29 APRIL 1905, Page 20

T HE triumph of M. Delcass6—for it is a triumph—is a

fresh security for the peace of the world. It is quite obvious, in spite of denials, that the German Government desired his downfall, and most probable that it intrigued to promote it. The semi-official Press of Germany is never so unanimous in its censures unless it has received its cue from the Foreign Office, and the Foreign Office gives no cue without the permission of the Emperor. The Imperial Government has, indeed, from its own point of view, grave reason for disliking M. Delcasse. He has twice helped to baffle its hopes of seeing one of its potential enemies involved in war with a Great Power,— once when the Fashoda affair so nearly irritated France into .war with Great Britain, and again when he helped to persuade both Russia and Great Britain into a working compromise over the discreditable incident of the Dogger Bank. M. Delcass6, moreover, is known to be strongly in favour of continuing the Franco-Russian Alliance, and also of perfecting the entente cordiale with Great Britain ; and neither of those policies is, or can be, agreeable to Germaty. Apart from all intrigues, her people have from their geographical position a natural, and in no way discreditable, reason for wishing that neither Russia nor France should remain as strong as they recently have been. So long as they remain armed to the teeth and united, Germany is liable to invasion from both sides. The German Foreign Office may be trying to lessen this national and permanent danger in rather petty and discreditable ways—by suggest- ing, for instance, to Russia that large concessions to Japan will mean the downfall of the Monarchical principle in Europe, or by trying to convince France that ententes with Great Britain are valueless—but the motive for all these subtle devices is in itself neither unreasonable nor blameworthy. There are nations which do not stoop to intrigue—sometimes, possibly, from stupidity—but there is no nation which is not anxious to protect itself from overwhelmingly strong attack. One can easily believe, therefore, that M. Delca,ss6 was persona ingrata at Berlin ; and his fall would, in the circumstances, have been a most serious misfortune. His successor, whoever he might be, must have bent more or less to the "mailed fist." He would have been suspected in Russia of desiring a German alliance in preference to a Russian one; and he must, whether officially or unofficially, have abandoned the Agreement about Morocco, and also the entente cordiale with Great Britain. Whether the German Emperor really desired supremacy on the Atlantic coast of Morocco—as the Pan-Germanic Societies in Germany admit that they do—will probably not be revealed until the time arrives for the publication of the secret memoirs of William II.; but it must be remembered that the Pan-Germans look forward to a grand triumph whenever Francis Joseph of Austria passes from the scene, and have already much of that influence in Germany which Professors who take to politics always have had in her affairs. They fixed German attention upon the " sea-surrounded " unity of Schleswig-Holstein, and fed the passion of patriotism which found its expression in the demand for " Elsass-Lothringen." What is certain is that the German Emperor saw in Morocco a possible• apple of discord between Great Britain and France, and acted accordingly. If that had caused a stumble, he might have found in the position of Egypt, which is still complex, another obstacle to the continuance of the advance towards a peaceful agreement of all Europe. M. Delcass6 now returns to the control of French foreign policy with greatly increased force, for it must not be forgotten that before his resignation he was not completely recognised in France as the necessary man. The Nationalists hated him, as a leading member of a Cabinet hostile to the Vatican and friendly to England ; while the extreme Radicals and Socialists, besides dis- liking him as a representative Moderate, were probably convinced, whether by the German Embassy or other- wise, that he was bringing nearer by his policy the German invasion which is to them a horror. He was furiously attacked in the great debate of Wednesday week on Morocco. M. Deschanel spoke of him with that gentle patronage which in France implies contempt, and the Premier himself, though he defended him, displayed a nuance of reserve about the policy of excluding Germans from the Mediterranean settlement. Now, though the Nationalists are, of course, implacable, all other parties in France have acknowledged that M. Delcass4 is indispensable. The Premier has apologised, the President has implored, M. Jaures has explained, and M. Delcass6 resumes his portfolio, by common consent, master of the situation. The agents of the German Foreign Office in the Press are receding from their posi- tion, and Count. von Btilow and his master must either concern themselves with some new object, or prepare some new diplomatic bomb-shell. Meanwhile M. Dekasse will adhere to his policy in Morocco, but will probably tele- graph to his agents in Fez: "Give up nothing, but go slow."

We are a little afraid that our countrymen, who have a- quite new habit of talking emotional nonsense—to the bewilderment of the Continent, which believes Englishmen incapable of emotion—may make the mistake of thinking M. Delcasse especially friendly to Great Britain. Day after day his " friendliness " to us and to our King has. been applauded in long leaders. We believe very little of all that. M. Deleass6, a strong and steady man, best described as Scotch in his mental equipment, and trained in the school of Gambetta, is only devoted to France. He desires peace because he doubts whether as yet the muscles of France have regained their ancient strength, and is therefore disinclined ''for so supreme a hazard as a war with Germany must in any case prove. He is a true Republican, and therefore dreads war because, if France is defeated, she will seek a refuge in some " saviour of society," and if victorious, will fin one in the most energetic General the war may throw up. And he is also, for a French Foreign Minister, singularly free from the passion for glory, desiring rather, if such an effort as war is to be risked, to perceive some prospect of serious advantage. He is a very sensible person, besides being, as we judge, a bolder one than he has as yet allowed himself to appear. The high appreciation of his merit which, when he had resigned, came up from all Europe except Berlin must have been to him a matter of exquisite gratification ; but it will not, we feel confident, produce in him what Americans, with their oddly humorous habit of figurative speech, describe as "swelled head." He will go on, we fancy, if he lives, avoiding pitfalls in his way, and waiting, waiting, waiting till lie sees some object for which it is worth while to run a supreme risk. Unless he makes some unexpected or unaccountable blunder, the parties will hardly attack him again, for in France to be hated by German officials is to enjoy an appreciation all the keener and more diffused because no one ventures to assign that as the reason. Frenchmen alter the Roman proverb, and love those countrymen best whom the Greeks scold hardest.