THE Tribune reports Admiral Sampson, when asked the question, “Will the people of Cuba generally prove amenable to the sovereignty of this Government?” as answering, “emphatically“:—
“It does not make any difference whether the people of Cuba prove amenable to our rule or not. We are there; we intend to rule; and I guess that is all there is about it.”
And that is American liberty and the love of it! That is the “expansion” of the great American principle that “governments derive their just power from the consent of the governed”—of “government of the people, by the people, for the people!” That is how the great, liberty-loving, liberty-exemplifying, American people, deliver people from oppression and from despotic rule. That illustrates how “the people of Cuba are and of right ought to be free and independent,” as declared by the American Congress, April, 1898.
Hurrah for free Cuba! Cuba libre forever.
THE same day Dr. Depew, speaking in Buffalo, said:—
“We make war against a foreign power, and for the first time in the history of the world solely for humanity. The world cannot understand, and the world stands by to sneer and scoff. To maintain order in Cuba until her people shall be able to maintain a stable government of liberty and law, is humanity. To incorporate Porto Rico in our domain, relieve its citizens from oppression, and give them good government, is humanity.”
It is not true that this is the first time in the history of the world when a nation made war against a foreign power “solely for humanity.” Rome made war against Philip V. of Macedon in behalf of the States of Greece, “solely for humanity”—precisely such humanity as is here extolled. Rome was a republic. Rome was a government of the people. Rome was free. Rome was the great exemplar of liberty in the world. Rome being such a lover of liberty, could not endure to see peoples oppressed. Therefore “solely for humanity” Rome sent her fleets and armies into foreign countries to make war against a foreign power. And when at much sacrifice “solely for humanity” Rome had conquered the oppressor, and had assured the freedom of the oppressed peoples she made the following proclamation “solely for humanity“:—
“The Senate and the people of Rome, and Titus Quintius the general, having conquered Philip and the Macedonians, do set at liberty from all garrisons, imposts, and taxes, the Corinthians, the Locrians, the Phocians, the Phthiot-Achecans, the Messenians, the Thessalians, and the Perrhebians, declare them free; and ordain that they shall be governed by their respective laws and usages.”
This is more than the Republic of the United States, with all her boasting, has yet done “solely for humanity,” or for any other cause, in Cuba, Porto Rico, and the Philippines. Back there, in Rome’s work “solely for humanity,” the world thought she understood it; and so did not stand by to sneer and scoff. The world thought she understood such wonderful, and such disinterested, efforts “solely for humanity,” and was charmed with it. The world congratulated herself upon the dawn of this new and blessed era of national sacrifice “solely for humanity,” and kings and nations hastened to form alliances with this wonderful, new, liberty-loving, nation; and so assure to themselves the unspeakable boon of liberty which was being so widely extended “solely for humanity.”
But very soon, and to her everlasting sorrow, the world discovered that she had not understood. Soon the world bitterly lamented, and for cause, that she had not stood by to sneer and scoff at Rome’s pretentious efforts “solely for humanity.” The world soon found that Rome’s little finger was thicker than the loins of all that had gone before her: that where others used whips, Rome used only scorpions. But it was too late. The world had not understood. “He destroyed wonderfully and practiced and prospered; and through this his policy he caused craft to prosper in his hand; and even by peace destroyed many.”
And Dr. Depew seems really to think that the world has forgotten all this, and that she can be persuaded now to think that she does not understand. Perhaps she can. Nevertheless there will be at least some who will still stand by to sneer and scoff at these pretentious claims of national sacrifice “solely for humanity.” For though “you can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, you can not fool all the people all the time.” A. T. J.