J2r. 35] TROOPS AND POLICE 289
viduals. To strike at the leaders is undoubtedly the right thing, and this is just what we have been accused of not doing. But openly teaching the doctrine of breach of contract, which is their real crime, does not, unfortunately, enable us to take them up. We are hampered in our action by an express agreement that we will not arrest any man unless we can say on our honour that we believe him to have actually committed or incited to outrage. This at first prevented us from attacking the leaders as vigorously as we might have done, but latterly some of them have been less cautious, and we have also prevailed upon ourselves to give a wider interpretation to our powers. 3?or my part, I should be inclined to interpret them very widely. It is hardly too much to say that in the present state of the country everybody who takes a leading part in the Land League does, by the very fact of so doing, incite to outrage. And there is now hardly anybody whose detention policy would demand that I would not personally arrest. Next to arresting all the leading men that we can comes the strict enforcement of the law. Every failure to serve a process, or to carry out a forced sale, or an eviction, does immense mischief. Of course, a collision should, if possible, be prevented, and for this purpose we always endeavour to send an overwhelming force.
' I may here notice that complaint has been made of the troops being exposed to stoning without being allowed to act in return. A certain amount of this may be unavoidable, but troops, in my opinion, should never be brought face to face with the mob unless they are intended to act. It is not fair for the troops, and it diminishes the moral effect upon the people. The police should, if possible, be employed in prefer-
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