NEW YORK (Jan. 5)
Israel’s “Freedom Torch,” sent by Premier David Ben Gurion to Henry Morgenthau Jr., general chairman of the United Jewish Appeal, was presented today to Mr. Morgenthau by Israel Consul-General Arthur Lourie, acting for Mr. Ben Gurion. The ceremony took place at the Israel Consulate here.
The torch, which was flown to New York from Israel for the presentation ceremony, last week lit beacons throughout the Jewish state to signal the attainment by Israel of its 1,000,000th Jewish citizen. The “Freedom Torch” was carried from one end of the country to the other by relays of several hundred runners.
Accepting the torch from Mr. Lourie, Mr. Morgenthau announced that it would tour major cities throughout the country, where it will be kindled to mark the opening of local campaigns on behalf of the United Jewish Appeal. The torch was first lit at Modi’in, in Israel, which tradition says is the tomb of the Maccabees, who led the people of Judea to victory against the Greek-Syrian forces in 165 B.C. From there it was carried to Jerusalem.
The Freedom Torch is made of bronze, mounted on a carved wooden staff. It has a menorah in bronze bas-relief on one side. Below is the insignia of the Israel Army. Consul-General Lourie, in making the presentation at the Israel Consulate, said: “It is particularly fitting that Israel’s Freedom Torch should be sent to Mr. Morgenthau. He typifies the great contributions to our victory and freedom that were made by the people of America. This torch is Israel’s tribute to him as a great Jew and a great American.”