HC Deb 22 October 1941 vol 374 c1765
20. Mr. Lipson

asked the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he can make a statement on the contribution which the Jews in Palestine have made to the war effort, indicating how many Jews in Palestine have joined the British Army, the Royal Navy and the Royal Air Force; and what further steps are being taken to encourage recruiting among the Jews in Palestine?

Mr. George Hall

The total number of Palestinian Jews now in the Services is over 9,000, including 1,505 who are missing or prisoners. Of this total 1,575 are serving in the Royal Air Force and the remainder in various branches of the Army. A campaign for more recruits for the Army is now in progress.

Mr. Lipson

Can my hon. Friend give an assurance that no obstacles are now placed in the way of Jews in Palestine who are physically fit and who wish to join one of the Fighting Services?

Mr. Hall

I can give that assurance. As a matter of fact, a campaign is proceeding at the present time to obtain recruits for the Army.

Mr. Wedgwood

Is there any chance of obtaining women for the A.T.S. in Palestine?

Mr. Hall

That is another question.

Mr. Mander

Why have so many attempts been made to hide the great contributions which the Jews are willing to make in this war?

Mr. Hall

No attempt has been made to hide any act which has been done by the Jews. That is a misapprehension.