16 MARCH 1872, Page 1


THE American Reply has arrived, and is by this time in the hands of the Cabinet. It is a reply conciliatory in tone, but insists on the right of the American Government to urge the indirect claims, and declines to withdraw them, alleging that the Geneva Tribunal is the proper judge of their admissibility under the Treaty. It is asserted, with every show of authority, that the United States Government speak disparagingly of the value of the indirect claims, and would not be indisposed, in order relieve us of the fear of overstrained demands, to fix a maximum sum, £4,000,000 sterling, beyond which the total demands under the Treaty should not go ; —but besides that this arrangement would hardly be sanctioned by the Senate, who sanctioned the Treaty and would not approve of any transaction derogating from their privilege, it would not, as we have elsewhere explained, at all remove the danger of the concession. Great Britain's procedure at Washington was a long chronicle of concessions. We must not be coaxed into abandoning the one equivalent on which our Commissioners had, as they sup- posed, taken their stand, and on which they insisted quite as much 'for the sake of international law and policy as for the interests of Great Britain.