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Full text of "The Struggle For Peace"

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my right hon. Friend had a conversation with the French
Ministers, including the French Prime Minister, in which he
informed them that we contemplated opening conversations
with Italy."
MR. GREENWOOD : " They were informed, but they were
not consulted."
THE PRIME MINISTER : " I put it to the House. The right
hon. Gentleman says that we went behind the backs of our
"friends and took isolated action. I tell him that we did tell our
friends what we intended to do, and he now says that we
informed them but did not consult them. The conversations
went further than that. Not only were the French informed
of our intentions, or of our contemplated opening of con-
versations with the Italians, but there was considerable
discussion on the subjects which might be discussed when we
came to open those conversations. Without going into
details, which perhaps it would be going too far to enter
upon now, I think I may say that there appeared to be a
complete agreement between the French and ourselves upon
the subjects which would then be discussed. I remember one
thing in particular which was reported as having been specially
insisted upon by the French, and that was that the discussions
should include a settlement of the Spanish question. That
bears out what I said last night and yesterday afternoon upon
that question. A settlement of the Spanish question is to be
included. I have told the Italians that it is to be included if
we are to have an agreement later on. I altogether repudiate
any suggestion on the part of hon. and right hon. Members
opposite that we have done anything behind the backs of our
friends, or that we have not acted in full consultation with
them.
" The important point is not entering upon the conversa-
tions, but what is to be discussed at those conversations and
what is to be the agreement, if there be an agreement, at the
end of them. Bound as we are to our French friends by con-
stant communications and by constant sympathy in the past,
does the House suppose that we had it in our mind to conduct
these discussions without keeping in close touch with our
French friends the whole way through? It seems to me
obvious, or perhaps hon. Members have not realised what we