Washington (Dec. 20)
Members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee today revealed that the U. S. Government would be ready to contribute $4,000,000 towards a $10,000,000 project which provides for the purchase of food to be sent to the remnants of the Jewish population in parts of Poland and Czechoslovakia through the International Red Cross in Switzerland.
The balance, it was stated, would be covered by the British Government underwriting $4,000,000 and by an unnamed American Jewish organization which is willing to put up $2,000,000 with the permission of the Treasury Department. The statement was made on the basis of testimony given by Assistant Secretary of State Breckenbridge Long, testifying before the Committee concerning the Baldwin-Rogers resolution which provides for the creation of a commission to facilitate the rescue of the Jews of Europe.
With both houses of Congress adjoining tomorrow until Jan. 10, individual members of the Foreign Affairs Committee today continued to discuss among themselves, informally, the situation created by the resolution. It was pointed out by some members that adoption of this resolution would be difficult because a proposal for the setting up of a new commission in addition to the Intergovernmental Committee on Refugees could easily be interpreted to mean that Congress was criticizing or repudiating all that has been done up to now by the United States Government to alleviate the situation of refugees. On the other hand, it is felt that if the Foreign Affairs Committee does not recommend that Congress take the steps indicated in the resolution, this may affect the position of the Jews in Europe since it may be taken as a repudiation of their cause.
The statement made before the Foreign Affairs Committee by Assistant Secretary Long, concerning the numbers of refugees that were admitted to the United States in the ten years after Hitler came to power was challenged here today. Statistics of the Justice Department, it was pointed out, show that only 163,423 of the 580,000 immigrants admitted in the decade were Jews, although in that period hundreds of thousands of Jews sought entrance.
Citing refugees from Germany and Austria as an example of what was termed the State Department’s failure to facilitate immigration, interested groups drew attention to the fact that although the immigration quota from those countries was 266,635 for the ten years 1932-1942, only 123,573 German and Austrian nationals were admitted, less than half the quota. The Polish quota was 65,240 for the same period, but only 28,579 were given visas, the Justice Department figures show.