Roumanian Minister Gives New Assurances That Anti-jewish Riots Will Not Recur
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Roumanian Minister Gives New Assurances That Anti-jewish Riots Will Not Recur

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New assurances that the Roumanian government is determined to see to it that anti-Jewish disturbances should never again occur in the country, that the Roumanian government is taking effective measures to punish those guilty in the last excesses and to make full reparation for the damages incurred by Jews and Jewish institutions during the recent events were made by George Cretziano, Roumanian Minister to Washington, in a communication addressed to Congressman William I. Sirovich.

Congressman Sirovich, who introduced a resolution in the House of Representatives urging the United States government to abrogate its treaties with Roumania in case the anti-Jewish persecutions do not cease, made public the communication of the Roumanian Minister together with his reply, in which he accepts the assurances of the representative of the Roumanian government. The exchange of letters was released for publication by Congressman Sirovich late Monday night following a dinner conference held at the Waldorf Astoria in which Minister Cretziano, Mr. Louis Marshall, Congressman Sirovich and George Boncesco, financial counsellor to the Roumanian Legation, participated. No statement was issued as to the action intended by Congressman Sirovich with regard to his resolution in the House.

It was learned that the conference was a result of negotiations which were carried on during the past several weeks. When asked by the representative of the Jewish Daily Bulletin, Congressman Sirovich stated that for the present he will defer action on his resolution, pending further developments. It was also understood that the text of the Roumanian Minister’s statement was issued with the full consent of the Bratianu government in Bucharest, to whom it was cabled before publication.

The Roumanian Minister in his communication expressed his opinion that the resolution introduced in the House would react unfavorably upon the Roumanian Jews themselves. He admitted that “the occurrences were disgraceful and in every way unjustifiable,” but urged that the Roumanian government has taken effective measures to punish those guilty and to provide indemnity for the sufferers. His government, which is opposed to the “mischievous theories and the lawless acts committed” and has accepted the terms of the minority treaty, incorporated in the Roumanian constitution, is resolved to exert all her power to accord equal protection of the law to all of her inhabitants.

The Roumanian Minister also expressed appreciation of the policy of moderation advocated by Mr. Louis Marshall which will redound to the mutual satisfaction of all concerned.

The Minister added that “Mr. Marshall’s efforts coincided with mine, namely, that by a friendly cooperation much more good can be accomplished than by exaggerations, denunciations and injudicious prejudice.”

Congressman Sirovich in his reply declared that he accepts the statement of the Roumanian Minister and added that he will incorporate the correspondence in the Congressional Record.

House Bill To Abrogate Treaties Will React Unfavorably in Roumanion

The letter of the Roumanian Minister read:

Roumanian Legation Washington, D.C. January 7, 1928

“The Hon. Dr. William I. Sirovich, Member of the House of Representatives, Washington. D.C.

“My dear Congressman Sirovich:

“It has come to my knowledge that you have introduced in the House of Representatives a resolution asking the American Government to abrogate the treaties now existing between the United States and my Country, and to intervene in behalf of the Jewish minorities of my Country. I consider it my duty to give you information which will prove to you that my Government, far from encouraging anti-Semitic disturbances, has taken all the measures to punish the guilty, to indemnify the victims and to avoid a repetition of similar occurrences without waiting for any outside suggestion or intervention on the part of a foreign Government or Parliament.

“I cannot help feeling that far from bringing about a happy and lasting solution of this problem, action such as you have advocated is likely to react unfavorably upon the Roumanian Jews themselves, for not only the Roumanian Government and people, but even Jews who are striving to establish a better understanding between the Jewish and Roumanian population would resent even a suggestion of the immission of a foreign power in the internal affairs of their country. In my opinion, cooperation between the Jews of the United States and the Government of Roumania, which is moved by a sincere desire to permanently remedy the situation, would be of far more service to accomplish the common purpose that we have in view.


“By frankly facing the situation and calmly analyzing the facts, a via media to remove all causes of friction and to establish barmony in the future among the various races and creeds within the Roumanian Nation may be found which will redound to the mutual satisfaction of all parties concerned.

“Now what are the facts A body of studens, taking advantage of the state of depression created in the Country by the sudden disappearance of a powerful per-#### late L I. C. Bratiaun, got on of hand and before the authorities had time to mobilize adequate forces to cope with an unanticipated situation, caused serious ##roder accompanied by acts of ## at Oradea Mare. Cluj and other ## in Roumania. The actual occur-## were disgraceful and in every way unjustitable. The press on this side of the ## published articles from ## unfriendly to Roumania in Buda-Pen and other parts of Central Europe, which were exaggerated. The truth is ## while a considerate number of ### were maltreted and a number of ## and their ## des## and damaged in spite of reports to the contrary happily to lives were lost.

Thes incidents are very and #### and the Roumanian Government not only deplores them, but swiftiy took measures to punish those officials who were found negligent, and to make reparation for the camage done. The Prefect of Oradea Mare and the Police Prefects of Oradea Mare and Cluj were immediately dismissed, and four hundred students were arrested on their return to Bucharest. In addition to this, their cases were referred to the Military Court and, according to telegraphic information, received from my Government, a first series of offenders has been tried by a Court-Martial for theft and cevastation during the anti-Jewish riots at Oradea Mare on December 6th, and have been sentenced variously to from ten days to five months in jail. The Senate of the Roumanian universities the has expelled forever from all Roumanian universities the students proved guilty of theft, profanation and devastation, while those found guilty of lesser offenses will be expelled for one year. Those holding scholarships will forfeit their subsidies. The Government has introduced a bill in Parliament for an appropriation to indemnify Mr. Keller an American citizen, who was injured, and to restore the synagogues to their previous state. No Government can do more by way of reparation for such misdeeds under the circumstances.


Roumania has been accused repeatedly of anti-Semitism. So far as the people of Roumania as a whole are concerned, this charge is unwarranted. There are, unforunately, individual agitators who, for selfish reasons, have sought to spread this hateful disease, regardless of the blot that they are placing upon the good name and the honor of Roumania. It is significant that those Jews, who recognized the virtue of speaking and acting with moderation and who really understand the people of Roumania, commend their good sense, their peaceful narare and the freedom from religions intolerance, and are convinced that the majority of Roumanias are entirely free from anti-Semitism.

I can personally assure you of the correctnes of this observation. Anti-Semitism is practically limited to a portion of the students in institutions of higher learning, to a few of their teachers and to a small number of ## politicians. The latter have adopted a platform based on falsehoods and prejudioe and calculated to mislead the student body into cooperating for the exploitation of a falsety ####by them.

“The governmentis ##### who entertain them, and is determined to afford protection to every part of the population. This is evidencec by the fact that during the past few months additional Jewish schools have been accorded rights as public schools, an order which forbade the closing of Jewish schools on the Jewish Sabbath has been repealed, Orthodox Jewish students who attend public schools have been excused from writing on Saturcays, Jews have been elected to membership in all Municipal Councils for which elections have been recently held, provisions have been made in the budgets of municipal Councils for subventions for the support of schools maintained by the Jewish communities. With the exception of the recent deplorable occurrences, street attacks upon Jews have ceased, and there has been no exclusion of them from places of amusement. In the Roumanian Parliament preceding that now in office, there were ten anti-Semitic Deputies. In the present Parliament there is not one. On the other hand, the Jews are now represented by ten Deputies and Senators in addition to the Grand Rabbi of Roumania, who, under the Constitution, is a Life Member of the Senate. The Jews have a large representation, not only in Roumanian commerce and industry, but also in the liberal professions. They are not barred from holding public office or from receiving commissions in the army. They actually hold a large number of both. In the United States, where Roumania has four Consulates, there is one Jewish Consul; a Jew is in charge of a second Consulate. On the staff of the Roumanian Legation in Washington the bookkeeper and archivist is a Jew. The newly-created Consulate in New Jersey is to be in charge of another Jew.

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“Much has been said concerning agitation in Roumania by the anti-Semitic Party for the establishment of the socalled numerus clausus in respect to the admission of Jewish students to institutions of higher learning. In fact the contention was made at a meeting held in Washington in February last that, so far as Jewish students in Roumania are concerned, it is not the numerus clauses which prevails but numerus nullus. As bearing upon this charge, permit me to call your attention to the following official figures:

“The total number of students in Roumanian universities and high schools is 24,729, of which 20,499 are Christians and 4,230 Jews, divided as follows:

| Christians | Jews

University of Bucharest | 12535 | 12 535 | 2,357

Commercial Academy Bucharest | 391 | 194

## Bucharest | 384 | 110

University of Jassy | 3,188 | 1,175

Commercial Acadermy Cluj | 2,141 | 159

Commerical Academy Chuj | 256 | 7

University of Cernautzi | 624 | 262

University of Oradea Mare | 215 | 47

Polytechnic, Timisoara | 345 | 9

“There figures tell their own story.

“It is a source of pride to Roumania that there are few countries in the world where the so-called minorities, and especially the Jews, receive better opportunities for education and self-development according to their own ideas and principles, than Roumania. Today these minorities have more schools in the newly-acquired portions of the Roumanian Kingdom than they had under the Governments of which they formerly constituted a part. When Transylvania was a part of Hungary there was not a single Jewish public school or high school in that territory. Today there are 59 elementary schools in the Old Kingdom, 35 in Transylvania, 2 in Bucovina and 48 in Bessarabia. The number of secondary schools in the Old Kingdom is 7. in Transylvania S. in Bucovina 4 and in Bessarabia 21. The Jews, with a population of less than a million, also have 1,500 synagogues in Roumania.


“It should also be noted that Roumania has become a party to and has accepted the terms of the Minority Treaty entered into at Paris on December 9. 1919, has incorporated them in principle in her Constitution, and is firmly resolved to exert her sovereign power to accord to all of her inhabitants the equal protection of the laws which she has guaranteed to the several racial. religious and inguistic minorities.

The government is firm in its determination to put an end to the anti-Semitic agitation which has prevailed among the students and to prevent any recurrence of the recent happenings. It is hoped that all American Jews who have at heart the well-being of their Roumanian coreligionists would cooperate in bringing about a complete understanding betwen them and the non-Jews of Roumania. This. I am sure. will be welcomed by them, and will redound to the advantage of both, as well as of Roumania.

“A prominent Jewish observer, Mr. Herman Bernstein, in a series of articles which he published in the “Jewish Tribune” on his return from Roumania a few months ago, declared himself satisfied that “the Roumanian people are really not anti-Semitic.” and pointed out that the anti-Jewish agitations are purely artificial and are carried out by a handful of students under the leadership of two or three second-rate politicians, who were officially and publicly disapproved by their political friends and colleagues. (See the Jewish Tribune of December 23. 1927).

“I am happy to state that that able man. one of the greatest American Jews. Mr. Louis Marshall, is in complete accord with my views when he pleads for moderation and for a cool examination of the situation of the Roumanian Jews. His efforts coincide with mine, namely, that by a friendly cooperation much more good can be accomplished than by exaggerations, denunciations and injudicious protests.

“You will recognize the desirability of giving the fullest publicity to this statement. The sincerity of your motives cannot be questioned. It is easy to understand the impression made upon your mind by the occurrences which ar condemned by every true Roumanian and which naturally aroused your sympathies for your religious brethren. Now that you understand that at the very time when you introduced the resolution the Roumanian Government had given evidence of its determination that such conditions, should never again occur and that it had announced its purpose to make full reparation for all damages inflicted, you will not hesitate to accept the assurances which I have herein given.

“Yours sincerely, G. Cretziano, Minister of Roumania.”


Congressman Sirovich, in his letter replying to the Minister’s communication stated:

January 9th 1928.

“His Excellency, Mr. George Cretziano, Roumanian Minister, Washington. D. C.

“Your Excellency:

“I am in receipt of your letter of the 7th instant concerning the resolution introduced by me in the House of Representatives for the abrogation of the treaties now existing between the United States and Roumania and for intervention on behalf of the Jewish minorities of Roumania.

“I have read and reflected upon what you have said with the utmost care and wish to express my appreciation for the detailed information given. You have fully appreciated the reason that prompted me to introduce the resolution. It was not hostility to Roumania, but sympathy for my religious brethren and indignation at the recent occurrences, which shocked the people of this country and which you have properly characterized.

“I accept what you have said regarding the attitude of your Government toward the Jews of Roumania and what it has done and what it intends to do in order to show its abhorrence of the lawlessness of those who are responsible for and participated in the outbreaks referred to, as an assurance that the Jews of Roumania will be accorded the equal protection of the laws and equal educational and other opportunities in accordance with the letter and the spirit of the Minorities treaty entered into and accepted by Roumania on December 9th, 1919. On the faith of what you have said it will afford me pleasure to incorporate the correspondence that has passed between us in the Congressional record.

“Very Cordially yours, William living Sirovich.”

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