Mr. GORDON GRAYDON (Leader of the Opposition):
Associating our party with the
remarks of the Prime Minister on the occasion of the ending formally of the British commonwealth air training plan, I should like to indicate to the house that not only has this been a successful adventure in wartime cooperation among the various units of the commonwealth, but, if I may say so, it augurs well for the future relationships between commonwealth nations, because what we have been able to do together in time of war we shall surely be able to do similarly in time of peace in collaboration and cooperation.
The closing of the plan brings to my mind at once two things. One is that while these boys have been trained to the extent, as the Prime Minister has said, of 150,000, there have been, if my memory serves me correctly-I have not the records with me-losses among
Canadian boys who have participated in that plan to the extent of something like 12,000 since the plan went into operation. We must to-day recognize that the loss in men is heavy in war; and the fact that we have lost 12,000 from the flower of our manhood' in air operations shows the heavy drain that is made upon our nation in times like these.
Then there was the other matter mentioned by some of the prime ministers of other dominions, namely, the associations that have been built up and cemented and welded by the fact that so many of the boys from other parts of the commonwealth have been received in such a cordial manner and shown the splendid hospitality of Canadian homes. That seems to me to be one of the practical results of the commonwealth air training plan from the social angle. Therefore, Mr. Speaker, in joining with the Prime Minister's remarks I say to you that we are hopeful in Canada that many of these young men will be Canadian citizens in the future. Having sampled our hospitality and knowing something of the great resources and opportunities of our country, we are hoping that they will come here, settle down and become citizens of Canada. If they do they will be royally welcomed.
Subtopic: WINDING-UP CEREMONIES THROUGHOUT CANADA- MESSAGES FROM BRITAIN, AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND