26 JANUARY 1945, Page 1


THE immediate fate of Germany—her ultimate, and not very distant, fate is not in question—will be determined by her own morale and Russia's supply-problem. That the Russian armies should maintain their incredible impetus indefinitely is impossible. Trans- port will sooner or later raise insuperable difficulties, unless before that the German forces collapse completely, or the Russians make captures of stores and material sufficient to keep them going. It would be wise to count on neither of these developments. But it is perfectly wise to count on the loss to Germany of all East Prussia and all Silesia, with the gravest results to prestige in one case, and to material endurance in the other, and strategically in both. Psychologically Goebbels' hope seems to be in the challenge TO despair, but it is hard to believe that the spectacle of crowds of miserable refugees pouring into Berlin and other cities, which hardly have the power to exist as it is, will do much to stimulate the will to resistance. So far there is little sign that the disasters in the east have caused any substantial transference of German forces from the west, for though some prisoners have been taken in Poland who say they were recently fighting in Holland or Belgium, that probably indicates only that a few units pulled out to refit after the Ardennes fighting have been sent to the east instead of back to the west. And in the west resistance in the north is still bitter, and in Alsace the enemy is still attacking. By holding him closely engaged the Allies in the west can materially help the Ally in the east. The two-front war which Germans have always dreaded is in active

operation, with results that are inevitable. •