America at war! (1941–) – Part 3

Das Land der 7.000 Inseln

Von Prof. Dr. Andre Eckardt

U.S. Navy Department (December 28, 1943)

Communiqué No. 492

Pacific and Far East.
U.S. submarines have reported the sinking of twelve enemy vessels in operations against the enemy in waters of these areas, as follows:


  • 1 destroyer.
  • 2 large tankers.
  • 1 large freighter.
  • 2 medium transports.
  • 6 medium freighters.

These actions have not been announced in any previous Navy Depart­ment Communiqué.

CINCPAC Press Release No. 213

For Immediate Release
December 28, 1943

Army Liberators of the Seventh Army Air Force which dropped more than 50 tons of bombs on Wotje on December 26 (West Longitude Date) were attacked by six Zeros. One Zero was destroyed. We lost two planes.

A low-altitude attack was made against Jaluit and shipping there on December 26 by Ventura bombers and Hellcat fighters of Fleet Air Wing Two. All of our planes returned.

The Pittsburgh Press (December 28, 1943)

Murray ends USW walkout with a word

Retroactive clause won, unions are ordered to open plants
By William Forrester

Army ready to use troops if railroad unions strike

Stimson places Somervell in charge of transport; pay raise given
By Lyle C. Wilson, United Press staff writer

Berlin admits evacuation of Adriatic port

Ortona retreat reported; Yanks seize gateway to Rome plain

Yanks closing on 2 airfields in New Britain

Marine tanks, artillery go into action around Cape Gloucester
By Don Caswell, United Press staff writer

Knox: Secret weapons hit Germans, Japanese

Secretary also discloses U.S. has six times as many carriers as Pearl Harbor Day

Too many cooks –
Call renewed for labor chief

All disputes now lead to White House
By Fred W. Perkins, Pittsburgh Press staff writer

Troubleshooter Somervell gets job Wilson gave McAdoo in World War I

Army supply chief has experience for task; 26 years ago today railroads were taken over

Smith charges ban on strikes made useless

Congressman claims teeth pulled from bill by New Deal

Hopkins denies saying Willkie will head GOP

Senator Langer to insist on probe of 1940 convention

Brydon Taves dies in crash

UP war reporter buried in New Guinea

Adv Allied HQ, New Guinea (UP) –
Brydon Taves, United Press Southwest Pacific manager and war correspondent, and Pendil Rayner, of the Brisbane Telegraph, died yesterday of injuries received Sunday in the crash of a combat plane on New Guinea, it was announced today.

Two Air Force enlisted men were also killed in the crash which occurred as the plane took off on a combat reconnaissance mission to observe Marine landings at Cape Gloucester.

Mr. Taves, 29, received severe burns which covered more than half his body, and a fractured skull. He was conscious for about an hour after the crash, but lapsed into a coma and did not regain consciousness. He was hurried in a war cemetery somewhere in New Guinea today.

The first American correspondent to reach Australia after the Jap attack on Pearl Harbor, Mr. Taves organized and supervised United Press coverage in the war zone commanded by Gen. Douglas MacArthur.

Mr. Taves was a veteran of the London Blitz in 1940.

Born in New York City, he received his education in England and joined The New York Herald Tribune for his first newspaper experience. He joined the United Press in 1933.

On May 21, 1943, Mr. Taves married Diana Parnham, an Australian actress. His widow and a sister, Patricia Taves of London, survive.

Ian Morrison of The London Times and Hayden Lennard of the Australian Broadcasting Commission were injured in the crash and taken to hospitals. Their injuries were not serious.

Realistic reporting urged as way to stir home front

OWI aide criticizes officials who predicted high casualties as means to arouse public

Simms: All that remains is to date for attack on Europe

Most desperate fighting in history will come in first 100 days of New Year; weather bars early start
By William Philip Simms, Scripps-Howard foreign editor

Editorial: Can you look them in the eye?

Editorial: Generals in politics

Editorial: The Eisenhower invasion

Ferguson: Home saboteurs

By Mrs. Walter Ferguson

Background of news –
Air support in landings

By B. C. Shepherd, North American Newspaper Alliance

Ernie Pyle V Norman

Roving Reporter

By Ernie Pyle

In Italy – (by wireless)
The little towns of Italy that have been in the path of this war from Salerno northward are nothing more than great rubble heaps. There is hardly enough left of most of them to form a framework for rebuilding.

When the Germans occupied the towns, we rained artillery on them for days and weeks at a time. Then after we captured a town, the Germans would shell it heavily. They got it from both sides.

Along the road for 20 or 30 miles behind the fighting front, you pass through one demolished town after another. Most of the inhabitants take to the hills after the first shelling. Some got to live in caves, some go to relatives in the country. A few in every town refuse to leave no matter what happens, and many of them have been killed.

A countryside is harder to disfigure than a town. You have to look closely and study in detail, to find the carnage wrought upon the green fields and the rocky hillside. It is there, but it is temporary – like a skinned finger – and time and the rains will heal it. Another year and the countryside will cover its own scars.

Land in the wake of war

If you wander on foot and look closely, you will see the signs – the limb of an olive tree broken off, six swollen dead horses in the corner of a field, a straw stack burned down, a chestnut tree blown clear out with its roots by a German bomb, little gray patches of powder burns on the hillside, snatches of broken and abandoned rifles and grenades on the bushes, grain fields patterned with a million crisscrossing ruts from the great trucks crawling frame-deep through the mud, empty gun pits, and countless foxholes and rubbish-heap stacks of empty C-ration cans and now and then a lone grave.

The apple season is on now, and in the cities and those towns that still exist, there are hundreds of little curbside stands selling apples, oranges, and hazelnuts. The apples are to us here what the tangerines were in North Africa a year ago, and the tomatoes and grapes in Sicily last summer.

I haven’t been in Italy long enough really to know much about the people, but I do know that the average soldier likes Italy a great deal better than he did Africa. As one soldier said:

They seem more civilized.

Our soldiers are a little contemptuous of the Italians and don’t fully trust them, and yet with the typical American tenderheartedness they feel sorry for them, and little by little they are becoming sort of fond of them. They seem to us a pathetic people, not very strong in character, but fundamentally kindhearted and friendly.

Some opinions on Italians

A lot of our Italian-American soldiers are taking to the land of their fathers like ducks to water, but not all of them. The other night I was riding in a jeep with an officer and an enlisted man of Italian extraction, both from New York. The officer was talking about the plentitude of girls in Naples, and he said most of the soldiers there had girls.

The driver said:

Not me. I won’t have anything to do with them. The minute they find out I speak Italian, they start giving me a sob story about how poor and starved they are and why don’t the Americans feed them faster.

I look at it this way – they’ve been poor for a long time and it wasn’t us that made them poor. They started this war and they’ve killed plenty of our soldiers. And now that they’re whipped, they expect us to take care of them. That kind of talk gives me a pain. I tell them to go to hell. I don’t like them.

But our average soldier can’t seem to hold an animosity very long. And you can’t help liking a lot of the Italians. For instance, when I pull back to write for a few days, I stay in a bare, cold room of a huge empty house out in the country. My roommates are Reynolds Packard of the United Press and Clark Lee of the International News Service.

We have an Italian boy 24 years old who takes care of the room. I don’t know whether the Army hired him or whether he just walked in and went to work. At any rate, he’s there all day and he can’t do enough for us. He sweeps the room six times and mops it twice every day.

He boards up blown-out windows, does our washing, and even picks up the scraps of wood and builds a little fire to take the chill off. When he runs out of anything to do, he just sits around, always in sight awaiting our pleasure.

His name is Angelo. He smiles every time you look at him. We talk to each other all the time without knowing what we’re saying. He admires my two-fingered speed on the typewriter. He comes and looks over my shoulder while I’m writing, which drives me crazy, but he’s so eager and kind I can’t tell him to go away. It’s hard to hate a guy like that.

Clapper: Strikes

By Raymond Clapper

Air Transport Command

U.S. cargo ship lands in hidden jungle airports
By Max B. Cook, Scripps-Howard staff writer