June 18, 1942

NAT

Herbert Alexander Bruce

National Government

Mr. BRUCE:

Brought disunity throughout the country.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Mines and Resources)

Liberal

Mr. CRERAR:

Three years ago this country was not at war. It had no dream of ever being at war. We were going about our peaceful pursuits. I would ask hon. members to note the transformation that has taken place in less than three years.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

Driven

to it by public opinion.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
NAT

Herbert Alexander Bruce

National Government

Mr. BRUCE:

Absolutely.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Mines and Resources)

Liberal

Mr. CRERAR:

If I am to be interrupted

in this fashion I wish to point out that I make it a practice not to interrupt hon. gentlemen opposite when they are speaking.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
NAT

Herbert Alexander Bruce

National Government

Mr. BRUCE:

The minister brought it on

himself.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Mines and Resources)

Liberal

Mr. CRERAR:

I ask them to be good

enough to show me the same courtesy.

That is the sort of criticism they have levelled against us. What has been done in

the defence services? Take the department of my colleague the Minister of National Defence (Mr. Ralston): an army of a few thousand people at the outbreak of war; to-day a well-equipped army of over 350,000. What has been done by my colleague the Minister of National Defence for Air (Mr. Power), who has given a leadership that has been almost inspired? Before the war we did not have an air force. Two and a half years after the outbreak of war we have over one hundred air training centres in Canada, and we are training pilots, air crew, gunners, by the tens of thousands every year. Is not that an achievement worth something? Look at what has been done by our young navy, which scarcely existed at the outbreak of war, in patrolling our shores and convoying ships across the seas.

What has been done in the field of production by my hon. friend the Minister of Munitions and Supply (Mr. Howe)? Three years ago we were not making a gun in Canada-or very few. We were not building a ship-

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

Or tanks, and you said they could not be built.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Mines and Resources)

Liberal

Mr. CRERAR:

-or a tank or an aeroplane. To-day we are producing all these and much more, in ever-growing quantities. What is the position to-day? In the field of production we have challenged the admiration of Britain and the United States, and you do not need to take our word for it. What has been done in the field of finance by my colleague the Minister of Finance (Mr. Usley)? Did he shrink from imposing heavy taxation? Have the people responded to our appeals for war loans? I admit that every citizen of Canada and my hon. friends opposite helped in that.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

And every other war effort.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Mines and Resources)

Liberal

Mr. CRERAR:

What about price control? What about agricultural production? We are producing in this country many times over what we were producing in concentrated foods three years ago. What about our good relationship with the United States? And all this, according to our friends opposite, comes from weak, vacillating, procrastinating, timeserving leadership in the government.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
NAT

James Arthur Ross

National Government

Mr. ROSS (Souris):

Absolutely.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Mines and Resources)

Liberal

Mr. CRERAR:

The sense of perspective of my hon. friends is badly off centre if they cannot see anything else. But with our critics all this goes for naught. The unit by which Canada's war effort shall be measured is the one factor of the conscription of men for overseas service in the army.

Mobilization Act-Mr. Crerar

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
NAT

James Arthur Ross

National Government

Mr. ROSS (Souris):

Conscription for every field.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Mines and Resources)

Liberal

Mr. CRERAR:

Yes, conscription for everything; and I venture to say there is a great deal more of it in effect to-day than my hon. friend is aware of, or he would not make an observation like that. There is one thing to be kept in mind. This emphasis on the conscription of men, I say to the house, has distorted the outlook on our war effort. What is the important thing to-day; what has it been since the outbreak of war? It has not been men alone; it has been production. This very day and hour there is being waged on the desert sands of Libya one of the fiercest struggles of this war. Who will win that struggle? I cannot say, but I venture the prediction that the side with the most guns and tanks, the side whose tanks, guns and planes last the longest, will be the victor in that struggle.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
NAT

Herbert Alexander Bruce

National Government

Mr. BRUCE:

With somebody to operate them.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Mines and Resources)

Liberal

Mr. CRERAR:

They have the men to operate them. If we had been deficient in getting men for these services there would be some point to the argument of the hon. member for Parkdale (Mr. Bruce). Nearly a year ago, and certainly at the beginning of this session, the hon. member for Parkdale pictured the plight of our men overseas, and he appealed: Are you going to leave them there without any support? Have they been without support? My hon. friend knows they have not been.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

They have not been in action. They may be without support when they go into action.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Order.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink
LIB

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Mines and Resources)

Liberal

Mr. CRERAR:

I am enjoying myself immensely, Mr. Speaker, and I hope all other hon. members are enjoying themselves too.

One aspect of our war effort which must not be overlooked is that it is many-sided. The allied nations depend largely upon Canada for copper and zinc and nickel and aluminum and lead. Britain depends almost entirely upon us for timber, of which she requires large quantities. She depends upon us for the production of foodstuffs. We have to keep our transportation system functioning effectively; and may I point out that all this vast field of enterprise, of building ships and nearly all the other activities included in our war effort, requires just as able-bodied men as are required for the army. The significance and importance of that fact have been overlooked by a great many critics of the government.

If our production of copper and nickel and zinc and lead and aluminum ceases or diminishes, we take the chance of losing the war. If we cannot maintain our production in all these other fields, that is equally the case. So that while it is easy to criticize the government, I would ask those throughout this country who are not partisan-blind to take account of the efforts of the government in all these fields and to recognize that the one factor of the conscription of men for overseas is not the most important thing necessary to enable Canada to prosecute an effective war effort. That must fall into its proper perspective, together with everything else; and if it does not, then we are weakening rather than strengthening our effort.

I should like to conclude with a simple illustration which I have used once or twice before. One summer a good many years ago I was in a little valley in northern British Columbia, at a wayside station on the Canadian National railway. When I arrived there in the evening an impenetrable fog hung over the valley. This fog continued for several days, and I never felt so much depressed in my life as I did at that time. But one morning we came out to find the sun breaking through the mist, and shortly after that the mountain peaks stood out in all their wondrous beauty; the mist dissolved, and the majesty of the forests and mountains was revealed to all who cared to look. I sometimes think that to-day we are in a somewhat similar situation. Doubts and suspicions and angry words make a fog around us. We have these differences of opinion, but I wish to say to my hon. friends opposite that if any of my words to-day have been too close, I did not intend them to be so. We have here a great heritage which a kindly providence has given into our care. We have various elements in our population, those of French extraction, others of English, Scotch and Irish extraction, those of Ukrainian extraction and many others I could mention. If we are ever to build a country with a soul and a spirit, these different elements of our population must be brought into harmony. I have sufficient faith to believe that while to-day we have the mists and fogs of uncertainty and doubt, of angry words and suspicion, in time they will disappear as did the mists of the mountains, and the real virtues of our Canadian people will be realized and appreciated by each element of our population. I hope that then we will realize what a great country we have in Canada and that we will not be French Canadians, or Irish Canadians, or Scotch Canadians, or English Canadians or Ukrainian Canadians; we will

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
Permalink

June 18, 1942