America at war! (1941–) – Part 3

Crisis at Anzio ‘a real thing,’ writer insists

War correspondent cites that high officials ‘admitted’ it
By William H. Stoneman

Big Jap convoy sent to bottom

Attempt to supply Bismarck force halted
By Don Caswell, United Press staff writer

2 Marine planes photograph Truk before big attack

Sight huge Jap fleet in enemy’s bastion and island covered with heavy coastal guns, airfields
By 1st Lt. Penn T. Kimball and 2nd Lt. William Holt, USMC correspondents

Hiccough victim gets own doctor

Tough job to invade Truk, U.S. visitor to base says

All island in group heavily and skillfully fortified, declares correspondent invited by Japs

Hull: Awaiting Japs, soldiers trap real live rats

Oil can used for snare by Yank soldier in Pacific
By Peggy Hull, North American Newspaper Alliance

Peggy Hull, the only accredited woman correspondent of World War I, is now the only woman covering the Central Pacific area.

A Central Pacific base – (by mail)
I’ve just spent a day with a small anti-aircraft outfit in an isolated section of this island. They haven’t been over here very long and are a disappointed crowd because they haven’t had a chance to take a shot at a Jap plane.

I don’t know where they got the idea that they were going to set up their guns and go right to work on the Nips, but they certainly arrived here all set to work out on real targets.

A little camp problem has kept them preoccupied recently and I was just as well pleased that my invitation was for a day and not a week, for the site is infested with rats and mice and what is worse, the rodents have taken the low, thickly branched trees and made their nest there.

A mouse dropping in one’s hair during an evening stroll or a rat landing on your shoulder in the blackout isn’t something I can contemplate with enthusiasm.

At first, they tried arming themselves with bamboo poles, knocking the rats out of their nests and then running them down.

Then an ingenious G.I. thought up a new kind of trap and when I was there it was working to everyone’s satisfaction except the rats.

A 55-gallon oil tin (in case anyone at home needs this prescription for the same reason) is cut in half and partially filled with water. The sides are then greased, a thick piece of paper tied over the top with a hole in the center and some bait suspended above the hole on a string. It really works.

Hong Kong termed goal of Pacific smash

By Miles W. Vaughn, United Press staff writer

Editorial: Dangerous censorship

Editorial: Keep the rural press free

Editorial: The losses and the gains

News of the worst military disaster at sea in our history, and news of the most daring naval action of the war, come on the same day. After this, no American in his senses can talk glibly of a soft war and easy victory.

To the thousand families who have received official notice of the loss of their loved ones on a troopship sunk by the enemy in European waters, the nation extends its deepest sympathy.

The same American Navy which has held such transport losses to a minimum now has sent a fleet in another ocean into the very jaws of the dragon. Truk is the main Jap base outside home waters. Repeatedly the enemy’s Pacific fleet has refused to come out and fight, even to defend its Marshalls bastion. Now Adm. Nimitz has thrown in a mighty task force of surface and airpower. If the enemy fleet is there, a decisive naval battle is in progress; if that fleet has fled, our forces will destroy its bases.

Regardless of hazard, the U.S. Navy will continue to press its offensive in the Pacific and continue to convoy more and more troopships across the oceans until this war is won.

Editorial: Changes they take


Edson: Old Dr. New Deal changes his name to Dr. New Peace

By Peter Edson

Washington –
You may well watch for the emergence of something that might be called “the New Peace” as successor to “the New Deal.”

President Roosevelt, in his now-famous aside to Dilworth Lupton of The Cleveland Press, just before Christmas, indicated that the New Deal slogan was outmoded and that something like “Win-the-War” would be more appropriate. A month later, Vice President Wallace told the Democratic Jackson Day dinner audience that the New Deal was not dead.

All the evidence would seem to indicate that Henry is right, as a look at the record of the last few weeks will show.

When the President was allegorically amplifying on his own views about how old Doctor New Deal had called in young Doctor Win-the-War to cure a sick country, he explained that although the post-war program had not been settled on at all – except in generalities – it was clear that plans must be made now for an expanded economy which will result in more security, more employment, more recreation, more education, more health and better housing for all, so that the conditions of 1932 would not return again.

Program outlined

There, from the President himself, you have the broad outlines of a post-war New Deal which is now being mentioned as “the New Peace” program.

In reality, it would be a successor to the President’s Win-the-War program.

The New Peace program has been dealt with in both the President’s regular message and in his budget message to Congress.

Basis of this New Peace program perhaps is best stated in the “Second Bill of Rights” passage from the President’s message:

The right to a useful and remunerative job in the industries or shops or farms or mines of the nation;

The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation;

The right of every farmer to raise and sell his products at a return which will give him and his family a decent living;

The right of every businessman, large and small, to trade in an atmosphere of freedom from unfair competition and domination by monopolies at home or abroad;

The right of every family to a decent home;

The right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health;

The right to adequate protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident, and unemployment;

The right to a good education.

Political platform

This eight-point program certainly did not get into the presidential message by accident. It is a ready-made political platform if there ever was one.

Whether it merely restates old ideals or states a new peace program, it does not sound like much of an abandonment of the New Deal. Maybe the label will be dropped as something that no longer garners votes, but that’s all, and into the Second Bill of Rights you can read anything you like or don’t like, from socialized medicine or persecution of big business to social security from cradle to grave.

As if to implement this program, the President in his budget message gave clear indications that he would later ask Congress for appropriations to achieve the objectives of strengthening the U.S. Employment Service, broadening old-age and unemployment insurance coverage, providing public works to relieve post-war unemployment and finally, spreading the benefits of stabilized currencies and international management of trade and the production and distribution of food to the whole world.

The New Deal killed by its pappy? Don’t let them kid you. Henry was right.


Ferguson: Gallico and women

By Mrs. Walter Ferguson

Paul Gallico, the author, is now on tour delivering a lecture entitled “Women and How to Improve Them.”

At first glance, you would say his subject is timely and the material available should be extensive. But unfortunately, in an effort to be funny, he doesn’t talk about women at all; he talks about fashion plates. Railing against nail polish, lipstick, permanents, mascara and the silly habits originating with clothing models and movie stars, Mr. Gallico deals entirely with the husk of women – never with their real selves.

That, I think, is a pity, because so much needs to be said about feminine faults of the intellect, heart and spirit. The American woman could do with some stiff lectures on her shortcomings. But they have nothing to do with the color of lipstick or nail polish.

Mr. Gallico might have said that women are shallow and vapid, content with a veneer of good manners and too much given to emotional tangents; that we lack imagination and kindness, and are restricted to a conformity of thought deadly to the growth of character.

He could have shouted that we are cowards, because we are so easily swayed from our moral convictions; that we are stupid because having within our hands tremendous power – numerical strength, leadership in the buying field, industrial influence – we still let men do our thinking for us.

He might have flayed our weakness of spirit which has led us to accept with too little protest, the present world, constructed from the political and diplomatic blunders of men.

Gazing out over that world, one wonders where a representative of Mr. Gallico’s sex gathers the temerity to criticize the women his social order has created.

9th Air Force in England for invasion drive

Brereton’s unit prepares to repeat role played in Africa
By Walter Cronkite, United Press staff writer

Simms: U.S., British prestige with weak ‘slipping’

Small nations wondering if Allies are ‘fair weather’ friends
By William Philip Simms, Scripps-Howard foreign editor

Navy’s chaplain pleads for mail – and more mail

Capt. Lash, in London, says letters really make morale

Fifty chorus girls scram when bears go on rampage

And as many husky males seek cover when animals, highly educated, suffer a mishap
By Ernest Foster

New Europe being mapped, but behind closed doors

Many problems face Allies in deciding political and economic rehabilitation plans
By Victor Gordon Lennox

Victor Gordon Lennox, a war correspondent in London, is now on a visit back home to the United States.

A new pattern for Europe is being fashioned in London and few people outside official circles will be allowed to know what shape it is taking until the war in Europe is very much nearer to being won.

On Jan. 17, The Pittsburgh Press and The Chicago Daily News carried a London dispatch from Helen Kirkpatrick reporting the concern voiced in newspaper circles over the fact that the British and American governments apparently prefer to deal with post-war questions behind closed doors.

She added that the Censorship Office, under Adm. Thompson, was not at that time obliged to accept Foreign Office advice on political stories.

Now it is clear that the Foreign Office is strengthening its hold over the censorship, in that it has appointed two British career diplomats as “advisers” permanently attached to Adm. Thompson’s office. Neither has any experience in censorship or press work. One, Sir Reginald Hoare, was minister to one of the Balkan states; the other, Sir Robert Hodgson, served in Ethiopia and Franco Spain.

‘A minor sensation’

Some American correspondents in London feel that this step was taken by the Foreign Office in compliance with representations from the Washington State Department.

The inference seems to be that American proposals for steps to be taken to impose the will of the United Nations on Germany after victory, presented to the European Advisory Commission last week, have created something of a sensation among correspondents who have gained some knowledge of their main outlines.

In Britain, as in the United States, there will undoubtedly be serious misgivings if it is thought that a plan is being cooked up in private which for one reason or another would not command popular endorsement. It should be remembered, however, that the European Advisory Commission was set up expressly to permit the three principal Allied powers in Europe, to privately thrash out their respective views and attitudes on European reconstruction and pacification.

Many questions

When British Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden visited Washington last March, he was gratified to find how much constructive study had been given to this subject in the State Department – more indeed than had been given in the London Foreign Office up to that time.

It then appeared, moreover, that the American trend of thought was along lines closely similar to those being pursued by the British.

After the Moscow Conference of foreign secretaries, it was widely assumed that the Russians had fully exposed their own thoughts on the same subject. Now, in fact, there is reason to believe that Russian Foreign Commissar Molotov was careful to confine himself to generalities, and it may well be that Russian plans are only now being propounded in greater detail.

These plans must deal not only with the disarmament, and possible partition, of Germany but also with the industrial and economic future of the States now comprised in the Reich.

Apart from political problems, it may well be found that the desire of various big business interests to gain a preponderant position in European industry during the period of reconstruction is creating trouble.

Attitudes undefined

While there has been no public announcement of the British attitude on this subject, it is known to be the general line of British policy that the western powers should try to prevent a competitive race for markets in the immediate post-war period.

The Russian attitude has been still less publicly defined, but probably envisages large-scale transfers of German industrial equipment and labor to the Soviet Union, to assist in restoring Russia’s industrial productivity.

As to the German state, the last available information shows the Allies thinking in terms of partition into several separate entities operating within some form of federal system.

Ernie Pyle V Norman

Roving Reporter

By Ernie Pyle

In Italy – (by wireless)
The little handful of old-timers left in my company have been together so long they form a little family of their own. They sort of stand apart from the newer bulk of the company.

Out of their wisdom they seek the best place to settle down in a new bivouac. They are the first to find an abandoned German dugout, or a cozy pig shed, or a case of brandy in the cellar of a bombed building. And by right of seniority, they take it.

Most of them are sergeants and platoon leaders by now. Such men as Tat Allumbaugh and Knobby Knobbs and Jack Pierson, whom I’ve mentioned before, and Sgt. Ed Kattleman of Cincinnati, and Buck Eversole of Twin Falls, Idaho, and 1st Sgt. Bill Wood of Council Bluffs, Iowa, and Sgt. Pete commers of Imogene, Iowa, and Pvt. Eddie Young of Pontiac, Michigan.

So much depends on this little group of noncoms, and war is such a familiarizing force that they are almost on the same basis as the officers. In this company the officers eat separately when they’re in bivouac, but that’s about the only class distinction.

Little military formality

There is little military formality. I had to laugh one afternoon when Lt. Tony Libertore of Charleston, South Carolina, was lying on the ground with several of these sergeants sitting around him, just gabbing about this and that.

Lt. Libertore made some remark. I forget what it was, and Jack Pierson rocked back and forth with his hands tucked around his knees, and said:

Why, you horse’s behind. It ain’t that way at all.

Even in fun, you don’t talk that way with an officer until you’ve been through that famous valley of death and out again together.

Then Lt. Libertore started telling me all that he had to put up with. He said:

Now take Tag and Knobby. They treat me like dirt. They browbeat me all the time. But word came around this afternoon that six men were to be picked for rest camp, and boy they’ve been “sirring” me to death ever since, and bringing me gifts and asking if I needed anything.

Listen with appreciative grins

Tag and Knobby sat there listening with appreciative grins on their facts.

These old-timers in the company sort of took me in and made me feel a part of them. One afternoon, Lt. Sheehy asked if I’d ever shot a carbine and I said no, but that I’d always wanted to. So, he said:

Well, let’s go out and shoot at something.

At the time, we were a couple of miles back of the fighting. Our company was to march that night and start its own attack next day. That afternoon, they had nothing to do, and were just like a man who takes a day off from the office to lie around home. There was distant artillery and the day was warm and sunny and lazy.

The lieutenant went to get his gun, and just by acclamation the little circle of veterans went after theirs, too. When they came back, they had carbines, Tommy guns, Garands .45s, and the German automatic known as the P-38, similar to the Lueger. We walked about a quarter mile from our olive orchard down into a broad, protected gully.

Slope is too rocky

Then with seasoned eyes they looked around for a place to do some target shooting. They’d look at one slope and say:

No, that’s too rocky. The bullets will ricochet, and they might hit some of our artillery batteries over the hill.

They looked at another slope and turned it down because we’d seen some Italian children running across it a little while before. Finally they picked a gravelly bank that seemed to have nothing behind it, and we started shooting. There weren’t any tin cans or anything, so we’d pick out tiny white rocks in the bank. The distance was about 75 yards.

I’d been jokingly bragging on the way down about what a crack rifle shot I was, so now I had to make good or else. And I did! nothing could make me any prouder than that I picked off little white rocks right along with these veterans.

Shoot for half an hour

We must have shot for half an hour. We traded guns all around so I could try them all. Buck Eversole showed me how they hold a Tommy gun and spray a slope full of krauts.

Finally, the lieutenant said:

We better stop or the colonel might raise hell about wasting ammunition.

Toward the end the boys made it comical, holding the guns out at arm’s length and shutting their eyes like girls, and holding down the trigger and just letting her jump.

It was really an incongruous interlude – war is full of them. Eight of the finest and most hardened soldiers in the American Army out in picnic fashion shooting at rocks and having fun two miles behind the line where tomorrow they would again be shooting to kill.

Pegler: Mr. Lynch’s ideas

By Westbrook Pegler