August 31, 2015

1968. Anonymous Democrats Accuse the Media of Bias

"The Networks Have Had Their Day"
The 1968 elections: "Nixon addresses supporters after winning his party's nomination again in 1968. He went on to defeat the Democratic nominee, incumbent Vice President Hubert Humphrey" (source)

ABC News Internal Memo (Confidential)

To: Elmer Lower / cc: John Lynch

From: Bill Downs, ABC Washington

9 October 1968

Relative to the confidential dinner conversation with our mutual friend, here is the paraphrase of his remarks as I noted them down from memory last Saturday night. I leave it up to you and John Lynch as to how widely you want the following to be distributed.

Friend X indicated that from now on out the campaign will get much rougher from the Democratic side. "We have the goods on Agnew possibly involving misfeasance or malfeasance in office and will break the story this week." (Thus far there's been no sign of it.)

However, X admitted that he is extremely depressed by the overall political situation. "It used to be a rule of thumb that in any election there would be about 20% of the electorate that would be extremist...nuts, Communists, Birchers, racists and such. This rule is not valid in this claim." X said that the Gallup and Harris polls showing a strong swing to the right across the country do not go far enough.

"Our mail from more than 100,000 people showed that 70% of the people reacting to the Chicago Convention supported Mayor Daley and his position on law and order and the whole police bit." If somehow there had been a Daly-Wallace or a Wallace-Daley ticket, X said, he believed it would sweep the country.

Those who think that the choice of General LeMay will hurt Wallace because of the General's "strangelove" rantings about the nuclear bomb are mistaken. X thinks the selection of LeMay as Wallace's running mate will increase the strength of the third party movement.

X thinks that the accelerated and harder hitting campaign now emerging with HHH & Muskie directly and personally attacking the Nixon-Agnew and Wallace-LeMay tickets will help the Democratic campaign. He said it's better that HHH go down fighting the new extremism in the US than not to attack it at all.

X was personally angry and bitter at the Nixon tactics. "We can't pin the bastard down...he's talking claptrap and evading the issues...and in many ways this makes Nixon more racist and dangerous than Wallace..." When asked about Agnew, X indignantly dismissed the Md. governor as a fool, adding, "I'd rather see LeMay as a vice president than Agnew."

X said that if Nixon wins, "as now appears to be likely," it may be that the vote will split among the three candidates as 35% to the winner, and 30% and 25% to the losers (he didn't specify who would be the low man.) "But whoever wins under those conditions will have no mandate from the people. I think that the Democrats will retain control of the Congress—the House by a very narrow margin. But the next Congress will be extremely conservative...Given the unsolved problems facing the country, with more than half of the country voting against him...I don't know what will happen to the nation..." X concluded the thought with the comment: "Sometimes I think there's madness here..."

X said that HHH now appears to be more sure of himself and the Democratic campaign has picked up momentum. But Humphrey himself is puzzled and bemused by the national attitude and temper of the people. He quoted Hubert as saying, "the only people who smile at me anywhere I go are the Negroes..." X again repeated that he would "rather see the Democratic go down singing than having the party fade away on questionable issues..."

As for himself personally, X said he was willing to go down with the ship if necessary. Referring to the big job offered to him, X said he stayed in politics at "considerable personal sacrifice...but I could not keep out of this election...it's too important...I'm dedicated to the party position win or lose..."

X expressed concern and bitterness about the way the news media more or less dismissed or downgraded the HHH foreign policy speech broadcast from Salt Lake City. Although the pundits and commentators mostly could see no radical shift in Hubert's position, X said it was an important move away from the White House. "And a lot of formerly doubtful Democrats read it that way..." X said the Utah speech reaction was startling with "thousands of letters still coming in." Said up to that time "there has been some $150,000 in voluntary contributions included in that mail, including one $10,000 check...and we're still opening letters. It's the most encouraging development of the campaign..." (Bill Lawrence did a TV story on this.)

When the conversation touched on the news media coverage of the campaign, X made no secret of his dissatisfaction and disappointment. Started out by questioning why ABC refused to clear time for HHH when NBC and CBS had done so. (I don't know the details of this or if it's true.) Then X made a long and bitter attack on the broadcast media and charged all with blatant editorializing.

"Your man Frank Reynolds has suddenly become a major target of Congressional criticism," X said. "I've been dealing with the Hill for years and know every man up there and I've never heard such attacks on the networks...and it's general. Reps. Harley Staggers and John Moss particularly are most vocal and bitter about Reynolds..." When asked why, X did not get specific but indicated somehow that Frank had become the symbol of their anger. X said the main complaint is that there's "no objectivity left on the networks...everyone is editorializing and no one labels it as such."

He dismissed Huntley-Brinkley as "so partisan that everyone's gotten used to it and expects it." X said he was shocked when Cronkite "lost his cool" in Chicago. "The Cronkite incident, along with Reynolds, is convincing Congress that 'the networks have had their day.'"

X expressed the opinion that attempts to pass some kind of legislation to license or otherwise inhibit the broadcast networks by the next Congress now appears inevitable. And he concluded: "If there is to be government control of the networks, Reynolds may be the catalyst to bring it about."

I want to emphasize that the sections of the above in quotation marks are as close to verbatim as I could make them. Also to emphasize that X himself was making no personal attack on Frank or ABC. "For the most part," he said, "ABC has given us a fair shake..." He was merely passing along the information, I sensed, knowing that I would pass it along to you. What his motives for doing this were, I have no idea.

And for gawd's sake, don't interpret this in any way as a throat-cutting excursion against Frank. I don't think X meant it that way...and I most assuredly do not. In fact, in my judgment ABC News with Reynolds has never looked better.

- Bill

"How We Came to Paris" by Ernest Hemingway

How We Came to Paris
"Photographer Robert Capa, left, and Ernest Hemingway, right, accredited as a correspondent for Collier’s magazine, with their Army driver in France shortly before the liberation of Paris" (source)

From Collier's Weekly, October 7, 1944:

HOW WE CAME TO PARIS
BY ERNEST HEMINGWAY

Never can I describe to you the emotions I felt on the arrival of the armored column of General Leclerc southeast of Paris. Having just returned from a patrol which scared the pants off of me and having been kissed by all the worst elements in a town which imagined it had been liberated through our fortuitous entry, I was informed that the general himself was just down the road and anxious to see us. Accompanied by one of the big shots of the resistance movement and Colonel B, who by that time was known throughout Rambouillet as a gallant officer and a grand seigneur and who had held the town ever since we could remember, we advanced in some state toward the general. His greeting—unprintable—will live in my ears forever.

"Buzz off, you unspeakables," the gallant general said, in effect, in something above a whisper, and Colonel B, the resistance king and your armored-operations correspondent withdrew.

Later the G-2 of the division invited us to dinner and they operated next day on the information Colonel B had amassed for them. But for your correspondent that was the high point of the attack on Paris.

In war, my experience has been that a rude general is a nervous general. At this time I drew no such deductions but departed on another patrol where I could keep my own nervousness in one jeep and my friends could attempt to clarify the type of resistance we could encounter on the following day between Toussus le Noble and Le Christ de Saclay.

Having found out what this resistance would be, we returned to the Hotel du Grand Veneur in Rambouillet and passed a restless night. I do not remember exactly what produced this restlessness but perhaps it was the fact that the joint was too full of too many people, including, actually, at one time two military police. Or perhaps it was the fact that we had proceeded too far ahead of our supply of Vitamin B, and the ravages of alcohol were affecting the nerves of the hardier guerrillas who had liberated too many towns in too short a time. At any rate I was restless and I think, without exaggeration, I may truly state that those whom Colonel B and I by then referred to as "our people" were restless.

The guerrilla chief, the actual fighting head of "our people," said, "We want to take Paris. What the hell is the delay?"

"There is no delay, Chief," I answered. "All this is part of a giant operation. Have patience. Tomorrow we will take Paris."

"I hope so," the guerrilla chief said. "My wife has been expecting me there for some time. I want to get the hell into Paris to see my wife, and I see no necessity to wait for a lot of soldiers to come up."

"Be patient," I told him.


The Eve of the Fateful Day

That fateful night we slept. It might be a fateful night but tomorrow would certainly be an even more fateful day. My anticipations of a really good fight on the morrow were marred by a guerrilla who entered the hotel late at night and woke me to inform me that all the Germans who could do so were pulling out of Paris. We knew there would be fighting the next day by the screen the German army had left. But I did not anticipate any heavy fighting, since we knew the German dispositions and could attack or bv-pass them accordingly, and I assured our guerrillas that if they would only be patient, we would have the privilege of entering Paris with soldiers ahead of us instead of behind us.

This privilege did not appeal to them at all. But one of the big shots of the underground insisted that we do this, as he said it was only courteous to allow troops to precede and by the time we had reached Toussus le Noble, where there was a short but sharp fight, orders were given that neither newspapermen nor guerrillas were to be allowed to proceed until the column had passed.

The day we advanced on Paris it rained heavily and everyone was soaked to the skin within an hour of leaving Rambouillet. We proceeded through Chevreuse and St. Rémy-lès-Chevreuses where we had formerly run patrols and were well known to the local inhabitants, from whom we had collected information and with whom we had downed considerable quantities of armagnac to still the ever-present discontent of our guerrillas, who were very Paris-conscious at this time. In those days I had found that the production of an excellent bottle of any sort of alcoholic beverage was the only way of ending an argument.

After we had proceeded through St. Rémy-lès-Chevreuses, where we were wildly acclaimed by the local charcutier, or pork butcher, who had participated in previous operations and been cockeyed ever since, we made a slight error in preceding the column to a village called Courcelles. There we were informed that there were no vehicles ahead of us and, greatly to the disgust of our people who wished to proceed on what they believed to be the shortest route into Paris, we returned to St. Rémy-lès-Chevreuses to join the armored column which was proceeding toward Châteaufort. Our return was viewed with considerable alarm by the local charcutier. But when we explained the situation to him he acclaimed us wildly again and, downing a couple of quick ones, we advanced resolutely toward Toussus le Noble where I knew the column would have to fight.


The Beauty of Tanks

At this point I knew there would be German opposition just ahead of us and also on our right at Le Christ de Saclay. The Germans had dug and blasted out a series of defense points between Châteaufort and Toussus le Noble and beyond the crossroads. Past the airdrome toward Buc they had 88s that commanded all that stretch of road. As we came closer to where the tanks were operating around Trappes I became increasingly apprehensive.

The French armor operated beautifully. On the road toward Toussus le Noble, where we knew there were Germans with machine guns in the wheat shocks, the tanks deployed and screened both of our flanks and we saw them rolling ahead through the cropped wheat field as though they were on maneuvers. No one saw the Germans until they came out with their hands up after the tanks had passed. It was a beautiful use of armor, that problem child of war, and it was lovely to see.

When we ran up against the seven tanks and four 88s the Germans had beyond the airfield, the French handled the fight prettily, too. Their artillery was back in another open wheat field, and when the German guns—four of which had been brought up during the night and were firing absolutely in the open—cut loose on the column, the French mechanized artillery slammed into them. You could not hear the Germans coming in, the 20-mm. firing, and the machine-gun fire cracking overhead, but the French underground leader who had correlated the information on the German dispositions shouted in French into my ear, "The contact is beautiful. Just where we said. Beautiful."

It was much too beautiful for me, who had never been a great lover of contact anyway, and I hit the deck as an 88 shell burst alongside the road. Contact is a very noisy business and, since our column was held up at this point, the more forceful and active of the guerrillas aided in reconstructing the road which had been churned into soup by the armor. This kept their minds from the contact taking place all around us. They filled in the mudholes with bricks and tiles from a smashed house, and passed along chunks of cement and pieces of house from hand to hand. It was raining hard all this time, and by the time the contact was over, the column had two dead and five wounded, one tank burned up, and had knocked out two of the seven enemy tanks and silenced all of the 88s.

"C'est un bel accrochage," the underground leader said to me jubilantly.

This means something like "We have grappled with them prettily" or "We tied into them beautifully," searching in mind for the exact meaning of accrochage, which is what happens when two cars lock bumpers.

I shouted, "Prettily! Prettily!"

At which a young French lieutenant, who did not have the air of having been mixed up in too many accrochages in his time but who, for all I know, may have participated in hundreds of them, said to me, "Who the hell are you and what are you doing here in our column?"

"I am a war correspondent, monsieur," I replied.

The lieutenant shouted: "Do not let any war correspondents proceed until the column has passed. And especially do not let this one proceed."

"Okay, my lieutenant," the M.P. said. "I will keep an eye on them."

"And none of that guerrilla rabble, either," the lieutenant ordered. "None of that is to pass until all the column has gone through."

"My lieutenant," I said, "the rabble will be removed from sight once this little accrochage is finished and the column has proceeded."

"What do you mean—this little accrochage?" he demanded, and I feared hostility might be creeping into his voice.

Since we were not to advance farther within the column, I took evasive action at this point and waded down the road to a bar. Numerous guerrillas were seated in it singing happily and passing the time of day with a lovely Spanish girl from Bilbao whom I had last met on the famous two-way, or wide-open patrol point just outside the town of Cognières. This was the town we used to take from the Germans whenever one of their vehicles pulled out of it, and they would return whenever we stepped off the road. This girl had been following wars and preceding troops since she was fifteen and she and the guerrillas were paying no attention to the accrochage at all.


Refreshment Between Battles

A guerrilla chief names C said, "Have a drink of this excellent white wine." I took a long drink from the bottle and it turned out to be a highly alcoholic liqueur tasting of oranges and called Grand Marnier.

A stretcher was coming back with a wounded man on it. "Look," a guerrilla said, "these military are constantly suffering casualties. Why do they not allow us to proceed ahead in a sensible manner?"

"Okay, okay," said another guerrilla in G.I. fatigue clothes, with the brassard of the francs-tiereurs on his sleeve. "What about the comrades who were killed yesterday on the road?"

Another said, "But today we're going to Paris."

"Let's go back and see if we can make it by Le Christ de Saclay," I said. "The law has arrived and they won't let us go on any farther until the column has passed. The roads are too muddy and torn up here. We could push the light touring cars through, but the truck might bog down and stall things."

"We can push through by a side road," the guerrilla chief named C said. "Since when do we have to follow columns?"

"I think it is best to go back as far as Châteaufort," I said. "Maybe we can go much faster that way."

On the crossroads outside Châteaufort we found Colonel B and Commander A, who had become detached from us before we had run into the accrochage, and told them about the beautiful contact up the road. The artillery was still firing in the open wheat field, and the two gallant officers had found some lunch in a farmhouse. French troops from the column were burning the wooden boxes that had held the shells the artillery had been blasting with, and we took off our wet clothes and dried them at the fire. German prisoners were drifting in, and an officer in the column asked us to send the guerrillas up to where a group of Germans had just surrendered in the wheat shocks. They brought them back in good military style, all the prisoners alive and well.

"This is idiotic, you know, my captain," the oldest one of the band said. "Now someone has to feed them."

The prisoners said they were office workers in Paris and had only been brought out and put in the positions at one o'clock this morning.

"Do you believe that sort of stuff?" asked the oldest guerrilla.

"It could be possible. They weren't here yesterday," I said.

"This entire military nonsense disgusts me," the oldest guerrilla said. He was forty-one and had a thin, sharp face with clear blue eyes, and a rare but fine smile. "Eleven of our group were tortured and shot by these Germans. I have been beaten and kicked by them, and they would have shot me if they knew who I was. Now we are asked to guard them carefully and respectfully."

"They are not your prisoners," I explained. "The military took them."

The rain turned to a light drifting mist and then the sky cleared. The prisoners were sent back to Rambouillet in the big German truck that the underground big shot quite rightly was anxious to get out of the column for the moment. Leaving word with the M.P. on the crossroads where the truck could rejoin us, we drove on after the column.

We caught up with the tanks on a side road this side of the main Versailles-Paris highway and moved with them down into a deeply wooded valley and out into the green fields where there was an old château. We watched the tanks deploy again, like watching dogs outside a moving band of sheep. They had fought once up ahead of us while we had gone back to see if the road through Le Christ de Saclay was free, and we passed a burned-out tank and three dead Germans. One of these had been run over and flattened out in a way that left no doubt of the power of armor when properly used.

On the main Versailles-Villacoublay highway the column proceeded past the wrecked airdrome of Villacoublay into the crossroads of the Porte Clamart. Here, while the column was stopped, a Frenchman came running up and reported a small German tank on the road that led into the woods. I searched the road with my glasses but could not see anything. In the meantime, the German vehicle, which was not a tank but a lightly armored German jeep mounting a machine gun and a 20-mm. gun, made a turn into the woods and came tearing up the road, firing at the crossroads.

Everyone started shooting at it, but it wheeled and regained the woods. Archie Pelkey, my driver, got in two shots at it but could not be sure that he had hit. Two men were hit and were carried into the lee of the corner building for first aid. The guerrillas were happy now that shooting had started again.

"We have nice work ahead of us. Good work ahead of us," the guerrilla with the sharp face and the light blue eyes said. "I'm happy some of the b—–s are still here."

"Do you think we will have much more chance to fight?" the guerrilla named C asked.

"Certainly," I said. "There's bound to be some of them in the town."

My own war aim at this moment was to get into Paris without being shot. Our necks had been out for a long time. Paris was going to be taken. I took cover in all the street fighting—the solidest cover available—and with someone covering the stairs behind me when we were in houses or the entrances to apartment houses.

From now on, the advance of the column was something to see. Ahead of us would be a barricade of felled trees. The tanks would pass around them or butt them around like elephants handling logs. You would see the tanks charge into a barricade of old motorcars and go smashing on ahead with a jalopy bouncing along, its smashed fenders entangled in the tracks. Armor, which can be so vulnerable and so docile in the close hedgerow country where it is a prey to antitank guns, bazookas, and anyone who does not fear it, was smashing round like so many drunken elephants in a native village.

Ahead and on our left, a German ammunition dump was burning, and the varicolored antiaircraft projectiles were bursting in the continuous rattle and pop of the exploding 20-mm. stuff. The larger projectiles started to explode as the heat increased, and gave the impression of a bombardment. I couldn't locate Archie Pelkey, but later I found he had advanced on the burning munitions dump, thinking it was a fight.

"There wasn't nobody there, Papa," he said; "it was just a lot of ammunition burning."

"Don't go off by yourself," I said. "How did you know we didn't want to roll?"

"Okay, Papa. Sorry, Papa. I understand, Papa. Only, Mr. Hemingway, I went off with Frère—the one who is my brother—because I thought he said there was a fight."

"Oh, hell!" I said. "You've been ruined by guerrillas."


A Kid with Some Fireworks

We ran through the road where the munitions dump was exploding, with Archie, who has bright red hair, six years of regular Army, four words of French, a missing front tooth, and a Frère in a guerrilla outfit, laughing heartily at the noise the big stuff was making as it blew.

"Sure is popping off, Papa," he shouted. His freckled face was completely happy. "They said this Paris is quite a town, Papa. You ever been into it?"

"Yeah."

We were going downhill now, and I knew that road and what we would see when we made the next turn.

"Frère, he was telling me something about it while the column was held up, but I couldn't make it out," Archie said. "All I could make out was it must be a hell of a place. Something about he was going to Paname, too. The place hasn't got anything to do with Panama, has it?"

"No, Arch," I said, "the French call it Paname when they love it very much."

"I see," Archie said. "Compris. Just like something you might call a girl that wouldn't be her right name. Right?"

"Right."

"I couldn't make out what the hell the Frère was saying," Archie said. "I guess it's like they call me Jim. Everybody in the outfit calls me Jim, and my name is Archie."

"Maybe they like you," I said.

"They're a good outfit," Archie said. "Best outfit I ever been with. No discipline. Got to admit that. Drinking all the time. Got to admit that. But plenty fighting outfit. Nobody gives a damn if they get killed or not. Compris?"

"Yeah," I said. I couldn't say anything more then, because I had a funny choke in my throat and I had to clean my glasses because there now, below us, gray and always beautiful, was spread the city I love best in all the world.

THE END

August 28, 2015

1945. The Man Who Couldn't Die: An Account of Hideki Tojo's Attempted Suicide

The Man Who Couldn't Die
"December 1947: Former Japanese prime minister and minister of war Hideki Tojo (1885 - 1948) takes the stand to testify in his own defense at the war crimes trial in Tokyo. Tojo was convicted and executed" (source)

In his now out-of-print memoir One Last Look Around (1947, pp. 93-113), war correspondent Clark Lee tells the story of former Japanese Prime Minister Hideki Tojo's botched suicide and its bizarre aftermath. Lee was among many reporters present when American officials arrived at Tojo's home in Setagaya to take him into custody in September 1945. (Warning: The journalists took many photos on scene, some of which are slightly graphic. Several are featured below.)


We Meet General Tojo
...When he was Minister of War in the Imperial Japanese government, pre-Pearl Harbor, and before that as head of the Army's military gendarmerie, General Tojo offered rewards of many millions of yen for the capture of Chinese patriots and other intransigent individuals who refused to recognize Japan as the savior of East Asia. After Tojo became Prime Minister, and as the guiding spirit of Japanese militarism led his country into war against the democracies, the United States and Allied nations would have gladly paid millions of dollars to any rifleman who could get within shooting distance of the head of the Tokyo government and the planning brains of the war. There was a big price on Tojo's head. Yet, ten days after the official surrender of Japan, we succeeded in being ushered into the presence of this feared and hated man at the cost of exactly five U.S. cents—the price of the American cigarettes I had given Captain Muto.

Muto gave directions as the jeep took us out to Tojo's house. John Henry, [Harry] Brundidge, Massa, and I were crowded in with the gendarme captain and the GI driver who took us through the ruined streets of Tokyo, out past what formerly was the theatre district and to the Setagaya ward police station. One of the ward policeman jammed himself in with us, and we drove down a long, tree-shaded lane that might have been in Maplewood, N.J., or Maplewood, Mo., but looked like no part of Japan that we had seen before. We made a sharp turn between stone walls that retained two grassy banks, and stopped in front of a police box. A dozen policemen and soldiers materialized into the lane, some in shirtsleeves and others in uniform coats. If they were armed, their weapons were inconspicuous. They surrounded us curiously, but without evident animosity.

On the right, thirty feet from the road and partially concealed by trees, was the ex-dictator's home, a one-story house of half-Japanese and half-foreign style, built of wood and yellow stucco. A diminutive, blue Datsun sedan sat in the concrete driveway. While Massa and the war gendarme walked up to the door, one of the police guards pointed out that two tall trees at the entrance were charred nearly to the top. "America no hikoki—American airplanes." Like almost everyone else in Japan, he thought it was funny to be bombed, and he laughed hilariously.

The house itself was more than modest by American standards, but typical of the homes into which Japanese commanders retired at the end of their terms of service as chiefs of the general staff. The idea had been that a general required no more of life than a modest salary—plus the opportunity to serve his Emperor. Austerity and abnegation had been the keynotes of the generals' lives. It was traditional that on completion of his service, a Japanese chief of staff repaired to a suburban or country retreat from which he offered his advice to successors and from which he was always prepared to emerge to offer his life, if need be, at the Imperial command.

Yet when Tojo built the house in wartime there had been a major scandal. Whispers started that Tojo had received a very large monetary present from a group of industrialists, and the talk swelled to such a roar that Tojo had to go to the unprecedented length, while still premier, of denying that he had been bribed. This uproar had been only a symptom of the general's unpopularity, which reached a climax with his resignation in July, 1944, after the fall of Saipan.

Exactly why Tojo was the most hated man in Japan was hard to explain. As far as most Japanese knew they were still winning the war, and it was Tojo who had given them victories. But it was likewise Tojo whose decrees had cracked down on both the little man and the war profiteer in Japan—taking a few more grains of rice out of the former's slim diet every month or so—and breaking up the gay whirl in Tokyo in the first two years of war when the Japanese were cashing in on their conquests and everybody had plenty of money and was spending it freely. However, the Japanese were accustomed to decrees and to belt tightening, and what seemed to make them loathe Tojo was the fact that more than any other man in the country's modern history he, as an individual, had been the government—the front man for the Emperor. In recent years, even with one or two outstanding men in a cabinet, the government had always been "they," and nobody knew exactly who ruled Japan. Now it had been not "they" but "he,"—one man, Tojo. When the war tide turned, the little man centered his hatred and his lost feeling on Tojo. He detested Tojo's mannerisms, his way of riding a horse, the fact that his wife was spending more money than seemed possible on a general's pay.

The trouble with Tojo was that he symbolized to the Japanese both their strength and their weakness. He was the best they could produce, the best field general and tactician, the most faithful servant of the Emperor, the most fanatical of the fanatics, the man who developed the modern air force, the man who stood against the Soviet threat to Japan, the general who had been dared to challenge the United States and Great Britain. But he had failed, and, knowing they too were doomed to failure, his countrymen had hated him.

Tojo had been the most brilliant and successful Asiatic military commander since Genghis Khan. Nicknamed the Razor because of his sharp intelligence, he had helped to set up in Manchuria the military-controlled state what was a model for what the Japanese Army eventually hoped to extend over the entire world. He was a businessman, too, a brief-spoken but persuasive talker who had made a deal with Japan's leading industrialists so that they became co-partners in Manchuria and in the Army's larger plans for world conquest. To the outside world he was sinister, threatening, brutal, a Hitler with the added danger of Oriental mysticism. . . .

Now there was a slight bustle on the lawn and around the corner of the house walked a lithe figure in white shorts and shirt, gray socks that came up over his knees, and low black button shoes. His bronzed skin gleamed like a polished Buddha. Shifting a long stick from his right hand to the left, he motioned us to a table on the side lawn.

Riding out to the house, I had said to Brundidge, "Don't shake hands with him." Harry replied, "I wouldn't shake hands with the bastard for anything in the world."

But now the little Jap thrust out his hand to me, and as the others pushed up from behind I was so close that our hands were almost touching. I accepted his firm grip. What the devil, there was plenty of soap and water back at the hotel!

We sat in iron garden chairs and admired the house and beyond it the green, extensive fields that Tojo told us made up his farm. He called for a round blue tin of Hope cigarettes (made in Japan) and passed them to us with the remark that "American cigarettes are very difficult to get now." It was apparent that he understood a good deal of English, although our conversation was through the interpreter. It was also apparent that he was nervous, not knowing what to expect next, although he was perfectly in control of himself.

"Is the general taking any part in politics or military affairs now?" we asked.

He answered genially, starting to relax, "No. None whatever. I am a farmer now and work in my fields." He looked hard as nails. But there was something wrong with his demeanor. If you had interviewed him ten years before, say, in Manchuria, or if it had been possible to interview him just before he dispatched the carriers to attack Pearl Harbor and started the invasion fleets for the Philippines and Southeastern Asia, his replies would have been gruff and condescending. He would have used the prescribed means of a Japanese general dealing with an American—a superior air, deceiving half-truths, denial of knowledge of any embarrassing matter. All his adult life he had studied that manner, and now it was gone and without it he was only another little man. Outwardly hard as nails, but inwardly you sensed a softness—the hard something that had been his self-discipline, his beliefs, his power and authority, his life-and-death control over millions, wasn't there and the man was hollow inside.

"What are the general's plans?"

"I have no plans, just to go on farming. I cannot discuss politics or military affairs because it is not for a defeated general to talk."

He alternately smoked a cigarette in a glass holder and toyed with his stick as we talked. Except at the eyes, his skin was unwrinkled. His eyes were quick and bright. Brundidge asked his age.

"Sixty-two Japanese style. Sixty-one America." The Japanese begin to count from the day of conception.

I followed up the question: "Does General Tojo believe that Japan's cause was just?"

He answered emphatically. "Hai, Hai! I do believe that Japan's fight was based on righteousness. I realize that America will not agree with that. However, I believe that it will take time and an impartial third party to make the final decision as to whether America's fight was just, or Japan's was."

That struck me as a pretty fair statement, especially the last part. It is difficult to imagine a defeated American general saying to a representative of Hitler, "You may be right. Time will tell."

Now, Tojo leaned over toward the interpreter and went on: "I was responsible for the war. I accept full and complete responsibility. But I do not believe that makes me a war criminal. There is a difference between leading a nation in a war which it believes right and just, and being a war criminal. . . . But again, that is for the victorious nation to decide."

We asked Tojo then if the Japanese Army and Navy had cooperated fully during the war, and he turned the query aside with a suggestion that we submit it to our own Army and Navy. His humorous observation seemed to cheer him up and suddenly his mood changed. He smiled, sat forward in his chair, and picked up Brundidge's field cap. Like a delighted kid he tried it on, turning it this way and that. It fitted his bullet-shaped head like a washtub. He mugged, smiled a solid-gold smile out from under the American eagle, and murmured, "Oki, oki! (Too big.)" He might have been referring to American power, as much as to the size of the hat.

Tojo looked tired and we got up to leave. Again the war lord walked close to shake hands, but this time we had room to maneuver out of the way. He walked out to the gate and waved as we drove away. There he turned and walked back up the driveway to the house. It was the last time he did it. The next day he was carried out, feet first, on an American stretcher with a gaping hole in his chest and another in his back.
Press correspondents on board a landing craft somewhere off the coast of England on May 8, 1944. "With faces to camera, from left: Clark Lee of International News Service; Bill Higginbotham of United Press; Lt. Comm. Barry Bingham, of Louisville, Ky.; Lt. John Mason Brown, New York City; Lt. Byer, with cigarette...Back to camera: John Moroso, left, of Associated Press; and A.J. Liebling of the New Yorker magazine" (AP Photo) (source)"

...Who Couldn't Die
The next day, at about twenty-five minutes to one, an officer came into the crowded, noisy dining room of the Dai Itchi Hotel and knocked on a beer bottle with a knife to attract the correspondents' attention. Then he read a brief announcement:

"The Supreme Commander has ordered the Counter-Intelligence Corps to arrest former Premier Hideki Tojo, who is first on the list of war criminals."

We grabbed a couple of apples off the table and ran outside, looking for transportation. There was one car, a brindle-painted diminutive Jap model which I recognized as the "liberated" property of George Burns, the photographer for Yank magazine. I rushed back into the dining room and pushed past the screen behind which Brig. General Le Grand A. Diller, MacArthur's public relations officer, who had segregated the enlisted men from the officer-gentlemen correspondents and the public-relations staff. Burns was wrestling with a piece of camouflaged spam.

I called him aside. "What do you want to do, George, eat this spam or see Tojo kill himself?" Burns dropped his napkin, grabbed his cameras, and followed without a word. Six of us crowded into the little open car. Harry Brundidge and Ken McCaleb were in front with Burns; and our interpreter, Massa, a police reporter from the Yoimiuri, and myself in the back.

Burns kept goosing the car, trying to coax more than twenty miles an hour out of its straining engine as we directed him through the burned-out city.

Finally we swung around a last corner into the lane in front of Tojo's house. We jumped out, and Massa questioned a loitering gendarme.

"Where's the general?"

"In the house, of course. His wife is with him."

"The Americans get here yet?"

"There's one up there."

A correspondent was sitting in a chair in front of the driveway entrance. Some of the police were sitting on the grass, and others lolling by their tiny sentry box. They greeted us as old friends from the day before and we gave them cigarettes. Massa told them, in Japanese, "Tojo is going to be pinched by the Americans."

They weren't very surprised. One of them sucked in his breath wetly through his gold teeth, leaned back, and burst into laughter. "Ha. Ha! Bery funny." The others joined in the hilarity.

As time went by, and the C.I.C. still didn't show up, we decided to try to beat them to the punch and "invite" Tojo to accompany us to headquarters.

We walked between the stone pillars and into the small yard, pushing Massa ahead of us.

Massa had to be pushed. He still hadn't recovered from the shock of talking to Tojo face-to-face the day before, and he was very apprehensive about breaking in on him now. A manservant, in sloppy army pants and cloth slippers, motioned us around to the side entrance of the house, facing the garden where we had taken tea with Tojo eighteen hours previously. The doors here were sliding panels, and a woman came to one of them. She was rather tall for a Japanese, with a thick, sturdy body. Her hair was still coal-black, though she was no longer young, and she wore the unbecoming black pants and blouse which Tojo had decreed as the national costume as a wartime cloth-saving substitute for the kimono.

Massa told her: "Please advise the general that orders for his arrest have been issued. We talked to him yesterday and he already knows us. We will be glad to give him a ride in our car to General MacArthur's headquarters."

Tojo must have been just inside the room, listening, because he stepped into the doorway, half pushing the woman aside. From inside the house came the wet smell of burning incense. Somebody whispered, "Hara-kiri!" But behind Tojo we caught a glimpse of a man moving around, apparently arranging things to be packed in a suitcase that stood on the floor. It looked as if the ex-dictator was packing to go to jail, not preparing to join his ancestors by the process of honorable belly-slitting.

As on the day before, the little man was wearing shorts and a shirt, but this time they were greenish. He looked far less composed than when he had jokingly said "Gorru-bye" to us. He sighted Burns' camera and snapped in Japanese:

"No pictures! No pictures! I will not have any pictures." Burns smiled disarmingly and kept the camera at his side.

"General," Massa began, "we will take you to Field Marshal MacArthur if . . ." The Japs never called MacArthur "general." It gave them more face to have their conqueror a field marshal.

"No," Tojo cut him off. "I will wait for the authorities!" He turned to go inside, and for a moment he was boss again. "No pictures!" he repeated. "No pictures!"

We went back out to the lane and found it was beginning to get a little crowded. There were two command cars, both with newspapermen, and one of the Australian correspondents had brought his shapely White Russian girl-friend along to see the sights. We chatted, smoked, took pictures of the gendarmes and the entrance to the house, and waited for the C.I.C. to show up. The minutes dragged into an hour and a half, and most of the correspondents wandered off to talk in the lanes, or drove back into Tokyo.

"Massa," I said finally, "it's hot as hell in here. Go on up to the kitchen and ask for some beer. And try to work on Tojo again to see if he'll come with us."

The young Japanese hated to go, but he walked through the garden gate. In a few minutes he was back, without the beer but with some news. "Tojo says he'll consider going with you," he announced. We sat back to wait for the general to make up his mind.

The sun had gone behind a low layer of overcast, but it was still very hot and in the quiet lane the suspense seemed to grow and grow. Massa felt it more than anyone. His apprehension increased noticeably. He fidgeted, left his sentences unfinished, and even threw away a Lucky Strike after two puffs, which was convincing proof of his state of mind. American cigarettes were very valuable items in those first days in Tokyo. Perhaps Massa's native instinct told him what was going on inside the house. Brundidge had the same thought and put it into words. "I'll bet he commits hara-kiri. That incense . . ."

Idly, we questioned the gendarmes who were sitting with us in the long grass. They discussed the question without special interest. "Maybe he will kill himself. Maybe not. The incense makes it look as if he might. But it's pretty late for him to do it now. He should have cut his belly either when his government fell or when the Imperial Rescript for the surrender was issued."

"On the day of the Rescript," one of them went on, "Tojo's son-in-law committed hara-kiri. He was twenty-nine years old and a major in the Imperial Guard. He slashed his belly at the guard headquarters. Tojo himself went down there and got the body and brought it back to the house. It stayed in the back room for two days, in front of the family shrine, and then the funeral was held. Tojo never made any comment, one way or the other, about what the major did. So it is hard to tell what his thoughts are."

Another gendarme started a serious discussion about the future of Japan and of the world. "We hope," he said intensely, "that we will never again have leaders like Tojo who get us into war."

The policemen explained that the sentry box had been set up, and they were assigned to the house, not to keep Tojo under surveillance but to protect him from Americans and from attacks by "foolish, hotheaded Japanese." Several attempts had been made on his life, they said, after his government resigned at the time American forces conquered Saipan.

We chatted on about Tojo as if he had been a long-dead character in history, instead of behind garden walls a few yards away. But all of us were wondering: What is he doing now—moving around? Praying? Preparing for hara-kiri, or just waiting silently for the sound of alien wheels that would mean the end of everything for him? He had once won a great empire in one of the swiftest military campaigns in history. Now a prison cell was ahead—trial by his conquerors—and then dangling death at the end of a rope.

We didn't know he was in his European-style room writing his last will and testament.

"Come on there, Massa," Brundidge suggested. "Go up again and see if he's got any sake. I'm dying of thirst."

Once more Massa dragged himself up to the house on reluctant feet. He stood at the kitchen door and argued with a servant and then came back to us empty-handed. In a few minutes the servant himself came out of the house with a message from Tojo.

"The general's final decision," he announced, "is that he will not accompany you." So Tojo had made up his mind to something at least.

A few minutes later, the woman in the black kimono came out of the back of the house. She walked down a path through the trees in the side yard, with her face averted from us, and then shuffled stolidly away down the lane.

"There goes Madame Tojo," said one gendarme.

"No, Kato-san," another argued. "That is his sister-in-law, not his wife."

While they were still discussing the woman's identity, we saw a strange figure coming slowly toward us up the lane. It was an old woman, who bent far forward as she inched her way along with the aid of a stick. In front of us she stopped, caught her breath, and bid us polite good days in formal language. Her back, almost parallel to the ground, could not have been more than three feet above the grass, so that she resembled a T-square. Contrary to the orders of Tojo, she wore a cotton kimono and obi, and in her hand was a silk furoshiki of the kind the Japanese use to carry packages.

We lay on the grass as she gazed intently at each of us in turn, and Massa explained that we were Americans. Again she hissed politely, and formally expressed her pleasure at having us in Japan. Her face was seamed with years and cares, her gums toothless, but nevertheless there was a neatness and cleanliness about her, and her brain was clear.

"This is the day they issue our rations," she said, "and I am going now to get mine. It takes me all afternoon to get there and back, because I move very slowly. And it is a long way to go for so little rice. They keep giving us less and less."

We nodded our sympathy, and she chatted on. "I used to be very rich, but my three houses in Tokyo were burned down by the American bombers and now my daughter-in-law is very cruel to me." For five minutes she talked about the daughter-in-law and her son, "who used to be so good and dutiful until he married that woman, but now he is crazy about her and she twists him around her finger."

Then, with all good wishes for our health and the continued success and prosperity of America, she turned and moved slowly away. At the entrance to the driveway, she paused and bent even lower in a brief salute to the guards.

As she went out of sight over the hill, we looked again at our watches.

"That damn C.I.C. must have lost the way," somebody said. "It's been three hours now. You'd think they could find the house in that time."

"Yeah. This is a nice way to spend an afternoon, but it's not getting Tojo arrested and it's not getting us any stories."

I left the group and, on directions from the gendarmes, walked down a hill behind the house and found a lumber mill. There was a telephone inside, and after a long delay I managed to get through to the Dai Itchi to dictate a story. The connection was terrible, and it was slow, tedious work. While I was trying to make myself understood, Brundidge walked into the factory. He was very keyed-up. "Cut it short," he insisted. "I have a hunch things are going to happen right away. Let's get back there." I felt the same way. All through the afternoon, the tension had been building up inside of us, subconsciously. We had talked about many things, but always there was in our minds the picture of the little man in the yellow house, and in our nostrils the faint, lingering smell of incense. We ran back up the lane and around to the front of the house. Two jeeps were in the front driveway, and about twenty Americans were moving across the lawn toward the house. Leading the way were an American major and lieutenant, and a Nisei captain—the interpreter.

Suddenly, Tojo stuck his shaven pate out of the side window of the front room and said sharply in English, "This Tojo."
Tojo addresses the Americans outside of his home in 1945 (source)
Through his interpreter, Major Kraus said, "Open the door so I can come in and present my credentials."

Tojo answered in Japanese, "Unless this is an official order, I will not discuss it." Kraus bristled. He directed the interpreter: "Tell him to open the front door so I can present my credentials. Tell him to prepare himself for a trip to General MacArthur's headquarters at Yokohama."

While this colloquy was under way, the photographers were busy. George Burns, who hadn't made a news picture all afternoon, exploded a shot and Tojo glared and slammed the window.

"What do we do now?" an American soldier asked.

"Pull the son of a bitch out by his heels," an officer answered angrily.

The Americans ran from the garden to the front of the house. As they reached the entrance a shot rang out. They crashed the door. Back at the rear of the crowd, some of the correspondents scattered hurriedly to look for cover, thinking Tojo was shooting it out. Inside the hallway, Kraus smashed out the panels of the door into the living room and stepped in.

Tojo had shot himself in the chair and then partially risen, but with great effort. He was half on his feet, wavering, and in his hand was a .32-caliber Colt revolver. Kraus shouted, "Don't shoot." Tojo looked up at the American, let the gun slide through his fingers, and slumped back into his chair. It was 4:21 P.M.

I pushed into the room. Tojo lay back in a small armchair, his eyes closed and sweat standing out on his forehead. His open shirt outlined a V of hairless brown chest and flat belly. Blood oozed slowly from a wound just above his heart.

"The bastard has killed himself," an excited voice panted in my ear.

"No. The son of a bitch is still breathing. Look at his belly going up and down."

It was a small room, about fourteen feet long and ten wide, and Tojo's chair was just a foot or two inside the door. A small wooden table was beside him and a cluttered desk opposite. There was a sofa behind him, and above it a very large oil painting in somber colors, depicting this now bleeding soldier of Japan in one of his moments of triumph.

Into this room now crowded a dozen people, all but two or three of them Americans. One of the Japanese, who had been chauffeur and secretary to the war lord and had stuck to him after his fall from power, leaned over him now, sobbing and patting his shoulder. The American reporters pushed past Tojo, brushing his knees, talking loudly and excitedly. Photographers shoved their cameras in the wounded man's face. Some of the gendarmes came in for a look, and then walked out, laughing. The chauffeur followed them, his face contorted with grief. Then the show began, with Tojo—the man who wanted to die and couldn't—as an impersonal Exhibit A.

"The yellow bastard didn't have enough nerve to use a knife," a reporter said. "He knew he would kill himself with a small bullet."

"Don't be a jackass," another snapped. "You can't put a shot through yourself where he did and expect to live."

I took a good look. Tojo had changed his shorts for his army pants and polished brown boots and a clean white shirt. His uniform coat, with four rows of colored ribbons, twenty decorations, lay on the window sill beside a rack holding three swords in leather cases. There was a blue porcelain tiger on one window sill and a large Japanese dragon-scroll print on the wall. A cabinet held writing brushes, although Tojo had told us the day before that he neither painted nor wrote poetry. Soon all the smaller objects began to disappear into the pockets of the reporters. I saw a hand come through the window from outside, feel along the sill for the leather case, and then disappear with one of the samurai swords. Outside, George Burns stuck the sword inside his pants leg and started to hobble toward his car. He almost made it when a hand fell on his shoulder and a C.I.C. officer said, "Nice work, kid. But take it back now."

Burns took the sword back and put it in the case, while the C.I.C. agents departed to seek reinforcements and medical assistance, leaving only a rearguard of two distracted GIs. A Japanese reporter or two came into the room to join the Americans. We stood around, smoking and talking, and making bets on how soon Tojo's small chest would stop heaving. The bleeding man's face was a mask on which showed neither pain nor emotion.

After a few minutes, I went out of the house and ran down to the telephone in the lumber yard. A Japanese helped me get the Dai Itchi, and Bill Dunn of CBS answered.

I shouted at him over the buzzing line:

"Please send a flash for me! Tojo just shot himself when the Americans came to arrest him."

"What's that?" Bill said. "I can't hear a word. Who's Jojo, the dog-faced boy?"

"Not Jojo," I shouted again. "Tojo. War. Japanese. General. Prime Minister. Shot himself."

"Hot," said Bill, his voice coming to me clearly. "I know it's hot. What the hell are you trying to tell me?"

After ten maddening minutes, he was just beginning to hear enough to get the gist of the story. Then, out of the window, I saw Massa run down the lane. He was soaked with sweat and his eyes were wild.

"What's the matter?" I called.

"Tojo is dead."

"What time did he die?"

"Four thirty-eight," Massa said slowly. "Brundidge is coming down to give you the details."

"Are you sure?"

"Yes. I saw him die. It's terrible. Everyone is taking souvenirs. They have no respect for a dead man."

I shouted into the phone again and Bill managed to hear enough of the information to write a flash: "TOJO SHOT HIMSELF WHEN AMERICANS CAME TO ARREST HIM AND DIED SHORTLY AFTERWARD."

When I ran back up to the house, Harry Brundidge was on the front lawn, getting a little air. "What time did he die?" I asked.

"Who die?" said Harry.

I thought he was being unnecessarily facetious. "Who? Why, Tojo, of course."

"He's not dead. He's still sitting in the chair."
The former Prime Minister lies semi-conscious in a chair after attempting suicide (source)
I ran into the front room. Tojo was slumped in the same position. He was groaning a little, not loudly. The blood had spread a little more on the lower left-hand side of his shirt. He looked very weak and I hesitated, waiting to see if he would die and make it unnecessary for me to correct the flash. Then he began to speak, and a Japanese reporter took down his words. In a steady voice, repeating much of what was in his "farewell notes," he said:

"The war in the greater East Asia region started right. It was a just war. That is my conviction. But with all our strength gone, we finally fell.

"It is proper that the Americans take over the person responsible for this war, but I do not want to stand before a jury or an Allied commission. As the former head of the nation, I do not want to be tried by the victors.

"While I believe Japan is right, I believe, too, that America thinks she is right. The righteousness or fairness of that will be decided by an impartial cool observer, a third person or party. I feel great regret both for the people of Japan and for the people belonging to the East Asia. I now realize the war was bad for the people. I shoulder the whole responsibility and hope the people will not go wrong in dealing with the situation.

"As for me I would have tried to commit suicide by hara-kiri but sometimes that is not fatal and I wanted to die. I tried to shoot myself in the heart, instead of aiming at my head because I wanted the Japanese people to recognize that it was Tojo and knew that I had done this and that the Americans had not substituted somebody else's body for mine. I am very sorry I missed my aim.

"I hope the nation of Japan foresees the future and follows the right path with unshaken heart. First and last I pray for the prosperity of the Japanese empire. I am now happy to die. Here is my Banzai for the Emperor."

He stopped, his eyes closing, and a photographer shouted very loudly, "Hey, Tojo!"

Tojo's eyes opened slowly. "That's right, said the photographer. "Now, hold it!"

A reporter was arguing. "I told you there is a homosexual streak in these sadists. When I lived out here before the war, the statistics showed a greater percentage of homosexuality in the Japanese Army and Navy than in any other armed force in the world. And the women, too. They got damn little affection from their men, and they used to fall in love with the actresses who dressed in men's clothes on the stage. You'd see hundreds of girls crowding around the stage doors at the Takarazuka Theatre, opposite the Imperial Hotel.

"Now, this thing proves that Tojo was partly effeminate. Did you ever hear of a male suicide shooting himself in the heart? Hell, no. They always point the gun at the mouth, the ear, or the temple. But there isn't a single case on record of a woman shooting herself in the face. They always dress up in their best and put the pistol to their breast. Don't want to die with their faces mussed up. Tojo didn't either."

And still Tojo couldn't die.

I ran back down to the lumber yard and twisted the phone handle savagely, trying to get Dunn at the Dai Itchi and correct the flash. The phone just squawked back at me. Massa got on and reached the operator by shouting loudly, but the hotel wouldn't answer. We were both soaked with sweat and I had tormented pictures of presses rolling all over America, even though it was early morning back home, of newsboys shouting extras and the radio quoting my dispatch, "Tojo dead." Finally, we gave up and walked back up to the house, too tired now to run.

On the lawn, I stopped Massa. "Why did you say he was dead?"

"The gendarmes told me so."

"But you told me you saw it yourself."

"Yes, I did, but I didn't know what I was saying." It was clear that, indeed, he didn't. Emotion had temporarily unbalanced him.

"What do the gendarmes think about it?"

"They say Tojo is a bungler, as stupid in this as he was in losing the war. They say he should have shot himself through the head, or taken a knife and cut his gut. They think he's pretty ridiculous."

The rest of Japan almost unanimously shared that opinion. From all over the country a sadistic chorus went up: "Tojo is to blame for everything. He got us into the war. He is a miserable bungler. He should have killed himself months ago. He should have shot himself in the head. He should have used a knife." When he was taken to a prison camp later, his fellow prisoners ostracized him and refused to talk to him or even eat with him. But right now, we didn't know he was going to live to reach prison.

We went back into the living room. Tojo was no longer in the chair. Brundidge had found a small iron bed in the back room and the reporters had carried it to the front part of the house. They picked Tojo up and laid him on the bare mattress, and pulled off his butterbean boots. A pink cover was thrown partially over him, but it could not hide the stain that spread over his shirt when they moved him.

"He bled like a stuck pig," Brundidge said.
Tojo lies in the bed brought up by the reporters (source)
The slight figure lay there quietly, while the room kept getting noisier and noisier and more filled with smoke. An American and an Australian reporter, seeing each other for the first time in months, embraced over Tojo's head and exchanged loud memories of Guadalcanal. Photographers climbed on the desk and shot down at the bed from every angle. A newly arrived lensman found a stepladder somewhere, squeezed it into the corner at the foot of the bed, climbed up, and focused. He pulled his trigger, and the bulb exploded with a vigorous pop. Reporters who were facing the other way didn't know what had happened.

Somebody shouted, "Booby trap!"

The knights of the typewriter made a line plunge for the door and then, discovering it was a false alarm, trooped shamefacedly back into the room, their heavy boots scuffing the polished floor.

I called Brundidge and McCaleb aside for a conference. "Look, I can't get through to the Dai Itchi. We've got to do something about my flash."

Brundidge misunderstood me. "Well," he said in a low voice, "there are too many people here for us to hit him over the head with a chair. But you should have seen him bleed when we turned him over. We could spin him once more."

I had to go back down to the factory to try to telephone at that point, but when I came back Tojo was faced the other way on the bed and the mattress was more bloodsoaked than before.

It must have been an hour after the shooting when the Japanese doctor, who had been summoned by the chauffeur, finally arrived. He was a bespectacled little man in a white suit. He took one look at Tojo and sat down in a chair.

"Why don't you fix him?" somebody asked.

"Forgot his tools," the interpreter translated.

We questioned the doctor, and he told us his name, Tamemitzu Ebara, but little else. So we told him Tojo was shot through and Ebara looked and announced that the bullet had gone out of Tojo's back. This we already knew. Brundidge, an old hand at police reporting, had surreptitiously explored the bloody chair after we moved Tojo and the bullet which he found in a pillow behind Tojo's back was in his pocket. He showed it to me in the kitchen, for identification purposes. "Best souvenir of the day," he whispered. "There can't be two of these."

Back in the front room, the doctor made a brief inspection of Tojo and told us he had a very short time to live. Tojo protested in a strong voice when the doctor touched him.

"Leave me alone," he said. "I want to die."

The doctor left him alone and sat back again. Meanwhile, we had discovered a phone in the hall and gotten through to the Dai Itchi. Standing in the doorway, looking into the room, reporters called out a play-by-play to the man on the phone, only a few feet away.

Russ Brines of the Associated Press was trying to make up for lost time. He had gone away about two o'clock and come back about five, when he met Brundidge on the lawn. "What's all the excitement?" Brines demanded. "Tojo shot himself," Brundidge said. Brines got angry. "Don't give me that crap." But he ran into the house.

Now he was phoning: "Tojo is lying there with a pink spread on him. He just turned over. Now he's raising his knees. . . . No, knees, you bastard. . . . K for kangaroo. N for Nancy, double E . . . that's it." He gave me the phone.

From the doorway, Brundidge shouted in a singsong voice the dope he was getting from Massa at the bedside. "His pulse is weaker. The doc says it can't be long now."

Then again, "He's turning himself over. Pretty spry. He just groaned. Yeah, it was five thirty-eight when he groaned."

And inside the room: "Look at the muscles around the bastard's jaw tightening up. He can't last long now." Latecomers combed the desk and walls for more souvenirs, as outside it grew darker and the light switches were snapped on. Brundidge called, "His pulse is stronger. Shall we turn him again?" I shook my head.

It was ten minutes to six when the doctor's tools finally arrived, brought by a nurse who wore the usual black pants with a striped blouse and who told us her name was Miki. A C.I.C. man who had come back from Yokohama took her into the kitchen to sterilize the instruments. The officer was just in time to prevent Brundidge from "liberating" to bottles of Johnny Walker Red Label. He took the bottles and at our insistence, since we didn't trust the C.I.C. in such matters, sealed them, and wrote in a neat hand: "Seized by the C.I.C. in the home of General Tojo. September 11, 1945."

The doctor approached Tojo. In a surprisingly firm voice, Tojo spoke. "Keep your hands off me. I do not want treatment. I want to die." Massa was right at his head, translating as he spoke, and from the doorway his words were relayed to the man on the phone.

"I only want to clean you up," the doctor said soothingly. I caught the word kirei, which in Japanese means both clean and pretty.

"Pretty me up after I'm dead," Tojo ordered. "My body belongs to me while I am alive."

But the doctor wiped off the wound on his chest, exposing the round hole an inch below the left nipple, and put a small bandage on it. Then two newspapermen grabbed Tojo's arms and two GIs took his feet. He fought away Brundidge's grip at first and then relaxed. Easily, the four Americans turned the small body over. As they did, a stream of blood spurted out of his chest, tearing away at one edge of the bandage and spreading over the bed. The news was quickly passed on by telephone.

"Jesus," somebody said. "That'll finish the son of a bitch!"

"Yeah, that did it. Lookit him bleed."

On the phone a reporter laboriously spelled out hemorrhage.

The Jap doctor slipped off Tojo's shirt, which was messy with blood in the back, and put another bandage on the wound there. Tojo turned half on his side again, his knees partially drawn up. The doctor took his pulse.

"I give him three hours," he announced through Massa.

"But, Jesus, doc," somebody protested in a hurt tone, "you said one hour before and that was nearly an hour ago." The doctor looked embarrassed.

We demanded of the doctor, "Is there anything that can be done to keep him alive?"

"No, absolutely nothing. He is certain to die." So the doctor did nothing. The nurse knelt by the bedside and kept her hand on Tojo's pulse.

"Not a bad-looking babe," said a reporter. "Ask her how old she is, Massa?"

Miki-san dimpled as she replied, "Ni-ju-ichi. (Twenty-one.)"

It was after six now and completely dark outside. Tojo was quieter, and only occasionally did he groan slightly or move his feet just a little. His hands were clutching the sides of the mattress. Once in a while, a light grimace showed the pain he must have been suffering. Under the lights his body was smooth and hard and hairless. It might have been that of a young boy.

The Japanese doctor began to fidget a little. Then he called to Massa. "I am not absolutely sure that perhaps he couldn't be saved. He still seems very strong. Perhaps I should call in another doctor for consultation. . . ."

There was no opportunity for that. Within a few minutes there was a bustle outside and suddenly the house was flooded by a new surge of men; big, business-like American soldiers who had to duck to keep their helmets, which were marked "MP" or "First Cavalry," from hitting the low doorways. The doctor, who was Captain James B. Johnson, went to the far side of the bed and bent over. He was young and strong-looking, with a thick shock of brownish hair.
An American medic tends to Tojo's injuries (source)
Tojo looked up at the doctor and spoke briefly, as Massa translated, "Don't make any trouble for me. I am going to die anyway." Then he seemed to shudder a little, and lay still. Johnson got busy.

With skilled fingers, he started to sew the chest wound. Massa stood beside him, talking in a caressing voice to Tojo, telling him in Japanese what the doctor was doing. It was doubtful that Tojo heard. He opened one eye slightly and winced when the sewing needle went into his chest, but apparently he was only semi-conscious.

On the phone, the dictating went on. "Doc Johnson's sewing him up now. His first name? . . . Just a minute." Inside the room, a newspaperman leaned over the inert body, "What's your first name and home town, Captain?" Johnson answered without looking up.

In the same way he gave his diagnosis. "Sucking chest wound. Common in battle. We usually save most of them. He's in shock, now." And his prognosis: "He has a pretty good chance of recovery. Of course, it would have been better if they hadn't let him lie here so long without doing anything."

The corpsmen turned Tojo over as if he had been a small child and Johnson fixed the wound in his back. While he was working, a wooden hat rack was brought in from the hallway; a bottle of plasma was hung to one of the pegs and American blood started to drip into Tojo's left arm. A morphine needle went into his other arm. The corpsmen fetched a checkered quilt they found in the back room and then a heavy gray blanket.

Then the show was over. The stretcher came in. Two men slipped Tojo onto it and put more brown blankets over him. With only his taut face showing, and his scarred bald head, he was carried outside. At the door of the ambulance there was a short delay. Everybody "held it," while the photographers took one last shot of the man who hadn't wanted to be photographed.

Back in the house, the C.I.C. agents were pasting labels on those articles that hadn't already been carried away. They sealed the back room, where the family shrine stood as it had during the days that the body of Tojo's son-in-law rested there. There were oranges on it, and chrysanthemums, which had been the dead major's favorite fruit and flower. Two agents were engaged in a scientific search for the bullet. They probed the chair back, shoving their fists into the bloodstained hole, measured the angle of entry and then ran their fingers over the oil painting, thinking the bullet might have gone in there. We left them kneeling on the floor.

Outside, Doctor Johnson was just climbing into the ambulance. He paused for a moment and addressed the reporters.

"I noticed a lot of blood in there. Looked like somebody turned him over on the bed and he had a big hemorrhage." He paused. "Who turned Tojo?"

"Well, doc," Brundidge spoke up, "Lee and I may have had something to do with it. There was a little matter of a flash. . . ."

"That was nice going," said the doctor. "If that blood hadn't been drained out, it would have gone into his lungs and drowned him. Best thing in the world you could have done for him. That saved him for the hangman. . . ."

August 27, 2015

1943. The Complete Moscow Broadcasts

Bill Downs' Moscow Reports
A still from the Soviet film The Battle of Russia (1943)

Bill Downs wrote these broadcast transcripts and articles in 1943 while he headed the CBS bureau in Moscow. His reports feature updates and analyses of the war as it happened.


January 20, 1943: The women doing the labor in Moscow
"By closely observing this daily battle against the snow, you can pretty well tell how all of Moscow feels about things. When the Red Army isn't doing so well, this army of women prod viciously at the ice. They glare at pedestrians and at each other. They don't do much talking, even when they stop for a breather."

January 22, 1943: Life in Leningrad
"No one knows what Leningrad is suffering tonight. It is not likely that the German command is letting Russia's greatest seaport city sleep while the Red Army continues its dirty job of throwing German soldiers out of pillbox after pillbox."

January 23 to May 13: The turning point of the war in Europe
"It is a cheering sign that there are no such foolish arguments or discussions going on in Moscow tonight such as those which arose in America after the last war—you know the old argument that 'we won the war for the Allies.' Russians simply don't think that way. After what the Soviet Union has suffered, the people of Russia don't care to waste time talking about who won what. It has become pretty clear over here that unless everyone puts ever ounce of fight and energy into this war, no one is going to be able to talk about winning anything for a long, long time."

January 24, 1943: The Red Army pushes back against the encirclement of Leningrad
"During their sixteen month encirclement of Leningrad, the Germans built a three-to-five mile zone of concentrated Siegfried Line. It was a military nightmare. First there was row after row of coiled barbed wire. Then came the minefields."

January 26 to February 23, 1943: Decimating the Axis forces
"Hitler calls his great Russian winter retreat an 'elastic defense.' It is fairly certain he is going to try to put some snap into it this spring. But he's working with synthetic material that he can only stretch so far. Hitler's ersatz allies have already been badly broken under the strain."

January 1943: Comparing wartime Moscow and London
"You see in the people of Moscow the same determined, grim look that you could see in the brave citizens of London during their heaviest bombings. And when a Muscovite looks grim, I mean he really looks grim."

February 8 to February 9, 1943: The aftermath in Stalingrad
"There are sights and sounds and smells in and around Stalingrad that make you want to weep, and make you want to shout and make you just plain sick to your stomach."

February 9, 1943: German Field Marshal Paulus in custody after Stalingrad
"Typical of the daring, devil-may-care spirit of these new Red Army forces was the almost comic capture of Field Marshal Von Paulus. Von Paulus, the only German field marshal ever to be made a prisoner of war, was taken after initial negotiations conducted by a 21-year-old Red Army first lieutenant."

February 9 to April 28, 1943: Stories from the Eastern Front
"At one point in the Stalingrad line, the German and Russian soldiers used to amuse themselves by shouting insults back and forth to each other. My Russian friend said that one German soldier shouted across the lines and offered to exchange his automatic rifle for a Red Army fur cap."

February 19 to 20, 1943: Moscow schoolkids make predictions about a second front
"So I decided I would beat them to the draw. I asked the class just how and where they thought a second front should be started."

February 22, 1943: The 25th anniversary of Red Army Day
"The letters that the Russian kids write to the soldiers usually congratulate the men on the 25th anniversary and urge them to continue the stuffing out of the Germans. And often the letters end up with a promise that, as a token of appreciation, the schoolchildren will see that they make better grades and stop whispering in classrooms."

February 27 to March 16: The Nazi occupation of Kharkov and the colonization of Ukraine
"During the first days of the occupation about 18,000 people were executed. Bodies hanging from balconies were a common sight. Among these 18,000 executed were about 10,000 Jews—men, women, and children—who were taken nine miles out of the city, shot and buried in a big ditch."

March 2, 1943: The Soviet Union's winter offensive after Stalingrad
"The Germans didn't leave Rzhev voluntarily. This is shown by the great amount of equipment they left behind. They were kicked out of Rzhev in a blow that eliminated the main Axis threat to Moscow."

March 5, 1943: The Red Army's "tank desant" tactics
"This is the formation of groups of "hitchhike troops" specially trained to operate mobile tank forces which have acted as spearheads for the Russian drive westward."

March 7, 1943: Joseph Stalin names himself Marshal of the Soviet Union
"Premier Stalin now holds the position of Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the USSR. He also is Chairman of the State Defense Committee, the People's Commissar of Defense, and Chairman of the Central Committee of the All-Union Communist Party."

March 8, 1943: Lend-Lease to the USSR
"The Russian people also have no idea of the scope of such American and British organizations such as the Aid to Russia funds. They know virtually nothing of the tremendous personal interest the people of the United States and other Allied nations are taking in their problems."

March 8, 1943: Ambiguity in Russian-American relations
"As he said in his statement tonight, the American people realize and sympathize with the stupendous courage and effort with which the Russian people have met the Axis onslaught. But, he said, the Russian people have little idea of the American's feeling for them."

March 19, 1943: The Nazi offensive is bogged down by the weather in Ukraine
"They sent a group of tanks across to attack some Russian fortifications on the left bank. When the two loading tanks reached the middle of the stream, the ice suddenly gave way and they went through and were lost. The following tanks immediately retreated to safety."

March 21 to April 21, 1943: Soviet bombers fighting for air supremacy
"The Soviet bombers have proved just how impressive they are to the citizens of Königsberg and Danzig. And a lot of other German cities are going to find out this summer when flying weather gets better. The Russian bombing force is growing."

March 21 to May 23, 1943: The advent of spring in Russia—two censored reports
"We are told it is almost a certainty that Hitler will start the fighting this spring. But he is hesitating because this time he feels he must not fail. He must get this campaign rolling before he has to organize another to protect his 'European fortress' from a second front."

March 23, 1943: The State Stalin Prize
"The occasion for even hinting that these things exist was the first annual list of Stalin science awards. These awards range from $18,000 to $5,000, and are given to engineers, professors, and scientists who have distinguished themselves in Soviet science and industry for the past year."

March 24, 1943: The Red Army's death toll thus far
"[A]ccording to the comparative losses during the German counterattack, 2,936,000 Red Army men have died in defending their country during this fighting. But I must point out that this figure is based merely on one small fact from one small sector of the Russian front. But whether the figure is larger or smaller, 2,936,000 men lost in the cause of democracy gives the Allies of Russia something to think about—and throws new light on Russia's desire for a second front."

March 26, 1943: The Soviet Union waits for the Western Allies to open a second front in Europe
"When they learned that there was some Congressional opposition to extending the Lend-Lease agreement, they could not understand it. Their one question was always, 'If it helps to win the war, then why argue about it?'"

March 28, 1943: Soviet engineers work a miracle as the Nazis retreat
"And when the Germans were chased from the area, they did one of their most complete jobs of earth scorching along the Velikiye Luki-Moscow railroad. Every bridge was blown up. Switches and sidings were destroyed. In some places the Germans even burned the forest around some vital bridges so that the Russian engineers would have no material with which to reconstruct them."

April 2, 1943: The Nazis leave behind horrific booby traps
"He opened up the door and one cat jumped out. The second cat just started to leave the stove when the lieutenant pushed it back inside. On investigation, he found that the second cat had a string attached to one of its rear paws. The other end of the string was attached to the fuse in 25 pounds of high explosive."

April 3, 1943: The Red Army's massive winter offensive comes to an end
"In just 141 days of some of the bloodiest fighting that the world has ever witnessed, the Germans lost over 1,193,000 men in killed and captured."

April 6 to May 12, 1943: The Soviet commission on Nazi war crimes
"The report ends with the statement, 'These men must bear full responsibility and merited punishment for all these unprecedented atrocities.' And this morning's Izvestia editorial adds 'The Russian people will not forget.'"

April 8, 1943: Heroic Czechoslovak soldiers hold the line
"The Germans launched a counterattack. It was a big show, and sixty tanks appeared on one narrow sector opposite the dug-in Czech troops. A young lieutenant named Yarosh was in command on this sector. His field telephone rang, and Colonel Svoboda said the unit would have to hold out alone. There were no reinforcements to help the lieutenant stop the sixty tanks. The colonel's orders were 'it is impossible to retreat.'"

April 9, 1943: The Free French squadron fighting in Russia
"Many of them are veterans of the Fighting French air force in Britain. Here they operate under Russian command and have a great respect for the fighting abilities of the Russian fliers. One of them told me he was learning how the Soviet pilots ram German planes in combat. He said the Russians had developed a technique in which a pilot could knock the tail or wing off an enemy plane and do very little damage to his own ship."

April 1 to April 14, 1943: Censored broadcasts
"There was a fear that the correspondent could, by intonation, change the meaning of his report...When reading your dispatch on the air, there was always an English-speaking Communist broadcaster sitting alongside with his hand on the cut-out switch. If you unintentionally changed the grammar of the sentence, as sometimes happens, down would go the switch and you'd be off the air."

April 17 to May 28, 1943: The battle for the Kuban bridgehead
"It took forty minutes of inching forward through the mud on their stomachs before the Russian soldiers reached the first German lines. Then there was a period of furious and bitter hand-to-hand fighting before all the Germans were bayonetted out of their trenches."

April 19 to April 27, 1943: Soviet officials deny responsibility for the Katyn massacre
"The newspaper Pravda, organ of the Communist Party, this morning violently attacks the Polish government of General Sikorski for giving official cognizance to the German propaganda charges that the Soviet government allegedly murdered 10,000 Polish officers near Smolensk in 1940."

April 21, 1943: No time for fun in Moscow
"[T]here are no nightclubs or dance halls or anything like that in the capital of the Soviet Union. There is only one cocktail bar, and you have to stand in line to get into it. Occasionally some of the artist's clubs or other such organizations will throw a dance, but it's not very often."

April 21, 1943: Russians civilians train for air raids
"Moscow has not had a bombing for a year. Quite naturally the city is relaxed. People have forgotten where they put their gas masks. Fire watchers and shelter wardens have been more lax than they should be with Nazi bombers only a half hour's flight from the city."

April 21 to July 6, 1943: Film and theater in wartime Moscow
"In an exclusive Variety interview, Krapchenko said the wartime Moscow theatre is tending toward serious drama and tragedy."

April 23-24, 1943:  The air war in Crimea
"[T]he Germans more and more are putting Romanian troops into the vanguard of their local attacks. Thus the Romanians suffer the heaviest losses. The dispatch says that when the unlucky Romanians show a reluctance to attack, or when they appear on the verge of retreat, the German soldiers behind them liven their spirits with Tommy gun bullets. A good number of these Romanians have been killed by their own allies."

May 2, 1943: Stalin's cult of personality
"This week all over the Soviet Union, pictures of Josef Stalin are being displayed on every factory and office building in the country. It means that this week his picture is getting larger display and his name on more banners and posters and that he is getting more personal publicity than any man has ever received."

May 7, 1943: Soviet maskirovka
"No one is fooling down in the Caucasus tonight as the Red Army presses the Axis forces back to the Black Sea coast. But on the rest of the front there is a real war of nerves that, in plain deception, provides the greatest mystery show on earth. And strangest of all, these mystery tactics are good military practice."

May 13, 1943: The Russians react to the Allied victories in Tunisia
"The American and British and French troops in North Africa don't know it, but their heroism and sacrifices and courage have achieved something here in Russia that a thousand diplomats and a million words could never have done."

May 19, 1943: The American ambassador visits the ruins of Stalingrad
"Mr. Davies said he wished every American fighting man could have a look at the tragedy of Stalingrad before he went into battle against the Germans."

May 25, 1943: The Soviets throw a goodwill banquet for the British
"They represent an exchange of ideas—not between governments, but between peoples. Neither America, Britain, nor the Soviet Union is trying to impose ideas in this campaign for better cultural relations. That's what got Germany into trouble. If there is one thing that this war has proved, it is that it's much better to exchange ideas than it is to exchange bullets."

May 30, 1943: Western Allied bombing of Germany threatens morale on the Eastern Front
"The Anglo-American bombing of Germany is having a very real effect on the German soldier, who has been given the impossible job of defeating Russia. When a Fortress or a Liberator or a Lancaster drops a bomb on Berlin or Duisburg or Essen, this bomb not only smashes Nazi war production, it also smashes just one more grain of confidence and resistance in the morale of the Fritz on the Russian front who sooner or later hears that his hometown has taken it in the neck again."

June 7, 1943: "Red Justice"
"With the German attack of 1941 a decree was promulgated reclassifying murder, attempted murder, highway robbery, resistance to representatives of the government, and refusal to join the labor front as crimes subject to martial law."

June 17, 1943: "Bogdan the Elusive" in Ukraine
"Once, the Germans thought they had Bogdan. They carefully threw a cordon around his camp. When they finally closed in on the camp they found warm campfires, empty tin cans—and a goat. Around the neck of the goat was a note saying 'A hurried good-bye—but I'll be back.'"

June 19, 1943: The Russian perspective on Japanese imperialism
"'In May 1943, a serious reverse befell Japan,' the Russian expert says. 'In the Northern Pacific, American troops drove the Japanese out of Attu Island which, incidentally, the Japanese militarists prematurely gave a Japanese name.'"

June 25, 1943: Summertime fashion in Moscow
"The most popular summer footwear are sandals. I've seen some made out of worn out automobile tires. The tire is simply cut into the shape of a show. Another thickness is nailed onto the heel—two straps are attached—and there you have a perfectly good pair of summer shoes."

June 27, 1943: The Wehrmacht's lice epidemic
"The German command is trying to combat the louse that infests the invincible, Aryan Nazi soldier. They are using all kinds of propaganda. Soap is scarce in the German army, and propaganda has not been a very good substitute."

July 11, 1943: What are Hitler's ultimate plans for the new offensive?
"The third theory is that this present attack is the beginning of an all-out attack on the Soviet Union, with Hitler ignoring the impending second front and setting out once and for all in an attempt to defeat the Red Army. In this event, he would depend on his European defenses to protect his rear."

July 14, 1943: Axis espionage in Russia
"The business of spying is no longer a glamorous job of pumping a victim full of champagne and getting him to talk. Axis agents have been discovered disguised as beggars, as wounded Russian soldiers, as government officials, and a number of other things."

July 27, 1943: Russian play features heroic American war correspondent
"The correspondent is depicted as about 40, greyish, with an intense interest in getting the story but with little interest in taking a personal part in the war. He is constantly taking notes and snapping pictures and making what are, to the Russian mind, wisecracks. The author allows the correspondent to jibe the Russians about their love for tragedy, maintaining that Tolstoy should have ended 'War and Peace' with 'everyone loving everyone else.'"

August 13, 1943: The Bryansk partisans
"I sat next to Romashin during a lunch the Orel city government gave the correspondents. He told me that, if I wanted to turn him over to the Germans, I would be a rich man. The Germans know his home. To the person who can produce him dead or alive they will give 15,000 rubles, thirty acres of land, a house, one horse, and two cows."

August 14, 1943: The Red Army's high spirits
"These campfires are a beautiful sight. I saw them from an army headquarters on a height overlooking the Oka river valley. These fires, spotting the ridges and slopes of the rolling steppe, make an unforgettable sight, particularly if you look to the horizon and see the reflection of the burning ruins of Nazi occupation. Those peaceful looking army campfires are flames of vengeance. The big light on the horizon is reflected fear."

August 26, 1943: Downs tells of the curfew in Moscow
"While walking from the foreign office to the radio studio, a young soldier packing a very business-like rifle and bayonet stopped me and asked to see my documents. I handed him my official press card, the pass which allows me on the street during air raids, and my precious night pass. Everything was in order except for the night pass. It had run out and had to be replaced."

September 4, 1943: Tragedy on the Steppe Front
"We came to a little farm railroad called Maslova Pristan. Our convoy of jeeps stopped. An air raid had started someplace on the horizon. The ack-ack and bomb flashes lit up the skyline so brightly that it didn't seem real. If you saw it in the movies you would say it was too Hollywood; too overdone."

September 6, 1943: Ukrainians persevere in the wake of Nazi destruction
"The damage is so extensive that the occasional house that was new—unburned, without shell holes and not charred by fire—such scattered houses seemed almost to be showplaces. They stood out like the pyramids in a desert of destitution."

September 9, 1943: Italy falls as Donetsk is liberated
 "A victory for one of the United Nations is a victory for all the United Nations."

September 12 to September 17, 1943: The Red Army approaches Bryansk
"The Red Army in the past ten months of its winter and summer offensive has almost completely wiped out the gains that the German army spent two years in achieving.As the Russians drive for Kiev and the Dnieper bend, they soon will be on the same lines where they fought the Nazis in September 1941."

September 14, 1943: The Young Guard in Ukraine
"These high school students played a lot of tricks on the Germans, such as taking empty mine cases and planting them like booby traps. The Germans would worry for days over such tricks. They wired officers' cars so that when they stepped on the starters, the car would blow up. They cut the telephone lines, and always they put out their daily bulletin, carefully written by hand and passed among the people."

September 20, 1943: "Harvest of Death: Behind the Lines in Russia's Reconquered Villages"
"The jeep was blown a dozen feet off the road, turned over, and was almost torn in two. The driver escaped miraculously with only a wound in the back of his head. It was a freak mine that somehow hadn't gone off although hundreds of cars had driven over the spot on the road throughout the day."

September 23, 1943: The Second Battle of Poltava
"The German base of Poltava was one of the most powerful in the Ukraine. It was taken with much greater casualties for both sides than either the Russians or the Swedes suffered two centuries ago."

September 26 to September 29, 1943: The massive Dnieper offensive continues
"An article in the Army journal, Red Star, today puts the question that is on everyone's lips here in Russia: "Where is Hitler's army going to stop?" This same question must be on the lips of the people of Germany."

December 6, 1943: The Babi Yar massacres
"The first foreign witnesses this week returned to Moscow from what are probably the most terrible two acres on earth—a series of desolate ravines in the Lukyanovka district three miles northwest of Kiev."