Franco Enters Barcelona
• • General Franco made his triumphal entry into Barcelona on Tuesday this week. The long procession of his troops was greeted enthusiastically by the inhabitants, who shouted " Viva Franco ! " as General Franco passed standing upright in an open car.
M. Bfrard's Mission
II • Meanwhile M. Berard, the Frencli senator, has been to Burgos again discussing future Franco-Spanish relations with the Nationalist authorities. It appears that General Franco, as head of a sovereign State, is unwilling to " buy " de jure recognition by, for instance, a promise of a general amnesty at the conclusion of the war. Leftists use his refusal to pledge himself to a general amnesty as evidence that he intends to indulge in a wholesale massacre. But it does not follow.
U • Even the Left Press now admit that Sr. Azana, President of the Spanish Republic, is in favour of an immediate unconditional surrender in order to avoid further useless lighting. But the Prime and Foreign Ministers, Negrin and Del Vayo, are doing all they can to urge him to back up their efforts to continue. It is interesting to note that the Spanish Republican Constitution says that the President must reside in Spain and that the Premier must have the confidence of the President. Neither condition seems to be fulfilled at the moment.
U U The expenditure on rearma,
meat this coming year will be 1580 millions. Sir John Simon announced in the House of Commons this week that £230 millions would be raised by taxation, the remaining f350 millions by loan. The figure of L580 millions for rearmament compares with 1406 millions this year, £406 millions last
year, 1283 millions in 1937-1938 . . and f77 millions in 1913-1914. The vastness of the estimated expenditure this year has once more produced charges of gross profiteering on the part of armament makers.
" Truculence of Autocracy "
• III President Roosevelt seems very uneasy about the present European situation in contrast to the view of the English Government that " the barometer is at set fair," as Mr Burgin, Minister of Transpoit, stated this week Mr Roosevelt hoped this week that Americans would " lift democracy high above the ugly truculence of autocracy.
• Mr Stanley and Mr Hudson. each at the head of a Government Trade Department, are going to Berlin and Moscow, and probably certain other capitals in Central Europe next month. This seems to herald the beginning of a more co-ordinated British trade campaign in these parts. Mr Hudson has several times lately warned Germany that if she pursues her trade campaign by methods not used by us, we would be forced to take up her own weapons.