The creation of a representative body of democratically organized World Jewry has never come at a more propitious time, declared Dr. Joseph Tenenbaum, chairman of the Executive Committee of the American Jewish Congress in a statement issued yesterday to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency following his return from Europe where he attended the world Jewish conference in Geneva which decided to convene a world Jewish congress in the summer of 1934.
“Not many times in our long history of the diaspora was common action as imperative and vital as it is today,” Dr. Tenenbaum said. “The Jewish people as a whole face a crisis unprecedented in depth, extent and severity.
“The ten million Jews in Europe are engaged in a bitter struggle of life and death. Assailed and assaulted by so many enemies, herded in concentration camps of economic discrimination and mass starvation, robbed of some of the most elementary civic rights, European Jewry lives through one of the darkest pages of its history. There is mass starvation in Poland, infringement on personal safety and liberty in Roumania and Hitlerism in Germany. Economic boycott has ruined Jewish commerce and industry. Instead of a national economy, European countries have adopted a ruinous and heinous policy of racial economy with barriers to trade and commerce, built on racial lines of demarcation within the confines of the same state.”
Discussing the Jewish situation in Germany, Dr. Tenenbaum asserted: “Hitlerism in Germany pours forth insidius, libelous and denuncialtory propaganda in over one hundred newspapers scattered throughout the land of Germany with headlines and anti-Jewish slogans reminiscent of the darkest days of medievalism. Nor is the Hitlerite brand confined to Germany alone. It has assumed proportions of an international anti-Semitic movement.
“The 600,000 Jews in Germany,” he asserted, “to quote one instance, when isolated and separated from the stem of World Jewry, can hardly offer adequate resistance to the avalanche of destruction raging in Germany. But what can be done to the Israelites in Germany with impudence cannot be done to the whole of Israel with impunity or for that matter to any part of a united Israel.”
The task of the world Jewish congress will be “to formulate anew the principles and guide posts of the old trusted road; through Israel to the welfare of the whole of humanity,” Dr. Tenenbaum said.