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European Jews Admire Generosity of American Jewry, Judge Stern Declares

September 13, 1926
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(Jewish Daily Bulletin)

The Jews of Europe are grateful for the generosity of the Jews of America, declared Judge Horace Stern, eminent jurist and president of the Federation of Jewish Charities of Philadelphia, on his return from a three months trip abroad.

In an interview with the representative of the “Jewish Daily Bulletin,” the Judge commented on his impressions of the Jewish situation in Europe.

“They marvel both at the manner in which the Jews of America accomplish what they set out to do and at their generosity. It will take some time before the Jews of Europe will be able to emulate the Jews here. The reason for this is not difficult to find. In the first place the Jews of Europe have not yet recovered entirely from the war. In many countries there is still misery, want and even starvation. Those Jews who are better fixed financially are doing their utmost to help the others. But the problem is of course beyond them The Jews of America will have to continue to render assistance.” he said.

What depressed the Judge most was the anti-Semitic feeling which he found throughout southern Germany. As a characteristic he cited the instance of a small town in southern Germany where there are about five Jewish families that have been living in the town possibly for several hundred years. Regularly every week there appears on the town bulletin board a grotesque cartoon ridiculing the Jews in the vilest manner and bearing the inscription “Drive the Jews out of Germany.” This vicious propaganda has been responsible for a great deal of harm to the Jews residing in that part of Germany.

“One can not help but be thrilled,” the Judge declared, “by the sense of historical continuity of the Jewish people when he goes through the old Ghetto of Rome, the catacombs of Rome and the burial grounds in Frankfurt. Especially interesting are the synagogues throughout Europe. Their beauty and the spirit they generate are most inspiring. This is especially true of the synagogues in Florence, Rome, and Paris.

“In France,” the Judge said, “the Jews are showing extraordinary loyalty and devotion to their country. In spite of their numerous hardships and in spite of the economic depression they head the lists of those who are contributing generously to the bond issues floated by the government. Jewish names and the size of their contributions stand out most conspicuously on the official posters issued by the government.”

In Germany as in the other countries, Judge Stern visited the various orphan asylums and hospitals. He told of one instance where an orphan asylum in Germany had been accustomed to caring for one hundred orphans, was compelled to reduce its number to twenty, because of lack of funds. By their contributions to the $25,000,000 now being raised by the Joint Distribution Committee in America the Jews of this country are helping to alleviate this condition, he said.

The judge spent some time in England studying the English courts. He sat on the bench with Sir Henry Fielding Dickens, the son of Charles Dickens, and made a number of observations which he intends to use in connection with his work here.

The three weeks motor trip in Italy ended with a visit to Benito Mussolini.

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