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Full text of "The Struggle For Peace"

126____________________________________________
opinion of the German Government relations between
Austria and Germany are a purely internal affair. His Majesty's
Government, as a third party, have no concern in them. The
interests of His Majesty's Government in this question cannot,
however, on any tenable ground be denied. In the first
place, Great Britain and Austria are both members of the
League, and both were signatories, as was also the German
Government, of treaties which provided that the independence
of Austria was inalienable except with the consent of the
Council of the League of Nations.
" Quite apart from this, His Majesty's Government are,
and always must be, interested in developments in Central
Europe, particularly events such as those which have just
taken place, if only for the reason, as I stated in the House only
a fortnight ago, that the object of all their policy has been to
assist in the establishment of a sense of greater security and
confidence in Europe, and that that object, as I said then, must
inevitably be helped or hindered by events in Central Europe.
Throughout these events His Majesty's Government have
remained in the closest touch with the French Government,
and the French Government have, I understand, also entered a
strong protest in Berlin on similar lines to that lodged by His
Majesty's Government. It seems to us that the methods
adopted throughout these events call for the severest con-
demnation, and have administered a profound shock to all who
are interested in the preservation of European peace. It
follows that what has passed cannot fail to have prejudiced
the hope of His Majesty's Government of removing mis-
understandings between nations and promoting international
co-operation.
" It might seem unnecessary to refute rumours that His
Majesty's Government had given consent if not encouragement
to the idea of the absorption of Austria by Germany, were there
not evidence that these are being sedulously being put about
in many quarters. There is, of course, no foundation whatever
for any of these rumours. The statement which I have
already made shows clearly that His Majesty's Government
emphatically disapprove, as they have always disapproved,
actions such as those of which Austria has been made the
scene.