New York (Aug. 26)
On the eve of the American Jewish Conference, the Institute of Jewish Affairs of the American Jewish Congress and the World Jewish Congress published today a “balance sheet” of the devastation wrought by Hitler upon the Jews of Europe in the course of his ten year war on them.
The study asserts that the Jewish population of Europe, totalling 8,300,000, has been reduced by 5,000,000 and that in the whole of continental Europe, embracing twenty-four countries occupied by the Axis, only 3,000,000 Jews remain alive. More than 3,000,000 Jews have been destroyed in the four year period since the outbreak of war in 1939 by planned starvation, forced labor, deportation, pogroms, and methodical murder in the German-run extermination centers of Eastern Europe, it says. One million eight hundred thousand Jews were saved by evacuation into the interior of the Soviet Union, the report points out, while 180,000 succeeded in emigrating. Of the number of Jewish dead only about 8% have fallen in actual warfare.
These facts are set forth in a three-hundred-page survey prepared by the Institute of Jewish Affairs for the use of the 500 delegates who will attend the American Jewish Conference. The Conference will consider as its first order of business on Sunday the problem of the mass extermination of the Jews in Europe and a program which should be inaugurated to save those who remain. The entire evening session of the Conference is to be given over to this discussion.
Tomorrow, at the Hotel Astor, the delegates representing the American Jewish Congress will meet in all-day session to discuss their views as to the program to be undertaken with respect to the rescue of Jewry and the reconstruction of Jewish life abroad. This meeting is preliminary to the presentation of a program by the Congress delegation to the Conference as a whole.