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Armed Forces (Educational Pamphlets)

Volume 441: debated on Monday 28 July 1947

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asked the Minister of Defence if he is aware that some of the booklets issued by the Bureau of Current Affairs in relation to the U.S.S.R. are rather one-sided in their viewpoint; and, before future publications are distributed to the Army and Royal Navy, if he will have them carefully examined to test their real educational value.

I have been asked to reply. All "Current Affairs" pamphlets are examined before they are issued. Lecturers and leaders of discussion groups are instructed so far as possible to treat their subjects impartially and objectively and the same principles are followed in selecting literature to form the basis of this type of instruction. More latitude is allowed in providing material for libraries and information rooms, but here again care is taken to see that all views are represented. It is extremely difficult, however, to produce a pamphlet on a controversial topic which appears completely unbiased to everyone, particularly if it is intended, as these are, to stimulate thought and discussion.