The Courier News from Blytheville, Arkansas on November 29, 1949 · Page 9
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The Courier News from Blytheville, Arkansas · Page 9

Blytheville, Arkansas
Issue Date:
Tuesday, November 29, 1949
Page 9
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TUKSDAY, NOVEMBER 29, 1949 America's 30-Year War Against Communism — 1919 Skirmish First Of Many Attacks on Communists in U. S. (Editor's Note: This Is the second in a scries o[ 12 stones by NfJA Washington Correspondent Peter Kdson on the Communist Party In the U. S., it's successes and setbacks, and wlicre Hie current attacks on It may lead.) By refer tMsort NKA Washington Corres[K>ndent The first of the many battles to be fought, with Communism opened with a skirmish on Nov. 7, 1919, two years and three weeks alter the revolution that created the Soviet Union. On that day Atty. Gen. A._Mltcli- turn his committee IOOM on r«dl- { •als in the state. Tiie November raids were little iiore than experiments. On the seventh, Palmer's nieii seized 250 of- icers of the Union of Russian Workers. In 12 cities. Next day the k committee agents hit 70 Corn- luinist Pai'ty meeting places and muled in as many members as they ised police—100. Eighteen days later the Immigration Service hart deported 230 aliens, but could not he sure how many of them were-actual advocates of revolution. (Two were: Emma Goldman and Alexander 1 Palmer staged the first of a se- , "Vies of raids Intended to rid the na- '• tion of a radical-anarchist infestation. He was fortified by a million- dollar appropriation, the spirit of the time and the conviction he was right. Before his agents, supplemented by Immigration Service men and local law enforcement officers, had finished, between 6000 and 10.000 , persons had been arrested, some 750 deported and dossiers on 600,000 suspects compiled. Today there are those who point to impressive figures and suggest a return to the tactics of 1919. The concensus here Is that N.S. anti-Communist policy U too soft (as witness the Job-like patience of Federal Judge Harold A. Medina). . • . But cooler users of history's hindsight disagree. In running roughshod over the radicals, the men of the old Bureau of Investigation (now the FBI) administered a medicine as bad as the disease itself. The Bill of Rights all but went by the board. Mass arre.sts; search and selure without warrant; neitlier grand Jury nor jury action in many cases; excessive ball; deportation proceedings without defense counsel; evidence most flimsy; all were condoned and ordered. These excesses aroused immediate public indignation. The outcry was effective. But it held no candle, ^ In Its demand that the Constitution 51 be respected, to the adroit use by Red propagandists of what had happened. As recently as 1948 one Robert W. Dunn published H pamphlet In which he charged a recreation of th« 1919-1920 raids by the investigations of the FBI and the House Un- American Affairs Committee and by the enforcement of the Taft-Hartley Law. Like all «uch propagandists Dunn writes without regard for the fullness of truth. If the raids are to be understood, so must the times. "BoU 'shevlki 1 ' was a gag to many an American, a cartoon of a dirty, wildly-bearded man with a round black bomb in one hand. President Wilson was abroad, utterly preoccupied by the Versailles Treaty and the League of Nations. Here at home many Congressmen, with the White House check-rein off, were feeling their oals. There was a great deal of war-left Inflation .which was to lead to the recession In mid-lB20. Politically, socially and economically, the nation was untended corral, filled with bawling and milling about. * • • The Communist Party, only a few weeks old, was divided into two factions. Powerful radical leaders still held the loyally of thousands: Eugene V. Debs, the Socialist, was one who had lost tittle by his conviction of espionage. Another WRS Big Bill Haywood, boss of the I.W.W.— the "Wobblies" who considered BUYTHEVTLLE (ARK.) COURIER NEWS Berkman, arehism.) • avowed leaders of an- themselves one big anarchistic „.. ion. Haywood had been convicted of sabotage in 1918, and was to jump bail to flee the country In 1021 did Cicrhart Eister in 1940, but ..yet could order widespread strikes and have the order respected. In February, 50 of Hnywood's lieutenants were deported. In Aoril New York postal inspectors found bombs in the mails, addressed to prominent persons; in June Attorney General Palmer's Washington home was damaged by a bomb, Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vaiwttl were In a Massachusetts jail, awaiting trial for the murder of a Braintree paymaster. Sacco and Vanzetti were destined to lose a seven-year fight for freedom, to be executed and to be seized up forthwith by the Commies as the first great martyrs of the New World revolution. Actually ^neither Sacco nor Vanzctti was a 'Communist. The Commies simply moved in and grabbed the act. Onto this arena strode Palmer and his chief aide, William J. Flynn. the famed detective then heading the Bureau of Investigation. Coincidentally, the New York^Legislature empowered Sen. Clayton R. Uisfc to Tlie greatest raid, painstakingly prepared like a military maneuver, occurred Jan. 2, 1920, Hundreds of agents swooped down simultaneously on leftist halls in GO cities. The net was- Impressive: 100 in New York, 400 in Boston, 800 in Detroit, 180 in Buffalo, 200 each In Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Chicago. Throughout the balance of the month, mop-up squads continued the arrests- with Seattle's 316 biggest of the latter-month raids. The public clamor, to which was added bitter Congresional criticism of Attorney General Palmer, put an end to the raids in April. For three years, then, two separate committees of Congress investigated, at the rnd ordering a number of reforms to make sure the future would not see the unconstiiutional acts repeated. When they had done, the "treal- 'em-rough" technique was a used firecracker. And for 20 years the Communists were to walk virtually unmole.sled on what had been a great battleground, pointing to Its scars as living proof that capitalism Is wrong and Red revolution right. Big Whiskey Deal Brings Ten-Year Term in Oklahoma OKLAHOMA CITY, Nov. 29-W) —Federal District Judge Edgar s. Vaught yesterday sentenced Harold E. Byford, Oklahoma City bootlegger to 10 years imprisonment and assessed a $10.000 fine. By/ord hud been found guilty by a jury for his part In a »25.000 forged check whiskey deal. Dave Taut, attorney for Byford. asked the court to fix an appeal bond. Vaught declined, declaring "I am sick and tired of this man's activities In this community md I want him surrendered to the marshal now. II' lie wants out on an appeal bond, he will have to apply to the U. S. Court of Appeals at Denver." Two other men charged in connection with the foregry pleaded guilty. James Edward Shockley, Oklahoma Cjty, was sentenced to three years one of three counts mid placed on five years probation on each o( two other counts. M. D CLaii'p, Oklahoma city Dentist, wn.s sentenced to five years on each count ami fined $1,000 on each However, he was placed on probation. The check allegedly was u.srd In buying whiskey in Shrevcport. La Water Jug Blamed For Haystack Fires PERCY, III.—</!•)—Roy Meyerhoft theorizes that ninny farm haystack fires can be traced to the old water jug. He got the Idea while trying to (ind out what caused his Jacket to bum on hi* farm near her* on* sunny day. He figured he had the answer when he moved his hand past his water Jug near the jacket. 'Ilie sun's rays focused by the Jug—like > magnifying glass—burned his hand. He believes many haystack fires probably c*n b« traced to the common practice o( farmers leaving their Jugs on haystacks while they work. 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