11 JANUARY 1963, Page 3

Portrait of the Week--

'THE RAF MIGHT well be the first to wish to keep the results of Sky Shield II a secret.' So the Ameri- cans quashed the temporary fillip given to the state of Britain's defences when it was suggested that a number of Vulcan bombers had pene- trated American defences in a recent exercise. According to American sources every one was theoretically shot down, and the RAF seemed un- certain whether the exercise had ever taken place. Mr. John Profumo, the Secretary of State for War, went to Washington for talks, followed by Sir SoIly Zuckerman and a team of scientists to discuss the implementation of the Nassau agree- ment. The War Office- symbolically gave up the struggle and put its six defensive sea forts up for sale as private residences, and a group of Tory backbenchers seemed on the point of volunteer- ing to buy Skybolt themselves.

THE COMMON MARKET PREPARED for next week's decisive Ministerial meetings : the Italian Min- ister for the Budget, Signor La Malfa, announced that he had written to his Prime Minister sug- gesting a separate agreement with Britain should the negotiations fail, and said that the Italians had already discussed withdrawal. Dr. Schroder, German Foreign Minister, who brought a strong team of officials to Britain for talks on NATO and the Market, had a full, frank and friendly discussion. Dr. Adenauer survived his eighty- seventh birthday, Mao Tse-tung his seventieth, the London underground its centenary. Herr Kai-Uwe von Hassel succeeded Herr Strauss as German Minister for Defence and the American Secretary for Agriculture made noises at Miami Beach about America having to withdraw secur- ity commitments in Europe if the Community Persisted in its protectionist agricultural policies. Like. most people. he was said to be helping Britain to get M THE MOST DECISIVE NEWS to come out of the Congo was Mr. Tshombe's return to Elisabeth- \lite. Mr. Adoula pressed on with the U Thant Plan for reintegration, Mr. Tshombe appeared re- signed to accepting it, but any rejoicings were tem, Pered with fears of sabotage in the important mining district of Kolwezi. The Land Freedom Army increased its numbers in Kenya and an- other bomb was thrown at President Nkrumah. Britain continued to refuse to recognise the new Government in the Yemen and at the same time received the Governor of Aden in London to determine an early date for the merging of the Colony With the South-West Arabian Federation.

Peru the military government claimed to have forestalled a Communist plot directed from Havana and Moscow by arresting 800 people. Russia and America meanwhile jointly wrote to Thant saying that they no longer needed the Security Councils' help to settle their few remain- ing differences in the Caribbean. But James H. Meredith reminded Americans that they still had their own integration problems at home, by saying he would not be registering for a second term at the University of Mississippi under Present conditions.

MR. GAITSKELL RETURNED TO HOSPITAL With a re- currence of a virus infection and on Monday spent a restless night. As unemployment con- inued to rise Mr. Macmillan also spent several restless nights, before deciding to count the problem as one of Lord Hailsham's sports. The 1L- unpopularly announced that its members would be going slow from January 14 and Mr. Frank Musgrove wrote to The Times saying he ,tl.ad been forced to conduct a child-birth opera- tion by candlelight The new Lord Buckingham- shire resigned his job as a Parks Superintendent ,W,Ith Southend Corporation, and the dummies Tought to represent Prince Philip and President Kennedy were removed from the window of a London tailor's.