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Rain with mild temperature tonight and tomorrow. Temperatures today—Highest, 47, at 12:01 a.m.; lowest, 43, at 7:55 a.m.; 45 at 1:30. Yesterday—Highest, 56, at 4 p.m.; lowest, 32, at 7:55 a.m. Late New York Markets, Page A-11. Guide for Readers Page. After Dark ... B-9 Amusements B-16 Comics _B-14-15 Editorials .A-6 Finance .. A-ll Lost and Found A-3, Page. Obituary ._A-8 Radio _B-15 Society.B-3 Sports _A-9 I Where to Go . B-4 Woman’s Page B-10 An Associated Press Newspaper 92d YEAR. Yo. 36,399. WASHINGTON, D. C., TUESDAY, DECEMBER 28, 1943—TWENTY-EIGHT PAGES. *** SnSS. THREE CENTS. Trained Troops to Run Railroads In Event of Strike, Stimson Says; Steel Workers Returning to Jobs Experienced Men Are Concentrated In Case of Crisis Text of President's Order, Page A-4. By the Associated Press. Swiftly taking over physical possession of the railroads, the Army is concentrating troops with railroad experience to sup plement any possible manpower shortages. Secretary of War Stimson dis closed the use of troops at a spe cial news conference. Declaring that “terrific dangers” confront the Nation if a strike is carried out, Mr. Stimson announced that seven railroad presidents had been appointed _ colonels and were ready to take over the operation of as many divisions. In addition. Martin W. Clement, president of the Pennsylvania Rail road, was named general adviser to Ll. Gen. Brehon Somervell, chief of the Army Service Forces, and Maj. Gen. Charles P. Gross, Army di rector of transportation, who will operate the lines. Mr. Stimson said the two generals also would have the assistance and advice of the staff of the American Railroad As-, sociation, headed by John Pelley. Trucks Are Ready. Mr. Stimson said an organization 1 had been set up to operate the rail- j roads and that wages and labor conditions as of 7 o'clock last night! would be held in “status quo” until the railroads were returned to civil ian management. Gen. Somervell and Mr. Stimson declared emphatically that the rail roads would be kept operating. Gen. Somervell said that, in addi tion to having troops with railroad experience ready to fill in on any; jobs where necessary, the Army also planned to use its^trucks should the need arise and to make available Army stocks of vehicles and food to supplement any civilian shortages.! Mr. Stimson disclosed that work! on detailed plans for operating the 1 railroads had been under way before President Roosevelt signed his order for Federal operation at 6:40 p.m.. yesterday. At 7 o'clock Mr. Stimson i was able to issue orders to zone j commanders of the nine service1 commands to act. operating Agreement Mapped. Beginning at that hour. 672 offl- , cers had started out with orders to! take over each of more than 600 j separate railroad erganizatiorw.!, Two officers were assigned to some j of the major lines. Gen. Somervell said an operating agreement with the railroads had been drafted and that “we are go ing over it with the railroads at this time, but we do not wish to disclose the details." The agreement relates to financial matters. “We are to operate the railroads, not to adjudicate any labor dis-! putes involved.” Gen. Somervell said, j “We are not a labor board. Any change in pay or labor conditions | will be effective only after roads i have been released from War De partment control." Tire general said railroads in the United States now were considered Federal property and that sabotage j laws applicable to Federal property applied to the railroads. Asked about penalties in event of strikes by railroad employes who now’ become Federal employes, Gen. Somervell and Secretary ' Stimson said there were “several laws.” in cluding section 6 of the Antistrike Act and conspiracy laws. (Section 6 of the antistrike law I states that when any facility is j in the possession of the Govern- ; ment, it is unlawful to coerce, conspire or encourage any person j to interrupt operation through a ; lockout, strike or other interrup- i tion. It would not. however, j cover an individual who quit work of his own volition.) New Colonels Named. Railroad presidents appointed colonels and named by Mr. Stimson ! to take over and operate various re- | gional organizations included: Fred erick E. Williamson of the New York Central, supervision of the Eastern division; R. B. White of the Balti more & Ohio, the Alleghanv region; William J. Jenks of the Norfolk & Western Railroad, the Pochontas re gion (primarily a coal-producing j region with headquarters at Roa noke, Va,; Ernest E. Norris of the Southern, the Southeastern region; Ralph Budd of the Burlington, the Central-Western roads with head quarters at Chicago; Charles E. Denny of the Northern Pacific, the Western region, and Lewis W. Bald win of the Missouri Pacific, the Southwestern region, _Noting that the Brotherhoods of 'See RAILROADS. Page A-4.) 750,000 Cases of Peaches To Be Freed to Public The War Food Administration to day announced the release within a few weeks of 750.000 cases of canned peaches owned by canners and set aside for Government purchase. The peaches will reach retail markets at about the time that fresh iruits are in lowest supply, WFA said. Because latest estimates indicate that these stocks will not be neeeded for Government require ments, the Food Distribution Ad ministration has authorized the office of the quartermaster general to permit canners to release the supplies. Ration point values on canned peaches were not expected to be changed by the WFA release, ac cording to OPA officials. Smaller cans call for 18 points, while larger cans cost 30 points. On November 2 WFA ordered the release of 900.000 cases of canned peaches under similar circumstances. Public to See Little Change In Railroads Despite Seizure Army Operation Will Be Felt at Top; Won't Affect Average Passenger By the Associated Press. The Nation's railroads oper ated today under their first day of Government control just as they did yesterday, and it was doubtful that the public would see any physical evidence of a change. Representatives of the Eastern Railroad Presidents' Conference Committee expressed the opinion that Government operation would follow the pattern of the last seiz ure—26 years ago—when regional offices were set up for supervisory purposes only. Those offices acted as liaison be tween the Government and the rail roads. The railroads are expected to continue to operate under their present managements. So far as the average train rider is concerned. Government operation of the railroads under presidential order won’t mean a thing, an Army official said here. Tickets will be purchased in the regular way and punched and taken up by the regular conductors. "Unless the traveler happens to notice a copy of the presidential order, which probably will be pasted in most stations, he won't know there has been any change except through reading the newspapers,” the official said. And, he added, the usual scramble for .seats and the usual delays in schedules probably will continue. Emergency Staff Organized to Direct Eastern Systems Service Commands Mobilize Rail Forces In South and West Bj the Associated Press. BALTIMORE, Dec. 28.—Brig. Gen. Philip Hayes, commanding general of the 3d Service Com mand, set up today an emer gency staff in charge of the 83 railroads in Maryland, Pennsyl vania and Virginia, under the President's order directing seiz ure of all railroads. Roy Barton White, president of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, was named director for the Alleghany region, which covers the three States of the 3d Service Command. It is one of four regions set up by the Army administration on the East1 Joast. The emergency organization be :an functioning shortly after the j irmy officially took possession and j :or,trol of the railroads last night. Lt. Col. Willis Pruett was ap pointed assistant to Mr. White, and Jol. M. A. McFadden, zone trans portation officer, was selected for he post of executive officer of the emergency staff. Gen. Hayes said one or more Army officers would be named to the pperating headquarters of each rail road in the command area. Staff Studies Operation Of Midwestern Lines CHICAGO, Dec. 28 <A>).—Army supervision of railroads in the 6th Service Command was discussed to dav at a staff meeting of the com mand after 78 Army officers had been assigned to the offices of 57 railroads in Illinois, Wisconsin and Michigan under terms of President Roosevelt's executive order. Tlie Army men will be on duty only as observers, said Brig. Gen. John F. Davis, commanding general of the 6th Service Command in the absence of Maj. Gen. H. S. Aurand. 101 Officers Assigned To Southern Systems ATLANTA, Dec. 28 (/Pi.—Assign ment of 101 Army officers to various railroad headquarters in the seven Southeastern States to assume con trol under President Roosevelt's order seizing railroads was an nounced today by Maj. Gen. William Bryden, commanding officer of the 4th Service Command. The officers were selected for specialized knowledge of transpor tation affairs. Gen. Bryden issued the assignments on instructions from the War Department. 84 Officers Sent To Western Offices OMAHA, Dec. 28 (/P).—Eighty-four officers of the 7th Service Command have been ordered to proceed to operating headquarters of railroads in the nine States of the command, it was disclosed here today. Maj. Gen. F. E. Uhl, service com mander, said commanding officers of all posts have been instructed to report the number of enlisted men| possessing railroad operation ex perience. This is an emergency measure in preparation for possible develop ments, Gen. Uhl said, and the men enlisted will not be detached from their units and their training will not be interrupted at present. Two railroad operating regions are in the territory under jurisdiction of the 7th Service Command. Col. Charles E. Denney, St. Paul, has been designated regional director of the Northwestern region and Col. L. W. Baldwin. St. Louis, South western regional director. FEPC Turns Problem Of Enforcing Orders Over to President Action Follows Decision Of House Committee To Initiate Inquiry By the Associated Press. Enforcement of President Roosevelt's order against any racial discrimination in war in dustries was up to the Chief Executive himself today. The problem was turned over to him by the Fair Employment Prac tices Committee late yesterday after a congressional committee moved to investigate the agency's activities. The FEPC. set up by the Presi dent under the Second War Powers Act. certified 14 Southeastern rail roads and seven railway labor unions as violators of presidential order No. 9346 which forbids racial or re ligious discrimination against work ers or job applicants by any firm doing any work for the Govern ment. Operators of the railroads in volved were in effect removed from the picture, however, by the Presi dent’s seizure oi the entire railway system in the current wage dispute. While the railroads are being op erated by the Secretary of War any decision by the President on en forcement of the nondiscrimination order could be carried out imme diately without concurrence of the railway managements. Carriers, Unions United. The FEPC’s authority was openly challenged December i3 when the Southeastern railroads served notice on FEPC that they intended to dis regard its directive designed to carry out the President’s no-disenmina tion edict. Three of the seven railway unions also have formally denied the FEPC has powers to enforce the Presi dent s order. Submission of the issue to the President for further action has un usual political implications. South ern members of Congress who op posed the administration soldier vote and poll tax measures have been outspokenly critical or FEPC, while Northern colored organiza tions, which carry considerable voting power in several industrial cities, have been urging FEPC to take even stronger action to carry out the President’s order. * Organized labor’s right to draw contracts with employers also is at issue. The seven unions cited to the President are accused by FEPC of writing clauses into operating con tracts with the railroads which dis criminate against the job rights of colored workers. Ross Sees Challenge. Malcolm Ross, FEPC chairman, declared the railroads’ refusal to obey the agency's directive consti tuted an “open challenge to presi dential authority.” He declined to comment on an investigation headed by Representa tive Smith, Democrat, of Virginia. Mr. Smith said the inquiry was de cided on after his committee re ceived complaints from West Coast shipyard workers and Southern railways management that FEPC had exceeded its authority. The Smith committee took the records in the case against the rail roads and the action involving the boilermakers’ union and five West Coast shipyards, which were also recently ordered by FEPC to end allegedly discriminatory practices affecting colored employes. Stimson to Speak Tonight Secretary of War Stimson will speak at 7 o'clock tonight in a coast to-coast radio program to be carried by the four major networks. Mr. Stimson will discuss Army seizure of the Nation's railroads. 'Fare' Spurned by 45 Cabs Has Drivers Called on Carpet Forty-five taxicab operators’ re fusal to stop for a passenger who attempetd to flag them down during a two-month period at Massachu setts avenue and Second street N.E. landed them on the carpet at the hack inspector's office today to ex plain their action. The complainant was Robert L. Hill, assistant to the director of per sonnel at the Department of Agri culture, who took down the license number of each cab that, passed him by at the corner. He said he usually spent 15 minutes between 8:45 and • j 9 a.m. trying to hail a cab each morning. Being ignored a few times was not so bad, but the drivers' per sistent refusal to stop for him finally roused him to action. Taxicab operators are required by law to stop for passengers whenever hailed while on duty, but there has been a rising tide of complaints against the operators who, many persons have said, have gotten “choosey” during the transportation pinch and try to select those who appear to be better paying custo mers. WLB Approves Retroactive Pay In Contracts By the Associated Press. A one-day walkout by more than 170,000 steel workers ap peared ended today with the granting of their demands for possible retroactive pay in new contracts now being negotiated. Reports from the scores of plants in nine States which were closed by ; the work stoppages showed most of the men were obeying orders tele ; graphed last night by Philip Mur ray, president of the CIO United Sieel Workers of America, to resume "uninterruptedly the production of steel.” Mr. Murray's instructions were dispatched a few minutes after the War Labor Board issued a directive which incorporated suggestions of President Roosevelt that retro active pay be guaranteed. Littl^Choice for Operators. Steel operators had little choice but to accept the order. Reports in informed sources were that the War Production Board would readily consider requests for higher steel prices, which Benjamin F. Fairless, president of the United States Steel Corp., said some time ago would be necessary to cover any added cost, such as more pay to'the workers. Republic Steel Corp.. largest of 214 companies whose contracts with the union expired at midnight, Christmas eve. precipitating the controversy, estimated it would re quire "about 48 hours” for produc tion to return to normal. More than half of Pennsylvania's 40.000 idle went back. Others were to follow on the afternoon and eve ning shifts. The 20.000 employes of Wheeling Steel in Ohio and West Virginia were slow in responding to the back to-work order, but a company spokesman said It "seemed reason able to assume operations would be restored during the day.” Ohio Workers Returning. At least partial production was resumed in all of the 30 Ohio mills hit by the work stoppage of 81.000 steel workers in that State, and industry officials estimated from 50 to 85 per cent normal forces were on duty. The break in the crisis came just as steel production dropped to its lowest rate since 1940. when the United States began its “all-out" war production. The Labor Board, in agreeing to retroactivity by an 8-to-4 vote, re versed the stand labor members of the WLB took last Wednesday when they voted down a virtually identical proposition made by the public members. Murray’s Announcement. Mr. Murray, in his announcement to terminate the work stoppage, declared of the board's reversal: “This action upon the part of the National <War> Labor Board at the direction of the President of the United States will correct the grave situation created by the Na tional (Wan Labor Board.” The CIO chief ordered telegrams dispatched at once to local union and district officials directing “fuli compliance" with the latest board action, saying: “You are further advised of the need of continuing uninterrupted the production of steel and steel products essential to the war needs of our Nation. This is in conformity with our organization's no-strike policy. “All necessary measures should therefore be taken by the offices and members of our local unions to comply with the policy and to as sure the representatives of your organization the opportunity to negotiate by peaceful means the perfection of a satisfactory wage agreement, with the understanding that if the new agreements include any wage adjustments, such adjust ments shall be computed retroac tively to the date when your con tract would have expired." eve pulled 81.000 men out of the Industry members of the WLB. dissenting from the action of public and labor members who guaranteed the steel workers retroactivity, said in a statement that “when 150,000 men simultaneously stop work, with picket lines around many plants, including those in which contracts have not expired, the question of whether or not there is an author ized strike is wholly academic." and they said, illustrated “conclusively either the absence or the abuse of union responsibility and discipline.” D. C. Police Fail to Find Trace of Missing Boaf Fighting ice fields on the Potomac River in a vain search for a small motor boat reported caught in the ice off Occoquan Bay, harbor police returned to Washington today with out finding a trace of the craft and its occupants. Harbor police shortly before mid night dispatched the steel-hulled Charles Evans to the scene, about 25 miles downstream, after receiving reports of distress signals burning from the motor boat. Searchlights were played in the area for nearly an hour without success, police said. Dangerous ice floes slowed the Charles Evans, in command of Har bormaster Otha R. Sanders, and the searching party did not return to Washington until about 6 a.m. The police boat was the only craft strong enough to withstand the ice, police reported. Residents along the Virginia shore at Occoquan first reported seeing the distress signals and notified State police, who in turn appealed here. _... ?%v ^/weCANUCK OUR ^ / ENEMIES IN EUROPE h r IN 1944, CAN YOU LICK \ ' V YOURS AT HOME? J\ Tedder Named Deputy To Eisenhower on Allied Invasion Staff Gen. Paget Appointed Commander in Chief In Middle East By the Associated Press. LONDON. Dec. 28.—In a move which clearly foreshadowed the mighty role air power will play in the main invasion of Europe, Air Chief Marshal Sir Arthur Tedder. Britain's master air strategist, today was appointed deputy to Gen. Dwight D. Eisen hower, supreme commander of the Allied invasion armies. Selection of Marshal Tedder, who cleared North Africa's skies of the German Air Force and directed air cover for the invasions of Sicily and Italy, was greeted w-ith approval in London and his appointment was re garded as assuring that the building of air strength would gain new mo mentum. It was announced at the same time that Gen. Sir Bernard 'Tolly) Paget, who fought a grim battle ol withdrawal in Norway and for twc years was commander in chief ol the British home forces, has been appointed commander in chief in i the Middle East at Cairo. Admiral Fraser Possible Leader. Thus the line-up of commanders for an encircling assault from west, north and south was virtually com plete. Although no naval commanders for the British-based invasion have yet been named. Admiral Sir Bruce Fraser, commander in chief of the British home fleet and hero of the Scharnhorst sinking, was regarded as a possible leader. It also was announced last night that Capt. M R. Holcomb of Pasa dena. Calif., had arrived at London derry, North Ireland, to become chief staff officer of the United States operating base at London derry. As Tien. Eisenhower yesterday promised the complete defeat ol Germany in 1944, the Berlin radic said Marshals Erwin Rommel and Karl Rudolf Gerd von Rundstedt had held an invasion council of war at which Marshal Rommel “con vinced himself of the preparedness for action of the Western European area." The broadcast said the for mer "Desert Fox” had found defense ' See INVASION. Page A-2 > Col. McCormick Declines To Run for President By the Associated Press. CHICAGO. Dec. 28—Col. Rob ert R. McCormick, editor and pub lisher of the Chicago Tribune, has advised an Illinois Republican lead er that he is not to be considered a presidential candidate in the Illi nois preferential primary next spring. Ben Berve. chairman of the Re publican State Central Committee, announced yesterday that Col. Mc Cormick expressed his views in a letter to him after he had sought his opinion. Mr. Berve said his request followed distribution of 10,000 petitions by the Republican Nationalist Revival Committee to enter Col. McCormick's name in the primary. In a letter to Mr. Berve, Col. Mc Cormick said, "If I would allow my name to be used in the presidential primary in Illinois I would have to cease acting as editor and publisher of the Tribune. “It would be a great mistake for me to give up the activity which has proven to be useful to under take one of uncertain value to m> country. * * * I desire that m> name be not used as a candidate ir the preferential primary for Pres ident of the United States.” Late Bulletin York Among Ships Sinking Scharnhorst LONDON UP).—1The British battleship Duke of York and a force of cruisers and de stroyers participated in the naval battle which resulted in the sinking of the German battleship Scharnhorst, the Admiralty announced to night. U. S. Destroyer Sunk by Japs Off New Britain, Knox Reveals Toll in New Landing Operation Not Given; Marines Drive on Gloucester Air Strips By th* Acsoeiated Pres*. An American destroyer was sunk and a small coastal trans port ship damaged by Japanese bombs in the landings Sunday at Cape Gloucester on the western tip of New Britain Island. Secretary of the Navy Knox re ported at a news conference today that both vessels went down, but i the Navy later announced that the ! transport was only damaged. The ships were not identified nor was there any information as to the number of casualties. Mr. Knox said Japanese claims, broadcast by the Tokio radio, of the sinking of two heavy cruisers and two transports were "as fan : tastic as usual.” From advanced Allied headquar ters in New Guinea today came reports that the marines, now’ using tanks, were advancing toward the airdromes in the Cape Gloucester area and had captured Target Hill, a 450-foot elevation near Borgen Bey. The hill was pounded heavily from the air and by warships before the Sunday landings. The loss of the destroyer. Secre tary Knox said, resulted from an air attack four or five hours after the operation started. It was our only loss. he said. No details on the destroyer were given, but Mr. Knox said the small transport W'as only about 100 feet long. The Tokio radio quoted a Japa nese communique as saying two Al lied cruisers and two transports had been sunk and three transports damaged by Japanese naval planes, which attacked an invasion convoy (See PACCTfcTPage A-10.) Secret Weapons Aid Navy Victories Over Japs, Knox Reports Discloses 42 Carriers Now Are in Operation With Latest Planes By the Associated Press. The Navy is using secret wea pons in driving the Japanese back in the Pacific. Secretary of the Navy Knox reported today. He gave no details, however. Mr. Knox made the disclosure in a summary of 1943 activities, saying: "In the field of new weapons, or secret weapons, the Navy has by no means been idle. “The Japanese especially have felt ; the sting of weapons which, al though greatly improved, neverthe less are of conventional types. “Japanese and Nazi alike, how ever, also have felt destriction wrought by weapons not known to them, and will continue to do so.’’ New Planes Lauded. The Secretary also disclosed at a news conference that more than 42 aircraft carriers are in operation. He said their ‘offensive sting” has | been increased by the Corsair and Hellcat fighters, “the most power ful carrier-based fighting planes in the world.” Also now striking its first blows, he said, “is a powerful new dive bomber" He did not identify the new dive bomber, but it presumably is the Curtiss Helldiver, which saw its first action against the Japanese in a raid on Rabaul November 11. The Navy said yesterday that it “lived up to our expectations during combat.” Mr. Knox disclosed the figures on aircraft carriers in reporting that the Navy now has in operation “more than six times as many" carriers as it had when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. At that time the Navy had seven carriers. Mr. Knox's figures include escort carriers. Other high points in the Secre tary's report of 1943 progress: The naval aviation arm grew "in a manner that gives us world leader (See KNOX, Page A-3.) Two Railroads Cut As Soviets Plunge Toward Rumania German Flank Along Lower Dnieper River Also Threatened <Map on Page A-?.) By HENRY C. CASSIDY. Associated Press War Correspondent. MOSCOW. Dec. 28. — Gen. Nikolai Vatutin's 1st Ukraine Army swung southwest of Kiev today in a new plunge toward Rumania and the old Polish border, cutting two railroads out of the Germans' fast-dwindling network of communications and threatening the flank of the enemy forces along the lower Dnieper River. Gen. Vatutin's spectacular ad vance through the town of An drushevka. 120 miles from the Ru manian frontier, was preceded by terrific artillery barrages. It car ried his troops forward approxi mately 40 miles from the starting point of his offensive in the Brusi lov sector to within 15 miles of the Zhitomir-Odessa lateral railway line. This strategic railroad, which Nazi Marshal Fritz von Mannstein cleared at heavy cost by his ill-fated November tank onslaught, was again in imminent danger, accord ing to dispatches from the front. Capture of Andrushevka put the Russians 20 miles northeast of the key rail. city of Berdichcv, even closer than they were last month before Von Mannstein’s attack pushed them back from the Zhito mir-Korosten sector. Berdichev is on a major Axis railway feeding (See RUSSIA. Page A-7.) Sir Frederic Fisher Dies LONDON. Dec. 28 PP).—Admiral Sir Frederic Fisher, 92, brother of the late Admiral Lord Fisher. First Sea Lord during the early months of the World War. died December 23. it was announced today. Sir Frederic was born in Ceylon and served 49 years in the Royal Navy, retiring in 1914. New Year Eve Price Ceilings Ordered in Night Clubs Here Washingtonians are expected to’ throng night clubs in record-break ing numbers New Year eve, secure in the knowledge—if that problem worries them—that the OPA is keep ing careful watch to see that they are not overcharged. To try to help keep overly enthu siastic celebrators from going broke quite so soon, the OPA has issued a ruling prohibiting night clubs from raising New Year eve prices over last year’s levels. Several night clubs already have been sold out and others report sell outs expected for next Friday night. A few hotels have curtailed the cele bration due to the war, but the majority are preparing for New Year eve with all the trimmings. Special midnight shows in all the downtown and most of the neigh borhood theaters will take care of thousands of the District’s war swollen population unable to secure night • club reservations. The District has 19 night clubs. 12 hotel dancing spots, 17 restau rants with floor shows and innumer able taverns which provide dancing to the accompanying blare of a juke box. The District's 32 bowling alley's will be in operation and the Chevy Chase Ice Palace and Uline's Arena will be open to ice skating enthu siasts. More than 1,500 people will attend the All States dance at the Washington Hotel, which is staging the affair primarily for lonesome, unacquainted people here. In ad dition, there will be numerous pri vate parties in homes and hotels. Though forced to keep the mini mum or cover prices at last year’s level, night spot operators expect the added volume will mean greater grosses than last year. OPA reflations further require that the quality of the food and en (See NEW YEAR, Page A-10.) Germans Report Loss of Orfonar Italian Anchor Forces Withdrawn North of Ruined Adriatic Port By the Associated Press. LONDON, Dec. 23.—The Ger mans have evacuated the “ruins of Ortona,” Adriatic port which has been the scene of bloody street fighting for more than a week, the German communique said today. The communique was broadcast by the Nazi DNB news agency. Northern anchor of the German winter front in Italy. Ortona was set afire December 14 by the Ger mans, leading to speculation that an enemy withdrawal was imminent. The German Transocean News Agency today said Nazi forces, op posed by "greatly superior enemy forces," had withdrawn to “well prepared positions immediately north of the city.” Nazi Flame Throwers Turned on Canadians ALLIED HEADQUARTERS. Al giers. Dec. 28 (TP;.—The Germans were reported today to have turned flame throwers on Canadian 8th | Army troops, who were battling (their way at bayonet point through (the streets of Ortona, in a grimly desperate defense of the Nazi com munications to Rome from the East. I Both Canadian and Indian troops | of the 8th Army took numerous (prisoners in the bitter fighting for .the port, a city of 9.000 situated 11 miles below Pescara. Tighten Hold on Range. Meanwhile, American troops of the 5th Army, with the capture of , two more heights, tightened their hold on the important Samucro mountain range overlooking the Germans' strongly held San Vittore backdoor to Cassmo and Rome. On both the 5th and 8th Army fronts intensive Allied patrol ac tivity was reported. American patrol activity was reported. Amer ican patrols, completing the con (solidation of their Samucro positions a mile and a half east of San Vit tore, were sent down the south west slopes to find the village strongly held by the Germans. Southwest of Castel San Vincenzo in the center of the Italian front, (fierce local battles were raging for a ridge called Catenella Degli Mai nardi. while other Allied forces cap tured a high point in the Monte Marrone range. Attack Important Height. French Moroccan troops were at tacking an important height "to which the enemy is clinging tena ciously.'’ an Allied communique said, (but did not identify the location of (the hill. | Fighter activity over the 5th Army (front increased with slightly better j weather and fighter-bomber blast led Civitavecchia, northwest of Rome, I hitting shipping, the railway yard (and harbor installations, t Medium bombers ranged far north to attack viaducts at Recco. and Zoagli, south of Genoa, while other bombers crossed the Adriatic to bomb shipping near Zara in Yugo slavia. Rail targets were destroyed on the Ancona-Pescara line and a factory and railway yard bombed at Anagni. The raids were accomplished with out loss. Sale jof Share of Network To Time Is Reported Bv the Associated Press. NEW YORK. Dee. 28.—Time mag azine today was reported to have purchased a substantial pan of a national radio system. Discussions on the deal, which have been under way for some time, included the probability that the forengn news gathering staffs of Time. Life and Fortune magazines would be made available to the broadcasting chain to expand its news programs. | It was recalled that when Edward J. Noble purchased the Blue Net work for $8,000,000 he had negotiated with a magazine owner to take a part interest, but the deal fell through. The Time transaction is expected to involve several million dollars. Allied Ship Reported Shelled in Dodecanese By the Associated Press. LONDON. Dec. 28.—The German news agency DNB said today that an Allied warship attempting to en ter Pegadi Harbor on Scarpanto • Karpathos'. Dodecanese island be tween Crete and Rhodes, on the night of December 26, presumably to land saboteurs, was spotted and | heavily shelled. Early Churchill Talk On Invasion Setup Forecast in London Ey the Associated Press. LONDON. Dec. 28. — The Daily Mail today said Prime Minister Churchill, who pre sumably is in the Middle East recovering from pneumonia, would make a speech soon giv ing his views on the newly established invasion setup un der Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower. The newspaper said Mr. Churchill "has been a busy man for more than a week” and that he took a hand in all arrange I ments for the organization of the invasion command and the Christmas eve announcement of the appointments. An appearance before Com mons or a radio speech to the nation after his complete re covery and return home would i be in the normal course of j events.