In the billion dollar navy bill which will be submitted to Congress this morning there is palpitation of the heart for Secretary Wilbur and the sweetest of justification for Admiral Magruder. It will be remembered that the admiral's offense was in aerating the navy's soiled linen in the Saturday Evening Post, with the implied suggestion that an early laundering would not be inappropriate. The admiral was spanked in a manner peculiar to those who go down to the flagships in launches; and his suggestions were adopted.
England, long pictured as the naval ogre of the world, a monster uncontent with parity in armament with the United States, may be given her answer. For, speaking in the House of Commons two weeks ago William Clive Bridgeman, First Lord of the Admiralty, announced that two of the big British cruisers that had been building under the terms of the disarmament treaty had been abandoned. At the same time he declared that Britain intended to restrict it cruiser tonnage next year to a mar', below that of the treaty agreement.
It has been found, though, in the legislative check up on the allegations of Admiral Magruder, that even if the United States were to build six or seven submarines a year for the next five years, this would be only "a fleet appropriate to out needs." In spite of the recent completion of the twin airplane carriers Saratoga and Lexington, the most modern vessels of their kind in the world, the United States is all of 69,000 tons behind the allotment of the disarmament conference.
No longer can America think of the English menace that has saddled it with the incubus of a huge navy. Such advances as those of Lord Bridgman, calculated as an antidote to the bad taste of the international deadlock at Geneva, are ignored. Although the scope of resultant feeling is not determinable at present, it is already clear that Great Britain has given the cut direct to her cruisers, while the United States has given it to Great Britain.
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