WASHINGTON (Mar. 20)
Taking cognizance for the first time of charges that he had been instrumental in injecting anti-Semitism into the recent controversy on the lease-lend bill, Senator Burton K. Wheeler denied last night, in a broadcast on an NBC network, that he had attempted to spread race hatred.
The leader of the Senate isolationist bloc denounced the “medieval mendaciousness” of racial agitation and said he was “not interested in the race or creed” of the men he had condemned in his recent speeches. He did not attempt to explain, however, why he had singled out the Rothschilds, Warburgs and Sassoons, all Jewish, in a recent broadcast attack on ” international bankers.”
In his broadcast speech last night Senator Wheeler declared, ” Those of us anxious to preserve civil liberties and peace have been subjected to a smear campaign, but fact is not answered with fact, or reason with reason. Gries of ‘pro-Nazi, ‘Hitler agent’ and ‘anti-Semite’ are shouted at the opposition. This is bigotry in its vilest form. This is a return to the monarchical concept that the king can do no wrong.
“Speaking for myself, I have nothing to recant or for which to apologize. I have said, and I repeat, that there are men in the world who are far more concerned with the restoration or the preservation of their economic and social status than with the welfare of the masses of the people. I am not interested in the race or creed of these men. I am concerned, and always have been, with the welfare of the great mass of humanity, with the under-privileged, with the economic and social status of these who are ill-fed, ill-clothed and ill-housed.
“Nothing I have said can be interpreted to give comfort to those people here or in any country in the world, who make a fetish of the persecution of any minority group. I denounce those who seek to play upon the passions and emotions of our people with this kind of medieval mendaciousness.
“Today we witness legislative and administrative actions which inevitably must lead to the denial of the rights of minorities, A lend-lease bill, an alien concentration camp bill, an anti-strike bill, a wiretapping bill–these are the vehicles of one-man government. They will lead to chains and tears for the minorities in our land. Wave after wave of every kind of intolerance will roll over our nation. No minority group, economic, political, racial or religious, can be certain that it will escape the tide, These are the results of war and war psychology.”