H G. Wells, arriving in the United States for a two weeks’ rest, gave his opinions on war and peace, British Fascism and anti-Semitism in Europe. The great novelist remarked that Anti-Semitism in Europe is childish stuff and nonsense, and that there is no more reason to suspect Jewish than Scottish solidarity.
“Do you want me to tell you of the conspiracy of the Scotch?” he added. “Well, they are the engineers on all the principal ships in the world, and they have been since the age of steam. Through a conspiracy of efficiency they will be for years to come.”
Mr. Wells had in mind the legend of Jewish solidarity for world domination that is being circulated by the Nazi propagandists. It is the old story of the counterfeit “Protocols.” And now the Hitlerites are trying to prove by a post card caricature of Hitler that the Jews had organized a plot to assassinate Hitler.
The enemies of the Jews have done and are doing their utmost to create solidarity among the Jewish people by their vicious onslaughts. Unfortunately, the Jews are not sufficiently united even in their defense against Hitlerism. Thus far no coordinated program has been elaborated by American Jewish leadership.
We have received a letter from Joseph D. Kaufman, chairman of the publicity committee of the B’nai B’rith membership campaign in Washington, together with specimens of the “literature” used in the campaign.
“On April 1 the membership of this lodge was about 225,” he writes. “Today it stands about 750, or more than tripled in less than a month. … It is ###?r purpose to continue until w### get at least a thousand members, which should be done in less###an a week, and thereby set ### for at least a million Jews to become members of the B’nai B’rith with its obvious advantages of campaigning. The inspiration behind all this, local campaigning and national to be, is Mr. Edmund I. Kaufman of this city.”
The letter analyzes the “literature,” or exhibits, sent out by the publicity department, and encloses the screaming broadsides.
The exhibits are indeed very striking and effective. But they are too hysterical, and they magnity the danger of anti-Semitism in the United States. It is an act of dangerous irresponsibility to exaggerate the menace of anti-Semitic racketeering in this country.
What will happen if the Washington B’nai B’rith Lodge will increase its membership to one thousand? If these are the methods to be used to arouse American Jewry, without proposing any definite constructive measures for combatting anti-Semitism, how can we be sure that more serious blunders will not be made ###y these high-pressure publicity campaigns for Jewish organization?
One of the envelopes contains broken Matzoth accompanied by a card which reads as follows:
“Passover 1984! Again the Jew needs to be ‘led out of Egypt’-out of the House of ‘Anti-Semitic Bondage and Injustice!’ As this Matzoth is broken, so will the Jews of America be, IF WE FAIL in our drive for B’nai B’rith members (for Anti-Defamation Work, etc.) GO TO IT!!!”
The B’nai B’rith should put a stop to such foolish and dangerous publicity, however well-in-tentioned it may be.
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.