The Peace Society is very jubilant over the success of
Mr. Richard's motion last Session for an address to the Queen in favour of a permanent system of international arbitration in Europe, and, indeed, if we may trust the Press, various Italian politicians have also congratulated Mr. Richard on his success, and augured great results from it. The Peace Society is so overjoyed that it is going to print and circulate the debate as widely as possible. We can only hope that it will circulate also the gracious answer of the Throne to the Address, in which Mr. Richard and his friends were as good as told that a system of international arbitration is virtually impracticable, and that the Foreign Office cannot waste its time or energy in recommending such a mare's-nest. The plain truth is that arbitration must either rest upon the spontaneous wish of the parties concerned,—in which case a general system is neither needful nor possible,—or must have some physical power behind it to compel respect to its decrees, in which case a general system of international arbi- tration would lead to more wars than ever did international anarchy. Mr. Richard and the Peace Society have a bee in their bonnets, and hardly know what they would be at.