asked the Secretary of State for Air (1) whether his attention has been directed to the success of the United States dive-bombers in the Battle of the Coral Sea; what is the Air Ministry policy on dive-bombers; and what steps are being taken to profit from the Coral Sea experience;
(2) whether he is aware of the success of the torpedo-planes in the Coral Sea action; and what is the Air Ministry's policy in regard to torpedo-planes?
Full details of the part played by dive-bombers and torpedo-carrying aircraft in the action in the Coral Sea are not yet available. When reports are received they will be carefully studied to see whether any new lessons can be learned. As for policy, I would refer the hon. Member to my speech introducing the Air Estimates and to the statement regarding torpedo-carrying aircraft which I made in my reply to the Debate on that occasion.
The steps that we took to provide the Royal Air Force with an adequate supply of bombers were to order them in July, 1940. As regards the inaccuracy of bombing at high altitudes, it is our constant endeavour to make it more accurate, and our endeavours have not been without success.
If they were ordered in July, 1940, when will an adequate supply be coming along, in view of the growing concern at enemy ships getting away as easily as they have done?
If the policy was decided upon in July, 1940, does not the right hon. Gentleman think it about time that some further review was made in the light of recent developments?