« НазадПродовжити »
act towards neutrals in the same manner as neutrals shall suffer the English to treat them.
This decree consequently implies, not only the seizure of enemy's property on board of American vessels, agair.st the principle free ships make free goods, a principle the American government abandoned after having recognized it by acceding to the declaration of Russia in 1780,--not only the seizure of 'articles classed as contraband in the treaty concluded between Lord Grenville and Mr. Jay, and declared innocent merchandizes by the treaty of 1778, but also reprisals for all vexations, contrary to the law of nations and to the treaties, which the Americans shall endure on the part of the English, without an efficacious opposition.
The secretary of state has been pleased to observe, that France and the United States, by a reciprocal treaty, had consecrated the principle, free ships make free goods, and diminished the list of articles seizable as contraband. Upon this basis he built reasoning which he might have spared, if he had been pleased to remember the 2d article of the treaty of 1778.
The secretary has also been pleased to reply in part to the note of the undersigned minister plenipotentiary, dated 6th Brumaire, relative to the press exercised on the American sailors, that the federal government was not to give an account to any nation of the measures it takes for the protection of its citizens; if such an answer required a reply, the undersigned minister plenipotentiary would request the secretary of state to observe, that the object of his note of 6th Brumaire, and of his letters of the gth and 19th Germinal last, which are there referred to, was not at all to know the steps taken by the federal government for the protection of its citizens; but the measures pursued
by it for preventing its citizens from increasing the maritime forces of the enemies of the French Republic, its ally. It is evident, that in this case the federal government should expect, and the French Republic would have a right to regard its silence as a tacit consent to that measure and a real hostility.
The undersigned minister plenipotentiary can no longer be suspected of having demanded of the government of the United States, explanations foreign to the relations which exist between that government, and the French Republic, of having had the intention to wound the federal government, in his letter of 7th Vendémiaire in the fourth year, since after the passage cited by the secretary of state, is the following paragraph : “But I am con" vinced it will not be so. The American go“ vernment is too much attached to the laws of an “ exact neutrality, it knows too well that the cause “ of free people is linked to that of France, to al“ low to be usurped by the English a right injuri
ous to the interest of the Republic."
“ It is in this conviction that I have written you “ this letter, persuaded that it is perhaps super« fluous to address to you these reclamations. I “ do not doubt but the American government will
prove to all Europe the intention it has of main
taining the most exact neutrality with regard to “ the belligerent powers, that it will oblige Eng“ land to violate no longer the rights of nations, " and that it will not henceforward reduce France
to the pain of addressing new claims upon this subject."
(No. 6.) In the General Advertiser, published at Philadelphia on the gth of June, 1796, may be seen the questions proposed by the President on the 18th of April, 1793, to the heads of the departments. The undersigued minister pleni
potentiary contents himself with giving here an extract.
Question 2. Shall a minister from the Republic of France be received ?
Question 3. If received, shall it be absolutely, or with qualifications, and if with qualifications, of what kind ?
Question 4. Are the United States obliged by good faith, to consider the treaties heretofore made with France as applying to the present situation of the parties----may they either renounce them or hold them suspended, till the government of France shall be established ?
Question 12. Should the future regent of France send a minister to the United States, ought he to be received ?
(No. 7.) The French government, zealous of giving to the United States proofs of its attachment, had commenced negotiations with the regency of Algiers, in order to put an end to the war which that power was making on the commerce of the United States. The minister for foreign affairs, by a letter of the 5th January, 1794, instructed the predecessor of the undersigned to communicate to the federal government the steps which the French government had taken in this respect. The predecessor of the undersigned in consequence wrote to the secretary of state, on the 16th Prairial in the 2d year, the following letter_“I have already had the pleasure, Sir, to inform you, verbally, of the interest which the committee of public safety of the National Convention had early taken in the truly unhappy situation of your commerce in the Mediterranean. “ I now fulfil the duty imposed on me by the
government, by calling to your recollection in writing, the steps which are to be taken by our agent with the dey of Algiers, for repressing this new
manoeuvre of the British administration, which has put the finishing stroke to its proofs of malevo. lence towards free people. The dispatch of the minister communicating this measure to ine, is dated the 5th January, and did not come to my hands till fifteen days ago; I do not yet know by what route ; I could have wished it had been less tardy in coming to me, that I might sooner have fulfilled the agreeable task of proving to you by facts, the protestations of friendship of which I have so often spoken in the name of the Republic of France.
« The information which I shall receive from Europe in a little time, will doubtless possess me of the success of those negotiations which were to have been opened in January last. If the situation of your affairs is yet such with respect to that barbarous regency as that our intervention may be of some utility, I pray you to invite the president to cause to be communicated to ine the means that he will join to those of the committee of public safety, for the greatest success of the measures already taken. It is in virtue of the express request of the minister that I solicit of the president some communication on this subject; I shall be satisfied to be able to transmit it by a very early conveyance which I am now preparing for France."
The secretary of state replied to him on the 6th June, 1794, by a letter of which the following is an extract.
“ Your other letter of the 4th of June, is a powerful demonstration of the interest which the Republic of France takes in our welfare. I will frankly communicate to you our measures and expectations with regard to Algiers; but as you will so soon receive the detail of those measures, which your government has pursued in our behalf, and
after the rising of Congress some new arrangements will probably be adopted by the executive, it will be better perhaps to postpone our interview on this matter, until the intelligence, which you further expect, shall arrive.”
Then Mr. Jay was charged to negotiate with the British government--and that citizen Fauchet did not afterwards receive any communication on the subject.
(No. 8.) On the 13th Floréal in the 3d year of the Republic (2d May, 1794) the predecessor of the undersigned minister plenipotentiary expressed himself in these terms to the secretary of state upon the blockade of the French colonies.
“ After so many useless attempts, Sir, you must “ be sensible of the pain I experience in tracing “ this picture so different from that which the " French Republic gives whenever justice towards
you is in question, even though her interests are
compromised. It was when a terrible war was “ incessantly devouring her, that she rigorously “ fulfilled her treaties with you ; in this instance, " she demands but justice, and cannot obtain it. « On the contrary, she sees her enemies admitted “ to an intimacy with you, at the moment in “ which your commerce and your sovereignty “ are alike insulted by them; at the moment when “ adding derision to injustice they despoil you anew upon
the seas, when they promise to in“ demnify you for former acts. This reflection, “ Sir, becomes more grievous when we see posted
up under our eyes the official legalization of a “ proclamation, which prohibits your conimerce “ with our colonies, and suspends to you alone “ the laws of nations. I know, Sir, what respect
imposes on me as to what immediately interests
your affairs and your relations as a people. “ But I cannot entirely pass in silence transac