Korea

Oral Answers to Questions — Armed Forces – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 14th February 1951.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Sir Toby Low Sir Toby Low , Blackpool North 12:00 am, 14th February 1951

asked the Minister of Defence if he will make an up-to-date statement on operations in Korea.

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Easington

I hope to make a statement shortly.

Photo of Sir Toby Low Sir Toby Low , Blackpool North

Will the right hon. Gentleman bear in mind that he has not made a statement for more than two months, and that the public and the House particularly are extremely interested in what is going on; and that the only really authoritative statement can come from him and his Department?

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Easington

I am conscious of that, but there have been many fluctuations in recent weeks. I shall do my best to furnish a statement next week.

Photo of Mr Anthony Eden Mr Anthony Eden , Warwick and Leamington

Will the right hon. Gentleman bear in mind that, while we do not expect a detailed account of the fluctuations in the whole of the fighting, the House is interested in the part our British troops are playing and would like a statement about it at regular intervals?

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Easington

I will bear in mind the right hon. Gentleman's wishes, and I will do my best.

Photo of Viscount  Turnour Viscount Turnour , Horsham

Did not the right hon. Gentleman reply in exactly the terms as he has used now to a supplementary question which I put to him some time ago, when he said that he agreed with me and would make a statement at regular intervals? Why has he not done so?

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Easington

If I said that, the noble Lord ought to be quite satisfied.

Photo of Major Sir Duncan McCallum Major Sir Duncan McCallum , Argyll

asked the Minister of Defence how many British helicopters are in service with the British Forces contingent of the United Nations Armies in Korea.

Photo of Major Sir Duncan McCallum Major Sir Duncan McCallum , Argyll

Is it a fact that British units in Korea have to borrow American helicopters? Does the right hon. Gentleman think, in view of the years that British industry has been developing the helicopter, that it is not possible to provide British helicopters for British units serving overseas? Is he aware that it is the prejudice of Government Departments against the development of the helicopter which prevents this being done?

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Easington

The Americans are responsible for evacuating casualties, and there has been no demand for British helicopters. As this matter is being properly handled I do not think that we need interfere.

Photo of Mr Enoch Powell Mr Enoch Powell , Wolverhampton South West

asked the Minister of Defence whether he has considered the possibility of some reduction in the air mail rate for parcels below a certain weight addressed to persons serving with His Majesty's Forces in Korea.

Photo of Mr Kenneth Thompson Mr Kenneth Thompson , Liverpool, Walton

asked the Minister of Defence if he is aware of the heavy charges levied for parcels sent by post to men serving with British units in the Far East; and if he will state his intentions regarding this matter.

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Easington

I would refer the hon. Members to the reply which I gave to my hon. Friend, the Member for Coventry, South (Miss Burton), on 7th February.

Photo of Mr Enoch Powell Mr Enoch Powell , Wolverhampton South West

While realising that it may be impossible to apply concessionary rates up to the full weight of 4 lb., may I ask the Minister to consider offering reduced rates for small weights such as 1 lb. or even ½ lb.?

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Easington

I should prefer to wait until we see how the bulk parcel scheme works out. We are not quite ready to say what the final form will be, but I think we shall be able to do so very shortly.

Photo of Mr Kenneth Thompson Mr Kenneth Thompson , Liverpool, Walton

Is the Minister aware that the cost of parcels to men serving in Korea is the cause of probably the greatest amount of dissatisfaction among relatives in this country at present?

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Easington

As the hon. Gentleman is aware, we did go a long way to meet some of the hardships. Now we are working on the new scheme, and if we find it satisfactory we shall put it into operation.

Photo of Miss Elaine Burton Miss Elaine Burton , Coventry South

If I were to put down a Question to my right hon. Friend for next Wednesday, would he be in a position to make a statement on the matter, because I think the country should know the excellent suggestion which has been put forward by the Government to help with the problem?

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Easington

I cannot complain if my hon. Friend puts down a Question to me, but the scheme has been worked out by the War Office and perhaps the Question might be transferred to that Department.

Photo of Captain Robert Ryder Captain Robert Ryder , Merton and Morden

Can the right hon. Gentleman say if these facilities are to be available for naval Forces as well as the others?

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Easington

We shall seek to apply the scheme wherever it is necessary.