The Charlotte News
Friday, June 12, 1953
Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that in Seoul, South Koreans chanted, marched and wept during the fourth consecutive day of demonstrations against the proposed armistice, leaving Korea divided. Some 400 men paraded in front of the allied correspondents' billets, pushing past a single line of metropolitan police to the gates of the compound, where they chanted, "Go North! Go North!" School girls paraded in several demonstrations, chanting, "Give us unification," and "March North!" About 400 girls visited the correspondents' billets, where they sang, shouted slogans and broke into loud crying on signal from their leaders. They passed out leaflets to allied soldiers, which stated that they were against any truce without unification, that they preferred death to absence of unification, that they feared that they were being handed over to the Communists and that the anti-Communist prisoners of war should be set free—which, as to the latter point, was virtually included in the terms of the truce. In Pusan, the temporary capital of South Korea, shots had been fired in the air in front of the U.S. Army Engineers unit near the British legation compound, but no one had been injured and the origin of the gunfire was unknown.
Meanwhile, Communist and allied staff officers worked in secret on the final details of the armistice, which now appeared virtually certain to occur, only a matter of days away. Two groups were meeting separately, one believed to be working on the truce line and the other, the final details of the prisoner exchange.
In the ground war, Chinese Communist troops struck for the third straight day at U.S. forces on the east-central front and guns on both sides fired thunderous barrages. The Chinese had been repulsed the previous day amid heavy rain, with heavy losses inflicted on an attacking force numbering about 1,500. The enemy had nevertheless again attacked with unknown numbers of troops on "Outpost Harry", ten miles northeast of Chorwon, along the northeast invasion route to Seoul. The Communists were repulsed in attacks near "Sniper Ridge" on the central front and clung to three hills in the mountainous eastern sector, where South Korean troops were trying to close a breach in the allied line. The Army said that in two days of fighting for "Harry", the enemy had lost approximately 500 men killed and 1,000 wounded. Associated Press correspondent Milo Farneti reported that at the Third Division front, enemy artillery had knocked out numerous bunkers and at one point, allied soldiers had stacked up about 100 enemy bodies as protection against shell fragments. U.S. Eighth Army commander, General Maxwell Taylor, visited headquarters of the 15th Regiment, which was fighting to hold "Harry". The commander of the Third Battalion wondered why the enemy was wasting so much manpower against superior allied fire power, as they had during the previous two nights, if they were serious about an armistice.
A report from the western front indicates that Americans who walked on patrols through no-man's land each night were greatly impatient with the opposition to the truce by the South Koreans and President Syngman Rhee, his Cabinet, and the National Assembly. One American private commented that after a few weeks in foxholes with C rations, one did not ask how there was going to be an armistice but rather when there was going to be one. That appeared to be the general sentiment of most Americans at the front. One soldier said he would like to take the "old so-and-so", in reference to the 78-year old President Rhee, along with him on patrol and give him "a taste of them mortars". Others expressed similar feelings, as quoted in the story. One soldier said he wanted the fighting to end, after narrowly escaping death on June 10, when a mortar shell dropped on his back but proved to be a dud, after once earlier having dodged a glancing enemy rifle bullet which had been stopped by his flak jacket. As the patrol began its outpost duty in no-man's land as the sun sank, one private said that he hoped that everyone got home safely. There was then a silence, and one could sense the feelings of the men, "the fear of dying in the dying days of the war."
South Korea's Ambassador to the U.S., Dr. You Chan Yang, had the previous day charged during a press conference, following the dedication of a blood center in Philadelphia, that a U.N. economic embargo had been orally threatened by U.N. officials, whom he declined to name, to coerce acceptance by South Korea of the proposed truce terms. He said that the U.N. might force the U.S. to cut off economic and military aid to South Korea if it refused to abide by the truce. The State Department quickly indicated that the claim was untrue, that the U.S. would not use famine and human suffering for political purposes. At U.N. Command headquarters in Tokyo, U.N. supreme commander General Mark Clark stated that there had already been a denial of a similar report, and a U.N. Command spokesman declined further comment. South Korea's U.N. representative, Col. Ben Lamb, expressed astonishment at the charge and said that he knew of no such attempt at international bullying. Dr. Yang said that he believed other members of the U.N. forces were placing pressure on the U.S. to put forth the truce terms, but that he did not believe the U.S. would succumb to pressure to deny food and other economic supplies to South Korea. It had been generally accepted that the U.S. and the other U.N. nations would cut off the flow of guns and other weapons to South Korea in the event it continued to fight after a signed armistice.
The House Foreign Affairs Committee the previous day had voted 18 to 5 to approve nearly five billion dollars in foreign aid for the coming fiscal year, 476 million dollars less than the President's budget, which had cut about 35 percent off that recommended by former President Truman in his final budget issued in January. The Committee only established the ceiling for the appropriations, which had to be approved later. Representative Glenn Davis of Wisconsin, a member of the House Appropriations subcommittee concerned with foreign aid, said that his subcommittee was considering deeper cuts and would study the bill very carefully. The Foreign Affairs Committee authorization was expected to reach the House floor during the middle of the following week. The Committee also voted to withdraw more than a billion dollars of new funds earmarked for European military aid, unless the six-nation European Defense Community was finally ratified. Only West Germany had thus far ratified the treaty.
In Custer State Park, in South Dakota, the President, in an address the previous night to about 500 Republican leaders in the state, said that "creeping socialism struck at the United States during the last 20 years of Democratic administration" and that the nation ran a grave risk "if that group takes over again." Earlier, he had addressed a Republican rally at Mount Rushmore, indicating that his Administration had made a "good beginning toward a regime serving the interests and needs of all our citizens." He was staying at the State game lodge in the Black Hills, the same lodge which had housed President Calvin Coolidge when he vacationed in the area in 1927. The President would remain there until Saturday morning, when he would fly to Hanover, N.H., and on Sunday would receive an honorary degree from Dartmouth College, speaking later in the day at ceremonies dedicating Sagamore Hill, the home of President Theodore Roosevelt at Oyster Bay, on Long Island, N.Y. On this day, he was planning to go trout fishing, his planned round of golf having to be forgone because there was no golf course nearby. He should have gone up on top of the Mount Rushmore Memorial and teed off on each one of the four Presidents' heads in succession, letting "Fore!" each time echo down the mountainside, just to let the spectators and press know who was boss. Look out, fish…
The Army this date announced it was closing seven more camps and installations as an economy measure, estimating the savings to be about 11 million dollars during the first year and 30 million dollars in succeeding years.
Lamar Caudle of North Carolina, former head of both the criminal and tax divisions of the Justice Department at separate times during the Truman Administration, testified this date and the previous day before a House Judiciary subcommittee probing Justice Department operations in recent years. This date, he agreed that a settlement of a Minneapolis doctor's tax fraud case in 1948 had not been fair to the Government, in accepting a $35,000 settlement on a $118,000 tax liability, following the doctor's plea of guilty to one count of fraud, for which he was fined $10,000 and provided a suspended one-year sentence. The previous day, he testified that the settlement had been arranged through then-Attorney General Tom Clark and his deputy, Peyton Ford. Mr. Ford had been scheduled to testify this date, but had failed to show up, his testimony postponed until the following Wednesday. Mr. Caudle said that he indicated his disagreement with the settlement of the doctor's case but that there was nothing he could do about it.
In Montréal, a man was hanged this date in Bordeaux jail for the 1951 murder of his wife of two months, for which he had been convicted the previous May. The prosecution had claimed that he wanted his older wife's $30,000 estate.
In Raleigh, Dr. Carey Bostian, 46, was unanimously elected this date to become the new chancellor of N.C. State. He was presently director of instruction in the School of Agriculture at the college. He would begin his new post on September 1, succeeding John Harrelson, who was retiring. The Board of Trustees of the Consolidated University elected Dr. Bostian after he had been recommended by an executive committee and approved by Gordon Gray, president of the University. There had been reports that two men who had been considered for the position had turned it down because they felt the present code gave the chancellors of the three units of the Consolidated University, which also included Woman's College in Greensboro, too few powers.
In Knoxville, Tenn., a proposal to banish bees from the city had the populace "buzzing" and the City Law Director's telephone ringing, such that one might say that "he's busy as a bee". One caller had observed that bees had rights like everyone else. But the problem was that bees were attracted to people, especially barefoot children trying to beat the heat. One residential neighborhood had six beehives and some of the barefoot children had been badly stung, causing neighbors to complain about the proliferation of the bees. The City Council responded, proposing a ban on bees, until the outcry of bee-lovers arose in response, with one irate caller suggesting that an ordinance ought be passed to require children to wear shoes to ward off the bees. Another called it rank discrimination and suggested that the proposed ordinance ought be enlarged to include hornets, wasps and dirt daubers. One caller suggested that the ban could leave city gardens, flowers and fruit trees without required pollination, but the City Law Director advised that country bees were better at that job than city bees. One citizen had wondered whether the ban might cause the necessity of having a new bee inspector, but the Director assured that it would not. Another caller indicated that the City would be the first violator, as there had been a swarm of bees for years in the Market House, owned by the City.
On the editorial page, "Wheat Glut Has Benson on the Spot" indicates that the U.S. had enough surplus wheat to fill 4,000 3,000-ton freighters and still have enough to send the million tons to Pakistan, which had been proposed by the President the previous Wednesday. In the coming weeks the wheat surplus would be as significant as the surplus in dairy products owned by the Government, amounting to 200,000 tons of butter and 100,000 tons of cheese. The wheat surplus was also growing larger, likely requiring Secretary of Agriculture Ezra Taft Benson to seek acreage and marketing controls designed to reduce the 1954 wheat output by 15 percent. Under law, he would have to make a decision by the following month, which would then be subject to approval by two-thirds of the farmers. They could choose not to abide by the quotas even if two-thirds of them approved. But farmers who planted more than the quota would not then be able to sell any of their wheat at the regular 90 percent of parity support price, instead being relegated to the Secretary's discretion in designating a level of support, probably at about 50 percent of parity.
It indicates that the limitations were necessary to prevent the wheat surplus from increasing further. It was, however, only a temporary answer, with the final solution coming when wheat exporters found new markets and grain farmers diversified, growing produce more in demand, that if that did not solve the problem, then Congress would have to adjust the support price of wheat to make it less profitable to farmers and less costly to the taxpayer.
"A Guessing Game, with a Possible Answer" indicates that it was always interesting, and sometimes profitable, to speculate on what turn history might have taken if something else had occurred, citing South Korean President Syngman Rhee as an example. The Truman Administration had been criticized after the invasion of South Korea by North Korea in June, 1950, for not having provided stronger military forces in support of South Korea and withholding military aid voted by Congress.
It finds that there had been much truth in those assertions and that history would likely find the Truman Administration at fault for not foreseeing and forestalling the attack—in reliance, it fails to point out, on the bad intelligence collected by General MacArthur's G-2 and his assertions that there was no such threat of an imminent Communist invasion of the South.
But it suggests that if the U.S. had furnished the officers, the matériel and money to train a modern, well-equipped South Korean Army, it might have been possible for the fiery President Rhee to have found an excuse in some border incident to justify an offensive attack on North Korea in an attempt to unify the nation. Had he done so and met with initial success, Communist China would have undoubtedly intervened, as it had in November, 1950 when General MacArthur had pushed U.N. troops to the Yalu River after the end-around invasion of North Korea via the port of Inchon. In that event, the U.S. would have been forced to choose between coming to the aid of South Korea and letting it fall—just as was the case at the time of the invasion in June, 1950.
It indicates that it was idle speculation, but gained credibility from President Rhee's behavior of late.
Though Chiang Kai-shek was a more moderate man than President Rhee, he also cherished the goal of returning to mainland China, and the U.S., while having the responsibility to shore up Formosa's defenses against attack by Communist China, had to be careful not to equip him to the extent that he could launch an attack on the mainland and precipitate a major war which might ultimately require the intervention of the U.S.
Though not involving a Nationalist Chinese attack on the mainland, such involvement of the U.S. nearly led to general war in 1958 regarding the Communist Chinese threat to the outlying islands of Quemoy and Matsu, where Formosa had established military outposts close to the mainland.
"The Road to Real Democracy" indicates that the magazine Pathfinder had performed extensive research on the subject of who really ran America and came up with certain conclusions, that 75 percent of the Senators represented predominantly rural states, that 61 percent of all Representatives were from predominantly rural districts, and that 60 percent of the members of state legislatures lived in rural areas. In addition, three-forths of the Senate seats were controlled by 36 rural states, even though less than half of the nation's population lived in those states. The same rural domination carried over into the committees of each house.
Pathfinder had interpreted the facts to mean that "Congress and the state legislatures are in safe hands … controlled by conservative, commonsense people." The piece generally agrees with the opinion, but also finds that the other opinion expressed, that rural Americans were "well grounded in the fundamentals of our way of life" and were hence to be trusted with minority control of government, did not stand up under examination. It finds that no minority group, however wise and well grounded in Americanism, had any right to permanent dominance of the political institutions of the country, that there were also many good Americans in the large cities, who had an equal right to fair representation at the state and Federal levels. It posits, however, that it would be some time before the cities would obtain their properly apportioned representation, as the representation was fixed in the Senate by the Constitution, and districting for the House was done by state legislatures, in turn primarily controlled by small rural counties. It concludes, however, that fair representation was an objective which had to be constantly placed before the people, as it was the only road to real democracy.
"Quiet on the Congressional Front" indicates that one of the heartening aspects of the Korean truce negotiations during the previous few days had been the attitude of members of Congress, who, almost without exception, had maintained a discrete silence regarding the matter. The piece had only noted that Senator Pat McCarran of Nevada, who agreed with South Korean President Syngman Rhee that the war should not be ended in stalemate, had been the only member of Congress to speak out against the proposed truce. The piece views the silence as appropriate during the delicate latter stages of the negotiations. It suggests that possibly the membership had heeded the advice of Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman Alexander Wiley, who had urged a stronger sense of caution and restraint among his colleagues when discussing difficult matters of foreign policy. It finds the restraint being practiced admirable.
A piece from the Greensboro Daily News, titled "Key Word: Diversification", indicates that the impending location of a woolen and synthetic yarn manufacturing plant near "Little Washington" in North Carolina emphasized again the need for diversification in the Eastern part of the state and the cooperative effort required to obtain it. Washington civic leaders, including the Chamber of Commerce, had joined with State Treasurer Brandon Hodges and the State Department of Conservation and Development to bring the new plant to the state. Prevalence of a good labor supply undoubtedly had played a major part in the company's decision, but the town's natural advantages would not have attracted the attention of the New York company absent considerable work on the part of all agencies and individuals concerned.
Eventually, the plant would employ between 500 and 600 persons and would mean a great deal to the economy of the Beaufort County region. The piece indicates that it was what was needed to relieve Eastern North Carolina from the dependence on tobacco and agriculture generally, that diversification was the secret word for the state's development. Attracting such new industry to communities such as Washington was the job of Governor William B. Umstead's new model Conservation and Development Department.
Drew Pearson indicates that Speaker of the House Joseph Martin remained optimistic that a truce would be worked out between the President and Republican chairman of the House Ways & Means Committee, Daniel Reed, in the battle regarding extension of the excess profits tax, set to expire at the end of June. The President wanted it extended until the end of the year. Privately, however, the Speaker was becoming increasingly worried, as opposition to the President's position was beginning to mount in the Committee, as evidenced by the intense questioning of Undersecretary of the Treasury Marion Folsom. Meanwhile, another major roadblock was forming against the President, in that Mr. Reed had told friends that he was not going to call up the bill for a Committee vote to report it out to the floor if he had reason to believe that a majority of the Committee would vote to recommend the extension, and the chairman had that power under the archaic rules of Congress. But at present, he did not have to block the bill, as it appeared most of the Committee opposed the extension. At present, it appeared that only three Republicans of the Committee would support the President's position, in addition to seven Democrats supporting it, out of 25 total members of the Committee. The President's only hope was to use his personal popularity to take the matter directly to the people.
Secretary of Defense Charles E. Wilson had a regular weekly meeting with the President each Tuesday, but the prior Tuesday, the President's appointments secretary had explained that since the President had to entertain the Disabled War Veterans at a garden party on Wednesday, he would change his usual golfing afternoon from Wednesday to Tuesday, interfering with the Secretary's appointment, and therefore asked the Secretary to meet with the President shortly before the garden party. But the Secretary failed to understand, asking the appointments secretary to repeat the statement, after which he declared again that he did not understand, and the appointments secretary explained it a third time, after which he cupped his hand over the telephone receiver and said under his breath to his secretary that he wondered how they had ever explained the Chevrolet to Mr. Wilson, former president of G.M. (All they had to say was, "See the USA!" and Charlie was right on board in a nanosecond, down by the levee.)
The President had told Republican leaders that he was opposed to calling back Congress for a special session in the fall, which meant that most of his program would have to be postponed until the following year, including the St. Lawrence Seaway, statehood for Hawaii and revision of Taft-Hartley.
James Cosgrove, a spokesman for the oil industry, had rushed to Washington to testify that it did not make any difference to the oil companies whether the Federal Government or the states had title to the offshore oil lands. But he was kept waiting a week by Senators Price Daniel of Texas and Russell Long of Louisiana, finally indicating that he would have to return home because he had run out of shirts and, being large, could not find a size 19 in Washington.
Following California Congressman Samuel Yorty's outcry against the Air Force budget cuts, Deputy Secretary of Defense Roger Kyes had asked for a report on his background, including the number of aircraft companies located in his district, receiving the response that Mr. Yorty did not represent a single airplane manufacturer.
During his round-the-world tour, former Illinois Governor and former Democratic nominee for the presidency in 1952, Adlai Stevenson, had bypassed Iran, at the urgent request of the State Department, which feared that Mr. Stevenson might innocently set off explosive rioting, just by being an American dignitary.
One of the most popular bosses in town was the new head of the CIA, Allen Dulles, brother of the Secretary of State.
Marquis Childs reviews the extensive preparations made by the Administration in Washington, leading up to the truce in Korea, with the first effort having been to convince Republican Senators that a truce short of complete victory would be the only way to avoid extensive additional loss of American soldiers. The other effort was directed at U.S. allies, who were doubtful that the U.S. really wanted to end the fighting. First, a truce proposal drawn up recently had made concessions to South Korean President Syngman Rhee, by proposing to release all North Korean prisoners as civilians immediately after the signing of the truce, if the Communists did not readily agree to the proposed terms. But Britain, Canada and India, among others, considered that a radical departure from the Indian resolution proposed and accepted by the U.N. the prior December, whereby a commission comprised of neutral nations would examine the issue of repatriation of prisoners while the Communists were permitted time to convince those Communist prisoners not desiring repatriation that it was safe to return to their homelands.
The Communist negotiators had rejected the proposed release of the North Koreans and a new start had to be made on the negotiations. Undersecretary of State Walter Bedell Smith was Acting Secretary in the absence of Secretary of State Dulles, on a tour of the Middle East, India and Pakistan. General Smith asked leading Republican Senators to meet with him, at which time he explained the Administration's position on the truce, that a decision had been reached to follow the Indian resolution, with only minor variations, that the allies were being consulted and he had confidence that there would be a unified approach to the truce. He believed that if the Communists then rejected it, the U.N. would be in an invulnerable position, as the allies could not refuse to go along with the steps which the U.S. would consider essential to ending the war by force of arms. Several of the Senators did not like the plan, opposing what appeared to them to be a surrender to Communist demands regarding the prisoner repatriation issue. Undersecretary Smith pointed out that a way could be found to ensure the territorial integrity of South Korea following a truce.
After some discussion, some of which had been acrimonious, Senator Bourke Hickenlooper had summed up the view of the reluctant Republicans by saying that he did not like the proposal, that he was afraid of it, but that if the Administration wanted it, he would put aside his prejudices and go along with ithe plan. Senator Taft, ill in the hospital, was not present. While the speech read by his son in Cincinnati a few days afterward, that the U.S. should consider going on its own, apart from the U.N. allies, if there were no peace effected soon in Korea, had caused concern in the Administration, ultimately the Republican Senators went along with the plan.
At about the same time, Secretary Dulles was in New Delhi having a series of talks with Premier Nehru of India, wherein he explained the U.S. position on the truce. It was the first time that a sitting Secretary of State had visited India and the talks had gone well, after which Prime Minister Nehru gave his public approval to the U.N. truce proposal.
The decision of the Administration to follow the Indian U.N. proposal on the truce was reached after long consideration, with the final decision having been made by the President, whose greatest desire, after having served 41 years in the Army, was to bring peace to the world. He understood that with the Communists dedicated to international aggression, the truce was a calculated risk.
James Marlow indicates that Secretary of Defense Charles E. Wilson had made his job tougher for himself by the way he had handled his public relations. During the confirmation process before the Senate, he had issues raised regarding his retention of G.M. stock, a company of which he had just resigned as president, before finally agreeing to divest himself of the stock, with Senators warning him that he would not be confirmed otherwise. His delay in doing so had caused him a lot of bad publicity.
His greatest decision thus far as Secretary had been to cut some five billion dollars from the Air Force budget, reducing the planned number of Air Force wings from the 143 goal of the Truman Administration down to 120 by the end of 1955, causing concern in the Congress and with the public. Had he anticipated that reaction and prepared a full presentation of his rationale for the cuts in advance, he could have avoided a great deal of the criticism. His explanations for the cuts had been made in piecemeal fashion and he had even come into conflict with his own Defense Department. For instance, chief of staff of the Air Force General Hoyt Vandenberg had been critical of the budget cuts as weakening the minimum requisite national defense and retaliatory capabilities of the Air Force sufficient to deter Soviet air-atomic strikes, whle not allowing for adequate air defense of Western Europe.
The previous day, Mr. Wilson had replied to a number of questions sent to him in writing by Senator Margaret Chase Smith of Maine, in which he contended that the Air Force would actually have 170 wings at its disposal by the end of 1955, including those of the Navy and Marines, and that it would be as strong as the proposed Air Force under the Truman Administration budget.
Mr. Marlow indicates that in the end, Mr. Wilson might be proved correct and General Vandenberg wrong, but the Secretary could have saved himself a lot of time and concern by stating his position more fully at the inception.
When Mr. Wilson had been president of G.M., he had a public relations staff around him to help, and did not have to endure public questioning on the operations of the company, beyond justification to stockholders. But now, as Secretary of Defense, whenever he made a major decision, he had to face public questioning before he could implement that decision. All the citizens were stockholders in the Government.
A letter from the resident engineer for the Seaboard Air Line Railroad, from Hamlet, comments on an article in the newspaper of June 9, titled "Attention All You Seedy Characters", finding it correct in stating that there were approximately 61,000 square yards of grassing on the project, but that it had been incorrect in stating that they needed two pounds of Bermuda grass seed per square yard, that in fact they only needed one pound per hundred square yards, along with two pounds of Sudan grass seed. He says that he did not want the readers to think that the railroad was extravagant.
What was the project? Are you trying
to grow grass on the rails so that the wheels will not be so noisy in
the night as they go clickety-clack, clickety-clack, singing along
the railroad tracks
A letter writer congratulates the newspaper for its support of the recent bond election to complete the construction of the new auditorium and coliseum, and finds it typical of the outstanding work the newspaper had done in an effort to make the future of Charlotte bright.
A letter writer from Pittsboro
comments on two editorials appearing June 9, "The Lesson of the
Korean War", which he hopes the country had learned, and "The
Court Juggles a Hot Potato", regarding the decision of the
Supreme Court to order re-argument of Brown v. Board of Education
in the fall term, indicative of the Court taking quite seriously the
issue of desegregation of public schools and the potential overruling
of the 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson doctrine of "separate but
equal". He indicates that the Korean War had originally been
precipitated by an attempt by North Korea to reunite a family which
had been forcibly divided by outsiders, and disagrees with
characterizing that attempt as "aggression", that it was
merely an attempt to correct an injustice. He finds that with respect
to the issue of school desegregation, the suggested amendment to
the Constitution which the piece had made, would likely not produce a
solution, suggesting that there was no forcible way of resolving the
issue, that it had to occur by "evolution". He thinks the
argument was being confused by regarding segregation as equivalent to
second-class citizenship for black students, that segregation was "an
expression of nature and runs through most, if not all of animate
life," including the fish, the fowl, and the inhabitants of the
wilderness and jungles, that man lives in a segregated society. He
says that when he had been a student at UNC just after the turn of
the century, there was segregation and the fact was still true, based
on what he had been advised. He indicates that he had not been a
member of a fraternity
Are you calling the Negroes honkies? If so, you know what they are going to call you. Moreover, you sound like a Communist sympathizer regarding Korea. Are you a Commie?
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