Skip to main content

Full text of "The Struggle For Peace"

See other formats

-------------------------------------------------------------------- 3**
police, and   for  the release of Sudeten   German   political
prisoners instead of demanding that those things should be
done by ist October-------"
Miss WILKINSON : " What about the kidnapped Czechs ? "
THE PRIME MINISTER : " The joint guarantee, which is
given under the Munich Agreement to the Czechoslovak State by
the Governments of the United Kingdom and France against
unprovoked aggressions upon their boundaries, gives to the
Czechs an essential counterpart which was not to be found in
the Godesberg Memorandum, and it will not be unnoted that
Germany will also undertake to give a guarantee on the ques-
tion of Polish and Hungarian minorities being settled. Finally,
there is a declaration by the Four Powers that if the problems
of the Polish and Hungarian minorities in Czechoslovakia are
not settled within three months by agreement between the
respective Governments, another meeting of the Four Powers
will be held to consider them. (Interruption.) I think that
every fair-minded, every serious-minded man who takes into
consideration the modifications which I have described—
modifications of the Memorandum—must agree that they are
of very considerable extent and that they are all in the same
direction. To those who dislike an ultimatum, but who were
anxious for a reasonable and orderly procedure, everyone of
those modifications is a step in the right direction. It is no
longer an ultimatum, but it is a method which is carried out
largely under the supervision of an international body.
" Before giving a verdict upon this arrangement, we should
do well to avoid describing it as a personal or a national
triumph for anyone. The real triumph is that it has shown
that representatives of four great Powers can find it possible
to agree on a way of carrying out a difficult and delicate opera-
tion by discussion instead of by force of arms, and thereby
they have averted a catastrophe which would have ended
civilisation as we have known it. The relief that our escape
from this great peril of war has, I think, everywhere been
mingled in this country with a profound feeling of sympathy.
[HON. MEMBERS : * Shame/] I have nothing to be ashamed of.
Let those who have, hang their heads. We must feel profound
sympathy for a small and gallant nation in the hour of their
national grief and loss/*