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Lehman Cites Bravery of Maccabbees at Dedication of Service Flags

Speaking at a dedication of 25 service flags massed by reform synagogues in New York in honor of their more than 3,000 members in service Governor Herbert H. Lehman said today in referring to the Pearl Harbor attack, that ”it is a great privilege to be able to recite the tremendous moral resentment of all Americans against this kind of warfare and also to recapitulate the powerful rebound from this initial setback of our brave and devoted armed forces, backed up by the consecrated loyalty of their fellow citizens, of all creeds and kinds in America. Pearl Harbor destroyed our differences, unified our nation and consecrated our sacrifice.”

The dedication exercises, held at Central Synagogue, were observed in conjunction with the Feast of Chanukah. The celebration took place under the auspices of the New York Federation of Reform Synagogues. Other speakers were Frank L. Weil, president of the National Jewish Welfare Board, and Ben Kaufman, national commander of the Jewish War Veterans of America. Frederick Greenman, president of the New York Federation of Reform Synagogues, presided.

Citing the resolve of the ancient Maccabees, ”who chose rather to die that they might not profane the holy covenant,” Governor Lehman said that ”It is indeed a proud record for the Jews that in these days, when all of us are close knit in the struggle for freedom, we can recall that our ancestors two centuries before the birth of Christ had already proclaimed the righteousness of the sacrifice made against the same kind of tyranny we are asked to face today.”

Governor Lehman emphasized that the Jews remember more than the Maccabbean victory on the Feast of Chanukah. ”We remember the kind of bravery which for the first time in the history of all humanity rose and offered the lives of its men, women and children in defense of a principle of a righteousness in freedom,” he stated.

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