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much shorter. But what really stopped this planning
was the tragic death of General Maitland in the explosion
of the dirigble R-38. When I turned up with my gospel
of the friendly arctic, insisting that we forget the ancient
views of the terrible north inherited from the Greeks and
base all our thinking and planning on the actual verified
principles of modern meteorology and the reliable ob-
servations of travelers, General Brancker resumed his
interest in the London-Tokyo plans that had been inter-
rupted by General Maitland’s death. We went into the
question very thoroughly—length of jumps, prevalence
of fogs, direction and violence of winds, absence of moun-
tains, advantages and disadvantages of the polar tem-
peratures both in summer and winter. The conclusions
were crystallized in a speech made by General Brancker
at Sheffield, in which he said that regular mail service by
dirigible between England and Japan over the Arctic was
a probability of the next ten years.

During the summer 1923 I took the time for discus-
sions of every arctic problem with whoever would listen,
because they had a bearing on creating public interest in
the pressing situation of the men on Wrangel Island. I
also wrote articles for the Spectator, Times, Manchester
Guardian and Observer, for in a democracy it is neces-
sary to convince not only the Government, but also the
people who support the Government with their votes and
who are likely to register disapproval at the polls if the
facts and reasons behind the actions of the Government
are not made clear to them.

My intercourse with the Government continued
smooth and pleasant, but progress no longer appeared to
be rapid. I speak with no authority, but I blamed the
delays upon the slowness of diplomatic correspondence,

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