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Volume 414: debated on Thursday 25 October 1945

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asked the Secretary of State for War whether he has any statement to make on the future of the Commandos.

The Army Commandos were formed in 1940 for the only kind of offensive operation that we were then able to undertake. During the years of preparation, before the assault on the Continent in 1944, the Commandos were used in many raids and attacks on the enemy-held coasts. Their tasks did not cease with the invasion of Europe, for they took part in many operations until VJ Day, and they have seen service in Burma and on almost every front in this war. The manpower commitments of the Services must, however, now be greatly reduced and it is impracticable for the Army to retain in peace-time specialised units such as the Commandos. But although the Army Commandos are now to be disbanded the lessons which they learnt and the technique which they perfected will be incorporated in the Army training of the future.In addition, a certain number of Commando units will be retained in the Royal Marines, who have themselves furnished during the war half the strength of the Commando force, and who are so fully qualified, by their long tradition and history, to carry on the special role which the Commandos have performed in the war. I take this opportunity of paying tribute to the gallant officers and men who have served in these units.