Capetown, South Africa (Mar. 27)
Declaring that the “Jewish question is the most serious minority question,” Prime Minister Jan Christian Smuts told Parliament yesterday that he was confident that provisions covering the treatment of minorities would be included in the world charter to be drafted at the United Nations’ San Francisco conference.
“I am what may be called a Palestinian,” Smuts said, ” I would like to see the Jewish people have their own national home, to where those of their people who are unwelcome in other countries can go. This seems a natural solution. Here is the old historic home of the Jewish people. Why shouldn’t they have it back, have a country to where they can go?
“In many countries,” the Prime Minister continued, “they are unwelcome, They are welcome in South Africa, welcome by peoples possessing a large human out. look. But with many people who are intolerant, the Jewish question becomes urgent, with agony resulting on both sides. I have, therefore, for many years been an advocate of a Jewish national home in order that some solution may be found for this most terrible of all minority questions. We are pledged to certain things. Whether they will be carried out, time alone can tell.”
Replying to a query by nationalist deputy Eric Louw as to whether he was speaking for the British Government, Smuts replied; “I am not speaking for the British Government. The British Government is in a difficult position and is sweating blood over this question.” He said that what is needed is a new universal declaration affirming the fundamentals of western civilization. “Thus,” he said, “we would know if we did not observe them, we were falling below our own stardard.”