The war therefore must go on.
-- Earl Russell, January 24, 1863
Lewis's memorandum and Palmerston's reluctance to act provide the final denouement to the question of why the British government refused to intervene in the Civil War. 1 Lewis knew that the key person he had to dissuade from intervention was Russell. He also knew that the foreign secretary relied on history and international law to justify his stand and that the only way to undermine his argument for intervention was to appeal to that same history and international law. This Lewis did with his November 7 memorandum. In arguing against intervention, he included references to history and citations and quotes from Austin, Vattel, and Wheaton, knowing that Russell had relied on these writers in justifying his call for intervention. Lewis lauded the interventionist move as humanitarian in nature--thereby praising Russell--and then, after complimenting the foreign secretary's use of history and international law to promote an intervention, raised the practical and legal obstacles to such a move. Lewis's