200 DRAMATIC MOMENTS
upon humanity, but a hideous breach of inter- national law; that the Maine had been blown up by the Spanish Government; and that, any- way, Cuba was to be freed regardless of cir- cumstances, and by war, no matter what any- body said.
This fact must be kept in mind. It was thoroughly understood by all hands, the efforts for a peaceful solution hinged upon preventing McKinley's giving Congress its head. And so all discussion finally centred upon whether he was or was not to send a message of this sort.
Granting that the war was of great benefit to Spain, Cuba, and the United States, as well as an indispensable step both in the develop- ment of this country as a World Power, and in the establishment of a new sense of interna- tional comitj^ based upon justice and "the de- cent respect for the opinion" of mankind, as well as "National Interest," it must be ad- mitted that, in his diplomatic action, McKinley showed none of the executive strength and con-