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terior affairs. Sir Edward Grey, the British Foreign Minister, in reply to a question in the House of Commons, promptly repudiated the action of the United States, stating briefly that his Government did not maintain that the holder of a British passport was exempt in any way from observing the laws and regulations of Russia when traveling or attempting to travel in that country. France and Germany quickly followed suit with like declarations, thus leaving the United States alone in a position held to be untenable not only by Russia, but by other European countries even more deeply and intensely concerned in the welfare of foreign peoples than the United States. It may be noted also that in all these countries the native-born and the naturalized citizens of Russian origin and those bound to them by ties of race or religion play a far greater part in the government of the country than they do in the United States.
The Russian Government was at first inclined to active resentment against the United States, and promptly called attention to the indignation which would be aroused in America should Russia attempt to dictate as to the administration of the American immigration laws under which several million Russian subjects are ineligible for admission to the United States, passport or no passport. It was also recalled that in a given period of sixty days nearly two hundred Russians had been deported from America, while in the same time two American passports had been refused the visé required for travel in interior Russia. When the first and most acute stage of indignation and regret had passed, however, and it was tided over with skill and efficiency by the American ambassador then stationed in St. Petersburg, it was succeeded by an attitude of indifference, which still maintains.
A careful study of Russian trade with America shows that, treaty or no treaty, friendship or no friendship, her people can buy what they must from the United States without let or hindrance, and that a large percentage of what is bought from Russia will be taken regardless of international complications. Unfortunately, the arbitrary termination of the treaty is not the only cause for irritation. When Congress adopted the idea of a
five per cent. differential tariff rate in favor of goods imported in American bottoms, this provision was held to be inoperative against countries with which the United States had favored-nation treaties. There being no treaty with Russia at the time, and this being exceptional, the adoption of the differential was held to be purposely unfriendly to Russian trade. Whether the differential clause holds in the end or not, this impression naturally still prevails.
Closely following upon this action comes the unfortunate scandal attached to the appointment of an American ambassador to St. Petersburg, a place which has been vacant since June, 1913, when, by all rights, to fill this post promptly and efficiently, in view of the strained relations existing between the two countries, it should have been a first consideration of a newly inaugurated state department. The whole impression given by the incidents attendant upon the selection of a man for St. Petersburg is one of American indifference not only to the critical situation which actually exists, but to the importance of Russia as a possible friend and a valuable business colleague, one more than ready to facilitate a free exchange of civilities and commodities between the two countries.
If instead of terminating the treaty of 1832 between the United States and Russia in the brutal manner in which it was done, the United States Government had suggested the making of a new convention, such suggestion would have been agreed to. The pourparler preceding such a convention would have given opportunity for a full and free discussion of all points at issue and allowed of final compromise, which could only have resulted advantageously for all American citizens, native-born or naturalized. It would also have made possible an agreement with Russia providing for a relinquishment of all claims upon Russian subjects who became citizens of the United States. This principle was first brought into treaty obligations by the United States, and obtains with all countries with which this country has made treaties in recent years. In the case of Russia, however, there having been no recent treaty, no such agreement exists. It was time that a new convention should have been projected in order that
new and more intelligent relations might be brought about. It was not necessary, however, that the then-existing treaty should be beaten to death with a club. would have died a natural and easy death when its successor appeared as a result of the joint and friendly efforts of the two governments. The fact remains, however, that the United States chose the offensive and destructive method without a hint from constructive statesmanship as to what should take the place of that which was destroyed.
The diplomatic attitude of Russia today is easily stated. It is in effect that the United States, having seen fit to do away with the treaty, it rests with the United States to ask for a new agreement. It is also equally well understood that Russia cannot and will not yield on the main point which has held public attention in the United States, and this not through any obstinacy, but because of interior political and economic conditions requiring, in the judgment of the Russian authorities, a continuation for a while at least of the present policy toward foreigners visiting Russia, no matter from what country they may come. It is believed in Russia not only by the people at large, but by the government officials themselves, that the present passport system should be thoroughly revised and simplified. As now administered, it is a cumbersome and vexatious affair, acting in restraint of social intercourse and commerce. The legislative program of the Duma for the near future includes a plan for a revision of this now obsolete institution, but such revision will not be dictated by any foreign government, nor will it, when finally complete, take from the Russian government authorities supervisory rights over the comings and goings of those who travel to and from the empire. The purpose is to make travel easier and to make the ordinary tourist less aware of police surveillance. That free hand should be given, however, to those who wilfully or unwittingly are ready to add to the great difficulties attendant upon the maintenance of order and safety in that vast and complex community can hardly be expected by any one with even a cursory knowledge of Russian conditions.
Government, as a matter of courtesy to its own and foreign peoples, has maintained the status quo existing under the recent treaty in its treatment of Americans and American commerce. This, however, will not go on forever, and uncertainty as to the future has given a halt to an expansion of American trade in Russia, which two years ago promised to become one of the most notable features of American enterprise abroad. Millions of American money are in Russian banks to guarantee American securities; thousands of men are employed in America in manufacturing goods for shipment to Russia; fifty million dollars' worth of American cotton goes annually to serve the Russian spinners, whose cloth is sewed into shape by American machines in Russian hands. The virgin ground of southern Siberia is being turned over by American machinery, and the shiploads of grain that find. their way out to the trade channels of the world are made ready for market by instruments born of the ingenuity of American inventive genius.
In the meantime, while diplomacy waits upon action at Washington, the Russian
To sacrifice principle for material gain is no part of American purpose, and such a course, if pursued by the Government at Washington, would bring a prompt verdict of disapproval throughout the country; but to destroy American opportunity in a mistaken and futile effort to control the domestic affairs of a great and solvent European nation is a justing against windmills which brings only harm and humiliation to an international Don Quixote, and accentuates the troubles of those in that foreign land through a natural reactionary feeling of irritation at the part they play in bringing about an attempt at interference by outsiders.
It is difficult to grasp the potentialities of the Russian Empire. A bald statement of its size, population, and activities conveys some comparative idea, but even this fails to call up the picture as it exists. With an area of nearly nine million square miles as compared with the fewer than four million of the United States; with an annual ordinary expenditure of over fifteen hundred million dollars as against the less than seven hundred millions disbursed by the United States; with a population of nearly one hundred and sixty millions, increasing without immigration at the rate of nearly three mil
lions a year, and out of that population maintaining a regular army which on a peace basis numbers a million and a quarter of men, such a country affords a field over which the liveliest imagination can play at will, and yet fail to grasp its full significance in future history. It has been a drowsy giant, but is now waking out of sleep, and ready to fight, play, or work with its smaller, but more highly developed, world companions.
It takes long for new ideas to penetrate throughout this vast empire, but within the last few years such progress has been made as renders comparisons possible. Nearly one hundred million dollars will be spent this year for public education, and six million Russian children are now at school. The effort to secure more extended local government is making strong headway. The present Duma is a practical working legislative body which plays a vital part in the government of the country. Railroads are being pushed into new territory, and natural resources are being developed. The long journey from Moscow to Vladivostok now presents a panorama familiar to those who took part in the development of western America. The Russian Government is moving every year a minimum of 250,000 people from western to eastern Russia, settling them upon farms, and lending them money to till the land.
With all this movement toward better things, the empire is still a land of strange contrasts and contradictory evidence, and the reasons for this lie in the vastness of the territory, the varied character of the population, and the tremendous difficulties of government administration. The old bureaucracy is tenacious in its hold upon the affairs of the people, and the laws that govern the modern city of St. Petersburg would prove of no avail. among the Russian Mohammedans to the south or the Russian Mongols to the east. While in Moscow the factory whistles call thousands of skilled workmen to their daily tasks, the howls of arctic wolves still bring terror to the traveler crossing the plains. Between the northernmost ocean and the Black Sea live many races of men all calling themselves Russian, and the conditions under which they live are as varied as the strains of blood in their veins.
It will be many years before the Russian people cease to look abroad for the materials needed to develop their land and its resources and to adapt themselves to modern life. It is the greatest undeveloped market in the world for the products of skilled human labor. This development has, however, passed its beginning; it is even well on the way toward its promise for the future. America has played no small part in this awakening, and in turn the American people have profited largely, with apparently no limit. to what might accrue from intelligent enterprise, which should keep pace with Russian development. Americans were liked, and their wares were in high favor. The Russian Government was friendly, and treated American ventures with consideration. The first serious check to this state of affairs came with the termination of the treaty in 1911. As soon as the Russian people became really convinced that a serious and, as they viewed it, an unfriendly step had been taken, the whole attitude toward America and Americans underwent change. Competitors of Amercan firms were invited to come in where before they had little chance, and these same competitors have lost no opportunity to emphasize this anti-American spirit and lay permanent foundations for themselves.
The diplomatic strain is not the only evil which has resulted from the rudeness of the United States toward the Russian Government. Such strain could undoubtedly in time be relieved. But a direct and large financial loss has been inflicted upon American industry-a loss not to be measured by its obvious proportions at the moment, but rather in its relations to a future wherein the American people seeking outlet for the increasing product of their labor find that the Russian field has been prejudiced and intrenched against them.
Meanwhile the American Government apparently takes no notice other than to launch a scandal over the appointment of an American ambassador to St. Petersburg to fill a vacancy which has existed for many months. The American people are now asking those into whose hands they have given the appointive, legislative, and treaty-making powers of the nation, "What about Russia?"
THE QUALITY OF GENIUS
BY KATHARINE HOLLAND BROWN Author of "The New Nest," etc.
HAT you, Granny? Hist!" It was the voice of Peter, my eldest grandson, at the telephone, the deep, dark, shuddering note of the conspirator. "Lis
You need me badly to-day-to take you motoring. No, you don't feel any yearning need of me yet, but you'll get wise in a minute. This is the day, the awful day, that mother entertains her Amalgamated Association of High Brows up at Tower Hill-Sisters of the Signers, you know. She's giving her annual luncheon, and this time she has roped in Sir Christopher Lindley, the famous English playwright, to give them a spiel on "The Drama of To-day,' so it's a terrible frabjous occasion. Now, Granny love, won't you help me side step?"
"Yes, side step, vamose, fade. Mother had promised me, parole d'honneur, that I could duck this time, for I 've helped her swing that shindy two years in succession; but this morning the heavens fell. You know dad is slated to feed the Breslau committee, those eight worshipful yellow-legs who came over for the International Engineering Society-”
"Yes, but Charles Edward's luncheon at Tower Hill is set for Thursday week."
"For sure it was. Father had it all framed up for next Thursday, when the echoes of mother's hammerfest should have died away. But, alas! our little Deutsch brothers suddenly decided on a week-end run to Iowa to see the new Des Moines dam. With Teutonic calm they wired father that he might expect them for luncheon to-day instead of Thursday next."
"O Peter! and the Sisters of the Signers already under way! Oh, what a dreadful mix-up!"
"Ain't it awful, Mabel? But hark! The worst is yet to come. Father, of course, was charmed. He and mother I made some wild calculations, and figured that, by keeping them apart, both lunch
eons could be put through without bloodshed. Mother planned to give the Sisters an al-fresco spread on the front porch, while dad would corral his guests in the dining-room, then rush them back to town for the four-o'clock Chicago Limited. All was lovely; but this morning-whack! down came the fatal shears: father was summoned to Washington. He's leaving on the first train-Interstate Commerce grill, you know."
"O Peter! and desert his eminent guests! He must not. He can't."
"He can't do anything else, Granny. He's got to hearken to his country's call or else be cited for contempt. No, if I were you, I would n't try to condole with my dear eldest son. He's just finished blowing out a fuse, trying to tell his attorneys what he thinks of 'em. Now d' you see? In the face of this calamity, mother has gone back on her word. Faithless jade she is; she says I 've got to stay right on the job. Says I must rattle around in dad's shoes as best I may. Therefore, Granny, command me. Asheville or Jersey City, Hackensack or Hurricane Mountain, 't is all the same as long as it 's forty-five minutes from Tower Hill A-ah!" A hiss of baffled fury. "Foiled again!"
Then came the voice of Gwendolen, my daughter-in-law, alarmingly staccato, with no trace of its habitual velvet languor.
"Peter Wentworth, you would vex a saint. What nonsense have you been telling granny? I don't believe you gave her one word of my message. O Mother, I'm in the most dreadful straits! No, don't beg off, please; I must have you today. I can't possibly do without you. Yes, Peter will take his father's place as host to the Breslau committee. No, he can not take them to a club. We dare n't revoke our house invitation. Europeans are so fussy, anyway. Yes, I'm giving the Signers' luncheon at the very same minute, but I can carry it all through if
If there's anything that frightens me to panic, it's such a task as this. As a rule, I can maintain a decently conventional aspect at the children's grand affairs. As Peter proudly says, I 've never been caught drinking out of my fingerbowl yet; and thanks to the perennial stream of advice which my daughter, my daughter-in-law, my granddaughters, and my nieces pour into my listening ear, I manage to go about in seemly raiment. But as for entertaining their famous folk! The thought is consternation. The mere word genius brings always a daunting wonder, a thrill of awe. Yes, it's all very silly and early-Victorian of me, and those of the great that I have met face to face upon the narrow road of my days have been the least formidable of folk; never vainglorious, never puffed up; quiet, instead, and gentle, eager to serve those who are in need, to give happiness to little children. None the less, I can hardly lift my eyes to these, the light-bringers; for they seem always of such sublimer essence, loftier breed.
Peter's car did not break down; Peter was brutally prompt. Eight minutes later I got out, to find Gwendolen struggling
in one of those hideous quicksands that sooner or later entrap the most far-sighted hostess. The stars in their courses fought against poor Gwendolen that day. As for Peter Wentworth, I wanted to turn him over my knee. True, he loathes these functions, but that 's small excuse for the way he projected about, outwardly the suave young host, yet snatching every chance to fluster poor Gwendolen by some imp by-play. Presently, impeccably on the minute, Charles Edward's august_guests arrived, eight grave, substantial German gentlemen, all in customary garb of solemn black, with black gloves and ceremonious silk hats. Oddly enough, they were almost of a height, and the eight, in their somber raiment, advancing two by two to greet their hostess, gave a rather startling effect. However, that was no reason why Peter should turn to his mother and ask in a hushed aside whether the friends were to take a last look, or should he dismiss the audience at once. Poor Gwendolen nearly lost what little self-command she had left.
"At least I'm thankful they 're safely here, without any breakage," gasped Gwendolen. "If only Sir Christopher arrives on time, and Mrs. Sutphen Sands—"
"His lordship may be prompt, but Mrs. Sands will be late. Sands will be late. She's always late. 'Tis the prerogative of a a Signers' founder," said Peter, cheerfully. Gwendolen's eyes had flown to the door.
"There is Sir Christopher!" With a sigh of heartfelt relief she swept away. Perhaps I looked a little wild-eyed, for Peter laid a soothing hand on my arm.
"Calm yourself, Granny. He'll be dead easy." He nodded reassuringly toward the tall, stooped, gray-haired man who was coming inexorably toward me. "If he acts aloof and silent, break the ice with a few cheery questions. Ask him why is a genius, and what does it feel like. Tell him you have a dear little grandson at home who wants to know. Ask him if it 's true that his father was a pit boss, and used to come home soused, and did he, at the age of four, actually sell matches on the street corners, and of what touching contrasts life is made. Ask him-"
I did n't catch Peter's last question, but it was no great loss. Sir Christopher was already bowing over my hand. He did his devoirs with a clumsy carefulness,