VOL. 174 No. 5197

LONDON, DECEMBER 16th, 1939_____________________ SIXPENCE


By Algernon Cecil


Our Central European Correspondent writes on the Plight of Catholic Poland

A FRENCH STATEMENT OF WAR AIMS Drawn up in the French Universities, and addressed to English Readers


The Text of Cardinal Hinsley’s Broadcast Address

Full List o f Contents on page 688.

THE WORLD WEEK BY WEEK Sweden Under Pressure have officers and a hierarchical organisation, and are in consequence, pieces of Fascist apparatus. The U.S.A. and Finland

After a fortnight Stalin’s troops have had no important successes, but their ultimate striking power must be considerable. It is now being mobilized, and the limited and strategic objectives announced from Moscow, the proposal to cede 70,000 square miles of unimportant territory while taking less than 3,000 square miles of key military importance, marks out the Finnish adventure as a preliminary to more ambitious schemes. The Swedes, at any rate, have lost no time in mobilizing and appointing a generalissimo for the defence of Sweden. The Swedish anxieties are increased by an ominous sign from Berlin, the concentration of abuse on the person of the late Foreign Minister, M. Sandler, who is held responsible for what the Nazis consider a tepid and inadequate neutrality. In the German view, neutrals ought to arm and convoy their ships with German cargoes, and resist by force the British counter-measures to the German mines. Whether this sharpening of the Nazi attitude is primarily the fruit of the German counter-blockade policy, or whether it is German competition with Russia for the domination of Scandinavia, is left by Berlin in calculated obscurity. How to Detect “Fascism”

The world is giving some small help to Finland at present, but we have yet to see that “ spontaneous movement,” resulting in tens of thousands of volunteers, and the raising of money and sending of supplies to which we grew accustomed when the cry was that Democracy was being invaded. Those who hastened to fight for Democracy in Spain ought to feel the call of the Democracy of Finland. But if there is a great disparity in the amount of agitation and the organisation of help, we must recognise that the Government of Finland is only to be considered by good Communists as a democratic façade, behind which there was, as the Stalinist “ World News and Views” explains, “ a Fascist state apparatus.” By this is meant the Finnish army, and by this method of presentation, any democratic state can be explained away, for the Dutch and the Danes, no less than the Swedes, have armies, and those armies

The strength of isolation of sentiment in the United States can be measured by the President’s refusal to seek to vary the neutrality act in order to extend credit to the Finns to buy weapons for their heroic war of selfdefence. There is no sort of division of opinion in America. Finland is admired, and the Soviet is condemned, but greater than these sympathies is the fear that any concessions made to Finland might have to be made to other belligerents, and that little by little there would grow up a vested interest of those who had lent, wanting American arms to go actively to the support of the countries to whom loans had been made. In this particular case of Finland, the sympathy is so widespread and deep that it should be possible for private enterprise to provide that help which the Government judges it inexpedient to grant. The League meeting was chiefly useful as a way of demonstrating that the attack on Finland is not considered an incident in the War, but a gratuitous piece of predatory conquest. The League is not a body which can do anything effective, because those member States geographically well-placed for giving aid are also the States whose own existence is in some jeopardy, and who cannot be expected to run fearful risks except from considerations of selfpreservation. It may prove that for them boldness at this juncture would be a safer course than the prudence which lets their enemies proceed against them one by one. Stalin and Hitler are in agreement on one thing,

that the day of small nations has passed. They base this view on the recent developments of warfare and the increased power of sustained attack which large countries now possess. The answer does not lie in any strict insistence on the absolute legal rights to sovereignty and neutrality, b u t in th e construction o f large geographical units for defence in those parts of the world, that is, north-western and south-eastern Europe, in which great aggressive States are on the march. These small countries must be the judges in what so