Giessen, Germany (Hesse)
Dear Mudder and Dad,
I hope that you will forgive me for not writing for the last several days but again it’s the same old story. I’m not receiving any letters from you. The Stars and Stripes makes claims about the bad weather and all that but I believe that it is just a case of slow and careless handling by the postal authorities over here. The mail seems to come in bunches which leads me to believe that somewhere they just leave it lie around until they have so much that they must get rid of it.
The day before yesterday they dropped a bombshell in here by ordering the release of all prisoners who are not SS or Gestapo. We didn’t think that the release of general prisoners would start before next March and then we thought that Nazi Party members would be held for further screening. Evidently this is being done to reduce the number of troops needed for the occupation. Of course this is okay with us but it sure came suddenly. Most of the men will be discharged under contract to the government so they will hold their present jobs. I can’t say that I blame them. To use an old army axiom, “They never had it so good.” When they work for the US they are sure of one thing anyway and that’s three squares a day. The people here are just beginning to realize how fortunate they are to live in the US Zone of Germany. The big German military hospital near here is beginning to fill up with patients from the Russian zone and Poland. I can’t say that the Germans aren’t getting exactly what they’ve always asked for but when I see some of the poor wrecks of humanity that they bring in over there I can’t help but feel a great pity for them. That’s the trouble with these people over here. They think that two wrongs make a right somehow. It’s always an eye for an eye and hate triumphant marches on. To all these people we remain the great enigma. They don’t understand us so they fear us all the more. I wonder if they will ever wake up.
This change in policy rather confuses the situation in regards to our status. Most of us will be entering the redeployment pipe line within a month so there is not much sense moving us somewhere else unless they bring some low pointers to take our places. According to the schedule I must be at sea by April 15th. That means I must be in my carrier unit by March 15th at the very latest. It might be March 1st even. Fifty-three pointers are on the move now so you can figure it out for yourself. On the 4th of April I will be eligible for discharge on both points and length of service.
I’m sure happy now that I didn’t push that OCS business. I’d be stuck for another couple of years—WHOOOEEE!
The weather over here has been amazing for the last few weeks. There hasn’t been a sign of snow nor rain for that matter. The Krauts don’t know what to make of it. They said that the winter of 1937 was very warm and dry but nothing like this. It’s swell with me if everything stays the same all winter.
I sure hope that I get some mail tomorrow. It sure won’t hurt my feelings if I get a whole fist full even. I hate the feeling of being cut off from home. I suppose these mail clerks don’t give a damn.
Things must be in a great muddle at home. In today’s S&S there is a picture of a guy looking at a sign with “LA city limits” on it and a no vacancy sign above it. The impression is getting around over here that things in the states are pretty rough. Of course such a wide spread belief wouldn’t hurt the army recruiting drive any.
That’s about the whole story for today.