The Charlotte News

Monday, July 12, 1954


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that Prime Minister Churchill had said in Commons this date that his Government did not consider it the moment to raise the matter of Communist China's admission to the U.N., that Britain's policy toward China remained the same, favoring its admission after the Communist regime proved that it was willing to forswear aggression and abide by international agreements. The Prime Minister also said that his Washington conference recently with the President had been the most agreeable and fruitful in his experience and that the resulting declaration of principles transcended their passing differences and provided a framework within which the differences could be amicably resolved, reaffirming the comradeship between the two nations and extending the hand of friendship to all who might seek it. He said that he had gone to Washington because of his deep concern at the lack of information which Britain possessed regarding the hydrogen bomb. He concluded by indicating that widespread acceptance of the idea of peaceful coexistence with the Communist world might, with the passage of years, solve problems and "avert the mass destruction of the human race." He also urged France to ratify the European Defense Community, reminding that it was originally a French conception.

In Geneva, British Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden returned to the Indo-China peace conference this date, joining new French Premier Pierre Mendes-France in a last-ditch effort to make peace with the Communists in Indo-China. Mr. Eden was scheduled to meet, after a luncheon with Premier Mendes-France, with Soviet Foreign Minister V. M. Molotov, who had arrived at the conference the previous week following a two and a half week recess during which the military commisssions of the parties to the conference had discussed the cease-fire areas preliminary to a cease-fire agreement, having been ordered to submit their recommendations by July 10. It appeared, however, that there had been no clear agreement on those matters, as the Cambodian and Laotian representatives had reportedly not been able to agree with the Vietminh representatives regarding a single report, necessitating that separate reports issue from the two sides. Premier Mendes-France had scheduled another meeting this date with Pham Van Dong, the Vietminh Foreign Minister. The French leader had entered the crucial week of negotiations uncertain of full U.S. support. Communist Chinese Premier and Foreign Minister Chou En-lai had departed Moscow early this date and was expected to arrive in Geneva later this date.

From Hanoi, it was reported that Vietminh troops had tightened their pincers around Hanoi this date but that the French defenders of the capital had claimed that they had repulsed a five-hour attack the previous day by 5,000 of the rebel troops only 20 miles from the city and had killed at least 300 of the Vietminh, while admitting that French losses were "appreciable" but providing no specific numbers. Other rebel forces had surged in from the northeast and northwest to strike at French outposts 25 miles above Hanoi, and clashes had been reported the previous day at scores of points as the enemy maintained their pressure. The French were so busy seeking to maintain their shrunken hold on the Red River Delta area that they were unable to spare planes for more than token air harassment of the long truck convoys moving south from the Communist Chinese frontier. French reconnaissance pilots reported that Communist China was presently transporting more supplies into northern Indo-China than it had during the time preceding the fall of the French fortress at Dien Bien Phu, which had fallen on May 7. A French briefing officer declared that they did not have the planes to spare for more than harassment attacks against the Communist supply convoys and that it was more important that they bomb the Vietminh bases inside the Delta. The previous day, French warplanes had dropped nearly 150 tons of bombs on rebel bases inside the Delta defenses, some of them less than 20 miles from Hanoi. North of Hanoi, the French had managed to reopen roads between three towns 30 miles from the city, restoring communications between the three towns, which formed a protective triangle against Vietminh regulars massing to the north. A spokesman for the French Union commander, General Paul Ely, said that only ten percent of the guns, tanks and planes still being supplied to Indo-China were being stored in the northern sector, seeking to relieve concerns stated by members of Congress that U.S.-supplied arms might fall into the hands of the Communists should the French withdraw from Hanoi.

The Army this date issued its draft call for September, calling for 23,000 men, the same quota announced for July and August, the September quota to bring the total number of men drafted or earmarked for induction since the resumption of the draft in September, 1950, in the wake of the start of the Korean War, to 1,766,430.

In Bolton Landing, N.Y., at the 46th annual governors conference, Governor Arthur Langlie of Washington proposed to other governors this date an "action program", calling for the Federal Government to give up various taxes in return for less Federal aid to states, part of a six-point plan which he offered at the first business session of the conference. As he did so, Vice-President Nixon arrived at the local airport from Washington and headed to the conference, where he would speak this night, his speech to be broadcast live by ABC on radio and in recorded presentations subsequently by NBC and CBS. The President canceled his plans to address the conference because of the death of his sister-in-law, Mrs. Milton Eisenhower. Governor James Byrnes of South Carolina, Secretary of State under President Truman in 1945-46, recommended that U.S. representatives return to the Geneva peace conference to bring about a showdown regarding the Indo-China crisis. He said that the U.S. could not afford to stand aloof and risk being blamed before the world for failure to reach a settlement with the Communists, that the U.S. could refuse to participate in any surrender agreement but should make its views known, that the British and French should not be enabled to charge that failure to reach agreement was the result of U.S. absence from the conference. Secretary of State Dulles had hesitated to return to the conference because of possible domestic criticism regarding the results, the fear of U.S. involvement in enforcing some settlement which would entail French surrender to the Communists.

A New Jersey builder refused to testify before the Senate Banking Committee this date on the basis of the Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination regarding the probe of the multimillion dollar windfall profits to contractors out of the Federal housing program. He was the first builder to claim the privilege during the hearings.

In Birmingham, Ala., State Attorney General Si Garrett was arrested this date on a grand jury indictment charging him with vote fraud in the June 1 Democratic primary. He had been a witness before the grand jury, which had also indicted the solicitor of Phenix City and the chairman of the Jefferson County Democratic executive committee, also on vote fraud charges. They were charged with altering the official vote for Lee Porter in the race for Attorney General, adding 600 votes to his total, despite which he had been defeated by anti-crime crusader Albert Patterson, who had been murdered on June 18, a few days before he was scheduled to appear before the Jefferson County grand jury to testify in the voter fraud inquiry.

In Vienna, relief supplies for thousands of homeless victims of central Europe's worst flood in centuries poured into Austria and Germany this date, with Holland, Sweden, Switzerland and the Saar being the first to offer bedding, food and clothing to thousands of families rendered homeless by the flooding Danube and a dozen of its tributaries during a five-day period. Thus far, 24 people had reportedly died on both sides of the Iron Curtain in the flooding. Many inhabitants in Austria and Germany were forced to take refuge on their rooftops and upper floors, as aid was beginning to arrive for them. More than 3,000 U.S. soldiers had been taking part in the rescue effort. Sketchy reports from Czechoslovakia and Hungary indicated that those two Iron Curtain countries had been hard-hit by the floods, with Prague and Budapest radios stating that Communist authorities had ordered entire farm communities evacuated and that many hamlets were under water and crops destroyed. It was not disclosed what the death toll was in those countries. Nine deaths had been reported the previous night in East Germany, while in West Germany, skies had cleared and flood waters had begun to recede, while thousands of acres of rich farmland remained under water. The worst appeared to be over in Germany, but the Danube had forced thousands of victims from farms and villages along its banks in Austria, with 24,000 having been evacuated from Linz.

In Tunis, it was reported that five Tunisians were killed the previous night in the central part of the country, eighty miles from Tunis, in what was believed to be a retaliatory attack for the terrorist killing of six persons the prior Saturday night. Unidentified persons driving a black automobile at high speed had fired submachine guns at three café terraces open only to Arabs, and then made their escape. On Saturday night in Ferryville, two terrorists had killed four Frenchmen and two Tunisians in a similar attack on an open café terrace.

In Asheville, N.C., evangelist Billy Graham was being treated for a kidney stone and had spent a comfortable night in the hospital, reportedly in good condition. He had suffered five attacks and had lost 20 pounds during his recently concluded five-month preaching crusade in England and Europe, and had another attack the previous Friday during his first day spent at home in nearby Montreat, where a kidney stone was diagnosed as the cause of the problem.

On the editorial page, "Children, Children, Children" indicates that Mecklenburg County had a problem with the post-World War II baby boom and the arrival of children from other regions of the country, producing overcrowding in its schools, with the County School superintendent predicting that overcrowding would get worse in the ensuing fall term, with enrollment reaching an all-time high in both the City and County systems. Meanwhile, school construction had lagged behind the rise in student population.

Across the nation, enrollment in elementary and high schools had reached a record-breaking 30.5 million in 1954, approximately 25 percent more than in 1946, and another 30 percent increase was predicted by 1960, bringing fresh problems of overcrowding, teacher shortages and the need for costly expansion of facilities.

While much had been done in Mecklenburg and elsewhere to improve the physical facilities, it had not been enough to meet the increasing demand. In the County system, one new building would be ready by September, and another by Christmas, with other projects due the following spring, but the superintendent nevertheless indicated that all of the projects presently underway would not meet the demands expected by September, 1955. The superintendent had recommended that some pupil shifts be made within the system, which would not be popular with parents, but would be better than other less desirable measures, such as double sessions, with part of the students attending during the mornings and the other part during the afternoons.

It stresses that the remedy would only be temporary and that the County had to provide for its children in the future, that the planning job never really ended for providing to students their right of universal free public education.

"Reveille for a Slumbering Giant" indicates that the Southern Association of Science and Industry had predicted that 3,000 new multi-million dollar industrial plants would be built in the South during the ensuing decade, being a significant illustration of the rising tide of economic optimism in the region. Southern leaders had brushed aside their doubts and set ambitious goals for the region, once labeled during the 1930's as the nation's number one economic problem.

It indicates that for several years, an average of one multi-million dollar plant had begun operation each working day in the South and that the region had more than 12,500 manufacturing plants which employed 50 or more employees, with construction ongoing on hundreds of additional factories, mills and warehouses. Moreover, diversification was a keynote of Southern business expansion, and the resulting economic balance would provide for future stability. The most surprising new development was in chemicals and chemical processing, which had become one of the South's biggest industries, challenging even textiles. An SASI official reported that half of all new chemical plants started since mid-1950 had been built in the South and that approximately one-third of the nation's entire chemical industry was now located in the region.

With that changed economic status there had come new population shifts, social and political changes, physical face-lifting and sharp revisions of economic policies. It indicates that a vibrant new region would emerge, that the South was no longer America's slumbering giant, that reveille had been sounded.

"It's That Old, Atavistic Compulsion" indicates that the snore had been explained by a British physician, Dr. A. H. Douthwaite, telling the British Medical Association that it was "based on race memory and that atavistically the male made the noise at night to keep marauders from the den". Thus, a wife kept awake by snoring of her husband should draw encouragement from the fact, "as a sign of deep affection", according to the doctor.

It regards the doctor as being correct but neglecting to mention other truths which were corollary to his theory. For example, when a man went out on the porch during the evening and sat quietly puffing his pipe, he was not seeking to get out of drying the dishes or putting the kids to bed, but rather was pursuing the old atavistic urge of taking up a sentry post from which he could detect potential marauders. Similarly, when he did not reply to repeated questions of his wife regarding his experiences during the day, it was not because of preoccupation with the newspaper, ill humor or stupidity, but rather the atavistic desire to listen hard for stealthy footsteps from a burglar, planning a valiant defense of the home in the process. Likewise, when the husband vetoed the purchase of finery for his wife or the request for more funds than necessary to purchase groceries, he was merely protecting her from the likelihood of being robbed on the way home from the market, possessed of excess cash.

It thus suggests that American men ought to consider building a monument to Dr. Douthwaite as they relaxed on the porch, watching, rocking and snoring.

A piece from the Sanford Herald, titled "A Cruise Among Words", indicates that the Memphis Commercial-Appeal had stated that the phrase "by and large" had derived from the days of sailing ships when the helmsman would order the ship steered as close to the wind as possible. But the newspaper had been unable to find the origin of "quite a few", about which inquiry had also been made by its readers.

It finds that the authorities on naval terms, Knight, Lovette and de Kerchove's International Maritime Dictionary, disagreed with the Commercial-Appeal's origin for "by and large", the latter indicating that "by the wind" was the phrase in question, together with other variants, all of which utilized the word "wind".

President Roosevelt, it informs, had a favorite metaphor, "between wind and water", which he used to suggest his negative feeling, for instance, when a friend resigned from Federal service or to indicate the region of the enemy to which he aimed a military or political blow, Zwischen Wind und Wasser. Literally, the phrase meant the area of a ship's side or bottom brought above water by rolling or variation in immersion because of travel in a seaway, thus becoming vulnerable to attack. Related sailing-ship phrases which had become generally used were "between the devil and the deep" and "the devil to pay", the "devil" in those phrases referring to the seam in a wooden deck which bounds the waterway, so-called because of its difficulty to access for caulking or paying with pitch. "The devil to pay and no pitch hot" had once been a sailor's expression, and once, when Hanson Baldwin, the military editor of the New York Times and an Annapolis graduate, had mistakenly written in an article, "hell to pay and no pitch hot", he had immediately been swamped with letters of protest and kidding, including one from the Sanford Herald.

It concludes that it could not assist the Commercial-Appeal in its quest for meaning for the paradoxical "quite a few" or explain why people sometimes said "a right smart'n few".

Drew Pearson indicates that a primary lesson to take from the problems experienced in Guatemala was that the seeds of Communism were seldom planted in a hurry, that they took time to sprout and were almost always nourished by waves of anti-Americanism. In the case of Guatemala, those seeds had been sprouting in the days of President Jorge Ubico's harsh dictatorship, and the tragedy now was that his nephew and secretary, Col. Carlos Castillo Armas, was one of the ruling military junta, with the other three colonels and one other insurgent of the rebel forces, and if Col. Castillo was able to shove the other colonels aside, it was a safe prediction that there would still be more trouble in Guatemala and that eventually Communism would come back into power.

A different problem was brewing in Brazil, long a close friend of the U.S., and, he suggests, now was the time for the U.S. to do something about it. Brazil was not threatened by Communism or revolt, but had been swept by a wave of anti-Americanism, largely because of coffee. If anti-Americanism usually preceded Communism, then now was the time for the U.S. to mend fences in Brazil. Until a few months earlier, Brazil did not have price supports and its coffee prices fluctuated, with the coffee growers sometimes using coffee to pave roads because there was such a glut of it on the market. The previous winter, there had been a frost in the coffee-growing state of Parana, and coffee bushes were killed, some farmers going bankrupt, while others had made huge profits. Coffee growers in other countries had been especially lucky because the price of coffee had skyrocketed, with U.S. consumers having to pay more and Brazil getting all of the blame. U.S. newspaper editorials had condemned Brazil, as had speeches by members of Congress, all of which had been published in Brazil, producing resentment against the U.S. Now, some U.S. coffee importers were boycotting Brazilian coffee in favor of African coffee and Brazilian sales had markedly dropped, potentially creating a depression, which would be a certain breeder of Communism.

He provides some facts regarding breakfast coffee during the previous 75 years, which tended to suggest that it would pay the U.S. not to forget the good neighbors of Brazil, even if frost sometimes created higher prices on coffee. For in three wars, Brazil had come to the aid of the U.S., when it had fought Spain over Cuba at the turn of the century, at the outset of World War I, and in supplying bases on its bulge nearest Africa during World War II when U.S. cargoes were being sunk with regularity by U-boats and those bases were vital to the airlift of supplies across Brazil to Africa. One Brazilian division had fought its way up the Italian peninsula during World War II as well. President Vargas and Oswaldo Aranha, the same leaders who had cooperated during the latter war, were now back in power in Brazil and were the country's best friends in Latin America, but were getting kicked in the pants politically because of the row over coffee and Africa.

Joseph & Stewart Alsop again examine the practice by the Government of employing professional informants and witnesses, a relatively new practice, putting them on the Justice Department payroll, classified as consultants to the Immigration and Naturalization Service, at $25 per day, while ordinary Government witnesses were paid only four dollars per day, the higher pay justified by their "consultant" status.

The problem arose when the professional witness had to declare whether or not he knew of a particular defendant being prosecuted under the Smith Act or being deported as a Communist, and if the witness were to state that he did not know the person, then he could not obtain the $25 per day, usually much higher than the individual, who had been a former Communist, normally was obtaining in their regular employment. Thus, entered a financial self-interest of the witness to answer that they did know the individual in question.

There were about 50 such persons classified as consultants to the INS and only a small number of those were employed in the professional category of regular informants and witnesses, with only 12 who had earned enough to make the money meaningful to them. Of that latter group, three were presently being investigated by the Justice Department for possible perjury, including Paul Crouch. The Daily Worker had indicated its delight that some were being investigated, which the Alsops regard as proof that the original purpose for their employment was salutary. But not all of those accused by the professional witnesses were from the Communist underground, and an attempt had been made by two of them, the other two presently under investigation, to connect the distinguished U.N. diplomat, Dr. Ralph Bunche, with Communist sympathies. Furthermore, they suggest, the desire to root out the Communist conspiracy could not excuse gross impropriety and departure from the American tradition of law and justice, as in that way, the enemy would win by indirection.

Doris Fleeson indicates that a group of Senate Democrats were seeking to bolster the historic position of their party in support of collective security by indicating that, while Communist China did not deserve presently to have admission to the U.N., any notion that the U.S. should withdraw from that body in the event that Communist China was admitted was an abrogation of the country's responsibility to maintain freedom and peace. The Democrats faced the problem of being a responsible opposition party regarding foreign policy, and with one or two exceptions, were united on that issue, firm in the belief that internationalism was the correct course. But while the President was also an internationalist, he was allowing two things to happen which the Democrats could not countenance, refraining from affirmative action in foreign policy, lest he offend influential Republican Party leaders in Congress, and giving tacit assent to Vice-President Nixon and the RNC to wage a campaign strategy during the fall midterm elections on the basis of the "20 years of treason" theme, in reference to the Roosevelt and Truman Administrations.

The Democrats wanted to protect their Congressional candidates and influence Administration policy, while realizing that the President remained very popular and could not be directly attacked. Senate Minority Leader Lyndon Johnson had, the previous week, suggested an idea whereby the party would join strongly in the attacks on Communist China, as initiated by Senate Majority Leader William Knowland, but without endorsing the idea of the Majority Leader that the U.S. would withdraw from the U.N. in the event Communist China were admitted to membership, while indicating that the American people would never support that admission. Senator Johnson resented the general opinion that he had joined Senator Knowland, and was currently seeking a formula regarding Communist China on which all could agree.

Meanwhile, many Democrats feared that the great principle of international cooperation, with which every modern Democratic President had been associated, was being imperiled, and they did not want to place the party in a position where it appeared that, for the sake of expediency, they were supporting steps toward isolation and the lapse of the alliances which had been so carefully constructed through time.

A letter writer indicates that he was impressed by the new airport terminal, at least its first floor, but that the observation deck on the second floor appeared cheap because of the necessity to pay a dime to access it, urges that since the building had been constructed with public funds, there ought not be a charge for access to any part of the terminal which was open to the public. He advises the City Council to remove the turnstile which charged the dime admission fee as unseemly and unsafe.

A letter writer indicates agreement with a previous letter writer of July 6, regarding reruns on television during the summer, advises that television programming would have to improve throughout the summer before the population would be willing to sit inside a hot house and watch it when they could be outside, especially in the 100-degree heat Charlotte had been experiencing. She finds that Arthur Godfrey's "Talent Scouts" was one program which had begun during the summer which was fairly good "as talent shows go", but that since Mr. Godfrey was heard every night or day on either radio or television throughout the winter, wonders why programmers had to put him on during the summer, also.

They expect you to get out of the house during the summer, are tacitly encouraging you to do so, to vary your activities during the course of the year, to get some fresh air so that you will not take all of that programming too seriously, maybe hijack a plane to Montana to throw the hoolihan, realize that it is only entertainment, not a substitute for reality. Go to the beach or the mountains and cool your jets, or set up easy chairs in the backyard and watch and listen to the birds sing. Half the time, while watching those shows on the television, you are merely watching actors do as much on the backlot sets anyway. In reality, they go elsewhere during the summer months, whether to summer stock to hone their craft, participating in an occasional film, or heading to the mountains or the seashore to escape the madding crowd and fans who can't get enough of the craft of which they are merely craftsmen at work, the result happening to be seen at once by millions each night across the nation, thus bringing them into your homes as part of the family. Get to know your own family and neighbors again.

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