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men, or commended only by their own intrinsic merits, being dependent as they are for their efficacy and ultimate adoption upon the force and growth of public opinion in their favor, may be regarded as international laws in the making. But rules already adopted by all civilized states and justly enforceable against any offender by all or by any state or states especially aggrieved, are to be deemed international laws actually established as such. Such laws already cover numerous topics of great importance, as, for example, various written and unwritten codes governing the high seas and their navigation, the crime and penalties of piracy, the obligations of treaties, the jurisdiction over littoral and territorial waters and its limits, certain rights of neutrals, the rights and immunities of the Red Cross, and many other usages and practices prevailing in times of actual hostilities.

In view of the unanimity of civilized states necessary to constitute a rule of international law-a unanimity to be ordinarily inferred from long established usage and practice—it may be asked whether anything effective can really be done towards hastening the development of international law-whether such development must not await the slow and gradual process of piecemeal evolution from international transactions and incidents as they from time to time occur? Such a conclusion would be unfortunate and there is no sufficient reason for accepting it. Doubtless there are many other ways in which the accomplishment of the great object desired can be accelerated. But all combined must, it is believed, yield in potency to international conferences like those of the Hague. Each is an object lesson of the most efficacious sort. Each makes nations better acquainted through the familiar intercourse with each other of their leading public men. Each brings on able and thorough investigation and discussion of international relations and the rules which should govern them. Each of them is sure to lead to the discovery that on many important topics all nations are substantially agreed. Each is likely to leave behind a body of doctrine which commands universal assent. If propositions result to which there is temporarily only partial assent, each at least succeeds in bringing the questions involved before the world and in attracting to them consideration by the most eminent jurists and statesmen of all countries. Every Hague conference, indeed, in addition to the positive results reached, is a true educational campaign of world-wide and most beneficial influence. Suppose the proceedings of a particular conference should prove academic merely, and produce rules which, however intrinsically praiseworthy, do not at the time command the unanimous or even the general assent of civilized states. Nevertheless, if such rules be manifestly correct and salutary in themselves, it would be wrong to estimate them as of no account-it would be a grave mistake not to realize that though for the time being without political sanction, they have behind them a force of wonderful potency. Laws are not necessarily the most effective to which the police and the military are bound and presumably stand ready to compel obedience. If palpably unwise and at variance with the instincts and sentiments of the people to whom they apply, it is familiar experience that the executive power of the state seems to be paralyzed and that such laws remain practically inoperative. The same public opinion, which often nullifies the most formal and elaborate statutes, never fails to exact obedience to unwritten and intangible laws whose roots are found deep in the popular mind and conscience. In favor of all wise and just rules of international conduct formulated by conferences at the Hague or by other like conferences, the public opinion of the civilized world may be relied upon to furnish a force ever growing more and more potent, until such rules receive complete international recognition and acceptance. When in 1823 Webster would have had this country express sympathy with the revolt of the Greeks against Turkey and it was objected that the thing was useless because we did not propose to fight for Greece or to endanger our own peace in any way, he made an answer which is among the most impressive of his public utterances:

Sir, this reasoning mistakes the age. The time has been indeed when fleets, and armies, and subsidies, were the principal reliances even in the best cause. But, happily for mankind, a great change has taken place in this respect. Moral causes come into consideration in proportion as the progress of knowledge is advanced; and the public opinion of the civilized world is rapidly gaining an ascendency over mere brutal force. It is already able to oppose the most formidable obstruction to the progress of injustice and oppression, and as it grows more intelligent and more intense, it will be more and more formidable. It may be silenced by military power, but it can not be conquered. It is elastic, irrepressible, and invulnerable to the weapons of ordinary warfare. It is that impassible, inextinguishable enemy of mere violence and arbitrary rule which, like Milton's angels,

"Vital in every part, Can not but by annihilating die.”

If the foregoing observations are of any value, it consists in noting and emphasizing the crucial fact that individualism as the essence of the relations between states must be regarded as largely modified by what may be termed internationalism. State independence as the basis of international law has become radically qualified by state interdependence. The importance of the change not merely in theoretical but in practical consequences may be readily tested. In seeking for the ideal condition of international relations, the paramount object is the prevention of war-is international peace. But the greater the interdependence of any two states, the more each relies upon the other for the essentials of well-being, the more intimately their respective peoples are bound together by social and commercial ties, the less likely they are to engage in war and the more likely they are to provide against it in advance by arbitration agreements and all other appropriate preventive measures. Further, any would-be belligerents not only stand to each other in relations of mutual dependence, but each of them stands in similar relations to other civilized states who will be sufferers by war as well as the actual combatants themselves. Hence comes an outside pressure upon such belligerents to settle their quarrel without fighting-a pressure which will be powerful in all cases and is irresistible in many even after hostilities have become imminent. But the potency of these interdependent relations of states by no means delays showing itself until a warlike crisis is actually at hand. It leads the wise and patriotic statesmen of all countries to unite their best energies in conceiving plans and devising machinery through which the entire body of civilized states shall use its influence to disperse war clouds almost automatically and as fast as they rise above the horizon. The Hague conference of 1899 did much in that direction by facilitating international arbitration and making mediation between angry states rather a friendly courtesy than a piece of officious impertinence. Other like conferences may be expected to make substantial progress in the same direction and the advent of the time when “Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more” is by no means to be put down as among the dreams of poets or the visions of seers. The interdependent relations of states, constantly increasing in number and closeness and strength, are constantly making war increasingly difficult, impracticable and repulsive. They are steadily bringing nearer and making more imperative agreements between the civilized states of the world, by which war, already branded as the worst possible violation of the dictates of common sense and sound morals, shall also be a crime in the sight of international law and as such be both preventable and punishable by all the forces which organized civilization may be able to command.

RICHARD OLNEY.

BOARD OF EDITORS OF THE AMERICAN JOURNAL

OF INTERNATIONAL LAW

CHARLES NOBLE GREGORY, State University of Iowa.
ROBERT LANSING, Watertown, N. Y.
John BASSETT MOORE, Columbia University.
WILLIAM W. MORROW, San Francisco, Cal.
LEO S. Rowe, University of Pennsylvania.
Oscar S. STRAUS, Washington, D. C.
GEORGE G. Wilson, Brown University.
THEODORE S. WOOLSEY, Yale University.
DAVID J. HILL, The Hague, European Editor.

Managing Editor
JAMES BROWN Scott, George Washington University.

EDITORIAL COMMENT

THE SECOND PEACE CONFERENCE OF THE HAGUE

The second Hague peace conference is no longer a matter of speculation, it is now a certainty. Invitations have been issued to and accepted by the recognized states of the world, and chosen representatives of these states will meet at the Hague on the afternoon of June 15, 1907.

The first conference was looked upon as an experiment and many there were who shook their heads in doubt. It did not wholly justify the hopes of its friends and well-wishers. It did not produce a general disarmament, neither did it succeed in limiting armaments nor in placing a limit upon the expenditures necessary to preserve peace by force. It did, however, discuss these great problems and relegated them, unsolved though they were, to the consideration of a future and perhaps more favorable conference. They are in the nature of unfinished business and will doubtless be considered and treated as such.

If war was not abolished and the era of universal peace ushered in, a serious and successful attempt was made to give definiteness and consistency to the laws of war on land, and to the sick and wounded upon the seas there were extended the humane principles of the Red

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