Mexico City (Aug. 19)
The anti-Semitic agitation in Mexico this week took a turn away from the openly German “defensive” propaganda against the alleged boycott of the Israelite Chamber of Commerce and developed a Mexican “nationalistic” tinge which some observers believe to have been inspired in non-Mexican sources.
For a week or more, publicity on the Jewish question completely faded into oblivion and the form of its revival this week has led some to believe that aspirants to state or national legislative offices during the next elections may be capitalizing on the small merchant’s and small industrialist’s resentment of competition from the new immigrant elements who are spreading out from Mexico City in the Provinces.
Significantly the new anti-Jewish action came not from Mexico City which was the source of the German-Jewish conflict, but from Leon, Guanajuato; Mazatlan, Sinaloa; Guadalajara, Jalisco, and other points. According to press dispatches, Juan Manuel Carrillo, mayor of Leon, has been holding meetings “for the purpose of working out means to counteract the pernicious manoeuvers of the Israelites in their disloyal competition and their procedure.”
‘INVESTIGATE’ JEWS IN INTERIOR
The reports from the interior towns are to the effect that authorities are beginning “investigations” to see if all Jews are complying with the national commercial code, with the labor laws and other legislation, in order that “they may be subject to all the dispositions and regulations which Mexican law prescribes.”
LOAN SOCIETY ATTACKED
Meanwhile, in Mexico City, the incorporation of the Loan Society of the B’nai B’rith Mexican Bureau and Israelites of Mexico, with a capital stock of 75,000 pesos, provoked an editorial in a local business and financial newspaper, Diario de Negocios. The editorial, entitled “The Anti-Semitic Reaction”, strongly attacks Jewish commercial organizations, the new loan organization in particular, and calls attention to the fact that the new immigrants apparently do not have 10,000 pesos nor are they dedicating themselves to agriculture as required under the immigration laws.
The loan society’s application gives as its purpose “the making of loans at low interest rates to honorable Jews, residents of Mexico, to establish and develop small industries and businesses.” The society is formed by the B’nai B’rith Mexican Bureau, Abraham King, Wold Foudisch, Aaron Kletzel, Leon Sosnovich, Mayer Perkis, Guillermo Saloschin, Leon Weinstock, Benoit Bourde, Joseph Nagin, Abraham Z. Phillip and Carlos Gravinsky.
“It is evident,” the editorial says in concluding, “that in spite of naturalizations, the Jewish conscience continues being a strong tie uniting these elements. The Jewish cohesion is stronger than the union which can exist among any other foreign group because until now no foreign colony in Mexico has organized a bank to finance their own nationals exclusively.”
COMPLAINTS ‘NORMAL REACTION’
Another portion of the editorial says:
“Mexico is not a country where anti-Semitic hate is always in ferment and ready to produce an explosion; on the contrary, the Jews are generally looked upon with sympathy and enjoy the same hospitality which the Mexican character offers traditionally to all strangers. The complaints which are constantly coming forth, then, are not the result of a racial phobia but the normal reaction of a class which has become settled in the commerce of its own country which had conquered fame and credit and which brusquely finds itself conquered, substituted by a competitor against whom struggle is impossible. And this reaction takes an organized form precisely because there is complete cohesion among the immigrant Jews, because there is unity of action among them.”