Search JTA's historical archive dating back to 1923

Digest of World Press Opinion

December 19, 1934
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The Canadian Jewish Chronicle, writing editorially of the session of the Administrative Committee of the Jewish Agency which opens in New York on December 31, declares.

The proposed meeting of the Administrative Committee of the Jewish Agency which is to take place in the United States once again brings to the fore the old question, what has the Zionist Organization of Canada done to be represented in this body? This question has arisen from time to time, but the only answer that has been given is that there are no non-Zionists in Canada and therefore we do not need to be represented.

This reply may be a source of gratification to the Zionists in the Dominion, and may be a proud boast of the sentiment which has prevailed here for years past, but the fact remains that the Jewish Agency is today neither Zionist or non-Zionist, but rather the supreme body in matters pertaining to the development of Palestine. The old lines of demarcation have been wiped away and the Agency is the liaison between the League of Nations and Zionist endeavor.

The boast that we have no non-Zionists in Canada may have been useful in the early days of the Agency, but new orientations have taken place which have put a different complexion on the Jewish Agency. As matters stand today, the Canadian Zionists are merely a pushke or a collection agency without any voice in administrative affairs.


Writing on Jewish education in America Israel S. Chipkin discloses in The Synagogue Light the following fact about Jewish education in New York City:

Only twenty-five per cent of the 350,000 Jewish children of school age receive some kind of Jewish education—minimum or maximum. Jews, as individuals, are spending even in these days of depression between two to three million dollars a year on elementary and secondary Jewish education. How well is this money spent? What is the quality of instruction in the local schools? What results are achieved by the pupils? How long does the Jewish schooling of these children last?

Why are so many thousands of children without a Jewish schooling? Who takes care of the thousands of poor children who do want to attend a Jewish school? What kind of Jews do the Jewish schools produce if they have any power? Similar questions can be multiplied. The fact is that such questions must remain unanswered because there is no organized Jewish community which can set standards, indicate direction and assure stability to existing educational agencies.


The Detroit News in one of its leading editorials belittled the warning that America will one day be faced with a Jewish problem and declared:

Prof. Friedrich Krueger has gone from Wittenberg College, at Springfield, O., to tell the Nazis that the people of America are “being poisoned by fairy tales” about them, just as they were “poisoned” during the World War. The German-American press, he said, is trying to correct the erroneous impressions made by the Anglo-American press, but is greatly ham pered in this good work because most Americans do not read German.

Prof. Krueger admitted that the Jewish question and the church question have given German – Americans some trouble some moments, but added. “Some day America will be forced to deal with the problem presented by the Jew.”

Prof. Krueger is mistaken about the “Anglo – American” press; it has made a sincere attempt to report what has been going on in Germany, and to understand the Nazi manner of thinking. And when he says that some day we shall be forced to deal with the “problem presented by the Jew,” we remind him that it has already been delt with in the First Amendment to the Constitution: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

The Jew is a problem in no country in which opinion is free.


Speaking of the peace pacts reached between the Zionist Executive and the Revisionists the New Judaea, the official organ of the Zionist Executive in London, writes.

More definite is the understanding reached by the Executive with the World Union of General Zionists as a result of the discussions which took place at the end of last month. The agreement is not confined merely to inadmissible methods in the relations between parties, but covers the question of Zionist discipline, certain organizational reforms including the shekel and procedure of the Congress. In regard to the question of labor conditions in Palestine and the relations between employers and workmen, as well as matters connected with these problems, a decision has been deferred to enable the World Union of General Zionists to take the opinion of its members in Palestine. On the political work of the Executive its policy and methods, the representatives of the World Union of General Zionists registered their full approval.


The question of whether Jews are justified in joining Communist ranks is the subject of a debate that is being conducted between Dr. Alexander Lyons of Brooklyn and the Detroit Jewish Chronicle. The paper says:

Our viewpoint differs from that of Dr. Lyons. Dr. Lyons would under no circumstances condone Jewish affiliation with the Communist party because he maintains that this party attempts “to overthrow the constituted government” by resorting to “forceful and sometimes violent measures.’

We on the other hand, maintain that as long as our government permits the listing of Communist candidates for office on our election ballots—thereby attesting to the lawful methods of the party in this country—Jews have as much right to affiliate themselves with the Communists as non-Jews have.

We don’t mean to boast of the fact that we are outspokenly anti – Communist. Nevertheless, we resent any attempt to rob Jews of the right to affiliate themselves with this party. Dr. Lyons would be justified in his arguments if our government would proscribe Communism, and if the party were removed from lawful ballots. But until that occurs—and we hope for the sake of free political opinion and free speech that that time will never arrive—Dr. Lyons and all who adhere to his viewpoint are wrong.


The New York Sun, commenting on the revival of the Hebrew language, states editorially:

Lady Erleign has set forth in a special article in the London Times # brief account of the re-establishment of Hebrew as a living language. The record she gives is astonishing. For generations the tongue was restricted to the purposes of religion and scholarship. Fifty years ago Moses Mendelssohn began in Germany a crusade to restore it to everyday use. The movement achieved little success there, but made progress among the Jews in Eastern Europe, where, in Lady Erleigh’s phrase, “from being simply a return to the classics it became the genesis of a comprehensive modern literature.”

At first poetry absorbed the interest of those who took part in the renaissance, but with the development of the Jewish community in Palestine, Hebrew came into less formal use. Pioneer Zionists in Palestine pledged themselves to speak only their ancestral language rather than Yiddish which is often confused with Hebrew because it is written in Hebrew characters. Yiddish, however, is basically German. For centuries it has been used by European Jews for commercial and civil purposes.

Recommended from JTA