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The complaints which the Spanish Ministry is said to have made to our government, of its laxness in preventing filibustering expeditions, have called out from the Secretary of the Navy an interesting rejoinder. The statement of Mr. Long attempts to show on the part of the United States a diligence in preserving its neutrality, that is not only "due" but even unusual under the circumstances. This correspondence is not yet published. The mere fact of its existence and probable tenor, is known. We cannot scrutinize the assertions of fact and law and precedent therein contained. Nevertheless, perhaps we may use the incident to advantage as a peg upon which to hang two inquiries, the one relating to fact, the other to law; the one recalling a bitter national controversy, long since settled; the other concerning the duties of a State in view of an insurrection against a friendly power, an insurrection which cannot well be recognized as belligerent.
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