America at war! (1941–) – Part 3

Nazis talk of robot raids on New York from U-boats

By Jack Frankish, United Press staff writer

Firestone cites need for tires


Perkins: Lewis ignores plank written for him in Democratic platform

Promise to aid coal industry stands out as one of few definite New Deal pledges
By Fred W. Perkins, Pittsburgh Press staff writer

Washington –
John L. Lewis, who is trying to shepherd the United Mine Workers and their voting relatives away from support of President Roosevelt, didn’t show at the Democratic National Convention, but a platform plank was written for him just the same.

It is a peculiar plank because it is definite. It stands out amid the many general and the ambiguous statements. It pledges “federal legislation to assure stability of products, employment, distribution and prices in the bituminous coal industry to create a proper balance between consumer, producer and mine worker.”

This is a restatement of the aims of the now-defunct “Guffey Act” – first enacted in 1935 and declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court, reenacted in 1937 and upheld, extended experimentally twice by Congress, and finally allowed to die a year ago, because the legislators were in no mood to do anything desired by Mr. Lewis. He was then in the middle of his long strike-punctuated fight against wartime wage policies.

New bills pending

Bills to revive this legislation are now pending in both Senate and House, but not one bears the name of the original sponsor, Senator Joseph F. Guffey (D-PA). The coal operators who brought about the introductions decided they could do better without the Guffey label. Nor have Mr. Lewis nor any of his legislative aides appeared prominently in support of the proposal.

But the mine workers leadership is much in favor of this kind of a law as a means of maintaining coal prices so that miners’ wages can be saved from a nosedive at the end of the war.

The story of how this plank got in the Democratic platform includes an appearance on its behalf by Charles O’Neill, operator who leads the industry school of thought that the coal industry cannot prosper without federal maintenance of prices; and also a belief by some Democrats, said to include Frank Hague of New Jersey, that it would be a good idea for the purpose of stopping what they were told was a trek of miners away from the Democratic Party.

GOP not committed

No corresponding promise is in the Republican platform, but GOP Chairman Herbert Brownell Jr. said he sees indications of a heavy miner vote in favor of the Dewey-Bricker ticket. Incidentally, a large part of this vote is in states where it might swing electoral votes – such as Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana and Illinois.

A difference between this year and 1940 is that the Lewis declaration of four years ago was made only a short time before the election, while now the miners’ leader will have several months in which to spread his anti-Roosevelt doctrine through his organization. This union will open its convention, of about 2,500 delegates, in Cincinnati on Sept. 12. The political intentions of the leadership, and some indication of the response from the rank and file, are expected to come into the open at that time.

A big pro-Roosevelt labor convention will run almost concurrently. It will be the annual gathering of the CIO United Auto Workers, opening Sept. 11 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. R. J. Thomas, Richard Frankensteen and other leaders of the auto workers were foremost in the fight for Henry A. Wallace at last week’s proceedings in Chicago and were disappointed, but, like all other CIO spokesmen, are pledged to go down the line for the Roosevelt ticket.

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Ernie Pyle V Norman

Roving Reporter

By Ernie Pyle

In Normandy, France – (by wireless)
One of the things the layman doesn’t hear much about is the Ordnance Department. In fact, it is one of the branches that even the average soldier is little aware of except in a vague way.

And yet the war couldn’t keep going without it. For Ordnance repairs all the vehicles of an army and furnishes all the ammunition for its guns.

Today there are more vehicles in the American sector of our beachhead than in the average-sized American city. And our big guns on an average heavy day are shooting up more than $10 million worth of ammunition. You see Ordnance has a man-sized job.

Ordnance personnel is usually about six or seven percent of the total men of an army. That means we have many thousands of ordnance men in Normandy. Their insignia is a flame coming out of a retort – nicknamed in the Army “The Flaming Onion.”

Ordnance operates the ammunition dumps we have scattered about the beachhead. But much bigger than its ammunition mission is Ordnance’s job of repair. Ordnance has 275,000 items in its catalog of parts, and the mere catalog itself covers a 20-foot shelf.

In a central headquarters here on the beachhead, a modern filing system housed in big tents keeps records on the number and condition of 500 major items in actual use on the beachhead, from tanks to pistols.

Able to repair anything

We have scores and scores of separate Ordnance companies at work on the beachhead – each of them a complete firm within itself, able to repair anything the Army uses.

Ordnance can lift a 30-ton tank as easily as it can a bicycle. It can repair a blown-up jeep or the intricate breech of a mammoth gun.

Some of its highly specialized repair companies are made up largely of men who were craftsmen in the same line in civil life. In these companies you will find the average age is much above the Army average. You will find craftsmen in their late 40s, you’ll find men with their own established businesses who were making $30,000 to $40,000 a year back home and who are now wearing sergeant’s stripes. You’ll find great soberness and sincerity, plus the normal satisfaction that comes from making things whole again instead of destroying them.

You will find an IQ far above the average for the Army. It has to be that way or the work would not get done.

You’ll find mechanical work being done under a tree that would be housed in a $50,000 shop back in America. You’ll find men working 16 hours a day, then sleeping on the ground, who because of their age, don’t even have to be here at all.

Ordnance is one of the undramatic branches of the Army. They are the mechanics and the craftsmen, the fixers and the suppliers. But their job is vital. Ordinarily they are not in a great deal of danger. there are times on newly won and congested beachheads when their casualty rate is high, but once the war settles down and there is room for movement and dispersal it is not necessary or desirable for them to do their basic work within gun range.

Ordnance casualties light

Our Ordnance branch in Normandy has had casualties. It has two small branches which will continue to have casualties – its bomb-disposal squads and its retriever companies that go up to pull out crippled tanks under fire.

But outside of those two sections, if your son or husband is in Ordnance in France you can feel fairly easy about his returning to you. I don’t say that to belittle Ordnance in any way but to ease your worries if you have someone in this branch of the service overseas.

Ordnance is set up in a vast structure of organization the same as any other Army command. The farther back you go, the bigger become the outfits and the more elaborately equipped and more capable of doing heavy, long-term work.

Every infantry or armored division has an Ordnance Company with it all the time. This company does quick repair jobs. What it hasn’t time or facilities for doing it hands on back to the next echelon in the rear.

The division Ordnance companies hit the beach on D-Day. The next echelon back began coming on D+4. The great heavy outfits arrived somewhat later.

Today wreckage of seven weeks of war is all in hand. And in one great depot after another it is being worked out – repair or rebuilt or sent back for salvage until everything possible is made available again to our men who do the fighting. In later columns, I’ll take you along to some of these repair companies that do the vital work.


Hattie Caraway faces four men

Little Rock, Arkansas (UP) –
Senator Hattie Caraway, the only woman in the Senate, was opposed for renomination by four men in the Arkansas Democratic primary today.

Her chief opponent was Rep. J. W. Fulbright. Others in the race are Governor Homer Adkins, Col. T. H. Barton and J. R. Venable.


‘Cotton Ed’ Smith opposed by four

New Dealer among his primary foes

Columbia, South Carolina (UP) –
U.S. Senator Ellison D. “Cotton Ed” Smith, veteran of 36 years in the Senate and bitter New Deal critic, faced four opponents today in his race for renomination in South Carolina’s Democratic primary.

The main opposition to Mr. Smith, who defeated administration efforts to “purge” him in 1938, came from Governor Olin D. Johnston, a New Dealer. The other three candidates were attorney John N. Daniel, Dr. Carl Epps and attorney A. A. Merrimon.

Mr. Smith built his campaign around states’ rights and white supremacy. Election officials said Negroes would not be permitted to vote but some Negro leaders were expected to make a “token attempt” to cast ballots.


Herbert Brownell indicates –
Stokes: Democrats’ disunity offers real opportunity for GOP

Republican cautious in angling for votes
By Thomas L. Stokes, Scripps-Howard staff writer

Washington –
Republicans believe they have found a rich opportunity in the division and disunity in the Democratic Party which required so many compromises at its convention.

They realize, however, that some care is necessary, as was indicated by the cautious attitude of National Chairman Herbert Brownell Jr. at a press conference here.

Without any particular effort, Republicans will get some benefit in the natural course.

GOP has three choices

But, if they angle actively to attract various disgruntled elements, they will have somewhat of a problem. For it is a wide reach between the Texans, for example, whom they would like to inveigle into their ranks, on one hand, and on the other, the Negroes and the CIO labor vote in large Eastern centers, as the Democrats have discovered.

Republicans have three choices, it would seem. They might do nothing, taking advantage of a natural drift to them here and there. They might be all things to all men, with a policy of expediency and opportunism. Or they might formulate a progressive program, consistent and straightforward, in the effort to become the real progressive party and lure much of that strength from the Democratic Party.

Governor Dewey is certainly handed the chance to rise above GOP old guardism.

Expects UMW support

In his press conference, Mr. Brownell forecast a big swing of labor in the industrial states to the Republicans. He said he expected considerable support from miners in the United Mine Workers, John L. Lewis’ union, and also looked for some support from CIO members, despite the leadership’s adherence to President Roosevelt.

He thought the Texas revolt was so vociferously expressed at the Democratic Convention that it was not necessary for him to comment on that situation; but he did add that Republicans expected to campaign actively there.

As one of the “highlights” of the Democratic Convention, he said in a statement:

Control of the Democratic Party rests wholly with two elements – the bosses of the corrupt, big-city machines and the radical left-wingers who are closer to Communism than to any other political philosophy.

Refuses to name names

But when asked to name names, he refused. He thought the newspapermen before him knew who he meant, he said. He added that he would have something to say later about these groups.

It was noted that he omitted in the controlling groups the Southern conservatives who forced the Democratic Party to compromise on the Negro issue in the platform and who furnished the votes that defeated Vice President Wallace. The Southerners became a real factor in the party again at the convention.

It was obvious from Mr. Brownell’s caginess that the party leaders have not yet decided just how they will go about the job of trying to capitalize upon what he called “the dissension, backbiting and double-crossing” in the Democratic Convention, just how they can appeal to the Southerners and still nurture the Negro and progressive vote, just how far they can go in condemning “radical left-wingers” without giving affront to rank-and-file workers in big cities.


Dewey, Bricker plan 9-week campaign

By Lyle C. Wilson, United Press staff writer

Washington –
New York Governor Thomas E. Dewey and Ohio Governor John W. Bricker will pack their presidential and vice-presidential campaigns into the nine-week period preceding the Nov. 7 election, Republican National Committee Chairman Herbert Brownell Jr. revealed here.

Making his first visit to RNC headquarters, Mr. Brownell said that the rest of July and August would be given over to organizing the campaign. Mr. Bricker will arrive at Republican headquarters Thursday for campaign conferences.

Mr. Dewey will be in St. Louis next week for a meeting of Republican governors, but that is a political development related to the campaign only indirectly since it involves a collective effort and no series of speeches by the candidate. Mr. Brownell said the exact itinerary of the St. Louis trip with other stops would be made public later.

Confident of victory

But he was ready with victory claims, expressing confidence that the Republicans would have Election Day majorities in the 26 states which now have Republican governors and which have 339 votes in the Electoral College. A majority necessary to elect is 266 Electoral College votes.

But Mr. Brownell is still wary of some of the personal support already offered Mr. Dewey for this campaign, notably the pledge which recently came from President John L. Lewis of the United Mine Workers of America. Neither does Mr. Brownell want to discuss in any detail whether, when or how Wendell L. Willkie, the 1940 Republican presidential candidate, will participate in the Dewey campaign.

Brownell was sharp in his criticism of “left-wingers” at the Democratic National Convention but under questioning avoided any commitment whether he included the Congress of Industrial Organizations in that group. He said the Dewey-Bricker ticket expected to get some CIO support.

Questioned on Willkie’s role

After he had stressed Republican Party unity, Mr. Brownell was asked if he included Mr. Willkie in the unity statement. He replied:

You will find as the campaign progresses that every Republican leader will be behind the Dewey-Bricker ticket.

“Does that include Mr. Willkie?” he was asked again. Mr. Brownell replied that he would let his statement stand.

Continuing to explain that the Republicans expected to get a big labor vote, Mr. Brownell was asked whether Mr. Lewis would work actively for the Dewey-Bricker ticket. The question has come up before and Mr. Brownell was ready with an answer which avoided any direct acceptance of Mr. Lewis assistance but suggested that the mine leader was following the trend of his own rank and file.

Al Shean’s only song still clicks in big way

‘Everybody’ has wacky chorus for dirty, some good, some naughty
By Ernest Foster

Joan Carroll in comeback

Veterans get union pledge on old jobs

Post-war rights are outlined

Editorial: A program, but no WPA


Editorial: It depends on who and how

By order of the Federal Communications Commission, Western Union has forbidden the transmission of telegrams of congratulation.

The order was issued to keep the telegraph wires open for the great volume of war business. Which would seem to make sense. Most citizens have accepted this “sacrifice” gracefully.

But President Roosevelt, from that undisclosed naval base from which he delivered a radio speech to the Democratic Convention, telegraphed “heartiest congratulations” to Senator Harry S. Truman on Mr. Truman’s nomination for Vice President.

This, as the FCC admits, was a clear violation of the order. Since Mr. Roosevelt is Commander-in-Chief, you couldn’t expect Western Union to turn down his wire. No more than you can expect the FCC to do anything about it.

Of course, some private citizens have violated the order, too. But they had to be more subtle. Like a friend who sent a telegram to another: “So sorry can’t send telegram I’d like to send.”

But Mr. Roosevelt boldly used the forbidden word: “Congratulations.”

This is like it is with so many other things. The government makes the rules and the government breaks ‘em.


Heath: Dewey’s visitors go away visibly impressed

By S. Burton Heath

S. Burton Heath, writing a series of articles from Albany, is substituting for Peter Edson, regular conductor of the Washington Column, who is absent from Washington for a few days.

Albany, New York –
The Dewey personality is working up here – and like a bit of yeast tossed into the brew, it is turning a heterogeneous collection of casual ingredients into a potentially powerful liquor whose flavor seems to appeal to many.

In other words, Candidate Dewey is busy right now making friends: Dispelling any idea that he is an autocrat who gets nasty if he can’t have his own way, and whipping anti-Roosevelt parts into a pro-Dewey machine.

Most of Mr. Dewey’s visitors since his nomination have of course, been Republican officeholders, aspirants or party leaders, who are stuck with the GOP candidate at least until Nov. 8, whether they like him or not. They would not be expected, in this political season, to leave his presence breathing smoke and fire and hurling anathemas.

But capital correspondents, whose business it is to know when a politician is being political and when he is sincere, think that the enthusiasm of Governor Dewey’s conferees thus far has been from the heart.

Variety of callers

The Dewey appointment book, since he accepted the nomination, shows four types of callers. There have been members of his official family visiting him on state business. There have been newspaper, magazine and radio representatives ranging from the men assigned to his office to top executives of the biggest publications coming to get acquainted or to arrange for special articles.

There have been a few individuals who have come to discuss policies, issues, strategy, organization and party financing – such persons, for example, as National Chairman Brownell, National Financial Chairman Kemper, former National Chairman Spangler (now party general counsel).

And finally, there have been Republican members of both houses of Congress, who are being invited by state delegations. These practical, down-to-earth, 24-hour-a-day politicians provide an acid test of the Dewey personality. That is particularly true because the earlier ones from Vermont, Massachusetts and Connecticut leaned strongly to Wendell Willkie until the 1940 candidate pulled out of this race. When I went through New England last winter, some of these people couldn’t see Dewey for Willkie.

The Congressional members and aspirants all are running for office themselves this year, except for an occasional senator. When they get back home, they go out through the countryside seeking votes. Their job here is to determine for themselves whether their own fortunes will be advanced by plugging Mr. Dewey assiduously for the White House or by giving him lip service as a formality and playing lone hands thereafter.

Personality rings bell

The impression gained by political observers is that without exception these people are going away with the idea that they can serve themselves and their party best by going all out for Candidate Dewey.

As they put it, with apparent sincerity, they are “inspired… impressed… completely overwhelmed by the force of his personality.”

Veteran Congressman James W. Wadsworth of New York, more articulate than many, summed up the general reaction when he said:

I am greatly impressed with the Governor’s vigor. He travels a straight road. He fills the atmosphere of discussion with vigor. It’s very refreshing and encouraging.

That, of course, is the purpose of this preliminary phase of the Dewey campaign – to make friends, to send apostles back to the hustings enthusiastically singing praise of the presidential candidate while he is preparing thunderbolts to launch at President Roosevelt during and climaxing two months of the campaign.

Thus far the system seems to be working. There will be nothing muscle-bound about the fervor with which those who have come to Albany thus far will talk Dewey to their constituents back home.


Editorial: Party splits

Both parties are now trying to heal the wounds of their convention battles. In either case party unity may make the difference between victory and defeat in November. At the moment the Republicans are better off. They left fewer throats cut and hearts broken than Mr. Roosevelt’s remote-control sessions in Chicago last week.

Anti-Roosevelt Democrats in the South are talking third party, under some such name as “Jefferson Democrats.” In Texas, unless there is an unexpected last-minute deal between the present majority, anti-Roosevelt faction and the “rump” fourth-termers, there will be rival Democratic tickets in that state.

The two biggest convention fights last week were settled in favor of the restive South to prevent party revolt spreading beyond Texas. Mr. Wallace was ditched and Senator Truman nominated for the Vice Presidency to appease the South, though that was not the only reason. Likewise, the platform fight over the racial issue ended in a plank of evasion, and a complete defeat for Negro and Northern Democratic delegates who demanded something better even than the surprisingly strong Republican plank.

Candidate Roosevelt and his convention bosses had the unhappy choice of alienating Southern votes or Northern Negro votes in the election, and chose the latter as the lesser electoral risk. But Negro organizations claim they hold the November balance of power in at least eight Northern and border states, including New York, Ohio and Indiana.

There will be no Democratic split as a result of the bitter vice-presidential fight. Wallace supporters are FDR supporters first, and the CIO labor leaders who made the convention noise for Mr. Wallace had accepted Mr. Truman secretly in advance as their best compromise.

Republicans have been successful in turning a convention vice-presidential fight into a unity asset. The popular Governor Warren might have been a stronger candidate – he hopes to swing the Pacific Coast states anyway by campaigning – but his withdrawal enabled all factions to unite on Governor Bricker of Ohio, a key state. all, that is, except the Willkieites; and it is doubtful at the moment that Mr. Willkie will bolt.

So, at the start of the campaign, Mr. Dewey’s forces are more united than those of Mr. Roosevelt.

Ferguson: Gullible parents

By Mrs. Walter Ferguson

UP names Grigg London manager


Millett: Heaven help the man!

Wife and husband in Congress fight
By Ruth Millett

In Texas, a war plant worker who is a candidate for nomination for Congress asked for an injunction to keep his wife from competing with him in the race. The judge said nothing doing. But you can’t blame the man for trying to eliminate his wife’s opposition.

For a wife could be a deadly political opponent. Suppose, for instance, she did nothing more than to introduce into political circles the kind of talk woman pass off lightly at bridge parties. No man whose wife did that could hope to impress anybody with his fitness for an important political office.

You know the kind of talk I mean. The little story about how George got stung on a business deal. And the hilarious tale of last summer’s victory garden – which George deserted for the golf course after a few evenings’ work.

And then some of George’s peculiar notions about running a house. And how the poor dear is so forgetful he can’t even remember his wedding anniversary. And the way his wife manages him by making him think all of her bright ideas are his.

There is nobody in the world into can make a man look more incompetent, or more of a comic strip character, than his ever-loving wife.

And that’s when she is on his side. If she were running against him for a political office – heaven help the man.

U.S., British groups open oil parley

Production control, distribution discussed
By Hal O’Flaherty

Argentina, irked by Hull, recalls envoy

Dignity injured, government hints

De Gaulle urges reduced bombings



Pegler: Communist-CIO

By Westbrook Pegler

New York –
The rise of Sidney Hillman’s Political Action Committee of the CIO to a commanding position in the Democratic Party calls for a serious study of Hillman’s political and personal history and of the persistent, though often changing methods of the Communists in American affairs.

Like Hillman, many of these indefatigables are naturalized citizens in the legal sense but mere angry prejudice against as “foreigners,” and against their exasperating effrontery, is a dangerous weapon. It can be politically effective but it invites consequences as bad as the dangers which it undertakes to defeat.

Anyway, there are many native Americans in the conspiracy – notably Earl Browder, a Kansan, claiming to come of an old Virginia line – who are the more dangerous for the very reason that they would not be included in such prejudice.

The better way is to get out the books and Congressional documents and the rosters of Communist organizations and their more or less innocent subsidiaries and cram during the period of less than four months remaining before Election Day.

A big assignment

Those of us who have been at it for years realize that this is a big assignment and, this being so, it would be well for the Americans for once to take a lesson from the Communists, themselves, and organize “study groups” to learn how the Communists operate and who they are.

One reason why the few Communists could command the attendance of Henry Wallace and Francis Biddle, the Attorney General, at conferences with their man, Hillman, in Chicago, and issue to the Democratic Convention an order for the nomination of Mr. Wallace which barely was defeated, was that they are constantly at it. They are diligent where Americans are mentally lazy.

For the purpose of study by neighborhood and shop and office groups, the reports of the Dies Committee would be useful because they contain condensed information, including lists of names and organizations of the Communist front. Martin Dies’ own book, The Trojan Horse in America, is another informative authority.

Another book, amounting to a history and directory of American Communism for a certain period with detailed information on Hillman and others who carry over into the present crisis, is Benjamin Gitlow’s I Confess. Gitlow is a backslider, Browder’s predecessor in American Communism, who told all with such firm authority that the worst of his old comrades couldn’t even say he lied.

Example of Communist treachery

Ben Stolberg’s Story of the CIO, published in 1938, and his recent Tailor’s Progress, short and full of information. And, as an example of the ruthless and cynical treachery of the Communists to any American who has served their purpose, even at the risk of his life, there is Proletarian Journey, by Fred Beal. He was still in prison in North Carolina at last reports, convicted of a Communist murder in a riot. The book tells of his escape to Russia and of his disillusionment there, after which the American Communists disowned him and let him go to prison.

The Dies Committee’s data has a bad reputation for the very reason that it attacked and exposed Communism in the Roosevelt government. Thus, the New Deal propaganda agencies and the Communist intelligentsia sheered Martin Dies into disrepute as a witch-burner. And, only recently, Hillman, whom Dies had exposed, was able to move into Texas with such financial and political power that Dies knew he couldn’t be reelected to Congress and decided to sit out a term.

Among the people who should be reached by such study are the American workers who have joined unions, willingly or not, who may actually believe that the fight against Communism is a fight on labor, as the Communists dominate the CIO today. Philip Murray is the prisoner of the Communists. They control him and the CIO through their seats in the executive committee. Hillman is as badly off. They have got to play ball or die.

Maj. de Seversky: Post-war power

By Maj. Alexander P. de Seversky