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Canal Zone. Following the Hague Convention No. 13, it provides that a period of not less than twenty-four hours must elapse between the departure of a vessel of war or vessel falling under Rule 2 of one belligerent and a similar vessel of its adversary. The order of departure is determined by the order of arrival, unless the ship which arrived first is so circumstanced that an extension of its stay is permissible. A belligerent vessel of war or ship falling under Rule 2 may not depart until twenty-four hours have elapsed since the departure of a private vessel of his adversary.
Rule 12 contains provisions which appear to be intended to discourage the hovering of belligerent ships in or near the waters of the Canal Zone which might tend unduly to interfere with the use of the Canal by other belligerents or by neutral vessels. It provides that a belligerent warship or vessel falling under Rule 2 shall, if it returns to Canal waters within a week after departure therefrom, lose its privilege of precedence in departure over vessels flying a hostile flag which may enter those waters after its return and within one week from its previous departure. This rule applies whether the belligerent vessel has passed through the Canal or not.
The prohibition contained in Rule 7 against the furnishing of supplies to belligerent vessels at the Canal by the Government of the United States is extended by Rule 13 to the use of the repair facilities and docks belonging to the United States, except in cases of actual distress. In these exceptional cases, the repairs may only be made upon order of the Canal authorities, to the degree necessary to render the vessel seaworthy, and they must be made with the least possible delay. The maintenance at the Canal by the Government of the United States of facilities for the repair of ships operates against the establishment of such facilities by private enterprise, and vessels in need of assistance will necessarily be obliged either to go without repairs or be allowed the use of the government-owned plants. Under these circumstances, the granting of this accommodation by the United States Government to the vessels of all belligerents on equal terms would seem to be a justifiable relaxation of the rule which forbids the supplying of war materials by a neutral government to a belligerent Power. In all other respects, the rule conforms literally to the requirements of Article 17 of Hague Convention No. 13.
By Rule 14 the use of radio installation on all vessels of belligerents, whether public or private, and on all vessels coming within Rule 2, is restricted to Canal business. This is designed to prevent the transmission of communications from vessels in the Canal Zone to belligerents outside of that jurisdiction. It conforms to the inhibition in Article 5 of Hague Convention No. 13.
Rule 15 is a new provision. It forbids belligerent air craft, public or private, not only to descend or ascend within the jurisdiction of the United States in the Canal Zone, but to pass through the air spaces above the lands and waters within that jurisdiction. The right of the United States to forbid the use of its territory for the landing and ascent of air craft is clear; but, in view of the unsettled state of the law as to the jurisdiction in the air space above national territory, the assumption of such jurisdiction by the United States at Panama is interesting and important, and may be regarded as a definite indication of the attitude of the Federal Government toward the subject. The prohibition may be easily defended as a necessary safeguard to protect the valuable property in the Canal from the danger of injury involved in the passage of air craft over it, and as a means of preventing belligerents from spying upon enemy vessels using the Canal.
Finally, Rule 16 includes within the Canal Zone, for the purposes of the rules, the cities of Panama and Colon and the harbors adjacent thereto. The proclamation states that the United States has authority to do this under its treaty with Panama of February 26, 1904. The specific articles of the treaty granting this authority are not mentioned, but it is no doubt included in the right and duty of the United States to maintain the neutrality of the Canal and to preserve the independence of the Republic of Panama. If such authority were not exercised by the United States, the proximity of the cities of Colon and Panama to the Canal under a separate jurisdiction would make it difficult, if not impossible, for either the United States or the Republic of Panama to apply and enforce the ordinary rules of neutrality upon the Isthmus. In view of the close association of the interests of the United States and Panama, a protocol was signed by the two Governments on October 10, 1914, to facilitate the maintenance of their neutral obligations. This protocol is referred to in the President's proclamation and is annexed to it. It provides "That hospitality extended in the waters of the Republic of Panama to a belligerent vessel of war or a vessel belligerent or neutral, whether armed or not, which is employed by a belligerent power as a transport or fleet auxiliary, or in any other way for the direct purpose of prosecuting or aiding hostilities, whether by land or sea, shall serve to deprive such vessel of like hospitality in the Panama Canal Zone for a period of three months, and vice versa."
SECRETARY BRYAN'8 PEACE PLAN
Previous editorials in the Journal have reported the progress made from time to time by Secretary of State Bryan in the negotiation of treaties for the advancement of peace in the form devised by him, namely, by providing for commissions of inquiry to pass upon international disputes to which arbitration treaties do not or are not applied or upon any other difference which can not be adjusted by diplomatic methods. For the convenience of our readers, the present editorial will give a brief resume of what has so far been accomplished.
Up to the present time, 35 nations have accepted the plan in principle, namely, Argentina, Austria-Hungary, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, China, Costa Rica, Cuba, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Italy, the Netherlands, Nicaragua, Norway, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Persia, Portugal, Russia, Salvador, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Uruguay, Venezuela. A comparison of this list with the nations invited to the Second Hague Peace Conference shows that only 10 have failed to accept the plan in substance and among these one first-class power only will be found, namely, Japan. It is not likely that Japan was omitted from the list of nations which were invited to adhere to the plan, and the absence of its name from the list of acceptances is no doubt due to the unsettled state of certain well-known questions outstanding between the two governments. Among the remaining 9 nations which have not accepted are found four Balkan States, Bulgaria, Montenegro, Roumania, and Servia, which appear to have been too much occupied with warlike affairs to give serious consideration to other matters. Turkey has also failed to accept, probably for the same reason, and Luxembourg and Siam likewise do not appear on the list of acceptances. All of the American republics are included in the list of acceptances except two, namely, Colombia and Mexico. In the case of the latter country, the absence of a government recognized by the United States is obviously the reason for the failure of that nation to be included in the plan at the present time, and the outstanding dispute between Colombia and the United States growing out of the separation of Panama is probably the reason for Colombia's non-appearance on the list.
Of the 35 nations which have accepted the plan in principle, 30 have already actually signed treaties. Twenty-one of these, with the dates of signature of the treaties, are listed in the editorial on page 566 of the Journal for July, 1914. On August 29th a treaty was signed with Paraguay, and we noted in a comment in the last number, page 876, the signature on September 15th of treaties with China, France, Great Britain and Spain. Since then treaties have been concluded as follows: Russia, October 1, 1914; Ecuador, Greece and Sweden, October 13, 1914, making 30 treaties in all. This leaves only 5 treaties to be negotiated with the countries which have accepted the plan in principle, namely, Austria-Hungary, Belgium, Cuba, Germany, Haiti. It will be noted that 3 of these are countries engaged in the European war, and treaties with them are likely to be postponed until they again turn their attention to the pursuits of peace.
Of the treaties actually signed, all of them have received the advice and consent of the Senate to their ratification, excepting those with Panama and Santo Domingo. The special relation which the United States has assumed by treaty toward those countries is no doubt the cause of the delay in the action of the Senate. The dates on which the Senate's favorable action was taken upon the treaties are as follows:
Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Denmark,
France, Great Britain, Spain.
Ecuador, Greece, Sweden.
Of the foregoing treaties, ratifications have been exchanged of 10, as follows:
Bolivia, January 8, 1915; Costa Rica, November 12, 1914; Denmark, January 19, 1915; France, January 22, 1915; Great Britain, November 10, 1914; Guatemala, October 13, 1914; Norway, October 21, 1914; Portugal, October 24, 1914; Spain, December 21, 1914; Sweden, January 11, 1915.
THE PURCHASE OF VESSELS OF WAR IN NEUTRAL COUNTRIES BY
The recent attempt of a belligerent engaged in the European war to place contracts with American manufacturers for the construction and purchase of submarines and its abandonment at the suggestion of President Wilson raise interesting and somewhat technical questions involving the neutral obligations of the United States, especially as a submarine may be completely constructed, launched and leave the jurisdiction of the United States under its own steam, or in tow, or it may be carried as cargo in parts or as a whole on board a merchant vessel. The remarkable evolution in the types of the engines of modern warfare is so recent and rapid that questions concerning them are likely to arise at any time for which no authoritative precedent may be found, and the present question, if it had not been settled by the voluntary action of the manufacturers,1 would have necessitated the application of principles rather than an appeal to precedents for its solution.
1 The official statement which ended the incident, issued by the Secretary of State on December 7, 1914, reads: "When information reached the State Department that the Fore River Company was planning to build a number of submarines for one of the allies, inquiry was made to ascertain the facts. As a result of the inquiry, Mr. Schwab called at the State Department last week with his attorney, and laid before the department what his company had planned to do, stating that before undertaking the work he had secured the opinion of a number of international lawyers, and was keeping within the requirements of neutrality as outlined by them.
"I stated to him that the President, basing his opinion upon information already obtained, regarded the work, as contemplated, a violation of the spirit of neutrality, but told him I would lay his statement before the President, and then give him a final answer.
"On Friday I had a conference with the President, and he instructed me to inform Mr. Schwab that his statement only confirmed him in the opinion previously formed that the submarines should not be built. Within a few minutes after my return from the White House, Mr. Schwab called me by long-distance telephone, and told me