NEW YORK (Oct. 18)
The American Jewish Congress and the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith reported today their offices had been deluged with telephone calls from persons protesting a local television program which featured what the Congress called “three Negro Anti-Semites.” The program, “Negroes and Anti-Semitism,” was defended by David Susskind, its moderator, who said it was important “to spotlight this infection.”
Will Maslow, executive director of the AJ Congress, sent a telegram to station WNEW, which broadcast the program last Sunday night, expressing “shock” over the program, adding that the station “rendered a disservice to journalism and the community.” He accused Mr. Susskind of “pandering to sensationalism by turning his program over to three Negro anti-Semites. Such discussions, far from bringing the issue out into the open, serve only to exacerbate tensions and foment the advocates of black power and white backlash.”
A spokesman for WNEW said that the station received about 80 calls after the program and that only two were favorable. In his defense of the program, Susskind said: “The Negroes are the last people in the world who should hate, but the problem of anti-Semitism in the Negro ghettoes does exist and it is time somebody did something about it.”
The three Negroes who appeared on the program, all of whom work in Harlem, were Arthur Williams, a student at New York University, Mrs. Rose Hayes, a publicity worker for an anti-poverty program; and Omar Ahmed, who was not identified. One of the three said that Jews had “dragged” the United States into war five times. All expressed contempt for whites in general and for Jews in particular.