The Charlotte News

Friday, March 7, 1952


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports, via Robert B. Tuckman, that the Communist truce negotiators this date had sought to forestall a possible naval blockade of the Communist Chinese coast or an invasion of the mainland by attempting to place a ban on such an invasion into the armistice agreement. A U.N. spokesman said that the ban would extend to any place in the world in which forces in Korea had any territory under their control. It was not yet clear how committed to this unacceptable proposal the Communists were.

The prisoner exchange subcommittee made no headway regarding the stalemate over voluntary repatriation of prisoners. Communist negotiators accepted a revised version for exchange of interned foreign nationals, providing that foreign civilians would be "permitted and assisted" to return to the other side if they so desired. The U.N. held only two such foreign civilians.

The President, in his second message in as many days to Congress on the Mutual Security Program, forecast this date the "ultimate decay of the Soviet slave world", provided the free nations built up their military strength. The message went far beyond the previous two messages of the day before, including the one broadcast via radio and television the previous night.

Despite the President's two messages the previous day regarding the foreign aid program and the need to preserve the 7.9 billion dollar proposed budget, members of Congress appeared still committed to scaling it down. Senator Bourke Hickenlooper of Iowa said that the country had failed to stop Communism in Korea and that European unity was not materializing, while waste and corruption in the Government was increasing. Senators Brien McMahon of Connecticut and Francis Green of Rhode Island applauded the President's message but agreed that there was a stiff fight ahead. Congressman James Richards of South Carolina, chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said that Congress might cut as much as a billion dollars from the budget and that it probably should be more than that.

The President said that the Senators who were opposing his plan to reorganize the IRB were more interested in their political patronage than in good public service, following the vote by the Senate Expenditures Committee to disapprove the plan earlier in the week. The plan would next go to the Senate floor for debate and vote on Tuesday.

The President was leaving for Key West this date for three weeks, set to return for the Jefferson-Jackson Day Democratic dinner on March 29, at which time it was anticipated that he would disclose his decision whether or not to run again.

Another Gallup poll appears, this one sampling opinion in a hypothetical contest between Senator Estes Kefauver and either General Eisenhower or Senator Taft, finding that the General was preferred by 57 percent of the respondents, compared with 32 percent for the Senator, while 47 percent preferred Senator Kefauver against Senator Taft, polling 41 percent. In the latter hypothetical race, independent voters preferred Senator Kefauver 48 percent to 35 percent, and in the Eisenhower-Kefauver matchup, preferred the General 55 percent to 28 percent. Of Republicans only, 82 percent preferred the General to 12 percent for Senator Kefauver, and 79 percent preferred Senator Taft to 19 percent for Senator Kefauver. Among only Democrats, Senator Kefauver was preferred by 52 percent to General Eisenhower at 37 percent, whereas Senator Kefauver tallied 75 percent to 13 percent for Senator Taft.

The Senate investigation subcommittee looking into the shipping deals heard further from the attorney for the Nationalist Chinese company which had shipped oil to Communist China up to the time of the Korean War and other goods for six months into the war, acknowledging that the foundation headed by Newbold Morris, the newly appointed Government ombudsman to clean up corruption in the executive branch, could have barred the oil deliveries. The attorney also said that he and Mr. Morris as partners in their law firm had received about $158,000 in fees for legal services from two companies which had engaged in the Chinese trade. The committee indicated that Mr. Morris would be called as a witness the following Tuesday. This date, Senator Richard Nixon, a member of the subcommittee, said of the deal, "The morality concerned … is about the equal of that of international pirates."

That nice young man is going to make a fine, fine Senator, as he insists on keeping Government as clean as a hound's tooth. We need more like him up there.

In Japan, two earthquakes hit the central portion of the country, disrupting traffic in communications and starting landslides. They were felt over a distance of more than 350 miles, from Tokyo and Yokohama, southwest to Okayama. Meanwhile, a U.S. Army mercy train made its way through snow-covered hills of northern Japan to transport food and blankets to Kushiro, which had suffered a severe earthquake the prior Tuesday.

In London, a young girl's crippling arthritis and disfiguring skin disease associated with it suddenly healed after an automobile accident. She had been riding with her parents and her father's right arm had been torn off in the accident. The attending physician offered two possible explanations, that it was either a psychological reaction or cortisone had been liberated from the girl's adrenal glands by the shock of the accident.

In Charlotte, a man was shot five times fatally in his apartment and his brother, who lived with his family in the same building, was held on a charge of murder. The two had a fight before the shooting. The arrested brother said that his brother "come up with his knife" at him and he "commenced pumping lead … feeding him bullets all the time as long as they lasted—and I think the last one stopped him." Police officers said that they were investigating reports of an all-night drinking party at the home of the deceased. There was also a report of a knife fight between the two brothers about seven hours before the shooting. The fight was said to have concerned the location of a truck owned by the surviving brother. He had a knife wound on his neck. He had been told during the morning by his brother that he had sold the truck, but since it was in the surviving brother's wife's name, he knew that was untrue, whereupon he asked again for the keys, which his brother refused and the knife fight ensued.

In Quonset Point, R.I., two masked, armed men held up the Naval Air Station Credit Union on the base early this date and escaped with about $100,000. The State police said that the men were last seen fleeing in a black sedan. Be on the lookout. If you see a black sedan, be sure to run it off the road and then call the cops.

In Vandalia, O., the "Phantom of Route 40" was roaring down the national highway at night, according to motorists. One trucker said that during snow and freezing rain one very dark night three weeks earlier, he had dimmed his headlights at the approach of a car, but when it got within about 200 feet, its lights suddenly went out, there was a little flicker on the inside, and he saw "this thing" which was "horrible looking" and scared him, causing him to jam down the throttle and "get out of there fast". The State Highway Patrol had received five such stories from travelers, some saying that the car glowed. Sometimes, the phantom exited the vehicle and revealed a Halloween mask and a skeleton suit, with bones outlined in luminous paint. Three truckers had almost caught the phantom a week earlier, but he had zoomed away, scraping his car against one of the trucks. A Patrol officer said that he might be mentally ill or perhaps possessed of a weird sense of humor.

The sports page tells of West Virginia being predicted to win the Southern Conference Tournament in Raleigh, based on a poll of the coaches taken by reporter Sandy Grady.

They haven't got a chance this year in the A.C.C. Tournament.

On the editorial page, "The Mutual Security Program" tells of many in Congress wanting to cut the proposed 7.9 billion dollar program proposed by the President through decreasing military spending and cutting economic foreign aid. The total for foreign aid in the budget was 10.5 billion dollars, the additional 2.6 billion representing unspent, appropriated funds. That budget represented a four billion dollar increase over the previous year in foreign aid spending, all for military aid. The modest economic aid proposal included technical assistance for Asia, Africa and Latin America.

It hopes that the Congress would cut substantial portions from the overall budget but also hopes that it did not further weaken the technical assistance program under Point Four. For under it, the country built up potential markets by aiding underdeveloped countries to increase their living standards and showed that the country was interested in peaceful progress of other peoples, sometimes obscured by the emphasis on military spending.

Many in Congress were arguing that the U.S. should not give more aid to foreign countries when they were not doing more to help themselves. While the country had given substantial aid, the NATO allies had more men in uniform, per unit of population, than did the United States, and that was so despite the fact that their total production was about a third of that of the U.S. Their financial contribution to defense had also been substantial. The U.S., in 1952, was spending 12.7 percent of its gross national product for defense while the French, for example, whose per capita income was several times smaller than that of Americans, were spending 9.3 percent.

It hopes that some of the frills would be cut from foreign aid, but that it would be done with a rifle rather than a shotgun.

"A Plan for Good Samaritan" tells of the special subcommittee of the City Council and the County Commission having criticized in its report the administrative policies of the Good Samaritan Hospital, which it proceeds to specify.

The hospital was one of the oldest black hospitals in the country, having been established in 1885. But it appeared that the job of caring for the black citizens of the city and county was too much for one denomination. It suggests that the ideal solution would be for the community, through its public agencies, to purchase the hospital for a fair price. Whatever the solution, it posits, the medical care for the black citizens was a community problem which had to be faced.

"Touche!" remarks on the Department of Justice naming 186 members of the du Pont family as defendants in the General Motors lawsuit, prompting Lammot du Pont to respond that of the 186 family members named, 96 were under age 21 and 61 of those were children 14 or under, which he found interesting for the fact that the Government's complaint alleged a conspiracy dating back to 1915, whereas one of the alleged conspirators was only eight months old.

The piece thinks the rejoinder qualified for an Oscar.

A piece from the New York Post, titled "What the Man Said", tells of a dispatch from Germany from Westbrook Pegler, published in the Journal-American the previous day, indicating that things were bad because an American official in Germany was a man on leave from the Times where he had worked for Lester Markel, head of the International Press Institute, which had been endorsed by Secretary of State Acheson who recently addressed a dinner of Americans for Democratic Action and was a friend of Justice Felix Frankfurter who knew Alger Hiss. The Times man working in Germany had once worked for the Times Sunday department, which John T. Flynn had recently exposed as favoring the type of democracy which FDR championed, and another man who worked in the same department had once defended Paul Draper and Larry Adler when they had gotten into a row with Hester McCullough.

Mr. Pegler had concluded, "I will give this one a rest for a few days but I have stubbed my toe on something important over here." The piece concludes: "[A]nd there's no doubt about it."

Drew Pearson indicates that U.N. negotiators would make a last, desperate bid during the month to end the Korean War, but if they failed, General Matthew Ridgway was prepared to blockade the Chinese coast with battleships and strike the Chinese bases with bombers, contingent on approval by the President. General Hoyt Vandenberg of the Joint Chiefs had indicated that there were not enough planes to waste on conventional bombing of China, that China's principal cities were protected by squadrons of jet fighters, and that the Air Force could not afford to lose bombers except for the purpose of delivering the atomic bomb. There was also a danger that bombing China could provoke Russia into war.

Orders had come from Washington to persuade the Communists to obtain in writing the oral agreements which had already been reached in the armistice talks, so that the Communists would be dissuaded from backing down from those commitments. The CIA was convinced that the Chinese would try to prolong the stalemate indefinitely so that the Chinese Communists could continue to receive war goods from Russia to equip their armies and build a powerful air force. But the CIA reports had also indicated that the Russians were worried about the growing strength of China and were secretly urging the truce as an excuse to cut off the supply of equipment.

The President had mused recently to an unnamed Senate friend that he did not know why General Eisenhower wanted to become President, as he was too thin-skinned for the job, that he became upset every time a columnist took a nasty dig at him. He indicated that the General would have a short honeymoon just as he had, and then everyone would start pouncing on the General.

The Pentagon had kept it quiet, but radar units in Washington had tracked 25 "flying saucers", each sighted by at least one eyewitness. The Air Force was still skeptical, indicating that radar was subject to creating false readings, just as one unit had picked up a formation of unidentified bombers heading toward Washington, causing the private warning system of the President to be triggered before the Air Force discovered that the supposed bombers were in fact ionized clouds.

The President disliked General J. Lawton Collins as Army chief of staff and had been trying to get rid of him. He had not reappointed General Vandenberg, to avoid setting a precedent which might have made it necessary to reappoint General Collins as well. But he also did not want to appease Senator Taft, who had attacked the Joint Chiefs.

The Pentagon would be sending special public relations missions around the world to put U.S. military representatives on their best behavior in foreign countries.

A lieutenant colonel, who was a deputy Army engineer in charge of building airbases in North Africa, had ignored lower bids of legitimate Moroccan businessmen and ordered tent frames and floor panels from a French five-percenter, costing the taxpayers an additional $50,000 to meet the higher prices charged by the five-percenter. The same colonel had built a fancy home at taxpayer expense and then installed a special rubberized linoleum on the floors, costing the taxpayers more than $2,000.

Roscoe Drummond, writing from Springfield, Ill., in the Christian Science Monitor, tells of Governor Adlai Stevenson being a very unusual New Deal candidate, should he obtain the Democratic nomination for the presidency. He supported America's role as leader of the free world and realized that the U.S. had to aid its allies militarily and economically to resist Communist aggression, but also would be mindful of straining the nation's economy, foreseeing a potential taxpayers' strike should the Government continue spending money at its present rate.

Domestically, he was aware that larger social problems of modern society required larger political powers to deal with them, but he was opposed to the continuing concentration of authority in Washington and believed that government should be as small and as local in character as possible. He believed in the Government's responsibility to the unemployed, the aged, and the sick when they were unable to care for themselves, but was exceptionally economy-minded and wished to scale down Federal spending.

Mr. Drummond indicates that after studying everything the Governor had written or said during the previous few years and having had extensive conversations with him, he could report that he was a "full-bodied but careful internationalist, a political liberal with a highly developed sense of fiscal responsibility, a Governor whose experience and instincts would cause him to resist the accumulation of Federal power wherever possible." Whether that made him, in fact, a New Dealer remained a question mark. He would be running on his own platform were he to become the nominee.

In Illinois, the State Constitution prevented deficit spending and that suited the Governor perfectly, even though the Legislature had provided him appropriations which exceeded revenues on more than one occasion. In 1951, he had vetoed 134 bills which had appropriated 42 million dollars above the budget and above anticipated revenue. He had strongly supported a state version of the Hoover Commission to streamline State Government. He had already instituted policies which had effected large savings, including terminating 1,300 unneeded public employees and establishing a merit system for recruiting the police force, previously subject to the patronage system.

His overarching theme was fiscal responsibility and, Mr. Drummond concludes, the Democrats would have to take him as he was if they wanted him as their nominee.

Marquis Childs tells of Senator William Jenner of Indiana being out to sabotage the Japanese Peace Treaty through a series of amendments which would undermine the careful work of John Foster Dulles during a period of two years leading to the prior September San Francisco conference which had approved the treaty, subject to ratification by each of the signatory nations. Mr. Dulles had been careful to consult with both Republicans and Democrats on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and its members reported that there had been few prior occasions when they were more conscientiously included in the treaty-making process.

Mr. Childs indicates that the Jenner amendments would not be adopted, even though they would be approved by the "lunatic finger of the right". But that was not known in the rest of the world or in Japan and the implication given was that the U.S. meant to maintain troops and garrisons in Japan indefinitely, serving in the process Communist propaganda and that of the extreme nationalists. One of his amendments would require Japan to recognize the Chinese Nationalists as sovereign over all of mainland China. The Japanese industrialists were fearful of being shut off from the raw materials of the Chinese mainland and the Jenner amendment would create major problems for the rebuilding of security in Asia.

Senator Jenner had characterized the treaty as being part of the Lattimore-Hiss-Acheson plot to turn Asia over to the Communists, and he had linked Mr. Dulles to that plot. His demagoguery, suggests Mr. Childs, was on a par with that of the late Senator Theodore Bilbo of Mississippi, who had once denounced publisher Henry Luce and his wife, Clare Boothe Luce, then a member of Congress, as Communists.

He suggests that such irresponsible behavior was the reason that the moral values of society were being eroded swiftly. He warns Republicans campaigning for the November election that such men as Senator Jenner could lose the election for them, and if they were to win, could lose what was left of the free world afterward.

A letter writer from Chapel Hill compliments the newspaper, but also finds that for some time, the editors had given up pointing out the pros and cons of the President and instead taken to conveying their personal opinions as to who or what a President should be. He indicates that he does not intend to argue with the newspaper's editorials criticizing the President but wants to suggest that if they knew so well what ought be done, they ought run for office themselves. He concludes: "You can nominate Taft, or your Eisenhower, or whomsoever you please, but WE, the people, will re-elect President Truman, you and your brethren-in-ink notwithstanding."

A letter writer expresses support for General Eisenhower and explains his reasons.

A letter writer, on behalf of the Scouts and Scouters of the Mecklenburg County Council, expresses appreciation to the newspaper for its cooperation in helping to celebrate the 42nd anniversary of the Boy Scouts. He especially thanks Elizabeth Blair of the newspaper's staff.

A short piece from the Chapel Hill Weekly tells of the loafing bench in the Eubanks drugstore under the clock beside the front window having been removed the previous Friday for the first time since it had been installed in 1913, so that it could be repaired to allow heavyweight sitters without the danger of it collapsing, now having been re-installed, strengthened with a new coat of paint.

We took a mind to reference it because it reminded of the days of old, when everybody at the University of North Carolina drank Coca-Cola.

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.