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Mickey Rooney’s War Performance

A Note from V. Grey

(14 April 1945)

From The Militant, Vol. IX No. 14, 14 April 1945, p. 5.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

I see by the papers that soldier Mickey Rooney arrived in Paris on March 23, after performing for 3 months in the Roer River sector. And now all the soldiers are happy.

“I performed in barns and bomb-ruined houses,” Mickey told a reporter. “But what does it matter as long as the GIs are happy?”

The way I get it is that America’s “bad boy” usually has an easy chair near the cameras, and a plush-lined dressing room on roller skates to relax in. So he had a pretty tough time pepping up the boys’ morale under such adverse conditions.

But what the hell! He’s a good scout, isn’t he? He’ll make the best of a bomb-ruined house! Maybe the people who used to live in it could learn a lesson by his spartan example. Maybe they’ll learn to get along without running water and a roof, too.

Maybe. But they won’t be able to go to Paris and relax after a few weeks of it, though.

Maybe he’s right about the soldiers being happy, too. But it looks to me like the happiness of the steelworkers on a Saturday night. They’re so glad to be out of the mess and sweat for a few hours, and so worried about going back to it again – they try to forget with a drink and a good laugh.

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