§ Notwithstanding any provision of the Army Act any member of His Majesty's forces sentenced to death by court-martial shall have the right of appeal to the Court of Criminal Appeal assisted by one or more military assessors as the Lord Chancellor may direct.—[Mr. Lansbury.]
§ Brought up, and read the First time.
§ 10.0 A.M.
§ Mr. LANSBURY
I beg to move, "That the Clause be read a Second time."
We have had a very long discussion on the question of punishments, and especially on the question of the death penalty. I think everything I have heard to-night has confirmed me in my view that, no matter how we may draft the Regulations, the real thing that is wrong is war, and until we can get rid of the spirit of war there will always be the kind of things we have heard about this morning, which everyone deplores. What amazes me is that in the year 1923 we are obliged to sit calmly by and hear and discuss this question, which is really murder and nothing else, and we are told that in order to secure wholesale Murder we must retain the right to individual murder. I hope some day this House will sit down to a full discussion of the whole question of war, not merely the abolition of capital punishment, but 1610 what means we can take to bring about the abolition of war. If I were a father or mother in Iraq, I would be unable to understand why a Christian nation should send out aeroplanes to bomb me and my children—
§ Mr. LANSBURY
You must not shout at me. Order yourself! I am not going to be bullied, and am not going to be shouted at by you.
§ Mr. LANSBURY
I do not know what to call you—Mr. Chairman or Mr. Deputy-Chairman? I shall call you Sir Frederick Banbury: We have had a long discussion, and it has been one of the best Debates I have listened to. I am not going to be a party to breaking up the spirit which has animated this Committee to-night. I ought to explain that the discussion, to which you have not had the privilege of listening, has been 1611 concerned with capital punishment for men who fail in time of war. Incidentally I wished to say that, although I am a pacifist and bate war, I do not wish the Air Minister to think I challenge him—I feel he, personally, is not a bad man.
§ The TEMPORARY CHAIRMAN
That may be all right, but it has nothing to do with the Question before the Committee. I would ask the hon. Member to confine his remarks to the Amendment.
§ Mr. LANSBURY
Certainly, I am doing so. We shall not get rid of these cases until we get rid of war.
§ The TEMPORARY CHAIRMAN
The hon. Member must confine his remarks to the right of appeal to the Court of Criminal Appeal.
§ Mr. LANSBURY
Everyone knows a Court of Criminal Appeal was set up in this country because there was uneasiness in the minds of the public that some persons were probably sentenced to death whose cases should be considered by such a court I know that a soldier can appeal from one officer to another, but he does not get the chance to come before a court. We have failed to secure the abolition of the death penalty and we want to get this in the hope that it will finally lead to the abolition of the death penalty, and we want to give the soldier or officer the same privileges as those granted to the civilian found guilty of murder and sentenced to be hung. I hope we will not have this dismissed simply as something new and therefore dangerous, although it is something new to bring a soldier before a civil court.
§ Sir S. HOARE
We have had a very good-natured Debate, on the whole, during this rather long Sitting. I hope the Committee will therefore excuse me if my answer to the hon. Member is somewhat short. The hon. Member asked me to give this Amendment careful consideration. I can assure him I have given it a lot of careful thought. I do not in the least object to it because it is something new, but I object to it because I really believe the soldier and officer would be worse off in matters of appeal than at present. The officer and the soldier or airman have at present a variety of safeguards. First, they have the review of the confirming officer of the Court Martial. 1612 Then the sentence has again to be reviewed by the Judge Advocate-General, who, as the Committee knows, is a lawyer and not a soldier. Thirdly, the officer or man has the right to send a petition to the Sovereign through the Secretary of State. These three safeguards are very real ones. Moreover the Secretary of State can look at the case not from the strict point of view of the letter of the law—he can quash sentences on general grounds. I think the Committee will agree that all these safeguards are very real ones. If for these safeguards they substituted a Court of Criminal Appeal what is going to happen? Take first of all the case of a Court Martial and the sentence of death upon active service. I suggest to the Committee that it would be quite impossible to adopt the machinery of the Court of Criminal Appeal. It would mean first of all that an inquiry would have to be held on the spot. It would then mean that the papers with reference to the case would have to be sent to London. It would then mean that the officer or the man charged would also have to be sent back to London and it would probably mean several months before the case could come before the Court of Criminal Appeal at all. I suggest to the Committee that such a procedure would be quite impracticable during active service. If that be so, take the other alternative of peace time. There, I suggest, that no such safeguard is necessary for the very good reason that death sentences for example within the United Kingdom are practically unknown in peace time. Not even during the War was there a single death sentence within the United Kingdom, and within peace times within the memory of man there has not been a case of a death sentence by Court Martial in the United Kingdom. What I understand does happen is that in the event of a serious charge the case is almost invariably taken into a civil court. I hope I have said enough to the Committee that upon active service the procedure would be quite impracticable, whereas in peace time it is not needed at all. I hope, therefore, that with this short explanation the Committee will agree with me in rejecting the Clause.
§ Mr. R. DAVIES
The Committee were told just now that a soldier sentenced to death has three appeals after the Court 1613 Martial and one of the appeals and the final one apparently was to the Sovereign. But that appeal comes in the first place to the Minister of State, and so far as my knowledge of these cases goes it works out in this way, that when the man appeals to the Minister of State it is the duty of the Minister to recommend to the Sovereign the attitude of the Sovereign towards that man, and I have yet to learn that in any single case the Sovereign would intervene and upset the recommendation of the Home Secretary in such a case of capital punishment. I just want to make two observations on the Amendment. I think the Amendment has a great deal of substance in it. The object of our Amendment is this, that we shall give a man who has been tried for his life, who has been condemned to death, that he shall have a chance of being tried by judicial tribunal without that suspicion and bias and prejudice that must arise in connection with these people who have tried it on the battlefield or thereabouts. Let me point this out to the Committee. What seems strange to us is this. Let me try to draw a picture of the case of a young man 19 years of age in the Army. He has failed in his duty as a soldier. That young man is sentenced to death and the sentence of death is carried out without the appeal that would apply, for insance, to a hardened criminal in civilian clothes. Take the other side. Here you have in this country in civilian clothes a criminal hardened to the job. He will go through the whole process of the law of the land, expense is incurred in connection with his case, and he goes right up to the Court of Criminal Appeal and is given every advantage that the law allows. But this young lad, 19 years of age, is brought up before a court martial, sentenced to death, and his sentence is carried out. One last observation I wish to make. A man in soldier's clothes is sentenced to death by court martial because he declines to murder. The man who actually murders in civilian clothes gets a better opportunity of justice and fair play than the man who has declined to murder on the battlefield. That seems to me the whole point of our Amendment and I do trust, in spite of what the Minister of Air has said, that the House will seize the point in our Amendment.
§ Sir ERNEST POLLOCK
I venture to intervene for a few moments on this im- 1614 portant question, because I think I should give the Committee some information which may be of service to it in coming to a conclusion on the merits of the Amendment. I suppose that in all quarters of the Committee we are concerned and, indeed, very anxious, that we should have a system established whereby an efficient system of appeal is opened to those who are sentenced by court martial. Indeed, if I had the information, and only the information which appears to prevail in some quarters of the Committee, I think I should be earnestly endeavouring to press upon the Minister in charge of this Bill that something like a further system of appeal should be granted to those who have been sentenced. The reason why I venture to intervene is that I feel that I can give, if the Committee will allow me, some information on this point which may remove misgivings. The appeal which is made to the Secretary of State is one which is of great moment arid great force and constantly used in favour of the man. The Secretary of State, after the matter has been considered by the Judge Advocate-General, has the opportunity of considering the case, and it is, in fact, reconsidered afresh. During the course of the War my predecessors who held the office of Attorney-General agreed that all the appeals which went to the Secretary of State should be submitted to the Attorney-General, and when I held the office of Attorney-General I was still carrying out the duty of helping to advise the Secretary of State in these cases which came before him.
§ Sir E. POLLOCK
What he did was to invite the assistance of the Attorney-General after the Judge Advocate-General. It must be remembered that the class of cases which came up for appeal are not limited to cases of the death sentence. Please do not imagine that the matters which have to be dealt with are always matters for the extreme penalty of the law. Many cases which have to be considered by court martial are matters of much less importance, involving much less serious punishment. But where they involve serious breach of discipline, or serious punishment, there is an appeal and it is open to be exercised. I have 1615 been struck by the number of cases in which every opportunity has been given to the person against whom sentence has been given, and also by the manner in which clemency has been exercised by the Judge Advocate-General and the Secretary of State. Let us disabuse our minds of thinking that we are dealing with bad cases or of the extreme penalty only. On the contrary, under British justice, which prevails in the Army as everywhere else, an opportunity is given to try to mitigate the punishment, and often the imposition of any penalty in the system that has to be worked. The Amendments suggest that all these cases should go to the Court of Criminal Appeal.
§ Sir E. POLLOCK
Let us consider what an appeal before the Court of Criminal Appeal is. It is an appeal in respect to which the decision can be reviewed and is reviewed in all cases which take place in this country. No confirmation from me is necessary of the words of the Air Minister that such cases brought before the War for a long period were very few. We have to take the exceptional cases which occurred in the wider and more distant parts of the Empire. In all these cases there is a standing system of appeal. Further, confirmation has to be given of the sentence by an adequate and important military authority. Do not imagine that that is a matter of course. It is a very serious step which has to be carried out effectively, and has to be carried out to the full. Then, after that, confirmation, the case is considered by the Judge Advocate-General. The present Judge Advocate-General who is well known to many of us in this House, is a man of great ability, who rendered great service to the country in the early part of the War; a man whose judgment all Members of this House have confidence in. The sentence has to be confirmed by him. I say from my experience of the Court of Criminal Appeal that the working of the system now prevailing in military circles is really more favourable to the men who are punished than any system which could be established by means of going to the Court of Appeal. I have spoken longer than I intended, because I was anxious that the Committee should have such information as was at my disposal to re-assure them 1616 that the present system is one about which they need have no disquiet—that the great spirit of British justice which prevails in all Courts does prevail, and work in favour of those who are punished from time to time under the military system.
§ Mr. G. SPENCER
Everything the right hon. and learned Gentleman who has just sat down says on a question of this character is always worthy of the most serious attention of this House, but there are two points of view from which hon. Members approach the subject. Unless an appeal is granted to an ordinary soldier, he is looked upon as being of less regard and concern than the common criminal who is guilty of the grossest crime that could be committed.
§ Sir E. POLLOCK
There is a right of appeal; it is not a question of an appeal being granted in certain cases.
§ Mr. SPENCER
What I gather from the Minister in charge is that there are three stages and the sentence has to be confirmed. By whom has it to be confirmed? The right hon. Gentleman does not say by whom. So far as the man himself is concerned, it seems to me he has no right of appeal to a properly constituted tribunal. My right hon. and learned Friend (Sir E. Pollock) has had a legal training and the hon. and gallant Member for Melton (Sir C. Fate) has been more or less a soldier. If a case were presented in which my right hon. Friend was present, he would approach it with a legal mind, but if my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Melton were dealing with the case, he would approach it from the military point of view, more or less with the prejudice of the soldier—he could not escape it—and he would approach it from the point of view of how it affected the Army and not how it, affected the person. So far as any military tribunal is concerned, I do not say the General has less regard for the soldier, or that he is not actuated by the highest possible motives, but what I do say is that he does not bring the same judicial mind to bear upon the question as would a tribunal constituted like the Court of Appeal.
§ Sir E. POLLOCK
Perhaps I did not make my meaning clear. In the case of a death sentence that has to go before a General Court Martial and that is the very highest Military Court composed of 1617 officers of high rank. It goes from them to a man who is legally trained, the Judge Advocate-General, for confirmation, after the General Court Martial has dealt with it.
§ Mr. SPENCER
If ever it was proposed in this House that the Courts of Justice of this country should be presided over in the same way as the Courts Martial are presided over, my right hon. Friend and the whole of his legal fraternity would immediately protest against a Court of that character.
§ Captain BERKELEY
There is really a point of substance here. I was quite sure that there was some misunderstanding, and I should like to try and clear it up. The right hon. and learned Gentleman the late Attorney-General (Sir E. Pollock) has been talking about the case of general courts martial, That is not the case which is impeached. The case that has been impeached is that of death sentences on active service, and they are passed, not by a General Court Martial, but by a Field General Court Martial, which is quite mother matter. It is composed of the best officers of Field and lower rank that can be summoned together for the purpose by the convening officer, who, as a rule, is a Brigadier-General. Then there is an important point in connection with the confirmation. The right hon. Member for Che[...]sea (Sir Samuel Hoare) says that
§ the first safeguard of the accused person is the confirming officer, who—I quote from memory—is usually an officer of Field rank or a Brigadier-General. The confirming officer is nominally a Brigadier-General, but he may, in certain cases, be an officer of Field rank. There are difficult legal points on which he has to satisfy himself, namely, whether evidence of a nature prejudicial to the accused has been wrongfully admitted, whether the accused has been unduly restricted in his defence, whether the charge is bad in law, and whether there has been any departure from rules of procedure by which an injustice has been done. I submit that those are highly technical points which, without in any way criticising senior officers, require considerable legal knowledge for their determination. The case then goes to the Judge-Advocate-General Overseas, and the man has the right of petition to His Majesty. I am not really sure that he has this right in eases of sentence on active service; but in that event it may come before the Secretary of State, who calls in the Attorney-General. It is not always that the case of a death sentence comes before the Secretary of State, because the man does not always know that he has the right to petition, and I am sure that the right hon. and learned Gentleman would not contend that it did.
§ Question put, "That the Clause be read a Second time."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 127; Noes, 201.1621
|Division No. 97.]||AYES.||[10.37 a.m.|
|Alexander, A. V. (Sheffield, Hillsbro')||Dunnico, H.||Irving, Dan|
|Ammon, Charles George||Ede, James Chuter||Jenkins, W. (Glamorgan, Neath)|
|Barker, G. (Monmouth, Abertillery)||Fairbairn, R. R.||John, William (Rhondda, West)|
|Batey, Joseph||Foot, Isaac||Johnstone, Harcourt (Willesden, East)|
|Benn, Captain Wedgwood (Leith)||Gosling, Harry||Jones, J. J. (West Ham. Silvertown)|
|Berke'ey, Captain Reginald||Gray, Frank (Oxford)||Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd)|
|Bonwick, A.||Greenall, T.||Jowett, F. W. (Bradford, East)|
|Bowdler, W. A.||Greenwood, A, (Nelson and Colne)||Jowett, W. A. (The Hartlepools)|
|Briant, Frank||Grenfell, D. R. (Glamorgan)||Kenworthy, Lieut.-Commander J. M.|
|Broad, F. A.||Griffith, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)||Kanyon, Barnet|
|Bromfield, William||Groves, T.||Kirkwood, D.|
|Brothurton, J.||Grundy, T. W.||Lansbury, George|
|Buchanan, G.||Guest, J. (York, W. R., Hemsworth)||Lawson, John James|
|Buckle, J.||Hall, F. (York, W. R., Normanton)||Leach, W.|
|Burgess, S.||Hall. G. H. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Lee, F.|
|Buxton, Charles (Accrington)||Hamilton, Sir R. (Orkney & Shetland)||Linfield, F. C.|
|Cairns, John||Hancock, John George||Lunn, William|
|Cape, Thomas||Harbord, Arthur||MacDonald, J. R. (Aberavon)|
|Charleton, H. C.||Hardie, George D.||M'Entee, V. L.|
|Collison, Lavi||Harris, Percy A.||Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan)|
|Darbishlre, C. W.||Hayday, Arthur||March, S.|
|Davies, Evan (Ebbw Vale)||Hayes, John Henry (Edge Hill)||Martin, F. (Aberd'n & Kinc'dine, E.)|
|Davies, Rhys John (Westhoughton)||Henderson, Rt. Hon. A. (N'castle, E.)||Maxton, James|
|Davison, J. E. (Smethwick)||Henderson, T. (Glasgow)||Middleton, G.|
|Dudgeon, Major C. R.||Herrlotts, J.||Morrison. H. C. (Tottenham, N.)|
|Duffy, T, Gavan||Hirst, G. H.||Murray, R. (Renfrew, Western)|
|Newbold, J. T. W.||Shaw, Thomas (Preston)||Webb, Sidney|
|O'Grady, Captain James||Shinwell, Emanuel||Westwood J.|
|Oliver, George Harold||Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)||Wheatley, J.|
|Paling, W.||Simpson, J. Hope||White, Charles F. (Derby, Western}|
|Parkinson, John Allen (Wigan)||Sitch, Charles H.||White, H. G. (Birkenhead, E.)|
|Phillipps, Vivian||Smith, T. (Pontefract)||Whiteley, W.|
|Potts, John S.||Snell, Harry||Williams, Dr. J. H. (Lianelly)|
|Pringle, W. M. R.||Spencer, George A. (Broxtowe)||Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)|
|Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring)||Steven, Campbell||Wilson, C. H. (Sheffield, Attercliffe)|
|Riley, Ben||Stewart, J. (St. Rollox)||Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)|
|Ritson, J.||Sturrock, J. Long||Wood, Major M. M. (Aberdeen, C.)|
|Roberts, C. H. (Derby)||Thomas, Rt. Hon. James H. (Derby)||Wright, W.|
|Roberts, Frederick O. (W. Bromwich)||Thorne, G. R. (Wolverhampton, E.)||Young, Robert (Lancaster, Newton)|
|Robinson, W. C. (York, Elland)||Thorne, W. (West Ham, Plalstow)|
|Saklatvata, S.||Tout, W. J.||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Salter, Dr. A.||Turner, Ben||Mr. John Robertson and Mr. Morgan Jones.|
|Sexton, James||Warne, G. H.|
|Shaw, Hon. Alex. (Kilmarnock)||Watts-Morgan, Lieut.-Colonel D.|
|Ainsworth, Captain Charles||Erskine, Lord (Weston-super-Mare)||Morrison-Bell, Major A. C. (Honiton)|
|Alexander, Col. M. (Southwark)||Erskine-Bolst, Captain C.||Murchison, C. K.|
|Amery, Rt. Hon. Leopold C. M. S.||Eyres Monsell, Com. Bolton M.||Newman, Colonel I. R. P. (Finchley)|
|Archer-Shee, Lieut.-Colonel Martin||Falcon, Captain Michael||Newton, Sir D. G. C. (Cambridge)|
|Ashley, Lt.-Col. Wilfrid W.||Falle, Major Sir Bertram Godfray||Nicholson, Brig.-Gen, J. (Westminster)|
|Astor, J. J. (Kent. Dover)||Fawkes, Major F. H,||Nicholson, William G. (Petersfield)|
|Baird, Rt. Hon. Sir John Lawrence||Ford, Patrick Johnston||Nield, Sir Herbert|
|Balfour, George (Hampstead)||Foreman, Sir Henry||O'Neill, Rt. Hon. Hugh|
|Banbury, Rt. Hon. Sir Frederick G.||Forestier-Walker, L.||Ormsby-Gore, Hon. William|
|Banks, Mitchell||Foxcrott, Captain Charles Talbot||Paget, T. G.|
|Barnett, Major Richard W.||Furness, G. J.||Parker, Owen (Kettering)|
|Barnston, Major Harry||Ganzoni, Sir John||Pease, William Edwin|
|Becker, Harry||Garland, C. S.||Pennefather, De Fonblanque|
|Bellairs, Commander Cariyon W.||Gates, Percy||Penny, Frederick George|
|Bennett. Sir T. J. (Sevenoaks)||Goff, Sir R. Park||Percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings)|
|Bentinck, Lord Henry Cavendish-||Gould, James C.||Perkins, Colonel E. K.|
|Berry, Sir George||Gray, Harold (Cambridge)||Perring, William George|
|Birchall, Major J. Dearman||Greene, Lt.-Col. Sir W. (Hack'y, N.)||Philipson, Hilton|
|Blades, Sir George Rowland||Greenwood, William (Stockport)||Pielou, D. P.|
|Blundell, F. N.||Guinness, Lieut.-Col. Hon. W. E.||Pollock, Rt. Hon. Sir Ernest Murray|
|Bowyer, Capt. G. E. W.||Gwynne, Rupert S.||Pownall, Lieut. Colonel Assheton|
|Boyd-Carpenter, Major A.||Hacking, Captain Douglas H.||Preston, Sir W. R.|
|Brass, Captain W.||Hall, Lieut.-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich)||Privett, F. J.|
|Brassey, Sir Leonard||Hall, Rr-Adml Sir W.(Liv'p'l.W.D'by)||Raeburn, Sir William H.|
|Bridgeman, Rt. Hon. William Clive||Halstead, Major O.||Raine, W.|
|Briggs, Harold||Hamilton, Sir George C. (Altrincham)||Rankin, Captain James Stuart|
|Brittain, Sir Harry||Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry||Rawlinson, Rt. Hon. John Fredk. Poet|
|Brown, Brig.-Gen. Clifton (Newbury)||Harrison, F. C.||Rawson, Lieut.-Com. A. C.|
|Brown, J. W. (Middlesbrough, E.)||Harvey, Major S. E.||Reid, Capt. A. S. C. (Warrington)|
|Bruford, R.||Henn, Sir Sydney H.||Rentoul, G. S.|
|Bruton, Sir James||Hennessy, Major J. R. G.||Reynolds, W. G. W.|
|Buckingham, Sir H.||Herbert, Col. Hon. A. (Yeovil)||Richardson, Lt.-Col. Sir P. (Chertsey)|
|Buckley, Lieut.-Colonel A.||Hiley, Sir Ernest||Roberts, Samuel (Hereford, Hereford)|
|Bull, Rt. Hon. Sir William James||Hoare, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir S, J. G.||Roberts, Rt. Hon. Sir S. (Ecclesall)|
|Burn, Colonel Sir Charles Rosdew||Hogg,Rt. Hon.Sir D. (St. Marylebone)||Robertson, J. D. (Islington, W.)|
|Butler, H. M. (Leeds, North)||Hohler, Gerald Fitzroy||Roundell, Colonel R. F.|
|Butler, J. R. U. (Cambridge Univ.)||Holbrook, Sir Arthur Richard||Ruggles-Brise, Major E.|
|Button, H. S.||Hood, Sir Joseph||Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)|
|Cadogan, Major Edward||Hopkins, John W. W.||Russell, William (Bolton)|
|Campion, Lieut.-Colonel W: R.||Howard, Capt, D. (Cumberland, N.)||Russell-Wells, Sir Sydney|
|Cayzer, Sir C. (Chester, City)||Howard-Bury, Lieut.-Cot. C. K.||Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)|
|Cecil, Rt. Hon. Sir Evelyn (Aston)||Hudson, Capt. A.||Sanders. Rt. Hon. Sir Robert A.|
|Chadwick, Sir Robert Burton||Hurst, Lieut.-Colonel Gerald B.||Sanderson, Sir Frank B.|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N.(Ladywood)||Hutchison, G. A. C. (Midlothian, N.)||Sandon, Lord|
|Clarry, Reginald George||Jackson, Lieut.-Colonel Hon. F. S.||Sheffield, Sir Berkeley|
|Clayton, G. C.||Jarrett, G. W. S.||Shepperson, E. W.|
|Cockerill, Brigadier-General G. K.||Kelley, Major Fred (Rotherham)||Smith, Sir Allan M. (Croydon, South)|
|Colfox, Major Win. Phillips||King, Captain Henry Douglas||Smith, Sir Harold (Wavertree)|
|Colvin, Brig.-General Richard Beale||Kinloch-Cooke, Sir Clement||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)|
|Cope, Major William||Law, Rt. Hon. A. B. (Glasgow, C.)||Spender-Clay, Lieut.-Colonel H. M.|
|Courthope, Lieut.-Col. George L.||Lloyd-Greame, Rt. Hon. Sir P.||Stanley, Lord|
|Craig, Captain C. C. (Antrim, South)||Locker-Lampson, G. (Wood Green)||Steel, Major S. Strang|
|Crook, C. W. (East Ham, North)||Lorimer, H. D,||Stott, Lt.-Col. W. H.|
|Curzon, Captain Viscount||Loyd, Arthur Thomas (Abingdon)||Stuart, Lord C. Crichton-|
|Dalziel, Sir D. (Lambeth, Brixton)||Lumley, L. R.||Sueter, Rear-Admiral Murray Fraser|
|Davidson, J. C. C. (Hemel Hempstead)||McNeill, Ronald (Kent, Canterbury)||Sutcliffe, T.|
|Davies, Thomas (Cirencester)||Maddacks, Henry||Terrell, Captain R. (Oxford, Henley)|
|Dawson, Sir Philip||Manville, Edward||Thomson, F. C. (Aberdeen, South)|
|Doyle, N. Grattan||Margesson, H. D. R.||Titchfield, Marquess of|
|Du Pre, Colonel William Baring||Milne, J. S. Wardlaw||Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement|
|Edmondson, Major A. J.||Mitchell, Sir W. Lane (Streatham)||Tubbs, S. W.|
|Elliot, Capt. Walter E. (Lanark)||Molson, Major John Elsdale||Ward, Col. L. (Kingston-upon-Hull)|
|England, Lieut.-Colonel A.||Moreing, Captain Algernon H.||Waring, Major Walter|
|Watts, Dr. T. (Man., Withington)||Wise, Frederick||Yerburgh, B. D. T.|
|Wells, S. R.||Wolmer, Viscount|
|Weston, Colonel John Wakefield||Wood, Major Sir S. Hill- (High Peaky)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Whaler, Col. Granville C. H.||Woodcock, Colonel H. C.||Colonel Leslie Wilson and Colonel|
|White, Lt.-Col. G. D. (Southport)||Yate, Colonel Sir Charles Edward||Gibbs|
§ The CHAIRMAN
Several new Clauses have been handed in in manuscript: It is, as the Committee knows, my duty to select new Clauses or Amendments for discussion, and I do not look with favour upon proposals handed in in manuscript that might have been put on the Paper, but there are two of a very simple character which I am disposed to favour. The first is one in the name of the hon. Member for Caerphilly (Mr. Morgan Jones), but unfortunately it is not consistent with Clause 5, which has already been passed. He will, however, be enabled, subject, of course, to what Mr. Speaker may say, to move the substance of that Amendment on Report. The other is in the name of the hon. and gallant Member for Central Nottingham (Captain Berkeley).
On a point of Order. May I draw your attention, Mr. Chairman, to the peculiar hardship that falls on us owing to the procedure adopted by the Government? I am not complaining, but merely pointing it out. In the ordinary course, I myself had an Amendment which I desired to move, if it were selected, but supposing it were not selected, I would have desired to move it on Report, but it must be—in fact, practically all Amendments to this Bill must be—in the form of new Clauses, and on the Report stage a new Clause cannot be moved unless notice is given, but the Government will not give us the chance to give notice, because they are taking the Report stage immediately after the Committee stage, and therefore I suggest to you that you should look considerately on Amendments handed in in manuscript.
I do not think the hon. and gallant Member means to complain of the action of the Government, because, as a matter of fact, we did our best to meet the convenience of hon. Members, but the proposal to which we were prepared to agree met with no support from the benches opposite. It would not, therefore, be fair to impute any blame to us for the fact that this new Clause may not be able to be put on Report. We do not want, however, to deprive the hon. and gallant Member 1622 of having this provision, once and for all, making field punishment No. 1 illegal on the face of it, and if there is any difficulty on Report, I will consult with my Noble. Friend the Secretary of State and see if he can put it in in another place.
I should like to say that, provided it is understood, as I understand it is, that field punishment No. 1 is now to be statutorily illegal, and not a matter of rules and regulations, I am quite content, and I should not think of taking up the time of the Committee by moving my Amendment now. I understand that it will be done by the Government in another place, and I thank the hon. and gallant Gentleman.