3 DECEMBER 1948, Page 5

Sir John Boyd Orr is a man of wisdom and

experience, but he seems to have lapsed strangely from his normal objectivity in some public references he made this week to Russia. "Let us try a new approach," he suggested, "and say 'you did great things in the war. We are delighted to help you. Will you come in and play with us ? ' I believe there is a great chance of Russia coming in." What fantastic illusion is this ? Has Russia never been invited to come in and play with us ? Was she never invited to accept the benefits of the European Recovery plan ? Has she never been importuned to join with the Western Powers in administering Germany on the basis of the Potsdam agreement ? Has she never been pressed to join Sir John Boyd Orr's own Food and Agriculture Organisation ? Has her co-operation in almost every field not been solicited till the pro- cess has become a humiliation to the solicitors themselves ? Was she

ready even to play with us over the soldiers' wives ? No. There is not a man in this country who is not anxious to see normal relations with Russia established, but the distortion of facts, plain or implicit,

does no -good to anyone, and the suggestion that Russia is standing aloof because no one has asked her to come and play is as colossal a distortion as the human imagination could well devise.