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An Open Letter to Arthur HendersonI

New Theatre Manager. I

"Peace Offensive" in The House.

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"Peace Offensive" in The House. MR. BALFOUR QUESTIONED BY OURS." FULLY APPROVED OF WHAT LORD ROBERT CECIL SAID. The Peace. Group again forced forward the question oi the Lord Robert Cecil "Peace (Of- fensive interview in the House of Commons on Monday when Mr. Ponsonby asked M#. Bal- four (Foreign Secretary) whether the Minister of Blockade was acting under instructions when, -it the reception of Americall correspondents last week, lie referred to the possible offer as a jxvaee offensive, to be directed very largely against Great Britain, thereby implying that, whatever the nature of the terms might be, they would be rejected; and whether this re- presented the attitude of his Majesty's Gov- ernment. Mr. Balfour replied t-hat he fully approved of what Lord Robert had said. He was un- to follow what Mr. Ponsonby meant in sup- posing that Lord Robert's words implied that Ls mplied that ]',U"e offers would be rejected, and the refer- ences which ho (Lord Robert) was supposed to have made to the presence of a Gorman emis- sary in the country in the shape of a distin- guished neutral were wholly imaginary. -N tr. P<)n.<m b Mr. Ponsonby: Are offensives not generally I esisted «J I give notice that on Thursday I will raise the-question of the repeated failures of our diplomacy. "CONVENIENT AND USEFUL." Mr. J--e('t; Smith asked Mr. Balfour whether Lord R. Cecil informed him of hits intention "before giving his interview to the Pi ess. Mr. Balfour: As far as I remember he did not. Why should he? (Laughter.) Mr. Lees Smith asked whether the Minister of Blockade could be prevented from making unauthorised statements in new of the iact that on the previous occasion hin statement had to be repudiated by the Foreign Seoi/etary himself. Mr. Balfour I do not agree with the hon. gentle man's history. In my opinion the inter- views of my noble friend with the correspon- dents are convenient and useful in the' public M'T^TOO. Mr. Snowden; Is it proper for an Under- Secretary, on his own, without consulting his isuperior, to make important announoements with regard to policy? HAS HE READ IT? Mr. Balfour: There was no announcement of policy, so far as I can remember. To what does my hon. friend refer Mr. Snowden Has the right hon. gentleman treated this interview, as he treated Count Hertling's spee«h ? Has he read it? Mr. Balfour: I halve read it, and I suppose my hon. friend haw. I hn.ve not discovered any announcement of policy. Has her Mr. Snowden: Yes. Mr. Balfour: What is it? (Laughiter.) The fepeaJcer: The hon. member will answer that on Thursday. (Renewed laughter.) Mr. Balfour, replying to a number of ques- tians. as to Mr. Lloyd George's knowledge of the Emperor Karl's peace terms, said that it woruid not be in the public interest to discuss the subject in question and answer. The French Government, which was primarily concerned. waA considering the whole matter, and he would put the House in immediate possess ion of any official, statement which they might issue. fr. Lees-Smith: Does the light hon. gentle- man mean to indicate that tlm, people of this country have no right to any infor-mation as to the reasons for a decision which is leading to tJbe loss of millions of Jin>?

it Arthur Henderson at Wrexham.

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