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Full text of "The Struggle For Peace"

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tration of the Air Ministry and he has given us a tremendous
catalogue of charges, only a fraction, I understand, of those
which he might have made, against the work of the Air
Ministry. It is obviously quite impossible for me attempt to
make an answer to those charges now. To my mind they
suggested a foundation of truth and a great deal of elaboration,
shall I say, of their truth afterwards, but again I put it to the
House, assuming that there is a certain amount of truth,
that there have been mistakes, that there have been delays,
that there have been changes when there should not have
been changes, and that there have been gaps when there
should not have been gaps, how is an inquiry going to help
us to put that right now ? There are changes that have taken
place quite recently, but before the appointment of my right
hon. Friend, in the organisation of the Air Ministry. They were
described by my Noble Friend the Chancellor of the Duchy of
Lancaster (Lord Winterton) the other day. They have passed
the test of experience like their predecessors, and I do believe
myself that they are designed to carry out and are capable
of carrying out effectively that acceleration and expansion
of the programme which was recently decided upon by His
Majesty's Government. My right hon. Friend will himself
be speaking later in the Debate, and I do not want to trespass
in any way upon what he is going to say hereafter. I think,
therefore, I had better leave this question of the charges that
are made about the past or the changes that have recently
been made in organisation, with any fresh ideas which my
right hon. Friend may desire to put before the House. I
had better leave all that to him to give us when he comes
to speak later in the evening,
" I would like now to turn to the remarks which the
hon. Member made about a ministry of supply, a proposal
which has had a good deal of publicity, though there appears
to be a good deal of difference of opinion as to what exactly
is wanted. There is the hon. Member for Oxford University
(Sir A, Salter), for example. He has put forward a plan for
a ministry of supply which would be limited to the require-
ments of the Air Ministry and which would not have, as
I understand, any powers or duties which it is not possible
for either the Air Ministry or the Committee of Imperial