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to his own will and pleasure, and wrote to the emperor informing him of his mistake! Nor was any notice taken of this second dangerous interference with the despot's authority. Yermoloff was supposed to be implicated in the conspiracy of Pestel, was placed under surveillance, and retired from the service. But when the emperor visited Moscow he was desired by him to resume his rank and uniform. While he was employed in Georgia he sent one or two missions to explore the nature of the country and the character of the people among the deserts towards Bokhara, and he has drawn up with his own hand a plan for the invasion of India through Georgia, by means of the occupation of Constantinople. He is a fair-intentioned, well-informed, soldier-like man.
His rival, Paskewitz, who has been successively victor over the Persians, Circassians, Turks, and Poles, is called by the emperor the father marshal. He is a short, small man, nearly sixty-eight years of age, with small features and mean appearance. He is by some called a native of Little Russia, whilst others affirm that he is a Servian by birth. His sway in Poland is fully as absolute as that of the czar in Russia. He is perfectly independent of the Arch Chancellor Nesselrode (concerning whose history the Times' fell into such a series of blunders), corresponds personally with the emperor, and merely sends the gross total of the revenue and expenses of his vice-royalty without any of the accounts. Though strict in his military rule he is not harsh or oppressive over the people, but is said to be as fair and just as a Russian can be.
The other Russian generals best known to travellers are Czernicheff, minister of war, the two Orloffs, Denizoff and Davidoff. Czernicheff has the reputation of being equally unprincipled and ambitious. He is reported to have denounced one of his friends to the emperor as having been acquainted with Pestel's conspiracy, and then to have asked for his estate. He is a handsome, soldierlike man. It was owing to these qualities that he was so well received in the salons of Paris, where he contrived to worm out the secrets of the War Office. He is even said to have been a favourite of Josephine herself. The Orloffs are men of no talent, civil or military.
The distinguished officers of foreign origin or birth amount to more than double the number of native Russians. Such are Wittgenstein, Sacken Benkendorf (an honest but not over clever man), Roth, Rudiger Toll (an excellent engineer), Geismar, De Witt, Gerstenzweig, Berg, Jomini, and Rautenstrauch, commandant of Warsaw. These, with the exception of one (Jomini) are all Germans, and the introduction of so many officers of that nation deeply wounds the old Muscovite spirit. When Alexander asked Yermoloff how he could reward him after one of his successes, the
Morale of the Russian Army.
bitter old Muscovite spirit broke out in the curt and contumelious reply of: Make me a German.'
The hasty sketch which we have given of the organisation and personnel of the Russian army, does not profess to be full or complete, (for we have extracted it hastily from a mass of disjointed matter,) but it will afford to the reader a bird's-eye view of a power with whom the complications of events may perhaps sooner or later bring us in contact, whether as friends or foes. The national prejudices and superstitions of the Russian soldier are now in no degree less inveterate than they were half a century ago. He exhibits now as then the same blind, passive, unreasoning obedience, and looks on his czar as little less than his God, and on his general as the vicegerent of his czar. Believing that if he dies in battle fighting against his enemy he will be eternally rewarded in the world to come, he exhibits, when seconded by his officers, steadiness and resolution; but if his immediate superior falter or play the coward, there is little reliance to be placed on his own steadiness or valour. The Russian generals-even the best of them-have committed innumerable faults in the most warlike periods of their history, and less dependence ought undoubtedly to be placed at the present moment on the science and skill and valour of the officers of the Russian army, sensual and corrupt as they in the most part are, than at a juncture when they were barbarous and superstitious, without the disadvantages of being enervated, luxurious, and corrupt.
During the last hundred years the successes of Russia have been fully as much owing to the purse as to the sword, and to the knowledge that these generals were always supported, to use the words of a recent writer in the Morning Chronicle,' wellinformed on the subject of Russia, by a command of money, by the most unprincipled means, and by unblushing perfidy.'
Such is the account which we have received from the journal of a friend of the Russian army and military system, and though not a very favourable one, still it is far more favourable, and in some respects more minute and detailed in its statements, than the three chapters dedicated to the subject in the 'Revelations of Russia The author of this latter work, the most complete and perfect that ever has been published on Russia, fairly admits that the Russian infantry had attained great steadiness under Suwarof, but he denies that they exhibit this steadiness now, and maintains that, timid in their disposition, and feeble in their constitution, they can neither endure long marches nor resist the hardship of a campaign. Accustomed to a watery food, of which they require great quantities, they soon fall victims to famine, and diseases and epidemics rapidly thin their numbers when
exposed to scarcity or fatigue. The officers are, he maintains' deficient in personal gallantry and intelligence (vol. ii. p.42), insensible to honour, shamefully hiding themselves from fire (p.45). Nor is it the higher officers only who exhibit these baser qualities; for neither do the Russian subalterns do their duty (p. 54). According to this author, indifferent as is the infantry, the cavalry is still more inferior (p. 60), nay even the vaunted guardsman is a miserable creature when not made up into shape and substance by the tailor's art (p. 63). The spirit of the army is, if possible, worse than the physique. Generally no Russian will accept a challenge, and men, therefore, find themselves obliged to put up with the grossest insults without any means of redress (p. 80). And since they do not lose caste by this unmerited dishonour, that which they may have merited, does not exclude them from the very circle which has witnessed it. Generally all ranks in the army are ignorant of their profession (p. 86), but the gaudy gilt gingerbread guardsmen are thorough feather-bed soldiers, laugh at pretensions to hardihood, and ridicule the idea of men exposing themselves to more personal danger than can possibly be avoided in actual warfare;—a sentiment supplying the hidden thought to which no one dares give utterance, That it is folly to expose oneself for the advantage of one's worst enemy' (p. 86). Few volunteer for a distant dangerous service. The quality which is most esteemed, and insures promotion, is the martinet spirit and buckram stiffness; -but the Russian troops are, notwithstanding, far from going through the great manoeuvres with precision (p. 96). In all their formations they are slower and looser than the British (p. 96). Men pointed out as clever men in the artillery and engineer corps are often incredibly ignorant and unintelligent, though they can talk with fluency on any subject connected with their profession without compromising themselves (p.97). That the Russian soldiers are even wretched manœuverers at a review, is plain from the fact that more men were accidentally killed and wounded in the sham battle at the camp of Kalisch, than in all the British operations on the coast of Syria, inclusive of the storming of Acre (p. 96). It is true the Russian soldier is cheap, and costs but 51. a year, but, as the author of the Revelations" judiciously remarks, in the estimation taken of European soldiers we are to calculate the cost of labour, and not the rate of wages; more work is done for a given price by the English soldier than by any in the world. Russia most strongly exemplifies the paradoxical truth which so many continental states more or less demonstrate, namely, how dear the low priced soldiers may be.'
It is the opinion of this author, too, that the actual military strength of Russia has diminished. It is doubtful whether she
could now send forth an army as powerful as that which overran the north of Italy half a century ago. This is certainly no very flattering picture, but we believe it to be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. In the complications of war, we may peradventure find the Russian soldier by our side, but though we may battle in the same cause, this circumstance cannot induce us to extend our approval to his military system or organisation, still less to the spirit which actuates his army. Nor can the domestic constitution of Russia ever enlist the sympathy of Great Britain. The blood runs cold in reading the horrible details in these volumes-details almost incredible, had they not been given, to use a legal phrase, with all 'convenient certainty of time and place.' The subject is of too important and engrossing a character to touch on now, but we shall, in a future number, treat of the internal administration of Russia, and disabuse the public as to the gross errors set afloat by the Times,' concerning the Russian navy-errors disgraceful to any journalist, provincial or metropolitan, but criminal in a paper professing-whether for good or ill-to guide and govern public opinion.
ART. X.-1. An Appeal to the British Nation in behalf of Colonel Stoddart and Captain Conolly, now in Captivity in Bokhara. By CAPTAIN GROVER, Unattached. London: Hatchard. 1843.
2. Letters of Dr. Wolff, written in the course of his Mission to Bokhara. MS.
3. Nachrichten über Chiwa, Buchara, Chokand und den nordwestlichen Theil des chinesischen Staates, gesammelt von dem Präsidenten des Asiatischen Grenz-Commission in Orenburg, GENERAL MAJOR GENS, bearbeitet und mit Anmerkungen versehen von GR. v. HELMERSEN. (Information respecting Khiva, Bokhara, and the North-western part of the Chinese Empire, Collected by MAJOR GENERAL GENS, President of the Asiatic Frontier Commission in Orenburg, and edited and annotated by GR. V. HELMERSEN. St. Petersburg. 1839. From the Press of the Imperial Academy of the Sciences.)
WHEN an act of weakness or wickedness has been perpetrated, the consequences do not exhibit themselves all at once. The culprit, perhaps, for some time congratulates himself on his achievement, imagines he has performed something extraordinary, and, lending his own partialities and predilections to mankind, anticipates a golden harvest of fame. This appears to have been the
case with our Tory cabinet, when they relinquished the vantage ground which had been gained in Affghanistan. They regarded the matter in one light only, namely as a reversal of the policy of Lord Palmerston. To take views different from his was, they thought, to triumph over him, to prove him wrong, to undermine his reputation for statesmanship, and ultimately to give a heavy blow and great discouragement' to the party of which he is one of the most distinguished leaders. But, to borrow a phrase from Lord Castlereagh, they halloo'd before they were out of the wood. Of all the great politicians throughout Europe, not one was found to coincide in opinion with them. Common sense forbade it. The Affghan expedition, one of the boldest political schemes that ever was planned, had rendered us masters of the great central citadel of Asia from which we might have dictated the terms of peace or war to all surrounding states. Russia beheld her grand projects arrested in mid career; France stood literally paralyzed with envy; Persia, Beloochistan, and all the petty governments of independent Tartary, lay absolutely prostrate at our feet. Even the Chinese empire already felt the shadow of our colossal power flung across its frontier, and trembled at the aspect of the neighbour it had thus unexpectedly gained. Every man in Great Britain capable of reading accurately the signs of the times, and of looking ever so little forward into futurity was haunted by the most painful solicitude lest some event might happen to remove from the helm of government before the great and glorious work should be completed, the man who had laid its foundations and who alone apparently possessed the wisdom and energy necessary to put the finishing hand to it. Unhappily for our fame and fortunes as a people, the machinations of faction, when events had arrived at this stage, succeeded in overthrowing the Melbourne ministry, when a few months longer of power would have elevated us to a pitch of grandeur unexampled in the history of mankind. Our authority was rapidly consolidating itself in Affghanistan. Even the disasters at Kabul, supposing them still to have occurred, would not have shaken us in the least. We should have put down insurrection; we should have extirpated utterly the hopes of the disaffected; we should have planted ourselves firmly in every strong place in the country; we should have commanded the passes, conciliated the towns and plains, and transformed the ignorant and savage inhabitants into civilised, peaceful, and industrious men.
The accession of the Tories at this juncture to office blasted all these fair prospects. The governor-general whom they sent out to India, a vain, rash, unreflecting novice, intent on imitating Napoleon in his bulletins and in his retreats, was precisely the best instrument that could have been selected to undo in a few short