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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - March 6, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta WMlnMday, March 6, 1974-THE LETHBRIDQE HERALD-39 China's honesty reputation tarnished 'Better to kill them' Pat Devlin serving a life term in prison, listens as Jean Vanier (foreground) speaks to re- porters at the end of a conference on corrections in Ottawa. Devlin said it is better to kill people than put them behind bars for 10 years. Divided Germany a jigsaw puzzle By GEORGE VINE WEST BERLIN (Reuter) When Germany was divided into two states it created a geographical jigsaw puzzle which has still not been fully sorted out 25 years later. The 800-mile frontier abounds in anomhes reveal- ing the tragedy and the ab- surdity of the partition. In some places, one side of the road is Communist while the other lies in the West. The border, sown with minefields and patrolled by Communist armed guards with orders to shoot, bisects villages and even houses. For the last 12 months since the two German states signed their "good neighbor" treaty putting the seal on partition for the foreseeable future, a joint commission has been surveying the frontier with a view to tidying up the muddle. Hundreds of small, odd- shaped pieces of land on both sides of the frontier have to be fitted into the giant jigsaw. COTTAGES CUT OFF Gr.e of the strangest ano- malies is in Berlin where a tongue of land not much big- ger than two tennis courts be- longs to the West but the only way of reaching it is through the Communist wall. Erlengrund is a small spit of land sticking into the Havel River where the wall comes down to the water's edge and makes a sharp turn along the shore. Weeping willows and elm trees give the little pro- montory a peaceful appear- ance but the owners of the 33 weekend cottages and allot- ment huts on the Erlengrund and the neighboring colony of Fichtewiese are literally "up at the sharp end in the East- West confrontation When the little plots of land were established m 1921 they could be reached by walking along the river bank. But the East-West dividing line which runs straight out to the middle of the nver now cuts them off. MUST SHOW PAPERS East Germany has provided two iron doors in the wall, each fitted with an electric bell, so the owners can reach their property After negotiating the con- trols, a cottager can relax for an afternoon snooze in a deck- chair safe from salesmen, his crediters and the attentions of visiting rela- tives But the waters surrounding the spit of land are "red." In order to bathe, paddle or drop a fishing line, the cottager has to retrace his steps through the wall and- out the other side, showing his identity papers and special pass again, to reach Western waters 50 yards away. The right-angle formed by the 10-feet-high concrete wall is strewn with deep sand carefully raked so that foot- prints can be instantly de- tected. From the two iron doors double rows of black and white painted posts lead to a glassed-in cabin where two or three armed guards sit. WATCHED CLOSELY When the bell rings the guards press a button and the door is opened by remote con- trol. The visitors must not walk outside the posts. Are there mines under the sand? Towering over the scene is a timber observation post from which more guards peer down through binoculars while offshore police patrol boats are alert for possible East German defectors. Since the 1972 agreement, two larger enclaves at Eiskel- ler and Steinstuecken have been incorporated into the West by trading other pieces of territory for access routes. During past crises. British armed cars were used to es- cort children to school while Allied troops were landed by helicopter to guard these little suburban islands. The frontier was originally drawn in 1945 by the vic- torious powers of the Second World War to demarcate their occupation zones. They followed old parish. borough and county adminis- trative boundaries which had no relevance to modern devel- opment The settlement of 1972 ap- pears to have partly defused the Berlin powder keg. But Chancellor Willy Brandt's ef- forts to achieve more human- ity on the border have been less successful. East Germans who cross the death strip are still being shot. The Communist government continues to strengthen the frontier obstacles, minefields and trip- wire guns. PEKING (Reuter) The reputation of strict social dis- cipline and honesty which China has enjoyed since the end of the Cultural Revolution in the late 1960s has taken a few knocks recently. It is still true that, at least as far as the foreign commu- nity here is concerned, China must be rated as one of the world's most secure coun- tries. Stories of how foreigners are unable to drop so much as a button in a Chinese street without it being breathlessly returned are as common as ever. Many foreigners still regard it as unnecessary to lock their cars, hotel rooms or even apartments, so sure are they that nothing will be tampered with. But the pristine image of Chinese incorruptibility has been tarnished by a number of reports by foreign residents and visitors of small but some where the weight of evidence suggests Chinese as being re- sponsible rather than light-fin- gered foreigners. A German businessman had several hundred dollars worth of Chinese currency stolen from his hotel room. The cul- prit was caught and the money he had not disposed of was returned. Less serious but nonetheless significant, one diplomat's wife says her silver spoons have progressively dis- appeared at dinner parties where Chinese have been em- ployed as caterers. The spoons were said to have van- ished after the guests left, ruling out the possibility that any of them were guilty. Other foreigners have no- ticed such items as toothpaste and hand cream dis- articles of low value. In most countries such minor pilfering might be ignored, but in China any lapse from high standards of probity arouses attention. What sort of crime problems there are in China as a whole can only be guessed at. Like many other aspects of Chinese life, crime is a sub- ject few foreigners get a chance to investigate. POSTERS APPEARING But that it exists there is no doubt. Posters have appeared recently in Peking calling for a campaign against "hooli- and an official in the northern city of Tientsin spoke of hooliganism and petty theft as security prob- lems. Foreigners have sighted public notices in at least two major Chinese cities listing heavy court sentences for a limited number but wide range of rape, treason, large-scale em- bezzlement and bribery. When questioned on this, Chinese officials tend to say only that a "very small" number of people are in- volved. Outright crime apart, several surprising scenes of lack of discipline on a mass scale have been witnessed by foreigners within the last year. Foreign observers were amazed one evening last May to see thousands of youths who had assembled to watch a round-the-city race in Peking breaking ranks and milling excitedly around the capital's main square while loudspeakers pleaded vainly with them to "raise their rev- olutionary consciousness" and return to their places. BARRED FROM RINK More recently in northeast China, an ugly scene devel- oped when thousands of hockey fans who could not get tickets for a match involving a visiting Canadian team re- fused to allow the Chinese side to enter the stadium. On that occasion the author- ities were obliged to call out the local militia to restore or- der. The militia has come under scrutiny recently with the opening of an official cam- paign to build up its strength Banff hotel won't hire foreigners BANFF (CP) The Banff Springs Hotel has decided not to import Japanese, Mexican and European workers, Ivor Petrak, regional manager of CP Hotels says. The hotel's original plan to hire foreign workers during the tourist season, because of difficulties in hiring Canadian workers, was attacked by the Calgary Labor Council. Mr. Petrak said the decision not to hire 150 foreign workers on temporary work visas was not due to pressure from the labor council but due to "a new source of qualified staff." The labor council said the hotel had difficulties finding chamber maids and dining room staff because it was paying "slave wages." Mr Petrak said the hotel management is discussing with Manpower officials about plans to fill the jobs with Canadians. Save foam cushion back and seats In Slate, Brown or Blue stripe, Olefm. Sofa and chair. Reg. Smoked glass and chrome accent tables Table c-End Table Bunching table (not illustrated) S54.99 Plump. Comfy. 2-pc contemporary suite Save The super leather- look goes Spanish 699" 4-pc grouping teams Spanish styling with luxurious, wipe-clean Naugahyde vinyl with smashing results1 Foam padded pillow seats and backs, no- sag springs In Cranberry or Black. 4-pcs (sola, chair, loveseat and ottoman) Reg S779 98. Also sold sep Sofa S2M.99 Otto- man S59.99 Chair S1M.99 Loveseat Walnut finished tables. cocktail commode Hex commode (not ilius) Wow! The Paper Clip char fits Ike a teaflher glove! g-Super seating1 Gtearmng tJrrome frame with ioarn padded, high quality vinyl cover In Saddle Tan or Tctoaoco Brown Easy, slute-logeflier assembly 59" Simpsons-Sears Ltd all Simpsorjs-Sears you gefl tumflures finest guarantee MtisfMtkm or tnonty refunded and free delivery Slore Hours Open Daily 9 30 a rn to 5 30 p.m. Thursday and Friday 9 30 am 5o 9 00 p m. Centre Village Mail Telephone 328-9231 ;