HC Deb 03 April 1951 vol 486 c23
42. Mr. Hurd

asked the Secretary of State for War if he has now taken steps to ensure that all young soldiers sent to Malaya receive adequate training there in jungle fighting before they join operational units.

Mr. Strachey

Reinforcements arriving in the Far East are not sent on operations before they have been in the command for a suitable period—normally four weeks—for acclimatization and for training in the tasks they are likely to be required to perform in jungle operations.

Mr. Hurd

Are we to gather from this answer that every young soldier being sent out to Malaya is given four weeks' intensive jungle training before being sent to join his operational unit?

Mr. Strachey

He is given training, but he joins his unit at once. To that extent he is subject to the same risks to which everybody is subject in Malaya.

Mr. Joynson-Hicks

Can the right hon. Gentleman say if the procedure which is now envisaged is one that has been recently introduced?

Mr. Strachey

No, Sir. I emphasise that men join their units as soon as they arrive there, and it is considered the best form of training, but they are not sent out on jungle patrols or on active operations.