The Charlotte News
Friday, October 16, 1953
Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that in Panmunjom, thousands of North Korean prisoners resisting repatriation threatened to break out of the compounds in which they were confined within the demilitarized zone, forcing cancellation of the second day of explanations by the Communists, seeking to convince the prisoners to return home, with 1,000 North Koreans having been scheduled for the process this date. The Indian command assigned to guard them had withdrawn a battalion which had sought to force 500 of the North Korean prisoners to listen to the explanations, after 2,000 North Koreans, armed with clubs, were preparing to break out of nearby compounds at the first sight of violence. U.N. observers had indicated that they would protest if any prisoners were dragged forcibly before the explainers. The Neutral Nations Repatriation Commission indicated that 1,000 Chinese would be interviewed the following day. Lt. General K. S. Thimmaya, Indian chairman of the NNRC, said that the Indian command had done all it could to appeal to the North Korean prisoners and that the Commission would consider how to enforce its rules so that the prisoners would attend the interviews, which were mandatory under the terms of the Armistice. He said that the Commission was empowered to use force if necessary to compel attendance.
In London, the Big Three foreign ministers, Secretary of State Dulles, British Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden and French Foreign Minister Georges Bidault, began their conference on worldwide problems, called hastily during the week. The talks were set to conclude the following Sunday. Secretary Dulles said that he did not think the talks would produce a "magic formula for peace" but was confident that the exchange of views among "three friends" would advance "the cause of worldwide peace and justice". Prime Minister Winston Churchill was expected to put forward, through Mr. Eden, his proposal for a Big Four conference of the heads of state, including Premier Georgi Malenkov of the Soviet Union. Among the topics to be discussed was the crisis taking place in Trieste, after the announcement by the British and Americans earlier in the week that they would withdraw their occupation troops from the northern occupation zone, in favor of the Italians, heavily protested by Yugoslavia, which occupied the southern zone, contending that it was a violation of the peace treaty with Italy.
In Kansas City, governors of drought-stricken states presented to the President, during his tour of the Midwest, a program in which Federal and state governments would share the cost of relief to feed starving cattle, and the President approved the plan. Under the plan, no state would be penalized if it could not produce state funding. Secretary of Agriculture Ezra Taft Benson, also present, confirmed that funds under the program would be allocated on the basis of the number of cattle in drought disaster areas. The Department of Agriculture would pay up to half of the cost of transportation of hay into the drought areas and the states would be responsible for buying and distributing the hay.
In New York, Senator Joseph McCarthy said this date that he would go to the Lewisburg Federal Penitentiary in Pennsylvania the following day to question convicted atomic spy David Greenglass, the brother of executed atomic spy Ethel Rosenberg, concerning what he may have known about radar espionage. The Investigations subcommittee which the Senator chaired was investigating an alleged radar espionage ring emanating from Fort Monmouth in New Jersey, where radar defenses were formulated. Evidence had come to the subcommittee that executed atomic spy Julius Rosenberg had been the mastermind behind the Fort Monmouth ring. Mr. Greenglass was serving a 15-year sentence, reduced for his cooperation in providing information and testifying against his sister and brother-in-law. Senator McCarthy said that he expected the transcribed full testimony to come to the subcommittee this date from a German scientist, who reportedly had told authorities in West Germany that the Russians were using secret documents stolen from Fort Monmouth. The German scientist had fled East Germany for West Germany more than a year earlier.
Attorney General Herbert Brownell said this date that a Federal grand jury would be asked to determine whether Warren Stephenson, former local Republican leader, had committed perjury in testimony before a House committee investigating "four percenters". Mr. Stephenson had acknowledged at the hearing that he sought a four percent fee for obtaining more Government business for a California munitions firm; but there were apparently some conflicts between some of his testimony and the other record of the hearings, held the prior June in executive session. Representative Porter Hardy of Virginia had told him at the time that he was "one of the biggest liars" the Congressman had ever heard. Mr. Stephenson had said that he used supposedly secret information about Navy plans for rocket launchers in seeking to get the California firm to retain him at $2,000 per month or the four percent fee.
In Serzin, France, near Lyons, a locomotive crashed into the rear of a suburban train, killing ten persons, at least four of whom were women, two of whom were schoolteachers. Police took the driver of the locomotive into custody for questioning.
In Turkey, ten people drowned in floods the previous day in two small villages, following a night-long downpour.
In Greensburg, Pa., a 24-year old man was maintained under close guard after police said that he had admitted participating in the slaying of the two sleeping truck drivers on the Pennsylvania Turnpike the previous July. He had been arrested in Albuquerque the previous Sunday by New Mexico State Police. He was charged with murder of the two truck drivers, who had been shot in the head and robbed within three days of each other. The man initially had denied having any knowledge of the slayings, claiming that he thought he knew, however, who had done it.
In St. Joseph, Mo., Kansas City investigators, at the behest of the prosecutor, reopened the shallow grave, in which the body of six-year old kidnap and murder victim Bobby Greenlease had been discovered, on the theory that another body, that of the alleged third accomplice, who had been cleared by the male of the arrested couple, might have been buried there, but found nothing. The person in question had not been located.
In Dawsonville, Ga., a fugitive from a life sentence for causing the deaths of 41 persons by poisoned liquor, was recaptured this date. The convict weighed over 300 pounds and had walked away from a prison camp on September 29. He was apprehended driving a stolen car outside of Dawsonville. The sentence for murder was based on his having produced a lethal mixture of moonshine and methyl alcohol, a mixture to which he had admitted producing, stirring it with a broomstick, but claiming that he had no idea that it was poisonous. His nickname was "Fat".
Willard G. Cole, Pulitzer Prize-winning editor of the Whiteville (N.C.) News-Reporter, said this date that he did not plan to leave his present post to become an administrative assistant to Senator Alton Lennon of North Carolina, but said that he was honored by consideration for the position.
In Charlotte, Tom Fesperman of The
News reports of residents of an area off Park Road having
awakened during the morning to find that their new white houses had
been stained brown by gases or fumes emanating from nearby Sugaw
Creek, as much as a mile from some of the houses in question. A
resident of the area said that the odor from the creek was the worst
he had ever experienced and that they had to keep all of the windows
and doors closed. The neighbors called the City and County health
officer, who said that the situation was "pretty bad", that
apparently an industrial concern had dumped waste into the creek
which had mixed with materials already present to form hydrogen
sulfide, a gas with a bad odor, which had reacted to the lead in the
white paint to form a lead sulfide, producing the brown coloring. The
health officer said that he did not know whether the staining would
ultimately go away. A resident said that it did not appear that it
would fade away. Cheer up. At least it did not turn them black
At Southwell Race Track, England, jockey Mick Morrissey swapped horses in mid-race the previous day without ever touching the ground, having left the starting gate aboard Knother, a 20 to 1 shot, and crossing the finish line on Royal Student, the even-money favorite in the race, which had crashed at the fifth fence, throwing its rider, and causing Knother also to crash, throwing Mr. Morrissey high into the air, causing him to land on Royal Student, which struggled to its feet and finished the two-mile course in a walk. In what position did the horse finish?
In New York, G.E. thought it would be nice to provide five shares of its stock to any baby born to a G.E. employee the previous day, the firm's 75th anniversary, and wound up having to provide $47,000 worth of stock to 122 such babies, even before the West Coast had reported, according to a company spokesman. Each such baby would receive $394.48 worth of stock at current prices. The company had approximately 226,000 employees within the U.S. What's the stock worth now?
On the editorial page, "A Principle Pays Off at Panmunjom" finds compelling the 49 to 1 ratio among anti-Communist prisoners of war resisting repatriation to their homelands, who were sticking by their initial choice and not swayed by the start of the Communist explanations seeking to entreat them to return home, underscoring the principles of freedom and democracy. The fact was even more compelling when it was realized that those who chose repatriation would return home immediately, while those who chose to remain would not necessarily be freed until early in 1954.
The beginning of the explanations period, set to proceed through December 24, was a small step forward in winding up the war in Korea, decreasing the tensions which had occurred in the demilitarized zone where the non-repatriating prisoners were being guarded by Indian troops, viewed with suspicion by the anti-Communist prisoners resisting repatriation. The overwhelming rejection of repatriation by the first Chinese prisoners to be interviewed would lower the prestige of the Communists throughout Asia, regardless of how hard the Communists sought to downplay the rejection, as they had in the previous night's radio broadcasts. It posits that Americans could take some pride in the fact that their negotiators had stood firm for the principle of voluntary repatriation during the months of attempting to reach the truce. It suggests that the response of those prisoners would reverberate far beyond Korea.
"Farm Exports Won't Increase This Way" indicates that Secretary of Agriculture Ezra Taft Benson might not have a definable farm policy, but the same could not be said of Republican Senator Milton Young of North Dakota, who advocated extending parity support for three years beyond its scheduled expiration, expanding it to take in more farm crops, increasing farm exports, and decreasing imports.
It finds that all of the points, with the exception of expansion of farm exports, appeared unacceptable. If Americans wanted to sell more overseas, they would need to buy more so that foreign importers could earn dollars with which to buy U.S. goods. It asserts that produce at artificially supported farm prices could not compete in the world market, one of the major reasons why U.S. farm exports had declined 30 percent in 1952.
It concludes that lowered farm prices was the best way to boost farm exports and domestic consumption, but also believes that farm costs for equipment and food needed to be reduced. It finds Senator Young's policy, however, to appear as campaign fodder and not the result of realistic agricultural economics.
"Adult Education, Charlotte Style" indicates that the President, during his tour of the Midwest the previous day, had stated a central theme that international understanding was essential to peace, and that education was the means of establishing that understanding. It finds it laudable, while recognizing that some people could not afford to go beyond high school, indicating that education did not necessarily derive from attendance of college, that increasingly, adult discussion groups and panel discussions were used as a means to supplement formal education.
The following day, it points out, residents of Charlotte would employ those methods to initiate a program to help achieve the President's aim of increasing understanding of international relations, a program sponsored by the Joint Council on International Affairs, a symposium on foreign affairs and U.N. problems, to be held at the local YWCA all day. The emphasis would be on participation by everyone present, and it wishes the program success and hopes it would be a permanent part of the Charlotte scene.
"Vinson's Legacy" suggests that the late Chief Justice Fred Vinson had thousands of friends, millions of admirers, and had left his imprint on all three branches of the Federal Government, in which he had served for decades, and yet when the final accounting of his estate was made recently, it had been revealed that he had left only about $1,000 to his heirs, as he died a very poor man by standards of many of his contemporaries. Yet, he had left a rich legacy in terms of friendship and diverse contributions to the government of the country, and, it suggests, the value of the legacy warranted reflection by everyone who scurried about accumulating a material estate.
A piece from the Greensboro Daily News, titled "The South Has Something To Say", comments on the flood of literature emanating from the South during the previous half-century, contributing 10 of the 11 best sellers which had sold more than a million copies, and producing such authors as Ellen Glasgow, William Faulkner, James Branch Cabell and Erskine Caldwell.
Southern Renascence: The
Literature of the Modern South, edited by Louis D. Rubin, Jr.,
and Robert D. Jacobs, analyzed why that was so, finding that Southern
literature displayed certain traits appealing to American readers:
such as the sense of the concrete, as shown by the works of Thomas
Wolfe and Eudora Welty; the sense of the elemental, as in Paul
Green's "The Lost Colony", in William Faulkner's saga of
It suggests that such literature was from the mind and heart of the South, with a source unlike the rest of the country, with a voice strong in skepticism regarding the country's way of life, more inclined to favor agrarian rather than industrial society. Its tragic history had taught it to be wary of an overabundance of success and its concomitant problems, including those of race and poverty, which had forced the region to think deeply about man and the good life. "It knows the difficulties of living by a code which paramounts honor, compassion, courtesy, courage and integrity: some stick by it, others abandon it, and end up on Tobacco Road, but the code never dies, and its influence emerges in Southern literature, again and again, for instance, in Faulkner's novels, in Young's, and in Will Percy's Lanterns on the Levee." It observes that such explained why the nation's foremost fiction writer was born in Mississippi, instead of Massachusetts. It finds that the South still had a good deal to say to the country and the world, which had become accustomed of late to listening to what the South had to say.
It might be noted that after unabashedly borrowing for the heading of its first section "The Mind of the South" and after taking up where W. J. Cash left off in his book of 1941, in analyzing the new, more realistic litterateurs of the South, in comparison and contrast to romanticists of the past, dealing with many of the same authors, those writing major works by 1940, Southern Renascence, in its 464 pages, makes not a single mention of Cash or his book. The glaring omission, made the more glaring by adopting the title of the book without attribution, probably derives from its heavy influence by the Agrarian group out of Vanderbilt in Nashville, whom Cash found trifling, atavists seeking to carry the South backward rather than forward, and one of whom provided the only negatively critical review of his book when it was first published. Indeed, Southern Renascence appears to be little more than an expansion of the themes begun in carefully distilled streams in the last section of Cash's book, with, no doubt, an Agrarian tilt to the matter: Let's not move along so fast heya with all that Commonest integratin' business, else we git 'em all up confused and revoltin' on us.
It is not surprising that such a group reacted with a degree of opprobrium to Cash's work, as he had been none too kind to them in The Mind of the South, though, characteristically in his restrained hand, not without some praise for certain of their more practical and clear-headed views:
11. The proposition that Southern writers of any importance were generally moving toward a more clear-eyed view of the Southern world even has a certain applicability to a group which might seem to stand wholly outside what I have been saying. I refer to the so-called Southern Agrarians, who made their appearance in the late twenties, with the center of their activity at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, and who were led by John Crowe Ransom, Allen Tate, and Donald Davidson.
Primarily this group was one which turned its gaze sentimentally backward. Its appearance just as the South was moving toward the crisis of the depression, just as Progress was apparently sweeping the field, just as the new critics and writers were beginning to swing lustily against the old legend and the old pattern, was significant. In a real fashion these men were mouthpieces of the fundamental, if sometimes only subterranean, will of the South to hold to the old way: the spiritual heirs of Thomas Nelson Page. And their first joint declaration, I'll Take My Stand, was, like their earlier prose works in general, essentially a determined reassertion of the validity of the legend of the Old South, an attempt to revive and fully restore the identification of that Old South with Cloud-Cuckoo Town, or at any rate to render it as a Theocritean idyl.
But the attempt was made with enormously intellectualized arguments, which itself is evidence of how far the South had moved on its highest levels, how far the new spirit had invaded even conservative quarters like Vanderbilt. The yearning of these men toward the past had encountered and mingled with all that yearning for the past which, in Europe and America, has moved in an unbroken stream since the early-nineteenth-century revolt against Rousseau. They had read the Summa Theologica of St. Thomas Aquinas, were steeped in Spinoza, Hobbes, Kant, all the philosophers; they worshipped at the shrine of Dr. John Donne (the Donne of St. Paul's deanery and the esoteric poems rather than the author of "To His Mistress Going to Bed," of course
); they had been influenced in varying degree by De Maistre, John Ruskin, Ferdinand Brunetiere, the neo-Catholicism of Hilaire Belloc and Gilbert Chesterton, the neo-medievalism of Belloc and Chesterton and T. S. Eliot, by Irving Babbitt and Paul Elmer Moore and Norman Foerster.
They distrusted science almost as warmly as Bishop Wilberforce had once distrusted it, felt with conviction that it assumed much too arrogantly to be on the verge of illuminating the whole of the vast range of illimitable darkness which is the mysterious universe, that its total effect on men was to make them too smug and knowing and brightly hard, to loose the old bonds without replacing them with new ones or having the capacity to replace them with new ones—perhaps not altogether without reason. They distrusted industrialism and its effect on mankind and the South even more positively, and certainly not without reason. They had more than a few doubts about democracy. Arrant individualists, they yet recoiled from the monadism which, swinging up through the centuries from the Renaissance, was flowering in the chaos of our times; felt the pressing need for the revival of values, and above everything a religious faith, which should again bind Western men, or at least some portion of them, into a unified whole.
Being poets (the old Fugitive group formed the core of the Agrarian group), they longed for a happy land into which to project their hearts' desire. Being Southerners, and so subject, subconsciously at any rate, to the old powerful drive toward idealization of the fatherland, they caught up all their wishing and all their will to think themselves back into the old certainties and projected them upon the Old South as the Arcadia in which they had once been realized, and to which return would have to be made if salvation were to be achieved.
Yet, as what I say indicates, and despite their strong tendency to preciosity, there was from the first a good deal more realism in them than in any of the earlier apologists and idealizers. Theirs was to be no close repetition of the pro-slavery argument of Harper, Dew & Company, with every shred of evidence relentlessly twisted to their purpose.
It is not true, as was foolishly charged by the Communists and others who should have known better, that they consciously inclined to Fascism. And it is not true, as Sherwood Anderson and an army of followers clamored, that all that moved them was simply the nostalgic wish to sit on cool and columned verandas, sip mint juleps, and converse exquisitely while the poor whites and the black men toiled for them in the hot, wide fields spread out against the horizon.
It is true that Allen Tate got into near-Fascist company as one of the editors of the American Review, though that was the result of sympathies which had nothing directly to do with Fascism. I think he was quite candid when he protested to the Nation that he would join the Communists if the only alternative were the Silver Shirts.
It is true also that the majority of the contributors to I'll Take My Stand were primarily occupied with the aristocratic notion in their examination of the Old South. And it is true, finally, that they took little account of the case of the underdog proper, the tenants and sharecroppers, industrial labor, and the Negroes as a group.
Nevertheless, they did take much account of the small landowning farmers—the yeomen. A minority of them, with John Donald Wade of Georgia University as the most eminent, was even more concerned with these people than with the planters. And practically every contributor to the book confessed openly or tacitly that the Old South was in the main more simple, plain, and recognizably human in a new country than the legend had ever had it in the past. Furthermore, it may be said that the virtues they assigned to the Old South were essentially the virtues which it indubitably possessed. Save for the fact that they insisted on making it a good bit more contemplative and deeply wise than I think it was, they are much the same virtues I have myself assigned to it at its best: honor, courage, generosity, amiability, courtesy.
Merely, the Agrarians refused to observe the faults of the Old South and the operation of its system upon the people who lived under it. And, above all, to confess that the diseases which presently afflict the South are not and cannot logically be made to be, as they maintain, solely the fault of the introduction of industrialism and commercialism, but in very great part flow directly out of the pattern laid down in the Old South itself.
As time has gone on, however, they have tended to modify their views in the direction of realism. The tendency to idealize the Old South has gone steadily on, indeed. It is to be observed plainly in such books as Allen Tate's The Fathers and Caroline Gordon's None Shall Look Back. And above all in Stark Young's So Red the Rose. It is more than a little ironic that the last novel was written by a man who prefers to live in New York (an Agrarian by remote control, as it were) and who serves the New Republic as drama critic. But the case serves brilliantly to illustrate the power of the South over its sons even when they flee from it, and is perhaps explicable enough on the theory that distance tends to heighten and not lessen romantic nostalgia.
But despite the persistence of this tendency to idealize, the movement toward realism which I mention has gone forward, too. Taxed by most of the critics with having no knowledge of the elements of sociology and economics, at which they were inclined to sneer in I'll Take My Stand and their early essays in the American Review, the Agrarians were not long in setting out to remedy the lack, and they have gradually exhibited more respect for the facts in these fields. Moreover, they have gathered many new converts, some of whom are well versed in the social sciences and have no patience with precious nonsense about them—converts of whom the most notable is Herbert Agar of the Louisville Courier-Journal [who, it should be noted, was scheduled to fly from Louisville to Raleigh on December 5, 1941 to give a speech in honor of Cash's posthumous receipt of the North Carolina Mayflower Literary Society Cup, honoring The Mind of South, prevented by inclement weather from appearing, in whose stead appeared recently retired Ambassador to Mexico, Josephus Daniels].
Again, when the critics pointed out their lack of awareness of the underdog in I'll Take My Stand and charged that Agrarianism was only a nebulous piece of poetizing about the joys of communion with the soil, without definite form or objective, they tacitly admitted the justice of the indictment by expanding their doctrine into a "program." Ever since they have spent a great deal of ink in deploring the growth of tenantry, sharecropping, absentee landlordism, and industrial proletarianism; have continually maintained that the South could never be healthy again until the land was widely distributed among small holders. In the hands of such men as Mr. Agar, the argument here has become very extensive and formidable. But it cannot be said that their "program" is yet properly such, for they have never got around to telling us precisely how the redistribution of the land is to be brought about—though that is not to be too much held against them, since the problem is obviously one of staggering difficulties.
These Agrarians have had the bad influence of encouraging smugness and sentimentality in many quarters, and even of giving these vices sanction as a sort of higher wisdom. But it is fair to say that this has probably been well balanced out by their services in puncturing the smugness of Progress, in directing attention to the evils of laissez-faire industrialism, in their insistence on the necessity of developing a sensible farm program for the region, and in recalling that the South must not be too much weaned away from its ancient leisureliness—the assumption that the first end of life is living itself—which, as they rightly contend, is surely one of its greatest virtues.
12. But, for all the changes that were going on and being made in Dixie, it would still have been rash to adopt the conclusion which I have assigned to my hypothetical observer: to assume that the vigor had gone out of the old pattern and that it was speedily being relegated to the limbo of things past and done with. If it was breaking down in the most intelligent quarters, and if perhaps more serious fissures than those I have mentioned were slowly developing, its power over the body of the South would remain tremendous, even conclusive, and would exhibit itself with great distinctness...
—from The Mind of the South, Book Three, chap. III, "Of the Great Blight—and New Quandaries", sections 11 and 12, pp. 389-394 of 1969 ed., Knopf
The Boston Herald comments on "the day they cleared the land", that is the day on which a young couple cut down trees and marked out a place for their new home, after having obtained homesteading rights. It neither identifies the place nor the couple in question.
Perhaps, they were New England Agrarians, by remote control
Drew Pearson, en route through the Midwest, tells of Secretary of Agriculture Ezra Taft Benson galling the farmers by hiring as his right-hand man one of the bitterest critics of the farmers, Jack Davis, of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, author of American Farmer: Top Man on the Economic Totem Pole. The latter had given a speech before the National Rural Co-operative Association, in which he had suggested that the farmers "get off the government teat". As soon as Secretary Benson had hired Mr. Davis as his personal assistant, the news spread in farm publications that the farmers were in for a hard time. The Secretary's first press release had stated that a huge bureaucracy had grown up in the Department of Agriculture during the previous 20 years and it was in for a major overhaul. Congressman Jamie Whitten of Mississippi had challenged the Secretary over that press release, when the Secretary first appeared before Congress, and the new Secretary disclaimed any knowledge of it, saying that he had never read it. Mr. Pearson explains that it was because Jack Davis had issued it. Thus, the farmers figured that they knew who was running the Department.
The Federal budget was the size of a phone book and was pretty dull reading, but in its back, there were interesting figures, including the amount of the subsidy paid to farmers and to businessmen, veterans and others. In 1952, the subsidy paid to farmers was 463 million dollars, and in 1953, 547 million, while the subsidy paid to businessmen was more than a billion dollars in 1952. Yet, many businessmen talked of "creeping socialism", and the President, who had branded TVA as an example of it, probably had not read his own budget figures. Postmaster General Arthur Summerfield, who, as chairman of the RNC, had collected many thousands of dollars from big airline officials to counteract such creeping socialism, also had not likely read those figures. Nor had Secretary of the Treasury George Humphrey, who was determined to lower taxes to prevent such creeping socialism. But the companies of Secretary Humphrey had received over 22 million in tax subsidies just a few weeks before he had entered the Cabinet. The Hanna Coal & Ore Co., which Mr. Humphrey owned, received a 75 percent tax depreciation write-off on an 11.3 million dollar iron ore investment, and another 70 percent write-off on a 22 million dollar nickel plant. The Postmaster General was paying between 70 and 95 million dollars annually to the airlines as a subsidy for carrying airmail. In 1951, the Government paid 21.3 million dollars to construct new towers, beacons and radar for the large airlines, plus another 13 million dollars in 1952 for the purpose. Large amounts had also been paid for runways and construction work at airports. Mr. Pearson points out that the shipping industry also received large subsidies, amounting to about 30 million dollars per year, in addition to which the U.S. Lines received a construction subsidy of 18.2 million plus a national defense subsidy of 24 million for building the S.S. United States. Doctors also received a subsidy of about 30 million dollars per year, reaching 39.5 million in 1951, for conducting medical research.
He goes on further listing such subsidies from the Government, commenting that they were just a few within private business, demonstrating why the farmers were so unhappy with the employment of Jack Davis as Secretary Benson's personal assistant. He concludes that it was no wonder that Mr. Davis had resigned.
Marquis Childs discusses the rumors circulating regarding the supposed ill health of the President, whose health, at age 63, White House press secretary James Hagerty assured, was good. The President's personal physician, Maj. General Howard Snyder, who had been close to the President since the end of World War II and was also his personal friend, also assured that the President was in good health. General Snyder had received his medical training in Utah, where, after graduation, he became a contract surgeon with the Army, later graduating with honors from the Army Medical School in Washington. During World War II, he had been assistant to the Inspector General of the Army, touring all theaters of war.
Mr. Childs observes that to the casual observer, the President gave every outward sign of being in good health, also exhibited at his most recent press conference, after returning from a six-week respite from Washington spent in Colorado. He ventures that much of the speculation and rumors regarding the President's health probably derived from the fact that he was more complicated than his outwardly easy mien suggested, that the complications and strains placed by the Presidency on any individual were unknowable even to those close to the President.
He reminds that rumors had circulated regarding President Roosevelt's health from the early days of his first term, the result in part of his having been afflicted in 1921 with polio. Those rumors had grown in intensity when FDR announced that he would run in 1944 for a fourth term. President Truman, though subjected to many kinds of rumor-mongering, as every President, never had his health questioned substantially, "since he was so obviously made of something indestructible". Parenthetically, his early morning, brisk constitutionals regularly taken with any press members who wanted to join him, no doubt, helped to squelch any such rumors aborning.
James Marlow tells of three Senators, Francis Case of South Dakota, James Duff of Pennsylvania, and John Stennis of Mississippi, all members of the Armed Services Committee, having toured Europe and North Africa to inspect the construction of American bases there, coincidentally leaving Madrid on the day the agreement with Spain was concluded to provide aid in exchange for the air and naval bases. They appeared generally pleased with the construction in England, France, Germany, Turkey, Portugal, French Morocco and Italy. They said, in a report released during the weekend, that if an aggressor launched an atomic attack, that aggressor would suffer inevitable damage. It said that they had been informed that one man in a single jet bomber-fighter of the type located at the forward bases in large numbers could carry more destructive power than all of the bombers which were in England during World War II. They asserted that it was time to quit the wringing of hands and talking in tones of despair, that potential aggressors, when they realized they could not win any war, might begin to listen to reason.
On October 12, the Government had made the announcement that the Greek Government had provided the U.S. permission to use air and naval bases in that country.
The result of these bases was an "iron ring" which the U.S. and its allies were building on the perimeter of the Iron Curtain. The U.S. had announced the signing of similar agreements with other countries, such as Denmark, utilizing facilities on Greenland, with Portugal, utilizing air and naval bases in the Azores, and with Iceland.
Robert C. Ruark, in Port Lyautey, in French Morocco, tells of a vastly expanded naval base and its surrounding community, nearly integrating completely the town into the Navy. He asserts that it appeared to him, though acknowledging his bias for having served in the Navy during World War II, that the Navy had a way of getting things done on its own, with a minimum of foolishness. They appeared to have avoided the complications associated with the big Air Force bases in French Morocco.
He finds Lyautey to be neither Arab nor French, to have become as much Navy as Norfork or Mare Island in San Francisco Bay. All of the locals spoke English with an American accent. The ladies dressed and wore their hair as Americans, and, he supposes, intended to marry Americans, if they had already not done so. The town had plenty of new construction, with a new hotel and swimming pool and a series of "gin mills" reminiscent of Chicago. It was divided into separate communities, with Navy personnel going to one café, while the Government civilian workers hung out in another, and the Air Force personnel, yet in another.
He says that he had a large amount of fun in the town and heard a lot of complaints from the non-commissioned officers of the Navy, more than he had heard since his days in the Navy. They now had enlarged their scope of complaints to include atomic-powered submarines and modern technical communication.
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