A very curious, and at first sight alarming, incident is
reported from Shanghai. The British Government, on the advice of its Consuls there, ordered the second Indian brigade to stop on its way to the front and land for the protection of the British settlement. It stopped accordingly, bat the troops were forbidden to land. It seems that the Viceroy who had given his consent withdrew it, and the change of purpose is attributed locally to Russian and French instiga- tion, those two Powers believing that we are preparing to hold the Valley of the Yangtee. Instructions have, there- fore, been asked from London. It is quite likely that the Viceroy, whether censured from Pekin or terrorised by the "Boxers," withdrew his permission, assigning as his reason the jealousy of France and Russia, which, again, may have been expressed without orders by their local representatives. Are we perhaps bothering about Manchuria, which we cannot protect, and so exposing ourselves to a counter-rap?