Discrimination Assailed at American Jewish Congress Conference, F.d.r Sends Greetings

Declaring that “America owes a debt of gratitude to its Jewish citizens,” Dr Malcolm MacLean, President of the President’s Committee on Fair Employment Practices, today assailed economic discrimination in all its manifestations, in an address before 500 delegates from all sections of the country attending the special war emergency session of the American Jewish Congress, meeting in the Hotel Sherman here.

Greetings from President Roosevelt were received last night by the opening session of the conference. In his message the President said: “I am very happy to take this opportunity to extend sincere greetings to the American Jewish Congress meeting in war-emergency session. I commend most highly the lofty aims of this meeting, which are to help the United States win the war and win the peace, and to develop a program designed to contribute toward the creation of a free world in line with the principles of the Atlantic Charter. It is, therefore, a distinct pleasure for me to wish it every success in its endeavors to advance these aims.”

In his keynote address last night, Dr Stephen S. Wise, president of the Congress, lauded the President for crushing anti-American activities, declaring that “every attempt to bring about racial and religious division in the United States is a threat to American unity without which there can be no victory over the Axis. We are resolved to defend ourselves against anti-Semitism as Americans,” Dr Wise said, “knowing that the more stoutly we resist the greater will be our service to our country and to the democratic ideals.”

He called upon American Jews to use their freedom as Americans “to right wrongs against their brethren wherever inflicted,” and pledged “renewed loyalty to the United States and maximum aid to the United Nations.” Dr Wise read messages pledging that equal rights for Jews will be re-established in Poland, Czechoslovakia and the Netherlands when these nations are restored through the victory of the United Nations. The assurances came from the Prime Ministers of these three governments in exile, Wladyslaw Sikorski, M. Jan Sramek and Dr. Pieter S. Gerbrandy.

Round table sessions this morning discussed Inter-American Jewish unity, the organization of American Jewish Communities, the war effort, the strengthening of Democracy against un-American movements, post-war Jewish reconstruction and the question of Palestine.

NEXT STORY