The Charlotte News

Saturday, March 22, 1952


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that outnumbered U.S. jets hit three enemy MIG-15 jets in an air battle late the previous day, climaxing one of the most successful weeks of the war for the Fifth Air Force.

There is no update on the page regarding the truce negotiations.

Donald McDonald of The News interviews General Claire Chennault of "Flying Tiger" fame during World War II in Nationalist China, who believed that the previous eight months of negotiations in Korea had been a complete "waste of time", that the Communists would never agree to any truce as long as the U.N. negotiators allowed them to have their way. He agreed with General MacArthur's overall strategy to carry the war against the Manchurian supply bases. General Chennault was in Charlotte on a brief stopover at the airport, heading on a fishing trip in Monroe, Louisiana, his boyhood home.

Tornadoes and floods hit five Southern states along the Mississippi River the previous day, leaving 214 dead and more than 1,000 injured. Seven members of one family had drowned when their home had been washed away at Scottsville, Kentucky. The worst of the damage occurred in Arkansas where 148 had died, with White County in strawberry country accounting for 73 of the dead. It was the worst storm ever to hit Arkansas, the previous most deadly storm having been in 1916, when 86 persons had been killed. Forty had perished in Tennessee, eight in Mississippi, 11 in Missouri and seven in Kentucky. The largest death toll ever recorded from tornadoes on a single day had occurred March 18, 1925, when 689 people had died in Missouri, Illinois and Indiana. Physical damage from the tornadoes was expected to run into the millions of dollars. The Red Cross had responded to the scene and Arkansas had summoned 445 National Guardsmen to active duty. It was predicted that fresh tornadoes might hit during the afternoon of this date in Tennessee, Kentucky and Alabama.

In the Rockies and Sierra Nevadas in the West, snow and blizzard conditions had subsided. Three deaths had been reported in the snow belt of northwestern Colorado. Wyoming had also been hard-hit by snow, as had areas of Nevada and California, prompting closure in the latter of U.S. Highways 40 and 50, the main arteries between Northern California and Nevada, as well as prompting the necessity of flying in bales of hay to stricken areas of northeastern Nevada, where 600,000 head of starving cattle and sheep were located, cut off by the snow.

A steel industry spokesman said that the major steel companies would begin individual negotiations the following Monday with the United Steelworkers Union regarding the recommendations of the Wage Stabilization Board made the previous day. The union had accepted the WSB proposal and had threatened to strike on April 8 unless the companies accepted. The bargaining regarding the terms of the contract would be company by company rather than industry-wide and would occur in various cities. The steel industry, in a joint statement released the previous day, had denounced the WSB proposal, which included a 17.5 cent per hour wage increase, a union shop, and other concessions in a package deal. The industry indicated that the wage boost would necessitate an increase in the price of steel by $12 per ton, when existing price controls would only allow an increase of about two dollars per ton.

Senator Estes Kefauver was busy campaigning in Nebraska for the upcoming primary on April 1, contesting Senator Robert Kerr of Oklahoma, also on the ballot. On the Republican side, Senator Taft was also campaigning in Nebraska, announcing plans for a write-in campaign against former Minnesota Governor Harold Stassen, who was on the ballot.

In Raleigh, State Highway Commissioner Mark Goforth of Lenoir entered the race for the Democratic nomination for Congress in the ninth Congressional district, the seat being vacated by long-time Congressman Robert Doughton, chairman of the House Ways & Means Committee.

In Charlotte, Dr. Thomas H. Burton, an educator, was a surprise entry to the race for the Democratic nomination in the 10th Congressional district, against incumbent Congressman Hamilton Jones of Charlotte. Dr. Burton said that he had hoped General Eisenhower would seek the Democratic nomination for the presidency and that until the Democrats selected a nominee, he would continue to support the General.

In Frankfurt, 44 persons had died this date in the wreckage of a Royal Dutch airliner, West Germany's worst airplane disaster since World War II. Four of the 48 persons aboard had survived, but two had been hurt so badly that they were not expected to live. A German truck driver was credited with pulling at least four persons from the wreckage, braving flames in doing so, cutting safety belts with his pocket knife, and passing people out to a companion and another man. The flight had originated from Johannesburg, South Africa, and had flown to Frankfurt from Rome, the crash occurring 2 miles from the designated airport. The cause of the crash had not been determined. The weather was gray and the plane was making an instrument landing.

An Air Force investigating board was on the way to investigate the crash of an Air Force Beechcraft plane en route from Bolling Air Force Base in Washington to Greenville, S.C. The four servicemen aboard had only been slightly injured, with one hospitalized, but the co-pilot had been burned to death. The crash had occurred in conditions of poor visibility after the plane turned back from Greenville and was attempting to land in Charlotte at Douglas Municipal Airport.

In Purchase, N.Y., 10-year old Jackson, who spent most of his time sleeping in the sun at the Westchester County Airport, willingly gave blood to Tex, after the latter became entangled with a propeller of a plane which was warming up. Tex wasn't too bright and walked right into it. The condition of Tex is not provided by the story. An individual that dumb, however, probably does not deserve to live.

In Springfield, O., the fire department was called to a fire the previous night but did not answer the alarm as the call had come to the dispatcher from 160 miles away. The caller indicated that she thought she was calling the Akron fire department regarding a grass fire.

Bermuda or another type?

Not on the page, the four results in the second round of the N.C.A.A. Tournament, each constituting a regional final this night, were victories by Frank McGuire-coached number ten St. John's over number one Kentucky in a shocking upset, 64 to 57, in the Raleigh regional; by number two Illinois over number four Duquesne, 74 to 68, in the Chicago regional; by number eight Kansas over number five St. Louis, 74 to 55, in the Kansas City regional; and by unranked Santa Clara over Wyoming, 56 to 53, in the Corvallis, Ore., regional. St. John's would meet Illinois and Kansas would meet Santa Clara in the national semi-finals in Seattle on Tuesday night at 11:00 p.m. and 12:45 a.m., E.S.T., respectively, with the national championship game to be played on Wednesday night in Seattle, starting at around 1:00 a.m. Go to bed early and set your alarm clocks.

In the Kansas game, "Colossal" Clyde Lovellette had set an N.C.A.A. Tournament single-game scoring record with 44 points, having tied the previous mark of 31 the prior night, that earlier record having been set by George Glamack of UNC in 1941. The new record would be broken the very next year by Bob Houbregs of the University of Washington, scoring 45 points—with the all-time record, still standing, of 61 points eventually set by Austin Carr for Notre Dame in the 1970 Tournament.

Lawrence, Kans., was abuzz with Jayhawk fever and no one, not even the KuKu pep organization, thought of hanging Dean Smith in effigy.

Anyway, it's two down and four to go...

On the editorial page, "Turn About's Fair Play" indicates that it had suspected that Congressional investigators would find some skeletons in Republican closets if they looked hard enough, and, sure enough, Senators Owen Brewster and Styles Bridges were now having to explain themselves and their relationship with Henry Grunewald. Senator Brewster had been chairman of the Republican Senatorial campaign committee in 1950 when party rules forbade use of party funds in the Republican primaries. Nevertheless, Senator Brewster had borrowed $10,000 in the committee's name and passed it out equally to Senators Richard Nixon of California and Milton Young of North Dakota, both of whom had been hard-pressed for campaign funds. The two had been nominated and then suddenly were flush enough financially to repay the loans. Senator Brewster would have to answer to his own party for this deliberate violation of rules.

It indicates that the people would like to know why Mr. Grunewald received $12,500 from Senator Brewster, when Senators Nixon and Young only received $10,000 of that money. They would also want to know why a top-ranking Republican used a person such as Mr. Grunewald as an intermediary in the transaction.

Senator Bridges had interceded on behalf of a Baltimore liquor dealer in a large tax case and thus far there had been no satisfactory explanation for his interest in the matter.

It posits that the two cases showed that neither major party had a monopoly on virtue or on evil and that Congress might not fare so well if they were exposed to the same spotlight which had been focused on the executive branch of the Government.

"You Can't Campaign on a Shoestring" tells of gubernatorial candidate Ernest Gardner, who had been employing an easy-going, good-natured approach to voters and, but for his withdrawal from the race, might have had an impact on producing a primary runoff between the two leading candidates, William B. Umstead and Hubert Olive. He had withdrawn because he had been unable to raise the $50,000 which he thought it would take to wage an effective campaign. The piece comments that there had been a day when a candidate could climb on a horse or into an automobile and travel the state, seeing enough voters to get elected. But in present times, large sums of money had to be spent to reach the mass of voters and get them to the polls on election day.

Large amounts of money had been spent by Willis Smith and incumbent interim Senator Frank Porter Graham during their contest for the Democratic Senatorial nomination in 1950. Up to 1951, North Carolina law had specified a limit of $15,000 on the amount which could be spent on behalf of each candidate for state office, an unrealistically low amount causing the limit to be abrogated by the 1951 General Assembly. It had been hoped by the supporters of the revision that it would encourage truthful reporting of campaign expenses, and the piece hopes that it would, so that the people could finally realize that a person seeking a major public office had to be independently wealthy or obtain strong financial backing from others.

"Mutual Security and Politics" indicates that the arguments in favor of major cuts to the foreign aid program had enough plausibility to sound convincing to the American people, and it fears that Congress, in response to the outcry from politicians seeking election, might take the easy way out and cut away large portions of the 7.9 billion dollar bill.

Another side to the story was told in an editorial reprinted on the page this date from Business Week, a conservative publication, finding that the Korean War had upset the apple cart and forced countries to devote a larger portion of production to defense, threatening living standards abroad, not yet high enough to permit a reduction in aid of rearmament without trouble.

The piece indicates that it was often forgotten that the Politburo had been the source of the country's postwar troubles, and that had there been no invasion by the Communists of South Korea, the current national budget would be smaller and taxes lower, without controls or shortages, and with the European allies back on their feet economically. While it makes room for some cuts in the foreign aid program, it counsels caution on the part of Congress, calculating the effect on security rather than on election chances of some politicians.

"In a Bad Way" tells of an agency official in Washington having indicated the previous week that the materials allotment program was not based on equity unless allotments were so low that they permitted the agency "to relax and allow market determination at percentage of base period, sidetracking military return with adjustments", coupled with some other double-talk. Defense Production administrator Manly Fleischmann, when asked what the explanation meant, responded with no comment, a response which the piece does not begrudge him as he probably could not understand the explanation either. It concludes, however, that the whole program had to be in "one dickens of a fix."

A piece from the Richmond News-Leader, titled "A Bluebird for Ike", indicates that just a week earlier, the newspaper had diminished the significance of General Eisenhower's victory in the New Hampshire primary, but now, following the write-in performance in Minnesota, believed that the General had emerged as a candidate of "truly impressive stature". It finds that he might yet win the nomination against a seasoned and highly regarded opponent in Senator Taft by maintaining his position 3,000 miles away in Europe, an unprecedented feat if accomplished.

It indicates that it was impressed, and that professional politicians across the country also had to be impressed, with the General's receipt of 107,000 write-in votes against 128,000 for former Minnesota Governor Harold Stassen, who was on the ballot. It had demonstrated the power of the General as a vote-getter and, it reminds, elections were not won on the basis of popularity contests but by the ability to obtain votes. It concludes that the Minnesota vote suggested a bandwagon effect.

An editorial from Business Week, as indicated in the above editorial, examines the foreign aid program and the President's proposed 7.9 billion dollar budget. The major target for cuts by Congress was to the economic aid portion which was 1.8 billion dollars, of which 1.4 billion was earmarked for the NATO nations. The Congressional argument was that those nations had returned to prewar levels of production and therefore American aid ought be limited only to military matters. But, in fact, it suggests, the difference between military and economic aid was largely a fiction because of the interrelationship between rearmament and the standard of living in the NATO nations. Less assistance, economically or militarily, would only result in less rearmament or a lower standard of living.

The Korean War had upset the apple cart, forcing those countries to devote larger portions of their production to defense, threatening their standards of living, not yet high enough to accommodate a cut in rearmament aid without problems. With both Britain and France facing economic problems, to cut or eliminate economic aid would have drastic adverse effects on their economies, with consequent problems for rearmament, at a time when the Russians had announced their largest arms budget in peacetime. Such a cut would likely place American allies in a position of being forced to resume or expand trade through the Iron Curtain. A cut could break the back of France and its ability to continue to carry on the costly war in Indo-China, and if that country fell by default, it would mean the end of a free Southeast Asia and ultimately the necessity of large American outlays to sustain the economy of an isolated Japan.

It concludes that such consequences were compelling, illustrating why the decision by Congress on cuts to aid was difficult. Such a cut could contribute to a relapse of the European allies at a time of major risk, and, it concludes, that was a risk too potentially costly to run.

Drew Pearson tells of the aides and secretaries to the President carrying the most weight in terms of providing him with advice on policy matters. Thus, a mere appointments secretary such as Matt Connelly had become one of the more powerful men in the nation. Mr. Connelly had overruled the President's small business advisers and persuaded him to strengthen the multi-million dollar Pan American Airways monopoly by approving its merger with American Overseas Airways. He had also influenced the President in his eventual opposition to making public income tax returns.

Recently, the President had introduced his palace guard to a group of Masons, making it clear that he was completely in support of them, giving special praise to Mr. Connelly and to correspondence secretary Bill Hassett, aide John Steelman and press secretary Joseph Short.

Senator Estes Kefauver had obtained substantial financial aid from Nathan Straus, Jr., whom he had met when the latter was Housing administrator during the Roosevelt Administration, and receiving a lot of criticism from Congress. One day, then-Congressman Kefauver sought from Mr. Straus some information regarding housing and slum clearance, to which Mr. Straus had responded enthusiastically, becoming acquainted with the Congressman, causing Mr. Kefauver to become one of the toughest defenders of public housing, prompting, in turn, Senator Taft to do likewise, helping to pass the current housing bill. Mr. Straus had since left the Government and was operating radio station WMCA in New York, but had never forgotten the help provided by Mr. Kefauver.

British Laborites friendly to the U.S. were looking for new leaders to replace former Prime Minister Clement Attlee and former Foreign Secretary Herbert Morrison, believing in the need for a dynamic personality to offset Aneuran Bevan, anti-U.S. and gaining increasing support inside the Labor Party.

An ultra-modern American Embassy would be built in Franco's Spain, modeled on the U.N. building in New York.

Marquis Childs tells of the storm in the wake of the dismissal of General MacArthur by the President and the resulting hearings a year earlier having largely passed, though the General still had a following, small but fanatical, which Mr. Childs estimates to be about 10 to 15 percent.

That was in dramatic contrast to a year earlier when the General had come home for the first time in 14 years and made his dramatic speech to a joint session of Congress, broadcast on television. Mr. Childs observes that had the General taken a magnanimous approach to the President, asked for forgiveness for his errors and called for national unity, he would presently have the country with him as few men in the country's history ever had. His subsequent speeches had instead become increasingly partisan and bitter. He had denied that he would support General Eisenhower for the presidency, scarcely news to anyone.

General MacArthur had been choosy about his speaking engagements, but sources close to him indicated that he was growing impatient with the failure of Republican leaders to challenge the Truman Administration and that he appeared ready to shoulder that burden himself. A source close to him indicated that if the President undertook a whistle-stop campaign tour of the country as he had in 1948, then the General would feel compelled to answer him at every stop. Whether that would enhance the General's stature or simply place him on the same level with the politician Truman remained to be seen.

Senator Taft had taken up the MacArthur strategy of employing the Chinese Nationalist forces to wage an attack on the Chinese mainland. While vindication of the General's strategy, it appeared that the view was not widely popular across the nation. The Korean War was definitely unpopular and many feared that following General MacArthur's course would only enlarge the war and result in a more costly stalemate.

He concludes that another demonstration of General Eisenhower's popular support, as was demonstrated in the 39 percent write-in vote for the General in Minnesota, would pretty much settle the matter as between the two generals, neutralizing the possibility of another dramatic speech by General MacArthur at the Republican convention upsetting the choice of General Eisenhower as the nominee.

Robert C. Ruark again addresses the ruthless murder of Arnold Schuster in Brooklyn, following by a few days Mr. Schuster having noticed notorious bank robber, Willie Sutton, and summoned police to arrest him. There were still no suspects in the murder, which had transpired in gangland fashion, with both of Mr. Schuster's eyes shot out. The police had launched an all-out manhunt and were being assisted by the criminal element of the city who did not want the Schuster killing pinned on them. But the case had been muddied by cranks and crackpots producing false clues and providing the police and newspapers with worthless information. Recently, the police had brought in an old gravedigger who had written a threatening note, showing how carefully the police were looking at potential evidence, but turning out to be the worthless lead of a crackpot.

Crackpot crime was the bane to police as there was no logical way to ferret out the perpetrator, with no stool pigeons or organized crime circles to which to turn to develop information. There appeared to be no particular motive in the killing of Mr. Schuster other than mad impulse. Mr. Ruark concludes that there was only a 50-50 chance of ever catching the murderer and that if they did, it would be merely by a lucky accident.

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