Women In The War Effort (PM Tabloid, 1942)
Eight months into America's entry into the war came this article from PM reporting the War Manpower Commission and their data as to how many American women up to that point had stepped up to contribute their labor to the war effort (over 1,500,000):
"Women have been found to excel men in jobs requiring repetitive skill, finger dexterity and accuracy. They're the equals of men in a number of other jobs. A U.S. Employment Service has indicated women can do 80 percent of the jobs now done by men."
The Liberation of Allied POWs in China (PM Tabloid, 1945)
Brereton Steps Up (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"Major General Lewis E. Brereton (1890 - 1967) is the new commander of the U.S. forces in the Middle East."
Reporter Under Fire (PM Tabloid, 1941)
CBS war correspondent Betty Wason (1912 - 2001) reported in a very chatty way about how the war was proceeding along the shores of the Southern Mediterranean Sea. Of particular interest was her observation regarding how thoroughly lame the Italian Army appeared to their opposite numbers in the Albanian Army. Rather than eliciting feelings of dread and hatred, the Italian soldiers were pitied for their poor skills - their bodies were plentiful on every battlefield.
New Jersey Law Nabs Top Bundists (PM Tabloid, 1940)
In 1937 the elders of New Jersey passed a law that was tailor-made for the thugs of Camp Nordland. Knowing well who the Bundists were, the law clearly condemned
"'the unlawful assembly of three or more persons' and 'and the uttering of speeches, the sale of literature, display of emblems and uniforms which counseled... hatred, violence or hostility against groups of persons... by reason of race, color, religion or manner of worship.'"
In 1940 the law netted a harvest of the three highest Bund leaders.
Saboteurs to be Tried in Military Court (PM Tabloid & Yank Magazine, 1942)
"The eight Nazi agents, who landed from U-boats on the shores of of Long Island and Florida, planning to cripple American war production, are in jail here [Washington, D.C.] under heavy guard, awaiting military trial on four charges that carry the death penalty."
A New Kind of Naval Warfare (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"In the seven months since Pearl Harbor the aircraft carrier has replaced the battleship as the true capital ship of modern naval warfare. The carrier's rise to power reached a crushing climax in the battle of the Coral Sea and the Battle of Midway - the two most decisive naval engagements of the war thus far. Opposing fleets only struck at each other with bomber and torpedo planes and never fired a shot except in self-defense against aircraft."
Hitler Prepares to Visit Paris (PM Tabloid, 1940)
"The man who once peddled cleaning fluids on the crooked back streets of Vienna, today was preparing to march as conqueror into Paris beneath the arch built to commemorate the triumphs of Napoleon Bonaparte."
70,000 American Prisoners of War (PM Tabloid, 1945)
In a manly display of boastful "trash-talking" a few weeks before VE-Day, the over-burdened P.R. offices of the German high command issued a statement indicating that their military had in their possession some "70,000" U.S Prisoners of war. This was in contrast to the records kept by the Pentagon whose best guess stood in the neighborhood of 48,000.
"The statement revealed that 27 of the 78 prisoner of war camps in Germany have been overrun by the Red Army and U.S./British forces, and that 15,000 Yanks have been liberated."
The Navy Tells It (PM Tabloid, 1942)
One year after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor the Navy released its report to the press with updates on all the various repairs that were put into effect.
Government Heath Care for California Migrants (PM Tabloid, 1940)
This is a report on the 1939 government-sponsored medical outreach program for "California's Grapes of Wrath migrants":
"The counties of San Joaquin Valley have well organized health departments... [Migrants] are entitled to drugs, special diets, eyeglasses and appliances if authorized by the medical director. Since many patients are in need not so much of medicines than of food, the Association may pay a medical grocery bill just as it pays the druggist. It also provides school lunches and nursery meals."
More on migrant laborers can be read here...
''Guns On French Cliffs Shell British Ships
(PM Tabloid, 1940)
"A British convoy in the Straits of Dover today ran the gauntlet of terrific cannonade of long range German artillery on the French cliffs from Calais to Boulogne. The spectacular Channel bombardment was witnessed by thousands on the Dover cliffs. They reported that none of the 18 ships in the British convoy appeared to have been hit."
Bundist Arrested As Spy (PM Tabloid, 1942)
Johannes Kroeger, ex-leader of the German-American Bund was picked up by the FBI in the Fall of 1942 for espionage. Employed as a bus driver on Long Island, New York, Kroeger would regularly carry the employees of the Republic Aviation Company to and from work. When pressed for details, the FBI remarked:
"Workers in aviation plants talk too much."
Soviets Hold Their Reserves for Stalingrad (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"The Russians undoubtedly have a reserve army that they are waiting to throw in at a moment that a counter-offensive would be of greatest value. Tne Nazis haven't crippled the southern army. Except at Voronezh, where it has made a stand costing the Germns thousands of men and hundreds of tanks, the Red Army has been falling back in good order."
The Last Will of Dr. Mabuse (PM Tabloid, 1943)
"The reason the Nazis banned The Last Will of Dr. Mabuse was that it was a political preachment against Hitler 'socialism,' by a man [Fritz Lang] whose films were appreciated by the Germans as true interpretations of the social trends of post-war Germany... Lang's intention in the film was, in his own words, 'to expose the masked Nazi theory of the necessity to deliberately destroy everything which is precious to a people so that they would lose all faith in the institutions and ideals of the State. Then, when everything collapsed, they would try to find help in the new order.'
• Watch The Movie •
Gandhi Urges Revolution (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"Mohandas K. Gandhi tonight summoned India's millions to rise in a struggle 'for freedom or death' after the full committee of the All-India Nationalist Congress approved by an overwhelming vote his call for mass passive resistance against British rule."
Shortages (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"The Japanese now are permitted fuel for their homes for only two months of the year and the prices are so high that many homes are without heat the year around."
Fighting in Winter (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"Within a few weeks, Winter again will be sweeping down on the greatest battlefield in history... At Leningrad, the Fall rains are almost over. Now comes a month of dangerously dry, clear weather and then the snow. The Moscow zone will be thickly carpeted in white in seven or eight weeks. Allied strategists hope that the second Russian war Winter will bring a repition of the first, when Soviet skill in cold weather fighting finally drove the Nazis back.
Under-Age Workers Step-Up (PM Tabloid, 1942)
The National Youth Administration (NYA) was established in 1935 as one of FDR's many alphabet agencies created to alleviate the sting of the Great Depression; it was tasked with providing work and education for young Americans between the ages of 16 through 25. By the time World War II kicked -in, many in Congress felt it was time to do away with the organization, but as this article spells out, NYA members could now be put to work in the defense plants.
Click here to read about the travails of young adults during the Great Depression.
The Fifth Column In America (PM Tabloid, 1942)
Sabotage, The Secret War Against America (Harper, 1942), is as exciting as a Hitchcock movie. It is also a tragic story, for it is the factual , documented narrative of the years when this country was the happy hunting ground for our enemies, foreign and domestic."
Identifying The War Criminals (PM Tabloid, 1945)
Watching American Fascisti (PM Tabloid, 1940)
A year and a-half before Pearl Harbor American law enforcement agencies got serious about the domestic fascist groups. This article pertains to a twenty-five page Federal order instructing the FBI and local authorities to tap phones and monitor the movements of all groups sympathetic to Axis philosophies.
British Attack Along The Mareth Line (PM Tabloid, 1943)
"The British have struck heavily at the Mareth Line in what both sides call the opening blow of the long-awaited big battle of Tunisia."
(The Mareth Line was a system of bunkers built by France in southern Tunisia during the late Thirties. The line was intended to protect Tunisia against an Italian invasion from its colony in Libya.)
''White Man's War'' (PM Tabloid, 1942)
During the winter of 1942, Private Harry Carpenter, U.S Army, made a big honking mistake when he decided to declare that the current war was "a white man's war". Arrested by the MPs and carted-off to stand before Magistrate Thomas O'Hara, Carpenter found that he had reaped the whirlwind: he was charged with treason against the United States.
French Slavery Becomes A Reality (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"Petain clamped the chains of Nazi slavery on the men and women of France today. The aged Marshal, Pierre Laval, and their quisling cabinet, promulgated a decree ordering all French men and women to compulsory labor. The decree, which the Government frankly admitted meant slavery in Germany for thousands of Frenchmen, was signed by Petain on Friday night."
Click here to read about the enslavement of Europe...
''Nazis Halted at Stalingrad'' (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"Stalingrad continued to hold today. For three days now the Nazis have been stopped on both the northwest and southwest approaches to the key industrial city on the Volga, loss of which would be a grave blow to the Soviet war effort... Today's first Soviet communique indicated that Marshall von Bock continues to pour in more men, more tanks and more planes, trying to overwhelm the Russian defenders by sheer weight."
The Question of Japanese Youth (PM Tabloid, 1945)
Far-flung correspondent Max Lerner (1902 - 1992) penned the attached editorial concerning the necessity of reëducation Japanese school children:
"The Japanese youth are the key to Japan's future. There were 12,000,000 of them in the elementary schools before the war, dressed in school uniforms, bowing before the Emperor's portrait every day on entering and leaving... The values taught to him were feudal and fascist values, but the weapons given him were modern weapons. This is the combination that produced the suicide-squadrons of the Kamikaze."
A similar article about German youth can be read here.
Somewhere In North Africa (PM Tabloid, 1943)
With the loss at Kasserine Pass and the victory at El Guettar behind them, the U.S. Army in North Africa traveled ever northward in a caravan of Jeeps and trucks looking for their next engagement with Rommel's Africa Corps.
The Dangers of the Bund (PM Tabloid, 1940)
Here is an article from the man who would shortly be America's premiere spy-master: William "Wild Bill" Donovan. In this report he examined the Trojan horse tactics of the German "Foreign Organization":
"Children of Germans naturalized half a century ago are still counted German by Berlin and every effort is made to convince them of the fact... It is safe to say that a very fair proportion of the non-refugee Germans who have become American since Hitler came to power did so with the secret intention of turning free and democratic America into 'their' - that is, Hitler's - America."
FDR's Sense of Sympathy (PM Tabloid, 1942)
When a 22-year-old expectant father wrote to President Roosevelt complaining that he'd been unemployed for four months, FDR wasted little time in contacting one of his alphabet agencies and seeing to it that the gent was offered a defense job.
Nazis Take Paris (PM Tabloid, 1940)
"Paris belongs to Adolf Hitler. Abandoned by the French and declared an open city to prevent its destruction, the capital of France was turned over whole to the Nazi invaders early this morning."
Click here to read about the 1944 liberation of Paris.
Allied Efforts in North Africa (PM Tabloid, 1943)
By the time this article appeared at the New York City newsstands, the British had chased Rommel's Afrika Korps out of Egypt, the Americans had suffered their first defeat at the Kasserine Pass and was in the process of walloping the Tenth Panzer at El Guettar. The anonymous general who penned this article took all that into consideration but believed there was much more fight left in the Germans than there actually was.
The U.S. 34th Division fought in Tunisia, click here to read about them.
The Japanese Zero (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"Soon after Pearl Harbor Americans began hearing about a Japanese warplane called called the Zero. It had an unusual name, it was virtually unknown, even to aircraft experts, and almost immediately it began to take on an air of sinister mystery. Information now available shows there is no good reason for the mystery, although the plane has been a big factor in the Jap drive... The Zero has no secret weapons or engineering developments. It is simply a pretty good pursuit or fighter."
Nighttime Tank Battle (PM Tabloid, 1942)
Canadian war correspondent M.H. Halton reported from the Egyptian desert concerning "one of modern war's most dramatic spectacles - [a] battle of tanks in the dark."
American Units Get Active (PM Tabloid, 1943)
Click here to read about the Rangers in North Africa.
Americans Answered The Call (PM Tabloid, 1942)
When it came across the wire that Fall of 1942 saw the U.S. Navy enlistments increase by 150%, the editors of PM were not slow to dispatch a team down to the induction center to check it out (at 67 Broad St., NYC).
Many, many African-Americans answered the call as well, but with understandable reservations...
More about W.W. II induction can be read here
The Partisan War (PM Tabloid, 1941)
"A Red Army officer, who said the German Army was being constantly harassed behind its lines by partizan activities and guerilla warfare, told me details of a number of recent incidents in White Russia. He said almost every village in German-occupied territory had supplied one or more groups of partizans who lived in the woods and used every opportunity to waylay detachments of infantry patrols and tanks."
The German Eastward Thrust (PM Tabloid 1941)
"Sub-surface evidence that the war on the Russian Front is going into a more crucial phase is mounting... if the present German drive achieves the bulk of its objectives, the Russians will have had some of their resistance power taken away from them. They will not have quite the same communications, the same supply facilities or the same freedom of movement they have had to work with thus far."
The Surrendering Italians (PM Magazine, 1943)
"Italians who were assigned to the defense of key hill positions surrendered in droves as the U.S. attack intensified... Many of the Italians had been without food for two days. There water was exhausted. Some of the captives shamelessly wept as the Americans offered them food and cigarettes."
Click here to read about American POWs during the Vietnam War.
At The Front North Africa (PM Magazine, 1943)
Here is the PM movie review of At The Front North Africa directed by John Ford and produced by Darryl Zanuck for the U.S. Army Signal Corps. The reviewer seemed irked that the film only showed the Germans having a difficult time.
Click here to read about the American Army in North Africa...
• Watch At The Front North Africa •
Murray Korman (PM Tabloid, 1942)
Brilliant photographer Ralph Steiner (1899 – 1986) spent some time examining the photographs of Murray Korman (1902 - 1961) and, to his surprise, came away finding his work to be very interesting:
"Murray Korman is the man whose pictures you see outside the musical shows and in girlie magazines... After four hours of looking I was dizzy. I figured that no man could take such pictures for 17 years and get satiated with lusciousness and bored by the sameness of the girls. I figured that all that kept Korman going was the profit motive. But when I went to his studio on Broadway I found I was all wrong."
''The Man Who Stopped Rommel'' (PM Tabloid, 1942)
Australian general Leslie Morshead (1889 - 1959) gave Rommel and his Afrika Korps a tough time of it during the North Africa campaign (1940 - 1943). The Germans called him Ali Baba Morshead, and they knew what he was capable of. He kicked Rommel out of Tobruk and El Alamein and when his work was done in the Mediterranean, he was transferred to the Pacific Theater where he gave the Japanese no end of grief.
The French Navy In The Balance (PM Tabloid, 1940)
Stalingrad Turns in Favor of Reds (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"At Stalingrad the imitative appears to be slowly shifting into the hands of the Russians...The Russian attack was reported to be growing in vigor and German counterthrusts were repulsed with heavy losses."
Jim Crow and the Draft (PM Tabloid, 1940)
Wishing to avoid some of the taint of racism that characterized the American military during the First World war, Republican Senator William Barbour (1888 - 1943) announced that he intended to introduce an amendment to the 1940 conscription legislation that would open all branches of the U.S. Military to everyone regardless of skin color. The article goes on to list all the various branches that practiced racial discrimination.
Red Drive Toward Rostov (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"The Red Army crossed the Don River at three points and advanced spearheads upwards of ten miles to the south of the Stalingrad Axis seige army, threatening it with more strict encirclement and at the time moving the key city of Caucacus. Moscow dispatches stressed the importance of this action which apparently swings a considerable weight along the railroad toward Rostov."
Failing To Attract An Audience (PM Tabloid, 1940)
In spite of the incredible films that Hollywood churned out in 1939 - Gone With the Wind, The Wizard of Oz and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, it seemed that there were some folks in 1940 who just wouldn't be satisfied. This completely irked the citizens of Hollywood. And so the editor of Variety dispatched pollsters hither and yon to ask why they
thought the movies stunk.
German Army Thirsted for Grozny Oil (PM Tabloid, 1942)
The summer of 1942 found the German Army in the Soviet Union nearing the end of its oil reserves. It was decided that this problem could best be solved by seizing the Red oilfields of the Caucasus Mountains - and so began the Battle of the Caucasus (25 July 1942 – 12 May 1944).
Despair and Hunger (PM Tabloid, 1940)
PM correspondent Richard O. Boyer (1903 – 1973) was in Berlin in June of 1940 when Paris fell to the German Army. He was dumbstruck by the surprising gloominess that hung heavily upon the German people the week of that great victory:
"I could not understand it all and could scarcely believe the testimony of my own eyes. The scarlet banners with their black swastikas that garlanded the city everywhere in response to Hitler's orders seemed only to emphasize the worried melancholy. The victory bells that rang each day at noon acquired the sound of a funeral dirge when one looked at the tired, pinched faces of the Germans hurrying along the pavements ... When I expressed surprise to a glum man sitting near me he glanced impatiently up and only said, 'We celebrated once in 1914'."
The Japanese home front suffered from tuberculosis - click here to read about it...
The Life and Death of Trotsky (PM Tabloid, 1940)
Appearing in the pages of a slightly left-leaning New York paper was this obituary of Leon Trotsky (1879 - 1940):
"Thus, at 9:25 last night, ended the life of the man who, with Lenin, brought about the world's most profound revolution and with his death, ended the bitterest of modern feuds - Trotsky against Stalin."
Enemy Agents Sought Weather Info (PM Tabloid, 1942)
Before the era of the World Wide Web, intelligence agencies had to rely on their own flunkies to gather all meteorological information they could find about a particular weather system; this explains why so many Axis spies were found with weather data among their possessions.
Night Attacks On Bataan (PM Tabloid, 1942)
Filed from General MacArthur's headquarters in Australia, here is Frank Hewlett's (1913 - 1983) eyewitness account of the defense of American positions in the Philippines (January 7 – April 9, 1942).
Production Delays (PM Tabloid, 1940)
The week the French Army collapsed was the week Hollywood experienced the greatest number of production delays. Studio wags believed it was an indicator as to just how many European refugees were employed on their stages. Studio bosses banned all radio and newspapers from their properties in hopes that each production would maintain their respective schedules.
Red Army Gains at Stalingrad (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"Soviet counterblows have thrown the Germans back in some places in the Stalingrad area. The early communique announced today that several of the city's streets were recaptured in bloody hand-to-hand battles."
Stalingrad Exordium (PM Tabloid, 1942)
A short article explaining the significance of Stalingrad to Stalin (aside from its name) and the battle that took place there 24 years earlier during the revolution - when the city was called Tsaritsyn.
Tokyo POWs Liberated (PM Tabloid, 1945)
Victory is Assured (PM Tabloid, 1943)
While speaking at the 141st anniversary of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, Chief of Staff General George Marshall gave a great big shout out to three American generals. Pointing out that all of them were graduates of West Point (as he was) the general could not help but conclude that the Axis didn't have a chance.
RAF Bombs Munich (PM Tabloid, 1942)
Throughout the course of the Second World War, the city of Munich was bombed seventy-four times by both the Royal Air Force as well as the U.S. Army Air Corps. The attached article gives an account of the third of these attacks.
"Giant four-motored planes flew in over their targets so low that they could clearly see the Brown House and the Beer Hall where Hitler organized his 1923 putsch... The citizens of Munich will, no doubt, be thinking of their Fuehrer today as they survey the bombed-out buildings and piles of rubble in the streets where Hitler first harangued them about his political ideas."
Ground Zero, New Mexico (PM Tabloid, 1945)
Weeks after the atomic blast that took place over the city of Nagasaki, American Journalists were allowed to see the crystalized ground that was the Trinity test site in New Mexico. They pocketed the queer pieces of glass that made up ground zero and openly mocked the Japanese scientists who said the radioactivity in Hiroshima and Nagasaki was continuing to kill four weeks later.
A Busy Year for the FBI (PM Tabloid, 1942)
The FBI had been tangling Axis spies throughout the mid-to-late Thirties, but with the December 8, 1941, declaration of war the FBI was emboldened with far greater powers. This explains why Director Hoover exclaimed "that his agency had just completed the busiest year in its history."
''Tanks Spearhead Nazi Offensive'' (PM Tabloid, 1942)
The largest tank battle in history was fought on the Eastern Front during the Second World War. In April of 1943, 6,000 German and Soviet tanks, supported by some 2,000,000 infantrymen, had-at-it near the Russian city of Kursk. This article was written a year before the clash, and it informed the readers that armored engagements were becoming larger and larger with each one.
FDR and Congress (PM Tabloid, 1943)
A Most Memorable Jingle (PM Tabloid, 1940)
Coca-Cola may be the real thing, but in 1940 Pepsi had launched the ad that made Madison Avenue sit up and realize the true power of radio advertising. It was the famous radio jingle that we still hear today in every play, movie and TV show wishing to create the perfect Forties atmosphere - you know the one: Pepsi Cola hits the spot, etc., etc., etc. A real toe-tapper. The attached article will clue you-in to it's significance.
A Pearl Harbor Day Recollection (PM Tabloid, 1942)
A year after the Pearl harbor attack, one of the PM journalists recalled for their readers how many Americans in the lower 48 had heard the news on the radio that evening.
All-In for the Eastern Front (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"In a message to the German Red Cross, Hitler referred to Russia as 'an enemy whose victory would mean the end of everything'"
"When Hitler says 'the end of everything' he means the end of Nazism."
Rommel Returned to Where he Began (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"Marshal Erwin Rommel's Axis forces in Egypt have been beaten back by British guns and planes. A Cairo communique said yesterday that the German armored divisions had retreated west of the British minefields to the starting line of his offensive which opened a week ago... Captured Axis prisoner disclosed how Rommel had touched off the offensive last Monday with a proclamation to his men that "we are off to Cairo.'"
The British Move On Tobruk (PM Tabloid, 1941)
"British bombing planes made a lightning assault on the Fascist base at Tobruk yesterday... Italy's high command admitted today that Bardia had fallen and was completely in British hands... Reports from Benghazi, capital of italian Libya, indicated that the British were intensifying their attacks against Giarabub in an effort to strengthen their exposed left flank against counterattacks.
The Champ is Gone (PM Tabloid, 1945)
This highly personal column appeared in one of New York City's evening papers and seemed characteristic of the feeling experienced by much of the U.S. after hearing about the unexpected death of President Roosevelt.
Written by Joe Cummiskey, the column stands out as the type of remembrance that is thoroughly unique to those who write about sports all day long, which is who Mr. Commiskey was:
"Somehow or other, if you were in sports, you never thought of FDR so much as connected with the high office which he held. Rather, you remembered him most the way he'd chuckle, getting ready to throw out the the first ball to open the baseball season. Or how he'd sit on the 50 at the Army-Navy game..."
Fair Employment Laws Enforced (PM Tabloid, 1942)
Some six months prior to Pearl Harbor FDR signed Executive Order 8802 which made it illegal for defense contractors to discriminate based on race or religious faith. Eight months later the President's Committee on Fair Employment Practices was convened in New York City to review the evidence at hand indicating that numerous defense contractors were failing to comply with the law.
Europe Enslaved (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"Today in Europe there are more slaves than ever existed on any continent at any time. Hitler had to fight for every one of them... They used gangs, particularly in Poland, to round up workers from the streets, to drag them from churches and theaters and even from homes to go to work in Germany."
At the time it was estimated that there were as many as 6,000,000 slaves in Germany; half of them were prisoners of war.
Click here to read about the enslavement of France...
Equal Pay for Equal War Work (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"The War Labor Board has decreed 'equal pay for equal work' for women in war industry... George W. Taylor, WLB vice-chairman, wrote the decision and said that any other condition than that of pay equality was 'not conducive to maximum production'."
Springtime Over The Kuban Valley (PM Tabloid, 1943)
"The Russians shot down 18 enemy planes over Kuban on Sunday. Moscow estimated German plane losses on all fronts for the week ending Saturday at 381 against 134 Russian planes."
The British Six-Pounder (PM Tabloid, 1942)
"Six-pounder guns are being turned out in large numbers in one of the Royal Ordnance factories in England. Most of the workers who make them are women. The gun is highly mobile and is said to have a high rate of fire and remarkable armor penetration."
The Rationing of Meat (PM Tabloid, 1943)
Congress Approved $5,000,000,000 Build-Up (PM Tabloid, 1940)
"To fulfill the [Pentagon's requirements] the President plans to send Congress one more defense message asking for another $5,000,000,000. After that, with machine industries saturated with orders, Congress can sit back and survey the defense picture - provided England doesn't collapse overnight... Acting Secretary of the Navy Compton announced yesterday the award of contracts for three aircraft carriers and two cruisers to the Newport News Shipbuilding and Drydock Co...."