February 26, 1948


Angus MacInnis

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

Mr. ANGUS MacINNIS (Vancouver East):

I regret, Mr. Speaker, that I cannot take the time to follow the example set by the hon. member who has just taken his seat (Mr. Webb) and tell you about the beautiful province and the charming city from which I come. I will, however, try to do them justice in a few words by quoting a couple of verses that were made in regard to another beautiful part of the world, and I shall leave it at that.


Charles Edward Johnston

Social Credit


It must be Alberta.


Angus MacInnis

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


The hon. member is wrong again. I quote:

Lovest thou the mountains great,

Peaks to the clouds that soar,

Corrie and fell where eagles dwell,

And cataracts dash evermore;

Lovest thou the green grassy glades By the sunshine sweetly kist, Murmuring waves and echoing caves?

Then come to the gem of the west.

I may have done violence to the metre of the last line, but I think it will do.

Last week the hon. member for Vancouver South (Mr. Green), speaking in this debate, referred to the delay in filling the vacancy in Yale riding caused by the resignation of Hon. Grote Stirling on October 4, last, nearly five months ago. Tonight I merely wish to emphasize the points so well made the other evening by the hon. member for Vancouver South. First, I would say that no constituency should be left unrepresented in this house any longer than is absolutely necessary-and by that I mean any longer than is necessary to get into operation the machinery for holding a by-election. Second, no government has the right to deprive a constituency of its rightful representation in this house for political or any other consideration. Then there is this other point which should be remembered. In view of the high-principled action taken by Mr. Stirling in resigning his seat when he felt he could no longer adequately represent his con-

The Address-Mr. Maclnnis

stituency, it is a definite affront to the electors of Yale to leave that riding unrepresented.

Yale is one of the most important constituencies in Canada. As I think we all know, it is an important fruit-growing area, and marketing fruit satisfactorily has always been a difficult problem in British Columbia. It is more than likely that the marketing of the crop during the coming season will be as difficult as anything the fruit growers of the Okanagan valley have ever experienced. Before coming to Ottawa in January I visited several centres in that constituency. I was in the district when the British Columbia fruit growers association held its annual convention at Penticton, and I want to tell the hon. members that the fruit men of the Okanagan valley are worried about the future. Last year with some difficulty they marketed a relatively small crop of six million boxes of apples. This year they expect to harvest a crop of nine million boxes, and the marketing situation does not look as good even as last year.

I should like to refer briefly to press reports of the convention of the fruit growers association, to indicate how the people of the Okanagan valley, which is largely Yale riding, feel in regard to this matter. The atmosphere of a convention is usually indicated by the headlines in the press reporting it. I hold in my hand a clipping from the Vernon News of January 22 with the heading, "Riddle of future puzzles fruit men in convention. Strange atmosphere of uncertainty pervades speeches." I quote briefly from the article which appeared on the front page under these headlines, dated Penticton, January 21:

A strange 'atmosphere pervades the ball here where the fifty-ninth annual convention of the British Columbia fruit growers' association is being held this week. It is an atmosphere of tension; not of fear, but certainly of apprehension, and it penetrates most every address, many resolutions and most conversations.

This uncertainty is of the future. The more distant past of the depression days is known now and its causes quite well understood. Known also is the general measure of prosperity of the war years and the immediate postwar period.

This air-this atmosphere-is difficult to define. Reference to it was made Wednesday morning by the Minister of Agriculture, Hon. Frank Putnam, who declared that more difficult days lie ahead for farmers. The reports of the sales agency heads, president A. K. Lloyd and sales manager David McNair, delved into it. Mr. McNair's problem was a sharp one; the distribution of a probable nine million box crop of apples this year entirely on the North American continent.

That is the situation in the riding formerly represented by Mr. Stirling. I believe it is a situation which demands that this constituency

be represented in this house as soon as possible. Such representation has been too long delayed already, and I urge the government to act quickly in this matter.

It is so long since the speech from the throne was read by his excellency that I suppose many hon. members have forgotten what it said. As was natural, the first para-1 graph of the speech referred to the unsettled condition of world affairs. It pointed out that dislocations resulting from the ravages of war are becoming increasingly apparent. It said Europe has made only partial recovery and that in Asia active fighting is continuing over large areas. The speech then went on to contrast conditions in Canada with conditions in other parts of the world; and, as I suppose was natural, the comparison was very favourable to Canada. I am not finding fault with that, because I am quite willing to agree that living conditions in Canada are about as good as living conditions anywhere. We should not, however, be too boastful about conditions here, because when the countries with which we are making comparisons were ravaged by invading armies and their cities pounded into rubble, we were adding to our capacity to produce at a rate unprecedented in our history. I say, then, we should not be [DOT]too boastful about our prosperity, for the reason mentioned and also because the prosperity is not as general as well-fed cabinet ministers would lead one to believe.


Humphrey Mitchell (Minister of Labour)



How about the well-fed members?


Angus MacInnis

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


I do not know why the Minister of Labour should speak up when I mention well-fed cabinet ministers. Again, we should not be too boastful about our prosperity because it rests upon a very shaky foundation. Indeed, the speech from the throne recognized that fact when it said:

A permanent solution of our exchange problems and the future well being of the nation depend upon the revival of world trade.

How often did I hear that phrase during the depression. Then the speech from the throne continues:

An important step forward in this direction has been the successful conclusion of the recent discussions at Geneva.

We all welcome the Geneva trade agreements, but how insubstantial they are in the present disjointed condition of world affairs is demonstrated by the fact that at the very time we had before us those agreements to free world trade, we were giving priority to a measure for restricting trade. Again I am not blaming anyone for that contradiction;

The Address-Mr. Maclnnis

I am merely drawing attention to it so that before we boast we might be a little more careful.

It seems to me there is something wrong somewhere, which we have not found and which we are leaving out of our reckoning. In my opinion what is wrong is that since the end of hostilities w'e have failed to realize the extent of the war damage in Europe, not only the physical 'destruction that took place but the emotional and psychological damage to the people themselves. No matter to what extent trade may be made free, Europe cannot trade until her productive machinery is restored; and that has been made so difficult because we changed far too soon from the co-operation of war to the competition of peace.

The first positive steps should not necessarily be steps leading to free trade. We shall have to have something to trade before we do that. The first positive steps toward world prosperity and world peace should be the economic reconstruction of the countries devastated by the war. Whatever the cost of that may be, it should be considered as part of the war cost. To act otherwise is to leave the winning of the war unfinished and the peace in jeopardy.

There is one hope on the horizon at the moment that something in that regard may be done. There is something which perhaps Canada can do. We may be able to give aid through the Marshall plan, which I hope and which I trust everyone else hopes will come into operation at the earliest moment. It is our chief hope at the moment for both peace and prosperity.

I mentioned earlier that prosperity in this country is not so general as we might be led to believe. For that reason I should like to refer briefly to the growing problem of unemployment which for several months has been increasing all across the country. I do not wish for a moment to give the impression that unemployment has attained startling proportions. It has not. As a matter of fact employment is on a high scale, but there are ugly symptoms which are reminiscent of what took place in this country in the hungry thirties. They show that although we had the time to do it we have not made conditions such that persons who are unemployed because of circumstances beyond their control may have as a right either work or decent maintenance without the stigma of charity. That is not yet provided for. I want to read to the house two short excerpts from newspapers which deal with unemployment in my own city of Vancouver. The first is an article which

appeared in the Ottawa Journal of February 7, date lined Vancouver and under the subheading, "Vancouver alarmed by steady influx of youthful vagrants." I wish hon. members to note the word "vagrants". Legally a vagrant is a person without any visible means of support. This news item reads;

Civic and welfare officials, with painful memories of the jobless myriads that descended on this Pacific coast city in the "grim thirties," today are becoming alarmed at the increasing influx here of youthful vagrants.

City welfare officials report they are becoming swamped with the arrival of hundreds of youths a week from eastern Canada and the prairies seeking jobs on the warmer Pacific coast.

At a special meeting last night of the homeless men's committee-

That does not sound like prosperity.

-of the community chest, officials called on Vancouver citizens to provide homes for "hundreds" of unemployed youths roaming city-streets.

It is only yesterday that those youths were our heroes. If war should come tomorrow they would be heroes again. I warn this country not to allow them to again become homeless vagrants. An editorial which appeared in the Vancouver Sun of February 12, 1948, referred to the same matter in the following words:

An emergency committee headed by Reverend Doctor Andrew Roddan and operating under community chest sponsorship has made a good beginning in dealing with the plight of Vancouver's unemployed.

Overlapping of social welfare: work is being eliminated by setting up the Thurlow street hostel of the Salvation Army :as a central clearing bureau for these men, to whose needs the Sun has drawn attention repeatedly. The community chest has set aside $1,000 towards feeding and sheltering the homeless and hungry.

In these days of high prices $1,000 is not going to go very far toward providing food and shelter for hungry people. Another paragraph in this editorial reads:

One kindly city woman, a soldier's widow, who had read in the Sun of the misfortunes of these unemployed men now roaming our streets, telephoned the Sun with an offer of several dozen pairs of warm wool socks. Through the red shield centre, she soon had batches of applicants appearing at her door until the welcome socks were all given away.

Such editorial comment and news items need no elaboration. They are in themselves eloquent comment on our failure to meet the situation, because we knew that sooner or later we would be faced with it. It is heartening to see that the press and the public are concerned about the plight even of a relatively few unemployed. There may be some benefit in prodding those in authority so that a

The Address-Mr. Maclnnis

definite policy may be framed whereby the unemployed may not have again to consider himself as the unwanted.

I think we need to be watchful in this matter. I am afraid that among the members of the government there are those that hold to the inevitability of unemployment. My attention has been drawn to a statement attributed to the Secretary of State for External Affairs (Mr. St. Lament) during his recent visit to Winnipeg. I should like to read the following short excerpt which appeared in an editorial in the Toronto Star of February 2, 1948:

One can imagine the depression and unemployment with which we would have been faced if there had1 been no country to which we could export the surpluses of our farms, our forests, and our mines; the $1,500,000,000 we have over the last eighteen or twenty months lent to others to purchase our surpluses, had not been available for distribution here to pay for the work of our farmers, our bushmen, our miners and our workers in our plants and factories. How could we have avoided massive unemployment and the demoralizing system of direct relief?

Mr. GIBSON i(Comox-Alberni): Sell it to the United States for hard money.


Angus MacInnis

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


There may be another way, I do not know. I quote that statement because if it is a correct statement of the government's attitude, it is dangerous in the extreme. It means that this government is bereft of any policy to meet changing conditions. It means that in the opinion of this government we can live better if we give away a large portion of our wealth than if we use it in Canada for our own benefit. In order that there may be no possibility of misunderstanding in this matter, I wish to say that I do not in any way criticize the loans made to Great Britain and other countries to enable them to buy the things that we have to sell. In that I supported the government as did all the members of the group with which I am associated. As a matter of fact I not only supported it but I urged1 the government to make those loans and my only regret is that we could not have done more. But I do reject the philosophy that if we had not made the loans we would ourselves have been in economic difficulties. From the statement I have read it would appear that the loans were made, not so much to help the countries receiving them, as to save us from "massive unemployment".


John Lambert Gibson

Independent Liberal

Mr. GIBSON (Comox-Alberni):

That is not true.


Angus MacInnis

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


I do not know whether it is true or not. But when a member of the cabinet says that that would have 'happened had we not done it, there are conclusions that

could be drawn from his statement regardless of what the hon. member for Comox-Alberni may say about it.

Let us take a look at that $1-5 billion which we lent to Britain and1 to other countries. I may be wrong, I have not much of a business head, but I understand that the borrowing countries were given a bank credit here; that is, that no money left this country but that when a borrowing country made purchases in Canada its account was debited with the monetary value of the goods received. The goods left Canada and we got an IOU. If the borrower cannot pay we will assume the loss. If we can make a loan of that kind for people outside of Canada, is there any economic reason why the government could not make the same amount of money available to the people of Canada?-not to keep them on direct relief, but to keep them working and producing wealth in Canada, building for instance, houses which are so badly needed. We were told in 1944 by the James committee that there was need at that time for over 700,000 homes. Those homes have not yet been built. Surely if we have a capital of $1-5 billion we can put our people to work and produce wealth here in Canada far in excess of that SI-5 billion. If we cannot do that there must be something wrong with my economic thinking.

I believe in trade. I believe that the more we exchange the goods that we have in surplus for goods that other people have in surplus the higher our standard of living will be. That kind of trade is necessary unless we have within our nation all the goods that we need-both capital and consumer goods. Trade is only useful when we can exchange usable wealth for usable wealth. In that case both parties to the deal profit. There is no gain and there can be no material gain to us, at least at the moment, in giving away wealth, and there is no reason why we should have to depend on that fiction in order to keep our people working. Such an idea is the essence of nonsense and the sooner we get rid of it the better.

I want to refer for a few moments to another matter which I had hoped that at some time I would have 'an opportunity of discussing at considerable length. I refer to a social security program for Canada. I doubt whether there is any member of the house who has not since the opening of the session received numerous letters from people in his constituency who find it impossible to live on their present incomes. These letters come from war veterans trying to live on their disability pension, war veterans trying to live on the war veterans allowance, old age pension-

The Address-Mr. Maclnnis

ers, people drawing small superannuation pensions and other such people. I believe that at least fifty per cent of my correspondence is about such matters.

I do not believe that the question of social security or social services can be handled effectively in the piecemeal fashion in which we have been dealing with it up to now. The actual situation at the moment is that the group which exercises the most pressure gets the greatest results. That is not good enough in a country where people should be dealt with equitably and be provided for according to their needs, not according to the pressure which they can exert.

I think the time has arrived when the government should be giving thought to the development of an over-all social security program. What should be the basic principles of such a program?

First, it should be national in scope; that is, it should cover all Canadians without regard to provincial boundaries. Second, its benefits should be available to everyone who is prevented from earning a living for himself and dependents for any reason beyond his control. Third, the benefits should be adequate in amount; that is, they should not be just a nominal amount so that we can say that we are doing something. The amount should not be arbitrarily set. It should have some relation to what is required for a reasonable standard of living. Just as we provide for the salaries of people who are performing services for the state, a social security program would look after those who either cannot perform service or have already performed service to the community as citizens, and consequently should not now be compelled to live on a mere pittance.

The fund out of which the benefits are to be paid should in my opinion be raised on a contributory basis, and perhaps the income tax is the best method for raising such a fund.

I am quite free to say that between the dominion and the provinces the people of Canada have considerable social legislation at the present time, which in the main, having regard to its limitations, is working fairly well. I find the administration of most of the social services with -which I come in touch all that can be expected. I find those in charge sympathetic and willing to give the applicant the benefit of the doubt where they believe there is a doubt. But I think everyone will admit that our social services on all levels of government are inadequate and have been developed haphazardly. Let me just refer to one or two instances.

Take our old age pensions. The pensions were never, and are not now, sufficient for

any sort of decent living. But besides that, there are anomalies. For instance, if a pensioner's wife is not eligible in her own right, if she is under the age of seventy, the two of them have to live on a pension that is totally inadequate for one. I do not know what was the basis for that. Surely it is not assumed that a woman between the age of sixty and sixty-nine can go out today and find work and add to the family income. The idea is preposterous, and I cannot understand on what basis the amount of these pensions is arrived at. I could mention a number of other things in regard to old age pensions, but it is not necessary.

Let me say a word about unemployment insurance. Admittedly it is a great advance over the old method of relief, but there is much dissatisfaction with it. I am not referring now to faults in the act itself-that is, in the act as it is drafted for a particular purpose, or in its administration. It is largely because the act is limited to involuntary unemployment, and the average person who contributes to it cannot understand why he cannot get benefits when he is unemployed for other reasons. I try to explain to those who write to me about it and to those who speak to me about it why they cannot get it, but it is difficult to get them to understand. Let me give an example. John Doe is a contributor to the unemployment insurance fund. He becomes unemployed and makes application for benefit. For three weeks he applies at the employment office for work, but no work being available he receives his unemployment insurance cheque. On the fourth week John Doe is ill and he cannot go to the employment office, but his wife goes to the office and says that she is sorry but Mr. Doe could not come this morning, that he is ill and has been ill for a week. But there is no cheque for him, because although John Doe is unemployed and there is no job for him, he is not unemployed according to the act; he is sick, and consequently when he needs his cheque the most he cannot get it. He cannot get it because the act does not provide for unemployment because of sickness.

I could go on and multiply these instances. I say again they are not faults in administration; they are limitations that should be provided for.

I appreciate that the federal government cannot institute a national social security program without the co-operation of the provinces. I also appreciate, Mr. Speaker, that some of the provinces are not as co-operative as they might be. I do, however, urge this government to start at once to work out a

The Address-Mr. Breithaupt

social security program along the lines I have indicated. Then let the people know about it and I am satisfied that the public response to a constructive program will make the go-it-alone premiers much more co-operative than they are now.

There is just one point I wish to make in connection with this matter of co-operation between the dominion government and the provincial governments in regard to social security. Seven provinces have already signed financial agreements with the federal government, and I think the government has an obligation to these seven provinces to conclude with them, as I believe they are anxious there should be concluded with them, agreements covering social security measures such as were mentioned in the dominion government's green book proposals of 1945.

A national policy on this question is urgent as neither the provinces nor the municipalities have the financial resources to deal with the many problems which the end of war prosperity has once more placed upon them; consequently I would urge the government to act at once. Do not leave this important matter until you have to begin looking around for a vote catcher. The day for that sort of thing, if it ever had validity, has long since gone by.

Mr. L. 0. BREITHAUPT (Waterloo North): Mr. Speaker, at this point in the throne speech, late as it is, I wish to congratulate the mover, the hon. member for Lake St. John-Roberval (Mr. Dion), and the seconder, the hon. member for Halifax (Mr. Dickey). The people of Waterloo North, which is one of the great industrial, financial and agricultural ridings in Canada, are naturally interested in the positive approach to the problems which confront us as a nation today. On account of the diversification of activities in the riding from which I hail, the country's problems are our problems in a very real way.

While I do not intend to make a speech at this time with purely local implications, nevertheless I do wish to draw the attention of the house and of Canada to the fact that since the last throne speech debate much of interest has happened in my riding of Waterloo North. In September last we had the pleasure and the honour of a two-day visit from the riding's most distinguished son, the Prime Minister, (Mr. Mackenzie King). Besides visiting in his native city of Kitchener he also paid a visit to the rural communities and renewed his former acquaintance with his many friends there. Many recalled the occas-sion of Mr. King's first election to the House

of Commons from Waterloo North, and it goes without saying, Mr. Speaker, that the welcome he received was tumultuous.

On January 1 of this year the town of Waterloo graduated to the ranks of full-fledged cityhood. Naturally the event was suitably celebrated, such as only Waterloo citizens could celebrate an event of this kind with their well-known liquid resources. Most Ontario towns become cities when their populations reach the statutory requirement of 15,000. In the case of Waterloo, however, what it lacked in population was more than made up in other ways. It became a city by special act of the Ontario legislature after reaching a population of slightly over 10,000.

The new city of Waterloo can point with a good deal of pride to forty bustling industries, unquestioned leadership in the insurance field, together with the best of facilities for educational, religious and recreational training, hockey included, real hockey, not just broom ball. Now that Waterloo has become a full-fledged city, adjoining as it does, the city of Kitchener, the twin community has become unique in that the two centres form the Dominion of Canada's only twin cities undivided by a river or natural barrier. It is indicative of the splendid spirit of co-operation evidenced by the good neighbour attitude of citizens of both cities that many of the educational and cultural institutions are run jointly. Thus, while actually two municipalities, to all intents and purposes, they might as well be one. Probably in years to come a closer union, which many believe is inevitable, will undoubtedly be consummated.

Agriculturally, the riding of Waterloo North has probably more happy and contented farmer families than any district in Canada. Some hon. members will dispute that. Mixed farming has been the order of the day for many generations and still continues to yield satisfactory over-all results for our people in the rural communities. Many of our farmers are a good deal better off than their city brothers, and it is a matter of quite some interest that best business properties in our cities are often financed by mortgage money which the farmers provide on developed real estate.

Financially, the district is characterized as *the insurance centre of Canada, and is often referred to as "the Hartford of Canada". The financial institutions there have taken their full part in assisting to build up Canada and in protecting the Canadian public against loss and damage to life, limb and property. The record of these companies is so well

The Address-Mr. Breithaupt

known that to dwell further on this point at the moment would be superfluous at a time when we are all endeavouring to reach the end of the present debate.

Industrially, Waterloo North has been built up, not only to supply the requirements of the domestic markets, but factories have made extensive additions to plant and equipment during the last number of years to cater the better 'to home and export trade. As one out of every eight employees depends on export business, it is a truism that to live Canada must export. This can have no truer implications or applications than those which apply to the people of my riding.

It is a matter of great satisfaction and much pride to us all that Canada can point to a 1947 eclipse of all trade records, including wartime peaks. Figures released by the dominion bureau of statistics on the weekend of February 9 showed our foreign trade for 1947 totalled over $5,385 million compared with $4,266 million in 1946. The previous high figure attained, which was during the war in 1944, was $5,241 million. When it is considered that this figure included great quantities of war materials shipped to our allies, the figures for 1947 become all the more impressive.

This great industrial expansion, while establishing a very enviable record, has, nevertheless, probably resulted in one of the chief causes of our shortage of United States dollars. New industrial projects and developments, as we have recently been informed by the Minister of Trade and Commerce, reached the imposing figure of two and one-third billion dollars in 1947.

It appears, therefore, that Canada, as a result, should hit a new high in production for the current year, if new plant extensions and manufacturing facilities are to be fully utilized. Fully to utilize this plant extension, I am convinced that a determined drive will have to be put forth to increase our exports to the United States and other hard currency countries. I was much impressed by the remarks of the hon. member for Vancouver East (Mr. Maclnnis) who preceded me, when he also came out for the Marshall plan. I am pleased to note that the Hyde Park agreements are still in effect. This should help our export picture.

I wish to take this opportunity of congratulating our dynamic Minister of Trade and Commerce, his deputy minister and his able cohorts for the steps they have already taken in connection with the stimulation of exports, and at the same time, I wish humbly to suggest

that if the economy of our country is not to undergo a recession of some proportions, these efforts might well be doubled and redoubled to keep industry fully employed, and to keep our surplus products moving. The time is near at hand when favourable consideration might also be given to the export of a much larger percentage of our farm products, including cattle, if it can be established that these are not required for Canadian or United Kingdom consumption.

As regards our trade position, statistics show that at confederation, as pointed out in a recent speech by the deputy minister of trade and commerce, fifty-six per cent of our imports came from the United Kingdom. A steady decline has resulted in imports from this source ever since. The percentage fell to just under twenty per cent before the beginning of the last war. At the present time our imports from the United Kingdom are only 7i per cent of our total imports. This situation should be speedily remedied as Britain's ability to export improves. All hon. members know that there has been a serious shortage of men's shirts in Canada. To remedy this it is to be hoped that the United Kingdom will soon be able to supply us with much larger textile shipments. It would be particularly good news to the many shirt factories in my riding if these would soon materialize. I am pleased to learn that the government has a capable emissary, Mr. A. G. S. Griffin, now in the United Kingdom, chasing up increased shipments of much needed materials.

I am firmly of the belief that, as and when the United Kingdom can supply us with a greater volume of all lines, we should definitely increase our imports from that source. Undoubtedly as British manufacturers are able to step up production their prices will swing more into line; so that volume will result. A feature I wish to stress particularly at this time is possibly one that does not need further emphasis. Nevertheless, I think it is important and will bear repeating: that is, that our import trade has turned largely to the United States wdthout a similar increase in our exports to that country. Surely, if any businessman in this country or any other country had a top-ranking customer from whom he could purchase supplies in return, he would be only too glad to do so, and I am sure that the United States will arrive at the point where similar treatment to their best customer will also appear to be good business to them.

At the time of confederation the United States supplied us with only 30 per cent of our total imports. By 1946 the figure had

The Address-Mr. Breithaupt

risen to about 75 per cent-an advance in imports from the United States of 45 per cent! It surely must be apparent to all hon. members and the country as a whole, that unpleasant as the task is for the government, corrective steps had to be taken to rectify this situation.

It is a fact that stands in bold relief that we have turned largely to the United States for our foreign purchases, and they in turn have not reciprocated in kind.

The present program of the government designed to meet the situation is apparently pretty good, better than we are given credit for in some quarters. This is clearly demonstrated by the facts recently submitted to the house by the Minister of Finance. It is gratifying to know that the steps which have been taken have produced results far beyond the expectations of even the most sanguine. Canadian holdings of gold and United States dollars were at a low of $461 million during December, and at the end of January they had bounced up to $514 million, thus registering an improvement in the position during that short time of some $53,000,000, which represented an improvement of 11 per cent. Obviously, if this trend continues and exports increase, the picture will soon improve. I am sure that all hon. members, including the Minister of Finance himself, will look forward to the gradual easing of some of the present restrictions. At this point I think it is only fair to say that the Minister of Finance and the Minister of Trade and Commerce have been very reasonable and helpful in connection with situations which have arisen owing to the first draft regulations. Many of these situations have been ironed out to the satisfaction of all concerned, I believe, and not only for the members of the government, as was feared by the opposition would be the case.

While import bans and restrictions may assist in partially rectifying the present exchange situation, nevertheless in my opinion the one really effective remedy which should be stressed to the utmost is for the government to encourage production as much as possible and also production for export of those commodities, and only those commodities, which are in plentiful and surplus supply here. Surely we, the best customer of the United States, have every right to expect of our great neighbours to the south of us that, besides selling to us such a tremendous percentage of our total requirements, they too should be willing and anxious to patronize their best customer by taking more of our products.

As I said before, I was glad to hear that the Minister of Trade and Commerce has taken initial steps to bring to the attention of the United States government the case for Canadian exports under the European recovery program or Marshall plan, also referred to by the hon. member for Vancouver East. There are many industries which can assist in the rehabilitation of European countries through this plan. As an example of what can be done I wish to draw to the attention of the house the situation in connection with the Canadian shoe industry.

The shoe industry reached its highest peak of production in 1946, when it manufactured 43,000,000 pairs, mostly for home consumption. This high production was possible and necessary to fill domestic requirements which ran short during the war years, and was only possible because the shoe industry had built up a large capacity during the war to take care of service requirements. Reference might be made here to the high quality of footwear supplied to the armed forces, and testified to by General McNaugbton while he was head of the Canadian army. According to figures supplied by Mr. Frank Millington, of Montreal, executive vice-president of the shoe manufacturers association of Canada, we are advised that it has been estimated that even if production again reached 43,000,000 pairs in Canada, the industry could still further increase production to allow for two and a half million pairs additional for. export. This industry submits that it would be able to make five and half million pairs of shoes for the European recovery program, and that at the same time export possibilities to countries other than Marshall plan countries would not be prejudiced, nor would shoe requirements for our domestic trade suffer. I might point out that if shoe business were to accrue to Canada under the plans now being made by the Minister of Trade and Commerce, the various provinces throughout Canada would benefit from such a program. The shoe industry is spread from coast to coast and beneficial results in employment would therefore be felt across the country.

While a great deal has been said in and out of this house about the unfortunate rise in the cost of living, it appears to me that while we here at Ottawa are placing thousands and literally millions of words on Hansard, the situation as far as Canada is concerned seems to be improving daily. A recent report from the Kitchener-Waterloo Daily Record states:

Retail meat dealers today refer to bacon price reductions from ten to fifteen cents a pound, since the high of eighty-five cents a pound in the twin cities.

The Address-Mr. H. O. White

A drop of this kind is certainly an indication of the trend. A recent letter received by me from a friend in Fitchburg, Massachusetts, indicates that best butter is now selling at ninety-four cents a pound there, and only recently had been selling at ninety-nine cents a pound; eggs at seventy cents a dozen and milk at twenty-three cents a quart. Comparison with the prices we are still privileged to enjoy in this great country indicates without the shadow of a doubt that we are far better off in Canada than some hon. members would lead us to believe. From what I have seen of the raw material markets, I am convinced that the trend in most commodities is definitely down. Production has caught up with demand in many industries and is rapidly reaching the saturation point in others. With the prices committee doing an excellent job in ferreting out certain situations, it appears to me that with natural economic forces also at work the cost of living will soon be down for our Canadian people.

I wish to refer briefly to the case for government aid to flying clubs throughout the country. I understand from members of our flying club at Kitchener that an appeal has been made by the Royal Canadian flying clubs association to the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Howe) and the Minister of National Defence (Mr. Claxton) to have prewar subsidies reinstated to these flying clubs for the duration of the current year as a temporary measure until an up-to-date proposal for subsidy can be carefully worked out and considered. Realizing what a splendid job the flying clubs have done during the pre-war period, to say nothing of the really wonderful piece of work they did during the war and since, I sincerely hope that consideration can be given to relieving the present situation as far as these clubs are concerned.

Before closing, Mr. Speaker, and if my time permits me to do so, I should like to refer briefly to the question of reduction of income taxes for the coming year. While the matters discussed1 in this house for the last month have undoubtedly indirectly interested some of my constituents, some of your constituents and some Canadians some of the time, the fact remains that all my constituents, all your constituents and all Canadians are directly interested1 at this time and all the time in the subject of further income tax reductions. I would therefore strongly urge the Minister of Finance again to give most serious consideration to a further general reduction in income taxes in his forthcoming budget. Last year I believe an average over-all reduction of twenty-nine per cent was made by him, and to say that Canada received the good news

with enthusiasm would be an understatement. Abbott was a real hero I Surely with the much larger surplus this year of three quarters of a billion dollars, a further all-round substantial tax cut can be made and at the same time a reasonable proportion of our national debt retired. I wish to repeat my well-substantiated and, I hope, effective case of last year when I put in a special plea for white collar workers and low income groups. Until rates for these groups are brought more into line with general levels, I believe they should have special consideration and much needed relief from high wartime imposts.

Mr. H. 0. WHITE (Middlesex East): Mr. Speaker, in rising to take part in this debate this evening I wish, following the custom in this house, to compliment the mover and seconder of the address in reply to the speech from the throne.

Listening from time to time to various hon. members one would come to the conclusion that Canadians were poor people; we hear so many arguments in favour of cheap food. I want to point out, however, that in 1947 Canadians spent $400,000,000 on alcoholic beverages, $275,000,000 on tobacco and $120,000,000 on movies and cosmetics, which makes a total of about $795,000,000. In addition the governments paid some $230,000,000 in family allowances, which brings the total to nearly $100 per person. It would seem to me, then, that people want subsidized food so they can afford luxuries; and they want the farmer to bear the brunt of it. I am not going to say anything more about farming tonight, except that I am glad the Minister of Finance (Mr. Abbott) acceded to my suggestion that he give the fruit and vegetable growers some idea of how long the dollar conservation program might last, so they can make their plans for 1948.

Tonight I wish to deal particularly with two lines of endeavour carried on in my constituency of Middlesex East. First I should like to deal with the needs and development of the university of Western Ontario. I have no hesitation in saying that from what I have heard from various sources Western is one of the finest universities in Canada. I need only mention two outstanding men, Doctor Banting and Doctor Best, who received their early education and training and carried out many of their experiments at London and Western. On March 7 next the new president of the university, Doctor G. E. Hall, is to be installed, and a special convocation service is to be held to commemorate the event. In passing I want to pay tribute to Doctor Sherwood Fox, past president of the university, who is

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now retired. He is still carrying on many activities, however, one of which I should like to mention particularly because I am rather interested in it. During the past few years the native sweet chestnut of the lake Erie region has been suffering from a disease or blight that has practically wiped it out. A few stands remain, but they never get to the fruiting stage. This fall in the city of St. Thomas a few sweet chestnuts were offered for sale at $1 per nut, and were bought eagerly by people who are trying to propagate them and grow the sweet chestnut again in southwestern Ontario. Doctor Sherwood Fox is spending much of his spare time gathering data and carrying on experiments in the hope of finding some way to perpetuate this great forest tree.

Western, as I said before, is well known in connection with the arts and sciences, and also for its extension work. It is looking to the future, providing training for many of our student veterans and young people from all over Canada, particularly from western Ontario. Like all growing institutions it requires many things, including new buildings; and if and when they ask for assistance, I hope it will be forthcoming. In this connection I should like particularly to say a word in reference to the Department of the Secretary of State. Western university has a very good library and a very good librarian, with whom I am personally acquainted. According to law I understand each university in the dominion should have forwarded to it six copies of all governmental documents that are not of a secret nature. That is only right; but as far as Western is concerned, and I believe this is true of all universities, their collection is incomplete. I have with me a list which has been compiled of the missing governmental documents required by the library of Western university, and I am going to ask the Secretary of State (Mr. Gibson) to do everything possible to see that these missing documents are supplied. I understand this is supposed to be done by the king's printer. As we know by looking at Hansard and other documents the king's printer is a busy man. Some of the work has to be turned out on very short notice, but some other documents are weeks, months and years behind. When I see the quantity of paper that comes to my desk every day, some of it nothing but waste paper, I believe some of that energy could be employed in providing these missing documents for Western and all the other universities of Canada. I believe they all find themselves in the same position, so I would suggest that the universities be asked to furnish lists of the government documents they require,

TMr. White (Middlesex East).]

and that the job of furnishing these documents be given some printing company. It seems to me that if there is any place in Canada where these documents are needed, where they will be used to advantage and the benefit of that use passed on to the country as a whole, it is our universities.

Along the same line I should like to mention the possibility of a national library. Yesterday we heard something about the national film board. We would not want a national library to turn out like that, and if I thought it would do so I would not mention it. I believe a national library could be a great asset. I know Western university borrows books from universities in the maritimes, from the University of Michigan and many other places. If we had a national library in Canada in time it could1 be developed into an institution from which our universities could borrow the documents and books they might require.

So much for Western university and its needs. I am passing over these matters rather quickly because time is limited. Now I want to say a few words about veterans affairs.

The largest military hospital in the British empire, Westminster hospital, is located in Middlesex East. I am well acquainted with the doctors, some of the nurses and some of the staff in that hospital. They are loyal. I know that the doctors and others are doing everything possible to help the veterans. They are doing a great work. But there is one thing that I find there, and this applies toother departments of government. There are some employees who are permanent civil servants and others who are temporary. Some of the temporaries have been there since the first great war. I do not know how you can expect to build up loyalty in that way. If they are-going to be there for a lifetime, let us make it a permanent job.

Some of these are doing the work of grade three civil servants but they are not always getting the pay. When inquiry is made we are told that the position has not been created. These people are doing the work, and I suggest that if they are doing the work the job is there..

In connection with that hospital is the western counties tubercular centre which is located in beautiful grounds south of the hospital and1 of the city of London. I had the opportunity to visit this institution and I know they are doing a fine work.

Westminster hospital is south of London on Wellington road, a paved highway with heavy motor traffic. There is no sidewalk along this highway from the city limits to the hospital. It is true there is a bus line, but many people prefer to walk, and the only place they can walk is on the side of the road. Sooner or

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later someone is going to be killed. It is going to take a life to awaken the authorities to the fact that by the expenditure of a small amount human lives may be saved. Some of the property past which this sidewalk would run is still farmland and the owners are not interested in paying any frontage tax. I know the Department of Veterans Affairs does not want to build sidewalks for municipalities, but I venture to say that ninety per cent of the people who walk up and down Wellington road are going to or from the military hospital. With a little oo-operation between the Department of Veterans Affairs and the municipal authorities that sidewalk could be provided in the immediate future.

I am not going to go into this in too much detail, but I would remind hon. members that I mentioned this matter on the last day of the last session, July 17, 1947, and of course no one paid any attention to it. I would refer the Minister of Veterans Affairs (Mr. Gregg) to page 5823 of Hansard of July 17, 1947. I suggest that in dealing with these employees at the hospital the civil service commission and the Department of Veterans Affairs get together to try to work out some satisfactory arrangement so that these employees will not be left where they are now.

I want to say a word or two about pensions. I do not think that anyone in Canada would complain about what we might do for the veteran and those who fought our wars. There would be no complaint if we increased pensions because there is a debt which can never be paid in money. Why be niggardly about this particular item? I am going to suggest that the plan set out in The Legionary, and which has been mentioned on more than one occasion in this house, be followed. There are others who took part in the great war, and I refer particularly to Red Gross workers. I might mention also student veterans, both married and single, who are attending schools and universities. The cost of living has increased since these allowances were granted and they are now finding it rather difficult to get along.

I wonder if it would not be possible for the bureau of statistics to set up a realistic cost of living index. About 33 cents out of every dollar that we spend is in the form of hidden and other taxes. Taxes are not considered in setting up the cost of living index and therefore it is not a true index. This index should be brought up to date and be made more realistic. I believe pensions could be linked with the cost of living index so that when living costs went up pensions would automatically be increased. When the reverse was the case, the opposite situation would apply.

It would avoid placing the veteran in the position in which he finds himself today where his pension is not adequate to meet his living costs. I might mention also the widows and children of veterans, some of whom are finding themselves in a most difficult position.

One hundred Veterans Land Act houses have been built in my riding. It has been my opportunity to meet many of the young veterans who have returned and purchased these houses. As I said last session, these houses in the township of Westminster are nice little homes but they cost too much money as far as the veteran is concerned. I think $500 or $750, or even more, should be written off the cost of these houses so that these veterans will have a fighting chance to pay for them. I notice in the London Free Press of a couple of days ago that these veterans have formed an organization to beautify their houses. They are showing a community interest in the project and I believe they are going to do a good job. Let us give them some encouragement.

I have been in many of these houses. While they look as though they had been hastily built, it took a long time to build them and they cost too much. I suggest that some reduction should be made. I am not certain that the deal has been completed but I do not believe anyone in the country would object. We heard a story the other night about the film board. We can question the expenditures made there, bu't I do not think anyone in the country would question anything we did for the veteran.

I received a telegram from the Army, Navy and Air Force Veterans of London, unit 227, in which they complain about some of the things I have referred to in my talk tonight.

There is just one other thing I want to mention-immigration. I think I have mentioned this before. Canada is a country with vast resources and we must face the fact that we need more people. I have mentioned the fact that we would gladly share our national debt with them. I repeat that we have a national debt that should satisfy anyone. Any child born in Canada tomorrow has a debt of over $7,000 over his head. We need people to help carry this burden.

I have had considerable to do with assisting people in this country to bring over their relatives from Europe. The present set-up is inadequate. I often get excuses and passing the buck. It is always someone else who is holding up the entry into this country of some immigrant. While we are doing that, other countries are skimming off the cream of the immigrants that we might get, and the

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first thing we know all that will be left will be the dregs. I mention, one particular case, which could be multiplied many times, in which I attempted to assist a would-be immigrant from one of the European countries. He had left Latvia before the war, but like many others got caught in the jam and now finds himself in Germany. He is not in a displaced persons camp and so comes, they tell me, under the international refugee organization. Each of these organizations, the one looking after displaced persons and the international refugee organization, has given him a number, and there he is wandering about Europe with a number, and nobody doing anything about it. So far as I can see our immigration policy is simply a delaying action, and when I contrast it with what I read in the newspapers of the influx of reds from across the border, I wonder how they get into this country so easily. We seem- to be struggling with one hand to keep immigrants out, and with the other hand we are welcoming undesirables.

There is another feature. Many of our young educated Canadian boys and girls are crossing the border to seek a living in the United States. I quote from an article in the Windsor Star of February 13 last, under the heading "Over border in droves", which says:

Boys and girls in their teens are going over the border in droves from Canada to the United States. R. P. Bonham, chief of the United States immigration service at Seattle, reports that these young folks are seeking employment in the United States. Most of them are being picked up and returned to their homes in Canada.

A group of young Canadians w-as taken to the immigration people in the United States. One of -them explained why they are leaving Canada by the simple statement: "There just isn't much chance for a young guy in Canada today."

Some of these young people should be sent down to Ottawa to speak to the dominion government. With managed lives the rule in Canada today, the officials should hear the stories of these young people, who want to get away from this country -to seek a new life in the United States.

It does not speak well for Canada's trend to socialism to find so many young people wanting to escape to better living under free enterprise in the United States.

Mr. DAVID CROLL (Spadina): Mr. Speaker, I want to take this opportunity to speak about the tragic case of Palestine, with all its heartaches and frustrations and dis-illusionments. The case is now before the united nations assembly at Lake Success. It is not only of importance to the Jewish people; it is of importance to Canada and to the united nations.

Today the Holy land is being engulfed in an unholy war, in defiance of the decision of the parliament of man, which may well turn into

another Ethiopia or Manchuria. The matter is of special concern to Canada; for we are in great measure responsible for the decision which was reached by the united nations. The effort of Mr. Justice Rand on the united nations special committee on Palestine has been hailed throughout the world as a signal achievement. Without his patience and understanding it is fair to say that the UNSCOP report would not have seen the light of day. I think Canada may be justly proud of the fact that in our first participation in a major united nations decision we were so well and ably represented. The work of Mr. Justice Rand and the members of the Canadian delegation to Lake Success has given Canada a new and an impressive position in international affairs and has permitted her to make a notable contribution towards world peace.

No problem in modern times has ever been under such a strong searchlight of investigation as the Palestine problem, and in our desire to be involved in peace rather than in war we have made superhuman contributions in order to reach a decision.

The Palestine case today comprises, I think, two main issues. On the one hand there is the immediate fate of Palestine itself and its people, and on the other hand the larger question of the ability of the united nations to solve international problems without resorting to armed conflict. In order to appreciate these two issues we have to consider briefly the background.

Before 1917 the Arab states, as we know them today, did not exist. For four hundred years they had been part of the Turkish empire. Palestine itself had then no separate existence. Its population of some 690,000, of whom about 85,000 were Jews, was under Turkish domination.

During the first world war the British troops under General Allenby occupied Palestine. At that time the British government made certain commitments to the Jews and Arabs. They were contained in the Balfour declaration of 1917, pledging to set up a Jewish National Home, and in an exchange of correspondence beween Sir Henry McMahon and the Sherif of Mecca, assuring British assistance to the Arabs in establishing their independence.

We start, then, with these two solemn undertakings by Britain. Are they mutually exclusive? The British government has specifically repudiated the Arab claim to Palestine in the following words which I quote from the white paper of 1939:

In the recent discussions the Arab delegation have repeated the contention that Palestine was included within the area in which Sir

The Address-Mr. Croll

Henry McMahon, on behalf of the British government . . . undertook to recognize and support Arab independence. The validity of this claim, based on, the terms of the correspondence which passed between iSir Henry McMahon and the iSherif of Mecca, was thoroughly and carefully investigated by British and Arab representatives during the recent conferences in London. His Majesty's government adhere to the view that the whole of Palestine west of Jordan was excluded from Sir Henry McMahon's pledge, and they therefore cannot agree that the McMahon correspondence forms a just basis for the claim that Palestine should be converted into an Arab state.

On the other hand, there is a pledge contained in the Balfour declaration of which, it should be observed, Canada was a signatory. In 1946 the Anglo-American commission of inquiry commented on the meaning of national home in the following words:

This term "national home" was new to international law and subject to varied interpretation. It appears certain that no one in 1917 contemplated the immediate creation of a Jewish state to rule over the large Arab majority in Palestine. But many responsible persons in the British and United States governments, and among the Jewish people, believed that a considerable Jewish majority might develop in Palestine in the course of time, and that a Jewish state might be the outcome of the Balfour declaration.

Following world war I, Palestine was placed under a league of nations mandate, with Britain as the administering power. The mandate, in the words of the Anglo-American commission to which I referred-

. . . recited the Balfour declaration and gave recognition to the historical connection of Jews with Palestine and to their right to reconstitute their national home in that counry. The mandate, moroever, required Great Britain to facilitate Jewish immigration and to encourage close settlement of the land. Though extensive safeguards were provided for the non-Jewish peoples, the mandate was framed primarily in the Jewish interest.

It was apparent from the beginning, Mr. Speaker, that the Arab leaders were unwilling to agree to the creation of a Jewish national home in Palestine. Their aim was an independent Arab state, and the riots and the unrest that followed are too very well known by this world.

In eighteen years no fewer than ten separate commissions were appointed to investigate conditions in Palestine, of which the most significant was the Peel commission headed by Lord Peel, which investigated the riots of 1936. The findings of the Peel commission were that the Jews had been promised a state and that the Palestine administration was antagonistic to this plan. It found, however, that the aims of the Jews and the Arabs were irreconcilable and recommended the partition

of Palestine into Jewish and Arab states with international control of Holy places. A subsequent commission to delimit the boundaries of the new states failed to achieve its purpose, and, when renewed Arab disturbances followed, Britain called1 Jewish and Arab representatives to London to come to agreement on policy. The roundtable discussions broke down when the Arab delegates refused to meet with the Jewish representatives, and as a result Britain announced her own decision in the white paper of 1939.

Briefly, the white paper put forward plans for an independent state in which Jews and Arabs would share authority. At the same time it severely restricted the purchase of land by Jews and limited Jewish immigration to 75,000 over a period of five years, to be permitted thereafter only with Arab consent. In other words it relegated the Jewish community in Palestine to a permanent minority status in what was to have been a national home; for at the present time the Arabs in Palestine outnumber the Jews two to one.

Now, the white paper requires a little comment from me. It was unanimously condemned by Jews and Arabs alike. It was also declared by the mandates commission of the league of nations to be in conflict with the terms of the league mandate under which Britain held the trusteeship of Palestine. Despite this, during the war some of the terms of the white paper were put into effect, notably restrictions on land holdings and immigration, and I need not tell this house that they were deeply resented by the Jewish community.

As a result of post-war tension, the Anglo-American committee of inquiry was set up in 1945 to study the problem. Their unanimous report favouring abolition of the ban on immigration and land holding was, however, rejected by the British government and so the situation continued to deteriorate. Finally the British government announced its readiness to surrender the mandate because of failure to find a solution acceptable to both the Arabs and the Jews, and placed the responsibility on the united nations for recommendations regarding the future government of Palestine.

The record of those earlier years of fruitless discussions about the settlement of Palestine must be considered against the background of European history from 1933 on. While commissions sat, and white papers were handed down, the Hitler tyranny systematically reduced the Jewish communities of half Europe to slavery and then proceeded to annihilate them in cold blood. In all, six million Jews perished in the gas chambers

The Address-Mr. Croll

and furnaces of Germany and Poland. This is how the Anglo-American committee described their terrible ordeal:

In the cold print of a report it is not possible accurately to portray out feelings with regard to the suffering deliberately inflicted by the Germans on those Jews who fell into their bands. The visit of our subcommittee to the ghetto in Warsaw has left in their minds an impression which will forever remain . . . Adjoining the ghetto there still stands an old barracks used as a place for killing Jews. Viewing this dn the cold grey light of a February day one could imagine the depths of human suffering there endured. In the courtyards of the barracks were pits containing human ash and human bones. The effect of that place on Jews who came searching, so often in vain, for any trace of their dear ones, can be left to the imagination ... In Germany and dn Poland, which was often described to us as "the cemetery of European Jewry," a Jew may see, in the face of any man he looks upon, the murdeTer of his family. It is understandable that few find themselves able to face such conditions.

In short, Palestine has become, for these dispossessed and disinherited people of Europe, more than an ideal to be realized some day in the distant future. It is a very real and very immediate home for them from the suffering and persecution which even today follow them wherever they may go. I use the word "home". I do not mean refuge, nor do I mean asylum, nor do I mean shelter; I mean home with memories and hope.

I have reviewed briefly the background of modern Palestine, although not as a basis for further arguments on the merits of the case. The problem facing the Canadian and other delegates at Lake Success was not to balance claims based on who had majority status in Palestine-when, in what numbers, or for how long.. The fact to be faced was that here were two irreconcilable groups of people, each of them entitled to self-government and selfdetermination.

The official position of the Canadian government was stated by Mr. Ilsley when he quoted from the majority recommendation of UNSCOP:

The basic premise underlying the partition proposal is that the claims to Palestine of Arabs and Jews, both possessing validity, are irreconcilable, and that among all the solutions advanced, partition will provide the most realistic and practicable settlement, and is the most likely to afford a working basis for meeting in part the claims and national aspirations of both parties.

The Canadian delegation, therefore, held out partition as the only feasible solution. To the Pakistan argument that partition should not be adopted without consent, the Canadian delegate observed that the question

arose whether it was any better to try to maintain unity without consent. To the threats of disorder from the Arab speakers, in the event of the passing of partition, Mr. Ilsley, as Canadian spokesman, had this to say:

It would be folly to assume that there would be any less likelihood of disorder if any of the other alternatives were adopted. Indeed, in our judgment, this likelihood in the case of every one of them would be not less but greater . . . But something must be done with this problem, and we are satisfied that, full of difficulties as the partition solution is, any other solution would be worse.

Our representative also discussed the alternative of abstention, and it was felt that obligations to the united nations and to the people of Canada would not permit abstention. I quote Mr. Ilsley again:

We have, as this assembly knows, taken our full share of responsibility in this matter throughout the entire session. We have worked day and night to obtain a solution which would be practicable and workable, and we feel that our obligations, not only to this organization, but to our own people, are such that we could not justify an abstention, and that we should vote for the resolution. This we propose to do.

Now the support for partition given by the Canadian delegation was accorded in the belief that partition provided the shortest cut to a settled middle east. This was expressed by the Under-Secretary of State, Lester Pearson, a week before the vote:

The Canadian delegation has only one desire in this matter-to bring peace and security to this unhappy land of Palestine, which is a holy land for us all and from which has come to so many millions security and peace . . . The plan that has been recommended by the subcommittee, and which is based upon the majority report of the united nations special committee which investigated this matter for many months, has the best chanoe of success of any that has been submitted to us; the best chance of bringing peace and order to that torn and troubled country. In that spirit, Mr. Chairman, our delegation will support the plan of subcommittee 1.

As a result of its deliberations the general assembly of the united nations, by a two thirds majority of its members, decided on partition with economic union. This decision was reached on the basis of a full investigation of the facts, and after lengthy debate in which the Canadian delegation took a leading part. This was the greatest amount of international agreement ever achieved by the assembly on any controversial issue up to that date or since.

That being so, I am sure it will be unnecessary and even presumptuous on my part to discuss the merits of the case. The highest court in the world, the parliament of man,

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has passed its judgment. In legal language, the matter is res judicata. The issue has been settled. In cannot be tried all over again, and there is no room for revision or reversion.

I think it is fair to say that the Jews, although very much disappointed by the decision, have expressed their willingness to abide by the terms, but it is also true that the Arabs have from the start objected strongly to the united nations dealing with the problem and their objections have not been confined to mere threats. It remains to consider what course Canada and the united nations will- follow in the future.

If the united nations decision is to mean anything, it must be implemented, and the question is, how is that to be done. Well, we must first, I think, accept some basic facts upon which to predicate our future policy. In the first place, the united nations' decision which does the maximum of justice to both sides is final. The Palestine case has been settled and I am sure that we shall have no part of any manipulating so as to make it appear that the opposition to partition is so formidable that the plan cannot be carried out.

We cannot afford to retreat in the face of force. True, the threads that we have spun have become knotted-it is our -task to help unwind the knot.

Fact No. 2 is that Canada has freely and wholeheartedly committed herself to participation in the united nations on many occasions, but particularly I have reference to page 1282 of Hansard, on the orders of the day, where the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar (Mr. Coldwell) asked the following question:

In view of the grave warning made by the Palestine commission to the security council vesterday that "a tragic and dangerous precedent" will be established if force or the threat of force is allowed to thwart the decision of the -united nations, is the government prepared to accept its share of responsibility in such action as may be taken by the security council with a view to averting further bloodshed in Palestine and implementing the assembly decision?

The answer given by the right hon. the Secretary of State for External Affairs (Mr. St. Laurent) was:

In answer I can only state that Canada accepted full responsibility under the charter of the united nations and has at all times been pressing to have all the organs of the united nations set up in accordance with the charter and in such a manner as to make the charter fully effective. There is no intention of not complying with the requirements both of the letter and of the spirit of the charter.

No more heartening words have been uttered in this house. Those words can only mean that, whatever the decision and whatever the obligations, Canada will contribute her full share towards carrying them out according to her means and her ability, whether it be in Korea, Trieste or Palestine. True, to do so may well involve us; but it seems to me we might as well get involved in peace, for if we do not we shall certainly get involved in war.

Fact No. 3 is that the British government mean business when they say that they are getting out of Palestine.

Fact No. 4 is that the united nations cannot leave a vacuum in Palestine. The surrounding Arabs have said in no uncertain terms what they intend to do, and today across Palestine falls the Arab vendetta. This house must well remember that Hitler defied the league of nations, and you know the rest. The league was discredited and it died. We want the united nations to live.

The Arabs today defy the united nations. What will be the result? I recall again to this house Ethiopia and Manchuria. I want to avoid similar consequences. Today the authority, the prestige and the very existence of the united nations is being challenged, and it cannot be settled by fine notes, strong resolutions or back-tracking.

Fact No. 5 is that the Arabs are directly or indirectly getting arms and infiltrating into Palestine.

Fact No. 6 is that the Jews in Palestine are not being reinforced by arms or men from outside. None the less, scarred by the heat that burned six million of their fellowmen, they are determined to fight with whatever arms they have. The Jews today are left without means to defend themselves. In fact, they are denied means to defend themselves. They are not permitted to import arms; they are not permitted to import people to fight; they are not permitted to organize an army from their own resources.

It seems to me that if the makers of the united nations' decision are not themselves ready to enforce it, they ought surely to permit the legatees to defend their ward. Surely if the world will not let these people in Palestine live in peace and liberty, live decently, it should at least give them an opportunity to die not as their brothers did in Poland and in Germany, but to die in defence of their own homeland.

I think it cannot be too strongly emphasized that the basic issue which confronts us at the present time is not Arabs versus Jews. There is more involved here than the lives of Jewish settlers and Arab tribesmen. It is collective

The Address-Mr. Croll

security; it is moral force; it is either one world or two worlds. If it is to be two worlds, then we had better get on with the task of building bigger and better atom bombs and dust off the old ones we have on the shelves at the present time. If it is to be one world, now is the time to make our influence felt in the united nations to avoid the prospects and the dangers of a third world war. I think the question is whether a decision of the united nations is to be openly flouted, and the answer to that question will involve not only the fate of Palestine but also the fate of the united nations and of the world. If the nations are not prepared to honour their commitments under the united nations charter, then the delegates might as well pack their suitcases and go home. It is not a christening they are attending at Lake Success; it is a wake. And if the united nations fails we are back to the naked tactics of balance of power diplomacy and ententes which will lead us inevitably to a third world war just as they led us to the first two.

Since the Palestine decision is a united nations decision, it must be implemented by all the nations. There is no room for unilateral action, pipeline diplomacy or for playing it safe. The inescapable truth is that there is no solution to the Palestine crisis without United States leadership, participation and responsibility. What action we took at the united nations was taken with our eyes wide open. We calculated the risk and we took it in the interests of peace. The price of failing to implement the action is an uncalculated risk far more hazardous and dangerous. From everything I have quoted here today it is clear that we are prepared to carry out our proportionate share, but we cannot be expected to carry out more than that. Under these circumstances I do not believe that the frontier of our homeland is our boundary. I recall the statement made by the late President Roosevelt in 1940, that the frontier of America was on the Rhine. Since then it has extended across the whole world. In our support of the united nations and all it stands for, it may well be that the frontiers of Canada are not only on the Jordan but on the Yalu.

Let us consider for a moment the alternatives to implementation of the united nations decision. Well, we can do nothing-in which case the consequence will almost certainly be civil war; and this, it should be noted, on Russia's back doorstep. The danger involved in allowing Palestine to become the Spain of world war III surely precludes a policy of non-intervention. The united nations might recruit troops from the national armies of its member states. This possibility should be

seriously considered. None the less it should be clear that we, the smaller nations, are not there to pull the chestnuts out of the fire for the big five. A volunteer united nations force might be recruited from the member nations. This has the disadvantage that the united nations has neither the time nor the facilities to train a volunteer army. In any event, this is not a task for adventurers, enthusiasts or mercenaries. The united nations might recruit a militia in Palestine to keep order. The experience of Britain in raising a Palestinian home defence army known as Haganah, which she did during the war, would commend this as a feasible alternative, although I am quick to admit that it too has some obvious objections. It has been suggested that the united nations freeze the situation in Palestine and bring the matter back for further discussion and compromise. This is no more acceptable than the do-nothing policy which I first suggested. Events have gone too far to permit of any protracted reconsideration at this time. The decision has been made. To modify under pressure is to encourage more pressure. All this will do is to give the Arabs, with their open supply lines and free communications, an opportunity to pour men and arms into Palestine. Finally, one great power might take over the job. But which one? Russia would certainly Object to a United States army in Palestine just as strongly as the United States would object to a Russian occupation force. The united nations veto would certainly kill any such proposal. While all this goes on in Europe, shade by shade, the iron curtain grows, the lights are dimmed one by one and from one nation after another comes silence.

It may be that the method of implementation is not for Canada to decide, but this much is certain: that since we shall participate in whatever plan is ultimately adopted, we must consider the alternatives carefully; for we are not a nation that talks united nations and acts unilaterally.

Palestine is the supreme test of the united nations. The eyes of the world are focused on this small yet highly strategic land. It is a test because we are witnessing something unique in history, namely, the replanting of a people. The Jewish people have initiated the rebirth of human and spiritual values in Palestine. They have developed the economy of the country, established industries and reclaimed land which had lain barren for centuries. Their long fight has finally been recognized by the united nations, and the united nations decision means that one more democratic nation has joined the world.

The Address-Mr. Croll

Canada fortunately at this time possesses statesmen of international stature both in office and public service. I am impressed by the tremendous confidence the rank and file in this country have in the present Secretary of State for External Affairs. The same is true of the Minister of Justice, who was our spokesman at Lake Success. And there is great comfort in the knowledge that we have in the public service men like Lester Pearson and General McNaughton. Here is an opportunity for Canada to play an even more important role; to act as the conscience of the united nations in the interests of peace, to bring together the great English-speaking nations of the world and in that way apply her talents and her good will in helping solve the problem of implementation as magnificently as she helped the united nations reach a decision on partition.

Let us not lose sight of this all-important fact. The united nations must implement the decision, and the main responsibility lies with the great powers. To fail now is to cast dark shadows, yes, to extinguish for a time justice and honour and freedom and liberty. I implore this government to rise to the occasion; for if the united nations fails at this time it bares its impotency before the world and becomes a spent force. I am certain that is not the wish of the people of Canada. As

for me that is an impossible and unthinkable position for this world to find itself in at the present time.

On motion of Mr. Aylesworth the debate was adjourned.



Mr. ST. LAURENT moved the adjournment of the house. He said: It is intended tomorrow to proceed with the resolution standing in the name of the Minister of Trade and Commerce preceding a bill to amend the Canadian Wheat Board Act. If that resolution is disposed of we shall take up the one in the name of the Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Gardiner), No. 8 on today's order paper, preceding a bill to continue the Agricultural Products Act in force until March 31, 1949. Should those two resolutions be disposed of, the Minister of Veterans Affairs would ask the house to revert to government notices of motion and take up the resolution standing in his name setting up a committee on veterans affairs.


John Ritchie MacNicol

Progressive Conservative


What will be taken up after eight o'clock?

Mr. ST. LAURENT: I understand that for the first hour private bills will be taken.

Motion agreed to and the house adjourned at 10.55 p.m.

Friday, February 27, 1948


February 26, 1948