Tuesday, October 2, 1945

The Charlotte News

Tuesday, October 2, 1945


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that General Patton had been relieved of his command of the Third Army which he had led through France and into Germany, and placed in charge of the Fifteenth Army, a "paper Army" with only a small staff of researchers and not involved in occupation duties, as was the Third in Bavaria. General Lucian Truscott was appointed to succeed General Patton as commander of the Third Army. No official reason was given for the change in command but it clearly stemmed from General Patton's allowing of Nazis to remain in local offices to insure efficiency, counter to General Eisenhower's order completely to de-Nazify Germany.

General Eisenhower had met with General Patton the previous week and had issued the order the following day, even though not yet publicized until this point.

General Patton's reaction was not available, or, if so, probably not printable.

Four hundred Jews who had been maintained at the Third Army's camp were transferred to 25 nearby residences from which Germans had been evicted. General Walter Bedell Smith had suggested the living arrangement at the camp for 5,000 Jews pending transfer. Earl Harrison, U. S. representative on the Intergovernmental Committee, had complained to President Truman that these Jews were being treated only marginally better than by the Nazis.

With 16 per house in their new digs, surely this complaint, regarding overcrowded conditions, would subside.

The Military Government in the American zone of Germany began shifting the authority gradually to civilians, in accord with the policy to have full civilian control by July, 1946, with the military to be utilized thereafter only as a police force.

The London Foreign Ministers Conference ended after three weeks, with no formal statement yet having been issued. Tension surrounded the last weekend as V. M. Molotov threatened to leave the conference unless Ernest Bevin of Britain apologized for his remark comparing Molotov's methods to Hitler. Mr. Bevin apologized.

From Tokyo, ABC radio reported that General Anami, Japanese Army chief of staff, who committed suicide, had lied to the Emperor regarding the chances for continuing the war and persisted, as late as August 13, in claiming that one more battle could turn the tide. When the Emperor asked him if he was still lying, he left the room humiliated and committed hara-kiri.

In Santa Ana, California, forty Army Air Force veterans, former prisoners of war, were released from an erroneous assignment to K.P. duty, washing dishes, pots and pans. One of the misassigned men was a sergeant who had flown with General Doolittle on April 18, 1942 and had been a prisoner of war for forty months. The commander of the base, perhaps soon to be on K.P. duty himself, Brig. General Arthur Easterbrook, apologized for the error.

At least he didn't have them shot as traitors.

Larry Crosby, brother of Bing, and head of the Crosby Research Foundation, stated that his researchers had developed a method to detonate the atomic bomb from a distance without knowing the precise location of the weapons, potentially causing havoc. The method, he said, would be turned over to the Government, provided it would be used to compel fair treatment by other nations of the United States.

Just how that would work was not explained.

He also stated that uranium was too unstable to be suitable as the basis for atomic energy, that other elements better served the purpose.

In Bombay, riots, which began the previous Wednesday between Moslems and Hindus, had subsided, following 33 deaths and 168 injured. It was not clear that the riots had been stimulated by any political or religious dispute, but were laid to "illiterate hoodlums".

In Texas, the Lower Colorado River Authority fired 140 striking workers, a strike which had threatened cessation of hydroelectric power to 25,000 customers. Thus ended that strike.

Nationwide, idle workers still numbered about 380,000. Secretary of Labor Lewis Schwellenbach was busy trying to obtain a resolution of the oil refinery workers strike, which affected nine states.

The Congress voted to begin a three billion dollar Federal-State highway construction program. North Carolina was slated to receive 5.4 million dollars of the fund in its first year.

A woman who had taken a baby from its crib in Warren Harding's hometown of Marion, Ohio, as reported July 10, was acquitted the previous Thursday of child stealing, based on her temporary insanity. She was ruled presently sane and was to join her husband, a veteran of the war. The baby was but six days old at the time of the snatching, but was quickly recovered. The woman claimed to have been pregnant with the child.

On the editorial page, "Limited Strategy" suggests that reporters who had become accustomed to corresponding on the war, now sent to cover the labor strikes abroad the country, were using the same methods of journalism in both scenarios. Most front pages appeared to leave the impression that there was a concerted effort by labor to storm the ramparts of free enterprise, with more battles in this war predicted on the horizon.

The piece finds this reportage overripe, that there was no indication of cooperation between CIO and AFL, that it was not likely they were plotting together any grand strategy. Within unions, there was plenty of dissent, with locals being challenged by national unions in several instances. The labor situation was simply the sum of thousands of individual grievances which had been stored up, awaiting the end of the war.

"Voices of the Past" finds that the opponents of the full employment bill from industry were reactionary voices of the ancien regime, favoring a necessary pool of unemployed to keep wages low and labor disciplined, that full employment was Communistic in origins, that keeping people from starving could be done more effectively than through jobs, that industry would rather pay for welfare than have to assure jobs for everyone.

Fine, we just won't buy your pitiful products anymore and you can "Root, hog, or die."

The New York State Chamber of Commerce issued a report which stated, "Depressions are the price we pay for freedom," a statement entirely consistent, incidentally, with the teachings of Karl Marx.

Where did they get these bozos?

In any event, it compliments Senator James Murray of Montana for revealing, in a recent issue of Collier's, some of these opinions from the extreme right.

"One Made Music" tells of author and poet Carl Sandburg taking up residence at Connemara in Flat Rock near Asheville. The home had been the residence originally of the Treasurer of the Confederacy, Christopher Memminger, and of late of Confederate veteran Ellison Adger Smythe, who gave the name to the estate.

Mr. Sandburg was from Galesburg, Illinois, and had devoted much of his writing life to his multi-volume biography of Abraham Lincoln, always worth reading.

He had moved to Connemara to sing folk ballads, but, the piece suggests, his writing days might not be over, that he might be able yet to bring forth more prose wrung from the "restless ghost of the old Confederate", the cotton and textile mill magnate who preceded him in residence, Mr. Smythe.

"Unreconstructed" tells of a three-year old who insisted through Sunday and Monday that War Time had not ended, wanted explanation as to why she should be going to bed an hour later and delaying meals by an hour. When it was explained that it was beneficial to farmers to set the clocks back, she wanted to know whether she was a farmer.

The piece wants a special liaison from Congress to be appointed to explain the matter further.

The excerpt from the Congressional Record has Congressman Edward Cox of Georgia suggesting three hours of debate be reserved for the bill to provide Federal control over tidewaters and navigable streams for purposes of commerce and navigation. Representative John Rankin of Mississippi suggests that there would be no opposition likely to the bill and therefore no need for three hours of debate. Mr. Cox indicates that members often had prepared speeches to get matters off their chests and it presented a good opportunity for doing so.

The second installment in the series by the State Planning Board addresses the statistical breakdown of agricultural production in the state and the relative changes in percentages between 1930 and 1940. There was a lot of tobacco, cotton, peanuts, and in the Eastern section of the state, hogs were on the rise.

Drew Pearson explains that the House Ways and Means Committee had witnessed the first anger of President Truman since he had assumed the office April 12. He had asked all Democratic members to come to the White House the previous Thursday morning for a meeting re the shelving of the unemployment compensation bill which he had proposed as a vital part of the reconversion program, shelved in response to the massive numbers of idle workers from strikes. The President barely forced a smile during the entire 45-minute discussion.

Congressmen John Dingell of Michigan, Herman Eberhauer of Pennsylvania, and Aime Forand of Rhode Island each defended the bill and stated their full support for it in its original form before it had been trimmed back by the Senate, eliminating the $25 per week provision.

The President found the argument regarding strikes as an excuse for shelving the bill to be completely without support. He did not answer the argument by some of the members, including Wilbur Mills of Arkansas, future chair of the Committee, that $25 per week was too high, above the average wage for some states, especially in the South.

The President also indicated his opposition to the bill to return the Employment Service to the states.

He had earlier sent a letter to Senator Alben Barkley, Majority Leader, saying that the bill was desirable but not indispensable. The letter had been authored by George Allen, who had, though reactionary, become a prominent adviser to the President.

Mr. Allen had also advised the President on the appointment of three judges to the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, judges who had been supporters of the power companies. He had also advised Federal Economic Administrator Leo Crowley to end Lend-Lease right after V-J Day.

Mr. Pearson next reports that King Ibn Saud of Saudi Arabia had met with a woman outside his harem for the first time, Congresswoman Frances Bolton of Ohio. But she still had to take her dinner with his harem, while the other members of Congress ate camel meat with the King.

Marquis Childs addresses the Republican and isolationist attempts to brand FDR a war-monger and charge that he deliberately allowed Pearl Harbor to occur to get the country into the war. He points out that the Dewey forces in 1944 had sought a letter to Wendell Willkie from the President dated December 5, 1941 in which FDR warned of the possibility of armed conflict with Japan at any time, especially in the Philippines, Java, and Malaya, in relation to a fact-finding trip to be undertaken by Mr. Willkie to Australia. Mr. Willkie, as one of his last acts before his death in early October, 1944, had refused to provide the letter to the Dewey campaign.

Mr. Childs stresses that unlike Governor Dewey, who apparently had decided that the President was guilty as charged, Mr. Willkie had understood the complexity of the crisis and that there was no such "childish plot" to get the country into the war.

He urges that there are other facts on the attack still to come to light and that no conclusions should yet be drawn, as being urged by Republicans and isolationists for political advantage in the 1946 elections.

As we have previously suggested, the President had numerous opportunities to argue for declaring war, with the unprovoked sinking of several United States ships by both Germany and Japan, the Robin Moor in May, 1941 and the Reuben James on October 31, to name but two sunk by German U-boats. He steadfastly refused to seek a declaration from the Congress regarding any one or all of these several episodes, certainly did not seek at any time to whip the flames of war. The charge, therefore, is simply ludicrous on its face.

A letter writer compliments The News for not joining the chorus of journalists and politicians seeking to harm the name of President Roosevelt through attacks on his family, sons James and Elliott, and former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt.

He quotes Shakespeare from Cymbeline, Act III, Scene 4:

"...No, 'tis slander,
Whose edge is sharper than the sword: whose tongue
Outvenoms all the worms of Nile: whose breath
Rides on the posting winds, and doth belie
All corners of the world: kings, queens and states,
Maids, matrons, children, nay the secrets of the grave
This viperous slander enters."

Another letter writer believes that Thomas Dewey was a hero for not revealing all which he knew about Pearl Harbor in response to General Marshall's warning that doing so would reveal to the Japanese that their code had been cracked and thereby cost thousands of American lives. By contrast, she believes that FDR told lies and made wild promises to get elected—for the fourth term which he plainly did not desire.

She reminds readers that FDR had stated in 1940 during the campaign that no Americans would fight a war on foreign soil, leaving out the somewhat critical condition that it would be so, unless the United States were attacked.

She disliked the sarcasm of the News in reference to the matter.

She also disliked the News criticism of Senator Kenneth Wherry of Nebraska for his defense of General MacArthur in relation to his setting policy in Japan rather than leaving it reposited within the State Department, and Senator Wherry's implicit suggestion that the New Deal was rife with Reds. She thinks it was an accurate charge.

But, the heart of the matter remains, as always, in the inquiry: Where is the beef?

"So if I were you, I would keep my big mouth shut. All the American people aren't crazy. Even if you are wrong, Mr. Wherry was right."

The Editors respond: "Madam, we're practically speechless. Do you mean the war was a farce, and Pearl Harbor a Roosevelt trick?"

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