May 24, 1956 (22nd Parliament, 3rd Session)


Colin Cameron

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Colin Cameron (Nanaimo):

Mr. Speaker, I should like to address a question to the Minis: er of National Health and Welfare. Would he care to comment upon the reported s a e' nent by Field Marshal Viscount Mont-o.: c * with regard to the evacuation of ies?
Ion. Paul Martin (Minister of National 1 1th and Welfare): Mr. Speaker, in answer would simply say that any observation We by Field Marshal Montgomery would * oted and considered with great respect, i' en in its context the statement referred primarily to conditions in Europe and apparently he was looking forward to the time when we would be faced with the

Inquiries of the Ministry actuality of intercontinental guided missiles. No one suggests, of course, that evacuation is the final answer to all the problems that civil defence may have to face when these weapons not now in being come into existence. Nor does anyone minimize the problems that will arise in any attempt to move large numbers of the population on short notice out of crowded cities into areas of greater safety. But it is equally clear, particularly against the background of last week end's detonation of an airborne hydrogen bomb-equivalent to ten million tons of t.n.t.-by the U.S. authorities at the Bikini proving grounds, that it will not be sufficient for civil defence purposes to counsel people to take shelter in their cellars. It will be recalled that at the first detonation two years ago a crater was created in the ground 178 feet deep. To protect ourselves against the menace of the H-bomb, something more than a policy of "duck and cover" is required; and that distance is, for the present at least, the only effective defence weapon against the H-bomb. It is because of our conviction that this is so that we, together with the other NATO countries, are testing evacuation to determine the extent to which it can provide an effective answer to the threat of this particular instrument of warfare.
On the orders of the day:

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