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concerned, at a maximum of 5 per cent, ad valorem. All the treaties included a 'most-favoured-nation' clause; consequently it was impossible to buy off, by special concessions, the opposition of any single Power, or to make a breach in the compact array of obligations under which the country lay. Each treaty-State-and there were some fifteen in all—had its own consular jurisdiction, its distinct system of law, civil and criminal. Diversity of language added to the difficulties experienced by Japanese subjects who had dealings with the consular courts. The legal education of the consuls was in many cases defective; and appeals were practically impossible, for the courts of appeal lay on the other side of the world -in London, for instance, or in Leipzig. Not only did civil and criminal cases, in which Europeans were concerned, come before the consular courts, but even matters of police and domestic administration. If a European insisted on travelling on a Japanese railway without a ticket, the Japanese authorities were left practically without redress. If regulations were issued for the exclusion of cholera infection, they could not be enforced against Europeans. It may easily be imagined that it required all the patience and self-restraint which a highspirited and naturally exclusive people could command to put up with such a state of things.
The Japanese Government made repeated and persistent efforts to free the country from these intolerable obligations; but for a long time they strove in vain. A term for the revision of the treaties had been fixed; and the end of this term coincided roughly with the abolition of feudalism. A prime object of the Iwakura embassy (1871) was the revision of the treaties; but from this point of view the embassy completely failed. • First amend your laws,' was the answer generally received. The laws were amended and codified, and that too, as we have seen, on European principles; but the treaties were not revised. It is to the credit of the United States that the first advance in this direction was made by that Power. In July 1878 a treaty was signed at Washington which, while leaving the question of jurisdiction where it was, made important concessions to Japan, especially in regard to the coasting-trade and the right of determining import and export dues. But these concessions
Vol. 200.--No. 399.
were rendered almost worthless by the stipulation that the treaty should not come into force until Japan had effected a similar revision with all the other treatyPowers. Many years were to elapse before this took place.
In 1882 a conference of representatives of all the treaty-Powers met in Tokio to consider the question of revision. Japan was represented by one of her foremost statesmen, Kaoru Inouye, Minister of Foreign Affairs, who had fully grasped the necessity of breaking, once for all, with the old jealous and exclusive policy towards other States. He laid before the conference a proposal to throw the whole Empire open to foreign trade-an advantage to be met by the abolition of the consular jurisdictions. It was suggested that the treaties based on these proposals should be valid for twelve years, but that after eight years the tariffs and trade regulations should be subject to revision. This suggestion seems to have been unfavourably received by some of the foreign delegates; while, on the Japanese side, some opposition manifested itself to the opening of the whole country to foreign trade. Difficulties also arose in connexion with the length of the transitional period, and a proposal for the appointment of a certain number of foreign judges by Japan. In the end, after sitting for six months, the conference broke up without coming to an agreement.
A second conference met in May 1886. Count Inouye (as he now was) again represented Japan. The British and German delegates joined in a proposal to surrender the consular jurisdictions at once, without any transitional period. But difficulties of detail again arose, and certain safeguards were demanded which seemed to the Japanese Government to encroach upon the judicial independence of the State. Popular opposition to any such concessions ran high; and eventually, in July 1887, Count Inouye closed the conference, after it had sat for upwards of a year.
These repeated disappointments came near wearing out the patience of the Japanese people. The enthusiasm for foreign manners and institutions, which had risen to an almost absurd climax about 1885-6, now declined. A A bitterness of feeling showed itself which led to several attacks on foreigners, the assassination of Count Okuma (who had succeeded Count Inouye at the Foreign Office)
on account of his foreign proclivities, and the attack on the Czarevitch in 1891. Nevertheless, the Government continued its patient efforts in the cause of treaty reform. In 1889 a treaty with Germany was signed at Berlin, which, while conceding the main demands on either side, involved the appointment of foreign jurists as judges in the Japanese Court of Cassation. This provision caused the Japanese Government to refuse ratification. Similar treaties with Russia and the United States broke down over the same obstacle.
At length, when the completion of the legal codes and the establishment of the Constitution had removed all reasonable grounds for anxiety, and proved the fitness of Japan to rule itself, the confidence of the foreign Powers was won, and the persistent efforts of the Japanese Government were crowned with success. It is pleasant to reflect that Great Britain was the first Power to give full effect to the recognition of Japan. In March 1894 a treaty was signed in London by Lord Kimberley and Viscount Aoki which, in consideration of the opening of Japan to British trade, put an end to the rights of extraterritoriality enjoyed by British settlements in Japan, abolished the consular jurisdictions and the other immunities enjoyed by British subjects in that country, and handed over the jurisdiction to the native courts. The example of Great Britain was followed first by the United States and then by the other treaty-Powers.
The new treaties came into force in 1899. In the interval the Chinese war had been fought and won. On June 30, 1899, the Emperor issued a proclamation in which the following passages occur. After stating that,
Thanks to the traditions we have inherited and to the virtues of our ancestors, it has been granted to us to obtain full recognition of our sovereign rights,' the Emperor continues :“In regard to the revision of the treaties, our long-nourished wishes have at length, by means of a satisfactory agreement with the treaty-Powers, attained their end. Considering that the revised treaties are now about to come into force, we may regard this moment with joy and hearty satisfaction; and, while on the one hand we recognise the responsibilities which the altered state of things imposes on the Empire, on the other we hope that the new conditions will contribute to
build up our friendly relations with the Powers on a basis yet firmer than before. We expect, therefore, from our loyal subjects, ever ready as they are to discharge their public duties, that, in accordance with our wishes and the enlightened principles of our national policy, they will without exception receive in a kindly spirit the strangers who come to us from distant lands, and will thus strive to raise the national reputation and maintain the dignity of the Empire.' (Von Siebold.)
The spirit which inspires these words worthily marks the coming of age of a great people. Less than half a century had gone by since Japan, holding fast to her ancient ways, undisturbed through long ages by extraneous influences, lay, a slumbering and secluded group of islands in the Pacific, remote from all the stir of the Western world. In 1853 there was nothing to show that the 'Drang nach Osten' of the European Powers would not reduce her, as it has gone near to reducing China, to a pitiable condition of dismemberment and vassalage, and the more easily by reason of her insular position and the comparatively small numbers of her people. But Japan bestirred herself in time. She was safely guided by a wise monarch, and by statesmen of unsurpassed insight and discretion, through all the perils of domestic revolution, and through a crisis in her foreign relations—that of 1895—as formidable as any that ever beset a young and untried people. Transformed within and without, retaining her ancient fervid patriotism, but armed with all the panoply of modern science, she took her place as a great Power, only five years ago, in the comity of nations.
Art. XIII.--THE MILITIA AND VOLUNTEERS.
1. Report of the Royal Commission on the Militia and
Volunteers; with Minutes of Evidence and Appendices.
London: Spottiswoode, 1904. (Cd. 2061-4.) The Royal Commission on the Militia and Volunteers seems to have been appointed by the Government not with a view to making large reforms, but rather as a means of escape from parliamentary troubles. In February 1903 Mr Beckett, in the House of Commons, moved as an amendment to the address,
* that this House humbly regrets that the organisation of the land forces is unsuited to the needs of the Empire, and that no proportionate gain in strength and efficiency has resulted from the recent increases in military expenditure.'
In the course of the debate the supporters of the amendment, some of whom were members of the party on which the Government relies, strongly urged the opinion that the land defence of the United Kingdom ought to be entrusted mainly, if not entirely, to the auxiliary forces. The effect of the debate was to shake the faith of the Government in Mr Brodrick's schemes, and to convince its members that some means must be found of staving off for the rest of the session a repetition of the attack. The simplest means appeared to be the appointment of a Royal Commission.
There was indeed a good reason why the Secretary of State should seek advice on the subject of the Volunteer force from persons conversant with its organisation and working. On November 4, 1901, an Order in Council had been issued modifying the conditions required to be fulfilled by volunteers and Volunteer corps for the purpose of earning the capitation grants by which the corps are maintained ; and the Order in Council was followed by new regulations, dated November 27, 1901. One of the new conditions prescribed was that every corps should attend a camp of exercise for one week in each year, and
, that every volunteer should attend the camp for at least one week in every alternate year. This condition was not the invention of a perverse War Office. It was one