Mr. J. H. BLACKMORE (Lethbridge):
With the passing of Neville Chamberlain the British empire has lost the services of a great Englishman. He was the last of a family of illustrious British statesmen. Where is he who can divine the motives that impel the thinking, speaking and acting of any man, much less a public man, be he statesman -or be he politician? Even if those motives be known, how almost impossible is it to judge rightly of their worthiness or unworthiness? But of a man's utterances or actions, select even the simplest word or deed, analyse the judgments that led to it, weigh the results, direct and indirect, which derive their cause from it, then seek justly to appraise it, and you will find yourself thoughtful and humble.
It is with thoughtfulness and humility that I regard Chamberlain to-day. In most minds his name is, and for a long time will be, associated with appeasement and Munich. To be fair to him, we must remember that he carried responsibility in Britain while the motherland was staggering from the consequences of the folly of one of the most abjectly fatuous periods in Anglo-Saxon history; a decade when men made almost every kind of blunder in their economic thought and practice, and then allowed themselves to be deluded into almost every kind of disarmament. The marvel is that he agreed to assume office at all. A double marvel is that he did as well as he did. Let us be grateful for his courage and good intentions and good achievements, whatever they might have been. Let us be charitable towards his errors, whatever and whyever they may be found to have been. For judgment let us leave him to the future, when men will be able to arrive at conclusions more calmly considered and better informed than ours possibly can be.