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The Daily Dispatch: July 24, 1862., [Electronic resource], Partisan Rangers and private citizens captured by the enemy. (search)
o part in hostilities unless called on by their Government. If, however, in violation of this usage, private citizens of Missouri should be oppressed and maltreated by the public enemy, they have unquestionably a right to take arms in their own defence, and if captured and confined by the enemy under such circumstances, they are entitled, as citizens of the Confederate States, to all the protection which that Government can afford, and among the measures to which it may be needful to resort, is that of the less saltonis. We shall deplore the necessity of retaliation, as adding greatly to the miseries of the war without advancing its objects; and, therefore, we shall act with great circumspection, and only upon facts clearly ascertained; but if it is our only means of compelling the observance of the usages of civilized warfare, we cannot hesitate to resort to it when the proper time arrives. Very respectfully, Your obedient servant, G. W. Randolph. Secretary of War.