The Charlotte News

Wednesday, October 18, 1950


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that while a Pusan radio broadcast claimed that South Korean troops had reported having reached a nearly deserted Pyongyang, the claim might be premature, conflicting as it did with a field dispatch originating two hours later saying that Marine pilots were still attacking enemy targets outside the city. Correspondent O. H. P. King, after flying over Pyongyang, made no mention of friendly forces inside the city, reporting instead that North Korean rear guard troops were withdrawing inside the city in retreat from approaching U.N. forces. Whatever the case, Pyongyang appeared to be in its last hours in enemy hands.

The South Koreans were still fighting hard to reach the capital prior to the U.S. First Cavalry Division, with the South Korean officers barely able to restrain the onrush of the men, cleared part of the way by U.S. tanks. The Americans, however, wanted to add Pyongyang to their first entries, as at Tokyo, Manila, and between the two South Korean beachheads. Communist bodies littered the mountain roads leading to the capital. The U.S. 24th Division was moving west of the city to capture the port at Chinnampo.

Hal Boyle, with U.S. forces near Pyongyang, in a report filed three hours before the Pusan broadcast, tells of the capital appearing from a two-seater observation plane as "an empty citadel where death is king … more like a blackened community of the dead." In the surrounding hills south and southeast of the capital were the dispensable North Koreans assigned to the suicide mission of protecting the flanks long enough for the leaders and their retinue to escape. The rail yard in the center of the city was a "black stain", with twisted locomotives and cars strewn about. The city where the war had been plotted was now a "cancer without hope".

In the latest Korean casualty report from the Defense Department, 43 deaths and 333 combat wounded were listed.

The President had provided his address the previous night from San Francisco, following his return from the weekend Wake Island meeting with General MacArthur, expressing an offer of a "partnership of peace" for all of Asia, backed by U.S. military presence. Parts of the speech, saying that Russia was attempting to turn the peoples of the Far East into colonial slaves, were repeatedly transmitted via Voice of America to the Far East. The President had then returned to Washington.

At the U.N., the Security Council would meet this date in emergency session to hear Russian arguments for denying Secretary-General Trygve Lie a new term for at least another three years, as proposed by the U.S. The General Assembly could not agree on any other candidate the previous week, after Russia vetoed the new term in the Council. The Russians reportedly wanted a delegate from India, Sir Benegal N. Rau, to fill the post, but other reports had it that they had informed other delegates of at least two additional desired candidates, while some were told that the Russians might back Mr. Lie under some circumstances.

In Indo-China, the French announced abandonment of the frontier post of Dong Dang, relinquishing for only the second time in 65 years the main invasion route to the country from China. It was the fifth post abandoned within a month along the mountainous frontier, where Ho Chi Minh's guerrilla forces maintained their strongest hold.

In Prague, prison sentences of from eight to twenty years were meted to an undisclosed number of persons convicted of spying for Yugoslavia against the Czech Government.

Andrews Air Force Base outside Washington reported that three F-86 fighter planes had crashed almost simultaneously in the area without explanation. There was no information provided on the fate of the pilots.

In New York, David Greenglass, brother of Ethel Rosenberg, pleaded guilty in Federal court to a charge of conspiracy in time of war to convey secret Government defense information to Russia. Co-defendant Harry Gold had already pleaded guilty to being an intermediary between the Russians and Dr. Klaus Fuchs, the British atomic scientist who had pleaded guilty in Britain to providing to the Soviets documents on the atom bomb. Four other co-defendants in the case, including the Rosenbergs, still awaited trial. Mr. Greenglass had been in the Army and assigned to Los Alamos during the summer of 1944, when the alleged spying took place.

The Federal Power Commission counsel recommended that Piedmont Natural Gas Co. of Spartanburg, S.C., be authorized to serve eight cities in the Carolinas. He also recommended that two other companies who wished to sell natural gas in the Carolinas be permitted to amend their applications and that further hearings be held to hear evidence from them.

Senator Taft, campaigning for re-election in Ohio, said that he was the target of an attempt to install in Washington a "Labor-Socialist Government on the British principle."

Democrats in New York sought to make an issue of the claim by Lt. Governor Joe Hanley that he was promised to have his financial debts paid if he dropped from the gubernatorial race to make way for Governor Dewey to run again, and instead enter the Senate race.

The Atlantic hurricane hit the southern Florida citrus belt, leaving behind five million dollars worth of damage and one death across four "Gold Coast" counties, with winds reaching 125 mph.

On the editorial page, "Mr. Truman's Speech" finds that the President's speech from the Opera House in San Francisco the previous night had not said much that he and other top officials had not said before. But he coined a new phrase, "partnership of peace", which might prove helpful in combating Soviet propaganda. He had also contrasted the "revolutionary idea" of American democracy with the "reactionary movement" of Communism. It suggests that if Asians could be made to believe in those concepts, then the trend toward nationalism in that part of the world might be directed toward democracy and away from Communism.

He had not answered the questions of Americans regarding the specific nature of his talk with General MacArthur on Wake Island during the prior weekend and what agreements they might have reached regarding Far Eastern policy.

The speech set the stage for the President's address to the U.N. General Assembly, to occur on October 24.

"The Hanley Letter" regards the dispute between Lt. Governor Joe Hanley of New York and Governor Dewey, the former claiming that he was promised by the Governor that his financial debts would be paid off in 90 days if he dropped from the gubernatorial race to make way for a draft-Dewey movement and enter instead the Senate race. Governor Dewey denied the contention. One of them was either not telling the truth or was mistaken. It suggests that Mr. Hanley might be getting even for being forced from the race by Governor Dewey and merely offering a pretext for letting his financial obligations slide.

Whatever the case, it concludes, the Democrats in the state sensed that they might be able to recapture the Governor's mansion in the upcoming election.

"Truman vs. Eisenhower?" speculates on the 1952 presidential election match-up after Senator Taft had taken himself out of the running for the GOP nomination and Governor Dewey had endorsed General Eisenhower, having said that he would not seek the nomination again, having already sought it thrice and been the nominee twice in succession.

A piece from the Christian Science Monitor, titled "Darling Clementine", tells of a cat named Clementine missing for four months from its home in New York, showing up in Colorado at the home of the owner's brother, who had left the cat with his sister when he moved to Denver a year earlier. It suggests lack of parallels to the song, and that the cat probably was on life No. 9 rather than wearing shoes of that size after such a harrowing journey.

It concludes that some humans would do well to know, as Clementine, where they were going by instinct.

Yeah, but cats also eat mice and flies and are easily distracted by a ball or skein of twine. And furthermore, the cat probably hitchhiked most of the way by looking pitiful by the side of the road, bumming tuna fish sandwiches and saucers of milk. Hey, go out and work for a living.

A piece from Coronet comments on radio critic John Crosby, who had recently said that radio had lost its future to television, which he had advised should be on a level higher than the moronic.

Opinions of him differed markedly, some viewing him as the best columnist since Heywood Broun, while columnist Ed Sullivan called him a "damaging liar". Frank Sullivan called him "radio's severest friend". Mr. Crosby had been unknown five years earlier but now enjoyed wide syndicated publication across the country. To many he was rescuing radio from its drab soap operas and lowbrow comedies.

He derided conservative commentator Fulton Lewis, Jr., as irresponsible. When a quiz program added $1,000 worth of books to the prize list, he mused that it assumed dubiously that the listeners could read. He also regarded radio, however, as advancing the culture of the country by presenting broadcasts of great music but lamented that it could also bring the great books, dramas and minds into the living rooms of America instead of opting to present primarily jokes alternating with the morose, the soap operas dealing with such matters as murder and suicide and bankruptcy, not the everyday issues of the ordinary housewife.

Mr. Crosby had previously been a theater critic and knew nothing of radio. As soon as his column first began to appear, he was deluged with mail. He exposed the tendency of radio advertisers to censor even the slightest comment on religion or race which might offend listeners or be too controversial. He found it to be closing the doors of the imagination and stifling invention, driving the script writers into "sterile cynicism". His caustic attacks had led to some relaxation of the censorship.

Most radio experts believed that he would have an equally ameliorative effect on television. He believed that the phoniness and tawdriness which had pervaded radio would not be possible on television. He also asserted that over time, advertisers had developed some responsibility.

Wait a few short years, when the need for ratings to survive in competing time slots will lead the average demographic appeal to degenerate to a search vehicle for the least curious twelve-year old mentality in the country and even internationally...

Drew Pearson tells of the taxpayers paying for the wedding of the daughter of Congressman Louis Rabaut of Michigan. She had previously worked as his secretary, as had his other daughters. Even after she had quit, however, she continued to receive $643 per month as a salary, even as another secretary was in place, receiving $331. The Congressman claimed that his daughter had merely shifted to his Detroit office and never quit working for him. But that office had not opened until the Congressional recess, about three months after the time she had quit. He also did not appear to have any secretarial support when he went to Detroit.

The recent attack by New Hampshire Senator Styles Bridges on the State Department regarding Chinese policy had been drafted by the public relations firm of UMW leader John L. Lewis. Senator Bridges had received $35,000 per year when he had been a trustee of the UMW welfare fund.

The propaganda outfit of the Navy, "Operation 23", was supposed to have been abolished the prior year following the feud with the Air Force over the B-36, but the ghost of the operation still plagued the Air Force, as the same old anti-Air Force stories were being leaked to the press, claiming, as with the Communist press, that U.S. planes had been killing North Korean civilians. The fact was that the B-29 raids in Korea had been quite accurate, in one instance destroying the Woosang armament plants without harming adjoining workers' housing.

The President had sided with Administration enemy Senator Bourke Hickenlooper of Iowa, who needed a bill regarding the transfer of Fort Des Moines to Iowa to help his re-election bid. Despite Oregon Senator Wayne Morse, a friend to the President, having opposed the measure for giving away surplus property sought for political advantage, the President signed the bill.

Marquis Childs, in Athens, tells of two billion dollars in foreign economic and military aid having been put into Greece since 1945, of which the U.S. had contributed about three-fourths. Physical recovery had advanced a long way, but some Greeks believed it had not advanced far enough or quickly enough. The need remained substantial in the country torn by war, both during and after World War II.

Yugoslavia was the most important neighbor to the north and American aid had to go there as well if the latter was to be saved from economic deterioration and consequent overthrow of Tito by Soviet Communist forces. If Russia developed Yugoslavia into a satellite, it would threaten Greece to the point where it could not remain independent without U.S. troop presence, potentially becoming another Korea.

Yet Greece and Yugoslavia were not even on speaking terms, the Greek Government recently having been unwilling to receive the Yugoslav ambassador. The two countries had ancient differences over claims to small areas of land, complicated by the difference in their ideologies. The border between the countries was virtually impassable, such that trade in sheep and timber, vital to Greece, had to be transacted through Trieste.

The Soviet puppet Government in Albania, also to the north, was reportedly weak, subject to overthrow by Yugoslavia and Greece acting in concert. Secret missions were reported prowling through the countryside, each with separate operations, including reported operatives of the CIA. It followed the pattern of the past instability in the Balkans, but the stakes were much higher currently.

The U.S. needed to agree, he concludes, on a Greek-Yugoslav accord which would make each country better able to resist Communism.

Robert C. Ruark tells of having recently taken author W. Somerset Maugham to lunch at a fancy restaurant. A movie based on three of his short stories, "Trio", had just opened in New York. Mr. Ruark had become enamored of his work at an early age when Mr. Maugham had written of high adventure in exotic lands, far from Mr. Ruark's native Wilmington, stimulating and entrancing his youthful imagination.

During lunch, Mr. Maugham had recalled that he had written a novel titled The Moon and Sixpence, concerning a respectable middle-aged man who had left his family to go to the tropics and paint pictures. To his horror, he had recently heard of a man who had followed the story after reading it and did likewise, albeit turning out to be a terrible painter. He concluded that one wrote for one's own amusement without thought to how it might impact the reader.

He had also admitted to trying his hand at journalism, starting with book reviews and dramatic criticism, but finding that he had no talent for it, an admission pleasing to Mr. Ruark. He had even been advised to give up writing completely for a lack of ability to expound on his topic.

He had been so poor that when he got his first financial success, he could only think that he would not have to worry for six months about money.

After the lunch, Mr. Ruark felt that he had gotten even at last for all the trouble Mr. Maugham had caused him in his youth.

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