Friday, August 16, 1946

The Charlotte News

Friday, August 16, 1946


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that President Truman was reported to be considering appointment of former North Carolina Governor and present Undersecretary of the Treasury O. Max Gardner to the position of chairman of the domestic Atomic Energy Commission, recently enacted into law by the Congress.

The President was also considering former Ambassador to England Joseph Kennedy, TVA chairman David Lilienthal, and Dr. Irving Langmuir, a scientist who had worked on the Manhattan Project to develop the atomic bomb. Dr. Langmuir had testified to the Senate Special Atomic Energy Committee that he favored retention by the United States of the atomic secret until such time that a satisfactory system of world security could be achieved. He had predicted the previous fall that without controls, the Russians would develop their own bomb within three years.

Mr. Lilienthal would finally receive the appointment.

In Jerusalem, eighteen young Jews, members of the Stern organization, were sentenced to death for their part in bombing of the Haifa Railroad shops. Four women were given life sentences. The defendants continued to sing in Hebrew as they had through the proceedings, having been removed during a large portion of the trial for the disturbance.

Unconfirmed reports stated that two small ships had brought 200 to 300 illegal Jewish immigrants to the coast of Palestine before dawn and enabled them to disembark and blend with Jewish settlers.

The President stated that he was considering a request to Congress for legislation to permit European refugees, including Jews, to enter the United States.

In Paris, Finland's delegate asked the Peace Conference for lighter reparations and territorial alterations under its proposed treaty previously approved by the four-power Council of Foreign Ministers.

Soviet delegate Andrei Vishinsky wanted both commissions for settling the treaties with Rumania and Finland subject to the rule that only those nations who had declared war on the treaty nations could participate. As to Finland, such a rule would exclude the United States and France, and as to Rumania, France. The British were firmly opposed to such a plan. The New Zealand delegate angrily called upon Mr. Vishinsky to stop delaying substantive matters with quibbling procedural questions.

In Calcutta in India, fifteen persons were killed and 250 injured in riots between Moslems and Hindus, protesting the British plan for Indian independence. The Moslem League called for a nationwide strike.

The Decontrol Board said it would issue its decision by Tuesday as to whether price controls on food would resume automatically on August 20.

The Justice Department announced that it was studying complaints of price fixing and artificial shortages in meat based on withholding hides from market in anticipation of higher prices. Some meat packers and wholesalers were reportedly using "tie-in" agreements, forcing retailers to purchase unwanted products along with desirable meat.

In Detroit, 73 of 370 Great Lakes vessels were tied up by a strike of National Maritime Union workers in the second day of the strike. About 25 other ships which were unorganized were also tied up. Some 2,500 NMU workers and another 1,500 unorganized workers were idle. Detroit shipping was shut down and the strike was threatening Chicago, Buffalo, Ashtabula, O., Duluth, Milwaukee, Toledo, and Erie, Pa. The union was demanding a reduction of the work week from 56 hours to 40, plus higher wages and increased overtime pay.

UAW president Walter Reuther stated that the union would, on October 16, reopen its wage agreements with Chrysler, and any other companies where the contract would permit, but make demands for higher wages dependent on efforts of the Government to hold down inflation during the ensuing two months. The contracts in question covered 50 to 60 percent of the 850,000 auto workers.

Harold Ickes reports that political prospects for joker George E. Allen, close presidential adviser and member of the RFC board, were dim. The House had cut the life of RFC to seven more months rather than the proposed five years sought by the President. Thus, Mr. Allen would likely be out of a job by year's end. The President was said to be considering offering him an overseas mission, as a polite avenue out of the Administration.

It would also, he suggests, be illogical to retain Ed Pauley in the Administration, given that the President had vetoed the tidelands oil bill which Mr. Pauley actively had supported. The controversial and ultimately withdrawn nominee to become Undersecretary of the Navy did not appear to be accomplishing anything of note in his overseas missions.

Judge Samuel Rosenman, an adviser to President Roosevelt, had also become an adviser to President Truman. But he had aligned himself too closely with Mr. Allen. Thus, he, too, would likely soon be departing.

The United Nations began moving to its new temporary home on Lake Success on Long Island, from Hunter College in the Bronx. It was contemplated that it would occupy the old Sperry Gyroscope Company facility for three to five years while a permanent site was being sought and a permanent building constructed.

In Philadelphia, a young woman pedestrian was shot in the foot from a passing street car.

In New Orleans, a cotton speculator told of his having, since 1941, bought cotton, initially staked by gambling proceeds and an advance on his salary totaling $2,000, which after four months, he had converted to over a million dollars. He had watched during the previous eight months without surprise the 1,200-point rise in the price, from 24 cents per pound to 36 cents.

Later, however, he slipped on a banana peel, fell into Lake Pontchartrain and was eaten by sharks. That is what you get for making a killing off the war, punk.

Heavy rains hit the Mississippi Valley along the Illinois-Missouri border causing flash floods, leaving portions of East St. Louis and Belleville, Ill., under water.

In New Rochelle, N.Y., a baby was born two months prematurely, weighing approximately a pound.

In Hollywood, Warner Brothers, upset over an unstated matter contained in Time and Life coverage of Warner's celebration of the twentieth anniversary of the talking picture—perhaps the exclusion of the declaration that it was tantamount to God incarnate—had banned Time and Life reporters from the studio lot.

In South Haven, Mich., fishermen spotted on Swan Lake a horned sea monster with a long tail. It was a normal day.

In "Bish's Dish", Furman Bisher's column on the sports page, you may find an interview with Bob Quinn, a baseball veteran, regarding the free admission of women to some baseball games.

On the editorial page, "Raleigh's Anxiety Is a Compliment" discusses Raleigh correspondent Lynn Nisbet's having found from interviewing in private Raleigh officials that their reaction to the creation of the G.I. Democrats of North Carolina, unlike their official approbation, was less than enthusiastic. They believed it would become another political machine operated by certain politically ambitious veterans, namely, Mayne Albright and John Lang, both regarded as New Dealers. They also believed that the meeting to form it had been secret and thus suspect. The 260,000 veterans of North Carolina would resent a platform adopted in their name by a mere 50 veterans, nearly all of whom had been commissioned officers. Their platform was also viewed as being too extravagant and too much in accord with the ultra-liberal wing of the Democratic Party, moving further into socialism.

The piece finds the worry regarding creation of a new machine to be reasonable, the secrecy not indicative of anything sinister, their impact to be likely of too little significance to worry the broad mass of veterans, and "balderdash" the latter concern over the organization being too liberal, that the platform was more conservative than the Sermon on the Mount or the campiagn promises of Calvin Coolidge in 1924. It reflected only an impatience with the way things were going in terms of practical issues such as housing for veterans.

The reaction suggested that the old guard in Raleigh perceived the organization as a genuine threat to their power.

"America and the Palestine Problem" remarks of the absence of a clear issue of right and wrong in the Jewish immigration to Palestine, or the British and Arab resistance to it, leading on to "one of the most peaceful of all earth's peoples" resorting to violence "for which they have little talent."

The historical claims had no merit in resolving the current, expedient crisis of homeless people, dispossessed by the Nazis of their worldly belongings, wandering Europe or in detention camps, at risk of continuing discrimination, seeking a new homeland and Palestine being the place which was suited to receive them in areas not being used for any purpose, simply open desert territory which the Jewish settlers had already demonstrated an ability to transform into an arable landscape.

The British were convinced that survival of their empire in the Mediterranean depended on preservation of control of Palestine, and that control depended on friendly relations with the Arab. The Arabs believed that they would be displaced by Jewish immigrants.

The Greek Mayor of Famagusta on Cyprus, to which the British had taken the illegal Jewish immigrants for placement in former German prisoner-of-war camps, had stated that Cyprus would not tolerate a British attempt to weaken the Greek majority on the island with foreigners.

No nation could readily claim to be free from suich reaction and thus criticize the parties involved. The United States had, for instance, in June, 1939 refused entry by the 937 Jews aboard the St. Louis, forced to return to Europe, where, while two-thirds were accepted by countries not then in the war, most would eventually be interned under Nazi occupation and many would die in concentration camps. Throughout the war, efforts in the United States to increase quotas to allow refugees to enter the country had largely failed, one exception being the effort of Samuel Grafton to establish in the last year of the war free ports in the United States for the receipt of refugees on a temporary basis, to be segregated from formal entry beyond the confines of the port. One such facility was established at Oswego, N.Y., by the Allies in the summer of 1944 but by September had only received 960 refugees, most of whom already had been slated for return to their native countries. In the meantime, German and Japanese prisoners of war were being housed by the thousands across the land.

Present policy of the United States was ambiguous, with clear support for the British position in the Mediterranean to prevent Russian aggression in Turkey to obtain control of the Dardanelles. But while British soldiers and Jewish patriots were dying in Palestine, America remained on the sidelines offering bad advice.

It was America's responsibility, offers the piece, to put forth a workable compromise to end the violence. While President Truman had made suggestions favorable to Jews regarding the British partition plan, words were not enough. The United States had to back up its suggestions with a genuine commitment to acceptance of responsibility for carrying out those suggestions.

A piece from the Louisville Courier-Journal, titled "The World Is Neither Brave Nor New", comments on the first anniversary of V-J Day and the simultaneous fifth anniversary of the Atlantic Charter, that the world for which hope had been so flourishing had not so far materialized.

Attention had been turned instead to "gazelle boys, talking dogs, chess games that last eight years, and rainbows under the moon." It was not the way the war had been won but instead was aimless cowardice winding up in disillusionment.

The country had forgotten that peace had to be won as surely as war, that it was not a passive state. During the war, everyone took part, but now, the country felt divorced from the actions in Paris as the delegates gathered to write the five peace treaties of the former German satellites.

Each citizen, it urges, had a stake in that peace. And it was worth every sacrifice to insure its manifestation. Maintaining attention on insignificant matters was not the way to have it.

Drew Pearson, back from Paris, discusses the dissension on Palestine between former Secretary of State Henry Grady, President Truman's special representative on Palestine, and Judge Joseph Hutcheson of Texas, chairman of the Anglo-American Commission which had recommended immigration of 100,000 Jews to Palestine. Judge Hutcheson opposed the British partition plan and position on immigration as a betrayal of the Anglo-American Commission's recommendation, as inevitably leading to "ghettoization" of the country, while Mr. Grady favored the partition plan because of the notion that war with Russia was inevitable and a strong British position in Palestine was thus necessary as a Western bulwark.

He notes that the British opposed placing Palestine under U.N. administration because it did not want its shabby past record of colonial administration revealed and debated before the U.N., and because Britain did not want Russia to emerge as the champion of the Arabs. But the Anglo-American Commission had interviewed many Arab leaders who feared the Russians more than the Jews. In Paris, however, Prime Minister Attlee had informed Secretary Byrnes that Russia was preparing for aggressive action against Turkey and that Palestine had to be held to resist it.

He next remarks that he had, in quoting on August 5 from "On the Western Front", the World War I poem of Alfred Noyes, left out the author's name and misquoted a line which he duly corrects, there having been no reference books available to him in Paris. So, he quotes further from the poem.

Whether, incidentally, through coincidence or via the magic of wire or shortwave radio, Mr. Pearson had related the same anecdote on August 5 with which Orson Welles had begun his broadcast of August 4, titled "The Peacemakers", re French President Clemenceau in 1919, at the conclusion of the Versailles Treaty Conference, walking out with the other Allied leaders, saying that he thought he heard a child crying, changed, somewhat more hauntingly, in Mr. Pearson's version to "the soldiers of 1940 weeping". Part of the remainder of the same broadcast, regarding the veto power being reserved vis-a-vis the World Court, on the counsel of John Foster Dulles to Senator Arthur Vandenberg, so that the U.S. could unilaterally reserve its right to determine what was purely a domestic issue not within the Court jurisdiction to which it would submit, was covered in all the same points the previous day by Mr. Pearson, indicative of either himself or his researcher having listened to the August 4 broadcast of Mr. Welles and copped it.

He concludes by indicating that a problem among American occupation troops was their tendency to marry German women. In Austria, the chaplain insisted, before providing his blessing to a marriage by an American soldier to an Austrian woman, that the soldier had to have known the Austrian woman for awhile and first return to the United States and make sure that he did not want to marry an American.

Marquis Childs discusses the 42-nation U.N. food conference to occur in Copenhagen in September. It would have before it a proposal to implement floor and ceiling limits internationally for the primary food commodities. Under the proposal, the Food and Agricultural Organization of the U.N. would have a fund to purchase surpluses of food in the event of threatened reduction of prices below production costs and thus a shortage. It would release those surpluses onto the market if shortages caused prices to rise.

But since it would end speculation in commodities, dealers in same looked upon it as anathema. And the plan of FAO director Sir John Boyd Orr of Scotland did not say from whence the money for the fund would come, causing speculation to arise that the U.S. would carry the brunt of the financing.

It was likely that the U.S. would oppose the Orr plan, though officially, it was considering its position. A compromise would likely be proposed by the American and British delegates to the conference, under which a commission would study creation of a world food board with powers to regulate food production. They would counsel that the impoverished nations would argue for the Orr plan while those with plenty would oppose it, leading to stalemate, damaging the prospects for solution of the food problem.

With UNRRA shutting down on January 1 and food production unlikely for three years to reach pre-war levels, it would be necessary at Copenhagen for the delegates to come together and formulate some concrete plan.

Peter Edson discusses the Decontrol Board's duty to determine whether price controls on food should be resumed August 20 or prices allowed remain unregulated as they had been since expiration of OPA July 1 and subjected under the new legislation to the August 20 date for reinstatement unless the Decontrol Board acted to re-impose the controls.

The decision extended to grains, livestock, milk, cottonseed, and soybeans. The three-person board meanwhile was hearing from various trade groups on the issue in opposition of controls, and labor and consumer groups in favor of them.

There had been a 12 percent increase in the cost of food and a five percent increase in the overall cost of living during July, suggestive of an inflationary trend. And there was nothing even the Decontrol Board could do to arrest it as it could not perform miracles.

R. F. Beasley of the Farm & Home Weekly out of Monroe responds to a News editorial of August 6 on the prospects of a Republican victory in 1948, provided more attention would be paid to the GOP in the South, traditionally neglected as Democratic territory. Mr. Beasley did not foresee such a coup or that there should necessarily be two strong parties within the South. Generally, the Democratic Party was likely to be more in line with his views than the Republicans, but he was neither wedded to the Democrats. Smoke-filled rooms only created parties when the people were apathetic.

He reminds that the Republicans had dominated in the South in 1928 only because Governor Al Smith of New York, a Catholic and in favor of abolition of Prohibition, was the Democratic nominee.

The News had referenced the belief of the Mayor of New Orleans that a two-party system would enable Federal patronage to the South since it would no longer be in the bag for the Democrats. But, to the contrary, the complaint was often heard that the South was running the country, The News having also pointed out in another editorial of August 6 that the Chicago Sun had found all of the top four Government positions regulating financial matters to be populated by North Carolinians. Moreover, the Secretary of State was from South Carolina and several other key positions in Government and politics were occupied by Southerners, the positions of Senate Majority Leader, RNC chairman, and so on.

And this power of Southerners was not new. In the Wilson Administration, powerful positions had been held by Southerners, such as Josephus Daniels as Secretary of the Navy and William McAdoo as Secretary of the Treasury. President Wilson, himself, was from Virginia.

Mr. Beasley believes that the one-party system in North Carolina had produced government just as efficient as any two-party state, and that counties with a one-party system operated more efficiently and cleaner than counties with strong Republican opposition.

He stresses that he was not arguing for the status quo, but believed that the stress on creating a two-party system as the answer to all ills was miscalculating the present system and suggesting it as the equivalent of European dictatorships.

But the ultimte fact was, he continues, that the reason for absence of a strong second party in the South was that the people saw no reason for it. When it would become necessary, they would establish it. The Republicans did not offer national leadership which appealed to the South. And, in any event, the Democratic primaries presented the opportunity to vote between differing political philosophies, much as would a two-party system.


Framed Edition
[Return to Links
Page by Subject] [Return to Links-Page by Date] [Return to News<i><i><i>--</i></i></i>Framed Edition]
Links-Date -- Links-Subj.