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as being so good that they are willing to promise its unconditional ratification if only we will desert those who have shown themselves our friends and restore to those who have shown themselves unfriendly the power to undo what they did. I pass by the question as to what assurance we have that they would now keep their pledge and not again refuse to ratify the treaty if they had the power; for, of course, I will not for one moment discuss the possibility of the United States committing an act of such baseness as to abandon the new Republic of Panama."

The United States entered into a treaty with the Republic of Panama, after having formally recognized its independence. This convention, which was ratified in February, 1904, is reproduced in full in the Appendix to this volume. Its chief provisions were the guarantee by the United States of the independence of the Republic of Panama; the immediate payment to the latter of the sum of $10,000,000 and the further payments during the life of the convention of $250,000 a year, beginning nine years after the ratification of the treaty; the grant to the United States in perpetuity of the use and control of a certain zone of land for the construction and operation of the canal; the agreement that the cities of Colon and Panama shall comply with the regulations of the United States in the matters of sanitation and that it shall have the right to enforce public order in them; the guarantee of the United States that the ports of Colon and Panama shall be free for all time and that the canal shall be neutral in perpetuity.

The decision of the Government to adopt the Panama route did not deter the advocates of a canal at Nicaragua from continuing to agitate the matter. In fact, a vigorous campaign was carried on by them in Congress and through the public press for years. The slightest opportunity for adverse criticism of the Panama undertaking and the men who were carrying it out was eagerly seized upon, and so limited was the actual knowledge of the subject that newspapers whose tendency was toward impartiality were often imposed upon by writers who claimed to be expert judges. During the first three years of the American occupation of the Canal Zone there was more nonsensical rubbish printed in newspapers and magazines regarding the Canal than would appear to be conceivable in the light of our present knowledge.

There was no lack of data upon which to found a decision as to the comparative merits of the rival routes. Both had been surveyed time and again by engineers of the utmost ability. Each had important features in favor of it but the balance of advantage easily lay in favor of Panama.

Whilst the Nicaraguan coast can not boast a single natural harbor on either side, the Panama route affords an excellent one at each terminus of the Canal. In the matters of winds, rains and earthquakes, the advantage lies with the latter region. The weight of expert opinion inclines to the idea that the difficulties to be overcome in construction would be much greater at Nicaragua and consequently the cost of a canal there would be proportionally larger than that of one at Panama. The San Juan River and Lake Nicaragua present problems quite as serious as those connected with the Chagres River. At Panama a substantial amount of the work had already been done, extensive facilities, including the railroad, existed for its continuance, and the conditions to be encountered were in a ess degree problematical than those at Nicaragua

With every year that has passed since the

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