A Daily Updating Blog of Important Events In History That Never Occurred Today.
Imagine what would be, if history had occurred a bit differently. Who says it didn't, somewhere? These fictional news items explore that possibility. Written by Alternate Historian

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October 14

Ed Murrow

In 1953, CBS News management, overriding spirited protests by famed journalist Ed Murrow and producer Fred Friendly, spikes a planned broadcast on Murrow's See It Now TV program regarding the case of Air Force Reserve lieutenant Milo Radulovich, who had been discharged on suspicion of 'Communist sympathies' because his immigrant father subscribed to a magazine associated with a group labeled as Communist by the U.S. government. It will emerge that the network brass has acted out of fears of a backlash from See It Now sponsor Alcoa Aluminum, a major Air Force supplier, and from the government itself.

Ed Murrow - Journalist

Both Murrow and Friendly are furious, and demand an opportunity to air the show, which they have worked on for months. In a meeting with CBS president Frank Stanton and network founder William Paley, however, they are read the riot act:

"This network," Paley decrees, " exists to bring news and entertainment to the American people, and to make money doing so, not to pick fights with the Air Force and our corporate sponsors. If you cannot work here with that understanding, you are welcome to seek employment elsewhere".

Murrow and Friendly reluctantly back down. A substitute program will air instead. The film and other materials assembled for the planned broadcast will be consigned to storage.

June 9

In 1954, Wisconsin Senator Joseph R. McCarthy, feeling bruised by his treatment at the hands of Army special counsel Joseph N. Welch of the Boston law firm Hale & Boggs during Congress's televised investigation of McCarthy's efforts to secure special privileges for his aide G. David Schine, who has been drafted, violates a pre-hearing agreement and accuses a young lawyer at that firm of Communist sympathies.

Joseph McCarthy
Joseph McCarthy - Pres. Candidate
Pres. Candidate

When Welch scolds him, asking if he 'has left no sense of decency,' and tries to cut him off, McCarthy refuses to allow himself to be silenced. Instead, he demands, 'By what right do you, sir, whose legal firm harbors enemies of this country, ask if I possess a sense of decency? What sense of decency is it, sir, which drives you to stand in the way of rooting out Communists, wherever they may hide?'

It is a crucial moment. McCarthy is cheered by many of the onlookers in the hearing chamber, and Welch is thrown off balance. Moreover, the Wisconsin Senator comes across to the TV audience as a bold, tough patriot, while his opponent, according to man-on-the-street interviews conducted for television over the next few days, appears 'stuck-up,' 'bullying' and even 'whiny.' After this, talk of Joe McCarthy as a presidential candidate intensifies.

June 17
Joseph McCarthy

In 1954, the so-called Army-McCarthy hearings end.

In their aftermath, the Army will quietly yield to McCarthy's demands regarding his protege Schine. Many military officers will resent this decision, and President Eisenhower will privately refer to it as 'not a proud moment for the U.S. armed forces.' There will, however, be little open opposition, owing to concerns that the powerful senator will drag any critic through the mud.

Joseph McCarthy - Pres. Candidate
Pres. Candidate

January 20

In 1953, with Dwight D. Eisenhower scheduled to be sworn in as president at noon, Wisconsin Senator Joseph R. McCarthy takes the podium in the Senate to scream that Harry Truman's pardon of Hiss, issued the previous day, proves that the outgoing president is a Soviet agent.

Eisenhower, in remarks delivered immediately following his inauguration, condemns Senator McCarthy's attack on Truman as 'an intemperate assault on a loyal American who has served this country well in every capacity, up to and including the presidency.'

Eisenhower - US President
US President

McCarthy's response, delivered in time to make the evening news, is to snarl, 'The remarks of General Eisenhower'--he refuses to call Ike 'President'--'merely demonstrate how deeply the Communist rot has penetrated our great nation. Obviously the taint of treason is not limited to one party alone.'

January 21

In 1953, conservative Republicans hail McCarthy's attack on Eisenhower, whom they have distrusted all along as a representative of their party's "Eastern establishment".

Before the week is out, there will be talk of running the Senator against the General in the 1956 GOP primaries.

Eisenhower - US President
US President

August 5

In 1962, actress Marilyn Monroe was rushed to the hospital by her friend, actor Peter Lawford, after Lawford found her unconscious and near death in her Hollywood home from a combination of alcohol and an overdose of sleeping pills.

Rehabilitation by Eric LippsFollowing her release from the hospital, Ms. Monroe was persuaded to seek treatment for her reliance on drink and drugs in handling emotional difficulties. In 1966, she founded the Marilyn Monroe Clinic for the Treatment of Alcohol and Drug Abuse, attracting several high-profile therapists to its staff.

At the time of her near-death, Ms. Monroe had begun to branch out from the airhead/glamor girl roles in which she had been cast for years; her role as the blowsy, neurotic singer in the Bus Stop was one example of the new direction in which she was working to move her career. Further dramatic roles would follow, although she would continue to play glamorous women well into her forties.

She would retire from films in the 1980s, making only an occasional guest appearance on various television programs thereafter. Nevertheless, when she died in 1992 at the age of 63 Marilyn Monroe would still be considered a Hollywood icon.

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© Today in Alternate History, 2013-. All characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.