20 DECEMBER 1940, Page 3

The question has arisen whether Sir Robert Vansittart, as Chief

Diplomatic Adviser to the Government, should broad- cast at all, quite apart from the merits of his actual text. Civil Servants, of course, do not broadcast as such in their official capacity. The Prime Minister made it clear that only Ministers can declare policy. The only answer one can make is that Sir Robert Vansittart is in an exceptional position, but the case is thin. Mr. Harold Nicolson gave some reassuring figures about our foreign broadcasts. Apparently we now speak in thirty foreign languages and give over 140 hours a week to this important side of the war effort. These figures are double the number, both in languages and hours, which were given before Mr. Duff Cooper succeeded Sir John Reith. With Sir Walter Monckton as Director-General there is a chance that the Ministry may start off on a new and more hopeful career.

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