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Norwegian Parliament); but the state of war prevented its publication in due time and the author was forced, adding a few chapters, to publish it himself two years later. His main object, in writing this book, was to describe the history of the growth and strength of the great powers and of the parallel development of international law and organizations, curbing and limiting that strength and gradually creating a whole system of guarantees for the smaller and weaker nations; he gives us an excellent picture of the curtailments and restrictions imposed upon the State Sovereignty, which formerly was the expression of state selfishness only. The crowning success of this movement the author sees in the establishment of the League of Nations.
The first chapter deals with the difficult question of the equality of states, their natural inequalities, the political strife between might and right, and the real meaning of sovereignty and independence, as they developed among the European states. Chapters II and IV are devoted to the history of the great powers; the author eloquently tells the story of the amazing growth of a few states, who played a leading part mostly on account of their tremendous strength; perhaps even too many details are given in these chapters, as much of the ground has been so thoroughly covered by other historians. Chapter III deals with the ideas of sovereignty and independence in their international aspects and was probably meant to be the center of his investigation; a trifle more precision would not have harmed. In Chapter V we find the discussion of the old question of federations and confederations, with reference mostly to Germany and to the fate of the smaller nations. Then follows (Ch. VI-VII) the history of permanent neutrality and of the protectorates; this last chapter has much valuable information, as well as the following one (VIII) on international finance and the Drago Doctrine.
The treatment of the difficult questions concerning international finance leaves much to be desired; the time has not yet come for a detailed investigation and it will take probably many volumes devoted entirely to the subject. Chapter IX deals with the Monroe Doctrine and might be of some interest, as it reflects an impartial European view of the matter. The author's views of the subject are further developed in Chapter XI, dealing with “Pan-Americanism and the Bryan Treaties ;'' these two chapters contain interesting information for European readers. Chapter X, devoted to the Hague Peace Conferences, on the contrary, re-states well known facts and conclusions. Finally in Chapter XII are enumerated the projects of international organizations that might have a direct bearing on contemporary events and policies. The last Chapter (XIII), dealing with the existing and possible guarantees of the rights and interests of the smaller and weaker nations, seems rather vague and perhaps even a little incoherent; it makes the impression that the writer was in a great hurry and did not quite digest his own conclusions.
ons. He discusses at length the
"International Spirit” of the great powers, not always drawing the necessary line between theories and questions of fact, personal postulates and historical events; the reader does not get any definite idea of the author's own point of view; neither do we find here any clear formulæ of international law; maybe, however, in this latter case, it is not quite the fault of the author; contemporary history is not conducive to such indisputable definitions and no one can yet predict the future fate of the League of Nations. The author, at least, seems to believe in its future and final
S. A. KORTE.
Letters to “The Times" upon War and Neutrality, 1881-1920, with some
commentary. By Sir Thomas Erskine Holland, K.C., D.C.L., F.B.A. Third edition. London: Longmans, Green and Company, 1921. Pp. xv+215. $4.00.
Sir Erskine, as I believe he prefers to be known, there being another Sir Thomas Holland, may perhaps be considered the dean of British students of international law. He was born in 1835 and is now therefore eighty-six years of age. From 1874 to 1910, a period of thirty-six years, he served with great distinction as professor of International Law at Oxford. He has, in full vigor of mind, survived his eminent and gifted contemporaries, Westlake and Oppenheim, of Cambridge. He has well earned and won the blue ribbon of international law, the presidency of the Institut de Droit International and received honors from his own and many sovereigns and- from universities and learned societies the world over, including honorary membership in the American Society of International Law. Today he stands facile princeps among English scholars in this great and useful branch of learning. His publications are many and their authority beyond question.
Therefore this little book of 215 pages from his hand deserves our especial attention.
The first edition appeared in 1909, and in the preface he said:
For a good many years past I have been allowed to comment, in letters to “The Times,” upon points of International Law as they have been raised by the events of the day. These letters have been fortunate enough to attract some attention both at home and abroad, and requests have frequently reached me that they should be rendered more easily accessible.
He accordingly selected from a greater number those on "questions of War and Neutrality," and published them. He published a second edition with many new letters in 1914, saying in the preface:
I have no reason to complain of the reception which has so far been accorded to the views have thought it my duty to put forward.
In the preface to the present and third edition, dated April 25, 1921,
This, doubtless, final edition of my letters upon War and Neutrality contains. the whole series of such letters covering a period of no less than forty years.”
The explanatory commentaries have been carefully brought up to date, all have been fully indexed and the little volume is presented in the belief that “not a few of these questions are sure again to come to the front so soon as the rehabilitation of International Law, rendered necessary by the conduct of the late war, shall be seriously taken in hand.”
The letters number 113 in all. They are brief, ranging from half a page to four or five pages. They are clear and not hesitant in tone. It must be added that they quite uniformly display ripe scholarship and sound judgment. Thoughtless, raw and dangerous change is strongly combated, but the process of evolution and adjustment to new conditions is fully recognized and supported. The American doctrines excite, on Sir Erskine's part, no hostility, but on the other hand often meet with what Emerson calls a “manly furtherance.” For instance, in 1900 he declared that the innovations made during the American Civil War on the doctrine of continuous voyage seemed to be demanded by the conditions of modern commerce and might well be followed by a British prize court," and he had the satisfaction to see these words referred to by Lord Salisbury eight days later. He shows, moreover, that our doctrine, so much decried by European writers, was adopted by an Italian court in 1896 and by the British Government in 1900 (see p. 161) and endorsed, after long discussion, by the Institut de Droit International in 1896.
“The deceased Declaration of London," as he calls it (p. 92), which gave such satisfaction to those who shaped it and which met with such general disaster thereafter, Sir Erskine consistenly regarded with great distrust and almost animosity. He repeatedly records its failure to obtain ratification and the utter breakdown, as a rule for action, of even those portions of its enactment temporarily approved during the late war. He deemed it “nothing more than an objectionable draft by which no country has consented to be bound." He quotes Lord Portsmouth's description of it as “rubbish" with hearty agreement, and shows that an order in council of 1916 revoked all orders by which provisions of the declaration were adopted or modified for the duration of the war. He shows further that the French Government joined the British Government in declaring that they had been disappointed in the expectation of finding in the declaration “a suitable digest of principles and compendium of working rules” (p. 207).
Sir Erskine recognizes the League of Nations as "a brave design, but finds it a serious mistake to “combine in one and the same document provisions needed for putting an end to an existing state of war with other
provisions aiming at the creation, in the future, of a new supernational society” (p. 7).
Sir Erskine does not shrink from controversy, but he conducts it with dignity, courtesy, and, it must be added, remarkable success, as many eminent contestants discovered who crossed swords with him in these intellectual encounters, par example, Mr. Gibson Bowles and Mr. Baty.
I am tempted to quote a gallant passage, one of many, in support of the claims of international law. Here it is :
The ignorance, by the by, which certain of my critics have displayed, of the nature and claims of international law is not a little surprising. Some seem to identify it with treaties; others with “Vattel;” several having become aware that it is not law of the kind which is enforced by a policeman or a county court bailiff, have hastened, much exhilarated, to give the world the benefit of their discovery. Most of them are under the impression that it has been concocted by “book worms, “jurists,” “professors" or other “theorists,” instead of, as is the fact, by statesmen, diplomatists, prize courts, generals and admirals.
This admirable work in its new edition will assuredly continue, as in the past, to be referred to as a valued and high authority. Too much cannot be said of the happy combination of comprehensive, but not pedantic learning, extending to the most recent decisions and acts even of remote and foreign powers, with sound, sober, cautious judgment. Nor can the courage and tenacity be overlooked with which just and needed corrections of popular action or feeling have been attempted and often achieved, when such attempt involved much criticism and hostile feeling, from persons perhaps as patriotic but less wise and thoughtful than Sir Erskine. He fully appreciates, as do most of those who devote years to its study and development, the many imperfections in the law of nations, the many difficulties in its exact ascertainment and enforcement. But such long and deep study and acquaintance has no less assured him of its noble purpose, its vast scope and its profound effect as an aid to justice and to humanity. Long may he continue its wise exponent, its brave and effective defender!
CHARLES NOBLE GREGORY.
Treaties and Agreements with and concerning China, 1894-1919. By John
V. A. MacMurray, Compiler and Editor. New York: Oxford University Press, 1921. 2 vols., pp. 1729. Publication of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Division of International Law. $10.00
These two massive volumes constitute one of the most valuable of the publications of the Carnegie Endowment. They represent an immense amount of labor upon the part of their compiler and editor. The reviewer has only admiration and gratitude for the painstaking and intelligent care with which this labor has been performed. No one not familiar with conditions in China can form an adequate idea of the necessity for such a work as this. In this connection the reviewer ventures to quote words which he used in the introduction to a volume published by him in 1920 dealing with foreign rights and interests in China. He then said of China:
Probably nowhere else in the world is there such a mixture of territorial rights with foreign privileges and understandings, of purely political engagements with economic and financial concessions, of foreign interests conflicting with one another and with those of the nominally sovereign State. When a national government is wholly untrammelled with regard to the management of its own domestic affairs and has within its own hands the enforcement of law within its own territorial borders, international rights and responsibilities are easily determined by a resort to well-established principles of public law. But when, as in the case of China, we have a Power which permits the exercise within its limits of all kinds of extraterritorial rights and privileges; when there exists within its territory spheres of interest, special interests, war zones, leased territories, treaty ports, concessions, settlements and legation quarters, when there are in force a multitude of special engagements to foreign Powers with reference to commercial and industrial rights, railways and mines, loans and currency; when two of its chief revenue services—the maritime customs and the salt tax-are under foreign overhead administrative control or direction; when the proceeds of these and other revenues are definitely pledged to meet fixed charges on foreign indebtedness; when, at various points within its borders, there are stationed considerable bodies of foreign troops under foreign command—when we have these and other phenomena all carrying with them limitations upon the free exercise by the central government of its ordinary administrative powers or its discretionary right to deal as it deems best with the individual nations with which it maintains treaty relations, we then have a condition of affairs which furnishes abundant material not only for theoretical or academic discussions by students of international jurisprudence, but for serious conflict and disputes between the nations concerned.
Mr. MacMurray, in his volume, has followed much the same principles of selection as those used by W. W. Rockhill in his collections published by the United States Government in 1904 and 1908, except that the arrangement is a strictly chronological one. In addition to treaties and other formal international agreements, less formal declarations and arrangements, loan and railway and mining and other agreements have been included, and valuable footnotes, by way of cross-references, indicate the relations between the several documents. In all cases the English text is given.
Beside seven valuable maps, and an elaborate index, there is a chronological list of the documents at the front of the first volume; there is a similar list arranged according to nationalities.
Mr. MacMurray's volumes supersede Rockhill's two volumes, but, for the period prior to 1894, one must still consult Hertslet's Treaties between Great Britain and China and Foreign Powers (3d ed., 2 volumes, 1908) and Treaties, Conventions, etc., between China and Foreign States (2d ed.,