Page:Britain's Deadly Peril.djvu/117

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111
THE PERIL OF THE ENEMY ALIEN

any! Now, if this be true, why did Mr. McKenna make the communiqué to the Press soon after the outbreak of war, assuring us that there were no spies in England, and that all the enemy aliens were such dear good people? I commented upon it in the Daily Telegraph on the following day, and over my own name apologised to the public for my past offence of daring to mention that such gentry had ever existed among us. If Lord Kitchener were actually responsible, then one may ask why had the Home Secretary felt himself called upon to tell the public that pretty fairy-tale?

Now with regard to the danger of illicit wireless. Early in January 1914—seven months before the outbreak of war—being interested in wireless myself, and president of a Wireless Association, my suspicions were aroused regarding certain persons, some of them connected with an amateur club in the neighbourhood of Hatton Garden. Having thoroughly investigated the matter, and also having been able to inspect some of the apparatus used by these persons, I made, on February 17th, 1914, a report upon the whole matter to the Director of Military Intelligence, pointing out the ease with which undesirable persons might use wireless. The Director was absent on leave, and no action was taken in the matter.

A month later I went to the Wireless Department of the General Post Office, who had granted me my own licence, and was received there with every courtesy and thanked for my report, which was regarded with such seriousness that it was forwarded at once to the Admiralty, who have wireless under their control. In due course the Admiralty gave it over to the police to make inquiries, and the whole matter was, I suppose—as is usual in such cases—