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Bombing Restriction Committee (Paper For Booklet)

Volume 387: debated on Wednesday 24 March 1943

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asked the Minister of Supply why paper has been made available for the publication by Bombing Restriction Committee, of 49, Parliament Hill, N.W. 3, of a 16-page protest against the danger caused to German civilians by British bombing methods; and whether he will stop this waste of paper?

No paper has been specially made available for this booklet. I am having full inquiries made into the circumstances of the publication and shall communicate with my hon. Friend as soon as possible.

Will the right hon. Gentleman examine how it so often happens that a few cranks can obtain a liberal supply of paper while responsible organs are kept extremely short?

Without accepting those designations, I would reply that that is part of the inquiry which I am making at the present time.

Can the Minister give an undertaking that any censorship imposed by the Government will be through the proper channels and not through restriction of paper by the right hon. Gentleman's Department?

Is not the hon. Gentleman who put the Question one of the most notorious cranks in the country?

Is not the right hon. Gentleman aware that the term "crank" as used by the hon. Member could therefore be applied to Sir Gilbert Murray, and others [HON. MEMBERS: "Hear, hear"]—that, of course, is the Tory mind—who agree with the purposes of this Committee? Can we have an assurance that Fascist methods will not be employed to suppress allegedly unpopular opinions?

I have already said that it is no part of the function of the Ministry of Supply either to suppress or to censor. Our business is to see that our conditions are complied with.