A. F. of I. Convention Asks Post-war Rights for Jews in Europe and Palestine
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A. F. of I. Convention Asks Post-war Rights for Jews in Europe and Palestine

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The American Federation of Labor, holding its 47th annual convention here, today adopted a declaration condemning Nazi brutalities against Jews and urging the United Nations “to remember the claims and sufferings of the Jewish people and to take stops to guarantee freedom and equality to them in their adopted countries, as well as their independence under the Balfour Declaration on the soil of Palestine”

The declaration, read by Matthew Woll, vice-president of the A.F. of L., was presented to the convention by the Committee on International Labor Relations of the organization. It was proceeded by a report on Nazi atrocities in occupied European countries, delivered by Julius Hochman, vice-president of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union. The text of the declaration reads:

“The American Federation of Labor has ever been the friend and champion of the oppressed and persecuted and has always been the stalwart guard of the rights of minorities, whether of nations or of peoples. We would, therefore, again pledge our sole support to the issues of freedom for every nation oppressed and persecuted by the despicable and hateful Nazi ‘conqueror.’ We again pledge our fraternal and moral support to the claims of every oppressed national minority within every land, and the claims of any persecuted racial minorities now suffering under the yoke of the tyrant.

“Traditionally, the American Federation of Labor has affirmed its sympathy with one of the most unjustly and tragically persecuted of all minorities-the Jewish people. At present this unfortunate group of the human brotherhood is enduring not only the usual barbarous and detestable excesses of the Nazis towards conquered people-it is being subjected to a program of systematic extermination which puts all its past sufferings into the shade. We again reiterate and emphasize our profound sympathy with the Jewish people. We assure them of our warm support in their just claims to that moral and practical recognition which is due to any historic ethnic and cultural group.


“We deplore the incredible brutality which activates the behavior of their Nazi oppressors. We declare our complete sympathy with the national aspirations of the Jewish people towards collective security at the end of the present war. Since a start towards such security was made in the establishment of the national homeland in Palestine for the Jewish people, we reaffirm our belief that the United Nations owe to them the continuance and the maintenance of this homeland as a relief from their dreadful and inhuman persecutions, as a guarantee of their cultural unity and continuity, as an instrument for their legal and international standing in the court of nations, and as a restitution for their national dignity, honor and creative energies.

“In the post-war period of world reorganization that lies ahead, when the United Nations come to the problems of restoring the integrity of nations and groups now suffering under the lash of vile tyranny, we urge that they remember also the claims and sufferings of the Jewish people, and take steps to guarantee freedom and equality to them in their adopted countries, as well as their independence, under the Balfour declaration, on the soil of Palestine.” The declaration concludes with greetings to the Histadruth, promising “maximum international aid for an early reconstruction of Jewish nationhood in Palestine.”

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