Text: S.Res.111 — 111th Congress (2009-2010)All Bill Information (Except Text)

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Agreed to Senate (05/19/2009)


111th CONGRESS
1st Session
S. RES. 111


Recognizing June 6, 2009, as the 70th anniversary of the tragic date when the M.S. St. Louis, a ship carrying Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany, returned to Europe after its passengers were refused admittance to the United States.


IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

April 23, 2009

Mr. Kohl (for himself, Mr. Voinovich, Mr. Brownback, and Mr. Wyden) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

May 19, 2009

Committee discharged; considered and agreed to


RESOLUTION

Recognizing June 6, 2009, as the 70th anniversary of the tragic date when the M.S. St. Louis, a ship carrying Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany, returned to Europe after its passengers were refused admittance to the United States.

    Whereas on May 13, 1939, the ocean liner M.S. St. Louis departed from Hamburg, Germany for Havana, Cuba with 937 passengers, most of whom were Jewish refugees fleeing Nazi persecution;

    Whereas the Nazi regime in Germany in the 1930s implemented a program of violent persecution of Jews;

    Whereas the Kristallnacht, or Night of Broken Glass, pogrom of November 9 through 10, 1938, signaled an increase in violent anti-Semitism;

    Whereas after the Cuban Government, on May 27, 1939, refused entry to all except 28 passengers on board the M.S. St. Louis, the M.S. St. Louis proceeded to the coast of south Florida in hopes that the United States would accept the refugees;

    Whereas the United States refused to allow the M.S. St. Louis to dock and thereby provide a haven for the Jewish refugees;

    Whereas the Immigration Act of 1924 placed strict limits on immigration;

    Whereas a United States Coast Guard cutter patrolled near the M.S. St. Louis to prevent any passengers from jumping to freedom;

    Whereas following denial of admittance of the passengers to Cuba, the United States, and Canada, the M.S. St. Louis set sail on June 6, 1939, for return to Antwerp, Belgium with the refugees; and

    Whereas 254 former passengers of the M.S. St. Louis died under Nazi rule: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Senate—

(1) recognizes that June 6, 2009, marks the 70th anniversary of the tragic date when the M.S. St. Louis returned to Europe after its passengers were refused admittance to the United States and other countries in the Western Hemisphere;

(2) honors the memory of the 937 refugees aboard the M.S. St. Louis, most of whom were Jews fleeing Nazi oppression, and 254 of whom subsequently died during the Holocaust;

(3) acknowledges the suffering of those refugees caused by the refusal of the United States, Cuban, and Canadian governments to provide them political asylum; and

(4) recognizes the 70th anniversary of the M.S. St. Louis tragedy as an opportunity for public officials and educators to raise awareness about an important historical event, the lessons of which are relevant to current and future generations.