Fifty-Fifty Pacific Fleet !s New Naval Policy T HE departure of the Pacific fleet marks an epoch in American naval history. For the first time the naval force has been divided with exactly half of Its power assigned to guard the western seaboard. For the first time also the strategic value of the canal is to be fully tested when Admiral Hugh Rodman Rod-man moves his armada through to Pacific Pa-cific waters. And for the first time Americans of the far West are to see with their own eyes the full pomp and power of the navy that has been their pride for years. The main base of the Pacific fleet will be in Puget sound, Washington. The composition of the Pacific fleet tells its own story. The three most modern shins of the line In the navy, the New Mexico, Idaho and Mississippi, are headed west. Not since President Roosevelt sent the Atlantic fleet to girdle the globe have the people of California, Oregon and Washington seen in their harbors a more powerful and modern fighting craft than the old hero ship Oregon, long out of date and holding her place on the navy list only because of her valiant record. Beside the 30,000 ton flagship of the Pacific fleet the Oregon will be almost a pigmy, and against even the speed of more than 17 knots, which made the old ship queen of the navy for years, Rodman's main fleet, his eight big ships, can maintain about 21 knots for hours at a time, while his destroyers can turn up 35 knots. The sailing of the great fleet marks a complete change in naval policy. Not while the German fleet existed or while German eyes were leveled covetously cov-etously at the rich and undeveloped resources of South and Central America could American naval strength have been divided.