New York (Dec. 29)
The American Jewish Conference today issued a statement charging that the Emergency Committee to Save the Jewish People of Europe is one of a “series of fronts” whose leaders have “constantly assumed to speak for the Jewish people in this country without having or endeavoring to secure a mandate from any constituency” and whose activities have caused “discord, resulting frequently in a disservice to the cause they had assumed to represent.”
Tracing the history of the “American Friends of Jewish Palestine,” “The Committee for an Army of Stateless and Palestinian Jews,” the current “Emergency Committee” and the “American League for a Free Palestine,” the statement declared that these “several manifestations have common features which reveal their character as being one and the same.” Instead of cooperating with established and recognized national Jewish agencies, they have entered into competition and sought to undermine them, the statement continued, “They have conjured up the illusion of activity by press agency, financed by the appeals for contributions invariably accompanying their advertisements.”
The Conference asserted that an “unfortunate and regrettable aspect” is that “many men and women of good will, moved by humanitarian sympathy with the plight of the Jews of Europe, have been misled into believing that these committees represented the Jewish people and have contributed to their support.” The Conference made it clear that its statement was not intended as a reflection on these individuals, a number of whom had withdrawn when they became aware of the facts.
The statement recalled the advertisement published by the Committee for a Jewish Army last February, which implied that 70,000 Rumanian Jews could be saved at a cost of $50 a piece. “From the content and phrasing of this advertisement, many persons were led to believe that a $50 contribution would save a Jewish life. The public is waiting to hear how many Jews were ransomed with the money that was collected and what disposition was made of the money,” the Conference said.
RESOLUTION INTRODUCED IN CONGRESS AGAINST WILL OF JEWISH ORGANIZATIONS
Referring to the Baldwin-Rogers resolution sponsored by the Emergency Committee in Congress, the Conference declared it was introduced in “complete disregard of the rescue program which is being actively pressed in Washington by representative Jewish agencies” and that it does not reflect the totality of that program.
“Obviously, any resolution which promises the slightest hope for the rescue of the Jewish people of Europe will command support, but it must be pointed out that the Emergency Committee has made rash and exaggerated claims as to what this resolution will accomplish,” the statement said.
Referring to the American League for a Free Palestine, the statement asserted: “The prospectus of this new organization is a mixture of all the propaganda items which have proved serviceable in the past in capturing sympathy and contributions. But if the propaganda is confusing, the purpose is clear. The prospectus includes an open attack on the World Zionist Organization.” It described the new group as an attempt to establish a front against the Jewish Agency for Palestine.