The Jewish People Should Be Preserved
I feel with all of you the gravity of the present situation. I feel, perhaps more than most of you, the difficulties which confront us, because I realize my own inability to contribute much to the removal of those difficulties. But I hold it to be my duty and my privilege to aid, and so far as it is in my power to do so, I will join you in this great work. I thank you for your confidence in my ability to help the cause.
I feel my disqualification for this task. Throughout long years which represent my own life, I have been to a great extent separated from Jews. I am very ignorant in things Jewish. But recent experiences, public and professional, have taught me this: I find Jews possessed of those very qualities which we of the twentieth century seek to develop in our struggle for justice and democracy; a deep moral feeling which makes them capable of noble acts; a deep sense of the brotherhood of man; and a high intelligence, the fruit of three thousand years of civilization.
These experiences have made me feel that the Jewish People have something which should be saved for the world; that the Jewish People should be preserved; and that it is our duty to pursue that method of saving which most promises success. While I feel unable to bring to this task the knowledge, the experience, and the ability which it requires, I am glad to work to that end with you and the other Zionists of this and other countries.
By a sudden catastrophe, the movement has been deprived of leadership by those who for many years have successfully advanced it. In the last few weeks, since the need of American aid became probable, I have endeavored to acquaint myself with what had been accomplished. I am greatly impressed with the progress made; with the wisdom manifested; with the energy applied in overcoming difficulties.
And I may add that I am greatly encouraged, as I am sure every one of you is, by what Dr. Levin [Shmaryahu Levin, a close associate of Chaim Weizmann] has told us today. The spirit with which he has approached the questions under discussion, the unusual intelligence with which he has dealt with them, intensify my admiration for the work of the past.
To achieve our purpose we need the cooperation of everyone here and of the tens of thousands whom those here can influence. Let us work together! Carry forward what others have, in the past, borne so well! Carry it forward to the goal for which we all long!