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sters to repeat the assertions of those of our resources to make our enemics sbo expressed such sanguine opinions feel the consequences of war." as to the probable result of the repeal The only remaining topic in the of the orders in council. They aban. speech, was that which related to India. doned their own opinion upon that The affairs of our Indian empire, it was question, and adopted that of their said, should be fully investigated beadversaries, which no doubt furnished fore any system for its future governa strong proof of their vigour, firm- ment was finally determined upon. The Dess, and perseverance. They ought, whole question should be brought for. in fact, to have expected, and been ward, not in the shape of a bill for lefolly prepared for war with America; gislation, as was proposed last session, they ought, as statesmen, to have but in a distinct and separate form for known that the American government deliberate enquiry, in order that it had been long infected with a deadly might be examined in all its details. hatred towards this country. It was The omission to notice the catholic absurd to suppose that governments question in the speech from the throne, might not, as well as individuals, be was severely censured. 66 After all influenced by passion ; or that they that had occurred in discussion," said were not more apt to act from the some members of opposition, “ and impulse of their own vices or corrup- been excited in hope, no disposition tions, than from a consideration of the whatever was expressed to conciliate interest of those over whom they pre- the catholics, or to adjust their claims. side. No statesman would therefore

Every one remembered what had taconclude, that because it was contrary ken place at the close of last session in to the interest of the American people both houses of parliament; by the to engage in war with this country, House of Commons, indeed, a distinct the American government would shrink pledge had been entered into, fully to from such a measure. In this instance, consider the catholic question, with a indeed, no such conclusion could be view to an ultimate and satisfactory deemed in the slightest degree excusa- arrangement. Was it now resolved to ble, for the disposition of the Ameri. relinquish this pledge, and set aside all can government was quite evident, and that had been done? There were too therefore common policy might have many grounds of suspicion upon this urged ministers to prepare fully for the subject ; and several proceedings had event; they ought to have made ade. occurred both in this country and in quate exertion to pacify, intimidate, or Ireland, where, to use the words of to punish America. No means should Lord Camden, the hand and fingers have been un provided to repel the au- of government were very visible." dacious attack which the American Such, indeed, was the supposed hostigovernment had ventured to make up- lity of government to the cause of the on Great Britain.— Nothing of this catholics, that one motive for the diskind, however, had been done, and solution of parliament was said to be America had been suffered to com. a desire to get rid of the pledge of the rence, and, for a time, to carry on other house upon the subject ; and if hostilities, even without danger to her. the rumours now abroad were well self. The most extensive exertions founded, that statement would appear should be made to convince the Ame- not improbable. For, according to rican government of its folly; and the one rumour, it was the intention of best hope of peace would rest upon ministers, after the Houses had met the manly and vigorous employment for a few days, and adjusted some matters immediately necessary to the produced by French invasion, the objects of government, to propose an Spaniards were most forward to con. adjournment for two months. Now, tend for the independence and for the the practical effect of such an ad. old establishments of their country, journment would be to evade the and therefore their cause held out an pledge for taking the catholic ques. encouraging prospect, and a good tion into early consideration, which, example, which the people of Russia combined with the omission in the were now so nobly emulating. It was speech, was a bad omen for the catho. this exhibition of a high national spilics.-- There weré some words at the rit which originally induced ministers conclusion of the speech in praise of to become the advocates of that assistthe constitution. Yet there was also ance which the Spaniards had received a report that ministers had it in con. from this country. Indeed, if this templation to propose an extension of country had not afforded that aid, it the duration of parliament upon the would have betrayed an indifference, demise of the crown ; but the praise not only to every high sentiment of of the constitution contained in the liberty, but even to the most common speech, surely destroyed all belief in notions of policy. But while our obthe rumour.”

ject was to assist Spain,-to afford to Such was the view taken by oppo. the Spanish people and to Europe the sition of the general policy of govern- means of profiting by circumstances ment. The ministers, on the other which appeared so promising, minihand, vindicated their conduct from the sters were certainly not so sanguine, imputations which were cast upon it, as many others who concurred with and expressed their readiness to sub- them, in the policy of granting assistmit the whole of their proceedings to Whatever the result might be, the strictest scrutiny, whether refer- it was the duty of England to make ring to disaster or to triumph-whe. an attempt in favour of Spain. The ther furnishing matter for congratula- real question therefore was, whether 'tion, or connected with events which the exertions of Britain were comevery one must deplore. With respect mensurate with her means and reto the conduct of the war, history ena- sources, as well as with the importbled every one to pronounce that those ance of the object, the attainment of who looked for unmixed success and which was in view ? This was the true exemption from every species of mis question. With regard then to the fortune, rested on hopes the most chi- amount of the aid afforded, the utmost merical. But where misfortune oc- had been done for Spain, which, concurred, the majority of parliament and sistently with a due attention to other of the public were too considerate and objects, it was possible for governjust, not to distinguish between that ment to accomplish. It was for those which was attributable to the contin. who maintained the contrary to shew gencies of war, and that for which mi- how and where more might have been nisters or their agents might be deem. done. As to the adequacy of the ed fairly responsible.—The war in means to the end in view, it was proSpain might be regarded as a new era per to remark, that our great comin the history of modern wars, because mander in the peninsula had never been here the people were active in re- deceived by government with respect pelling their invaders. Unlike the to the means in its power to afford, people of Germany and Italy, who nor had any aid which that officer re. were passive spectaiors of the conflict quired ever been refused. It would,


indeed, have been an injustice to him, to on the 25th of June last, in the peninour ally, and to the country, to have sula and the Mediterranean, an army of deceived him on such points.-Consi. no less than 127,000 men in our pay; dering the subject in all its bearings, that was, 91,000 British, including fohow could any blame be imputable to reign or German troops, with 36,000 ministers? It was admitted, indeed, Portuguese. Such was our force, inthat at the period when the French dependently of Spanish auxiliaries, who armies were engaged with Russia, the received from us all the assistance in opportunity was favourable for a great our power, in their formation, equipeffort in the peninsula, but considering ment, and pecuniary supply. Nay, the uncertainty of war, and the respon. the British army alone under Lord sibility of government for the perpe. Wellington, at the period alluded to, taal protection and safety of the empire, amounted to 58,000. Did the exerwould it have been consistent with its tions which collected such an army de. daty, for the sake of one extraordinary serve to be characterised in such terms effort, to throw away the means of fu. -three years ago would any man have tare exertion. As the most brilliant been so sanguine as to believe the col. campaign has often no decisive influ. lection of such an army practicable ? ence upon the fate of war, should a Yet such had been the exertions of wise government cast all on one die that government, which had also to hazard the power, and shed the heart's provide for the protection of India, of blood of a country, merely to make a our numerous colonies in the West, fourish-and risk perpetual strength and for our domestic arrangements.for the triumph of one year! A go. As to the alleged deficiency of equipvernment entrusted with the manage- ment in our army,--that our soldiers ment of the resources of a great em- should be quite secured from privations, pire, is bound to recollect that it has that they should at all times be com to provide for the future as well as the pletely equipped, it would be too much present, and ought to look to the safe to expect in the ordinary vicissitudes ty of the whole. The country ought of war. Where, however, such privato know what exertions had actually tions occurred, and where they were been made, and it would be convinced reported by our illustrious command. of their sufficiency. But when the as- er, his requisitions were immediately sertion was bazarded, that more ought attended to. This could and would, to have been done for the peninsula, no doubt, be confirmed promptly by let us look to the proudest periods of that distinguished commander himour history—to the periods of King self-for it was a striking feature in William and Queen Anne, when the his character, that he was as just to great Duke of Marlborough wielded those who supported him, as he was ihe energies of the nation with so much bold to those who opposed him-and glory and success. Let all the rela: it was another striking feature in his ove circumstances be fairly taken into character, that he was never extrava. view.-Our means had of late aug. gant in his expectations or demands ; treated in a surprising ratio ; and with. indeed, he was never likely to make in two or three years the increased such demands, because ministers took strength of the military force of the care that he should be always accu. country was great beyond example. For rately informed as to the means of what was the actual state of our force supply:-—That some inconvenience in that quarter, which it had been said might have been felt from the state of was so inadequately supplied? We had the military chest no one could deny ;


but the supply of specie at present must tributable to any want of energy on depend upon a great variety of cir- the part of his majesty's government ; ; cumstances, beyond the power of any nor was the scarcity of artillery at ministers to controul ; upon the means Burgos any imputation upon govern. of obtaining money for bills on the ment ; for in fact there were three continent, and other causes, particu. battering trains on the continent; and larly the state of the Spanish colo. besides these, one was sent last March nies in America, all of which natu. to Lisbon to be kept afloat, subject to rally interfered with the importation the orders of Lord Wellington. Ac. of bullion. Yet no blame could cording to the opinion, however, of attach to government, for nothing the noble lord himself, Burgos must practicable was left undone by them. have been taken, if at all, without de. There was, however, a limit to their lay, and before any

artillery could be means, as there was a limit to the brought to him. But the failure of means of any nation ; by that limit our gallant commander's calculation, alone government was confined in its and the consequent recapture of Maefforts to assist these operations which drid, was owing to the refusal of Ba. it was called upon to extend.—The lasteros to obey his commands ; which Sicilian expedition was prepared to refusal facilitated the movements of sail early in March, and was conducted the French force, and disconcerted throughout in concert with Lord Wel- Lord Wellington's plan of operations.” us lington, who communicated regularly With reference to America, it was a with the commander of that force. observed, “ that the dispatches of her The appearance of this expedition off government clearly demonstrated that Catalonia was of great utility, as it the orders in council were the great prevented Suchet from sending rein. stumbling block, in the way of an forcements to Joseph Buonaparte, who amicable arrangement between the in consequence evacuated Madrid ; and countries. Not only the acts of the the arrival of this expedition at Valen. government, but also the acts of concia, instead of being a mistake, as as- gress, expressly declared, that the reserted, was the result of a concerted peal of the retaliatory measure, the plan.—That the late campaign had non-importation act, depended upon eminently succeeded was obvious. For the rescinding of those orders. So what was the object of the campaign ? soon as that very measure should be Why, the capture of Ciudad Rodrigo adopted, which it was now pretendand Badajoz, the expulsion of the ed the Americans regarded as insigFrench from the south of Spain, and nificant, the American government the raising of the siege of Cadiz. All proclaimed that its hostile measures these objects had been attained ; and should cease to be enforced. It had would not that man have been deemed been asserted, that we were unprepavery sanguine, who at the outset red for the American war ; but where would have predicted the attainment and how were we unprepared ? Were of such important objects, particular. we unprepared in Canada, or was there ly the liberation of the Spanish go- any neglect at the Admiralty ? Upon vernment by the raising of the siege this subject, as well as with respect to of Cadiz ?-While the objects of the Spain, let the opponents of ministers campaign had been accomplished, many come to close quarters_let them state of the hopes excited by the victory of facts—let them bring something speSalamanca had been disappointed. cific, and abandon that style of loose But that disappointment was not at and general accusation, of which the

House had been favoured with so many for them to obtain possession of a specimens in the course of the discus- greater disposable force. The minision. “ Now as to the concluding topic sters of the prince regent were preof the noble marquis's (Marquis Wel. pared to defend themselves on the lesley's) speech, I have not,” said the exercise of the means they actually Earl of Liverpool, “ made use of any did possess, or could possess, and on expression with respect to the catho. their having employed the resources Hic question, to which I do not adhere. entrusted to them to the utmost, My opinion I have always publicly without draining the country beyond proclaimed upon this subject. I have that point which no nation could susresisted, and I will resist, the proposi- tain or support. Ministers certainly tion for entering into the considera- could not have been expected to tion of the catholic claims, because I make these unnatural attempts (now cannot see any way to an adjustment suggested as necessary or defended of those claims, likely to satisfy the as politic) by gentlemen on the other catholics. I therefore thiok it more side ; by those who had ever incul. consistent to oppose the proposition cated upon their minds the necessity at once, than to seek to defeat it by there was for husbanding our rewhat are called guards or securities. sources, and, even on the peninsula, I meet the catholics openly and pub- keeping our exertions within the licly, and will never attempt to disap- bounds of the strictest moderation.point their wishes by any little under. It was obviously impossible indeed hand opposition-by any schemes or for ministers to enter on an ample subterfuge. My system of opposi- elucidation of the measures respecting tion I feel to be more fair and candid, which doubts might be thrown out and therefore I will continue to pur- on a night like the present, when all sue it. In stating this to be my in. the numerous points of policy contention, I declare merely my individual nected with the country were thrown opinion, without meaning to sway the open for partial discussion, and the judgment of any of my friende.” attention was not confined to a single

Returning again to the affairs of the object, though many of those alluded peainsula, it was remarked by other to were sufficiently'intricate and impembers, “ that this was the point on portant to require of themselves the which ministers ought, by the ordinary utmost diligence of parliament.-The course of policy, to make their effort country should be on its guard against 25 a diversion in favour of Russia, since being led to expect too much from it could not be expected of tbis coun- successes, or to despair on aecount of try, that it should be able, at one and reverses, even though they might be the same time, to make proper ex- such as to replace the allied forces in ertion in that quarter, and nerve the the lines at Torres Vedras. It was arm of Russia in the north, by fur. not by one victory that the fate of nishing her with men or money.' Mi- the peninsula would be decided ; and sisters would not be inclined to ward it was a dangerous enthusiasm which off any censure that might be ap- was elevated beyond bounds, even by pried to them, on the ground of re- such a victory as would soon call for the laation in their efforts to carry on thanks of the House ; or be depressed most sigorously the war in Spain; beyond measure by every failure that bat there had been no relaxation on might attend our exertions. When their parts; neither had they neglected by the most consummate generalship, any means by which it was possible that victory unparalleled in the his




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