The question of American participation in the 1936 Berlin Olympic games was not raised by the Jewish delegates at the recent Amateur Athletic Union Miami convention, although strenuous protests were made by many Jewish and non-sectarian organizations, because the A. A. U.’s retiring president, Avery Brundage, was unalterably opposed to such a move and would have swung the convention to his sentiments, which favor acceptance of the German invitation.
This statement was given to a Bulletin reporter by Charles L. Ornstein, member of the A. O. C.
Had the topic reached the floor it would have been pushed out in deference to the wishes of the man who had been the leader of the A. A. U. for six years, said Ornstein, and the issue would not be open to recourse and the formal acceptance by the American Olympic Committee, of which Brundage is also president, would have been binding upon the national amateur sports body.
The fourteen Jewish delegates at a private meeting prior to the opening of the sports assembly had agreed not to broach this subject in view of the fact that circumstances were inimical to a satisfactory settling of the issue, Ornstein claimed.
At the same time they were given to understand that the 1935 convention of the A. A. U., to be held in New York City for the second time in two years, would be more beneficial for the Jewish cause. Also, Justice Mahoney, in the president’s chair, would be absolutely open minded in his attitude to the German question, Ornstein asserted.