The Charlotte News

Saturday, August 9, 1952


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports, via William C. Barnard, that over North Korea, U.S. Sabre jets had shot down another enemy MIG this date, the 19th in six straight days of victories in dogfights with the Russian-built jets. Allied fighter-bombers maintained an increased pace of striking Communist supply and troop targets in North Korea, as pilots reported destroying 28 buildings and damaging four others with bomb, rocket and napalm attacks on four Jaeju Peninsula troop concentrations, near the 38th parallel.

The Air Force announced that during the previous week, not a single allied plane had been lost in aerial combat, though four had been lost to enemy ground fire and four to unreported causes. The previous six days had possibly been the most successful of the war for U.N. fighter pilots. The top U.N. air commander in Korea, Lt. General Glenn Barkus, indicated that the high toll of enemy planes was because the enemy had chosen to expose their fighters more than usual, penetrating far to the south on a few occasions, costing them 18 jets destroyed and 19 damaged without a single victory.

The U.S. Eighth Army reported that allied troops this date had twice lost an advance position to artillery-supported Chinese troops east of Panmunjom. An oversized enemy platoon had won the hill before dawn, but air-supported allied troops retook it by mid-morning, though losing it again prior to noon.

The State Department was continuing its investigation of the reported escape in January of John Hvasta, convicted by the Communist Czechoslovakian Government of espionage and imprisoned initially for three years, later increased to ten years, and whose whereabouts was currently claimed to be unknown by the Czech Government, which had just announced the escape the previous day. His mother wondered aloud whether it would have taken him seven months to cross the Danube to the American zone of Vienna to safety and expressed fear that the so-called escape was a trick by the Communists. American officials had not been permitted to see Mr. Hvasta since August, 1950, despite repeated requests to do so. The State Department was hopeful that the matter would not upset negotiations for the release of Associated Press correspondent William Oatis, also held as a prisoner for the previous year after being convicted of espionage.

The President ordered the Civil Service Commission this date to propose a single program for testing the loyalty, security and suitability of Federal employees. Presently, there was a separate program for each function. The President indicated that the merger of the programs was necessary to eliminate duplication and confusion which existed. The Federal loyalty program had been initiated by Presidential order in 1947, in response to pressures from the Republican Congress to do so. The suitability program dated back to around 1912, involving examinations to determine whether Federal employees could competently perform their jobs.

In Buenos Aires, El Presidente Juan Peron of Argentina marched bare-headed under a rain of flower petals in solemn procession this date behind the body of his deceased wife, Eva, through the center of the capital, to begin the final phase of funeral obsequies, which equaled those normally reserved for a president dying in office. She had died July 26 and would be interred the following day in the central building of the General Confederation of Labor. Forty-five workers of the GCT, wearing white shirts with mourning bands and black neckties, drew a gun carriage which bore the mahogany casket along a 15-block route. Their coatless attire was meant to symbolize the Descaminadoes, who had formed the great political power of the Perons. Crowds had been slow to gather, apparently scared away by security precautions after eight persons had been crushed to death and hundreds injured in the initial rush to see Evita's body at the Labor Ministry.

In Denver, John Foster Dulles, foreign policy adviser to General Eisenhower, stated to a news conference the previous day that the General believed that the President's foreign policy was placing America in the "greatest peril" in its history and that only the General's election as president could block Soviet domination of the free world and avert a third world war. He claimed that Governor Stevenson lacked "the experience, the stature and the power of decision in great world matters" necessary to save the nation at the time. Mr. Dulles spoke following a two-hour conference with the General and vice-presidential candidate, Senator Richard Nixon. Mr. Dulles, until recently, had been an adviser to Secretary of State Acheson, and had also represented the nation as a delegate to the U.N. He said that he agreed with the General and Senator Nixon that foreign policy was the major issue of the campaign, a view which Governor Stevenson had expressed the previous week. He said that virtually all the credit for improvement of morale in Western Europe was the result of General Eisenhower having been NATO supreme commander for the year and a half preceding June 1. He indicated that a third of all the people of the world were under Soviet dictatorship and that the remaining two-thirds were held together very precariously. He was confident that General Eisenhower would check that trend and that he alone could do so.

In San Francisco, a cab driver, who the previous week had been hailed in the city as the man who cracked a $20,000 robbery and recovered most of the loot, now was under Federal indictment, charged with aiding and abetting the robber, receiving stolen property in the form of ransom money and transporting it across state lines. He faced 25 years in prison and $22,500 in fines if convicted, only five years less than the maximum penalty faced by the confessed principal robber whom the cabdriver had been initially credited with capturing. The robber was accused of bluffing a banker out of $20,000 in ransom money after he claimed to be holding the banker's wife captive. The cab driver claimed to have picked up the man and his accomplice shortly thereafter and, supposedly at gunpoint, carried them to Reno, the next morning informing police of the pair's open discussion of the plot and showing them $17,000 of the loot still in the trunk of his cab. The cab driver claimed that he had been able to slip away during a stop at a tavern for drinks, claiming that he had befriended the robbers in an effort to ingratiate himself to them so that he might escape. But the U.S. Attorney contended that the cab driver had been involved in the scam all along, that there were many times when he was out of the presence of the other two and instead of looking for authorities, had planned to take $5,000 of the loot or keep it all, returning to San Francisco and informing authorities only "because he knew the game was up."

In Gastonia, N.C., the police reported that they had arrested a 14-year old boy and sworn out a warrant for a 22-year old man, both of Belmont, in connection with the robbery of a fruit stand near Belmont the previous afternoon. The boy had $15 on him when arrested. The 22-year old had possibly been arrested in Draper. He had been previously tried in Gaston County for theft of an automobile some months earlier and was presently unemployed. The story had changed from the previous day, when the two had supposedly informed the fruit stand operator, whose stand was now transposed from Highway 74 to Highway 29, that they would leave his 1940 Chevrolet, which they took, outside a theater in Cherryville, now having become Kings Mountain. In any event, the car had been found in Gaffney, S.C.—perhaps outside the movie theater playing a return engagement of "Harvey".

In Folkestone, England, a 24-year-old Gastonia fireman rested this date in a seaside hotel where he was training for an attempt to swim the English Channel on Monday, provided the Channel waters, which were choppy, would calm enough for the 20-mile attempted swim.

In Charlotte, doctors, policemen and an enraged patient at the Good Samaritan Hospital engaged in a free-for-all in the operating room and the corridors early this date, ending with blood splattered over the police officers' uniforms and on the floor of the hospital hallway. Two police officers had arrived at the hospital to have knife wounds of the individual tended to by the staff, after which the patient refused to wait at the hospital until county patrolmen could arrive to obtain information about the knifing incident, which had taken place outside the city limits. The patient was said to be drunk and so the two police officers placed him under arrest on a charge of public drunkenness. The patient became further enraged and started scuffling with the doctors, orderlies, and the two police officers. The two county patrolmen then arrived and provided assistance. The patient was finally handcuffed and brought to police headquarters, where five warrants were sworn out against him. During the morning of this date in City Recorder's Court, he was sentenced to 30 days on the roads on the charge of public drunkenness, suspended on payment of $10 plus costs, 12 months on the roads on the charge of resisting arrest, suspended on payment of two dollars plus costs, and 30 days on the roads on each of the three charges of assault on the officers, with all sentences to run consecutively, also suspended on payment of five dollars plus costs in each case.

That will teach him not to get knifed in Mecklenburg County.

Elizabeth Blair of The News, reporting from Akron, O., tells of Charlotte Soap Box Derby entrant Jimmy Mooney and his "Lizzie IV" racing car having crashed into a picket fence beyond the finish line in the trial heat the previous day, but having recovered overnight after mechanics had worked late to repair the racer's busted nose, making the car ready for another trial heat scheduled for the following afternoon. Jimmy was pleased with the repair job and had recovered from his own bruises and scrapes. His trial run had been 27.3 seconds, .2 seconds off the leader, about two car lengths.

Charlotte radio station WAYS would cover the event this night and the following day, with a tape recording of young Mr. Mooney and his impressions of the Derby, as well as interviews with other Charlotte residents attending, to be broadcast this night, and up-to-the-minute coverage of the heat the following day.

On the editorial page, "Ike Should Repudiate McKeldin's Move To Smear Stevenson with Hiss" indicates that the North Carolina Republicans, in their meeting during the week in Statesville, had brought into the campaign in the area the fact that Governor Stevenson had testified in the trial of Alger Hiss. The prior Thursday, Governor Theodore McKeldin of Maryland, who had nominated General Eisenhower at the convention, stated that the Fair Dealers wanted the Republicans to forget the deposition given by Governor Stevenson in defense of Mr. Hiss after the essential facts of the latter's disloyalty had been revealed by Whittaker Chambers.

It regards the matter as a flimsy smear campaign and provides the fuller story, which was that Governor Stevenson had been asked to testify about his association with Mr. Hiss, had declined to go to New York to testify in the trial, but signed a deposition which became part of the trial record. He had stated therein that he had worked with Mr. Hiss in 1933 while employed at the Agricultural Adjustment Administration, and that while their contact had been frequent, it had not been close or daily, that he had no further contact with Mr. Hiss until he met him again in the State Department in 1945. At that time, said Governor Stevenson, he believed Mr. Hiss had been preoccupied with the arrangements for the U.N. Charter Conference in San Francisco, of which he had been secretary general. The Governor indicated that he was engaged in other matters and met Mr. Hiss primarily in intra-departmental meetings and in connection with some aspects of the planning for the San Francisco conference, primarily relating to the handling of the press. Governor Stevenson had been at the U.N. Charter Conference as an assistant to then-Secretary of State Edward Stettinius, but during that time, he did not cross paths with Mr. Hiss in any official way, meeting him occasionally only at official social functions. After the conference, he conferred with Mr. Hiss occasionally in connection with preparations for the presentation of the U.N. Charter to the Senate for ratification. He resigned from the Department in August, 1945 and did not recall meeting Mr. Hiss again until he arrived in London in January, 1946, with the U.S. delegation to the U.N. General Assembly, at which time they had offices nearby one another and met frequently at delegation meetings and staff conferences. After returning to the U.S. in March, 1946, he recalled having met Mr. Hiss again at the U.N. General Assembly in New York in 1947, after Mr. Hiss had become connected with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and Governor Stevenson had met with him on a couple of occasions at his office in the U.S. delegation headquarters in connection with the U.N. budget, but had not seen him since.

The Governor had added that at the time he knew Mr. Hiss, his reputation for "integrity, loyalty and veracity" had been good, and that he had never heard any reports prior to 1948, at the time of the accusations by Whittaker Chamber before HUAC, suggesting him as a Communist or Communist sympathizer.

Recently, when the Governor had been asked how well he knew Mr. Hiss, he had indicated that he thought it would be a sad day for Anglo-Saxon justice when any person, especially a lawyer, would refuse to provide honest evidence in a criminal trial for fear the defendant might eventually be found guilty. "What would happen to our whole system of law if such timidity prevailed?" He indicated that he believed strongly that it was one of the basic responsibilities of any citizen, and especially that of lawyers, to testify to the best one could in any case where that person had evidence which either side deemed relevant. The jury would decide the value of the testimony. He indicated that he could not simply say that he did not know Mr. Hiss when he had known him. He also said that he could not indicate that his reputation was bad when obviously it had been good or he would not have been held in the exalted public position he was in when he met him in the State Department in 1945. He would not have been selected as president of the Carnegie Endowment by some of the most conservative and respected businessmen in the country, were his reputation otherwise at the time. He stressed that he had not seen or heard of Mr. Hiss between 1933 and 1945 and had heard not a whit of suspicion regarding him. He said on another occasion that he did not know Mr. Hiss well, had never visited his home or met his wife, and that if he had been asked about the source of his impressions of his character, he would have stated that his opinion was based on superficial contact, but that he was not asked that question. He had told the truth about what mutual acquaintances had suggested regarding Mr. Hiss, that they all seemed to regard him highly.

The piece indicates that to link the two men together in the theft of the famous "pumpkin papers", the microfilm of the confidential, though worthless, State Department documents which Mr. Chambers, the admitted former Communist espionage agent, claimed he had received from Mr. Hiss in 1938, as the bit of doggerel distributed by the North Carolina Republicans had sought to do, was a "gigantic and despicable lie". To say, as Governor McKeldin had said, that Governor Stevenson's deposition had been in defense of Mr. Hiss, was "a grossly distorted play on words".

It indicates that the Republicans had many sound issues on which to wage the forthcoming campaign and that General Eisenhower had promised a high-level campaign, free of smear tactics and appeals to prejudice and bigotry. It therefore urges the General immediately to repudiate the statements of Governor McKeldin and demand that all his lieutenants conform to "his own example of integrity and fair-mindedness", and that if he failed to do so, he would alienate millions of Americans who were presently supporting him.

"No Bonus Baby Is Ol' Satch" tells of 46-year old—"that's what he says"—Satchel Paige, on August 6, having beaten the Detroit Tigers in 12 innings, 1-0. It prompted the piece to ask who wanted to provide bonuses to 17-year old major league hopefuls when a 46-year old professional could perform so skillfully for a mere suit of clothes, the prize which Mr. Paige received from the club owner, Bill Veeck, after his 12-inning feat.

He had been playing professional baseball since 1926, and had pitched in 35 games for the St. Louis Browns during the season and won eight.

Meanwhile, the piece ventures, the bonus babies would probably continue to receive their $100,000, and there would likely be no "mass invasion by the major league scouts of old age homes, the birddogs galloping down the corridors in search of new Satchel Paiges."

Drew Pearson's staff, during Mr. Pearson's vacation, indicate that Democratic vice-presidential candidate, Senator John Sparkman of Alabama, together with Senator Tom Hennings and others, had been urging the White House to make public the confidential report on world control of the oil industry, kept from the public ever since the FTC had issued it. The column had gained access to the report and indicates that its conclusions were that outside the U.S., control over the petroleum industry was divided essentially between the state monopolies and seven large international petroleum companies, five of which were American and two British-Dutch, including Standard Oil Company of California, Socony-Vacuum, Gulf Oil, Texaco, Anglo-Iranian Oil Co., and Shell, the latter two being British and British-Dutch, respectively. The report indicated that in 1949, the seven companies accounted for more than half of the world's crude production, about 99 percent of the output in the Middle East and over 96 percent of the production of the Eastern Hemisphere, almost 45 percent of that of the Western Hemisphere.

The report indicated that the American, British and Dutch companies had secretly conspired to withhold oil production in some countries when they wanted to keep prices down, while increasing prices to the U.S. Government during the war and attempting to do so after the war. Through interlocking directorates, competition was stifled. A large part of the directors of the companies held multiple directorships in subsidiary companies. The directors of the Anglo-Iranian Co., who assisted in making oil policy for Iraq and Iran, participated, along with the directors of Gulf, in planning the price and production policies of Kuwait.

They note that during the London debates over the Iranian oil dispute, members of Parliament and British newspapers had worried that American oil companies might intervene and take over the Anglo-Iranian Oil Co.'s operations in Iran. But the FTC report made it clear that the American oil companies had been working closely with the British.

The FTC report indicated that in some cases, companies drilled shallow wells deliberately so as not to strike oil, to keep production down. Delays were deliberately undertaken in the development of Iraq's oil, originally applying to the British-Dutch and French in cooperation with Standard of New Jersey and Socony-Vacuum, but eventually involving also Texaco and Standard of California, at which point Standard of New Jersey and Socony-Vacuum horned in by letting Texaco and Standard of California in on some of their monopoly petroleum gravy in the Near East. The column indicates that it was just part of the secret story of the attempt by the five American oil companies, with the two British-Dutch companies, to corner the oil production and distribution market throughout the world.

Joseph & Stewart Alsop tell of Italian Socialist leader Pietro Nenni having been granted an interview with Russian dictator Joseph Stalin after going to Russia to receive a Soviet "peace prize", and giving a full report thereafter on the interview to Italian Ambassador to Russia, Mario di Stefano.

Stalin had begun the interview with the expected statements about the Soviet "will to peace" and then questioned Sr. Nenni at length, showing a surprising grasp of the details of Italian politics and the upcoming crucial election in Italy the following spring. He then began to discuss Germany, the portion of the interview considered of particular interest. The Russian leader indicated that the Bonn agreement had been approved by the U.S. Senate and he predicted as "very probable" the election of General Eisenhower as President. He thus considered any further diplomatic exchanges on the subject of Germany with the Western bloc to be no more than a "propagandistic and marginal expedient". He believed that it had become impossible to prevent the division of Germany into two parts on a permanent basis.

There was no indication in the conversation regarding anything to do with Korea or other problems. Sr. Nenni indicated that Stalin appeared in excellent health and spirits, "calm and confident", and seemed to have no intention of making war but also was not in any hurry to make unnecessary concessions to the West.

Sr. Nenni then inquired of the Italian Ambassador how U.S. Ambassador to Russia, George Kennan, was perceived in Western diplomatic circles, to which the Italian Ambassador replied that he was wholly sincere and that the Soviets were making a serious mistake in isolating him and paralyzing his efforts.

The Alsops remark that the meaning of Sr. Nenni's story was uncertain. It was likely he had provided the report to the Italian Embassy with the full consent of the Kremlin and had asked about Ambassador Kennan with its encouragement. It was possible to conclude that Stalin's statements on Germany supported the view of the more optimistic of two schools of thought which had long existed within the U.S. Government, one being that the Soviets would ultimately be willing to go to war if necessary to prevent the rearmament of West Germany in alliance with the West, while the other group had believed that the Soviets would simply heavily rearm East Germany in response and isolate the Eastern zone fully from contact with the West. The questions regarding Ambassador Kennan suggested that the Kremlin might be considering an approach to the American Government through the Ambassador.

Robert C. Ruark indicates that it had been some time since he had filed a report on his family, and announces that he had become a grandfather of ten boxer puppies, the initial effort of his boxer at paternity. The dog had barely known the mother, a poodle. He tells of his boxer having been "pretty insufferable" throughout the five years that Mr. Ruark had worked for him, and the news of the ten offspring had appeared to make the dog more autocratic around the breakfast table than previously. He stared now constantly in an accusatory fashion at Mr. Ruark, suggesting weakness at not having delivered any offspring of his own.

The poodle mother appeared frustrated at having to live in the back streets of her lover's life, and had eaten one end of the divan recently, probably the result of a frantic search for food, as she seemed determined to eat herself into obesity since the arrival of the ten pups. She had managed to take a whole turkey from the top of the stove recently and even sought to devour two frozen hotdogs. She had previously slept with Mr. Ruark but now locked herself in closets and in the shower to sleep. She brooded constantly, followed her faithless boyfriend with disillusioned eyes, and slept in the bathtub.

He had summoned the dog psychiatrists, but they had offered no solution save more talk about basic frustrations and traumas. He had determined either to tell the boxer that the puppies were not his or to buy the poodle a cat and tell her it was her very own puppy, in which case she would probably believe it and save everyone's sanity.

We still await your opinion next month on that little black and white dog destined for immortality in the Nixon family, given that you're such an aficionado of the Eisenhower-Nixon ticket. What will your dog psychiatrists say about that one?

A letter writer from Norwood finds it not too surprising but was nevertheless bewildered by the change in attitude of Democratic leaders toward General Eisenhower. Whereas in 1948 the party leaders had sought to persuade him to run as a Democrat, now he was "anathema maranatha" and was being regarded as everything from a liar to a Communist sympathizer. He indicates that both Governor Stevenson and General Eisenhower were patriots of the "first water" and he hopes that no one in the country would qualify as "bilgewater scum" by labeling them anything else.

You seem to have your wires crossed a little bit, as it had been some of the pro-Taft Republicans who had suggested General Eisenhower's softness on Communism. We have not read of any Democrats having done so.

A letter writer indicates that a previous letter writer's discussion of dogs as being anything but man's best friend having reminded of a late 19th Century story, "Senator Vest's Tribute to a Dog". He could not understand why the prior writer would suggest that all dogs ought be destroyed. As a complete vindication of the dog, he submits the story by the Missouri Senator, George Graham Vest, who had lived between 1830 and 1904, and had been the last member of the Confederacy to serve as a member of Congress.

He provides the background of the story, in which Senator Vest, while attending court in a country town in Missouri, had been asked by the plaintiff's attorneys to help in a dog case, wherein it was alleged that the defendant had deliberately shot the dog, while other evidence suggested that the dog had attacked the defendant and so the latter had acted in self-defense. Senator Vest had agreed to participate, and argued to the jury that the best friend a man had in the world might turn against him and become his enemy, even including a son or daughter and those otherwise nearest and dearest, that the money a man had could be lost, that his reputation might be sacrificed by a moment of ill-considered action, that those who gave praise in times of success might turn and "throw the stone of malice" when failure arrived, but that "the one absolutely unselfish friend that man can have in this selfish world, the one that never proves ungrateful or treacherous, is his dog."

He goes on quoting at length from this story and Senator Vest's sentimental argument to the jury—apparently having little or nothing to do with the facts of the case. He concludes that after the argument, the plaintiff having sued for $200, was awarded $500 by the jury.

Perhaps, Senator Nixon, not just recalling the 1944 reference by FDR before the Teamsters meeting in Washington to the Republican attack on Fala, had been sent a copy of this story either by the letter's author, Mr. Cherry, or some other reader. In any event, such a sentimental appeal to the masses of dog owners, having had its effect obviously in the 19th Century, still had its impact in 1952, when the heavy influx of letters and telegrams in favor of Senator Nixon after his speech of late September, would save his spot on the ticket and his place, an inimitable one, unique among U.S. Presidents thus far, in history.

A letter writer from Norwood tells of a "candidate's expenditure report", including such items as "lost 2,416 hours of sleep thinking about the election; lost two front teeth and a lot of hair in personal encounter with opponent; donated a beef, four pigs and five sheep to community barbecue; gave away three pairs suspenders, four calico dresses, five dollars in cash and 13 baby rattlers." And it goes on in that vein, adding "told 20,000 lies, attended sixteen revival meetings and was baptized four times by immersion and twice by other ways … got dog bit 27 times; was kicked twice by the same mule and was defeated", signing the letter "Fun Lover". The writer adds a P.S., saying that Senators Kefauver and Russell could understand and appreciate the position of that candidate.

Well, what about Senator Taft?

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