NEW YORK (Oct. 8)
The decision of the American Jewish Committee and the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith to withdraw from the National Community Relations Advisory Council “can only be understood as a deliberate attempt to disrupt the cooperative relationship and unity which have been achieved through the N.C.R.A.C.,” the national executive committee of the American Jewish Congress declared today.
In a statement announcing its approval of the plan adopted by the N.C.R.A.C.at its September plenary session in Atlantic City, the Congress’ executive said that this plan provides “at least some minimum basis for democratic joint program planning, coordination of activities and intelligent division of labor among the national community relations agencies.” The statement charged that the withdrawal of the two agencies is a “repudiation of any form of majority rule and total community responsibility in the name of organizational autonomy, “which” would substitute anarchy for orderly democratic procedure in Jewish communal affairs.”
The statement characterized as “untrue” the assertions by the American Jewish Committee and B’nai B’rith that the decision taken in Atlantic City would change the nature of the N.C.R.A.C. and endanger the autonomy of member agencies. “The N.C.R.A.C. remains what it always has been, namely, and instrument for furthering and strengthening the cooperative process in the Jewish community relations field,” the statement said.
Citing the development of Jewish community councils and community relations councils throughout the country as evidence of the growing maturity of the Jewish community, which “has placed the total community interest above the interest of individual agancies. ” the Congress’ executive declared that “the plan adopted by the N.C.R.A.C. is no more than the enlargement of this principle of service to the community on a national level. ” It pledged “to work in partnership and cooperation with the local representative Jewish community councils and with all the other national Jewish organizations which similarly recognize the overriding interest of the total Jewish community.”