OCR Interpretation


Evening star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, May 09, 1950, Image 11

Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045462/1950-05-09/ed-1/seq-11/

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‘--- ~
CHIEF ELECTRICIAN
WILLIAM C. SMITH.
Chinese Reds to Free
2 American Flyers
Accused of Spying
By tht Associated Press
TOKYO, May 9.—The Chinese
Communists broadcast today that
they are releasing two American
airmen from whom they extorted
“spy confessions” after 18 months
in prison.
The official Peiping radio said
the two airmen. E. C. Bender and
W. C. Smith, will be deported. It
gave no details.
Marine M/Sergt. Elmer C. Ben
der, Cincinnati, and Navy Chief
Electrician William C. Smith, Long
Beach, Calif., were forced down
October 19, 1948, on a flight from
Tsingtao, then a United States
naval base.
They have been held incommu
nicado. The Reds stiffly rejected
all efforts to obtain their release.
“Magnanimous Policy” Oited.
The Communist radio broadcast
this statement by Gen. Hsu Shih
yuh, commander of the Shantung
military district:
“It was not until lately that
Bender and Smith, influenced by
our magmanimous policy toward
prisoners, began to confess . . .”
The history of communism is
full of similar “confessions,” ob
tained after long imprisonment.
The broadcast said Communists
had released four captured Amer
ican airmen last year after Vice
Admiral Oscar C. Badger, then
commander of the United States
Western Pacific Fleet, “admitted
their mistakes in a personal let
ter and guaranteed that no simi
lar occurrence would happen
again.”
Consul Hopes It’s True.
In Hong Kong, United States
Consul General Karl Rankin, told
of the impending release, said, “I
hope it’s true.” Officials said it
was likely Bender and Smith
would be taken to Tientsin and
placed aboard a ship.
Both Bender and Smith are
married. Their wives often have
sought their release.
In Long Beach, Smith’s wife
Ruby said she is “overjoyed and
relieved. I intended to go and
M/SERGT. ELMER C.
BENDER.
—AP Photos.
get him myself, but now it looks
as if I won’t have to go.”
In Chicago Bender's wife Shir
ley said, "It’s true, it must be
true.”
The Smiths have two boys. Mi
chael, 2, and Patrick, 18 months.
The Benders have a daughter,
Kathy, 4.
Cigarette 'Kicks'
Soldier Into Auto,
Then Into Court
A strange woman and an even
stranger cigarette were blamed to
day by a young airman as the
causes of his misfortune.
Pvt. Richard S. Charlton, 18,
of Bolling Air Force Base was
in Municipal Court yesterday,
charged with unauthorized use of
an automobile. He was found
asleep in the vehicle Saturday
night, in a car which police said
he had taken from Mayflower
Motors, 1125 Fifteenth street
N.W,
The airman said he didn’t know
what had happened, except that
he met a young woman on down
town I street N.W. She accom
panied him to a tavern, they had
some wine and he asked for a
cigarete. She offered him one
with a “kick.”
“That’s the last thing I re
member,” the airman told Judge
Thomas D. Quinn. The jurist dis
missed the case, after admonish
ing Charlton to stay away from
“strange women.”
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