The Charlotte News

Wednesday, September 13, 1950


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that allied troops had been informed by General Walton Walker, ground commander, that soon they would be engaged in offensive operations—with the as yet unknown imminent landing on Inchon. The allied gains of the prior three days were the greatest in nearly a month, sealing much of the gap through which the North Koreans had threatened breakthrough from Kigye near the east coast. American and South Korean troops, led by a task force under the command of Brig. General Gar Davidson, the former West Point football coach and star end, had closed off a three-mile gap also in the southern gate of a mountain corridor, in the area south of Pohang and northwest of Kyongju, trapping 3,000 enemy troops. The "left end run" had forced the enemy to return to their lines or face death. American big guns had also wiped out 200 enemy troops as they stormed a peak near Masan in the southern sector.

On the Masan front, a North Korean soldier surrendered with a leaflet dropped by the U.N. forces, and asked for more "tickets" to enable surrender of others who wanted to do likewise. He was given a handful of the leaflets and ten minutes later, four more North Koreans surrendered.

Front line troops would continue to receive beer for free, according to an unidentified Army official, following removal of the one small can per day ration the previous day, provoking a howl of protest heard as far as Washington, where Representative John Dingell of Michigan asserted that the free beer was essential for the front line troops. But Representative Joseph Bryson of South Carolina believed beer should not be served to the troops or to civilians at home during wartime, and introduced a bill to prohibit the practice to conserve alcohol for medicinal purposes. The beer was not made available to soldiers in the rear—no rear beer.

Following the accepted resignation of Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson, effective the following Tuesday, the President had asked Congress to make exception under the 1947 National Security Act to allow for appointment of General George C. Marshall to become Secretary of Defense. The Act prohibited anyone who had been in active military service during the prior ten years from so serving. The Senate Armed Services Committee had already approved the change, 10 to 2, and the House Armed Services Committee was expected to take up the matter shortly. The proposed bill would allow the General to retain his rank and continue to receive pay and allowances for that rank. The original provision of the Act had been designed to prevent undue influence on military men as Defense Secretary from those being supervised at the Pentagon.

The resignation of Mr. Johnson and appointment of General Marshall had strengthened the hand of Secretary of State Acheson, meeting with the French and British foreign ministers in New York to discuss rearming of Western Europe. The policies of General Marshall were more closely aligned with those of Secretary Acheson than had been those of Secretary Johnson.

Diplomatic authorities said that the subject of the treaty with Japan, not yet formalized, would be discussed between Secretary Acheson and British Foreign Secretary Ernest Bevin, probably the following week.

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved appointment of former New York City Mayor William O'Dwyer as Ambassador to Mexico, by a vote of 8 to 0.

The Committee also unanimously voted to ask the Senate to issue contempt citations against Earl Browder, Frederick Vanderbilt Field and Philip Jaffe for contempt of Congress for refusing to answer questions before the subcommittee investigating the charges brought by Senator McCarthy of Communists in the State Department, subsequently denounced by the Senate as a "fraud and a hoax".

The House Rules Committee bypassed the controversial excess profits tax to speed final action on the 4.5 billion dollar tax increase bill.

Maj. General Lewis Hershey, head of Selective Service, told the Senate Appropriations Committee the previous day that he was making plans to induct between 370,000 and 500,000 men before July 1, 1951.

In Pittsburgh, the engineer of the Pennsylvania Railroad train which had crashed into the rear of the troop train near Coshocton, O., killing 33 National Guardsmen, testified at a hearing before the Interstate Commerce Commission that he was trying to make up time when the crash occurred, after being 29 minutes late leaving Pittsburgh and losing another minute en route. He said visibility was restricted by fog. He guessed his speed to be 50 mph at the time of the crash, whereas ICC regulations required that speed be reduced to 30 mph at an approach block, which the train had passed just prior to the collision. He also admitted that he had not applied his brakes properly at a stop-and-proceed signal just before the crash. He applied his emergency brake as soon as he saw deployed flares and a flagman before the stalled train, but it was too late, with the stalled train only 50 car lengths away.

A Presidential emergency board, formed to investigate disputes between the New York Central Railroad and its employees, accused four railroad unions of an effort to extort hundreds of thousands of dollars from the carrier.

Another earthquake was reported from northern Assam in India, possibly more violent than the one which had taken 5,000 lives in the same area the prior August 15. The new tremors had lasted 90 minutes.

On the editorial page, "Exit Johnson, Enter Marshall" praises the appointment of General Marshall to replace Louis Johnson who had just resigned as Secretary of Defense after months of controversy regarding his economizing program on defense, which many believed had emboldened the Communists to wage war in Korea.

While others found that Mr. Johnson was only being made a scapegoat for economizing policies of the Administration to make way for spending on Fair Deal domestic policies, or that blame should be cast on Congress and the American people for supporting these moves, he had become ineffective as Secretary of Defense in time of war and it was time for him to go. He had been the victim of circumstances, no doubt, but had also brought about much of his own trouble by bragging of superior defenses on an economized budget, when the opposite had proved true when war broke out.

General Marshall, who had been Secretary of State from early 1947 to early 1949, would bring a history of stable administration practices to the job, first having been Army chief of staff during the war. While the Congress would have to amend the National Security Act of 1947 to accommodate the appointment, to eliminate its prohibition of any Secretary of Defense from service who had been on active military duty during the previous ten years, General Marshall had demonstrated his ability to divorce himself from his military service in his administrative capacity, as shown when he had been Secretary of State.

General Marshall had been the first architect of Far Eastern policy, finding the Communist Chinese administration no worse than the corruption and inefficiency he observed in the Chiang Kai-Shek Government, while serving as the President's envoy to China in 1946. Thus, his appointment would likely be opposed by those in Congress who favored Nationalist China over the Communist regime. It asserts that such opposition, however, would likely not delay amendment of the Act to permit him to serve or his subsequent rapid confirmation for the post.

General Marshall, it concludes, would provide relief from the confusion which had enveloped defense policy and caused great consternation since the start of the Korean war.

"Crime and Politics" finds that the withdrawal of Morris Shenker, the criminal defense attorney from St. Louis, from the appointment to be a member of the DNC Finance Committee for the fact, as suggested by Senator Estes Kefauver, that prosecutors might show lenience to his clients in deference to his political position, had not explained why he was appointed to the position in the first place. Senator Alexander Wiley had also criticized the appointment.

Mr. Shenker represented William Molasky, top racing news distributor in St. Louis, and James Carroll, former St. Louis betting commissioner, among others, the activities of both of whom had been investigated by the Senate.

It finds the withdrawal proper but that it still left unexplained why he had been selected in the first place.

"A Coach's Garden of Verses" provides verses for coaches of such institutions as Slippery Rock Teachers College and Spearfish Normal, who routinely fielded football teams pressed to come up with a single victory.


"There's a destiny shapes our ends." —William Shakespeare (The line, from Hamlet, Act V, Scene 2, is actually, "There's a divinity that shapes our ends..." And it was so as far back as the line existed in print. If ye darest dispute it, have on.)

"These lines made I. Another steals my honors." —Virgil

"My wants are many, and, if told
Would muster many a score." —John Quincy Adams

"A pretty foot is a great gift of nature." —Goethe

While about it, though we mean no insinuation that the 2017 UNC football team will not win its fair share of games eventually, a beginning toward which, however, having not yet been made manifest, we suggest emendation of the new slogan adorning the entry tunnel to the field at Kenan Stadium, from "The ceiling is the roof," to "The ceiling's roof is the Blue sky aloof." We offer this suggestion without intending in any manner to criticize the slogan's author, a well known former athlete of the University, but it was uttered off the cuff and, in truth, makes no sense, now, does it?—the less so, the more one considers it, especially as Kenan Stadium has no roof beneath the heavens, on which also, insofar as we are aware, there is no roof. Just paint slashes through the other words so as not to obliterate them and insert the new ones, so that the double lines will supply the dual force of power henceforth through the season.

Take our word for it. We have been around for centuries supporting the Tar Heels. Don't mess with a good thing.

There's no power in a limp defense.

John P. McKnight, brother of News editor Pete McKnight, and formerly for 20 years an A.P. foreign correspondent, presents the second of three pieces on efforts to stop the spread of domestic Communist propaganda, this time stressing the conflict with civil rights under the Constitution in bringing about such control. The fact that Communists had invoked these civil rights had led to suspicion by Americans that every time someone did so, they might be Communists. In that manner, Communist propaganda had seeped into the society to produce suspicions by Americans of each other, no matter how loyal.

But to allow the Communists to maneuver the American people into laying aside these freedoms expediently for the duration of the cold war was to enable them fatally to impair the chance of victory for democracy, as its foundations rested on these very freedoms. The rights protected by the Constitution could be denied to no one, no matter how demanding the circumstances or unpopular the cause being protected.

The test case in Durham of the young man who had deliberately defied the Recorder Court Judge's order to police to arrest for vagrancy anyone caught distributing the Soviet-backed Stockholm peace treaty petition stood as an example of this conflict, which, when boiled down, was an attempt to deny a citizen basic rights under the First Amendment.

To allow freedoms to be eroded little by little in such manner would potentially so inure the people to the process as to subject them eventually to tyranny.

He quotes the unknown "Junius", who in 1769 sent a letter to London's "Public Advertiser", saying: "When the constitution is openly invaded, when the first original right of the people, from which all laws derive their authority, is directly attacked, inferior grievances naturally lose their force, and are suffered to pass by without punishment or observation."

Drew Pearson tells of the details of the behind-the-scenes maneuvering to get Lieutenant Governor Joe Hanley of New York to withdraw from the Republican race to make way for the draft-Dewey movement which had resulted in the Governor declaring for a third term after previously announcing his retirement from politics. Mr. Hanley had been promised a job on the Throughway Commission, with a $25,000 salary, should he lose the Senate race to former Governor and incumbent Senator Herbert Lehman. He also would receive another $15,000 in income from an oil company, making his total salary about what he would have received as Governor. The Dewey camp had also pledged to repay the $30,000 put up by Frank Gannett, Kingsland Macy, and one other to pay off Mr. Hanley's debts.

Chief British U.N. delegate Sir Gladwyn Jebb had suddenly become a recognizable television star after becoming the president of the U.N. Security Council for the month of September, causing people to approach on the street to shake his hand. It made him feel uncomfortable as no member of the British Foreign Service was supposed to be recognized publicly. A newsman had insisted that he was second only to Milton Berle in importance to the public of late, to which Sir Gladwyn responded by asking who Milton Berle was.

After Senator Andrew Schoeppel of Kansas had been challenged openly on the Senate floor by Secretary of Interior Oscar Chapman to repeat his charges that Mr. Chapman had Communist ties, in an open forum where he enjoyed no Senatorial immunity, and the Senator had then refused reply to the invitation, only saying that Frank Bow, his assistant who had ghost-written the speech denouncing Mr. Chapman, was out of town, columnist Robert Evans, former partner to Mr. Pearson, aptly whispered loudly, "Another cockroach down the drain."

The Committee for Constitutional Government, a right-leaning lobbying group supported by such powerful Republicans as Frank Gannett and whose executive secretary was Edward Rumely, jailed in World War I as an agent of the Kaiser, was operating at taxpayer expense while distributing material which opposed public housing and other Fair Deal measures. It did so through friendly Congressmen who allowed their franking privilege to be used to send out reprints of the material published by them in the Congressional Record.

Marquis Childs discusses the Big Three foreign ministers meeting to discuss rearming of Western Europe to meet the threat from Russia. Secretary of State Acheson had to contend along the way to this point with Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson's economizing policies, relaxed since the start of the Korean war. Secretary Acheson had long believed that the key to peace lay in maintaining the peace in Western Europe, that rearming Europe, as he recently had explained, would serve as a deterrent to Russian aggression. Secretary Johnson and Secretary Acheson had differed on the degree of commitment to Europe versus Asia.

The threat existed that Russia would begin aggressive moves before Western Europe was strengthened. But the Soviets had already taken the risk of general war by approving the action of North Korea, and so it was time to act in Europe, regardless of potentially triggering a reaction from the Kremlin.

The primary question therefore was the speed with which the rearmament plan could be effected. General Mark Clark, chief of the American occupation forces in West Germany, was optimistic, that the first troops to augment the existing forces would arrive within four months, and that five new divisions would eventually be sent. But other military planners were not so optimistic, asserting that divisions to be sent within a short time would have to be National Guardsmen. Moreover, there would be a problem with dependents of these troops were they, more or less, to be permanently stationed in Western Europe.

Furthermore, in addition to the economic strain on the country, as years would pass after such mobilization, the psychological incentive present in wartime would be lost if nothing happened. But at least Secretary Acheson was now moving forward with a definite plan of action, dependent on the compliance of Britain and France in contributing substantial numbers of troops to match the complement to be supplied by the U.S.

Robert C. Ruark finds the present stories in the news troubling, including the longshoremen taking into their own hands the decision not to load Russian ships in defiance of Presidential orders, the decision by General Foods to fire actress Jean Muir for her supposed fellow traveling, and the unilateral statements of Navy Secretary Matthews and General Orville Anderson, favoring preventive war to establish the peace. (He leaves out General MacArthur's withdrawn statement to the V.F.W. unilaterally endorsing a policy of permanent support for Formosa, implying it as a new policy of the Administration, apart from the U.N. policy of neutralization for the duration of the Korean war only.)

Each of these matters involved individuals or companies or trade unions taking matters of public policy into their own hands, independent of Administration policy or the legal framework. Government off the cuff was not appropriate, he finds, even if the parties involved were correct.

He, personally, would advocate the death penalty for Alger Hiss and convicted espionage agent Judy Coplon, but, he admits, it was not his decision to make. He hated also informants of the type of Whittaker Chambers, a reformed Communist. Perhaps, he would applaud a decision to engage in preventive war against Russia. But again, it was not his decision to make. Likewise, it was not the decision of the longshoremen or the V.F.W. or that of the Secretary of the Navy. Rather it was the business of the responsible entities, the policy makers within the Administration, the Justice Department or Congress.

He might have added today that it is likewise not the business of the latest "press spokesperson" for the White House, in off the cuff remarks, to suggest, one day, that the Justice Department ought consider charges against the former FBI director for "false statements", and then, the next, that ESPN ought fire an announcer for tweeting that the "President" is a "white supremacist" for having aligned and surrounded himself with such persons.

The White House should not be advising the Justice Department what to do, especially when the ultimate basis for urging the charge is that the former FBI director merely refused to play ball when attempted coercion was brought to bear by the President to drop the investigation of collusion between eventual Administration or Trump campaign personnel and the Russians during the 2016 election, dangling implicitly the FBI director's job and future in front of him as the bait, courageously not taken.

Furthermore, the White House, with its duty to represent the entire nation, should not be telling a private concern whom to fire or hire in any case, especially when the reason asserted is merely an exercise in freedom of speech protected by the First Amendment. It is wholly appropriate to call the "President" a "white supremacist" when he has gone around the country campaigning specifically to the rhetoric and boot-stamp of such groups and individuals for the past two years, repeatedly refusing, save half-heartedly when called out on the matter, to condemn support by racist groups, dividing the country as it never before has been divided in peacetime, prompting, even promoting violence in that rhetoric.

But, we make room for the fact that these people at the White House, including the "President", are so incredibly amateurish and dumb, more so than the members of any previous Administration in modern history, that they cannot understand their official roles or the limits of their power, as opposed to their rights as individuals to say whatever the hell they want at a given moment. Yet, ignorance of the law and public duty and the limits of power provides no excuse. They should have taken at least a high school level civics course before accepting Government employment or seeking public office. They know that their electoral base did not, however, and so figure that it makes little difference, that a tour as a commentator on Fox News or starring in a reality tv show is sufficient preparation, forgetting that the broad mass of American people do not support them, never did, will not forget how this bunch came to power.

Good luck when the impeachment proceedings finally begin in about sixteen months. You will have more than earned the backlash which is going to take place in response to your continued ignoring of the predominant will of the American people, contrary to your ridiculous, short-sighted policies designed to embolden white supremacists and their ilk.

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