William Wilson, editor of "The London Year Book" and other publications, amplifies the article which was published by the Spectator on Saturday last regarding France's attitude toward the United States in the late war. He says that not long after the opening of the war the French government conceived a plan, the object of which was to rescue Spain, to administer a rebuke to American ambition, and to assert European supremacy in the complications in the Western world. By a combination of good fortune and diplomatic adroitness, the French government secured the support of the other continental powers, Germany and Russia included. The stroke was all but completely prepared, and nothing remained but to secure, if not the active adherence, at least the tacit consent or neutrality, of the English government. At this point the first and last check to the scheme was received. The English people, so reasoned the French Cabinet, have suffered more from American aggression of late years than any other nation. Deeply angered by the worst part of the American press, they must have reached the limit of their endurance under the menaces of President Cleveland. Here, therefore, is their opportunity for an easy and overwhelming revenge. Accordingly the proposition of diplomatic intervention, if that should be sufficient, or force of arms if needful, was definitely submitted to Lord Salisbury. To the unmeasured surprise and grief of the French Cabinet, a reply was delivered to the effect that if the plan was not directly abandoned, not only would Her Majesty's government refuse to countenance its execution, but would join forces with the American government and declare war on France and such supporters as should come to her assistance. The negotiations at once fell through, and the French government was compelled to beat a retreat.

September 8, 1898

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