Tuesday, October 24, 1944

The Charlotte News

Tuesday, October 24, 1944


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that three British columns of the Second Army, utilizing a concerted phalanx of artillery, tanks, and infantry, had entered 'S Hertogenbosch as German defenses were breaking along a 12-mile front south of the town, appearing no longer to have adequate artillery support. Scottish troops to the south of the city cut the road to Eindhoven. The northernmost column captured the village of Rosmalen and made its way into the eastern suburbs.

The offensive combined with that of the Canadian First Army against approximately 40,000 Germans in southwestern Holland in an attempt to open the port of Antwerp to Allied use. The Canadians cut the causeway to the East Schelde Estuary, connecting it to the mainland, advancing to within three to five miles of Roosendaal and Bergen op Zoom.

Other Canadian units held Breskens firmly and were along or across the road the distance to Schoondijke, three miles south of Breskens. Demolition units withdrew from positions a half-mile beyond Breskens in Fort Frederik Hendrik and the fortress now was no man's land. Other advances occurred northeast of Hoogerhide and west of Esschen, and to within 1.5 miles of Dorp op Pindorf, 3.5 miles west of Bergen op Zoom.

The winter's first heavy snowstorm hit along the front through France and little progress elsewhere was measured by the measure.

German artillery had fired 16 to 20 eleven-inch 700 lb. shells into Third Army positions causing some casualties and damage. The origin appeared to be about thirty miles distant but was not precisely determinable for the cover of rain and clouds.

Eleven German officer candidates in the school in Metz had surrendered voluntarily to General Patton's forces after dropped leaflets convinced them the action to be the better part of valor.

A large force of Luftwaffe fighters challenged a thousand RAF bombers striking Essen the previous night, hitting the Krupp Works to destroy repaired facilities since the original attack to begin the concerted strategic bombing offensive in Europe on March 5, 1943. That attack, combined with five subsequent blows, had leveled two-thirds of the city. A small force of Mosquitos also attacked Berlin. The force was hampered by the inclement weather which caused darkened skies over Germany even though it was not snowing.

The Third White Russian Army, led by General Ivan Cherniakhovsky, and the First Baltic Army of General Ivan Bagramian had penetrated to a depth of nineteen miles into East Prussia and had captured 400 towns within German territory. The First Army had occupied all of Memel save the port itself, albeit with its defenders entrapped. The Russian forces were approaching Gumbinnen, fifteen miles east of Insterburg and 63 miles from Konigsberg, having driven from Kaunas in Lithuania. The deepest penetration thus far was at Goldap, taken the previous day.

In Italy, the Fifth Army moved to within four miles of Castel San Pietro, 13 miles from Bologna in the Po Valley, along the Rimini to Bologna Highway. Another column had taken a village seven miles from Imola.

In Greece, British patrols had occupied Lamia, 93 miles northwest of Athens.

Spanish Republicans, operating out of Paris, contended that armed clashes between their forces and those of Generalissimo Francisco Franco were spreading throughout Spain.

The Chinese had engaged the Japanese in heavy fighting eight miles southwest of Kweiping and at Pingnam in Kwangsi Province, the Japanese base of operations out of which they had been pushing toward the U.S. base at Linchow, 78 miles north of Kweiping. The Chinese had the previous day made substantial gains in an area 21 miles north of Kweilin.

Associated Press Correspondent Dean Schedler, who had been in the Philippines during the Battle of Bataan and the fall of Corregidor in the winter and spring of 1942, contrasts the very different scenario now transpiring on Leyte. Now, all the planes overhead were American, whereas previously they had been Japanese. Supplies and food were plentiful, also in stark differentiation from the prior experience two and a half years earlier.

Meanwhile, U. S. Troops had moved onto Samar, the fifth island to be captured since the landing October 19, (October 20 across the dateline). A road led longitudinally along Samar to within fifteen miles of Luzon.

The southern column on Leyte captured San Pablo airfield in a seven-mile advance westward from Dulag. General MacArthur's troops had thus far liberated eleven towns on Leyte, ten of which were within seven miles of Tacloban, as detailed on a map on the page. Do you know the way?

A new Hellcat fighter plane, the F6F-3, had been introduced in the Pacific theater. It flew at speeds of 400 mph, faster than Japanese Zeros, and had increased maneuverability over previous versions of the Hellcat.

Undersecretary of State Edward Stettinius, a month away from becoming Secretary, announced that it was likely that a United Nations charter conference would be held early in 1945, ensuing a possible meeting late in 1944 of Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin to resolve loose ends lingering after Dumbarton Oaks. A Pan-American conference might also precede the planned January conference. Mr. Stettinius clarified that the unexpected prolongation of Dumbarton Oaks, running from August 21 to October 7, had thrown out of joint the times for the final meetings to establish the U.N. Secretary Hull, early in the summer, had expressed the hope for a charter meeting before the end of 1944.

The timing, however, of the conferences would hinge on the wherewithal of the President to attend such a meeting with the other of the Big Three leaders within a short time after the election, given a heavy schedule set for him during the ensuing couple of weeks.

The Malta and Yalta conferences of the Big Four would not take place until late January and early February, respectively. And the United Nations Charter Conference in San Francisco would not get underway until April 25, thirteen days after the death of the President.

Governor Dewey, speaking in Minneapolis, clarified a statement by Governor Bricker which had implied that a Dewey-Bricker administration would consider abolition of the Agricultural Adjustment Administration, created by the New Deal to regulate farm prices and surplus to insure a steady market for farmers at a reasonable price. Governor Dewey stated that he intended to maintain the existence of AAA.

On the editorial page, "Nazi Valor" finds a telling characteristic of the Nazi mind having been revealed in the surrender of the last defenders at Aachen the previous week. The colonel who finally surrendered the last remnants of the German Army at first had balked at signing terms which specified unconditional surrender on the ground that his and his men's families were still in Germany and would be thus subject to reprisal, they believed, should they sign such a document.

Eventually, the colonel did sign after prodding, but the episode demonstrated, asserts the piece, that Nazi courage derived not so much from patriotic duty as fear for their loved ones at home. It was emblematic of the Nazi culture, based on threat and fear of reprisal, as with organized criminals anywhere.

"Recruits" points out that the 1940 presidential campaign had established a record for spending, fifteen million by the Republicans and six million by the Democrats. Yet, no hue and cry had been set up in the country against this sort of profligate spending on politics.

The Green Committee, chaired by Senator Green of Rhode Island, however, was examining expenditures on behalf of the parties by third-party organizations. The Committee for Constitutional Government had been indicted for refusing to provide the Senate committee with access to its financial records.

The American Democratic National Committee had admitted receiving contributions from corporations, though forbidden by the Corrupt Practices Act.

And the committee had identified Senator Edward H. Moore of Oklahoma as providing $25,000 to Texas Senator W. Lee O'Daniel's committee to defeat a fourth term for the President, despite Senator O'Daniel having contended that the bulk of the contributions had come from "little people".

It was difficult to track down the source of contributions and the Hatch Act did not limit contributions to state or local committees and permitted $5,000 per year to campaign funds.

Yet, nobody had so much as squawked in the public re these revelations; only the CIO PAC appeared to stir any great fervor.

The piece echos the thoughts of Drew Pearson the previous day.

"Nimble Joe" comments on the high principle which had motivated Senator Joseph Ball of Minnesota, a Republican, to endorse FDR. He had done so on the basis of the President's clear stand on foreign relations versus the murky and waffling rhetoric of Governor Dewey, enabling him to find support among such renowned isolationists as Robert McCormick and his Chicago Tribune.

It was too soon to calculate what impact Senator Ball's endorsement and that of Bartley Crum in San Francisco, the campaign manager for Wendell Willkie in 1940, would have on the election. But the statement of Senator Ball would no doubt carry some weight with voters in assessing the fitness of Governor Dewey to serve as Commander in Chief at such a critical time in history.

"War Chest" discusses the Community Chest appeal in time of war, seeking $385,820 for various foreign relief out of Mecklenburg County. There was more money in circulation and a greater tax deduction available for charitable contributions than in 1943, giving prospect to a larger Community Chest fund for what would be the most critical year of the war for foreign relief.

Drew Pearson tells of the efficient team brought together as advisers for Thomas Dewey, having been slowly organized since his days as District Attorney in New York City in 1937. The brain trust of the campaign included John Burton as the chief researcher, Elliot Bell, primary ghost-writer, Paul Lockwood, personal secretary, and others, plus, of course, John Foster Dulles as chief foreign policy adviser and future Eisenhower Attorney General, Herbert Brownell, as campaign manager. They regularly huddled at the Governor's mansion in Albany, then got to work on execution of plans and writing speeches.

Mr. Dewey had often signed onto his team people he could not best on the campaign trail, such as New York Times reporter Jim Hagerty, who had begun his relationship with Mr. Dewey in 1940 antagonistically, was now acting as liaison with the press. Mr. Hagerty had succeeded in obtaining the respect of the press for himself, but had done little to increase likeability for Governor Dewey.

Marquis Childs points out that the mountain states of the West, Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, Nevada, Wyoming, and Montana, were as strong for FDR in the coming election as the Midwest was for Governor Dewey. Electrification, protection of silver and copper, and irrigation, brought to these states by the New Deal, were benefits not to be forgotten by the voters.

Montana, he asserts, was paradigmatic. Though isolationist in its tendencies in election of Senators and its Representatives, one of the latter two in the previous Congress, Jeannette Rankin, having been the only dissenting vote against the Declaration of War on Japan in the wake of Pearl Harbor, the state nevertheless had voted for FDR in the past and appeared ready to do so again, based primarily on domestic issues. The Fort Peck Dam on the Missouri River and the President's advocacy for Missouri Valley and Columbia River authorities, similar to TVA, had galvanized opinion in his favor. Likewise, the protection of the Butte copper interests, providing in the meantime higher wages and better working conditions for the miners, was inescapably borne in mind by Montanans.

In Arizona, the Republican Party barely existed.

Only Idaho and Colorado appeared likely to favor Governor Dewey, leaving the President with 22 electoral votes from the mountain states, conceivably determinative in a close election—which it would turn out not to be.

Samuel Grafton comments on the speech of Thomas Dewey given before the Herald-Tribune Forum. The Governor had urged that it was irregular and problematic for the armistice treaty with Rumania, signed September 12, to have been executed on behalf of the United States by Soviet representative "Melinosky", actually Rodion Malinovsky. Mr. Dewey had stated further that Secretary Hull, when asked for the reason for the foreign signatory, had declined comment.

But, contends Mr. Grafton, Mr. Dewey had, in so stating, engaged in a good bit of courtroom circumlocution, leaving out the fact that in April, Undersecretary Stettinius had flown to London with the expressed purpose of working out such an armistice with Rumania, providing the imprimatur of the United States on its terms.

Moreover, on September 13, the front page of the New York Times had reported the armistice as following two days of consultation between U. S. Ambassador to Russia, Averill Harriman, British Ambassador Sir Archibald Kerr, and Russian Foreign Commissar Molotoff.

Mr. Grafton finds the sloppiness therefore of Mr. Dewey's errant presentation to be signal of either bad advice from those advising him on foreign policy or his own headstrong insistence on dissembling in spite of the facts, implying, either way, a distrust of the Soviet Union. Such did not bode well for the future of U.S.-Soviet relations in a Dewey administration.

The knight-errant advice, we can fairly discern from the aftermath of history, more probably than not derived from future Secretary of State John Foster Dulles.

Dorothy Thompson writes of some of the statements of Toronto Globe and Mail publisher-editor C. George McCullagh, speaking also at the Herald-Tribune Forum. Mr. McCullagh had trumpeted the smooth working relationship between Canada and the United States, had reminded of some of the history of simpatico relations between the two nations.

Canadians had volunteered in droves for the Union Army during the Civil War, 48,000 having enlisted and 18,000 having died for the cause. There were as many people of Canadian heritage living in the United States as in Canada. Canada had converted its currency from pounds sterling to dollars, i.e. the gold standard, and were taking 60 percent of their imports from the U.S. while 40 percent of their exports went to the United States. Some four billion dollars of investments by Americans were in Canada and a billion of Canadian investments in the U.S., despite the fact that Canada only had a tenth of the population of the United States.

And, counter-intuitively, Ms. Thompson posits that the best part of the Good Neighbor policy between the two nations was Canada's membership in the British Empire. For it increased Canadian security and thus made Canada a more secure and thus trustworthy neighbor.

The overarching point of Mr. McCullagh was that all states in North and South America ought enter a common security association to increase Western Hemispheric trust.

The Organization of American States would be formed, albeit without Canada as a member, in 1947.

Hal Boyle, reporting from Germany on October 15, tells of Staff Sergeant William Kolosky, chief clerk in a headquarters outfit, who had won the first Distinguished Service Cross in the European theater, but shrugged his shoulders when asked how he had done it, contending that he had simply reacted out of fear.

The incident for which his medal had been awarded occurred July 30 near St. Denis Le Gast during the offensive to break through the German positions at St. Lo. Sgt. Kolosky had rallied a battle line of clerks, radio operators, draftsmen, messengers, interpreters, and orderlies, not one of whom was a combat soldier, to repel a German counter-attack consisting of 600 men and ten tanks throughout the night.

Sergeant Kolosky and his men thought that the end had come as the Germans approached, some drunk and yelling war chants like Indians, conjuring to the Americans images of a revivified Little Big Horn. Since none of the unit were combat soldiers, the sergeant assumed command and, figuring the end was nigh, began rallying the men to fight. They held the position through the night, killing 135 of the Germans. The next morning, artillery guns of the Allies wiped out the remainder of the 600 enemy troops.

It had been the first time Sergeant Kolosky had fired his gun in combat. But he now laughed at the thought of having been awarded a medal for simply being scared and doing the only thing his instincts told him he could do.


Was that the king, that spurred his horse so hard
Against the steep uprising of the hill?


I know not; but I think it was not he.


Whoe'er a' was, a' show'd a mounting mind.
Well, lords, to-day we shall have our dispatch:
On Saturday we will return to France.
Then, forester, my friend, where is the bush
That we must stand and play the murderer in?


Hereby, upon the edge of yonder coppice;
A stand where you may make the fairest shoot.


I thank my beauty, I am fair that shoot,
And thereupon thou speak'st the fairest shoot.


Pardon me, madam, for I meant not so.


What, what? first praise me and again say no?
O short-lived pride! Not fair? alack for woe!


Yes, madam, fair.


Nay, never paint me now:
Where fair is not, praise cannot mend the brow.
Here, good my glass, take this for telling true:
Fair payment for foul words is more than due.


Nothing but fair is that which you inherit.


See see, my beauty will be saved by merit!
O heresy in fair, fit for these days!
A giving hand, though foul, shall have fair praise.
But come, the bow: now mercy goes to kill,
And shooting well is then accounted ill.
Thus will I save my credit in the shoot:
Not wounding, pity would not let me do't;
If wounding, then it was to show my skill,
That more for praise than purpose meant to kill.
And out of question so it is sometimes,
Glory grows guilty of detested crimes,
When, for fame's sake, for praise, an outward part,
We bend to that the working of the heart;
As I for praise alone now seek to spill
The poor deer's blood, that my heart means no ill.

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