August 5, 1942 – The Eastern Front: Grim With Glimmers – A Desert Sitzkrieg – Gas Rationing At Home.

The Eastern Front: Grim in some places – hopeful in others. And somewhere sat Stalingrad.

August 5, 1942 – News Of The World – Gordon Skene Sound Collection –

August 5, 1942 – Beginning with a report from Moscow by Robert Magidoff, the situation on the Eastern front was looking grim but with glimmers of progress in places. There seemed no clear-cut path to victory and what was ultimately at stake was Stalingrad. The situation in the South continued grim and threatening, although the Red Army struck back in two vital battle zones and halted the German advance, at least for the time being. The Russians were in retreat in the Don elbow area, but abruptly stopped it’s withdrawal and launched a powerful tank attack, inflicting heavy losses. The action came in good time because a breakthrough at that point would have made easy access to Stalingrad. And another surprise attack by Red Army troops inflicted the loss of some 3,000 German troops along the Rostov-Baku Railway line.

Meanwhile, the Desert War was grinding on with RAF bombers going back and forth after German targets, but otherwise there was no break in the seeming inactivity on the ground while this “Sitzkrieg” continued for another day.

And back home – the prospect for Gas Rationing became a real one, because if the government didn’t act soon to restrict civilian driving all over the country, the War Production Board saw a complete breakdown in automobile transportation by March of 1943. The officials went on to say that, by March 1943 the average American tire will be worn down to point where it would be good for only 4,000 more miles and there would be no rubber for re-caps or retreads. Also, sitting on the President’s desk was the verdict on the eight German Saboteurs, which FDR promised would be delivered sometime this day. Also at issue was a demand by Textile Workers for a raise in pay from 7 1/2 to 10 cents and hour in the South. Opponents claimed it would bring inflation closer – there was also the rumor of a Black Market in Steel which triggered an investigation if the rumors were true.

And that’s a small slice of what happened, this August 5th in 1942 as presented by NBC’s News Of The World.

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