October 16, 2018

1945. Reporters In Japan Limited By Networks

Updates on Foreign Correspondents in Occupied Japan
Bill Downs' Certificate of Identity issued on July 17, 1945
From Radio Daily, October 16, 1945, pp. 1, 5 [PDF]:
Reporters In Japan Limited By Networks

The four major U. S. webs will be allowed two correspondents each in Japan and one each in the Philippines effective Oct. 27, according to a directive issued by Gen. Douglas MacArthur which puts a ceiling on the number of newsmen of all media who will be permitted to remain in the areas under his command. The directive also reverts all correspondents to civilian status.

For MBS, Don Bell, now in Japan, will go to Manila as the web's correspondent in the Philippines. Bob Brumby, now vacationing after a tour in the Pacific, will go to Japan and will be joined by Jack Mahon who is now on his way home for a rest.

William J. Dunn and Bill Downs will cover for CBS in Japan while John Adams stays on as the web's representative in the Philippines.

Of NBC's crew in the area, George Thomas Folster and Guthrie Janssen are assigned to Nippon, with Joe Laitin in the Philippines. Merrill Mueller has returned from Japan and Joe R. Hainline is returning to the U. S. with units of the Pacific fleet.

American's correspondent under the new system will be Frederick B. Opper and Larry Tighe in Japan, and Dave Brent in the Philippines. Norman Paige has come back from Tokyo and John Hooley, recently from Manila, will probably go to Europe after a vacation.

MacArthur's order will permit one correspondent for the Australian Broadcasting Co. in Japan and one in the Philippines. BBC will be allowed two newsmen in Japan.
United Press article, August 1945:
Jap Jail for Unwanted Reporters Is Warning

New York — (UP) Bill Downs, Columbia Broadcasting System reporter on Okinawa, reported last night a warning from an American Air Transport Command general that war correspondents or anyone else who arrived with the air-borne occupation forces in Japan without official orders would be turned over to Japanese police at the airfield.

Downs said the general made the statement while addressing 200 men of his command at an Okinawa air strip. Several war reporters will in the group.

"You will take no war correspondents with you," the general told the crews. "Those are orders from General Headquarters."

Then, Downs reported, "the general made a peculiar statement for an American about to occupy Japan. He said, 'Any man found on their airfield without official orders to be there will be turned over to the Japanese police for safekeeping until the main body of our troops arrive.'"