Recognition by foreign powers.
--We are heartily sick and tired of the weakness and want of self-reliance and self- respect evinced in the disposition to lean upon the recognition of foreign powers.
What is the practical value of such recognition?
It does not amount to taking sides with us against the North
; it will not provoke the United States
into a war with those powers, for such recognition would be no casus belli,
and, if it were, the Lincoln
Government, despite the blustering talk of the New York Herald
, could not be kicked into a war at this time with France
We ought to be content that the foreign powers have declared strict neutrality between the two sections. --As to their active aid, we either need it or we do not. If we do, then of course we are unable to achieve our own independence, and even supposing any European
power willing to take up our quarrel, we must expect to pay a price for such assistance, which will simply amount to transferring us from the vassalage of one despot to that of another.
If we do not need foreign aid — and every battle of this war proves that we are able to defend ourselves — why manifest a solicitude which indicates that we distrust our own strength?
A nation that depends upon others for the means of achieving its independence, must continue to depend upon them for the means of preserving it — a most extraordinary state of independence, indeed!
We neither know nor care whether the great powers of Europe
will recognize our independence.
If we cannot make it a fact, they will not help us do it; if we can, they need not. It would be a far prouder reflection that we had achieved our own deliverance, than that we had to be aided in it by England
The moral influence of an unassisted triumph upon the pride and self-reliance of our own people, would be incalculable.
We want to be under no obligations to Europe
; to give no claim to our gratitude, and no war rant or pretext of superiority to any arrogant power or supercilious people in the Old World.
We believe that the South
is at this moment the most military nation in the world, not even excepting gallant and chivalric France
; we believe that the soldiers of the Southern
army, led by a Napoleon
, can conquer any equal number of men in all Christendom.
We know that our agricultural resources are inexhaustible, that we can feed and clothe ourselves, and that if the rest of the world were sunk in the ocean to-morrow, we should not be the worse for it in any single respect.
If they can do without us, we can do far better without them.
We may desire their friendship, we may admire their prowess, we may have close sympathies with those of them whom we know to be generous and chivalrous; but they themselves will respect us all the more, if we show more self-reliance and respect for ourselves.