HC Deb 23 February 1954 vol 524 cc179-80
6. Mr. Swingler

asked the Secretary for War what percentage of the Army's fighting units is now overseas.

Mr. Head

The answer is 80 per cent.

Mr. Swingler

In view of the recent speech by the Minister of Defence, would not the right hon. Gentleman agree that there must be something fundamentally wrong with the policy of the Government since it prevents him from establishing the strategic reserve about which the Minister of Defence has spoken?

Mr. Head

The main controlling factor here is represented by various things overseas over which neither the War Office nor, indeed, any Government can have absolute control.

Mr. Slater

In view of the discrimination referred to by my hon. Friend the Member for Stockton-on-Tees (Mr. Chetwynd), could the Minister say what percentage of those serving overseas come from the Durham Light Infantry and the Northumberland Fusiliers?

Mr. Head

Not without notice.