THE STORY OF THE JEWISH DEFENSE LEAGUE Page 77
Chapter 3: The Jewish Establishment
 
 
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The Jewish Establishment 77

band organizations to truly understand the pain of the Jew band to act on his behalf is best exemplified by the reaction, or bbetter, the lack of reaction, of our leadership during the bHolocaust. While six million died and as news of the exter- bmination camps emerged before a horrified Jewish world, bour Jewish leadership, which did indeed love Jews, and did bindeed care for Jews, did not love them enough or care for bthem enough to do everything and anything that had to be bdone to save them.

b“The crime of President Franklin D. Roosevelt in refusing bto bomb the rail lines leading to Auschwitz or in not allowing bshiploads of refugees to enter the United States was met, not bby a call for five million American Jews to take to the streets, bnot by a call for sit-ins and civil disobedience, not by a mass bmarch of rabbis to the jails. It was met by only the usual bhonest and sincere protests which lacked substance and bstrength. The refusal to abandon the mantle of respectabil- bity, even when it came to saving Jewish lives, was the hall- bmark of a failure to understand fully the real meaning of bAhavat Yisroel. The true extent of this failure can best be bunderstood when one studies such books as those by Rabbi bDov Weismandel, Ben Hecht’s Perfidy, and the history of bthe Kastner trial in Israel. One who reads these and begins bto appreciate the full failure begins to understand that our bJewish leaders will never be able to say: ‘Our hands have not bhad a share in the spilling of that blood.’

b“The Soviet Jewish question is, once again, a striking bexample of a failure to feel the pain of Jews. During the bmore than a half century of spiritual and national extermi- bnation of Jews within the Soviet Union, there have been bample opportunities to press the Soviets into concessions. bMany times during those fifty years the Soviets have been at bbay, have been in a position of weakness, in need of Western baid and comfort. Nevertheless, Jewish leadership, indeed bmost Jews of the free world, have failed to respond to the bcalls of their brethren and to the opportunities offered. By btheir apathy and by their indifference, by their failure to btake to the streets, to shout, and to move the world, they bhave aided and abetted the destruction of Soviet Jewry.

b“And in the United States as crisis conditions emerge for b 

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THE STORY OF THE JEWISH DEFENSE LEAGUE Page 77
Chapter 3: The Jewish Establishment