Treaty of Washington (1871)

The Treaty of Washington was a treaty signed and ratified by the United Kingdom and the United States in 1871 during the first premiership of William Gladstone and the presidency of Ulysses S. Grant, it settled various disputes between the countries, including the Alabama Claims for damages to American shipping caused by British-built warships, as well as illegal fishing in Canadian waters and British civilian losses in the American Civil War. It inaugurated permanent peaceful relations between the United States and Canada, United States and Britain. After the arbitrators endorsed the American position in 1872, Britain settled the matter by paying the United States $15.5 million, ending the dispute and leading to a treaty that restored friendly relations between Britain and the United States. That international arbitration established a precedent, the case aroused interest in codifying public international law. In early 1871, the British government sent Sir John Rose to the United States to ascertain whether negotiations to settle the Northwestern boundary dispute would be acceptable to President Ulysses S. Grant.

The U. S. government through the adroit and diplomatic abilities of Grant's Secretary of State, Hamilton Fish, cordially received his advances and, on January 26, Sir Edward Thornton, the British Minister at Washington formally proposed the appointment of a joint high commission to meet in Washington to resolve the dispute. The United States consented, provided that the differences growing out of the Civil War be among the subjects to be considered; the British government promptly accepted the American proviso and the president appointed commissioners. The British government selected as its commissioners Earl de Grey, Sir Stafford Northcote, Lord Tenterden, Sir Edward Thornton, Mountague Bernard, Canadian Prime Minister Sir John A. Macdonald. President Grant appointed as U. S. commissioners Secretary of State Hamilton Fish, who served as chairman, Robert Schenck, Ebenezer R. Hoar, George Henry Williams, Samuel Nelson, J. C. Bancroft Davis. Although the treaty was signed in the name of the British Empire, Macdonald's presence established that the newly-formed Dominion of Canada would at least take part in settling foreign matters that affected it directly with respect to dealings with the United States.

The joint commission entered at once upon its task and on 8 May concluded a treaty which received the prompt approval of the two governments. Aside from the settlement of the dispute growing out of the so-called Alabama Claims, provision was made for the adjustment of the differences with regard to the northeastern fisheries by the appointment of a mixed commission to meet at Halifax and pass upon the relative value of certain reciprocal privileges granted each of the contracting parties. In 1877, the Halifax Fisheries Commission appointed under the treaty directed the United States to pay $5,500,000 to the British Government as compensation. Provision was made for submitting to the arbitration by William I, German Emperor, of the Pig War dispute concerning the maritime boundary in Puget Sound. Thus, the treaty profoundly affected international law, with subsequent effects upon the 1878 Congress of Berlin. At Geneva, in 1872, the United States was awarded $15,500,000 pursuant to the terms of the treaty, the British apologized for the destruction caused by the British-built Confederate ships but admitted no guilt.

Compensation for the Fenian raids was not included, American fishermen were given rights to fish in Canadian waters. That irritated Macdonald, but he nonetheless signed the treaty under the argument that he was a junior member of the British delegation; the treaty was published in the Canadian press to widespread condemnation, but Macdonald remained silent on the issue. When it came time to debate the treaty in the House of Commons of Canada, he revealed that he had been secretly negotiating for a better deal and had obtained a cash payment from the Americans for the use of Canadian fishing grounds, in lieu of any claim against the United States over the Fenians. Furthermore, the British had agreed to a guaranteed loan of £4,000,000 for the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway; this masterstroke of diplomacy and statecraft allowed an otherwise unpopular treaty to be ratified by the Parliament of Canada. The scholar of international law John Bassett Moore called this treaty "the greatest treaty of actual and immediate arbitration the world has seen."

These so-called rules of Washington agreed upon by the contracting parties for the guidance of the tribunal in the interpretation of certain terms used in the treaty and of certain principles of international law governing the obligations of neutrals: That due diligence "ought to be exercised by neutral governments in exact proportion to the risks to which either of the belligerents may be exposed, from a failure to fulfill the obligations of neutrality on their part." "The effects of a violation of neutrality committed by means of the construction and armament of a vessel are not done away with by any commission which the government of the belligerent power benefited by the violation of neutrality may afterward have granted to that vessel. "The principle of extraterritoriality has been admitted into the laws of nations, not as an absolute right, but as a proceeding founded on the principle of courtesy and mutual deference between different nations, therefore can never be appealed to for the protection of acts done in violation of neutrality."Those rules affected t

BBNG (album)

BBNG is the debut album from Canadian jazz instrumental hip hop band BADBADNOTGOOD. It was released for free download in 2011; the album features a mixture of original compositions and covers of songs from the artists Flying Lotus, Gang Starr, J Dilla, Joy Division, Nas and Ol' Dirty Bastard. The cover artwork was made by Connor Olthuis and Sam Zaret. Matthew Tavares - keyboards Chester Hansen - bass guitar, upright bass Alexander Sowinski - drums, sampler Matt MacNeil - engineer, mixing Official website BADBADNOTGOOD on Tumblr BADBADNOTGOOD on Bandcamp

Raid on Boulogne

The Raid on Boulogne in 1804 was a naval assault by elements of the Royal Navy on the fortified French port of Boulogne, during the Napoleonic Wars. It differed from the conventional tactics of naval assaults of the period by utilizing a wide range of new equipment produced by the American-born inventor Robert Fulton, with the backing of the Admiralty. Despite its ambitious aims the assault produced little material damage to the French fleet anchored in the harbour, but did contribute to a growing sense of defeatism amongst the French as to their chances of crossing the English Channel in the face of the Royal Navy and launching a successful invasion of the United Kingdom. Napoleon had marked out the Channel port of Boulogne as one of the main embarkation points for his Armée de l'Angleterre. Preparations for an invasion flotilla to carry French troops across the Channel from a number of ports had been underway since the late 1790s, but had been temporarily shelved by the Peace of Amiens; the resumption of hostilities resulted in the gathering of forces outside Boulogne, the construction of large military camps and the fortification of port in preparation for the assembling of the invasion flotilla.

Napoleon himself visited the town on 16 August 1804 to review present medals. The Royal Navy was the main obstacle to a successful invasion, but Napoleon declared that his fleet need only be "masters of the Channel for six hours, we shall be masters of the world." Meanwhile, British land-based defences were under-prepared and ill-equipped to resist an invasion force numbering upwards of 100,000 men. Unless the French invasion fleet could be destroyed either in port or at sea, it was doubtful that the south of the country could be held in the immediate aftermath of a landing and advance on London. Though the intended departure points were known and were being blockaded by the Royal Navy, First Lord of the Admiralty Lord Melville was short of ships. If a combined Franco-Spanish fleet were to force the Navy from its station for a short while, the French invasion force might succeed in crossing unmolested. With tensions running high in Britain, prominent politicians suggested attacking the French force in port, in the hopes of at the least delaying the anticipated invasion while defences were hurriedly constructed along the coast.

Boulogne had been fortified over the years, a number of conventional assaults had failed, notable being one commanded by Horatio Nelson in 1801. The invasion barges were defended by a double line of warships anchored nose-to-tail, with these covered by gun batteries lining the cliff tops. New methods had to be considered. Prime Minister William Pitt met with a number of inventors and amateur tacticians during the year, who proposed new and novel ways of attacking the French before they could put to sea. Ideas included sinking blockships in the harbour mouth, releasing rocket-carrying balloons over the port at night to be detonated by clockwork, or sending in a fleet of fireships. On 20 July 1804 Sir Home Popham met with the American born inventor Robert Fulton. Fulton had been working in France designing submarines, but having failed to generate any real interest in the French Navy for the practical application of his inventions, Fulton had come to Britain and offered his services to the Admiralty.

He proposed an assault using a combination of fireships, torpedoes and other explosive devices, a concept that Pitt agreed to. A contract was signed and Fulton was tasked with working with the Admiralty to build his devices in anticipation of an assault that year. Napoleon left Boulogne on 27 August, bound for Aachen to visit the tomb of Charlemagne, to see his wife Joséphine; the army remained encamped outside Boulogne and the British were suspicious that his departure was a ruse, that he would double back unexpectedly to take command of the army and launch the invasion. In the meantime the frigate HMS Immortalite was sent under the command of Captain Edward Owen to carry out surveys along the French coast around the port. Fulton subsequently pronounced his inventions ready, an assault was planned for early October. Working at Portsmouth Dockyard Fulton had built several types of craft and explosive devices. The'torpedo-catamaran' was a coffer-like device balanced on two wooden floats and steered by a man with a paddle.

Weighted with lead so as to ride low in the water, the operator was further disguised by wearing dark clothes and a black cap. His task was to approach the French ship, hook the torpedo to the anchor cable and, having activated the device by removing a pin, remove the paddles and escape before the torpedo detonated. To be deployed were large numbers of casks filled with gunpowder and combustible balls, they would explode. Included in the force were several fireships, carrying 40 barrels of gunpowder and rigged to explode by a clockwork mechanism; the force assembled outside Boulogne in September, under the overall command of Lord Keith aboard his flagship HMS Monarch. There to witness the operation were Fulton. Fulton had negotiated a sum of £40,000 for the first decked ship destroyed in the attack, half the value of any ship destroyed, on top of his salary of £200 a month; however Keith made no attempt to conceal the British force, the French were alerted that an attack could be imminent. By 9pm on the night of 2 October the wind and tide were judged right and the flotilla began to approach the harbour.

The British approached in three divisions. The fireships were escorted in by several gun-brigs, accompanied by Fulton's torpedo-catamarans, up to 18 in total; the French had responded to the increased British forces by anchoring their line