860F.48/52: Telegram

The Minister in Czechoslovakia (Carr) to the Secretary of State

56. My 55, March 19, 5 p.m. Fully aware of and in full sympathy with the later reports and policy of the United States in regard to [Page 55] immigration, I nevertheless feel that a special situation exists here which merits the serious attention of the President and of Congress. The Czechoslovak state was in part the creation of the United States of America upon whose form of government the Czechoslovaks were proud to model their own. There are many here who gave their best efforts over a period of years with the encouragement and strengthened support of the United States and other democratic nations to an attempt to preserve in Central Europe an independent state devoted to the principles of liberty for which the United States stands. They made extraordinary progress in public improvements, education and social welfare. They may justly be proud of their contribution to progressive and enlightened government. Through no real fault of theirs their independence has ended. The men who were the leaders in the establishment of the Czechoslovak state, the public servants who patriotically carried on the public work often times under great handicaps, and some men of industry and business who devoted their best efforts to the building up of the state are now under arrest hunted by secret police facing loss of property and even life itself or apprehensive of some or all of these eventualities. It is obviously for the several governments to endeavor to persuade the German Government to permit these people to leave the country unharmed and seek homes elsewhere. But even if they could depart from this country no adequate provision exists for their admission to other countries. By law they are effectually shut out of the one country whose policies and principles they have sought most earnestly to emulate. It seems to me that by not opening our doors to a reasonable number of these distressed people the United States is likely to appear to the people here who depended upon its friendship to the end and to democratic people everywhere as lacking in sincerity and humane interest in the very people who have tried to mould their institutions upon its model. I think this should not be viewed as an emigration matter but one of the protection of innocent human beings from the effect of a catastrophe.