Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB

EFFECTIVE BLOCKADE.

129

expressement, elle les a désavoués d'une façon indirecte seulement. Si la première phrase est indécise et peut permettre à l'Angleterre, dont elle est l'æuvre, de revenir à son ancienne pratique, la dernière phrase est au contrairie plus précise et se rapproche d'une définition exacte du blocus effectif: En effet, il faut, d'après elle, que l'accès du littoral ennemi soit interdit réellement, soit rendu impossible par les forces bloquantes; or dans le blocus par croisière ce n'est pas l'abord de la côte qui est défendu, mais des vaisseaux croisant à une grande distance du port bloqué arrêtent les bâtiments qui s'y dirigent.

Quoi qu'il en soit, nous ne pouvons approuver une définition qui prête ainsi à double sens, et nous appelons de tous nos veux le jour où les puissances, se dépouillant enfin des idées d'intérêt personnel, donneront une définition claire et précise du blocus effectif. (Du Blocus Maritime, pp. 110, 111.)

Wharton says in regard to blockades:

A blockade to be effective need not be perfect. It is not necessary that the beleaguered port should be hermetically sealed. It is not enough to make the blockade ineffective that on some particularly stormy night a blockade runner slid through the blockading squadron. Nor is it enough that through some exceptional and rare negligence of the officers of one of the blockading vessels a blockade runner was allowed to pass when perfect vigilance could have arrested him. But if the blockade is not in the main effective-if it can be easily eludedif escaping its toils is due not to casus or some rare and exceptional negligence, but to a general laxity or want of efficiency—then such blockade is not valid. (Commentaries American Law, section 233.)

The United States has entered into several treaty agreements in regard to blockade. Among those still in force are the following:

Article XIII of the treaty with Prussia, May 1, 1828, declares:

Considering the remoteness of the respective countries of the two high contracting parties and the uncertainty resulting therefrom with respect to the various events which may take place, it is agreed that a merchant vessel belonging to either of them which may be bound to á port supposed at the time of its departure to be blockaded shall not, however, be captured or condemned for having attempted a first time to enter said port, unless it can be proved that said vessel could and ought to have learned during its voyage that the blockade of the place in question still continued. But all vessels which, after having been warned off once, shall, during the same voyage, attempt a second time to enter the same blockaded port during the continuance of the said blockade, shall then subject themselves to be detained and condemned.

16843–06—9

This article also occurs in the treaty with Sweden-Norway, July 4, 1827.

The treaty with Italy of February 26, 1871, Article XIV, states:

And whereas it frequently happens that vessels sail for a port or a place belonging to an enemy without knowing that the same is besieged, blockaded, or invested, it is agreed that every vessel so circumstanced may be turned away from such port or place, but shall not be detained, nor shall any part of her cargo, if not contraband of war, be confiscated, unless, after a warning of such blockade or investment from an officer commanding a vessel of the blockading forces, by an indorsement of such officer on the papers of the vessel, mentioning the date and the latitude and itude where such indorsement was made, she shall again attempt to enter; but she shall be permitted to go to any other port or place she shall think proper. Nor shall any vessel of either that may have entered into such a port before the same was actually besieged, blockaded, or invested by the other be restrained from quitting such place with her cargo, nor, if found therein after the reduction and surrender, shall such vessel or her cargo be liable to confiscation, but they shall be restored to the owners thereof; and if any vessel having thus entered any port before the blockade took place, shall take on board a cargo after the blockade be established, she shall be subject to being warned by the blockading forces to return to the port blockaded and discharge the said cargo, and if after receiving the said warning the vessel shall persist in going out with the cargo, she shall be liable to the same consequences as a vessel attempting to enter a blockaded port after being warned off by the blockading forces.

This article, omitting" by an indorsement of such officer on the papers of the vessel, mentioning the date and the latitude and longitude where such indorsement was made," appears in the treaty with Brazil of December 12, 1828.

Article 21 of the Japanese regulations relating to cap. ture at sea of March 7, 1904, states that

Blockade is to close an enemy's port, bay, or coast with force, and is effective when the force is strong enough to threaten any vessels that attempt to go in or out of the blockaded port or bay or to approach the blockaded coast.

Conclusion.-In regard to the question, “Should the provisions of the Declaration of Paris of 1856 be revised?” it may be said that the first clause, “Privateering is and

DECLARATION SHOULD BE REVISED.

131

remains abolished” should be maintained. Regulations should be made, however, for the control of vessels such as those of the auxiliary navy.

In case regulations in regard to the exemption from capture of private property at sea in time of war are adopted the second and third articles, "The neutral flag covers enemy's goods, with the exception of contraband of war,” and Neutral goods, with the exception of contraband of war, are not liable to capture under enemy's flag,” should be modified in such a manner as to coincide therewith.

The fourth clause, “ Blockades, in order to be binding, inust be effective—that is to say, maintained by a sufficient force really to prevent access to the coast of the enemy,” should receive new statement showing exactly what is meant and to what situations it applies, particularly what constitutes an effective blockade.

Pacific blockades will not affect powers not parties to them. (International Law Situations, 1902, Situation VII, pp. 75-83.)

In fine, the Declaration which is still binding on the sig. natory powers might well be subject to full consideration, and should before general acceptance be revised.

TOPIC VII.

A. At the convention at The Hague in 1899 three declarations were made as follows:

1. To prohibit the launching of projectiles and explosives from balloons or by other similar new methods.

2. To prohibit the use of projectiles, the only object of which is the diffusion of asphyxiating or deleterious gases.

3. To prohibit the use of bullets which expand or flatten easily in the human body, such as bullets with a hard envelope, of which the envelope does not entirely cover the core, or is pierced with incisions.

(1) The first of the above declarations was ratified for a period of five years by the United States. Should the prohibition be renewed?

(2) Should the second declaration be adopted? (3) Should the third declaration be adopted?

B. It was also voted that-The conference expresses the wish that the questions with regard to rifles and naval guns, as considered by it, may be studied by the Governments with the object of coming to an agreement respecting the employment of new types and calibers.

What action should be taken upon this provision?

C. It was also voted thatThe conference expresses the wish that the proposal to settle the question of the bombardment of ports, towns, and villages by a naval force may be referred to a subsequent conference for consideration.

What regulations should be made in regard to bombardment?

CONCLUSION.

A. The following action should be taken on the three declarations of the convention at The Hague, 1899:

(1) The contracting powers agree to prohibit, for a term of five years, the launching of projectiles and explosives CONCLUSIONS AS TO DECLARATIONS.

133

from free balloons, or by other new methods of similar nature.

The present declaration is only binding on the contracting powers in case of war between two or more of them.

It shall cease to be binding from the time when in a war between the contracting powers one of the belligerents is joined by a noncontracting power.

(2) The nature and phrasing of the second declaration seems to be such as to make its adoption in the present form inexpedient.

(3) The third declaration should be made to conform to the principle embodied in the Laws and Customs of War on Land.

B. Discussion and study of the question of restriction upon.invention and use of new types and calibers of guns subsequent to the conference in 1899 seems to show that such action would not necessarily lessen the burden of war, shorten its duration, or make it more humane. This being the opinion which seems to accord with the facts, it does not seem logical to impose any restriction, and such a limitation should not be adopted.

C. The bombardment, by a naval force, of unfortified and undefended towns, villages, or buildings is forbidden, though such towns, villages, or buildings are liable to the damages incident to the destruction of military or naval establishments, public depots of munitions of war, or vessels of war in port, and such towns, villages, or buildings are liable to bombardment when reasonable requisitions for provisions and supplies at the time essential to the naval force are withheld, in which case due notice of bombardment shall be given.

Steps should be taken to spare, as far as possible, edifices devoted to religion, art, science, and charity, hospitals and places where the sick and wounded are collected, provided they are not used at the same time for military purposes. The besieged should indicate these buildings or places by some particular and visible signs, which should previously be notified to the assailants.

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »