Wednesday, July 31, 1946

The Charlotte News

Wednesday, July 31, 1946


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that Britain had accepted a proposal by Anglo-American experts that Palestine be divided into four areas with a Jewish area left to determine on its own the question of Jewish immigration to that region. There would also be an autonomous Arab region of Palestine which could also determine its immigration policy. The experts asserted that the plan would accommodate the 100,000 Jewish immigrants to Palestine as recommended by the Anglo-American Commission. The third zone would be Jerusalem, including Bethlehem, and the fourth would be Negreb, in the south of Palestine, a desert triangle in which a few Jewish settlers had established homesteads under the provisions of the 1940 land transfer regulations. The United States was to undertake the transportation of Jewish immigrants, a task it had already indicated it was willing to do.

Acting Prime Minister Herbert Morrison stated that the plan required the cooperation of the United States. President Truman was calling upon his expert delegation to return to the United States to discuss the proposal.

On the second day following the bombing at the King David Hotel in Jerusalem and the ensuing search for the terrorists responsible for the killing of British and Arab officers, 111 having been reported as killed or missing, a British gun-toting chaplain, the Rev. Harry Hyde, had led British troops to a cache of weapons beneath the great synagogue of Tel Aviv. The weapons appeared freshly deposited in the location.

The two American officers who had been detained in the Russian zone of Berlin were released after 27 days of being held as spies. They had been held at Russian headquarters in Potsdam for most of that period and had been treated well despite daily interrogations. They were arrested at Oranienburg on July 4 while trying to visit the Nazi concentration camp at Sachsenhausen and were unaware that the camp was being used by the Russians to house political prisoners.

Foreign Commissar V. M. Molotov addressed the opening of the 21-nation Paris Peace Conference, calling for the nations to unite in putting an end to the Franco Government in Spain. He had earlier sought before the Rules Committee to establish a rule requiring a two-thirds majority vote so that Russia would not be outvoted by the West. Secretary of State Byrnes provided qualified support to that proposal, that the rule would apply only to essential and substantive matters.

A transport ship, the Colby Victory, carrying a thousand troops to Bremerhaven from New York, received medical supplies for treatment of an outbreak aboard of diphtheria. The ship was several hundred miles off the coast of Argentina.

Harold Ickes provides a portion of a transcript of a hearing before the Truman Committee in 1944 between the chief counsel for the committee, Hugh Fulton, and a dollar-per-year man advising Lt. General Breton Somervell regarding the Canol Pipeline Project to bring oil from the Norman Field in Canada to Alaska to supply American troops stationed there during the war. As Mr. Ickes had presented in his column on Monday, it was a huge waste of money compared to his own suggestion of shipping oil by tanker. The testimony suggests the lack of planning and inefficiency in the project.

Mr. Ickes concludes: "A sober soldier can sometimes spend more money, faster, than the traditional 'drunken sailor.'"

Mr. Ickes also inserts a correction to his column of July 26: Congressman Jed Johnson of Oklahoma had demanded a fee of $2,500, not $5,000, for a routine Indian probate case handled by his former law partner.

The Senate declined to limit debate on the anti-poll tax bill, and, with the session set to end on Friday, signified its incumbent defeat by filibuster. The vote was 39 to 33 for the gag rule, but a two-thirds majority was required. It had not been imposed since February 28, 1927, applied to a bill to create a bureau of customs and prohibitions.

OPA authorized a 6 percent increase in the retail price of farm machinery and replacement parts. It had granted a ten percent increase on May 10 to manufacturers and wholesalers, but required retailers to absorb the difference, no longer allowable in full under the new bill just signed into law. Textile ceilings were about to be raised by an average of sixteen percent, with retail prices on cotton fabrics expected to rise 10 percent. Corn, peas, and tomatoes were expected to rise by one to two cents per can. Bread might go up a penny per loaf and coffee was slated to rise 8 to 10 cents per pound, with higher ceilings also on breakfast cereals.

The secretary to Washington Congressman John Coffee testified to the Senate War Investigating Committee that the jails would be full if the Justice Department intended to prosecute every case in which payments were made during the war by war contractors for "campaign contributions". Mr. Coffee had received $2,500 from a Tacoma contractor in 1941. The secretary contended that the law did not forbid making contributions of personal funds. Senator Homer Ferguson of Michigan disagreed.

The secretary contended that the contractor in question had threatened to use the payment against him while he was running for Mayor of Tacoma unless he withdrew from the race in which they were both candidates.

In Onset, Mass., a 25-year old woman had been missing since Saturday after departing a Cambridge dance with a man named Frank. She was set to be married to a sailor still at sea within a few weeks and did not usually go out with strangers. The police believed that she may have met with foul play as neither Frank nor the young woman had responded to police requests for information regarding her whereabouts.

The Justice Department was studying whether Klan activities in seven states, New York, Michigan, Tennessee, Florida, California, Mississippi, and Georgia, were violating Federal laws, and stated that court action would be initiated if it was found to be the case. Complaints about Klan activity were being received from all parts of the country, presented by labor organizations, civil rights organizations, and individuals.

One particular complaint came from Florida where it was reported that Klan members had cooperated with local officials to prevent blacks from moving into a housing project.

A second complaint alleged that before the Georgia primary, a masked group of white people visited the residences of blacks in one county, shooting into houses and warning the residents against voting.

The Miami Daily News reported that it had received a letter from Senator Theodore Bilbo that he was thinking of introducing a bill to outlaw the newspaper as he did not like its statement of views, that it was the "meanest newspaper in the country". He was responding to an editorial of July 5 in which the newspaper had urged the Senate not to seat Senator Bilbo in January in the new Congress because of his holding up legislation by filibuster in derogation of the Constitution. The Senator later told a reporter that he had no actual intention of introducing such a bill to suppress publication of the newspaper, but had wished to underscore the silliness of the editorial.

In Pretoria, South Africa, the first white rhinoceros to be held in captivity was in the Pretoria Zoo, having been abandoned by its mother in Zululand, 500 miles from Pretoria. It was two weeks old, weighed 75 pounds, and consumed a gallon of milk per day from a bottle.

On the editorial page, "Representative May's 'Explanation'", finds Congressman Andrew May's statement in a letter to his constituents, that all he did was to urge shipment of materials at a time during the war when General Eisenhower needed supplies desperately, to be unpersuasive. He had been accused by witnesses testifying before the Senate War Investigating Committee of taking bribes from the Batavia-Erie Basin combine of companies in exchange for recommending continuance of war contracts despite high costs of production relative to other contractors.

Yet, he claimed that Senator James Mead of New York, chairman of the committee, was playing politics to try to be elected Governor of New York, and that Communists were behind the smear campaign of Mr. May, to try to discredit his attempts to maintain the atomic secret under military control to insure that it would not leak into the hands of the Russians.

The people of Kentucky might find in him a martyr to protect against interference by outside interests. Yet, they had no monopoly on such purblind behavior. Comptroller General Lindsay Warren had just revealed that the amount of corruption involved in the cost-plus system of war contracts was rank and that the committee had just skimmed the surface. The public ought be outraged by the revelations.

If Mr. May and others were innocent of wrongdoing, then they ought be willing to step forward and prove it. Thus far, Mr. May had claimed heart trouble as an excuse not to testify.

"How to Prevent Intervention" comments on the threat by Senator Richard Russell of Georgia to Senator William Knowland of California to retaliate if the Senator from California persisted in placing in the Congressional Record editorials from the New York Herald Tribune which were unkind to the state of Georgia for the lynching of two black couples the previous Thursday at Moore's Ford Bridge near Monroe. Senator Russell stated that California had its problems too, presumably referring to violent retaliation against Japanese-Americans, some of whom were veterans, and that he would place unkind editorials in the Record about that.

Senator Olin Johnston of South Carolina also thought it unfair for Senator Knowland to complain about Georgia in that manner.

Governor-nominate Eugene Talmadge had deplored the violence but stated that Detroit, New York, and other cities also had racial violence during the war.

Meanwhile, the State Police had gotten nowhere in their investigation and claimed local authorities were not cooperating, that the victims' families were frightened and the whole community had clammed up. The State Police wanted the Federal authorities to step into the investigation. Georgia, despite the best efforts of Governor Ellis Arnall, appeared unable to solve its own racial problems. If so, it wonders how Georgians could continue to oppose anti-lynching laws, repeatedly filibustered to death over the years. They could do so only by defending such racial violence as had occurred the previous Thursday in broad daylight on a public roadway.

The Greensboro Daily News had advocated Federal intervention, as had other Southern newspapers. Others would take up the cry unless Georgia could bring to justice the 20 to 25 white men who murdered at Moore's Ford.

Mass murder in Georgia was as much the business of the Herald Tribune as it was the Atlanta Constitution, as much the business of Senator Knowland as of Senator Russell. "The only way to prevent outside intervention is to make it unnecessary."

After 67 years since the lynchings at Moore's Ford Bridge, not a single individual has ever been brought to trial for the murders.

"Straw Poll on City Extension" thinks it wise that the City Council was planning to take an informal poll of suburban residents regarding the proposal to extend the city limits to embrace them. The primary concern was whether tax rates would increase. The most important feature of the proposed expansion was to permit city planning into the future.

A piece from the Asheville Citizen, titled "It's None of Our Business, But...", comments on the piece by Editor Louis Graves of The Chapel Hill Weekly, as reprinted July 23 in The News, chastising the newspaper for finding in an editorial of July 20, "How to Steal an Election", that it was none of its business that Georgia had elected Eugene Talmadge again as its Governor pursuant to the unfair system of county unit-voting, when opponent James Carmichael had properly won the popular vote, Mr. Graves having reassured that it most certainly was its business.

The editorial underscores the sentiment of Mr. Graves and believes that only outsiders could look at a problem with "disenchantment" and without worry of adverse response from readers.

It had never seen an editorial which found a particular candidate good and then apologized for butting into a matter not its business, but it would keep an eye peeled.

The light-hearted tone of these editorials, it should be noted, had preceded the lynchings on the previous Thursday.

Drew Pearson recounts again his trip to Paris in 1928 with Secretary of State Frank Kellogg to sign the Kellogg-Briand Pact outlawing war, executed in the Clock Room of the Quay D'Orsay. As it was being signed, the Japanese war lords were planning to occupy Manchuria, begun in 1931. Poland had cavalry skirmishing along the German border. The Nazis began shortly afterward to formulate the details for the systematic extermination of the unwanted of Europe.

Mr. Pearson attended the 1930 London Naval Conference, when Mussolini was planning to stab France in the back. In 1936, when Hitler sent support for Franco and remilitarized the Rhineland, it remained nevertheless impossible to convince some people in the country of the danger. Even FDR had ignored the rehearsal for war in Spain. In conversations with Mr. Pearson at the time, he appeared unconcerned about it.

Despite the fact that Hitler had no support troops or armament available for the move into the Rhineland and the Ruhr, the absence of military backing of France from Britain caused the French Cabinet to do nothing in response.

So, peace conferences could prove deceptive. Public opinion needed to remain vigilant in preventing war and not lulled into complacency by treaties.

The present peace conference in Paris could not be regarded as any panacea to prevent war, especially as the subjects of Germany and Austria were verboten. But a new troublemaker, Russia, appeared to be on the horizon. Already, American and U.N. decisiveness had prevented problems from arising from Russia's stay in Iran beyond the original March 2 deadline for withdrawal, in preventing Soviet intended aggression against Turkey, and in obtaining resolution of the occupation of Czechoslovakia.

While the Government and the people were more alert than in the period preceding the war, a war of nerves eventually wore down alertness. Though it would take great patience by the country and the world, the goal of world peace and abandonment of war as a means to settle disputes between nations might yet be reached.

Marquis Childs comments on the good fortune of another bumper crop from the United States, after five successive years of record crop production, in good time to help feed Europe, India, and the Far East. The United States had shipped to Europe and Asia 400 million bushels of grain during the previous fiscal year. Yet there were still large numbers of people on the verge of starvation.

A mission, however, had just returned from India and found practically no starvation or even malnutrition, the result of efficient rationing, the one exception being the Bengal Province. India's population was placed on a daily ration of 12 ounces of food for adults and six ounces for children under eight, just enough to sustain life. India needed 750,000 tons of grain for the coming fall months, and only 500,000 thus far was available from the United States.

The visit of former President Hoover to India had proved beneficial, convincing Indian officials that America was genuinely concerned with famine relief.

UNRRA was scheduled to end at the end of the year and its job would not be complete by that point. Italy, according to UNRRA director Fiorello La Guardia, would need help after the beginning of the year and its political situation was unstable, with bitterness over the peace settlement running high. Hunger could be exploited by the Communists. And the Congress was ending its session without action on the issue of what would replace UNRRA.

But for the present, the bumper crop would assure lower prices for grain so that the Government could purchase it for overseas delivery.

Samuel Grafton discusses the lack of foresight in the country in economic planning and foreign trade. The Canadians had just made a deal to supply a billion dollars worth of wheat to Britain for four years, based on a cost the first year three quarters of the price of American wheat. Then each of the ensuing years, Canada would be entitled to a specific minimum price such that it would get less in the first year than the market would bear, but likely more in the out years.

Sweden had just given to Russia a 300-million dollar credit with which to buy Swedish machinery and electrical goods, the very trade which the United States had hoped to establish with Russia.

The British had authorized the shipment of half of its automobiles as exports, meaning that British cars could be had in American cities in seven to ten days.

All of this forward thinking was lost on American industry which was eager to make a fast buck at today's prices and let the future hang, complicated by nationalist objections to export of American goods or deals made with Russia.

Now that OPA was renewed for a year, industry was clamoring for higher prices, when during the period of cessation of regulation, they had humbly beseeched Congress not to reimpose price control and they would voluntarily keep down prices.

It was all a game, concludes Mr. Grafton, of trying to outwit the teacher, rather than attempting to solve a problem of reconversion.

A letter finds a previous letter which greeted the end of OPA with enthusiasm to have been short-sighted. This writer embraces everything President Roosevelt had championed and hopes that the previous writer would not lose sleep over the resurrection of OPA.

A letter writer thanks the newspaper for its editorial of July 24, "'A Minor Angel to Argue With...'", regarding the death of regular "People's Platform" correspondent S. A. Reed of Southern Pines. This writer had regularly communicated with Mr. Reed for the previous ten months and had been convinced by him to cancel a subscription to his previous newspaper and subscribe instead to the more liberal News.

A letter writer seeks the address of a recovered alcoholic about whom Burke Davis had written so that she might write him in the hope of getting help with her husband's drinking problem before it was too late.

The editors respond with the address of the gentleman, a Presbyterian minister in Concord.

"The Box Score" presents the vote of the North and South Carolina Congressional delegations on the issues of the proposed equal rights amendment for women, the amendment by Senator Wayne Morse of Oregon to attach to the tidelands oil bill a rider on anti-poll tax legislation, the tidelands oil bill itself, two amendments to the veterans terminal leave pay bill, the OPA revival bill and amendments thereto, and the amendment to vest atomic cotnrol and development in a five-member civilian commission.

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