UK 'diplomat' wanted UK, Germany to split world

An amateur diplomat alarmed British officials during World War II by proposing that Germany and Britain divide the world between them, according to records released Sunday. James Lonsdale-Bryans, a fascist sympathizer, traveled to Italy early in the war to meet the German ambassador, Ulrich von Hassell. "It would appear that Bryans may be taking part in unofficial discussions," said a Secret Service memo released by the National Archives. "Bryans' idea is that the world ought to be divided into two parts. That Germany should be given a free hand in Europe and that the British Empire should run the rest of the world. "I am not sure that this is a very desirable point of view to publish at the present time." The records show that Bryans had been in touch with Britain's Foreign Secretary Lord Halifax, and the Secret Service was unsure how much backing Lonsdale-Bryans may have had from the Foreign Office.