Mr. J. A. BRADETTE (Cochrane):
Mr. Speaker, before I proceed with my remarks, I wish to make a brief allusion to the activities of the standing committee on external affairs. I have the heavy responsibility and also the honour to be chairman of that committee, and am ably seconded by the vice-chairman, the hon. member for Peel (Mr. Graydon). We started to function in the fall of 1945 and, through the cooperation which was accorded by every member of the committee, and which continued through every one of our meetings, I believe we succeeded to a very large extent in doing what we set out to do. When we started to function, the Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) was then Secretary of State for External Affairs, and he cooperated with us to the fullest extent although he found it impossible to be present at our discussions, and the same good will was shown by the officials of the department. This year the new department was formed, and the heavy responsibilities so ably discharged by the Prime Minister of Canada, were placed on the shoulders of the present occupant of that high position. He is fulfilling his obligations with his natural qualifications of high diplomacy and high statesmanship; and I believe this is the time and place to compliment our present Secretary of State for External Affairs (Mr. St. Laurent) upon the honour he has brought to himself, to parliament and to the whole of Canada.
I was very proud indeed that during this afternoon and evening there was no sign of subduedness in his voice or in those of previous speakers. I was afraid that when we received that resounding rebuff from the "Big Four" Canada would take it impatiently, but Canada took it with dignity, but with some resentment. However I never saw the population so electrified, or rather stupefied as when the Canadian people learned that we were persona non grata as far as the peace treaties with Austria and Germany were concerned. I am not again going to cover the ground which was so well covered this afternoon as to the great renown Canada won for herself during world war I and also during world war II. We can go to a peace conference with a fine symbol. We do not want any territorial aggrandizement; we have no quarrel with any nation. We can go there with an open heart and open mind. I know that public opinion in the countries of Europe, even public opinion in the four big nations, will be so strong that it will compel them to allow Canada to take its proper place in the deliberations at the coming peace conference.
I want to say just a few words about some of the things which happened under the treaty
of Versailles, which was signed in 1919, and at the deliberations which preceded it. I always have in mind the statement of that great Jewish philosopher Spinoza, when he was looking at his times, which were very troubled indeed. He said we should not smile, not cry, but we should try to understand. I believe the whole world was highly elated over the treaty of Versailles and built up great hopes on it. Ail hopes for the future peace of mankind, not of any individual nation but the whole of the civilized world, were heightened by a great statesman, President Wilson of the United States, who left his shores with his ten points for the peace treaty. He was a great figure at that conference, carrying not only the respect due him for his personality and for the wonderful effort put forth by his country, which was one of the great reasons for our victory on the battlefield, and for the sacrifices made and the money spent by the American nation; he also created a feeling of hopr in every citizen worthy of being called a civilized person. However, within a few years the world knew a great feeling of despair, because that great statesman, that man who was carrying the hope of civilization, did not have the strong support he expected from his own nation and the military support needed <nder such circumstances.
We must learn from that experience of the y*.st. While I am dealing with the treaty of Versailles, I know I shall be forgiven if I mention some of its shortcomings. This is neither the time nor the place to compare what might have happened if we had lost the war, to suggest what Germany and her allies would have done to the democracies, to countries such as France, the United States, Great Britain, Canada and our other allies. This is not the time to say, an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, just because we have been victorious. However, there have been some anomalies. I know that, while at the time I was not very well versed in world affairs, I was astonished at the dismemberment of Austria, creating in the middle of Europe an economic and political vacuum which was one of the contributing factors to world war II. There is no getting away from that fact. It is too late to go back and try to change history, but I maintain that the nations of the world in the treaty of Versailles committed a terrible crime against Austria in practically destroying that nation. It is true that it was an ally of Germany, but those people were the tools of Germany. We must also remember that, although the chief villain in that terrible play really was Germany, her borders remained almost intact. I shall never pose as a prophet, but I remember my thought a few years ago
when Mussolini and Hitler connived to take over the population of that great, historical section of Europe known as the Tyrol, to bring the Tyroleans into the so-called German national home, a sore was caused which has been festering ever since.
I hold no brief for Germany at the present time, but I remember hearing from my own people, when we created the so-called Danzig corridor, that here was an embryo containing all the seeds for a future war. You cannot cut through the sacred and historical soil of any nation, with a knife, with diplomacy or with the force of arms, without creating a dangerous situation which eventually will be the cause of great difficulty. At the present time there are frontiers which have been demolished, which have been drastically and horribly destroyed. No one can make me believe that the fine Polish people will ever be satisfied with a big slice of that historic and heroic country cut off to the east. As long as a single man or woman of Polish extraction lives on this planet they will always remember this; it will be the irredenta for them as long as they remain alive. And the same thing applies when we cut Prussia from the core of Germany. I have never had any sympathy for the so-called junkers, the Prussian military caste or the militaristic men of Germany; but let us look at it in a cool and open minded way. Prussia has been an integral part of the great Teutonic empire; and Prussianism is not typical of only one province. Prussianism is something that can be found all over Germany. It is true that many of the leaders of the so-called Prussian military spirit were born and bred on Prussian soil, but look at a list of the military and political leaders of Germany and you will see that a great many came from other provinces of the German federation. I hope I may be wrong in this thought, but I believe it will happen as far as Poland and Germany are concerned; that the irredenta, the day of vengeance for them, may and will come-and it could come-when their old national frontiers will be reestablished, and it will be a Satanic brew that will scar their souls with revenge.
How is it possible to rectify them? Canada is in a strong position to bring up that matter. We have had frontier and border troubles in the past. At the present time we are in the happy position of being a middle power, and of being without suspicion as far as our own motives are concerned. But apparently we are not going to speak up; apparently we believe it is better to leave the status quo and
not start any rivalry which might prove detrimental not only to ourselves but to other nations of the world.
These are things which must be mentioned; and this is the first occasion I have had, since I have been in public life, to mention these anomalies which have been the cause of great tribulations in the past and in future will be the cause of great disturbances, national, mental, territorial and spiritual. There is no getting away from things of that kind; they will stay with us like the Macbeth ghost. Look at the history of the world and the history of Europe for the last twenty years. You could never pick up a German paper without seeing a great big headline about the Polish corridor. That was only a small thing in comparison with what has happened to the map of Europe since the second war, when historical nations have had portions of their territory taken away from them or their frontiers brutally and forcibly changed, as we would take an arm or a leg from a human being. For the rest of the world to be so complacent as to want to believe these will not be danger points in the future history of Europe, danger points which will have their effect on the whole of Europe, is like whistling when we pass a graveyard. There is no getting away from these facts.
Three years ago, I believe it was in 1943, when our young men were losing their lives by the thousands, while our allies the Americans were losing thousands of men, the magazine Lije sent some of their best artists to picture what was happening on the war fronts. There was published in one of the editions of Lije magazine in 1944, I believe it was, a series of drawings showing some young men who had been fighting on the shores of Europe and in the Pacific; it showed the blood running from their faces and their bodies, the sight of horrible wounds. The pictures were in natural colour, showing their actual expressions and the suffering which was shown on their faces, the redness of oozing blood, the ghastliness of horrible cuts. Considerable tumult arose in the United States among some of the readers of the magazine, some of whom went so far as to say that those pictures should not have been published. I believe it was a necessary thing to have published those pictures, for the good reason that those young men who lost their lives were not only on the allied side, but possibly in part were men on the other side who, generally speaking, had no quarrel with other ideologies. They were too young for that; in the prime of their young exuberance they had no quarrel with anyone.
I recall when early in the war I often spent
a half hour or an hour watching our young men parade in this city, presenting colours in front of these parliament buildings. I would look at their faces and realize that these were young Canadians, full of happiness and in the springtime of their lives, with their hopes and thoughts of a full life showing in their faces. Often I asked myself how many of those fine young men who had no quarrel with the other men they would have to face in the trenches and the foxholes, will come back with their lives and unscathed. I believe they had no quarrel with the world or the people in it, but quite a number of them never returned.
But they answered the call of civilization, the call of their country. We cannot forget the sacrifices they made, and the lives they gave. Those men will go down to martyrdom for a cause that they knew was theirs. It is not likely that they will be honoured by attending the peace conference. But I believe it is only right that they should be given an opportunity to express their sentiments in an informal way. I would have a shrine in Moscow, where these deliberations will take place, where one of the departed ones would be mummified and the time that life ebbed from his young body, showing how those men lost their blood, showing the suffering on their faces, so that those who are at that conference will remember who made the greater sacrifices during the last war. There would also be represented those men who have been horribly mutilated, men who have no legs today, men who have no arms and men who have lost their sight. These would be present, so that the members of the delegation would keep in mind what the war meant to the younger generation of our countries, to their mothers, fathers, wives, children and sweethearts.
Then, too, they would be reminded of those young, mutilated school children. I listened attentively this afternoon to the hon. member for Peel when he referred to the lad in London, the victim of the blitz, standing among its ruins. We have been told-although I did not see it, but I know that it is true-that one bomb which came from Germany and was dropped on one of the schools in England resulted in the deaths of eighty-two young, lovely school children, boys and girls. We are told that there were little limbs, little pieces of head, of the crania found 200 yards away on the tree tops-that distance away from the school which had been totally destroyed.
These things must, of necessity, be kept in mind at the peace conference, but must be remembered by all, so that those who are attending will remember the ones who have
suffered. It was the youth who suffered most, the flower of mankind, and they suffered by the tens of millions.
I make these statements in all the sincerity I possess, because those who speak to study groups in my community firmly maintain that, of necessity, we must make our statesmen fully realize the real importance of the destruction, devastation, death and suffering caused by the last war in every part of civilization, on every part of its population.
As a result of our participation in the charter of the united nations organization we have contracted some duties and obligations. However, in Europe today there are still millions of people who are suffering, millions who find themselves without a national home. More than that, we have today conflicts in ideology. Are we to have two worlds? Or are we to have only one world? On the one side we have the ideology exemplified by the United States and Great Britain and their allies, a system which has shown itself to be best from the point of view of production and which has brought about great advances in mechanization and industrialization, coupled with farming and agricultural production.
On the other hand we have the other ideology which promises food but not freedom to the famished populations of Europe. In contrast with that, our side has promised food and also freedom; and on that score I believe we are right.
What does this imply, so far as Canada and the allies are concerned? It would be perfectly ridiculous to make these promises without being willing and ready to make the necessary sacrifices to implement them. To make our ideology prevail, it must be supported by loans to needy people; it must be supported by industrial help so as to develop higher industrialization; in a word, to the advancement of a fuller life.
We read in the newspapers of the United States and of other countries that the present crisis in Great Britain is a crisis for the whole civilized world and which we must help to solve. That principle applies with even greater force to the whole of Europe and of Asia. WTe must do all we can to implement what has been set down in the charter and blueprint of the united nations organization. This will cost a good deal of money and will require many sacrifices. But if we draw up a balance of the cost we shall find that we are still in the black, still on the credit side, because it will cost much less to maintain peace that if we had another war, which, in my view, would result practically in the destruction of civilization as we know it.
The people of Europe are caught between two ideologies; for millions of them want something to eat. An empty stomach has no time for reason; an empty stomach has not time to listen even to ideologies. It will grab at the first thing that comes within its reach, hoping against hope that what is placed in its way will prove to be a solution for its problems.
I believe that the door should remain open, so far as the communistic ideology is concerned, if our own ideology based on Christian principles could be presented to the Russian people. But I believe, too, that this should be a two-way road. I admire greatly the attitude taken recently in the United States by the Secretary of State for External Affairs (Mr. St. Laurent) when he tendered a hand to Russia, showing Russia that there was nothing sinister so far as the northern defence of Canada is concerned, showing Russia and her government that we have nothing up our sleeves. I believe, if the Russian people had an opportunity to listen to those statements, to listen to the voice of logic, they would receive them.
Perhaps this is not the time or place to discuss a matter of that kind, but I hope the Russian people will have access to the rest of the world and may know what goes on in it. I say that because I know a good number of Russian-born Canadians, and I have found them intelligent and democratic people. If they were given an opportunity to lead their own government, I believe it would be fashioned along more democratic lines. I say that because the Russians in Canada whom I know are democrats at heart, and the Russian people who were great Christians, desire freedom and happiness.
I listened to the hon. member for Peel who told us, and rightly so, of the great devastation which had taken place in Germany, and he spoke particularly of that fine German lad who was surrounded by destruction such as we know exists in Berlin at the present time. I believe, if a pointed question were asked of that German lad as to what had been the primary cause of what has happened in Germany, if he had been fair to himself he would have said, "It was the fault of my own government of my own people".
The hon. member for Peel referred to that fine lad in London who, too, was surrounded with horrible destruction. If the same question had been asked of that young boy he would have said, "My father told me that our government and that the people in the British isles did not want the war; that we have done all we could to avoid war. We even went so
far as to go to Munich to avoid war. But war was brought upon us, but we were not the cause of it. Our delegates and the delegates of the united nations will have to work with the French delegation, and the French nation is not going to forget readily that within three short generations their territory has been thrice invaded by Germany and that millions and millions of French lives have been lost on the altar of patriotism to defend their native land, within the material destruction. These were not offensive wars started by France but offensive wars started by Germany, in which every citizen of France had to rise to defend the sanctity of French soil. The French people will remember for a long time the three million French workers who in the last war were carried off to Germany, where 100,000 of them contracted tuberculosis. They will remember the thousands of young women who were taken from France and Holland-Holland which never was an enemy of Germany-and sent into Germany for one purpose only, prostitution to the military men. These are harsh words, but let us remember these things when we come to make a just peace, not to wreak vengeance on Germany, but to make a just peace that will ensure us against a repetition of what has happened in the past.
The hon. member for Peel spoke, and rightly so, of the devastation of Germany. But what happened to Rotterdam? Did the Dutch people have any quarrel with the German people? No, they had none. Yet Holland was the victim of a dastardly attack by the monsters from across the Rhine. Tens of thousands of innocent Dutch people, old men and women and young children, were destroyed. No nation can stand before the world and say that there was any justification for that attack. What happened to heroic Greece, which was called upon to defend herself against the hordes of fascist Italy all by herself? She was able to defend herself against the fascist hordes until Germany came to the aid of her ally and overcame Greece. Go and tell the Greek people to forget what happened to them under the Gennan regime. No, Mr. Speaker, these things must, of necessity, be remembered at the peace conference.
As a man of French descent I have studied and admired particularly one trait of the British people. It has been well said that in war there is no better fighter, no more heroic soldier, than the British but that they forget all feelings of enmity when the last shot has been fired. I want the delegates at the peace, conference which is to make treaties with Austria and Germany to remember what
General Foch said of the treaty that was made at the end of the war of 1918. He said that the treaty would surely bring another war within twenty years, and time proved him to be a true prophet.
The people of France do not want the pauperization or the destruction of Germany. No one on our side does. But the people of France are intensely realistic. They know what happened in 1918, when they were told that they were going to get the armed support of Great Britain and the United States. They did not get it. What happened? In that vacuum created in central Europe by the destruction of Austria you had in embryo the war that eventually brought a holocaust on the civilized world because France was left absolutely alone with hardly any support from her allies. France had a case to present to the peace conference. She may be hard to get along with but she is a nation with intense national pride; but she is realistic, and in proof of that look at what happened last week, when she formed, not an entente but an alliance with Great Britain. What a magnificent spectacle it was for everyone who has at heart the peace of the world to see these two great upholders of the civilization of Europe, France and Great Britain, forming an alliance for the advancement of peace in Europe. I hope it will be the forerunner of other alliances in Europe. I hope the day will come when every country in Europe, which was the birthplace of our own civilization, will come together, including Germany and Italy, for one purpose and one purpose only, and that the advancement of civilization, Christianity and peace throughout the world.
France is coming to the peace conference with some realistic policies. She wants a federation of the German nation,. in which its different states can cooperate together in a friendly way but can never become a danger to the rest of Europe and the world through centralization. France also wants the allied nations to take upon themselves responsibility for the nationalization of the industries of the Ruhr valley. These are two problems which, I believe, are capable of solution, and their solution will mean a great deal to the advancement of peace throughout the whole of Europe.
I repeat, France does not want Germany to become a weak nation. At times, when J look to France, the blood of which country runs in my veins, France, one of the proudest nations of Europe, and see some of its men taking their political ideology from Moscow it makes me shiver for the whole future of
Europe. But we know what a wonderful recuperative power France has and that she will rise again from her suffering and humiliation, and I say that it is the duty of the other big powers to see that France again attains the place she formerly occupied in Europe. If we want a Germany which will be strong economically but weak militarily, we also want a France which will be strong in every respect as the only safeguard and guarantee that we have in Europe of peace for the next fifty years to come, but a weak France would mean a weak and a desperate Europe.
These are some of the things which, of necessity, the delegates to the peace conference will have in their minds. Someone may say that it is easy to theorize. I know it is easy. I know what blunders I might make if I had the qualifications to be a delegate to the peace conference. But there is a sound general principle which says that the people as a whole usually exercise good judgment, and I am voicing the sentiments of my own people who have studied these questions from all angles and am giving the conclusions to which they have come at the present time. I believe, therefore, that I cannot be far away from the truth in making these statements.
While the situation is serious, it is not desperate. I believe that if in time of peace we show the same initiative, the same enterprise and the same idealism that we showed during the war, not only this nation but all our allies, the impression created will be so great on those who were our enemies of yesterday, people of different ideologies, that eventually, perhaps within the next twenty or thirty or forty years at the most, we may have the spectacle not of a utopia or a Garden of Eden, for we do not want these things in this world which is built for constructive rivalry, and progressive thoughts and actions in the full sense of the word, but of a united purpose among the peoples of the world to see that no one shall go hungry, no one shall live in squalour, filth and misery, and that all nations shall progress to a higher degree of civilization. I believe that this is possible of accomplishment, with all the power and energy and generosity that is inherent in human beings. We must never forget that we are our brother's keeper. We all know what another great world conflict would mean, have experienced two world wars in the last twenty-five years. There are great hopes for the future. But again I say we must be realistic. We must remember that, wherever there is a danger to the peace of the world in
some country, it is our duty to remedy that situation, to try reason and understanding for its solution. It is a duty to try not to crush but to remedy that situation, because crushing never rectified or cured anything, but leaves countless bruises and ill will. It is within our power and ability to see that the freedoms of which we speak, the four freedoms, are fully applied and honoured at this moment.
I should like to quote the words of Mr. Franklin Delano Roosevelt which he gave to the 27th congress on January 6, 1941. They are as follows:
The first is freedom of speech and expression -everywhere in the world. The second is freedom of every person to worship God in his own way-everywhere in the world. The third is freedom from want, which translated into world terms means economic understanding which will secure to every nation a healthy peace-time life for its inhabitants-everywhere in the world. The fourth is freedom from fear which, translated into world terms, means world-wide reduction of armaments to such a point and in such a thorough fashion that no nation will be in a position to commit an act of physical aggression against any neighbour-anywhere in the world.
That was a much greater message than Mr. Wilson gave to the world over twenty-five years ago, because it is within the reach of every nation in the world, including Germany, Japan and Austria, to implement these four freedoms. But they contain implications of sacrifice; there are implications of being your brother's keeper; there are implications of being willing and ready to some extent, no doubt to a great extent, to give up some of the so-called national sovereignty, for the cause of the welfare of mankind; because if every nation goes back into their shell, economically, nationally and politically speaking and acts as they did after 1918, within twenty years or twenty-five at the most we shall be facing perhaps a worse situation than we faced then.
These four freedoms are within the reach of all nations including China, which I am sorry to say is not one of the big five. China, that great, generous nation will come out of her internal, horrible and destructive insurrection because there is power and resilience in that nation. They showed us what they could do for nearly seven and a half years by holding back the well-armed and well-equipped barbarian invader from Japan. They held them back with almost nothing but their bare hands and their stout hearts and bodies. I am sure a nation like that will eventually find national unity which, I hope and which I know will be for the welfare of the whole world, when she will take her full place in the forums of the world's nations.
The things which I have mentioned are not rhetorical but practical things. They may not
be diplomatic, but I believe they have their raison d'etre. I believe I have given expression to thoughts which, generally speaking, are in the minds of the people of Canada and the United States.
In conclusion, may I say that I know Canada will be well represented. I know that the "Big Four" will need Canada to be there; otherwise there will be a terrific vacancy, the absence being greatly felt. That has been well said by the Minister of National Defence (Mr. Claxton) and the Secretary of State for External Affairs (Mr. St. Laurent). We all know of the huge sacrifices of Canada during the last two wars. They were undertaken not joyfully but seriously and loyally in response to the call coming from across the sea. Our men fought on every battlefield of Europe and Asia. Much of our young blood was spilled and many young lives were lost on every battlefield known to the world. We go to the peace conference not asking for the pound of flesh, a change of territory or aggrandizement in the Atlantic or the Pacific. Surely the voice of Canada being so clear and resounding should be listened to. It should be possible for our delegates-and I know they will do so-to tell the nations of the world to forget their own nationalism and their own political and ideological pride for the welfare of the whole.
I should now like to complete my remarks by quoting the words of a great humanitarian, a man who accomplished a great work during the last w'ar, and whose voice is highly respected. I refer to Pope Pius, the present Pope in Rome who on the 21st day of February, when speaking to a great peace gathering in Rome, used words to this effect: "Let us try with all our might on the great Christian principle, the primary one being charity, to work for the advancement of civilization and of peace; and may the nations of the world see reigning the angel of peace and that the empires will be led by God and not led by guns."