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at which eastern coals can be laid down at these places will be not more than $6.20 per ton. Taking as a basis the amount of coal on naval account sent to the Pacific in the last fiscal year, 160,000 tons, the saving amounts to $360,000. Nor does the advantage end there; a collier can take a cargo via the canal to the Pacific coast, discharge and be back at Norfolk in the time she would take to make the voyage out via Magellan. This roughly divides by two the tonnage necessary for any given supply of coal at those ports. In time of war in the Pacific, this will be of inestimable advantage, considering our woful lack of a merchant marine. With respect to other bulky naval supplies, like provisions, the same thing does not hold true, for they can be delivered equally well and at little difference in cost on either coast from their points of origin. Even ammunition and guns, which are practically all manufactured in the east, would very probably be sent by rail to the Pacific in order to save time, although the expense would be greater. But with oil fuel, again, the advantage to the Navy is apparent, and this time the gain is in movement toward the Atlantic. In the last few months the price of oil has markedly increased. California produces more oil than any other state and its price is lower than eastern oils. This fact, in addition to the important fact that a large oil-producing area has been set aside for naval purposes in California,* points to the possibility that the Navy may soon be using California oil in the Atlantic, which would hardly be possible without the canal. The demand for oil increases every day and many of the older wells are falling off in production; the Navy may not improbably have great occasion in the years to come to congratulate itself that the canal will make the Pacific coast fields available.
* A decision rendered early in June, 1914, by Judge Dooling of the Federal District Court, San Francisco, will invalidate the Government's title to the naval reservation of oil lands unless it is reversed by the higher court.
Modifications of trade routes that will follow the completion of the canal are sure eventually to cause a reduction in freight rates, and so act as a stimulus to trade. The increased trade will, in turn, demand a greater tonnage, although this demand will be partially met at first by the ability of the same amount of shipping to provide for a greater trade because of the shortened distances via the canal. Still it can hardly be doubted that the opening of the canal will create a demand in time for an amount of shipping considerably greater than exists now in order to provide for the increased trade. The opinion has been advanced that the United States merchant marine will be greatly stimulated by the operation of these causes. The Navy earnestly hopes that this may be true, for a large merchant marine is a necessity for a strong navy only in a less degree than the auxiliary ships especially designed for its service; and anything whatever that can properly be done to increase the merchant marine should have the active support of the Navy. In so far as the coasting trade is concerned there seems to be good reason to expect an increase of United States shipping, for that trade is certain to grow rapidly upon the opening of the canal, and for
eigners cannot take any part in it. Already some ships have been built for this trade in anticipation of the completion of the canal, and others are being
But the writer has been unable to convince himself that the opening of the canal will alone serve to draw American capital into a form of investment from which it has persistently kept aloof, and under present conditions and laws* he anticipates little or no resultant increase in that part of the merchant marine of the United States engaged in foreign trade. Without any close examination of the reason why, it seems to be a fact that Americans either cannot or else do not care to compete with other maritime nations in the sea carriage of foreign trade, and it is not apparent that the opening of the canal will by itself change that condition. That we should have a flourishing merchant marine is a matter of such vital interest to the Navy that it will anticipate with satisfaction the increase of shipping engaged in coastwise trade due to the opening of the canal; and, as remarked above, the Navy should exert its influence in favor of every proper measure tending to put American ships on the ocean in the foreign trade.
However interesting and profitable it may be to dwell upon the military advantages to the United States attending the opening of the canal, that feature is not the most vital one to the Navy. The canal puts an added and very great responsibility upon the Navy, and this fact is one that the Navy and its friends must always keep in mind.
* Written before the outbreak of war in Europe.
rules. . .
The canal is being built, and it will be operated and controlled, solely by the United States government, and its protection falls solely upon the United States. In the Hay-Pauncefote treaty of 1901, the neutralization rules are embodied in Article 3, in which the language is: “The United States adopts, as the basis of the neutralization of such ship canal, the following
." We are, therefore, the sole guarantors of the neutralization of the canal. Again Article 1 of the treaty of November 18, 1903, with Panama reads: "The United States guarantees and will maintain the independence of the Republic of Panama.” Finally, the United States trade passing through the canal will be very great. Here are new and great responsibilities, all flowing from the canal, and all dependent upon the Navy for their realization. The Navy is the outer line of defense of the canal as it is of the country. The inner line of defense of the canal resides in the fortifications and garrison at the canal itself. If our Navy is driven from the sea and made negligible, an enemy with a great army can undertake with impunity the transportation of the troops necessary to overcome the inner line of defense and complete the victory begun on the ocean. The task may not be easy for him, but its possibility must be conceded if the sea is closed to us and open to the enemy. The only possible and final assurance of safety for the canal is in a Navy strong enough to meet the enemy, beat him, and prevent him from ever getting near it. The following words, quoted from Admiral Mahan, indicate the alternative: “Permanent (naval] inferiority means inevitably ultimate defeat, which fortifications can only delay.” And a few lines later he uses these words: “If the United States desires peace with security, it must have a Navy second to none but that of Great Britain; to rival which is inexpedient, because for many reasons unnecessary.”
The United States is not a military nation. There is little consideration and less understanding among the people at large of military matters. The government has no defined military policy, using “military' in its wide sense, and it has no defined naval policy. By this is meant that there is no soberly thought-out relation between our military strength and our situation in the world — between our declared external political policies and the only means yet found efficacious to uphold them — that manifests itself as a guiding principle in Congress, or even in the recommendations of departmental heads to Congress. There should be such a military policy, and it should carry on from administration to administration, from Congress to Congress, and be considered a part of our foreign affairs policy, as little open to attack from within our own household as the external policies on which it is founded. Our form of government, the immensity of our country, and our isolated position, almost insular as far as other first-class nations having great military strength are concerned, all doubtless conspire to cause the general lack of interest of our people in foreign affairs, which is the ultimate cause why there is so little appreciation of the underlying need for a strong Navy. The Navy is popular just now, and to