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Presidential Race Used for Anti-jewish Propaganda, A.J.C. Reports

May 12, 1952
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The unified condemnation by the three major religious faiths of racial and religious bigotry in the current presidential primaries and the fall presidential campaign was urged today at the semi-annual meeting of the American Jewish Committee’s executive committee meeting in the Savoy-Plaza. More than 100 leaders of American Jewry from every part of the country were told that the presidential political race has sparked anti-Semitic agitation, “which may penetrate into the broader areas of American life.”

The urgent appeal to the three major faiths to denounce bigotry in the presidential campaign was contained in a report to A.J.C.’s executive committee by Samuel R. Feller, chairman of the national Domestic Affairs Committee of the A.J.C. He disclosed that on the basis “of evidence in our hands, the use of anti-Semitism as a political instrumentality is currently being stepped up significantly.”

“It is vitally important,” Mr. Feller added, “that the major presidential candidates join with the religious leaders in unequivocally denouncing the support of hate merchants. If this is not done, it is quite possible that the 1952 presidential election campaign may go down as one of the darkest blots on American history.

“In the campaign now in progress,” he revealed, “anti-Semitism is especially prominent as a tactic used by organized professional hatemongers, who have attacked one or two leading candidates in vicious gutter propaganda. These scurrilities know no local boundaries. What was produced in California was distributed in New Hampshire’s presidential primaries. Literature published in Kansas is used in Texas. Material from Texas finds a market-place in the Middle West and Far West. Some communities have literally been saturated with this poison.”


Addressing the meeting last night, Jacob Blaustein, president of the American Jewish Committee, said that Americans must help in every way to encourage and activate the democratic forces within Germany to counteract German reaction, chauvinism and racialism. “American organizations which have developed special skills and competence in community relations areas have a unique responsibility for encouraging Germany to undertake a comprehensive program of education for better democratic living and for solving intergroup problems,” he declared.

He also cited the Near East as an example where “both peace and democracy are threatened not only by the persistence of ancient injustice and hatred, but also by the newest and most threatening from of tyranny-totalitarian communism.” It is in the obvious interest of the United States, Mr. Blaustein stated, and the cause of democracy throughout the world that peace and stability should be achieved in the Near East. “That is why we are concerned with a meeting of minds between the leaders of Israel and the leaders of the Arab states,” he said.

Irving M. Engel, chairman of the executive committee of the A.J.C., reported to the meeting that “the Soviet rulers are breeding a new type of political hybrid in Eastern Germany called a ‘communazi.'”Pointing to the confirmed fact that the ranks of officials in the Russian zone of Germany are filled with former Nazis and Wehrmacht officers, Mr. Engel said that this is further proof that “Communism and Nazism are indistinguishable in their motives, methods and objectives.”

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