WASHINGTON, April 18 (AP) —
Ernie Pyle is dead.
The famous little war correspondent, beloved alike of Doughboys and five-star generals, was killed Tuesday on Le Jima, a small island lying off Motobu Peninsula of Okinawa. His death was announced by Secretary of the Navy Forrestal and President Truman issued a statement of condolence.
"The nation is quickly saddened again by the death of Ernie Pyle,' Mr. Truman said. "No man in this war has so well told the story of the American fighting man as American fighting men wanted It told, x x x he deserves-the gratitude of all his countrymen."
Forrestal said Pyle was killed Instantly by Japanese machine gun fire while standing beside a regimental commanding officer.The secretary's statement said: "With deep regret the navy announces
the death on Le Shima (Jima) of Ernie Pyle whose reporting of this war endeared him to the -men of the armed forces throughout the world and to their families at home.
"He was killed instantly by Japanese machine gun fire while standing: beside the regimental commanding: officer of headquarters troop 77th division U. S.
army. At the time of his death, he was with the foot soldiers, the men for whom he had the greatest admiration.
Reds Within Sight Of Berlin
18 Miles From
By RICHARD KASISCHKE
LONDON, April 18 (AP)
German broadcasts declared today the battle for the eastern approaches to Berlin had "reached its climax," with Russians breaching defense lines only 18 or 20 miles from the capital, and that the Soviets had launched a third offensive south of Stettin aimed at linking with the Allies on the north German plain.
Front dispatches to Moscow asserted the Russians could see Berlin burning, but did not yet specify that any offensive was underway.
Nine Russians armies are smashing toward Berlin, the Germans said, conceding Red army gains through the strong hedgehog positions in the blazing arc east and
northeast of the bomb-shattered city.
The enemy declared Stalin had thrown in a third offensive on a 17-mile Oder river front south of Stettin, intending to slice in between that Baltic port and Berlin, and join the western Allies north and west of Berlin. This drive has assumed great dimensions, the broadcasts said.
Move Cuts Nazi
Forces In Half
By WILLIAM L. RYAN
Associated Press War Editor
Lt. Gen. George S. Patton's Third army entered Czechoslovakia today, slicing Germany in half, as the 90th division invaded Czechoslovakia northwest of Asch in the northwestern tip of the country. The Americans had dashed eight miles from the area of Hof, which is about 10 miles south of captured Plauen.
American First army troops cut to within 4,000 yards of the heart of Leipzig and
U. S. Seventh army men cleared half the Nazi shrine city of Nuernberg, while behind. the advances the German debacle in the Ruhr approached Stalingrad proportions. More than 309,000 prisoners have been taken from the pocket thus far by the Americans, with prospects for 50,000 more before the day was out
As Germany was halved geographically, although not yet strategically, and Allied armies pressed' relentlessly from the west, a Moscow dispatch 'said the Russians
could see burning Berlin.
The Germans said the Red army had exploded a new offensive on a 17-mile front south of Stettin in a drive to outflank Berlin and join, with the Allies on the north German plain.
Yanks Drive Into Japs'
Forts Hit Japan
By LEONARD MILLIMAN
Associated Press War Editor
Mud - spattered American Infantrymen drove into the outskirts of Baguio, Japaneseheadquarters from which Igorote tribesmen rescued 7,000 civilians, today while Superfortresses ripped up six airdromes in southern Japan for the second consecutive day.
No Japanese interceptors took off yesterday from the six air fields on Kyushu Island, bases for many of the 2,280 Japanese planes which Adm. Chester W. Nimitz announced have been destroyed in the last month during Okinawa
invasion operations, 325 miles south of Japan.
Wednesday communiques reported American planes on all Pacific fronts destroyed or damaged 29 more Japanese ships, hundreds of small craft, 15 locomotives