4 JANUARY 1930, Page 7

Before The Hague Conference No pains have been spared to

make the second and final Hague Conference fireproof. The German delegation, appointed at a Cabinet meeting last Saturday, is impressive. It contains the heads of the four Departments chiefly concerned, and it does not contain Dr. Schacht. "Germany's strong man," of course, repudiates responsibility for anything but the Young Plan as he signed it, and he will perhaps exercise a more useful influence by remaining in Berlin. The French delegation includes three Ministers. It is reported from Paris that the difficulties have been carefully examined in conjunction with Great Britain. The problem of Eastern Reparations is by no means settled, but it is nonsense to suggest that squabbles introducing the sempiternal Hungarian Optants dispute should be allowed to hold up the signature of the Young Plan. The French Press, however, is trying to make mischief by suggesting that France should raise the question of possible " sanctions " in the event of a German default. Even legally there is no case for any such precaution in view of the arbitration procedure set up by the London Agreement of 1924.