NEW YORK (Apr. 21)
Major American newspapers throughout the country published editorial tributes today and yesterday to Dr. Stephen S. Wise, who died on Tuesday at the age of 75. The Yiddish press stressed in editorials that the death of Dr. Wise is a great loss not only to Jews but to all humanity.
The New York Times editorial said that Dr. Wise “was an intense, eloquent and even belligerent crusader for what he believed in. One of his sources of power was that he did not weigh too cautiously the consequences of a given line of action but proceeded on the basis of principle as he saw it,” the editorial said.
The New York Herald-Tribune described Dr. Wise as “a natural crusader, whose voice was never silent when there was a liberty in danger or a human cause to be served. On his last birthday, Dr. Wise referred happily to the establishment of Israel as a nation for he had been a leader in the Zionist cause since 1897. One rejoices that he was able to see that great victory won,” the paper added.
In an editorial entitled, “A Prince Has Fallen In Israel,” the New York Sun declared that Dr. Wise was “one of those intense, indefatigable idealists who, regardless of their calling, are bound to influence the life of the community. He was a pioneer in the Zionist cause. In this fight his vigor and his eloquence proved of lasting value,” the Sun said.
The New York World-Telegram asserted that “this city has had few more dynamic figures in its religious and civic life than Dr. Stephen S. Wise. He was a born crusader. He had the very look, manner and speech of a crusader. One of the early pioneers in the birth of the Zionist movement, Dr. Wise rejoiced in the new state of Israel and left no stone unturned to secure its recognition by the United States.”
The New York Post Home News said: “The death of Stephen S. Wise leaves a gap in American life. His battles for humanitarianism were not confined to the pulpit. He fought prejudice and bigotry and corruption everywhere. Political reform and religious ardor marched together in his long career. Happily, he lived to see the climax of the struggle in the birth of the state of Israel. The world mourns a leader and a warrior.”
The New York Journal-American declared: “Dr. Stephen S. Wise had been for so long a dynamic force in the life of our city that his death brings to all of us, Jew and Christian alike, a sense of loss. He was a fearless man and caution was not in him. Many distinguished Jews differed with him in his views, but none questioned his honesty. His most deeply satisfying sense of fulfillment, he told friends as his life was running to its close, was that he was granted the time to see the establishment of the state of Israel as his people’s homeland. It is regrettable that he died without realizing another wish, to visit the new nation.”