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Full text of "The Struggle For Peace"

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materials present for a breach of the peace, with Incalculable
consequences, if the matter is not handled boldly and with a
reasonable amount of speed. Therefore, in accordance with
our general policy, and in close association with France, we
have done everything that we could to facilitate a peaceful
solution of the dispute. It is a problem which, in one form
or another, has existed for centuries, and it would perhaps
be unreasonable to expect that a difficulty which has been
going on so long should be capable of solution in a few short
" The right hon. Gentleman spoke of one of the many
rumours which he has collected, without very much authority
behind them. This was to the effect that we were hustling the
Czech Government. It is a little difficult to know what one is
to do about these rumours. If you deny them when they are
untrue, then when you cannot deny them people assume that
they are true. You get into a difficulty when you eliminate
one rumour after another, and thus allow the skilful journalist
to find out the thing you wish him not to know. With regard
to this rumour, I should like to assure the right hon. Gentle-
man that there is no truth in it. Indeed, the very opposite is
the truth. Our anxiety has been rather lest the Czechoslova-
kian Government should be too hasty in dealing with a situa-
tion of such delicacy that it was most desirable that the two
sides should not get into a position "where they were set, and
unable to have any further give-and-take between them.
" Perhaps I might say, with regard to the rumour to which
the right hon. Gentleman referred when he inquired whether
we had urged on the Czechoslovakian Government to submit
their proposals to Herr Henlein before putting them to their
Parliament, that we did so, and we did so for that very reason,
that if by any chance an agreed settlement could be come to
between Herr Henlein and the Czechoslovakian Government
before any statute was put before the Czech Parliament,
obviously that would be the best solution of all. But I do not
think that any great amount of pressure need be applied from
us to induce the Czechoslovakian Government to do what
they were anxious to do all along, and that was to give the
fullest opportunity for a full and frank discussion of any
~ proposals they might wish to make. Hitherto we have our-