WASHINGTON (Jun. 4)
The Army Department has instructed occupation authorities in Europe to name the Jewish Agency, representing the state of Israel, as the official organization moving Jewish displaced persons to Israel, it was learned today. The step was suggested by Gen, Luclue D. Clay, U.S. commander in Germany.
However, after consultation with the State Department, the Army modified the original Clay proposal to make it for “planning purposes only.” This means that the occupation authorities in Germany and Austria can begin to make paper arrangements for handing over to Israeli representatives the authority to transfer Jewish DP’s to Israel, Clay’s suggestion would have allowed for immediate movement of refugees in Germany to Palestine under the direction of Israel officials.
The proposal was modified because of the efforts of the United Nations to impose a truce agreement in Palestine. The Army was unwilling to give Military Government inflexible instructions on this subject prior to and during an Arab-Israel truce. The inference is that Washington wishes to be in the clear on the provision, insisted on by the Arabs, to ban Jewish immigration during the truce period.
The confusion about authority over Jewish DP’s developed after the proclamation of statehood by Israel. The International Refugee Organization, which had been handling the transfer of European Jews to Palestine, announced that it could not be responsible for sealing refugees into an area where fighting was going on.