Samuel Untermyer, leader of the world boycott movement against Germany and president of the newly created World Jewish Economic Federation, returned from Europe on the French liner, Paris, Sunday, to face a highly enthusiastic reception by 15,000 New York Jews.
Specially chartered boats met the Paris at Quarantine with bands blaring and decorated with huge posters hailing Mr. Untermyer as “our leader”, and praising him for his work at the recent world boycott conference held in Amsterdam at which he presided.
At the pier 5,000 enthusiastic Jews crowded onto the dock while 10,000 more waited patiently in the street for a glimpse of the man whom they considered the hero of the fight against the Nazis. Delegations of Jewish War Veterans in uniform, posts of the American Legion, veterans of Allenby’s campaign in Palestine, Zionist and Hadassah organizations as well as many other groups were on the pier and cheered Mr. Untermyer.
ADDRESSES NATION OVER RADIO
Flanked by motorcycle police and heartily cheered by the crowds who had waited for hours to greet him Mr. Untermyer was rushed uptown after a short reception at the pier to deliver an address over Station WABC and a national hookup.
“I have seen and talked with many of the terror-stricken refugees who have had the good fortune to escape from Germany, though forced to leave their property behind them,” said Mr. Untermyer, “and I want to say to you that nothing that has seeped through to you over the rigid censorship and lying propaganda that are at work to conceal and misrepresent the situation of the Jews in Germany begins to tell a fraction of the frightful story of fiendish torture, cruelty and persecution that are being inflicted day by day upon these men, women and children, or the terrors of worse than death in which they are living.
“The Hitler regime originated and are fiendishly prosecuting a boycott to exterminate the Jews by placarding Jewish shops, warning Germans against dealing with them, by imprisoning Jewish shopkeepers and parading them through the streets by the hundreds under guard of Nazi troops for the sole crime of being Jews, by ejecting them from the learned professions in which many of them had attained eminence, by excluding their children from the schools, their men from the labor unions, closing against them every avenue of livelihood, locking them in the vile concentration camps, starving and torturing them, murdering and beating them without cause, all solely because they or their remote ancestors were Jews and all with the avowed object of exterminating them.
“As against this the foulest boycott in the annals of time, we are appealing to all mankind to enforce a counter-boycott. That appeal is meeting with the conviction that idealism and justice are still alive.”
Mr. Untermyer then appealed for support from those Jewish organizations who have so far been lukewarm or opposed to the boycott saying:
“With this explanation of our aims, I appeal to the American Jewish Committee, whose public spirit and good intentions I do not for a moment question, but the wisdom of whose judgment I challenge, no longer to holf aloof but to rid themselves of their timid and ill-considered prejudices and join in actively pressing this boycott as our only weapon except the appeal to the League, which I shall discuss at a later time.
OMITS CONGRESS APPEAL
“I purposely refrain from including the American Jewish Congress in this appeal because I am satisfied that 95 per cent of their members are already with us and that they are being misrepresented by two or three men now abroad. Of them I ask that, prior to the meeting to be held this month in Prague by their executive committee, they instruct these false leaders in no uncertain terms as to the stand they must take on this all-important subject and demand that they shall either openly represent their views or resign their offices. One of them, generally recognized as the king-pin of mischief makers, is junketing around the Continent engaged in his favorite pastine of spreading discord, asserting at one time and place that he favors and supports the boycott and at another that he is opposed or indifferent to it, all dependent on the audience he is addressing; but always directly or indirectly delivering a stab in the dark.”
Mr. Untermyer concluded by thanking his audience for the heartening reception he had received and expressing the conviction that through the support of all Jews aided by the millions of non-Jewish sympathizers Hitlerist bigotry and fanaticism would be driven from the earth.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.