Foreign News: Eighteen Levels Down

Just before last week's Communist stab through the Nationalist Huai River defense line (see above), TIME Correspondent Frederick Gruin made a visit to the Huai front. His report:

The railroad station at Pukow, just across the Yangtze from Nanking, was choked with people. Soldiers, bulky in padded winter khaki, bivouacked on the concrete platforms. Their rice cooked in big iron pots over wood fires. Grimy refugees hovered nearby with begging bowls. Petty traders, going uprailway to barter cloth and matches for sesame oil and tobacco, swarmed with their bundles on the rooftops of overpacked...

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