Services Ordered to Trim
Public Information Personnel
BY JOHN A. GILES
The Army, Navy, Air Force
and Marine Corps today had or
ders to trim their public informa
tion personnel by from one-third
to one-half to replace high
ranking brass as directors with
Defense Secretary Wilson, in
the second of two crackdown
orders issued yesterday, save the
secretaries of the military de
partments those instructions.
A spokesman said it could
mean a reduction of from 200 to
300 jobs throughout the world.
The $14,800-a-year civilian in
formation chiefs will supplant
present general and flag officers
-.ho now are responsible for
staking public military informa
Mr. Wilson ordered the shake
up in the public information
setup a few hours after he
cracked down on military offi
cials who write so/ publication.
He also generally tightened rules
on release of military informa
The orders followed President
Eisenhower's implied criticism at';
his news conference of Admiral
Robert B. Carney, Chief of Naval
Operations, for speculating that
war may break out soon in trie
The spokesman said the orders
have been in preparation for
some weeks, but they could ap
ply to the practice of anony
mously giving information to a
selected group of newsmen as
was the case in the Carney in- !
Navy officials refused to say
whether Admiral Carney had
been reprimanded. But they
pointed out he visited the Presi
“Admiral Carney would be the
last man to do anything to em
barrass his commander in chief,”
a high official told a reporter.
"The whole thing now is re
garded as a closed issue.” '
The White House also has re
ceived protests on the handling
of information on the sea trials
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of the atomic submarine Nau
tilus. The skipper, Comdr. Eu
gene Wilkinson, has written two
magazine articles on the subject
while the Navy has steadfastly
refused to say anything about
The Navy called the handling
of the Wilkinson articles was
"unfortunate.” In f any future
instance such information will
be put out to all news media,
Navy officials promised,
j Mr. Wilson and Secretary of
the Nafy Thomas were unaware
of the Wilkinson articles until
they had gone to press.
1 The military services now
spend $3.5 million annually on
public information activities. In
1954 they spent $4.5 million and
Mr. Wilson voluntarily made the
reduction in expenditures. He
also had directed the Aimed
; forces to trim their public in
formation personnel by 25 per
cent, but a spokesman said that
; cut was never carried out.
In Washington public Infor
mation rosters show the military
has 334 information specialists.
The Army has 99, the Navy 96,
the Marines 47 and the Air-
Force 92. In addition Mr. Wil
son’s own office employs 97
persons in this work.
Until civilian appointees are
named. Mr. Wilson told the serv
ice secretaries that each will be
personally responsible for his
department's public relations. A
spokesman Said the order was
issued- with the full knowledge
and concurrence of the service
secretaries. The final draft was
approved at a meeting Monday,
j The Army’s present chief of
information is Maj. Gen. Gilman
| C. Mudgett. The Navy’s is Rear
Admiral William G. Beecher, jr.,
and the Marine Corps has Brig.
Gen. Frank Wirsig.
The Air Force information
setup is headed by Brig. Gen.
Brooke E. Allen, who had been
scheduled to be replaced this
week by Col. Robert Lee Scott,
author of the best selling book
“God Is My Co-Pilot.”
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THURSDAY. MARCH 31. UNM
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