Menu JTA Search

Now-editorial Notes

Download PDF for this date

In his new anti-Jewish campaign, the German Minister of Propaganda Goebbels blamed the German Jews for the anti-German boycott abroad. He said that all Germany was “aware of the fact that if part of the outside world continues the anonymous boycott against German goods this is due to our own Jewish fellow-citizens.” Then he warned the outside world, and especially foreign Jews, that they were rendering the worst service to the German Jews.

“If the boycott were carried to lengths actually.-endangering our economic situation, it would not mean that we would let the Jews go free. No! The hatred, rage and despair of the German people would first of all vent itself on those who can be grabbed in the homeland,” cried Goebbels.

And this is what he advised the German Jews to do:

“German Jews will be left alone by us if they will quietly and modestly retire within their four walls and if they will refrain from putting forth a claim to equal worth and equal rights with Germans. If they do not, they will have to blame themselves for the consequences.”

Goebbels counsels his “fellow-citizens” to retire within their four walls and not utter a word of complaint about their rightlessness and their degradation. And if the boycott against German goods is carried on abroad, Goebbels warns them, the German people will avenge themselves on those Jews who can be grabbed in the “homeland.”

The German Jews who remained in Germany have been silent ever since Hitler came into power. They had nothing to do with the anti-German boycott in foreign lands. Some of them, under compulsion, even appealed to Jews of other lands to cease denouncing and boycotting the Hitler regime. They have suffered in silence and it is their sufferings, not their protests or complaints, that have stirred the civilized world.

The brazen arrogance of the chief propagandist Goebbels reveals before the whole world the methods employed by his government trying to intimidate the Jews everywhere by threatening intensified persecutions of the German Jews.

The Goebbels squeal indicates that the economic situation of Germany is already substantially endangered by the anti-German boycott in other lands. The anti-German boycott in various lands is not a Jewish boycott. It is a measure of protest and self-defense against the menace of Hitlerism.

Several weeks ago inspired propaganda articles in this country and elsewhere endeavored to convey the impression that Hitler was not really the author of the anti-Jewish outrages and that, at any rate, Hitler was now inclined toward modifying and relaxing the anti-Jewish disabilities in Germany, and that only his Nazi disciples were determined to carry out the Nazi anti-Jewish program.

Now comes chief propagandist Goebbels and reveals that the anti-Jewish atrocities were not at all a spontaneous outburst of popular resentment “against Jewish atrocity mongers,” but that the plan of the anti-Jewish boycott was conceived by Chancellor Hitler himself in the quiet of his Bavarian mountain retreat. To prove that Hitler was the author of the atrocity plan, Goebbels has made public his diary entitled “From Kaiserhof to Chancellery.”

After writing in his diary on March 24, 1933, that “atrocity propaganda abroad causes us much trouble” and that he had prepared a “very objective article for a big English newspaper against the atrocity propaganda,” he admits that “it is merely a drop on a hot stone.”

Then came the great idea.

“My article in the London Sunday Express against atrocity propaganda has a good effect,” he writes. “It brings us some relief in England. During the night I go to Munich and from there to Berchtesgaden to which the Leader has called me. Up there in the solitude of the mountains he carefully considered the entire situation and has now arrived at a decision.

“We will fight off foreign agitation only if we grab its originators or at least its beneficiaries, namely, the Jews living in Germany who, up to now, have remained untouched. We must therefore undertake an elaborate boycott against all Jewish businesses in Germany. Perhaps the foreign Jews will change their mind for the better if their racial comrades in Germany are collared.

“Party Comrade Streicher (Nazi leader of Nuremberg) is appointed director of the undertaking. I immediately write the boycott proclamation to the press. In the evening I return to Berlin. Now the course is clear. The Leader stands like a star above us.”

On March 30 he notes in his diary:

“The boycott organization is ready. Now we merely need to push the button and it starts.”

A day later Goebbels wrote in his diary:

“If the agitation abroad comes to an end, it (the boycott) will be stopped, otherwise a fight to the knife begins. It is now up to the German Jews to work on their racial comrades of the world so they can save their collar.”

On April 1, Goebbels wrote:

“The boycott is a great moral victory for Germany. The Leader has again hit on the right thing.”

Three days later, Goebbels recorded in his diary:

“The world atrocity agitation has noticeably abated. The Cabinet has decided, therefore, not to resume the boycott for the present but to keep it as a standing threat in the background”

Here are the machinations of the head of a government who is pleading for equality among the nations for his own country, resorting to methods of violence against a portion of the German people, holding the German Jews as hostages and threatening to renew the atrocities against them if the outside world continues to condemn the German government for its atrocities.

Is there another example of such Machiavellian cynicism and savage cruelty in modern history?


Louis S. Posner, eminent attorney and Commissioner of Education, speaking before Zeta Beta Tau at its annual banquet, declared that the body of a Jew may lie in the grave of Germany’s unknown soldier. Mr. Posner said:

“In Germany, as in other lands, there is a shrine, a sacred place to which all her people turn with humble, grateful devotion. There every knee bends and every tongue gives homage. It is the grave of the Unknown Soldier, symbol of those who, in numberless battalions, marched bravely to their death that Deutschland might live. None shall ever know whether his love for Germany was born in the very year that he died for it or came to him through a thousand years of forbears in that land, nor in that Valhalla to which he and his companions have gone. It is enough that here he lies, object of unwavering love and unending inspiration. Who shall say that beneath this hallowed spot, where the mighty and the lowly alike of the German Fatherland bow in reverence before the Unknown Soldier, there lies not the body of a Jew!”

Thousands of German Jews gave their lives for their “Fatherland” during the World War. For centuries Jews contributed their energies, their culture, their talents, their work toward the material and cultural upbuilding of Germany in times of peace. The Unknown Soldier may be a Jew. The known victims of Hitlerized Germany are the Jews.

In other lands the grave of the Unknown Soldier is held in solemn reverence and is regarded as a symbol of sacrifice in behalf of the entire nation. It also serves to remind the living of the horrors of war and to inspire them to work for peace among the nations.

Not so in Germany. The supreme sacrifices and the constructive contributions made by German Jews in behalf of their stepfatherland are repaid by an ungrateful, deluded people in inhuman persecutions and discrimination. In Hitlerized Germany the grave of the Unknown Soldier is used by the Nazi propagandists for the purpose of stiring up hate and arousing the spirit of vengeance so as to intensify the preparations for a new war.

Whoever lies in the grave of the German Unknown Soldier, Gentile or Jew, he gave his life in vain for the Germany of today.


The Rumanian Minister to the United States, Charles A. Davila, in a radio address delivered on the occasion of the Rumanian national holiday, celebrating the fifty-seventh anniversary of his country’s independence, spoke of the “successful attempt of the government to check anti-Semitic and intolerant agitation” and referred to the assassination of Prime Minister Duca several months ago as a victim of the anti-Semitic activities directed against the Rumanian government. He emphasized that despite all the difficulties, Rumania would “remain in the liberal camp” and that his country is now witnessing evidences of economic recovery.

The present Rumanian government is wisely resisting anti-Jewish agitation and Nazi influences which are directed not only against the Jews but also against the government. The Cuzas and the Gogas and their followers are working for the destruction of the present order in Rumania and are seeking to emulate the methods of Nazi Germany.

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