The Charlotte News

Sunday, November 17, 1940



French Revolt?

Signs Multiply That General Weygand May Turn Rebel

The attitude of General Maxime Weygand is still obscure but the evidence gathers that he may be on the verge of raising the standard of revolt against the Vichy Government and joining forces with the De Gaulle "Free French" Government in London.

Sometime ago Pierre Laval, who was jealous of the influence of Weygand and with old Marshal Petain, got him dispatched to North Africa to take command of the troops there and to keep an eye on the natives and Foreign Legion men who are suspected of flirting with De Gaulle. But not long after he arrived there the General made a speech in which he is supposed to have said that France would not give up an inch of her colonial empire to her conquerors.

That stirred the Germans to demand his immediate recall, and Pierre Laval obediently issued the command. But the General refused to obey. (Such, at least, has been the report, though Berlin and Vichy had denied it loudly.)

But now from Beirut in Syria comes a dispatch which openly says that De Gaulle and Weygand agents are busily at work lining up not only North Africa but Syria for the rumored revolt, with the prospect that General Auguste Nogues, French commander in Syria, may also be brought into the combination.

Weygand's loyalty to France is proverbial. "Je suis au service de la France" has always been his favorite saying. And it is quite possible that the British stand has changed his conviction that France had no chance left. If so, it is bad news for the Axis.

For the native troops idolize the little general and both hate and scorn the Italians. If he ever leads them to revolt, the Italians stand to be thrown bodily out of Africa in nothing flat. And Mr. Hitler's schemes for an offensive in Asia Minor will be in for trouble.



Mr. Madden Gets a Robe; His Yes-Men the Gate

Along with a lot of other editors, we might as well have saved our breath. The President had appointed J. Warren Madden to be judge of the United States Court of Claims almost before we got through with saying that he had no fitness for the job.

The new post will pay him $12,500 instead of the $10,000 he got as chairman of the National Labor Relations Board. The extra cash and the robe ought to be sufficient balm for his wounded feelings over being denied reappointment to NLRB despite Boss John Lewis's passionate backing.

But the fact remains that by temperament he is totally unfit to be a judge, and that President Roosevelt does himself no service by such shabby appointments.

One comfort, however, remains. His removal from NLRB and his replacement by Dr. Harry A. Millis promises to clean up the whole pack of those who got that agency in bad odor. As soon as they found out that he wasn't coming back, the board's secretary, Nathan Witt, its associate counsel, Thomas I. Emerson, and his chief administrative examiner, Alexander B. Hawes, all hastened to resign, somewhat huffily. They seem to have got out just ahead of the axe, and it is expected that many more of the understrappers will follow them swiftly, by request.

Contrary to common opinion, the decisions of the board have not been generally bad. At least the courts have upheld the majority of them. But Madden and the numerous employees of the board who followed his line have gone far beyond their legitimate business of saying that the right of labor to organize in unions of its own choice was not violated. They have clearly conceived themselves as a sort of inquisition whose function it was to pillory industry before the public, to police its morals in general, and even to decide in some cases what members of it should survive. Much of the hatred for the board is explained by the attitude.


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