Wednesday, August 4, 1943, 1943

The Charlotte News

Wednesday, August 4, 1943


Site Ed. Note: On the eve of the fall finally of Catania to the British, the front page reports that concerted air, infantry, and naval bombardment by the Allies had been concentrated on the German salient at the base of Mt. Etna in Sicily and substantial gains were being made by the British, Americans, and Canadians. The Seventh Army, bolstered by rested troops from North Africa, taking over from the fighters who had captured since July 10 four-fifths of Sicily, continued its march east, taking Caronia, four miles east of San Stefano.

The U. S. infantry had hacked their way out of dense jungle to the eastern edge of Munda airstrip on New Georgia in the Solomons, but the communique indicated that much bloody fighting still lay ahead to effect the capture of the objective, the campaign for which had now been ongoing for a month. Japanese resistance was said to be stiffening, the closer the infantry approached the key airstrip.

On New Guinea, Australian and American infantry had managed to get close enough to Salamaua to effect artillery shelling of the Japanese base. Several barges filled with Japanese reinforcements and supplies from Rabaul had been destroyed by Allied bombing within the previous few days, virtually cutting off enemy supplies to Salamaua.

Sir Anthony Eden told Commons that unconditional surrender of Italy remained the only terms acceptable to the Allies, notwithstanding General Eisenhower's recent radio broadcast to the Italian people which had alluded to "honorable conditions of peace".

The fall of Orel to the Russians appeared imminent, as the Red Army pushed forward to within five miles of the city, forcing the Germans into full retreat. The fall of the German stronghold would mean elimination of the Nazis all along the central front in Russia.

After dropping 21,520 tons of bombs on Germany and German-occupied cities in July, more than 53 times that dropped on any British city during the Blitz, the Allied airwing took a rest from bombing activity after two straight weeks of bombing Hamburg and other industrial targets in Germany.

Secretary of State Cordell Hull refused comment on a report that a rivalry had developed in the State Department between the Secretary and Undersecretary Sumner Welles, adversely affecting the efficiency of the Department. The Secretary assured that State was sailing along as efficiently as ever.

Naval observers predicted the complete destruction or surrender soon of the Italian Fleet in the Mediterranean, freeing Allied shipping to proceed to Burma and begin to engage the Japanese.

The News began on Monday a serialized abstract of Moscow Dateline by Henry C. Cassidy, Associated Press reporter assigned to Moscow, the third installment of which appears this date. We shall within the next couple of days catch you up on Monday's and Tuesday's offerings, easy enough as the Friday edition is missing from the microfilm. The book begins recounting the events of spring, 1941, with Moscow entreating for any terms of peace possible with Germany, Germany set on an inexorable course of invasion.

On the editorial page, "Santa Claus Peace" smiles benightedly at the ringing endorsements of post-war peace pervading the newspapers and magazines of late, but cautions that it would not be won without a pricetag and thus reminds the public to continue to purchase War Bonds.

"People, As Ever" continues the sentiment.

"Wider Cities" predicts, with accuracy, the coming of the suburb to American life, and, with it, annexation by cities of once rural areas and the concomitant consolidation of governments.

"Now For Hitler" looks at ancient and modern dictators, by comparison to the ancient Roman temporary autocratic rulers set up solely for the purpose of meeting a military crisis, and, as Cincinnatus, then quietly retiring back to whatever toil which preceded their temporal crown. It finds it unlikely that Hitler would break precedent with the many contrarian dictators, from the Caesars to Napoleon to Lenin and Porfirio Diaz of Mexico, who had never resigned their power before either death, exile, or foreign powers forced their hands.

The editorial was correct, of course.

Samuel Grafton suggests that the demagogues of the world, foreign and domestic, should take special note of that transpiring in Italy after the collapse of 21 years of Fascist authoritarianism. From Gerald L. K. Smith to every motherís son who had fashioned informally a racist or ethnocentrist remark in his time, Mr. Grafton urges the warning: all that driving hate of the Other does not work to form human progress; it only begats violence, bloodshed, and finally rebellion against the dictator.

Raymond Clapper takes his reader on a walking tour of nearly desolate Palermo, partially in ruins, partially deserted, hastily deserted by fleeing Italian troops, leaving behind their bedrolls, ammunition, even clothing. The war was nearly over in Sicily.

The Reverend Herbert Spaugh counsels temperance in all things, starting with food, as intemperance begats intemperance, he assures.

Given a recent report in 2010 indicating that North Carolina is tied with Michigan as tenth most obese state in the country, the advice remains, 67 years on, quite apt and timely.

As North Carolina was fourth in the same survey as being least physically active, however, it seems to be taking the Reverend's advice on that issue too literally, to the point of accelerating its tendency toward obesity.

Yet, we note, it is ever difficult to move much in summer heat and humidity which pervades the South. Ya'll come on down heh before giving the South a hawd time faw all its lack of ene'gy and ine'tia.

But, from past and present experience, we note that there is only one way to beat the heat: get out from behind the platinum and chromium air conditioner with the turbo, double-helixed supercharger running full steam and go run a few miles. Then, you don't feel like eating and the pounds begin of their own account to melt steadily away.

August 8th approacheth nigh, a special date in our hearts and minds, for reasons we maintain among ourselves.

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