Washington (Dec. 17)
The House Foreign Affairs Committee has temporarily suspended hearings on the Baldwin-Rogers resolution calling for the creation of a United States commission to rescue the Jewish people of occupied Europe, it was announced here today.
Chairman Sol Bloom of the Foreign Affairs Committee was charged in the House of Representatives yesterday with causing “unnecessary delay” on the Baldwin-Rogers bill. Congressman Andrew L. Somers, New York Democrat, told the House that he deplored the fact that the resolution, introduced on November 9th, has not yet been reported to the House.
Assistant Secretary of State Breckenridge Long was criticized by Congressman Samuel Dickstein of New York for his testimony before the House Foreign Affairs Committee with regard to the admission of refugees to the United States. Speaking in the House of Representatives, Congressman Dickstein said that the testimony of Mr. Long “is significant not in what it states, but in what it implies.”
“After all the many weeks of public discussion, the clamor in the public press, newspapers, and radio comments, which disclosed a situation which would have saved many innocent men, women, and children who are about to be extirpated by Hitler and his satellites, we find a bland statement to the effect that in the last decade, meaning the last 11 years, the total number of all refugees admitted to the United States from all nations, both permanently and temporarily, is 580,000,” Rep. Dickstein said. “If we consider the fact that the average admission would then be at the rate of less than 58,000 per year, it is clear that the organs of our Government have not done their duty. The existing quotas call for admission of more than 150,000 every year, so that if the quotas themselves had been filled, there would have been a total of 1,500,000 and not 580,000 during the period mentioned.
STATE DEPARTMENT CHARGED WITH LACK OF GOOD FAITH
“But that is not the whole story,” Mr. Dickstein continued. “There was no effort of any kind made to save from death many of the refugees who could have been saved during the time that transportation lines were available and there was no obstacle to their admission to the United States. But the obstructive policy of our organs of Government, particularly the State Department, which saw fit to hedge itself about with rules and regulations, instead of lifting rules and regulations, brought about a condition so that not even the existing immigration quotas are filled.
“To boast of the proceedings, as the State Department seems to indicate in its press release is more than strange. Stranger still is the press release carried on December 12 from Australia to the effect that that country is now seeking more immigrants. At the Bermuda Conference, as you recall, the British Government insisted that there be no discussion of any admission of refugees to any part of the British Empire, and now Australia is clamoring for immigrants.
“It is a strange commentary on the workings of our official departments, that at a time when there is a definite solution possible, it not only is not taken advantage of, but no mention of any kind is made as to any possibility of a solution, and our State Department simply is throwing the burden on small countries like Sweden and Switzerland to settle a condition which these countries are incapable of handling. There is a total absence of good faith on the part of our authorities as well as on the part of the British authorities, to solve the problem of refugees, and neither our Government nor that of Great Britain is helping to any considerable extent.”