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in commission will be 262,000l. in 1913-14, rising to 1,226,000l. in 1923-4.
With regard to military defence, in 1909 Field-Marshal Lord Kitchener visited Australia at the invitation of the Commonwealth Government, and, after inspecting the military forces and the forts and defence works, reported on the whole scheme of land defence. The provision of an adequate military force to ensure local safety and confidence at a time of attempted invasion is regarded as a paramount duty; and it is proposed that the homedefence forces of Australia shall be organised on lines. similar to those adopted in Great Britain. The strength of the land-force necessary for this purpose is reckoned at 80,000 men; and the annual cost of the scheme, when in full operation, will amount to 1,884,000l. The recommendations of Lord Kitchener were largely embodied in the Defence Act of 1910, which came into operation on January 1 last. On account either of sparseness of population or difficulties regarding communications, certain areas are exempt from the operation of this Act; but in all other parts of the Commonwealth territory universal military training has been proclaimed. The total expenditure of the Commonwealth on defence for the year 1910-11 was estimated at 2,833,8951., of which total the military expenditure accounted for 1,029,7587. The estimates for 1911-12 provide for a total outlay of 4,583,000l. on defence, including 1,515,000l. in respect of the construction of the fleet unit.
With regard to Canada, the Naval Service Act was passed on May 4, 1910. Its object is to give effect to the resolution which was unanimously passed by the Canadian House of Commons on March 29, 1909 (see above, p. 234). In principle the Act follows closely the Militia Act, with this difference, that the naval service is to be voluntary, whereas under the military law all males between eighteen and sixty are liable to military service. Very little progress has been made with the organisation of the new naval force. A Naval College has been established at Halifax, and two practically obsolete protected cruisers, the Niobe' and the Rainbow,' have been The Act
purchased from the British Government. provides for the construction of dry docks; but, so far, nothing appears to have been accomplished in this
direction. In the latter part of 1910 the Canadian Government invited tenders for the construction of nine ships of the naval programme, that is four cruisers of the improved Bristol' class and five torpedo-boat destroyers of the improved 'River' class; and on May 1, 1911, tenders were received for the construction of these vessels in Canada. A change of Government has since taken place; and on November 21, 1911, the new Premier (Mr Borden) made an important statement in the Dominion House of Commons with regard to the policy of the Government in the matter of naval defence. He said the proposals of the late Government called for an expenditure of 10,000,000l., spread over a period of ten years. A fleet had been planned which would be useless as a fighting force and would be quite obsolete by the time it was completed. Mr Borden expressed the opinion that it would not be wise to proceed with such a useless expenditure, and he intimated that the Government would stop it; they thought that the whole question should be reconsidered. In the meantime the Government would endeavour to ascertain what were the conditions confronting the Empire, and they would be quite prepared to do their duty as citizens of Canada and of the Empire. Mr Borden added that a matter of such importance as the navy should not be entered upon until the question had been submitted to the people and had received their approval.
There is no reason to believe that this change of policy foreshadows any weakening of public opinion in Canada in the matter of the responsibilities of the Dominion with regard to naval defence. Sir Wilfrid Laurier's scheme was obviously a compromise between the views of the Nationalists, who were opposed to participation in any scheme of naval defence, and the Imperialists, who desired to undertake a much more ambitious scheme. It has been recognised that the division of a few cruisers and torpedo craft between the Atlantic and Pacific seaboards of Canada would neither add to the security of the Dominion nor prove of any real value in the general scheme of Imperial defence. Canada possesses neither the facilities for construction nor the personnel requisite for a purely national navy; and it may be hoped that the Dominion will now approach the consideration of
this question in the generous and comprehensive spirit in which it has been dealt with by Australia and New Zealand. In 1910 General Sir John French, Inspector General of the Imperial Forces, visited Canada and inspected the Canadian militia. In his report the General stated his opinion that, so long as the present condition of affairs on the North American continent remained as it was, the existing military system, if strictly administered on a sound basis of peace organisation, should suffice to meet the needs of the Dominion. The expenditure on militia and defence in the fiscal year 1910 amounted to 936,000l.; and this will no doubt be materially augmented when the new naval service is in full operation.
With regard to the Union of South Africa, as the Union only took effect on May 31, 1910, sufficient time has not intervened to permit the elaboration of a full scheme of national defence. The Defence Forces of the South African Union are about to be reorganised; but no official information is available as to the nature and scope of the proposed reorganisation. The military expenditure for 1911 is estimated at 440,000l. The map which accompanies paper No. 9 of the Imperial Conference, 1911, defines the geographical limits of the Cape of Good Hope Naval Station; and from this it may be assumed that it is contemplated that the Union will also provide a naval unit similar to those which are to be maintained in the East Indies, Australia and China Seas.
At the Imperial Conference of 1911, subsidiary conferences took place between the British Admiralty and the representatives of the Dominion of Canada and the Commonwealth of Australia with regard to naval and military defence. At this conference it was agreed that the naval services and forces of the Dominions of Canada and Australia should be exclusively under the control of their respective Governments. The training and discipline of the naval forces of the Dominions is to be generally uniform with the training and discipline of the fleet of the United Kingdom; and officers and men of the said forces are to be interchangeable with those under the control of the British Admiralty. The Canadian and Australian Governments are to have their own naval stations as agreed upon from time to time. The British Admiralty has undertaken to lend to the Dominions
during the period of development such officers and men as may be needed. In time of war, when the naval service of a Dominion has been put at the disposal of the Imperial Government by the Dominion Authorities, the ships will form an integral part of the British Fleet, and will remain under the control of the British Admiralty during the continuance of the war.
It may perhaps be urged that the awakening of the Overseas Dominions to a sense of their responsibilities in the matter of Imperial defence affords some ground for the limitation of the naval expenditure of Great Britain; but this is very far from being the case. Naval forces cannot be improvised; and, for many years to come, the naval units to be provided by the Dominions must be practically negligible so far as the great navies of the world are concerned. Moreover, it cannot be pretended that the naval programme which has recently been discarded by Canada would have been in keeping with the magnitude of her population, wealth and sea-borne commerce. The Commonwealth, with a population of 4,482,896 and a sea-borne trade which is valued at 160,000,000l. per annum, has undertaken a scheme which will ultimately involve a naval expenditure at the rate of about 4,400,000l. per annum ; while Canada, with a population of 7,080,000, and an external trade of the value of about 140,000,000l. per annum, only proposed to spend 1,000,000l. per annum on naval defence.
The population of all races comprised in the Union of South Africa is 5,958,000, and the value of its external trade exceeds 96,000,000l. per annum. The sea-borne trade of India is worth over 200,000,000l. per annum; and that of the Crown Colonies is well over 160,000,000l. per annum. Of course, the action taken by the Dominions may in time be expected to relieve the British taxpayer of the annual charge of 2,500,000l. at present incurred in protecting the trade of the Overseas Dominions; but the maximum annual expenditure at present contemplated by Australia and Canada in respect of their naval forces cannot be expected to exceed 5,000,000l. per annum, and this maximum will not be reached for several years.
The magnitude of Great Britain's expenditure on naval armaments must always be judged primarily in the
relation which it bears to that of the other naval Powers; and the following summary, which shows the growth of naval expenditure by the eight great naval Powers during the past decade, will prove of some interest:
* Including expenditure from Loans under Naval Works Acts and appropriations in aid.
The total increase of naval expenditure by the eight Powers included in the above table during the ten years 1902-11, was 52,656,8031., or 56 per cent.; and it will probably be a surprise to a great many people to learn that Great Britain, far from setting the pace in the matter of naval armaments, has during the period in question increased her naval expenditure at a lower rate than any other Power with the exception of Russia, which has the same ratio of increase, namely 27 per cent. Not only has our relative increase of expenditure been lower than that of the other seven Powers, but the actual amount of our increase, namely 9,654,2107., has been surpassed by two Powers, namely, the United States, with an increase of 11,835,673l., or 74 per cent., and Germany with an increase of 11,986,788., or 119 per cent.
In 1902 Great Britain's share of the total naval expenditure of the eight Great Powers was 37.3 per cent. ; for the year 1911 it only represents 30.5 per cent. of the aggregate. Moreover, in considering the relative magnitude of the naval expenditure of Great Britain and the other Powers, it must be remembered that the figures given in the foregoing table do not represent strictly comparable quantities. Mr McKenna explained this when, in introducing the Estimates for 1911-12, he said: