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should be attacked. The primordial object, as has been often pointed out, is to secure freedom of transit. It is evident that in spite of the waterway being legally free from attack (as would be the case if it is not fortified) it is yet possible for a state at war with another to act in a manner so as to prevent that the canal should be freely used by all vessels at all times. For if a recalcitrant state should decide to disregard the neutrality of the canal, it could proceed to blockade it, direct that its vessels should revictual or take stores therein, or embark and disembark troops or munitions of war, without in any way infringing the provision of the Hague Convention to which reference has been made. The absence of fortifications at Panama, therefore, would not by itself secure the purpose for which the canal is endowed with the privileges and liabilities of neutralisation.1

The question as to whether the Panama Canal should be fortified or not is a matter of policy that concerns the states interested. The inquiry here attempted is merely directed to discover whether the

1 It may be interesting to call the attention of the reader to a provision to be found in the Declaration concerning Egypt and Morocco entered into by Great Britain and France, of April 8, 1904. The article in question reads as follows: "A fin d'assurer le libre passage au détroit de Gibraltar, les deux gouvernements conviennent de ne pas laisser élever des fortifications ou des ouvrages strategiques quelconques sur la côte marocaine comprise entre Melilla et les hauteurs qui dominent la rive droite du Sebou exclusivement" ("Les Accords Franco-Anglais du Avril 8, 1904," Appreciation critique, Paris, 1905). It is not difficult to see that this provision is nothing else than a diplomatic euphemism. The ostensible purpose for restricting the erection of fortifications is said to be "in order to ensure free passage by the Strait of Gibraltar." Evidently free passage there is not guaranteed; nor did the contracting powers intend in any way to secure that free transit of which the provision speaks.

fortification of the Panama Canal would affect its neutralisation. And in this respect it may be laid down that if the arguments adduced are in any way correct, the answer would necessarily be in the negative. Neutralisation, or in fact any other conception of International Law, cannot take away the right of self-defence, and, as a logical consequence, the erection of fortifications is not repugnant to the notion of neutralisation.



It may be needful in an inquiry of this nature to trace in a single chapter the successive steps that have been traversed, so as to consider as a whole the entire structure, which may appear in its detached parts somewhat confused on account of its various details.

A recapitulation of the previous chapters reducing to concise statements the results of our inquiry would not only help us to attain precision and coherence, but also assist in showing the connection that exists between the different parts. On more than one occasion, however, when dealing with the application of certain principles or the interpretation of international treaties, diplomatic dispatches, or historical facts, the conclusions that seemed to follow logically from them have been immediately recorded. Nevertheless, it is deemed advisable to add an organised re-statement of the general conclusions that the premises separately adduced seem to warrant, but avoiding, as far as possible, the repetition of the arguments themselves. The scope of this chapter is, therefore, to present the whole logical fabric so as to contemplate it from a distance.

The policy of the United States towards the canal question has passed gradually but progressively from indifference to intense interest. Vital considerations connected with their extraordinary development have induced them, especially towards the later part of their career, to attempt to apply to the subject of interoceanic communication the flexible principles of their foreign policy which are supposed to rest on President Monroe's Message. It seemed for a moment that they were bent on acquiring an exclusive control of the canal, so that it should he managed and regulated as an integral part of their territory. But the general interests that other nations have in the question of transit, together with the return to a spirit of fairness, have finally led the North American Republic to recognise the tendencies of some modern rules of International Law that grant to all nations at all times the right of passage by what are considered to be the world's thoroughfares.

The whole history of the endeavours of certain powers to appropriate to themselves the exclusive benefit of using the maritime communication is sufficient in itself to demonstrate fully that the artificial route should be included in the domain of that law that regulates the intercourse of the general body of civilised nations. Indeed, no other course is possible in order to reconcile the conflicting interests that would necessarily spring from such a problem.

The question could not be dealt with by the territorial power alone on account of the special circumstances of the case, nor could it be assimilated to natural straits so as to make the general rules adopted for them applicable to it. The problem, it has been

shown, is sui generis in its very nature, and special rules for the regulation of the transit had to be evolved.

The notion of neutralisation, therefore, has been thought to apply to such a case. But this conception as applied to states or parts of states is found to be different from the one that should be applied to a region where freedom of transit is to be attained. In consequence of this fact the essential characteristics of the notion-freedom from hostilities-has been retained, and special conventional provisions have been added so as to insure the general purposes of the law.

In order to establish neutralisation, it is necessary that there should exist a general interest among the different nations of the globe with regard to a certain region. This interest has undoubtedly been shown to exist towards the Panama Canal. On account of this interest and because the Hay-Pauncefote treaty, although entered into by Great Britain and the United States only, embodies rules which have already gained universal acceptance and are just in themselves, it is submitted that the provisions contained in it have come to be of a law-making force. This international agreement is supported by the tacit understanding of all the other members of the family of nations—a fact that makes it binding on all states. Professor Westlake comments on this subject in the following manner: "To the system thus established for the Central American Canal of the future the express assent of the European States has not been invited. Their assent may be assumed from their own establishment of the same system in the old

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