DECEMBER 4, 1950
HYDE PARK, Sunday—On Wednesday evening I attended a dinner of the Scandinavian-American Foundation in celebration of their 40th anniversary. Crown Prince Olaf of Norway represented the Scandinavian countries and the ambassadors of Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Iceland were all present. It was an interesting occasion and the work described explained well why the ties between the Scandinavian countries and the United States have developed and improved. The foundation has encouraged scholarships not only for students, but for trainees in industry, and these trainees are, I think, almost more valuable than students.
We have sent students over to Norway, too, and there have been many reciprocal cultural projects, such as publication in this country of translations of the best Norwegian authors, the interchange of theatre groups, and exhibitions of various sorts.
A warm feeling of friendliness surround the Crown Prince and Princess of Norway. They are fond of the United States and I think everyone who comes in contact with them likes and admires them. I have been happy this weekend to have them both with me at Hyde Park again. I am sure for them the visit was mixed with sadness, because they were for the first time revisiting scenes which were so familiar during the years of the war and which recalled to them not only their own anxieties, but the warm friendship which existed with my husband, and which I know they miss in returning to this country. They leave tomorrow homeward bound, and I am sure they take with them the goodwill and good wishes of all the Americans who have come to know and to love them during the past years.
To turn to another matter, I want to speak about the demonstration which took place outside of the Security Council chamber in Lake Success the other afternoon. A group of women went out there, and their petition for peace was touching and sad. It showed how little they understood the situation, but spoke of the yearning of every woman's heart when she sees her men in danger. It was, of course, a Communist-inspired demonstration, but I am sure most of the women had no idea that this was so.
At the same time, a demonstration was carried on by young boys and girls sitting down on the floor. They looked to me like an older teenage group, and I was told that Paul Robeson, Jr., was leading them. I cannot imagine that this was true, but in any case I am sure these young idealists felt they were doing a grand thing in demonstrating for peace. One slogan they carried read: "We want peace, no discussion." Poor children—how little they know how hard peace is to achieve and how well worthwhile discussion is!
What troubles me above everything else is that I feel sure this Communist-inspired demonstration also was not made up entirely of boys and girls who are Communists. Yet it might be that the FBI may list some, if not all, of the people who were in these two groups, and five or ten years from now the fact that they were in a Communist group, and their names are on an FBI list, will come back to dog their footsteps. It will stand on their record and prevent their getting certain jobs they may someday want to hold. They don't think of this, but someone ought to tell them and that is why I write of it in this column.