Thursday, March 21, 1946

The Charlotte News

Thursday, March 21, 1946


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that General Eisenhower recommended to Congress that the Selective Service Act be extended indefinitely, with provision for limitation of service to 18 months. In so doing, fathers currently serving could be released by August or September. Otherwise, he warned, the services would fall short by 165,000 men by July 1, 1947.

Secretary of War Robert Patterson indicated that present manpower of the military was at 2.5 million, with another net reduction of a million expected by June.

As Iran summoned its nineteen-year olds to colors to meet the attacks by 3,000 Kurdish tribesmen along the border with Iraq, the rightist elements in the capital were expressing concern that the leftist Tudeh Party was planning in its private session to stage demonstrations, or possibly a coup, against the Government for its protest to the U.N. Security Council regarding the continued presence of Soviet troops.

A leader of the Rightists, Zia Ed-Din, opposed to the Premier and described by political writers as anti-Russian, had been taken into custody by two men who appeared to be colonels in the Iranian Army. Mr. Ed-Din stated that he was being arrested because he was not liked by the Russians, and further asserted that Iran's only hope lay with the U.N. The Director of Propaganda stated that Mr. Ed-Din had been placed in "preventive custody" at the behest of the Premier pending investigation of certain unspecified charges.

President Truman stated that Moscow's request for a sixteen-day delay in the start of the U.N. meeting in New York, scheduled for Monday, would not be acceptable to the United States. Soviet Ambassador Andrei Gromyko had urged that precipitant action by the Security Council on the Iranian matter would only complicate it and that Russia needed longer to prepare its case.

Senators appeared not to support Senator Claude Pepper's call for a Big Three meeting but rather wanted to allow the Security Council to resolve issues, especially with its meeting imminent. The Senators also expressed privately their strong opposition to Senator Pepper's other proposals, destruction of all atomic weaponry, sharing of the atomic secret with the Russians, and provision of a loan to Russia. President Truman also indicated his lack of intention to call a Big Three meeting and that matters should be worked out at the U.N.

India warned that five to fifteen million of its people could die from starvation within the ensuing few months unless they received aid from the UNRRA. The spokesman, agent general for India in Washington, asserted that the causes were a combination of cyclones, tidal waves, drought, and the war. India, he said, had already reduced its per capita rations to 960 calories per day and could restrict no more.

The Yugoslav representative complained that citizens of his country were reduced to 1,500 calories per day, which limited their diet nearly to bread only.

Former Secretary of War Henry Stimson stated in writing to the joint Congressional committee investigating Pearl Harbor that he had learned on November 28, 1941 of the movement of Japanese ships along the Asiatic coast and immediately had informed President Roosevelt. They determined that there were three alternative courses of action: to do nothing, immediately discarded as untenable; to attack offensively, considered initially as a sound course; or to send an ultimatum, indicating the point at which the United States would attack. The plan to attack at once was set aside because it was believed that to do so without an attack initially by the Japanese would be used for propaganda purposes internationally, suggesting that the U.S. had started the war, giving a casus belli then to Japan.

The Hull Ten Points, proposed on November 27, not the 28th, was the eventual winner. It was viewed as an ultimatum by the Japanese, but Mr. Hull had testified in November, 1945 that it was not intended as such, merely a statement of the terms upon which the United States had insisted throughout the negotiation process for resumption of normalization of relations with Japan, specifically resumption of trade of oil and scrap iron. Negotiations had been ongoing since the spring of 1941. The terms included removal of Japanese troops from China and Indo-China, the latter having been occupied in late July.

In Berlin, another "Axis Sally" had been arrested March 16 in the American sector, pursuant to a tip. Mildred Gillars, 37, of Portland, Maine, had come to Germany in 1934 to marry a German man, but he had died. Had he lived, she said, she would have become by virtue of marriage a German citizen and thus beyond the reach of the United States for her subsequent activities. She proudly proclaimed that she had engaged in broadcasting as "Axis Sally", stating that she had done nothing wrong, was only trying to stop the war, was paid handsomely for her services. She was to be transported to the United States to face charges of treason.

Rita Zucca, the other "Axis Sally", (whose last name means "pumpkin" in Italian, perhaps not Cinderella), had been arrested in September. Whether Ms. Gillars was the Kingfish or just the worm on the hook remained to be determined.

President Truman responded negatively to a press inquiry as to whether his political speech at the Jackson Day Dinner in Washington on Saturday would include an announcement that he intended to run in 1948. He also stated that he had not discussed with Secretary of Commerce Henry Wallace his proposal that party members who got out of line be disciplined by being denied use of the party label.

By 1948, the President might have wished that he had discussed the matter with Mr. Wallace—though, in the end, the Progressive Party of Mr. Wallace would not prevent re-election of the President, likely siphoning off as many liberal Republican votes as Democratic.

Lady Nancy Astor, originally of Virginia, told the South Carolina Legislature that she hoped the United States and Britain could work together in peace, that Britain was too uniform for there to be class war, and that it would not turn to communism, as Foreign Minister Ernest Bevin knew how to tell the Reds "where to get off". She was glad that there was a Labor Government in Britain, despite the fact that she had served as a Conservative in Commons from 1939 until the defeat of the Conservatives the previous July. Lady Astor had, however, been at times antagonistic to Winston Churchill, with whom she did not get along personally.

Whether Lady Astor's appearance before the South Carolina Legislature was the result of her old cronies of the Cliveden Set in Britain, of which she played hostess during the lead-up to World War II when the Cliveden Set prominently advocated, with, for its money and publishing ties, a great deal of assiduity and impact, tolerance of the Nazis as a necessary bulwark to Soviet Communism, having seen in the South Carolinians, perhaps, the last great hope for creation of yet another such bulwark, is subject to speculation.

In Joliet, Illinois, the 30-year old son of the president of Lincoln Electric Company had admitted to shooting and beating with a hammer a nine-year old girl after she refused his advances. Despite her several wounds, the girl was expected to survive. The assailant was married with two small children of his own and his wife described him as a caring father and husband.

But not on the previous day.

An unsubstantiated report from Batavia had it that Russian submarines were lying off the south coast of Java.

Indonesians said that they were completely in the dark.

World War III is imminent. Batten the hatches, men. We're going out again.

On the editorial page, "When Is a Purge Not a Purge?" indicates that Henry Wallace was sometimes a statesman but never a politician, as confirmed recently when he favored discipline of party members not following party doctrine by denying them the Democratic Party label. The idea appeared as repugnant as the hypocrisy being displayed by the Southern Democrats aligning with the Republicans.

The response from Southern Democrats in Congress had been thunderous, in the case of Senator Olin Johnston of South Carolina, accusing Mr. Wallace implicitly of being Communist. Senator Johnston had once been an ardent New Dealer who had supported the unsuccessful efforts of President Roosevelt to purge his nemesis in South Carolina politics, the late Senator Cotton Ed Smith.

The piece recalls the attempt of FDR to conduct the purges of 1938, which had completely failed in its goal, with every one of the targets achieving re-election, in the case of Senator Smith, in part in reaction to the attack upon him.

The pressure to change had to come from the people, not by party edict. It hoped that one day the voters of the South would vote on principle, rather than personality, and elect persons based on liberal or conservative stands. The attempt to enforce uniformity in the party, however, would only tend to entrench the deleterious one-party system which pervaded the South.

"The Strange Ways of Diplomacy" suggests that the sudden turnabout in American policy since the disastrous reactions to the Churchill speech at Fulton, including the denial by the White House that President Truman had read the speech in advance as originally reported, Mr. Churchill's omission in his subsequent New York speech of any reference to the Soviet Union, and Secretary of State Byrnes's recent remarks that the United States was intending to form a military alliance with either Britain or Russia, all appeared as hindsight seeking to minimize the impact of the address.

Had the country a decisive foreign policy, such backfilling would not be necessary. Until such a policy were developed, there would be no improvement in relations with the Soviets. Words never deterred nor incited a war. Actions were important and Russia stood for the time more puzzled than angry regarding U.S. action thus far since war's end.

"On Locating the Medical School" comments on the suitability of Charlotte, based on its population, to serve as the locus for the proposed University of North Carolina medical school and adjoining 600-bed hospital. The State Medical Society was said to be examining several locales in the state as a possible site.

Ultimately, Chapel Hill would be chosen as the location.

A piece from the Columbia Record, titled "Are Blue Laws Sacrilegious?", suggests the affirmative as an answer to the question regarding South Carolina's blue laws, contending that they violated the concept of separation of church and state, the Christian concept of independence of initiative of religious observance, and had originated in ancient Rome, not in either Britain or the United States.

It should not require an act of the Legislature, it concludes, to enforce the laws of God.

While on the subject, excuse us, North Dakota Legislative Majority, for being so ineffably temerarious for asking, but should you, in your infinite wisdom, pass a law tomorrow which says that "speech" means, in the context of the First Amendment, only certain words which you, in your infinite wisdom, declare to be acceptable, do you believe that it changes the concept of free speech to recognize and embrace only that which you, as a Legislative Majority, license? Apparently you do, and thus ought be collectively tossed on your buns by the electorate of North Dakota for being too dumb, wasting the taxpayers' time and money, suggesting embarrassingly to the great majority of the nation, undoubtedly calumnious propaganda, that your state's collective I.Q. registers at about 65 on a good day, to have garnered in your educations the first notion of what your oath of office, regarding, first and foremost, upholding the laws and the Constitution of the United States, truly means. Or have you determined to change that oath also, to exclude the latter and make yourselves, as many State Legislatures and Local Yokels through time have tried, hope springing eternal, the Supreme Law of the Land, the Works, baby, the Hague ... the Mob, La Cosa Nostra. Family Values. You know?

Try reading up on the Right to Privacy, as determined by the Supreme Court long ago. We know, we know. It is not in Your constitution. But it is. You just can't read among the shadows. Get your eyes checked.

Drew Pearson reports that the latest diplomatic reports had it that the present foreign policy framers in Russia were Foreign Commissar V. M. Molotov and Vice-Commissar Andrei Vishinsky. The policy promulgated was acquisition by Russia of the Dardanelles and buffer states in Eastern Europe and the Middle East, such as a toehold in Northern Iran via Azerbaijan Province, and in Hungary and Yugoslavia, with troops in the latter in preparation for a possible march on Trieste. It was deemed critical to acquire these buffer zones promptly to take advantage of the war-weariness of the rest of the world and demobilization by the democracies, plus recognition of the willingness of the Russian people to follow the lead of the Government as long as Josef Stalin, in failing health, remained alive.

Mr. Pearson notes that former Ambassador to Moscow, Averell Harriman, had reported on his return that Stalin appeared emaciated, much as Roosevelt had at Yalta, 70 days before his death.

He next tells of the arrival in Washington of former Premier of France Leon Blum to plead for aid to France, as indicated in the caption of the photograph on the front page. The former Premier was not immune, however, from the ordinary red tape of customs and health inspection. Even the French Ambassador to the U.S., on hand to greet his arrival, was forbidden to touch him until he had cleared the health inspection, at least until it was realized that he wore gloves and so a hand-shake was deemed acceptable.

None of that French kissing though.

The column suggests that one reason for the antipathetic response by Stalin to Winston Churchill's Fulton speech was his own harbored ill feelings against the former Prime Minister, as had become manifest at the Tehran Conference in late 1943. He was especially upset about the delay, caused by Churchill's objections, to the creation of a second front in Europe, to take the German pressure off the Russian front. He had also not forgotten that it had been Churchill as Secretary of State for War at the end of World War I who had ordered troops into Archangel and Siberia in an effort to destabilize the newly created Bolshevik regime.

He next tells of the removal of ceilings on poultry to be a trial to determine whether it would work to increase poultry production.

Lastly, he relates, among other things in his Merry-Go-Round section, of the attempt of John L. Lewis and David Dubinsky to take over the UAW and bring it into AFL from CIO.

Marquis Childs reports that the President, after nearly a year in the White House, appeared tired and strained. His schedule had been extremely demanding throughout the year, trying to cobble together the various political elements of his own party and obtain support for his reconversion program, which thus far had made little headway since the end of the war.

He had been disparagingly compared to Warren Harding and to Andrew Johnson. Mr. Childs thinks him more akin with the latter than the former, beset as the Harding Administration was by scandal and corruption. Both President Truman and Andrew Johnson had come from humble backgrounds, succeeding strong Presidents under tragic circumstances, and having wartime powers at the start of their terms in office.

Andrew Johnson had been honest but was never given a fair chance to succeed by the Radical Republicans of his day, led by Thaddeus Stevens, distrustful of his being a Southern Democrat, ultimately seeking to destroy him through impeachment. When the country then turned in 1868 to the Northern war hero, U.S. Grant, to be the next President, the result had been scandal and disgrace.

Mr. Childs suggests that the country might profit from the lessons engendered by those unhappy times of that post-Civil War period. He urges the populace to step back from its rush to place blame for lack of strong leadership and realize that ultimately the President could not work miracles and had to be afforded a chance to have his programs work before having brickbats hurled at him.

Samuel Grafton suggests that the liberal bloc of votes was sitting around orphaned, waiting to be courted by someone as President Roosevelt had successfully done. Mr. Truman had casually sought the bloc's attention but thus far it was wary.

Robert Hannegan, chairman of the DNC, in his recent Jackson Day dinner speech at Wilmington, Delaware, had taken a jab at Southern Democrats for their lack of party fealty, claiming they had bolted to join the Republicans in a "class compact", defying in the process three-fourths of the will of the country. Mr. Hannegan, in knowingly committing the political faux pas of raising class conflict, was trying to get the Southern bloc back into line and arrest the process of party disintegration.

Should Mr. Hannegan fail, Mr. Grafton predicts, the result might be a third party. Only if he were to succeed could the Democrats move forward under the big-tent which had been formed during the Roosevelt years.

A letter equates the Churchill trip to America with a hurricane, doing its greatest damage at Fulton, Missouri. The writer opines that there was no market in the current world for Churchill's "blood, toil, tears, and sweat"—or "blood, sweat, and tears" as he renders it. The people of the world were tired of war and wanted no more of it. Mr. Churchill, he asserts, was doing a profound disservice to the U.N. and the prospects for peace with his U.S. tour.

He asks why should the United States be dragged into a war with Russia in order to protect British, Dutch, and American oil interests in Iran and because "a few pantywaists are afraid of the Communistic ideology". He finally asks whether anybody would believe that the U.S. would be "damn fool enough" to promote a war it could never win, thus wonders what the shouting was all about.

Wait twenty years, after all of this stuff has had a chance to seep into the American consciousness, be thoroughly nurtured and cultivated in the minds of the colossally stupid abroad the landscape, those who also truly believe in flying saucers and little green men from Mars, and you will, sir, obtain dark answers to your bright questions. Wait again another 35 years after that, and you may just give up on asking the questions, resigning yourself to the notion that about a third part of the country, a very loud and boisterous and often well-heeled part, is incurably insane.

Just as the idiots who wish to outlaw thought, descendants of the monkeys who moved to lynch for leering and give it approbation in nullification when their Legislature would not expressly underwrite it.

Another letter, commenting on "The Case for Price Control" from March 16, plumps for a definite determination of the country to live either under free enterprise, socialism, or communism, but not an amalgam of two or more of them, the result being too confusing. If OPA could grant him and his family security, he says, then he was all for it, but he wanted it guaranteed, not contingent on the success of a Government policy.

A letter thanks The News for its courtesy to a group in the community, of which the author had been part, by printing a story on their planning of a mausoleum in Sharon Memorial Park. Such recognition of service, he says, made people want to locate in Charlotte.

And, we take it, die there as well.

As we correctly predicted, the University of North Carolina won tonight in Madison Square Garden, defeating N.Y.U. in the N.C.A.A. quarterfinals in basketball 57 to 49, as Ohio State beat Harvard 46 to 38, in Harvard's first outing in the tournament, probably slated in perpetuity never to win a game in N.C.A.A. Tournament play, being, as it is, a part of the Ivy League.

We shall go out on a limb now and predict the actual scores of the next quarterfinal games on Friday in Kansas City. Oklahoma A & M will defeat Baylor 44 to 29 and California will beat Colorado 50 to 44, with Saturday's semi-final pairings thus set to insure an exciting finish when Oklahoma A & M and North Carolina assuredly will meet on Tuesday in the Garden.

Again, you can rest consigned to complete confidence in setting your brackets by our unfailing predictions. Matriculate through the lines accordingly. We have not yet determined our forecast for the score of the finals. Nor have we fastened on who Tuesday is. But we are hard at work resolving both problems.

We stress again also the three young ladies depicted yesterday from Miami walking baby tigers, which would grow up, no doubt, to be wildcats, but for now, were still baby tigers, being walked in Miami on leashes.


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