Right Hon. W. L. MACKENZIE KING (Prime Minister):
Mr. Speaker, I wish to
table parliamentary return reference No. 33, moved by the hon. member for St. John-Albert:
For a copy of all correspondence, letters, cables and other documents exchanged between His Majesty's government in the United Kingdom and His Majesty's government in Canada from September 1, 1938, to September 15, 1939, relating to the attitude of Canada in the event of an outbreak of hostilities between His Majesty and any other power.
When the motion was adopted the order was extended to cover a period subsequent to September 15 sufficient to complete the correspondence in reference to the particular matters referred to.
I would say that the reason for the delay in bringing down this return is that the consent of the government of the United Kingdom and the consent of the government of Australia and New Zealand had to be obtained before we felt at liberty to table the correspondence. That consent has now been obtained, and the return which I have just made includes all the correspondence.
Previous to September 1, 1939, the government of Canada was kept informed of international developments in the usual manner. As the crisis approached in the summer of 1939 there were consultations between the United Kingdom and Canadian authorities through the United Kingdom high commissioner at Ottawa and the Canadian high commissioner in the United Kingdom.
I think hon. members will find this return most interesting and of historic interest, inasmuch as it relates to the attitude of Canada at the outbreak of hostilities between His Majesty and the German Reich. There are only eight telegrams in all; they are not very lengthy, and I believe it would meet the convenience of hon. members if they were printed in the Votes and Proceedings of the House of Commons. I ask that instructions be given accordingly.
________________Foreign Insurance Companies
Subtopic: EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Sub-subtopic: ATTITUDE OF CANADA AT THE OUTBREAK OF HOSTILITIES, 1938-39