Washington (Jul. 31)
The United States Government will not state its policy on Palestine until the United Nations General Assembly takes up the Palestine problem at its September session, Secretary of State George C. Marshall reiterated today.
The statement was made in a communication addressed to Rep. Jacob K. Javits, Republican of New York, who with 29 other members of Congress wrote to the Secretary of State asking clarification of the views of the U.S. Government on Palestine. The text reads:
“I have received your letter of July 15, 1947, addressed jointly to me and to Senator Austin by you and a number of your Congressional colleagues with regard to the consideration which is now being given to the question of Palestine by a special committee of the United Nations.
“According to our information, the special committee recently completed the hearing of testimony in Palestine and other countries of the Near East and is assembling in Switzerland for the purpose of considering the results of its inquiry and preparing its report to the General Assembly of the United Nations.
“It is the Department’s opinion that until such time as the special committee has completed its task and this Government has had an opportunity to study the contents of the special committee’s report, no statement should be made by this Government with respect to its views regarding the future status and government of Palestine.
“In reply to the numbered questions in your letter of July 15, it would not accordingly appear desirable for the United States representative to the United Nations to appear before the special committee; nor would it appear desirable for this Government to make any statement of policy through the United States representative at this time with respect to Palestine.
“The Palestine problem, in the opinion of the Department of State, is one of continuing concern to this Government and the views of the Government will be put forward when the General Assembly considers the problem.”
CONGRESSMAN CRITICIZES STATE DEPARTMENT’S “NEUTRALITY”
Rep. Javits, in a statement accompanying the release of the Marshall letter, criticized the State Department’s “neutral” reply. “This is the time for action, not neutrality,” he said. “When the Committee has already made its recommendations a fine statement of policy by the United States, will hardly improve an unsatisfactory solution.”
Javits said that in failing to inform the U.N. Special Committee “that we are willing to join in implementing a solution,” the United States is losing “an unparalleled opportunity to get the historic United States policy on Palestine realized. The State Department’s refusal to announce this to the special committee leaves the special committee operating in the dark as to the practicability of carrying out any recommendations it makes, whether for partition, for free Jewish immigration or for another interim administration in Palestine to replace the British.”