10 NOVEMBER 1939, Page 14

* * * * These confident assertions were echoed for

us by the Ministers whom we saw. There was no sign of wishful thinking, of vapid optimism, of empty boastfulness. Before answering our many questions the Ministers would gaze for a moment at the tapestries and chandeliers which adorn their studies and would then reply with precise clarity. We derived an impression of knowledge, thought, certitude and resolution. The effect was most exhilarating. I felt as if, after many weeks of worry over the symptoms of some fell disease, I had at last nerved myself to consult a specialist. " Yes," he seemed to answer, " you did right to come. We must take this thing in hand and deal with it drastically. But I can assure you at once that there is nothing organically wrong." Even Harley Street, after such an interview, seems like a blue-bell wood in May.