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Smuggled News Out of Europe in Shaving Tube and Girls' Dresses


"Epidemics threaten to sweep over Europe this winter with no institutions to check them as the League of Nations did at the end of the last war," Serge Fliegers, now doing graduate work at the University and formerly a European war correspondent, stated last night.

"The Swiss-French border has already been closed, since the Swiss fear contamination from some mysterious epidemic which is eating into France at the present time. Nice has been closed to everybody because diphtheria has swept away more than half the Italian garrison there," he stated.

During the last war the League halted the spread of a pest epidemic emanating from Poland outward over Europe by rushing doctors, nurses, and medical supplies to the stricken areas. But now there is no organization internationally powerful enough to perform the same service.

Fliegers is taking post-graduate courses in economics and international relations with the intention of returning to Europe for one of the leading dailies next year.

"I learned recently that the reason why the Germans broke through Sedan was because Daladier had stationed all the Reds and Socialists in the army there so that they would be killed off first. At the beginning of the German advance the French soldiers turned. Five thousand had to be shot and 7,500 sentenced to Devil's Island before discipline could be restored. By that time the Germans had captured Sedan and were on their way to the coast."

Getting news out of Europe is no cinch, according to Fliegers. "My two agencies, the NNS and the ICP, are among the few who still get uncensored dispatches from the Axis-controlled countries.

"I have sent out news on thin paper rolled up and hidden in large-sized tubes of shaving cream or in girls' epaulettes.

"One story we had smuggled out that way was the one about the phenomenal rise in suicides among French Jews since the Nazi occupation. The bodies of many of these unfortunate people were found one morning floating in Marseilles harbor, and an obliging diplomat smuggled the news to Lisbon in his shaving kit next day."

After having studied at three foreign universities, Fliegers decides that he likes Harvard professors best. At present he is applying for citizenship papers.

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