The Charlotte News

Friday, September 22, 1950


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that allied Marines fought 10,000 North Korean troops, involving close-range and hand-to-hand combat on the city's outskirts. Correspondent Don Whitehead reports that the Marines, by mid-afternoon, had not entered Seoul, but patrols had reached the city limits from the west as the enemy erected barricades for house-to-house fighting. One allied approach came from the southwest at Yongdungpo, and the other from the northwest. Absent reinforcements from the north, the enemy was trapped in a closing vise.

The allied forces had made two 20-mile advances from the new and old beachheads, one from Inchon, as the U.S. Seventh Infantry, facing little opposition, took Suwon airfield, 20 miles south of Seoul, and the other from the southern defense arc, as the U.S. First Cavalry Division, 20 miles north of Tabu, moved toward Sangju, a hundred miles southwest of Seoul.

The tank-led enemy mystery column reported to be moving south from the Manchurian border area, remained a mystery as to its national origin.

The President presented General Omar Bradley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs, with his fifth star in a White House ceremony attended by many high Government officials.

The wife of an Army lieutenant, sentenced to death by an Army court martial for disobeying battle orders in Korea, had petitioned the President for commutation of the sentence. A letter from the lieutenant to his wife contended that the order in question would have led him and twelve other men to certain death. His execution was scheduled by October 6. The soldier had been a waiter before entering the Army in 1940 and had served in Italy, having been honorably discharged as a lieutenant in 1946. He had been recalled to service as a reservist in 1947 before to going to Japan as part of the occupation force. The Judge Advocate General's office had instructed that any death sentence by court martial had to be approved by the entire chain of military command and confirmed by the President.

At the U.N. General Assembly meeting in New York, the 14-nation steering committee sent to the Assembly Russia's charges that the U.S. had committed aggression by sending the Seventh Fleet to protect Formosa from attack by the Chinese Communists. Only Nationalist China had opposed the consideration. The committee deferred action on the U.S. proposal to place Formosa's future into the hands of the Assembly. Russia and Communist China contended that Formosa was part of mainland China and that the U.N. had no right to protect it for the duration of the Korean war.

The Big Three foreign and defense ministers met in New York to discuss formation of an integrated NATO defense force to resist potential Russian aggression. The primary question was whether to include German units in the force. The recommendation of the ministers would be put before the NATO council for further action the following week. The American officials, Secretary of State Acheson and Secretary of Defense Marshall, favored inclusion of the German units. The French and the British had been reluctant to accept the proposal.

The Allied High Commission in West Germany ordered that the six German steel cartels be broken up into small and independent companies. Production, in the meantime, would not be interrupted by the liquidation. An earlier order during the month had provided for the break-up of I. G. Farben, Germany's chemical giant.

The White House said that the President later in the day would veto the anti-subversive measure, the McCarran bill, just passed by the Congress. The President had found the bill to be another version of the old Mundt-Nixon bill which required registration by Communists and front organizations.

The House passed its first installment of the tax increase bill by a vote of 328 to 7. The President had said that he was pleased with the measure, which would raise 4.7 billion dollars of additional revenue. The bill did not include an excess profits tax, delayed until after the November elections, at which time the leadership of both parties had indicated they would support such a bill.

In Oslo, Norway, Dr. Ralph Bunche, former U.N. mediator in Palestine, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

The stock market in New York hit a 19-year peak, exceeding the 1946 high of $82.40 per share for the Associated Press average of 60 top stocks, rising to $82.80 by noon. The 1931 record was $88.50. Railroad issues powered the rise. The market had plunged to its lowest point since the war in June, 1949 and had been climbing since that point, starting a steep rise in mid-July, 1950, following the start of the Korean war.

Two Air Force F-84 thunderjet fighters took off from England for a nonstop trans-Atlantic crossing, the second attempt at the record flight for jets. They expected to land at Long Island in eight hours. The first attempt was postponed when one of the jets encountered engine trouble.

In Miryang, Korea, a pilot inadvertently landed a B-26 light bomber on a small field reserved for grasshopper-type planes. He was too embarrassed to provide the press with his name.

In Greenville, Tenn., Alfred Dean Slack, part of the spy ring allegedly associated with Ethel and Julius Rosenberg, following his entry of a guilty plea the prior Monday to espionage for the Russians, was sentenced to fifteen years in prison. The Government had recommended only a ten-year sentence. He admitted giving the recipe for the highly explosive RDX to the Russians.

In Asheville, the Western North Carolina Methodists unanimously approved a campaign to raise 2.5 million dollars for four Methodist colleges in the state, Greensboro College, High Point College, Louisburg College, and Brevard College.

On the editorial page, "Mr. Acheson's Peace Program" tells of the U.N. steering committee placing five U.S.-sponsored items on the agenda of the General Assembly, Secretary Acheson's peace initiative, Nationalist China's charge that the Russians had helped the Communist Chinese in their rise to power, a demand for an accounting by Russia of Japanese and German prisoners of war, a review of the Greek-Balkan situation, and a determination of whether the ban on diplomatic recognition of Spain ought continue. Russia had opposed each item and the fact that it had been rebuffed showed that the Assembly would not be sidetracked.

John Foster Dulles had called Mr. Acheson's initiative the most important proposal for international peace since the end of World War II.

In sum, the proposal sought to identify trouble zones before they developed into war, to provide a way for the Assembly to act expeditiously in an emergency, and to develop a pattern for immediate response by member nations. If the U.N. found a way to implement these proposals, the way to peace would be considerably advanced in a way not previously realized during the cold war.

"A Veto Is in Order" finds the McCarran bill passed by the Congress to be a bad bill as it would not catch any Communist not already known to the FBI. Some of it was ridiculous, as a provision denying entry to any alien who ever had in his or her possession printed matter advocating the economic or political doctrines of any form of totalitarianism. Such material would inevitably include Mein Kampf and Das Kapital.

Most newspapers had condemned the bill. A few Senators had articulated convincing cases against it. The President threatened to veto it. Attorney General J. Howard McGrath opposed it. FBI director J. Edgar Hoover said that he knew who the Communists were in the country and was keeping tabs on them.

The bill was politically motivated for the November elections. If the President vetoed it, he would be accused of being soft on Communism. If he signed it, he would be accused of yielding to political expediency. The piece favors veto, giving the Congress additional time to pass another such bill.

As indicated on the front page, word from the White House was that the President would veto the bill later in the day.

"Christmas Gift" tells of the State Revenue Commissioner predicting that a surplus of seven million dollars would exist by the beginning of 1951, enough to pay the teachers salary bonus, increasing pay to between $2,200 and $3,100 per year for the grade A classification, as promised by the 1949 Legislature provided a sufficient surplus existed at the end of the biennium. Part of the increase would be paid in December and the rest the following July. It finds that it would be a welcome addition for the teachers' coffers during the Christmas season.

A piece from the Durham Herald, titled "The Empathetic 'Nyet'", tells of a section of The Loom of Language, titled "Language Museum", from the bestseller of a few years earlier by Lancelot Hogben and Frederick Bodmer, listing in rows the words for common objects and concepts in nine European languages. It looks at the word "no" in these languages, including "nyet" in Russian, sounding the most emphatic of the ten. If one happened to be feeling mean, "nyet" was pleasurable to say. It suggests that it might explain why the Russians used it so much at the U.N. It wonders what the Russian word was for "yes".

It is "A-okay".

Drew Pearson finds that the 81st Congress would probably be remembered for increasing the average wage earner's taxes by as much as 20 percent while refusing to tax the excess war profits of big corporations. In a closed door session of the Senate and House confreres, Congressman John Dingell of Michigan had battled to try to obtain a few concessions for small taxpayers, seeking removal of the excise tax on baby powder and oil, as well as other consumer items. But his efforts bore no fruit.

The VFW had launched a campaign of community service against the conditions on which Communism and Fascism thrived, poverty, unemployment, and illiteracy. President Truman had praised the effort. The VFW, he notes, was offering $35,000 in prizes to the post which produced the best positive action against Communism through community services.

Joseph Alsop, in Seoul, continues his story, started Wednesday, on the taking by the Marines of Kimpo airfield, eleven miles from Inchon. The battalion had fought most of the morning and Kimpo was still seven miles away. The men of Easy Company, which led the way, appeared nevertheless fresh and cheerful. Despite each man carrying a 75-lb. pack plus ammunition and weapons, the walk to the airfield at times resembled a picnic because of the reception by the local villagers, a change from the southern beachhead where the locals rarely made the fighting men feel welcome. But the locals on the way to Seoul, unlike those in the south familiar only with the regime of Dr. Syngman Rhee, had experienced the Communist regime, and were waving South Korean flags at the arrival of the liberators.

Eventually, Easy Company made their way to the high ground commanding Kimpo field, still not encountering trouble. At dusk, however, they started receiving fire. They took shelter in a ditch and thereafter eventually reached the taxiway, at which point the North Koreans fled before American tanks.

At 3:30 a.m., the customary dawn attack eventuated, lasting two hours. When the tanks were able to enter the fight at first light, however, the enemy attack weakened rapidly. The many allied wounded and dead were gathered from the area, and as Mr. Alsop headed back to the rear, the Marines were advancing to take the last enemy strong point.

"It looked like a bad battle photograph, and only the still continuing bursts of firing gave it reality."

Marquis Childs tells of greater orders than ever before soon to be made for tanks, guns, ships and planes to make up for the deficiencies of the prior eighteen months in defense spending. But equally crucial to these arms was the friendship and goodwill of people everywhere, in both Europe and Asia. NATO was a useful first step in building this goodwill but was not sufficient, for the people of Asia were also important.

But in Asia, there was a deeply embedded memory of exploitation of the East by the West during the prior two centuries. More often than not, it had been "cruel, arrogant, ruthless and greedy". The record of the U.S. in this regard, however, was better than that of most European nations. The U.S., at the time of the Boxer Rebellion in 1900, for instance, had not grabbed Chinese territory as the other powers had, rather using its share of reparations to finance Chinese students in the U.S.

As a result of the Spanish-American War, the Philippines went to the U.S., becoming the initial American thrust into the Far East. But William Howard Taft, first as Philippine Commissioner and then as President, was able to lead the Filipinos toward independence. American missionaries in every Asian country also helped spread goodwill. Millions of American children during that earlier time sent pennies to foreign missions, most of which were in Asia.

Some of the effort was supercilious and fanatical, some downright silly, but much of it was well-intentioned and profoundly rewarding in nurturing friendship and understanding. He wonders, however, how much of that goodwill survived in an era of cynicism.

A letter writer from Pinehurst commends John P. McKnight for his series of three editorials the prior week regarding the Durham test case of the Recorder Court judge's order to arrest anyone found distributing the petition for the Soviet-backed Stockholm peace treaty. The writer praises The News for standing for the Bill of Rights. He finds that when Willis Smith took his seat in the Senate, the state would be represented by a conservative in Senator Clyde Hoey and a reactionary in Senator Smith, replacing the liberal Senator Frank Graham.

The State GOP executive committee, he informs, had announced that its principal speakers would be Senators William Knowland, Joseph McCarthy, and Karl Mundt, indicating a reactionary trend. He finds that it left little choice for the voter who wanted to vote independently in the Senate race in November.

A letter writer, 66, says that he was more frustrated than at any time in his life. He wondered whether, in addition to Korea, America would enter the fight in Indo-China, where it was reported that a furious fight was being waged after the Chinese Communists reportedly had joined with Ho Chi Minh in the fight against the French-backed Bao Dai regime. He disagrees with the editorial of the previous Monday advocating occupation of North Korea. The increased taxes to support a 90 billion dollar budget, as outlined by Stewart Alsop, caused him to wonder whether the country could afford the increased defense expenditure to 45 to 50 billion dollars. He thinks the path was open to socialism in the country, similar to that in England. He finds little to be obtained from human leadership and so turns to God for solace.

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