22 JANUARY 1921, Page 2

The French Courts on Thursday, January 13th, ordered that the

General Confederation of Labour should be dissolved, and fined its chief officials. The Confederation was found guilty not only of infringing the French law of associations on various technical points, but also of violating the spirit of the law by pursuing political and revolutionary -aims which were outside the limits proper to the activities of trade unions.” The Con- federation did in fact instigate a railway strike last May and tried to cover its failure by calling for a general strike in the hope of provoking a revolution. The democratic Third Republic is far stricter than Great Britain in its regulation of trade unions, and is determined not to allow the trade union leaders to usurp the Government. The judgment of the courts reflects public opinion. At the General Election the Socialists sustained a crushing defeat, because the French peasants and workmen resented the.disturbance caused by the extremists who had gained control of the Confederation of Labour.