Canada at War: THE DOMINION: For Better, for Worse

In World War I, Colonel James Layton Ralston, then a battalion commander in the trenches, demanded that Canadians at home be conscripted to fight overseas. Last week in Parliament, Colonel Ralston, now Canada's National Defense Minister, told Canadians no conscript would fight overseas—so long as Canada had enough volunteers.

Minister Ralston had been baited, by a purely political maneuver, into restating Canada's compromising manpower policy. The Parliamentary Opposition had demanded that Canada's 73,000 "zombies"—home defense conscripts—be made available as overseas reinforcements or released for war jobs. Minister Ralston flatly rejected both suggestions.

Soldier's Defense. Ex-Soldier Ralston offered a soldier's...

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