord Palmerston was very few public men in England left pretty much to himself, and what who follow up foreign affairs suffi- he thought best that he could straightciently to foresee the consequence way give effect to. But Lord Derby of events which have not hap- has to consider not only what is best pened." A striking confirmation of to be done, but how far the country this was given upon Lord Granville's will go with him. No foreign minister succeeding Lord Clarendon as Foreign can now safely dispense with taking Secretary on the eve of the French- the country fully into his confidence German war, when he stated on the if he does, he runs the risk of finding authority of Mr. Hammond, that there himself left in the lurch. Further, never was a time when the political any attempt at a game of brag, with a atmosphere of Europe was so serene and view to impressing foreign Powers, is cloudless, and the prospects of peace attended by the peril of either being so well assured. Before another day or repudiated by public opinion at home two France and Germany were prac- or of being outrun by it, opinion tically at war, and the Protocol of the getting excited in earnest. Hence Treaty of Paris, above referred to, was secret and personal diplomacy is no treated by both with great contempt. longer practical for us.
Absolute The reason was that they had made up non-intervention is also impossible their minds to fight, and wanted only and so is the old balance of power, an excuse, no matter how trivial or which excluded moral force, took the absurd.
measure only of physical power, and