Monday, November 1, 1943

The Charlotte News

Monday, November 1, 1943


Site Ed. Note: The news dominating the front page this date was of the agreement reached at the Foreign Ministers Conference in Moscow. The pledge was for continued cooperation in the war effort and for a mutually assured peace after the war through joint membership in a "general international organization". It also pledged that each signatory would fight the Axis until there was an unconditional surrender and disarmament of those nations, removing any doubts of late among skeptics that the Soviet Union might opt to form a separate peace with Germany once the war in Russia was won. It further assured that each would insure obedience to the terms of surrender.

The wording of the paragraph on forming a post-war international organization tracked that in the Connally Resolution, Senate Resolution 192. It did not, however, include the crucial wording of the Connally Resolution authorizing the organization to have "power to prevent aggression", even if this language, itself, fell short of the more specific Ball-Burton-Hatch-Hill Resolution 114 of March, which had authorized the President to commit the United States to the creation of an international police force after the war as well as the creation immediately of a relief organization for liberated nations during the war.

The signatories further agreed to work toward arms regulation in the post-war world and not to use military force in other countries post-war except to enforce the terms of the agreement itself.

Regarding Italy, the agreement declared that Fascism must be destroyed and the Italian people afforded the opportunity to establish a government on democratic principles.

Regarding Austria, singled out for unstated reasons, the agreement declared that the Anschluss of March, 1938 was null and void and that Austria would be liberated to re-establish its own government.

The agreement also stated a firm policy on Nazi atrocities in occupied lands during the war. War criminals would be identified among the Nazis and extradited for trial before war tribunals within the venue in which the atrocities were committed.

The paragraph draws on nearly Shakespearian phraseology to stab home its point:

"Let those who have hitherto not imbued their hands with innocent blood beware lest they join the ranks of the guilty, for most assuredly the three Allied powers will pursue them to the uttermost ends of the earth and will deliver them to their accusers in order that justice may be done."

In addition to being signed by Secretary of State Hull, Russian Foreign Minister Molotov, and British Foreign Minister Sir Anthony Eden, the agreement was signed by Chinese Ambassador to Russia, Foo Ting-Sheung.

The agreement was greeted by officials in both Britain and the United States as a resounding success.

On the war front, The Fifth Army, after a harsh confrontation with troops of the Hermann Goering Division, seized Teano in Italy, controlling the supply and reinforcement roads flanking the German lines along Massico Ridge. In what was described as one of the greatest one-day achievements yet in the Battle for Italy, American troops, impeded by minefields and intense enemy fire, slogged through rain-soaked mountainous terrain to gain five miles and obtain Valleagricola, a citadel at the top of a 2,000-foot mountain, four miles north of Raviscanina, with an objective of capturing Venafro.

The Eighth Army took Cantalupo--the Singing Wolf--, bringing the British within nine miles of Isernia, German stronghold of the Massico line, and enabling the Allies to have control of the high ground overlooking both sides of the road leading from Foggia to Isernia. The Army also captured Macchiagodena, nine miles southeast of Isernia, and Frosolone, twelve miles from Isernia. (Cantalone was left as a side dish further down the road.)

In the Pacific, it was reported that a massive new bombing raid had occurred on the Japanese stronghold at Rabaul. In the Solomons, American and New Zealand troops were reported locked in pitched battle with the Japanese at Choiseul, the next day to become the site of another act of heroism by John F. Kennedy and the crew of his new PT-boat. The fighting, ongoing since the landing on the island Thursday, was concentrated around Sangagal, six miles southeast of the beachheads. The Japanese appeared cut off from air support originating on Bougainville, thirty miles to the north, as virtually all of the enemy planes in the southern part of the island had been wiped out.

And, in an effort to pay for the war, the House Ways and Means Committee approved a rise in the cost of postage stamps from three to four cents, the cost of airmail from six to eight cents. The postage rate had been at three cents since 1932 and would continue at that rate ultimately until 1958 when it went to four cents, where it stood until 1963. During the Nixon-Ford years, the rate went from six cents to thirteen cents. During the Reagan-Bush years, it went from 15 cents to 29 cents. During the term of George W. Bush, it rose from 34 cents to 42 cents. As of January 1, 2011, the rate will become 46 cents. Go figure.

If you voted for the new Republican House, expect a miracle: Postage rates will probably top 50 cents by 2012.

On the editorial page, "Senate Mimes" quotes from Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Tom Connally as well as from Vice-President Henry Wallace and Secretary of State Cordell Hull, each plumping for establishment of somewhat differing versions of the United Nations organization, post-war. The Connally Resolution advocated the organization only in the most general terms. Secretary Hull wanted to insure an organization with force behind it. Mr. Wallace wanted an organization based on the Ball-Burton-Hatch-Hill Resolution, with tough, specific language regarding an international police force to prevent aggression. The editorial finds this latter position to be the only one based on conscience and not politics.

"New Economy" finds the editorial column agreeing with an unlikely source, David Clark's Textile Bulletin, historically a racist, reactionary publication in its politics. But in its recommendation of diversification of crops in the South, the column liked it like that.

"Strike Votes" indicates that it would be likely that the strike ballots mailed out by the railroad union would be returned favoring strike. It usually was the case, though not necessarily indicative of a coming strike in fact. It rather was used as a bargaining tool by union leaders. The piece cites the example of the non-operating unions having set September 11, 1941 as a date for strike, and in response, the President having set up an emergency board to try to avert it while suspending the strike until a decision could be made by the board. The decision was rejected by the union and the operatorsí union then set December 7 as their deadline, whereupon the President asked the board to reconsider its decision, resulting in a better deal finally acceptable to the union.

Samuel Grafton finds that the attempt by the House Ways and Means Committee to finance the war by increasing taxes on luxury items to be foolhardy. The war, he suggests, was not a luxury item and would not be won by taxing luxury items. The practice presented a dodge by the Congress to avoid facing the need for higher corporate and individual income taxes.

They were running scared, but from what? Mr. Grafton believes that the people were willing to accept higher taxes. No one got upset, for instance, when the 20% withholding tax had been imposed.

The Republicans were leading the charge against new income taxes, Mr. Grafton informs, and instead were substituting revenue raising devices such as the one-cent increase in postage rates.

The same sort of evasive tactics, he says, characterized the issue food subsidies. Food subsidies would provide the farmer with a needed boost to his income while avoiding the inflation which would ripple throughout the economy with food price increases. Yet, the Congress had taken no action on the President's request for enacting food subsidies.

Raymond Clapper examines the continuing production increases in the United States for essential war goods, all being maintained on the basis of anticipation of a long war.

The State Department, says Drew Pearson, had received a report from Ambassador George Messersmith that King Carol of Rumania and his wife could exert a definite positive influence on Rumanians to overthrow the Nazi yoke besetting them in the oil-rich land. King Carol was in exile in Mexico City, but there had been a move among Congressmen to bring him to the U.S. By his statement, King Carol was eager to serve in the cause of defeating Fascism and Nazism. He professed that he always had been.

We note, incidentally, in follow-up to the story the previous week on Wayne William Lonergan, confessed slayer of his estranged wife, brewery heiress Patricia, that upon his conviction by a Manhattan jury the following April for the lesser charge of second degree murder, after he had recanted his confession, claiming it had been obtained under duress, Time indicated that his son was then 22-months old. That meant that he was born in June, 1942. If he was born June 18, we would find that--how shall we say?--quite rightly interesting.

In any event, Mr. Lonergan was released from his 20-year to life sentence in 1965 and lived until 1986 when he died of cancer. He tried on a few occasions after his release to contact his son but his son would never meet with him. Mr. Lonergan was a real nowhere man.

Anyway, what do you think about it, Longergum?

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