Symud i'r prif gynnwys
Cuddio Rhestr Erthyglau

21 erthygl ar y dudalen hon

NOTES ON NEWS. i. "

Newyddion
Dyfynnu
Rhannu

NOTES ON NEWS. i The Prime Minister's statement at Bir- kenhead with regard to the shipping posi- THE SHIPPING POSITION. tion was very reassuring. The figures about losses and building which he gave not long ago in the House of Commons wore declared by the Germans to be inaccurate. That is not very surprising, for German statesmen and the German Press having made extravagant promises to the German people as to what would be the effect upon this country of submarine warfare, are not yet prepared to eat their words and con- fess failure, even though they must by now have very disquieting doubts as to whether the underse-a boats are going to bring us to our knees after all. The German people will have to be told the truth sooner or later, but the men in power in Berlin will put crff the moment of revelation as long as possible. Even in this country, however, tilero were many who shook their heads and sug- THE Premier'S CONFIDENCE. gested that Mr. Lloyd George had really been unreasonably sanguine, and that the position was very much graver than he had made it out to be. It is satisfactory, therefore, to have the Premier's assurance that 'the figures he gave were strictly ac- curate, and that it depends upon the efforts of all concerned in tho shipbuilding industry to verify his forecast as to future building. Mr. Lloyd George himself is confident. The enemy, ho says, "will not be able to beat down the strength of this Empire, or to beat down the hopes of the Allies, which depends upon the strength of this Empire, by means of all the efforts they can make with their submarines. Tho situation is very serious, calling for constant effort and the most rigorous eco- nomy, but the Premier's cheerful and en- couraging statement should put heart into tho most fearful of the doubters amongst us, Admiral Scheer, the successor of von Tirpitz, will no doubt have read with in- "THE DAY MUST COME. terest Mr. Lloyd George's speech. He is one of those who are striving with might and main to keep up the faith of the German people in their U-boats. He was interviewed the other day on this subject. The interviewer asked him: Do the submarines promise much?" He replied, "Everything." There is no doubt about tha't, at any rate, they do promise everything; it is the little matter of performance as to which many people in Germany must by this time be feelmg very serious doubts. And to these people tho Admiral says the day must como when Britain will have to give in as the result of the submarine losses. The day must come! Surely there must be among the German people who read the re- port of the interview a good many who will reflect that that day was to have come months ago. Having given, them a further dose of promises, Admiral Scheer proceeds to encourage the German people by telling them that the struggle is one of German endurance against British obstinacy, and that the Briton will never be able to stick it out. We shall see. The Admiral is constrained to admit that things lately have net been going well with the German people, and that is a very significant ad- mission. Night raids by aeroplanes constitute the most difficult problem of air warfare which NIGIIT AEROPLANE RAIDS. the Government has had to tackle. The Zeppelin menace appears to have been satisfactorily dis- posed of, and aeroplane raids by daylight can be coped with, but aeroplanes at night. arc a different matter. The machines fly higher and faster than Zeppelins, and even if found by the search- lights are practically imposible to "hold." They are much less vulnerable, and much less likely to be hit either by our guns or our airmen. Compared with this pro- blem, that of*the Zeppelin was simplicity itself. Yet it took some time to beat the Zeppelin, and it is not surprising that a remedy for the new disease cannot be found immediately. The attitude of some people seems to be that we ought to accept the infliction as our share of the horrors of war, and be thankful it is no worse. "What is it after all, they ask, "com- pared with \vha'!i the people of France and Belgium have to suffer?" That is a kind of argument of which we have heard a great deal too much. There is no sense in passive submission to an evil instead of doing one's utmost to find a remedy for it. A remedy for this one must be found, and no doubt the authorities are doing their utmost to find it. There is much in favour of the sugges- tion that the aerial defences of the country OVER THE SEIIMAN LINES. should be entrusted to a special organisation which would have complete freedom of action and be entirely independent of the military and naval authorities, who already have their hands full without these new problems which are constantly arising. Such an arrangement,, it seems to the lay- man, would make for greater efficiency. There is reason and sound sense in the proposal, qualities which have been con- spicuously absent from a good deal of the stuff which has appeared in print on the subject of these raids. It would appear that some people think 'that it should be possible to prevent German aeroplanes from reaching these shores at all. It ap- parently never occurs to them to note that our own airmen are constantly carrying out far' more effective raids' on enemy mili- tary objectives. These raids have to be made over the German lines, in the face of defences, both of anti-aircraft guns and aeroplanes, immeasurably stronger than anything we can ever have at home. Yet our airmen carry out their raids with as- tonishingly small loss. To make a raid on this country more risky for the raiders than one over the German Army lines would be something of a miracle, and it is of no use to expect miracles even from a special organisation. Probably our own airmen's raids upon enemy air bases in Belgium are the best possible defence of our bortio towns after all. When Lord Ithondu-a accepted the office of Food Controller he remarked that he fully expected to make LoRD RHQNDDA AND FARMERS. himself unpopular. It looks as though the farmers do not like him much, at r.ny rate. They object very strongly to his fixed prices for cattle. They have passed a resolution that the prices will make the rearing of cattle unreinunerative and cause a beef famine in the spring, and that the diminution in the amount of manure will have a prejudicial effect on next year's harvest. That is certainly a gloomy outlook. Let us hope things will not turn out quite so badly. Lord Rhondda had a straight talk 'to the far- mers. He told them that the present high prices of meat could not be defended, aud must be reduced. He believes that his prices will secure to the farmer a fair profit promises him a decrease In the cost of feeding-stuffs, points out that during the vast two years he has done very well, probably better than for a generation or more, and leaves it to hIs patriotism to make the sacrifices asked for. One cannot believe that he will ask in vain.

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