The disclosures by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency in a cable from Berlin dated September 8th that the Paramount Film Company is patronizing a Nazi film publication through large advertisements, is arousing widespread comment in the Jewish press in this country and abroad.
It is pointed out that even such companies as the “Ufa,” controlled by Dr. Alfred Hugenberg, head of the Nationalist Party of Germany which has not been friendly to the Jews, have not advertised in the film organ. The Paramount company’s patronage of the organ has moreover enabled it to enlarge its activities and to appear as a weekly, instead of twice monthly as hitherto.
The Jewish Telegraphic Agency addressed an inquiry to the Paramount officials in this country. It has received a reply signed by J. H. Seidelman, manager of the foreign department of the company, written in behalf of Adolph Zukor, president of the company, which states that an inquiry has been despatched to Berlin with regard to this matter and that the company prefers to make no statement until the facts are known to it.
Among the papers which comment upon the matter are the C.-V. Zeitung” of Berlin, “Opinion” of New York, the “Hebrew Journal” of Toronto and the “Israelite Press” of Winnipeg.
The C-V Zeitung, organ of the Central Union of German Citizens of the Jewish Faith carries in its issue of September 9, 1932, which has just reached this country, a correspondence which it says comes from film circles in Germany, scoring the action of the German branch of the American film production company, Paramount, in placing advertising in the Nazi film organ “Der Deutsche Film”.
The C-V Zeitung correspondence declares as follows: “It is well known that the principal activity of the “Kultur-politik” of the National Socialist Party centers around the radio and film industries. It is equally well known that the entire Nazi “Kultur-politik” is comprised of nothing more than unexampled agitation against Jewish collaborators in both these industries regardless of their value, from a purely objective standpoint, and regardless of how much they are part and parcel of Germany.
“For some months now there has been appearing a paper called “Der Deutsche Film”, published by the National Socialist Party, Department of Films, and openly labelled as the National Socialist Film Paper.
“Thus far it has not been possible to find in this paper any new ideas worthy of discussion or any new constructive proposals. Were German films like “Der Deutsche Film,” they would never have attained their position of cultural importance or the prestige they enjoy today throughout the world.
“The paper is devoted exclusively to scandalous articles anti-Semitic in character. It is overwhelmed with hatred for the Jews.
“Certainly there are things and people in the film industry calling for justified criticism. But the Nazi organ assails every Jew in the film industry in sullied terms without any differentiation. The attempt is made to destroy the reputation of every Jew in the most justified manner.
“The film industry itself, regardless of the political or religious adherences of its affiliates, without exception spurned this publication. Not a single producer, beginning with “Ufa” down to the smallest film rentier, took notice of the paper’s appearance or placed any advertisements with it.
“The last issue of “Der Deutsche Film”, September 3, however, brought the first exception to the consolidated indifference to the Nazi film publication. Responsible for this is not a German producing firm, but a daughter organization of the American Paramount Company, the German Paramount Company, A-G. This organization can claim for itself the sad distinction of giving decisive support to the existence of this anti-Semitic film paper by placing (two) 2 full page advertisements with it.
“This act, â€” unfortunately â€” deserves to be nailed.
“The same issue of the paper publishes on its front page a characteristic article entitled: ‘Who Are the American Film Producers?’ A number of well known American producers are listed and at the end the following comment is appended: ‘Of these eight magnates of the film industry, seven are Jews. Of these film powers, who exercise the largest influence in the film industry in the United States five are immigrated of ‘Ostjudenstammlinge’.
“Strangely enough the one name missing from this list is that of one of the largest American film firms â€” that of the Paramount Company, founded by the Hungarian Jew, Adolph Zukor, its president, and Jesse L. Lasky. In executive positions are Sam Katz and Emanuel Cohen. The European interests of the Company and the German Paramount A-G, are under the direction of Ike Blumenthal, the company’s general representative.
“Through the insertion of two pages of advertising, it would appear, the German Paramount Company has freed itself from inclusion in this list. If there is appreciation of the lack of dignity involved in the action of a company whose executives are Jews which places advertising in an anti-Semitic and inciting sheet; if they are insensitive to the fact that no German film company has placed any advertisements with this sheet; at least collegial solidarity with other American firms and producers who refused to have anything to do with such a paper, might have been expected from the Paramount Company.
“The question ought to be asked in earnest: ‘What makes the German Paramount Company, in particular, submissive to pressure from the Nazi film paper?’ It would certainly be far more advisable for Mr. Zukor and Mr. Ike Blumenthal of Berlin to thoroughly look into the situation. Or do the responsible heads of the organization find it an honor to be the promoters of hatred of the Jews in the German film industry?
“The first fruits are already ripe: It is certainly not a mere coincidence that “Der Deutsche Film” in the very same issue in which the Paramount advertisement is published, carries an announcement that henceforth it will appear as a weekly. That means that henceforth its activity of promoting anti-Jewish hatred will be doubled.”
“Opinion” writes: “A despatch from Berlin reports that the Paramount Motion Picture Corporation has entered into an advertising contract with a Nazi film publicationâ€”a publication which in line with Nazi policy demands the exclusion of Jews from the German motion picture industry. The despatch further states that the advertising provided by the Paramount Company makes it possible for this Nazi paper to increase its number of appearances frim a bi-weekly to a weekly edition.
“A nice point in paradox might be made as to the comparative inappropriateness of this advertising contract having been given by the Paramount Company and its having been accepted by the paper in question. For the fact that the Paramount Company is owned and headed by Jews is so well known as to make it hardly necessary to call attention to the fact that Jewish money is thus being used to support an organ which is the avowed enemy of Jews and Jewish life. But the incident calls attention to a more serious question, namely, to what extent should Jews use whatever economic power they may possess in order to safeguard themselves and their co-racialists.
“Obviously it is impossible to inquire at every turn as to the attitude of corporations and industries to the Jewish problem. Nor can the executives of great companies be asked to answer a questionnaire concerning the degree of their anti-or philo-Semitism. But while economic self-defense cannot be carried ad absurdum it may and, in all decency, it must be used in certain instances. Thus for Jewish firms to patronize such outspoken anti-Semites as Coty of France or the Nazi publications of Germany is the last word in mercenary self-contempt. The possible excuse that the American officials of the Paramount Company were not cognizant of the nature of the publication which they used in Germany as an advertising medium can serve no longer. The Jews of the world will expect and will demand that they forthwith cease to make use of it and publicly state their reason for so doing.
“We do not rest under the delusion that Hollywood can counteract Hitler, nor that Coty will be cured by a female boycott of his products. But such action, whatever its economic effect and we believe it may be great, will give earnest that Jews the world over are one and stand as one in defense of Jewish rights and honor.”
The “Hebrew Journal” of Toronto comments editorially on the Paramount advertisements under the caption: “Why do they remain silent?”
…”Jews are great patrons of the movies,” says the editorial. “Thus indirectly Jewish money is devoted to helping a Nazi publication which does not cease to agitate that Jewish films be boycotted and they are not even ashamed to call upon Germany to rid itself of the Jews through expulsion.
“The Paramount Company has not even found it essential to explain its stand, or to state, even if it is not the truth, that the representatives of the company in Germany did this on their own responsibility without consulting the heads of the organization.
“If the Jewish leaders of the Paramount Company have not found it necessary to answer to the terrible charge against them, then Jewish public opinion in America must demand an answer.”
The paper also wants to know why the Canadian representatives of the company are maintaining the same silence.
The “Israelite Press” of Winnipeg scores the Paramount Company for placing its advertisements in the Nazi film organ, not because it means any profits, but simply “to curry favor with the bitter enemies of the Jews.”
“Lackeys is a better name for them. The Jewish lackeys of old were compelled to demean themselves, but this self-demeaning had no affect upon the community as a while.
“The lackeys with whom we are concerned are not compelled to demean themselves, but jumped to the fore of their own accord, in the hope of having their cheeks patted. And thus they help the greatest enemies of the Jews in their work against the Jews.
“It is our misfortune that there is no organized public opinion which will teach these people a lesson, or at least, hit their pocket books, which is their most vulnerable spot.”