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Wednesday, 27 February 1952


Mr BERNARD CORSER (Wide J3ay) . - This debate has revolved mainly round Chapter III. of the peace treaty, which concerns the security of Japan. I suggest that the security of Japan is of great importance both to the Japanese and to our own people. We have been told by the Government that at all COnferences about this treaty Australia has done everything possible to restrict the rearmament of Japan. By ratifying this treaty we secure the protection of Britain and the United States of America against Japan, should the necessity for such protection arise in the future. Therefore, the Government's good faith is not in question. However, the Australian Government was overridden at those conferences by all the other 49 nations that attended, with the exception of New Zealand, and we must accept this treaty as the best and wisest solution of a difficult problem. India did not become a party to the treaty, because it considered that the terms were too harsh.

I have been astonished and bewildered at the similarity of the arguments against the Japanese peace treaty advanced by honorable members opposite and by Communists generally throughout the world. Most honorable members opposite who have spoken in this debate have used the arguments that have been used by Communists both in Australia and overseas. Communists in every country in the world are doing everything possible to prevent this treaty from coming into effect, and to cause dismay and bewilderment in the minds of all democratic people. Last week in Japan, Russianorganized Communists stirred up riots against the treaty. In Australia to-day

Communists form the greater part of the delegation of over 300 people that is now waiting upon Labour members in King's Hall in this building. No good can come of Australia refusing to ratify this treaty. To refuse ratification would be to secure a victory for the Communists. The treaty must be our instrument to save Japan from being over-run by communism. A Communist Japan would complete the pattern of Russian conquest in Asia.

Communist agitation has demanded the complete disarmament of Japan, and has attempted to stir up hatred against the United States of America. Both those lines of argument have been used by the Communists, and I repeat that both have been used by the Opposition. I remind honorable members that if it had not been for the United States of America during the last war Australia would have gone down in ruin. Moreover, the United States of America cannot continue to pour hundreds of millions of dollars into its present system of occupation of J Japan. Unfortunately, the pattern of communism is quite plain throughout the world. Arguments similar to those used by Communists against this treaty have been used by Communists in France and other countries against the German peace treaty. Apparently the Communists wish to see the democratic nations pour out their lifeblood in the defence of an unarmed Japan and Germany against Russian aggression. In fact the- Communist activities were so intense in France at the time when the German peace treaty was being discussed that they almost wrecked the French Government. At present Russian influence has extended to within 2 miles of the Japanese mainland, yet honorable members opposite want to prevent the Japanese from taking any defensive moves against this Communist menace.

The honorable member for Fremantle (Mr. Beazley) said that America gave strategic bases to Russia. I submit that America did no such thing. Strategic bases were given to Russia under the Potsdam Agreement, an agreement that was entered into by Great Britain, France, America and Russia. I submit that Russia is not entitled to anything in the Far East because Russia entered the war against Japan only a day or two before it surrendered to the Allies. Yet when Japan was broken, Russia marched in and looted steel-works, electrical equipment, power stations and all the slaves and wealth on which it could lay its hands. Surely we shall not be a party to handing Japan over to a power that has already taken possession of China. By the Potsdam Agreement Russia was given Port Arthur and certain islands up to within 2 miles of the mainland of Japan. Russia was also given fishing rights in the waters between Siberia and Japan which had been a matter of controversy between Japan and Russia for many years. Russia therefore constitutes a terrible threat to Japan, and for the Allies to refuse to concede to Japan the right to take defensive measures would be merely to foster Russia's imperialistic ambitions. The Labour party has adopted to-day the arguments and methods of the Communists, not only in Australia, but also throughout the world, and they have advocated that Japan should not be allowed to defend itself.


Mr CLYDE CAMERON (HINDMARSH, SOUTH AUSTRALIA) - So has the honorable member for Angas (Mr. Downer).


Mr BERNARD CORSER - The honorable member for Hindmarsh (Mr. Clyde Cameron) is only concerned about a couple of Japanese boys who were taking photographs in Adelaide. The Japanese have not one warship with which to attack Australia, and the Russians have, great offensive fleets. I never hear the honorable member for Hindmarsh saying anything about the defence of Australia against the Communists in Australia. Russia has been given the position to attack Japan at any time, and we now have to see. to it that Japan shall be given the power to defend itself. "We must take precautions against the forces being developed by the. Communists for an extension of their march southward from the Asiatic mainland. It has been claimed by the Communists, and by those in this House who have espoused their arguments, that this treaty should not be ratified. Honorable members opposite have not told us whose children will have to go to Japan to save it from the Russians. The honor able member for Fremantle (Mr. Beazley) said that Japan would have only one course to adopt if it were allowed to rearm and that would be to join Russia. He claimed, further, that Japan could retain its neutrality only by not . rearming. Could anything be more childish? That is the desire of Russia and of Communists throughout the world. That is the reason for the agitation in France about the rearming of Germany. The desire was made evident also in Japan last week, when the Communists demanded the withdrawal of American troops. That is the sort of claim that is being urged by the Communists who nrĀ» in King's Hall of this Parliament House to-day. They are agitating in the name of the so-called Non-ratification of Japanese Treaty Committee. While they enjoy that freedom, the press from Peking to Hong Kong speaks of the relentless assassination of Chinese people on the ground that they are not co-operating with the Communist regime. The individuals who advocate this action are the traitors to Australia who have allied themselves with a foreign power. The official Chinese Communist newspaper has announced that the purge in China will not end until all opposition to the existing regime ceases. Millions of Chinese will be assassinated because they hold a different political opinion. Yet people with similar views enjoy the freedom that Australia gives to them, and honorable members opposite support their contentions. They would not be prepared to allow Japan to rearm, neither would they allow Australian youths to enter the Army to train for the defence of Australia. Trade unions are now being established in Japan. No doubt the Communists will get control of many of the more important of them, and Japan will be harassed in its endeavours to provide home defences against the Communists of China. The honorable member for Blaxland (Mr. E. James Harrison) said that he could not believe that Japan would aline itself against the Asiatic races.







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