File No. 812.032/21

Ambassador Fletcher to the Secretary of State

No. 83

Sir: I have the honor to report that in accordance with the Transitory Article No. 6 of the recently adopted Constitution, the Congress met in extraordinary session on the 15th instant. The First Chief of the Constitutionalist Army, charged with the Executive Power of the Nation, appeared before it to give an account of his stewardship, and read a long report of the events which have taken place since the beginning of the revolution.

I have [etc.]

Henry P. Fletcher

Report of President-elect Venustiano Carranza covering the period of the revolution from February 18, 1913, to April 15, 1917, read at the formal opening of Congress, April 15, 1917

Deputies and Senators: The Revolution of 1910, headed by the illustrious apostle Francisco I. Madero, having triumphed, the legitimate powers of the Republic were established by the sovereign will of the people, in substitution for the military dictatorship which emanated from the Plan of Tuxtepec, and which had weighed heavily upon the country for so many years; but the elements of the old régime could not be satisfied with their defeat, and thus began, from the first days of the establishment of the legitimate Government, the reactionary agitations which quickly came to a head in the military uprising at Vera Cruz, inspired by General Félix Díaz and seconded by various military men who were garrisoning that port in October 1912.

The mildness of the proceedings instituted against those responsible for this criminal attempt, and the mistake made of bringing to this capital the man principally responsible for the same, where all the hatreds which the new régime (because of the large interests which it necessarily had to Wound) had engendered in the favorites of the former dictatorship, were boiling with extreme activity, were the primary reasons which brought about the strengthening of the reaction and permitted it to acquire the form and organization necessary to destroy the legitimate authority, and to again supplant it with a new military power, which openly proclaimed itself everywhere as being indispensable for the maintenance of order among the Mexican people.

It was inevitable, therefore, that the rebellion should develop fatally, as it did, in the early hours of the morning of Sunday, February 9, 1913, when the School of Aspirantes and some of the Federal Army, led away from their duty through the maneuvers of General Félix Díaz and Generals Bernardo Reyes and Manuel Mondragón, openly rose in arms.

[Page 984]

From that moment, therefore, the fight against the legitimate Government began, a fight in which it was to be expected that the latter would easily win, due on the one hand to the small number of mutinous troops, and on the other, to the many and important elements which the Government possessed to reduce the rebels to submission; but, unfortunately, the evil was deep-rooted, ambition had no bounds, and treason contaminating all, had drowned completely the sentiment of duty and extinguished in its entirety military honor. It was thus that General Victoriano Huerta, to whom at an ill hour had been entrusted the defense of our institutions and the support of the Federal Powers, brought upon himself and upon the Army the most odious stain recorded in our history, by usurping the Supreme Power of the country on the afternoon of February 18, imprisoning the President of the Republic, the Vice President and the Cabinet.

The Government of the State of Coahuila, of which I was at that time in charge, had followed with the keenest interest all the developments of the struggle; for this reason I was greatly surprised at the receipt of the telegram from General Huerta, received at a late hour of the date indicated, stating that, authorized by the Senate, he had assumed the Executive Power and that the President and his Cabinet were prisoners.

Upon receipt of Huerta’s message I resolved immediately to assume a firm attitude against so great a crime, and putting my decision into practice I, at an early hour of the following day, transmitted the message in question to the State Legislature. Inasmuch as the Senate was not empowered to appoint the First Magistrate of the Nation, and therefore, had not the right legally to authorize General Huerta to assume the character of President of the Republic, I declared that I was resolved to comply with the sacred duties of my office and trusted that the decision of the State Legislature would be in accord with the principles of legality and with the interests of the Fatherland.

Now is the time to express, as I do with great pleasure, the sincerest admiration for the Representatives who formed the Legislature of Coahuila, for the reason that on the same date, February 19, Decree No. 1421 was issued denying recognition of General Huerta as Chief of the Executive Power, as well as recognition of his acts; extraordinary faculties in all branches of the public administration were granted to the State Executive for the purpose of raising forces to assist in the upholding of the Constitutional order in the Republic; and lastly, it was ordered that the State Governments and the Chiefs of the Federal forces, of the Rurales and of the auxiliary forces of the Federation, be invited to second the attitude of the Coahuila Government.

In compliance with this decree, the Government of which I had charge issued the circular of February 19, in which, after an exposition of the offenses committed by General Huerta, I concluded by saying that the

“Government under my charge, complying with the sovereign mandates of our Political Constitution, obedient to our institutions, faithful to its duties, and animated by the purest patriotism, felt compelled to disown and disavow that unqualifiable crime committed against our Fundamental Law, and invited the Governments and all the Chiefs of the States in the Republic to second the movement for law and order.”

It is known to all that General Huerta, desiring that an appearance of legality be given to the usurpation he had just committed, forcibly obliged the President and Vice President of the Republic to tender their resignations, so that he himself might be appointed Minister of Government by the Minister for Foreign Affairs, who in turn assumed the Presidency of the Republic in place of the Constitutional President, only to resign this position immediately in order that it might pass to Huerta.

This proceeding, obviously made effective by force of arms, could not legitimize for a single instant the usurpation committed against the Powers legally constituted, nor much less give the slightest appearance of constitutionality to all that intriguing which so enveloped all the institutions of the country, especially when a few days later Messrs. Madero and Pino Suárez were assassinated to the horror of the entire world, their disappearance at any cost being the desire of the leaders of the military uprising, who imagined that in this manner they could tranquilly enjoy the fruits of their crimes.

Coincident with these events the Consul and Vice Consul of the United States called on me in the Government Palace at Saltillo, stating that they had instructions from the American Ambassador, Henry Lane Wilson, to tell me to abandon my attitude of refusing to recognize the Government of General Huerta, because, according to their statements, resistance would be useless in view of the fact that [Page 985] the usurper had immense resources available to put down the Coahuila movement; and they informed me that the Huerta Government had just been recognized by all Governments having accredited representatives in Mexico City, including the Government of the United States. They added, also by instructions of Ambassador Wilson, that all the Governors of States had accepted the new order of things and that I was the only one who maintained a rebellious attitude. To all this I answered that I was aware of the resources at the disposition of the usurpers and of the reduced state of those in my possession, but that I would accept no arrangement and would fulfil my duty as Governor of the State, whatever might be the outcome of the struggle. Later I obtained a copy of the message on the subject sent by Wilson to the Consul and Vice Consul directing them to exert pressure on me and obtain my submission to the “Cuartelazo” Government.

A few days later when I was at my headquarters at Villa de Arteaga, Vice Consul Silliman came to see me again and asked me to state the conditions I would prescribe to avoid war, and he promised to deliver my statement to General Huerta through Ambassador Lane Wilson. I gave him a note to the Ambassador in which I referred to the statements that had been communicated to me in my former interview with the Consul and Vice Consul of the United States, and stated that in order to avoid an armed struggle I demanded that Victoriano Huerta, Félix Díaz, Aureliano Blanquet, and all others connected with the “Cuartelazo” and with the assassination of the President and Vice President of the Republic should leave the country; that the forces that had contributed to the downfall of the legitimate Government should evacuate the capital and should be replaced by forces of the States of Coahuila and Sonora, that Congress should designate a legal successor for the President, and that the new Government on being installed should determine the proper punishment for those soldiers who had failed in their duty.

Vice Consul Silliman promised to deliver this note at the capital of the Republic but I received no answer. I reiterate that its only purpose was to avoid the shedding of blood.

It is opportune to correct at this point a statement made recently by ex-Secretary Knox, who declared in an interview for the press that the intervention of Ambassador Wilson was due to my having approached him requesting his mediation, which declaration is completely in error, since the events were as above stated.

The virile, enthusiastic and opportune protest of the Coahuila Legislature, made without measuring the dangers nor taking into account the insignificant resources available for so great an undertaking in a struggle against men who were equal to any extreme, without scruples and wholly lacking in moral sentiment, and amply supplied with every kind of necessary material, accomplished its purpose. The noble and generous action of the deputies in embracing the cause of law and order at the call of the Executive of the State was simply patriotism in action, conscious of its power, and destined soon to reveal itself by countless acts of heroism, to vindicate the outraged law and restore the lost liberties to the Mexican people; and since all magnificent acts are suggestive, this action everywhere found its response in the hearts of young men who immediately flew to the service of the cause of justice.

The Plan of Guadalupe of March 26, 1913 was the battle cry for the best element of the young manhood of Mexico launched to the four winds of the country against triumphant iniquity. This battle cry was nothing more than the vibrant and ringing declaration of the national sentiment—a declaration that reaffirmed the fundamental purpose, the deliberate will of the Mexican people no longer to permit autocracy again to dominate the destinies of the Nation, enforcing the will of an odious and hated class that for so many years has crushed the aspirations of the Republic, throttling every effort towards progress, killing all idea of liberty and keeping the Mexicans, under the pretext of saving them from anarchy, reduced to a condition of slavery. Such is the farce that has been made of democratic institutions that has served only to replace the will of the people by the imposition of favorites installed by the usurper of public power upon the condition that they serve as pliant instruments in the furtherance of his designs.

Accordingly, by the Plan of Guadalupe which was adopted by the Permanent Committee of the Coahuila Legislature in its decree of April 19 of the same year issued at Piedras Negras, the questions of orderly government in opposition to usurpation, of law in opposition to mob rule, of free institutions in opposition to a military dictatorship, were completely established.

The call made to the Governors of the States exhorting them to support the attitude of Coahuila was responded to by Sonora only; for although the Governor of the State, José M, Maytorena, was not disposed to place himself on the [Page 986] side of law and order, the Legislature openly denounced the usurpation and appointed Ignacio L. Pesqueira, one of the members of the legislature, as acting governor, by decree of March 4, 1913 and refused to recognize Huerta.

The union of Sonora with Coahuila and consequently the adoption of the Plan of Guadalupe by that State took place the 18th of April following, the State being represented by Adolfo de la Huerta and Roberto V. Pesqueira, and also by Alvaro Obregón, Salvador Alvarado, who are today generals in the army, and by other military chiefs.

The contest having been decided upon, the Government entrusted to me had two important objects to accomplish; one, the organization of the public service so far as was possible with a state of war existing, in such a manner that those who took no part in the struggle should suffer the least possible injury; the other, the organization of the Constitutionalist Army in such manner as would enable it to accomplish its task and keep supplied with the elements necessary for its efficiency.

To accomplish the first of these objects the Government entrusted to me issued the decree of May 10, 1913 by which we established the fundamental rules establishing the rights of nationals and foreigners to collect indemnity for damages caused during the revolution of 1910 and those they might suffer during the campaign just entered upon.

Justice as well as public convenience imperiously demanded such a measure, partly because since we were dealing with a war which had for its supreme object the betterment of the Mexican people, the expenses resulting from it should not be borne solely by those persons living in the regions in which the Constitutionalist Army operated, who furnished supplies which could not be paid for immediately because of lack of finances, and the value of which became a debt against the nation to be paid in the manner and under the conditions to be prescribed in due time by a special law enacted for this purpose; also because the conduct of the Government was to be in accordance with the principles of strict morality and this demanded that the rights of foreigners should be respected and that they also should receive proper compensation for any contributions which were made for the public service.

Opportunity is taken here to state in order to avoid erroneous interpretation that the decree to which I have just referred does not treat of those damages that naturally accompany every civil war having their origin in unavoidable events which oftentimes paralyze commerce, such as the unprotected state of the centers of population, public highways and outlying settlements exposed to the ravages of those who, taking advantage of the disorder produced by public calamity, make attacks on life and property their constant aim and occupation; this decree covers only those damages resulting from the appropriations of property of individuals by the Constitutionalist authorities in accordance with the necessities of the service, as is made very clear by Article 3 of the decree and particularly so by the specific provisions of the declarations of the 10th of August 1913.

The circular of June 7, 1913 had the same object in view and was issued expressly to facilitate commerce between the United States of the North and the United Mexican States and for the purpose of avoiding in this manner the suspension of commercial relations between the two countries with resultant severe damage to the inhabitants of the two nations and with marked injury to the financial interests of the public treasury.

In addition, a measure of great importance for the attainment of the object mentioned was the decree of October 7, 1913, which organized the Constitutionalist Government by specifying the Secretaries of State to whom should be entrusted the various branches of the public administration and prescribing the duties that should be performed to meet efficiently the necessities of the moment and begin the institution of the reforms demanded by the social and economic conditions of the country.

Although the duties of the Secretaries of War, Government and Treasury were of transcendental importance for the organization of the army and its maintenance for the protection and the governing of the territory which step by step was being taken away from the usurper, and for the best possible provision of the supplies necessary to meet the daily increasing demands of the campaign, still the duties entrusted to the other Departments were no less necessary or important and any neglect of them would have resulted in my Government being uncertain in its acts and as to their final success.

From the very beginning I had the fixed idea, amply confirmed later on, that victory over the usurper of the public authority could not be gained without [Page 987] concentrating the attention in a special manner on impressing the public conscience with the conviction of the legality of the revolution, and of its necessity for the reestablishment of the authorities selected by the vote of the people, nor without adopting all those measures necessary to overthrow the enemy whether by depriving him of the means of subsistence, or by raising and opposing him with an army efficient not only in numbers but in quality as well.

With this in view and to accomplish the second purpose above mentioned, the office of the First Chief published the decree of April 20, 1913 calling together the generals, chiefs and officers of the liberating army and the Federal Army to organize the Constitutionalist Army, offering to guarantee them their positions in the permanent army on the success of the Constitutionalist cause, excepting only those generals, chiefs and officers who, in October 1912, took part in the rebellion of Vera Cruz, and those who took part in the military crime of February 1913.

I should say in passing that in addition to those chiefs who commanded the forces of Coahuila, Pablo González, Jesús Carranza, Cesáreo Castro, Francisco Coss and other officials, this call was answered only by the forces commanded by the present generals Jacinto B. Treviño, José Agustin Castro, Cándido Aguilar, Agustin Milan and other officials.

With the same purpose already referred to, the decree of May 1, 1913, was issued which put into effect the law of January 25, 1862, so that judgment might be passed on General Victoriano Huerta and his accomplices and those who conspired against the independence and security of the nation might be punished.

With the same object in view the decree of January 4, 1913 was issued which established six army corps and designated the regions controlled by the revolution. For a like purpose the decree of November 1, 1913 was issued putting into effect the laws of organization and jurisdiction of military tribunals. This decree and the other issued previously modified various provisions of former decrees as well as the law of January 25, 1862, and adapted them to the existing conditions; also the decree of July 31, 1914 was issued, providing that Military Judges of Instruction would have jurisdiction over federal crimes, provided that the prisoners should not be judged by the law of January 25.

I will not detain you by calling your attention to the importance and timeliness of these provisions, for their timeliness and importance are revealed by simply mentioning them; no one can fail to see that it was indispensable on the one hand to call to the Constitutionalist ranks all those who took part in the revolution of 1910 as well as the federals who were fully aware of their duties and were disposed to fulfill them, and on the other hand to indicate plainly that Huerta and all those who had assisted him in the “Cuartelazo” as well as those who had initiated the rebellion against the legitimate Government of the Republic would not be left unpunished.

It was also necessary to overcome all obstacles to the progress of the revolution, and with this in view, to punish severely any attempt on the part of the non-combatants who, not satisfied to withhold aid from the liberating party, offered various kinds of assistance to the enemy.

Moreover, I had to contend ceaselessly and with what means I had at hand, with the supporters of the usurper, and it was also necessary to preserve order in the Constitutionalist Army, while not permitting offenses in the civil community to go unpunished. This condition of affairs justified the organization of military tribunals and the extraordinary jurisdiction given them.

Further on in this report, and with the understanding that detailed reports will be made of the activities of the various Departments of Government covering the period from the beginning of the war to date, I will make a brief summary of the most important work of each Department in order that you may see the condition of the public administration in the entire country; but I wish to give a general idea of the more important events.

After having overthrown Huerta’s army and forced the officials responsible for the crimes of February 1913 to leave the Republic, and after having obtained the unconditional surrender of the Federalist Army set forth in the treaty of Teoloyucan, I finally occupied the City of Mexico, and by way of complying with the third Article of the Plan of Guadalupe, I issued the decree of August 2, 1914 which prescribed that after that date the Chief of the Constitutionalist Army would have the Executive Power of the Nation.

This act not only happily completed the task undertaken by the Governor of Coahuila with the patriotic and zealous support of the Legislature of that State on the memorable date of March 26, 1913, when the then small Constitutionalist Army raised its banners, but it also signified that the time had arrived for the [Page 988] triumphant revolution to begin a new work, that of restoring the peace and order of the nation without delay.

Permit me to say that the decree to which I have referred clearly demonstrated that the revolution had progressed greatly in a comparatively short time, during which the nation had not suffered any exceedingly great sacrifices, nor any of the very serious damages inevitably attendant upon war, and the sacrifices and damages would have been quickly recompensed had not the spirit of discord once more been incited to light the torch of civil war, bringing greater calamities upon the country and endangering the existence of the Government.

The Government under my charge, at the time of the occupation of the city by the Constitutionalist Army, desired to enter upon the work of national reconstruction; and, desiring to build on a firm foundation and to work in accord with the Constitutionalist Army, thereby avoiding undesirable differences of opinion with their evil consequences, I called together under date of September 5, 1914, a convention of the governors and generals having command of forces, to meet in this city and this same building on the 1st of October 1914.

The only purpose of this assembly (and considering the elements composing it and the purpose for which it was convened, it could have had no other purpose) was to give the person in charge of the Executive Power of the Union a program of Government which would insure prompt and complete compliance with the revolutionary ideal of fundamental public necessities; true this ideal had not been reduced to written form but it was well defined in the public conscience and in the desires of the people, and above all in the conscience and desire of the citizen who had borne arms to save the Republic.

Unfortunately the purpose of the assembly referred to was immediately opposed, on one hand by the principal chiefs of the North objecting to attend on the pretext that in this city they could not express their opinions with complete liberty, and on the other hand because of the poor impression, formed no doubt in good faith, that some chiefs of the other divisions had formed of the mission entrusted to them.

The chiefs who attended the assembly which met in this city the 1st of October 1914 desiring to avoid the break that threatened in the ranks of the Constitutionalist Army, and after an exchange of ideas with those holding contrary views, agreed that the assembly should convene at Aguascalientes and there renew its work on the 10th of October 1914.

From the first moment the assembly at Aguascalientes revealed its tendencies and the ideas that inspired a large part of its members, consisting almost exclusively of the chiefs of the Division of the North; all this indicated that the chiefs who attended the assembly which met in this city had been deceived and that in order to give guaranties to the Zapatistas who were craftily invited on the pretext of accomplishing an impossible reconciliation, they had thereby delivered themselves almost defenseless into the hands of their enemies.

The assembly or convention of Aguascalientes, as it has been called, began, if I may make use of the term, with a new “cuartelazo”, after the fashion of Huerta, for it deliberately assumed to represent the nation, declaring itself sovereign with absolute power to appoint the President of the Republic, and to legislate for all branches of the public administration. As has been seen, Huerta usurped the executive power of the nation; the convention of Aguascalientes usurped the legislative power, and attributed to that power a faculty which it does not possess, namely, to select the Chief Executive.

As we have seen, the Aguascalientes convention completely neutralized the purpose of the Junta convened by my Government to prepare a program for returning the country to a Constitutional Government; and it was not until the chiefs had gathered together for this convention with the best intentions possible, that they became convinced that they had been deceived, and that the purpose in view was simply to separate me from the high position in which I had been placed by my being Governor of Coahuila, and by the Plan of Guadalupe of March 26, 1913.

The weakness and corruption of the advisers of the General in charge of the Division of the North, had aroused in him the ambition to install himself as Provisional President of the Republic, and all his efforts were bent towards accomplishment of this purpose.

I shrank from entering upon a new campaign in which much blood surely would be shed, and the welfare of the nation would be destroyed; but the facts demonstrated to even the most casual observer that the individuals of the Division of the North had nothing to offer that was advantageous to the country, [Page 989] and that if the country were delivered to them they would unquestionably have guided it to destruction.

Therefore, much against my will, I had to decide to undertake a new struggle with the forces that had remained loyal to my government, and for the purpose of organizing them I proceeded to the port of Vera Cruz, where I could count on the help and assistance of a liberal and patriotic city, which received me with feverish enthusiasm and denied me no resources that might contribute to success.

To carry out this purpose further, I issued a decree in Córdoba November 20, 1914, in which it was provided the office of the First Chief of the Constitutionalist Army and of the Executive Power of the Union, together with the offices of the Secretaries of State, should be established outside of the City of Mexico, and in such places as were best suited to the necessities of the campaign.

My first act, after establishing the residence of the First Chief in the port of Vera Cruz, was to formulate in precise and categorical terms the program which the Government under my charge was to develop and follow in the new period of war about to be initiated; this was absolutely necessary in view of the fact that the new struggle was to have a character entirely different from that carried on against Huerta, because we were dealing with a faction of the Constitutionalist Army that had rebelled against the supreme authority, and it was indispensable to demonstrate to the nation and to the entire world that in this new conflict neither I nor the chiefs and officers who had remained faithful to the Plan of Guadalupe, sought to satisfy mere personal ambitions; on the contrary, once and for all time to put an end to the vices of the past which had taken such deep root in the customs of the Mexican people, and which in more than a century had disturbed their political, economic and social advancement, blocking its progress, interfering with its welfare, and producing a state of constant turmoil, that was the principal cause of the oppressions that have been suffered, and which have been caused by the lack of equilibrium and due circumspection with respect to all the relations which are vital to the existence of a sovereign and free State.

Consequently, my first object was to formulate this program, which was accomplished in the additions made to the Plan of Guadalupe by Decree of December 12, 1914, additions which embraced all the reforms that the Mexican people needed in their institutions to enable them to accomplish seriously and usefully the work of regeneration, without which work they could not take a single step in the path of perfection nor aspire to self-government, but would remain as they had been, victims of the ambitions of the most audacious and subject to the caprices of the most strong.

The reception that these additions received at the hand of the public and the enthusiasm they aroused in the Constitutionalist Army are the best proofs that they were the expression of the national sentiment, and explain why they alone have been the most terrible arm which could be drawn against the rebels, who had no other ideal than that of enriching themselves, nor any other manner of realizing this ideal than by robbing and committing all sorts of crimes. A revolution that has not as its motive a necessity that will admit of no delay in its realization, and that does not aspire to giving real life to an idea of morality and justice, is nothing less than a crime against the existence of a nation.

The first condition for the existence of a State is order, and order cannot be had where there is no law or where it is violated constantly and with impunity; it is the law that determines the relations of the members of a nation among themselves and to the State, that fixes the sphere in which individuals should have liberty of action and the limits within which the organs of the public power should operate in order that the functions of society may encounter no obstacle to their many and legitimate manifestations. Where a man, merely because of a feeling of strength through being armed, believes himself capable of imposing his will on others, and where there is no respect for the life, the liberty and the property of other members of the social body, there can be no law nor morality—fundamental elements of good order. Where any agent whatsoever of public authority believes himself authorized to follow the impulse of caprice and has no curb to contain him in his outbursts of anger, nor sentiment that impels him to see in other men human beings who merit respect, there can be nothing but anarchy, which is the disordered tyranny of many, or despotism which is the tyranny of one only.

The factions which after the overthrow of Huerta opposed the Constitutionalist Government have been conspicuous by the total absence of respect for any law other than their own, due to a complete lack of order, or, what amounts to the same thing, to the complete absence of law. They go to war to kill, they fight [Page 990] for booty, their only guide is the caprice of each one in so far as he may satisfy it; justice for them is vengeance; the motive for an attack on the rights of another is personal antipathy, when it is not the simple desire to do damage; they strike, they wound, they assassinate, they destroy for the sole purpose of showing their strength; fury rouses their brute force to action; the instincts of the savage make them bloodthirsty, and they are irresistibly driven to acts of destruction as the occupation of their erring lives.

In conformity with the program to which I have referred, and which is condensed in the “Additions to the Plan of Guadalupe”, my first act was to declare the dissolubility of marriage, in order to place the family on a foundation at one and the same time more rational and more human; later the liberty of the municipality was established as a fundamental condition to free government; and I ordered the immediate restoration to the towns of such lands as had been taken from them through the rapacity of the favorites of the last military dictators, and the presentation of land to those towns which lacked even the most elementary necessities of life.

The Government under my charge has devoted preferential attention to the study of reforms which should be made in the Constitution of 1857, as well as to the most careful study of the agrarian and labor problems, to the end that they might be solved in the most desirable manner; but with respect to the first of these, I found that reforms in the Constitution made by the office of the First Chief would furnish a pretext for continuing to disturb public order, not only to the armed factions, but also to the vanquished factions that formed a part of the old regimes, and this led me, as you know, to convene a Constitutional Congress, which has brought to a happy completion a most brilliant effort, and one that will be of the greatest importance in the history of the Mexican people. You are the first to be selected by the will of the people to represent them in the new life that begins to-day, and on congratulating the nation on the restoration of Constitutional order, I will now make a brief résumé of the present condition of the various departments of the public administration.

(The reports for the various Executive Departments were read and then President-elect Carranza concluded the reading of the report as follows:)

Deputies and Senators: I have finished the heavy load placed on my shoulders by the oath I took as Governor to protect and secure the protection of the Federal Constitution, by the imperative vote of the Legislature of my State, and by the cry of protest made by the heroic youth assembled in the Hacienda de Guadalupe the 26th of March 1913. History in its justice will eventually give its judgment from which there is no appeal, and will declare whether I have fulfilled my duty, and whether the work accomplished is commensurate with what was expected of me and with what might reasonably be demanded of me under the circumstances that existed during the time the task was performed.

I can assure you only of the sincerity and honesty of my intentions, and of my disinterested attitude; I have sought only the redemption of the Mexican people, their aggrandizement by means of a solid education, and their liberty through the establishment of democratic institutions, which they have good reason to look upon as the guarantee of their liberties.

The welfare of the Republic, which from the middle of February 1913 until to-day has demanded all my energy and has been the only object of my vigilance, and which often has caused me anxiety in the midst of many dangers that had to be overcome, is from this moment entrusted to your zeal, and I hope that, with your lights and patriotism you may know how to guide the nation along the road which leads to prosperity and to the sanctity of the law and of justice.

You should not forget even for a moment that you represent a people who wish to be free, and who have made enormous sacrifices to secure institutions which will permit of the realization of this beautiful ideal. For this reason you should always remember that while democracy reaches its decisions by means of the vote for the majority, this does not mean that a majority formed by avarice or the ambitions of agitators who drag along the undiscerning and ignorant multitude to the wrong goal, by exciting the lower passions or by making false promises which are never carried out and which are always chimerical; agitators who, in order to satisfy personal ambitions readily sacrifice the good of the community at the very altars where homage should be rendered to truth.

Democracy alone can establish concord among all social classes through the harmonizing of interests on the basis of the independence of men, and especially of the members of a single political body, and of perfect equality among them; it is [Page 991] not and cannot be, in essence and in truth, other than the government of reason which, high, profound and serene, feeling the pulse of national life, and duly considering its history, necessities and tendencies, seeks adequate measures for the establishment and preservation of its vital forces, measures which are a safeguard for the elimination of evils which menace its existence or make such existence difficult and unfortunate, and reforms which raise its spirits and ennoble its purpose, awakening and fortifying sentiments of charity for the helpless and of liberation for those who suffer from social injustices, and of fraternity and sympathy for all.

For this reason, democracy sincerely and honestly seen and honorably practiced, should not look for the majority in party politics whatever the party or the name it bears, but in the representation of all classes and of all legitimate interests.

You are not the representatives of one party but of the people as a whole; to give preference, therefore, to the interests of one class or group in prejudice to those of another would be not only unjust but dangerous. In your hands lies the establishment of democratic institutions, and it will be your task to show that the revolution has not been sterile; should you not do so the only result will be the substitution of the arbitrary will of one by the capricious and oppressive will of many. If you are today free from the pressure and guidance of those higher up, your decorum and the dignity of the Congress requires that you also be entirely independent of all others; whatever may compromise your liberty also compromises the future of the Republic.

Over the entrance to the Academy of the genial Plato this inscription appeared: “Only he who knows geometry enters here”. In this august assembly the noise of discordant passion should not penetrate and its tempestuous waves should not cross this threshold, for herein only the serene voice of reason should be heard searching for truth, and the sonorous voice of patriotism demanding that the Nation shall be great. Because of this, and in order to comply with your mission, you should always remember that none should enter here but he who has but one ideal: the public good; one desire only: to make the people free; one passion only: love for the Fatherland.