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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol 7, No. 5 June 21, 1944

A Reply to A. P. Herbert

A Reply to A. P. Herbert

Dear Sir,—At the International Relations Club's meeting on Monday evening, one of the College tories quoted a rather vicious doggerel poem by A. P. Herbert, aimed at those who asked for a second front instead of allowing the Red Army to do all the work. This poem wanted to know where the Russians were in 1940, "when we could have done with a second front," and ended with "Let's give some credit, boys, to Number 10."

We'll give some credit, yes, to number Ten—
For acts that shame the very face of men.
When Russia wanted armaments to go
Did WE uphold humanity! Oh, no!
When Slovaks, Czechs, resented Hitler's fuss,
It was not Stalin sold them out, but us.
In point of fact each offer Russia's made
For world security has been betrayed.
To each approach we turned a shoulder cold,
And added to the list of countries sold.
And so we should not be surprised to find
That Statin grew quite tired of being kind,
And, knowing that our Number Ten feared him
Much more than those who hung round Hitler's rim.
Made a pact which seemed to us a crime—
To stall a bit, to gain a little time.
He knew that he would be at war ere long.
And spent the time so gained in waxing strong.
So how can we condemn him, how may we,
Who through long years proclaimed a policy
Of cowering, appeasement, fatten pride,
("And what have we to do with them!" we cried.)
Insulted those who would be our allies,
And sold free people's lives before their eyes!
But note all this is done, so let us please
Permit recriminations now to cease.
Let Herbert and his ilk kick up their din
While we march on in unity—and win!