HC Deb 23 November 1920 vol 135 cc193-4
9. Captain TUDOR-REES

asked the Secretary of State for War the number of wars or warlike operations in which British troops are now engaged?

The SECRETARY of STATE for WAR (Mr. Churchill)

At the present moment British troops are engaged in warlike operations in Mesopotamia, Persia and on the Indian frontier. Very disturbed conditions also prevail in Ireland. Entire peace has not been restored in the neighbourhood of Constantinople.


Will the right hon. Gentleman say whether he considers the state of affairs in Ireland to be a state of war or a state of rebellion?


It is a state of rebellion, but it involves the hardships of warfare on the troops.


May I ask when the Supplementary Estimate caused by these operations to which the right hon. Gentleman has referred is likely to be laid?


I do not know for certain, but it is really a matter for my right hon. Friend (Sir D. Maclean) to settle with the Leader of the House. I should think, however, that it will be when the legislation which is now being disposed of in this House has gone up to the House of Fords—as soon as that is got out of the way. That is my opinion.

Colonel YATE

May I ask again, as the right hon. Gentleman has mentioned that the hardships of war are entailed on the troops in Ireland, whether it is not a fact that if the troops had been under service conditions, the lives of those unfortunate officers who were killed the other day would have been saved?


Can the right hon. Gentleman say what is the trouble on the Indian frontier?


I should like notice of that question, but operations of a minor kind have been in progress on the Indian frontier throughout the last few months—the usual disturbances with the Pathan tribes


As there is no state of war in Palestine, why is it necessary to keep so many troops there?