The Charlotte News
Saturday, June 12, 1954
Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that at the Geneva peace conference, British Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden and Russian Foreign Minister V. M. Molotov met this date for a private discussion which could decide the fate of the conference, as both parts of the conference, that concerning Indo-China and that regarding Korea, were in recess following a crucial week in which the Western powers had warned that they were ready to admit failure of the conference unless the Communists changed their intransigent positions. Mr. Eden was known to believe that it was useless to continue if the Communists demonstrated no major policy changes and was expected to talk very candidly with Mr. Molotov. Some of the delegates observed that if the shaky French Government of Premier Joseph Laniel, subject to another vote of confidence this date in the National Assembly, were to fall, it could provide an excuse for suspending the deadlocked negotiations, as the French played a major role in the Indochinese part of the conference. There was a question whether the other nations, particularly the Communist delegations, would be willing to deal with France on an interim basis while a new government was formed. But, the previous day, Communist China's Premier and Foreign Minister Chou En-lai had told the conference on Korea that there was no reason why it should not continue. At that session, Mr. Eden and other Western leaders had suggested referring the Korean issues to the U.N. in the face of the stalemate at the conference regarding free elections and their monitoring by the U.N.
In Paris, the National Assembly voted 306 to 293 this date against the Government position in the vote of confidence, and Premier Laniel submitted his resignation. President Rene Coty did not immediately accept it, but said he would provide a statement on Monday. The Assembly, by the Constitution, would have needed to cast 313 votes against the Government to force the Premier to resign, but past practice had been to resign whenever the vote went against the Cabinet. President Coty was reported to have urged the Premier to remain in power and force the Assembly to say definitely whether it wanted him to quit. The Premier then called a Cabinet meeting, presided over by the President, at which it was decided that he should resign.
Secretary of State Dulles returned to Washington early this date following a five-power conference of allied military leaders, to press at the Pentagon for fulfillment of five conditions he indicated were prerequisites for U.S. intervention in Indo-China. The military representatives of Britain, France, Australia, New Zealand and the U.S. had deliberated for a week on the strategic situation in Southeast Asia, and the conference had ended the previous night without any public announcement, the Defense Department indicating that the conclusions would be transmitted to their respective governments. In a speech the previous day before the Los Angeles World Affairs Council, Secretary Dulles set forth the five conditions for U.S. intervention, that an invitation would have to issue "from the present lawful authorities", presumably in reference to the governments of France and Indo-China, that a clear assurance be given by France regarding complete independence for the three Associated States, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam, that there would be a demonstration of "evidence of concern" about the Indochinese situation by the U.N., that there would be participation in "the collective effort of some of the other nations of the area", and that there would be an assurance by the French Government that France would not withdraw from the battle in Indo-China until it was won. Two developments appeared favorable to working for those conditions, the indications that the negotiations in Geneva regarding Indo-China might be brought to an early end based on the stalemate and the reported readiness of the British Government to begin active consideration of the formation of SEATO, previously proposed by Secretary Dulles but balked by the British.
From Hanoi, it was reported that the French had sent in reinforcements to the vital Red River Delta this date, as speculation was growing that massing Vietminh legions would strike at that location within the ensuing few weeks, before the monsoon season would hit its peak at the end of June, that otherwise it would not occur until early October, at the end of the monsoon season. Several large Vietminh units which had helped to destroy Dien Bien Phu were back at their original posts on the Thanh Hoa plain, forming part of the arc which the Vietminh were establishing around the rice-rich Delta. French military sources said that the returning units were crack troops drawn from various regiments which had bolstered the Vietminh assault on the fortress, which had fallen May 7. The new French Union commander, General Paul Ely, had flown to the Delta area the previous day to inspect defense preparations in three strategic zones and was expected to return to Paris within ten days to report on the defenses.
The Air Force announced the previous day that it would evacuate about 1,000 wounded French troops from Indo-China to their homeland, without the entry of U.S. forces into the conflict.
Senator Karl Mundt, acting chairman of the Investigations subcommittee during the Army-McCarthy dispute, called this date for an end to a "feud" between two of the subcommittee's aides, Robert F. Kennedy and Roy Cohn, which had erupted in harsh words the previous day and threatened to carry into the following week's hearings—which would turn out to be the last four days. Usual chief counsel for the subcommittee, Mr. Cohn, was accused by subcommittee minority counsel, Mr. Kennedy, of threatening to "get" Senator Henry Jackson of Washington on an issue regarding Communism, after the afternoon session had ended the previous day. Mr. Cohn had denied the claim and said that Mr. Kennedy, brother of Senator John F. Kennedy of Massachusetts, had admitted "hatred" for Mr. Cohn and other members of Senator McCarthy's staff—Mr. Kennedy having previously worked for a few months on the staff during early 1953. Senator Mundt said that the incident had escaped his notice the previous day at the point he recessed the hearings for the weekend, but indicated this date that there had been a feud ongoing for "a long time" between Mr. Kennedy and Mr. Cohn, saying that he did not know why and did not care why, that it had no place in the hearings and would not have a place in the hearings, that they were "just popping off and they can stop it." Mr. Cohn, however, had demanded the right to ask a series of questions the following Monday, which he said "might develop true facts" about some of the things Senator Jackson had said in pointed questions to Senator McCarthy about Private G. David Schine and his activities, the primary focus of the hearings to determine, on the one hand, whether Mr. Cohn and Senator McCarthy had placed pressure on the Army, as it had charged in its March report to the subcommittee, to obtain special privileges for Private Schine, failing which threatening the previous fall, according to the Army, to intensify the investigation of the Army for subversives, with focus at Fort Monmouth in New Jersey, or whether, as Senator McCarthy, Mr. Cohn and subcommittee staff director Francis Carr claimed, the report had been an effort to "blackmail" the Senator and his staff into relenting in the investigation and that the Army claims were false regarding the demands for preferential treatment for the Private and threats of intensification of the investigation were they not granted. Senator Jackson stated that in spite of Mr. Cohn's statement, he would continue to do everything in his power to obtain all of the facts, "to reach a fair and honest decision as to the merits" of the controversy.
It is worth noting again at this juncture that Private Schine's father owned several large hotels, including the Ambassador in Los Angeles, which had been managed earlier by the younger Mr. Schine, and the family would continue to own the Ambassador at the time of the ultimately fatal shooting of Senator Robert Kennedy at the location on June 5, 1968, just after he had won the California Democratic presidential primary. Both Mr. Cohn and Mr. Schine were still alive at the time, but there has never been any suggestion that either had any part in a plot to assassinate Senator Kennedy. There has, however, been a theory, explored by the original defense team of Sirhan Sirhan, that he may have been a manipulated and brainwashed operand of a conspiracy—such a notion not being dispelled by the fact that the Senator and his family members spent the last night before his mortal wounding, at the home of film director John Frankenheimer, director of "Seven Days in May", released in 1964, and "The Manchurian Candidate", released in 1962, the latter pulled from circulation and potential broadcast on television following the assassination of President Kennedy in 1963. Whether those intersections between fact and fiction were merely mysterious and strange coincidences, or whether they were coincidences of which others took deliberate notice and advantage to make any suggestion of a conspiracy through brainwashing appear the stuff of movies and lunacy, remains subject to question. There were, of course, documented cases of brainwashing techniques employed by the North Koreans and Chinese Communists on prisoners of war during the Korean War, well publicized in this time as prisoners were released the prior August, and made the subject of movies as early as 1957 in "Time Limit".
That which is not subject to question, however, is that the country lost a great statesman and voice for the less privileged in Senator Kennedy, regardless of whether he would ultimately have been the Democratic nominee for the presidency in 1968 or, more likely, in 1972.
The Administration's investigation of reported Government housing scandals had developed its first list of alleged profiteers and more could follow, as announced the previous day by Housing head Albert Cole, saying that a two-month inquiry had produced 200 apartment promoters whom he indicated had pocketed nearly 40 million dollars in profits from inflated Government-backed loans on 70 projects in 18 states and the District of Columbia. The announcement said that it had been shown beyond question that certain promoters had been aided and guided by former top FHA officials in the windfall practices. Mr. Cole sent the list of 200 corporations to the Justice Department for such civil or criminal proceedings as might be indicated. Mr. Cole said that it covered only a tiny percentage of several thousand cases under investigation.
In Los Angeles, Vice-President Richard Nixon's automobile had been struck the previous night by a swerving car which then collided head-on with a Secret Service car following, and no one was hurt. The Vice-President walked across the intersection to ascertain that no one had been injured, and then proceeded to his parents' home in nearby Whittier, set to provide a commencement address at his alma mater, Whittier College. Mrs. Nixon said that the rear taillight of their car had been knocked askew and the bumper dented by a fairly solid jolt. The driver of the other car was booked by police on suspicion of misdemeanor drunk driving.
Through his political career, and even afterward, Mr. Nixon would have an unusual penchant for being involved in or witness to a number of accidents. He was kind of a Checkles and Freckers kind of fellow, hard to pin down hiding in the outfield sometimes, when he wasn't in the dugout or behind homeplate playing on the floor with Timahoe.
In Phoenix, Ariz., a father of two children was jailed for investigation of kidnaping this date after the previously released kidnap victim had identified him from a live five-man lineup as her abductor. The unemployed welder refused to admit participation in the kidnaping. The woman had been kidnapped Wednesday afternoon and held for 29 hours until a $75,000 ransom had been paid. Police said they had no clues as to what had happened to the ransom money, which had been left, according to instructions, at a point in the Superstition Mountains. The man identified as the kidnaper was arrested five miles from the ransom drop location on Thursday night, with only 17 cents in his pocket, was naked to the waist when he had stumbled into a ranch house pleading for a drink of water, saying that he had been prospecting for gold in the area, a former gold-mining region, and had run out of water and torn off his shirt and undershirt when he became delirious. Police said that he made several statements the previous night which conflicted with his original story. He had demanded to see an attorney but refused to select any particular one, asking whether he was not entitled to a court-appointed attorney. That depends on whether the live lineup is regarded as a "critical stage" of the criminal investigation. What do you think? Again, you may thank, ultimately, Chief Justice John Marshall for those rights for having established the Supreme Court's authority to review cases appealed from the court of last resort in the states for claimed Constitutional violations, either as to their laws or their practices.
In Raleigh, discussion had begun of the top gubernatorial candidates for 1956, with Lt. Governor Luther Hodges mentioned most often as the leading contender. Others mentioned included Senator Alton Lennon, recently defeated by former Governor Kerr Scott in the Democratic Senate primary, and Hubert Olive of Lexington, a former Superior Court judge who had run a strong race for the Democratic nomination against Governor William B. Umstead in 1952. As indicated, Governor Umstead, who had suffered a heart attack shortly after his inauguration in early January, 1953, would die in November, and Lt. Governor Hodges would succeed him, would win re-election in 1956, and then be appointed to the Kennedy Cabinet as Secretary of Commerce in 1961, after having served longer than any other person as Governor of North Carolina, limited at that time to one term.
As pictured, a despondent man in Los Angeles had rigged up an elaborate system by which he had intended to commit suicide, designed to fire a lethal bullet into him through a series of interacting contraptions triggered by sash weights and strings, but the fire did not burn, the string did not break, the weights did not fall, the gas did not ignite, and, though a pistol had shot him in the shoulder, he had survived and was in the hospital, as shown by two different photographs on opposite corners of the page. Better luck next time. Practice makes perfect...
On the editorial page, "Ike Stands Firm on Sound Farm Policy" indicates that the President, in his speech two nights earlier, had indicated that he had reached the decision to veto the fixed price support program which Congress, in all likelihood, would pass. It finds that the price support issue had been distorted by members of both parties and provides some facts about it, suggesting that the rigidity of price supports on basic crops had encouraged their overproduction and that during the previous year, the Government had increased its investment in price-supported commodities therefore by almost three billion dollars. Taxpayers could expect to continue that excessive investment in surplus commodities unless farm production were diverted into non-surplus crops, which would be encouraged by a flexible price support program.
It indicates that the President might lose votes from farmers for the party by standing firmly for flexible price supports, but that his position was sound and deserved the support from Congress and the public.
"Progress on Immigration Problems" indicates that, as pointed out several times in the column, U.S. immigration policy was generally inconsistent and ludicrous, as legal immigrants were excluded for years by quotas, bureaucratic red tape and minute investigations of the immigrants' politics and personal habits, while illegal immigrants, including Communists, were arriving from Mexico in droves. The previous summer, the President had signed a refugee bill providing for admission of 214,000 immigrants, but through the previous month, only nine had been admitted to the country. During that same general period, about 700,000 illegal immigrants had been apprehended on the border with Mexico, and it was possible that thousands more had gotten through without being caught.
Nevertheless, it points out, progress was being made, as during the previous month, 39 refugees had been admitted and another group was due to dock in New York during the present month. Attorney General Herbert Brownell had announced during the week that the border patrol on the Mexican border had been nearly tripled, and had asked Congress to take two further steps to eliminate and reduce illegal immigration from Mexico, authorization for court injunctions to restrain employers from hiring aliens illegally when the employer knew that the alien was an illegal immigrant, and authorization for seizure and forfeiture of vehicles or vessels used in transporting aliens. It urges that if Congress placed those recommendations in a bill, the desire for cheap labor from Mexico, which had flourished because of wealthy ranchers and smugglers conspiring to bring them in, would be curtailed.
"Something To Be Proud About" indicates that the state could take no pride in its rank as 45th among the states in per capita income, but could be proud that its relative poverty had not prompted it to become a pawn of the Federal Government. The previous year, the Government had handed out nearly 2.73 billion dollars in grants to the states and local governments, an average nationally of $17.41 per person. Nevada, the home state of powerful Senator Pat McCarran, had received the largest per capita grant, at $56.89. Wyoming was next, and North Carolina had come in at 39th with $14.02. Only Virginia received, among the Southern states, less per capita in Federal grants.
Cynics might say, it ventures, that North Carolina ought obtain the money, as long as it was being handed out, especially given its low rank in per capita income. But it finds that it would be more preferable for the state to lift itself by its bootstraps rather than by Federal handouts.
A piece from the Washington Post, titled "Audible Manifestations", makes some suggestions for the various participants in the Senate Investigations subcommittee hearings of the dispute between the Army and Senator McCarthy, for improvement of pronunciation. It indicates that the correct pronunciation of "subpoena" was not, as subcommittee special counsel Ray Jenkins repeatedly referred to it, "sup-peen-yah", apparently a pronunciation local to Tennessee. "Prima facie" was not pronounced as Army special counsel Joseph Welch had it, "pryma facey", which it finds sounded similar to a lady at her dressing table slapping on a foundation cream. "Disassociate" was another word which it wanted to clarify as to meaning. "Espionage" sounded more sinister and alarming if the stress were slightly placed on the first syllable and if the "a" in the third syllable was flattened, such that it came out "es-pee-uh-nazh". "Saboteur" was being pronounced as "sab-a-tour", not more properly "sab-uh-tehr", as in the French from which it derived. "Democrat" was being employed derisively as a noun by Senator McCarthy as "the Democrat Party", "my Democrat friends", and "the Democrat Senators". (The poli-progeny of Senator McCarthy still do likewise today.)
It also wishes injunction against insertion of unnecessary vowels in such words as "grievous" and "tremendous", as a means to expedite the hearings. We heard "grievious", but do not recognize what its objection is regarding "tremendous"—perhaps "tremendious" or "treemendous"?
You left out Senator McCarthy's mockish, prolonged "sunnn-down", in response to the sarcastic usage of it by both Senator Stuart Symington and Mr. Welch in questioning Mr. Cohn about the urgency of getting suspected Communists out of the Army and defense plants, whether, if there was such urgency as Mr. Cohn claimed, it ought not be accomplished by sundown.
Drew Pearson indicates that Adlai Stevenson was as "salty" in person as his political wisecracks made him appear. Mr. Pearson interviewed him for television in a New York hotel after his speech at Columbia University's bicentennial celebration and he remarked that being before the television cameras was a good way to lose weight, that when Mr. Pearson's producer told him to keep his head in the same position for the camera, as they had it spotted down on the wall, he quipped that he had been wondering all day where his head was, the producer having been referring to his head's shadow on the wall. When he met an assistant wearing a red and orange necktie, he remarked, "Looks like the Spanish Armada." And when Mr. Pearson had started to say that Mr. Stevenson was an authority on government because his grandfather had been Vice-President, he stated: "Don't bring my grandfather in. I wasn't born then."
More seriously, he said that on foreign policy the Republicans had no unity and Democrats sometimes wondered who the Secretary of State might be, whether it was Senate Majority Leader William Knowland or Vice-President Nixon or Secretary of State Dulles, to which he referred as foreign policy conducted on the "platoon system". He stated that Secretary Dulles had a major problem in maintaining continuity of public support and understanding of what the national policies were, a matter of importance to everyone in the country to have a common policy so that it could be known where the country was headed and enable the people to be united in that direction.
He pointed out the several Republicans who had been appointed by President Roosevelt during his 12 years in office, including Secretary of the Navy Frank Knox, Secretary of War Henry Stimson, Undersecretary of War Robert Patterson, John J. McCloy, Robert Lovett and various others. When asked by Mr. Pearson whether they had been among the so-called "traitors" to whom Senator McCarthy and others referred of the previous 20 years of the Roosevelt and Truman Administrations, Mr. Stevenson replied that they must have been as long as the charge was all-inclusive, as it had to include Republicans as well as Democrats, plus General Eisenhower.
Former Congressman Maury Maverick, whom Mr. Pearson regards as having been a great Texan, had died recently at a relatively young age. He had also died an early political death because he had taken on the big power companies, the big oil companies and the major racketeers. His death had come as a delayed result of his several wounds suffered during World War I, including a remaining hole as big as one's fist in his back. During his days in Congress during the New Deal he had pioneered the first Government appropriation for cancer research, legislation which had set up the Cancer Institute. He had campaigned for TVA and for slum clearance at a time 20 years earlier when it was being resisted. He had crusaded for 50,000 planes and 100,000 pilots three years prior to Pearl Harbor when people were scoffing at those fantastic goals. When he had come up for re-election, the moneyed interests in Texas had gathered forces to defeat him. Subsequently, he became Mayor of San Antonio, where there was a large monument to him, though not bearing his name, having transformed the slums along the San Antonio River into a replica of an old Spanish village, one of the most beautiful spots in Texas.
Joseph & Stewart Alsop indicate that the likelihood was decreasing that the U.S. would intervene in Indo-China, despite the danger in Asia increasing, with the reason on the surface being the attitude of the allies, Britain having always preferred a Far Eastern appeasement policy to a Far Eastern war, and France, while having appeared to desire U.S. aid for the war, the request for aid and air intervention had been misleading in that the majority of the National Assembly and even the majority of the Cabinet under Premier Joseph Laniel did not want U.S. intervention but rather an "honorable settlement" to the war.
Talks between Premier Laniel and U.S. Ambassador to France Douglas Dillon were intended to impress the Communist negotiators at Geneva, to improve the chances for such an honorable settlement, the proof for which, in the view of the Alsops, being that the U.S. had only been asked to discuss entering the war but not asked to join the fighting except on an interim basis at the time of the crisis at the French fortress at Dien Bien Phu, prior to its fall on May 7. The State Department believed that Premier Laniel could not obtain Assembly approval for a motion to request U.S. intervention, even if he wished to do so.
With the policy static between the U.S. and France, events in Indo-China were taking control of the situation, with Hanoi, the key to the entire northern part of the country, being menaced by a massive Communist assault, placing the French Union forces in grave danger. While the French Army might be saved, it was possible that Hanoi would fall. That crisis would put a nearly unbearable strain on Franco-American relations and it was likely that the French would seek U.S. intervention on an interim basis, though it was already too late and the request for that aid would be refused. If Hanoi were to fall, the Indochinese position would become untenable and so a settlement would be made in Indo-China, not at Geneva. It would take the form of humiliating defeat for the West, not the "honorable settlement" which the French desired.
The Alsops conclude that such was in prospect as of the present, with the Administration and Congress issuing excuses that they had tried to prevent the catastrophe but that the allies would not allow it as Britain had blocked united action and France had not even sought U.S. air and sea intervention. They were also saying that, while the previous month they had made the argument that if Indo-China were to fall, Asia would fall, and that if Asia fell, the world was lost, now they were not so sure and that perhaps the Siamese or someone else might stand up and fight. They find that the reasons for not acting in Indo-China were coherent and persuasive but did not answer the question of how the U.S. could stop the chain reaction of disaster which would start if Indo-China were to fall.
The Congressional Quarterly indicates that shifts in regional dominance over committee chairmanships would result if the Democrats were to win control of Congress in the fall elections—as they would. A Democratic Senate would probably shift committee chairmanships to six Southern and five Western Senators, with the remaining four to be filled by one Democratic Senator from the Midwest, two from border states and one from New England. It lists the various possibilities for those chairmanships in both houses.
A letter writer says that he had been reading "the kind of bunk" which had been printed of late in the letters column of the newspaper, and had always thought that the News was operated by white men, but guesses that he was wrong, so decides to let "your Negro brothers take your paper and pay your salary" and hopes that every white person would feel as he did, and if the newspaper were unable to stay in business, the personnel might be able to obtain a pick and shovel and "help your brothers".
A letter writer, who says that she was black, indicates that she had been reading the letters in the column, asserts that it was time for black people to have their place in the world, "in shows, schools, and all other places with the 'White Only' sign."
A letter writer responds to the June 9 editorial, "Joe Won't Go Now, But Maybe Later", suggests that every time she read an editorial, she was convinced that they were written for people who did not know the facts, that the signatures on the failed "Joe Must Go" recall petition in Wisconsin had amounted to less than half the votes registered against Senator McCarthy in his 1952 successful re-election. Most of the signers had been Democrats, in all probability. She thinks that the newspaper believed that the majority of readers did not understand those facts and so had further misinformed them with an editorial "catering to their ignorance". She concludes that the newspaper and the Alsops were not fooling "everybody any of the time" and that the newspaper would come down to earth one day, that it was too good to have such "crackpot editorials".
A letter writer finds an advertisement which had appeared in the newspaper recently for the movie "Assassin of Youth" to have been inappropriate, the "sort of thing that J. Edgar Hoover has pinpointed as the cause, either remote or proximate, of the greater number of sex crimes throughout the country." He refers to the "obscene illustration" at the bottom of the ad, which, he says, appeared for no other purpose than "arousing of the passions of our youth (as well as adults, be they so willing) to the desire for lewd entertainment and the consequential purchase of a ticket at the theater involved." He indicates that it would be horrible to be responsible, even indirectly, for a "violation of the law of God", whether it took the form of rape or sex deviation or "the form of self-abuse or that of impure thoughts whence all the rest spring".
You misunderstand. That was an old movie from 1937 which told of the inherent evils of marijuana consumption, its mind-altering capabilities when consumed to excess through time, probably receiving the approbation of Mr. Hoover. The kids today want to see more of Miss Monroe
A letter writer wonders how many readers who had written to the newspaper regarding the Brown v. Board of Education decision of May 17 had read the State Constitution, that the state legislators were the only ones to recommend an amendment to the State Constitution to be decided by the voters of the state before "mixed races" could be established in the public schools. He quotes a state statute and a State Constitutional provision requiring segregation. He claims to have discussed the matter with members of both races and found that 70 percent of the black people with whom he had discussed it wanted continued separate but equal facilities, contends that the Federal Government could not set up an agency in the state to force desegregation under the present State Constitution, that he had one son in school and would abide by the State Constitution.
You need to read the Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution and realize that you and people like you are uninformed fools, blinded by your silly prejudices and confederated pride.
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