House Foreign Affairs Committee Hears Jewish Leaders on American Aid to Israel

Jewish leaders tonight testified before the House Foreign Affairs Committee presenting their views on the Mutual Security Program for the Near East. They placed on the record their conviction that the program does not provide adequately for the area as a whole and for Israel in particular.

Louis Lipsky, chairman of the American Zionist Council, recalled that the Government of Israel formally requested, in March of this year, a grant-in-aid of $150,000,000 to enable it to overcome the extraordinary economic problems resulting from its immigration program, and that subsequently, bills were introduced into the House and Senate authorizing a grant in that amount.

“We respectfully urge this Committee to take these bills into consideration in the discussion of amendments to the proposed Mutual Security Program,” Mr. Lipsky said. He reviewed American interest in Israel before and after the establishment of the Jewish state and pointed out that “Israel’s resourcefulness and stamina and courage” give it an opportunity to become a factor in the Middle East as one of the strongest democratic forces to oppose totalitarian aggression in that part of the world.

Declaring that “Israel qualifies as an outpost of Western civilization,” the chairman of the American Zionist Council said: “We urge you to give adequate aid to Israel, as well as to the Arab States, on their own individual merits, assessing what each needs and what each can contribute to the welfare of the free world. Of course, we urge measures to ensure the earliest possible resettlement of the Arab refugees. In our view, the amount provided for the Middle East in the Mutual Security Program should be substantially increased. We therefore urge the inclusion of Israel in the program for 1952 for an amount based on its own potentialities. This view is reflected in concrete form in the McCormack-Martin bills.”

DR. SCHWARTZ SAYS ISRAEL MERITS FULLEST ASSISTANCE BY UNITED STATES

Dr. Joseph J. Schwartz, executive vice-chairman of the United Jewish Appeal, reviewed Israel’s immigration program before the House Foreign Affairs Committee and pointed out that Israel’s open door policy helped to save tens of thousands of Jews. He emphasized that Israel may be compelled to accept about 250,000 immigrants this year and that “the doubling of the population in three years of any country, no matter how great its resources, would severely disrupt the normal life of that land.”

Outlining the problems which Israel faces as a result of keeping its doors open to personated Jews, Dr. Schwartz said that it is obvious that “Israel cannot meet the problems which face her alone.” Also, he insisted Israel should not be asked by the free world to meet these problems by herself.

“The history of Israel in its three brief years represents a notable advance for democracy,” Dr. Schwartz stated. “The State of Israel has shown itself to be a true democracy in a critical part of the world–which in itself should continue to evoke, I believe, fullest American sympathy and support. But over and above these things stands one fact about Israel which I feel merits her the fullest assistance by our own country.

“Israel, today, stands as one of the most gratifying and heartening ventures in our troubled times in the area of saving lives. Israel, today, represents a guarantee of hope to a vast body of distressed people–to the Jews of Eastern Europe and the Arab world. Israel, today, represents a realistic and inspiring solution to the age-old problems of anti-Semitism and anti-Jewish hatred,” he declared.

“Israel has already saved 640,000 lives in three short years. Its agenda calls for saving 600,000 more lives in its second three years,” he continued. “Each life already saved, each life to be saved, represents a recruit to the building of democracy and a better world. The best interests of our Government–world leader of the democratic ideal, champion of human life and dignity throughout its entire history–will be well served by aiding Israel to attain its program for the future,” Dr. Schwartz concluded.

Robert Nathan, noted economist and expert on Middle East affairs, was also scheduled to testify in behalf of the $150,000,000 grant-in-aid, (His testimony had not been given at the time the Bulletin went to press.)

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