Tribunal Public Hearing held at the Carnegie International Center in NY on Plight of Soviet Jews, condition of Jewish Cultural and religious life in Soviet Union

Panel presided by Civil Rights Leader Bayard Rustin, Dr. John C. Bennett , President, Union Theological Services; Rev. George P. Ford, Pastor Emeritus, Corpus Christi Church, Telford Taylor, Law Professor, Columbia University; Samuel Fishman, United Automobile Workers, Norman Thomas, Socialist leader. The panel functioned as an ad hoc committee of the Conference on the Status of Soviet Jews founded in 1963 by Associate Justice William C. Douglas of the Supreme Court, Dr. Merle Feinsod of Harvard University, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Bishop James A. Pike, Dr. Eugene Rabinowitch, nuclear mathematician, Walter Reuther, Mr. Thomas, and Robert Penn Warren, the author. Testimonies were heard by “eyewitnesses” of the conditions including: Dr. Erie Goldhagen, Brandeis University; Dr. David M. Weiss, Associate Professor, University of California; Rev. Thurston Davis, SJ, Appeal of Conscience Foundation. It was noted that less than 50 Rabbis lived in the USSR, at the average age of 65. There were no rabbinical schools or single Jewish school. The teachings of Hebrew or Yiddush to the young is prohibited by the authorities for the estimated 2.5 to 3 million Jews in the USSR. Christian and Orthodox Clergy Churches are permitted to travel internationally to attend international conferences. However members of the Jewish Community are denied this access.