HOLLYWOOD, Fla. (Aug. 9)
The national commander of the Jewish War Veterans termed the Watergate episode the culmination of a decade of moral delinquency in the United States in his opening statement yesterday at the 78th annual national convention of the JWV here. Commander Norman Tilles of Providence, Rhode Island, predicted that Watergate could mark the close of one of the sorriest chapters in American history “Stretching back for at least a decade the American people have been lied to, betrayed, promoted and generally conned by a parade of public officials to whom pious words meant more than pious deeds,” he said.
“We sent 50,000 boys to their death and hundreds of thousands to hospitals for a dubious war without end that continues this very day. We have rained bombs in quantities unheard of in modern warfare on countries still emerging into the age of technology without political or military effect. We have eroded the quality of the American dollar We have blundered into inflation by ignorance and greed and literally destroyed our ability to provide inexpensive food for the American table. We have disgraced our children by our moral laxity and throttled them when they dared to speak out against the excesses of our ignorance.”
Tilles stated that it is apparent now that “our young people were certainly right about our moral decay but off the mark about the ability of the system to correct itself.” It is time now, he said, “to vindicate both generations and close the gap between the young and the old by sweeping the slate clean and begin the job of restoring the moral position of our country and its leadership.” The JWV convention at the Diplomat Hotel here will continue through Sunday.