30 JANUARY 1942, Page 4


ALOT of people are calling on the Prime Minister to recon- stitute his Government, but not much has been said about how he ought to do it. Who is to be dropped and who included, and what is the general principle to be? As to the principle, Sir William Beveridge's powerful plea, in Monday's Times, for a small Cabinet, on the 1917 model, of picked men free from administrative duties and concentrating on the day- to-day conduct of the war needs a lot of answering. In such a Cabinet, apart from the Prime Minister, Sir John Anderson would certainly have a place. So, I suggest, should Sir Stafford Cripps. So should Mr. Oliver Lyttelton, if he could be spared from Caifo ; he might perhaps be replaced there by Mr. Duff Cooper, of whom Mr. Churchill spoke so warmly on Tuesday. There remains the question of Lord Beaverbrook and Mr. Bevin. There is a strong case for including both, but not while they hold their present posts, which are far too exacting to be reconciled with the kind of unremitting attention to the broad strategy of the war, both at home and abroad, which would be expected of a 1917-model Cabinet. As an alternative to Sir Stafford Cripps, or possibly even in addition to him the inclusion of some non-political figure of outstanding ability like Lord Greene might be well worth considering. Half-a-dozen members would be quite enough ; the 1917 War Cabinet, if I remember rightly, numbered five. But, of course, if each Dominion is to contribute a member such an arrangement becomes impossible.