The Courier News from Blytheville, Arkansas on November 13, 1967 · Page 14
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The Courier News from Blytheville, Arkansas · Page 14

Blytheville, Arkansas
Issue Date:
Monday, November 13, 1967
Page 14
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Page fourteen .-Blythevill* (Ark.) Courier News - Monday, November 1?. 19CT Released Prisoner Repudiates Anti-War Statement Another Stands Behind His By DAVID LANCASHIRE Associated Press Writer BEIRUT, Lebanon (AP) — Three U.S. Army sergeants released from Communist captivity in Vietnam left for Washington today after spending the | night in Beirut. One repudiated; antiwar statements he had! made in Hanoi. Another stood, behind his. | Tde three men—James E. Jackson of Talcott, W.Va., Daniel Lee Pitzer of Spring Lake. N.C., and Edward R. Johnson of Seaside, Calif. - were put aboard a Pan American airliner due in Washington at 10:30 p.m. EST after stops in Rome, Paris and New York. The men were flown to Beirut Sunday from Phnom Penh, the Cambodian capital, aboard a Czechoslovak airliner after aj ceremony Saturday at which they were turned over to Thomas Hayden, representing an American peace committee, Hayden was traveling with them to the United Stales, Pan American said. Sgt. Johnson, who was reported ill with dysentery and malnutrition, was quoted by the Beirut newspaper Al Bayrak as denying that he had been brainwashed and said: "I am going back to the war when duty calls me." "I said what I said in Hanoi under pressure and I didn't mean any of it," he was quoted as saying. "I am an American, ... I don't think my brain is so dirty that somebody has to wash it for me," However, Al Bayrak said Pitzer told its reporter at the airport: "I meant everything I said in Hanoi. I am against war and I think the Americans made a mistake in getting involved in it." Pitzer said in Phnom Penh that he was captured in October 1963 in Camau province, South Vietnam's southernmost province. But Melhem Karam, the editor of Al Bayrak and the president of the Lebanese Editors Association, said Pitzer told him his plane was hit while he was bombing North Vietnam, and that he bailed out and was captured. Pitzer said he was .well treated by his captors in North Vietnam. Jackson said only that he was going on to Prague and then to j meet his family in the United States. Beirut airport was under heavy security for the departure. Plainclothes policemen were on duty in the terminal and no newsmen or photographers were allowed out of the milding toward the runway where the airliner waited. The U.S. Embassy said the three Americans asked to be disembarked from the Czech jlane in Beirut Sunday for rest and medical attention. It was the three sergeants' Irst contact with U.S. officials since their release. Because of his illness, Johnson iiad not attended the release ceremony in Phnom Penh, but Jackson and Pitzer appeared and made statements of thanks to the Viet Cong and to Hayden. However, newsmen were not allowed to talk to them. A U.S. psychologist's report No Grandstand Play LBJ's Minister Says TOLLIAMSBURG, Va. (AP — When the Rev. Cotesworth Pinckney Lewis was asked if it took forethought and fortitude to urge resident Johnson to give a "logical, straightforward explanation of U.S. policy in Viet, nam," Dr. Lewis replied: "Of course it did. One isn't privileged to tell the President of the United States what he thinks very often." Dr. Lewis, a self-styled "conservative Southerner," said in an interview late Sunday night, "I offered a sermon this morning as is my custom. My remarks were addressed to the congregation, of which the Pres- dent happened to be one. I don't Want to make a grandstand play out of this." The graying minister who is in his fifties was born in Bir-. mingham, Ala., one of nine children in a family that traces its ancestry back to Charles Cotesworth Pinckney of South Carolina, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. A graduate of Birmingham Southern College in 1934, Dr. Lewis received his bachelor of divinity degree from the University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn. * t * He has held pastorates in Alabama, and Arkansas, and came to Bruton Parish Episcopal Church here 11 years ago from Trinity Cathedral in Little Hock, where he was dean. He is married to the former Louise Barclay of Home, Ga. They have one daughter, Lisa, 11. Bruton parish, completed in 1683, is among tie nation's oldest churches. In continuous use since it was court church for the Virginia colony, the building now nestles amid the restored splendor of colonial Williamsburg. Dr. Lewis' statement on Vietnam policy was an obvious addendum to his sermon, inserted on a separate page at the mid' die of his prepared remarks. His reserved, soft-spoken delivery built the sermon to its climax so subtly that many parish ioners were caught by surprise. What did he think the reaction of his parishioners, in general, would be? "It really doesn't matter," said the rector. released by officials !n Saigon I said there was evidence the three had undergone Communist brainwashing treatment, but some officials said it was not known how effective the treatments were. Hayden told Western newsmen in Phnom Penh they were kept away from the three sergeants because they would "exploit" them. Hayden and Communist officials contended that toe Communists made as much propaganda as possible of thek' action, which they have said came in response to peace demonstrations in the United States. Hayden, a Newark, N.J., writer who twice visited Hanoi and whose passport was withdrawn, represents a committee that includes Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and folk singer Joan Baez. He said that to his knowledge the committee had not met and any embarrassing questions put j he received word in Paris from to the sergeants by newsmen an unspecified source to go to might jeopardize the future re- 1 . Phnom Penh on the prisoner lease of U.S. prisoners. Hayden | matter. appeared hurt when newsmen Hunt on for Wallabies NEW YORK (AP) - West- Chester County Sheriff John E. suggested this was akin to blackmail. Communist sources in Phnom Penh said a steady "trickle" of prisoners would be freed if news j Hoy rounded up a posse stories about the current release | Wednesday to catch some walla- were "correctly written." jbies that flew the coop. The apparent reason for the| Wallabies? Yes, five of the roundabout route was to draw I small-size kangaroos broke out out the release process while'of a chicken coop in Bedford, N.Y., last August. Since then the wallabies, owned by an animal importer, have been living off the land in the woods of Westchester. Two of the hopaways have fallen victim to hit-run drivers on the county highways. "I'm afraid there isn't much hope for the other three unless we catch them pretty soon, said Hoy. 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