17 AUGUST 1944, Page 4


T is satisfactory to learn from the Minister of Health that the j fatalities from flying bombs are only a third of what they were when the attacks began ; the relative smallness of the number of casualties. certainly of fatal casualties, from this form of terror has, indeed, been surprising. Many of the missiles have been shot down, many have fallen of their own accord in open country, and those which have damaged property extensively have killed much fewer people than might have been expected. But whatever may be thought about V t and its performance, it is no use shutting cur eyes to the possibilities of V 2, to which some of the daily papers have been giving a good deal of attention lately. Some of the stories that have filtered through may quite possibly have an unsuspected propagandist origin, but the Government has always taken the rocket-gun threat seriously, and Mr. Churchill has spoken with complete frankness about it in the House of Commons. It is, of course, not known what the potentialities' of this weapon are nor how soon it may be in operation ; to drive the Germans from all Northern France would not necessarily bring security, for the range is reputed to be long enough for the missiles—with whatever weight of explosive they may contain—to be launched from the heart of Germany. Whatever their inaccuracy in flight, they cannot be expected to miss London altogether. Any reliable information that exists is, of course, in the hands of the Government ; it 0 important that any guidance which it may be deemed wise to give to Londoners should be given in good time.

* * * *