Daily Digest of Public Opinion on Jewish Matters
Menu JTA Search

Daily Digest of Public Opinion on Jewish Matters

Download PDF for this date

[The purpose of the Digest is informative: Preference is given to papers not generally accessible to our readers. Quotation does indicate approval.–Editor.]

That the Communist press in Russia is ignoring the story of the assassination of Petlura by Schwartzbard, although besides being a pogrom leader Petlura fought against the Soviets, is the information contained in an article in the “Jewish Daily News” (July 7) from its Moscow correspondent.

The reason for this attitude of the Communist press is explained by the correspondent as follows: “During the tumultuous time of the British strike the paper in Russia carried a brief item that a certain Ukrainian by the name of Schwartzbard shot Petlura. The ‘Pravda,’ official Communist organ, published an article declaring that Petlura was a counter-revolutionary, making brief mention at the end regarding the pogroms in Ukraine, leaving out, however the word ‘Jewish’ The ‘Emes,’ the organ of the Jewish Communists, did not publish any article, which showed that the Jewish Communists had decided to ignore the matter. On the whole, the first impression made was that Schwartzbard was a patriotic ‘Ukrainian’ who took revenge on Petlura for his criminal counter-revolutionary activities in Ukraine. Later, an item appeared in the press that Schwartzbard is a French citizen, and this was amazing. Finally, the Jewish Communist press once published an excerpt from the foreign Jewish press to the effect that Schwartzbard is a Jew, who took revenge for the Jewish pogroms. That was all. There is a desire to avoid telling about the attitude of the Jewish press to Petlura. For a long time it was stated in the papers here that the Zionists are with Petlura on the ground that Jabotinsky at one time made an agreement with him aiming to protect the Jewish population from pogroms. Whenever a Zionist, especially in the Ukraine, would be arrested, he would immediately be reproached as being a ‘Petlura man.’ And suddenly it is learned that the entire Zionist press denounces Petlura as a popromist and his name is hated even more than in the Communist press. This indicates clearly of course, how false were the charges made by the Jewish Communists that the Zionists were for Petlura. This explains at least in part the attitude of the Communist press to the Petlura incident.”


The charge that the Jewish section of the Communist Party in Russia demands of Jewish writers who live in Russia or who want to enter that country, not only submission but enthusiasm for the Communist cause, is made in the “Jewish Daily Forward,” New York Socialist paper, by Abraham Cahan, the noted Jewish Socialist leader of America.

Mr. Caban contrasts the attitude of the Jewish Communists with that of the former Czarist government, stating: “At the time of the Czarist regime, whenever a revolutionist escaped from Russia and later desired to return, the Czarist government demanded of him a ‘petition for mercy,’ that is, a request to be forgiven, and no more. That he should display ‘enthusiasm’ for the Czarist government, that was never demanded even by the Czar’s gendarmes. Such a demand however, is made by the Jewish Communists of Russia. They take a person, who is permeated with anti-Communist feeling or else a person who is absolutely indifferent to political questions, and they compel such a one to become an ‘enthusiastic’ Communist and to turn literature into political advertisements.

“The Czarist government never extorted such a price. Its iron censorship pertained to what one must not write, not to what one should write. The Jewish Communists however, ostracise true literature; they tolerate only those who are willing to bend their neck and serve those in power.”


The intention, rumored in the press, of Sir Herbert Samuel to visit the United States with Dr. Weizmann for the purpose of helping the Zionist leader to conclude the extension of the Jewish Agency, is criticized by the London “Jewish Chronicle” (June 25), which is known for its opposition to the Jewish Agency plan.

If the reports are true, the “Jewish Chronicle” declares, “it will provide further evidence, altogether unneeded, of his (Sir Herbert’s) interest in Zionism.”

“The step, if really contemplated,” the paper writes further, “is extraordinary if not unique. Sir Herbert may be setting a new and approved precedent for Mandated territories. This does not, however, in the least argue the value or the desirability of resuscitating the Jewish Agency proposals. Indeed, Sir Herbert’s recorded views on the Jewish future of Palestine, limited as is their concept to the maintenance and development of the Jewish Communities there, and adjuring all national aims, tend to show that the proposal which he is said to intend actively to champion is not one which should commend itself to Zionists.”

The bulk of the estate of Carl Berman of Newark, N. J., estimated at $1,250,000, will go toward the building of the Carl Berman Home for Aged People on the estate he owned at Palm Beach County, Fla., it was learned when the will was probated in the Essex County Surrogate’s office in Newark.

The will contains an initial provision of $150,000 to build the first unit of the Home, the balance of the cost to be taken from the residue of the estate, contingent on bequests to others. His widow, Rachel, receives the income of a trust fund of $100,000 for the rest of her life.

The will also contains a bequest of $10,000 to the Hebrew Memorial Orphan Asyl### Five other Jewish charities receive bequests of $1,000 each.

Founding Funders

The digitization of the JTA Archive would not have been possible without the generous support of the following donors:
  • The Gottesman Fund
  • Righteous Persons Foundation
  • Charles H. Revson Foundation
  • Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, in honor of Norma Spungen
  • George S. Blumenthal
  • Grace and Scott Offen Charitable Fund