11 FEBRUARY 1938, Page 2

There seems to be little reconciliation between the rival schools

of thought on foreign policy in the United States, and little sign that either school is making headway at the other's expense. The initiative is with the President, whose Naval Appropriation Bill is now before Congress. On the other side are the isolationists, fearful lest some secret under- standing has been reached with Great Britain whereby American ships may be enticed into action in some quarter of the globe. Admiral Leahy, Chief of Naval Opera- tions, has denied the understanding categorically ; Mr. Cordell Hull has elaborated the denial in phrases as explicit as language is capable of framing. Senator Pittman, Chair- man of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, has declared uncompromisingly that the attitude of the dictator- ships is making war inevitable, and that it is imperative for America to make herself capable of self-defence without regard to cost. These are convincing words, but there is no great probability that they will convince any substantial number of the Senator's political opponents. The Naval Bill will no doubt get through, in spite of the heavy expendi- ture it involves, but preponderating opinion in the United States considers it the function of warships to ward off war, not to engage in it. * *