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Hirschmann Criticizes Untermyer in Nazi Boycott Activities Here

December 17, 1933
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

“Jews must stop their whining and get down to real business. The manner in which they are prosecuting the boycott is disgraceful to the strength of Jewish leadership and the extent of their influence. The boycott, the German situation, the whole business of the Jewish persecutions has become a popular topic of conversation at tea. It is disgusting.”

I. A. Hirschmann, executive of Lord & Taylor, local department store and member of the executive committee of the American Jewish Congress, told The Jewish Daily Bulletin in an interview that unless some immediate steps are taken to end the “whining” of American Jews and start a program of united action, the “very name of the Jews will be violated.”

Couching in strong phrases his sentiments which are violently opposed to what he called the “stupid and inept” behavior of those supporting the boycott of German products, Mr. Hirschmann proposed that stores throughout the city known to be selling German-made goods be boycotted by persons wearing sandwich placards


Mr. Hirschmann challenged the supposition that Samuel Untermyer is “chieftain” of the boycott forces in the United States, and questioned the latter’s usefulness as a leader of the Jews. He qualified this assertion by adding that if Mr. Untermyer “stopped making speeches and got down to business, maybe he would be a leader.”

With conviction, Mr. Hirschmann said that the “countless number of little Jewish organizations ought to be shaken up until they come to life.” He spoke of the “crying need for a centralized group, with a central leader”.

“I have become quite disgusted,” he said, “with the stories which have been appearing in the press about a little howl here and a tiny squeal there about the treatment that is being afforded Jews in Germany and in other anti-Semitic lands. I am furious with the speeches some of our friends are delivering; they are thunderous, and seem even more so when we compare the bombast with the extent of activity which backs up wordage.”


Mr. Hirschmann, who spent ten weeks in Europe last summer, part of which he used in a visit to Germany, said he found the same “weak-kneed Jewish reformers everywhere.” None of them ever

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