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THE IRISH SKIRMISHING FUND.
A NEW YORK paper, the Nation, throws new light on tho manner in which some of the vast fund collected in the United States
for the purpose of revolutionising Ireland has been disposed of by the self-appointed mendicants of the Irish Skirmishing Fund. The Nation says :
The investigating committee of the sub- scribers of the Irish Skirmishing Fund have made a very depressing report to their con- stituents, which we cordially commend to the attention of the subscribers to Hubbell's Skirmishing Fund. They have discovered, it seems, that the two rams now lying un- finished at Jersey City, which were sup- posed to bo intended for the destruction of the British fleet, wore really in- tended "as a blind to deceive the subscribers into the belief that some- thing was being done to carry out the skirmishing idea. This one item cost the skirmishers $36,890. But the trustees did not confine themselves to rams as " blinds."
They also used funerals for this purpose, and spent $2030 on that of the late John O'Mahoney, Esq., which they tried to con-
vert into a "national demonstration." Of
course, the only way to spend money on a
funeral is to give it to the mourners. The days are long past when people put money or goods into the coffins of deceased heroes to comfort them in the spirit land. It is to bo presumed, therefore, that O'Mahonoy's
mourners had their sorrow to some extent assuaged by tho skirmishing idea. AAro regret to discover, also, that §2000 of the fund Avas usod to " purchase or subsidise the Scottish Highlander." The Scotch
Press lues hitherto been considered ex-
ceptionally pure, and over since the escape of the Pretender, in 17-li>, the Scotch Highlanders ha\'e been considered proof against pecuniary temptation. If Mr. John Murdoch, therefore, nlloived the Scottish Highlander to bo subsidised by the Irish branch of the Gael family, ho has dono a great Avrong. That O'Douowau Rossa should havo got §1331 for salary ¡is secre- tary Avili cause no surprise, lu fact, AVO think his "scoop" has been exceedingly moderato for ¡i person of his expensive
The most enjoyable part of the report is that relating to the expenditures of one of the trustees, Mr. John DeA'oy. This gentleman appears to have secretly abandoned the " skirmishing idea," and to hiivo resolved on what tho report calls a "Parliamentary programme," which seems to hai'c had only ono feature-namely, the election of James O'Kelly, Esq., to the House of Commons. To bring this about, Mr. Do voy started for Ire hind himself, ¡it a cost to the fund of §0000, and gave James O'Kelly, Esq., §10,000 for the expenses of his election anil gave "J. O-"§1000 for making a " favourable report" on his (Devoy's) own doings, and laid out §5000 in trying to get control of the irishman ncAvspaper in Dub- lin. The solo result of these very costly operations Avas thal .Tilines O'Kelly, ICsq., was elected, and is IIOAV James O'Kelly, Esq., M.P. ; and yet the House of Commons exists, and sits, and Ireland is no1 free.
AVe pass over without noliee a very pain- ful paasage in the report about the conversion of registeied into coupon bonds, willi a view to sale, by two of the unscrupulous trustees, through the negligence of the other f'n'o. Sulliee it to say that $!>3,000 of the fmid has, according to the report, been squandered, Avithoul any result whateA'er beyond the pre- sence of James O'Kelly, Esq., aforesaid, in the British Parliament. AVhal interests us
most is the fact that this unhappy slate of things has in no Avay shaken the failli of the committee in " tho skirmishing plan as the simplest and most efficient mode of warfare the Irish people can adopt in their fight against England." "If carried out in good faith," they say, " thero can bo no doubt that it will result in freoing Ireland from English rule." History is full of the attempts of oppressed peoples to got rid of a foreign yoke or overthroAV domestic tyranny by force of arms. In all books on military science these atlompts ¡ire fully discussed, and all the schemes that hai'c occurred to the acutesl minds to enable
down-trodden peoples to overcome the difficulties created by the want of an organised government and army have been fully set forth. In none of them, how- ever, is any mention made of the "skir- mishing jilan," so that it must be original with the trustees of this fund, and must be a weapon of extraordinary power, and very cheap. Tho committee, of course, do not reveal what it is ; but, whatever it be, it is plainly a now political force, which, if successful, vvill soon change the face of the modern world. If Ireland can bo skir- mished out of tho clutches of England by ¡in outlay of 8100,000 or 8200,000, of course skirmishing will soon begin all over tho globe. Tlio Turks vvill bo skirmished out of Europe, tho Austrian« out of Bosnia, the British out of Egypt and India, ami the
Russians out of Central Asia.
The accounts of tho Irish skirmishers
having been laid bare, it would seem as if
those of the officers of the American skir-
mishers, headed by Jay Hubboll and John F. Smyth, ought now to undergo soino sort of audit or examination. If theso worthies liad carried the election (or, as the Irish would say, had succeeded in " freeing Iro land from British rulo"), of couvso thovo would bo no troublosonio inquiries as to what thoy had dono with tho half million or thereabouts which they gol from tho Government clerks. But ¡ts matters stand lhere aro loud calls from every quarter for an accounting. People want to know whevo Hiibbell's vam« ave, and how much Smyth spent on the election of his James O'Kolly, Esq., anti on the funeral of his John Mahoney, Esq., and tho corruption of his John Mm doch. But lliero is as yot no sign of any revelations on tho subject. Tho Tribune soul a reporter to several members of the State Committee, but failed to got any information on tho Bubject. Tho activo inoinbors - Smyth, Sharpe, AVhoolcr, ami Johnson-appear to havo loft town immediately aftor tho defeat and havo not reappeared, Hubboll is buried ia the foresta of Michigan, Quo
member of the committee, who has been trying to find out something, says that in this State "more than half the counties were given neither money nor advice." Several thousand dollars were spent on lithographic pictures of candidates, not including those of Mr. Howard Carroll, which were not circulated, thus
leaving the voters in ignorance of his majestic countenance. The skirmishers' 0 w11 hotel bill wad SâOGO, "'hieb, however, is n.,l,c'1 less than Dovoy's travelling ex- penses, and no report is made, or to be made, to the committee. " The cheques and books are destroyed, and that is all there is of it. The party has to trust to the honesty of Smyth and Co." Hubbell's operations ¡ive buried in equal mystery. Most of his money is said to have gone to the South to skirmish the Bourbons. In short, there is much reason to fear that if an account were rendered it would in many respects outdo the Irish report ¡is a revelation of rascality ; ¡ititi it would, considering the kind of con- stituency on which Httbbell and Smyth levy, be a far more painful one. Americans have not the same excuse as Irishmen for allowing themselves lo be made the victims of imposture.