The Charlotte News
Thursday, July 10, 1941
Site Ed. Note: The page today contains little not already noted and so we won't belabor it. We get more isolationist pamphleteering from Clement Avenue's Nell Dixson Russell, who we started to believe had gone into reclusion from the level of rhetoric aimed at her by other readers, including another letter a couple or so days ago which we didn't bother to highlight. We also learn that Ms. Russell is apparently one and the same with Mrs. J. Walter Russell who had sent in a letter under a different street number. In any event, she no longer claims the "Imperial KKK" is after her for being against going after Hitler and insisting the British had lost the war, implying, we suppose, that the KKK was antipathetic to the Nazis, as she did at the end of May. Since the Russian invasion, she also has dropped the claim that Britain has lost the war. Now, however, she wants the U.S. to refrain from sending aid to Russia. Anything, it would appear, to insure a quick victory for Hitler on any front. We stress that she is against aid, not just the sending of American troops. She advises instead, following the counsel of her hero Lindbergh, buttressing defenses at home--insuring then that, as she recognized in an earlier letter, the U.S. would have had to man the border barricades from then on, at least as long as Hitler was around.
The first piece, continuing the sad saga of the wolf-whistling "Doghouse Battalion" who ran afoul of the remonstrative general, drops a name of a Congressman criticizing the general's discipline as overly strict, a name familiar to anyone who followed 1960's politics. Everett Dirksen of Illinois, by 1950 a Senator, became well-known as a crusty, usually moderate to liberal Republican, with a distinctive shock of white disheveled hair, possessed of a rasping voice, always unafraid to speak out on issues, and generally well-respected and liked on both sides of the aisle. He became Senate minority leader in 1959 and in that capacity, beginning in 1961, opposed many domestic spending issues of the Kennedy Administration, and generally remained a fiscal conservative; to his great credit, however, he worked in a bi-partisan manner with the Johnson Administration for passage of both the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the 1965 Voting Rights Act, winning him wide respect. During the 1960's he held weekly televised press conferences, discussing the Republican opposition on topical political issues, first with House minority leader Charles Halleck, dubbed the "The Ev and Charlie Show", then, after Congressman Gerald Ford became minority leader of the House, "The Ev and Jerry Show". As we have also previously pointed out, in February, 1963 he led an effort to bring an investigation to determine whether four U.S. airmen were killed while piloting unmarked American B-26 jets over Cuba in April, 1961 to provide air cover during the Bay of Pigs invasion. If true, it dispels the oft-touted notion that the Kennedy Administration refused all air cover, supposedly dooming to failure before its start the operation, planned during the Eisenhower Administration, to remove Fidel Castro from power. Whether Dirksen intended the investigation to reveal such a defense or to attempt to bring up again the reminder of the failure of the operation for political motives is not known: the investigation, opposed by most Democrats, was never had. Perhaps, it should have been. He died in 1969 at age 73 while still in the Senate.
Dorothy Thompson elaborates further on some likely theories as to why Hitler invaded Russia, not, she says, because of claims of Russian encroachment on Rumania or other German-claimed territory, or because of the need for German supply (though this one we except from the abnegation), rather for the purpose of dividing Britain in the hope of getting a sympathetic government to replace Churchill while causing the U.S. to hold up on aid to the Allies, as well to appeal to world Christianity against the "atheism and barbarism" of the Soviets--in other words pandering to appeasement and isolationist advocates among the Allies for the sake of spreading division and confusion among them, satisfying those who saw Hitler as the best bulwark against Soviet aggression and the spread of Communism in the West.
Installment 34 of Out of the Night tells of Jan's experience in a concentration camp in Hamburg, a former group of prison buildings condemned to be destroyed just before the Nazis came to power in 1933. He lives chained and shackled to his bed during the night, has one minute to eat boiling soup or consume a crust of black bread for meals, by day endures interrogation and regular beatings and kicking. The prisoners die routinely, usually of suicide, the rest murdered. The Gestapo--hate them or die trying to learn to hate them; for hate was all they knew, inversion of every reality until it became unreality. But it was quite real to those who endured their sadistic treatment to the end of death. "I am a red pig in chains for high treason," Jan tells us he was forced to say at each sunrise. Who the pig? Who the treasonous? Who in chains?
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