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A political crisis in Poland was sparked by the first student protests seen in that nation since its Communist takeover. The March 4 expulsion of dissidents Adam Michnik and Henryk Szlajfer from the University of Warsaw was protested in a rally that attracted more than 5,000 students. The peaceful rally was broken up by a state-mobilized "worker squad".After word of the police crackdown spread, protests continued at Warsaw for three weeks and spread to the campuses of the state universities in Krakow, Poznan, Lublin, Wroclaw and other cities.
Richard Crossman, The Diaries of a Cabinet Minister, Vol2, p700
Yesterday's papers were dominated by the success of the Cambridge Left in nearly breaking up Denis Healey's meeting [Minister of Defence] as effectively as they'd broken up the Prime Minister's meeting a few weeks ago...
I think that at the old universities part of the trouble comes because everybody is a student now, not an undergraduate. We have vastly inflated the student population and brought into our universities hundreds of people who haven't got middle-class backgrounds or bookish backgrounds and who really don't know how to spend three years studying. We have, in fact, enlarged our universities too rapidly with the result that we're getting a number of students who can't become undergraduates or assimilate into university life.
New Hampshire shows the way
Through his courageous and impressively successful campaign in the New Hampshire presidential primary, Senator McCarthy has performed a priceless service to the United States. He has restored the increasing American misgivings over the Vietnam war to their proper place in a democracy—in the forefront of the political debate. Whatever happens to his own political fortunes between now and the Democratic convention (and he would be the last man to make extravagant claims) the growing number of Americans who see the Vietnam war as a tragic mistake have gained a powerful place in the election forum. Senator McCarthy's achievement is ominous for President Johnson, of course, but not only for him. It places Senator Robert Kennedy in a position of the most acute difficulty. Until recently he has been his brother's natural heir as the leader of the idealistic young; by standing aside from the New Hampshire primary he placed this legacy in jeopardy. It is plain now that McCarthy gained his support to a striking extent from, and through the efforts of, the very sections of society which not long ago looked to Kennedy. After Tuesday's vote the defections from Kennedy will multiply. No commander, certainly not Kennedy, can afford to remain inactive when he sees his armies deserting him by whole regiments, and it may well be that Kennedy will join the presidential race not only in the hope of supplanting. Mr Johnson this year, but in order to preserve his own future in public life.
For anyone to think of deposing a president from within his own party is, of course, to go against history. Mr Johnson retains what still looks like overwhelming strength to deploy at the Democrats' convention. But the McCarthy triumph, is an amazing event in itself : after that, all customary certainties appear more frail. One question which Democratic politicians will try to answer now is, how much of the McCarthy vote was grounded on nothing more sophisticated than a plain distaste for the record and style of LBJ? The President's fallen popularity could be the determining factor in many an electoral calculation. It might also be an added spur to Senator Kennedy.
Mr Nixon emerges from this contest with the fewest questions to answer. He gathered overwhelming Republican support and left his nearest rival, Governor Rockefeller, with only the dimmest of prospects. Once again in his extraordinary career he has the scent of victory. But, as he knows better than any man, there are innumerable difficult corners still to negotiate. At least there is now a real chance of a new president in 1968, of one party or the other. And this would provide the best hope of all of a new flexibility over Vietnam.
The Czechoslovakian Communist Party's Politburo voted to institute a process of political rehabilitation for party members who had been purged from their jobs during the 1950s.
As the United States sought to maintain the price of $35.20 per ounce for gold to maintain the value of the British pound by selling gold reserves to the United Kingdom, unprecedented purchases were made on the international gold selling markets; $400,000,000 worth of gold was sold in a single day on the London Gold Exchange. The United States requested that trading on the London Gold Market be suspended, and the market was temporarily closed the next day. The London "gold pool" would be closed permanently three days later.
The Second Reading vote was taken and we moved on to the first amendment. It was while we were dealing with this at 11 p.m. that I got the first message from Michael Halls saying that the P.M. wanted to talk to me. I went up to my room and over the phone he told me there was a major international crisis: the whole liquidity system was in suspense and the Americans had asked us to close the gold market. He had decided that we must have a Bank Holiday, and for that we needed a Privy Council [a formal meeting with the Queen]. Would I want to go to the Palace? I said straightaway that I didn’t want to go. I’d prefer to stay on the front bench and see the guillotine debate through…
It was a typical post-prandial guillotine debate. The Tories were making long and amusing speeches to each other and celebrating the Kensington by-election result which had just been announced. As there is never anything new to be said such a debate is always artificial and it usually degenerates into violent personal abuse of the Leader of the House and the Minister in charge of the Bill. Somewhere near midnight George Brown [the Foreign Secretary] came wandering in, sat down on the front bench and leant across to me and said “What’s all this I hear?” And I said “I’ve known for some time that something is up because I am Lord President.” He got very angry at this…
There was obviously trouble in the offing. But I was determined to get that guillotine motion through and at last we got onto the second amendment. This was due to take another couple of hours and in the middle of it the Tories tried to move progress, i.e. to abandon the debate. It was actually while one of them was moving progress that the news appeared on the tape of the Privy Council meeting at Buckingham Palace. At this Parliament began to get out of control. The Tories all jumped to the conclusion that the pound had been devalued and most of our people feared the same thing… During the vote on the second motion Heath and Willie Whitelaw [leading the Opposition] got hold of me and said “We can’t control our people here unless you get Roy Jenkins [Chancellor of the Exchequer] over here tonight.” I had to think quickly and immediately I rang up the Prime Minister to tell him the House of Commons was collapsing into complete disorder and that I was going to announce that in forty-five minutes he and Roy Jenkins would be in their places ready to make a Statement. Somewhat to my surprise he agreed at once over the phone, and the House immediately became quiet once I made this announcement.
Somewhere near midnight George Brown came wandering in, sat down on the front bench and leant across to me and said “What’s all this I hear?” And I said “I’ve known for some time that something is up because I am Lord President.” He got very angry at this…
BOBBY GETS IT WRONG
New York—Senator Robert Kennedy leaves the starting-gate lamed. There has been some- thing curiously adolescent about his withdrawal for the last six months; his sudden reappearance as a candidate for President was a continuous endurance of the scene where the adolescent struggles to find a useful answer to the question of why he came home so late. Our inquiries and his replies could-all be summarised in the title of a minor classic about American boyhood: 'Where did you go? Out. What did you do? Nothing.'
So he has had to begin by explaining and apologising. It is more than a year since he and Mr Johnson had the famous quarrel at whose conclusion the President is supposed to have said: 'I never want to hear your views on Vietnam again. I never want to see you again.' In all that time, he has invariably said when pressed that he would support Mr Johnson for re-election. No discernible public event has occurred to explain his sudden change of front except for Mr Johnson's failure to obtain more than 49 per cent of the vote in the New Hamp- shire primary.
He begins, then, under the heavy suspicion that he is the sort of man who suddenly appears on the field and shoots the wounded. He has been unable to avoid this cloud of moral onus over the early days of his campaign, and it has borne heavily on his performance. He has not before been a glib man; but he has never been as halting as the sense of his own moral disadvantage made him all weekend...
A year ago, he had immense resources; except for Mr Johnson, nearly every professional Democrat of substance bore him manifest goodwill; alone among visible politicians, he had a real command on the hopes of the young, and, as his brother's heir, a mounting claim on the memories of the middle-aged. The attrition of this wealth since cannot be measured with any certainty; but certainly he is a candidate who no longer claims automatic adherence against all others. The Senator would seem to commence at a moment when his flame has never been lower on the burner...
What is significant in the post-primary polls is their finding that many of those who voted for Senator McCarthy did not know he was an opponent of the Vietnam war and that almost half of them still support it. Obviously, in a nation which has been shouted at for three years, the modulation of Senator McCarthy's tone, the wryness of his description of what we are, and the earnestness of his hope that we can be better, all add up to a style which is a relief to a great many people and which suggests that here is a candidate who is very formidable indeed.
The My Lai Massacre took place as Company C of the First Battalion of the U.S. Army's 20th Infantry Regiment killed 504 women, children and elderly men  in Xom Lang, a small portion of the Son My village, and which U.S. military maps had identified as "My Lai" within South Vietnam's Quang Nam province. Other estimates given are "between 347 and 504 Vietnamese civilians" were killed"
Student protests began at Howard University in Washington, D.C., and were marked by "the first building takeover on a college campus", signalling a new era of militant student activism on American college campuses. For five days, students staged a sit-in of the administration building, temporarily shutting down the historically-black university. The impetus for the demonstration was the punishment of 37 students who had disrupted the university's Charter Day celebration on March 1. Additional causes that were protested the school's ROTC program and military recruitment; the disproportionate number of African-Americans being sent into combat in the Vietnam War; and the lack of curriculum of African-American studies.
In response to the student protests at Warsaw, the First Secretary of the Polish United Workers' Party, Wladyslaw Gomulka, blamed the uprising on Zionist revisionists" and told his fellow Communists that there were three types of Polish Jews—the "patriotic Jews" who were loyal to the government; Zionists who wanted to undermine the state; and "cosmopolitans" "who were neither Jews nor Poles" and who tended to avoid any line of work toward building the socialist fatherland. When the complete text of the speech was published in the Soviet Union, Gomulka's demand that Zionist Jews be encouraged to leave Poland, had the "unplanned effect of reinforcing the hopes of many Soviet Jews eager to emigrate to Israel or the West."
The Battle of Karameh took place in the town of Karameh in Jordan, as the Israel Defense Forces forces and tanks crossed the border with 15,000 troops to move against the headquarters of the Palestine Liberation Organization, where a smaller force defended the PLO guerrillas. "Although hopelessly outnumbered and outgunned by Israeli forces," an author would later note, "the Palestinians stood and fought valiantly", and King Hussein ordered the Jordanian Army, with tanks and artillery, to come to their aid. Ten hours later, IDF retreated back across the border, but not before 28 of its members had been killed and 90 wounded. The Palestinians had more than ten times the number of casualties, but the legend of their defense against superior numbers would lead to more Palestinians joining the fight against Israel.
Governor Nelson Rockefeller of New York surprised supporters who had been expecting him to challenge former Vice President Richard Nixon for the Republican Party nomination for President. "Quite frankly," Rockefeller said, "I want it clear at this time that the majority of party leaders want the candidacy of Richard Nixon at this time. It would therefore be illogical and unreasonable that I would try to arouse their support.
Antonín Novotný resigned, under pressure, from his remaining job as President of Czechoslovakia in the wake of a scandal from the defection of General Jan Sejna. A reporter at the time noted that Novotny's resignation "was the first time a Communist leader has been removed by public pressure." Two months earlier, Novotný had been replaced in the more powerful job of General Secretary of the Czechoslovakian Communist Party by Alexander Dubček. Czechoslovakia's National Assembly voted, 282 to 6, to name Ludvík Svoboda as the new President, causing alarm in the other Communist nations of Eastern Europe and would "mark the beginning of the Prague Spring, a period of high hopes that ran into the summer, underscored by Dubček's pledge: 'There is only one path and that is forward.'"
Daniel Cohn-Bendit, who soon be nicknamed "Danny the Red", and 150 other students occupied the eighth-floor faculty lounge in the administration building at University of Paris X Nanterre, commonly referred to as the University of Nanterre. The action, originally set to protest the arrest of six Nanterre students who had been protesting the Vietnam War, would set in motion a chain of events that would lead France to the brink of revolution in May. After the publication of their demands, the students left the building without any trouble, but the incident would become known as the "Movement of 22 March".