THE STORY OF THE JEWISH DEFENSE LEAGUE Page 301
Chapter 9: And Now . . .
 
 
Prev Page   Page Guide   Next Page
And Now . . . 301

bnot have the moral decency to fight for them, what business bis it of yours when someone else does?

bIf one should ask this, the answer should be clearly under- bstood. When I sat in Jerusalem’s Central Prison for a month, bI wrote the answer with the intention of reading it at my btrial. Here is what I wrote on that June day as the Jewish bState placed me in isolation and prepared to put me in jail to bappease Richard Nixon:

THE CHOSEN STATE

b“Jerusalem Central Prison. The question is not often basked because the subject is not often discussed—it is too bpainful. But among those who do delve into the painful his- btory of Jewish inaction and passivity while six million of their bbrothers and sisters perished before their eyes in the bHolocaust, the question remains a growing and puzzling bone. Why? Why did not the Jews of the Free World rise up band do what had to be done to shake the world into action? bSurely the Jewish leadership was not composed of wicked bpeople whose hearts were stony and indifferent to the fate bof slaughtered kinsmen. Surely the Jews of the Free World, bof the United States—where the activities would have been bmost effective—were good Jews whose hearts ached for btheir people. And if so, why the silence; why the refusal to bleap into the necessary action and acts that would have saved bhundreds of thousands?

b“The answer is that, of course, Jews of the United States bcared for their people in Europe; of course, they desired to bsave them. But they cared for themselves more, they feared bfor their own interests first. They looked to their own safety band position as being more important than anything else. bAdam karov l’atzmo,’ say the rabbis, ‘man is near unto him- bself; he is possessed by self-interest.’

b“And so he does not risk himself or his interest, even at the bexpense of the bleeding fellow Jew. The commandment of bAhavat Yisroel, love of Jews, as expressed in the stern bibli- bcal admonition, ‘Thou shalt not stand idly by thy brother’s bblood,’ becomes a terribly difficult one when one is called bupon to put it into action. Far easier to leave it in the House b 

Prev Page   Page Guide   Next Page
 
 
THE STORY OF THE JEWISH DEFENSE LEAGUE Page 301
Chapter 9: And Now . . .