Studies in Biography

Cover of book Studies in Biography
Categories: Nonfiction

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Three weeks later the Treaty of San Stefano was signed, and the Government insisted that all the articles should be referred to the consideration of Europe. The refusal of Russia to consent to this arrangement led, at the beginning of April, to two fresh decisions. An order for calling out the reserves was issued on April 1st; and on April I7th the Indian Government received orders to despatch troops to Malta. These decisions led to the resignation of Lord Derby. It is necessary to restate these facts because our judgment of Lord Beaconsfield's foreign policy partly depends on them. The reserves were called out, and the Indian troops were despatched to Malta, after the Treaty of San Stefano was signed, and war was risked to enforce the demand, which the Government had made, that every article in the San Stefano Treaty should be referred to a European Congress. From Lord Beaconsfield's point of view much, no doubt, could be said in favour of this demand. It was a perfectly intelligible policy to declare that arrangements made by Europe should only be altered with the consent of Europe. The determination of the Government ultimately prevailed, and on June 3rd Russia accepted the Conference on the conditions on which Lord Beaconsfield had insisted. On the very next day the convention was signed at Constantinople between England and the Porte which placed the Turkish frontier in Asia under the protection of this country, and which surrendered Cyprus as a place of arms for British occupation. It is not now our intention to dwell on the reckless folly of a guarantee which, if it had proved operative, would have been certainly intolerable, or on the extravagance of an arrangement which placed an island under our rule which we did not require, and which has proved an i... --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Studies in Biography
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