Clause 1. — (Continuation for further periods of certain Defence Regulations.)

Part of Orders of the Day — Emergency Laws (Transitional Provisions) Bill – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 19th November 1947.

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Photo of Mr Samuel Silverman Mr Samuel Silverman , Nelson and Colne 12:00 am, 19th November 1947

The Committee, the House and the country are getting thoroughly sick and tired of these idle, irresponsible and mischievous speeches that are made on this subject by right hon. and hon Gentlemen opposite. They do not mean it; they know they do not mean it; and they are deliberately misleading the country. [HON. MEMBERS: "Nonsense."] I am not talking about hon. Members on the Liberal Benches. [Interruption.] Let me explain. The hon. Gentlemen on the Liberal Benches voted against any peacetime military conscription and that makes all the difference in the world.

Let us look at the case put forward. It is admitted that, with all its evil and unpleasantness, Regulation No. 58A was necessary in war. The right hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for West Derby (Sir D. Maxwell Fyfe) sat in this House on the Government Front Bench and defended Regulation 58A. I take it he is not ashamed of that. He does not wish to withdraw it; he does not think by passing and operating Regulation 58A throughout the years of the war that this country was transforming itself into a totalitarian or slave State—or does he?