by the weak-minded apostles of peace as chauvinistic.
Let that pass, I am proud to call myself a chauvinist
in the sense that I do not desire peace at any price,
but peace only for England’s welfare. The
patriotic tendencies of our people have been directed
into their proper channel by my predecessor Chamberlain.
And has not the Government for the last thirty years
hearkened to these patriotic feelings, in that, whether
led by Disraeli or Gladstone, it has brought about
an enormous strengthening of our defensive forces
both on land and sea? These military preparations,
whilst not only redounding to the advantage of the
motherland, but also to that of the colonies (which
they shall ever continue to do) have saddled the mother
country with the entire burden of expenditure.
But how shall the enormous cost of this war be met
for the future? How shall the commerce of the
English world-empire be increased in the future and
protected from competition, if the colonies do not
share in the expense? I vote for a just distribution
of the burdens, and maintain that not England alone
but that the colonies also should share in bearing
them. The plan of Imperial Federation, a policy
which we are pursuing, is the remedy for our chronic
disease, and will strengthen the colonies and the
mother country in economic, political, and military
respects. Certainly, my lords, such utterances
will appear to you to be somewhat impertinent, at
a time when a Russian army has invaded India and our
army has suffered a severe defeat, but I should wish
to remind you that every war that England has yet
waged has begun with defeats. But England has
never waged other than victorious wars since William
the Conqueror infused Romanic blood into England’s
political life and thus gave it a constitution of
such soundness and tenacity that no other body politic
has ever been able permanently to resist England.
We shall again, as in days of yore, drive the Russians
out of India, shall force the fleets of France, Germany,
and Russia who are now hiding in their harbours into
the open, annihilate them, and thwart all the insolent
plans of our enemies, and finally raise the Union
Jack as a standard of a world-power that no one will
for evermore be able to attack.”
THE YOUNG RUSSIAN CAPTAIN OF DRAGOONS
The news of Edith’s kidnapping—for,
in Heideck’s opinion, this was the only explanation,
because she would otherwise have left a message for
him—fell upon Heideck as a crushing blow.
He remembered the terrible cruelties narrated of the
period of the Sepoy mutiny. And he only needed
to remember his own experiences in Lahore to be convinced
that all those horrible stories were no exaggeration,
but, rather, well within the actual truth of the facts.
But if it was not a like fate that awaited Edith Irwin,
yet perhaps another ignominious lot would be hers,
and this could not fail to appear, to the man who
loved her, more terrible even than death itself.