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Observations On The Treaty
by [?]

It is further urged, with great vehemence, that these troops of Russia and Hesse are not hired in defence of Britain; that we are engaged, in a naval war, for territories on a distant continent; and that these troops, though mercenaries, can never be auxiliaries; that they increase the burden of the war, without hastening its conclusion, or promoting its success; since they can neither be sent into America, the only part of the world where England can, on the present occasion, have any employment for land-forces, nor be put into our ships, by which, and by which only, we are now to oppose and subdue our enemies.

Nature has stationed us in an island, inaccessible but by sea; and we are now at war with an enemy, whose naval power is inferiour to our own, and from whom, therefore, we are in no danger of invasion: to what purpose, then, are troops hired in such uncommon numbers? To what end do we procure strength, which we cannot exert, and exhaust the nation with subsidies, at a time when nothing is disputed, which the princes, who receive our subsidies, can defend? If we had purchased ships, and hired seamen, we had apparently increased our power, and made ourselves formidable to our enemies, and, if any increase of security be possible, had secured ourselves still better from invasions: but what can the regiments of Russia, or of Hesse, contribute to the defence of the coasts of England; or, by what assistance can they repay us the sums, which we have stipulated to pay for their costly friendship?

The king of Great Britain has, indeed, a territory on the continent, of which the natives of this island scarcely knew the name, till the present family was called to the throne, and yet know little more than that our king visits it from time to time. Yet, for the defence of this country, are these subsidies apparently paid, and these troops evidently levied. The riches of our nation are sent into distant countries, and the strength, which should be employed in our own quarrel, consequently impaired, for the sake of dominions, the interest of which has no connexion with ours, and which, by the act of succession, we took care to keep separate from the British kingdoms.

To this the advocates for the subsidies say, that unreasonable stipulations, whether in the act of settlement, or any other contract, are, in themselves, void; and that if a country connected with England, by subjection to the same sovereign, is endangered by an English quarrel, it must be defended by English force; and that we do not engage in a war, for the sake of Hanover, but that Hanover is, for our sake, exposed to danger.

Those who brought in these foreign troops have still something further to say in their defence, and of no honest plea is it our intention to defraud them. They grant, that the terrour of invasion may, possibly, be groundless; that the French may want the power, or the courage, to attack us in our own country; but they maintain, likewise, that an invasion is possible, that the armies of France are so numerous, that she may hazard a large body on the ocean, without leaving herself exposed; that she is exasperated to the utmost degree of acrimony, and would be willing to do us mischief, at her own peril. They allow, that the invaders may be intercepted at sea, or that, if they land, they may be defeated by our native troops. But they say, and say justly, that danger is better avoided than encountered; that those ministers consult more the good of their country, who prevent invasion, than repel it; and that, if these auxiliaries have only saved us from the anxiety of expecting an enemy at our doors, or from the tumult and distress which an invasion, how soon soever repressed, would have produced, the publick money is not spent in vain.