David A. Brown, whose statements made to the Polish Telegraphic Agency that the Jews of Poland suffer no specific misery have elicited wide-spread criticism from the Jewish press, has cabled the “American Hebrew,” of which he is the publisher, denying that he has given interviews to the Polish Telegraphic Agency.
Mr. Brown’s cable declared: “I deliberately refused to give interviews to the Polish Telegraphic Agency or to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency or to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency. I have no confidence in the reliability of their news. My only public statements on conditions in Poland and other countries are contained in my articles appearing in the American Hebrew and Jewish Tribune.”
whether he altogether gave the interview to the Polish Telegraphic Agency. The fact that the Polish Telegraphic Agency issued a statement and gave it wide publicity in the press of Polandâ€”a statement which unquestionably was harmfulâ€”this fact is indisputable. It seems to us that our organization only fulfilled its duty when it protested against the ludricrously misleading contents of the report of the Polish Telegraphic Agency, and if Mr. Brown is anxious to remedy whatever harm has been done to Polish Jewry, he should address his protest to the Polish Telegraphic Agency and it is his duty to have the Polish Telegraphic Agency withdraw the statement they issued in his name or carry a denial that he ever gave it to them. We would appreciate it if you would supply us with a copy of the cablegram Mr. Brown will forward to the Polish Telegraphic Agency. Should the Polish Telegraphic Agency refuse to give publicity to that statement, then in that case I wish to say, in behalf of my organization, that we will bend every effort to obtain publicity in the Polish press for Mr. Brown’s denial.
“Let me also point out that in this statement any reference to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency by Mr. Brown should be avoided…. As a matter of fact, even the reference contained in the cablegram of Mr. Brown to your paper is unintelligible. The Jewish Telegraphic Agency merely reproduced the statement of our organization with regard to the report of the Polish Telegraphic Agency and what blame can be attached to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency for so doing is beyond our comprehension.
“It seems to us that Mr. Brown, who has acquired an enviable world-wide reputation for his shyness and abhorrence of publicity, takes the easiest way out of an embarrassing situation. It is quite customary to blame an unfortunate statement on the reporter, but Mr. Brown goes a step further and denies altogether the report of the Polish Telegraphic Agency….According to Mr. Brown’s statement the editor of the Polish Telegraphic Agency invented the entire story. In justice to the Polish Telegraphic Agency, I wish to state that in our years of experience with that agency, they have scrupulously and faithfully reproduced whatever statements we gave them,…” the communication of the Polish Federation states.
In an editorial which will appear in the forthcoming issue of “Opinion,” Mr. Brown is taken to task for his “Polish slumming-party.”
“No graver charge has been levelled against any Jew in our time than that brought by the Jews of Poland against Mr. David A. Brown,” says the editorial. “It is a charge of treason and it rises out of statements issued while on a tour by Mr. Brown to the Polish Telegraphic Agency which can be and have already been used to bring aid and comfort to the enemies of Polish Jewry….
“It transcends the impudence of an American traveller who after a few days spent in Warsaw and Vilna dares chide a stricken and suffering people for its past complaints and implies that any further protests concerning its condition may be disregarded as overdrawn and hysterical…. Particularly when the commentator occupies a position in one of more American Jewish organizations which give the impression of an official declaration to what is purely a personal reaction.
“The creation of a sense of responsibility in Jewish life, however, predicates an entirely different attitude and outlook from that frequently displayed even by men who never would have committed such an indiscretion as the statement in question. This attitude…. has been that the stricken areas of Jewish life must be ministered to rather than counselled with…. It is this attitude which is basically responsible for Mr. Brown’s Polish slumming party,” “Opinion” says.