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have worked for the downfall of the United States, and would at the same time have avenged her former defeats and ridded herself of a powerful competitor. She has had many opportunities to expose the United States to the greatest dangers, without any risk to herself, by merely allowing the European Powers to attack them, but she has steadfastly resisted their temptations to countenance European aggression.
The great democratic Republic is naturally not beloved by the military monarchies of Europe. They see in it a great danger and desire its downfall. Hence many Continental writers have recommended that a pan-European coalition should be formed against the United States. Time after time the States of the Continent have endeavoured to secure Great Britain's support, or at least her neutrality, in order to be able to encroach upon the Monroe Doctrine or to strike at the United States, but they have always failed. Great Britain's refusal to countenance European aggression, even passively, has sprung from her race instinct, not from her fear of losing Canada. In the first place, the United States would have had no cause to attack Canada if Great Britain merely maintained a strict neutrality in the event of a war between the United States and some European Power or Powers. Secondly, the United States would not find it very easy to conquer the Dominion. Last, and not least, it must not be forgotten that, while the Continental Powers could never obtain Great Britain's support against the United States, Great Britain herself would probably very readily have received the support of the Continental Powers against the great Republic had she gone to war with that country. If, for instance, President Cleveland's highhanded action regarding Venezuela in 1895 should unhappily have led to an American attack upon Canada, Great Britain need not have stood alone. That fact should be borne in mind by all those on both sides of the Atlantic who believe that Great Britain's attitude towards the United States has in the past been dictated by her fear of losing Canada.
An Anglo-Saxon reunion is highly desirable upon ideal grounds, and it is equally necessary to the British Empire and to the United States for the most potent practical reasons. The first instinct of nations, as of individuals, is that of self-preservation, and their principal requirements are peace and security. At first sight the British Empire and the United States appear to be very differently situated. The one is a widely scattered island-Empire which is extremely vulnerable, being exposed to attacks on many sides, while the other is a firmly knitted and homogeneous Continental State, difficult to attack and impossible to conquer. However, these outward geographical and structural differences merely obscure the fact that the British Empire and the United States are similar in character, that they have identical interests, that they are threatened by the same dangers, that they suffer from the same disadvantage of lacking powerful standing armies, that both can be attacked only by sea, and therefore depend upon their fleet for their security from attack, and that consequently both are equally strongly interested that neither one of the great military Powers nor a combination of military Powers should become supreme at sea.
Admiral Mahan, the great American naval writer, said, in 1890, in the Atlantic Monthly :
While Great Britain is undoubtedly the most formidable of our possible enemies, both by her great navy and by the strong positions she holds near our coasts, it must be added that a cordial understanding with that country is one of the first of our external interests. Both nations doubtless, and properly, seek their own advantage ; but both, also, are controlled by a sense of law and justice, drawn from the same sources, and deep-rooted in their instincts. Whatever temporary aberration may occur, a return to mutual standards of right will certainly follow. A formal alliance between the two is out of the question, but a cordial recognition of the similarity of character and ideas will give birth to sympathy, which in turn will facilitate a co-operation beneficial to both; for if sentimentality is weak, sentiment is strong.
If we look more closely into the circumstances of the British Empire and of the United States, we find that they are in a very similar position. The United States are no longer an invulnerable continental State. Their interests, which were formerly purely continental, have become world-wide. By the acquisition of Hawaii, the Philippine Islands, Porto Rico, Guam, Samoa, the Panama Canal, and by their interest in Cuba and many other islands and territories which are of great strategical importance to them, they also have become a widely scattered and very vulnerable Empire, and their vulnerability is all the greater, as the United States army and navy are considerably weaker than are the British army and navy. The loss of the magnificent Pearl Harbour on the island of Oahu, which lies midway between the Pacific Coast and Asia, would, as is generally recognised in America, be as serious a loss to the United States as the loss of Gibraltar would be to Great Britain, and the loss of the Panama Canal would probably be more serious to them than the simultaneous loss of the Mediterranean route and the Cape route to the East would be to Great Britain and the British Empire.
In 1894 Admiral Mahan published in the North American Review a paper entitled 'Possibilities of an AngloAmerican Reunion,' in which he said:
Partners, each, in the great commonwealth of nations which share the blessings of European civilisation, Great Britain and the United States alone, though in varying degrees, are so severed geographically from all existing rivals as to be exempt from the burden of great land armies ; while at the same time they must depend upon the sea, in chief measure, for the intercourse with other members of the body of nations upon which national well-being depends.
To Great Britain and the United States, if they rightly estimate the part they may play in the great drama of human progress, is entrusted the maritime interest, in the broadest sense of the word.
I am convinced firmly that it would be to the interests of Great Britain and of the United States and for the benefit of the world that the two nations should act together cordially on the seas.
Admiral Mahan was right. As Great Britain and the United States have no enormous standing armies, as they are not likely ever to have standing armies capable of facing those of the great military States, and as they do not desire to become a nation in arms in the continental sense, they must perforce control the seas so as to be able to keep the huge armies of Europe, and perhaps of Asia as well, at arm's length. Let the great military nations of Europe share the rule of the land in Europe, but let the Anglo-Saxons share between them the rule of their own seas in which they are equally vitally interested. Whether Great Britain or whether the United States rule the seas is, after all, of minor importance. The thing that matters is that the seas should be ruled by the peaceful AngloSaxons and not by a great military nation.
Providence and the wisdom and energy of its early rulers and colonisers have greatly favoured the Anglo-Saxon race. A glance at the map shows that practically all the most valuable and the most promising territories and strategical positions in the world are owned or controlled by the Anglo-Saxon nations. To civilised nations the value of extensive territories lies chiefly in this, that they afford an outlet to their surplus population. The more thinly populated territories situated in a temperate zone are, the greater is their value to them.
The policy of powerful nations is guided not by their momentary dispositions but by their great and abiding interests. Self-preservation is their first instinct and their first duty. All the great military nations of the Continent of Europe, Russia alone excepted, and China and Japan, are greatly over-populated, and are therefore in urgent need of territories in a temperate zone, for, without the possibility of expansion under the national flag, they are bound to stand still and then to decline in relative power and influence. The future belongs evidently to those countries which possess vast reserves of thinly populated territories. How happy, in this respect, is the position of the United States and the British Empire will be seen from the following table :
The British Empire and the United States have room for hundreds of millions of people. Therefore it is only natural that the military Powers, which have a population of 200 people and 300 people and more per square mile, look with longing and envy to the vast, fruitful, highly mineralised and thinly populated territories, situated in a temperate zone, which are owned and controlled by the Anglo-Saxon nations, especially as these hold in addition all the most important strategical points which command the approaches to their world-wide possessions.
The Continent of America lies midway between overpopulated Europe and over-populated Asia. Its east coast is coveted by the overcrowded European, and its west coast by the overcrowded Asiatic, nations. How thinly some of the most desirable parts of the United States are populated is seen by comparing the size and the population of some of the American States with the size and population of some great empires. The German Empire has a