The Charlotte News

Tuesday, August 29, 1950


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that allied troops had resisted two North Korean attacks at opposite ends of the defense arc, ending enemy chances to reach Premier Kim Il-Sung's goal of taking control of South Korea by the end of August. The enemy forces, however, were building at the center of the line for a major battle. In that area, a force of 20,000 had attacked South Korean troops 18 miles north of Taegu. The bloodiest battle of the day was on a bald hill at the southern end of the line as South Korean and black American troops fought off an enemy bayonet charge in hand-to-hand combat. One American machinegun nest had been wiped out by North Korean bayonets.

At the other end of the line, 20,000 enemy troops infiltrated behind allied troops and cut off a road three miles southwest of Pohang before being pushed back around the recaptured road hub at Kigye, after gaining 2,000 yards, nine miles northwest of the northern port city. American troops had arrived in the sector but had not yet gone into the seesaw action. MacArthur headquarters said that farther north, around Uihung, progress was slow against "constant enemy resistance".

The enemy, some 40,000 to 60,000 strong, continued to probe for soft spots in the defense arc as they had been doing for days.

B-29's again dropped 230 tons of bombs on Chongjin, 60 miles from the Siberian border, as well as other North Korean targets. B-26's hit Kyomipo on the west coast, along with other targets.

The first contingent of British troops, around 1,500 strong, reached Pusan from Hong Kong. Hal Boyle and Don Whitehead report of bagpipers playing "The Glen Aurel Highlanders" upon the arrival of B Company of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Regiment. They appeared cheerful and ready to join the mountain fighting. One sergeant said, "The lads feel we should have been here sooner." A private wanted to know if there were any pubs nearby and appeared disappointed when informed that the only drink available was sake and unguaranteed apple brandy. They were welcomed by the Army Band playing "God Save the King" as well as by a South Korean band and chorus singing the "United Nations Welcome Song".

The President sent a statement of American policy on Formosa to General MacArthur, following the previous day's order that he withdraw a statement submitted for reading before the VFW regarding the need to hold Formosa as a key point on a Pacific-island defense arc, necessary to prevent general aggressive war in the Far East, an order with which the General had complied. The cordial statement is reprinted. The Administration was concerned over loss of prestige of General MacArthur in the Korean war as commander of the U.N. forces as well as the perception generally among Asian peoples in the region regarding any belief that the MacArthur statement implied a change in U.S. policy, that Formosa was to be neutralized against outside attack only during the Korean fighting and not as a general policy.

A White House official said that the President was preparing a report to the people, to be delivered as a "fireside chat", on the Korean war, including international affairs, the fighting, itself, and economic controls at home. He had last spoken to the nation via radio on July 19. Secretary of Agriculture Charles Brannan told Senate-House confreres trying to reconcile the controls measure that not a single farm product needed price control at the current time.

The Senate Judiciary Committee proposed an investigation of the competence, fitness, and legal qualifications of Federal judges. The resolution, yet to be voted on, was an amended version of one proposed by Senator William Langer of North Dakota. His proposal had come after the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals had overruled a District Court judge and released again West Coast longshoremen union leader Harry Bridges on his appellate bond during the pendency of his appeal of his conviction for perjury for misrepresenting on his application for citizenship in 1945 that he had never been a Communist. The District Court judge had revoked the bond on the basis that Mr. Bridges posed a national security risk in time of war. Senator Langer wanted to determine whether any Federal judges were Communists or sympathizers, as well as test their fitness for age. He specifically stated that were the facts as represented to him correct, then Ninth Circuit Judges William Healy and William Orr, the two jurists on the three-judge panel voting for the release of Mr. Bridges, ought be impeached and removed.

The well-reasoned decision had simply held that given the case of first impression regarding the courts becoming an arm of enforcement of military expediency, belonging inherently only with the executive branch, and furthermore given the meritorious nature of the appeal, that it was likely that the three-year statute of limitations had been violated in bringing the charges, the lower court revocation of bail had no justifiable basis, such as the likelihood of flight of the accused or dilatory prosecution of the appeal, both of which had been conceded by the prosecution as nugatory, or that the appeal lacked merit.

The CIO executive board ousted two more unions, the ILWU headed by Mr. Bridges and the Marine Cooks and Stewards headed by Hugh Bryson, from its membership on charges of hewing the Communist Party line. The action came after investigation by a three-man committee, recommending the ousters, and was subject to appeal to the CIO convention in November.

John L. Lewis said that UMW would not be bound by any AFL no-strike pledge during the war. UMW was currently independent of both AFL and CIO.

The Gulf hurricane increased in size and intensity during the night as it moved toward the Louisiana-Mississippi coast, about 450 miles south of Mobile and New Orleans, with 85 to 95 mph winds.

Bob Sain of The News tells of former Davidson College law and political science professor James Pinkney having found the nixing of his possible nomination as chairman of the Civil Aeronautics Board to be "politics as usual" because he had supported Willis Smith in the June primary with Senator Frank Graham. Both Senators Graham and Clyde Hoey had indicated no objection to the nomination.

Nancy Dumbell of The News reports of an urgent request from the Charlotte Red Cross for 48 pints of type "O" blood to be flown immediately to Korea for use by the Army. It was the second such emergency request in five days. The blood had to be collected by noon the next day to make the night flight.

On the editorial page, "L'Affaire MacArthur" examines the issues raised by the withdrawn message of General MacArthur to the VFW, under order of the President, for its message being contrary to the Administration policy of supporting Formosa only insofar as the Korean crisis and not generally as part of an "island defense line", as General MacArthur had planned to state in his written message.

The statement had come on the heels of Communist Chinese Foreign Minister Chou En-Lai having protested to the U.N. that the U.S. was an "invader" against Formosa, which Communist China intended to "liberate". The U.S. had then stated it would welcome an investigation of the situation, saying that its only interest was in neutralizing Formosa against attack during the action in Korea. General MacArthur's position, as expressed in the message, undermined this policy, saying that occupying Formosa would enable the U.S. to "dominate with air power every Asiatic port from Vladivostok to Singapore". Such a statement would produce uncertainty in the Far East as to what already suspect American intentions were.

The President also made clear that as commander in chief of the armed forces, he, alone, made policy, not the military. General MacArthur had intruded on this authority. While he might be right in his views, he remained a soldier and subject to the orders of his superiors, the President and the Pentagon. It concludes that if he could not conform to policy set in Washington, he could not continue to hold his command of U.N. forces in Korea.

And, of course, he would eventually be relieved of command and called home by the President the following April for seeking, in defiance of strict Presidential orders to the contrary, to engage Communist Chinese forces beyond the Yalu River, thus risking a full-scale war with the Communist Chinese.

"Bus Service Fundamentals" tells of certain basics which the people of Charlotte ought understand as the City Council began its assessment of recommended changes to the bus routes. The old streetcar lines served as the pattern for the first routes, from which expansion was then made. Basil Boyd of the Council wanted to maintain the current system with all its weaknesses and merely expand it. Another approach, as recommended by the City Traffic Engineer, Herman Hoose, was to maintain the budget while reorganizing the routes to increase efficiency. The former approach would mean the necessity of Duke Power Co., operator of the buses, raising its ten-cent fare to prevent further losses, whereas the Hoose approach would enable Duke to cut its losses and operate efficiently by carrying more passengers without increase in operating costs.

Sooner or later in the growing city, commuters by car would need to be discouraged and the best way to do so, it concludes, was to develop a first-rate bus system.

"'Beedle' Smith's New Task" finds that General Walter Bedell Smith would be better equipped to head the CIA than predecessor Admiral Roscoe Hillenkoetter, stepping down to return to sea. Admiral Hillenkoetter had become a lightning rod for criticism regarding intelligence failures in advance of the North Korean attack of June 25, though he claimed to have sent advices to the President and Secretaries Johnson and Acheson regarding the accumulation of enemy forces along the 38th parallel. The piece ventures that even if the President and the key departments had known of the pending attack, they would likely have not done anything to stop it as it had been the policy before the outbreak of the war that South Korea was expendable.

It cautions that swapping directors would not necessarily change the CIA unless there were also improvement of the Agency's weak spots to provide proper information on likely moves across the world. The lack of intelligence preceding the Korean invasion could not be allowed to occur again.

Bob Sain of The News, in the first of a series of reports, discusses Stalinism as it varied from Marxism or pure Communism. Stalinism, contrary to Marxist doctrine, was not bent on establishing a society without classes or castes, but, to the contrary, had set up a privileged caste with a large peasant class of workers below. The proletariat overthrow of the bourgeois classes, as envisioned by Marx and Engels in 1848, had never been realized under Russian Communism, at least after Stalin came to power in 1924. Such a vision had brought the Chinese, the North Koreans, and other Russian satellites under the Communist banner.

Vladimir Lenin had warded off several attempted revolts after 1917, as well as attacks by the British, French, Rumanians, Greeks, Japanese and Poles, bringing about some economic recovery by 1924 when he died and was succeeded by Josef Stalin. Stalin imposed an aggressive dictatorship, engaging in purges of his enemies, including the comrades of Lenin who had led the Revolution.

Andrei Vishinsky, the chief prosecutor in the purges, obtained 6,238 death warrants for counterrevolutionaries and by 1937, all save one of the revolutionaries of 1917 were dead, the only survivor being Stalin, himself.

Instead of rule by the proletariat, Communism had become a totalitarian dictatorship. If Stalinism could be ended, he remarks, then the resurgence of Communism had to be prevented, as it was the opiate which had induced other nations to accept dictatorship.

Some 54,000 Communists were said to exist in the U.S., according to the FBI, with 138 in North Carolina. Communists were as fanatically devoted to their system as to a religion, regarding Moscow as their spiritual capital. Junius Scales, head of the North and South Carolina Communist Party, was as much a minion of Moscow and Stalin as any other Communist, taking orders from the Comintern.

Mr. Sain promises to discuss North Carolina Communists in further detail later.

The day that 138 people pose a threat to any state is the day we all might as well give up and throw in the towel. Why empower the powerless by magnifying their effect? Just as with those idiots on the radio in Texas, no one but other idiots bother to listen with any imputation of credulity to the speakers.

Drew Pearson tells of many people around the White House, the President excluded, angling to get Secretary of State Acheson and Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson pushed out of their respective positions because they were constantly at each other's throats. Mr. Johnson appeared interested in becoming President, though he disclaimed the ambition.

In West Germany, visitors were given balloons and were encouraged to attach postcards addressed to Communists in East Germany and then release them. The balloons were causing problems for the Russians, and since the prevailing winds carried to Russia from East Germany, it would be possible to send larger balloons which could float all the way to Russia.

Only about half the promised 1,300 tanks and 400 airplanes promised by the Russians to North Korea by June 1 had been delivered. They had also promised to keep the Americans bogged down elsewhere and that the Communist Chinese would help if necessary. These promises had not been kept.

Two opposing lawyers in a rent dispute boarded the plane from Los Angeles to Washington which had its propeller come off and fly into the fuselage, necessitating a landing in Denver. The lawyers were so sure that they were not going to survive the mishap that they had shaken hands and buried their differences. But when the plane landed safely, they again became adversaries and boarded another plane for Washington.

The police lieutenant who was involved in wiretapping Howard Hughes and others in 1947, allegedly at the behest of Senator Owen Brewster to benefit Pan Am and Juan Trippe at the expense of TWA, had told Senator Claude Pepper that he ought check Drew Pearson's office for the lieutenant's file on the matter because he believed that Mr. Pearson had it—implying that the reports the column had published were accurate.

Admiral W. M. Callaghan, head of the Navy Transport Service, was using Navy transports to send men and supplies to Japan for Korea rather than using, for instance, the American Presidents line owned by the Government and running almost empty on the voyages to Japan.

The outcome of the Ohio election in which Senator Taft was running might turn on a ruling by the Ohio Attorney General that illiterate voters were entitled to help in marking their ballots. Senator Taft was concerned because it meant that many thousands of blacks who had migrated from the South during the war years would probably vote against him for his Dixiecrat flirtation.

Joseph Alsop, in Korea, tells of being a guest of the 27th Regiment, First Battalion, in the valley of Charpyongdong. The scene as he arrived initially appeared peaceful but the illusion, following dinner, was cracked by a blanket of mortar fire to protect against intrusion by enemy troops to the main road to Taegu, the provisional capital. The enemy decided to test the valley trap with mortar fire of their own. The fighting then continued all through the night until the enemy eventually retired.

At around 3:30 a.m., following a long lull, the enemy began its full advance. Finally, the North Koreans took flight just at dawn, around 5:00, and the battle was over. In the command post, the men began to doze.

Three rifle companies reported few casualties, but there were several hundred enemy dead all around in the rice paddies a little further forward. Five tanks, trucks, and guns added to the enemy toll. The valley trap had worked.

A captain of the Second Battalion, which had shared the enemy's infantry attack with Baker Company of the battalion with which Mr. Alsop was attached, congratulated Baker Company for "beautiful" machinegunning. "You form, it seems, a new but understandable concept of beauty in the infantry."

Robert C. Ruark tells of the departure of New York Mayor William O'Dwyer to become Ambassador to Mexico being a bit suspicious in light of the Kefauver crime investigating committee having sent Frank Erickson, gambling kingpin, to jail, and threatening the Florida gamblers associated with Frank Costello. The Mayor had promoted a bodyguard to become the fourth deputy police commissioner, as well as a chauffeur, appointed deputy commissioner.

Police captains had been committing suicide and whole precincts had been uprooted in the wake of investigation of police corruption allowing the gambling operations to proceed through payoffs.

The streets had been torn up and never seemed to get repaired. The Government was distributing brochures warning of what to do in case of an atomic attack, with New York assumed to be ground zero.

It all seemed to be the greatest challenge ever facing a New York City Mayor when he suddenly decided to accept an appointment as Ambassador to Mexico and leave the Mayoralty behind. Many believed that he was jumping ship in the midst of stormy seas and did not like it.

Once again, we note, Herblock has drawn what appears to be a caricature resemblant to Congressman Richard Nixon and labeled it "McCarthy", albeit in a context, regarding Senator McCarthy's past Wisconsin tax returns, which was sui generis to the Senator. The two, by this point, had, of course, become virtually interchangeable in their political bent and tendency toward sensational personal attack of convenient targets of whom few Americans previously had heard, and so we suspect the similarity of appearance in caricature was not completely inadvertent, including heavily embellished strokes of five o'clock shadow which one might more readily associate with Happy Hour in the Washington bars.

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