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Evening star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, December 20, 1940, Image 1

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Weather Forecast
Cloudy, occasional light rain tonight
and tomorrow; warmer tonight; lowest
about 45. Temperatures today—High
est, 51, at 1 p.m.; lowest, 37, at 6 a.m.
From the United States Weather Bureau report.
Full Details oa Page A-2.
Closing New York Markets, Page 20.
'From Press to Home
Within the Hour'
Most people in Washington have The
Star delivered to their homes eve’ry
evening and Sunday morning.
(4*) Meant Associated Press.
89th YEAR. No. 35,297.
British Fleet Strikes in Adriatic,
Blasting Albanian Port of Valona;
Bardia Is Hit From Land, Sea, Air
- --—-— A
100 Tons of Shells
Poured on City,
English Report
Bs the Associated Press,
LONDON. Dec. 20.—British sea
power, consisting of battleships, a
cruiser and destroyers, has swept the
lower Adriatic and the battleships
poured nearly 100 tons of high-ex
plosive shells into the Albanian port
of Valona, the Admiralty announced
The raid, through the 50-mile
wide Strait of Otranto, at the heel
of the Italian boot, was not chal
lenged by the Italian Navy and no
Italian shipping was found, the Ad
miralty said. Valona is a vital sup
ply port for Italian forces in South
ern Albania.
British commentators pounced on
the failure of the Italians to engage
the warships as indication that Brit
ish domination of the Mediterranean
had been extended to the Adriatic,
although the British penetrated only
the lower part, as far north as Du
razzo, on the Albanian side, and
Bari, on the Italian.
New evidence of British control of
the Mediterranean itself was found
In the intermittent, five-day bom
bardment of Italy’s beleaguered
Libyan base of Bardia.
Developments Expected.
The Admiralty itself drew' no con
clusions from the Adriatic and Bar
dia operations, but the naval cor
respondent of the British press asso
ciation declared:
"It would seem that the Italians,
driven from Taranto, and hounded
again by the R. A. F. at Naples, have
sought fresh bases where they hope
their fleet will keep out of the way
of our Mediterranean fleet..
"With the Adriatic Sea now open
to us, important developments may
be expected.”
(The Admiralty's report would
tend to bear out reports that
fleets of German Junkers trans
port planes are ferrying Italian
troops to the Albanian battlefront
where they had been taken hith
erto by sea.)
The Adriatic raid was staged the
night of December 18, according to
Admiralty communiques.
Admiral Sir Andrew Cunningham, !
commander in chief of the British
Mediterranean fleet, commanded the
battleship force in the Adriatic raid
and Vice Admiral M. D. Pridham
Wippel. veteran of World War oper
ations in the Adratic, the other war- :
ships. There were two phases of
the raid.
Number of Ships Unstated.
While a cruiser and a screening
destroyer force swept the lower sea,
looking fruitlessly for Italian ship
ping, the battleships—how many
was not disclosed—plowed toward
The extent of damage at that Al- i
banian port was not disclosed, but 1
commentators declared that the
"nearly 100 tons of high-explosive
shells,” referred to by the Admi
ralty. could make debris of docking
Durafeo. Albanian port to the
north of Valona, has considerably
inferior facilities, and even these
have beep subjected to repeated R.
A. F. bombardment.
London sources expressed belief
that Italian forces in Albania were
threatened with isolation worse
than the encirclement of the British
and French at Dunkerque because
of Italy's naval failure to command
the lower Adriatic.
First Known Penetration.
This was the first known pene
tration of the Adriatic by British
battleships in the present war, al
though on the night of November
11-12, while British naval planes
were pounding Italian warships at
anchor in the battle of Taranto. ?
squadron of light forces was re
ported to have attacked an Italian
convoy off Valona.
Of the four supply ships, escorted
by two destroyers, one was sunk
outright, two were “set seriously
afire and almost certainly sunk”
and the fourth, with the destroyers,
escaped in the protection of a smoke
screen, although one of the destroy
ers had been damaged, according to
the admiralty account.
Naval operations in support of
(See ADRIATIC, Page A-3.)
Mack Gains Financial
Control of Athletics
B> the Associated Press.
nie Mack, on the threshold of his
78th birthday, announced today he
has acquired financial control of
the Philadelphia Athletics he has
managed for 40 years.
The veteran baseball leader's
birthday is Monday.
Heretofore the club ownership
has been equally divided between
Mr. Mack and heirs of Benjamin
Shibe. who started the Athletics
on a joint basis 40 years ago. Con
trol of the club goes to Mr. Mack
through the purchase of a block
of about 141 shares, valued at $300
a share in 1938. from the widow of
John Shibe, who was a son of Mr.
Mack's first partner.
"Just because I have a majority
of the stock doesn’t mean there will
be any changes in policy or per
sonnel.” Mr. Mack said in announc
ing the purchase. “All the other
stockholders wanted me to buy the
John Shibe holdings so I did.”
At the death of Benjamin Shibe
In 1922, his holdings were divided
among his sons, Thomas and John,
and his daughters, Mrs. Elfreda
Macfarland and Mrs. George Reach.
Thomas Shibe is also dead, and his
share is owned by his widow, Mrs.
-Ida Shibe. -
R. A. F. Reports Fascist Bases
Left Blazing Ruins After Raid
__ ' _
'Covetous Eye' Cast
On Enemy Ships in
U. S. by British
Old American Vessels
Nearly Exhausted,
Cross Tells Press
By the Associated Press.
LONDON. Dec. 20—Britain's
Minister of Shipping today cast
what he called a "covetous eye" on
"a certain number of enemy ships
in the United States." and declared
that assignment of these and
United States ships to the British |
service "are the only ways I can see
for replenishments of any conse
The minister. Ronald Cross, de
clared that Britain's "real struggle”
with Germany would come in 1941.
The statements came in an inter
view with the American press.
He pictured the submarine men
ace as still the greatest threat to
British lifelines, and said it could be
overcome only by increasing num
bers of destroyers and by new ship
ping, which Britain is now turning
out at her virtual maximum of
Grateful for U. S. Aid.
“One naturally' hopes that the
United States will be able to see her
way to help us in the coming year," ;
Mr. Cross said.
‘‘I am extremely grateful for what
we have got already. A large amount
has already been supplied and we
have to thank the good will of the
Observing that supplies of old
American ships were nearly exhaust
ed and that it would be a year be
fore new shipbuilding in America
could reach substantial levels, the
Minister said:
“Perhaps the United States can
spare us something from her exist
ing ordinary services. Also there
are a certain number of enemy
ships in the United States. I nat
urally cast a covetous eye on those
“These are the only ways I can
see for replenishments of any con
Cites Need for Destroyers.
Speaking of Britain's need for de
stroyers Mr. Cross said:
“We obviously can do with a great
! deal more destroyers. We know how
i to master the submarine, given
equipment to do it, but we cannot
expect to get the submarine menace
i so far subdued that it will not re
quire an enormous amount of new
construction to maintain the war ef
; fort at full blast.”
Mr. Cross pointed out that ship
ping losses during the World War
continued heavy to the end but
toward the close were being more
than offset by tremendous building
in the United States, which produced
more than 3,000,000 tons in 1918 as
against 998,000 tons in 1917.
“Only the United States can sup
ply the enormous new construction
we need,” he said. “Consequently
we very much hope that the United
States wil embark on a shipbuilding
program on a gigantic scale similar
to the last war.
“Given that and our own steady
accretion of strength, I have not
; the slightest doubt we can main
I tain our war effort at full strength.”
I Germany has two vessels tied up
• (See CROSS, Page A-2U
Greek T roops Reported
Battling Way Up
Coast From Palermo
B' the Associated Press.
ATHENS. Dec 20 — Blazing ruins
were left in new assaults on the Al
banian ports of Valona and Krio
nero, the R. A. F command an
nounced today, while Greek troops
were reported battling up the coast
from Palermo Bay toward Chimara
“and tightening their lines around
the inland towns of Klisura and
At Valona. the R. A. F. command
reported military barracks, a gaso
line dump, a motor transport park
and buildings north of the town
were hit in the raid, carried out yes
terday. Great columns of smoke rose
from the vicinity of the barracks
and the gasoline stores, British
pilots reported
Direct hits were declared to have
been registered on buildings in the
Krionero area and fires were seen
raging after the attack.
Fascist Resistance Strong.
Greek troops continued their drive
to dislodge the Italians from stra
tegic positions which must be taken
before Tepeleni and Klisura can
be occupied.
Although Italian resistance is
strong, reports from the front said
Fascist forces are expected to with
draw any moment from hills behind
the towns.
On the Albanian front generally,
fighting has been slowed down bv
(See ATHENS,'Page A-12.) "
F. B. I. Studies Data
Indicating Bundsmen
Serve in U. S. Army
Agents Check on Records
Seized in Raid on
Chicago Headquarters
B? the Associated Press.
CHICAGO, Dec. 20—Working in
strict secrecy, agents of the Federal
Bureau of Investigation today studied
records to determine whether the
German-American Bund has mem
bers in the United States armed
The records were seized yesterday
in a raid on the Chicago headquar
ters of the bund. Among them, an
investigator for the State's attorney's
office said, was a loose-leaf book in
dicating that 1,500 to 2.000 members
were in the Army, Navy, air force or
Federal agents were reported to
be checking the names against naval
and military lists to ascertain
whether the men listed were now
active in the armed forces or had
j completed service.
F. B. I. Official Silent.
William S. Devereaux, in charge
of the F. B. I. office here, answered
“no comment” to inquiries about his
The records were seized in a search
for assets of the bund and an affiliat
ed organization, the Teutonia Pub
lishing Co., which occupy joint
offices. Municipal Judge Oscar S.
Caplan ordered the search in con
nection with a county suit against
the organizations for non-payment
of $380 in personal property taxes.
The State's attorney’s investigator,
who declined to be quoted by name,
reported that the “military member
ship" book was written in German
and listed “bund members in the
service" together with their home
town addresses and their rank in
the various branches of the armed
Motion Pictures Seized.
Four rolls of foreign scenic motion
pictures, a private telephone book,
a book containing the names of Mid
Weste^n bund members, and a hun
dred applications for membership
also were reported seized.
The investigator said that the
latter included data on applicants’
service in the German Army—their
grade, regiment, company or battery,
and the front on which they had
A policeman stood guard at the
bund offices during the night to
prevent removal of the contents of
a safe. Detective Stephen Leddy re
ported that .a woman secretary in the
bund office locked the safe during
the raid.
20,000 Italians
Holding Out in
Beleaguered City
B\ the Associated Press.
CAIRO. Dec. 20.—By land, sea and
air the British reported their forces
kept up a remorseless pounding of
Bardia today, with Italians trapped
in that beleaguered Libyan port
battling fiercely to break through
their blocked line of retreat to the
Supporting the forces encircling
| Bardia. where the British estimate
I 20,000 Italians are holding out, the
R. A. F. blasted the Libyan coast
westward to Derna. 175 miles from
the Egyptian frontier. Practically
the entire Fascist military establish
ment at Derna Camp was declared
left in flames.
Direct Hits on Barracks.
Heavily raiding Derna” simultan
eously with a similar assault of
Bardia, the R. A. F. command re
ported its planes Thursday night
| set off fires and explosions with
! direct hits on barracks, police head
quarters, motor transport parks and
garages at the former Fascist base.
"When our last aircraft left the
scene practically the whole of the
camp was ablaze.” todays com
j munique said. "Similar raids were
| carried out on enemy troop con
centrations and motor transports to
the northwest of Bardia. all our
bombs falling within the target
In fierce air fighting yesterday,
the British said R. A. F. pianes shot
down five Italian planes without I
the loss of a single British craft, and
that two other Fascist fighters were
believed winged.
(The Admiralty announced in
London that British naval opera
tions in support of the army at
Bardia "are continuing.” In a
heavy offshore bombardment the :
night of December 17 three
Italian supply ships were said to
have been sunk.i
Bardia Post Protected.
British officials declared the Bar
dia post was protected by a cunning
ly concealed network of tank traps,
land mines and machine gun em- i
They hinted it might take some
time to overrun the positions, but
expressed no doubt over the final vie- ■
tory. which the British high com- ]
mand was attempting to speed by j
hastening more men and equipment j
to the front.
Military circles here said the stiff
resistance encountered at Bardia was
not likely to lessen the activity of
British tanks and Bren gun carriers
which were reported mopping up
the road leading westward to Tobruk,
vital Italian naval base 80 miles from
| the Egyptian frontier.
Graxiana May Seek Test. , j
Reports from Rome indicated that j
Marshal Rodolfo Graziani, com
mander of Italy's North African
j armies, might select Tobruk as the
! site for a conclusive test of strength
with Gen. Archibald P. Wavells
army of the Nile.
There was no indication here that
the British intended to avoid such a
reckoning or to permit Marshal
Graziana to reinforce his position
j at Tobruk.
The British Navy was reported
' keeping the Libyan coast under
bombardment from the Egyptian
frontier to Bengasi, well to the west
of Tobruk, while the Royal Air
Force blasted at Derna and Benina.
Troops Still Moving West.
Indications here of heavy British
troop movements to the west gave
emphasis to Prime Minister Winston
Churchill's statement before the
House of Commons in London yes
terday that "the offensive is by no
means at an end.”
The task of maintaining steadily
lengthening lines of communication
was regarded here as one of the chief
problems facing the British in con
tinuing their drive into Libya. Losses
in man power apparently constituted
a negligible factor, for official fig
ures yesterday put British casual
ties at less than 1.000.
__Convoys of Italian prisoners con
(SeeEG YPTrPageA-1.)
22-Car Train Plunges
Off Track; None Hurt
B’ th* Associated Press.
LOS ANGELES, Dec. 20—A 22
car combination passenger and mer
chandise train of the Southern
Pacific plunged from the track today
in Soledad Canyon. 60 miles north.
No one was reported injured, but
the engine was over on its side and
four cars were derailed, the com
pany said.
The wrecked train carried 20 cars
of mail and merchandise and two
passenger coaches.
U. S. Newsman Back in London After 2 Months
Finds It Something Approaching Paradise
Chicago Daily News Foreign Correspondent.
LONDON, Dec. 20.—After two
months in Chicago, New York.
Washington, Bermuda, Portugal and
other neutral spots, your corre
spondent returned to the hellhole of
creation in the dusk of Wednesday
evening to discover that the hell
hole had suddenly turned into
something approaching a paradise
This is not an invitation to any
body to do anything about it, but
the fact is that London, during the
last 36 hours, has not been recog
nizable as the hot spot of eight or
nine weeks ago. One measly little
alarm last night was the only sign
that the krieg was still on and that
this splendid lull in the slaughter
might not last forever.
We have wandered over a goodly
part of the city during the last day
and a half, looking over the results
of recent raids, and have had 40 or
50 first-hand accounts of what has
happened here. Both personal ob
servation and eyewitness accounts
establish the fact that, as far as
London is concerned, the blitzkrieg
has petered out in a really sensa
tional way.
When we left London in mid
October, the remains of buildings
were dumped all over the streets,
people were red.-eyed from strain
and lack of sleep. Today practically
all the rubbish seems to have been
cleaned up, traffic is pretty near to
normal and folks seem to have re
covered their physical and mental
energy in a way that didn’t seem
possible in the old days of blood
and thunder.
This, of course, is taken by every
body to mean that more and bigger
trouble lies ahead; people feel very
much as a smart grouse feels just
before the “glorious twelfth.” But it’s
still very reassuring, to a person
who has been softened up by weeks
among the bright lights of Blighty,
to findi that the front line has tem
porarily gone to seed.
As far as the war itself is con
cerned. things don’t seem to have
(See STONEMAN, Pa* A-5.)
Common Impulse. Tell us More about doing
Hastening Cabinet Member
Pauses to Remember Needy
Postmaster General Walker Brings $352
From Mail Workers to Christmas House
Now is the moment to pause in your Christmas rush. Post
master General Walker hurried out of a crucial cabinet meeting
yesterday to board a train for New York—but he paused.
He took time out to present a check for S352.42 to The Star's
j Christmas fund. He and other busy workers in the Nation's mail
service had chipped in to "buy a
merry Christmas" for the families j
of Washington who are in direst
You, too. can bring unexpected
Yule cheer to children in impover
ished homes by bringing or mailing
a contribution to Christmas House.
1 outside The Star Building at
! Eleventh street and Pennsylvania
avenue N.W. Your gift should come
[soon, because the calendar itself is:
i in a hurry.
The Post Office Department gift
was one of a growing flood of
contributions by generous Govern-!
ment employes, private organiza
| tions and individuals.
Assistant Census Director Vergil
D. Reed came to a Christmas House j
j broadcast with $100—representing
1 just a portion of the funds collected
! by employes of his bureau, in co
! operation with the Commerce De
partment Post, American Legion,
for The Star-N. B. C.-Warner Bros.
Christmas fund.
Letters that come to Christmas
; House tell their own story. Said
•'Please accept this for your
(See CHRISTMAS. Page A^) I
Let's Hurry
Before It's Too Late
Checks and cash received at
Christmas House today and to
morrow can be placed in the
hands of needy mothers in time
for a bit of Christmas shopping.
Children may be denied their
share of the season's cheer if
your donation comes later.
Mail your gift at once to
The Star's Christmas House,
at Eleventh street and Pennsyl
vania avenue N.W. Or stop
by at any of the following •
WMAL broadcast periods:
4:30 to 4:45 P.M.
7:15 to 7:30 P.M.
10:30 to 10:45 A.M.
5:00 to 5:15 P.M.
6:15 to 6:30 P.M.
2 More Ships Report
Submarine Attack
Off Irish Coast
Distress Calls Picked Up
From Carlton and
Unidentified Vessel
B> the Associated Press.
NEW YORK. Dec. 20.—Two ships :
were attacked by submarines about ,
450 miles west of the Irish coast to
day in what appeared to be the sec
ond attack on a convoy in three
Word of the attack was heard by
i Mackay Radio, which picked up terse !
: messages from the vessels. Both
gave positions in the same area— ;
the area that in recent months has
become the graveyard of British
ships carrying war materials to the
beleaguered English Isles.
The first report today came from
the British steamer Carlton. At I
7:59 a.m. (E. S. T.) she radioed that I
a submarine had crossed her bow
and then launched a torpedo.
Thirty-six minutes later came a
second report.
The vessel was identified by j
Mackay as the 2.842-ton Norwegian
freighter Varangberg out of Oslo,
a former Great Lakes steamer.
The ship was built in 1915 at Ash
tabula, Ohio.
"Being attacked by submarine,
55.31 north latitude, 19.25 west longi
tude,” the message said.
The 5,162-ton Carlton, built in
1924, is owned by R. Chapman &
Sons and operated out of Newcastle.
Scores of British-controlled ships
have been attacked by U-boats in
the same general area since Ger
many stepped up its campaign
against shipping. The last assault
bearing the marks of an attack
against a convoy was unloosed on
(See"SHIPS7Page A-3.)
Two Irish Ports Placed
Under Military Control
B> the Associated Press.
DUBLIN, Dec. 20.—The defense
ministry yesterday placed the ports
of Galway and Sligo under military
control, a further step in the pre
paredness policy.
Since July the ports of Dublin,
Cork, Kingstown, Bantry Bay and
Lough Swilly have been under total
military direction. Special coastal
defense measures have been in oper
ation since the fall of France.
QHirtutmaa Hustr
Two full pages of Christmas
music programs in Washington
churches will be printed in The
Star's church section tomorrow.
Two New Shipyards
To Build 60 Vessels
For Great Britain
Construction Ordered
On Plants in Maine
And California
fa;, iht Associated Press.
Construction was ordered started
today on two new shipyards to turn
out 60 cargo vessels for the sub
marine-harassed British merchant
marine. *
Following formal approval of the
plan by United States officials, Brit
ish representatives contracted with
the Todd shipbuilding interests in
New York for building 30 of the
freighters at Portland. Me., and the
remainder at Richmond. Calif.
Tentative estimates set the cost
of the 60 ships at approximately
$100,000,000, with possibly more to
be constructed later.
English money was available to
pay for the work, and the plan was
in no way tied in with President
Roosevelt's proposal of a "mort
gaged materiel” system to supply
Britain with the sinews of war.
At New York, John D. Reilly,
president of the Todd Shipyards
Corp., said the new Portland and
Richmond yards would be completed
in four months.
“Work will be provided for 5,000
or more American workmen in each
yard,” he said.
Earthquake Jars East
From New Jersey
To Montreal
Jolt Rocks Big Buildings
And Homes; Felt in
Western New York
B> the AsiOCiated Press.
BOSTON, Dec. 20 — An earthquake
centering in New England and felt
; from Southern New Jersey to
Montreal. Canada, early today shook
heavy buildings and threw thousands
of persons into panic. Damage was
not great, reports indicated.
Prof. L. Don Leet of the Harvard
University Observatory said it ap
peared to be strongest just south of
Lake Ossippee. N. H.. and that it
lasted 30 seconds. He timed it at
2:27:29 am.
The 'quake, like many others, was
attributed by Prof. Leet to the slow
rising of the earth's crust in this
region, which was depressed by
enormous ice masses during the ice
Awakened by rumbling as their
| homes swayed, men, women and
childzen in cities as far west as
Rochester and Syracuse, N. Y„ arose
in alarm.
Some New Englanders dashed,
scantily clad, to the streets. Many
reported they thought there had
been an explosion. Virtually whole
! communities were roused in some in
i stances. Telephone lines in news
paper offices were clogged with calls i
from frightened persons.
Baby Hurled rrom l rib.
In numerous cases persons re
ported they were thrown from their
beds, and in one instance in Con
necticut a man said his baby was
hurled from a crib.
New England bore the brunt of the
quake, with lighter tremors being
felt in New Jersey, Philadelphia,
Long Island and in the valley sec
tions of New' York. The shock in
Montreal was enough to awaken
sleepers and shake small ornaments
from shelves, but no damage was re
ported there.
Available Reports of damage in
New England indicated it was con
fined largely to cracked plaster and
broken windows.
Coast Guards in their headquar
ters in the upper part of Boston's
custom house tow'er, tallest building
in the city, said they were shaken
Hospital Patients Awakened.
The Rev. James J. Devlin of the
Weston College Observatory in Wes
ton. Mass., and Prof. Leet joined in
saying the shock definitely could be
classified as an earthquake. The
Jesuit added that it was “a severe
quake for New England."
The shock, felt along the Hudson
< See EAR1TIQUAKE7 PageA^T) '
Damage Reported Great
In Italian Shipyard Fire
By the Associated Press.
ROME, Dec. 20—The Baglietto
shipyard at Varazze, where small,
fast torpedo boats are built, was
reported today to have suffered
heavy damage from flames which
started in the woodworking depart
ment and spread to the machine
shop. Boats on the ways escaped
Foiled De Tristan Extortionist
Crawls Past G-Men and Police
By the Associated Press.
SANTA ROSA, Calif.. Dec. 20.—The
wealthy, socially prominent parents
of 3-year-old Marc de Tristan, jr.
recent victim of a sensational kid
naping for ransom—have been sin
gled out once again by an extortion
ist seeking money as the price for
safety of their child.
It was learned on reliable au
thority today that P. B. I. agents,
working secretly through a letter
sent the Count and Countess de
Tristan through the Santa Rosa
Post Office, frustrated the scheme
and barely missed capturing the ex
tortionist in a trap set in a cab
bage patch near Santa Rosa.
The suspect, described as an elu
sive little man in a black overcoat,
was reported to have shown up at
the cabbage patch rendezvous late
Wednesday night, snatched up a
cigar box which he thought was
filled with money, and vanished in
the murky darkness before officers
could seize him.
Before he had reached the bounds
of the patch he discovered the box
was filled with worthless strips of
paper instead of currency, and he
discarded it among the vegetable
The golden-haired De Tristan boy,
closely guarded by his parents at
their home in the exclusive Hills
borough community 20 miles south
of San Francisco, was kidnaped Sep
tember 20 by Wilhelm Jakob Muh
lenbroich, a German alien who had
visions of getting (100,000 in ran
som for returning the child.
Instead, Muhlenbroich was over
powered by a couple of lumberjacks
in the mountains east of San Fran
cisco and is now in San Quentin
Prison serving a life sentence. The
child was returned unharmed.
Federal agents appeared at the
Santa Rosa Post Office three weeks
ago with a photographic copy of a
letter mailed the De Tristans. ' They
did not reveal the letter’s contents
but asked the postmaster to trace
its sender. They did not succeed
"(See DE TRISTAN, Page A-7.)
Roosevelt Calls
Defense Chiefs
To Parley Today
Three-Man Supreme
Council Among
Plans Considered
President Roosevelt prepared to
;‘‘talk, turkey” today to the National
Defense Commission, preliminary
! to a major reorganization in the
administrative machinery directing
mobilization of the Nation's military
Meeting this advisory group for
the first time since his two weeks’
inspection cruise to the Caribbean
defense area, the Chief Executive
has before him in varying detail
nearly a half dozen proposals for
revising the defense setup—all dedi
cated to the objective of expediting
production of armaments for our
own use and that of Britain, China
and Greece.
Precise nature of the various sug
gestions has been closely guarded
by the White House, with only one,
that for a three-man supreme de
fense council, being admittedly un
der consideration.
Wartime Basis Studied.
In the face of admission by present
commission members that hoped-for
production rates are materially be
low estimates, plus newly develop
ing demands for greater quantities
of equipment for British needs, the
new administrative plan as event
uallly adopted may contemplate
| placing American industry on a war
! time basis—abandoning, in part at
least, the principle of simply ex
panding the "normal" productive
To see him immediately before the
i scheduled afternoon conference with
the Defense Commission, the Presi
dent summoned to the White House
War and Navy Department officials
who discussed the reorganization
with him earlier in the week. In
this group were Secretary of War
Stimson. Secretary of Navy Knox
and Undersecretaries Patterson and
Forrestal of the same departments.
At his press conference this morn
ing Mr. Roosevelt said he could not
promise any announcement on the
reorganization at any precise time.
He confirmed the report that as
many as four or five possible plans
are before him and that the ulti
mate choice may be a combination
of some or all of these.
Questioned again today as to
whether his program for leasing
j war materials to belligerent coun
| tries might require amendment or
repeal of the Neutrality and John
son Acts, the President said it would
require legislation, but as far as is
known now would not necessarily
affect those particular statutes.
The President also canvassed the
whole problem of defense produc
tion and reorganization today with
Speaker Rayburn and House Ma
jority Leader McCormick.
As the legislators left the Whit#
House, the Speaker explained their
interest is principally along the lines
of whatever new congressional en
actments may be required for the
plan to lease materials to Britain,
but that all aspects of the defense
picture had been discussed.
Roosevelt Confers With Cabinet.
Yesterday Mr. Roosevelt conferred
for three hours with his cabinet, sum
moned into an unusual Thursday
session for the announced purpose
I of considering the administrative
! problems in the defense picture,
i The department heads declined any
: comment as they left the White
House after the session, but other
.sources asserted that a decision on
the reorganization is imminent.
Appointment yesterday by Presi
dent Roosevelt of Robert Porter
j Patterson as Undersecretary of War,
! a newly created post, was considered
one of the steps being taken to free
j certain key procurement men from
other responsibilities in order that
they may concentrate wholly on
the defense program.
Burden to Be Reduced.
Mr. Patterson has been serving
as Assistant Secretary of War. in
whicn post he has had many other
duties in addition to a major re
sponsibility for the department'3
contract work. Selection of a suc
cessor to the assistant secretaryship
is expected to free him completely
from these other obligations.
It is not expected, incidentally,
that the eventual administrative re
! organization will be accompanied
by any important change in the
advisory functions of the present
Defense Commission or in the con
tract responsibilities of the War
and Navy Departments.
Mr. Roosevelt also took occasion
at his press conference to comment
on recent reports of undue delay in
preparation of the eight naval bases
leased from Great Britain. Describ
ing the reports as a lot of nonsense,
(See ROOSEVELT, Page A-18.) '
Brother Identifies Body
Of Woman in Bridge Fall
The body of a woman identified
as Mrs. Fannie Mandelbaum, 48, of
1858 Mintwood place N.W., was
found lying beneath an arch of Cal
vert Street Bridge this morning,
apparently having fallen nearly 80
feet from the bridge rail to the
brush-grown bank along the road
in Rock Creek Park.
The body was identified by Mrs.
Mandelbaum s brother, Samuel
Wortleib. 1001 C street S.E. The
body was discovered shortly before
8 o'clock by Joseph Grobarek. who
reported he had seen it as he drove
to work. She had been missing since
last night, according to relatives.
In a purse, police said, they found
$68.78 in small bills and change.

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