Minister Beaupré to the Secretary of State.

No. 411.]

Sir: As minister of the United States to this Republic, I understand it to be a part of my duty to make, for the information present and future of the department, a record of all events that transpire, as well as of all measures enacted, within the limits of my territory, that may have or be given international significance. The visit of the Secretary of State of the United States to the Argentine Republic, at the invitation and as guest of the Argentine Government, is in itself an international act and one, in my judgment, of inestimable significance. In accordance, therefore, with my understanding of my duty, I have the honor herewith to report the facts of his visit, and at the same time to interpret, as I may be able, the feelings of this Government and people and their attitude at the time of and subsequent to Mr. Root’s sojourn in their country.

Mr. Root arrived at the port of Buenos Aires on board the Argentine war ship Buenos Aires at 11 o’clock of the morning of the 14th ultimo. With my wife and the secretary of legation I went to the Government House at 9.30 a.m. of the same day, where I met the minister for foreign affairs and his wife, Señora Montes de Oca, the minister of marine, the subsecretary of foreign affairs and his wife, Señora Tedin Uribarri. By communication by wireless telegraphy with the Buenos Aires we were kept informed of her movements until she entered basin No. IV of the closed port, when the entire party proceeded thither and waited while the vessel was warped to and made fast. Here we were joined by the Argentine minister to Washington and his wife Señora Portela, and by the Argentine secretary of legation at Washington, Señor Carlos Zavalia, During the morning an overcast sky portended rain, yet thousands of eager welcomers had congregated at the dock and on the streets leading thereto, filling all the available space, a detachment of marines keeping a passageway clear for the official party. The rain began falling heavily just as the vessel was moored. As soon as the gang plank was put ashore, the receiving party went on board and cordial greetings were interchanged, the minister for foreign affairs welcoming Mr. Root and his family.

After certain necessary arrangements were completed, the entire party went ashore, entered the carriages provided by the Government that were in waiting, and drove through the principal thoroughfares of the city, which had been elaborately and beautifully decorated for the occasion, to the private residence of Dr. José M. Llobet, No. 368 Avenida General Alvear, which the proprietor had kindly, at great expense and infinite personal care and attention, fitted for this particular purpose and put at the disposal of the Argentine Government for the occupation of its guest. In spite of the violent torrents of rain that greeted Mr. Root’s arrival at and passage through the streets of Buenos Aires, it was the occasion of a most unusual demonstration of enthusiasm, crowds accompanying his carriage on foot, regardless of the elements, from the port to the house of Doctor Llobet, a distance of about 2 miles, hailing him with cries of “Viva Mr. Root,” “Viva Los Estados Unidos,” and with “hurrahs,” that [Page 22]were most gratifying testimony of the genuine feeling of the Argentine people; gratifying not only to the guests of the nation, but to the Argentines themselves, many of whom expressed to me their satisfaction at the spontaneity of the popular demonstration. At times the crowd grew so dense that the carriages were scarcely able to pass, while the balconies and windows of the houses and sidewalks were filled with enthusiastic spectators.

Arrived at their residence in this city, Mr. Root and his party were left to rest and breakfast alone. At 2.30 o’clock of the afternoon the introducer of ministers of the Argentine Government, Baron de Marchi, came to the residence of Mr. Root, in the gala presidential coach, to accompany him to the Government House to visit the President of the Republic. I accompanied Mr. Root, with the introducer of ministers and Mr. Root’s aid, Lieutenant Palmer. In a second carriage Mr. White, the secretary of legation, and Captain Parker, the military attaché to the legation, accompanied Mr. Edward Root. The party proceeded by various of the principal thoroughfares, other than those traversed in the morning, to the Government House. Here the President of the Republic, attended by the entire cabinet, members of the supreme court, the presidents of the Senate and Chamber of Deputies, and the superior officers of the army and navy awaited Mr. Root. The ceremony was very brief. The President of the Republic and Mr. Root exchanged a few words, and the members of the cabinet and others of those present were introduced. Mr. Root then withdrew and returned to his residence, in the same manner in which he had gone to the Government House. Immediately after the return of Mr. Root to his residence the card of the President was left there, the President thus returning the formal visit of the Government’s guest.

After this Mr. Root received the visits of the members of the cabinet, the mayor of the city, and of the reception committee appointed by the Government, as reported in Mr. White’s No. 395, of July 27 last, to arrange the programme for the entertainment of its guest.

At 8 o’clock of the evening of this day, August 14, the Government offered Mr. Root a banquet at the Government House, the invitations to which were issued by the minister for foreign affairs for the President of the Republic and, translated, read as follows:

Manuel A. Montes de Oca, minister for foreign affairs and worship, presents his very attentive compliments to (his excellency the envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary of the United States), and in the name of His Excellency the President of the Republic is pleased to invite him to the banquet that in honor of His Excellency Secretary of State of the United States of America will take place at the Government Palace, the 14th instant at 8 p.m.

Mr. Root and his party went to this banquet, accompanied by the personnel of the legation, and returned in the same manner. The illumination of the streets and principal buildings on this and subsequent evenings is worthy of mention; it had been planned and prepared without regard to expense and on a scale unsurpassed, I believe, in any other capital of the world.

There were present at the banquet the entire official body of the Government and the foreign diplomatic corps. Two speeches were made at the close of the banquet; the one by the President of the Republic, toasting the United States; the other by Mr. Root in reply. I inclose a copy of the President’s speech, as transcribed in La Prensa [Page 23]of the next day, and a copy of it in translation, as it appeared in the Standard of the next day, August 15; also a copy of Mr. Root’s reply as given in the Standard of the next day, and a copy of the same in translation as it appeared in La Prensa of the next day, August 15.

It is needless for me to say, and yet I need to say it, that the words of the Secretary of State could not have been more fittingly chosen or have produced a more happy effect than was evident on this occasion. The Argentine Government had most courteously awaited Mr. Root’s arrival, with kindly anticipation of assurances of disinterested friendship. The moment had come for the special envoy of the United States to speak and to satisfy this expectation, and his words, by their very frankness, directness, and sincerity, carried them beyond their hopes to enthusiastic approval and absolute conviction, for he vindicated once more the irreproachable policy of the United States, and its disinterested adherence to the highest ideals of humanity.

This constituted the strictly official part of the Government’s programme.

The morning of the 15th Mr. Root, accompanied by the minister of public instruction, visited various schools of the capital. On the afternoon of the 15th the President of the Republic came in the gala coach to the residence of Mr. Root and accompanied him to the races at the Hipodromo Argentino; the wife of the President accompanied Mrs. Root. The order of precedence in the carriages on this occasion may be seen from the copy of the official programme which I inclose.

On the evening of this day a special gala performance was given at the opera. The President of the Republic, with his cabinet officers, awaited Mr. Root in the presidential box and gave him the seat of honor at his right. With the personnel of the legation and the commander of the Charleston, I accompanied Mr. Root in the presidential box. Mrs. Root accompanied the wives of the President and minister for foreign affairs in the box at the right of the presidential box; Miss Root accompanied Señora Portela and Mrs. Beaupré in the box at the left of the presidential box.

August 16 was devoted to one of the principal estancias (stock farms) of the country, that of Señora de Vivot. On the evening of the 16th Mr. Root attended a reception tendered him by the Americans resident in the Argentine Republic. On this occasion he made a speech, of which I inclose a copy as it appeared in the Standard of the next day, and a copy in translation as it appeared in La Nacion of the next day, August 17.

The morning of August 17 was devoted to a visit through the port of the capital, during which one of the largest grain elevators and flour mills and a representative slaughterhouse and frozen meat establishment were inspected. Mr. Root took occasion also to visit on the morning of this day the plants of La Prensa and La Nacion, the largest newspapers in the country. A luncheon was tendered him by the President of the Senate and ex officio Vice-President of the Republic, Dr. Benito Villanueva.

On the evening of the 17th Mr. Root was conducted by Dr. Luis M. Drago, ex-minister for foreign affairs and president of the official [Page 24]reception committee, to the opera house, where he attended a subscription banquet of some 600 covers given, as expressed on the first page of the menu, by “Buenos Aires to Mr. Boot.” It was a most representative gathering. At the close of the banquet Doctor Drago delivered a speech of welcome, a copy of which, in printed form as distributed at the banquet, I inclose. To this Mr. Boot replied in a speech, of which I inclose a copy cut from the Standard of the next day, and a copy in translation cut from La Prensa of the next day, August 18.

It is impossible to picture the enthusiasm of the audience as it listened to and grasped the full meaning of Mr. Boot’s words. Listened to with the most intense interest, repeatedly interrupted by the most spontaneous applause, he became, at the close of his speech, the object of the most unrestrained ovation that, I am assured, was ever offered to any person in this city, in which the entire audience thronged about him to accompany him to the doors of the building, while the ladies in the balconies tore loose all the floral decorations and showered them upon him. Never, I am convinced, in the history of this country has an Argentine audience been so penetrated by the lofty thought of a speaker or been so swayed by the eloquence of direct, frank utterance; never have higher ideals been presented to it, or the best that there is in this people come so straight to the fore in spontaneous acceptation of those ideals. With his speech at the opera Mr. Boot’s task in the Argentine Republic was accomplished. The Argentine people, as well as the Government, were now convinced of the disinterested intentions of the United States; the Monroe doctrine and the Drago doctrine were harmonized and given due definition; the Argentine press was disarmed; the Argentine people and those of the United States made friends on the surest of certain foundations—that of mutual acquaintance, understanding, and confidence.

I inclose the principal newspaper comments, cut from the journals subsequent to August 13, and translations of the more important ones. They are enumerated at the close of this dispatch. From them the entire and unconditional adhesion of the Argentine people to the friendly advances of the United States and the lofty utterances of its representatives can be seen. Not a discordant note is to be observed, or will be heard in our immediate and, it is to be hoped, permanent relations. Never, I believe, have those relations been established on a truer foundation.

On the morning of August 18 Mr. Boot made a tour of the city, and in the evening it was my privilege to entertain him and his family at dinner, with the officers of the Argentine Government and the diplomatic corps. A ball that had been planned at the Jockey Club was postponed at the request of the President of the Republic as an expression of sympathy with the neighboring republic of Chile in its affliction.

Sunday, August 19, Mr. Boot and party attended divine service at the American church, and at 2 p.m. left by special train for Bahia Blanca. The President of the Republic awaited him at the railway station in this city and took informal and cordial leave of the country’s guest. The introducer of ministers, in representation of the President, the subsecretary for foreign affairs, in representation [Page 25]of the minister for foreign affairs, the ministers of marine and public works, Admiral Howard and Captain Nunes of the Argentine Navy, certain members of the official reception committee, and I, accompanied Mr. Root and his party to Bahia Blanca.

This journey from the capital to the military port of Bahia Blanca, where he arrived during the forenoon of the next day, August 21, was attended by a series of ovations and enthusiastic demonstrations at every station at which a stop was made. At two places the crowd was so insistent that Mr. Root was compelled to address them, the subsecretary interpreting his remarks. At the port he was formally received by the admiral in charge of the same, and with him made a tour of inspection of the port and several of the Argentine warships. The entire party was then entertained at luncheon on board the Charleston, after which they took leave of Mr. Root and his party, and the Charleston weighed anchor and sailed away, amid the salutes of the Argentine marine. The fastest of the Argentine cruisers, the 25 de Mayo, accompanied the Charleston out of the port of estuary; at separating the two vessels exchanged appropriate salutes.

These are the facts of Mr. Root’s visit to this country. I have perhaps already sufficiently commented upon them. It remains only for me to say that I believe the plan of such a visit to have been a most fortunate one, and that this plan has been most happily carried out, to the lasting benefit of both countries, through an established and enduring friendship.

I am, etc.,

A. M. Beaupré.
[Inclosure No. 1.]

speech of his excellency dr. j. Figueroa alcorta, president of argentina, at a banquet given by him to mr. root in the government house, at Buenos aires, august 14, 1906.

[Translation from the Spanish.]

Mr. Root and Gentlemen: The American republics are at this moment tightening their traditional bonds at a congress of fraternity whose importance has been realized by the presence of our illustrious guest, who passes across the continent as the herald of the civilization of a great people.

The world’s conscience being awakened by the progress of public thought, the members of the family of nations are trying to draw closer together for the development of their activities, without fetters or obstacles, under the olive branch of peace and the guaranty of reciprocal respect for their rights.

International conferences are one of the happiest manifestations of that tendency, because, in bringing into contact the representatives of the various States, hindrances and prejudices are dissipated, and there is shown to exist in reality in the collective mind a common aspiration for the teachings of liberty and justice.

America gives a recurring example of such congresses of peace and law. As each one takes place it is evident that the attributes of sovereignty of the nations which constitute it are displayed more clearly; that free government is taking deeper root, that democratic solidarity is more apparent, and that force is giving way more freely to reason as the fundamental principle of society.

The congress of Rio de Janeiro has that lofty signification. Its material, immediate consequences will be more or less important, but its moral result will be forever of transcendent benefit—a new departure and a step farther in the development of liberal ideas in this part of the American Continent.

Mr. Secretary of State, your country has taken gigantic strides in the march of progress until it occupies a position in the vanguard. It has set a proud and shining example to its sister nations.

[Page 26]

As in the dawn of their emancipation it recognized in them the conqueror’s right to stand among the independent states of the earth, so likewise it later stimulated the high aspiration to establish a political system representing the popular will, now inscribed in indelible characters in the preambles of American legislation.

The Argentine Republic, after rude trials, completed its constitutional régime, gathering experience and learning from the great Republic of the North.

The general lines of our organization followed those of the Philadelphia convention, with the modifications imposed by circumstances, by the irresistible force of tradition, and by the idiosyncrasies peculiar to the race. The forefathers who drafted the Argentine constitution were inspired in their work by those who, to the admiration of the world, created the Constitution of the United States.

Many of our political doctrines are derived from the writings of Hamilton, Madison, and Jay; the spirit of Marshall and Taney are seen in the hearings of our tribunals; and even the children in our schools, when they learn to personify the republican virtues, the love and sacrifice for country, respect for the rights of man, and the prerogatives of the citizen, lisp the name of George Washington with that of the foremost Argentines.

Our home institutions being closely united and the shadows on the international horizon having disappeared, the Argentine Republic can occupy itself in fraternizing with other nations, and, like the United States, she aspires to make the ties of friendship sanctioned by history and by the ideal philanthropy common to free institutions more firm.

Your visit will have, in this aspect, great results. We have invited you to visit our territory in order to link the two countries more intimately, and your presence here indicates that this noble object will be realized, inspired as it is by the convenience of mutual interests and the sharing of noble aims.

You are a messenger of the ideals of brotherhood, and as such you are welcome to the Argentine Republic.

I salute you, in the name of the Government and the people who have received you, as the genuine representative of your country, with that sincere desire for friendship which is loyally rooted in the national sentiment of Argentina.

Gentlemen: To the United States of America; to its illustrious President, Theodore Roosevelt; to the Secretary of State of North America, Hon. Elihu Root!

[Inclosure No. 2.]

reply of mr. root.

Your Excellency and Gentlemen: I thank you, sir, for your kind welcome and for your words of appreciation. I thank you for myself; I thank you for that true and noble gentleman who holds in the United States of America the same exalted office which you hold here. I thank you for the millions of citizens in the United States. When your kind and courteous invitation reached me, I was in doubt whether the long absence from my official duties would be justified, but I considered that your expression of friendship imposed upon me something more than an opportunity for personal gratification; it imposed upon me a duty. It afforded an opportunity to say something to the Government and the people of Argentina which would justly represent the sentiments and the feelings of the people of the United States toward you all. We do not know as much as we ought in the United States; we do not know as much as I would like to feel we know, but we have a traditional right to be interested in Argentina. I thought to-day, when we were all involved in the common misfortune, at the time of my landing, that, after all, the United States and Argentina were not simply fair-weather friends. We inherit the right to be interested in Argentina, and to be proud of Argentina. From the time when Richard Rush was fighting, from the day when James Monroe threw down the gauntlet of a weak Republic, as we were then, in defense of your independence and rights—from that day’ to this the interests and the friendship of the people of the United States for the Argentine Republic have never changed. We rejoice in your prosperity; we are proud of your achievements; we feel that you are justifying our faith in free government, and self-government; that you are maintaining our great thesis which demands the [Page 27]possession, the enjoyment, and the control of the earth to the people who inhabit it. We have followed the splendid persistency with which you have fought against the obstacles that stood in your path, not without the sympathy that has come from similar struggles at home. Like you, we have had to develop the resources of a vast unpeopled land; like you, we have had to fight for a foothold against the savage Indians; like you, we have had conflicts of races for the possession of territory; like you, we have had to suffer war; like you, we have conquered nature; and like you, we have been holding out our hands to the people of all the world, inviting them to come and add to our developments and share our riches.

We live under the same Constitution in substance; we are maintaining and attempting to perfect ourselves in the application of the same principles of liberty and justice. So how can the people of the United States help feeling a friendship and sympathy for the people of Argentina? I deemed it a duty to come, in response to your kind invitation, to say this—to say that there is not a cloud in the sky of good understanding; there are no political questions at issue between Argentina and the United States; there is no thought of grievance by one against the other; there are no old grudges or scores to settle. We can rejoice in each other’s prosperity; we can aid in each other’s development; we can be proud of each other’s successes without hindrance or drawback. And for the development of this sentiment in both countries nothing is needed but more knowledge—that we shall know each other better; that not only the most educated and thoughtful readers of our two countries shall become familiar with the history of the other, but that the entire body of the people shall know what are the relations and what are the feelings of the other country. I should be glad if the people of Argentina—not merely you, Mr. President; not merely my friend the minister for foreign affairs; not merely the gentlemen connected with the Government, but the people of Argentina—might know the feeling with which the people of the United States are their friends, as I know the people of Argentina are friends of the United States. I have come to South America with no more specific object than I have stated. Our traditional policy in the United States of America is to make no alliances. It was inculcated by Washington; it has been adhered to by his successors ever since. But, Mr. President, the alliance that comes from unwritten, unsealed instruments, as that from the convention signed and ratified with all formalities, is of vital consequence. We make no alliances, but we make an alliance with all our sisters in sentiment and feeling, in the pursuit of liberty and justice, in mutual helpfulness, and in that spirit I beg to return to you and to your Government and the people of this splendid and wonderful country my sincere thanks for the welcome you have given me and my country in my person.

[Inclosure No. 3.]

speech of dr. luis m. drago, president of the committee of reception, at the banquet given by the committee to mr. root at the opera house in buenos aires, august 17, 1906.

[Translation from the Spanish.]
a

Honorable Sir; Gentlemen: The large gathering here assembled, representative of all that Buenos Aires has of the most notable in science, letters, industry, and commerce, has conferred on me the signal honor of my being designated to offer this banquet to the eminent minister of one of the greatest nations of the earth, a nation linked to us from the very beginning by many and very real sentiments of moral and political solidarity. This country has not forgotten that in the trying times of the colonial emancipation our fathers could rely on the sympathy and the warm and disinterested adhesion of the American people, our predecessors and our guides in the paths of liberty. The thrilling utterances of Henry Clay defending our cause when everything appeared to threaten our revolution have never been surpassed in their noble eloquence, and it was due to the generosity and foresight of their great statesmen that the United States were the first to receive us with open arms as their equals in the community of sovereign nations.

[Page 28]

The spiritual affinity thus happily established has gone on strengthening itself almost imperceptibly ever since by the reproduction of institutions and legal customs.

Our charter was inspired by the American Constitution and acts through the operation of similar laws. The great examples of the Union are also our examples, and being sincere lovers of liberty we rejoice in the triumphs (which in a certain sense we consider our own) of the greatest of democratic nations.

George Washington is, for us, of the great figures of history, the tutelar personality, the supreme model, a prototype of abnegation, honor, and wisdom: and there is an important region in the Province of Buenos Aires bearing the name of Lincoln, as a homage to the austere patriotism of the statesman and martyr. The names of Jefferson, Madison, and Quincy Adams are with us household words, and in our parliamentary debates and popular assemblies mention is frequently made of the statesmen, the orators, and the judges of the great sister Republic.

There thus exists, honorable sir, a long-established friendship, an intercommunion of thought and purpose which draws peoples together more closely, intimately, and indissolubly than can be accomplished by formulae—often barren—of the foreign offices.

And the moment is certainly propitious for drawing closer the bonds of international amity which your excellency’s visit puts in relief and which has found such eloquent expression in the Pan-American Congress of Rio de Janeiro. Enlightened patriotism has understood at last that on this continent, with its immense riches and vast unexplored extensions, power and wealth are not to be looked for in conquest and displacements, but in collaboration and solidarity, which will people the wilderness and give the soil to the plow. It has understood, moreover, that America, by reason of the nationalities of which it is composed, of the nature of the representative institutions which they have adopted, by the very character of their people, separated as they have been from the conflicts and complications of European governments, and even by the gravitation of peculiar circumstances and events, has been constituted a separate political factor, a new and vast theater for the development of the human race, which will serve as a counterpoise to the great civilizations of the other hemisphere, and so maintain the equilibrium of the world.

It is consequently our sacred duty to preserve the integrity of America, material and moral, against the menaces and artifices, very real and effective, that unfortunately surround it. It is not long since one of the most eminent of living jurisconsults of Great Britain denounced the possibility of the danger. “The enemies of light and freedom,” he said, “are neither dead nor sleeping; they are vigilant, active, militant, and astute.” And it was in obedience to that sentiment of common defense that in a critical moment the Argentine Republic proclaimed the impropriety of the forcible collection of public debts by European nations, not as an abstract principle of academic value or as a legal rule of universal application outside of this continent (which it is not incumbent on us to maintain), but as a principle of American diplomacy which, whilst being founded on equity and justice, has for its exclusive object to spare the peoples of this continent the calamities of conquest disguised under the mask of financial interventions, in the same way as the traditional policy of the United States, without accentuating superiority or seeking preponderance, condemned the oppression of the nations of this part of the world and the control of their destinies by the great powers of Europe. The dreams and Utopias of to-day are the facts and commonplaces of to-morrow, and the principle proclaimed must sooner or later prevail.

The gratitude we owe to the nations of Europe is indeed very great, and much we still have to learn from them. We are the admirers of their secular institutions; more than once we have been moved by their great ideals, and under no circumstances whatsoever should we like to sever or to weaken even the links of a long-established friendship. But we want, at the same time, and it is only just and fair, that the genius and tendency of our democratic communities be respected. They are advancing slowly, it is true; struggling at times and occasionally making a pause, but none the less strong and progressive for all that, and already showing the unequivocal signs of success in what may be called the most considerable trial mankind has ever made of the republican system of government.

In the meantime, to reach their ultimate greatness and have an influence in the destinies of the world, these nations only require to come together and have a better knowledge of each other, to break up the old colonial isolation, [Page 29]and realize the contraction of America, as what is called the contraction of the world has always been effected by the annihilation of distance through railways, telegraphs, and the thousand and one means of communication and interchange at the disposal of modern civilization.

The increase of commerce and the public fortune will be brought about in this way, but such results as concern only material prosperity will appear unimportant when compared with the blessings of a higher order which are sure to follow, when, realizing the inner meaning of things, and stimulated by spiritual communion, these peoples meet each other as rivals only in the sciences and arts, in literature and government, and most of all in the practice of virtues, which are the best ornament of the state and the foundation stone of all enduring grandeur of the human race.

Gentlemen:

To the United States, the noblest and the greatest of democratic nations!

To Mr. Roosevelt, the President of transcendental initiative and strenuous life!

To his illustrious minister, our guest, the highest and most eloquent representative of American solidarity, to whom I have not words sufficiently expressive to convey all the pleasure we feel in receiving him and how we honor ourselves by having him in our midst.

[Inclosure No. 4.]

reply of mr. root.

Mr. President, and Gentlemen: I thank you for the kind and friendly words you have uttered. I thank you, and all of you for your cordiality and bounteous hospitality. As I am soon to leave this city, where I and my family have been welcomed so warmly and have been made so happy, let me take this opportunity to return to you and to the Government and to the people of Buenos Aires our most sincere and heartfelt thanks for all your kindness and goodness to us. We do appreciate it most deeply, and we shall never forget it, shall never forget you—your friendly faces, your kind greetings, your beautiful homes, your noble spirit, and all that makes up the great and splendid city of Buenos Aires. It is with special pleasure, Mr. Chairman, that I have listened to that part of your speech which relates to the political philosophy of our times, and especially to the political philosophy most interesting to America. Upon the two subjects of special international interest to which you have alluded, I am glad to be able to declare myself in hearty and unreserved sympathy with you. The United States of America has never deemed it to be suitable that she should use her army and navy for the collection of ordinary contract debts of foreign governments to her citizens. For more than a century the State Department, the Department of Foreign Relations of the United States of America, has refused to take such action, and that has become the settled policy of our country. We deem it to be inconsistent with that respect for the sovereignty of weaker powers which is essential to their protection against the aggression of strong. We deem the use of force for the collection or ordinary contract debts to be an invitation to abuses in their necessary results far worse, far more baleful to humanity than that the debts contracted by any nation should go unpaid. We consider that the use of the army and navy of a great power to compel a weaker power to answer to a contract with a private individual is both an invitation to speculation upon the necessities of weak and struggling countries and an infringement upon the sovereignty of those countries, and we are now, as we always have been, opposed to it; and we believe that, perhaps not to-day nor to-morrow, but through the slow and certain process of the future, the world will come to the same opinion. It is with special gratification that I have heard from your lips so just an estimate of the character of that traditional policy of the United States which bears the name of President Monroe. When you say that it was “without accentuating superiority or seeking preponderance” that Monroe’s declaration condemned the oppression of the nations of this part of the world and the control of their destinies by the great powers of Europe, you speak the exact historical truth. You do but simple justice to the purposes and the sentiments of Monroe and his compatriots and to the country of Monroe at every hour from that time to this.

I congratulate you upon the wonderful opportunity that lies before you. Happier than those of us who were obliged in earlier days to conquer the wilderness, [Page 30]you men of Argentina have at your hands the great, new forces for your use. Changes have come of recent years in the world which affect the working out of your problem. One is that through the comparative infrequency of war, of pestilence, of famine, the increased sanitation of the world, the decrease of infant mortality by reason of better sanitation, the population of the world is increasing. Those causes which reduced population are being removed and the pressure of population is sending out wave after wave of men for the peopling of the vacant lands of the earth. The other is that through the wonderful activity of invention and discovery and organizing capacity during our lifetime the power of mankind to produce wealth has been immensely increased. One man to-day, with machinery, with steam, with electricity, with all the myriads of appliances that invention and discovery have created, can produce more wealth, more of the things that mankind desires, than 20 men could have produced years ago, and the result is that vast accumulations of capital are massing in the world, ready to be poured out for the building up of the vacant places of the earth. For the utilization of these two great forces, men and money, you in Argentina have the opportunity in your vast fields of incalculable potential wealth, and you have the formative power in the spirit and the brain of your people.

I went to-day to one of your great flour mills, to one of your great refrigerating plants. I viewed the myriad industries that surround the harbor, the forests of masts, the thronged steamers. I was interested and amazed. It far exceeded my imagination and suggested an analogy to an incident in my past life. It was my fortune in the year when the war broke out between Prussia and France to be traveling in Germany. Immediately upon the announcement of the war, maps of the seat of war were printed and posted in every shop window. The maps were maps of Germany, with a little stretch of France. Within a fortnight the armies had marched off the the map. It seems to be so with Argentina. I have read books about Argentina. I have read magazine and newspaper articles, but within the last five years you have marched off the map. The books and magazines are all out of date. What you have done since they were written is much more than had been done before. They are no guide to the country. Nevertheless, with all your vast, material activity it seems to me that the most wonderful and interesting thing to be found here is the laboratory of life, where you are mixing the elements of the future race. Argentine, English, German, Italian, French, and Spanish, and American are all being welded together to make the new type. It was the greatest satisfaction to me to go into the school and see that first and greatest agency, the children of all races in the first and most impressionable period of life, being brought together and acting and reacting on each other, and all tending toward the new type, which will embody the characteristics of all; and to know that the system of schools in which this is being done was, by the wisdom of your great President Sarmiento, brought from my own country through his friendship with the great leader of education in the United States of America—Horace Mann.

Mr. Chairman, I should have been glad to see all these wonderful things as an inconspicuous observer. It is quite foreign to my habits and to my nature to move through applauding throngs accompanied by guards of honor; yet perhaps it is well that the idea which I represent should be applauded by crowds and accompanied by guards of honor. The pomp and circumstance of war attract the fancy of the multitude; the armored knight moves across the page of romance and of poetry and kindles the imagination of youth; the shouts of the crowd, the smiles of beauty, the admiration of youth, the gratitude of nations, the plaudits of mankind, follow the hero about whom the glamour of military glory dims the eye to the destruction and death and human misery that follow the path of war. Perhaps it is well that sometimes there shall go to the herdsman on his lonely ranch, to the husbandman in his field, to the clerk in the countinghouse and the shop, to the student at his books, to the boy in the street, the idea that there is honor to be paid to those qualities of mankind that rest upon justice, upon mercy, upon consideration for the rights of others, upon humanity, upon the patient and kindly spirit, upon all those exercises of the human heart that lead to happy homes, to prosperity, to learning, to art, to religion, to the things that dignify life and ennoble it and give it its charm and grace.

We honor Washington as the leader of his country’s forces in the war of independence; but that supreme patience which enabled him to keep the warring elements of his people at peace is a higher claim to the reverence of mankind than his superb military strategy. San Martín was great in his military [Page 31]achievements; his Napoleonic march across the Andes is entitled to be preserved in the history of military affairs so long as history is written; but the almost superhuman self-abnegation in which he laid aside power and greatness that peace might give its strength to his people was greater than his military achievements. The triumphant march of the conquering hero is admirable and to be greeted with huzzas, but the conquering march of an idea which makes for humanity is more admirable and more to be applauded. This is not theory; it is practical. It has to do with our affairs to-day, for we are now in an age of the world when not governors, not presidents, not congresses, but the people determine the issues of peace or war, of controversy or of quiet. I am an advocate of arbitration; I am an advocate of mediation; of all the measures that tend toward bringing reasonable and cool judgment to take the place of war; but let us never forget that arbitration and mediation—all measures of that description—are but the treatment of the symptoms and not the treatment of the cause of disease, and that the real cure for war is to get into the hearts of the people and lead them to a just sense of their rights and other people’s rights, lead them to love peace and to hate war, lead them to hold up the hands of their governments in the friendly commerce of diplomacy, rather than to urge them on to strife; and let there go to herdsman and the husbandman and the merchant and the student and the boy in the street every influence which can tend toward that sweet reasonableness, that kindly sentiment, that breadth of feeling for humanity, that consideration for the rights of others which lie at the basis of the peace of the world.

[Inclosure No. 5.]

Editorial translated from La Nacion of August 18, 1906.

last night’s discourse.

Before a public that constituted the highest representation, intellectual and social, of Buenos Aires and in an atmosphere that under the influence of his words gradually passed from one of cordiality to one of enthusiasm, Mr. Root pronounced last evening at the banquet at the Opera the best of his discourse in South America.

If the audience had had a complete knowledge of English each one of his periods would have provoked an uncontrollable explosion of applause. And the ideas, concrete and precise on the one hand, great and generous on the other, to which our illustrious guest gave expression, one after the other in his brilliant oration, merited nothing less. But although a part of the audience did not understand his thought, the meaning of his words quickly pervaded the theater, giving rise in the minds of all to a unanimous impulse to applaud and approve. So that when the speech was ended the ovation was as spontaneous and as ardent as if every one of his words had been weighed by all his auditors. It would be possible to sketch the picture, but it would be impossible to reflect in its true intensity the vibration of enthusiasm that filled the hall when the most distinguished women of Buenos Aires arose in the boxes and amid the deafening acclamations overwhelmed the eloquent herald of the great republic of the north with a torrent of flowers.

The readers will find elsewhere a stenographic version of this splendid oratorical production which, besides being as sure in its thought and as expressive in its form as the previous speeches of the eminent statesman, is much more important because of the ideas advanced and the declarations formulated.

We are writing under the immediate impression of the great spectacle which serves as the frame to the orations of the North American envoy. And without time to fix our minds to read it in cool meditation we are scarcely able to indicate the principal features of it that impose themselves on a criticism of it.

The first declaration that was noted in Mr. Root’s toast was the attitude of full assent with which, responding to Doctor Drago’s speech, he referred to the doctrine that bears the latters name—that concerning the collection of public debts by force. Up to that moment the minister of the United States had shown himself reticent in this respect, avoiding all reference to it. But in his statements of yesterday he did not hesitate to say that he stands without reserve for the ideas of Doctor Drago, recalling that the United States had always refused to lend the aid of its military force to support reclamations [Page 32]arising from private contracts. He went even further and recognized in this idea a great principle of international law, stating that he considered extortionate the procedures of the powerful nations of imposing their demands on the weak which resulted in the fomenting of illegitimate speculation.

The United States do not wish to establish any dominion or to emphasize any superiority, Doctor Drago had said; and Mr. Root, in repeating the statement, fixed the scope of the Monroe doctrine, inspired by the desire to further American solidarity and not by a tutelage humiliating for the countries whose territorial integrity it desired to assure.

It was a page of sovereign eloquence that Mr. Root devoted to the province of public opinion, to arbitration, which he accepted in full as a political expedient, and to establishing the necessity of inculcating in the masses of the people ideas of peace and of concord which in the future are to give direction to each country for its guidance in its international relations. In his judgment it was the force of opinion that determined in one or other way the conscious march of communities, and its dominion ought ever to be emphasized as the natural and progressive evolution of democratic ideas.

In the development of this theme Washington and San Martin served to inspire Mr. Root to a masterly analysis, in which he presented to us the two great captains drawing to themselves the admiration and respect of posterity more by the serene prestige of the grandeur and virtue which their fecund labors for peace revealed than by their military deeds. The North American minister not only showed the maturity of thought that he possesses, but also a perfect knowledge of our great men and the elevated inspiration of a philosopher of history who knows how to extract its teachings and to assimilate its examples.

We can not under the burdensome demands of time analyze with the care that it deserves the brilliant piece of oratory; but only indicate in a general way its principal ideas. What it signifies as political thought each one will be able to estimate from the reading of it in our stenographic reproduction. But judging from the impressions that the words of the North American minister inspired we can affirm with the full truth of an evident fact that the most representative circles of the society of Buenos Aires last night consecrated with the testimony of their enthusiasm a friendship fortified by tradition, invigorated by community of ideals, strengthened by identity of institutions, and rooted most deeply in the very soil of Argentine national sentiment.

[Inclosure 6.]

Editorial translated from La Nacion of August 1, 1906.

To-day there leaves this capital, continuing his tour of international agitation—we might better say his mission as American apostle—the illustrious envoy of the North American Government, Mr. Root.

He took leave of us in his speech at the banquet in the Opera, a masterly production by reason of the intensity of its thought, by the spontaneity of its phrases that flowed with a natural eloquence, by the oral relief of expression, by the clearness of concept, and by the subtle power of conviction that seduces and persuades, constituting the most efficient gift of oratory.

Living, deep-felt and deeply thought words, intense and mobile, passing pleasingly from the one to the other of the themes presented in the course of his oration, Mr. Root’s last speech sums up, formally and in content, all that he has thus far delivered.

It reflects also his personal impression, his sentiments and ideas conceived in the warmth of the demonstration made by the Argentine people, and reflects them in the expansive moments of leave-taking, contrasting with the reticence which he observed on certain points of intercontinental diplomacy.

His feelings gave free pass to the profession of principles of justice and unity that appeared prudently guarded in view of the uncertainty in regard to the degree of civilization of these nations and their capacity to enjoy the autonomous privileges of constituted societies.

We will not force the analysis of these declarations or measure their scope and significance; but they leave the impression that Mr. Root carries to his Government the testimony that these countries are on the plane of international culture, and that a tutelar attitude can not be assured toward them as toward colonies or embryonic countries that are still struggling amid the vicissitudes of a precarious existence.

[Page 33]

Mr. Root has observed with scrutinizing gaze, has felt with fine tact the pulsations of their national life, and he has formed the judgment expressed in his discourse in the statement of his impressions of the multiple manifestations, political, social, economic, and historical, of the nation, fixing fact, considering antecedents, outlining horizons, and auguring destinies; all this with a frankness, clearness of vision, and temperance that exclude the frivolity of mere courtesy or complacency.

With the experience of a governor of the most powerful and expansive people, he has given us a programme of economic policy, demonstrating that labor is the virtual energy of a country in formation endowed with the capacity for universal assimilation, whose elements it ought to incorporate in its economy and identify with its destinies.

Mr. Root, with his eminent personal qualities, has done honor to his mission of pan-American solidarity; he has surmounted by his eloquence and the force of his ideas the misunderstandings that prejudiced the relations of the two countries. The most prejudiced have in the face of his eloquence, simple, expressive, and austere, felt his prejudice, his impatience, his caviling dissipated.

The North American envoy on leaving us carries with him the full and sincere testimony of our recognition of his eminent personal qualities and that of the affection and cordiality with which these have been able auspiciously to operate for his country and for the policy of friendly relations with these countries which he promises to foster.

He has brought to us the testimony of fraternity of the great Republic, and carries away in return our frank adherence to his mission and the fervent hope that it may bear the full fruit hoped for.

He can invoke this effusive and sincere testimony of the Argentine people and present it to his country as the irrefutable proof that he has triumphantly and completely fulfilled his transcendent mission, and that from to-day on currents of cordial sympathy are established, marking the direction of economic relations that shall embody them in material bonds.

As for Mr. Root himself, we comply with the gratifying duty of offering him our compliments at his departure, presenting to him the homage of our consideration as a man of superior mind, an experienced statesman, trained and conscientious, with that experiential wisdom that is the characteristic trait of his race and the singular energy of his country.

To this expression of homage and sympathy with our illustrious guest on the day of his departure we have only to add the assurance that the remembrance of his pleasant visit will endure in the memory of the Argentine people and Government.

[Inclosure 7.—Translation. Extracts from La Nacion, August 20, 1906.]

Echoes of the Day.

the united states and its foreign policy.

To Mr. Elihu Root, illustrious guest of the Argentine people:

The satisfaction of having contributed to dissipate the atmosphere of prejudice that a badly advised propaganda had succeeded in creating in the public Argentine mind in regard to the foreign policy of the United States in its relations with the South Amercian republics has been mine. I believe that I have given, with the help of the historical antecedents, the true definition of the Monroe doctrine, showing clearly that it was formulated by the President of the United States as the expression of the will of his country in favor of the definitive independence of the republics of the South.

These conclusions have been impressed on public opinion with all the force of historical truth, and popular sentiment has been pleased to see how, in the doubtful hour of our struggles for national emancipation, the Argentine Republic had a friend in the United States, as powerful as it was disinterested, that opposed the collected powers of the Holy Alliance and notified them that the sovereignties acquired by the efforts of the people of the South were conclusive.

The theme is always one of lively interest, and to-day more than ever so, with the presence of the illustrious guest whom Buenos Aires is going to receive as the envoy of the great nation.

[Page 34]

This is the opportunity of corroborating what is already a matter of public consciousness, and for it I take advantage of the hours of leisure that the life on board ship furnishes me, following at once the trend of my thoughts, ever drawn toward the distant country and constantly full of the great hope of its destinies.

The foreign policy of the United States, compared with the foreign policy of any of the great powers whatsoever, is distinguished by its spirit of nonintervention in the private affairs of other countries and with respect to their native institutions.

This policy is traced in the history of the diplomacy of the Union, and was not impaired during all the period of expansion and evolution through which that country passed in the second half of the nineteenth century.

Its expansive action was so vigorous that the honor belongs to the United States of having celebrated the first commercial treaty with Japan at the period in which the Empire of the rising sun, taught by cruel experience, had completely closed its doors to the civilization of the West, coming even to the point of prohibiting its own subjects, under penalty of death, from going out of the Kingdom.

In 1852 all communication by Japan with the rest of the world was carried on, under the severest restrictions, by the small Dutch establishment at Nagasaki, and it was then that a Yankee squadron, under the command of Commodore Perry, received the mission of presenting to the Mikado a letter from the President of the United States, making propositions for the celebration of a commercial treaty. The story of this negotiation has, by its incidents, all the interest of a novel, which is, in brief that Commodore Perry, overpowering gently but firmly the mightly opposition of the imperial exclusiveness, caused the message of the American President to reach the ears of the Asiatic sovereign. The consequence of this first step was the enlargement of the establishment at Nagasaki, the admission of a consul in that city, and the subsequent negotiation of a treaty which has lasted forty years, replaced recently by another more in harmony with the commercial requirements of the present time.

So that, as the action of the United States was then applied to obtain from Japan the opening of the ports and to agree upon mutual commercial privileges of good faith, a statue of Commodore Perry, head of the above-mentioned expedition, has been erected by the Japanese Government in a public place of the city of Yokohama. This demonstration on the part of a people whose national spirit and patriotism are so jealous of the domestic sovereignty plainly proves what history corroborates; that is, that the mission of the great Commodore was fulfilled without wounding the susceptibility of the haughty Asiatic nation and bore with it positive benefits.

To-day the governments of Washington and of Tokio maintain the most cordial relations and they have exchanged, on occasions, embassies charged with cementing these sentiments across the vast distance that separates them.

The action of American diplomacy in the Orient has another chapter in China which shows the same diligent procedure, zealous for the propagation of national commerce, but, at the same time, attentive and regardful of all the rights of foreign countries. The negotiations of the powers for open markets in the Celestial Empire have been a work of inexpressible patience, a constant struggle between their interests and the jealousies of a dynastic government * * * (convinced of its superiority over the barbarians of the West and of the necessity of holding no relations with them except under the pressure of force). In these negotiations, which have lasted more than half a century, the Chinese ports open to Europeans were repeatedly the theater of frightful tragedies. A North American minister was assassinated in Canton by the authorities, plotted in a popular riot. The powerful Republic, nevertheless, made no reprisal, nor did it take any part in the formidable demonstrations of the other powers.

Subsequently the same China has been the object of a political aggression on the part of the great European powers. They have appropriated pieces of Chinese territory, have established zones of influence. * * *

The public legend, which the man of the street repeats in Europe, is that these southern territories are peopled by races of cruel character, destitute of respect and regard for the life of their fellow-beings, and disposed to shed blood as the familiar way of settling all their questions.

I will not answer with the charge that as regards the past it is known that the European wars of past years were wars of extermination and of conquest, [Page 35]that lasted during entire epochs—the Thirty Years’ war does not yield numerical preeminence except to the war of the Hundred Years—whilst our struggles have been of a relatively short duration. That of the independence sealed in Ayacucho, in 1824, in the whole war there was not more blood shed than in the single Franco-German war of 1870.

The important and constant alterations of the map of Europe are an index of the conflicts there.

A great soldier of the sixteenth century, who carried his arms over half of the European Continent, would never cease to hear to this day of the new frontiers which the fate of battles has traced.

On the other hand, the countries of South America preserve the boundaries which they had in accomplishing their independence and have only occupied themselves in fixing those which remain doubtful, which they have obtained by the arts of diplomacy without firing a shot.

The fact is worthy of being stamped in very visible characters, since it constitutes a characteristic of origin.

The historic revolution of independence gave its definitive seal to the American hegemonies. In the north, the great republic, which extends its frontiers to accommodate them to the working of its powerful organism; in the center and in the south, independent nations, that not even the genius of Bolivar could unite in a single sheaf. In the struggle for the common emancipation it appears that each nation would have to respond to a fatal law of its own independence, with the result that each one, small or great, has had to work out its own destiny.

The map of South America in 1906 is, except for technical rectifications, the same as in 1825.

If the foreign policy of the United States comes out winning when it is compared with other countries in regard to reciprocal respect and consideration, it does not gain less when it is examined in the light of the proclaimed imperialistic tendencies, or by the absorption of new territories to increase its extensive domains.

The fact of having respected the autonomy of Cuba after having obtained the victory in the war with Spain contrasts singularly with the conduct of Germany in annexing two French provinces, with that of France in absorbing Savoie, with that of Austria in annexing Trieste. We do not speak of the annexations of Schleswig-Holstein by Prussia, nor of the unification of fifty unequal nationalities under the yoke of the Russian autocracy.

The imperialistic policy of Europe across the seas offers striking cases in the British domain of India, in the establishments of Great Britain, France, Russia, Germany, on the coasts of China and of Tonquin; and equally it offers them in the conquest of African territories by the English, Portuguese, German, French, Italians, even the Belgians, by every one, except by the Yankees.

And notwithstanding, a curious fact, it is in the United States that the imperialistic proposition is apt to be singled out, whilst public opinion shows itself indifferent in the presence of the absorption of an entire continent, such as Africa, by the European Powers.

And why has not the great republic of the north associated herself in such undertakings, so safe, so profitable, and so suggestive to swell the power of the nation and to impose the glory of her flag? Is it because she lacked the means that King Leopold had at his disposition for the founding of his Kongo Empire?

The supposition is not admissible, and one is forced to admit that if the banner of the stars and stripes does not float in these remote latitudes it is because the United States, faithful to the great advice of its national father, does not count on aggrandizing itself by methods of conquest and of subjection which have so decidedly influenced in the last changes of the political geography of the globe. One is forced also to confess that if there is to-day a country that is not imperialist that country is the United States.

They exercise, notwithstanding, duties, such as the protectorate of the Hawaiian Islands, consummated more by the force of events than by the will of Uncle Sam. The islands were taken by an epidemic of misgovernment that was depopulating them. The statistics of that period point out consecutive losses of population much more grave than those of the countries subjected to the calamities of epidemics or of wars. Great Britain had cast her eyes on that piece of earth, strategically situated, and endowed by nature with all the blessings of a mild climate and fertile soil. The local parties, victims of anarchy, sought the intervention of the United States to settle their hatreds and to be able to live. It was after prolonged consideration of the business [Page 36]and yielding to the pressure of circumstances that the United States, choosing among many evils the least, placed this territory under her government, observing in the emergency precautions of notable correctness. Read in Foster the history of this chapter of the diplomatic action of the Union and you will see how far from reproaches arises applause for the moderating power which put an end to an impossible situation, with real benefits for thousands of human beings.

In Santo Domingo the Yankee Government has also intervened, at the request of the local government, and has taken under its charge the administration of the customs. The auditor actually collects the revenues and delivers the half to the government and the other half to its creditors, whose reclamations threatened to provoke a conflict after the style of Venezuela. Santo Domingo had been, up to that time, subject to a corrupted administration, governed by silent partnerships of politicians who appropriated the fiscal receipts for their private use. There is cited the case of a loan which passed directly to the pockets of an exalted personage, without a single dollar remaining in the fiscal coffers. Since the establishment of Yankee intervention the half of the fiscal revenues has amounted to a larger sum than that which the whole produced before, the public debt is paid regularly, and the day in which the government of the island will recover its normal condition is near at hand.

I might still have something to add to what has been shown, but it would be prolonging this statement too much, and I need only to touch upon the principal point, the motive, the Monroe Doctrine, a theme palpitating to-day, and which summarizes the whole policy of the United States in its relations with the rest of the world.

Abhorring preambles, let me be permitted to repeat here considerations upon the Monroe Doctrine which I had occasion to express in the Chamber of Deputies, and which I desire to state in the present lines.

The formula of the Monroe Doctrine is the following:

The United States will not permit to any European power the acquisition of territory in the Americas.

The notification to the European powers of the fact that the nations of South America have ceased to be “colonizable” is the doctrine enunciated by President Monroe in 1823, as soon as the independence of these nations had been sealed and after the hopelessness of the pretensions of the Holy Alliance of reestablishing the Spanish rule, vanquished by force of arms, had been recognized by the same President.

* * * * * * *

For the Argentine Republic the Monroe doctrine has had an undoubted influence in the mere fact that a territory as extensive as Patagonia, totally abandoned during many years, in the embryonic period which followed the independence, has not been the object of the slightest attempt of “colonization” on the part of the colonizing powers of Europe.

The Monroe doctrine is the definite consecration of the independence of American nations. It is the voice of the strongest among them proclaiming to the face of the world that the conquest of territories in America has ceased. It is the notification to Europe that it can not expand in these continents, since their vast territories are all occupied by free nations, outside of whose sovereignty there does not remain a vacant inch. The declaration of President Monroe, right after Spain was vanquished on the fields of battle in South America and Brazil was emancipated by peaceful agreements, marks the culminating political event in the history of our independence.

The Monroe doctrine shines to-day with all the force of a law of nations, and no country of Europe has ventured to controvert it.

It is worth while, indeed, to hear of this great doctrine, this splendid deed, more fruitful for the peace and the progress of the earth than all the agreements arbitrated by the old nations of Europe for truces to their quarrels. The American President, in proclaiming his doctrine, decreed peace between America and Europe, which appeared destined the one to attack in order to acquire, the other to fight in order to be free. The Monroe doctrine has been the veto on war between Europe and America.

This sole result would be enough in order that the name of Monroe should figure with glory among the collaborators of the Argentine evolution to prosperity and to greatness; and yet the homage of history has been denied him sometimes and a popular sentiment has been aroused that refused him its sympathies. His doctrine is the object of prejudiced analysis, and rarely favorable; [Page 37]his country is regarded with suspicion. The declarations with which some parliamentary orators of the Union are accustomed to embellish their views of American policy mortify or make them impatient. Secret views of conquest are attributed to the United States, or declared attitudes of egotistic precedence, or at least of insupportable impertinence. Either they are the presumed political agent of Europe to cover their borrowed loans or they nourish the idea of a Yankee hegemony that will stretch from the snows of Alaska to the tempests of Cape Horn.

In this way is often judged by our people that strong nation which is imbued with ideas of greatness, which has never made any attempt against the independence of any American people, and to whom one of them, Cuba, owes her liberty.

It is necessary to dissipate these false prejudices.

The United States has been in the past the champion of the growing nationalities of South America, and in the present it can not constitute for them a threat, as no other nation of the globe constitutes it.

The name of Channing, the illustrious minister of England, who saluted from the summit of universal right the dawn of day of South American emancipation, lives in the heart of the freemen of this continent that considered him the friend of the decisive hour; but a reproach of ingratitude and of forgetfulness covers the name of Rush, the minister of the United States at London, who, long before Channing and in the hour even more critical for the liberty of South America, declared that the relations of these countries with Europe combined in the Holy Alliance would have to be adjusted on the basis of independence, because independence was an irrevocable fact.

Recent publications in La Nacion have well illustrated this point, with the testimony of our historians, and already public opinion is sufficiently informed in this respect for it to be necessary to be insisted on.

It appears the more appropriate, since history justifies so plainly the celebrated doctrine, to devote to it some brief considerations.

To appreciate the Monroe doctrine at its true value it is necessary to judge it at the precise moment in which it was enunciated and applied, in the midst of the events which caused it to be born and when the feelings under whose inspiration it was dictated were palpitating.

According to some critics the famous message of 1823 was the expression of an egotistic policy, in which the minor interest for the fate of the South American republics did not enter.

By these are omitted salient and undoubted facts, corroborated by documents of every evidence, that are the history of the doctrine narrated by its authors, and reveal it as having directly emanated from the sentiments of the people of the United States in favor of the liberty of the emancipated colonies of South America.

There is also an opinion spread about, but little credited, which attributes to the Monroe doctrine the compass of a vexatious imposition, belittling the sovereignty of the South American republics, that they could not accept it without diminution of their entity as independent states.

Generally the same ones that sustain this last thesis attribute to the United States feelings of egotism or of indifference for the countries of South America, and describe the governments of the Union in frequent contradiction with the Monroe doctrine, whose burdens they make more severe. A writer was asserting not long ago that the American Union witnessed impassively the French invasion in Mexico, and cited the fact as a proof that the Monroe doctrine wanted coordination and logic. It is known, notwithstanding, that if the Union had not intervened in Mexico in 1862 when France, England, and Spain sent their fleets to Veracruz to recover themselves manu militare the indemnification that that country owed them, it was because it was compromised in the civil war, which absorbed all its resources. Instead, in 1865, as soon as the southerners were conquered, the United States invited Napoleon, who had alone remained on the continent, to withdraw his troops; and Napoleon withdrew them, abandoning Maximilian to his unfortunate fate.

I have here what the Marquis de Barral-Montferrat says in this respect, in his book “From Monroe to Roosevelt,” a book which fell into my hands, adverse to the United States and to its international policy:

“During all this time the Government of Washington suffered great grief at not being able to oppose to the events which were unfolding, and which were such a humiliating reply from Europe to the bravadoes of the message of 1823, anything but inefficacious diplomatic protests. But there is this justice to be [Page 38]done it that, although in the most cruel of civil wars and notwithstanding the embarrassments that secession caused it, it did not renounce for a single instant its programme and never abandoned its principles. To the invitation of the powers to unite itself with them to force Mexico to pay her debts it replied with the offer of aiding pecuniarily the government of Juarez. The most indignant protest was made to the French invasion. To the election of Maximilian it replied with the refusal to recognize his fragile kingdom.”

The southerners conquered, the Cabinet of Washington offered the Emperor Napoleon the choice, that more than one orator synthesized proudly in Congress with these words, “Withdraw or fight!” The cabinet of the Tuileries chose the first; the French troops withdrew from Mexico, and the Emperor Maximilian paid with his life the infringement of the Monroe doctrine that the second empire had permitted itself in its frenzy of greatness. Those that accuse the United States of indifference in the presence of the French invasion of Mexico and of forgetfulness of its grand doctrine will meet their own confutation in the drama of Queretaro.

It is not necessary to place in evidence the inevitable contradiction which those fall into who charge the Monroe doctrine as mortifying and presumptuous, and at the same time attack the United States because they do not observe it. According to these critics, in order that the doctrine should be acceptable it would be necessary that it should only exist when a European power should threaten by act the integrity of a South American state and should declare itself suppressed in normal times. In the first case, while the United States would be obliged to interpose its sword, under penalty of being blamed for indifference or abandonment, as soon as the danger was past it could not make use of this authority to prepare itself for the case arising, because to do so would place in doubt the sovereignty of the weaker states, and these would construe it as an imposition or as a slight.

The want of logic of this manner of discussion is clear from this alone, but, nevertheless, such discussion of these interesting questions is frequent.

Others go to the other extreme, likewise contradictory, and as has already been shown, extreme, which consists in advising that the Argentine Republic should adopt a policy in opposition to the Monroe doctrine—that is, a policy which makes the possible interposition of the United States unnecessary in the conflicts of a South American nation with a European power. To arrive at this result the Argentine Republic would only have to substitute itself for the United States in the role of intermediary; and here may be seen how those who reject the Yankee action in this sense would accept in its place the Argentine action. There can be no greater praise of the Monroe doctrine, when it is thus recognized, that the evil which it has is that of others who apply it, and not inherent in itself.

Fortunately the day has arrived in which all these false conceptions may vanish, and with them the atmosphere of prejudice that might have been able to distort public opinion.

The attitude of the United States, proven thus by the evidence of history, in favor of our independence, at a time when no other nation of the globe took an interest in our fate, there has been nothing more necessary to arouse in the national sentiment strong feelings of sympathy toward the Great Republic.

The study of its diplomatic action in the last half of the century, ever inspired by the dictates of justice, confirms this impression, showing the United States such as we would desire to see them, what we expect in that nation, just as with England, the practice of free institutions. The defense of the right of weak and strong, the increasing love of justice, virtues of character, the admiration for every noble effort and for every efficacious energy, which belong to the Anglo-Saxon race, have in the American Union a field of application more vast than in that of any other nation.

From the seeds of morality and of adhesion to the eternal principles of human right which the Quakers, the colonists of Virginia and of Maryland, and the Pilgrims of New England sowed, arose American independence. By a process no less just, and, according to historians, wise, constitutional, and valiant, arose the Argentine independence, and with it that of all of South America.

The United States is to-day a star of the first magnitude that irradiates the northern heavens with glowing rays of light, enlightening the human conscience, and calling the nations of the earth to the exercise of their rights and to the application of their energies under the aegis of morality and law.

The Argentine Republic is a star that rises in the southern firmament, with a promise of vast expansion for universal democracy. This country, independent [Page 39]by its own effort, has been preserved from ill by the vitality of its own organism, and this has given to it the consciousness of its responsibilities and has opened its heart to the hopes of a splendid future. This is the fuel that maintains glowing its scintillations, to-day powerful enough to traverse space and to attract those who are marching toward the light.

By an act of political force the two stars have approached their orbits and have crossed their rays, as if the idea had suddenly and jointly occurred to them that if a great beacon is enough to guide those navigating over the sea of life, two, that should combine their reflected light, would fix the course as securely as when the light of day illuminates it. Welcome the event for the republics of the north and the south! Welcome to Mr. Elihu Root, the illustrious guest of the Argentine people!

Emilio Mitre.

[Inclosure No. 9.]

our distinguished visitor.

In welcoming Mr. Elihu Root to Buenos Aires to-day the Argentine Republic and all who are interested in its development and progress will do well to ponder not so much upon the man as upon the significance of his mission. Up to the present it has not been often that the first ministers of non-Latin states have made the tour of Spanish America in their official capacity. It has, indeed, fallen to the lot of the American Secretary of State to initiate what may, and most likely will, prove a series of such visits, for the day has gone by when nations of actual and potential power in South America can be ignored merely for being of South America. This continent has suddenly been discovered not merely by a few intrepid explorers, but by the Old World, whose people have been aroused to inquire from whence comes this abundance of grain annually at a time when the European farmer’s fields are bare and desolate under the stinging rain and killing frosts of the Northern Hemisphere. To those who have seen or know the terrors of famine or the consequences of a partial scarcity the realization of the fact that somewhere in the southwest there are immeasurable fields and countless flocks and herds comes as a pleasant surprise. And it naturally follows that thousands of eyes turn to seek the land of promise, that land that supplies Europe’s winter granary with its stores of breadstuff, meat, and other valuable commodities.

Investigation soon shows the economic importance of Argentina, which, favored by climate and position, by extraordinary feracity of soil and variations of temperature, possesses to a marked degree all the qualifications of a great agrarian country. Argentina, with its sparse population and incredible annual output, represents one of the wonders of the age and engenders not a little envy and jealousy. It is not, however, from motives of envy or jealousy that Mr. Root has come south. As the worthy representative of the most powerful American republic, the nation that is in a particular sense charged with maintaining the territorial integrity of America as a whole, he conies to see on what cooperation his country may count, and how worthy or unworthy are the States over which America has, without being asked, and without hope of reward, thrown her invulnerable shield of defense. It may be disconcerting for some South American republics to suddenly find themselves under the uncompromising eye of an impartial observer whose judgment will be accepted in North America as final and conclusive, and whose opinion of Latin America, when expressed, will be received with respect in his own country and in all the countries of the Old World. Argentina especially should rejoice exceedingly that such a visitor arrives this morning, for his verdict, favorable as we think it may be, would do far more real good to the Republic than all the paid propagandists maintained by the State at home and abroad. It would, however, be a mistake to suppose that a gentleman of proved acumen, such as Mr. Root is, can be dazzled by a sextuple row of electric lights in Calle Forida or by a succession of social functions that, while serving to show the lavishness and luxury of the federal capital, will have no power to refract the inteligence bent on knowing the actual state of the country beyond the pale or the municipal area.

The distinguished visitor, within the very limited time his programme gives him, will endeavor to look beyond the official circle in which he finds himself moving and acting. Having come to see Argentina he will not be induced to [Page 40]believe in the convenient absurdity that Argentina and Buenos Aires are one, or that the comparatively small part contains the immense entity. For the English-speaking community of Buenos Aires to-day is a red-letter day, and while international considerations are paramount we must not overlook our duty, as the organ of the community named, to tender to Mr. Root, in the name of our readers, a cordial welcome to Buenos Aires. We feel sure that whatever else he may find to praise, nothing is better calculated to excite his admiration than the immensity and importance of British enterprise in Argentina. He arrives on the forty-first anniversary of the inauguration of the Great Southern Railway, a system that challenges comparison with many of the great lines of the United States or any other country. That and the other lines that are as the nerves and tendons of the nation show how real and practical was British belief in the destinies of Argentina at a period when the Republic was less known and less prosperous than at present. Thoroughly believing that our distinguished visitor will note these evidences of racial energy which follow Anglo-Saxon blood the world over, we welcome Mr. Root as one of the race, as one of ourselves, and hope that among his numerous impressions of travel those received during his visit to Buenos Aires will rank as the most pleasing and enduring of all.

[Inclosure No. 10.]

the mission and the man.

The weather conditions that prevailed yesterday were not sufficient to prevent or spoil the welcome prepared for Mr. Root. The rain and its inseparable concomitants, mud and discomfort, did not prove sufficient to balk Buenos Aires in its desire to extend its traditional hospitality to a distinguished visitor. This fact, most gratifying in itself, is, however, one of distinctly secondary importance as an indication of the favorable change in public opinion that is taking place. What will particularly please Argentina’s guest is the more cordial tone adopted by the leading Argentine papers of this metropolis. This change is marked and genuine, and it represents to us a triumph for that new diplomacy of which the minister is perhaps the most noted exponent. The art of the artist lies in concealing art. In the new diplomacy the merit of the diplomat consists of discarding every heartless Machiavellian maxim in favor of hearty and straightforward honesty in act and expression. Such a simple rule of diplomacy is apt to be regarded with distrust, especially where it has not before been seen in practice. Since his arrival in South America Mr. Root has confounded all the astute school of reasoners by his frank method of accounting for his presence and the purpose of his visit.

He has said that the mainspring of his action is to be found in the simple desire of his country to cultivate closer and more friendly relations with the other independent States of America. If such a thing appeared preposterous to South America, the sister States of which have never shown anything more than a recurring transient desire for closer acquaintance, Mr. Root can not be blamed for the circumstance. It was for him to introduce the plain way in his own way, and he has been persistently and consistently doing so since he first landed in Brazil. And if he wishes for any proof of success to reward him for his efforts we recommend to his notice this favorable change which shows itself in the tenor and tone of our metropolitan contemporaries. It would be affectation to pretend or to endeavor to make believe that there never was any hostile feeling evinced here toward Mr. Root’s mission, or rather his supposed mission. Certain expressions of opinion cabled from Rio alarmed Argentina, whose people—reading between the lines, as is customary with them—saw the threat of Brazilian hegemony with the United States of America supporting, in secret, if not openly, that assumption of superiority. Doubtless the minister’s meaning was not clearly grasped, or more likely his direct and honest assertions were construed according to the older and more subtle school of reasoners, and made to wear a Janus-like aspect, threatening and encouraging at the same time.

The sense of distance strengthened, the sense of chagrin aroused, and Mr. Root’s supposed mission was rent in tatters and scornfully rejected. But gradually the personal character of the pioneer statesman became visible [Page 41]through his uttered words, and now that Argentina stands face to face with her guest, she acknowledges that from him she need fear no double dealing or guile. Neither has she the slightest reason to anticipate any change of his policy of plain speaking. In a word, Argentina appreciates Mr. Root as a gentleman whose natural probity and sense of honor make him incapable of doing or saying anything calculated to mislead an honest mind. And to-morrow the Republic will recognize that Secretary Root has been chosen as the fittest instrument to the end in view, which must be, and is, of a nature that an honest and patriotic American gentleman need have no scruples in expounding or recommending. Mr. Root’s mission and object are merely to sound the more remote States of America on the subject of American solidarity in defense of American interests. This implies neither a threat nor a hostile combination against any nation or power of America or Europe. Mr. Root represents that America of which we see little and hear less; the America that thinks along the lines the Pilgrim Fathers would favor. America is not all push and feverish commercial activity. In its better moments it is idealistic in a practical way, and there is always a powerful section of the mighty Republic governed by the nobler impulses. Mr. Root represents that section in a particular sense. He voices their aspirations and resolves which embrace a free America, and a rigid enforcement of that doctrine which has for its basic principle America for humanity at large.

[Inclosure No. 11.—Translation.]

Visit of Secretary Root to South America.

our guest’s official utterance.

Mr. Root’s speech delivered at the banquet at the Government House deserves abundant praise, if we were to be just, without a shadow of reserve. It is in form and thought a production worthy of an experienced statesman and a magnetic orator. He defined his mission in a manner that leaves nothing to be desired, it seems to us, molding a harmonious whole, giving expression to the highest political ideals and to affectionate sentiments that breathe sincerity together with the diplomatic discretion peculiar to men trained in the most arduous public affairs. In order that this frank expression of our judgment may be complete, let us formulate it thus: It is the occasion on which the representative of the Government of the United States has, during his tour of South America, been more happy in his exposition of the fraternal aims and of the desires for the progress of the continent which the great country in whose name he speaks entertains.

Mr. Root, who has a perfect command of language, expounded on this solemn occasion the ripe convictions of the statesman in respect of the present condition and of the future of South America, giving free expression to the sentiments that palpitate on his soul. The Government and people of the United States can be sure that a public agent of theirs has never communicated to Latin America the thought of their country with more authority, with more eloquence, with more appeal to the public reason, fitting the destinies and apportioning the desires of the Western Hemisphere to the zeal for the common ideal of progress on the basis of the calm dominion of sovereignties protected by right and justice.

La Prensa is pleased to observe that the interpretation which it gave the mission of Mr. Root, in its salutation of welcome, agrees absolutely with the conception that he himself attributes to it with a frankness and with a vision so clear of the destinies of the New World that, they suffice to recommend the purposes of his visit to the consideration and applause of South America.

His doctrine of political alliance is beautiful. He conceives them without diplomatic pacts, concerted by the community of ideals and by the gravitation those economic interests that accord with the demands of civilization and in the open field of the commercial activity of the peoples. This is also the Argentine doctrine, in the application of which the diplomacy of frankness, that conciliates the brain through the heart, radiates its innate splendor.

The parallel which he traced between the great Republic, his country, and ours, contemplating them in their stubborn struggle for liberty and the possession [Page 42]of the soil disputed by the barbary of civilized industries, was as clear as it was exact and generous. The similarity of the two tasks was outlined in a form so lofty that the colossus plan and at the same level as her sister of the Palat, in spite of the notable difference in size. At this point the loyal friend, the statesman of intense vision, and the diplomat tact rose to his full stature.

Our distinguished guest believes that his ideals and his sentiments are tempered in the very feelings of the Argentine spirit. In this sphere the reciprocity is perfect, because the coincidence of the views and aspirations to which he gave expression with those that animate the public life of this country that he feels in the sympathy which envelops him and the spontaneity of which can not escape his clear penetration, is true. We note them with pleasure for the political concept that fills them. Without any desire to recommend, overvalue them, let us recall that our peoples by nature are little given to effusion, so that its authentic hospitality proclaims its desire to strengthen the friendly bonds with the United States in accord with the noble call to fraternity in labor, in justice and right which they extend through the instrumentality of the eminent member of their Government who is with us in their name.

It is our most fervent desire to show to our guest, without reserve, all our endowment and all our economic and political thought, in connection with our public life, internal and external, for we have nothing to conceal, because, fortunately, we have no illegitimate interest to serve to the injury or detriment of the political or commercial interests of other sovereignties. We desire that Mr. Root report to his country that this is a people friendly to the United States, without a shadow in our souls that conceals our intentions, a people that seeks its own aggrandizement through the virtues of its institutions and the exploitation of its natural resources.

Thus we respond to the exalted ideas of his remarkable discourse, which we applaud, and for which we thank him in the name of the Argentine people.

  1. Furnished by Mr. Drago.