Let us say here that we feel so strongly the
necessity of setting Central Europe on its feet if it is not to become a diseased body communicating political and industrial contagion to all the world, that we think the financial and material reparation demanded from Austria and Germany should be reconsidered, and if necessary revised. We have all along been in favour of inflicting very stern, though not of course vindictive, punish- ments on Germany and Austria. Germany and Austria com- mitted the worst of crimes. It was right to sentence them to the most dread penalty, just as a convicted murderer is bound to be formally sentenced to death even though a recommendation to mercy may accompany the sentence.