Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Getting ready for the Pope

By EMERY BARCS 1970-6-12

A LOT of work on two levels ecclesiastic and secular -- will go into preparing the two-day visit of Pope Paul VI to Sydney next November. For the Pope is not only the Supreme Pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church with some 300 million members but he is also head of the Vatican State which despite its tiny area (.16 square miles) has all the right and privileges of any other sovereign country. Most of the preparations will be negotiated by the Vatican's representative in Australia, Archbishop Gino Paro, the Apostolic Delegate, who resides in a relatively modest building in Edward Street, North Sydney.

The Vatican has two kinds of representatives abroad. With countries that have treaty relations with the Holy See, the Vatican exchanges ambassadors. The Vatican's ambassador has the title of nuncio and his diplomatic standing and privileges are fully recognised.

TO OTHER COUNTRIES the Vatican may send Apostolic delegates. Although officially they are only liaison officers between the Vatican on one side and the local Catholic Church and State authorities on the other, they are granted diplomatic privileges by courtesy. Whenever a new Apostolic Delegate arrives in Australia he invariably calls on the Governor-General, the Prime Minister and mostly on the Minister for External Affairs.

Subsequently, he deals directly with the Australian Government and not through the Roman Catholic Church in Australia. This means that Archbishop Paro will have to spend a lot of time in Canberra between now and next November. Because of his eight trips abroad since his election to St. Peter's throne on June 21, 1963, Pope Paul has been called "the Pilgrim Pope". He went to Jerusalem in 1964,
to India the same year, to the United Nations in New York in 1965, to Fatima in Portugal in 1967, also in 1967, to to Turkey  Bogota (Colombia) in 1968, to Geneva in June, 1969. and to Uganda the following July. Their combined experience now also serves as a model for the or-ganisation of Papal trips, allowing, of course, for variations owing to local conditions.

For the Pope's trips abroad the Vatican charters one of the big jets, whenever possible, from one of the national airlines of his country of destination. So he may come to Australia by a special Qantas flight if it is available. Naturally, the Pope travels with a fairly large retinue. Usually a number of cardinals accompany him. Nine "princes of the church" went with him for the short - one day - trip to Geneva, two to Uganda and three to Bogota.

On his last two trips the Vatican's Secretary of State (equivalent of a Foreign Minister), Cardinal Jean Villot was with the Pope. It is almost certain that he will also come to Australia. The 10 to 20 other persons include high Vatican officials, the Pope's secretaries, security guards (usually with the commander of the Vatican gendarmerie in charge), the Holy Father's physician, domestic servants and as many Journalists, photographers, television and radio reporters as the plane can take.

The Pope is an avid newspaper reader. When in Rome he spends an hour every morning perusing the world press and even when he travels he likes to go through the local papers. If it's possible the Pope likes to stay at the nunciatures, which are "Vatican territory". However, where he will spend the one or two nights in Sydney is still uncertain. For even if everybody else moved out for the duration of the Pontiff's visit, the house of the Apostolic Delegation would be too small for the Pope and for his closest retinue. However, as the Apostolic Delegation seems unsuitable, other possible alternatives include Cardinal Gilroy's residence in Darling Point, some Catholic institutions and even Government House, Kirribilli - if some problems of protocol can be overcome.

ALTHOUGH THE Pope's stay in Australia won't be a State visit, precedents suggest that he will he received at the airport by the Governor-General, the Prime Minister and other Commonwealth and State dignitaries.

So far, wherever he has gone, he has always been welcomed on arrival by the head of State. For example, in Turkey he was received (and then farewelled) by President Cevdet Sunay, a Moslem, and in Geneva by Swiss President Ludwig von Moos, a Protestant. On several previous trips, Pope Paul received in audience not only the leaders of his own church but also those of other religions. In Bogota, for instance, the callers included representatives of the Jewish community led by the Chief Rabbi. Time permitting, this precedent may be repeated in Sydney. Time will be a major problem in Sydney, anyway.

 Crammed into some 48 hours, will be his participation at the special conferences of the bishops of Oceania — his immediate reason for coming — his celehration of a monster Mass probably at the Sydney Showground and his meeting with as many of the high and the humble who can be fitted in. It will take weeks before the detailed programme is known. But Australian church and State authorities are determined to make the first-ever visit of a Pope to Australia the success a historic event deserves.


By Dr. Emery Barcs 1970-5-8

TWENTY-FIVE years ago, on Tuesday, May 8, 1945, the overwhelming majority of mankind rejoiced in the news that Nazi Germany had unconditionally surrendered. World War II in Europe was over after five years, eight months and seven days of the most gigantic struggle ever recorded in history.

It was not the end of the war. Japan, although in full retreat, continued to fight. But is was generally assumed that Nippon could not resist for long the tremendous might of the Grand Alliance which would now be thrown against her.

The tremendous news was more or less expected ever since the first unconfirmed reports that Adolf Hitler, the man who had unleashed humanity's bloodiest tragedy, had committed suicide at his headquarters" in Berlin on April 30.

A couple of days later the German High Command officially announced the Fuehrer's death in a broadcast from Hamburg. With a last demonstration of Nazi spirit the announcement was preceded by solemn music from Wagner's Twilight of the Gods.

Before his death, Hitler willed that he should be succeeded as head of the German State by Grand Admiral of the Fleet, Karl Doenitz, a professional soldier and one of the top-ranking German officers who had wholeheartedly embraced Nazism.

The question was whether he would try to follow Hitler's order and continue the senseless resistance until Germany and Germania were literally exterminated.


In his megalomaniac madness Hitler once told Albert Speer, his trusted Minister of Armament:  "If the war is lost the German people will also be lost. There is no need to pay any consideration to the necessities for this people's primitive continuation of existence... Those Germans who will survive will be the worthless anyway; for the worthy will be dead."

Fortunately some common sense still prevailed. On May 7, Doenitz ordered the unconditional surrender of all German fighting forces and at 2.41 am. on the eighth General Jodi signed the surrender document for the Western Front and Field Marshall Kietel did so on the Eastern Front.

On the same day, Prime Minister Churchill and President Truman officially announced the end of the war. Stalin, for some reason or another, did so the following day.

Because of the time lag Australia officially celebrated the victory in Europe (V-E Day) on Wednesday the 9th. But in Canberra the previous afternoon Acting Prime. Minister Chifley (Prime Minister Curtin was ill) announced the great event to a cheering parliament.

Perhaps partly beeause this task still lay ahead and thousands of Australians on the Pacific fighting fronts and in Japanese POW camps had no prospect of returning immediately, and partly because no celebrations had been organised, Sydney did not lose its head over victory in Europe.

There was some spontaneous Jubilation in Martin Place during the cold and blustery late afternoon and evening of Tuesday, when people leaving shops and offices gathered there shouting, singing and waving little flags.

A few of the inner city's main streets were also covered with confetti made of torn papers which showered from offices just before closing time, But a train strike, starting at midnight, had been announced (and was duly held) and people tried to get home early. Those who lingered were stranded.

Wednesday, the official holiday, was quiet. Shops, pubs, theatres, cinemas and most cafes and restaurants were closed. Only Miss Pnina Salzmann's piano recital in aid of the Red Cross was held as scheduled

Yet this unintentionally mournful atmosphere was probably more fitting than a show of unbounded joy. Victory, superbly gratifying as it was, had been achieved at a terrific price.

When the final accounts of the whole of World War II (in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Pacific) were drawn up, they showed that an estimated 50 million people had lost their lives as a result of fighting, bombardments extermination camps and other causes directly attributable to the war and to Hitler's policies between 1939 and 1945.

The Bank of International Settlements estimated in 1946 the direct costs of World War II at $844,000 million (compared with $210,000 million in World War I).

But a U. S. Treasury estimate put the figure at $1,040,000 million. In addition, property losses were estimated at $230,000 million (against $24,600 million in World War I). These astronomical costs are expressed in money Values of a quarter or a century ago. Adjusted to current values they would be probably between five and seven times higher.

Of course nobody can statistically express suffering. And to say that between 1939 and 1945 hundreds of millions of people went through sheer hell is merely a banal approximation


Germany had her share of the devastation of property and decimation of people, During the nearly 2000 days of war in Europe and in North Africa, some four million German soldiers were killed and another four million German men, women and children lost their lives as refugees or during air raids.

In addition there were some five million wounded and innumerable widows and orphans. In 1945, practically every second German lived either in holes in the ground, in bunkers, barracks, camps, military hospitals, in cellars or in ruins.

People in the victorious countries who mourned their own dead and began to think of clearing away the rubble in their own devastated towns and villages had no time to feel sorry for the terrible plight of the Germans.

Not surprisingly, arguments that not the German people but Hitler's totalitarian system was responsible for the horrors -- and that what happened in Germany could be repeated elsewhere unless humanity learned a lesson -- fell on deaf ears.

Nobody really knew how to deal with the c.70 million Germans in the post-war world. Re-education, turning Germany into a perpetual community with no chance of building a war industry again, breaking up the German State into fragments, were among the most popular suggestions.

Only the Soviet regime under the omnipotent thumb of Stalin had a definite idea. At the end of April, 1945 -- while fighting still went on -- a planeload of German Communists left Moscow for Germany. They included Walter Ulbricht, Wilhelm Pieck and Otto Winzer.


They were groomed in the Soviet capital during the war years for  their future role: to be the future leaders of Communist Germany, subservient to the Soviet Union and hostile to Russia's Western allies.

Had they -- and Stalin -- succeeded, today some 76 million Germans would share the fate of Poles, Czechoslovaks, Hungarians, Romanians and Bulgarians all "voluntarily" living in Communist paradises.

As it is Herr Ulbricht and his associates now rule only about some 17 million East Germans, whom they have to surround with barbed wire fences and walls to prevent their exodus from the promised land.

Today the overwhelming majority of West Germans would like to forget the tragic past which a decreasing number of them remembers from experience. Many resent any reminder of what happened between 1933 and 1945 while the Nazis were in absolute power.

Yet today the West German Parliament will hold a session to remember those years and their consequences.

Chancellor Willy Brandt will be the main speaker. He is expected to tell Germans -- and the world --that May 8, 1945, was a turning, point from dictatorship to the beginnings of a democratic era in which his people hope and want to live permanently at peace with all men, wherever they are and whatever their political creed.


By Dr Emery Barcs 1970-2-20

THE decision of West German Chancellor Willy Brandt to meet East German Premier Willi Stoph, in East Berlin, has been a shrewd move on the murky chess-board of all-German relations. For Herr Brandt has accepted the East German invitation with the proviso that the Communists set no preconditions to the beginning of the talks.

The implication of Herr Brandt's "I'm ready to go, but..." is that if the East German Ulbricht regime wants to talk to him about the normalisation of relations between the divided nation, it must stop demanding Bonn's full international recognition of the Red-ruled German Democratic Republic.

Since the formation Of the Grand Coalition at the end of 1966 between Christian Democrats and Social Democrats (which was replaced by a Social Democrat Free Democrat coalition after last year's elections). West Germany has tried hard to establish friendlier relations with the Soviet bloc.  It has suggested a treaty renouncing the use of force to alter existing frontiers and to reunite Germany. But, it has insisted that East and West Germans must remain part of one nation," although they are ruled by different governments.

So far Herr Ulbricht and his men have flatly refused to enter into any special relationship with West Germany.  They have insisted that the Federal Republic of (West) Germany must treat the German Democratic Republic as any other foreign country.

The reasons for the cramped efforts to keep Germans permanently separated are obvious.  A special relationship would probably involve the easing of contacts between the people of the two sides of the border, including the demolition of the Berlin Wall, which has prevented East Germans from fleeing to the West.

However, the Ulbricht regime cannot afford to facilitate the exodus to the Federal Republic, despite improved economic conditions in East Germany. Hence it must stick to its right to seal the frontiers as tightly as possible.

In addition, the communists rule East Germany not by popular consent -- there has never been a free election in the "Democratic" Republic -- but by the force of Soviet arms and of a Red police State.

Therefore, West German recognition of the East German Communist regime as the government of an entirely separate sovereign State would give it the legality which Herr Ulbricht has sought for more than 20 years.

Until now, the Kremlin and its Eastern European satellites have fully supported Herr Ulbricht's aspirations. They are still vocal about them -- but with a slight difference.

Recently East Germany's two staunchest supporters -- the Soviet Union and Poland -- have agreed to hold preliminary talks with Bonn about the treaty on the renunciation of force and all that this involves.

The results of the discussions which two West German Secretaries of State, Georg Ferdinand Duckwitz and Egon Bahr, have held in Warsaw and in Moscow are not publicly known.  But they seem to have opened the way for discussions on higher government levels between Bonn on one side and Poland and the Soviet Union on the other.

The positive response from these two governments to West German diplomatic efforts has certainly contributed to Herr Stoph's recent invitation to Herr Brandt to go to East Berlin.

Herr Stoph's letter to Brandt included passages which appeared to be unacceptable to the West Germans.  It restated East German insistance in full recognition as the precondition for talks about anything else. It emphasised that Berlin (not just East Berlin) was the capital of the Democratic Republic.

Rightly or wrongly, some German and foreign politicians and political analysts have concluded from the letter that, despite the "invitation," East Germany wanted Herr Brandt to refuse to go to East Berlin. This, in turn, gave rise to speculations about a rift between East Berlin and Moscow and Warsaw about their respective future relations with Bonn.

Personally, I think that these speculations are merely the results of wishful thinking.  I prefer the theory that the three governments have merely been assigned different roles, with the Russians and the Poles now talking softly and the East Germans remaining tough.  They have every reason to follow such well-proved tactics and to see where they lead.

Anyway, if Herr Brandt does go to East Berlin he will not take with him his Foreign Minister, Walter Scheel, to emphasise that he is not meeting members of a foreign government.

On the other hand, Herr Stoph announced in his letter that if lie meets Herr Brandt, the East German Foreign Minister, Otto Winter, will be present, just to show that the discussions are not about internal German affairs.

So the two sides will still be poles apart, even if Herr Brandt sits down with Herr Stoph at a conference table.


By Emery Barcs 1969-8-26

In early September, 1931, a terrible railway disaster in Hungary sparked off a political vendetta and two innocent men were hanged.

On February 27, 1933. the capture of an imbecile young Dutchman at the scene of a fire gave Hitler the excuse to grab power in Germany.

On December 1, 1934, a young Communist shot dead a leading Party member and Joseph Stalin used it as a pretext to start the terrible purges in which hundreds of thousands perished and millions more became slaves.

On the night of November 9, 1938, the Nazis killed and imprisoned thousands of German Jews and burned hundreds of synagogues -- all because of a senseless murder in Paris two days earlier.

These are a few examples of how individual terrorist acts -- or even common crimes -- can serve as excuses for political retaliation against innocent people.

They are worth remembering when one considers the burning last week of the El Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem.  Sheer logic suggests that if conspirators were responsible for the disaster they did not act on behalf of any open or secret Israeli Government organisation.

The Israeli Government would have been mad to supply the necessary catalyst for both Arab fury and (still incomplete) unity by masterminding the destruction of one of the holiest Moslem places.

Unfortunately, however, the examples previously mentioned show how situations like this can get out of hand -- or be used to somebody's advantage.

Perhaps one of the most bizarre took place in Hungary in 1931 against two secret Communist leaders: Sallai and Fuerst.


Early in September, 1931, a viaduct near the village of Biatorbagy, on the main Budapest-Vienna railway line, collapsed as a passenger train was crossing.  Dozens of people died and scores were injured.  Subsequent investigations proved that sabotage caused the catastrophe. The viaduct had been dynamited.

But who could have committed such a crime? And for what purpose?
Nobody knew, but about that time the political police had been informed that the underground Communist Party (outlawed in the country since the collapse of Bela Kun's Red regime in 1919) was expecting important emissaries from the Comintern.

This was the Russian organisation established in 1919 to give Communists world leadership of the socialist movement. It was dissolved in 1943 to reassure Stalin's World War II allies).

The jumpy Horthy regime of Hungary, convinced that the explosion at Biatorbagy was a signal for a Communist uprising, declared martial law.  The political police arrested the two Comintern envoys -- Sallai and Fuerst. They were tried and hanged.

Months later, police arrested the real culprit of the Biatorbagy explosion. He was a middle-aged civil engineer, Sylvester Matuska, a completely non-political maniac who had carried out the deed "under orders" from an imaginary spiritual leader he named "Leo."

"Crystal Night" was the name given to the terrible Nazi pogrom on the night of November 9, 1938.  Two days earlier, a 17¬year-old Polish Jew, Herschel Seibel Grynszpan, shot dead with a revolver Ernst von Rath, a secretary at the German Embassy in Paris.  Grynszpan told police he really wanted to kill the German Ambassador to "revenge the Jews and to draw the world's attention to the Nazi misdeeds in Germany."  He had no accomplices.


Yet this senseless murder by a loner (von Rath was not even a Nazi) was branded by Herr Goebbels, Hitler's Minister of Propaganda, as "a new attack on the Third Reich by world Jewry."

And he called for retaliation. It came 48 hours later, on "Crystal Night.",  Some 267 synagogues were burned (with the help of fire brigades -- with orders to sprinkle the fames with petrol instead of water); 7500 Jewish-owned shops were destroyed and 30,000 Jews arrested and put in concentration camps at Dachau, Buchenwald and Sachsen hausen.

Nazis themselves admitted the murder of 36 Jews, though the real figure was probably much higher. Thousands were driven from their homes, which the mob then plundered.


The Hitlerites staged the Reichstag fire. Hitler had come to power four weeks earlier but there was still a parliament and the Nazi hold on the nation was by no means complete.  He needed a pretext - for establishing the brown-shirt dictatorship over the German nation.

So the Nazis set the Reichstag ablaze, but blamed the Communists.
Their proof was an imbecile young Dutchman, van der Lubbe, found on the spot with a can of fuel in his hand and a Communist Party membership book in his pocket.

Next day the Nazis began a wave of arrests. Among those held were three Bulgarian Communists living in Berlin -- Dimitroff, Taneff and Popoff and the German Communist leader, Torgler. They were charged with complicity with van der Lubbe.

The charges were such incredible fabrications that a court later had to acquit them.

But the unfortunate young Dutchman, who was completely apathetic and incapable of coherent speech during the trial (he was certainly doped) was sentenced to death and executed.

The "loner" who gave Stalin the excuse for starting the terrible wave of purges between 1935 and 1938 was L. Nikolaev, a young Communist allegedly in revolt against the policies of the Party.  On December 1, 1934 he shot dead Serge Kirov, a member of the Politburo, head of the Leningrad party organisation and supposedly one of Stalin's closest collaborators.

The purges were staged to "save" the Soviet Union from the conspiracy of its internal enemies, whose dastardly deeds were supposedly unmasked during investigations following the Kirov murder.


What these various incidents have in common is that their murky backgrounds have not been revealed to everybody's satisfaction.
Until a man is found guilty he is deemed to be innocent and so we don't know whether the Australian charged with burning down the El Aqsa mosque really did it and if so, why.

But we can take it for granted that his trial which will be held so publicly that any attempt at "covering up" would be immediately discovered and denounced -- will not satisfy everybody either.  A new legend will be born .. and that legend won't help ease the explosive Middle East situation.


By Emery Barcs 1968-9-20

AFTER 23 years of spurious excuses and double-talk the Soviet authorities have now agreed to allow West German war crime investigators to search Nazi documents which the Russians seized in Germany after the end of World War II.  The West Germans want to see these papers to uncover war crimes which have not yet been punished and bring the criminals to court.

Although the Soviet Government has taken plenty of time to make up its mind it has still not said whether the eight West Germans who will work in Moscow will be allowed to see all the papers, not merely some selected by Soviet officials for perusal.

Normal logic suggests that the Soviets would have every interest in helping to hunt down Nazi criminals by opening their archives to West German investigators and in raising hell if justice were not done despite incriminating proofs.

But apart from their habitual secretiveness the men in the Kremlin had a reason for not wanting to show what they had

In this way they could -- and indeed did -- open their cupboards and fish out a document whenever a former Nazi Party member, who had managed to conceal his past, rose to some prominence in the West German Federal Republic.


Four years ago when the Statute of Limitations for war crimes (20 years) was about to expire in West Germany, and the danger arose that Nazi criminals could escape scot free from the consequences of their deeds, Bonn asked all interested governments to reveal all relevant material in their possession to enable the West German authorities to prosecute the culprits.

Some countries -- including Czechoslovakia and Poland -- agreed to admit West German investigators.  But the Soviet Union and East Germany which probably have the largest number and the most important documents in their archives refused to comply with the request.

In January, 1965, the Soviet Government even charged the West German Government with duplicity, saying that Bonn only wanted to know the contents of certain documents to amnesty the "Fascist murderers" and not to punish them.

(Eventually the Statute of Limitations on war crimes was extended so that now no escape from punishment is possible.)

East Germany acted likewise. Clearly, neither Moscow nor East Berlin were primarily concerned with punishment for the Nazi criminals. They wanted to gain political profit from their hoard of documents whenever the opportunity arose.


The East Germans, however, had another motive for refusing to divulge their documentary proofs on Nazis. For throwing open their archives would have revealed that former Nazis did not manage to rise to positions of importance only in West Germany, but also in the allegedly untainted "Democratic" Republic.

Of course, the names of a number of East Germans who had been prominent Nazis under Hitler and who have been equally prominent Communists under Ulbricht were well known. But the point is that perusal of the documents held by East Germany would have unearthed additional names.

On June 11, 1965, the English language propaganda sheet of the East German Government, the Democratic German Report, edited by an Englishman and published in East Berlin, explained why former Nazis were allowed to hold positions in the German "Democratic" Republic.

After asserting that no "leading figures" in the East German army and judiciary were ex-Nazis, the paper continued: "There are, however, a number of people in posts of responsibility who were in fact members of the Nazi Party. The Minister of Culture appears on the rolls of Nazi Party members; he was 18 when the war ended.  "The Minister of Agriculture was 20 when the war ended. Both these men can be truly described as "nominal Nazis." They had no real choice in the matter.

"A few former Nazi Party members who broke with Hitler in 1943 and played a prominent part in the 'Free Germany National Committee' formed in the Soviet Union, and took part in dangerous front - line work against Hitler are also in leading posts; most prominent of them is Heinrich Homann, a deputy chairman of the State Council, who was sentenced to death by the Nazis in absentia."

This would be fair enough if the Soviets and the East Germans applied the same standards in East Germany and in West Germany to ex-Nazis who joined the party as mere boys or who eventually turned against Hitler although 1943 seems a bit late in the day.

But Moscow and East Berlin apply blatant double-standards. Disillusioned former Nazis are all right as long as they now help build Communism in East Germany. But they are incorrigible Fascist criminals if they live in West Germany.


Of course, quite a few Nazis who have or had managed to hide their past did commit crimes under the Hitler era. And they should be called to account for their deeds no matter on which side of the border they live.

Strangely, however, the Ulbricht regime keeps employing a number of prominent former Nazis who did not show any aversion to the Fuehrer until well after his defeat in 1945.

On September 6, Simon Wiesenthal, the famous Viennese "Nazi-hunter," who has done much to bring prominent war criminals before justice, published a list of 39 prominent ex-Nazis who are now playing leading roles in East Germany's propaganda organisations. The names include:

Kurt Blecha, now chief of the Press Bureau of the East German Council of Ministers.

Hans Walter, a former Gestapo agent and now editor-in-chief of the official foreign politics weekly, Deutsche Aussenpolitik.

Horst Dressler-Andress, former president of the Nazi Reichs Broadcasting Chamber and at present a member of the East German Socialist Unity Party's (Communists) Agitation and Propaganda Department.

None of these gentlemen had ever cared to admit his former adherence to Hitler's propaganda organisation. They do, however, continue to write the sort of language which was fashionable in the Third Reich.

For example, just before the Warsaw Pact countries' invasion of Czechoslovakia the official East German Communist Party daily Neue Deutschland (New Germany) of East Berlin appeared with the front-page headline: "Zionism Now Rules in Prague."

Thirty years ago, before the Nazi invasion of Czechoslovakia, Hitler's official daily, the Voelkischer Beobachter, published a similar headline on its front page: "Jews Now Rule in Prague."

If the Soviets now permit the West German investigators to peruse all Nazi documents in their possession it is quite likely that a number of crimes will be detected; crimes whose perpetrators may now live anywhere -- including East and West Germany.  Some of these may even hold responsible positions in either country.

But just 'because of the very likely chance of upsetting discoveries of this kind in the Federal Republic and in East Germany no one would be surprised if the investigators in Moscow were handed carefully selected documents which proved that all former war-criminals are to be found in the West and that none had contaminated the East.

If this happens one can be sure of the subsequent chanting of the comrades: "Didn't we say so..."


By Emery Barcs 1968-8-29

AN unprecedented rebellion of Western Communist Parties against the Kremlin leadership has been the most important side-effect of the invasion of Czechoslovakia by the Soviet Union and its Polish, East German, Hungarian and Bulgarian satellites.

The Western comrades' denunciations of Brezhnev and his associates have varied in phrasing and intensity.

The French, for instance, have been more guarded than the Scandinavians while the Italians, who run the largest Communist Party west of the Iron Curtain, have been the most outspoken in their condemnation of Moscow's Czech policies.

Italy's Communists, led by Secretary - General Luigi Longo, have a special reason for feeling upset and for clearly expressing their indignation. The occupation of Czechoslovakia by "fraternal" forces may have robbed them of the long-awaited chance of participating in the Government in Italy.

During my recent visit to Italy, Communist intellectuals never tired of explaining to me that Stalinism was dead, that Communist strong-arm methods were a thing of the past and that their party, the PCI, was a "democratic parliamentary force something like the liberal Communist Party of Czechoslovakia."

When I expressed my doubts that the Soviet leaders -- or any other Communist regime -- could tolerate freedom in Czechoslovakia because the Czech example would start an epidemic of demands for freedom in the whole Soviet bloc undermining the Party's power everywhere, the standard answer was that I lived and thought in the past which was no longer applicable.

Last week this past was applied in Czechoslovakia and no wonder that the PCI felt cheated.  In a Press statement, the Party declared the military intervention "grave and unjustified," and added that the PCI was "unable to reconcile it with the right of independence of every Communist Party."

Despite this stand, the Italian Communist Party undoubtedly feels --  and rightly -- that it will take time before it can make the country's non-Communist Left forget what happened to Czechoslovakia and to persuade it to enter into an alliance with the PCI.

Admittedly, even before the Czechoslovakian events there was only a slightly chance of a Grand Left coalition, as advocated by the PCI.  Such a coalition would have included Communists, the Left Wing of the Christian Democratic Party, Social Democrats and the new Socialist Party of Proletarian Unity (a dissident Social Democratic group) which ran for the first time during the last parliamentary elections in May and gained 23 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and 14 seats in the Senate.

But the point is that there was some chance of a Grand Left. Before the occupation of Czechoslovakia, the Left Wing of the Christian Democrats (DC), led by Donat Cattin, was inclined to open a dialogue with the Communists to further long-overdue forms blocked by the DC's conservatives.

Now Donat Cattin and his followers will almost certainly have second thoughts about the advisability of flirting with the PCI, despite the Party's denunciation of the suppression of freedom in Czechoslovakia.

It is also improbable that the ludicrous political situation in which Italy now finds itself and which has contributed to the Communist hopes of sharing power will arise again.

Since last June, Italy has had a minority Christian Democratic caretaker Government led by Signor Giovanni Leone, 60, a Senator for life and a Professor of Penal Law and Procedure at Rome University.

The reason for the formation of this "Government for the bathing season," as it is facetiously called, must be one of the oddest in the history of parliamentary democracy.

Last May general elections were held in Italy and the governing Centre Left coalition of Christian Democrats, United Socialists and Republicans was returned with a handsome majority. It won 366 of a total of 630 seats in the Chamber of Deputies.

However, while the Christian Democrats increased their seats by six, the United Socialists lost the same number.  Some of the Socialists (among them, I was told, Giuseppe Saragat, President of Italy) blamed their loss of seats on the Christian Democratic hesitancy to carry out reforms.

Hence they decided to withdraw from the coalition until after the United Socialist Party congress next October which will decide whether the Centre-Left regime should be re-established. (The Republicans also withdrew from the coalition.)

Many influential Socialists, including veteran party leader Pietro Nenni, now believe that their withdrawal from the coalition was a political mistake and that they ought to rejoin the Government as soon as possible. Few people in Italian politics seem to doubt that the Socialists will do so after their meeting in October.

But they want a firm assurance that the Christian Democrats will cooperate fully during the next five years in developing Italy into a fully fledged social welfare State, and that certain reforms -- such as the modernisation of education and public administration -- will be put through in the life of this parliament.

The Communists had hoped that the uncertainties caused by the coalition crisis would provide the chance for establishing a Grand Left regime in which they could join and hold some of the key Government positions.

At the beginning of this month when I was in Rome many politically articulate Italians to whom I talked (including some strongly anti-Communists) did not rule out the possibility that the comrades might succeed.

The Kremlin's rape of Czechoslovakia has un-doubtedly ended the PCI's high hopes because -- at least for the time being -- it has made Communism as unpalatable in Italy as it is elsewhere in Western Europe.

But whether the PCI will regain its popularity in Italy depends less on the Communist Party than on the regime which will emerge after next October's United Socialist Congress.

For under the gay and congenial surface of Italian life there is serious discontent in the country. The reason for this is that while Italy's economic progress since the end of World War II has been impressive, the improvements in living conditions have been spread unevenly and have hardly reached some categories of the people.

The industrial worker is relatively much better off than he was, say, 30 years ago. It is the white collar worker -- including public servants, teachers, minor academics -- who feel they do not enjoy any of the benefits of the overall economic progress.

It is this class of people, numbering many millions, whose income lags badly behind its zest for life, and it is here one finds some of the most acid criticism of the present state of affairs in Italy, and the greatest disaffection with the regime. 

Some of them have been Communist Party members. Many more have consistently voted for the party in the past.  And unless sound politics remedy their grievances they may do so in the future, helping the Italian Communist Party ultimately to stage a strong comeback -- unlikely as this may appeal in the present atmosphere of disillusionment with Communism.


By Dr Emery Barcs 1967-9-4

The ugly brawl outside the Red Chinese Embassy in London last week makes one wonder more than ever whether there is any rational explanation for the events in Mao Tse Tung's Communist empire.

Sixteen months have passed since Red Chinese Premier, Chou En Lai, announced the official beginning of the Great Cultural Revolution in Peking on the eve of May Day, 1966.

Since then hundreds of the most competent "China Watchers" on both sides of the Iron Curtain have been trying to find out why this revolution had been launched, what it is all about, and where it is supposed to lead the 700 million Inhabitants of the People's Republic of China.

Dozens of theories have been developed. However, the trouble with most of them is that, say, Theory A sounds quite acceptable until one reads Theory B which is also plausible although exactly the opposite of A.

Some of the most popular of these analyses are:

*    Mao Tse Tung was critically ill in body or mind (or both) for some time    before May, 1966.

*    The cultural revolution is nothing but a struggle for power Between Mao's lieutenants led by Army boss Lin Piao on the one hand, and President Liu Shao Chi on the other.

*    Mao is in full control of his mental and physical powers. He launched the Cultural Revolution as a super effort to purge the Chinese Communist Party of "influential power holders" who sympathised with the slower pace of the Russian way to Communism in opposition to Mao's instant Communism.

*    Mao (still sane and healthy) believes in a permanent revolution.  He was apprehensive about the rise of a New Class of leaders in Red China similar to those in the Soviet orbit.

*    The Cultural Revolution is only a practical application of the theory of class struggle.

The reasons why Mao (or someone else) has let millions of teenagers loose on a nihilistic rampage may be unfathomable, but some of the consequences of the Great Cultural Revolution are clearly visible.

One is that, as a result of the crazy pattern of the Mao regime's foreign policy, Red China now stands isolated because the Peking Government has developed the making of enemies into a fine art.

One could understand the Chinese Communists' feelings towards the United States which has been the main protector of the nationalists in Taiwan.  Even if one sides with Washington one must admit that there are rational grounds for Peking's hostility towards Uncle Sam.

But the point is that Peking has been at great pains to offend its potential friends as well. The Mao regime has challenged Britain, the first Western Power to recognise Red China, over Hong Kong, and when this had not produced the expected British surrender, it organised a barbaric assault on Britain's representatives in Peking.

Relations with the Soviet Union have been worsened by submitting Soviet ships to such humiliations in Chinese ports that Moscow has threatened to break all trade contacts with Communist China.

India, once Peking's staunchest friend in Asia, has been attacked, and tension between the two countries is at a permanent high.

Relations with Indonesia are deteriorating day by day.

Burma has been submitted to indignities from the local Red Guards, young militants of the Chinese minority.

Ceylon has been threatened with the cessation of Red Chinese rice sales because the Government in Colombo dared to seize subversive propaganda material sent from Red China.

Even the Japanese Communist Party -- Peking's most ardent admirer not so long ago -- recently complained about Red Chinese interference in its affairs.

Red China now has no friends in the world except tiny Albania, where the Hoxha regime entirely depends on Peking's support, and - insignificant pro-Peking Communist splinter groups in a number of countries, and a rather shaky love affair with Pakistan.

China, huge, populous, and potentially strong, could establish itself as a really great Power by its own strength and without outside goodwill or help.  But to achieve this the Chinese would have to combine enormous human efforts with brilliant political and economic leadership.

As far as one can gauge, the Cultural Revolution has sapped whatever determination for such effort existed, and has reduced efficient leadership to hesitating impotence.

Juni Kossiukov, former China correspondent of the Moscow daily Izvestia, who was recently expelled from Peking, has published the most up-to-date analysis of Red China's economy in the latest issue of the Soviet periodical, New Times

He writes that the interference of the Red Guards with production, and the mobilisation of workers and peasants in the fight for the Cultural Revolution have completely disrupted the country's ailing agriculture and industry.

According to him, unemployment is enormous and steadily increasing. There are no jobs for the two million young men and women who swell the work force annually.

Teaching has ceased or has been hopelessly disrupted in schools and universities.

Intellectuals, scientists, and technicians have been humiliated and cowed, and often beaten or otherwise ill-treated by the Red Guards for alleged unrevolutionary attitudes.

Where all this will lead is anybody's guess. But if collective insanity is not stopped soon then Red China could fall to pieces, or sheer desperation could transform her into the mightiest homicidal lunatic history has ever known.

Such a monster with the Bomb in its hands is hardly a prospect one can enjoy


By Dr Emery Barcs 1967-7-20

WITH only a hurried and offhand acknowledgment of her services to the East German Communist regime, Hilde Benjamin, Minister of Justice of the German "Democratic" Republic since 1953, has been removed from office.  She has also lost her membership of the Central Committee of the East German Communist Party and her seat in the country's so-called "parliament."

Nobody is likely to shed tears over the sudden eclipse of this 66-Year-old plump little woman with the unaffectionate nickname of "Red Hilde" who has served the cause of Communism with cruel fanaticism for the past 22 years.

For as the supreme inquisitor of the regime she has earned the fear and hatred of not only the non-Communist majority of the 17 million East Germans but also of most of the 1,650,000 members of her own Socialist Unity Party (SED)

Hilde Benjamin did not formulate the policy of terror of the Ulbricht regime. But because she carried out this policy with such uncompromising and ferocious zeal she became the symbol of ruthless opression.

First as Chairman of the East German Supreme Court and later as Minister of Justice she was directly responsible for 148 death sentences, some 400 life imprisonments and more than 25,000 shorter jailings all for "political crimes" against the SED rulers.  Reputedly she never wavered in meting out the maximum sentence.

She also established an organisation, with herself as chairman, which functions as a watchdog over socialist justice.  The duty of the members of this Organisation of Instructors of Judicial Administration is to instruct law courts in what sort of verdict they must bring against a person charged with a political crime. So far these orders have invariably provided for stiff sentences.

Hilde Benjamin's life story explains the development of this bitter and cruel woman.  She comes from an old and prosperous Protestant family named Lange. After obtaining her law degree with top honors she married Dr. George Benjamin, a Jewish physician and a Communist.

The young couple lived in Wedding, one of the dreariest and poorest districts of Berlin where Hilda Benjamin obtained first - hand experience of the misery caused by the depression in which some eight million Germans were permanently unemployed.

In 1932 her only child, Micha, son, was born.

A year later when the Nazis came to power her husband was arrested. He died in a concentration camp in 1942. Allegedly he committed suicide by touching a high tension electricity line.

Hilde and her son somehow survived the Nazi regime. Until Hitler's attack on Russia in mid-1961 she had a job with the Soviet Trade Mission in Berlin.  How she managed to keep herself and her son alive after that is not known.

When the war was over she first obtained a job with the newly established Public Prosecutor's office where she worked with the Americans.  In late 1945, however, she went to the Soviet occupation zone to serve the Communists.

The few men and women who had known her in East Germany and who have escaped to the West to tell the story, have described Hilde Benjamin as a bitter, lonely and unhappy person.

She is allegedly a great music lover. Her favorites are Mozart and Beethoven.  She is also a voracious reader of fiction and, ironically, she prefers the writers of the West to those of the East.

Reports about her personal life differ. Some say she lives simply in an East Berlin apartment, others that she has a huge villa with a large staff at her disposal and that she enjoys good food and choice wines.

But there seems to be a general agreement about her fear for her life and for that of her adored son. Micha, now 35, who lives with her. Hilde Benjamin is said to be the most closely guarded East German Red potentate after Ulbricht himself.  She has every reason to be afraid.

And it seems, that because of her past record she has become an embarrassment to the Ulbricht regime which is now trying to make itself popular with the East German masses by relucantly liberalising some aspects of everyday life.  Hence her removal from positions of power and influence.


Dr Emery Barcs 1961-1-19

NIKITA KRUSHCHEV'S acid comments at the present session of the Communist Party's Central Committee in Moscow on the mismanagement of Soviet agriculture have clearly ended another Soviet propaganda fable.

Two years ago Mr. Krushchev boasted that by 1965 Soviet agriculture would catch up with United States output, then gallop away from Uncle Sam at a staggering speed producing unprecedented quantities of foodstuffs for the benefit of the hungry and underfed peoples of the world.

Cautious and sceptical Western experts who doubted the feasibility of such rapid growths were derided as "hostile fools." "Of course," the true-believers argued, "only under the rationally organised. centrally planned and controlled system of Socialist farming is such a spectacular development possible. Russia will prove this."

So far not only Russia but also all other Communist-governed Eastern European countries have proved exactly the opposite.
In 1958 the world average of agricultural production was between 37 and 38 per cent higher than in 1938. But in the Soviet Union and in Eastern Europe the increase was only between 15 and 18 per cent compared with prewar levels, despite huge investments to make socialised agriculture work.

Mr. Krushchev's boundless optimism in 1958 was perhaps based on that year's bumper grain harvest in the Soviet Union and on reports of collective-farm managers who were anxious to please the men in the Kremlin. The Soviet leader has now called these managers "liars and cheats."

In 1958 the Soviet Government reported to the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisation (F.A.O.) that agricultural production in the U.S.S.R. rose by nine per cent that year-an increase which was more than double the world average of four percent.

Mr. Krushchev (or whoever had supplied him with the relevant data) then added to this exceptional year the hoped-for yields from newly developed regions such as the so-called "virgin lands" project in Kazakhistan and the ploughing of some 20 million acres of former forests and steppe along the Volga, in the Urals, Siberia and the Far East.

All these results put together might have produced the figures which showed that by 1965 and especially after that date the Soviet Union would be the leading food-producer of the world.

Unfortunately, however, a wide discrepancy has arisen between theory and practice. 'The first signs that all was not well with the ambitious Soviet agricultural plans came from Mr. Krushchev himself in January, 1960, when he violently denounced the criminal incompetence" of the men whose task was to organise the Kazakh "virgin lands" scheme.

He complained that 18,000 tractors took no part in the sowing, 32,000 combines were idle during harvesting, and four million acres of sown grain were not harvested at all.

Krushchev made two of his closest friends and supporters in previous party-feuds the scapegoats for the alleged bungling.
They were Messrs. N. I. Belyaev, First Secretary of the Kazakh Communist Party, and Alexi Kirichenko, an agricultural expert and one of the mightiest men in the soviet Communist Party Secretariat.

"Friendship can't save people who fail to fulfil their duties," screamed Krushchev. A few days later both Kirichenko and Belyaev were sacked and have since disappeared completely from the lime-light.

With them, as usual, hundreds of minor aides to the two men lost their jobs or were demoted to less responsible tasks.

BUT Mr. Kruschev's violent attacks at the present session of the Central Committee on those Soviet agricultural leaders who remained at their places last year and against newly appointed men show that the situation has scarcely improved during the past 12 months.

For    instance, Soviet meat-production has remained stagnant at about 8.6 million tons since 1959. To "catch up with America" the country would have to produce another 12 million or 13 million tons of meat by 1965. Only incorrigible optimists believe that this target can be fulfilled.

Or take the question of wheat. At the Central Committee meeting Mr. Kruschev refused to believe Nikolai Podgorny, First Secretary of the Ukranian Communist Party, who reported that the Ukraine produced (the equivalent of) 13 bushels of wheat to the acre in 1960.

Krushchev thundered that the real amount must have been lower there and then Podgorny (who seems to be the next man marked for the axe) meekly admitted: "You are dead right, Comrade Krushchev..."

But the Ukraine is not only one of the best wheat growing regions of the Soviet Union but of the whole of Europe. Yet even in the best postwar years it hasn't grown more than 15 bushels of wheat to the acre, or less than one of the (agriculturally) most backward European countries, Spain (15.1 bushels to the acre).

In comparison during the four years between 1955 and 1958 (the latest figures available) the average number of bushels of wheat to the acre per year harvested in the West were: Australia, 17.5; U.S.A., 22.4; France, 33.1; West Germany, 44.3; Holland, 56.3; and (the world's best) Denmark, 58.7.

The overall picture of agricultural production is no better in the rest of Russian-dominated Eastern Europe which was once the granary of the Continent than it is in the Soviet Union.

None of the seven Soviet satellite countries (Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Rumania, Bulgaria, Albania and East Germany) has been able to keep pace with the development in Western Europe or in the agriculturally more advanced parts of the world.

With the exception of East Germany (which provided much of the food-stuffs for West Germany) and of backward Albania, all of the other five Eastern European countries were food exporters before World War II. Now they can't even feed their own peoples properly.

Herr Walter Ulbricht East Germany's Red boss, has admitted that in his country agricultural production is "growing more slowly than consumption." The same is true throughout the entire satellite orbit. Not one of the seven states has been able to fulfill the modest plan of a four percent increase in food production each year.

The most obvious explanation for the failure of Communist-run agriculture is that Communist agrarian policy is based on a series of theoretical fallacies and political expediencies.

Probably the most glaring of these fallacies is that by increasing the size of farms, and by providing them with all sorts of machinery and scientific equipment, they can be turned into agricultural factories serviced by workers who are essentially no different from the staff of, say, an electric power-station or a steelworks.

But a farm, however big and however highly mechanised is still not a factory and 43 years of Communist rule in the Soviet Union has still failed to transform the Russian, Ukrainian or Kazakh men and women who work on the land into factory workers.

By taking away their land (or by not giving them any) Communist rulers can reduce peasants to wage-earners for the sake of eliminating a politically"dangerous" class of people with independent means.

Past experience, however, has proved that the landless farm-worker who has no, or very little, personal stake in his labors is a very careless and inefficient producer. And huge estates worked by such wage-earners have always been notoriously inefficient.

The highest efficiency in agricultural production has been achieved in Western countries and by medium or small independent farmers -- often voluntarily associated in co-operatives.

Under Communist rule the landless farm-worker might have a better deal than he had in Russia before 1917, or in some parts of Eastern Europe before 1945 when he sweated for often shockingly low wages for feudal landlords.  But despite his improved treatment he has still no personal interest in his labors and the land is the ideal place for the determined loafer.

But all this doesn't mean that Communists will abandon their agrarian policy in the forseeable future. For under Communism if theory clashes with facts then it's just too bad for the facts.


By Dr Emery Barcs 1957-7-5

THE LATEST purge in the Kremlin probably means the end of four years of "team-dictatorship" in Russia, and the emergence of Nikita Krushchev as the new, all-powerful master of the Soviet Union.

With a single stroke Krushchev and his associates have eliminated from the Soviet Communist Party hierarchy:

Vyachislav Molotov, 67, former Soviet Prime Minister, Foreign Minister, and a top man in the Communist Party since the 1917 revolution. Between 1917 and Stalin's death in 1953 Molotov was one of the closest collaborators of the late dictator.

Lazar Kaganovich, 64, a Communist since the age of 20, a fighting leader of the Petrograd  Soviet in 1917, reorganiser of Russia's communication system and heavy industry, Stalin's brother-in-law and intimate friend, a member of the highest party organs for 40 years.

Georgi Malenkov, 54, Stalin's former secretary and heir-apparent until his first demotion from Russia's leadership in February, 1955.

The 133-member Central Executive of the Communist Party has unanimously dismissed these three men for "anti-party activities."

At the same session the Central Committee also dismissed a lesser light, former Pravda editor and Foreign Minister Dimitri Shepilov, as a secretary of the Communist Party.  His crime was that he sided with the three big-shots in the faction fight for power which the Krushchev-Bulganin duo has won, and the Molotov-Kaganovich-Malenkov triumvirate has lost.

THIS struggle for power has gone on incessantly within the walls of the Kremlin since Lenin's death in January, 1924.

Stalin himself set the pattern of such fights.  Stalin's method was to team up with a couple of second-raters in the Bolshevik hierarchy to eliminate the strongest contestant for the dictator's mantle -- Trotsky.

When Trotsky was out Stalin schemed Trotsky's two former allies, Zinoviev and Kamenev, out of power. The progress went on until Stalin remained sole ruler, with a team of cowed yes-men around himself.

After Stalin's death the process was repeated among the heirs of the "great dictator." First, a group teamed up against Lavrenti Beria, boss of the Secret Police, and the most likely person to attempt to grab absolute power with the aid of his 1,000,000-strong political police force. He was shot in December, 1953.

The second victim of the process of elimination was Stalin's ex-secretary, Malenkov, who became too popular for his advocacy of less guns and more butter for the Soviet peoples. He had to relinquish his Premiership in February, 1955, under pressure from  the clique in the top hierarchy led by Krushchev and Bulganin.

But Krushchev and Bulganin were not yet strong enough to order the same fate for Malenkov as for Beria.

In 1955 Malenkov still had the backing of the three Old Bolshevik members of the Communist Party Presidium who had survived Stalin's' purges of the 1930s -- Molotov, Kaganovich, and Voroshilov.

Gradually, however, the Krushchev Bulganin alliance has whittled away the influence of the Old Bolshevik team by replacing lesser Stalinists in the Presidium of the Communist Party with their own followers.

There can he no doubt that the Communist Party has been the whole life of the four fallen men. Kaganovich and Molotov were in the thick of the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution. Both Malenkov and Shepilov have been Communists from earliest childhood.

Politicians also fall in the democracies. But they are not accused of vile crimes when their ideas no longer tally with those of the majority and they temporarily or finally retire from the political arena.

One would have thought that at least Molotov and Kaganovich, who have done an enormous amount of work for the Communists, would be allowed to retire as honored elder statesmen. But under the Communist dictatorship no such quiet retirement seems to be possible.  One is either an exalted hero or a despised criminal.

The Central Committee's communique announcing the dismissal of the four men accuses them of "anti-party activities." A charge which needs no comment...

Naturally, there has always been some sort of ideological or political background to the struggle for power in the Kremlin.

Stalin never said he was afraid of Trotsky, Zinoviev, Kamenev, or Tukachevsky. He justified his bloody purges with the argument that these (and millions of others) had to be eliminated because they betrayed Communism by opposing the only true Communist policy

Krushchev and Co are using the same argument. And those who tune in next Tuesday night to television station Channel 9, TCN, for the American interview with Krushchev will see how persuasive Kruschev can be.

For the televised interview by two American Journalists is a masterpiece of superbly delivered Communist double-talk. He never retreats from the hackneyed, orthodox, anti-Western line. Yet he sounds as if the West has only to ask for brotherly love and the Russians would pull down the Iron Curtain which (as Kruschev puts it) the West has built against the Soviet Union and its allies.

The Central Committee's communique which "explains" the dismissal of the four leaders is a similar cynical double-talk. The three former Presidium-members are now accused of such crimes as opposing peaceful co-existence, de-Stalinisation, the super-experiment of using virgin lands for increasing food production and of an "overbearing attitude" (whatever that means).

I shed no tears over the fall of the anti-Krushchev trio. Like Krushchev, Bulganin, Mikoyan, and all the present purgers. they have helped to make the world an unsafe place.

But wasn't it Malenkov, only a week after Stalin's death who first talked about "peaceful co-existence" and the need to give the Russians more consumer goods?

Wasn't it Kaganovich who, about the same time, talked about the need of "pushing, our frontiers past and present limits, right into the wastelands to produce more food and to discover. the hidden treasures of the subsoil"?

On the other hand, wasn't it the Krushchev-Bulganin clique which suppressed the Hungarian revolution and put into power the Kadar puppet regime (which, in his TV interview, Krushchev has the effrontery to call "a regime of the Hungarian people").

And wasn't it Marshal Zhukov --now full member of the Presidium -- who fought tooth and nail against Malenkov's plan to scale down Russia's heavy industry, including the most prosperous of all Soviet industries, the manufacturing of armaments?

IN reorganising the Communist Party Presidium the winning side has raised membership from 11 to 15 and for the first time it includes a representative of the Red armed forces -- Marshal Zhukov

At the moment unity seems complete in the Kremlin hierarchy. But in due course the fight for power will flare up again, until one man is strong enough to eliminate all the contenders for the dictator's mantle, and wrap this most coveted piece of clothing around his own body. Nikita Krushchev seems the most likely man to do the trick.

One can hardly expect any spectacular change in Soviet policy towards the West.  Since February, 1953, Krushchev and Bulganin have designed and carried out this policy, which basically aims at reaching a sort of armistice between the Free World and the Communist orbit.

The Communist world -- from Czechoslovakia to Manchuria-- is in the throes of serious economic troubles and political uncertainties. Communist leaders now probably want peace -- for the time being. Marxist theory almost compels them to conclude such temporary peace. which alone may guarantee their survival.

Besides, Krushchev and Co represent that second generation of the Bolshevik elite which now has a vested interest in the Soviet State.

Its wellbeing and prosperity depends on the successful completion of the grandiose schemes which the leaders have put forward. For failure of these schemes may mean the beginning of their own end.

The Krushchev-set is now firmly in the saddle. It has all the opportunity it wants to solve the greatest problem of the communist world-- the rising demand of the masses for a better life.


Dr EMERY BARCS - 1954-7-28

We may not learn for some time the full story of the disappearance behind the Iron Curtain of Dr. Otto John (pronounced Yawn) with his bosom friend, Dr. Wolfgang Wohlgemuth

But whether the Russians kidnapped  Dr. John, or whether he went voluntarily, his departure for East Germany is a major calamity for the West.  As Chief of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, Dr. John was really head of the West German intelligence service.

This office has its headquarters in No. 2 Ludwigstrasse, Cologne.  Its official task is to protect the Federal (West German) Republic from subversive elements - Communists and neo-Nazis.

In reality, however, the Office is the centre of West German intelligence. Its work (as far as as one can penetrate the secrecy which surrounds such organisations) includes the collection of information about East Germany, as well as counter espionage.

This means that the Office has had contacts with anti-Communists in East Germany, and that Dr, John, as head of the Office, probably knows everything about the organisation, members, and work of the Western intelligence service in the Communist-dominated part of Germany

SO whatever the reasons for Dr. John's disappearance behind the Iron Curtain, the fact that he is in Communist hands is enough to suppose that by now the Reds know the innermost secrets of the Western intelligence organisation in the "Democratic" Republic of East Germany. For if he doesn't want to talk the Communists have well-developed techniques to persuade him to talk.

There are Germans in Sydney who knew both John and Wohlgemuth at home. The picture they draw of the two men suggests that the Reds may find Dr. John a willing collaborationist.

Dr. John (his former acquaintances say) is a tall, smartly dressed, sharp-witted lawyer. Until the attempt on Hitler's life in July, 1944, he was syndicus (legal adviser) to the German civilian airline, the Lufthansa.

On the night of July 20, 1944, when John heard that the bomb plot against Hitler (in which his brother was involved) had failed. he used the permanent seat-reservation of Lufthansa big-shots to escape to Spain, whence he eventually went to Britain.

In Britain he worked for the Intelligence Service and the B.B.C. After the war he returned to Germany as a trusted friend of the British occupation forces.

It was this trust which procured him the job of Chief of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution. But neither Chancellor Adenauer nor other leaders of the West German Federal Republic liked him. He was also unpopular with his colleagues in the West German public service.

This aversion of Germans for him perhaps only assured the Western authorities that he was the right man in the right place. For he ascribed his unpopularity to the enmity and machinations of former nazisa who had wormed themselves into the West German Administration.

Whether this was true or not is difficult to know. Recently, however, many reliable German democrats have criticised Dr. John.  The Premier of the West German State of Baden-Wurttemberg, Dr. Reinhold Meier, for example, attacked him in an open letter addressed to Chancellor Adenauer.

Dr. Meier wrote that the hostility of Chancellor Adenauer towards him was based on false reports of Dr. John. The usually reliable West German weekly Die Zeit (The Time) also attacked Dr. John and questioned his reliability.

Possibly this hostility changed Dr. John's attitude towards the Communists. But it is equally possible that (unless he was kidnapped, which now seems unlikely) he has had intimate contacts with the Reds for some time.

Dr. Wolfgang Wohlgemuth, who accompanied Dr. John on his trip to the Eastern sector of Berlin, is a well-known personality in the former capital of the Reich.

His Sydney acquaintances describe him as a brilliant physician with an enormous gusto for night life, always spending much more than he earned, and constantly in debt.

He, like Dr. John, is In his late 40s. As a young man he was one of the most promising doctors at the famous Berlin hospital the Charite. For some time he was first assistant to the world-famous German physician, Professor Sauerbruch.

In the early '30s he developed a close friendship with one of the greatest stars of the silent films, Pola Negri. He also became a great jazz fan, and an accomplished jazz trumpeter.

Wowo (as his friends called him) was the darling of Berlin's film and theatre world. In 1939 he married a well-known Berlin actress, Charlotte Thiele. They stayed together three years.

During the war he became an assistant to Hitler's personal physician, professor Morell. This association with Morell saved Wohlgemuth from milltary service.

He remained in Berlin where he had a prosperous practice in the fashionable Kurfurstendamm.

In 1939 he married lovely film actress Ingrid Lutz who, however, left him after six months. Later he married a girl half his age, and abandoned her within a year.

DR. WOHLGEMUTH'S Sydney acquaintances say it is difficult to imagine that this excellent doctor-cum-nightclub-regular has become a Communist. He has always been cynical about politics, and never believed in anything "except pretty women, good champagne, and hot jazz music."

And he would do anything for a sizable bundle of banknotes. It is not impossible that when Dr. John met his old pal, "Wowo," the doctor made the Intelligence Chief thoroughly drunk and delivered him to East Berlin.  Police reports say that tho two were extremely "merry" when they crossed from West Berlin to East Berlin in Dr. Wohlgernuth's car.

But it is equally possible that both of them were hopelessly drunk, or that Dr. John had chosen this gay exit of his overt free will. The riddle may be explained some day.


By Dr Emery Barcs 1954-5-27

INTERNATIONAL Communism is making a determined bid to extend the area of Red attack to the American continent

Reports published in the U.S. on Monday say war between Guatemala and Honduras seems imminent. Last week the pro-Communist government of Guatemala received 2000 tons of ammunition from behind the Iron Curtain.

The exact source of this arms shipment is a mystery. It came from the former German port of Stettin, which now belongs to Communist-dominated Poland.  United States Intelligence reports said it consisted of unused lend-lease war material which the U.S. had given to Russia to fight the Nazis in World War II.

With typical Communist cynicism the Russians now boomerang the left-overs back to Guatemala to stir up trouble in the Americas.

EXCEPT in Guatemala, Communism has been unable to secure a firm foot-hold in the 19 independent Latin-American Republics.

The area has a total population of about 165,000,000. Estimated Communist Party membership in the 19 countries is about 242,000 -- or 0.15 per cent.  In five of them -- Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador, Argentina, and Uruguay -- the Party is allowed to work in the open. In the other 14 it is illegal, but survives underground.

Until 1946 the most influential Communist group in Latin-America was the Communist Party of Mexico, which operated (and still operates) under the name of the Popular Party.

For many years Vicente Lombardo Toledano has been leader of Mexican Communism and, until about eight years ago, the Kremlin had great hopes that he would revolutionise his own country first, and the rest of Latin-America later. But when Miguel Aleman, a progressive reformer, was elected President in 1946, he began to squeeze the Communists out.

Today Mexico is further from Communism than it has been at any time since the Party's foundation in the early twenties.  Mexico's Communists are undoubtedly fighting to make a comeback. But the leaders of international Communism are realists. They know when they are licked, and when they must change their tactics or their battleground, or both.

The rise of Communist influence in Guatemala (the southern neighbor of Mexico) is the result of such a change in tactics and scene.

Until 1944 Guatemala was a typical Latin-American Republic suffering from the traditions of Spanish colonialism. The rich were very few and very rich. The poor -- probably 90 percent of the country's 2,787,030 inhabitants -- were many, and very poor.  They were hardly more than illiterate serfs of big estate owners, or grossly underpaid chattels of rapacious industrialists.

Between 1930 and 1944 General Jorge Ubico's dictatorship barred every attempt to carry out social and economic reforms, especially land reform. But with the slow development of an intelligentsia --   poor and ambitious -- the pressure for a change increased.

By June, 1944, the new intelligentsia, allied with the under-paid officers of Ubico's army and police force, carried out a bloodless revolt. They removed the President, and in 1945 installed a political refugee, Professor Juan Jose Arevalo, to the Presidency.

At the beginning Arevalo was only a middle-of-the-road reformer. His closest collaborators were a civilian progressive, Jorge Toriello, and two officers -- Major Francisco Arena, leader of the moderate army group and Captain Jaeobo Arbenz Guzman, head of the extreme Left.

By the time the Guatemalan revolutionaries had established themselves, the Mexican Communists had begun to feel the pinch of the Aleman regime.  Therefore they decided that it was worth trying to establish the new Latin-American Communist headquarters in Guatemala.

Under the guidance of Toledano (who frequently flew to Guatemala),  an old Guatemalan Party member, Jose Manuel Fortuny, was entrusted to carry out the task.

Fortuny founded a party called the Liberty Front, which kept its true colors secret until May, 1950, when it openly became the Communist Party of Guatemala.

The Liberty Front supported Arevalo and Arbenz Guzman against Arana and his moderates (Toriello had dropped out of politics in the meantime). Within three years, Front members occupies the most important positions in the country.

In July 18, 1949, Arena was murdered near Lake Amatitlan, leaving the road open for the extremists.

In 1950 Arbenz Guzman followed Arevalo in the Presidency. Under his regime the Communists have decisively increased their power and influence.

Officially the government is not a Communist organisation. And at the 10th Inter-American Conference in Caracas last March, the Guatemalan representative protested against the stigma of Communism.

But Guatemala was the only American country which voted against a resolution condemning international Communists as a "threat to peace" and calling for joint action against Red subversion as well as aggression.

For good reasons. Investigations have established a direct link between Communist activities in British Guiana (which led to the suspension of the colony's Constitution last October) and the Reds of Guatemala.

Similar activities have kept authorities on their toes in British Honduras (the eastern neighbor of Guatemala), and in the Republic of Honduras which has outlawed Communism, and which recently reported large scale gun-running from Guatemala.

The Communists have applied the familiar line of attack in British Guiana as well as in British and Republican Honduras.  Their agents work under the guise of "social-reformers," supporting local political parties which fight against -- often well-founded -- grievances.

They infiltrate the ranks of non-Communist, or even anti-Communist, groups which have large popular support, and try to occupy key positions in them. But, should they be successful, there is no doubt that they would do what Fortuny had done in Guatemala. They would come out into the open and take charge of the country.


By Dr Emery Barcs 1954-3-23

THE secretary of the Indonesian Communist Party assured Prime Minister Sasiroamidjojo last week that the party would support the Government as long as it carried out a "democratic" programme.

This Red reassurance has considerably increased Western misgivings and apprehensions about growing Communist strength and influence in Indonesia.

Recently the sober New York Times suggested that Indonesia was the next Red target in South-east Asia. And the equally un-hysterical Economist, of London, wrote that the shift towards the Left in Indonesian politics was "disturbing."

Australians are vitally interested in these reports. For Indonesia is not only our nearest neighbor. This sprawling republic of the "30,000 islands" which stretches from opposite Malaya to the vicinity of New Guinea, is also a mighty barrier between Australia and the mainland of South-east Asia.

Our direct air-routes to Britain, via the Middle East, pass over Indonesian territory. Darwin is only seven hours from the Indonesian capital of Djakarta, which, in turn, is two hours from Singapore. Indonesian islands flank our shipping lanes to Malaya.  If the Reds ever seized Indonesia, some of our most important communication lines would be cut.

A superficial glance at the political situation in Indonesia does not reveal alarming Communist strength. The party (PKI in brief) has only 16 members in the parliament of 212. With the five or six sympathisers who regularly support them, the Communists control only about 10 percent of parliamentary votes.

And there are no Communists in the Government of Dr. Sastroarnidjojo, a 50-year-old former Indonesian Ambassador to the United States, who has been in power since last August.

But if we look closer at the situation in Indonesia, the picture becomes much less reassuring. In September, 1948, when the Indonesian nationalists were still struggling with the Dutch on the issue of complete independence, the Communists made an attempt to grab power in Indonesia by force. The background of this abortive revolt is a revealing example of Communist plotting in Asia.

An Indonesian Communist. called Muso, who had spent 23 years in Moscow, returned to his country in 1947 and took immediate command of the Commirnist party machinery.

On the surface the PKI seemed to be weak and unimportant. It had only a few thousand members. No known Communist was among the leaders in the struggle for nationalist independence.

At that time the "Big Four" of Indonesian nationalism consisted of Soekarno (now President of the Republic); Sutan Shahrir, leader of the Socialists; Mohammed Hatta, a brilliant, Dutch-educated economist; and Amir Sharifuddin, a zealous Christian, and Prime Minister until the middle of 1948.

On the day Sharifuddin resigned he dropped a bomb-shell. He announced that he had been a member of the Communist Party since 1935.  Secretly he had worked for 13 years -- under the Dutch, under the Japanese, and in the Nationalist camp -- for the Communists.

After his resignation Sharifuddin openly made common cause with his party boss, Muso.  In September, 1948, the two Red leaders occupied with armed gangs the town of Madiun, and declared a Communist war on the Indonesian Republic.

Soekarno, and his associates sent all available men to fight the Reds.  Within a few days the "war" was over.  The Republicans captured both Muso and Sharifuddin.  They died in front of a firing squad.

In December, 1949, the sovereign United States of Indonesia was born.  The political parties agreed to appoint a parliament in which every party would be represented in proportion to its estimated following. The Communists were included in the list of 19 parties, and received 16 seats.

Even a strong and stable central government would have had a tremendous task to efficiently organising the 80,000,000 people of Indonesia, and in reviving the country's economy.

The people belong to dozens of national, racial and religious groups.  And World War II, the Japanese occupation and the struggle with the Dutch had ruined indonesia's economy.

But the five Indonesian governments which have tried to run the country in the last two and a half years have been weak and unstable.  They remained in power only as long as temporary alliances between some of the 19 parties secured them a working majority in Parliament.

These weak regimes have been unable to cope with the various scourges of the nation -- the separatist movements in Celebes and the Moluccas, the lunatics of the Darul Isiam, who want to establish a Moslem religious regime and whose cut-throat guerillas control large tracts of Java and Sumaira and truculent army bosses who do as they please with complete disregard for the wishes of Djakarta.

Besides, as the German financial wizard, Hjalmar Schacht (whom the Indonesian Government invited in 1951 to put the country's economy in order) warned: "Indonesians take the word freedom as a synonym for laziness."

Tea, coffee, quinine, tobacco, and sugar production has fallen seriously since 1939.  Instead of exporting rice, Indonesia now must import 600,000 tons a year.

The population of overcrowded Java is increasing by about 1,000,000 a year. There is plenty of room for settlements in the outer islands, but few volunteer to do the hard work of pioneering.  As President Soekarno said recently: "All round, we see lassitude. "It would appear almost as if we had no idealism left."

All this  -- terror, political dissension, and economic crisis --  has created the right atmosphere for the Communists to establish themselves in Indonesian politics.  They have gained control of the central organisation of the trade unions. And by associating themselves with the Nationalist Party, and by advocating a National Front Government (the type of regime which delivered the Eastern European satellites to the Russian yoke) the Communist have almost won the balance a power in Indonesia.

But they have not succeeded yet.  The largest party in the Indonesian Parliament, the Moslem Masjumi, and the Socialists of Sultan Shahrir (which are not represented in the present Leftist-coalition government) have declared war on the Communists.

Both parties, especially the Masjumi, are well organised and have large followings.  They demand general elections to replace the parliament-by-appointment) which have been postponed year after year since 1951. They hope that the people Will give them a clear majority to establish a stable government and to fight Communism.

Many of the 17 other parties, however, are afraid that general elections will put them out of business... Therefore they vote for postponing elections, which are now tentatively scheduled for 1955, The Communists are also against "premature elections."


By DR. EMERY BARCS  1947-8-28

THE trouble with 68-year old "Nancy" Astor of Cliveden fame is thai she always blurts out aloud what her more discreet Tory friends think but keep to themselves. Her latest indiscretion is to tell Americans that she doesn't care how many Jews are killed in Palestine; her only interest is the number of innocent British who are slaughtered. For that, Representative Emanuel Celler wants to bar her entry into the United States. (Lady Astor has since returned to London.)

In August, 1942, she shocked even Right-wing Commons members by stating: "I'm grateful to the Russians, but they are not fighting for us. They are fighting for themselves." Which was, of course, perfectly true, but very unpolitical to say publicly five years ago.

Nancy Witcher Langhorne, as she was born 68 years ago in Virginia, U.S.A., has never troubled to sugar-coat her opinions, has always thought it beneath her dignity. As a girl and as the wife of a certain Robert Shaw, she was an American aristocrat. She divorced Shaw in 1906, and married Waldorf Astor, the great-grandson of a German pedlar, who made millions out of furs, and real estate in America. Then, like her husband, became an English aristocrat. Her father-in-law was made a peer during the war, and her husband inherited the title. Her brother-in-law, Colonel John Jacob Astor, is the chief proprietor of the London Times.

She was the first woman to become a member of the House of Commons. Back in 1919, Plymouth (where the Astors have large steel interests) sent her into Parliament with a Conservative programme. She held her seat uninterruptedly for 25 years, and retired from active politics before the 1945 elections, which gave Labour a landslide victory.

Lady Astor's name will be mainly remembered in association with the Cliveden Set, a circle of reactionary, ultra-conservative, pro-Hitler-Mussolini-Franco appeasers and red baiters. On March 28, 1938, Sir Stafford Cripps said in the Commons: "The Cliveden Set is driving the Prime Minister (Mr. Chamberlain) into an international Fascist alliance."

Cliveden is a huge Thames-side mansion. Viscount Astor's father gave it to his son as a wedding present when he married Nancy 31 years ago.  The place needs a domestic staff of 100 to look after it. In 1942, when manpower troubles became acute, the Astors presented it to the nation. Important people in British and Foreign politics were invited there for week-ends. Lady Astor has always indignantly denied that her "Set" had a sinister influence on pre-war politics. She said that Communists invented the term Cliveden Set.

She was even more indignant when von Ribbentrop asked at the Nuremberg trials that Lady Astor and several of her closest friends should give evidence in his defence. Personally she is charming, courageous. In 1941, when Nazi bombs showered Plymouth, she fought the fires with complete disregard of her personal safety. One of her greatest admirers and most astute political opponents is Bernard Shaw.   Although retired from active politics, she is still considered one of the major forces in the British Conservative Party.

Soviet Moves For Mastery Of The Middle East, India

By  DR. EMERY BARCS  1947-3-27

SYDNEY MORRELL, UNRRA's Associate Director for Public Information for Europe, is a versatile British foreign correspondent.

He had varied war service as an adviser on psychological warfare to the American Army and as director of the Overseas Branch of the United States Office of War Information. He was  stationed in Iran, Greece, Yugoslavia and Italy, and saw from inside the struggle between Russia and the Western Democracies for influence in these countries. Morell doesn't mince words in describing the mistakes committed by Britain and America.  He also has firm views on the intentions of the new Soviet imperialism in the Middle East and Eastern Europe.

The subtle competition was most obvious in Iran, occupied during the war by the three Allies, Britain, the United States and Russia.  According to Morell one of the most disappointing facts of  this three-power occupation  was that no real comradeship existed among  the troops of the three countries.

 On lonely airfields he said,  scores of miles from civilisation, American and British troops has separate establishments, lived separate communal lives, carried on old prejudices.  British and American garrisons in the same towns lived in splendid isolation.  Occasionally, British and American fliers  and  men met and spoke to each other. The Russians were completely isolated from both, Red Army soldiers were not allowed to mix.  Even if the ban had been lifted, the language problem would have put an insurmountable barrier between them.

Morrell admits that British propaganda and diplomacy were more adroit in Iran than either American or Russian.  The Americans didn't care much and the Russians were too heavy-handed. Especially British liaison officers to Iranian tribes did good jobs in keeping up friendships. Some of them had strange experiences with the tribal chieftans.

Once, a British liason officer with the Quashgai tribe had to carry out negotiations with the chief of the tribe,  Nassa Khan. Squatting on the carpet inside Nassa Khan's tent, the cfficer produced the supply of drugs he had brought with him as a gift. There were the usual supplies of aspirin, empirin, laxatives, atabrine, and, finally, a simple supply of sulfanilamid. "This," the officer explained, with the customary awe-inspiring preliminary, "is the latest miracle drug that cured Mr. ChurchiII when he was taken ill on his way home from the conference in Teheran." Nassa Khan nodded  his head solemnly. "In that event," he pronounced, we will name it   Churchill Drug.''

Power politics and scheming is easy in this dagger-drawn atmosphere where everybody is everybody's  enemy and almost any man and woman can be bought.  The great clash in Iran is between Britain and the Soviet Union. Oil is not the main source of antagonism. The Russians want to get to the Persian Gulf to obtain a warm sea port.

But If they succeed, nobody can stop them grabbing the Iraq oilfields and occupying the "great Middle East Quadrangle," possession of which means the mastery of the Near East and India. This quadrangle is marked by the cities of Astrakhan in Russla, Teheran in Iran, Basra in Iraq, and Aleppo in Syria.  Russian foreign policy is moving skilfully towards these goals.

Iraq, Iran, and Syria are those vital spots of the Middle East where, according to Morell, Britain has been compelled  to retreat into the defensive in front of revived Russian imperialism. Another spot, says the author, is Greece, where the exreme leftist elements are in a minority, but entirely under Russian influence and well organised and well equipped.

If Britain had not arrived in time this minority would have grabbed power and established another Russian satellite State in the Balkans. Morrell believes that the present regime, although not entirely democratic, has the great majority of the Greek people behind it. The Greek Communist Party, the K.K.E., which dominates the former leftist guerilla organisation, E A M., has only a few followers, and, if it were not helped from outside, its part in Greek politics would be that of a small minority opposition party.

Morrel blames Allied politics for the tragedy of General Mikhailovich, the Chetnik leader, who was executed by the Tito Government. He says that, originally, Mikhailovioh wanted to fight the Germans, but received orders from Allied headquarters to organise his forces and wait. Britain and America did not wish to jeopardize the possibility of a large-scale uprising in Yugoslavia by a premature Chetnik revolt,  Mikhailovich,  a soldier a who understood what discipline was, did not move.

In the mean-time the Communist gangs, organised by Tito. waged an  all-out guerilla war against the Germans and Italians.  Thus, the Yugoslav people, which did not know the real reason behind the passivity of the Chetniks, flocked into Tito's camp. When the Allies realised the danger in this Communist-organised resistance front they ordered Mikhailovich to fight the Axis. By then it was too late.

Tito wanted power himself and had his own scheme for post-war Yugoslavia. Political differences led to clashes between the two groups and resulted in battles between the Chetniks and the Titoists. Morrell blames inadequate British intelligence for the failure to understand the Issues in Yugoslavia. Britain and America awoke too late to see what was going on behind the iron curtain of Tito's headquarters. When they realised the issues, Yugoslavia was firmly in the hands of Moscow's allies.

Oil conflict carries the germs of world conflict

By EMERY BARCS  1947-2-13


SENATOR Joseph O'Mahoney, chairman of a special committee investigating U.S. petroleum resources. said recently that  America's Standard Oil and Texas Oil companies are trying to establish their domination over the European and possibly over the world oil trade. Although he gave no details, this mere mention of such an action has caused considerable International bewilderment. Oil has the highest priority In power politics and anybody who touches it is bound either to hurt others or be hurt himself.  The axiom of Lord Fisher—One of the ablest and most far-sighted leaders the British Navy ever had—that "oil power Is world power," is as true today as when he said it some 40 years ago.

The free access of the Allies to the most important oilfields of the world, and Germany's deficiency in the "blood of modern warfare" had a decisive Influence on the outcome of both world wars. And it is safe to say that whatever new weapons the world develops in the future, the vital importance of oil will not diminish for a considerab!e time

 A FEW figures will clarly show what it means to a modern war run on oil. 1938 the world's  natural oil a production reached new of about 284,000,000 peak tons. But, in spite of the   large destruction of important oil refineries and wells in Europe, Russia, and South-East Asia. world production had risen to 391,000,000 tons.

Probably less than 20 per cent. of greatly increased production went for essential civilian use. With the rest at the oil, the armies, navies, and air forces of the world had quenched the enormous thirst of the war machinery. The Allies had been able to secure a continuous flow of oil because during the war their fields produced 1,877,000,000 tons of natural oil. Axis fields produced only 88,000,000 tons and they could not replace their deficiencies with "ersatz." Thus warships, tanks, lorries, and aeroplanes alone during  the six years of war swallowed almost six years of normal world oil consumption. The planes of the oil-starved Luftwaffe, pinned to their bases because of lack of fuel, the immobilised tanks and mechanised guns of the Wehrmacht towards the end of the great struggle, had proved that deficiency in oil means defeat. Perhaps this lesson, rather than fear of any sort of weapons, will become a major obstacle to future wars.

It would, however, be a mistake to believe that the few countries which today control oil, can look into the future with serene confidence. Oil deposits. compared with the enormous consumption, are extremely meagre. In July, 1946, however, the known oil-fields contained no more than between 8,000,000,000 to 9,000,000,000 tons, or roughly 22 times he world production in 1945. This means 22 years of assured supplies. Oil experts differ whether undiscovered oilfields will greatly increase the present estimate. The pessimists say that the oil-age will be finished well within half a century because of exhaustion of deposits. But the optimists believe that the real oil deposits, hidden under the oceans, and deposits not yet discovered on the mainlands, are enormous.

Today three nations control practically the entire oil deposits of the world: the United States. Britain and Soviet   Russia. The U.S. controls 56 5 per cent., Britain 25, and Russia 13. France has a two per cent. share, Mexico 1.5, and the rest of the world another two per cent.  The share in production follows the same proportion, although Britain is in a slightly more advantageous position. American interests produce 47.39 per cent. of the world output Britain 38.73, and Russia 8.60. The remaining 5.28 per cent. is divided among all the other countries.  Without the slightest doubt, oil is an international problem of the greatest importance.

Those who constantly refer to the control of oil resources as being only the business of big vested interests, have not the faintest idea what they are talking about. Since the beginning of the century the governments, and through them the peoples of the two big oil powers (Britain and America), have obtained great shares in commercial oil companies. The Anglo-Iranian Company and its subsidiaries are practically nationalised enterprises because the British Government owns about 56 per cent. of its shares.  Repeated statements have been made that government interest has also increased in the other great British-controlled concern, the Royal Dutch Shell. In spite of opposition from the American oil industry, the U.S. Government has entered it on a large scale.

The Compagnie Francais des Petroles is a French State monopoly for the control of the two per cent. world oil interests of France. By 1938 Mexican oil had been nationalised. Soviet Russia, of course, has an entirely socialised oil industry.

AMERICAN oil power was  created and organised by John D. Rockefeller, who died in 1936 at the age of 97. He left £400,000,000 and two organisations to his heirs. One was the Standard Oil, the other the Rockefeller Foundation. With the foundation he wanted to expiate thosa innumerable crimes which he committed to make Standard Oil great. British oil power Is connected with four names. Only one of them, William K. D'Arcy, who discovered the oil wells of Iran, was British. The other three were:

* Dutchman Sir Henri Deterding, who developed the Royal Dutch Shell into the largest oil company of the world after Standard Oil. Because of his pro-Nazi syrnpathies, he had to retire from the company in 1936. When he died six months before the outbreak of World War II he was buried on his German estate in Mecklenburg

 * Polish Jew, Marcus Samuel, later Lord Bearstead, who at one stage of his career ran a small shop in London's Whitechapel called The Shell. It sold souvenirs made out of shells. This is the origin of the word "Shell" in the great British-controlled company

* Armenian, Calcus Sarkis Guelbenkian, the grey eminence behind Shell world power. These men. who started their careers as little nobodies, and became fabulously wealthy and powerful, did not secure world oil supremacy for Britain and America because of patriotic motives. They wanted to make, and did make, fortunes. But whatever their reasons, and however unsavoury their methods, as a result of their work Britain and America control more than 80 per cent. of the world's oil.

Since the end of World War I, clashes between British and American oil interests were few,  and the general tone has been mutual concessions and collaboration. If one of these two groups tried to grab sole world domination, the result would be a ferocious war with serious consequences for both. Oil conflict carries the germs of world conflict. This is the reason why the obscure hints of Senator Mahoney caused such bewilderment.