New York (May. 14)
Immigration of 100,000 European Jewish refugees to Palestine, as recommended in the report of the Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry on Palestine must be effected promptly “if grave developments in occupied Europe and in Palestine are to be forestalled,” it was stated here tonight by James G. McDonald, one of the American members of the inquiry committee, addressing a meeting of the New York Chapter of the American Jewish Committee.
“There is no justifiable reason for delay,” Mr. McDonald declared. “I refuse to believe that the British Government will, by insisting upon impossible terms for their release, hold as hostages these Jewish young people, men and women, who after surviving years of torture ask only to be allowed to rebuild their lives in Palestine. I refuse to believe that President Truman, having taken forthright and courageous leadership in this vital enterprise, will fail to press on until the 100,000 are secure in Palestine.”
McDonald pointed out that “delay in implementing this program would dangerously heighten the tension now existing in the centers where Jewish displaced persons have so long waited for release.” Adverse action or inaction on the inquiry committee immigration recommendations, he said, would drive many of them to despair. “Palestine’s capacity to absorb many times 100,000 Jewish immigrants,” he stated, “cannot be seriously doubted. The so-called absorptive capacity in that country depends almost wholly upon what more is done to reclaim the desert and the swamps.”
Ralph E. Samuel, who presided at the meeting, outlined the position of the American Jewish Committee on Palestine. The organization, he said, urges that the recommendations of the Anglo-American Committee for immigration into Palestine and for removal of land purchase restrictions be put into immediate and unconditional effect. It also supports the proposal that Jewish immigration into Palestine be continued “to the limit of the economic absorptive capacity of the country,” and that Palestine be governed by a United Nations trusteeship which would safeguard the rights of all sections of the population.