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that while existing circumstances continue they may give their protection and aid to Spanish subjects resident in the territory of that state.
The undersigned renews on this occasion to the honorable Secretary of State the assurance of his highest consideration. \ FAOUNDO GONI. The Hon. SECRETARY or STATE
qf the United States, ¢§~c., $10., ¢§*c.
The undersigned, Secretary of State of the United States, has the honor to acknowledge the receipt of the note of her Catholic Majesty’s minister of the 9th instant, in reference to extending the protection of the United States to subjects of her Majesty residing in Mexico, and in reply has the honor to inform him that his request in regard thereto shall be complied with.
The undersigned takes this occasion to ofi"er to her Majesty's minister renewed assurances of his very distinguished consideration.
WILLIAM H. SEWARD.
Senor Don Facuxno G051, $10., <§~c., §~c.
SIR : I send herewith a copy of the official Vienna Gazette, for December 8th.
It contains aletter from the .Emperor to the Imperial Royal minister of war, in_
regard to General Benedek and Generals Henikstein and Krismanie. A preliminary investigation as to the conduct of those oflicers in the late Bohemian campaign was made by high military authorities, assembled at Wiener, Neustadt, immediately after the battle of Kiiniggratz. The letter of the Emperor is as follows : '
I take notice of the decision of the supreme senate of military justice to ordain atrial by military law against general of ordnance, (Feldzerg-meister,) Chevalier von Benedek, Lieutenant Field Marshal Baron von Henikstein, and Major General Chevalier von Krisxnanie, on account of their- conduct in the late campaign, but think proper to decree that any further judicial action against those three generals shall be pretermitted.
In the same way are other generals and staff officers to be dealt with, who, on accountof similar tactical or strategic faults have been or were to be held to account. You are to do the needful for the execution of this my decree.
FRANZ JOSEF, M. P.
SCHGNBRUNN, December 4, 1866.
It will be perceived that this decree is in the nature of a pardon, it beingassumed that the result of a judicial prosecution, following upon the preliminary investigation, could not help being a sentence of severity.
The generals in question have already been placed on the pension list, and of course removed from active service for the future. The publication of the Emperor’s letter is accompanied by a leading article of great length in the same number of the Vienna Gazette. The censure thus ofiicially, but anonymously, pronounced upon the unfortunate commander in chief is very bitter, as may be judged by the following extract :
Painful as it is to us, \ve must repeat the hard word that General Benedek was not equal to such a great task; that there were mistakes in his plans and dispositions, which cannot, by any means, he justified according to the rules of military art, and which. looked at by themselves from a judicial point of view, might even afibrd sufficient grounds for the contilpuation of a legal action, if there were not the weightiest reasons for a milder treatment of t e case.
Had there appeared, by the investigations held, only the slightest si 11 of a bad intention or premeditated neglect, the severest interpretation and application of the law would have been justifiable, and would certainly have taken place. From the examination, however, no such sign appeared. Not from carelessness nor from a want of energy, not from indifference 'nor imprudence, resulted the faults in Benedek’s tactics. N 0 one could have striven with a better will or greater zeal for the victory of our army; for the glory of Austrian arms. But political and military circumstances which, as it is known, existed before, and during this unfortunate war, could only be vanquished by one of those generals gifted with genius, of which there are at all times so few, and among whom General Benedek cannot ‘be counted, notwithstanding his prominent qualities as a soldier. That this is so, we must deeply regret, after the mis ortune which has occurred, and which is hardly to be measured in its full extent; but there is no statute which declares the want of the highest mental'gifts to be punishable, and nothing remains in such cases but the unavoidable expiation which lies in the immediate removal of the persons concerned from a sphere of action to which they
are unsuited-—an expiation which is the harder to bear the higher and more honorable was that sphere. .
The loss of the confidence of his imperial chief, the annihilation of his military reputation in the eyes of the resent world and of osterity, the knowledge of the immeasurable misfortune, which, un er his direction, and tirough its defects, the whole monarchy has suflered, must be,—for the honorable and hi h-minded man Benedek has always shown himself to be-— a harder expiation than any pnnis ment which might have struck him, had the legal action been continued.
I have not time to translate the whole article, but I thought it probable that it might have interest for the WVar Department and the military authorities of the United States, and I accordingly forward it for reference, if necessary.
The article concludes with an intimation that the ofiicial report of the late campaign will soon be published. I record these proceedings as part of the current history of the war, abstaining from all comment‘ upon them for the present. It would seem hardly possible that some answer on the part of the late commander-in-chief should not be made to this severe and unusual denunciation from an oflicial source.
I have the honor to be, sir, your obedient servant,
Hon. WILLIAM H. Sswaao,
Secrelary of State, lVas/zington, D. C.
lllr. Motley to Mr. Seward.
‘No. 217.] LEGATION or THE UNITED Srwrns,
Vaerma, December 10, 1866.
SIR : Since my despatch of November 14th, No. 215, the debates in the various diets (Landtags) have been continued. Much excitement and even acrimony have been manifested in the cis-Leithan assemblies, and there is an almost general demand for the restoration of the constitution of 1861, suspended, as you are aware, by the imperial edict of September, 1865, and for the re-convocation of the Reichsrath. With the exception of thef diets of Bohemia, in which, however, the minority infavor of the constitution is very large, and that of Glalicia, in which, too, the Ruthenians opposed the vote of confidence in the ministers, the excitement in regard to what is called the“suspending policy” of the present government is vcry great.
The diet of this province (lower Austria) has just presented its address to the Emperor, moving him to restore the constitution. His Majesty received it with the simple expression that it should be reserved for closer consideration.
On the other side the Leithan, the debates of the Hungarian diet have been stormy. It seems to be well understood that the imperial rescript of this year has indicated the widest concessions to Hungary that it is possible for government to make. Yet the most advanced party, or left, has manifested its entire dissatisfaction with the course of policy thus proposed. On the other hand, the more moderate party, led by Francis Defik, has shown an inclination for the present to support the government. A vote was taken a few days ago on the question whether the labors of the commission appointed last winter by the diet for devising a. plan of treating atfairs common to the kingdom of Hungary, and to
- the hereditary provinces of the imperial house, should be suspended or continued.
Koloman Tisca moved that those labors should be suspended until the Hungarian constitution was restored, and a responsible Hungarian ministry appointed.
The motion was defeated by a very large majority, (227 nays, 107 yeas, and 53 absent.) Subsequently, Deék’s motion to continue the labors of the commission was sustained by a large majority, the yeas and n_ays not counted.
You are aware that the elaboration of a plan for the common affairs was intrusted to a. committee of 67. Of this number, a sub-committee of 15 has been at work for many months.
When their report has been accepted by the great committee, and subsequently by the house, it will 'be offered to the chamber of magnates, and then laid before the government.
In order to place before you an accurate picture of Hungarian politics at the present moment, I translate, and append to this despatch, a few extracts from Deak’s speech on making his motion. The speech was received with infinite enthusiasm, and the vote is considered by the government as very satisfactory.
Time must soon show, however, whether there is any essential difference between the two great parties in Hungary. All claim entire and absolute independence for the kingdom. It is not pretended that any arrangement can be‘ made except in the Way of a treaty between two self-dependent and sovereign states, both of which happen to have the same monarch.
Yet how is such a theory compatible with any idea of national or imperial union’! The solution of the problem now before the government still seems too-much like squaring the circle. At least it is difiicult to reconcile the ideas of dualism and unity. Practically, the Austrian empire exists as a fact, and it is the obvious interest of Hungary that it should continue to exist.
On the other hand, the more Germany tends to unify itself, the greater in the future must be the attraction of Germany upon the German provinces of this em ire.
The greater the concessions to Hungary, the more intense becomes the dissatisfaction of those cis-Leithan provinces in which the German element preponderates. Thus, the situation becomes day by day more grave. It seems‘impossible, however, in view of the mutual dependence of Hungary and the whole monarchy each on the other, as a matter of fact, that some constitutional union for the empire should not be devised, after the legal independence of Hungary has been suflficiently demonstrated as matter of law.
Unless this is done without any great delay, a catastrophe may occur, for an absolute government such as now exists seems scarcely possible.
[Extract from Deak’s speecb.]
GENTLEMEN : The country bleeds from numerous wounds. When the question is to heal the wounds, the physician when dealing with dangerous injuries will not continually inquire for the hand that struck the wounds, but for the means of healing them. Consequently, when healing is in question, I will never concern myself with persons. To judge of the actions of persons belongs to history. My objections are principally and exclusively directed against the system, that absolute system which is the cause of all our misfortunes. The absolute sys em exists, and the question is not what is the name of one or the other of his Majesty’s a visors, for it is impossible to expect anything good from the absolute system, except that it would destroy itself, and so re-establish constitutionalism. [Applause.]
My highly valued friend Ghiczy has said, we will be consistent in our proceedings in this diet, for. the foundation of our actions was the hope of the fulfilment of our wishes. This hope has vanished. This is clear. No one is here who could assert that our transactions have produced a result ; that our constitution is re-established even in the smallest part. I, however, and I believe the whole house with me, wish so deeply and warmly for the restitution of the constitution that I am not capable of giving up the hope forever. [Lively applause. The speaker continued, raising his voice :] This hope is our all, and weak as may be the ray of hope, I shall never bring myself to extinguish it in my breast, or in the breast of another. [Enthusiastic assent] For terrible would be the effect produced in the whole country if the delegates, if the men of trust should say, not in discourse, but in a resolution, we have assembled in the hope of the re-establishment of our constitution ; we have repeatedly begged and striven for the re-establishment of our constitution, and we have chosen a committee for preliminary matters, because we hoped for the re-establishment of our constitution, and now we forbid the committee of 67 to continue its work, because every hope of the re-establishment of the constitution is vanished. [Hear, hear.] I say if the house pronounced such a resolution the last hope would be torn from the people, everything would be taken away from them, and only two things would remain to them: first, endless suffering ; second, I do not name it, for it agrees not with the calling of this body, which is here to consult ; which is here on the basis of the pragmatic sanction; which is here to work peacefully, and to make laws. I will lay down my opinion of this simply and concisely. [Thundering cheers, many
minutes long, throughout the house and in the alleries: many delegates wave their hats toward the speaker, who, visibly moved, proceed together by his Majesty, the wishes of the people were, as the house remembers, two in number: lst. Re-establishment of the constitution. 2d. An honorable adjustment. On this
s.] \Vhen the present diet was called.
ground the diet came together—I admit, not on an entirely lawful basis. but still it assem~bled to work for the attainment of both these ends. The house has urged the re-establishment .
of the constitution; has appointed the committee of 67, which, in its turn, appointed the 15 sub-committee. What was the sphere of action of this sub-committee? It was designed especially by the circumstance that the house recognized. This do also the 1848 laws.
[Murmurs on the extreme left.] It was the duty of the members of this sub-committee to-~
compose this design in the way they, according to their own consciences and their own conviction, judged the most to the purpose. This duty they have faithfully performed. It may be that the committee has failed. It may be that the plan contained things not to the purpose. It may be that in some point it went farther than the house wished. [A voice on the extreme left, “Very much.’’] But has the sub-committee made final resolutions? No. It will lay its work before the committee of 67, which, in its turn, will lay it before the house, and the latter will decide. Our opinions did not always agree; on some points they essentially differed. Neither should I wish that in such highly important affairs a determination should he arrived at without the conflict of different opinions. All this was to me not unexpected. Neither was it unsuspected by me that the conflict of opinions should show itself more and more sharply. But one thing was entirely unexpected by me,: that the sub-committee should be accused of endangering the independence and self-dependence of the country, that it should be accused of wishing, because the government will not recognize our full right, to sacrifice the substance of that right so as to save its splinters. Public opinion pronounces itself only on two points :
lst. That we must have the complete constitution withboth good and bad details, because otherwise the had is not to be altered. ‘
2d. An honorable agreement with the preservation of the independence of the land.
It does not concern itself with details, and in the main point the fulfilment of these two wishes all are agreed. [Applause on all sides.] True to the principles mentioned at first, I say nothing further. I avoid refuting single arguments. Finally, as I judge it superfluous to explain that I shall vote for my proposit‘ons, [laughter, ] only a few more words. \Vhere diiferent political opinions arise, there the harder the situation, the more necessarily parties arise. Let us oppose each other as olitical parties. Let us consult each other with every arm of consideration and reflection ; bntlet us make no use of passion or bitterness, for these lend to misunderstanding, and this again to increased bitterness. [Prolonged applause from all sides of the house ; stormy cries for the question. The deputies hurry towards the speaker and press his hands.]
I have the honor to remain, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
SIR: I have had the honor to receive your despatch No. 207, of November 16th, in which you inform me that the President instructs me to ask an audience of his Majesty the Emperor, in order to congratulate him in the name of the United States upon his providential escape from an attempted assassination. Since my despatch No. 211, of October 31st, relating to that event, the process against the accused person has not been terminated. I am very happy to say, however, that the impressions prevalent at the first moment at the imperial royal foreign ofiice, and among the public at large, have now been very much modified.
I have just received information from the imperial royal ministry of foreign affairs that the judicial investigations made thus far, in regard to the case, are highly unfavorable to the accuser, that the tale is now disbelicvcd, and that the acquittal of the supposed criminal is highly probable. '
As the process at Prague is not yet ended, I have not alluded again to the subject in my despatches, preferring to wait until I could send an exact and authentic account of the trial and of its result.