committee for consideration, to receive further consideration in the house at that session.
The second point with which I wish to deal is the remarks made by the hon. member for Kamloops (Mr. Fulton) with respect to the effect of legislation or proposed legislation recently submitted by the President to the Congress of the United States. I think it is necessary that the Canadian public know what the situation is and not be left under the impression that might have been gathered from newspaper dispatches which have had to be qualified previously in statements to the house but which, unfortunately, the hon. member chose to put on the record last night.
There was recommended by the President to the Congress of the United States on May 26 a bill to replace the act which had been passed in 1940, and which was an act to authorize the secretaries of war and navy to assist the governments of the American republics to increase their military and naval establishments. The President, in submitting this bill, said, among other things:
As stated in my message to the 79th congress our army and navy have maintained cordial relations of collaboration with the armed forces of other American republics, within the framework of the good-neighbour policy. Under authorization of the congress, military and naval training missions have been sent to various American republics.
And further down, he said:
The American republics have assumed new responsibilities for their mutual defence and for the maintenance of peace in the act of Chapul-tepec and the charter of the united nations.
Hon. members know that the act of Chapultepec is an act adopted by the members of the Pan-American union to which Canada does not belong. I continue:
The close collaboration of the American republics provided for in the act of Chapultepec, the proposed treaty to be based upon that act, and other basic inter-American documents, make it highly desirable to standardize military organization, training methods, and equipment as has been recommended by the inter-American defence board.
Canada is not a member of the interAmerican defence board, which is an organism of the Pan-American union. I continue:
Under the bill transmitted herewith, the army and navy, acting in conjunction with the Department of State, would be permitted to continue in the future a general programme of collaboration with the armed forces of our sister republics with a view to facilitating the adoption of similar technical standards.
That is the proposed legislation submitted to the United States congress by the President. In submitting it, he had this to say:
[Mr. St. Laurent.}
The collaboration authorized by the bill could be extended also to Canada whose cooperation with the United States in matters affecting their common defence is of particular importance.
That being the situation, it was stated here the other day by the Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) that this legislation had no effect whatsoever on the arrangements outlined and described by him in his statement to the house on February 12, 1947. I think it is only fair that the Canadian public should realize that such is the situation, and that this legislation was legislation to replace the act to which I have referred, an act authorizing the secretaries of war and of navy to assist the governments of the American republics to increase their military and naval establishments and for other purposes. The legislation relates exclusively to the projects arising out of the arrangements of the act of Chapultepec and to implement the undertakings made by those who are parties to that act. It is something which could be extended to Canada, which could be extended to any other nation, which could be extended even to Russia, but it would have to be by arrangement with the sovereign government of such other nation.
Another matter which I think I should deal with at once is this, the idea mentioned by several speakers that the introduction of this bill at the present time had implications which went far beyond the declarations of policy enunciated by the Prime Minister on February 12, 1947. The purpose of this bill is to implement a portion of the declaration made on February 12, 1947, and goes no farther than that; and these implications that have been discussed, these prospective dangers that have been conjured up, cannot be founded on this bill or on the declaration of policy of February 12, 1947. If hon. members choose to imagine other possible policies, other possible dangers, I do not contest their right to do so, but let them do so on their own responsibility. In the presentation of this bill or in the policy declared to this house nothing is to be found which can serve as a basis for such feared possible consequences.