Where is the true original of the sacred veil presented to Our Lord on the way to Calvary ? Are there not three authenticated originals? (A. C. IL, Sevenoake.)
One cannot speak of an " authentic"
veil of Veronica. The tradition that St. Veronica wiped the face of Christ during His Passion is a very ancient tradition, but by no means a matter of faith, or even historical certainty. With all the less certainty, therefore, can we speak of an authentic veil. But of reproductions of such veils, the oldest is in St. Peter's, Rome. There is another (traced back to the sixth century) in
the Lateran. The Council of Treet ss. 2.5) was most insistent that no relic he recognised in future as such without the most careful enquiry. But in regard to such relies as stretched back into antiquity (as does the veil of Veronica) the Council made no rule. In practice the Holy See has tolerated the reverent veneration of such ancient relics except where convincing evidence proving them to he spurious.
Si,—Mr. John Hodge of Banbury warmly commends "de Gaulle's fiat refusal ' to compromise with Dorian." President Roosevelt's adoption of a completely opposite policy indubitably saved the lives of thousands of Allied' soldiers and sailors and was implemented by the acumen of Admiral Leahy, Mr. John Murphy and General Eisenhower. The writer of this letter—one of " your correspondents " to whom Mr. Hodge refers—is a British subject and hence, ipso facto, an enemy of the German Reich. M. Puchcu, an contraire, was, at the material time, the gitizen of a ,State and held office in a Government which had concluded an armistice with its ox-enemy.
Incidentally, this armistice was solicited by a Government of which tic Gaulle's political foster-parent, Reynaud, was a member. Hence to equate the position of " either of your correspondents " with that of M. Pucheu is quite beside thc point.
If it be true that de Gaulle has " never bowed to the (French) Communist Party," it is indisputable that he and his committee have extended the welcoming band of collaboration to those saboteurs of the Third Republic. Should Mr. Hodge take exception to the word " saboteur " I quote, with acknowledgments to Mr. A. Lunn, the dictum of M. Andre Thorey, now one of the ornaments of Free France in Algiers:
" If European war comes we Communists will transform it into a civil war of liberation, for we are Leninists and revolutionary defeatists."
The activities of this particular patriot while acting as recruiting sergeant in France for the Spanish Republican Government were not unremunerative. His .notorious homicidal tendencies were too pronounced for even the French Chamber of Deputies to stomach, for on one occasion he was left alone to address the empty benches.
s During the Munich episode of September, 1938, M. Paul Langerin, another distinguished adherent of French Communism, implored Mr. Chamberlain to draw the sword in de fence of Crechoslovakia. Simultaneously he embNished the walls of Paris with pladarele exhorting his fellow-citizens to Tbstain from all A.R.P. precautions.
M. Leon Blum — admittedly an anaemic " pink "—expressed the view in 1938 that " Slavery is better than combat, so far as France is concerned."
He and his Cabinet colleague, M. Cot, stripped the Armde Adrienne of aircraft for the benefit of the Spanish Reds, and not improbably on a commission basis. One notes that M. Cot is now believed to be de Gaulle's legate in Moscow.
It is a matter of history that the French Communist deputies were incarcerated for their subversive activities in 1939-1940. Their followers busied themselves in stabbing the French Army in the hack until the armistice, and in June, 1941, somewhat belatedly, turned their weapons on to the German troops of occupation.
Pucheu was not a Communist—no; a Mason, hence he was a fitting sacrifice to the new ideals.
Giraud has received his dimisston for similar reasons, as did General Georges before hint. His military record, his character, his incarceration in Germany are not likely to exculpate General Weygand in the eyes of the sansculottes of Algiers.
A la fanterne—Yive la fraternite !
C. L. KERR.