Goldstein, Eisendrath Hit Red-labelling of Rabbis Wise and Magnes

Dr. Israel Goldstein, president of the American Jewish Congress, and Rabbi Maurice N. Eisendrath, president of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations, in a joint statement, today castigated the House Committee on Un-American Activities for having “permitted the publication of the fantastic charges of ex-Communist leader (Benjamin) Gitlow” against the late Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, world-renowned leader of the AJC and the World Jewish Congress, and the late Dr. Judah L. Magnes, president of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Both men had been spiritual leaders of Reform congregations in the United States.

Gitlow testified that both men were among a number of clergymen “who carried out the instructions of the Communist Party or collaborated with it.”

The joint statement by Drs. Goldstein and Eisendrath pointed out that the two late Jewish leaders “were hailed the world over as among the most independent, courageous and moral figures of our generation.” It added: “To charge them with having taken instruction from the Communist Party and having collaborated with it is a contemptible and vile desecration of two of the most noble and revered names in American Jewish history.”

The statement also expressed the “hope that this climactic revelation of the irresponsible character of the Committee’s procedures will move the American people to action in defense of their liberties.”

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