Inter-american Jewish Conference Opens in Baltimore; Hears Sumner Welles
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Inter-american Jewish Conference Opens in Baltimore; Hears Sumner Welles

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An appeal to Latin-American countries to adopt a more liberal policy toward admitting refugees was voiced by Under-Secretary of State Sumner Welles addressing today’s session of the Inter-American Jewish Conference, which opened at the Southern Hotel here in the presence of over forty delegates from every country in Central and South American with the exception of Brazil where the government refused permission to Jews to participate in this conference. Twenty-five Jewish communities and organizations from the United States and Canada are also represented here.

Revealing that Pres. Roosevelt urged the Inter-Governmental Refugee Committee to start "a serious and expanding effort to survey in detailed fashion the geographical and economic problem of resettling several million people in new areas of the earth’s surface after the war ends." Secretary Welles stated that the United States government believes that after the war there will be not one million but ten million or more refugees. He praised the Dominican Republic for being generous in permitting a Jewish settlement and declared that this settlement "conclusively demonstrated that European refugees can be resettled in sub-tropical climate and can prosper and thrive." He assured the delegates that the United States government will "participate in every practicable manner, contributing with other governments towards successful realization of that great human enterprise of making it possible for the refugees to find a safe haven."

Rabbi Stephen Wise, addressing today’s session, bitterly attacked "the lamentable viewpoint of Lindbergh" and accused the flier of accepting "the spirit of Nazism." Rabbi Wise predicted that the day of the overthrow of Nazism is not far off but warned that when peace comes, Jews on the American continent will have the huge task of formulating demands for post-war restoration of Jewish life including demands for Palestine.

Moses Goldman, leader of the Argentine delegation, addressing the meeting, said: "No people can so sense the greatness of America as the Jew." He called on Jews of the entire American continent to promote pan-Americanism in contradiction to the evil forces who are busily engaged in destroying inter-American unity through racism, anti-Semitism and other methods of disturbing harmony among the American nations.

The prediction that three to four million Jews in Europe will perish during the war and that six or seven million Jews who may survive, will remain without any means of existence was made at the Conference today by Dr. Nahum Goldman, leader of the World Jewish Congress. Goldman urged that "everything should be done to enable world Jewry to come into closer contact with Russian Jewry." He said that Russia’s entry into the war against Nazism changed the Soviet’s international position and is bound to break the wall which separated Russian Jewry from World Jewry.

The Conference heard greetings from Mayor H. W. Jackson of Baltimore, Governor Herbert O’Connor of Maryland, Samuel Bronfman, President of the Canadian Jewish Congress, Judge Louis E. Levinthal, Mrs. Tamara De Sola Pool, Herman Hoffman, Grand Master of the Independent Order of B’rith Abraham, Dr. Jacob Robinson and others.

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