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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - September 29, 1971, Lethbridge, Alberta Wedneidny, September 11, THE IETHBR1DC! HERALD 9 John Burns Cancelled parade: great China puzzle pEKING Speculation that the national day parado was cancelled because Chair- man Mao TsG-Lung would have been unable to allend was countered by a senior offical the Chinese foreign ministry, who was quoted hy diplomatic sources as saying that the chair- man is in presently good health. The official was reported to have made the remark in reply to questions about the chair- man which were put to him at a reception marking the nation- al day of the African Republic of Mali. The reception was one of the best attended in months, a must event for diplomats and correspondents searching for dues to what is fast becoming the number one riddle of the year. t After making their rounds most of the searchers came away as perplexed as they were on arrival, for on this is- sue there appear to be no dip- lomatic insiders. The major development of the day was the emergence of an official line on the cancella- tion from the foreign ministry, which answered some inquiries by saying thai it was "a re- form" and others by describing it as "an economy measure." Observers on the spot found loth explanations unconvincing for a number, of reasons. Prin- cipal among them was the fact that the parade was called off after weeks of preparations, which seemed to indicate that there hat] been some unexpect- ed snag. In the circumstances it was to be expected that the most active speculation would centre on the person o; the chairman if only because all the other theories which were put about seemed to fall so far short of accounting for the cancellation. And yet it would be foolhardy to lay any bets on the basis of the speculation, for commenta- tors have been altogether too prone in recent years to fall back on speculation about the chairman's health when con- fronted hy developments that they have been otherwise iui- able to explain. Observers here cannot help recalling how the 77-year-old loader dropped out of sight al- ter the national day celebra- tions in But he confound- ed those who concluded that his health must have failed by re- appearing nearly ten months laler and going for his now famous swim in the Yangste. This time the chairman has been out of sight for less than two months, for The People's Daily pictured him greeting Burmese leader Ne Win in Pek- ing as recently as August 8. People who were at thai meet- ing say he appeared to be in good health then and there is absolutely no evidence to sug- gest that there has been any deterioration since. Jn fact, the evidence rather indicates the contrary, for the foreign minister official had hardly made his remark at the Mali reception before testi- mony of the chairman's con- tinuing good health became available from quite another quarter. Doctor Paul Dudley While, an eminent U.S. cardiologist who is visiting China at the in- vitation of the Chinese medical association, told me that the Chinese doctors who have been his hosts in Peking have as- sured him that the chairman is in excellent condition. When approached, Doctor White had not even heard that the parade had been cancelled. In fact there was little way that he could have known, since there has still been no public announcement of it by the Chinese, and those who have discussed it with foreign- ers are distinctly reticent. A full 24 hours after the story broke the foreign min- istry finally prepared a state- ment for correspondents, which was read over the telephone to those who inquired. "There wiJJ be no ceremonial activities in Peking on national day this the statement said. "There will be no parade during the day and no fire- works at night. There will only be celebrations in the parks. This is a reform that we have made." Asked to explain why the re- gime had suddenly decided to cancel a spectacle which has been the premier event on the Chinese calendar since the founding of the republic in 1949, a foreign ministry official re- peated the wording of the state- ment. "All I can say is that this is a he said. When 1 asked why the reform had not been instituted weeks ago, before tens of thousands of people had been marshalled into rehearsals, I drew another blank. After all, there had been rehearsals, day after day for weeks, hadn't there? "Is that the official deadpanned. More than anything else, it was the irrefutable fact of the rehearsals including massed marches, dummy runs hy half- finished floats, and tests of communications equipment which made official explana- tions seem unconvincing. In some ways, it would be consistent with stale policy for UK parade to be reformed after an unbroken run of 21 years, for it is an undeniably showy affair for a country that sets such store by modesty and thrift. A start in this direction had already been made on July one, when the fiftieth anniver- sary of the founding of the Communist parly was allowed to pass without major cere- monies of any kind. But if this were the policy, why wait until two weeks be- fore national day on October one before cancelling the pa- rade? Similar objections can be made against the explanation given to several inquiring em- bassies, which was that consid- erations of economy had prompted the decision to aban- don the parade. One diplomat who enjoys un- usually good relations with the Chinese said that the parade had been described to him as "a needless expenditure of time and money." "They say that dropping the fireworks and the parade will save them two and one half million dollars" the diplomat said. But if so, why wait until mil- lions of manhours and no small amount of money had been spent on rehearsals before abandoning the whole affair? The argument given the diplo- mat that orders issued months ago by the Communist party's central committee fail- ed to reach the parade organi- zers is hardly compelling. Dissatisfied with the official line, observers here have done some thinking of their own, and came up with two other pos- sible explanations, neither of them very plausible. One is that the national peo- ple's congress, China's Parlia- ment, is about to convene for Ihe first lime since 19H. Those who favor this theory suggest that the lop leaders, in- cluding Mao, would be loo busy participating in the congress to have time for a parade. Since the parade takes only two hours, and the chairman rarely remains for all of that, the argument is scarcely con- vincing. The second theory is that there has been a sudden and very deep split in the top eche- lons of the party, making it impossible for the nation's leaders to appear together in public at this time. The trouble with this is that the party gives every appear- ance of being united behind the chairman. And in any event, it showed during the Cultural He- volution years that the deepest splits need not stand in the way of the national day parade. All in all, it is a perplexing situation, and one that is not likely to resolve ilself very soon. At the moment it looks as though the best hope of enlight- enment lies in Emperor Ilaile Selassie of Ethiopia, who is due to arrive here for a state visit on October six, and even he may not be of much help. In recent memory, the chair- man has made a practice of greeting every head of state to visit Pelting. It would be re- markable if he did not extend the same recognition to the em- peror, one of the more signifi- cant of recent newcomers to the fold of China's friends. (Herald Peking Bureau) BRAND NAME MEN'S CLOTHING WAREHOUSE LOCATION OWEN DISTRIBUTING LTD. WAREHOUSE 1216 1st Ave. 5. Thursday 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Friday 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday 9a.m.-6 p.m. BRAND NAMES: Clinton and Michael Stern. Sizes 36 lo 44. Single, Double breasted, three piece, 2 piece.. Various shades. Merchandise may be exchanged, no cash refunds SHIRTS BRAND NAMES: BVD, Tooke Van Heusen, Harraday, I. Mil- ler. Dales of Montreal, Cortez of California. Styles and Colors: Non-button down, button down, body shirts, dreis thirls, iports shirts. Sizes: small, medium, large. Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4 Sale Sale Sale 3-99 5-99 Sob SWEATERS BRAND NAMES: Rendole, Cnldwell, Patrick Peele, Arijtocror, High- land Knir, Wolssy, Shelby. Styles; Cardigan, V-neck, crew neck, alpaca, norvyk ski sweaters, skin- ny knits, rib knits. Sizes: Small, Medium, Large and XL. .95 .95 EXAMPIE: Alpnctci V-ncck. Reg. Sale Norvyk Ski sweaters Reg. Solo A good selection of inserted sweaters. Regular to Solo priced at 15 4 DRESS CASUAL SLACKS BRAND NAMES: H.I.S., G.W.G., Ballin, Millar Legs. Slyles: Straight leg, flared leg, low rise, medium rise. Wool, poly- ester and wool. Wash and wear. Colors: Plain colors, Stripes, Chccki. Sizos: 28 waisr to 36 waist. EXAMPLES: G.W.G, wool Rag. Salt H.I.S. casual. Rog. Sale........ One special lablo asserted sizes, stylos and colon QQ Salo priced nl 61" ed tr 2 JEANS BRAND NAMES: H.I.S., G.W.G., Mnlibu, Wrangler. Styles; Snap button blue denim, but- ton fly denim. Canvas jeans. While button fly jeani, Wide wale cordu- roy, flared legs. Sizes: 28 to 26 waist EXAMPLE: Sculptured denim leant. Reg. Sale Wide wala cord loan. QQ Rog. I H.I.S. Blue Jean M QQ Reg. TT JACKETS BRAND NAMES: Aljac, Ulox, CroH, Great Things. Slyles: Norfolk, double breasted, single breasted safari, Split cowhido, suedei, Wet look, canvas look, denim look. EXAMPLES: Split Cowhide Jockot. Reg. Sals Wei Look Safari Jacket. Reg. 29.95 Sale............ Suftdfli ul low ai 27" 15" 24 PRESENTED BY PRINCETON CLOTHING LTD. OF LETHBRIDGE Fewer students a good thing The Ottawa Journal were the usual alarmist cries this spring of not enough space in On- tario's universities lo accommodate all the qualified students seeking admission. Now the alarm is on Hie other side: there may bo empty seats in many in- stitutions. Only Queen's University and Uie main campus of the University of Toronto are reported lo be fully booked. Graduate schools throughout Uie province are not- ing fewer applicants, except in medicine and law. The cut-back in provincial aid lo grad- uate students is one reason. But under- graduate schools are noticing the same trend: fewer younger students than ex- pected are signing up for courses in the arts and sciences, Uie bread-and-buller faculties of the universities. The development is entirely healthy, whatever the reasons. Some universities will go into the red because lower enrol- ments mean less provincial grants. Yet in the end education quality will be better served if arts and science courses are not used as havens for stu- dents who should receiving specific vo- cational and technical training. The community colleges which offer Una kind of education show encouraging signs of losing the undeserved reputation of be- ing places lo go for those wlio couldn't make a full-fledged university. Many of them report greater Ulan expected regis- trations. Perhaps the stories of unemployed PhDs and surpluses of qualified teachers have had a salutary shock value. It is time thai students were being lorced to make a more realistic appraisal of their own educational aims and capacities. The whole educational establishment could use a good shaking down. Fewer students may be just the way lo get rid of the excess administrations and faculties as well as the registration rolls. The Telegram's troubles By Claude Ryan in Lc Devoir ils controversial report on the mass media, the Senate committee, chaired by Keith Davey, concluded economic laws inexorably favored an evolution towards open or disguised monopoly situa- tions in Uie daily newspaper field. The committee added in the case of To- ronto this sybiline observation which today appears prophetic: "The only factor which, in itself, could destroy a newspa- per like The Telegram would be that ad- vertisers come to believe that The Tele- gram is a second newspaper in many homes. In such a case, they would refuse to advertise at a high cost, in The Tele- gram and its slice of the advertising mar- ket would without doubt crumble pitiably." George McCuIlough and John Bassett had dreamed of producing a high quality newspaper. In several respects, success crowned their efforts. Notwithstanding this progress, The Star continued, under the rigorous direction of Beland Honderich, to increase its lead over The Telegram. The Telegram in 1969 and 1970 was hit with, losses of the order of million a year, A deficit at least as great was fore- seen for 1371. Faced with these (acts, John Bassett decided lo cease publication soon. One can deplore ths unilateral, sud- den, apparently irrevocable character Uiis decision. In a foreseeable gesture, Ihe president o[ The Star deplored the and declared his own newspaper acknowledged the add- ed responsibility which falls on it. These propositions cannot take the place of the guarantee of liberty and diversity which tfie presence of two rival organs In the same field of activity represented. The Telegram has not yet closed its doors. Before the decision is put into effecl, is it not possible at least to give its contributors, as well as other groups, a chance for a last examination? For the Montreal public, this develop- ment in the richest region of the country invites reflection. How long can the three French-language newspapers which compete in the morning field continue