HC Deb 13 December 1950 vol 482 cc1149-51
49. Brigadier Clarke

asked the Minister of Defence if, in view of the present military situation in Korea, he intends to call up any additional reservists.

The Minister of Defence (Mr. Shinwell)

I have nothing to add to the reply given to the hon. and gallant Member for Merton and Morden (Captain Ryder) and the hon. Member for Blackpool, North (Mr. A. R. W. Low) on 29th November, though the position will, of course, be kept under review in the light of developments.

Brigadier Clarke

Does not the right hon. Gentleman appreciate how much the international situation has deteriorated since he last gave that answer?

Mr. Shinwell

That is all the more reason for my present answer.

53. Mr. Deedes

asked the Minister of Defence whether he is satisfied with the system of security which governs the broadcasting and publication of news about the movements of British Forces in Korea; and whether, in the present circumstances, he is prepared to suggest that these arrangements be reviewed.

Mr. Shinwell

The publication of news about the movements of all United Nations Forces in Korea, including the British Forces, is under the direction of the Commander-in-Chief of the United Nations Forces in Korea. I am, however, fully alive to the considerations which have prompted the hon. Member's Question.

Mr. Deedes

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that there is some disparity in the security arrangements governing news about our troops in Korea and our troops in Malaya? Is he satisfied that the arrangements in the first case are adequate? Could he not arrange for our troops in Malaya to get a better show?

Mr. Shinwell

I will look into that.

Mr. Charles Ian Orr-Ewing

Will the right hon. Gentleman look into the report about valuable equipment being left behind by our Forces in Korea? I think the House was rather shocked to read that a Centurion tank and other equipment had been left behind and that full details were given of the position in which it had been left, so that the enemy would be able to make a study of the equipment.

Mr. Shinwell

I cannot find anything in this Question about Centurion tanks.

Mr. Gerald Williams

Will the Minister say if there are representatives of the three Services available to the B.B.C. to advise them before the publication of the news?

Mr. Shinwell

I cannot say offhand.

Mr. Driberg

Can my right hon. Friend say if it is the case, as announced this morning, that new censorship arrangements have now been introduced in Korea and Tokyo; and is he aware that most newspapers and most responsible correspondents would have welcomed such a censorship, on the ordinary security grounds, from the beginning?

Mr. Shinwell

I have seen the newspaper report, but I have no official confirmation.