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Secret Diplomacy

War and Secret Diplomacy

 With a fine bold air as of someone daring to tell the truth in face of popular prejudice the editor of the “New Statesman” (31/7/48) declares that “the first necessity is to get back to secret diplomacy.” But immediately his courage failed him, and he hastened to add, as if to excuse his boldness, that “no sane advocate of open diplomacy ever urged that difficult and detailed discussions between great Powers should be carried on in public.” Whether it is sane or not in the eyes of Mr. Kingsley Martin, there certainly have been and are plenty of people who hold that secrecy only serves the interests of the ruling class groups of the world and not the interests of the working class. Even in the ranks of the rulers there have been some who on occasion have declared for the abolition of secrecy.

A Rare Fragment

        “A British Labour delegation came to Moscow. It consisted of three well-known members of the British Labour Party and of the Trades Union Congress. They had come to show the solidarity of the British workers with the Russian Revolution. I was present when they received a deputation from the Moscow Council of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Deputies. These men who were members of all parties in the Soviet, began by asking what was the attitude of British Labour to the Russian Revolutionaries’ proposal of peace without annexations or indemnities and with the right of self-determination for nationalities . . . the British delegates were firm, ‘ only the complete military defeat and crushing of Germany for many years to come would bring peace in the world.’ ”

Editorial: Remember Belgium!

In 1914, hundreds of thousands of workers were duped into enlisting by the appeal to their sympathy on behalf of “poor little Belgium!" It is interesting to learn that confirmation has now been given to the statement that the Allied Governments had themselves prepared for violating Belgian “neutrality.”

Mr. Harold Nicolson has just written a life of his father, Lord Carnock, who as Sir Arthur Nicholson was Permanent Under-secretary at the Foreign Office in the years leading up to the war (“Lord Carnock,” published by Constable, 21/-).

From a review of the book which appeared in the Daily Herald on April 3rd, 1930, we learn that in September, 1911,

    “preparations for landing four or six divisions on the Continent have been worked out to the minutest detail"; and in 1913 French military authorities are reported by Sir Arthur Nicolson to be of the view that “it would be far better for France if a conflict were not too long postponed.”

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