19 MAY 1923, Page 10

American naval men are said by Mr. F. W. Wile,

the Washington correspondent of the Sunday Times, to be somewhat agitated by Mr. Amery's alleged statement in the House of Commons that " the command of the seas " remained, as of yore, a British ideal. What Mr.

Amery actually said, as reported in the Times, was :- " The action they had taken was entirely consistent with the general policy of the Government of getting armaments down to the utmost limit compatible with safety ; it was in no sense contrary to the spirit either of the League of Nations or the Washing- ton Treaty, and it simply aimed at securing for the Fleet, now very much reduced, free mobility, so that it might carry out in every sea of the world its historic mission, which was to keep the seas free for the trade of this country, and for communication between this country and the other portions of the Empire on which, in peace as well as in war, our security and existence depended. (Cheers.) " There is assuredly nothing in his speech to which the most whole-hearted supporter of the Washington Treaty could fairly object.