THE STORY OF THE JEWISH DEFENSE LEAGUE Page 5
Chapter 1: Soviet Jewry: I Am My Brother’s Keeper
 
 
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Soviet Jewry 5

bEstablishment, which raised the first of many future cries: b“You will make things worse for Soviet Jews!”

bOf course, that was not true and neither was it the real breason for Establishment opposition to demonstrations. bThe same men and groups who had stood idly by their bbrothers’ blood as the Holocaust raged, refusing to take to bthe streets and overturn the world if necessary on behalf of bthe Jews of Auschwitz, refused again to cry out with mean- bingful action on behalf of yet another three million—and bfor the same reason. Angry protests and loud demonstra- btions tended to call attention to the Jew and might arouse bthe anger of the gentile. Anti-Semitism, the terrible specter bthat paralyzes all comfortable and respectable persons, plus bthe terrible “natural” apathy that causes people to be oblivi- bous to all pain except their own, added to a community that bhad become so twisted and confused that it saw its hope and bdestiny in the struggle for Black civil rights, Vietnamese b“nationalists,” and every cause in the world except its own. bAll these were the ingredients for the apathy and silence of bAmerican Jews while three million Jews waited to die a bnational spiritual death. All these were the ingredients of a bsituation JDL was pledged to change.

bThe electrifying slogan “Never Again” was never meant bto declare that a Holocaust would never occur again. That is ban absurd proposition to state, for so long as one gentile lives bopposite one Jew, the possibility of a Holocaust remains. bWhat “Never Again” always meant was quite another prop- bosition. That as long as anyone attempted to repeat that bHolocaust, never again would there be that same lack of breaction, that same indifference, that same fear. Never bagain would JDL allow the Jewish Establishment to repeat bits obscenity of World War II. And so the battle for Soviet bJewry began.

bIn January 1970 the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra bappeared fora concert at Brooklyn College’s Walt Whitman bAuditorium. It was part of the growing American-Soviet bcultural exchange program for which both governments bhad such high hopes, and music-lovers filled the auditorium bfor a night of culture. So did the JDL.

bOutside the hall, tens of JDL people handed out leaflets to b 

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THE STORY OF THE JEWISH DEFENSE LEAGUE Page 5
Chapter 1: Soviet Jewry: I Am My Brother’s Keeper