4 JUNE 1971, Page 24

Adrift with mourning clouds

Sir: Whoever wrote Edward Heath's speech to the Conservative Women (a captive audience, if anyone ever had one—albeit more conned than served) doubtless un- wittingly 'drew two splendidly ap- posite and pertinent parallels.

This was at the moment (the great man thunderously pro- claimed) rare, perhaps (the sure touch of the professional speechi- fier) unique in our history, What splendid understatement, that words 'perhaps'—as though a Prime Minister determined to throw his country's sovereignty to the wolves has been a common occurrence through the ages! What modesty.! Is there no limit to the man's self-effacement?

Unfortunately not; for, in the next breath (or so the Tv extracts presented him), he was comparing himself to Hitler and Napoleon: a terrible trio, indeed. But give me Napoleon every time. And even Hitler has the merit of being dead; unable to do us further harm.

Besides which, the British people beat them both, a point both they and Mr Heath would do well to remember. The British people must also remember that the other two made less strident claims to being on our side.

Gilbert Keith Chesterton re- gretted that his secret people had never spoken—yet! If they do not speak soon, it will, at last, be too late.

Even the British cannot throw away their chances for ever; even their luck must run out eventually. And they will have no one to blame but themselves.

Morris J. J. Catherwood 56 Norwich Street, Cambridge, Carobs