MAY 4, 1959
NILES, Mich.—When I spoke in South Orange, New Jersey, last week, I found great interest in my recent visit to Iran and Israel, but I am afraid the story of my granddaughter's camel almost outshines all other interest!
I would like to emphasize again what a magnificent increase in industry and agricultural development seemed to me to have been achieved in the Negev. I was also happy to observe the orderly absorption of Jewish immigrants who had recently come from Rumania to rejoin their families in Israel. Many of these families were separated when Jewish immigration from Rumania was halted in 1951. In response to humanitarian pleas, the Rumanian government decided early last winter to permit Jewish immigration for the purpose of reunion of families.
I was told that some 15,000 Jews have already received passports for emigration to Israel but are still in Rumania. There are also many others who have families in Israel. Rumanian sources say that the policy of reunion of families remains unchanged. This announcement gives a strong basis for the hope that the Rumanian government will pursue the same understanding attitude which it has shown in the past and will continue the humanitarian process of the reunion of families until all those wishing to rejoin their relatives in Israel have been able to do so.
No one envies the Western foreign ministers who have just met in Paris, for they face a very difficult job -- they must first come to agreements among themselves. The Soviets have a great advantage in that they have no one to consult but themselves. There may be differences of opinion within the Soviet official family, but these will certainly be easier to settle than the difficulties that arise between four different countries, each thinking primarily of its own situation, but realizing at the same time that the final answer has to solve a situation that concerns them all.
To an outsider, the reunification of Germany may not seem very important. It is obvious that West Berlin has an importance as a showcase, and access to West Berlin must be kept free. But a reunified Germany would probably frighten the European countries of the West. Although they have done everything to rebuild Germany's strength, they still have a lurking fear in the back of their minds of what Germany's role might turn out to be in the future. It is no easy job that faces our new Secretary of State. He seems to have made a good start, and all of us had better hope that his talents for mediation and conciliation will be of the highest order, for one doubts if any of the other gentlemen can have real objectivity about the questions under discussion.
The President has said the final word, it seems, on the strange and curious situation that developed over the appointment of an ambassador to Brazil. His statement that the lady had behaved in a "perfectly human" manner, but that perhaps her attack had been "ill-advised," certainly cannot be questioned. Now that Mrs. Luce has resigned, one hopes that the friendship which we seek with Brazil will not suffer from the recent acrimony. We need friends in South America and understanding between ourselves and the people there, so don't let's complicate our situation any further by misunderstandings among ourselves.