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International: The Russian Contribution

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In Geneva last week, a Russian launched into a tiresome tirade on a familiar theme: that Western rearmament eats up money that ought to be spent on the world’s underprivileged. At this point, studious Isador Lubin, U.S. delegate to the U.N. Economic and Social Council session in Geneva, broke in with a quiet recital that was worth half a dozen angry replies: “Let’s see how deeply concerned [the Russians] are about the fate of these peoples,” he said, and proceeded to tick off the Soviet record in contributions to international welfare agencies:

U.N. International Children’s Emergency Fund—”exactly zero.”

Palestine refugee relief—”exactly nothing.”

International Refugee Organization—”the U.S.S.R. made no contribution.”

Technical assistance for underdeveloped countries—”not a single red ruble.”

World Health Organization—”the U.S.S.R. failed to pay its assessment.”

International Bank for Reconstruction and Development—”not a single cent.”

“Needless to say,” Lubin concluded, “the Soviet Union has not seen fit to contribute a penny [to rebuilding] in Korea.”

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