Jews all over the world will participate this week in the celebration of the eighty-fifth birthday of Thomas G. Masaryk, president of Czechoslovakia, for whom the Jews have a feeling of unlimited admiration.
On more than one occasion President Masaryk has been the spokesman for justice for Jews. When the Nazi government came to power, President Masaryk was the first statesman who unmistakably condemned the anti-Jewish persecution in Germany and demanded that the mistreatment of Jews there become an issue to be taken up by all governments and by every civilized nation
PLAN PALESTINE COLONY IN MASARYK’S HONOR
Admiring their President, the Jews of Czechoslovakia are now engaged in the creation of a special fund to establish in Palestine a colony named after Masaryk in recognition of his sincere sympathies for the Jewish cause. Not less than 260 Jewish communities in Czechoslovakia have declared themselves ready to contribute to this fund. The Jewish National Fund in Palestine will provide the land for the establishment of the Masaryk colony as a sign of Jewish national recognition of the honored president of Czechoslovakia.
The anti-Semitic movement would long ago have risen also in Czechoslovakia, were it not for President Masaryk. Led by General Gajda, the Czechoslovakian military leader, a special “Aryan” party along the same lines as the Nazi party in Germany was recently formed in Czechoslovakia. The Stribrny League, another anti-Semitic group in Czechoslovakia, would long ago have emulated the anti-Jewish propaganda of Nazi Germany on a large scale were it not for the well-known sympathies of Masaryk for the Jews.
HIS PERSONALITY LIKE SHINING STAR
The celebration of the eighty-fifth birthday of Professor Masaryk is therefore an occasion which the Jews, not only of Czechoslovakia, but also of other countries, are utilizing to emphasize their appreciation and thanks to this man of great human feelings. In this age of growing hatred and anti-Semitism, the personality of President Masaryk and his love for humanity stand out like a shining star.
The anti-Semitic movement throughout the world received a tremendous blow this week, with reports from Berlin that Adolf Hitler himself has realized that his Jew-baiting policy must be modified. Under pressure of Dr. Schacht, minister of economics, the Nazi Fuehrer was made to understand that the harm done Germany’s interests by the boycott of German goods abroad is greater than the good done to the Nazi Reich by the “Aryan” paragraph. This Herr Hitler realized after a delegation of leading German industrialists had returned from the United States with a disappointing reply that Germany cannot expect any loans from the United States as long as discrimination against Jews goes on in the Reich. This delegation was sent to America by the German government to obtain not less than a two hundred million dollar loan. This loan was on the verge of being granted by a number of American banks, but at the last moment authorities in Washington intervened and prevented the banks from making the loan.
DELEGATION WINS FIGHT AGAINST NAZIS
The delegation returned to Berlin ready to mobilize the industrialists of the Reich to force the Nazi leaders to discontinue their Jew-baiting propaganda and anti-Jewish legislation. The fight which the industrialists had to carry on against the Nazi leaders was not an easy one. It seems however, that this fight was finally won. No less a person than Dr. Julius Lippert, the State Commissar for Berlin, openly stated at a meeting of the American Chamber of Commerce in Berlin that no further restrictions would be imposed upon the German Jews, especially in commerce.
Needless to say, Jewish leaders outside Germany have taken the announcements of Dr. Lippert and others with a grain of salt. It is quite easy to see that these announcements were made to prevent a further boycott of German goods abroad. The attitude of the majority of Jewish leaders is that as long as the Jews in Germany are not fully restored to their rights there can be no such thing as peace between the Jews of the world and the Nazi Reich.
FAR FROM RESTORING FULL CIVIL RIGHTS
The leaders of the Nazi Reich are, however, far from restoring the Jews in their full rights. For them the Jewish situation is practically “solved.” The “Aryan” paragraph has enabled them to push all the Jews out of state and municipal institutions, as well as from public life. That is all they desired. As far as commerce is concerned, they do not mind if the Jews continue their trading as before, since the Nazi cells control every commercial enterprise in which their members are employed anyway.
The Jews in Germany were watching the Nazi statements this week with the greatest interest. For them these statements are a question of their right to exist. Many German Jews who were on the verge of leaving the country have suspended their preparations to emigrate. Moreover, the president of the Berlin Jewish community, Dr. Stahl, publicly advised the Jews of Germany to remain in the country and not to go to Palestine.
POLISH JEWS ALSO INTERESTED
The Jews of Poland were interested in the Nazi statements not less than were the Jews of Germany. Anti-Semitism in Germany has also greatly encouraged the anti-Semitic activities in Poland. The curbing of anti-Semitic legislation and propaganda in the Reich would no doubt have salutory effect upon the anti-Semites of Poland. It would take much of the wind out of their sails. It would perhaps serve as a lesson to the Polish government, which is discriminating against the Jews even in commerce.
It has long been established that the situation of the Jews in Poland is much worse than even that of those of Nazi Germany. The process of eliminating them from state and municipal employment was practically completed in Poland long before it was ever started in Germany. In addition, Polish Jewry has begun to suffer from all kinds of restrictions in trade and in commerce, not to speak of the burden of over-taxation which is undermining the entire economic existence of the Polish Jews.
RUMANIA MAY TAKE LESSON TO HEART
The peace offer which Nazi Germany is now compelled to make to the Jews may also serve as a lesson for Rumania, where anti-Semitic tendencies have assumed an especially serious character during the last few weeks and where the ex-premier Vaida-Voevod, this week came out openly with a project to modify the Rumanian constitution in a way which would convert the Jews into second class citizens.
There is no doubt that the growth of the anti-Semitic movement in Rumania is only a result of the anti-Semitic theories preached by the Nazis from Berlin. Now, when Berlin is ready to compromise on this theory, the wings of the anti-Semites in Rumania will also undoubtedly be closely clipped. The government of Tatarescu will have to realize that the protest which was handed over this week by American Jews to the Rumanian legation in Washington means