The Charlotte News

Monday, February 16, 1948


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that President Truman asked Congress for additional military aid for Greece and Turkey to supplement the 400 million dollars authorized the previous spring, 300 million of which went to Greece. He did not indicate how much more he would seek but stated that the continued need to fight guerrillas in Northern Greece necessitated additional aid there.

Congressman Richard Nixon of California had been proved prescient on this point. Perhaps there was a bug in the White House planted at some time by someone, perhaps conducting plumbing repairs.

President Truman had made direct personal appeals to other governments for restraint in dealing with the troubled situation in Palestine since partition was approved by the U.N. on November 29, 1947. Reports indicated that the Kings of Saudi Arabia and Iraq were among those to whom the President personally made appeals.

According to an American officer in China, the Chinese Communists demanded a neutral mediator to negotiate release of four American Marines held captive. One Marine had been fatally wounded when they were captured near Tsingtao and Haiyang on Christmas Day.

The House Banking Committee voted 18 to 5 to extend rent controls provisionally for one additional month beyond the end of February and indicated through the chairman that rent controls would be continued in one form or another for at least an additional year. The Committee wanted additional time to investigate the matter.

The Supreme Court, in Woods v. Cloyd Miller Co., 333 US 138, unanimously upheld the legality of Federal rent controls this date, in an opinion delivered by Justice William O. Douglas. It held that the war did not necessarily end with the end of hostilities and so upheld the continued exercise by Congress in this regard of the emergency powers passed during the war. The decision reversed a Federal decision in Cleveland holding the converse, that the emergency powers had expired.

The Court also refused, for the nonce, the request of a black woman to be admitted to the segregated University of Oklahoma Law School, in a further hearing on Sipuel v. Board of Regents, deciding earlier that the State of Oklahoma had either to admit the otherwise completely qualified applicant to the University Law School or provide an alternative in-state law school which was equal to the University school. The petitioner had contended anew that the State had set up a law school in one week, with only three faculty members and in which she would be the only student, thus could not possibly obtain an equal education to that afforded by the University school. The Court only deferred judgment on the issue, as the matter was still being considered by the State courts; thus, the petitioner had not fully exhausted her legal remedies before resorting to the High Court. The Court found that the State courts had not issued orders inconsistent with the mandate issued in January by the Court.

Justice Wiley Rutledge dissented on the basis that the Oklahoma Supreme Court and District Court had not followed the original mandate of Sipuel but had instead provided alternatives whereby the State of Oklahoma could hastily establish an inadequate separate law school to satisfy the requirement of making available immediately a facility "equal" to the University law school, a ruling which appeared to frustrate the purpose of the Supreme Court's mandate.

The Truman Administration asked anew that Congress extend old age benefits to more people. Representative Robert Kean of New Jersey, a Republican, introduced a bill to bring twenty million more people within the eligibility list.

General Eisenhower stated in his farewell address as chief of staff of the Army that he believed that if war were to come again, the first 60 days would determine the winner. He urged that ERP was vital to America's security and that of the West. He said that in an emergency, America would need a ground army of 1.3 million men, but that such would be probably too expensive to maintain on a regular basis, that the National Guard was the best alternative.

Secretary of Defense James Forrestal announced the creation of a civilian defense study unit to identify radioactivity before it could kill.

Senator Elmer Thomas of Oklahoma submitted a letter to Senators investigating his grain and cotton speculation, stating that he did not wish to be bothered any further regarding his private activities. It was alleged that he had made large profits since 1933 by influencing cotton prices through speeches and then having surrogates trade for him, and that similar activities had taken place with respect to grain speculation in a more recent period.

A warrant charged that the national secretary of the CIO National Maritime Union had entered the country illegally, was a Communist, and was to be deported.

Grain, soybean, and corn prices edged upward again after the decline of the previous two weeks. Butter also rose. Cotton was $1.29 higher on the New Orleans market and ten cents per bale lower on the New York market. Retail meat prices continued at a lower rate than before the slide began.

In Detroit, a man who tried to snatch a woman's purse from beneath her arm as she walked along the street was hit in the face with a pumpkin pie which she wielded in her right hand. The bandit exclaimed, "Whoo," and ran away.

New advertising campaign for pumpkin pie: "More effective than guns or knives, get your pumpkin pies."

You can drink a farmer's run-off water from 200 acres in Union County, should you be thirsty of a day or night, as explained in the Carolina Farmer section.

On the editorial page, "Do We Need a State Hatch Act?" asks the title's question based on the denied Associated Press report that Governor Cherry was planning to try to get appointed officials to stop supporting former Governor J. Melville Broughton for the Senate seat to which William B. Umstead was appointed by Governor Cherry in late 1946, following the death of Senator Josiah W. Bailey. The piece wonders whether a state version of the Federal Hatch Act, preventing any control or coercion of the voting of Federal employees by officers of the Federal Government or participation by officers of the Government in political activity, was necessary.

It asserts that the Governor's efforts would be unseemly if undertaken. It cites the failed attempted purge of disloyal Democrats in 1938 by FDR and the adverse reaction to it by the people in refusing to vote them out as an example of what would happen under such circumstances.

"Marshall Plan Steadies America" tells of the declining prices on commodities boosting the chances for passage of the Marshall Plan reasonably intact. All, save the isolationists following Senator Taft and the economic protectionists, were aboard with this new argument for the Plan.

It augured well for the world situation, as without an effective ERP, it would devolve quickly to economic and political chaos, inviting Communist inroads to Western Europe.

A piece from the Atlanta Journal, titled "The Priceless Daniels Legacy", remarks on the death recently of former Secretary of the Navy, Ambassador to Mexico, and publisher and editor of the Raleigh News & Observer, Josephus Daniels, and his having left to his four sons controlling interest in the newspaper. It quotes at length from Mr. Daniels's will regarding the obligation of a newspaper, which the editorial believes to be an excellent statement of the matter.

He had provided political and social gospel during his editorship, editorializations not always popular with the leadership of the state, in the drive to bring about better conditions for the people. In consequence, the newspaper was dubbed the "Nuisance & Disturber". But he was able to disarm his critics in time. That was the legacy left to Jonathan Daniels, presently editor, and brother Frank Daniels, publisher. The piece finds the bequest from the father to be worth more than gold.

Drew Pearson tells of the German Foreign Office documents captured after the war revealing that in Stockholm in the summer of 1943, right after the battle of Stalingrad, Hitler nearly concluded a separate peace being sought by Stalin, an agreement separate from that sought in December, 1940 on conditions that Russia be given free will in Finland, the Dardanelles and, consequently, the Middle East, a tender ultimately rejected by Hitler.

He supplies the background of the 1943 discussions, coming at a time when President Roosevelt and Prime Minister Churchill were resisting Premier Stalin's entreaties to initiate a second front to take the heat off the Russian front. The two Western leaders viewed it as premature, before sufficient troops and weaponry could be brought to bear on Western Europe. The North African offensive had been initiated in November, 1942 and the successful Sicilian campaign, in July, 1943, followed in September by the invasion of Southern Italy. But Stalin wanted a larger offensive in the West to draw off German troops from the East. V. M. Molotov was particularly upset at the refusal.

Russia proposed to Germany that it receive half of Poland, to which the Nazis agreed. They also agreed to the demand for control over Iran and to have free access to the Indian Ocean through the Persian Gulf. Hitler wanted Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, Greece, and Hungary, to which the Russians assented. The negotiations foundered, however, on the subject of Turkey and the Dardanelles, Hitler refusing the demand of Russia for a free hand therein to avoid Russia having warm-water access through the Mediterranean.

President Roosevelt and Prime Minister Churchill received word of these negotiations at the time and sent Secretary of State Hull and Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden to Moscow to patch things up, a successful venture. It was at that time that the conferences of the three heads of state were set in motion, starting with Tehran in November, 1943 and continuing through Yalta in February, 1945 and Potsdam in July, 1945, ultimately to resolve Stalin's expressed concerns regarding the Balkans and Poland and how they would be determined after the war.

At Tehran, the Big Three agreed that the West would initiate the second front, though with Mr. Churchill's objection as to it being via the English Channel to France rather through the Balkans or, secondarily, through the Mediterranean coast of France, both of the latter rejected by Stalin, with whom FDR eventually agreed. Russia, it was agreed, would have a free hand in Bulgaria, Rumania, and part of Yugoslavia at war's end. Great Britain would have a sphere of influence in the Mediterranean and the Dalmatian coast of Yugoslavia. Stalin convinced the other two leaders that Tito was the man to back in Yugoslavia.

Thus, the knowledge of the possibility that Russia would link arms with Germany or sit out the rest of the war motivated these concessions by President Roosevelt and Prime Minister Churchill.

The "Miriam", whose portraits had excited response at the St. Etienne Gallery in New York, was actually the wife of a prominent public relations official in Washington.

Russia was reported to be mining 400 tons of gold per year and hoarding five billion dollars worth, the dumping of which on the world market could cause major problems.

Joseph & Stewart Alsop remark on the lack of interest shown in the country anent the 5,000 Russian officials, military officers and soldiers belonging to the Soviet military government and occupation forces in Germany, who had defected to the Western sector in the previous two years. Kravchenko, for writing a book about his defection, had captured the public's imagination, despite the other Russians having taken far greater risk in their flight.

The American Military Government, however, had taken the position that the Russian officers had to be returned, based on an agreement with Russia formed at the end of the war.

Secretary of State Marshall and General Lucius Clay, American occupation commander, had nixed the suggestion that the agreement be abandoned. A German politician had remarked to the Alsops that all Russian officers would desert to America if promised 40 acres and a mule, a statement confirmed by informed sources in Washington.

Such a flood of desertion would demoralize the Russian occupation and provide information on the Soviet inner workings, as had the deserters thus far.

Marquis Childs looks back to the 1946 election of a Republican House and Senate for the first time since the start of the New Deal in 1933. At the time, Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas, a keen student of government, had suggested that the President resign so that Speaker of the House Joe Martin could become President and eliminate divided Government. While he did not expect acquiescence, he made the gesture as a demonstration of the problems inherent in such government. The result was that he was abused and ostracized within the Democratic Party.

Mr. Childs suggests that had the President followed the advice, he would have set a good precedent and established his place in history, whereas his current record would not be so great.

Russia understood that 1948 was an election year and that, in consequence, there would be stultified implementation of policy from both parties. If ERP were approved, it would occur in spite of the divided Government. The principal factors in this regard were the swing of public opinion in favor of ERP, Secretary Marshall's deft handling of the presentation of the Plan to Congress, and Senator Arthur Vandenberg's steerage of it through the Congress. Regardless, there was no assurance that a workable plan would result.

A letter writer asks what a man was to do at age 40 when he found himself out of work. There appeared no jobs for such a person.

A letter from failed Republican candidate for Congress P. C. Burkholder responds to unflattering comments of another letter writer on February 5, remarks further on his own letter of that date. He says that his attacks on the New Deal were greeted in other quarters well, that a reader from Spartanburg, for instance, had written, "Good. Go to it, pard."

For all you know, Mr. Burkholder, the writer may have been offering a terse and cryptic assessment of your inditements by suggesting you as the little dog of that name. That would be our finding anyway.

A letter writer says that he had trouble reconciling Christianity with white supremacy but found one entailed the other, nevertheless wished President Truman well in his campaign for civil rights for all.

Four writers of a letter ask the newspaper to retain on the page, despite objections by readers, the letters of P. C. Burkholder for the reason that his missives, unlike the comics section of the newspaper and Buz Sawyer, provided "laughs, good, deep, hearty belly laughs".

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