Washington (Dec. 20)
Assistant Secretary of War Howard Petersen, on a radio interview here tonight, said he believed that 100,000 Jews should be admitted to Palestine and that the rest of the United Nations should open their doors to the immigration of the remaining Jewish displaced persons.
Petersen refuted charges made by George Meader, counsel to the Senate War Investigating Committee, in his report to the committee, to the effect that the migration of Jewish Dp’s from Poland is organized and paid for by groups of Jews in other lands.
“Jews in Poland are going to leave Poland, regardless of outside assistance,” Petersen said. “They want to get out of Europe, to go to Palestine. In their migration they receive help along the way, humane treatment by voluntary Jewish agencies which are doing fine work. But the help they are given doesn’t start the movement. I don’t think coffee and doughnuts and wayside soup kitchens ever started a mass migration.”
To Meader’s charge that the DP’s have “no desire to work,” Petersen pointed, in explanation, to the psychological factor in the reluctance of the Jewish DP’s to do any work that would aid Germany in any way. He also pointed out that in many cases the camps were not located close to centers of industry.