GRAF SPEE LEDTO DEATH TRAP
British Furnished Fuel toGerman Freighter, Then
Followed Ship to
SHATTERED HULKBLOCKING CHANNEL
Nazi Commander Reveals
Craft Was DisguisedSeveral Times In
By HAROLD K. MILKSMontevideo, Dec. 19 (AP)— Naval sources Intimated today the Admiral Graf Spee's encounter with three British warships in the south Atlantic was no accident, but really a trap that had British-sold fuel
The source said a German freighter attempted to buy oil from a British concern at an undisclosed Brazilian port 10 days before the engagement of last Wednesday. At first It was refused, but later was supplied on Instructions from headquarters.
Capt. Hans Langsdorf, commander of the German pocket battleship, said he was cruising off the coast of Brazil In search of a rendezvous with the supply ship Tacoma when he sighted the British cruiser] Exeter.Trapped By Cruisers
Turning southward, he found himself in the presence of two more British cruisers, the Ajax and Achilles. Lack of fuel forced him to fight at a disadvantage, the German commander told port authorities, and he eventually ran for cover in Montevideo, only to take his shell-battered ship out of port Sunday night and sink it with his own hands.
Some sources said the Admiral Graf Spee may actually have made a refueling contact before the battle, for in Buenos Aires last night Langsdorf jovially commented that he had possessed enough fuel to reach the coast of Spain If need be.
He declined to specify the amount, however, and observers who saw the ship enter Montevideo said Its position in the water confirmed his first story of scanty fuel.
BY RED PLANES
First Fair Weather In SeveralWeeks Gives Red
Air F o r c e Aid In
PLANE SHOT DOWN
NEAR SECOND CITY
Finnish Troops Reportedto Have Routed Large
Russian Forces In
Helsinki, Dec. 19 (#")—At least two Soviet bombers and possibly more were downed today during an air raid in which eleven bombs were dropped on a Helsinki suburb without damage. Seven Russian planes roared over Helsinki, hiding behind cloud-banks from volleys 6T anti-air-craft fire. They disappeared to the northwest and later only three were sighted returning. The bombs dropped harmlessly in fields outside suburban Malmi. -People Seek Shelter
When the sir raid sirens Bounded, residents of the capital poured quickly from restaurants and stores into shelters. Within three minutes the streets were cleared except for air raid wardens, soldiers and an occasional straggler.
The all-clear signal was sounded at 12:18 p. m. (5:18 a. m. EST).
Two minutes later the streets were crowded again. Peddlers of silvered evergreen branches were back at their posts. Big department stores were thronged with Christmas choppers, and the normal wartime tempo of life In the capital was resumed.
U.S. Neutral In Russo-FinnishWar—It Lends Finns Money
Washington—Little Finland is at war and under the neutrality act we. should hide our head under our wing and not see too much that might start our pulses beating. But what are we doing? We are helping the Finns fight the Russians as surely as we are alive. Our actions are masked only by the gossamer thread of procedure.
As soon as they were attacked by the Russians the Finns "recognized" the existence of a war, although without such ritualistic formality as that of the British and French in declaring war on Germany for invading Poland.
Yet we as a nation do not recognize the war. If we did, the neutrality law would go into effect and all Its rigors would be invoked against Finland Just as much as against Russia.
Already our ships are barred from going to Finland because of the combat zones at the mouth of the North Sea in connection with the other part of the European war which we formally recognize. But if the neutrality act Is not Invoked credit can go. And it is going.$10,000,000 Loan
Jesse Jones, as chairman of the Federal loan Agencies has announced that the Export-Import Bank will make $10,000,000 available to Finland. The President has approved it, of course, as no such phenomenal action would be taken unless he were willing.
It is specifically stated that the money will be used to help rid the United States of agricultural surpluses and to make other "civilian
supplies available to Finland. But to Finland a dollar's worth of food for civilians is worth, almost as much as a dollar's worth of bullets.
Every dollar we send to feed Finnish civilians will release a Finnish dollar to buy munitions. Even more important, the act in itself is as stimulating as a pot of coffee to a chilled soldier in a snowdrift.