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Commencement of the Discussion on the separate Paragraphs of the Address-Amendment to first Paragraph proposed by M. de Carnè, and rejected-Amendment to second Paragraph by M. Gustave de Beaumont-Speeches of M. de Beaumont, Marshal Bugeaud, M. Marc Girardin, and M. Guizot-Amendment proposed by M. Leon de Malleville to third Paragraph-Speeches of M. Peyramont, M. Odillon Barrot, M. Guizot, and M. Dufaure-Amendment rejected-Speeches of M. Billault, M. Dumon, and M. Odillon Barrot on question of third Paragraph-Demand for Secret Ballot-Narrow Escape of Ministers from Defeat-Whole Address carried by a large Majority-Presentation of Address to the King— Discussion in the Chamber of Deputies on the State of the Law as regarded religious Bodies in France-Speeches of M. Thiers, M. Dupin, M. Berryer, and M. Lamartine-Debate on the Arming of the Fortifications round Paris-Speeches of General Leydet, M. Arago, M. Lamartine, and M. Thiers-Prorogation of the French Chambers-War in Algeria-Abd-El-Kader-Shocking Atrocity committed by a French Officer in suffocating a Kabyle Tribe in a Cavern-Disasters suffered by the French Troops-Destruction of Colonel Montagnac and upwards of Four Hundred Soldiers at Djemma-Ghazaouat-General Bourjolly compelled to retreat-Death of Colonel Berthier-Effect of these Disasters in France-Indiscreet Letter of Marshal Bugeaud-Surrender of Two Hundred French Troops to the Arabs-Embarkation of Marshal Bugeaud for Africa-Further Operations in Algeria-Resignation by Marshal Soult of the Office of Minister of War-New Appointments-Opening of the new Session of the French Chambers-Royal Speech.
HE general discussion being closed, the debate on the separate paragraphs commenced. On the reading of the first paragraph, M. de Carnè moved an amendment, which was, after a spirited discussion, rejected by a majority of 28. A debate then arose upon the following alteration in the wording of the second para
graph, proposed by M. Gustave de Beaumont.
"In resuming to-day our labours amidst a profound calm, we should be happy to have it in our power to congratulate ourselves without reserve on the speedy re-establishment of peace, as we applaud, with the entire of France, the brilliant success of our arms."
M. Gustave de Beaumont having been called to the tribune, proceeded to examine the different clauses of the treaty concluded with Morocco, some of which he regarded as puerile, and others as impossible to execute. He particularly condemned the omission in the treaty of an indemnity to defray the expenses of the war. The Ministry at first had deemed it indispensable, its agents were of the same opinion, and all the reasons hitherto assigned to justify that omission, had failed to convince him of its expediency; for, in his opinion, it would have been the most efficacious means of making the Emperor and the Moors feel their defeat and the power of the French arms. Why did England attach so much value to the payment of an indemnity to Mr. Pritchard? It was not for the consideration of the 25,000f. or 30,000f. to which that indemnity would amount. It was because that indemnity was the symbol of defeat, and of the failure of a negotiation. M. de Beaumont thought that the next care of the negotiators should have been to fix at once in the treaty the boundary line between the two countries, the settlement of which he feared would be productive of much bloodshed.
Marshal Bugeaud here interrupted M. de Beaumont, and observed, that the settlement of the question would suffer no difficulty; that the limits of the Turkish possessions were well known, being marked by the territory occupied by five Algerian tribes.
M. de Beaumont next criticised the clause of the treaty relative to Abd-el-Kader, and suggested that, instead of leaving the Emperor at liberty to expel or remove him
from the frontier, the negotiators should have insisted on the adoption of either alternative, and demanded, with Marshal Bugeaud, that the Emir should be conveyed to one of the Atlantic harbours of the empire, and there placed under the surveillance of a French Consul. France had no right to complain of the presence of the Emir, in Morocco, he was protected by the stipulations of a treaty which, he regretted to say, was a mere piece of paper of no value. The precipitation with which it had been concluded was explained by the receipt of a despatch from London, expressive of the greatest terror, and the desire to obtain the insertion of a favourable sentence in the speech of the Queen of Great Britain on proroguing Parliament, on the 5th of September, and for that purpose it was necessary for the Minister to have it in his power to inform Lord Aberdeen that the treaty was signed. England, he knew, was jealous of the power of France, in Africa, but she also understood what was just and right. The Ministry might have told England that France had no idea of extending her conquests in Africa, but that she would defend herself, and England would have appreciated such language.
Marshal Bugeaud next rose and said, that when he first read the treaty with Morocco he did not approve all its clauses. He had blamed the stipulation relative to Abd-el-Kader, and the absence of guarantees; but subsequent events in Morocco had since convinced him that the Government had perhaps acted more wisely. The Emperor would not have been free to execute the conditions of the treaty, particularly as respected Abd-el-Kader-that powerful ene
my, that man of genius, who would not leave any repose to the French so long as he should have a soldier left. Marshal Bugeaud confessed that he had been surprised by the attack of the Moors, for nothing announced any serious hostility on that side. He had, however, soon collected his detached forces, and might not at first have been sufficiently strong to March upon Fez, but, after the victory of Isly, when the Moorish army had been completely dispersed, he could have advanced on that city without any great obstacle; the heat alone presented serious difficulties, for the day after the battle (August 16th) the thermometer ranged 47 degrees in the shade, and 61 degrees in the sun. Marshal Bugeaud, however, observed that considerable reinforcements would have been necessary. He then described the immense works executed by the army in Algeria, and the results obtained by the expeditions undertaken into the interior of the regency, in a commercial point of view, urged the necessity of persevering in the military system pursued of late, and declared that with 100,000 men judiciously employed the colonization of Algeria would proceed more rapidly and satisfactorily.
M. St. Marc Girardin said, that he did not ascend the tribune to reply to the illustrious officer who had just addressed the Chamber— for Marshal Bugeaud could only find there warm admirers, but to express the opinion of the minority of the committee on the amendment. He wished neither to increase nor diminish the differences which separated him from his old friends. That sentiment he had already maintained frankly in that tribune, and would do so still. He
was the more disposed to speak so, because he looked on the Ministerial question as already settled. Cries of "No, no," from the left.) Yes, said the honourable deputy, that question was disposed of. (Fresh denial from the same quarter.) Well, then, it was in all probability disposed of; and when he stood there to express his sentiments, he hoped that he should not be exposed to be treated either as an intriguer or a candidate for place. The utmost that he could be accused of was, that he was a member of a coalition, and that would be an error from which, he trusted, he should find persons amongst the Ministry itself to exculpate him. But to refer to the amendment. What he blamed particularly was, that Marshal Bugeaud had not been employed in the negotiations relative to the treaty. By whom, in fact, could France have been better represented than by the Governor-General of Africa -the victor of Isly? Who could better have judged of the situation? And it was evident, from the only despatch of the illustrious Marshal that had been laid before the Chamber, that he expected himself to be so employed. Compare the situation of the victorious General, stipulating beneath the shadow of his flag, to that of our Consul-General at Tangier. No one was more ready than himself to render justice to the intelligence, the zeal, and the patriotism of that functionary, at Tangier; but he had no precise and positive information, and the despatches of Marshal Bugeaud only reached him from Paris. In such a barbarous country there was no means of communication; what passed at Ouchda was not known at Tangier.
Thus, while their Consul-General was still hoping for peace, war had broken out; war, not attended with danger, for the gallant Marshal was there, but with all its fresh complications. By this parallel he wished to compare the situation of the negotiator chosen with him, whom he could have wished to have seen in that position; the former was ignorant of facts until long after they had occurred; the latter was ignorant of nothing that was passing, and knew the secret of Arab cunning. Was it not to be readily believed that when the same hand wielded the sword and guided the penthat when it was the conqueror who presented himself to treat, surrounded by all the halo of victory, that the interests of the country would be better defended than when the task was confided to a negotiator ill-informed and devoid of all personal consideration? It had been said that there was also at Tangier a negotiator armed by victory. God forbid. (Interruption.) He (M. de St. Marc Girardin) considered he rendered a great and solemn homage to the Prince de Joinville in speaking of him. (Fresh and loud interruption.) What! was it to be supposed he should have heard the reporter on the address, and he should not reproach him with it, speak of the Prince de Joinville and of the cannon of Tangier, without speaking of the cannon of Isly? Ministerial responsibility covered all, and consequently permitted the discussion, not assuredly of names and titles, but it permitted the use in a speech of the name of a prince who had been a negotiator-the name of a prince for whom he hoped no one doubted his pro
found respect. He was therefore persuaded that he had made use of no expression which might reach to him a prince he honoured and admired-to that illustrious negotiator. (A voice: "He was no negotiator.") True, he was no negotiator; but it was under the cannon of his ships that the negotiations were concluded. However that might be, it was in consequence of entrusting the negotiation to improper persons that the idea occurred of stipulating that Abd-el-Kader should be treated with generosity and consideration; it was to the false appreciation of the power of Abderrhaman, who was rather treated as a powerful chief than as one vanquished and lowered to such a point, that he was prevented from even discussing the clauses of a treaty. ("Hear, hear!") He therefore complained of the nature of the negotiations and of the choice of the agents employed; he complained of the absence of guarantees, and in saying this he only repeated the idea of the Minister of the Interior, who admitted that all their guarantee was the possibility of a fresh campaign in the spring. He considered that the Chamber ought not to give an absolute and unreserved approbation to the policy of the Cabinet. It had never been accustomed to do so.
When a formal vote of blame was proposed, it merely contented itself with not blaming, but took care not to vote what might be taken for undoubted approbation. That was the course proposed by the amendment, and the Chamber, by acting so, would preserve all its independence.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs said, that he did not arise to again take part in the discussion, be
cause he could not add anything to the reasons which the Chamber had already heard; he came forward merely to declare, that the Government having expressed, in the speech from the throne, its opinion on the affairs of Morocco; on the manner in which the war was carried on and the peace effected; and having said that France had proved her power by the former, and her moderation by the latter; finding, moreover, that this opinion was repeated in the address, the Government rejected the amendment of M. de Beaumont, as being of a nature to completely change the meaning of the address, which could not then respond to the Royal Speech. The Government, therefore, rejected the amendment now proposed, as it had done that of M. de Carnè the preceding day.
The first paragraph was afterwards adopted, and M. de Beaumont having withdrawn his amendment to the second, that also was adopted.
When the third paragraph was proposed, M. Leon de Malleville moved the following amendment: "We are happy to learn that the accord so necessary to the repose of the world has been maintained between the two States, but we regret that, in granting a reparation which was not due, the rules of justice and reciprocity, which France shall always respect, were not sufficiently taken into account." M. Leon de Malleville, having been called to the tribune to develop his amendment, said, that the Chamber having granted a Bill of indemnity to the Ministry on the ensemble of its policy, the amendment he proposed was not directed against its existence; his intention was merely to examine the quesVOL. LXXXVII.
tion in itself, a question which had wounded to such a degree the national susceptibility; he meant the indemnity awarded to Mr. Pritchard, of which he did not hesitate to declare the country was unanimous in disapproving. ("No! no!" from the Ministerial benches.) He then entered into considerations to prove that no cordial alliance should prevail between Great Britain and France without a perfect reciprocity, and on that condition alone was he a partisan of that alliance. M. de Malleville protested his high respect for the work of the English missionaries who had initiated the savages of Oceania in a knowledge of the doctrine of Christ, and in the arts of civilization; but Mr. Pritchard, in his eyes, was no missionary; he was a mere trader, an intriguer, the mayor of the palace of Queen Pomare, the King of Tahiti. All the French authorities in the Pacific spoke in high terms of the English missionaries, Mr. Pritchard alone excepted. M. Malleville had blamed the establishment of the French at Tahiti, because he had foreseen all the obstacles and complications that occupation would produce; but once the French flag hoisted on that island, he had felt it imperative to defend its honour and dignity. He then described all the circumstances that had preceded and followed the arrest of Mr. Pritchard. Mr. Pritchard, he said, was no longer an English Consul; he had remained at Tahiti as a spy on the French; he had had many opportunities to proceed to his new residence, but he had no doubt received instructions from his Government to remain at a post where he had rendered, and could yet render, such important ser[R]