AUGUST 18, 1958
HYDE PARK—The American Friends Service Committee, which has always tried throughout the world to meet human needs and to bring together the peoples of different nations in an effort to encourage peace, is sponsoring a visit by three American medical scientists to the Soviet Union. This is, of course, set up on a reciprocal basis, so the committee has invited three Soviet professional leaders in the same field to visit the United States within the next six month.
The American doctors on this present mission are Dr. Joseph Stokes, Jr., of Philadelphia; Dr. George A. Perera of New York, and Dr. Samuel A. Corson of Little Rock, Arkansas. They began their visit to the U.S.S.R. on August 11th and will travel there until September 9th. En route to Russia, they attended the International Congress for Microbiology in Stockholm, and on leaving the Soviet Union they will stop in Poland to visit Polish doctors and scientists.
Dr. Corson speaks fluent Russian which will be a help to all of them, and each has a special field in which he will do research.
Dr. Stokes is interested in observing Soviet practices in promoting the health of mothers and children. Dr. Perera hopes to observe Russian developments in the field of internal medicine and to study medical education. Dr. Corson will look for Russian advances in the basic medical sciences, particularly in the field of conditioned reflex and psychosomatic physiology.
Few people realize what a broad worldwide program the American Friends Service Committee carries on. They have projects in at least twelve countries.
Elmore Jackson, the committee's area representative in Beirut, has cabled that the needs in Lebanon now are very great and has asked for at least $10,000 in the next three weeks to continue relief operations begun in three districts of Lebanon in cooperation with Lebanese Quakers and other religious leaders.
Aid is given on a nonpartisan basis and is handled in Lebanon by Ralph Kerman, a Quaker professor from Kalamazoo, Mich., who is at present teaching at the American University in Beirut.
Already seven and a half tons of wheat and flour have been distributed in some fifteen villages in the Chouf district of Lebanon, inhabited by Druses and under the supervision of Kamal Jumblatt. This is one of the poorest areas of Lebanon but aid is only given to families where the head of the household has been killed or wounded, and it is distributed by a Lebanese Quaker who is allowed to move freely on both sides of the line of conflict.
In the port section of Tripoli there has been wide unemployment for the past three months, and there the Greek Orthodox priest is distributing relief among Moslems and Christians alike.
In southern Lebanon, near the Syrian and Israeli borders, about 100 families who fled opposition-controlled areas are receiving aid on the recommendation of the leaders of four different religious groups.
It is good that we have an organization like the American Friends Service Committee that can enlist such varied cooperation, for the need is great and it is relief of this kind which speaks most clearly of America's interest in human beings, regardless of any political situation.