MAY 19, 1943
WASHINGTON, Tuesday—Yesterday afternoon, at 4:00 o'clock, the ladies of the Cabinet and I gave our first party for a group of Congressional ladies. We had a short movie and then went out on the lawn for some very light refreshments. The air was delicious, neither too cold nor too warm. I only hope that every one of the parties planned for the garden will be as pleasant as this one was.
We were shown another in a series of films in the evening, prepared by the Special Services Division of the Army, to be shown in the camps. It is one of the best chronologies of the development of the war that I have seen and I hope that, like "Prelude To Victory," it will be released to the general public, as well as to the soldiers in the camps.
For the benefit of the Greek War Relief, the radio stations will have on sale, for the price of $1.00, an atlas of World War II, which was arranged as a program for the Greek War Relief benefit. It shows geographically the entire progress of the war, and I can think of no better gift for the boys in the Army, who after they have seen the film we saw last night, will want something actually in hand to remind them of the history of this war.
Many people all over this country must be reading the casualty lists with great anxiety these days. There is one thing which impresses me each time I go through them. I have always known it, but it is something good to bear in mind. There are the names of the men who have given all they had to give for the country in which you and I live, and the names—why they are Russian, British, German, French, Dutch, Jewish, Czech, Hungarian, Chinese, Italian, Irish, Japanese, Norwegian, Swedish, and from all the rest of the nations of the world!
As you read the stories of heroic deeds, you find again that whether it is Meyer Levin or Jimmy Doolittle, the name, the race, the religion does not seem to make any difference. Courage belongs to no one race or no one religion, but it does seem to be in all our boys, for where one is recognized a hundred go unnoticed. We can take pride in all these young Americans, and if any of us ever had any prejudices we can beat them down and hide them away, shamed by the mute testimony of the names on our casuality lists.
At 5:00 o'clock this afternoon I start visiting housing projects. So far as I can now tell, I won't get through much before 9:00 o'clock tonight, so I shall have to forego dining with our very delightful guests.