2 JANUARY 1932, Page 6

But the very catholicity of the Government may prove its

undoing. Mr. Lin Sea, the President, is seventy years old, respected but a nonentity. There is no real leader, and it is an unfortunate fact that Northerners and Southerners can never agree for very long, while the Can- tonese have begun quarrelling among themselves almost as violently as they did with General Chiang. The latter is associated in the important Political Council with one man whom he helped to expel from the Kuomintang in 1930, and another whom he virtually imprisoned last spring. All three are born fighters and quite incompatible together. The student body, too, is a serious menace. It is dangerously tinctured with Communism, quite out of control, and intoxi- cated with the triumph of having successively driven from office two excellent Foreign Ministers, an incomparable Finance Minister, and the great Chiang Kai-Shek himself, for " weakness " with Japan. If the new Government is equally " weak," the students will turn and rend it. Yet how can it be strong without fresh disaster ? But the first decision taken by the new Government, to postpone indefinitely the abolition of extra-territoriality, is a welcome—and unlooked for—sign of political wisdom.

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