VOL. 174 No. 5192






The Complete Official English Text THE UNITY OF GERMANY

By Father Friedrich Muckermann, S.J.


A Retrospect, by Michael Trappes-Lomax

Full List o f Contents on page 544.

THE WORLD WEEK BY WEEK Nazi Miscalculations

The Governments o f Britain and France are quite right not to be drawn, even by neutrals so respected and so naturally concerned as the Queen o f the Netherlands and the King o f the Belgians, into large discussions. The inescapable tru th is th a t if th a t neutral initiative led to anything, it would be to a different kind o f war, continued without mobilization and blockade, but equally without any mitigation o f the furious clash o f wills.

Probably i t would now suit Hitler to buy a respite, even a t the cost of admitting a serious check to his record o f successes. I t would even pay him now, as things have turned out, to make handsome amends to Poles and Slovaks and Czechs, whose independence he has taken away. He would gain time for better preparations and more skilful manoeuvre in exploiting the abundant divisions both in Central Europe and in the West.

It never entered the calculations o f the leading Nazis th a t their foreign policy would land them in a major war with Britain and France, with the resources of America open to them, while Nazi Germany fought quite alone. A few months ago the Nazis calculated on aid from Italy and Japan or, alternatively, on the Soviet. They calculated on having as many friends as foes in SouthEastern Europe, and did not believe in anything like a Balkan pact taking shape.

I t is difficult to imagine how anything short o f open coalition of all countries against them, such as came into being, little by little in the last war, could be more disadvantageous for the Nazis than what has happened. I f the Litvinov policy was still in favour in Moscow, and the Soviet was aligned with the Allies, th a t fact would have given the Germans a great deal o f support in Central Europe, as in Italy and Spain. The knowledge o f this was one o f the considerations which made it easy for the British Government to maintain a firm NO when the Soviet began asking a high price and a free hand in the Baltic in return for a membership,

which would probably have proved highly nominal, in the front to protect Poland. Resettling Poland

All the time the German occupation o f Western Poland continues on a drastic plan o f uprooting and resettlement. The German theorists are busy proving th a t the Western provinces were always German, some o f them denying any reality to the concept o f a Polish nationality or Polish culture and art. The Poles are being driven from their villages, where it is proposed to settle Germans brought in from the Baltic, and often the villages have to be fired to compel the Poles to move east. The arrangements proposed by Herr Hitler for the Poles is th a t they shall be herded in a reserve or protectorate against the new Russian frontier, and he is engaged in a search for some Poles with well-known names to act as a puppet Government. The deep hatred which the oppressed Poles feel for the conquerors is no t disguised even in the German reports. All the same, if the report is true that the Germans and Russians have agreed to allow the populations to make a choice and move under the foreign Government which they dislike least, there will be a large movement from east to west. No Poles under the Nazis believe th a t the present conditions o f servitude will last very long. The Poles under the Soviet can have no such confidence in quick change. All through Poland, through Slovakia, among the Czechs, and very markedly now among the Austrians, who have some contacts with Italy, and know th a t no Italians believe in a Nazi victory, the conviction th a t 1940 will see the end o f the Nazi regime is becoming more confident and being more boldly expressed. Settlers Abroad and Foreign Exchange

The policy which Herr Hitler is carrying out so ruthlessly in Poland was long cherished by the Hohenzollerns, who had an organization under the name o f the Ostmarkenverein, which aimed a t shifting the Poles and bringing German settlers further east. One Nazi