In every chareidi history of American Jewry’s responses to the Holocaust, one event always merits special mention l’gnai (for criticism) – a mass protest called by secular Jewish organizations in the mid-1930s calling for a boycott of German products. Those histories cite credible reports that Hitler, ym”sh, was enraged by the protests and thereby strengthened in his determination to exterminate the Jewish people from the face of the earth. [Emphasis mine]
Is Rabbi Rosenblum really to be tasked with explaining, at a third-grade level, the difference between rallies and mock trials of Hitler in the early 1930s (which caused reprisals against Jews and Jewish businesses across Germany) and a march on Washington when the death camps were operating at their most brutal level? [Emphasis Mine]
|The Reichstag Fire|
|Chamberlain, Daladier, Hitler, Mussolini, and Ciano |
pictured before signing the Munich Agreement
Courtesy of: Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-R69173 / CC-BY-SA
George Canty, the Berlin-based trade commissioner for the U.S. Department of Commerce, got wind of protests against the film by the German Ambassador in Washington, and concluded that "the film serves no good purpose." Across the country, censors took Canty’s view, and the film was denied a license, banned, and cut by New York City and State censor boards. In Chicago, the film passed the censors but was stopped when the city’s Nazi consul insisted that the footage was fake.
|Hitler in "Homes and Gardens"|
[A]s his famous book Mein Kampf ("My struggle") became a best-seller of astonishing power (4,500,000 millions copies of it have been sold), Hitler began to think of replacing that humble shack by a house and garden of suitable scope. In this matter he has throughout been his own architect.
The forty-eight hours after the march into the Rhineland were the most nerve-racking in my life. If the French had then marched into the Rhineland we would have had to withdraw with our tails between our legs, for the military resources at our disposal would have been wholly inadequate for even a moderate resistance.
- To clarify what I believe is the well-established and standard interpretation of history, in opposition to the claims of Rabbi Rosenblum and Rabbi Menken, and to praise those whom they condemn.
- To serve as an example and a warning as to what happens when we shut ourselves off from debate.