16 JANUARY 1948, Page 1

No Pause in Greece

It would be disastrous if the success of the Greek Army in clearing the immediate neighbourhood of Konitza of rebels were to give rise to the impression that the situation is now improVing. It is still deteriorating. Since the direct military strength of Markos depends on outside aid, there is nothing to stop its deployment in greater force at any moment or at any point. In fact the urge to such a move s being sharpened by growing economic confusion inside Greece, due on the one hand to the direct activities of the guerillas in frus- trating production, and on the other to the indirect effect of their presence in swelling the flood of refugees. The upward pull of inflation is accentuated by the shortage of goods and the diversion of outside aid into military and relief channels. The Army shows no signs of changing its tactics in older to cope with the peculiarities of guerilla warfare. Possibly such a change would be difficult, and possibly the long-term and rather individualistic police work which is needed most of all would best be performed by the gendarmerie. But there is a long way to go before the gendarmerie is either a suffi- ciently numerous or an adequately trained force to carry out unaided the work of keeping trouble-makers out of the valleys and destroying them in detail. In the meantime the army would be better em- ployed in lending a hand than in fostering inter-unit jealousies and crying out for more heavy armament. The attitudes of the outside Powers have not changed in any way which would lead to that isolation of the Greek problem which should be the proper end of any intervention. In fact, Greece continues to run down the broad road to destruction with half the world in hot pursuit.