The Akaroa Mail. FRIDAY, MARCH 27, 1914 THE ULSTER CRISIS.
Not the least important development in the Home Rule crisis is tbe wholesale resignation of the officers;of the regiments ordered to Ulster to nelp; in connection with the revolt at the passage of the Home Rule Rill. The action of the officers has given rise: to a good deal of adverse comment- It is natural that no officer would like the work of firing on rebellious Ulstermen, but, after ail, a soldier is supposed to bis as near a machine as possible, and to obey orders at all costs If be fires on a party of men at tbe command of the Government, he should not consider what his own views in the matter are. If an army is to be at all effective, it should be composed of men who obey orders unflinchingly whatever- their orders may be- There comes a stage when a soldier's feelings are too strong to allow him to carry out orders given, and no man can be blamed far resign* ing. Apparently Brigadier-iGenerai j Goughandbis fejjpw officers ireached tbat stage when even the giving up of J their chosen careers was preferable to hoving to obey orders and fire on Ulstermen, At present the position is a ridaculous one. The Go? ernment are sending troops to, Ulster io coerce J
the rebellious spirit, and at tbe same dime they bave practically had to assure tbe officers of the regiments ;sent that there will be no "mailed jhand," but simply "velvet glove-" ' Having reached the present crisis the Asquith Government should either | withdraw all Bhow of arras against i Ulster, or send men who will act as ! ordinary soldiers should the necessity I arise. The sending of the troops is a fiasco, and the Ulster people must realize this is so. Whatever views one takes as to whether Home Rule is justified or not, it must be agreed tbat the people of Ulster are putting themselves in the wrong in the atti tude they have taken, and if tbey are going to resist by taking up arms, the Government' is obliged to take up j arms against tbem. Tbe late fiasco of officers' resignations robs tbe English regiments of any terrifying aspect for the lawbreakers. After all the Bill has not passed the * House of Commons; and as pointed out by tbe " Daily Chronicle," our officers should not resign because of the passage of a certain Bill through the House of Commons.