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Observations on the Present State of the Affairs o

OBSERVATIONS ON THE PRESENT STATE OF THE AFFAIRS OF THE RIVER PLATE.

BY THOMAS BAINES.

"Malheur au siecle, temoin passif d'une lutte heroique, qui croirait qu'on peut sans peril, comme sans penetration de l'avenir, laisser immoler une nation." CHATEAUBRIAND.

LIVERPOOL: PRINTED AND PUBLISHED AT THE LIVERPOOL TIMES OFFICE, CASTLE STREET.

1845.

OBSERVATIONS ON THE PRESENT STATE OF THE AFFAIRS OF THE RIVER PLATE.

The destructive war which has now been waged for so many years, by the Chief of the Province of Buenos Ayres against the Republic of Uruguay, involves questions of so much importance to the commercial interests, and to the national honour of England, that nothing can account for the very slight attention which it has received from Parliament and the press, except the fact that many of the principal considerations connected with it have never yet been fully brought before the British public. In order to supply this deficiency, and to show how much it concerns the character of this country that this war should at once be brought to a close in the only manner in which it can be ended; that is, by the prompt and decided interference of the Governments of France and England, I have thought that it might be useful to lay before the public the following observations and documents, explanatory of the principles involved in the war; of the conduct pursued by Mr. Mandeville, the British Minister to the Argentine Confederation, at the most critical period of its progress; and of the strong and rapidly-increasing interest which this country, and more especially the port of Liverpool, has in the preservation of the threatened independence of the Republic of Uruguay.

Most of the readers of these remarks are no doubt aware that the Province of the Banda Oriental, or eastern bank of the River Plate, was first constituted an independent state, under the title of the Republic of Uruguay, at the close of the war between the Argentine Confederation and the Empire of Brazil, in the year 1828. This arrangement was in a great measure brought about by the good offices of Lord Ponsonby, the Ambassador of the British Government to the Court of Rio, and the result of his negociations was so agreeable to the English Government, that the peace thus concluded was made a subject of congratulation in the speech from the throne in the year 1829. The principal object in forming this new Republic was, to put an end to the destructive war between Buenos Ayres and Brazil, originating in the claims put forward by both these countries to the possession of the Province of the Banda Oriental. The Brazilians, who had had possession of it for several years, were naturally unwilling to have so warlike and powerful a state as the Argentine Republic on their most vulnerable frontier, and the Argentines were not less unwilling to have the Brazilian frontier pushed more than a hundred leagues up the River Plate, and within the limits of the ancient Viceroyalty of Paraguay, which had for ages been occupied by the Spanish race. As the only effectual solution of these difficulties, the English Government proposed that the Banda Oriental should be rendered independent of both countries, and this, after some negociation, was agreed to by all the parties concerned.


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