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Issue 1128
From the Library of Dale R. Broadhurst
Edgar Rice Burroughs:
Dean of WWII Correspondents in the Pacific Theatre
Transcribed by Bill Hillman
Intelligence Test For Legislators
Honolulu Star-Bulletin ~ May 5, 1941

Whatsoever A Man Soweth
Honolulu Advertiser ~ October 21, 1942

Paladines of Paradise (scan)
Paradise of the Pacific ~ 
Hawaii's Illustrated Monthly Magazine ~ December 1942
Paladines of Paradise (text)

Tanker Like "Accident About to Happen" Burroughs Feels
Honolulu Advertiser ~ July 5, 1945

Laughs At Sea Found By Author Traveling With A Naval "Oiler"
Honolulu Advertiser ~ July 9, 1945

Honolulu Star-Bulletin ~ May 5, 1941

Editor The Star-Bulletin: To a man up a tree, where I shall probably have to take refuge after writing this, it would appear that the childish antics of the Territorial Legislature, fortunately adjourned, constitute a very strong argument against conferring statehood upon Hawaii; for it has conclusively proved that the territory is not prepared for even partial self government.

This, however, may be said with equal truth of practically every state in the union. And why? To me, the explanation is simple: the utterly ridiculous system by which we go about selecting the giant intellects who spend our money and make the laws for us.

*     *     *

I believe that I am correct in saying that in nearly every large city of these United States of America a noble and ambitious citizen wishing to become a street cleaner must pass an examination and, among other things, must be able to read and write; but no so with those whom we elect to make our laws, spend our money, and guide our destinies. 
There is nothing in the Constitution of the United States which requires that the president, even, shall be able to read or write; there is nothing in the constitution that would prevent the election to this high office of a congenital idiot who cold neither read nor write and spent all his time unravelling his socks. 

*     *     *

Of course, this is reducing the thing to an absurdity; but how about our territorial and state legislators? Perhaps we would all be better off if they confined their activities to unravelling their socks; but, unfortunately for us, they are not all congenital idiots; there are many borderline cases who have studied oratory in high school.

This article is not prompted by any mere spirit of captiousness on my part. I seek a solution to a problem which comes very close to answering the question of what is wrong with democracy: a political ineptitude such as wrecked France, has almost wrecked Great Britain, and threatens to wreck us. 

*     *     *

I feel that we should exercise even greater care in the selection of our lawmakers than we do in the selection of our street cleaners, and I have a plan by which we may take at least a step in that direction. 

It is that before any person, otherwise qualified, may become a candidate for any elective or appointive office, he shall pass a comprehensive intelligence test to determine not what he knows about Greek literature, or the name of the seventh president of the United States, or who said, "You may fire when you are ready, Gridley," but to prove just how much native intelligence he has -- the kind of horse sense intelligence that Will Rogers had.

The present so-called intelligence tests which determine one's I.Q. are not sufficient. Many ten year old children pass them with flying colors, but I don't wish any ten year old children to make laws for me.

I believe that if bulbous domed psychologists went into a huddle they could evolve such a test as would at least keep a majority of the nitwits out of public office.

If this fails, we can put the street cleaners in our legislatures. At leas, we know that they can read and write. 

Kapiolani Blvd.
(Editor's Note: The Star-Bulletin invites Mr. Burroughs to outline an intelligence test of the sort he would apply to those who seek to become legislators.)

Honolulu Advertiser ~ October 21, 1942
Russia reproaches us. She reproaches us for the paucity of aid we have given her. She forgets that we lost the Philippines perhaps because we sent bombers and fighters to Russia instead of to MacArthur. She forgets that we have fought and still are fighting some of the greatest naval battles of all times. She forgets that against her two thousand-mile front, we have a twenty-five thousand-mile front, and that we are sending ships and planes and men to every continent and sub-continent. The war is not alone on that two thousand-mile front.
*   *   *   *
We admire Russia as a great and powerful ally. We want to do and we have done all that we have been physically able to do. We shall continue to do all that we are physically able to do. But we must protect ourselves. We must be able to protect ourselves not only now but after the peace.

If Russia forgets, we do not. We do not forget that for a quarter of a century Russia has been trying to undermine and overthrow our government. Every intelligent American knows that behind the skirts of the Communist Party, it has been the Russian government that has been doing these things. The Russian government could have stopped it. When peace comes, they can see that it is not revived.

*  *  *  *
The American people have chosen and will continue to choose their own form of government. They have never attempted to force their form of government on Russia. They do not wish Communism, and they demand that in the future Russia leave them alone.

Before one plane or one bullet was sent to the aid of Russia, we should have demanded this assurance from the Russian government. If such assurance was not demanded and received; then some day we shall have to fight to win it. It would be tragic; for we like the Russian people, and we do not want to fight them.

Perhaps, if we were convinced that Russia would always be our ally, and would never again attempt to interfere in our politics, we could and would redouble our efforts to aid her now. But deep in the fibre of our being is suspicion and distrust of the Government of Russia. It is nothing of our own doing. The Government of Russia, sowing deep for a quarter of a century, planted it there.

"Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he shall also reap."

Click for Full-Sized Image
Fellow BMTC Officers
Hawaii's Illustrated Monthly Magazine
Honolulu, Hawaii, U.S.A.
December 1942

Paladines of Paradise
By Maj. Edgar Rice Burroughs, B.M.T.C.
The old grey mare ain't what she used to be. Honolulu has changed. Do you see that buck private in khaki crawling along through the weeds on his belly, pushing a rifle in front of him? The sun is beating down on his tin hat. His hands and face are dirty. He is sweating like a horse. He is a vice-president of the Bishop National Bank. 

Five paces to his right behaving in the same amazing manner, is the dignified manager of Remington-Rand's Honolulu office. The young fellow with the .45 Cold strapped at his hip, the one who is signalling to them, is their boss. He is a grocery clerk. They, with the rest of their platoon, are about to capture a command post with a major and his staff. 

This is just one of the things that the Japs started in Honolulu on December 7.

These men and a thousand others like them are members of the Businessmen's Military Training Corps., better known as the BMTC. The organization was conceived early in January 1942 by a group of Honolulu business men for the purpose of defending their homes against enemies from without and within.

They took the idea to army authorities, who were not greatly impressed. They felt that not enough men would volunteer to make it worth while -- that at best it would be a nine-day wonder that would fade out of existence as enthusiasm waned. However, they said that if five hundred men could be induced to sign up, the army would arm and equip them. 

The last week in January a call for volunteers was issued through the newspapers, and on Sunday, February 1, a thousand men turned out in response. Training started within an hour; and it has continued, three days a week, ever since. 

Many of the original volunteers have dropped out. Some have gone into the army, some have returned to the Mainland, some are doing equally important defense work in other organizations, and some were just plain weak sisters. But recruits come in in a steady stream to replace losses, and most of the Old Guard who met in Kapiolani Park February 1 have stuck like the good and loyal citizens they are. 

The army's interest in BMTC has steadily increased. On March 1, Lieut. General Delos C. Emmons reviewed the regiment -- four battalions of partially trained men in civilian clothes. Just before General Emmons was to arrive, there was an air raid alarm which found a thousand unarmed men in white shirts standing in mass formation in the open. A beautiful target for bombers. They were ordered to disperse and find cover. They evinced more curiosity than fear, and it was difficult to keep them under the trees. After the all-clear, General Emmons came; and the review was held.

Shortly after this, four commissioned and four non-commissioned officers of the army were assigned as instructors; and rapid progress in training ensued. Two infantry and a coast artillery (AA) regiments are among the regular army organizations which have shown the keenest interest in the training of the BMTC. This training includes close and extended order drill, target practice with .45 caliber Colt pistols, and .30 caliber and sub-caliber rifles, guard duty, and hand grenade throwing. 

Twice each month regimental field exercises are held, in which actual combat situations are simulated, and on August 30 the BMTC took part in maneuvers with the regular army. The opportunity to do so stemmed from the second review held for General Emmons, on August 16. This time the corps was uniformed, armed, and equipped. It was led by a famous Coast Artillery band. It made a splendid and impressive appearance. So much so that General Emmons asked to take part in the coming maneuvers. 

The men were called out at midnight the following Saturday, and every post was manned within thirty-eight minutes. An excellent record when the extent of the BMTC from that night is taken into consideration. It extended from the Damon Tract to beyond the Blow Hole. 

At the critique held at Fort Shafter a couple of days later, high ranking army officers had only praise for the work done by the BMTC. The corps is now considered an important factor in the defense of Honolulu. It is here to stay for the duration. It deserves the active support of every organization and loyal citizen on the island. 

The corps is, in a sense, elite. Not by the standards of the Social Register, but by a finer and higher standard -- patriotism, responsibility, dependability. Every man must be passed by the corps' own intelligence officers and then by the Honolulu Police Department. He must be a descendant of non-Axis parents and vouched for by a member of the corps. 

Half of the personnel of the BMTC are executives in civil life. Sixty-four per cent have had some previous military training, ranging all the way from ROTC to West Point. The regular armies of the United States, Canada, France, and Great Britain are represented, as well as our navy, marine corps, and coast guard. Many fought in the first World War. The average age is a little over forty-two years. Ages range from he teens to the seventies. There is a place in the BMTC for every ablebodied man on Oahu who is not doing some other type of defense work.

No article on the BMTC would be complete without mention of the Auxiliary Corps, composed of housewives and employed women who give part of their time to the typing and office work of the organization and who furnish coffee and sandwiches when the men are on night duty. 

Yes, the Japs started a lot of things on December 7. One of the best of them is the BMTC.

Crew of the Cahaba
© Photos  2004 Danton Burroughs Archive
Not for duplication

Tanker Like 'Accident About 
To Happen,' Burroughs Feels
Honolulu Advertiser ~ July 5, 1945

Editor's Note: Following is one of a series by author Edgar Rice Burroughs on little known sides of the Pacific War.

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

ON BOARD A FLEET OILER, June 10 (Delayed) (UP) - The fleet oilers, although unsung, are a vital auxiliary of the fighting Navy. Without them, the fighting ships could not fight, the Navy fliers could not fly.

Having just completed the first 4,000 miles of a cruise that may last 18 months and take the ship almost anywhere in the Pacific between Pearl Harbor and China, I have acquired vast respect for oilers in general and unlimited pride in my ship in particular.

This ship, the U.S.S. Cahaba, is some ship. She is larger (longer over-all) than certain cruisers, and she is all-Navy. Don't confuse her with merchant tankers unless you want a fight on your hands. The merchantman brings her principal cargo of fuel oil and aviation gas to some comparatively safe anchorage. She takes it out to the fighting ships, often close to land-based enemy planes where she may be subject to attack by suicide bombers and suicide subs, the Kamikaze and the Kamashio of the fanatic Jap -- Divine Wind and Divine Sea.

The discipline and morale on my ship are high. I do not see how they could be higher on any ship. And the credit for that belongs, of course, to the skipper, Lt. Cmdr. Julius Burnbaum, USNR, of Brooklyn, 30 years at sea in the regular Navy and merchant marine.

Had Their Moments
Although so far relatively distant from any battle zone, we have had our moments both while cruising down here and while lying at anchor. No matter how often you have experienced it, the call to general quarters evokes a little thrill of excitement, accentuated by the sight of nearly 300 officers and men running along decks and cat-walks up and down ladders to their battle stations.

Coming down here, we were called to stations three times by our own planes falling to identify themselves -- two C-54s and a Coronado. Fortunately for them our skipper is a careful man, as they flew within easy range of our guns.

Close Call
Since we anchored here our bogies have proved to be enemy planes. One of them got within six minutes of us. It was reassuring to see our planes go out to meet them. What happened, we never learned; but no Jap got through to us. The disappointment of the gun crews was great, but they had it all to themselves. No one shared it with them.

Although not a combat ship, we are adequately  armed and well equipped with the latest scientific instruments for our own protection. However, with our enormous inflammable and explosive cargo, augmented by the considerable store of ammunition we must carry, we appear to an innocent bystander like this correspondent, to be an accident going somewhere to happen.

Cahaba refuellingCorrespondent Burroughs in Hawaii

Laughs at Sea Found by Author
Traveling With a Naval "Oiler"
Honolulu Advertiser ~ July 9, 1945
(Editor's Note: This is the third of a series dealing with an oil tanker 
which supplies fleet units at sea with life-giving fuel.)
AT SEA, June 15 (Delayed) - (UP) - For two days my fleet oiler has been ploughing along in a north-northwesterly course into noticeably cooler latitudes. We are in a convoy and under escort, and we are to rendezvous somewhere with a task group and fuel them at sea, the thing I will have traveled some 5,000 miles to write about, the principal duty that this $12,000,000 ship was built to perform. In addition, she carried some 150 tons of deck cargo for the fleet. 

This is a period of comparative rest for the crew, something they deserve after our last day in port when they transferred 72 tons of cargo from the deck of a victory ship to our deck in something like four hours, carrying 48-pound loads up and down ladders and along catwalks to all parts of the upper decks below the bridge, without a grouse, but with a lot of laughs. They got a great kick out of showing up the merchant marine crew of the victory ship, who stood around doing nothing. They are great kids, ours. 

Cruising 4,000 miles through a vast and empty sea endows minor incidents with importance. A whale, a school of porpoises, a derelict wooden box, another whale. They were the only other things in the enormous world of which we were the center.

And at last a ship. Below the horizon, it was invisible to us on the bridge; but our lookout in the crow's-nest picked it up even before the men at the marvelous scientific instruments with which we are equipped. In our little world the boy was immediately famous. He is good-looking black haired, 18-year-old Audrey Paul Guillory, S2c, of Crouley, La. His father, Pfc. Archie Gauillory, USA, stationed at Kunming, China, owned a meat market before the war. Young Gauillory ran it before he enlisted in the Navy; then they had to sell it. For every American family making sacrifices such as this, a thousand noble patriots bawled like hell about a 12 o'clock curfew. 

Another lad who won fame, at least in my eyes, is Joe "Red" Clennan, S1c, son of Benson C. Clennan of Chapman, Kan. Red, two years in the Navy, 20 years old, is one of the crew of No. 1 motor launch. He has seven sisters and four brothers. After the war he wants to finish high school and go to Kansas City College.

In harbor, No. 2 motor launch is moored to a boom that is rigged aft on the starboard side of the ship. The boom sticks far out over the water. From its end a Jacob's ladder extends 10 feet down into the water. Along its upper surface a four-inch board forms the cat walk along which the launch's crew make perilous trips to and from the constantly bobbing and cavorting launch.

Whenever possible, I always stood at the rail on No. 2 deck and watched this Ringling Brothers' aerial act, and at last my patience was rewarded -- Red missed the boat and fell into the sea. It was darn nice of him.

There are other laughs, too. A boy wrote home, "Tarzan is aboard. He is a war correspondent." Another, writing to his girl, said: "I smell under the arms, my feet smell, and I have pimples all over my body." Then he asked her to wait for him. An optimist. 



1941: ERBzine 1129 
1942: ERBzine 1754
1945/1946: ERBzine 1755
More ERB WWII Writing at:
ERB: The War Years
Lost Words of ERB
Hawaii Clippings

Issue 1128

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