§ 49 and 50. Mr. Proctor
asked the Prime Minister (1) if, at the proposed conference of heads of State, he will seek a clear statement on the strength of the Russian and the Warsaw Powers in conventional weapons, the strength of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation Powers in conventional weapons, and the period of time it would take the North 543 Atlantic Treaty Organisation Powers, using nuclear weapons, to demolish completely the Russian military power, destroy Russian productive industrial power and strike a mortal blow at the Russian people;
(2) if, at the proposed conference of heads of State, he will seek a clear statement on the period of time it would take the Russians, using nuclear weapons and ballistic rockets, to destroy all Western Europe; what damage the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics is capable of doing to the United States of America with the use of nuclear weapons; and what is the scientists' estimate of the survival of the human race, if the present stockpile of nuclear weapons is used in nuclear war.
§ The Prime Minister
I should prefer not to go further than what I said in our debate last week: that is, that the general subject which seems to offer a chance of progress at any summit meeting is that of disarmament in its widest sense.
§ Mr. Proctor
Would the Prime Minister agree that it is highly desirable that the people of the world should be well acquainted with the amount of conventional arms that the various great Powers have, so that we can judge the menace that arises from their possession? Furthermore, would he agree that while the nuclear weapons have so far preserved the liberties of the world, we have reached a stage where they are a menace to the very life of the world? Would the Prime Minister agree that if nuclear war should break out, Russia and all Europe would be completely devastated in three hours, which would mean that by twenty-seven minutes past six Leningrad, Moscow and London would be finished?
§ The Prime Minister
The hon. Member has asked me to agree to a number of propositions which I should like a little time to consider before committing myself in detail to them. What I would say would be to ask the hon. Member in return whether he agrees, as I understood he did, that the balance of power, with all its disadvantages, has at least preserved the peace and is likely to continue to do so.
§ Mr. Speaker
I think that both the hon. Member's question and the Prime Minister's question were rhetorical.