HC Deb 30 March 1939 vol 345 cc2214-5
48. Mr. Kennedy

asked the Prime Minister whether any decision has now been reached by the Government as to the further measures to be taken for the recruitment of the armed forces of the Crown; and whether any pledge has been given to France to introduce compulsory national service?

49. Mr. V. Adams

asked the Prime Minister whether he will now state the result of the review of our defensive position in the light of the changed conditions in Europe, and, in particular, what is the Government's policy with regard to in creasing the land forces available to re pulse attack upon British possessions and to defend our allies against aggression?

The Prime Minister

I would refer the right hon. Gentleman opposite and my hon. Friend to the answer which I gave yesterday in reply to a private notice question by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Wakefield (Mr. Greenwood).

Mr. Adams

May I ask my right hon. Friend whether it is not correct to say that even with the welcome increase announced yesterday we are still relatively less well prepared on land than we were in the summer of 1914?

The Prime Minister

I could not answer that question without notice.

Mr. Adams

May I ask whether my right hon. Friend has finally ruled out the possibility of universal service?

The Prime Minister

Nothing is final in this world.

Lieut.-Commander Fletcher

May I ask whether the Government have any steps in contemplation for stimulating recruiting for the Regular Army in order to overcome the shortage which exists at the present moment?

The Prime Minister

Yes, that is under consideration.

Mr. Thorne

Is the Prime Minister aware that during my life I have been in favour of a compulsory citizen army, but that I have changed my views now?