10 MARCH 1928, Page 39


[To the Editor of the SPECTATOR.]

SIR,—Although you have long since ceased publishing correspondence bearing on the " aviation boom," may I he permitted to trespass momentarily upon your space in answer to Mr. Lynn of Los Angeles ?

Mr. Lynn appears to have joined that growing band of controversialists who seek to make a case by dealing loosely with the words of others. I never complained that " the airplane in peace serves no use." I quote from my original letter to the Spectator : " . . the aeroplane might be banished from the world to-morrow for all the peace, pleasure or use it serves, and very few indeed be the losers . . . the aeroplane is eighty or ninety per cent. a weapon for destroying mankind." Mr. Lynn, and his fellow-Californian business men, are indicated by the "very few who would be the loseri," and by the ten or twenty per cent. I (arbitrarily) allocate as the aeroplane's peace value. fii • I am perfectly well aware of the score or more of subsidiary uses to which the aeroplane is being put in peace time—in fact, I contributed an article to the Graphic last autumn enumerating these. But they appeared, and appear, to me to be quite overshadowed by the parallel-developing war machine to which all Governments are devoting such earnest attention. In other words, I venture to think that the ftict that. U.S. airscouts are being built to fly at 50,000 ft. is -of far more vital import to all of us than that Mr. Lynn should be able Iiot6 "la),