17 DECEMBER 1870, Page 3

The Austrian Minister of War, General Benedek, has informed the

Delegates who manage the joint affairs of the Empire that the Austrian Army, with its Reserves, now numbers 864,000 men, all of whom have received two years' training, and are supported by 180,000 Militia. Only 200,000 of these men are on foot in time of peace, but the arms and accoutrements for the remainder are ready, and the Minister offered to allow the Delegates to in- spect the preparations. The rifle, however, though a breechloader, is only a converted rifle, and a better one must be speedily intro- duced, and money sufficient to arm 400,000 men with it has been asked for. The artillery must also be increased, and Austria has no siege guns worth naming. The point for Austria just now is not the number of her troops, but whether they can be relied on to fight heartily. They are a match for the Russians, but sup- pose the order is to invade South Germany ?