Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that the President did
not agree with the Soviet indication that there had been agreement
to hold a meeting between the U.S. and Russia, as reported in the
Moscow newspapers. The report apparently was based on a
misinterpretation of a report provided to the Soviets by Ambassador
Walter Bedell Smith on May 4, which the President characterized as
intending to make no change in American policy.
American observers in Moscow attached great significance to
the fact that the report, false as it was, had stimulated immediate
interest in the Russian people, who quickly snatched up all the
copies. Press and radio gave wide publicity to the prospect of
agreement between the powers. Capitals throughout Europe likewise
reacted with relief and surprise at the announcement.
In Jerusalem, the Jewish Army announced the capture of the
Arab village of Beth Mahsir along the Tel Aviv-Jerusalem supply
route, above the Bab al-Wad Gorge. Irgun members described the
battle as the largest yet between Arabs and Jews. The Arabs had
launched a counterattack at Bab al-Wad under the leadership of Iraqi
Col. Mohammed Mahdi Bey. The road had not yet been opened as there
was still fighting ongoing in the adjacent hills. The Jews wanted to
establish first a clear corridor for five miles on either side of
the road. Jews also claimed capture of Safad in northern Palestine.
Bans against shipments of perishables and livestock on the
railroads were lifted in the first day of operation of the trains
under direction of the Army. The railroads were reported by
Secretary Kenneth Royall to be functioning normally. Efforts to
resolve the wage dispute with the three railroad brotherhoods, who
otherwise would have started striking this date, continued.
CIO president Philip Murray criticized the issuance of
injunctions to stop strikes under Taft-Hartley.
In Annapolis, a Navy midshipman was killed when a classmate
accidentally hurled a javelin in his direction fifteen feet away,
striking him in the neck. The javelin had slipped as it was being
thrown during a track and field workout.
In Greenville, N.C., the police chief was found shot to death in
his parked car the previous day, the victim of suicide. No reason
for the act was suggested by family or officials. His wife had said
that he had been restless the night before and talked in his sleep.
In Winston-Salem, Harold Stassen was scheduled to speak this
night before heading to Oregon for a debate with Governor Dewey on a
date as yet not set.
We shall provide the coverage of the debate when it occurs, as the
event, undoubtedly, will determine the next President, at least in
In Charlotte, a 13-year old boy, one of the two youths who
had been convicted in March of draining the Freedom Park lake of its
water, killing most of the fresh $5,000 stock of bream fingerlings,
was in trouble for the third time in two months, this time for stealing a motorboat valued at
over $3,000, having in the interim been accused and found guilty of
the theft of a milk truck on April 20, also with a youthful
accomplice. Another young boy was a defendant as well in the new
case. They were caught cruising around in the boat on the Catawba
Tom Schlesinger of The News tells of a little known
tropical plant reaching out from a display window of the Newton &
Newton store on East Trade Street in Charlotte and sucking the blood
of passersby. Bugs and spiders were committing suicide within the
Hey, pal, you may be the son of a prominent historian and the
brother of another to be, but you cannot fool us. We have already
seen that movie—twice over, in fact.
Besides, someone brought a Venus flytrap to show and tell in
the first grade. That's old stuff. It certainly is not front page
news when the world is about to come to an end in less than five
On the editorial page, "America's Trains Must Run" supports the President's decision to seize the nation's railroads to
prevent the strike by three railway brotherhoods which would have
taken effect this date. The Administration did not have resort to
Taft-Hartley to obtain an injunction as with the coal miners'
There was need, it suggests, of amending the Transportation
Act to bring it into conformity with Taft-Hartley, though the
railroad brotherhoods would object. The President was acting
pursuant to residual wartime emergency powers in the seizure.
It urges that management and labor take greater steps to
cooperate voluntarily to avoid additional Government regulation.
"Thurmond's Keynote on Rights" remarks on South
Carolina Governor Strom Thurmond's address to the States Rights
convention in Jackson, Miss., the previous day, in which he warned
the Democratic Party that the Southern states would be lost if it
pursued the civil rights plank in its platform or if it nominated a
candidate supporting the President's civil rights program. He had
insisted that even if the proposed civil rights laws were passed,
the Federal Government could not force integration of the South,
even with bayonets.
The piece agrees with this latter point and finds the
legislative effort to repeat the mistake of Radical Republicanism
during Reconstruction. It recommends educational growth through time
to improve race relations.
It also agrees with the Governor's statement that only
Southerners had "cared and provided for the Negroes" in
the South. The "emancipators", said Mr. Thurmond, had
done nothing to make the task easier.
The editorial concludes that the "cause of true
emancipation" would suffer greatly from use of Federal power
to coerce change in the South.
The bayonets would, nonetheless, trump the feeble attempts of
the fools and hypocrites, as Governor Thurmond, who wanted to lead
the charge against progress to the point of stultification. In
eighty years since the Civil War, grudging progress had been made
only in the form of elimination of most lynching and elimination in
half the Southern states of the poll tax. That was not a proud
record on which to stand. South Carolina had just been ordered by
the Supreme Court to open its primaries to all citizens. Vigilante
racial violence and murder committed with impunity still raised its
ugly head in several instances since the war.
The editorial and Governor Thurmond were still living
mentally in the time of Tara and Never-Never Land—a time which
never existed save in story books and the fertile imaginations of
school boys and girls feeding on nonsense.
"Government Inflation Offenders" tells of the
president of the American Bankers Association providing a talk in
which he had said that the Government was placing inflationary
pressure on the economy, with no plans to cut spending, sponsor
credit or grant subsidies. No reductions had taken place to account
for ERP and defense spending.
It finds wisdom in the warning and suggests that the people
were not sufficiently concerned with continued spending and high
taxation. It urges consideration of economy-minded candidates.
A piece from the Atlanta Journal, titled "These
Sort; These Kind!" tells of marveling at Winston Churchill's
mastery of the English language in his memoirs, excerpts from which
had appeared in Life and the New York Times. It
remarks of glowing prose, such as in the phrase, "First and
foremost gleamed the Baltic," in reference to the first
arena which promoted itself for a Naval offensive against Germany in
It criticizes Mr. Churchill's use of the phrases "these sort of
things" and "these kind of things", but excuses
the slight faux pas as trivial, concluding, "We are
only painting the wart on the face of our Cromwell."
Drew Pearson tells of the President nixing the appointments
of Paul Smith, editor of the San Francisco Chronicle, and
Richard Wells, a New York attorney, to the voluntary positions on
the South Pacific Commission, designed to work with Australia,
Britain, France, and other nations in helping the war-torn Pacific
islands recover. The reasons were that Mr. Smith had editorialized
against the 1946 nomination of Ed Pauley as Undersecretary of the
Navy, and Mr. Wells was a friend of Adolph Berle, formerly Assistant
Secretary of State, who recently had announced his disfavor of the
President seeking the Democratic nomination.
In their stead, the President had approved the appointments
of an anthropology professor from Stanford and Presidential
brain-truster Judge Sam Rosenman's law partner, both on the
recommendation of Judge Rosenman. Both supported the President and
were Democrats, but had no particular expertise for the jobs.
The column corrects a mistaken previous reference to a supposed
"reign of terror" against blacks in Mississippi in the
wake of the promulgation of the President's civil rights program, urged to Congress February 2. It turned out that two
black men beaten by police had criminal records and that black
citizens had come to the aid of the white officer in one of the
cases. The State Supreme Court had reversed a conviction and death
sentence three times in the case of a black man convicted of murder
of a white man. He says that he was glad to report these apparent signs of progress in Mississippi.
Joseph Alsop tells of the portrait presented of the President, as
tending to the national business without concern for election-year
politics, being inconsistent with the reality. Maj. General John
Hilldring was an example of election-year politics, appointed as
special adviser on Palestine to Secretary of State Marshall, killing
any hope of effecting the Arab-Jewish truce in Palestine. General
Hilldring was favored by the Jews but not by the Arabs, and
Secretary Marshall had not been in favor, therefore, of the
Another example was the appointment of the ERP administrator.
The President wished to appoint a Democrat, while Senator Vandenberg
wanted him to appoint Studebaker head Paul Hoffman, the eventual
appointee. Because Mr. Hoffman had not appointed the desired staff
as his subordinates, the President announced that he would not
appoint any more Republicans.
Samuel Grafton tells of there being Federal laws prohibiting
the attempt to overthrow the Government by force and violence. The
pending Karl Mundt bill, however, provided for punitive sanctions
against those accused of such attempts, but, by the fact of allowing
the punishment against those who were members of the Communist Party
or Communist-front organizations, without the Government having to
prove an attempted overthrow. It could reach anyone who was a member of an organization,
no matter how innocent, whose membership also included a Communist,
which could make it "reasonable to conclude" that the organization fell within
the ambit of the law.
It was the role of the executive to ferret out treachery
against the Government, and this bill sought to shift the role to
the Congress, using a blunderbuss approach.
He urges that it not become law.
A letter from the publicity director of the Textile Workers
Union of America seeks to correct published accounts of a speech at
the union's recent convention, which appeared to urge violence by
the membership to bring about organizational goals. He says that the
references were only to violence directed against the union
organizers in South Carolina and Georgia, and not exhorting workers
to use violence.
The editors respond by quoting language on which The News had relied in its editorial of April 30 against the statements, as the TWUA
speaker had urged the workers to use their own fists to combat the
violence and warned that bloodshed and killing would take place in
the organizational effort. The editors thus continue to be unable to
understand how the statement was not exhortation to violence.
A letter writer urges relegating all anti-strike legislation
to the scrap heap and to stress cooperation between management and
labor to avoid strikes.