intervention — that ignis fatuus
which was allowed to operate so injuriously to our cause in the beginning of this war, and the probability of which seems as remote as ever — has not yet lost all its terrors for the Yankees
correspondent of the New York Times
, under the date of May 9, thus gives expression to his fears that something of the sort may yet come to pass.
We give his comments upon the subject, without attaching much importance to them, but as an exemplification of the ever-changing currents of public rumor in England
"Quiet as everything now seems with regard to American affairs, there are many signs of a confidence, amounting to certainly, that the American
war is not to last much longer.
The Government is about to employ the people of Lancashire
on public works, so that they may not emigrate, but be ready to spin the cotton when it comes.
A line of steamers of 3,000 to 4,000 tons is being built expressly to bring cotton from New Orleans.
One, the Georgia
, was launched this week.
The manufacturers who have not been in any hurry about cotton, satisfied to get off a large manufactured surplus at an advance, are evidently in no trouble about a supply when they need it. They are even building new mills, and filling them with machinery.
I have no doubt that they have an assurance from the very highest quarters that cotton shall be forthcoming at a fixed and not very remote period.
"On what is that assurance based?
On the ability of the National Government
to conquer the South
and open her ports to the world?
I cannot come to any such conviction.
The southern loan of $15,000,000 was not subscribed for, and is not kept at a premium by any such idea.
There is, beyond reasonable question a general understanding in England
, and between the Governments of these countries, that if the South
is not subjugated within a certain period — and of the probability of such subjugation they have no belief — her independence is to be acknowledged and guaranteed.
They will say — you have had three years and the resources of the world to end this rebellion.
If you cannot do it in that time, you never can. The war is too great an injury to the commerce of the world to go on for an indefinite period.
We must interfere for our own interests, and in the cause of humanity and civilization.
They will say to you as they will to Russia
, as France
, at least, will say to Victor Emanuel
: This has been going on long enough.
It becomes a nuisance and must be put a stop to.
"There is another fact you are not to lose right of. Englishmen, as well as others, have pride of opinion.
They are not willing to be found in the wrong.
Now, there is scarcely an Englishman of either of the great parties, from Derby
, down, who have not committed themselves to the success of the rebellion.--There is scarcely an Englishman of any political reputation who has not expressed, over and over again, the opinion, not to say wish, that the National Government
can never conquer the rebel States.
The Liberal Press — I mean the Times, Morning Post, Saturday Review, &c.
--have been as decided and as contemptuous in the matter as the Herald,
or John Bull,
The nation, with slight exceptions, is committed in opinions and hopes one way, and it is vain to think they will not "back their opinions," or attempt, to realize their hopes.
They look for cheap cotton and free trade from the Southern States
, and a perpetual checkmate to Northern power and aggression."
All this sounds plausible enough, but the present aspect of European
affairs is not very promising of such results.
, the only power whose sympathies for the South
have been exhibited in a tangible form, is just now too busy with the Polish and Italian imbroglios
, not to mention her Mexican
expedition, to think seriously of any move in that direction, unless backed by the moral and material support of England
, nor can this support and co-operation be hoped for so long as the Russell-Palmerston
ministry shall remain in power.
The liberalism of England
is a very shadowy and unsubstantial foundation to build upon, as the Poles have more than once found out to their cost, and as the Italians would also have experienced, but for the bold and vigorous measures of Napoleon
In the meanwhile, let the South
rely solely on the goodness of her cause and the devoted patriotism of her sons.
Let us continue to help ourselves, and Providence
will most assuredly take us through the fiery ordeal.