Letters, Apr. 10, 1944

  • For All Americans


    For the benefit of other civilians, I forward a message to us all from a letter written by an A.A.F. captain now flying a Liberator in the Central Pacific; he wears the Air Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster:

    "I want to tell you what a group of us officers and enlisted men have been talking about tonight.

    "Though we have done a good job of killing the enemy, I find no sign of an organized hate in any of our men. . . . Our men come closer to hating those at home who break faith with us at the fronts—the shirkers, the profiteers, those who bicker in Washington over our rights. If the powers that be in America deny us in the service the right to an easy, practical way of voting, they will live to regret it. And to the last man our group js not in accord with What some people in the states are trying to do with some American citizens, namely the Jap citizens. We say, if they step out of the line of faithfulness to our country, punish them severely. But don't touch one of them just because he has Japanese blood. They are American citizens. We are fighting for all American citizens, and when we die for them we don't stop to ask what kind of blood they have. We are fighting for the sacred rights of man; we don't want them toyed with behind our backs."

    DONALD CULROSS PEATTIE Santa Barbara, Calif.

    Our Mistake


    In TIME (March 20) you state that "the New Republic, non-interventionist until a few months before Pearl Harbor, shifted to reflect the views of its owner, Mrs. Leonard K. Elmhirst. U.S.-born, she has become a British citizen. . ."

    This statement is not true. The New Republic's action in demanding that the U.S. enter the war was solely the work of its editors. We believed that Hitler intended to conquer the world; that as matters stood ... he had a good chance of succeeding, and that the U.S. ought to get into the conflict before Great Britain was knocked out. . ...We think now that we were absolutely right in our decision.

    Numerous other magazines and newspapers came out in favor of entering the war just before or just after we did so. Does TIME believe that in all those cases there was improper pressure to force them to do so ?

    Mrs. Leonard Elmhirst is not the owner of the New Republic. Ownership was transferred a number of years ago from the editors to Editorial Publications, Inc., a New York corporation. During the whole history of the magazine no attempt has ever been made by its financial sponsors to influence the editors. When we make mistakes, as we are perfectly capable of doing, they are our own mistakes.


    President New Republic New York City

    ¶TIME, which sometimes makes mistakes too, erred in implying that Mrs. Elmhirst, who established the trust funds which largely meet the paper's deficit, controls the New Republic's editorial policy.—ED.

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