12 FEBRUARY 1937, Page 18


[To the Editor of THE SPECTATOR.] Sia,—I find myself so much in agreement with the interesting article you publish on Czechoslovakia that perhaps I may be permitted to take exception to the accuracy of one phrase : " Inside Czechoslovakia are 3 million Germans, 2 million of whom yearn to become subjects of the Reich."

Your correspondent probably bases his figures on the numbers polled by the Henlein party at the last election, even though he points out that Herr Henlein himself professes loyalty to the Czechoslovak State, and German Bohemians, on whose judgement I rely, are convinced of his honesty. The question is unfortunately impossible to prove, but last summer, when I asked a friend of some prominence among the Germans, his opinion was that the result of a plebiscite might easily vary from month to month depending on the number of the unemployed who would vote for any change ; since then unemployment has been considerably reduced. My friend told me that he had put the same question to a German deputy in the Czechoslovak Parliament who believed that a plebiscite would prove unfavourable to annexation.— (Former United States Minister to Czechoslovakia).