Page images
PDF
EPUB

only man in the civilized world who had appeared as the apologist of the partition of Poland! (Hear, hear.)

MR. P. STEWART said, that his Majesty's Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs having acceded to his first proposition, viz. the appointment of a diplomatic mission to Cracow, and the second part being in substance conceded, he deemed it unnecessary to press his resolution.

a

We cannot abstain from offering a few observations on one portion of the speech of the Member for Tamworth, in which he made a sort of apology for our not having taken part in the late war in favour of Turkey against her northern antagonist. The honourable Baronet imagined that in order to defend Turkey in 1829, we must have incurred an enormous expense, unless we had been assured of the co-operation of the other powers.

We feel morally convinced that the mere presence of two line-of-battle ships in the Black Sea, during the second campaign, would have decided the contest in favour of Turkey. The Turks had at that time a magnificent fleet in the Bosphorus, which on its first cruise in the Euxine captured the finest frigate in the Russian navy.. Sir Robert Gordon, then our ambassador at the Porte, justly appreciated the resources of that power, and indignantly spurned the idea entertained in England that Turkey was lost because she had made peace on disadvanta

geous terms.

It was by Russian diplomacy, not by the force of arms, that Turkey was compelled to make peace. The London Protocol of March, 1829, was the means by which Russia triumphed over our natural ally. It must not be forgotten that Turkey was paralyzed by England and France, acting in virtue of the Treaty of July, for the pacification of Greece, and that during the winter of 1829, the Conference of London proposed to extend the limits of Greece, and therefore the sphere of the Greek contest.

The struggle on the Danube, by drawing thither an immense majority of the forces of the Sultan, pointed out to the Greeks every chance of success in the southern portion of an empire then shaken by the double scourge of foreign war and of a sanguinary contest between its Greek and Turkish subjects. The unity and enthusiasm given to the former on the first arrival of Capodistrias seemed to secure these successes.

Capodistrias confined himself, during two years, to deploy more than 15,000 men from Athens to the Gulf of Arta, without there occurring the least combination in the military operations which could bring about the result which it was so natural to

expect from them. Nevertheless one memorable fact could not escape the attentive observer of the course of this war. The demonstration of the Greek army

did not remain without influence on the success of the campaign. The whole of the Albanians, threatened at home, refused to march to the Danube and to the Balkan, and so strong was the impression amongst these populations produced by the Greek manæuvre, combined with the success obtained in spite of the President, who wished to confine himself to threats, by the western army commanded by the Generalissimo, Sir Richard Church, that the Pacha of Scodra did not leave his Sandjak until after the raising of the blockade of Prevesa, in May, 1829.

The 25,000 men of Mustafa, Pacha of Scodra, arrived at Philippopolis in Sept. 1829, evidently retarded in their departure by the state of uneasiness which tormented Albania at that period. The numerical forces of the Russians had just decided the fate of the campagn, in permitting them to pass the Balkan. Had an additional force of 25,000 men, and those men Albanians, been placed in the defiles between Schumla and the sea, it is allowable to believe that General Diebitch, would not have

gained the title of Sa Balkanski. Thus, it is not presumptuous to suppose that Count Capodistrias obtained for him his laurels on the Gulf of Lepanto.

It may not be uninteresting to quote an extract here from the Memoir of a Greek Patriot, dated from Ægina, in Nov. 1829. It was at that period equally applicable to Turkey and to Greece.

The Cabinet of St. Petersburgh has never concealed her projects. It is too strong to require to do so, and too skilful to undertake that which had no probability of success. Profiting by the disposition of the powers, Russia explained, from the very commencement of the Greek revolution, her views as to the fate which she thought convenient to accord

It is at Laybach ; it is in the notes of Lord Strangford at the period of the interview of the Emperors at Czernovitz; it is in her memoir

presented to the European Courts in the winter of 1823 to 1824; it is in fine in the Protocol of 4th April, 1824, that she has given before-hand the explanation of the Xth Article of the Treaty of Adrianople.

- What fatal charm blinds the eyes of our generous supporters, France and England ? The word Liberty engraven on our chains! this is the work

us.

of their magnanimous intervention? Servile resignation to the will of Russia! Is this the task worthy of the two great powers who have to defend, not only the interests of their own policy, but those of civilization in general ? Since the battle of Navarin, until the steps taken with Diebitch, at the Treaty of Adrianople, how many anomalies, how many contradictions, how many errors do we not see in their conduct? What abandonment of principle, what subjection to the power of words, what a want of independence, of dignity, of courage! They united themselves with Russia in July, 1827, in order to prevent a war from taking place with the Porte, and not only has war resulted from the union, but furthermore, subaltern assistants at the sacrifice, they have garrotted the victim and placed it on the altar. They have taken part in the intervention, in order to secure to themselves that Russia should not dispose of us according to her good pleasure, and they have placed their fleets, their troops, their millions, at the disposal of a Russian Cabinet, and of a Russian minister, to make of Greece (and Turkey) what Russia expressed her desire to make of her from the first day, or rather from the eve of our revolution. In fine, it seems that they have

[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »