1 OCTOBER 1948, Page 15


SIR,—I agree with Mr. Nicolson's view, expressed in his interesting article in The Spectator of September 17th, that the Home Secretary deserves great credit for taking an unprecedented step in granting Dr. Dering a private investigation in strictly legal form, but he does not make clear that the legal investigation did not precede, but followed, the methods he describes as " customary when a denial of justice is threatened." From these, curiously enough, Mr. Nicolson omits the basic one—the agonising search, extending over months, for exculpating evidence, the main responsibility for finding which rested on the Hon. Secretary of our League, Miss Frances Blacken. Nor, probably, does he know of the devoted help given by many of Dr. Dering's ex-fellow- prisoners of war, in particular one who had worked with him in the Polish underground resistance movement in Auschwitz itself. Their efforts were made worth while by the fact that Dr. Dering, unlike the Yugoslays handed over to Marshall Tito's Government, was allowed to see copies of all the charges brought against him and to have the benefit of counsel in his defence.

If by these means the life of an innocent man has been saved, may we not hope that this procedure will in all future similar cases replace the prima facie procedure ? If so, I shall not mind how often Mt. Nicolson (or anyone else) calls me a nuisance !—Yours faithfully, KATHARINE ATHOLL, Chairman,

British League for European Freedom.

66 Elizabeth Street, S.W.I.