ITALY WATCHES LONDON MOVES
N1 °WHERE has Tito's visit to Britain been followed with greater interest—one might say apprehension—than in Italy.
Typical of Italian Press comment is a recent one by II Tempo which said : "It is evident that the Yugoslav leader regards his trip to London as being of exceptional significance.
"Tito is well aware of the value of his present favourable position, and will seek to exploit it to the utmost.
"1-le pretends to be serving the purpose of the Atlantic coalition, but in fact he is attempting to use the support of London and Washington in order to win the only battle about which he is really conceined—the battle over our Eastern frontier."
High on the list of priorities down for discussion by Tito and the British Government was the thorny question of Trieste, about which great feeling exists in Italy.
Indeed, this aspect of the talks raises the real danger that the Government, in its anxiety to please Communist Yugoslavia, is sacrificing the valuable good will of Christian Democratic Italy—which is at least every bit as important to the survival of the West as is Tito.
Already, the Italian population in Trieste is apprehensive lest they should he sacrificed in order to find some superficial solution to a difficult problem.
A 'Trieste correspondent writes that March 20 is the fifth anniversary of the Note issued by America, Britain and France recommending the return of the whole of the Free Territory of Trieste to Italy.
This move in 1948 was, of course, intended to influence the Italian elections in favour of Signor De Gaspen's Christian Democrats.
Tito left the Cominform the same year, with the result that the AngloAmericans found they were no longer able, without the risk of offending an "ally," to carry out their recommendation.
Trieste Christian Democrat circles fear that any violence which may come on this anniversary from Italian right-wing elements may be dangerous for the whole Italian cause in this area.
They fear, in particular, that the U.S. &ate Department and the British Foreign Office may, on the basis of any new demonstrations, come to a hasty decision about Trieste and decide on what is superficially the easiest solution: the Anglo-American Zone A to Italy and Yugoslavcontrolled Zone B to Yugoslavia.
No Italian will accept this facile decision in its ultimate analysis.
In point of fact, the Trieste Christian Democrats argue, if Signor De Gesperi were to agree to the immediate ceding of Zone A to Italy, the Yugoslays would at once proceed to the full annexation of Zone B, and 30,000 Italian refugees from Zone B would flee to Italy.