PARIS (Dec. 1)
More than 200 messages from Jewish leaders in all parts of Europe — except the Nazi territories — were received today by the European office of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee in connection with the relief organization’s 25th anniversary, which will be marked this week-end in the United States.
Coming from virtually every important Jewish leader in a score of countries, these messages stressed the great work of salvation done by the J.D.C. for millions of needy Jews in Europe up to the present and its historic mission at a time of unprecedented Jewish catastrophe.
Outstanding among the messages were those of Dr. Chaim Weizmann, president of the World Zionist Organization and Jewish Agency for Palestine; Barons Edouard and Robert de Rothschild of France; Sir Osmond d’ Avigdor Goldsmid of England, Prof. William E. Rappard of Switzerland and Senator Justin Godart of France. Those from the various Jewish communities in Central and Eastern Europe were touching.
Dr. Weizmann wired: “I am sending to the Joint my heartiest congratulations on the completion of 25 years of magnificent work in behalf of suffering and oppressed Jewry. The Joint has earned the gratitude of Jews throughout the world. Its wise and generous administration of relief funds has saved thousands from despair. I pray that its work may be continued and extended during the dark days before us.”
In similar vein were messages from the Board of Deputies of British Jews in London, the World Jewish Congress in Geneva, the Alliance Israelite Universelle in Paris, the Jewish Colonization Association, HIAS-ICA Emigration Association, World ORT Union, the OZE, the Quaker relief organization and the federations of Jewish communities in France, Switzerland, Belgium, Italy, Hungary, Yugoslavia, Rumania, Greece, Latvia, Lithuania, Bulgaria, Slovakia, Luxemburg, Turkey, Finland, Sweden, Portugal and others.
Morris C. Troper, chairman of the J.D.C. ‘s European Executive Council, sent the following message to the 25th anniversary conference of the relief organization which will be held in Chicago this week-end:
“My deep regret in not being with you in your deliberations today is exceeded only by the determination to remain on the bridge during the hurricane through which we are now passing.
“Once more the pitiful, pain-wracked and starvation-marked faces of decent men, women and children look westward, all now in one single category of war sufferers looking to you and to you alone for assistance.
“Once more the organization born in war is asked to become the pivotal agency in bringing war relief. Once more refugees stalk the open highways and barren wastes of no-man’s-lands with their bodies mutilated and their hours numbered.
“Once more American and Americans are looked to for a modicum of help and assistance for those uprooted from an already abnormal existence, for those torn asunder from all vestige of hope, for those for whom in their stark nakedness and degradation, death seems the only escape.
“I know what it means, after the year of fund-raising through which you have just passed, once more to attempt to raise the necessary wherewithal even fractionally sufficient to cope with the present situation. And yet, with full realization thereof, I feel it my duty to tell you that unless you come forward again with the utmost resolve and generosity to help in this situation, there will be no help, and even worse, no hope.
“Like the great nations fighting for principles for which so many of their sons have fallen, we too have our honored dead, who during their lives nobly carried on the work in behalf of the downtrodden, the persecuted and the underprivileged.
“Let us be true to the memory of Jacob Schiff, Louis Marshall, Julius Rosenwald, Felix Warburg, Cyrus Sulzberger, Arthur Lehman and so many others who so unselfishly gave their all to this cause. Millions are present with you in your deliberations today. They have faith that their urgent pleas, though physically unspoken, will be heard and answered by you.”