MAY 1, 1957
NEW YORK—It was amusing and somewhat confusing to read of the communique issued in Damascus, Syria, which said that inter-Arab talks in Cairo and Saudi Arabia had been "an exchange of information on the present situation in Jordan" and that "safeguarding of Jordan's independence is one of the bases of common policy among Egypt, Syria and Saudi Arabia."
This seems hard to believe when Syria's own troops have been menacing Jordan and both Syria and Egypt have been accepting Communist infiltration.
This is, of course, a highly confused situation which perhaps will continue to be difficult for the rest of us to understand. I cannot help but hope, however, that the most recent consultation between King Saud of Saudi Arabia and King Hussein of Jordan will lead to the strengthening of the young Jordanian king's stand against Communism.
It would seem to me, as an outsider, that Jordan's basic difficulties are economic, for Jordan seems to possess so few resources by which to offer its people an independent and decent livelihood.
Expert advice and help in the economic field will have to come to that country, it seems to me, before there can be much stability.
Israel's announcement that it does not intend to enter Jordan so long as other troops stay out seems perfectly logical. For its own safety, Israel would not want to see Syrian troops take over Jordan. It is obvious, however, if Jordan looks to freedom in the future, it must stand on its own feet, ruling out interference and trying to build economic strength.
I had the pleasure last Saturday night in taking some of my young people to the "Waltz of the Toreadors" in which Sir Ralph Richardson stars.
The whole cast is excellent, and I found the play most amusing, still carrying an undertone of seriousness which, as I thought it over, seemed more important than it did while I was laughing at the clever lines.
I went Sunday to the communion breakfast of the St. George Association, which is made up of welfare workers from the New York City Welfare Department and of a recently-organized group from the Health Department.
I was glad to see both Commissioners Henry L. McCarthy and Leona Baumgartner. They are two of our hardest-working city officials and both are trying to give us increasingly good administration.
We had a pleasant luncheon here at home in New York and then I motored out to Vineland, N.J., to give a speech. It was a longer motor trip than I had realized, and I did not get home until very late at night. But I was glad that the meeting seemed to be a success. My hosts were charming and kind young people.