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bullets, or any other novelty likely to be suggested by the progress of invention, is sure to meet with opposition, on the ground that such renunciation would unfairly affect nations which are compelled by their circumstances to rely especially on one or other of the practices which it is proposed thus to stigmatize. Nothing can be effectually prohibited which does not either cause suffering beyond the necessities of the case or conflict too seriously with the interests of neutrals.
Conclusion.--The third declaration prohibits "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 by incisions.” The specific nature of this prohibition was pointed out by the representatives of the United States at The Hague conference. It is not certain that another form of bullet producing similar results, but not of the probibited class, may not be invented. This at most is only one of a general category of bullets which it is well to prohibit, i. e., the class which produces unnecessary suffering. It would therefore seem better to aim at the general category in the prohibition rather than at one variety of bullet.
It would seem expedient that this third declaration should not be adopted. At the same time, some regulation should be adopted.
Many of the objections which apply to the second declaration in regard to asphyxiating gases apply to the expansive bullets. These objections apply, or may apply, to other agencies which may later be invented for or turned to warlike uses. The object of both declarations is to prevent unnecessary physical suffering and injury without lessening the efficacy of warlike measures. Such an aim is to be favored from all points of view, and is in full accord with the objects of war. Such being the case, a general prohibition should be adopted under which specific cases could be brought. Such a provision has been inserted in the Laws and Customs of War on Land, adopted by the conference at The Hague, by which it is prohibited “to employ arms, projectiles, or material of a nature to cause superfluous suffering. Specifications under such a prohibition could be made if thought advisable, e.g., there might be added an illustrative clause, “such as explosive or expanding bullets, projectiles whose sole object is the dif
NEW TYPES OF GUNS.
fusion of asphyxiating and deleterious gases, etc., or other agencies which cause suffering disproportionate to the military ends to be gained by their use."
The third declaration should accordingly be made to conform to the principle embodied in the Laws and Customs of War on Land.
B. New types of guns.-It was 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."
The consideration of the limitation of the use of new types and calibers of guns received much attention at the conference. On the matter there was a wide divergence of opinion. There was also a proposition looking to the limitation of the use of new kinds of powder and explosive materials. The reasons given in support of these propositions varied, but economy was frequently mentioned. It was shown, however, that often the reason for the adoption of a new explosive or type of gun was primarily one of economy. Propositions to limit the weight of gun, the caliber, the weight of the bullet, the initial velocity, the number of shots per minute, and the nature of the projectile were discussed. These limitations were to run for a period of five years if adopted.
The question was asked as to whether if the limitation of cannons to the type of the most perfect then in use would be understood to mean a limitation making it possible for the less advanced states to place themselves on a level with the more advanced. It was shown that this would introduce a difficulty in the way of obtaining evidence as to what form of cannon of those at the time in use was the best. Indeed, the state having such cannon would hardly care to give evidence of the fact and to disclose its points of excellence. The result of the discussion showed an unfavorable opinion on the part of the larger states, while Russia and several of the minor states favored the limitation.
In regard to the use of new kinds of powder, the discussion, in which Captain Crozier took a leading part, showed that a limitation was not practicable and might not be humane or economic. No state favored this restriction.
Conclusion.—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.
It may be further said that if adopted the practical difficulties of carrying into effect such a regulation would probably be almost insurmountable.
C. Bombardment of open iowns.--At The Hague conference in 1899 it was voted that
The 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.
This subject was quite fully discussed by the Naval War College in 1901 and 1903. (International Law Situations, 1901, pp. 5–37; International Law Discussions, 1903, pp. 23–27.)
Conclusion.--In accord with those discussions the following regulation seems advisable :
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.
It has been proposed to regulate the use of mines and similar agencies in maritime warfare. What, if any, should be the regulations?
1. Unanchored contact mines are prohibited, except those that by construction are rendered innocuous after a limited time, certainly before passing outside the area of immediate belligerent activities.
2. Anchored contact mines that do not become innocuous on getting adrift are prohibited.
3. If anchored contact mines be used within belligerent jurisdiction or within the area of immediate belligerent activities, due precaution shall be taken for the safety of neutrals.
DISCUSSION AND NOTES.
Certain questions. -The use of mines in maritime warfare gives rise to several questions.
1. There is the general question as to whether the use of mines is in any case allowable.
2. If allowable, there arise special questions as to (a) character of permitted mines, (6) area of permitted use, (c) purpose of permitted use.
1. Use of mines in general.—The question as to whether the use of mines is in any case allowable is one which has been discussed in a manner similar to that of the discussion of the use of torpedoes at an earlier date. The discussion resulted in the recognition of the use of torpedoes as a legitimate means of warfare so soon as this means of warfare was under reasonable control of the military
forces using it. Torpedoes are now considered legitimate means of warfare. None of the conventions and conferences have endeavored to prohibit the use of torpedoes or mines. It has been recognized that both mines and torpedoes are legitimate means of warfare in recent wars, and both agencies have been used. This, however, has been recognized only so far as the belligerents are concerned. It may be affirmed that the use of mines is a legitimate means of hostilities as between belligerents.
This position does not, however, imply that mines may be used at will without regard to those not concerned in
As the torpedo and certain other means of hostilities are necessarily directed and dispatched by the belligerent and are under belligerent control to this extent, the probable range of their destructive activity can be reasonably known.
Certain mines, however, are not thus under control and their probable action may not be predicted or directed. The claim seems to be reasonable that agenies so destructive as mines shall be restricted in such manner as to affect solely the belligerents concerned in the hostilities.
2. Limitations on use of mines.—The questions then arise as to the special restrictions upon the use of mines.
(1) Should the character of the mines be limited ? In general mines may be exploded at a fixed time by a mechanical arrangement, may be exploded at any time when controlled by shore or other connections, or may be exploded by contact with a vessel passing over the mine.
Of these mines, those which are regulated to explode at a time fixed by a belligerent and those whose explosion is at the will of the belligerent operating the mine from the shore or otherwise, may be said to be open to little or no objection.
Contact mines--those which explode on coming in contact with a vessel---may, however, be anchored or free. Contact mines which are anchored are dangerous to navigation, and make it necessary that their field at all times be so guarded as not to be a menace to parties not concerned in the hostilities. This may be done in various ways, as by prohibiting the entrance of neutrals within certain