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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 2, No. 8. May 31, 1939



We heard about the Munich crisis through the distorting glass of a B.B.C. broadcast and censored cable messages. Afterward our impression of it has been effectively confused by numerous "experts," all spouting different contradictory versions per medium of the capitalist press.

But last week a letter arrived in New Zealand which given us at last clear, first-hand, uncensored, information, written by a Czechoslovakian boy of sixteen to his pen-friend here. "Salient" is glad to print this exclusive message. The English is a little crude and the grammar faulty, but this, we think, serves to heighten the pathos. It runs:

"My Dear——

"... So by now you will have, advanced from the school branch and are drawing salary, well, much Joy to you. My prospects are not so bright, as our Government, staggering under the burden of our national catastrophe, has decreed that no employees will be admitted for the next two years. The standard of living has been lowered down, while things have gone up in price. On the surface our life goes on as before, but if you should pay attention to the rumors, they are of the worst. The gangster demands one-third of our gold treasure what backs our currency (he has none and his mark is valueless). But the debt for the stolen territory only wants to pay with 5 per cent. He wants a third of our army to help him (irony, what he will never get). He is draining our country of commodities, what we have to sell at his price. We have 180,000 refugees we have to feed, house and try to create work for them. He stole our fortified frontiers, broke up our army, our locomotives, denuded the stolen territories of all the woods, what he cut down with the greatest haste. Now he ordered that we have to [unclear: op] all former German high schools, colleges, etc., and sent his Sudeten German students here in order to create a new German minority. So now we have more Huns here than before. And if there will be no war between the Democracies and the Dictators, so we will be swallowed up entirely. The impending war is our only hope.

"So you see, dear R—, how fortunate you are if you do live in that remote corner of the Earth. So our motto: Through war to independence. —George."