23 JANUARY 1909, Page 2

Lord Cromer was the chief guest at the annual dinner

of the Leeds Chamber of Commerce on Monday night. We have dealt with his speech elsewhere, but must mention here one or two specially striking passages in a memorable address. After declaring that one of the most gratifying events of late years was the outburst of sympathy with Britain on the part of the Young Turks, he went on to point out that though at one time the policy of this country seemed hostile to the Turkish Empire, we had never failed in showing our disinterestedness and our respect for Ottoman rights. A propos of this he told the following striking story. Two or three years ago a Turkish gentle- man of high social position said to him that whatever appearances there might be to the contrary, the British Embassy at Constantinople was very highly respected, perhaps more so than the Embassy of any other foreign nation. Lord Cromer asked him why. He replied : "Because it is perfectly well known that the British Government does not and will not support any demand made by British subjects on the Turkish Treasury unless they can be justified on thoroughly just and equitable grounds." That, said Lord Cromer, was the wise policy pursued by successive Governments, and we were now reaping the fruits of our forbearance. "Believe me, gentle- men," he continued, " it will be an evil day for this country if the Diplomatic and Consular representatives of Great Britain should ever become mere agents to act in support of company- mongers and hunters after concessions."