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Full text of "The Struggle For Peace"

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" T DO not offer any apologies for intervening at this stage
J[ of the Debate because I think it would be for the general
convenience of the House if I say what I have to say at as early
a stage as possible. The speech of the right hon. Gentleman
(Mr. Attlee) was divided into two very well marked parts,
the second of which appeared to me to have very little relation
to international affairs and to be rather more suitable for an
election platform than for the Debate that we are conducting
this afternoon. I do not propose to reply to that part of the
right hon. Gentleman's speech which, perhaps, had better
be dealt with by my right hon. Friend the President of the
Board of Trade (Mr. Oliver Stanley) who will be speaking
later in the evening. There is, however, one question he
addressed to me which I would like to answer at once. He
asked me whether it were true that, as reported in the Daily
Herald^ instructions had been sent out from Whitehall to all
the Departments dealing with social services to cut down their
expenditure in order to pay for armaments. I read the state-
ment in the Daily Herald this morning, and it was the first I
had heard of it. I have asked my right hon. Friend the
Chancellor of the Exchequer whether there was any action
which had been taken by the Treasury which might provide
the slightest justifiable foundation for such a statement. He
informs me that no action of any kind like that suggested has
been taken by the Treasury. The whole story, therefore, Is
entirely an invention.
" To return to the first part of the right hon. Gentleman's
speech. He asked a number of questions and made a number
of comments upon what he considered to be the consequences
of the Munich Agreement. I find myself in agreement with
a number of observations made by the right hon. Gentleman,
but there was one statement with which he began, to which
I must take exception. He described the Munich Agreement
as a great defeat for this country and for France and to the
cause of law and order. If the right hon. Gentleman really