Detroit Free Press from Detroit, Michigan on January 21, 1944 · Page 6
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Detroit Free Press from Detroit, Michigan · Page 6

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Friday, January 21, 1944
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6 'XmZ UriOu'1 FREE PRESS FRIDAY. JANUARY 21. 144 Wht pjetr0it $xtt ?&xm On Guard for Over a Century AN INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPER JOHN s. KNIGHT. PUBLISHER J. H. BARRY. GENERAL MANAGER Pubtllh mry mornlna by The Detroit Free Preai. from Ht Homo Office 321 W. Lafayette Ave Dotroit 31. MiefclQen. Entered ae Moond-oim matter it tre pottoffiee ef Dotroit. Michigan, undor the Act of March 3. 1879. MEMBER Of THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Ttio Aiooeiatfd Pree it exclusively entitled to the aoe far reproduction of all newt dltpatchee aroditod to It or not otherwise eroditod In thli paper, aid alto the local new publnxed herein. All rfflhU of rooubllcation of special dlipatchaa herein are alio reserved. FRIDAY. JANUARY 21, 1944 As We See It The Price of Safety A LL human experience backs WPB Vice Chairman Charles E. Wilson's declaration that, as insurance against future disaster, American industry must be kept "scientifically and technologically ready for war." The present holocaust stemmed directly from the failure of the democracies, after the World War, to keep their powder dry. The French hid behind the Maginot Line. The British took their "peace ballot," which influenced government policy down to Munich. We were swept by a wave of pacifism. A major assumption upon which Hitler worked was that American industry could not get going in time to affect the decision in Europe. Aided by his blunder in attacking Russia, American and British industry have fooled him. Yet at what a price! American youth must never again be called upon to sacrifice itself because its Country failed to be ready to meet aggression from whatever quarter it might come. Give Him the Money r O V. KELLY has called a special meeting jr of the "Little Legislature" to act on Judge Leland Carr's inquiry as to whether funds appropriated to investigate the Legislature may be used to investigate other departments of the State Government as well. There is only one answer. Judge Carr, as a one-man grand jury, should be given all the money he needs to investigate every hole and corner in Lansing suspected of corruption. The people would rather pay for a good house cleaning than for dishonesty in government. They Must Be Cared For P PROXIMATELY 800 persons in Wayne County and 200 outstate are awaiting public hospitalization. About 80 per cent of these are, minors and most are feeble-minded. "We cannot wait until after the war," Gov. Kelly properly says, "to take care of mental patients." The proposed increase in the State contribution to the upkeep of State patients at Eloise is due Wayne County, which is paying more than its share, but it won't make room for new patients. Space can be leased, the Governor states, if necessary. It should be. Care of its unfortunates is a test of civilized government in which Michigan should take second place to no State in the Union. Congvcss Shouldn't Dally pHE House has passed unanimously a bill providing $300 mustering-out pay for every man and woman honorably discharged from the armed forces after 60 days' service. The Senate bill, adopted last month, calls for a sliding scale of discharge pay, from $200 to $500, according to length and place of service. A single measure should be promptly agreed upon and enacted. With this "bonus" out of the way, Congress can get down to more important aspects of demobilization. What most service men and women are probably looking forward to, with greater interest, are plans for rehabilitation and training and, above all, assurance of jobs. These are matters which demand immediate and intelligent consideration in Washington. Zone Mailing Stays yONE MAILING, the Postoffice Depart- ment says, has been so successful in its seven months of operation that.it will continue in effect after the war. The co-operation of mail-users in 10 major cities, who faithfully affixed unit numbers of addressees, enabled the department to handle even the huge flood of Christmas mail with celerity. It is an excellent system and deserves to be retained. It is notable, though, that many people remain unconvinced, as witness the unzoned mail in letters received by most anyone over a period of time. The penalty may be delay in delivery. 2A00fi00 Casualties IN ONE of the wars we fight there were, for one year, 18,400 killed, 1,700 permanently disabled and 108,000 permanent partial impairments. Casualties in all categories of "wounded" were 2,400,000 persons. All this in the twelve months of 1943. What war was this and on what fronts? Look about you. The figures are for work accidents in shop and factory and field. Enemy savagery didn't account for these fallen. Carelessness cut them down. "Most of these accidents could have been prevented," says the Department of Labor which released the appalling report. Among its many meanings, the equivalent loss to the war job amounts to one whole year's production by 914,000 workers! There is deep and grim meaning here. It is especially deep and especially grim for industrial Detroit. 'Cleansing the Atmosphere9 So Says Stalin A WISE MAN will make every effort to get an understanding of his opponent's viewpoint in an argument. Let us, then, do this with Russia. If we found that the Russian Government was financing, let us say, Bolivia, and that Bolivia had organized an army and sent it over to join the Nazis in a fight against the United States, what would we say and do? All right! Now, the United States and Great Britain are financing Franco's Spain and sending supplies to that Fascist govern ment. Yet Franco is maintaining a Spanish Army with Hitler to fight the Russians, who, it is no mere figure of speech to say,' are pouring out their life's blood against the beast of Berlin. Furthermore, Stalin, grim realist, has a good memory. He is well aware that both France and Great Britain in the decade before the war deliberately encouraged Hitler and his gang with the idea of building up a pow erful Germany for just one purpose : to fight Russia. The idea was to keep the Nazis and the Communists so busy fighting each other that they would leave the Western World alone. Stalin does not have to have the memory of an elephant to remember the appeasement at Munich, a conference from which Russia was barred, and at which Hitler was given the green light to continue his brutal conquest of the little peoples of Europe. He is also fully aware of what Churchill and other British governmental leaders called him and what they said about the Russian "experiment" before they became allies. "JV'OW the Russian leader says, through his newspaper organ, "War and the Working Class": "The peoples of the countries allied with us and their responsible leaders must understand the efforts being made by Nazi elements." He denounces "underground activity of defeatists in the United States and Great Britain" and calls for a cleansing of the atmosphere of the "poisonous gases" spread by the Nazis in an effort to split the Allies. Specifically, he declares that Hitler's hopes of splitting these Allies had been "buried forever by the decisions of the Moscow and Teheran conferences." That means as far as Russia is concerned. This does not look as though Stalin were trying to wreck Allied unity, but to save it. He is a plain, blunt man who knows nothing about the niceties of diplomatic language and cares less. For the past 10 years he has shown that he has known far more about the inside workings of European intrigues than Great Britain, France or the United States. He looks over his blood-soaked land and does not cheer at our sweet words to the Vichy gang, or our present soft treatment of Victor Emmanuel and Badoglio, or the American coddling of Prince Otto of the Haps-burgs. Why should he? TYE are inclined to agree with the conjec-' ' ture of Walter Lippmann that he may also be looking ahead to the time when Germany is defeated. The Nazis know that day is inevitable. They are smart enough to know that they stand no chance of salvation in the "practicalities of diplomacy" if the Russians get to Berlin first. The Russians, above all others, have been the victims of their horrible crimes. They would much rather have the British and Americans as their conquerors. After all, they are "practical" people. What was really agreed upon at Teheran? The world has not been told. Undoubtedly Stalin, Churchill and Roosevelt came to a complete understanding. But Stalin knows that other complete agreements have been made before. They make up a major part of the history of Europe for many centuries. Let Washington and London speak together in clear exact language on what our joint policies are and will be. Once given to the whole world they cannot be withdrawn. That is what Woodrow Wilson meant when he pleaded for "open covenants openly arrived at." There is no danger of any break among the Allied Nations. But there is great danger of postwar forget-fulness of pledges made. It looks as if Stalin may have adopted the tactics of indirection to bring the whole thing out into the open for purposes of record. Iffy. the Dopesfer London dispatch ses "Eisenhower sees King" but, another way of putting it would be, "King sees Eisenhower." And with all due respect to the King, who is a very nice young man, he saw a more interesting show than "Ike" did. Leopold Stokowski accepts position with New York Symphony orchestra. Leopold Stokowski i3 the man who won national fame as a character in one of Walt Disney's super-special Mickey Mouse pictures, called "Fantasia." Even our Weather Bureau says this is unusual weather we have been having, so it must be. Former Mayor Reading gave himself up yesterday to the prison authorities to serve his term asDetroit's biggest grafter. Those who know of Double Dip Dick's habit of wisecracking could write a book on him: "From Pun to Pen." Have his neighbors complained about Frank Sinatra! as he walks the floor o' nights, singing to that new baby of his? Mayor LaGuardia won't let New Yorkers share taxicabs. In New York during the rush hours they do not even let you share the sidewalk. Good Morning l By Malcolm W. Bingay FUN IN COURT Rose Barron must be dead by now for she was dying, of cancer, 39 years ago today when she was arrested in Detroit s most famous poisoning case. But I wonder whatever became of her ever-lov ing husband "Mike. 'Twas on this kind of a day in January, 1905, when the story broke. The Alhambra Apartments, at the corner of Cass and Temple then an exclusive shade sheltered residential area, had been opened Dut a little while as Detroit's most Ritzy new housing development. On this night 40 or more of the prominent families living there were poisoned by arsenic. Two of them died. Rose Barron, a cultured, edu cated little mite of a woman had been cook there but had been re duced to the position . of scrub woman. It was said that she bitter ly resented this. Why she did not quit no one ever knew. Not only did she have a good bank account of her own but Husband Mike was a carpenter who made good money, was thrifty, sober and faithful and did not want her to work. Arsenic was the drug used. All who ate the biscuits were stricken. Mrs. Barron was arrested on suspicion. It was impossible for most people to believe that this gentle, soft spoken, smiling little woman, knowing she was facing death herself, could have done such a thing. But the police charged that there was a trail of deaths wherever she went. Her own father-in-law, twas charged, died from arsenic One witness testified that this woman, a stranger, stopped him on the street and asked him to buy arsenic for her in a corner drug store explaining that she wanted to kill rats and was ashamed to ask for it. He bought it. Poor, stolid Mike fought to save her, never left her, never wavered in his faith in the frail dying, smil ing woman who was vastly his superior in worldly wisdom. She joked with the police and teased Mike when he would blunderingly try to oner alibis. The trial lasted 19 weeks. It was as much of a society affair as it was a criminal case. The perfume of the exclusive set battled with the smoke stained atmosphere of the dingy old court of that great and illiterate jurist, Judge James Phelan. It was a field day for the Judge who never forgot a name or a face or a precinct. Assistant Prosecutor Frank Bumps handled the case with Mr, and Mrs. Charles Abbott as attor neys for the defense. Mrs. Abbott was brilliant, witty and beautiful. all or which added to the picture. irank Bumps was a rough hewn oak from the country, a tough and shrewd trial lawyer. It was the rapier against the sledge hammer. And most baffling of all was Rose Barron whose agile mind again and again frustrated Bumps. It was the best three- ring circus ever staged with Judge Phelan as master clown. Of course, too, there was Detective Ell Baker, called "Owl- Eyed Eli." The defense held the poisoning was due to faulty plumbing. An engineer witness drew on the blackboard the design of the plumbing system to refute the claim. For days he and the pros ecution and the defense battled over that design. ' While the shouted duel of wits was at its height a juror grabbed at his stomach, stood up scream- ng, "My God, I've been poisoned! and collapsed on the floor. Judge im roared that there was a recess and doctors were rushed to the stricken man. They found that he had merely fainted. The power of suggestion had been working on him. Now, in the court at the time, as that beloved actor and splen did journalist, Nick Stark, who had just come off the road after a theatrical tour and was watching the show from his old seat at the press tabla. We must not forget lck. During the recess Lt. Eli Baker had gone quietly to the blackboard and had rearranged the design. He had once been a plumber, or some thing, and thought he would improve on the engineer's draughts manship. He was the chief police witness. When court again convened Mrs. Abbot saw the changes made in the design and immediately charged Prosecutor Bumps with trickery. He had, she said, deliberately changed the draw- ng to fool the jury. Above the tumult Judge Jim was roaring that court was again in recess. But not before Bumps had had his say. He yelled out so that he could be heard across the river: Who changed that drawing?" Up spoke the redoubtable Eli. I did," he said, "I found it wrong and thought I would take advan tage of the time being called to correct it." "Oh, you did, did you!" shriek ed Bumps whose great bald dome was purple with his fury. "Haven't you messed this case up enough! How much longer have I got to put up with you? You've gummed everything up since this trial started" Recess! Judge Jim had them all behind his locked door. And then Nick Stark wandered over to the blackboard and marked an X where the changes had been made. He wrote under it: "Where Eli got his Bumps. Rose was acquitted. -If We're to Win the War AND the Peace INTERCEPTED LETTERS WILLIAM GREEN President, AFL Washington, D. C. Dear Bill: '"THOSE meetings with John Lewis to bring him back into the AFL means you will play Jonah and John the whale. nrELIXE TETE Merry-Go-Round By Drew Pearson WASHINGTON, Jan. 20 Seldom has the Demo-cratic National Committee, meeting this week in Washington, summoned its heterogeneous members under such politically gruesome circumstances. If you talk to Senator "Cotton Ed" Smith of South Carolina, or Virginia's Senator Harry Byrd, or labor leaders, farm leaders and others who once helped lect Roosevelt, the Democratic Party appears to have gone to pieces. Farm elements which once regarded F.D.R. as their savior have forgotten the past. Now, not con tent with merely voting Republican, they want to work actively ag'in him. Labor, which has received greater benefits from Roosevelt than in 150 years of American history, now is beginning to turn sour. There is no basic criticism of the conduct of the war. In fact, general agreement is that it is going well. But there is a fervid, vitriolic undercurrent of determination to defeat Roosevelt or any Democrat if the war, at least in Europe, is over by November. Fully realizing that the tide is running out, the Democratic National Committee meets to elect, as successor to placid Frank Walker, a new chairman who must have the courage to start a new battle, plus the ability to pick up all the broken pieces and weld them together. Not for 11 years has the Democratic National Committee picked its own officers. Always they were handed down from up above. Democratic Committee Lobbyists T ACK in the early qays of the New Deal, a terrible hue and cry was raised over the fact that certain members of the Democratic Committee also carried on a remunerative lobbying practice on the side. The issue received so much publicity that the President denounced it publicly and called upon all committeemen engaged in lobbying to resign. As a result, Bob Jackson of New Hampshire. Arthur Mullen of Nebraska and Bruce Kremer of Montana all resigned from the committee. Today, however, the White House and apparently the public have lost their sense of smell. For months, the same situation has existed, but the White House has said absolutely nothing. Oscar Ewing, who represents the Aluminum Corporation of America, one of the biggest companies doing business with the Government, holds no less a position than vice chairman of the Democratic National Committee. Its secretary is George Allen, executive of the Home Insurance Co., one of the fire insurance group whose giant lobby against the Sherman Anti-Trust Act has been vigorously criticized on Capitol Hill. Treasurer of the committee is Ed Pauley, who had the decency to submit his resignation when his business put him in the position of lobbying for . high-octane gasoline plant. However, unlike the days when F.D.R. publicly demanded the resignation of Arthur Mullen of Nebraska from the committee, Pauley's resignation has not been accepted. Taxes and Campaign Funds RECENTLY, Frank Walker has made a unique move toward a similar situation. Privately, he is trying to persuade committee members to take Missouri's Robert Hannegan as the new National Chairman. Hannegan happens to be Commissioner of Internal Revenue, and Frank Walker is either very naive or very forgetful of past Republican scandals when big contributors to the party did not have to worry too much about income taxes. Today Republicans are already licking their chops over the charges they could so easily hurl against a Democratic chairman sitting in judgment over the income taxes of Democratic angels who contribute to the campaign fund. Quatrains By Edgar A. Guest GAMES Though very pleasant things to play Games are but games at best, I'd say. And it's too bad when playing ends In loss of self-respect and friends. THE DIFFICULTY So easily a war begins! But when the cannons cease So hard to know which nation wins And how ad just the 'peace. OLD SAYING My father said it o'er and o'er: "Just do the best you can. Angels are asked to do no more. Life asks no more of man." WEAKLING Those resolutions good I made Lie shattered in the dust. 'Twas ever to! Now I'm afraid M yself I cannot trust. Ernie Pyle Dive Bombers JN ITALY, Jan. 20 (By Wireless) If you ever heard a dive bombing by our A-36 Invader planes you'd never forget it. Even in normal flight this plane makes a sort of screaming noise, and when that is multiplied many-fold by the velocity of the dive you can hear the wail for miles. On the ground it sounds as though they are coming directly down upon you. It is a horrifying thing. The German Stuka could never touch them for sheer frightfulness of sound. Also, the Stuka has always dived at an angle. But these planes come literally straight down. If you look up and see one a mile above you, you can't tell where it's headed. It could strike anywhere within a mile on any side of you. That's the reason it spreads its terror so wide. But our pilots have to hand it to the Germans on the ground. They have steeled themselves to stand by their guns and keep shooting. Pilots say the Italians would shoot until the bombs were almost upon them, then dive for their foxholes, and then come out and start shooting again after the bombs had exploded. But not the Germans they stick to their guns. Maj. Ed Bland, a squadron leader, was telling me about coming suddenly over a hilltop one day and finding a German truck right in his gunsights". Now it's the natural human impulse, when you see a plane come upon you. to dive for the ditch. But the German gunner in this truck swung a gun around Pyle and started shooting at Bland. German and American tracer bullets were streaming back and forth in the same groove in opposite directions, almost hitting each other. The German never stopped firing until Bland's six machine guns suddenly chewed the truck into complete disintegration. "UR dive bombers don't have much trouble with German fighters. The reasons are several. For one thing, the Luftwaffe is weak over here now. For another, the dive bombers' job is to work on the infantry front lines, so they seldom get back where the German fighters are. And for another, the Invader is such a good fighter itself that the Jerries aren't too anxious to tangle with it. There have been pilots in this squadron who have finished their allotted missions and gone back to America without ever firing a Shot at an enemy plane in the air. And that's the way it should be, for their job is to dive-bomb, not to get caught in a fight. TOR several months the posting period back to America was set at a certain number of missions. Then it was suddenly upped by more than a score. There were pilots here who were within one mission of going home when the order came. So they had to stay and fly a few more months. Some of them never lived to finish the new allotment. There is an odd psychological factor in the system of being sent home after a certain number of missions. When pilots get within three or four missions of the finish, they get so nervous they almost jump out of their skins. A good many have been killed on their very last mission. The squadron leaders wish there were some way they could surprise a' man and send him home with still six or eight missions to go, thus sparing him the agony of those last few trips. jVOWHERE in our fighting forces is co-operation closer or friendship greater than between Americans and British in the air. I have yet to hear an American pilot make a disparaging remark about a British flier. Our pilots say the British are cooler under fire than we are. The British attitude and manner of speech amuse our pilots, but they're never contemptuous. They like to listen in on their radios as the RAF pilots talk to each other. For example, one day they heard one pilot call to another: "I say, old chap, there is a Jerry on your tail." To which the imperiled pilot replied: "Quite so, quite so, thanks very much old man." And another time, one of our Invaders got shot up over the target. His engine was smoking and his pressure was down and he was losing altitude. He made for the coast all alone, easy meat for any German fighter that might come along. He was just barely staying in the air, and he was a sad and lonely boy indeed. Then suddenly he heard over his earphones a distinctly British voice saying: "Cheer up, chicken, we have you." He looked around and two Spitfires, one on either side, were mothering him- back to his home field. The Voice of the People Th It column to for Pre Preaa eea4ee le expreae their optniooe on ejueationa of the da r. Please be brief. Writer mS?i thir B"mr addreaeee. shirk will bo omitted ea request. One of Best To the Editor: Your, "We Can Never Go Back." seems to me the. essence of good sense. It's cne of the best you ever printed. GEORGE C. MATHEWS. Put Him In To the Editor: Have we forgotten that our leader. President Roosevelt, is such by our vote ? We put him in that office. What he is doing is, in his way of thinking, for the greatest good for the majority of people. How can cne with the problems he has do his best when the boos come from every section of his own rooters ? Looks easy from where we sit, but what would we do under the same circumstances? There is an election coming, but until we can replace him with a leader without faults, why not give him cur wholehearted support? That is the American thing to do. TOHEY. Sane, Sensible To the Editor: I feel sure that large numbers of your readers must be aDDlaudine an I am vnnr very sane and sensible treatment of the current Russian-Polish and Russian-English situation on the Jan. 19 editorial page. Such cool ness and objectivity are ba 11 v needed at a time when manv. with whatever motive, are acting in such a hot-headed manner as to stir up dissension among and be tween me united nations, understanding and friendly co-operation with our Allies is of such vital importance for victory and a staDie postwar world that we must all strive to exercise the sort of healthy realism that you exhibited in this editorial. DAVID WHITE. Who Willingly Strikes To the Editor: We are soldiers in the corps of engineers stationed somewhere in New Guinea. It's tough over here. This jungle is harder to take than most people seem to think. We're not complaining. It's just that it burns us up the way some people can't seem to realize when they aie well off. Over here, thousands of miles from nowhere, we hear of strikes and rumors of strikes. Right now it's the rail and steel strikes that seem to be on top of the list. The people back in the States who are drawing almost as much an hour now as they used to draw in a day, the people who are griping because they can't meet their bills because "wages aren't high enough compared to the cost of living," these are the people we are referring to in this letter. These are the people who can't meet their bills because the bills on fine homes, expensive clothes, etc., are kind of high these days. These are the people who are endangering our very existence. A soldier who draws about $60 a month and at the same time is in constant danger of losing his life can't find room in his heart for much sympathy for those poor, unfortunate hundred-dollar -a-week men who are striking for higher wages. Maybe they would like a change. We're sure there are thousands, yes, tens of thousands of soldiers on the battle fronts of the world who would be more than willing to trade places with them, even at a reduction in wages. Any man who would willingly strike at a time like this is, in reality, sending a death invitation to the men overseas. In our opinion, a man who would do a thir-g like that doesn't belong in the same world with a real American. It would be a bad day for thorn if we came home to find them tying up our nation with such an undemocratic thing as a strike. To us, just to have the good old American soil under our feet w-ould be one of the greatest blessings we could ask. PVT. GAYLE STEWART. Trembling in Boots To the Editor: I doubt great! v if this letter will be published for the reason that, by editorial policy, the Free Press is plainly anti-Administration and anti-labor, but here goes. We again hear Mr. Willk;e going about his usual merry md slinging against the Administration's home policy and against organized labor. I wonder if many of the working people know thnt this same Willkie was not so lor ago the head man of one of tl.e largest corporations in the Unite i States, an outfit known for bei; one of the lowest wage payers -i existence? I wonder if laNr knows that Mr. Willkie represents all the huge corporations, WV;l Street moguls and their satellites in the legislative bodies, whnf slogan has always been wages huge profits" ? We now have at our head a. man who has made mistakes, a human spark plug to keep us on our toes, a man who has the wh"1' pnnfiHonf nf niir Allies and 5 per cent of our people. The other 15 per cent are those huge corporations and their legislative yes-men who are aghast and trembling in their boots that when thu conflict is over and things return to normal they will still have to pay their employees a living wage. That is. they will if the present Administration is in Washington. If a Willkie, Dewey, or a Bricker is in power with Wall Street behind him, that is another story. How much confidence have ou-Allies got in any one of these men? What possible experience, has any of them had to qualify for leadership of a nation approaching the most crucial period of a great war? What suggestions have any of them made for postwar problems? Let's keep a man at our head who has led us up to where we are today the most powerful nation on earth. Let's have him finish his great work. His record demands that he carry through to a glorious an 1 enduring peace. Who is in sisht; who has anywhere near our lea i-. er's capability to do this? The answer is nobodv. CARL rOTTER. ' Battle Creek, Mich.

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