The Charlotte News
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 1, 1939
Site Ed. Note: As to "No Hotbed", we respectfully and pointedly take great issue with Mr. Cash's peculiar notion, having spent some years around the campus ourselves, that Chapel Hill is anything other than a nice, simple pastoral place which has nothing to do with anything political whatsoever and is dedicated solely to the administration of quality education, perservering scholarship, non-ideological discourse, objectivity, the American way, scholarly discipline (oh, maybe we said that already), and mom and apple pie, brownies from home on weekends, volleyball, and holding hands in the lush spring-lit meadows of McCorkle and Polk Places--just to name a few of its wholesome attributes. No one who attended between roughly 1971 and 1975 could ever say that exhibitionism was a quality exhibited by students there, streaking a few times just to establish for a brief period, in the good college tradition of competition, the national record for most streakers in one streak, notwithstanding. (Just debrief a few students from that era and tell us we declaim against Mr. Cash wrongly!) Nor could anyone say that rebellion against authority is an attribute which has to our knowledge ever been exhibited in this campestral embrace of verdant solemnity. (That smell which used to pervade the upper deck of Kenan Stadium on fall Saturdays being a special type of oregano sprinkled on pop corn rather than some Spanish-American plant being burnt; we were assured so by a fellow wearing bull's (or it was it buffalo?) horns on his head and shouting, "Mary Juana, Ho Chi Minh, come on, Heels, first and ten." We never did figure out who this Mary was. Probably his girlfriend, but we really don't know.) Nor could anyone say that Angela Davis, Ralph Nader, Hunter S. Thompson, Stokley Carmichael, Saul Alinsky, Jesse Helms and several other apolitical voices, appearing in one school year, was anything but milk toast and poetic sweetness, something one could hear on any average street corner in any large city in the United States, even Charlotte. So whoever heard of such a ridiculous proposition as Mr. Cash suggests? Whatever may or may not have been true in Mr. Cash's day at that radical institution, Wake Forest, away back in the early 1920's, certainly has nothing to do with the case later on or today neither. We suggest a letter writing campaign to Mr. Cash this time so that these outrageously proletarian-inspired and ill-informed, and no doubt, calumnious editorializations of this and that will once and for all cease and desist, and stop, too. Just send your letters c/o The Charlotte News, Charlotte, N.C. 101939. We are certain such will result in a prompt apology, recantation, and ultimately a restoration of order and dignity to the State of North Carolina, and to Chapel Hill, also. Fie, fie on Mr. Caashe.
The Cats Have Not Yet Jumped
How Russia, Italy And The Balkan Nations Ultimately Will Line Up They Themselves Probably Don't Know
It is far too early yet to assume, as many people are doing, that the various "alliances" and pronouncements which are appearing one after another mean that England and France really face the choice of ignominiously surrendering or having to fight a combination of Germany, Russia, Italy, Turkey, and the Balkan nations.
All these moves represent simply is an attempt to create that impression. Not on the governments of England and France: Hitler, Stalin & Co. are much too shrewd to have any such foolish hope as that. Rather, the idea is to create that impression in the minds of the population of these countries, to set up doubt and fear and confusion, and by continually playing on these emotions to transform them into hysterical mass terror which will stampede the governments willy-nilly into "peace," which is to say surrender, which is to say the signing of the death warrants of the British and French empires.
A secondary, but by no means incidental, purpose is almost certainly to create confusion and fear in the United States. Hitler knows, we may be sure, that at this moment he is hated and despised in the United States as no other man in history has been. And that knowledge inevitably worries him. He fears immediately that the United States will repeal the arms embargo. And he fears that if the war goes on, the United States will ultimately come into it and seal his doom as it sealed the Kaiser's.
But he knows also how unstable human memory and judgment often are--that it is easy to befuddle many people with even such idiotic propositions as that he himself has struggled for peace and that England and France are the real aggressors in this war. And befuddlement, he knows also, makes for division and paralysis, his favorite condition for moving ahead.
But all this, as we say, proves nothing about how the powers may line up in the long run. As to what Russia intends, no one knows. Indeed, it is possible to suspect that Stalin himself does not know, and is only groping from decision to decision as the occasion demands. The one clear thing is this: that, under every rule of reason, the last thing Russia can possibly want is to have a victorious Germany established on her own borders, with the incredibly powerful military machine she would have in that case, and with their eyes on the Balkans and the Russian Ukraine--with no other guarantee that Hitler will not then attempt to carry out the Drang nach Osten mapped out in "Mein Kampf," save his word, which Stalin knows to be as worthless as his own.
As for Italy, Mussolini probably does not want to get into the war at all, on the theory that he will be far more powerful, and healthy at the end of it simply by conserving his forces. But if it works out that he has to get in on one side or the other, as it probably will, the decision will be anybody's guess and will have nothing at all to do with existing "sacred promises," etc.
Against the fact that if he goes in on the side of Germany and wins he may expect large loot, are certain considerations that make for the other side. One of them is that his country stands to be wrecked pretty rapidly by the Allies, whereas he would stand an excellent chance to stop a German invader in the Alps. Another is that he can count on considerable loot as the price of his support to the Allies. Still another is that he must reckoned with his people, who are neither pro-German nor pro-Red, but Catholic.
The role Turkey and the Balkans are playing in this game is that of helpless small boys hemmed up by two lions, with old Towser, the watch dog, away off on the other side of town--the role of attempting to propitiate and divert the animals which may any moment decide to begin to eat them. In the ultimate showdown, their decisions will hang on the balance between their interests, which generally lie with the Allies, and their doubt as to their ability to hold off the eaters until help arrives. Upon that and the balance also between their lusts and their suspicions.
Turkey, for instance, is undoubtedly being tempted by visions of recovering her old provinces of Mesopotamia, Syria, Palestine, Arabia, and Egypt. But she also knows very well that Mussolini has his eyes on precisely those same provinces, too.
At this stage of the game, nobody can really guess how the cards are going to fall out at last. Nor is it certain, as is commonly assumed, that the real showdown is coming soon. Actually, Hitler and his dubious Russian ally may go on playing this game for a very long time, leaving Italy, Turkey and the Balkans to hang on tenterhooks and serve as pawns in the war of nerves, and perhaps alternating periods of frightfulness with periods of braying for "peace."
Chapel Hill Students Play Usual Undergraduate Role
The Carolina Political Union is an organization of students at the State University at Chapel Bill which holds speakings. It prides itself on the catholicy of its tastes, chasing Tom Girdler with Norman Thomas, and Earl Browder with Senator Bailey.
Last week the CPU took up a proposal to invite Bundsführer Fritz Kuhn, the U.S. Nazi, to speak at one of its meetings. As once there arose the clamor of protest from veterans organizations over the state, accompanied by disapproval generally of the people who read newspapers, that the boys and girls at Chapel Hill should have any truck with so contemptible and unpatriotic a fellow as Kuhn.
The CPU went its way undaunted and put the Kuhn invitation to the vote of a regular meeting. It was voted down--decisively, the statement said. Whereupon the Phi Assembly at Chapel Hill, a student literary society, took up the issue and conducted a campus poll. If the majority out of 2,000 voting students favored having Kuhn, the old Phi would have him.
He isn't coming; in fact, won't be invited. There wasn't a majority of 2,000 participating students who wanted him. But look:
Of the 1,619 who did vote, 1,191 said, sure, bring him on.
Is it then that Chapel Hill, in addition to being the hotbed of Communism that Dave Clark has always liked to fear, a hotbed of Nazism? We don't think so. We think, rather, that the nature of students is about as it was in Dave's and our days--that they love to shock their elders and mentors; that they are at bottom sheer exhibitionists; that nothing causes greater glee in the dormitories than the flouting of authority and over-smug adult opinion.
All that, in sum, and one significant thing more: that they are more aware of democracy than their predecessors like Dave and us, and who can blame them for that? After all, government of, by and for the people is perishing everywhere from the earth.
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