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Mar 31

Airport lawsuit, World War II week by week

John J. Hutchins, a Paso Robles attorney protested before the San Luis Obispo County Board of Suprvisors. He filed an injunction claiming that $40,000 was too much to pay for the six parcels of land that would become the airport. Federal authorities wanted to invest $300,000 to build runways, drainage and lighting for a national defense worthy facility. Paso Robles had a competing proposal and did not look kindly on county funds being spent on the wrong side of the Cuesta Grade.

Telegram-Tribune front page March 31, 1942.

In other news on the front page…

Congressman Harry S. Truman, D, Mo.  accused Standard Oil of treason by entering into a cartel agreement with German company I.G. Farben to curb synthetic rubber production in the United States and encourage it in the Reich. Now that the Japanese had cut off rubber production from the Pacific Rim the issue had become one of national security. The president of the oil giant W.S. Farish, denied the charge with “indignation and resentment.”

Leaders of a group called “Friends of Progress,” were about to be arrested by Attorney General Earl Warren for calling Gen. Douglas MacArthur a coward. They had expressed pro-Axis isolationist sympathies before. Though they expressed solidarity with the remaining troops on Battan with an article that included the line “We are the battling bastards from Bataan, No papa, no mama, no Uncle Sam.”

They criticized MacArthur for leaving the besieged soldiers in the dead of night and compared him unfavorably to the British commander in Singapore who stayed with his men until surrendering. MacArthur had been ordered to leave by President Roosevelt and the California attorney general called the writing a conspiracy to commit criminal libel. One of the authors claimed that that nothing derogatory was intended about General MacArthur and called the charges “utterly ridiculus and without foundation.”

The War Department reported that a clearly marked base hospital on Bataan had been bombed by the Japanese.

The first picture of the Japanese raid on Manila from December, 12, 1942 was published on the front page. Between censorship and the logistical difficulties of transmitting images in wartime information took a long time arriving in the United States. The Tribune was a United Press member for stories but it appeared they relied on the feature service Newspaper Enterprise Association for photos. Call me hypercritical but  in my opinion, three and a half months is too long to wait.

Related posts:

  1. General Douglas MacArthur evacuates, World War II week by week
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  3. Japanese relocation, World War II week by week
  4. Japanese internment announced World War II week by week
  5. Bataan Tank battle, World War II week by week