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Two days later they arrived looking the judge straight in in sight of headquarters, hav- the face. ing passed fairly easily through W S told me he the confluence where the waters would never forget the scene : of the Mali and Nmai Kha the little court-house of corrumeet. Shannon spoke to Sau gated iron, the drip, drip of La as they drifted into the bank. the rain off the roof, the silent,
“You must come to hospital stuffy, little room filled to with me,” he said.
choking point with the Burman “Duwa, I cannot,” he said. rag-tag and bobtail, who loathe “I must go to the police.” Kachins, the smell, and then
“Why the police !” asked the question, “Do you realise Shannon.
what it means when you plead Chief, I killed a man up guilty? Do you realise there there (pointing back up-stream). is only one thing I can do ?” After killing him I went mad, And then Sau La, a stumpy and went off into the jungle. uncivilised little savage, with The headman and villagers all the passion of a great love : found me, and told me that "Is it wrong, Duwa, to kill a the Government wanted me. bamboo rat when it eats the So I came—to explain
household grain ? Is it a sin Shannon looked at the little to kill the tiger that steals one's savage, and marvelled at his
I loved my wife, and simple faith and absolute hon- I killed a thief. If the great esty, and, above all, his com- white ‘ Asoza 'considers I must plete trust in the white man's hang, I am ready. I am a judgment, for Sau La must Kachin, and I'm not afraid to have known that Government die:" Silence, and then the generally takes a life for a life magistrate, banging the table taken. Occasionally it means with his fist, with tears starting transportation, which to from his eyes like a highlyKachin is worse, for it means strung woman : “By Heaven ! home-sickness, and home-sick- I'd like to let you off.” And ness is worse than death. Shannon quietly: “May I tell
So this was the murderer he you something about this man, had come to give evidence sir ?” And then the story of against. “Well, anyway,” he the whirlpool, a long silence, thought, “I'll do my damn'dest and the quick decision against to get him off.”
all the laws and regulations of The local magistrate com- the hide-bound judicial world : menced the case the next day. “ This case may be settled by Shannon was main evidence, the village elders; you can but it was hardly needed, for go"; and the sudden light in the prisoner frankly owned to Sau La's eyes, and Shannon's committing the crime. He memory of his song :stood up with his manacled hands in front of him, and “ É-makhawn-É grai marawn ai lo.”
MUSINGS WITHOUT METHOD.
THOSE WHO PROPHESY ENGLAND'S RUIN-OUR ENEMIES ABROAD
It is being said all over the the last Australian. She was world by those to whom the represented as a nation of wish is father to the thought shirkers, which sent out Scots, that England is on the high- Irishmen, Canadians, Ausroad to ruin and decay. tralians, and New Zealanders Canada, our own loyal do- to do battle for her. When minion, rings, we are told, with the published figures proved the news of England's down- that she was bearing the brunt fall. The anti-English press of of the fighting, no word was America sedulously proclaims, offered of retraction in its largest type, the immi- apology. Now that the war nent collapse of Great Britain is over, the same amiable per(which meanwhile is paying sons who brought foul charges America tribute), and sends against England's honour are its newspapers
the publishing abroad the glad news Canadian frontier with a pecu- of her supposed embarrassliar satisfaction. There is no ment. They delight to picture returned traveller from Canada her as bankrupt in hope and who does not bring back in- pocket, as on the verge of telligence of our lost prestige, revolution, as unable to find of our waning influence; and any work for her labourers to the worst of it is that the do. They pretend, and pray, Canadians believe what they that she will presently descend are told. What is true of to the level of a fourth-rate Canada is true of our other power; and there is many an dominions, and it seems as enemy who would gladly throw though we are living again a stone at her as she descended in the corrupt atmosphere of from her pedestal. " propaganda,” which we were The hatred which her enemies asked to breathe in war-time. bear England proceeds from
In those far-off days Ger- envy. It irks them to see her many joined hands with holding a place which they America to darken the fair think should be theirs. They fame of England. England are irritated by her imperturbwould fight, it was said, unto ability. They believe that the time has come when her Empire the aggression and insult of should be divided up among her enemies. To-day he is themselves, and they rejoice more active than ever. He to pick up, to embroider, and would, if he could, destroy the to circulate the slightest rumour carefully established fabric of which can be turned to her society to flatter his vanity or discredit. For this hatred we to indulge his whim, and he should be grateful. It is merely gladly adds own noisy the tribute which jealous men rhetoric to the chorus of forpay to those who are beyond eigners, who "voice aloud," in their reach. We need not be a daily hymn of hate, the fall disturbed by the openly ex- of England. pressed envy of others. They And those Englishmen who are dangerous only when they still do not despair of the State sow the seeds of falsehood in keep an obstinate silence. Perour own dominions, and at- haps it is their arrogance which tempt to shake the faith of forbids them to correct the those, their neighbours, who falsehoods of ill-wishers. They owe (and pay) allegiance to refuse to make excuses, or to Great Britain. A more subtle defend themselves against asfoe, harmless for the most part, persion. Let the world abuse is the Englishman who takes us as it will, they say. The pleasure in abusing his own world cannot do us permanent country, and who cries Stink- harm, or shake our confidence ing Fish up and down the in ourselves. Besides, they are world. This gentleman, the not skilled in that odious busilegitimate descendant of the ness which is called "
propaWhigs, delights in cannibal- ganda.” They despise the liar ism. He would, if he could, so bitterly that they expose devour his country at his lie with reluctance. From meal. If his country find an this reluctance they suffered in enemy, there is the cannibal the war ; from this reluctance at the enemy's side. He has they suffer now when peace is been familiar to us for many seven years old. They thought, a day. He encouraged the with some justice, that truth Americans when they rebelled. would in the end overtake and He piously worshipped at the conquer falsehood, and meanshrine of Napoleon when the while they possessed their soul Corsican threatened the liberties in a patience which is not of England. He was, and still always prudent. For our own is, ready to rejoice in public at part, we believe that the best the fall of England, which he way of averting the despair in deemed (and deems) imminent. which our unamiable foes would One thing only he would not involve us is to set forth, as and will not do—he would not well as we can, the state of and will not by arm, voice, or England, the causes
of the pen defend his country against misery which we are said to
endure, and so discover what of disarming, by the sudden hope there is for the future. change from war to peace.
We are suffering, like the The relief brought with it carerest of Europe, from the re- lessness and the lust of pleasaction which inevitably follows ure. And what happened after the end of a great war. If we Waterloo was repeated with are in a worse condition than far greater intensity when the we were after Waterloo-and Treaty of Versailles was signed. our condition was bad enough The bow, drawn to its limit, then—it is because the Great was suddenly relaxed. Or, to War, though it did not last change the image, the sick so long as the struggle against man, restored suddenly to boisthe tyranny of Napoleon, was terous health, set no restraint more closely intensive than any upon his impulses. He clamwar in which we have ever oured for amusement, and yet been engaged. For the first refused to do the work and time in our history we were earn the money which should practically a nation in arms. pay for it. As the profiteers, The energy of the country was on the one hand, piled extravadevoted, wholly and solely, to gance upon extravagance, so the defeat of Germany, and it the working men shouted aloud is not wonderful that the main for higher wages and less toil. current of our industry was
The whole world seemed grossly turned into new channels. A materialised, and they who hundred years ago, on
the pretended that they had fought other hand, the normal life of a war to end war forgot their the country had been but aspirations. All they asked slightly disturbed, and yet the was that peace should be the peace which followed the fall herald of joyousness. of Napoleon did not bring calm Nor can we blame those who and prosperity to a troubled went out to seek the primrose people. A land,” says a wise path. They had escaped from historian, “in which no year the nightmare of war. The of the war passed without the nerves of many of them were building of factories, the en- shattered. They were not ready largement of mines, the re- to turn from the life of the claiming of waste, the con- trenches to toil of another kind. struction of piers, canals, roads, They had earned a holiday, and bridges, the invention of they thought, and they desomething new in sciences ap- manded as their right bread plied to arts, was troubled and and the circus. And they even streaked with blood in who might have given them consequence of the great dis- better counsel knew that their arming.” Why, then, did best chance of gathering votes distress and a streak of blood was to flatter the voters. And come upon England after so our demagogues cried out, Waterloo ? By the mere act on platforms and at the street
corners, that they would give nation time to choose between the returned soldiers houses fit the more and the less trustfor heroes to live in, when they worthy advocates of Liberal were unable to find hovels principles.” sufficient to shelter the weary. Fortunate, indeed, was the And, as always happens after nation which in a time of a war, authority began to stress found Lord Liverpool. decay. As in 1815, so in 1919 Fourteen
without and onwards, our governors break ! Though the superforgot how to rule, and the ficially clever Whigs laughed people, sensitive always to a at him, Liverpool was their weakening of authority, took master, as he was the master advantage of it. There is, of the country.
of the country. If only our however, this difference be- amateur diplomatists, whom tween the two periods. In the ineffable President Wilson 1815 the government of Eng- called "plain men ”–destined land was in stout hands, which, (so he said) to contrive a better if for a moment they lost hold peace than was made at Vienna of their task, speedily grasped -when they returned from it again. The head of the Versailles had found a Minister Government was Lord Liver with the force and character pool, who has been admirably of Liverpool holding the reins of described by a historian who office, all might have been well. never was
a partisan. “He Alas! in 1919 England fell an was a patient and discreet easy prey to the charlatans. man,” says this historian, And let it be added that
more fit for power than many in 1815 that great man, Lord men then alive whose intellects Castlereagh, stood at Liverwere more brilliant. He knew pool's side. A statesman,
fresh how far he must defer to men from the triumph of the peace, of genius, and he was not too he, too, was not afraid to exert proud to learn new lessons in his authority. The passing of politics; but he betrayed no the famous Six Acts proved that fear of orators, and he behaved the Government was resolved as if he knew that eloquence, to preserve order, and their if it was to rule Britons, must effect was salutary and immebe the outward sign of char- diate. For heroic measures acter. He courted neither the such as these our Ministers prince nor the populace. By had not the stomach. They the conscientious exercise of wavered and were lost. With authority he did as much as the hope of ease for themselves, any of his successors, and more they let everybody do as he than any of his predecessors, liked. Unable to construct the to make statecraft acceptable better life which they had to virtuous citizens. His tenure promised-how should politiof power lasted fourteen years cians construct it 1-they rewithout a break; it gave the nounced authority, took away