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JSTOR helps people discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content through a powerful research and teaching platform, and preserves this content for future generations. JSTOR is part of ITHAKA, a not-for-profit organization that also includes Ithaka S+R and Portico. For more information about JSTOR, please contact email@example.com. EDITORIAL COMMENT 621 The Fourteenth Lake Mohonk Conference on International Arbitration notes with pleasure the existence of fifty and more treaties of arbitration concluded within the past five years, and more especially the arbitration treaties concluded between the United States and France, Great Britain, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Switzerland, Holland, Norway, Sweden, Portugal, and Spain. The conference, therefore, expresses the hope that the peaceful and judicial settlement of inter- national difficulties by resort to courts of arbitration and of justice bids fair to become the rule of the future, as it has been in a measure the enlightened practice of the immediate past. The Fourteenth Lake Mohonk Conference on International Arbitration further commends the activities of our schools, colleges, universities, and the various professional, business, and labor organizations of the country by which and through which popular sentiment is created, trained, and directed, not merely to the maintenance of peace, but also, by the elimination of the ostensible causes of war by peaceful settlement, to the prevention of war itself. Finally, the Fourteenth Lake Mohonk Conference on International Arbitration rejoices in the fact that the representation of all the civilized nations of the world in the Second Hague Conference, and the recommendation in its final act for a future conference, guarantee, for the future, a conference of an inter- national and permanent character, capable of correcting the inequalities of international practice and of enacting a code of international law based upon justice and equity. THE NEW BUILDING OF THE INTERNATIONAL BUREAU OF THE AMERICAN REPUBLICS On the 11th day of May, 1908, in the presence of representatives of Latin America and of the United States, the corner stone of the new building of the International Bureau of American Republics was laid in the capital of our country. The occasion was a notable one, not merely from the presence of and addresses by President Roosevelt, Secretary Root, Ambassador Nabuco, and Andrew Carnegie, but as visible evi- dence of the fact that the Western Hemisphere is little by little being drawn into closer, more intimate, and sympathetic connection, and that Pan-America is cooperating to secure not merely commercial develop- ment but, by a closer understanding, the maintenance of peace at home and abroad. It was entirely appropriate that Mr. Root should be the conspicuous figure on the occasion; for it is not too much to say that his secretary- ship has witnessed the culmination of the various movements to bring Anglo-Saxon and Latin America together, nor is it too much to hope that the spirit of good fellowship generated by his policy and by his personal visit to the various countries of Latin America will result in removing 622 THE AMERICAN JOURNAL OF INTERNATIONAL LAW misunderstandings that so frequently occur between peoples that do not come into close contact, and that the relations of the Americas may henceforth be based upon equality, justice, and a desire for the improve- ment of all without the sacrifice of the rights and national aspirations of any member of the Western Hemisphere. The importance of the occasion and Mr. Root's part in bringing it about were admirably set forth by the President in the last paragraphs of his address : In conclusion, let me speak of another trip, made a couple of years ago by the Secretary of State, Elihu Koot — the first time in our history the American Secretary of State, during his term of office, left the country to visit certain other nations. Mr. Root made the complete tour of South America, traversed Central America, and afterwards visited Mexico. He was everywhere received with the heartiest greeting, a greeting which deeply touched our people, and I wish to say once more how appreciative we are of the reception tendered him. His voyage was unique in character and in value. It was undertaken only because we citizens of this Republic recognize that our interests are more closely intertwined with the interests of the other peoples of this continent than with those of any other nations. I believe that history will say that though we have had other great Secretaries of State, we have had none greater than Elihu Root; and that though in his high office he has done much for the good of his nation and of mankind, yet that his greatest achievement has been the success which has come as the result of his devoted labor to bring closer together all the republics of the New World, and to unite them in the effort to work valiantly for our common betterment, for the material and moral welfare of all who dwell in the Western Hemisphere. The address of the Secretary of State follows in full : Mr. President and Gentlemen: We are here to lay the corner stone of the building which is to be the home of the International Union of American Republics. The wise liberality of the Congress of the United States has provided the means for the purchase of this tract of land — five acres in extent — near the White House and the great Executive Departments, bounded on every side by public streets and facing to the east and south upon public parks which it will always be the care of the National Government to render continually more beautiful, in execution of its design to make the national capital an object of national pride and a source of that pleasure which comes to rich and poor alike from the education of taste. The public spirit and enthusiasm for the good of humanity which have inspired an American citizen, Mr. Andrew Carnegie, in his administration of a great fortune, have led him to devote the adequate and ample sum of three-quarters of a million dollars to the construction of the building. Into the appropriate adornment and fitting of the edifice will go the contribu- XDITOBIAL COMMENT 623 tions of every American Republic, already pledged and, in a great measure, already paid into the fund of the Union. The International Union for which the building is erected is a voluntary association, the members of which are all the American nations from Cape Horn to the Great Lakes. It had its origin in the first Pan-American Conference held at Washington in 1889, and it has been developed and improved in efficiency under the resolutions of the succeeding conferences in Mexico and Brazil. Its primary object is to break down the barriers of mutual ignorance between the nations of America by collecting and making accessible, furnishing and spread- ing, information about every country among the people of every other country in the Union, to facilitate and stimulate intercourse, trade, acquaintance, good understanding, fellowship, and sympathy. For this purpose it has established in Washington a Bureau or office under the direction of a Governing Board com- posed of the official representatives in Washington of all the Republics, and having a Director and Secretary, with a force of assistants and translators and clerks. The Bureau has established a rapidly increasing library of history, travel, description, statistics, and literature of the American nations. It publishes a Monthly Bulletin of current public events and existing conditions in all the united countries, which is circulated in every country. It carries on an enormous correspondence with every part of both continents, answering the questions of seekers for information about the laws, customs, conditions, opportunities, and personnel of the different countries ; and it has become a medium of introduction and guidance for international intercourse. The Governing Board is also a permanent committee charged with the duty of seeing that the resolutions of each Pan-American Conference are carried out and that suitable preparation is made for the next succeeding conference. The increasing work of the Bureau has greatly outgrown the facilities of its cramped quarters on Pennsylvania avenue, and now at the close of its second decade and under the influence of the great movement of awakened sympathy between the American Republics, the Union stands upon the threshold of more ample opportunity for the prosecution of its beneficent activity. Many noble and beautiful public buildings record the achievements and illus- trate the impulses of modern civilization. Temples of religion, of patriotism, of learning, of art, of justice, abound; but this structure will stand alone, the first of its kind — a temple dedicated to international friendship. It will be devoted to the diffusion of that international knowledge which dispels national prejudice and liberalizes national judgment. Here will be fostered the growth of that sympathy born of similarity in good impulses and noble purposes, which draws men of different races and countries together into a community of nations, and counteracts the tendency of selfish instincts to array nations against each other as enemies. From this source shall spring mutual helpfulness between all the American republics, so that the best knowledge and experience and courage and hope of every republic shall lend moral power to sustain and strengthen every other in its struggle to work out its problems and to advance the standard of liberty and peace with justice within itself, so that no people in all of these continents, however oppressed and discouraged, however impoverished and torn 624 THE AMERICAN JOURNAL OF INTERNATIONAL LAW by disorder, shall fail to feel that they are not alone in the world, or shall fail to see that for them a better day may dawn, as for others the sun has already risen. It is too much to expect that there will not be controversies between American nations, to whose desire for harmony we now bear witness; but to every con- troversy will apply the truth that there are no international controversies so serious that they can not be settled peaceably if both parties really desire peace- able settlement, while there are few causes of dispute so trifling that they can not be made the occasion of war if either party really desires war. The matters in dispute between nations are nothing; the spirit which deals with them is everything. The graceful courtesy of the twenty republics who have agreed upon the capital of the United States for the home of this International Union, the deep apprecia- tion of that courtesy shown by the American Government and this representative American citizen, and the work to be done within the walls that are to rise on this site, can not fail to be powerful influences toward the creation of a spirit that will solve all disputed questions of the future and preserve the peace of the Western World. May the structure now begun stand for many generations to come as the visible evidence of mutual respect, esteem, appreciation, and kindly feeling between the people of all the republics; may pleasant memories of hospitality and friendship gather about it, and may all the Americas come to feel that for them this place is home, for it is theirs, the product of a common effort and the instrument of a common purpose. RECENT ARBITRATION TREATIES CONCLUDED BY THE UNITED STATES In the Editorial Comment of the April number of this Journal (II, 387) attention was called to the fact that the United States had seriously taken up the problem of arbitration treaties, and that by a happy formula of the compromis clause the objection of the Senate, as well as the tech- nical objection of the foreign powers, seems to have been overcome. As the nature of the compromis was carefully considered, as well as the constitutional and international difficulty, it seems unnecessaiy to do more than to refer to the editorial in question. The American Government has not entered, into an unrestricted agree- ment to arbitrate any and all controversies which may rise, but has lim- ited the scope of arbitration to controversies of a legal nature, or differences relating to the interpretation of treaties, thereby excluding any differences of a purely political nature. The reason for this restric- tion is self-evident; matters of policy are for the Government to deter- mine, and it is not to be supposed that a government will generally and in advance renounce the right to conduct and to control matters of policy.