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Truman Asked to Urge Pope to Issue Statement Condemning Anti-semitism in Poland

President Truman was asked today to appeal to Pope Pius to issue a statement urging the Polish Catholic population to observe the Vatican pronouncements that anti-Semitism is a violation of the precepts of Christianity.

In a letter from Joseph Proskauer and Jacob Blaustein, president and executive committee chairman, respectively, of the American Jewish Committee, the President was urged to have Myron C. Taylor, American representative at the Vatican, intervene with the Pope on the Polish situation.

The American Jewish Committee officers took exception to the recent statement of Cardinal Hlond which attributed Polish pogroms “in part to political conflicts.” They pointed out, in the letter to the President, that persecution of a group because of political opposition to some individuals who are acting entirely on their own behalf is “contrary to all principles of humanity and religion.”

Dr. Hillel Seidman, a member of the committee that organized the Warsaw ghetto uprising, and a former member of the Warsaw Town Council, today called for the mass evacuation of Jews from Poland, charging that “the opposition forces in Poland already have worked out a methodical systematic plan to exterminate the remaining Jews in Poland.”

At a press conference at the offices of the Agudas Israel Youth Council of America, Dr. Seidman said that if the U.S. Government will not permit the entry of persecuted Jews to this country above quota limitations, it should grant temporary haven to the Jews in the U.S. zone of Germany. Entrance to the American zone should be organized as a mass legal evacuation, and not as illegal smuggling across borders, which “is half-heartedly tolerated,” he said.

Dr. Seidman declared that “the peasants and the workers, the intelligentsia and the clergy, the officials, the police and military” all hear guilt for the Polish pogroms, and called upon the government to “facilitate through every possible channel the evacuation of Polish Jewry.”

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