Tuesday, September 7, 1943

The Charlotte News

Tuesday, September 7, 1943

FOUR EDITORIALS

Site Ed. Note: A day before Italy would unconditionally surrender, the front page reports that the British-Canadian force had extended its arc through Calabria to sixty miles, taking Palmi and Delianuova in the process.

A report out of Sweden had it that Hitler and his generals were arguing over where to draw the line of defense against the Allies, Hitler demanding that the Po Valley would be the line in Italy and the generals favoring a withdrawal to positions behind the Alps, on the other side of the Brenner Pass.

RAF bombers hit Munich the night before while Flying Fortresses for the first time bombed Stuttgart during a daylight raid and hit other targets in Belgium and France.

Aiming toward Kiev, the Red Army took the vital rail junction at Konotop, were now threatening Baklimach, as shown on the map on the inside page. The advance on Stalino continued, with advance troops reaching to within two miles of the city.

John Lardner reports of the 84-page book prepared by General Eisenhower's staff providing the various notes of congratulation on the victory in Tunisia May 7 sent to the general by both heads of state and union workers. The notes had been so numerous that the likewise many congratulatory missives anent Sicily and now the landing in Italy had caused his staff to fall woefully behind in their preparation for publication.

With the landing of American paratroops in Markham Valley in the Lae-Salamaua area of New Guinea, the circle around the Japanese forces holding the Salamaua airfield was complete, complementing the landing force of Australians at Lae on Saturday and the continuing assault on Salamaua from the south by American and Australian troops. The action is shown on a map on the inside page. The paratroops captured an abandoned airfield in Markham Valley.

Three different rail mishaps occurred across the country during the previous twenty-four hours, the worst being the derailment of a commuter train outside Philadelphia when a hotbox got too hot and burned off a set of wheels. At least 65 were killed and 123 injured, making it one of the worst rail disasters in the countryís history.

The 20th Century Limited wrecked when its boiler exploded near Cantastota, New York, on its way between Chicago and New York City, killing three of the crewmen aboard. No passengers were reported injured.

And a derailment on the Erie Railroad of yet another passenger train resulted in only minor injuries to some of the crew.

In Houston, 47 men, including war workers, transients, and old age pensioners died in a hotel fire.

On the editorial page, "Not for Us" eschews the notion advanced by Tom Dewey that America should form a permanent military and political alliance with Great Britain.

The piece objects on the ground that Britain had not renounced its empire interests, indeed had gone far to maintain most of them into the future. America, by contrast, was interested in divestiture of interests in the Philippines, for instance. Thus, in trying to advance the cause of freedom across Europe, it should not taint its hands by aligning itself too closely with the unclean tradition of Britain.

"Apple Pie" expresses sadness at the apparent passing of the age of appreciation for the only dessert which ma used to make with regularity. It had been brought to mind by the witness of a fickle customer who, when presented at a local eatery with the choice of apple, butterscotch, or lemon pie, gave the surly response, "Zat all you got?" and chose lemon.

The world had indeed changed, says the piece, and not for better. Now synthetic pies were all the rage.

"Iberian Cheek" recommends to Spain that it sit in the corner and keep quiet rather than propose as it had recently to broker a peace in Europe. Its intended terms of peace, says the editorial, were for the Western Allies to join with Germany to defeat Russia. The echoing ring of support of Fascism and Nazism by Franco had not become yet faint enough to have been forgotten by America or Great Britain.

"Royal Blush" excoriates American and British policy for leaning toward the Badoglio government and the King in Italy, ignoring in the main the wishes of the Italian people to establish a democracy. H. G. Wells had complained in England that the Government had suppressed his voice in support of the forces desiring Italian democracy; the President had criticized O.W.I. for its calling the King "moronic" and Badoglio a "Fascist". The piece offers that, given the anti-democratic track record of these forces in Italy, the U.S. and British governments had no business providing it any lip service at all.

Dorothy Thompson again criticizes the Administration for its treatment and use of the press. On the one hand the President had criticized Drew Pearson acerbically, even if, Ms. Thompson asserts, Mr. Pearson did act irresponsibly in writing that Cordell Hull had always been and still was anti-Soviet. On the other, she contrasts the fact that the White House had released to favored journalists confidential diplomatic files on North Africa, seeking to use that part of the press as a conduit for release of desired information to the public without official government responsibility for its content.

She challenges this duplicitous role of the White House vis à vis the press and reminds that a free and independent press is always required in order to achieve fact-finding and approximate the truth. The assertion of fact must never be confused with that of opinion. Facts should be reported truthfully and could be checked for their accuracy and corrected if necessary. But opinions were rarely susceptible to contest as true or false and should never therefore be forced into the realm of retraction.

Samuel Grafton finds the conversion to anti-isolationism of Republican National Committee member Clarence Kelland noteworthy but not yet proved beyond words. Mr. Grafton recommends action of the sort which would publicly rebuke, for instance, Robert McCormick of The Chicago Tribune when next he uttered words denunciatory of either China or Russia. Such action, suggests Mr. Grafton, would be substantially more in furtherance of the cause of anti-isolationism than proposing, as Mr. Kelland had, a five-point post-war peace plan.

Drew Pearson recommends to the President that he streamline the State Department to insure that the machinery for achieving and maintaining the peace would be in place at the end of the war. He reminds that only two attempts to establish the United States in a role of leadership in effecting world peace had been attempted, once by Woodrow Wilson in 1918-19 and again by then Secretary of State Henry Stimson in 1929-32 with the Kellogg-Briand Pact. Both attempts had failed, largely, says Mr. Pearson, because the State Department was too mired in the tradition of reliance on Britain to patrol the sea lanes of the Atlantic and Mediterranean while the U.S. maintained its fleet in the Pacific.

No one envisioned the day now before the country where a weakened British Navy had to be propped up by the American Navy in the Atlantic and Mediterranean.

No one wanted a war again twenty years hence, and so a streamlined State Department needed forthwith to be effected so that the same mistakes made after World War I would not be repeated.

And a piece below Drew Pearsonís column collects various scoops which he revealed in the column before the news hit the press, including the scoop on the conflict aboard ship between Cordell Hull and Sumner Welles during a return cruise in 1939

from the Buenos Aires Conference. The scoop had to do with Mr. Welles's dog, Toby, and the failure of the scoop to interdict Toby's various improvident desecrations onboard the ship before Mr. Hull happened to step in one of them and proceeded roundly to curse Mr. Welles for his failure of scooping etiquette.

But, that too, was probably just another lie of Mr. Pearson's conjuring. The culprit was likely Fala pretending to be Toby.

And on the inside page, a piece instructed that C. F. Parish, Extension Poultry Specialist at State College, had announced that, if trends continued, North Carolina would produce a record lay of more than a billion eggs in 1943. He did not indicate, however, how many of them had ceilings.

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