HC Deb 17 November 1953 vol 520 cc1562-3
37. Mr. G. M. Thomson

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Defence if he will instruct the British representative on the Council of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation to protest against the statement of Field-Marshal Viscount Montgomery in a public speech on 4th November that the next world war may be expected to take place in 10 or15 years.

Mr. Birch

I am informed by Field-Marshal Viscount Montgomery that, in the speech which he made at a private function on 4th November, he did not state that the next world war might be expected in 10 or 15 years.

Mr. Thomson

Is the Minister aware that this is a rather belated disclaimer, and can he tell the House whether Field-Marshal Viscount Montgomery also disowns the disgracefully flippant phrase he used about the next war being "the next party "?

Mr. Birch

The Field-Marshal's speech was intended to convey a much more optimistic impression—that he saw the way clear ahead. With regard to the word "party," this was a private party at a rather late hour at a rowing club.