22 JULY 1905, Page 1

Several of Friday's papers publish a Lairs/es telegram from St.

Petersburg which, if true, is of the utmost importance. It is to the effect that the Czar will leave Peterhof on that day on board the Imperial yacht Polar Star,' ostensibly for a tour along the coast, but in reality is meet and confer with the German Emperor, who is now cruising in Swedish waters. The Czar, it is stated, will be absent for four days. In view of the meeting of the Zemstvo delegates in Moscow, and the necessity for an Imperial decision in regard to their programme, the suggested absence of the Russian Emperor is most remarkable. Possibly the conference with the Kaiser is concerned with the alleged intentions of the Russians to make peace only if the Japanese will consent to an alliance with them. If such a scheme is really being considered, it might be necessary to know the mind of Germany,—if, indeed, the plan did not originate in Berlin and does not involve far-reaching proposals in regard , to China. We confess that the whole thing sounds very unreal and fan- tastic, but we live in an age of surprises and of political " quick-change artists."