If the British Parliament should pass a bill providing for a minister and consuls to the Philippine Islands, aiming at recognition of a "Philippine Republic," what would be every American's feeling?
Yet the House Foreign Relations Committee at Washington is seriously considering the Mason Bill, which would appropriate funds to be used for the salaries of a minister and consuls to the "Irish Republic."
If the Mason Bill should become enacted law, the friendship between Great Britain and the United States would be more strained than at any time since our Civil War. If America recognizes the "Irish Republic," England would certainly be justified in serving diplomatic relations, and such action would be in no way unlikely. International enmity and war might be the result.
After refusing to accept the responsibilities that ratification of the Versailles pact would have brought, and after dedicating itself to a policy of "splendid isolation" and short-sighted provincialism, for the Senate to meddle in Irish affairs is the height of inconsistency. Love of the Irish vote rather than love for Ireland, moreover, is the motive behind the introduction of the Mason Bill. It is intended for political effect rather than as a real aid toward Ireland's obtaining its independence.
The politicians at Washington are playing with dynamite when they consider passing a bill recognizing a part of Great Britain as an "independent republic." Every American wants the Irish question settled speedily and permanently, settled to the satisfaction of both the Irish and the English, but the good will of the two great English speaking nations must not be jeopardized. Upon Anglo-American friendship and unity of purpose, forged on a common battleground, rests the hope of the world for peace and progress. The Anglo-American friendship of a century must not be imperiled by Congressional politics. To pass the Mason Bill would not make Ireland an independent republic, but it might mean war with England.
IRELANDSince the unhappy Easter Rebellion of 1916, the Irish question has steadily grown in importance; and as the need has
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