mESSRS. Stokes, Bevan and Tinker, who refused last week to vote the Government another gigantic sum without protesting at the Government's waste of money in ineffective propaganda, were well justified a few days later when the Nazi leaders were thrown into confusion by the attempted assassination of their chief.
Indeed since the news of the revolt became public every effort has been made by radio to encourage the Germans to rise against their master, but the nature of the propaganda is pathetic. This is not the fault of the propagandists: it is the fault of the Allied Governments who refuse to let the enemy people have the smallest idea about what their post-war fate will be. "'Unconditional Surrender," as was said again and again in the House of Commons last week, is a childish and harmful formula which may well prove 'responsible for the crime of lengtherling the war and increasing the anarchy of Europe.
Meaning of the Revolt
As regards the nature of the revolt itself, there is very little
that can be usefully said. Obviously it gave the Nazi chiefs the fright of their lives, and, despite the egotistical nature of Hitler's speech, it would be unwise to suppose that these men would have made such a fuss about a little clique of conspirators succeeding in planting a bomb two yards from the Fuhrer. Rightly or wrongly, these men came to the conclusion that the day of internal reckoning had arrived.
Apparently this first phase of the revolution miscarried. And
this is not surprising. Imagine the difficulty of seeking to organise a revolution in a country policed as no other country has been by men utterly committed to the regime ! Imagine trying it where spies and informers with a super-training in their art abound! Our Vansittartites reproach the people of Germany for their failure to denounce their masters, but they have still to.explain to us how this is to be done without virtually committing suicide and
courting a failure that would
tighten still closer the tyranny.
Earlier in the war any attempt! like this one would have been h I ghastly mistake. Good men would have paid in blood for it and those remaining would have been more securely enslaved. To day it is different. This revolt (which may well have been premature) was forced not by the free choice of a few individuals: this revolt was a necessary and inevitable expression of a people's despair. The war is lost for Germany. The people, tired, suffering, seeing no future, are near breaking-point. The revolt was one eruption of powerful human forces, conscious and unconscious, which are sweeping from end to end of Germany— not visibly, but within the stifled souls of individuals. ,
The Christian Offer
There are these millions' of human beings—not just Germans, but fathers and mothers and children, men of business, soldiers, working folk, farmers. Men and women like ourselves, sick to death of the folly of war, frightened for the future of their children. But these men and women, again like ourselves, love their country, dread an alien domination, are terrified of economic and political chaos which spells insecurity and poverty.
Can we make absolutely nothing of this situation?.
Not only in order to end this dreadful struggle quickly, but in order to prevent the outbreak of another, the humanity, the souls, of these ordinary, non-political folk of Germany must he respected.
They should be clearly told that we on this side plainly recognise the simple truth that the millions of ordinary peoples in a modern State—and especially in a politically comparatively primitive State like Germany—enjoy little or no real responsibility in national. policy. We should tell them how well we can understand the truth that in times of misery and widespread unemployment the ordinary person will catch at almost any straw to save his country and himself. We should say that we respect and honour their decent patriotism and that we wish them no evil.
Our policy is not to add horrors of peace to horrors of war, but on the contrary to do all in our power to help German folk to build-up a decent and honourable Germany in which plain men and 'women can live lives of human freedom and reasonable economic opportunity.
Why are we unable to speak such language? Is it because such words do not express our real feelings? Is it because they do not express the feelings of one or other of our Allies?
Yet it is certain that such is the only possible language for that Christianity in which we daily profess and in which we repose
our final trust for things natural and supernatural. *