The Charlotte News

Wednesday, April 2, 1941


Site Ed. Note: The letter to the editor this date, receiving the rye response from the Editors below it, refers to "Greek Censor", March 27. Perhaps, the lady had an early model tv at which to watch the whole affaire de dishoneur and thus remained informed by our correspondent with complete and excruciating accuracy. Or, she was after all practicing only the advice of old Will when, to the eyeless Gloucester, through the desipient tongue of King Lear, he suggested, "Look with thine ears."

Of course, sometimes we wake up from the midsummer night's dream yawning and braying, only to find that our ears have been supplanted by something other than the two good curly-cues with which we were born. Then, perhaps, it is time to resign ourselves to the notion that, at times, it is all a little Greek.

Ah well, maybe you had to be there.

"Old Pattern" predicts that the war, either for the worse or for the better, will soon be over, dependent on what would occur with Hitler's Balkan campaign. Why did the prediction prove incorrect? especially with the tightening stranglehold on oil supplies, eventually further cut off after the Trans-Siberian route for Mexican oil supplied by Japanese vessels was cut off with the June 22 invasion of Russia. Was it not this very stranglehold with which the editorial concludes which provided the necessity for Pearl Harbor eight months hence? Was the editorial, while incorrect as to the immediacy of timing, not far off in terms of the necessary predicate upon which a victory in Europe for either side might ultimately be predicted?

Two Questions*

Registered Voters Have (1) And (2) To Answer Tomorrow

Nothing has yet been written or said to alter the essential fact that the airport bond election tomorrow puts the following questions:

1. To authorize the City to buy a tract of land on which the Federal Government will build a secondary airport, or to pass the airport up.

2. To authorized the City to buy additional land at the present field for the expansion, as becomes necessary, of the U. S. Air Base there, or to refuse that authority.

The precise terms of the proposed bond issue, the site (open to change) of the secondary airport, details of beams and hangars and accommodation notes to be paid, are all beside the main points of (1) a secondary airport or no secondary airport, and (2) expansion of the Air Base or no expansion.

Wine Control*

Maybank Points To Only Really Effective Method

South Carolina is also plagued with the dilemma of cheap and powerful wine, and Governor Maybank has recommended to the Legislature that the sale of wine be confined exclusively to the liquor stores.

The trouble over wine arises from two factors. One is that cheap concoctions of raw alcohol, water and coloring matter are sold under the name of powerful wines like sherry and port, both of which are fairly expensive when authentic. The second trouble is that there are no restrictions on the sale of the stuff. It can be bought at all hours of the night and in any dump.

Even under a bad system of liquor stores like South Carolina's, these evils can be largely cured by giving the liquor store a monopoly on the trade, since the dealers are restricted in what they can handle. Under a good system like North Carolina's ABC stores, the evils can be entirely eliminated.

But dry counties in North Carolina are driven to the clumsy method of enacting a State law to forbid the sale of wines of more than 14 per cent alcohol content in their territory. It is a system which will be very difficult of enforcement, and one that cannot distinguish between authentic fortified wine and the [indiscernible word] concoctions.

Old Pattern

Hitler Still Seeks Victory Without Having To Fight

What Hitler is now resorting to in the Balkans is his celebrated war of nerves, and at the same time he is getting himself into position to strike if he must. But he will not strike, if precedent and the odds mean anything, until he is absolutely certain that he must or accept defeat.

It is commonly assumed that the Balkan campaign was begun by way of clearing the rear so that he could invade England with full force. But it is possible and even probable that what he had in mind was a Balkan campaign which would either win him the war at the cost of little blood or none at all-with England surrendering in an obviously hopeless fight.

Object of such a campaign would have been to get control of the Dardanelles, which would have given him control of Turkey, and insured against Russian defection from his alliance. Once that was achieved he could have struck for the oil fields of Persia and Mesopotamia, with a good chance of getting control of them. If so, he would have had the British blockade completely and permanently broken, and England would have had almost no chance to win the war, with her sea power virtually canceled out.

To that purpose he planned to intimidate Greece and lull Turkey until he was ready to move against the Dardanelles-before the British could get there. He believed that his plans would surely succeed, as is shown by the fact that he invited Matsuoka to Berlin to witness his triumph.

But as we now know, his plans gravely miscarried. It appears not at all impossible, indeed, that the British themselves deliberately set the stage to make him lose the maximum amount of face before his Japanese ally.

The coup of the Yugoslavian generals was executed with such smoothness as to suggest that it had been planned a good while, in all likelihood in consultation with Britain and her allies. And the stories also suggest that the British Navy had for two weeks been deliberately laying the trap into which the Italian Navy walked last Saturday-just when Matsuoka was coming to Rome.

Be that as it may, it is clear that Hitler has taken his first really decisive defeat, and that he is now doing his best still to retrieve it by means short of a fight upon which he must stake all, including his own precious neck. Troops are banked on Yugoslavian, Greek, Turkish borders. His nationals are ordered from Yugoslavia. The usual atrocity stories are heard in mounting hysteria. In short the pattern of his previous nerve campaigns is repeated.

He may yet succeed. The Balkan countries have natural advantages which largely cancel the mechanized power of Hitler's armies. But there is in those countries, as in all others, large, almost superstitious terror of the Nazi Power.

But if he does not succeed, then he must perforce fight in the Balkans. If he does and wins, the war will probably be over. If he fails, the war will probably still be approaching its end, for the British will be thundering at his back door, and the blockade will have a stranglehold on his nation.

It's A Record

A Month Without Violent Death Raises A Question

For the first time in fifteen years, Charlotte has lived through a whole month without a violent death. In March nobody, black or white, was murdered, and nobody died in an accident.

That may be due simply to the laws of chance. So far as automobile accidents go, it pretty clearly was very largely, at least, a matter of chance. There were several accidents in which people were injured, some of them seriously.

As for murder, maybe it merely happened that nobody chanced to drink too much "bust-head" wine and get angry enough or reckless enough to commit that particular crime.

But it would perhaps be unfair to the police to call it simple happen-so. The police rightly come in for a great part of the blame when murder goes on unchecked. And so, it is only reasonable to give them some of the credit when murder is prevented, or seems to have been.

In any case, we shall not be long in the dark as to whether this is an accident or the beginning of proof that Chief Joyner meant what he said when he took office. Nobody expects, of course, that murder will cease. But, within pretty definite limits, the murder rate in this city is well known and has been pretty constant for a number of years. In a few months we should be able to tell if the announced stricter patrolling of the more murderous districts is actually beginning to take effect and the murder rate is really coming down.

Snide Trick

Argentine Beef Is Made Football For Senators

The sort of thing which has been going on in the Senate over the question of the purchase of Argentine canned beef by the Navy is almost enough to make one despair of the Republic.

Less than a week ago that body turned down a prohibition on such purchases. The action was entirely justified. The Argentine is the most difficult of all Latin-American countries to hold in line for the Good Neighbor policy, and a good part of its resentment of the United States, its tendency to make up to the Axis powers, revolves around this very question of beef.

It is universally agreed by competent economic observers that the authorization of such purchases would make little difference to the western beef-grower. The only people who would benefit by their prohibition would be speculators and packers. And if the Navy could buy this beef it would mean a considerable saving to American taxpayers.

But a gang of western Republicans and Democrats in the Senate are always ready to put on an act designed to make the "western farmers" believe that they are alertly devoted to "protecting" them against plots to injure them.

So yesterday, this gang grabbed an opportunity when many Administration supporters were off the floor, reversed the previous stand and jammed through the prohibition. Parliamentary tactics robbed them of this contemptible victory and Administration forces may be able to block them for good.

But the spirit shown is disquieting.

Framed Edition
[Return to Links-Page by Subject] [Return to Links-Page by Date] [Return to News<i>--</i>Framed Edition]
Links-Date -- Links-Subj.