November 7, 1941

LIB

James Garfield Gardiner (Minister of Agriculture)

Liberal

Hon. J. G. GARDINER (Minister of Agriculture):

Mr. Speaker, I have made a number of statements, which have been published in the press. If it is desirable that further statements should be made before the house closes and after the discussion on the war services, I shall be pleased to answer any questions with regard to the matter.

Topic:   ACREAGE BONUS-ORDER IN COUNCIL RESPECTING PRICE CONTROL
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NAVAL DEFENCE

INQUIRY AS TO NEWSPAPER REPORT RESPECTING


On the orders of the day:


LIB

Paul Joseph James Martin

Liberal

Mr. PAUL MARTIN (Essex East):

Mr. Speaker, I invite the Minister of National Defence for Naval Services to comment on a report which recently appeared in the Detroit Free Press. This report received considerable circulation in this country as well as in the United States, and aroused some concern particularly at border points. It is by Clifford A. Prevost, Washington correspondent of the Detroit Free Press, and the relevant parts of his dispatch read as follows:

British warships have been withdrawn. from the north Atlantic and the United States Navy has taken over the task of defending Canada and convoying American and British merchant men beyond Iceland, according to information made available in Washington and Ottawa to-night.

It was stated reliably that Britain's greater harbour on this side of the Atilantic^-Halifax- had been taken over by the United States Navy. This was neither confirmed nor denied by the navy. . . . That the United States Navy is in control of Halifax was not denied by the president. . . . Mr. Roosevelt said

that of course the joint defence board had been considering joint use of defence facilities in the event of an attack. He said that he supposed the board had mentioned Halifax and Toronto and he knew they had discussed Chicago.

The report goes on:

But this much has been reliably established: That Admiral Ernest H. King, of the United States Atlantic fleet, is in complete charge of the Halifax harbour and that the Canadian navy has been released from its obligations to convoy ships leaving the Nova Scotia coast.

Hon. ANGUS L. MACDONALD (Minister of National Defence for Naval Services): In answer to the hon. member for Essex East (Mr. Martin) I would say in the first place that it would have been advisable for this reporter to consult some naval authority in the United States before making such statements. Had he done so, and had he been given permission to use the information thus acquired, I am sure the statements would not have been made. His dispatch is quite long and I do not know whether an answer should be made to it in this house, or whether ministers can be expected to deal with statements made by reporters in all parts of the world, statements obviously based on ignorance of the subject and lack of information. However, out of deference to my hon. friend who has asked the question I would say first of all that there are still British warships in the north Atlantic and there are still Canadian

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ships in that same area, as would appear from the remarks which I made the other night in this house.

As to the harbour of Halifax having been taken over by the United States Navy, I may say, as my hon. friend from Vancouver Centre (Mr. Mackenzie) has just commented, that that report, like the one about Mark Twain's death, is somewhat exaggerated; in fact, it is based on pure imagination. Halifax harbour is still as it has been for two hundred years, a British and Canadian harbour. I think that covers the question.

Topic:   NAVAL DEFENCE
Subtopic:   INQUIRY AS TO NEWSPAPER REPORT RESPECTING
Sub-subtopic:   THE NORTH ATLANTIC AND HALIFAX HARBOUR
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LIB

Paul Joseph James Martin

Liberal

Mr. MARTIN:

The answer is no?

Topic:   NAVAL DEFENCE
Subtopic:   INQUIRY AS TO NEWSPAPER REPORT RESPECTING
Sub-subtopic:   THE NORTH ATLANTIC AND HALIFAX HARBOUR
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LIB

Angus Lewis Macdonald (Minister of National Defence for Naval Services)

Liberal

Mr. MACDONALD (Kingston City):

The answer as to Halifax harbour is definitely no. While, as I said the other night when speaking in this house, we are most grateful here as are all British people for the assistance that is being rendered by the United States in one way or another, it is not true to say that there are no British warships left in the north Atlantic, and certainly there are a great many Canadian warships there.

Topic:   NAVAL DEFENCE
Subtopic:   INQUIRY AS TO NEWSPAPER REPORT RESPECTING
Sub-subtopic:   THE NORTH ATLANTIC AND HALIFAX HARBOUR
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DAIRY PRODUCTS

PROVISION BY BOARD FOR DISTRIBUTION OF CHEESE TO RETAIL TRADE


On the orders of the day:


LIB

George Ernest Wood

Liberal

Mr. G. E. WOOD (Brant):

I wish to address a question to the Minister of Agriculture. In view of the release of the make of cheese since November first, is it the intention of the dairy products board to see that a portion of it finds its way into the trade, so that the large processing firms will not buy it all up and deprive retailers of their share?

Topic:   DAIRY PRODUCTS
Subtopic:   PROVISION BY BOARD FOR DISTRIBUTION OF CHEESE TO RETAIL TRADE
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LIB

James Garfield Gardiner (Minister of Agriculture)

Liberal

Hon. J. G. GARDINER (Minister of Agriculture) :

The hon. member just at this moment has referred the question to me. I can only say that the matter was discussed before the cheese was again placed on the domestic market, and the board is placing what I think are sufficient safeguards about the disposal of the cheese to make it impossible for concerns such as those referred to to get possession of any more than their proper proportion of the cheese which is going on the market.

Topic:   DAIRY PRODUCTS
Subtopic:   PROVISION BY BOARD FOR DISTRIBUTION OF CHEESE TO RETAIL TRADE
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WAR-TIME HOUSING ACCOMMODATION FOR SOLDIERS' DEPENDENTS AND MUNITIONS WORKERS


On the orders of the day:


NAT

Gordon Knapman Fraser

National Government

Mr. G. K. FRASER (Peterborough West):

I should like to ask the Minister of Finance whether any consideration is being given to allowing soldiers' dependents as well as munitions workers the use of the new war-time houses. I ask the question because I have letters on my desk with regard to soldiers' wives being thrown out of houses on account of landlords selling the homes over their heads.

Topic:   WAR-TIME HOUSING ACCOMMODATION FOR SOLDIERS' DEPENDENTS AND MUNITIONS WORKERS
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Hon. C. D. HOWE (Minister of Munitions and Supply):

The situation was called to my attention some months ago, and also to the attention of the Minister of National Defence. Arrangements were made that a certain number of houses would be available for wives of soldiers now overseas who were ejected from their houses for reasons that the city or municipal authority, who are really responsible for the situation, could not prevent. I believe that all the localities where housing is being provided were notified of the arrangement. Certain cities have taken advantage of the offer and are now using a few houses for the purpose mentioned. If the responsible authority in the city represented by the hon. member will make the proper approach, I am sure that similar action will be taken in Peterborough.

Topic:   WAR-TIME HOUSING ACCOMMODATION FOR SOLDIERS' DEPENDENTS AND MUNITIONS WORKERS
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THE WAR


INTERNATIONAL SITUATION SINCE JUNE 14, 1941 -Canada's war effort The house again in committee of the whole, Mr. Bradette in the chair.


NAT

Thomas Langton Church

National Government

Mr. T. L. CHURCH (Broadview):

During the past week the house has listened for four days to a considerable amount of window dressing by hon. gentlemen opposite who are in charge of the war. It is the desire of every good citizen to cooperate with them in their task, the greatest task with which any government could conceivably be entrusted, but if the Prime Minister will keep his ear to the ground -and he was in the west and over in England and other places-he will find that there is a good deal of rumbling all over Canada.

This is not the first government that has sought to conduct a great war on a political basis. In England the Asquith government, which went out of office in 1916, had conducted the last war along similar lines. That government had to resign because the Prime Minister, Mr. Asquith, sought to conduct the war precisely in the way in which our present Prime Minister is carrying on this conflict, namely, on political lines.

Parliament has been treated during the last two years with contempt. We meet, so to speak, on again, off again, on again. The doors of the house are locked without any respect for parliamentary institutions. In the British house the other day twenty-six members of parliament supporting that government rose in

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their places and offered constructive criticism of their government. The Prime Minister there listened to a great many uncomplimentary remarks which were made in the course of the debate by members supporting the government in the house, sitting on all sides. He listened to remarks condemning the failure of the so-called Atlantic conference, the eight points of which reasserted a good many things, many of which cannot be carried out, though some are political and economic and will not add one iota to the fight against Hitler.

Those who criticize the party system in this country do so with some degree of justice, because the system has some defects. It sometimes leads people to forget the basis upon which political parties were formed and organized, namely, to promote the greatness of the country and the welfare of the people. But when you criticize the party system for its defects, do not forget that it has its merits and virtues too, as we can see by studying some of the great governments that have functioned there in the past, and gave England good government on the whole and free parliamentary institutions.

In a democracy such as Canada claims to be, the opposition, under the rules and regulations laid down in the constitution, must in effect share the responsibility for the conduct of the affairs of the country. It must share responsibility with the government if this is not a total war. The opposition is the alternative government, and its policy is to offset that of hon. gentlemen opposite. If the opposition make a strong case the government of the day may feel impelled to agree with them and to bring about some changes, or an appeal may be made to the people, and if the government wishes to remain in office it is bound to make such changes in its policy as are necessary.

This opposition has consistently protested against the conduct of this war as a political war. Take the members from the Toronto district. We have heard in the last few days three ministers representing respectively the air force, the army and the navy, for all of whom I have a great deal of respect. But the fact is that not a member of parliament from that district has received a single invitation to attend any meeting that would promote the successful prosecution of the war since it started, or to visit a camp, or see a parade or an inspection. Why, I do not know; perhaps it is beoause we are Conservatives and the government are conducting a Liberal war. At any rate, we have not received an invitation to visit a single camp. There is a certain building at the exhibition of which I laid the cornerstone, in which

:

there are housed some 7,000 men, and although I had a great deal to do with getting that building erected I have never been invited to visit it. But people from Hollywood can get invitations galore. As a matter of fact, members of parliament should not need invitations to go on federal government property if they want to. I do not blame the ministry, because they cannot look after everything, 'but I do suggest that they should pass word on to their deputies that the country has federal members. Yesterday we had an invitation from the minister in charge of the army. I do not wish to add to his burdens, which are heavy enough already; I would like to help. We had an invitation yesterday to go and help in recruiting. I for one will not help restore it or be responsible for its failures and mistakes because, as I say, it has been a case of on again, off again and on again, and voluntary recruiting has been destroyed. One does not feel any great enthusiasm until the government shows signs of hearkening to the voice of the people and doing something for the soldiers and their dependents, and giving some redress of grievances. Every Tom, Dick and Harry is protected and can get a bonus, but when you ask the Minister of Finance to do something with regard to a high cost of living bonus for our returned men and for the soldiers who are fighting for us overseas, the only answer you get is, "I will give the matter consideration," the same as was said a year ago.

If anyone is entitled to a war bonus it is the dependents of the soldiers, women and children, the mothers and wives of these men. When you are spending $4,000,000 a day, surely you can afford to give a fair share of justice to these men overseas or in training to go over. If you are not prepared to do so, then do not look for recruits. You must first give some consideration to the grievances of the soldiers and their dependents and to their requests for insurance, free fares, bonus, a readjustment of pay and so forth.

The people are very much dissatisfied with the conduct of the war as it has been carried on so far. While we wish to give general support to the government and have done so, there are a great many shortcomings in the administration of the war. I have been trying to get a readjustment of wages for these men, and it took me about four months to get some information and the rates of pay. I wrote, first, an excellent official, Judge Davis and he passed it on to the army; then it went to the navy and to the air force, and it took me four months to find out what the rates of pay were in these branches of the service. Look over the sheet which the minister has been good enough to give me and you will see the various

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ranks set out there, with rates of pay. I am not objecting to them. Take the rank of colonel-and some of them are not going overseas, but are staying at home, some in civilian duties. Some of them, with sustenance and living quarters, get $6,500. Then you come down the list and you find lieutenant-colonel, major, captain, lieutenant, the last receiving $5 a day, with $1.70 for sustenance allowance and all that kind of thing, amounting to $2,600 a year. Then you come to the humble private who gets $1.30 a day, although some of these men are serving in England. That schedule is inequitable. This is the pay, $1.30 a day, of the privates, the men who are doing hard work, and I submit that there should be some readjustment of salaries all along the line of these low-paid men.

The same applies to the air force and the navy. With regard to the latter, there are 4,000 or 5,000 men who cannot get into the navy on account of lack of ships. Then you come to the new army which has been formed, the army of women-and dear knows they were doing an important work in the last great war. I do not know how the war could have been conducted without them. But look at the rates of pay-$11.35 a day plus sustenance and other allowances in this new war, as much as given to eight or nine privates serving in the old country, in the actual theatre of war. I am not objecting to what the women are getting, for example, wing officers, $6.70 and all that, but if that is the rate of pay for the ladies' army, the privates serving in England should have some consideration.

I received a letter from the Minister of Finance, which was written on both sides of the paper-that is, about the only economy I have seen since I have been in Ottawa-with regard to this bonus for soldiers. If he would look into this wonderful information bureau he would see tons and tons of paper going to waste, just tossed into the waste-paper baskets when received. The minister said of course that with regard to a bonus for soldiers he was not in a position to reply or say whether there would be any change. Well, then, do not go round looking for people to join the army and to put up with this thing; do not ask members of parliament to ask the women to give up their husbands and sons for the country when soldiers' dependents are not paid enough to keep body and soul together, and are paid for only two children a small pittance and none for more than two. The whole system is wrong and should be changed in the interest of recruiting.

As far as the conduct of the war is concerned there are one or two things that I desire to call to the attention of the committee. The

first is the accusations which were made by the heads of the legion last summer, Mr. Reynolds and Mr. Herridge. I do not know anything about the matter myself. I have a great respect for the present Prime Minister, I think I have known him now longer than anyone else in the house and I sympathize with the work he has to do, it is almost beyond any man's capacity, but I want a total war effort. I think it would be better to reply to these gentlemen instead of sending the Postmaster General to North York. I should be glad if the Prime Minister would kindly lay the papers on the table of the house so that we might know what happened, as well as all correspondence for a year before the war. I moved for this in 1940, but did not get it.

During the six months before this war broke out, this government and the whole House of Commons were saturated with the Geneva type of mind, thinking we could get on without arms or allies whatever and remain at peace. The papers to which I refer should be laid on the table now, because if the government was pacifist it was no different from any other governments, and the charges which I have mentioned could be cleared up.

There is a meeting of the Conservative party in Ottawa to-day and it is very much alive; notwithstanding criticisms, it has always stood fast to its principles of the British connection. As the late Sir John A. Macdonald said at Kingston on October 5, 1844: "It is my firm belief that the prosperity of Canada depends upon its permanent connection with the mother country, and I shall resist to the utmost any attempt from whatever quarter to weaken that union." One of the things we saw here recently was the tremendous popularity of the monarchy, and the failure of the House of Commons to deal with problems as they occur. I have often wondered at that. Canada at the colonial conference in 1937 put forward the view that we have no commitments with the rest of the empire, that parliament should decide. They might well know that if war came Canada was at war, would be directly involved. But they refused to arm or get ready.

I believe the Prime Minister would have been well advised to have a war cabinet; that it is an absolute necessity. New Zealand and Australia wanted a war cabinet; south Africa did not, and the south of Ireland is neutral and outside the empire. Instead of ministers having to go across to England by aeroplane from time to time, we should have a war cabinet to sit in and meet with the other dominions. Down to the time of the outbreak of the war there was not a single member of

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the cabinet on the front benches who believed in empire policies and what they stand for; they were more Washington-minded than empire-minded. The Prime Minister said in Britain that he is averse to any participation in an imperial cabinet. That is a mistake. In south Africa they want a separate republic after the fashion of the south of Ireland. We are dependent upon Britain; everything in freedom and liberty we have in this country we owe to Britain; if it were not for Britain and the British fleet, where would we be to-day? This very building in which we meet would be bombed. As I said in 1936-37 during the Ethiopian war, we needed a proper empire shipbuilding policy and a programme for training youths for the merchant marine and air empire scheme, and events have proved that the government of the day was all wrong when it did not seize that opportunity and rearm. We are dependent upon Britain for our very existence, and there is no reason why we should be reluctant to enter into closer relations with the mother country during the war and have a war cabinet for the empire in London. Canadian sentiment is like that of New Zealand and Australia, loyal to the empire ideal. It was a great mistake when the Prime Minister decided that he was against a proper war cabinet to consider the various phases of the war in London, because London to-day is the new centre of Christendom as no other capital in the world is. There was the battle of London and the battle of the Atlantic, which in some sense is a misnomer because it is also the battle of the Pacific and the Indian ocean and the seas of the world, a battle for the freedom of the seas and British supremacy of the seas. Mr. Menzies, the former prime minister of Australia, who addressed this house wanted an empire cabinet and an empire policy, and I believe the overwhelming voice of the Conservative party in this country is in favour of having a war cabinet formed right away. The war is creating a comradeship between empire troops, and I believe that comradeship should be extended for the conduct of the war by an empire council. Had that been done we would have known more about the war.

We have had hardly a single paper laid on the table of the house of a record of correspondence with Britain and the empire. I am sorry the body which meets in another part of this building has gone home for the holidays; they could greatly aid in the war if given work, but apparently the House of Commons is not wanted around here either; as far as I see we might just as well pack up and go home. Members of the government rise in their places and read to us essays about things

which can be got in the public press just as well. They have made Canada restless for a total war policy in this the third year of the war. In the first year it was not to be expected that Canada could do everything it should do because we had a pacifist government which was not war-minded; many of them knew nothing about war, and it is no disparagement of hon. gentlemen who make admirable executives in peace time, to say that they have no knowledge of war problems, because peace and war administration are far apart, especially in a world war like this. Some are able and efficient gentlemen, but now what is needed is a total war effort on their part.

The battle of Canada's propaganda goes on night and day. You cannot turn on the radio without hearing all kinds of talk from members of the government, the information bureau and their favourites and radio paid agents, and the ghosts behind the scenes, as I called the unnamed spokesmen, and there seems to be a distinct United States taint about all the speeches and little praise for Britain. How does it come that we hear so little about the great fight Russia is making against the mechanized hordes of the axis powers? On the radio and from the information bureau we hardly ever hear about Russia, but we hear much about the American isolationists; in sections of our press and radio and information bureau they seem to be troubled with Lindberghitis. There is more space given sometimes in some papers to Colonel Windberg-I mean Lindbergh-and the United States isolationists than to all the proceedings of this house. The battle of the air is going on, and all these paid officers are giving their views. I believe the time is coming when we should cease having press censorship in this country and adopt the policy followed in the old country. Why not trust the newspapers, as we did in the last great war and abolish censorship? It is unnecessary. We would have very little trouble, and we would save all the money that is being spent on an information bureau which turns out literature presumably for the benefit of the United States press, and is resented over there as trying to bring the United States into the war.

Then I should like to know where the auditor general is during these times, because every department seems to be run by its own minister, who apparently is able to spend all the money he likes. We also have the celebrated joint defence board which, without the authority of parliament, is binding Canada to various treaties for the next hundred years. We have the Minister of Agriculture announcing a policy with regard to a fixed price for

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wheat which may cost the country from $125,000,000 to $200,000,000 with other allowances, and which is to be carried out by order in council. We have the Minister of Munitions and Supply, for whom I have the greatest respect, spending money in vast quantities. I do not know whether the Minister of Finance knows about all this, because there seems to be no coordination or central control, with the result that a great deal of money is being spent without the proper authority. Toward the end of the session in June I asked the Minister of Finance if the auditor general had jurisdiction over all these dollar-a-year men and all these boards. At that time the minister said he had, but that does not seem to be the situation, because every department seems to have its own auditors independent of a central auditor. As a result money is being spent like water by the navy, the army, the air force and everybody else, on home defence which will never win this war. Then we have the mayor of New York, who heads this defence board. He has announced expenditures running into millions of dollars, and I doubt if the Minister of Finance even knows anything about them, but this joint defence board binds Canada's future. The policy of the government seems to be, "A board a day will keep Hitler away."

In the first year of the war the mechanized hordes conquered Norway, Czechoslovakia, the low countries, Belgium, Holland and, last but not least, France. In the second year of the war they swept over Yugoslavia and Greece, and the mechanization still goes on. What is the position in Canada? We are now in the third year of the war and the government can give us no definite war programme for the next twelve months. As I said when this war began, the big question was man-power. I was told it was not, but it was food and munitions. Has there been any war in the history of mankind in which man-power has not played a major part? I say there has not; and if the government of the day had taken the right stand at the start, voluntary recruiting would not have reached the state in which it is to-day. We should have had a million men. During the first months of the war the country was willing to give the ministers time to become war-minded instead of believing in pacifism and disarmament; but two years of armed warfare should be sufficient to bring about that changed mentality. We should be taking active steps to see that in this third year of the war ours should be a total war effort from coast to coast. Now we find the government without any concerted, coordinated war planning for the coming year, to deal with the demands of the military services and the other demands

in connection with production, shipbuilding, agriculture and so on. Home defence will never win any war; there is no possibility of that. We should take stock of our military position. The people want to know the facts, but they cannot get them. As I said in 1937, are we to wait until the enemy comes up the St. Lawrence by air, land and sea, and bombs the citadel and this very building? All the protection we have is provided by Great Britain, and the United States would be attacked also but for the British navy. The small nations of Europe have been enslaved by this mechanized army; they have endured the spies, the sergeant-majors, the concentration camps, the loud speaker, the tramping of feet, the gestapo, the whips, the spirit of barbarism, brutality and savagery; and but for Britain we on this continent would be compelled to suffer the same experiences. Yet we do not pay her tribute.

What are we going to do about it? Sooner or later there must be another Peninsular war on the continent, and what is Canada doing to prepare for it in man-power to aid the mother country? New Zealand and Australia were represented in Africa, Greece, Syria and other countries. Canada was not. Now we have been told by one of the ministers, within the last day or two, that no Canadian troops can be moved out of England without the authority of this government. That is just what I said in this house last June, that not a man could be sent from England without the permission of the government of this country. That is a fine state of affairs. That is not a total war effort, or coordination with Britain; that is not showing cooperation with the other parts of this empire. The time has now come when there should be a change. I think we need something more than words, something more than the essays and all that sort of thing we have been getting. The people should know the extent of our war effort and exactly what our position is.

In addition, I believe that when the government takes over private property as crown property throughout the country it should pay taxes. The Ontario government and the hydro electric system pay municipal taxes. Why, the city of Toronto spent two and a half million dollars in connection with one plant on the harbour there, doing dredging, building retaining walls, putting in pavements, sewers, sidewalks, power at cost, water supply, roadways and all that sort of thing. Now the plant has been taken over as crown property. Surely the government of the day should pay something to help meet the cost of all these municipal services, and should pay some part of all this cost to the municipalities. This war is alto-

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gether different; and I hope the Minister of Munitions and Supply, who has not been unmindful of the needs of the municipalities, will-take this matter into consideration. These crown plants are getting their power, light and water, and transportation, street cars, at cost; they are being provided with sewers, pavements, transportation facilities and all the rest of it. Surely the municipalities should be helped, and all their revenue should not in this way be taken away. Since the early days of the hydro electric commission they have paid taxes on their municipal property, and I appeal to the government to take the same stand with regard to these crown property costs.

I see no change in the cardinal principles of the government's war policy, except the sending overseas of one hundred thousand men, though the Prime Minister said we would never send another expeditionary force to Europe. A few months before the war broke out, the right hon. gentleman said the danger to Canada was minor in degree and secondary in origin. In 1938 and 1939 we were told that our war policy was directed to home defence and the maintenance of Canada's neutrality in case the United States should be attacked by a foreign power. Since then we have had several agreements with the United States, one of which was announced at Ogdensburg, and we have had a joint defence board set up as a result. We have been told by the Prime Minister that Canada has no commitments, that parliament will decide. That is not so. We knew if Britain was at war, Canada would at once be also involved. Bases are given away and commitments made for the next ninety-nine years under the agreement giving the United States bases reaching from Newfoundland to British Guiana in exchange for fifty obsolete ships, some of which were useless and of no value at all, and Canada is bound by our United States-Canada defence board. Canada knew all about that agreement; it has been said that Canada was the author of that British-American Atlantic bases policy, but in any event we are bound by it for the next ninety-nine years. And whether we like it or not rve are also bound by the policy of the defence board created as a result of the Ogdensburg agreement. Supposing the United States should go to war with Japan. There would be no reason why Canada should also go to war; we are in a different position, but we are bound by these agreements into which the Prime Minister has entered with the President of the United States, over the head of parliament, of the mother country and of the other dominions who should know of it and to whom in an empire sense we are connected. The defence board agreement was entered into over the

fMr. Church.]

head of the mother country and of our sister dominions. It was agreed' to set up this defence board for the protection of America for the next ninety-nine years, and this action was taken over the head of this parliament. Nobody knows where it is going to end.

There is no time to be lost. As Lord Beaverbrook has so well said, and as was said a few weeks ago in the British house, there is no time to be lost in giving aid to Russia. To-day Russia is fighting with the mother country for the freedom of the world. The whole history of the world for the next two hundred years will be decided by the battle of Britain, the battle of the Atlantic and the battle of Russia. Russia is standing against the mechanized hordes. The Germans have lost 8,000 tanks so far in their struggle against Russia. At one time it was said that we could not turn out tanks in this country, and then we were told that we would have fifteen by the end of the year. The minister now thinks that we shall have produced 100 or possibly a few more. Germany is supposed to have 30,000 tanks, so that means that we shall have to produce 29,900 more if we are to be on an equal footing.

As I say, the history of the whole world is being decided over there in the battle of London and Russia. Were it not that Russia is now bearing the burden and the brunt of the struggle against these modem savages and barbarians with their awful mechanization, the British losses on land, sea and in the air would be terrible. These losses would be in addition to the already heavy burden being borne in this war by the mother country. The Hun has his awful mechanized hordes with their savagery and slaughter. This year has witnessed the collapse of all the ideologies of the past, and they should remain in cold storage until the axis gangsters are destroyed. After all, a kindly providence knows better than our own government. We should all face the facts and appreciate how Russia is benefiting, saving and aiding Great Britain in this struggle.

There are some who do not like this collaboration of Great Britain and the United States with Russia, and they quote General Franco. Had he said three years ago that he would not accept the military help of gangsters like Hitler and Mussolini he would now be in exile as a defeated man. But he renounced all his ideologies of the past, as Great Britain and the United States are now doing. By the use of diplomacy, Franco got both his axis partners out of Spain.

It is time for Canada to wake from her slumber. It is time for Canada to do something and not keep on talking about what will be done in 1942 and 1943. Canada

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seems to think that there is all eternity in which to prepare the necessary man-power, food and munitions to help Great Britain and her allies. The time has come when this government will have to come down out of the olouds and let us have a total war effort. At the beginning of this debate the Prime Minister gave the reasons why Russia went into the war, but he forgot to say anything about man-power in this country. No matter whether we like it or not, something will have to be done about man-power or else the war may be lost. Call it conscription, compulsory service, or anything you like; it all means the same.

As in the last war, I am in favour of a selective principle. In 1937 and 1938 I proposed that we should have a compulsory national registration with a view to obtaining the utmost national service from the people. That is the only way we can have equal rights for all and special privileges to none. We would not have needed it if voluntary recruiting had been properly handled from the start. Now it is too late. The recruits are not coming forward.

There is another matter to which I should like to refer. Why does this country continue to permit the Vichy legation to remain open? We all know the record of that notorious government during the past year in France. We all know that it is simply a puppet government of Hitler. We all know how France suffered in the last war to preserve civilization and how all Canada wants to aid her.

Before this house adjourns I should like to know what action this government intends to take in connection with the great losses to our shipping off the coast of Ireland. Are our sailors, soldiers and ships to be lost? In one of his speeches President Roosevelt said that they were not going to stand for it, and Mr. Churchill has referred to this as well. This kind of thing cannot go on much longer. A total of 340,000 tons of shipping has been lost in one month, most of it in the Atlantic. Throughout the centuries one continuous thread can be detected running through the variegated web of British military and naval policy-the strategical indivisibility of the British isles. We are all aware of the glorious record of those two little islands from the days of Elizabeth. They leaped up and became a great world power. We are proud of the record not only as the main defender of freedom and civilization, but also in discovery, the arts and sciences, and literature.

The defence of Ireland is the defence of Britain. Elizabeth knew it; Cromwell knew it; William of Orange, of pious and immortal memory, knew it, and so did Pitt and

Castlereagh. In our own time Mr. Lloyd George knew it. While prepared to give up much, he shrank from giving up all. Speaking at the Methodist conference at Cardiff in 1921, he said that he did not know what would happen to Great Britain in another war with Germany if we did not have these ports, yet later he gave Eire those very bases. In each epoch of British history 'her enemies have appreciated the situation in the same way. Elizabeth's struggle with Philip saw a Spanish landing in Ireland; the Napoleonic wars saw the French at Killala, and in the great war of 1914-18 Germany too made a nibble at the island on the western flank.

In the grim struggle in which Britain is now engaged only one thing can deprive her of victory. If her sea communications with the arsenal of democracy across the Atlantic are cut, the war for her is lost. Ireland lies across those lines of communications. An Ireland fighting on her side would make those communications safe, while a neutral Ireland would imperil and has so far gravely imperilled them. With Ireland in the possession of her enemies, the vital arteries would be severed. But this government does nothing about it but drift. It has a legation there as well. Apparently this government is ready to see our brave soldiers and sailors and our shipping and food for Britain lost in the seas off the coast of Ireland without saying one word of protest about these bases, instead of joining with Mr. Churchill and Mr. Roosevelt in seeking the use of these bases at once.

It is from these points that the Germans got the range and lights to destroy Coventry and Cardiff, and prevented our ships from reaching shore. The result has been that Great Britain has been unable to use Portsmouth and other ports on the southern channel, as she did in the last war. We might have lost the last war without these bases. Another result was the loss of the Channel islands. The Prime Minister was asked by me in 1939, 1940 and last June about these ports, but nothing has been done. Great Britain has been forced to use the narrow northern channel, and the result is that a month or two ago the shipping losses amounted to 144,000 tons. It is time for us to think about this bridgehead in Ireland and do something about it. We should appreciate what is being done by the people of Ulster, the six northern counties. Their war effort has been magnificent and were it not for that great arsenal, Hitler would have won Ireland long ago.

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NAT

Herbert Alexander Bruce

National Government

Hon. H. A. BRUCE (Parkdale):

In the early days of the war we were led to believe that men were not needed. This illusion was

The War-Mr. Bruce

entirely dispelled by the straightforward statement made by the Minister of National Defence (Mr. Ralston) on Wednesday last, so that there can no longer be any doubt that men are urgently needed. In answer to the question as to the government's military objective the Minister of National Defence stated that it was to be an all-out war effort.

The government's adherence to the voluntary system of recruiting is inconsistent with total war, and yet this is the only kind of war that will enable us to help defeat Hitler. Contrary to the opinion expressed by the Minister of National Defence it is the government's responsibility. It is perfectly obvious to every thinking man that Canada cannot make a total war effort without compulsory selective service, and also that if our aid is not to be a vital factor in this struggle this empire, and with it Canada, is doomed. Speaking for myself in this house on May 12 last, as I do to-day, I called upon the government to put this method into effect, adding that voluntary recruiting had reached the stage where it was slow, cumbersome and wasteful, and that selective compulsory enlistment was the only fair and efficient way to meet the complex needs of Canada. I believe now, as I did then, that nothing will strengthen national unity more than the knowledge that every section and every class of our population are bearing an equal share in the defence of our country.

I was pleased to read the report of a statement made by the hon. member for Mount Royal (Mr. Whitman) on October 8 last to the effect that we shall have conscription if and when it is shown to be necessary. Surely that time has now arrived. Every report we get from reliable sources emphasizes beyond all doubt the terrible crisis upon which we have now entered. Yet Canada allows a man to decide for himself whether he will sell goods over a counter, wave women's hair, work in a factory, vital to our war effort or otherwise, or serve in our armed forces overseas. The government must take upon itself the responsibility of putting the right man in the right place.

There is no doubt that there has been a very great change in public opinion in Canada on this subject since May last, and to give the committee some indication of the extent of this change I should like to quote from an editorial in the Montreal Star appearing under yesterday's date. In commenting upon the speech of the Minister of National Defence it says:

The problem will not be solved by indiscriminate enlistment of men for either industry or the armed forces. That is why so many people throughout the country are clamouring

for a system of selective national service that would permit the government _ to send men- and women-wherever their aptitudes could best fit into the war picture. There are thousands of men and women, not all of them fit for active service, who nevertheless are eager to do a war job-and they cannot always find openings. Voluntary civilian organization for war" purposes is all very well in its way, and is indicative of a high spirit of willing service, but unless it is related to a general official plan, it wastes both money and valuable effort.

I should also like to give the opinion of three ministers of the church, of different denominations. Two Roman Catholic army chaplains, Colonel C. L. Nelligan and Colonel T. J. McCarthy, when speaking in London recently, warned Canadians to do away with complacency and get into action. Colonel McCarthy, recently returned from London, England, speaking to Canadian wives and mothers said:

If your husbands and your sons are of military age don't hesitate to send them to fight your battles across the sea because then they won't have to fight them on your own doorstep.

Lastly, I would quote Bishop Renison, who has just returned from a visit to England where he went with a party of Canadian journalists as the representative of the Globe and Mail. I might remind the committee that Bishop Renison's two sons, his only children, went overseas at the beginning of the war. One son, like the boy referred to by my leader on Tuesday, paid his own way to England to join the Royal Air Force. His plane was shot down over France during Dunkirk and he was made a prisoner of war and is now in Germany. The other son went over with the first contingent. I wish to quote from a report in to-day's Ottawa Citizen. Bishop Renison said:

It is my opinion some form of compulsory service is absolutely essential.

The report goes on:

The young men who had joined the armed forces with the encouragement of the government have "pledged their all", Bishop Renison said, and "the Canadian government therefore cannot be less sacrificial in its attitude toward the war. ..."

I wish to make the strongest protest of which I am capable against the practice of this government in arrogating to itself dictatorial powers and, through its ever-growing habit of legislating by order in council, destroying the rights and privileges of parliament, obtained only after centuries of strife. The last and most flagrant example is the enactment by order in council of control of prices and wages -the most revolutionary change in our economic system that has ever been made in a democratic country-and this on the very eve of the assembling of parliament. I was not

The War-Mr. Gillis

impressed by the reasons advanced last evening by the Minister of Finance (Mr. Ilsley) for not submitting this important matter to parliament, namely, that secrecy had to be observed in respect to the fixing of prices of commodities lest advantage might be taken to do some improper thing, presumably the boosting of prices. But that same argument could be used to pass the budget by order in council, and up to the present time that has not been done. Whether or not, however, we agree with the method used or with the wisdom of what has been done, I wish to congratulate the minister upon the lucid and informative presentation he made of the subject yesterday.

We are given no opportunity of discussing any of the provisions of this control of prices and wages legislation, but, instead, we are told that, after listening to the reports from some of the ministers, we shall be permitted to ask questions, and then adjourn to reassemble late in January, because there is no legislation ready. This means that for a period of seven months parliament will not have functioned as a legislative body. Was it not the same disregard of the rights of parliament which called for the protest from the British House of Commons to King James I, on December 18, 1621, in the following terms:

That the liberties, franchises, privileges and jurisdictions of parliament are the ancient and undoubted birthright and inheritance of the subjects of England and that the arduous and urgent affairs concerning the state and defence of the realm and the maintenance and making of laws are proper matter of debate in parliament and that in the handling of these businesses every member of the house of parliament hath, and of right ought to have, freedom of speech to treat of these matters in such order as in their judgment shall seem fit.

We may, perhaps, be permitted to appeal from Philip drunk to Philip sober, from the successful politician to the sound parliamentarian, from the prime minister who destroyed the rights of parliament to the private member who once used to defend its dignity in such ringing terms as these:

Mr. Speaker, there should be an end to government by order in council. Government must be by parliament and through parliament; it must not be by the diplomacy of cabinet^ councils carried on by cabinet ministers in their secret chambers, but by the free discussions and questionings of the ministry in this house in regard to public affairs.

Mr. Chairman, no words of mine could express more exactly the conviction held by every true parliamentarian and the indignation we feel, than those words spoken more than twenty years ago in this chamber by the then hon. member for North York, the present Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King). He should be congratulated upon them. It is given to few statesmen to denounce with such

accuracy and eloquence in 1920 the crimes against freedom his ministry was going to commit in 1941. I use the word "crimes" advisedly and in all gravity. As I read history, it records few betrayals more callous or deliberate than the betrayal of the parliamentary liberty enshrined in this house by one who knew the place, and who has been for years its most ardent protagonist.

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November 7, 1941