World Quietly Haywire – November 30, 1961
News of the world, for this last day of November in 1961, had just about everything to do with the Cold War. The situation in Santo Domingo and the unrest, many felt was fueled by Fidel Castro and the Cuban government, was calming down with hopes that a violent overthrow was defused, at least for now. As of this day, a tentative agreement by opposition forces to the Trujillo government to form a new provisional government was accepted, even though it was reported both sides were still working out the details of an arrangement; but unless anything blew up suddenly, the crisis was expected to be settled shortly and that the situation had not been as explosive of the previous three days as it had been made to appear. According to reports, there has been no violence and the demonstrations have not gotten out of control as did previously.
Elsewhere, our Foreign Policy was coming under attack, this time by way of a verbal dressing-down of vice-President Lyndon Johnson by Soviet Ambassador Zorin at a dinner. Commentators were quick to make the pot-meet-kettle analogy, but the war of words was continuing.
In other Cold War news – the remaining members of the American Communist Party were making themselves scarce while they were preparing a new legal strategy, after a ruling banning the American Communist Party from existing in the U.S. was coming up for deadline. Offices were shut and a skeleton staff remained. Party leader Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, who had recently returned from Moscow, rejected suggestions she remain in Russia to avoid prosecution. But Flynn, who was 70, said a jail term under the new Registration Law would amount to a life sentence. The law in question provided a penalty of 5 years in jail for every day of non-compliance. Attorney General Robert Kennedy reiterated his vow to enforce the law.
And that’s a small slice of what went on in this hackneyed world, as reported and summed up by a group of NBC Radio correspondents on this last day of November in 1961.