FUTURIAN WAR DIGEST - Issue 10 (Vol. 1, Number 10) Jul. 1941

On June 14th, Roosevelt ordered the freezing of all German and Italian assets, which led to those countries immediately expelling US consuls, while on the 17th the RAF revealed that "radio location" had been Britain's key weapon against German bombers, the first public acknowledgement of the existence of radar.

The big news in June however was Hitler breaking the Nazi-Soviet pact and, on the 22nd, launching a massive invasion of Russia with 100 army divisions along a 1,800 mile front that stretched from the Arctic to the Black Sea.

Distributed with this issue:

THE GENTLEST ART #8 - ed. Douglas Webster - 4 pages
TIN TACKS #5 - ed. Don Doughty - 2 pages

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NEWSLETTER.......... ........................................................... ...........................................ODDMENTS

First item to report this month is news of James Rathbone, who has been wandering round the near East. His letter gives as address c/o Imperial Communications, Durban, South Africa; but is postmarked from London, England - so he has arrived home again. However, he is at present in hospital with some sort of nervous trouble . We wish him a speedy recovery; especially as he and the girl he left behind, Miss Rita Pitman, are waiting anxiously to get married:
Incidentally a round-about item of news about Harold Gottliffe via the ordinary press, was that his hospital. ship was unsuccessfully bombed during the affair round Crete. No casualities was the report.

Two changes of address: Hugh John Ellis of Barrow-in-Furness joins the gallant ranks of the bombed-out; new address is Berkune Cottage, Lindal- in-Furness, Lancs. And S.A.Beach leaves Aberystwyth for 18 Coychurch Rd, Bridgend, Glamorgan.

More Service news: William Frederick (Woof) Temple, after spending a leave with wife and family in Cornwall, is now in a Field Regt in Monmouth "not doing at all badly; Mostly Scots, Hoots, What's ma haggis". And Signalman E. C .Williams has now arrived in Llandudno for the nonce.

The visiting season has commenced. Eric Needham of Manchester & Eric Hopkins of London had a minor convention of their own, wandered all round the metropolis, discussed everything under the sun and made an unsuccessful call on Arthur Williams.

Eric Williams (this is getting a bit confusing) did manage to find both Arthur Williams (no relationship) & Ken Bulmer in during his recent leave in London and all three had a grand free-for-all discussion. "Renny" Rennison of Blackburn visited Bert Lewis in Preston & spent a day investigating Bert's beautiful collection. Both enjoyed the exchange of views. Ron Lane and Harry Turner, both of Manchester, met for the first time recently - there is a possibility of an stf. club (very informal) for Manchester, being formed.

Ron Holmes appeared before his local C.O. tribunal this month. Verdict land work, ambulance or civil defence.

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L o n d o n l e t t e r

As a result of a chain-letter recently sent around to them, half-a dozen London fans are now in touch with one another.

Tom Dovey; new fan-find of Sidney Bounds, reveals himself an enthusiastic cave-explorer, and met myself and two other cavers last week. Raises query; any other fans interested in speleology? Over Whitsun I visited deserted lead mine workings in Mendip Hills, source of Roman pipes in baths of Bath, reputably Phoenician in origin. Am.going to spend a seven days leave caving In South Wales.

Sidney L. Birchby
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FORT'S BOOKS REPRINTED !!!

The Fortean Society of America announces that in collaboration with Henry Holt & Co., they have reprinted all of Charles Fort's epoch- making books, in a single volume together with a complete & exaustive index. The price is 4 dollars post- paid anywhere in the world. The four books in question are "The Book of the Damned", "New Lands", "Lo!", "Wild Talents" and all try to show Fort's ideas of the incorrectness of modern science's interpretation of the universe. We hope that this edition will be available in Britain.

Other Booknews
A new series-of shilling paper- backs has been issued by Messrs Methuen. The first 12 numbers contain two widely differing fantasies, namely "The Jovial Ghosts" by Thorne Smith, which is one of the Topper series, a hilarious Rabelaisian farce: and "The Wind in the Willows" by K. Grahame, a childrens book of the Alice-in-Wonderland school.

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FIRST "SYDCON" A SUCCESS !!!

Australian fandom held its first convention on April 13th - Easter Sunday -- at Sydney. The idea was first mooted in the fanzine Cosmos, & Vol Molesworth and William D.Veney took the arrangements in hand. The usual Aussie squabbling then occurred but at the last minute feuding was forgotten and all Austra-fandom united to stage a worthwhile affair.

Notable features of the occasion were; the entrance procession with the Sydney, Melbourne and Newcastle groups all carrying banners, auction sale of all sorts of stf miscellania, David R. Evans, guest of honour summing up Autralian fan activities from the very beginning; gramaphone interludes and the popularity of the Things To Come march, and the banquet at the Hotel Australia.

The attendance reached the staggering total of 67, which certainly reflects great credit on all concerned, and compares favourably with American conventions.

An edition of 500 copies of a special booklet had been prepared and was reported to be sold out. Eric F Russell said that 250 copies were sold in Australia, 150 sent to USA, and another 100 sent to British fans. So far this latter batch has not turned up but we hope for its appearance soon.

A great deal of friendliness and fraternisation took place and many people now feel that they know others, who a short while ago, were nothing more than names. Everybody present enjoyed the affair thoroughly and are looking forward to next years "Melbention" or Melbourne convention; which the Melbourne group had been plugging vigorously during the day, including the singing of a specially written anthem.

The convention was officially declared closed at 10p.m. and all fans gave three cheers for the committee who had spent so much time and money in arranging the entire affair.

.............courtesy, Australian S.F. News.

DAVE MCILWAIN CALLED UP

Liverpool's David McIlwain received his papers to the Royal Air Force on Saturday, June 28th, so by now he will be in the service. He wishes all his correspondents to note that he would prefer them to hold up all letters until they hear from him, so as to avoid congestion in the McIlwain billet, until such time as he is more or less settled down. But fanmags etc., will be ok, as he still wishes to keep up with fanews.

This of course, means an end to PAN Publications, though they were probably entirely finished off by the "blitzing" of printer Reggie Potter. So until after the war we must say - - farewell "Garge".
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A Note To American Fan Editors

We are now working out a system whereby the maximum value is obtained out of any extra copies of fanzines which wend their way in this direction. A second copy goes around fellow FIDO editors and at the moment a "chain" is being made up so as to circulate any third copies of mags amongst the main body of subscribers so that if you are good enough to send three copies of your magazine to this address, anywhere up to 50 people will read it. This will give fanzines a tremendous jump in actual circulation. There are difficulties, in arranging to pass comments on to editors but we hope to arrange it.

Incidentally would Britishers who would like to receive such mags etc., and will guarantee to pass them on within three days, please inform either Jack Gibson or myself.
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Latest News of James Rathbone, just received is that he. is now in Bellesdyke Military Hospital, Larbert, Scotland.
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Jack Gibson hopes to be able to include a complete list of the books & magazines available in his Science- Fiction Exchange, to be incorporated in the August mailing.

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AN INTERESTING ARTICLE
"Mars and the Monroe Doctrine"

- "Reflections on some recent changes in American Public Opinion", by Gavin B. Henderson, is an article of considerable sciencefictional interest. It appeared in "Chambers Journal" for May '41. Mr Henderson points out that American public opinion has been "influenced not so much by leading articles in the principle dailies as by a type of literature so worthless and ephemeral that it has received little attention". The trash in question being 'the "pulps". He is connerned largely with the Science Fiction Magazines (he spells it with capitals throughout!) The claim is that it is stf, (along with President Roosevelt) that has been responsible for the mass swing-over of opinion in America from complete isolationism to a move or less active interventionist mood.

Stf. it appears, has worked this wonder, by hammering home the lesson that "Machine warfare has done one notable thing already. It has killed off the possibility of isolation for a nation, and made the invasion of far-off lands almost as easy as those nearby". This he quotes from "Wonder Stories" for March '32. Brer Henderson cites story after story from Astounding, Wonder, and Amazing featuring war and invasion and destruction, from "The Death Cloud" (Astounding, May '31) to "The Invisible Invasion" (Amazing, April'39).

Its really quite a nice little boost for stf. especially in such an unexpected place. Such sentences as "These stories are a riot of undisciplined imagination, and only rarely have the slightest literary value" are probably a concession to the readers of Chamber's Journal. His sympathetic interest in stf. in reasonably plain. Rather a pity he didn't manage to work in a reference to Tales of Wonder .....R. G. Medhurst

Since the appearance of this article we have been in touch with Mr. Henderson who says, "My approach to the subject is perhaps rather different from yours. I am a historian, and primarily interested in foreign policy; But of latter years public opinion has played a greater and greater part in moulding foreign policy; and I am therefore necessarily interested in the various things that influence public opinion - including Science Fiction. This influence has, of course been much greater in the U.S.A. than here. It is not a topic in which, so far as I know, any work has yet been done; and I wrote my little essay to try to persuade some American student to get on to the subject."

This certainly opens up an interesting vista worthy of some thought on our part. Incidentally Mr Henderson would be pleased if anyone could inform him of some good stf collections which could be accessible to him the neighbourhood of Glasgow, where he lives.

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MAGAZINE REVIEW

"STIRRING SCIENCE STORIES" Vol.1, No.3, June 1941
This magazine is certainly showing promise,- its semi-fan line-up gives it a freedom from, formula greatly to be commended. No less than 14 stories in this number, all interesting but in my humble opinion the fantasy section is far superior to the science fiction. Best tale is "Mr Packer Goes to Hell"- Cecil Corwin, surely one of the strangest underworlds ever portrayed in fiction followed by "Martian Fantasy" by Henry Andrew Ackermann;- "The Silence". Venard McLanghlin and "Karzan Collects"- S.D.Gottesman- all of a very high standard. Other stories are by A,J.Burkes, Walter C. Davies, Hugh Raymond, Basil Wells, Walter Kubilus, R.W.Lowndes, and D.H.Keller. Bouquets to Hannes Bok for his fine art work.
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BOOK REVIEWS.......... ........................................................... .................................. by BERT LEWIS

There are three books of note for my review this month tho' I'm afraid this is a little delayed owing to pressure of my own work; all these books hewever are quite worthy of note.

The first is by Rex Warner, many of you will, no doubt, remember his "Wild Goose Chase", his latest effort is of a different type and quite topical in a way. The book is called "The Aerodrome" (Bodley Head 7/6) and tho' sub-titled "a love story, bears no resemblance to the kind of romance those three words usually describe. It is much more than a love story; it is a grim fantasy and a grimmer warning of what might happen in this country, were a Fascist regime to sieze power. It bites deep and possesses a rare individuality, it is not a comfortable book, some of it will shock, with its cold sincerity and colder logic and demands, for its author's place amongst the present day writers who are producing somathing really new. It centres in a typical English village, where the "enemy" Air Force takes over the local aerodrome in its ruthlessly efficient way and the village is reduced to something like slavery.

The second story by Morchard Bishop is "The Star Called Wormwood" (Gollancz 8/-), is a fantastic satire directed against all wars. This also is a book which may well make some people feel uncomfortable, as the author sets about his task, not hesitating to bring in the ecclesiastical as well as human affairs. The result is a curious compound of Wellsian adventure and caustic commentary, during which an unlettered rustic from early Victorian days, finds himself transported to the world of A.D. 2839, in the company of shades of Coleridge and Blake, being gradually made aware of the, to him, almost incredible stupidities of modern man at war.

Ths third book is only reviewed in brief as, up to the time of writing only little in known of the contents, here it is for what it is worth; "Invasion" by Henrik Van Loon (Harrap 5/-) the book is supposed to have been written by Van Loon, who, in 1960, discovers his old manuscripts of a Nazi invasion of the United States in the early 1940s, the story in written contemporarily, its place in S.F. lists is very obvious.

-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-

WE WANT TO SAY that this issue is respectfully dedicated to Mr Douglas Webster of Aberdeen, who so kindly provided Fido's rapacious maw with 2 reams of paper which we are using for this issue.

We must apologise for uhwittingly conveying inaccurate information last month in the momentous question of chain-letters. Apparently the idea was originated by Ego Clarke, who discussed it by post with several other people, whereupon Hal Chibbett brought out the "Probe" letter on the idea that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
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The elegant and elite periodical publiaction you are now perusing is entitled FUTURIAN WAR DIGEST and is devoted to fantasy fiction. Generally known as "FIDO", it is published monthly from 4 Grange Terrace, Leeds 7 by & J. Michael Rosenblum; @3d. per copy, 3/- per year postfree. Amercans can remit promags to the value of 75 cents in lieu of cash. Thanks are due to those worthy souls who are responsible for the accompanying "litter.
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QUIZ : NUMBER TWO .......... ........................................................... ......... compiled by Arthur W. Busby

  1. When did Street & Smith take over Astounding from Claytons?
  2. The principal theme of H. G.Wells book "Wheels of Chance" is --?
  3. Give three feminine authors who have written for either Ast. or Amazing
  4. Fort's "Lo!" was serialised in Astounding some years ago. What are his other books?
  5. Who is the British Secretary of the Fortean Society of America?
  6. What degree does Stanton A. Coblentz hold ?
  7. When did Astounding first publish: i. In Time to Come, ii, Mutants?
  8. When was an editorial from The New York Times reprinted in an SF mag?
  9. What day did the great Stanley G. Weinbaum die ?
  10. S.G.Weinbaum wrote a story under a pen-name. Title & pseudonym please.
  11. What Astounding stories featured a.Billiards,b.Baseball,c.American football?
  12. Bill Temples first published fantasy story was ?
  13. What are the following by profession 1. Willy Ley, 2. L. Sprague DC Camp, 3. John A. Clark ?
  14. An author invented a fictitious character only to be informed later that there was a person of that name actually engaged on the work the author depicted. What was 1.Author 2. Story 3. Occupation 4. Character
  15. Chan Corbett wrote a a story called "When Time Stood Still". Another author used the same title ?
There's the little lot. See what you make of 'em. Answers next month. ::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o ::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::o::
PERSONAL COLUMN

Postcard from chez McIlwain informs us that a gramaphone record from 4e Ackerman has just arrived. Entitled "Hola al Halivudo" it is a talk in Esperanto. Would any fan studying Esp-o and who would like the loan of the record, let me know.

Wanted; Chess Set. Julian Parr,26 Edward St., Shelton, Stoke-on-Trent.

Warwick Hockley, 183 Domain Rd,Sth Yarra, SE1, Melbourne, Australia, will be "darn glad to hear, from British friends who'd care to write.

During the last month letters have been received from E .C .Hopkins ,A.C . Clarke, T.Overton, H.Villa, A.Dewick, H.J.Ellis, D.J.Doughty & J.Banks to which I fear I shall be unable to reply. Other people I have tried to answer. One new FGPOer only: Robert J. Silburn of Aberystwyth.

UNKNOWN (American editions) May & Dec. '40 @ 1/6 each. Write first to Edwin MacDonald, 25 Dochfour Drive, Inverness, Scotland.

STOP-PRESS

I an extremely sorry to have to report that the continuation of FIDO is once again in jeopardy. This is due to the new Act recently passed by parliament which makes conscientious objectors who have received a conditional exemption, such as I have, liable to be called up any time; at three days notice, for anything the government decides is "civil defence" and to serve anywhere. There is no appeal of any sort and the only alternative is presumably jail.

I have already received a "general" type of notice and might not hear any more. However should I get a second "call-up" notice, I fear that will be the end of FIDO.

Careful accounts are kept of all. subscriptions and should the worst occur, all money paid will be retuned at the earliest opportunity.

Let us hope that is the end of the matter but if FIDO doesn't turn up at any you will know what has happened.

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