The Charlotte News

Sunday, September 10, 1939


Site Ed. Note: Indeed, where Cash indicates "we suppose" in "Change of Heart", turned out not to be mere supposition but a fact: that the British Navy had quickly, in the wake of the September 1 invasion of Poland, thrown a cordon about the Mediteranean and North Atlantic to blockade Germany from receipt of any more oil from Mexico, oil being supplied through the auspices of one William Rhodes Davis, an Alabama-born Texas oil man and Abwehr agent, who made the deal with Hitler to finance the purchase and shipment of oil and to refine it in a Hamburg refinery built by the German state exclusively for the purpose. The oil flowed freely along this traitorous trans-Atlantic pipeline from March, 1938 through the invasion of Poland and in fact fueled that invasion. In spite of the blockade, elaborate schemes to hide the oil in the tankers of neutral countries and funnel the oil through Spain or Italy, eventually into Hamburg, and later as well to Japanese marus bound for the Trans-Siberian railway via Vladivostok, proved cumbersome but moderately successful through at least the invasion of Russia by Germany on June 22, 1941. Mexico would stop it, as Cash pointed out ruefully and sarcastically in 1939, but only because it could no longer practically be done, not because of its sense of outrage at the Nazis' actions against Poland, or later, in 1940, Norway, Belgium, Holland, France and Great Britain.

See map of Europe below, as it appeared in this day's News. See also map of the Western Front in close-up.

*Low Overhead

Fines Of $10 And $15 Only Chicken Feed To Lotteries

The fellow who risks his own small change on the long chance of hitting the butter 'n' eggs has never seemed to us to be a particularly reprehensible character. Nor, by the same estimate are the runners and pick-up men who work for the lottery necessarily society's bitter enemies.

The whole butter 'n' eggs, indeed, would be a good bit less than sinister if it weren't for the concentration of wealth and influence in the hands of men who are least to be trusted with either.

And that these big shots are beyond the reach of the law appears to have been established by their long and profitable operation. Only the Federals have ever clamped down on them, and then for neglecting to pay their full share of income taxes.

The only way evidently, for the local law to get at them is through their personnel. By soaking their agents with fines, that is, and costs and the necessity to pay lawyers' fees (all of which operating expense comes out of the organizations' treasuries) to such an extent that the lottery begins to be unprofitable and employment in the trade too hazardous.

But $10 and $15 fines such as were imposed on a quartette of numbers men in City Police Court last week, won't do it. To the contrary, fines of such small caliber amount virtually to a license to do business in violation of the law.

Lesson Unlearned

Adolf Called This A Bad Error Once Upon A Time

Yesterday Hermann Wilhelm Goering made a speech to some workmen in a Berlin factory in which he sneered at length at the English and painted them as a comically negligible enemy. As for the French, they could be dismissed with a few kindly chiding words.

There is a critique of that approach to the war written in the history of 1914, when the old German leaders talked just like that. But there is an even more pointed one written by a man who by now is fairly notorious. His name is A. Hitler, and he wrote it in a book called "Mein Kampf" back in 1925 when he was staying a while in jail. Here it is:

(Of the early days of the last World War) ... "One had no idea of the possible links and duration of the struggle now beginning. One thought of being home again in Winter to continue work in renewed peace. What man desires, he hopes and believes...' "-- p. 211, Reynal & Hitchcock translation.

And again:

"... It was completely wrong to ridicule the adversary as was done in Austrian and German propaganda... It was basically wrong for the reason that when a man met the adversary in reality he was bound to receive an entirely different impression; something that took its most terrible revenge: for now, the German soldier, under the direct impression of the resistance of the enemy, felt himself deceived by those who so far were responsible for his enlightenment, and instead of strengthening his fighting spirit or even his firmness, quite the contrary occurred. The man despaired.

"Compared with this the war propaganda of the British and the American was psychologically right. By introducing the German as a barbarian and a Hun ... it thus (sic) prepared the individual soldier for the terrors of war and helped guard him against disappointment. The most terrible weapon which was now being used against him then appeared to him only as the proof...

"Thus the English soldier could not ... have the impression that his country had taught him the wrong facts, something which was unfortunately the case to such an extent with the German soldier that he finally rejected everything that came from this side as 'swindle' and 'bunk' (Krampf)." -- pp. 234-235, ibid.

Russian Riddle

If Stalin Joins Hitler, He Takes A Desperate Gamble

What the Russians may be up to is anybody's guess. The report that they are calling up reserves for the Polish border and rushing war materials to the same area may indicate that Stalin, the ex-highwayman and triggerman, is preparing to join Adolf Hitler in carrying up Poland--indeed, that the two kindred souls have embarked upon the pursuit of a plan to divide the world between them.

On the other hand, it is possible that Stalin, who despite his crimes has not hitherto been a fool, is beginning to suspect that he has outsmarted himself. It is quite credible that what he has been about was a game of double double cross--that what he hoped for was a war of stalemate between Germany and England and France, in which both sides would be gradually worn out and eliminated as a threat to Russia--perhaps in the end, for such chaos that it would be possible to hold Red revolutions in all three.

And if that is so, then the rapid movement of the German Army through Poland would be a cause of grave alarm for him. For, under that view of the matter, the establishment of a German-Russian border would be about the last thing he could possibly want. The Germans, who are not fools themselves when it comes to penetrating the other man's game, might very well give him his choice between coming in with them whole hog and taking orders from them or of being invaded.

Certainly, if he is actually planning to come to Hitler's aid and strike Poland from the rear, he is embarking on a desperate gamble which, so far as we know, he does not at all need to take.

Japan has made it amply clear that she is not to be wheedled into any axis to which Moscow is a party, judging quite correctly that her part would be that of the rabbit in alliance with the foxes. And in her formal notification to Great Britain that she intends to remain neutral, she made it quite plain, in the curious parlance of diplomacy, that she is ready and eager for a deal, by saying that she "hoped England would do nothing to embarrass Japanese interests in China."

It is a plain bid for the withdrawal of English aid and support from Kai-Shek, with unspoken promises lurking in the background. And if England needed to sell out China to sic Japan on Russia's back, there is no doubt that she would do it in a minute, without any compunction. It would be tough on China, and sounds, and is cynical. But in a fight to the death, nobody is nice about the rights of third parties.

Moreover, if Stalin has a grain of sense left, he might take the United States into account in his calculations. Confronted with Adolf Hitler alone, and believing that England and France are strong enough to master him in the end, this country will try mightily to stay out of the war, despite the great emotional drive to strike the Nazis. But if it were confronted with the combination of Hitler and Stalin, of Nazism and Communism, the story might quickly be different. Certainly, the emotional drive would be enormously heightened. And the threat to our interests would become immediate and indisputable.

Change Of Heart

Mexico Spurns Germany, Makes Friends With Allies

Mexico--good old neighbor Mexico. She never has liked the Nazis anyhow, and the only reason she entered into a barter agreement with Adolf & Co. was that she had a lot of oil (from confiscated wells) on her hands and had to get rid of it some place.

But now that Germany is at war with the democracies, Mexico's conscience overcomes her cupidity. No more oil to Germany. Instead a cordial invitation to come and get it has been issued to belligerents "which deserve our sympathy"--i.e., England, France and Poland.

It only so happens, we suppose, that the nations which deserve Mexico's sympathy are in such complete control of the seas that Germany couldn't take Mexico's oil as a gift. And that Mexico already has tied up in Germany, without a chance of getting it out until the war is over, if then, a $6,000,000 book credit which she can neither eat, wear nor borrow money on. And what Mexico needs acutely is not book credits but hard cash.

(Click map to enlarge image, re-click to reduce)

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