The Charlotte News

Wednesday, June 11, 1947


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that the State Department had sent a strongly worded note of protest to Moscow regarding the Soviet-backed coup in Hungary, which had overthrown Premier Ferenc Nagy, threatening to take the matter before the U.N., contingent on the findings by a British-American-Russian joint investigation. Refusal of the Russians to participate or slowing the investigation would lead also to taking the matter before the U.N. The note accused Russia of violating the Yalta agreement of February, 1945 regarding the governance of occupied nations. Diplomatic sources stated that no direct reference was made to the U.N. in the note but that its implications were clear.

The U.S. also denounced the politically motivated arrest by the Communist Bulgarian Government of Opposition Leader Nicola Petkov.

Russia proposed to the U.N. a new set of atomic controls, opening the door for possible negotiated agreement on international inspection by a world commission, albeit under the Soviet proposal, operating under the Security Council and its veto power of the Big Five permanent members. The U.S. was firmly opposed to having atomic energy issues subject to veto.

China protested to Moscow the backing of Mongols who, the previous Friday, had attacked Chinese troops in remote Sinkiang Province, seeking the release of eight Mongol prisoners. It had been reported that Soviet planes provided air cover for the Mongols. The Chinese did not confirm that report.

President Truman, in Ottawa, spoke before the Canadian Parliament, saying that the U.S. intended to help those nations who demonstrated that they would live in peace with their neighbors without coercion or intimidation.

Senator Walter George of Georgia urged the President not to veto the tax bill, but stated he would probably not vote to override a veto.

The UAW formed an agreement with Briggs Manufacturing Company to end the strike of workers at the latter. A sitdown strike began among 1,200 workers of Continental Motor Co. and 600 at Hudson, impacting 15,000 workers at the latter company who refused to cross picket lines.

Winston Churchill underwent a hernia operation and was reported in satisfactory condition in London.

General Eisenhower's son, John, was wed the previous day in Fort Monroe, Virginia. The younger Eisenhower, eventually also to become a General, just passed away this past December of 2013 at age 91, was the father-in-law of Julie Nixon Eisenhower, daughter of former President Nixon.

Before the wedding, the mother of Mamie Eisenhower fell and broke her left arm at a reception.

Perhaps, it was an omen of some sort.

HUAC ordered a full investigation of reports that Communists had infiltrated the CIO union representing striking employees of Reynolds Tobacco Company in Winston-Salem, as reported in May to the Winston-Salem Journal by two former organizers within the union.

For the first time, the name of freshman Congressman Richard Nixon of California appears on either the front page or editorial page of The News, as a member of the sub-committee of HUAC which ordered the investigation of Local 22 of the United Tobacco Workers union.

As we previously noted, freshman Congressman John F. Kennedy of Massachusetts had been first mentioned on the pages, in the column of Drew Pearson, on May 16.

The respective running mates in 1960 of Vice-President Nixon and Senator Kennedy, Senator Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr., of Massachusetts and Congressman Lyndon Johnson of Texas, were both veteran members of Congress whose names had thus appeared on the pages several times before, during, and since the war.

In Boston, former Massachusetts Senator David Walsh, 74, whom Mr. Lodge had beaten in 1946 to win the other seat in the Senate from Massachusetts, after having given up his first seat in 1944 to join the Army, was said to be near death after suffering a cerebral hemorrhage. Mr. Walsh, who served 26 years in the Senate, would pass away this date.

We would be remiss, we suppose, were we not to point out that the Belo House in Winston-Salem, with its family connection to Dallas and George Bannerman Dealey, is located in Old Salem, just across the interstate from the Reynolds Tobacco Company as it existed in 1947.

We could go back to the editorial on Saturday anent local rule for the District of Columbia. We would have placed a link under it if we could have found the appropriate scene, but it is not there to be had.

In Lexington, N.C., a veterans service officer refused to apologize to a justice of the peace who had found him in contempt for protesting eviction orders issued against veterans. He began serving a ten-day sentence in jail. The justice of the peace stated that the gentleman had threatened to do him bodily harm and used contemptuous language in his protest. The man stated that he had not threatened the justice of the peace and that any language he used was outside the context of the court, as it was not in session. The justice of the peace had agreed to withdraw the complaint in exchange for an apology. There was no apology forthcoming.

Instead, no doubt, the man suggested, as he ought, that the justice of the peace do to himself that which ordinarily would be done only in pairs, in private collegial colloquy.

Governor Gregg Cherry appointed a nine-member North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission to succeed on July 1 the Division of Game & Inland Fisheries.

In Charlotte, opponents of the cross-town boulevard were making a last stand before the City Council.

In Oelwein, Iowa, M. E. Schroeder, a 30-year old railroad fireman, placed a call to Russian Foreign Minister V. M. Molotov in Moscow "just to be sociable." The call cost him $22.50, which he said was well spent. He was patched through to Mr. Molotov after waiting four and a half hours. Mr. Molotov asked him if he was in politics and whether he wanted to discuss international affairs, to which Mr. Schroeder replied that he was just an ordinary fellow being sociable. They then talked about railroading and Mr. Molotov asked about Iowa. One of his secretaries wished to know whether Mr. Schroeder had ever been to Hollywood.

Mr. Schroeder had once phoned Chiang Kai-Shek but could not get through.

On the editorial page, "Industrialization in the South" tells of a report by the new Committee of the South, established by the National Planning Council, directed by Dean Calvin Hooper of Duke's graduate school. The Committee had studied a hundred plants newly located in the South, finding that Texas had led the way in 1946 in new industrialization, followed by Georgia and Tennessee. The Louisiana and Texas Gulf coast area had become the leading industrial area of the country.

While wages were below normal, it was a condition regarded as temporary and had not resulted in lower unit production costs but was intended only as a means to train workers.

The Committee made clear that cheap labor was a thing of the past in the South and industries could not hope to locate in the region with that prospect. New industries needed the South as much as the South needed new industries.

"Notes on Commencement, 1947" comments on the pessimistic atmosphere pervading graduation ceremonies, even if it was the first commencement without a draft in place since 1940. But still there was no prospect for peace and the war now seemed a distant failure in achieving that goal. It appeared to justify the pessimism and frustration abroad the country.

Yet the machinery for creating a peaceful world still existed and the wisdom of past failures was being passed by former generations to the present to act in contradistinction to that inchoate peace of the past.

"The Mercy Hospital Campaign" tells of a special supplement in the day's newspaper imparting the story of Mercy Hospital and its service to the community for 41 years. The Sisters of Mercy who operated it needed an additional 120 beds to provide for the medical needs of the community. So, for the first time, the previously self-sufficient hospital was asking for community support to contribute a third of the 1.5 million dollars needed for the building program. It was wholly appropriate, given the hospital's longstanding service to all who sought care, regardless of religious affiliation.

A piece from the Louisville Courier-Journal, titled "The Old, Familiar Pattern", tells of HUAC under Republican J. Parnell Thomas being just as given to witch-hunting as when the Committee had been led by Martin Dies of Texas and John Rankin of Mississippi.

HUAC had recently devoted its rapt attention to actor Robert Taylor regarding Communist influence in Hollywood. He reported that the Government had held up Mr. Taylor's induction into the Navy during the war, that he might play a role in a pro-Russian movie. Mr. Taylor accused Lowell Mellett, White House assistant during the Roosevelt Administration, of arranging this service to Red propaganda. A further hearing on the matter set for June 16, at which Mr. Mellett could respond, had been postponed until September.

Mr. Mellett would not be the last person so smeared by the Committee, it predicts, as long as they pursued the un-Americanism which was hallmark of their policy.

As with all such witch-hunts, HUAC depended on the gullible and short of memory for its popular support, on the moneyed interests, seeking to exploit those down below willing to accept the facile and immediate to explain that which they could not otherwise understand, for its wherewithal to operate with as little public scorn as possible. In the particular context, Mr. Taylor, Ayn Rand, who would testify in the fall, and the Committee members neglected to inform that "Song of Russia", when it was produced in 1944, even if it was blatantly "pro-Russian propaganda", was to the end of maintaining good will between Americans and Russians, attempting to overcome two and a half decades of suspicion and prejudice, as the Russians for three years had fought valiantly to rid their homeland of the Nazi onslaught begun in June, 1941, and, by September, 1944, were engaging the German Wehrmacht on the outskirts of Warsaw, having driven them completely from Russia, saving in the process countless American and British lives, as the move from the Eastern pincer to meet the Western pincer gradually and steadily drew the claw tight about the neck of the Reich, ending in Berlin in April, 1945. Without the Russians on the Allied side, had they made, as was rumored they might, a separate peace with Hitler after the Nazis were driven from the Russian borders, the war would have been far longer in Europe and a far more bloody endeavor for the Allies, absent, of course, use of the atomic bomb in summer, 1945 on Berlin, a prospect entirely feasible at the time had not the war in Europe ended before the first successful test of the bomb on July 16, 1945.

HUAC, for purely political reasons, sought to revive the pre-war isolationist, nationalist sentiments which had fueled the war in the first instance, by having allowed Hitler and the Nazis, Mussolini and the Fascists, to flourish during the Thirties without counter from the United States, spreading propaganda with impunity in the United States, while HUAC looked askance and hunted only for Communists and leftist urban guerrillas in libraries and bookstores, as the Congress as a whole tied the hands of President Roosevelt in his attempt in fall, 1937 both to blockade the "outlaw nations" from American trade in raw materials necessary to waging war and, subsequently, to supply arms to the nations friendly to democracy by obtaining abrogation of the Neutrality Act which forbade sale of arms to belligerents.

But all of that was long since tossed to the wind by 1947, yesterday's dismal newsprint of a dismal wartorn time, beset by international and domestic economic woes. Now, with peace and relative prosperity in the nation, HUAC could get down to business without interference.

Drew Pearson tells of the secret strategy of the Republicans, should, as appeared certain, the President veto the tax bill. Knowing that they did not have the two-thirds vote necessary in each house to override, the GOP leadership determined that they would not even attempt it. But when the President would call a special session in the fall, as he intended to do, to try to get a new tax bill, favorable only to the lower brackets, they would pass instead the same tax bill again, forcing him to veto it twice.

He next informs of a pattern by President Truman of expressing complete confidence in people shortly before firing them. It had occurred recently with Assistant Secretary of State Spruille Braden, regarding his differences with the State Department on sale of arms to Argentina, believing it to be a mistake to empower dictator Juan Peron. A similar experience was shared by former Secretary of Commerce Henry Wallace, just before his firing the previous September regarding his public differences with Secretary of State Byrnes over the "get-tough" policy with Russia, and by Secretary of the Treasury Henry Morgenthau shortly before he was asked to resign.

The column next tells of Senator Taft cracking down on the practice of pairing, whereby an absent Senator of one party would seek a pair with a Senator of the other party to cancel out each other's vote by abstaining, thus allowing the absent Senator to continue his stay elsewhere. Recently, the tradition had found tough going, especially on the Democratic effort to table the tax bill until it was known what the budget would be like. After several failed efforts by other Senators to pair with Republicans, Senator Warren Magnuson of Washington agreed to pair with absent Senator Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin on the tax postponement.

Joseph & Stewart Alsop predict that soon the need to rescue Europe from financial collapse would become the dominant theme of American politics, necessitating a special session of Congress to deal with the matter. It had received focus from the Harvard speech by Secretary of State Marshall on June 5. The Administration clearly had in mind a program of economic aid to save Europe, the only question being whether Congress would approve it.

Secretary Marshall had halted the erosion in bipartisan cooperation in foreign policy, resulting from lack of communication between Administration officials and Congressional leadership. The previous week, Secretary Marshall had invited Senator Arthur Vandenberg, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, to spend the afternoon with him at Blair House. While not providing any assurances of accord on the foreign aid program, the Senator had come away with renewed confidence that there would be open communication henceforth on foreign policy.

The Secretary had also implemented a planning section at State to prevent recurrence of the lack of overall foresight which had caught the localized sections of the Department by surprise when the balance sheets from Europe showed suddenly an alarming pattern of decline and deficit. A comprehensive balance sheet was being prepared to determine how much aid was necessary and how much of the burden the United States could shoulder.

Samuel Grafton discusses the increasing tendency in the country to squelch dissent. Even the President had felt it, as some commentary now expressed the idea that he did not have the right to veto a tax bill once Congress had passed on the matter. Such a pattern was consistent with the figurative catcalls hurled at Henry Wallace by the establishment commentators and politicians when the former Vice-President expressed disagreement with the Truman Doctrine. Suddenly the hue and cry had gone up that he had no right to speak in such a vein, especially abroad. Mr. Wallace's supporters were marginalized as kooks and Communists.

When the President went along with the anti-dissent mood, he received praise, as when he favored a bipartisan foreign policy. But as soon as he began to side with labor, the commentary turned in the other direction.

Recently, Dr. Guy Shipley, editor of The Churchman, had stated to a church meeting that liberals were not by any means all Communists and fellow travelers as portrayed. The fact that a distinguished churchman had to make such a statement publicly underscored the problem.

Should the President become fixed in the public consciousness as a dissenter, he suggests, it would divide the country as never before.

A letter writer tells of attending a meeting in Chapel Hill at which author James Street, University chancellor Robert House, and Charles W. Tillett of Charlotte spoke on the trend in the world toward collectivism as opposed to individualism. All three speakers believed such a trend to be taking place. Mr. Street said that individualism had failed. Chancellor House saw a world which could accommodate both concepts, with God being the keystone in the arch bridging the two forms. The author believes this latter vision was the one for which to strive.

A letter writer advocates voting for ABC controlled sale of liquor to reduce bootlegging and attendant crime.

A letter from failed GOP Congressional candidate the previous fall, P. C. Burkholder, suggests that Russia was playing for time while rebuilding its industry, to be ready for war in less than ten years, notwithstanding the comments by Henry Wallace that they could not wage war for at least another decade and thus were not to be feared.

Mr. Burkholder wants everyone to be afraid of the Russkies. The New Deal had lulled everyone to sleep and created a worse monster than that of whom Hitler had ever dreamed, in the form of the Russkies.

It was all the doing of that Howard Da Silva, and probably the Roswellians, or at least their Governing Committee.

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