4 AUGUST 1939, Page 23


Sta,—I am not in favour of authors joining issue with their reviewers except in cases of extreme provocation. Mr. Carr's review of my Russia, Friend or Foe? however, demands a reply.

First, Mr. Can gives what the reader will take to be a sum- mary of my account of Soviet foreign policy since 1917. But he inserts in this summary an alleged change of policy since 1924 (putting of Comintern in leading-strings, &c.), which is directly contrary to the whole thesis of my book.

Secondly, my " only " contribution on the question of a guarantee to the Baltic States is a "rather airy quotation from Mr. Duff Cooper." This is not so. In considerable detail I show that a refusal to guarantee the Baltic States is a direct incitement to Hitler to attack the Baltic States. This is the reason for Soviet insistence on the guarantee.

Thirdly, " apart from one or two official pronouncements of a routine character," my chapter on military preparedness relies on a number of authorities for which Mr. Carr, obvi- ously, has no respect. Actually, this chapter is based on official Soviet material (whether of a " routine " character or not I do not know), backed up by a number of experts whose sympathies are anything but Bolshevist. But I also cite the practical experience of Chang-ku-feng, which has clearly escaped your reviewer.

Fourthly, the Soviet Press and I myself are alleged to be uninformative on the present situation. The whole point of my argument, backed by facts, is that, particularly since March loth of this year, the Soviet position has been per- fectly clear ; that the details of the Soviet position were made clear in May ; and that it is the British position about which we are still in the dark.

Finally, says Mr. Carr, I am wrong in suggesting that the National Government's reluctance to come to an agreement with the U.S.S.R. is a class issue. Unfortunately, I give pages of evidence for my view which Mr. Carr completely ignores. Mr. Carr gives no evidence to justify his disagreement with me.

I trust you will publish this letter ; otherwise your readers will have a completely false impression of the argument of