A SPECTATOR'S NOTEBOOK
APPROVAL of the steps the Government is taking regarding Communists in the Civil Service is sufficiently widespread to make any elaborate defence unnecessary. If anyone doubts the
possibility of men in positions of trust putting the interests of a foreign country above the interests of their own he has only to read the report of the Canadian Royal Commission of inquiry into the communication of secret information to a foreign Power ; it can be got from the Stationery Office for 7s. In some ways the most impor-
tant part of the report is the attempt to answer the question—a very vital question—how Canadian citizens were persuaded, in violation both of their normal loyalties and of the oaths of secrecy by which they were bound, to impart valuable and confidential information to Russian agents. The technique was elaborate and instructive, and the report exposes it fully. The chief figures in the espionage net- work were naturalised Canadians of Slav origin, but many of their catspaws were Canadian pure and simple. Secrecy, for them, had a value in itself, for its effect. on the young men and women it was desired to secure was to create an atmosphere of conspiracy, with " cells " formed out of so-called study-groups, all with a certain attractive flavour of adventure. Perverted ideas of internationalism, particularly the internationalism of science, played their part in the "indoctrination" process till in the end a man's loyalty to "the Party," in the words of the report, " takes precedence over his loyalty to Canada, entitles him to disregard his oaths of allegiance and secrecy, and thus destroys his integrity as a citizen." That this happened in Canada the verbatim evidence establishes conclusively, What ground is there for maintaining it could never happen here ?