18 AUGUST 1939, Page 23


SIR,—In The Spectator of August nth, in the article headed " Peace Front Terms," you demand that " the war-guilt clause in the Treaty of Versailles should be spontaneously and finally expunged." Where in the Treaty is such a clause to be found? Possibly you refer to Article 231, which does state that " The Allied and Associated Governments affirm, and Germany accepts, the responsibility of Germany and her allies for causing all the loss and damage . . . imposed by the aggression of Germany and her allies." This is rather different than " war- guilt," and is more a statement of fact, for surely Germany and her allies were the aggressors? If not, which country was? Belgium, possibly.—Yours, &c., S. CAPPER, Lieut.-Colonel (Retired).

Langley House, Wiveliscombe, Somerset.

[Article 231 is commonly referred to as " the War Guilt " clause. As to its being a " statement of fact," who is to decide that? Germans would not agree that it was fact, nor would many Englishmen and Americans accept the view that sole guilt for the War rested on Germany. In any case, is the clause worth perpetuating?—ED. The Spectator.]