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example of the duties which he inculcates ; and evince that in all his proceedings, whether they respect himself or others, he is actuated by a constant reference to a future and eternal state of existence.
The nature of the naval and military professions, the former of which adds to the common precariousness of life all the hazards resulting from boisterous elements, and both of them the risks attendant on war, seems to call those who belong to them to peculiar seriousness of mind and circumspection of conduct. Yet, ftrange as it may be, thoughtlessness frequently appears to increase in proportion to familiarity with danger. If this observation be well founded, it strongly inculcates on every Officer the importance of unremitting attention to the rites and precepts of religion in a line of life, in which the
circumstances that might have been judged singularly likely to lead the mind to habits of devotion, and a constant and lively and awful sense of duty, are found to fix it in carelessness, and to harden it in guilt.
3. The duty of an Officer towards enemies, and towards the subjects of neutral powers, is to, be noticed in the next place.
The duties which an Officer owes to the enemies of his country may be comprised under the two general rules, of faithfully rendering to them whatever they are entitled in point of justice to demand from him ; and of treating them with every degree of forbearance and humanity compatible with the successful prosecution of a just war.
The first of these rules binds an Officer strictly to observe those general laws, which civilised Nations have adopted by express or tacit convention for the purpose of regulating hoftilities. For as thele laws were mutually recognised by the belligerent powers previously to the war, each party may claim from the other, as an absolute right, the benefit of every injunction and provision which they contain. It binds him likewise to conform to all articles existing in any treaty between his own country and the enemy, which were to continue uninterruptedly in force notwith
standing standing future ruptures between the contracting States.
These antecedent engagements cannot be annulled without the act of the enemy; who may cancel them either by an express renunciation; or by failing himself to comply with them, or with some other agreement on which their validity was to depend. But an Officer who should infringe any one of them until it is undeniably cancelled in some one of these methods by the other party, would be guilty of an act of palpable dishonesty; and would of course be altogether inexcusable, whatever advantages he might hope to procure, or might actually obtain, for his country by the attempt. Our rule in the next place inculcates on every Officer the punctual performance of all engagements which have been made during the course of the war with the adverse Nation, or with individuals belonging to it, either by the Government of his own country, or by its authority delegated to himself or to other persons employed in its service. Under this description is comprehended the scrupulous observance of capitulations, of truces, of safe conducts, of parleys, of cartels, of paroles. He who abets another
in the violation of these or similar promises and contracts, is not less criminal than if he had broken them himself. He who breaks them by insidious fubterfuges and evasions; he who employs the liberty and opportunities which they afford him for purposes which he knows to be repugnant to the real and acknowledged meaning of the other party; commonly incurs deeper, because more deliberate, guilt, than he would have brought upon himself even by openly refusing to adhere to them.
Sincerity is a duty faithfully to be observed towards an enemy. It is no breach of this precept to have recourse to such feints and stratagems in the conduct of warlike operations, as are not repugnant to the received laws of war; for these cannot be styled deceits in the proper
sense of that term, being invariably expected (!), and admitted to be fair dealing
by by the opposite party. The combatant who seems to aim a blow at the head of his adversary, with a view to lead him to leave his breast exposed, at which from the first he intended to strike, violates no rule of morality : for the other was well aware, that the gestures of the assailant were not meant to convey any promise as to the part against which his attack should be directed. For similar reasons the Commander is blameless, who apparently menaces a particular district with an invasion, that he may cover his real designs on another quarter ; or assembles numerous standards on a hill, and pitches a camp of unnecessary magnitude,
(1) Some authors have defended the lawfulness of stratagems on the absurd plea, that a man having a right to kill his enemy, has therefore à fortiori a right to deceive him. See Vattel's Law of Nations, Chapter on Stratagems, vol. ii. p. 66; a chapter which contains many just obfervations, blended with a strange mixture of weak, con
fufed, and inconsistent reasoning. Deceit is on no pretence or occasion lawful. But allowed stratagems are not deceits, according to the real import of the word. If a person, on being requested to do a particular thing, answers, " that he will do it," or even nods, and afterwards does it not, it is deceit. And why? For this reason alone, because the words and the sign were such as, according to common acceptation, implied aflent. But had it been universally understood, that in certain cases they should not necessarily imply that meaning,' he might have used them in those circumstances without being pledged to it, and without being chargeable with deceit if