6 JUNE 1931, Page 1

Rome The news from Rome is grave. The execution of

a man who unsuccessfully attempted the murder of Signor Mussolini is a severer measure than would have been taken in countries where capital punishment is still the rule. Sentences of imprisonment, almost savage in their length, have been passed upon Professor Rossi and other educated members of the organization, " Justice and Liberty." These do not betoken confidence. Of much 'wider importance, the bands of young Fascists seem to have got out of hand. They have attacked the " Azione Cattolica " with violence. The Azione is recognized in the Concordat by the Government as a non-political body. Yet the Government has raided its offices, and dissolved its institutions, clubs for young people, &c. Will the Concordat stand this ? The Pope has taken measures to guarantee the non-political nature of the Azione and has decided that there shall be no religious processions in Rome at present, not even on the Feast of Corpus Christi. His excellent Encyclical, Quad- ragesimo Anno, recently published on social questions with the intention of bringing up to date the famous Encyclical of Leo XIII, Rerum Novarum, issued forty years ago, may have contributed to the present tension but did not create it. Peace is in the interest both of the Holy See and of the Government, and we look to the Pope and 11 Duce to do their utmost to keep it.