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For what can be more unreasonable than for us to pass resolutions about peace without the knowledge of those men who wage the war! And not only without their knowledge, but even against their will? Do you think that Aulus Hirtius, that most illustrious consul, and that Caius Caesar, a man born by the especial kindness of the gods for this especial crisis, whose letters, announcing their hope of victory, I hold in my hand, are desirous of peace? They are anxious to conquer; and they wish to obtain that most delightful and beautiful condition of peace, as the consequence of victory, not of some agreement. What more? With what feelings do you think that Gaul will hear of this proceeding? For that province performs the chief part in repelling, and managing, and supporting this war. Gaul, following the mere nod, for I need not say the command of Decimus Brutus, has strengthened the beginning of the war with her arms, her men, and her treasures: she has exposed the whole of her body to the cruelty of Marcus Antonius: she is drained, laid waste, attacked with fire and sword. She is enduring all the injuries of war with equanimity, contented as long as she can ward off the danger of slavery.

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