30.8.39.

Foreign & General
1. Virtually no news. Communications are passing to & from but the Cabinet are revealing nothing. Parliament adjurned° for a week. King of the Belgians offering to mediate, which Poles have accepted & Germans express themselves sympathetic to, but meanwhile troop movements & frontier outrages continue. Rumania is fortifying her Russian frontier. 2-300, 000 Russian troops said to be moving to Western frontier.
Soviet Parliament will not ratify the pact till the end of the week, obviously in order to give a different interpretation to it according to the then circumstances. If necessary it is still open to them to refuse ratification which could be used as demonstrations of Societ democracy.
Harold Nicolson[1] claimes that U.S.S.R. cannot supply Germany with much oil in case of war. Third-hand information via Stock Exchange[AA] indicates that 3 days back the Cabinet were confident Hitler could not move. On the other hand L.M. says that a few eeks back W. Churchill expressed very pessimistic views to him, based on talks with German generals. The Times [a]; News Chronicle [b]; Daily Mirror [c], undated, Radio;[AA] Private]
Social
1. Adjurnment° of Parliament for a week passed without a division.[2] The Times [a]

[a]The Times 30-8-39 Page 5The Times 30-8-39 Page 7The Times 30-8-39 Page 9The Times 30-8-39 Page 10The Times 30-8-39 Page 11 [b]NC 30-8-39 Page 1NC 30-8-39 Page 2NC 30-8-39 Page 8NC 30-8-39 Page 11 [c]Mirror 30-8-39 Page 1Mirror 30-8-39 Page 2Mirror 30-8-39 Page 4Mirror 30-8-39 Page 11Mirror 30-8-39 Page 13Mirror 30-8-39 Page 25

[1] Harold Nicolson (1886-1968; Kt., 1953), diplomat (to 1929), biographer, and novelist, was an M.P., 1935-45. His Diaries and Letters (edited by his son Nigel Nicolson, 3 vols. 1966-68) give insight into the political life of the thirties. In English History 1914-1945, A.J.P. Taylor records the wild scene that followed Chamberlain’s announcement in the House on 28 September 1938 that Hitler had agreed to a four-power conference at Munich:’Members rose to their feet, cheering and sobbing. Attlee [The Labour leader], Sinclair, the Liberal leader and Maxton of the I.L.P. blessed Chamberlain’s mission. Only Gallacher, the Communist, spoke harshly against it.’ In a footnote he asks, ‘Who remained seated?’ Certainly Gallacher and quoting R.W. Seton-Watson, he adds Churchill, Eden, and Amery. Another source, J.W. Wheeler-Bennett, is quoted as saying that ‘Harold Nicolson, despite the threats of those surrounding him, remained seated.’ Taylor says that Nicolson remembered only being rebuked the next day by a Conservative M.P. for not rising. Nicolson was a National Labour member of the government. (Revised Pelican edition, 1970, 525.)
[2] See 560, 30.7.39, Foreign & General, 1, for anticipation of adjournment despite the crisis.

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4 Responses to 30.8.39.

  1. Steve says:

    From a pg. 2 Daily Mirror article about German rationing:

    “Old-timers remembered the Great War, when flour was black, when motor-cars ran without tyres, when an egg was just a pre-war memory….”

  2. The Ridger says:

    Ahhh, but what a memory!

  3. “Virtually no news.”

    Eye to eye, he puts his hand on your shoulder and blurts out the code words as an overture.

    “Virtually no news.”

    Decrypted: “No bombs, yet.”
    ~~~~~~
    Key: The 150+ words which follow.

    George projects the suspense of several continents holding their collective breath.

  4. AlexS says:

    @Steve,

    Guess old timers are due to a refresher…

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