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November 10, 1940 - Image 6

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1940-11-10

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And Still Champ





A Hard Road
To Athens

Third Te r
"The Champ" last week defended.
his title successfully for the second
time. For an unprecedented event that
had the dopesters scratching their
heads beforehand, the fight was a
surprisingly one-sided affair almost
from the start. By midnight Tuesday
leading newspapers backing Willkie,
including the die-hard New York Her-
ald Tribune, and most inner-council
Republicans were willing to throw in
the towel.
Only the challenger fought on dog-
gedly. To a crowded ballroom in his
N. Y. hotel headquarters, he offered
congratulations for "being a part of
the greatest crusade in this century,"
promised that "the principles for
which we fought will prevail . . . as
sure as the truth will always
prevail," told shouting enthusiasts
begging him not to give up: "I guess
you people don't know me!"
Victory Evident
In the face of even the early
election returns such determinism was
hardly justifiable: it was evident that
the President would be returned to
office by a huge electoral majority.
According to the latest unofficial
figures FDR carried 38 states, 449
electoral votes; Willkie, 10 states
(including Michigan), 82 electoral
votes. Popular vote figures were:
26, 265,134 to 21,787,102 for the Pres-
ident with an estimated 2,000,000
more uncounted votes not expected to
change the margin.
Republican observers compared the
results with those of the 1936 cam-
paign (in which FDR carried all but
two states, had a popular margin of
more than 10 million) to bolster their
claim that the election was really
very close, that indecisive votes in
the key states had decided it. But
Democrats, contending that the elec-
tion was an overwhelming Democratic
victory, could point to more tangible
results: the victory of "minor" party
candidates in election for State and
Federal posts. They gained eight seats
in the House giving them a majority
of 267 to 168, lost three Senate seats
but kept their strong majority, 66
to 30.
Crowing Justified
Democrats seemed justified in crow-
ing, but all indications last week were
that "crowing" was out. Press and
vocal comment was taking the elec-
tion out of the purely political sphere,
making it a symbol of national unity.
The Democratic party had not tri-
umphed; the verdict was simply an
indication that national defense was
considered the paramount problem
by the electorate. President Roosevelt
was re-elected on his foreign policy,
and because Challenger Willkie's
stand on foreign affairs was almost
identical, it was evident that what
people were interested in above all
else was a unified national will, mind
and spirit on the foreign problem.
That is what commentators are
writing and speaking with varying de-
grees of emotionalism. William Allen
White, national chairman of the Com-
mittee to Defend America by Aiding
the Allies, indicated the trend: he
suggested public bonfires of all the
Democratic and Republican campaign
literature and buttons as a means
of "healing partisan bitterness and
for launching a nation-wide cam-
paign to safeguard American democ-
racy." Secretary of State Cordell Hull
and former presidential candidate
"Alf" M. Landon raised their voices
for a "united nation," and papers all
over the country were agreeing with
The San Franciso Chronicle that

Be Individual
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m Victory

"the nation will now go on with the
immense tasks before it."
What Will FDR Do?a
What Roosevelt would do now was
the question in everyone's mind. Most
immediate problem, except for the
war and defense, seemed to be what
to do with the cabinet. Secretary of;
Interior Ickes offered his resignation
last week in keeping with the tradi-
tion permitting the Presiden to start
a new administration with his hands
free. Not all cabinet members fol-
lowed the precedent in 1936, but sev-
eral changes were expected this year.
Rumor had it that at least Secretary
of War Stimson would resign, be
replaced by Louis Johnson, former
assistant Secretary of War, or by
Mayor LaGuardia of New York.
As for Willkie's plans: while up-
holders of national unification talked
of a position for him in national de-
fense circles, the University of Min-'
nesota Daily was vehemently deny-
ing reports that he would become
head of that University upon Presi-
dent Ford's retirement in June.
Defense . . .
Most significant defense news last
week had to do with air and naval
bases. The State Department revealed
that general understandings had been
reached with virtually all the Latin
American countries by which U. S.
forces would be allowed to use south-
ern bases for hemisphere defense.
None of the bases will be leased out-
right; instead, air fields, naval embar-
kation places will be prepared and
manned - under U. S. supervision -
by the nations in which they are sit-
Last week, too, a report coming
from London - denied by Washing-
ton State Department officials -
rumored that the U. S., Britain and
Australia have agreed in principle on
defense cooperation in the Pacific.
including theuse of bases. The agree-
ment was reported to be such that
an emergency decision might be tak-
en on short notice.

Drives fnd Counter-Drives In Greece
MILES 4ti1
Neutral observers declared that Greek forces defending their land
against Italian invasion were in as good or better position than on the
first day of the Fascist assault started 12 days ago. The Italians, ac-
cording to reports, have been thrown back on the Greek right wing (1)
and on the Greek center (2) in the region of Albania. The Greek high j
command announced that Italian attacks on the Greek left wing (3) had
been repulsed.
Axis Powers Disapprove
Of R'looseveltS's Eieetloo

UbWar In
Undaunted but materially weak
Greece last week continued to shoul-
der the ItalianĀ° steamroller, boasted
of the centuries-old Hellenistic moral,
but reluctantly admitted a slow, ir-
resistable Italian advance on virtually
all fronts.
From Athens, Belgrad. London
came glowing early week reports of
successful Grecian thrusts into moun-
tainous Italian Albania. Hopefully
rumoured were scattered rebellions
among wiry die-hard Albanian moun-
taineers. To Greece's aid-as earlier
to Poland's and Belgium's-came tor-
rential rains and rushing streams
which plowed through the mountain-
ous frontier, gouged into over-bur-
dened Italian supply roads, and pro-
duced oceans of mud and mire to
clog fascist mechanized units.
Beasts Of Aid
From London came enthusiastic
boasts of full aid to ally Greece, but
beleaguered at home and in Egypt,
Britain had little to offer in the way
of material support: too imminent
were the axis drives to Suez, Gibral-
-tar and London. Eager to do what
she could without selling her own
skin, England dispatched her Medi-
terranean fleet to take over strate-
gic Greek islands, based RAF units
in Crete, and launched sporadic aerial
warfare at Italian bases in Albania.
With decks cleared, the Royal Fleet
was hoping to- draw the small but
elusive Italian navy into the open.
As calmer, more reliable reports
came filtering in from the new war
theatre, it became evidentthat Ath-
ens was waging a valiant, but futile
fight. To cope with the Grecian
mud, Italians withdrew mobile units
and substituted slower, but more ef-
ficient infantry and engineers. To
combat Greece's colorful mountaineer
snipers, Il Duce rushed forward his
craci Alpine troops. The odds were
too great against Athens.
Look To Neighbors
Aware of their position, alert Greeks
looked to their neighbors, saw sym-
pathy but no action. All powerful
was the Russian sphinx, for Turkey
waited for the Kremlin O.K. and
Yugoslavia held fast by Turkey.
On the material side of warfare,
Rome's legions were pushing their


way through the mountain barrier
and the Metaxas Line, while scores
of fast bombing planes roared south-
ward towards historic Athens. With
but 200 old-age planes on hand, Greek
defenders were unquestionably out-
equipped. as well as out-numbered.
While two columns to the north
was slowing down the opening Greek
rally against Koritza (Corizza), Italy's
three southern columns were rapidly
closing in on Yanina (Ioannina),
vital point in Greece's first line of
Using every trick known to Guer-
rilla warfare, mining bridges and
snipping from grizzly hills, Greek de-
fenders were holding the Italian Jug-
gernaut at bay, but appeared doomed
unless Russia gave Turkey her go-
ahead. Athens may even annihilate
several Italian divisions, but Il Duce's
troops are many.
Only encouraging note on the dip-
lomatic front was Belgrade's aroused
attitude following the accidental Ital-
ian bombing of Yugoslav Bitolji. The
strengthening of military defenses in
the southern sector and the rushing
of troops to the borders could be in-
terpreted as either a move toward war
on Italy or a mere bluff to save na-
national honor. By the week's end,
with the incident already four days
old, Belgrade's guns were still silent.
Aerial Blasts
While the German assault on Bri-
tain diffused over wider areas ai,med
more at the provinces than at weary
London, Hitler threw sarcastic jibes
at the effectiveness of U.S. aid to Bri-
tain, asserted that Germany is "pre-

pared for the future as never before"
and "strong enough to meet any com-
bination in the world."
Punctuating der Fuehrer's boasts,
however, were the explosions of heavy
RAF bombs over Munich. Whether
planned or accidental, the British air-
assault proved well-timed: the raiders
shuttled over the South German me-
tropolis for more than an hour and
a half while Hitler spoke.
Though raids over London de-
creased in ferocity and duration,
several historic spots were reported
damaged: one bomb was reported to
have exploded near the spot where
Chamberlain lay critically ill.
-Karl Kessler
A word to the wise..
save with Kayser "Mir-
O-Kleers"! Sheer,
longer-wearing hosiery,
stoutly reinforced in
hem and foot. 7 4


Franklin D. Roosevelt may have
been the choice of the American peo-
ple but his election certainly did not
meet with the approval of the Axis
powers who look upon it today as a
definite sign of unfriendliness be-
tween them and the United States.
On the other hand the results were
greeted with great jubilation in Lon-
don and in several of the Latin
American countries, all of whom be-
lieve that the President's victory
means further aid to Britain and a
continuation of the "Good Neighbor
German opinion was expressed in
Field Marshal Hermann Goering's
National Zeitung at Essen which de-
manded that America recognize the
"European Monroe Doctrine" and
warned that "neither military nor
economic power (of the United
States) can prevent England's de-

In Rome newspapers interpreted
the reelection as "a step toward toali
tarianism" and one of them, The
Messagero, said that this was the twi-
light of economic liberalism in the
U.S.A. The view was also held that
the President would lose no time in
whipping up war fever in an effort
to bring the nation into war on Bri-
tain's side.
The first official comment from
Japan was a hope that "American pol-
icy toward Japan and the Far East
would be reconsidered" but later re-
ports indicated a feeling that the re-
election would make the country more
aggressive against Nippon.
-A. P. Blaustein






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