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people they would soon have a chance to know
Sir Henry Drummond Wolfe, former rep-
the custom house receipts of the Gulf ports can scarcely believe that so highly qualified
as security for interest on monetary advances. an official could have been misled by the
That position the present British government boots, but it would be interesting to know
has to all appearances abandoned. In Engwhat would have happened if his impeach- land's refusal to guarantee the Persian loan ment had been true.
This aversion to the Englishman is manifested in many ways; it is well nigh atmospheric. There is one bit of Russian history, apparently not widely known, which seems to explain this attitude in a measure, and certainly throws light on Russia's procedure in Persia, and for that matter her whole propaganda throughout the breadth of Asia. When the Czar Paul I., in 1801, combined with Napoleon for an expedition overland with the avowed purpose of ruining the British establishments in India, making the native sovereigns dependents of Russia instead of England, and acquiring commercial mastery of the whole region, he wrote in his voluminous orders to Orlof Denisoff, ataman of the Don Cossacks, who composed the Russian force : “Be sure to remember that you are only at war with the English, and are the friend of all who do not give them help. On the march you will assure men of the friendship of Russia."
Russia's progress to the southward and eastward for the past seventy years has been, and to-day is, a literal fulfillment of those mandates in their entirety. It is customary to call that progress mysterious, but a far greater puzzle than the Russian purpose is what England means to do, the meaning of what she has already done. In Persia, where the evidence of British recession is so plentiful and where every day the Russian arm, unchecked, stretches out farther and farther, one can hardly understand what the British Premier meant when he told the British
FAMILY OF PRINCE OOROOZBIEFF
of 22,500,000 roubles lay the opportunity boundary, the Russian engineer corps, rapid, Russia had long looked for, and to her en noiseless, furnishing no bulletins of its progdorsement of the obligation she attached the most sweeping and subversive of conditions, including, first of all, the wiping out of all debt to England. Prompt conformity to these has been exacted. The money which had been borrowed from England was all repaid, in compliance with the Muscovite demand, within two years after Russia had taken up the sponsorship and the rights that accompanied it.
To Britons everywhere, and perhaps particularly to those resident in the East, the practical retirement of England from Persia has been a source of deepest chagrin, the more so that apparently they can neither understand nor explain it. The sudden surrender of privileges which have been centuries in the acquiring and of influence in territory which is a natural outwork of the Indian possessions, suggests a radical departure in policy, and the more strongly the more it is considered a gigantic quid pro quo.
And so, although the Cossack halts at the
of the approaching lines have already been laid, but it is done without any flourish of trumpets, and the regions through which the routes lie are remote from the paths of general travel, so that little is learned of the progress made.
It is necessary to believe that the railroad line from Tiflis to Kars will connect, sooner or later, with the riad through Asia Minor, for which concession was not so long ago granted by the Porte. By war of Tiflis, Baku and the Transcaspian line from Krasnovodsk, by Kars, Khoi, Tabriz and Teheran, or yet again by another line which has been surveyed directly between Tabriz and Baku, touching the coast at Astara, the termination
of the Russian land boundary, Russia will BETWEEN JULPA AND TEHERAN
then possess unlimited transportation to the Division superintendent and engineer of the Indo-European Telegraph Company with inspection and repair corps going over the lines Trans-Siberian line, and so to the Pacific, to
say nothing of the possibly more important ress save to headquarters, goes on into the approach to the point of British contact below Persian country, marking out the way for the Herat. In the labor of surrounding India, railroad to the Gulf, which for two hundred Constantinople is not forgotten.
forgotten. Russia years has been Russia's primary objective. crowds both ways and all ways. In some directions, on her own soil, the tracks One small incident in connection with the
Asia Minor concession shows how narrowly as the first fruits of Emperor William's pilthe Russians have watched developments in grimage to the East, the consul at Riza sudthe East, how long in advance they have denly packed up and started for the interior, planned the steps which are now being taken, whence, after some days, he went to Conand with what nicety they have sowed
they have sowed stantinople and then to Russia. The news throughout all Asia the seed from which they that followed was the news of the Russian are eventually to reap such a stupendous concession. The consul for Riza, colonel of harvest. In Trebizond there lived a Russian, engineers, had merely been waiting in Trebiwho held the billet of Consul for Riza, a zond quietly, à la Russe, for sixteen years, small and altogether unimportant seacoast and the thing he had been put there to wait village some leagues away, which he seldom for had happened. Such instances are illumvisited. In 1899 he had been for sixteen inating. In their light the admission by years in Trebizond, engaging in no business, England, at last, of a Russian consulto but drawing pay as consul all the time, living Bombay, always refused hitherto, takes on a comfortably and in good neighborhood with new meaning all men, and in no wise burdened with the But whatever the ultimate object, it seems duties of his consulate. He had served in beyond question that the opening of the rich the Russian army, in which, his neighbors Persian fields to trade by means of railroads understood, he had ranked as a colonel of en and wagon roads will prove their regeneration. gineers. When the grant for the German In nothing is the difference between the two railroad through Mesopotamia was announced, régimes more manifest than in the roads on
of betterment, down as far as the rough pass which nature has cut through the mountain chain bordering the river. There, apparently of purpose, the road-makers have stopped work, and the way through the cut, running for the most part in the bed of a turbulent stream, is at some seasons wholly impassable. To the traveler that is a foretaste of Persia. There is a similar gorge on the Persian side, after which one comes out on what a Persian is content to call a highway. It is broken by landslides, creeks and irrigation ditches, and though in some places fairly good in spite of neglect, is for a great part of the way indistinguishable from the waste of mud, gravel and rock, or the water courses through which in many localities it runs.
Persian inactivity in the matter of road building is, of course, due in great measure to national poverty and inertia, but for years, until the latest understanding with Russia, there entered in, also, the theory upon which the Ottoman government has so stub