Appendix A.3 The Five Cities of June1
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Transcript of Reel 1
CHARLTON HESTON: Five cities were silent in May. On the first morning of the following month, they awoke with brushes in their hands and a calendar as their canvas. God made the days. Man made the calendar. And the five cities made June of 1963.
4,800,000 people died in the month of June, and 9,600,000 people were born. No one knows what names of future history are among those that were born. But within the millions that died was Angelo Roncalli—Pope John XXIII.
Outside St. Peter’s Basilica, the masses waited with meditation, tears, and prayers. On June the 2nd, the vigil outside the Vatican was over. Within the Basilica, the Cardinal College gathered for mass. Still in grief, theirs was a mission to elect a man to follow their beloved Pope John.
In the square, the crowds had received the signal they were waiting for. And from all over Rome, they gathered to witness a single puff of white smoke—a puff of smoke that told the world the election was over. The name was Giovanni Montini, and the coronation would be on the 30th of June.
Giovanni Montini chose to be called Pope Paul VI, and now his life would be spent in the highest service to the 500,000,000 people of his faith.
To the second city of June, foreigners, the press, and photographers were not invited. Films were made available only for government sources. The city’s name is unknown, but it is near Baikonur in the Soviet Union.
Here in the continuing race for the moon with the United States of America, the Soviet Union launched Valery Bykovsky and Valentina Tereshkova. In utmost secrecy, only the military and technicians observed the launchings of the two new cosmonauts. The launchings of June put the Soviet Union ahead in a race that was not forecast to be over until the end of the decade.
The history of man in space is short, but the conquests are many. Now films of every launch have been released both by the government of the Soviet Union and the free press of the world that was invited to photograph the launches of the United States. In 1961, the Soviet Union launched Yuri Gagarin and provided this motion picture of the lift-off.
The United States launched Alan Shepard from Cape Canaveral on top of a Redstone booster. Next in space was Gus Grissom of the United States—again photographed by hundreds of international photographers at the Cape. Then the Soviet Union announced the launch of Gherman Titov and released this film.
In 1962, John Glenn went into orbit, launched from an Atlas booster at Cape Canaveral. This was followed by United States astronaut Scott Carpenter three months later in the Mercury capsule. In August of 1962, Andriyan Nikolayev and Pavel Popovich orbited simultaneously, launched by two separate boosters from the Soviet Union—one launched within 24 hours after the other. These are the films provided of the launches.
Wally Schirra of the United States went next from Cape Canaveral, perched on top of a 1 and 1/2 stage Atlas. 1963 ushered Gordon Cooper of the United States into orbit in his Faith 7 capsule. And June in space belonged to the Soviet Union with Valery Bykovsky and Valentina Tereshkova. The Soviet Union furnished this film of the launches.
The second city of June—location unknown—wrote history with two proud names.
Transcript of Reel 2
CHARLTON HESTON: The third city of June lived off the Saigon River in South Vietnam. Its name was Ben Tuong. The village population lived from products that surrounded the river, and they made use of every available resource to uphold their strong, healthy, and happy lives they’ve known so long.
Their village had existed for centuries. It continued to exist until one night in June. On the night of the 18th, Communists came to spread their political fervor and killed the men and burned the village. South Vietnam soldiers were called to help save what could be saved, but it was too late. All that was left to do was to take care of the wounded, the frightened, and the homeless.
Their conquerors had come to Ben Tuong twice. Once they came by day as friendly strangers with promises of a new life of communal living and of more land. Then they came by night with their promises replaced by flames, with their smiles replaced by pillage, and the villagers’ happiness replaced by murder. Ben Tuong would not be left deserted. On the 21st, the army went back near Ben Tuong to route the communists out.
And so the soldiers came by rail, by air, by land, and water to win back the remnants of Ben Tuong. Communists from the north were trying to sweep the country. Ben Tuong was only a single step. In the month of June, they had attacked 294 places. Their forces numbered 22,000 and attacked not as a marching army but separately and distantly at isolated villages throughout the country in guerrilla fighting and scattered battles.
There were casualties in this unknown war of June, too many of them. But the Communists were out fought, out equipped, and out soldiered. One by one out of their hiding places in the thickets, they surrendered. But the ones that got away went on to other villages, and South Vietnam remained a battlefield.
The eyes of the world shifted to the small city of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, within the Deep South of the United States of America. It was a familiar story. It started before the war between the states 100 years ago, which was fought and won for Negro equality. Negroes were taken out of slavery, and their freedom was guaranteed. But barriers were put in front of them, especially within the states that had lost that Civil War, the states of the southeast.
The Constitution of the United States came under debate as to whether it prohibited or acknowledged such barriers. In 1954, it was made clear by the Supreme Court that the Constitution guarantees equality for all. And so the great tests were made, tests that brought mob disorder and violence to the south and that required federal troops to ensure the admittance of Negro students into schools other than those reserved for Negroes only.
Though the vast majority of the United States was in sympathy with the Negro, some of the citizens were not. Though the United States Government supported the Negro, some of the separate state governments did not. And now the test of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, the last state of the Deep South to resist integration of schools.
Once again, the governor of the southern state said no Negro shall be admitted to an otherwise white enrollment. And with the entire world as witness, judge, and jury, Tuscaloosa and history met on June the 11th when two American Negroes expressed their desire to enroll at the University of Alabama. It was, in effect, a single defiant man, holding with strength to the weak mores of the past against the Constitution, the government, and the will of the people of the United States, both Negro and white. With the protection of federal marshals, Vivian Malone and James Hood entered the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa.
There was no violence. The governor conceded. The law of the land was enforced by the government to protect two citizens. It was enforced so Vivian Malone and James Hood and anyone else would have the freedom to choose the school they would attend.
This was not the end of race problems in the South, but the government and the people had made clear that the Negro is an equal citizen and is entitled to and shall get freedom of choice. Wherever free men live, their most sacred request, their most sacred right is for freedom of choice, to bypass all prejudice, to live as they want to live, to worship where they want to worship, and to go where they want to go.
Transcript of Reel 3
CHARLTON HESTON: On the other side of this wall are millions of people who aren’t going anywhere. The Communist government they live under will not let them out. For centuries, walls have been built to keep out invading armies, but this was the first wall in all recorded history to keep an entire country from fleeing—fleeing into West Berlin as 3 and 1/2 million did before the wall was erected.
If the guards or their guns were unsuccessful in keeping people from fleeing, there was the barbed wire. If they crossed that, there was the wall. If they reached the top, there was the broken glass.
Over a hundred have been killed trying to cross. In June, 90 succeeded and three were killed. All escape routes were reinforced.
The Eastern guards had orders to shoot at each other if one tried to escape. In areas where windows overlooked West Berlin and people had jumped to freedom, the windows had been sealed with bricks.
The wall separated more than a city. It separated the world. On one side lived people who were free to be Christians or Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Jews, or Confucians. On the other side lived people whose expression of any religion was discouraged or taken away.
On June 26, a short distance from the wall and overlooking the East, the people of West Berlin welcomed a visitor—the President of the United States of America.
[CROWD CHANTING “KENNEDY”]
PRESIDENT JOHN F. KENNEDY: Thank you.
There are many people in the world who really don’t understand, or say they don’t, what is the great issue between the free world and the Communist world. Let them come to Berlin!
There are some who say—there are some who say that Communism is the wave of the future. Let them come to Berlin!
And there are even a few who say that it’s true that Communism is an evil system, but it permits us to make economic progress. Lasst sie nach Berlin kommen! Let them come to Berlin!
Freedom has many difficulties, and democracy is not perfect. But we have never had to put a wall up to keep our people in, to prevent them from leaving us.
While the wall is the most obvious and vivid demonstration of the failures of the Communist system for all the world to see, we take no satisfaction in it. For it is, as your mayor has said, an offense not only against history but an offense against humanity, separating families, dividing husbands and wives and brothers and sisters and dividing up people who wish to be joined together.
Freedom is indivisible. And when one man is enslaved, all are not free. All free men, wherever they may live, are citizens of Berlin. And therefore, as a free man, I take pride in the words, “Ich bin ein Berliner.”
MR. HESTON: June was over. With a crown, a rocket, a gun, a triumph, and a wall, five cities wrote history in the book of the world. Prophets could guess, wise men could warn, but no visionary of June could foretell the cities that were destined to write their names on future calendars.
- Source: Kennedy Library, United States Government Agencies Collection, Series 01, United States Information Agency/Service Films, The Five Cities of June, 1963: USG–01–15. Directed by Walter de Hoog and Bruce Herschensohn. Screenplay and music by Bruce Herschensohn. Narrated by Charlton Heston. “A News of the Day Production.” See Document 150.↩