§ 36. Major NEWMAN
asked the Under-Secretary of State for War whether he is aware of the number of officers of junior rank at present employed in the War Office and on the staff of the various Home commands who have hitherto been denied the opportunity of serving in the trenches or on other fronts; and whether it is intended to release these young officers for active service and replace them by officers who are incapacitated by wounds from further active service?
§ Mr. TENNANT
I am not aware what the number of such officers may be, but I do not think it is large. The principle suggested in the last part of the question has been acted upon from the beginning of the War wherever possible. It is not, however, inevitable that amongst the wounded officers the particular qualifications which are necessary for the headquarters or other staffs of the Army can be found. Members of this House are never tired of insisting, and with good reason, that the most competent officers shall be employed in the direction of the War without reference to other considerations. This is and must be the paramount criterion.