21 AUGUST 1936, Page 2

The Overtures to Poland General Gamelin, the head of the

French General • Staff, has left Warsaw, and it is difficult as yet to discover what is the outcome of his talks there with General Rydz Smigly. It appears indeed that there is no definite outcome, and that the conversations are to be continued when the Polish commander-in-chief visits Paris next month. Poland's anxiety regarding her military situation as she has watched the German army steadily and methodically surpass hers in numbers and efficiency is undisguised, and she interprets the occupation and forti- fication of the Rhineland as measures for securing Germany's back-door while German troops march east- ward through the front. But closer relations with France involve closer relatibns with Russia, which is by no means to Poland's taste. Yet even in regard to that Polish opinion is to some extent moving, and it is significant that the military talks with France are to be followed by military talks with Rumania, another State that is still within the French orbit and now friendly with Russia. Geography makes Poland's choice of allies a matter of critical importance to Europe, and it is easily intelligible that she should avoid a definite decision as long as possible. On the whole a favourable response to French overtures seems likely, though the hostility of the Poles to Czechoslovakia remains an obstacle. • * **