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TO THE EDITOR. Sir, —On Friday last I wrote to your war correspondent asking, him on what grounds he based his assertion that tho dirigible can beat the aeroplane all the time, as from accounts that have reached us from the scenes of action of aerial operations we were led to form a different opinion. I also asked Mr Spence whence he derived his information that the Germans have 800 aeroplanes, and that each dirigible is escorted by 20 or 30 aeroplanes of the largest size. I also questioned his statement with regard to Zeppelins carrying several tons of explosives, and hazarded the opinion that if a fleet of Zeppelins attack London few of them will return across the water. I simply asked Mr Spence some plain questions, easily answered if his information was well grounded. In reply, however, he disposes of my queries by saying that ‘1 am apparently too much cut of date on aeronautics to begin the discussion on dirigibles and aeroplanes which I seem to desire. There is no depth of attack in this. Mr Spence has been drawn into a salient position. Now, sir. I submit that a writer for the Press must not object to hie dogmatisms being questioned, nor to refusal by some to swallow all his ipse dixit statements without a grain of salt. Mr Spence continually impresses on your readers that all other war correspondents’ statements are rubbish, and that they are all unversed in war (many of them being military men with practical experience), whilst he, with his knowledge derived from text books and encyclopedia, is to be believed without question. But your correspondent is not infallible, as has been shown in more than one instance. “ Pibroch ” bowled him out on the weight of a machine gun, and instead of admitting his error he called “Pibroch” no sportsman. Mr Spence’s statement that in 20 years’ reading he cannot remember a statement in an English magazine which bore the slightest relation to war when war actually came is simply ludicrous, and shows that his reading o'f the higher' class of magazines must' have been very superficial.

Your manv readers look forward anxiously for their evening paper, and many of them read your war correspondent’s diatribes, whilst others pass them, over on principle, which perhaps is the wiser course. Ido not suppose Mr Spence’s gloomy forebodings prevent many people, from sleeping, but I fail to see what is the advantage of rubbing in the disasters which have, occurred, and very probably will frequently occur, to our arms before this war is ended. I think, sir, that criticisms of Air Spence’s articles should be answered by him courteously, if at all, and not with abuse.—l am, etc., F. 0. Bridgeman. October 17.

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MR SPENCE’S ARTICLES., Issue 15627, 19 October 1914

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MR SPENCE’S ARTICLES. Issue 15627, 19 October 1914

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