The Charlotte News

Thursday, August 8, 1940



Site Ed. Note: If you've never heard of actor Richard Greene, you're probably in good company--though if you're of sufficient age you will remember him if not his name. His notable roles were that of Henry Baskerville in the 1939 Sherlock Holmes film, and, his best-known contribution, Robin Hood, in the television series of the latter fifties. He was the grandson of William Friese-Greene, to whom the invention of the motion picture camera, albeit a too slow and failed version, ten frames per second, is attributed. The junior Greene apparently was still seeking the coos by the mid-fifties as he also appeared in a Wildroot Cream commercial in 1956.

A Backfire

A Soldier Breaks Up Play By a Hero of the Movies

Mr. Richard Greene seems to be called.

Mr. Greene is a young English actor now performing in Hollywood productions. He is a strapping, handsome fellow, and when he appears on the screen the high school girls clasp their hands and make cooing sounds. Undoubtedly, if he could adjust himself to the conditions, he would make a very good soldier for his mother country, England.

The other day Mr. Greene went over into British Colombia. Shortly, he came back and reported to the brass with loud sighs that he had offered his sword to his country and had brusquely been turned down. They told him in Vancouver and Victoria he said, that they had long waiting lines and he would just have to wait for his turn. And so, despondently, he left his application with the Seaforth Highlanders Regiment and came back. That was what Mr. Greene said.

But now comes Colonel Ronald Kingham, of the Sixteenth Canadian Scotch Regiment, to say phooey to that. Mr. Greene, said the Colonel, went to the only station in British Columbia which was not receiving enlistments, demanded to be made a commissioned officer at once, and retired.

It was, opined the Colonel, nothing more or less than a movie publicity scheme on the part of an actor who wanted the girls to coo even more loudly than they now do when his phiz is flashed upon the screen. And the British Army did not like it. If Mr. Greene wanted to serve his country, he could get right into the British Army when he tried, though of course he would have to learn to be a soldier before he could be made an officer.

Which seems to put it squarely up to Mr. Greene.


Sane Enough

This Hen Is Not Alone In Her Quaint Ways

The rooster which edged real eggs out of a nest, edged potatoes in, and then sat on them, and that other rooster, a bantam, which hatched out a setting of eggs, now has a companion in a hen down in Rochelle, Ga., which has adopted a gang of kittens and their mamma as well, and regularly broods over them in her nest.

However, before you laugh too loudly at her as a sillypot, it might be well to have a look around at Homo Sap, the mighty lord of the earth.

While Nazi agents busily build up revolution in Latin-America, Signor Gayda, mouthpiece to Signor Mussolini, informs the United States with a straight face that the Axis has no designs on the New World. What is more, plenty of isolationists fall for it.


Large Order

Mussolini Picks a Tough Spot for His Gamble

It is an ambitious project which Signor Mussolini has cut out for himself--the taking of Egypt. Doubly ambitious in view of what happened at Caporetto and at Guadalajara and of the fact that the Italian people are reported as still having little zeal for the war.

His work is ahead of him. The jubilation over the taking of frontier posts is as though a football team would announce victory because it had gained six inches in the first two seconds of play. It is in the ordinary course of events that advanced posts should be taken. They are put there merely to delay the enemy and to announce his coming.

Four hundred miles the desert stretches from Tobruk, the leaping off point in Italian Libya, to Alexandria, the first goal. Five hundred miles it stretches to Cairo, the second goal. Four and five hundred miles of the worst country on earth.

At noon the temperature rises to 120 degrees, with no patch of shade anywhere available. Water must be brought up from the rear at every step of the way unless the Italians can seize the great oases which lie to the north, and even these are located a great distance from the coast, along the route which the first thrust apparently is to take. The sand is treacherous and deep, blows and shifts. Only the lightest tanks will be of any use here and the passage of artillery will be like a labor of Hercules.

The British have the advantage of a little railroad which runs from Alexandria to Mersa Matruh, about 150 miles from the border. There are no railroads to speak of in Italian Libya.

The Italian troops are those which were already in Libya when the war began. Large stores of supplies had already been accumulated for them. But if the campaign extends to any length, new troops and supplies will have to come across from Italy by the Mediterranean, virtually under the guns of the British naval squadrons lying at the Alexandria naval base. Even water will have to be fetched from Italy.

And the troops in front of the Italians are no longer mere niggers armed with spears or unarmed Spanish Loyalists, but among the world's best tested "first-class fighting men." The core of the defense is made up of soldiers long used to battle and to just the sort of battle which will be fought here--the iron Tommies out of Mr. Kipling's Barrack Room Ballads and Soldiers Three, the Scots Highland regiments whose skirling bagpipes have sounded the doom of every revolt in India for three centuries.

Behind them stand the Anzacs from Australia and New Zealand, giant fellows with a good tradition from the last war unsurpassed by any soldiers in the world. They have been kept in Palestine so far, because the Egyptians remembered from 1914-18 that, when there were no Germans or Turks to fight, these men were likely to take to fighting anybody in sight. They will of course be brought up now.

The Italians have the advantages in numbers for the present, but numbers do not count as heavily in desert war as the courage and endurance of the men.

Somaliland, Signor Mussolini may take with fair ease. For it is surrounded on three sides by Italian possessions. But it will not much matter, so long as the British hold their base at Aden and so control the mouth of the Red Sea. Egypt is another case.

If Signor Mussolini gambles against long odds, yet the reward for victory would be tremendous. He would not only rehabilitate the name of the Italian soldier but he would come into the richest prize in the Mediterranean and control of the Suez Canal, would drive the British from the Mediterranean and break the back of the British power.

Incidentally, the attack on Egypt suggests that the expected attack in Gibraltar may not materialize. It would hardly be undertaken without the co-operation of the Italian navy with land forces operating from Spain. And the Italian navy promises to have its hands full in the Eastern Mediterranean for a time to come.


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