Congressional Hearings

Congressional Hearings - Capitol Hill's answer to the abattoir.

Congressional Hearings - Capitol Hill's answer to the abattoir.
Congressional Hearings – Capitol Hill‘s answer to the abattoir.

With the Cold War in full-bloom, the war of nerves and the hysteria was reaching fever-pitch. From Capitol Hill came a contentious set of Congressional hearings over purported Communist influence in the State Department. In the witness chair was Senator Joseph McCarthy and the war of words raged for hours, with no promise of let-up.

Likewise, the conviction of accused spies, Judith Coplan and Valentin Gubitchev caused an uproar. Gubitchev was given a suspended sentence on the proviso he leave the country, while Coplan received a 15 year sentence. Gubitchev’s handling outraged many on Capitol Hill, who called for the removal of Secretary of State Dean Acheson and a thorough house cleaning. Coplan’s sentence was to be appealed. But the Red Scare was galloping through the halls of Congress.

Meanwhile, the world was caught up in Cold War mania with Dean Acheson calling for total Diplomacy to war games in the Caribbean to the French Assembly beating down violent opposition from Communist members to pass an anti-sabotage bill. And the French government were on the receiving end of a shipment of U.S. warplanes as a plan to bolster NATO forces in Europe. General Omar Bradley, speaking at a gather of the Women’s Press Association, warned that the U.S. was now very far behind the Soviet Union in military readiness and steps needed to be taken to shore up those differences in case the time arrived.

More riots in Berlin as pro and anti communist demonstrators clashed in the Western sector of the city. The United Nations was still in a quandary over the two Chinas and which one was to be recognized.

And that was just a portion of what went on the week that ended March 11th in 1950 as presented by NBC Radio’s Voices And Events.

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