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Postby admin » Thu Jul 02, 2015 5:37 am

American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee and Refugee Aid
by Holocaust Encyclopedia



A Jewish youth on an agricultural training farm that prepared Jewish refugees for life in Palestine, sponsored by the Joint Distribution Committee. Fuerth, Germany, June 13, 1946. — Wide World Photo

The first, Jacob Edelstein, was a Zionist from Prague who cherished youth. After two years of Nazi hell in which everything, absolutely everything, was forbidden to the Jews, he welcomed the birth of Theresienstadt with blind optimism, hoping that the difficult life that awaited them there would prepare them for their future settlement in Palestine.

-- The Last of the Unjust, directed by Claude Lanzmann -- Illustrated Screenplay

Inspired in part by a August 31, 1914 cable from Henry Morgenthau, then US Ambassador to Turkey, to prominent US philanthropist Jacob Schiff requesting $50,000 to save the Jews of Palestine, then part of Ottoman Turkey, from starvation, representatives of 40 US Jewish organizations met in New York in November 1914 to discuss the coordination of relief measures for beleaguered Jewish populations in central and eastern Europe and the Middle East.

On November 27, 1914 they founded the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC or "Joint"). Originally the result of a merger of two newly established relief committees, the largely Reformed American Jewish Relief Committee and the Orthodox Central Relief Committee, the Joint was joined by a third committee, the People's Relief Committee, composed of labor and socialist groups, in early 1915. The initial purpose of the Joint was to raise and distribute funds to help support the Jewish populations of eastern Europe and the near east during World War I.

In 1917-1919, the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia, the collapse of the Central Powers (Germany, Austria-Hungary, Bulgaria, and Turkey) at the end of World War I, and the massive and often brutal population transfers connected with the breakup and overthrow of the Ottoman Empire continued to adversely effect the ability of Jewish communities in Central and Eastern Europe, as well as the Middle East, to survive, support themselves economically, and maintain their Jewish identity.

Between 1914 and 1929, the JDC collected some 78.7 million dollars from Jews living in the United States. Intended to be a temporary relief organization, the increasing impoverishment of Jews in eastern Europe, the Soviet effort to settle Jews on the land, and continued Arab violence against the Jews of Palestine prolonged the life of the JDC into the era of the Holocaust. In the decade after World War I, the JDC became the primary communal agency for overseas relief and rehabilitation. In addition to direct relief funding, JDC operatives provided funding through the American-Jewish Joint Agricultural Corporation to settle Soviet Jews on the land, primarily in Ukraine and the Crimea, and fostered economic development among Jews living in Palestine through the Palestine Economic Corporation.

The impact of the Depression in the United States drastically reduced the funding available to the JDC, whose leaders had to shelve their development schemes by 1932. With the Nazi seizure of power in 1933, the JDC, while continuing to provide support for Jewish communities in eastern Europe, focused on aid to Jews remaining in Germany and assistance to Jewish refugees from the Nazis. In April 1933, after Nazi thugs ransacked the JDC's European headquarters in Berlin, JDC officials relocated the office to Paris. Despite the Depression, contributions to the JDC actually increased as Jews in the United States became increasingly aware of the dangers and hardships facing their European brethren. Throughout the decade, the JDC painted a realistic picture of the plight of Jews overseas and managed to obtain sizeable contributions for overseas relief.

JDC efforts were instrumental in assisting at least 190,000 Jews to leave Germany between 1933 and 1939; 80,000 were able to leave Europe altogether with JDC assistance. The JDC supported various refugee resettlement efforts in Latin America, including the Jewish colony in Sosua, Dominican Republic, and a colony in Bolivia. JDC funds were also instrumental in funding a relief program for 20,000 German and Austrian Jewish refugees in Shanghai, China.

Nine months after the Germans invaded Poland to initiate World War II, the JDC was compelled to close its offices in Paris in the wake of the German advance in 1940 and reopen in Lisbon, Portugal.

In 1939, the JDC boosted its fundraising potential for rescue by joining with the United Palestine Appeal and the National Coordinating Committee for Aid to Refugees to create the United Jewish Appeal (UJA). Whereas between 1929 and 1939 the JDC raised and spent almost 25 million dollars on relief, between 1939 and 1945, it raised more than 70 million dollars, and between 1945 and 1950, it raised approximately 300 million dollars for refugee aid.

Until the United States entered the war in December 1941, the JDC sent food and money by various means to Poland, Lithuania, and other German-occupied countries. The JDC supplied money to support imperiled Jews throughout Europe—including those trapped in ghettos in German-occupied Poland. It funded orphanages, children's centers, schools, hospitals, housing committees, public kitchens, and various cultural institutions.

Even after the United States entered the war against Germany, the JDC, though no longer legally permitted to operate inside German-occupied territory, continued to funnel clandestine funds into ghettos in Poland via its office in Switzerland, headed by Saly Mayer. Mayer had contact with individuals in Switzerland—including officials of the International Red Cross—who in turn had links to Polish underground organizations. The JDC was also a significant contributor to the operations of the US War Refugee Board (WRB) after its creation in January 1944.

Made available through neutral legations, JDC funds facilitated the rescue of Jews residing in Budapest and assisted in the support of Romanian Jews during the last years of Marshal Ion Antonescu's rule. JDC funds also supported children's shelters under international protection in Budapest and partially financed the rescue operations of neutral diplomats such as Raoul Wallenberg and Carl Lutz. The JDC also sent thousands of relief packages to Jewish refugees in the Soviet Union.

The JDC provided material support and facilitated the emigration of refugees who had escaped to neutral countries including Portugal and Turkey or who had found refuge in other Axis countries, including Vichy France and Japan. Between 1939 and 1944, JDC officials helped 81,000 European Jews to find asylum through emigration to various parts of the world. Following its liberation in August 1944, JDC officials reopened their central office in Paris.

[Kay Griggs] You didn't used to kill women and children in war, you know, when the British army were pure, kind of. You know, you didn't go out and kill. I think at Dresden they did do some of that, but that was Walt Whitman Rostow and his crowd. And he's a very dangerous man. Because Walt Whitman Rostow is a Communist.

Eric: Okay, in what capacity is he?

July 29, 1989: Ronald Reagan with traveling companion retired U.S. Marine Lt. General Victor Krulak (in the yellow shirt)

[Kay Griggs] Oh, he was one of the wise men in Kennedy's administration. I think he was probably responsible for the movement that got Kennedy murdered. I believe it was an Israeli group which did it, with some of these rogues. Walt Whitman Rostow was the one who got us into the Vietnam war because he wanted to sell the weapons and stuff. He and Victor Krulak who is the present Commandant's father, Krulak was his lackey. Walt Whitman Rostow went with General Taylor and wrote the report that got us into the Vietnam war. And all the time that the Pentagon was saying, "No, no, no, no," he was a cheerleader for the weapon sales. He and Henry Kissinger. He and Henry. Walt Whitman Rostow, Eugene Debs Rostow, these were Communists, names for Communists. Eugene Debs Rostow, and, it's either his son or his other brother, runs the big Boston mob, the Port there. His name is Nicholas Rostow.

Eric: She claims that the war in Bosnia was also manipulated by these people, and that the CIA is not as important as we assume it is. She believes that most of the secret operations are coming from a group of criminals working within our military and NATO. Sometimes she refers to them as "The Joint."

[Kay Griggs] The war in Bosnia is simply a stage to train assassins, to be a market for brand new weapons, and to be a marketplace so the drug money can be used. And the Army runs the whole show. It's totally run by the Army. The CIA is a bogus thing, you know. It's training in doctrine command, it's NATO, it's SHAPE: Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe, started by Eisenhower. It's a totally independent corporation. It's main function is to sell weapons and launder money.

Eric: You're talking about the CIA?

[Kay Griggs] No, I'm talking about SHAPE. The CIA is kind of bogus. It's just there.

Eric: That's just a trade name for the media to use.

[Kay Griggs] It's just to confuse us, to get us off the track. It's all being done by Army people who are now Joint.

Eric: She describes "The Joint" as being in New York, and that it acts as a funding organization for their criminal activities.

[Kay Griggs] The funding organization, one of the funding organizations, was out of New York, and it was called "The Joint." And Meyer Lansky -- see, our Mob, the organized crime, the Jewish Kabbalist group ...

Eric: Unlike the gangsters of Al Capone's era, Meyer Lansky and his friends can manipulate entire nations rather than just a few cities. In this next segment, she mentions that one of the operations that "The Joint" was funding, was the illegal immigration of Nazis into America. Since she describes "The Joint" as being Jewish, your first thought might be to assume they were helping Jews escape Nazi Germany. However, what she describes may be what other people refer to as Operation Paperclip, although she does not use that expression.

An interesting footnote to history is the revelation of the cozy relationships which developed between top Nazi officials and the founders of the Zionist terrorist network, Haganah and the Irgun Zvai Leumi, in the closing days of the Second World War. The Zionists were working to drive the British out of Palestine; the Nazis were also at war with England, which gave birth to the most curious political alliance of the twentieth century. One of the leading advocates of working with the Abwehr, German Intelligence, was one Yitzhak Shamir, now Premier of Israel. After the war, the Zionists employed many former Nazis to help set up their military opposition to the British. The leader in this alliance was the veteran of the old Stern Gang of terrorists, which was now the Irgun Zvai Leumi, none other than Menachem Begin. One of Begin's proteges was a young woman named Mathilde J., as she was known in terrorist circles. She was born in Switzerland after her father left Italy because of "poor economic conditions," no political ideology there. The present Mrs. Krim is described by Current Biography as a "geneticist" and a "philanthropist." She has been the resident biologist at the American Cancer Society for many years. In her younger days, she joined the Irgun Zvai Leumi, marrying a fellow terrorist in a show of solidarity. She soon became a favorite of Begin, and divorced her husband. It was Begin who was asked by a grinning Mike Wallace on the program "Sixty Minutes," "Did you really introduce terrorism into the politics of the Middle East?" Begin answered emphatically, "Not just the Middle East -- the whole world." He was referring to the worldwide terrorist operations of Mossad, the Israeli Intelligence group which is entirely financed by the CIA with American taxpayers' funds.

-- "Murder by Injection -- The Story of the Medical Conspiracy Against America," by Eustace Mullins

She is going to mention that many of these Nazis had "The German Disease." And she refers to them as "The Pink Triangle Boys." She is referring to homosexuality and sex with children. The Nazi party had the same problem that the Republican party suffers from. Specifically, there are a lot of accusations that many top Nazi and Republican leaders are homosexual, that some are raping children on a regular basis, and that some are covering up the slave trade. In Nazi Germany, some of the rapists and homosexuals were arrested and put into prison camps, and pink triangles were put on their uniforms to identify them from the other prisoners. She believes that thousands of these Pink Triangle Boys were brought to America at the end of World War II. She also claims that the Nazi Government was brought down by the German people when reports about the raping of children started spreading through the population. This seems to be happening right now with the Bush Administration. The Jeff Gannon incident seems to be forcing a lot of people to face the possibility that many top government officials are not what they claim to be.

The Pink Triangle Boys

[Kay Griggs] This funding group in New York, they would pay for passports which were illegal. In fact, my grandfather was involved with that. That's how I know so much about it, because my grandfather was told to keep silent and not tell anybody. And of course he told my grandmother, and my grandmother told me, and I've told my children. Everybody knows they brought in probably more than 200,000 Nazi soldiers, and SS, and you know, whacko scientists and psychologists. And all of them, most of them, had "The German Disease." You know, because it was their culture.

Eric: The German Disease?

[Kay Griggs] Yeah, "The German Disease" is what the Pink Triangle Boys were. Colonel Ron Ray writes about this. He's a Marine Colonel who's a Christian who's writing about the "Cherry Marines," about homosexuality, and the group sex orgies, and so forth, which brought down the German government. Because Naples, which is where all of the Navy is doing their playing, I mean today, in Naples, these orgies are going on. It was where Krupp, [4] the weapons manufacturer, used to take the German High Command, and they would go onto the Isle of Capri into the Blue Grotto. And they would have big orchestras, and they'd bring in little boys, little Italian boys, who would be raped. They'd give them trinkets. And of course the mothers gradually found out, and just like me, it was one thing when there was just one of me, now there a lot more of us wives who are talking and telling truth. And those Italian women went to newspapers in Italy. They wouldn't listen. But when they went to the wives of these guys in Germany, it brought it all out. It brought the German government down, because they were duplicitous in it. But what they were doing was pedophilia. They were raping, bringing in little boys. They involve the Catholic Priests, you know, who were bringing in ... Anyway, but what happened was this whole group came over to the United States. And it's an old culture. But it's the reason there are a lot of things going on with children these days. And it explains why it's all being covered up. Because if you've got police officers who are playing these games, and they're going into the woods, like what is that place where, I mean, even Eisenhower played these games, even Mike Kemp out at it's called "The Hermitage" in California, where they all get drunk and they run around nude in the woods and stuff.

Eric: The Hermitage? Bohemian Grove?

[Kay Griggs] That's it! Bohemian Grove.

Eric: Rather than Hermitage?

[Kay Griggs] Bohemian Grove. That's the name of it. My brain's tired. And there was a big one in Washington called Rush River Lodge where they used to all go. And there are lots of places now, but the problem, as I see it, is that I think they are trying to destroy America.

In 1971 Paisley began organizing sex parties in Washington. Along with CIA colleague, Donald Burton, Paisley formed the Rush River Lodge Corporation. According to Trento, "Burton and Paisley staged several sex parties at the lodge." Those who attended these parties included politicians and journalists. Burton admitted that a "high-level Nixon appointee enjoyed tying up women and beating them" at these parties. Another person who attended was the beautiful Hana Koecher, an agent with the Czech intelligence service.

-- John Paisley, by John Simkin

Eric: She also accuses Caspar Weinberger of being part of this group of criminals.

[Kay Griggs] They are selling weapons! I mean, that is what the military is doing. It's totally controlled by the Mob. Look at this. Weinberger was General Douglas MacArthur's -- he spied on MacArthur in Korea. Who was MacArthur's nemesis, albatross? It was none other than little old intelligence "I'm-going-to-tell-every-move-you-make" Weinberger. Young. But he did it. He brought down MacArthur. Every move MacArthur was going to make, he broadcast it through the Chaplain, his little intelligence network. And he got brownie points with the group because he brought down the big lion. When you bring down a big lion like that, you get a big job. You've done good work. And they needed to get rid of MacArthur because he didn't want to keep the wars going. He wanted it over and, you know, it's like General Truffey (sp?) who took over after the Vietnam War was over. And he was on C-Span in August 1996 with former Ambassador Whitehead, and a few of the other State Department Vietnam people, and General Truffey had been holding these things in for years. He was on C Span. This man let it all out. He said, "I took over at the end of the Vietnam War. I was in control, right? Big general in charge. So I say, 'Cut off the shipment of weapons.' So I tell the Pentagon, 'Cut off the shipment of weapons.' " He said, "I got a phone call from Henry Kissinger saying, 'The weapons are going to continue at the wartime rate.'

Eric: Just when you think you've heard the strangest accusation possible, she comes up with another one that's even more difficult to believe. For example, she claims that some Communist dictators were also put through the homosexual mind control procedure by these criminals.

[Kay Griggs] Because already the Communist agents, the New York, Brooklyn, New Jersey Mob, were already training Mao. Mao was trained in Paris. So was, you know, the one in Cambodia. What's his name? I can't think of his name. The one who was Pol Pot. They were homosexually -- bless their little hearts -- by priests. They were wonderful little boys, sent there, you know, "turned," which is the word when they believe their mothers, and then all of a sudden the world's horrible, and they have these wonderful friends who are going to make them leaders. They are turned, psychologically, and it's a pattern. And so this is why it's so important to know what they are doing to innocent little boys in the Army and the Marine Corps today.

In another particular Apuleius turns out to have dealt faithfully with his readers. The promise of a literary tour de force conveyed in the image of the circus-rider, leaping from horse to horse in mid-gallop, is amply redeemed. The Golden Ass is a dazzling combination of parable, allegory, satire, robust humour, sex, violence, Grand Guignol, confession and buffoonery, a unique feat of creative fantasy. Its rich literary texture is matched by a linguistic exuberance and stylistic versatility that confronts the translator with a succession of thorny, sometimes insuperable, problems. How Apuleius himself handled the task of translation can be seen from comparison with the Onos. [54] He rarely renders the original word for word for long at a stretch, but subjects it to a process for which it is difficult to find a better term than souping up. Most of his innovations are by way of verbal amplification and the addition of picturesque detail, but the characterization is also enriched, and sometimes, as with Milo and Photis, radically revised. The general effect is to impart life and colour to a comparatively jejune original. This is typical of Roman treatment of Greek literary models, reminiscent for instance of what the comic dramatists, Plautus especially, did with their exemplars: what was called uertere, 'turning', something not adequately described by the word 'translation'.

-- The Golden Ass, or Metamorphoses, by Apuleius, translated by E.J. Kenney

Eric: In her eight hours of interview, she lets out a lot of accusations. And she accuses a lot of high ranking government officials of a lot of serious crimes. She does not show any signs of hesitation or fear except when asked one particular question. In this next segment, she is explaining that both her uncle and her husband were involved in secret weapons sales to a certain country for "The Joint." Which country? And who is "The Joint"? This is the only issue that she hesitates to talk about. However, after saying the "Z" word, she returns to normal and resumes her accusations of murder, corruption and sexual perversion.

[Kay Griggs] You know, selling weapons to whatever country. I know the country, but in other words, they were doing work for "The Joint" under the table all these years.

-- Mrs. Kay Griggs on How the Government Works, directed by Eric Hufschmid

After the war, the JDC—working together with the Jewish Agency for Palestine, the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (HIAS), and other organizations—became the central Jewish agency providing support and financial assistance to Jewish survivors of the Holocaust residing in the displaced persons (DP) camps in Germany, Austria, and Italy. The JDC provided food to augment official rations, supplied clothing, books, and school supplies for children, supported cultural amenities, and bought religious supplies for the community. Between 1945 and 1950 alone, some 420,000 Jews in Eastern Europe become beneficiaries of the Joint, which spent over 300 million dollars on assistance and sent an army of professionals (doctors, nurses, teachers, social workers, and administrators) to serve the needs of approximately 700,000 people each month—both in and outside of the DP apparatus.

From 1947 on, an increasing part of the JDC budget was devoted to assisting refugees to emigrate from Europe. Between 1947 and the foundation of the Israeli state in May 1948, JDC funding assisted some 115,000 refugees to reach Palestine. JDC officials also provided relief and assistance to those would-be immigrants whom the British interned in camps on the island of Cyprus. After Israel was established, the JDC continued to facilitate Jewish immigration to the new state.

By the end of 1950, around 440,000 Jews had reached Israel with JDC assistance: 270,000 were refugees from Europe; another 167,000 were refugees from Moslem countries in North Africa and the Middle East, including 46,000 from Yemen flown in from the British colony Aden in Operation “Magic Carpet.”
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Postby admin » Mon Sep 24, 2018 9:31 pm

Perfidy [Excerpt]
by Ben Hecht


It is known now (1961) that Eichmann's offer of a million Jewish lives for a few thousand trucks was not an Eichmann whim. It was a plan hatched by Hitler, Himmler, Goebbels, Becher, [200] Goering, and all the leading German thinkers of 1944. The execution of the plan was assigned to Colonel Eichmann.

The very fact that Brand was chosen, and not Kastner, may be proof of their hope to be taken seriously. An honest Jew was needed to bring the offer to the Jewry of the world -- a Jew with no known taint of German -- love in him. Brand was such a man, the Germans decided. And he was. [201]

But why? When such an inspired Jew-killer as Eichmann, and all the inspired Nazis, decide to offer to stop their Jew-killing, there must be a reason. I find in the evidence several obvious reasons. In 1944, the chief hope Germany's leaders had of escaping disaster was a divorce between Communist Russia and the Western Allies. It was a hope based on much logic. Hitler and his co-students of history must have gone to their deaths still bewildered at the "illogic" of the Western Allies who preferred Red Russia to the Nazi Reich as a friend.

Thus the first answer is that the Eichmann offer of Jewish Blood for Trucks was a separate peace overture toward the West. The trucks, said the Germans, would not be used against the Western Allies. They would be used only against the Russians.

A second reason for the offer was its whitewash possibility. Sparing the lives of the last million Jews might brighten the world's opinion of the fallen Third Reich, and win for it and its leaders a kindlier postwar judgment.

There is a touch of fantasy in this second reason, to wit -- why should the Germans imagine that the Allies were concerned about saving Jews? Have the Allies ever bombed the furnace houses in the death camps? Or the bridges leading to Auschwitz? Or allowed the Jews to find refuge in what had been given them as their own land -- Palestine?

But a little fantasy in so bedevilled a pack of intellects as the Germans in 1944 is to be expected.

Reason three is the most obvious, and the most German. Should it turn out that the Allies do not give a hoot about saving a million Jews, and that they regard the offer with contempt and derision -- that, in itself, will be a psychological victory for the Germans. The Allies will then be on record as having had no wish to save Jews when they could. How, then, will they be able to denounce Germans for killing them? Let Emissary Joel Brand come back to Budapest empty-handed, without ransom for a single Jewish child, and Germany will have proved its case against the Jews -- nobody likes them. Or, more practically, will have established the fact that Germany's deliberate torture and murder of six million defenseless and unmenacing humans (Jews) did not make it an outcast from Western civilization. Germany's case? -- "you not only made no protest against the slaughter, you refused to negotiate for the saving of the last million unslaughtered."

And so I restate the story of Joel Brand as I see it in the court of my mind, but it is not old Malchiel Greenwald who will stand trial in my court -- but the princes of Jerusalem -- the forty-year-long governing clique that has continued to flourish in the world's eyes as leaders of the Jews. I cannot serve warrants on Ben-Gurion, Sharett, or call upon them officially to defend themselves. I can only attempt to take upon me "the mystery of things" -- and imagine . . . what I can.

I begin with Joel Brand's return from Colonel Eichmann's headquarters in Budapest with news of the offer. The Budapest Jewish Council meets in full strength. They meet, debate, pray, burst into tears. For a sun suddenly blazes in Jewish darkness. Hope almost drives these Hungarian Jews mad. They were all going to be reduced to ashes at the rate of twelve thousand a day! Now Eichmann, the Furnace-Tender, wants to sell them to the Free World, the wonderful world outside of German hands, where nobody kills Jews!

And he is willing to pay one hundred thousand Jews in advance for the first thousand trucks, and the first hundred tons of coffee and tea!

There is no dissenting voice in the Jewish Budapest Council. Joel Brand must hurry to market to make the sale.

How can he fail, they ask each other? Joel will make the offer to the world's Jewish leaders who hold in their hands the millions of dollars collected in charity drives wherever there are Jews -- for the saving of stricken Jews.

Synagogues, cafes, meeting halls, and kitchens all buzz alike with hope. Such a miracle as this has not been heard of since Moses opened the Red Sea for the menaced Jews.

Of course, they will not be allowed to take anything along, so there is no need to pack. But who cares about possessions? They will be allowed to take fathers and mothers and children along. These are possessions enough.

Hungary's Jews lie awake at night, murmuring the word "Palestine."

The major matter in my mind is the arrival of the news of the offer in Palestine. When does this happen? The story is known to the safe and free -- the Elite of Palestine -- almost that same day. And after Brand's arrival by German plane in Constantinople, the Jewish-Agency-Zionist leaders stare at their unhappy problem. For who can doubt what the British would do if the Agency starts welcoming a million Jews to Palestine! There's no question of it -- the Jewish Agency and Zionist leaders will lose their standing as Jewish saviors -- if they proceed to save the Jews in disobedience of the British. Such is the Jewish situation in Tel Aviv.

While Hungary's Jews lie sleepless with the name Palestine lighting up their hearts, the leaders of Palestine vote on their course. Nothing will be done for Hungary's Jews without British permission -- never granted. And yet the situation must be met face to face. A Jew has to be talked to -- by the leaders of Jewry.

The deliberations of the Jewish Leaders on this topic are full of painful undercurrents. Jews like Avriel, Weizmann, Sharett, et al. are not creatures divorced from human mood. Sympathy for Jews to be fed into German furnaces is strong in their Jewish hearts.

They suffer at the thought of the doomed million in Hungary looking to them for rescue. They see, not only the faces of their brothers, but the old prayer shawls, the tvillin, they know by heart the Hebrew prayers these doomed ones are uttering.

And they wince (in Tel Aviv) at the thought that such rescue might be possible if they act quickly and boldly.

How wonderful to see the lighted faces of Eichmann's First Payment -- the first one hundred thousand Jews! To hear the cries of gratitude from mothers and children, plucked at the last hour out of German furnaces! How sweet to hear the tearful thank-yous of learned old men, of gentle rabbis and their sturdy young students!

With pale faces, the Jewish Leaders stare at the problem of Joel Brand, the salesman from Budapest.

Nevertheless -- pale, wincing or suffering -- the Jewish leaders decide on their course of obeying the White Paper. They decide on the criminal deed that must wreck all hope of saving the million men, women, and children from German slaughter. They will betray Joel Brand to the British.

But first, before betraying him, they are compelled by their high estate to play host to this spectral Banquo from Budapest. There is no escaping it. There are certain things that the Jewish Agency, historic champion of Jewry, must do. It must recognize a cry for help coming from its doomed Hungarian "chapter."

I have mentioned often "the Jewish Agency" as being responsible for this and that action in Palestine. Having come now to May 1944 and to its conduct in the Brand business, I think it well to identify the Jewish Agency of that time -- what it was, and what it was not. (Today there is a Jewish Agency, Inc. in the U.S.A. It is a new organization and did not participate in the Palestinian events of the forties.)

To nearly all American Jews and to most of the American press, the Jewish Agency loomed unequivocally in the thirties and forties as an institution devoted to the solving of Europe's "Jewish problem." In the twenties this problem was a minor political matter having to do with the creation of some sort of a homeland for the Jews in Palestine. The problem grew more dramatic in the late thirties. It then had to do with saving the Jewish millions of Europe from being murdered by the Germans.

American Jews who offered their money and participation to the Jewish Agency in Palestine were emotionally certain that such rescue of Europe's Jewry was the primary objective of the "powerful Jewish Agency" headquartered in Tel Aviv and with puissant branches in most of the capitals of Europe.

The American notions of the Jewish Agency were compounded of daydream and lack of information. There was a third content -- the emotional belief that a Jewish organization could not ignore the plight of Europe's Jews, could not substitute politics for humanitarianism. Despite all that has happened, most American Jews still hang on to this concept of the Jewish Agency.

The significance of the Jewish Agency begins with its establishment in 1923. It was established by the British to facilitate the execution of the mandate given them by the League of Nations and the U.S.A. -- "to prepare a homeland for Jews in Palestine."

The British government asked the leaders of Zionism to submit for British approval a coterie of Jews who would be acceptable as chiefs of the new Jewish Agency. The coterie was submitted and blessed with British sanction. Thereafter the Jewish Agency became the Jewish face for the British rule of Palestine -- a sort of caricature of authority to which Jews could give their loyalty.

The Jewish Agency continued to function as a Jewish collaborator and a Jewish front for British policy in Palestine. It was not an elected body, but an appointed one. And just as it had been established by British approval it could be dissolved by British disapproval.

The Jewish Agency, led by Ben-Gurion, Sharett et al., kept its Jewish look through the years of the extermination of Europe's Jews. But it remained unwavering in its loyalty to British policy. When British policy required silence and inaction toward the extermination of Hungary's Jews, the Jewish Agency and its now world famous factotums upheld this policy. Not once did the Jewish Agency inform the world and the Jews of Palestine of the mass murder of a final million Jews being done in Hungary and Auschwitz. Neither the headlines of Ben Gurion's press nor his innumerable orations during this time made reference to the matter of the murder of Jews.

The leaders of the Jewish Agency and of Zionism in 1944 cried out openly against the minority of Jews who fought to open the ports of Palestine to the still unslaughtered Jews of Europe.

I have repeated these facts about the Jewish Agency and its leaders to clarify the incredible adventures that befell Joel Brand on his arrival in Istanbul.

Albert Camus wrote, "To serve falsehood and despotism is the patriotism of the coward." I add -- "also of the uninformed."

Thus the Rescue Leaders in Constantinople gather around Brand like a troop of enfevered Samaritans. They listen to his tale with paled faces, with pain-filled eyes. And Brand talks on eagerly to Avriel, Barlas, Pomeranietz. His heart bursts with hope. What a deed to be doing -- rescuing a million Jews!

Joel Brand has no suspicions. Suspicions of whom? Of these Rne Jews of the Jewish Agency?

But the betrayal takes place. The time is not specified in the evidence by Bader or Brand.

Perhaps I behave too politely in my court room. There is nothing doubtful or vague about the whole business. Joel Brand was betrayed by the Jewish Agency to the British for a dozen reasons, all of them unspeakable from any human point of view.

Is the deed done from Tel Aviv or Istanbul or London? Was Weizmann really traveling "a good deal" and incommunicado? Was Ben-Gurion busy with other news? Government official Bader himself testifies that his fellow government official, Ehud Avriel, revealed Brand to the British right away.

Bader is noted for being an honest fellow, but his statement is a foolish one. Does he wish to make the point that Ehud Avriel played informer on his own? True, Avriel is a British Agent. But he is an agent on loan from the inner circle of the Jewish Agency. Whatever are his duties for the British, Avriel is a disciplined member of the Jewish politicalized society.

I pronounce in my own court room that Ehud Avriel was given his "betray Brand" orders by the Jewish Agency leaders in Tel Aviv.

I wonder what Chaim Weizmann said in the "top level" discussion that resulted in the dirty deal of betrayal. I wonder what that righteous "Greek scholar" and Man of the People, Ben-Gurion, said. And what said the clever Moshe Sharett -- the one who would have to face Joel Brand in Cairo?

If I had to put such a scene in a play I would not know how to write it. Any more than I would know how to write a scene about three cultured Germans sitting in a room and discussing the most economical way to murder six million Jewish men, women, and children. I would be inclined to overwrite something in both scenes -- the tug of conscience, the hidden human pain under the inhuman language.

This scene in London and Tel Aviv that I find hard to imagine takes place. Whatever the grimaces and sighs, these moral leaders of world Jewry come to a decision.

But how do they rationalize such a decision and bring its language within the bounds of decent human speech? I shall let an Israeli journalist of today, a pro-government journalist, naturally, make the kind of statement I am unable to imagine. He is Zeev Laqueur, writing in 1955 in The Jerusalem Post. M'sieur Laqueur writes:

"The whole approach of the court in finding fault with Kastner for having failed to make policy from 'a position of strength' is monstrous."

There you have the kind of reasoning that explains the High Command deliberating in Tel Aviv in 1944. The decision to scuttle Brand's mission is not only honorable per se -- simply because it is their decision -- but any criticism of their policies is "monstrous."

For in the eyes of the regime, all Jews who deal with the enemy from "a position of strength" -- the Irgun, the Lehi -- they are the betrayers. They who dared everything -- death in battle, the gallows -- they are the "criminals," the "scum," the "gangsters."

This hocus-pocus reasoning that attaches shame to the brave -- this unimaginable rationalizing -- is not a Hebraic trait only.

The judges of Joan of Arc were Frenchmen afraid of the English who sat in power over them. Having, out of this fear of their masters, decided on the heresy of Joan, her judges too found her continued defiance of their cowardice wicked -- probably "monstrous."

Thus, with the help of journalist Laqueur, and a little history to assist me, I am able to walk the crooked mile to the Joel Brand decision. The conference is probably a short, cool spoken scene. Quickly the debaters agree that it is folly to make policy from a position of strength, and it is wiser to continue "making policy" from a kneeling position.

But now the Jewish Leaders realize that a little cunning is needed if Brand is to be handed on a platter to the British. For Joel Brand is nervous about the British. He knows that if they detain him, his own family and a million others will pack the German incinerators.

Zion has a man for the job -- Ehud Avriel. And Jewish Leader Avriel does the job well. He soothes the fearful Emissary. How? By smiling on him as a fellow Jew. By chanting the lullaby names of Weizmann, Ben-Gurion, Sharett, to him.

Surrounded and "aided" by the people he most venerates in the world, Emissary Brand darts around Istanbul. He is arrested by the Turks. He is released -- all too quickly for the Jewish Agency timetable.

And now he wants to go to call on the United States Ambassador in Ankara, a Jew named Steinhardt. Maybe Steinhardt, having a Jewish heart, can help. Maybe he can induce Steinhardt's country, the glorious United States, to help.

But there's a snag. Brand can't get to Ankara. The Jewish Leaders somehow can't manage to get the right travel papers for Joel Brand. They will later manage to get the most difficult of papers for the emissary, papers allowing him to leave Turkey and enter British territory. But this simple police pass that would allow Brand to hop a train to Ankara is too much for them.

Thus, the Jewish Leaders prevent Emissary Brand from calling on the important Jew-Ambassador Steinhardt.

Had Brand made his visit, possibly all that would have happened is that Ambassador Steinhardt would have gotten into a peck of trouble and been recalled by President Roosevelt for harassing the British in their war effort. Emissary Brand, however, cannot reach the Ambassador, and continues to dart around Constantinople -- and to meet only with his Jewish rescuers.

But Joel Brand is a man of honest enterprise and a little cunning. He fears he is being delayed by small talk of "important officials due any day" and important officials "going over the Basic Situation."

Suddenly he gets an idea. If the Jewish Leaders in Istanbul will draw up a document agreeing to the big swap of Cargo for Blood, he will be able to fly back with it to Eichmann, and a hundred thousand Jews will be saved, automatically.

The Leaders draw up the document for Eichmann. Emissary Brand trembles with joy. His mission is a triumph. All he has to do is deliver the document to Eichmann! And there will be no massacre! A hundred thousand men, women, and children will be released from the queue outside the death furnaces!

But Joel Brand does not get back to Budapest with his priceless document. The Jewish Leaders talk him out of it. How can he think of returning to Budapest without first meeting face to face their great leader Moshe Sharett? Sharett is Weizmann's right hand man. Sharett will put the whole matter on a top political level and make it all official.

Brand wavers. Is Sharett coming to Istanbul? Certainly, the officials answer him. A day or two and he will be sitting right in this Turkish chair.

And Brand waits. He does not fly off with hallelujahs to Budapest. He sits on a hot stove -- on a great furnace whose fires are kindling -- and he waits for the famous Moshe Sharett.

Oddly, the Turks won't let Moshe Sharett come to Istanbul. Avriel can come there, Bader, Pomeranietz, Barlas and innumerable other Agency-Zionist officials. The" riff-raff of Europe can come to Istanbul. But not Moshe Sharett.

The record shows that Moshe Sharett was in Istanbul a few months before Brand's ill-fated arrival there. The bright-spoken Sharett came and went with nobody throwing up any road blocks.

I wonder why Joel Brand does not see the crudity of all the lies. Why he does not put together all the plot turns against him? -- nobody to meet him at the airfield, no papers to allow him to get to Steinhardt in Ankara, the insistence against his returning to Budapest with his "governor's pardon" for a hundred thousand Jews. And now the inability of the much-traveled Moshe Sharett to travel to Istanbul. I wonder how Brand can fail to spot the duplicity and betrayal in which he now walks.

But I am not a bewildered man with a million lives at stake if I make a wrong move. Nor am I a man infatuated since childhood with the nobility of Jewry's Leaders.

Joel Brand is. He listens desperately, nervously, and suspects nothing. His faith is in Weizmann, Ben-Gurion, Sharett and the other respectables. His soul is full of homage toward them.

Now the time has come to hand Joel Brand over to the British. It is a ticklish hour for the Jewish Agency. The Leaders tell Brand he will have to meet Moshe Sharett in Aleppo. Aleppo is on English soil.

The prospect frightens Brand. He argues. What if the British arrest him? Too much time has already passed. He promised Eichmann to be back in two weeks. Eichmann may start burning Jews any minute. Twelve thousand a day.

It is hard to believe that these fellow-Jews in Istanbul will not suddenly cry out to Joel -- "Go back to Budapest. Quickly! We are fooling you, hoodwinking you, betraying you."

No such sentimental collapse happens. Instead, the unhappy Joel Brand is urged on in another direction. If the great Moshe Sharett is willing to come to Aleppo to meet him, how can Joel refuse? And how can he worry about anything wrong happening when the highest officials of Palestine have all sent assurances that there is no danger?

And during all these days of Joel Brand's desperate talking, pleading, darting about Istanbul -- in jail, out of jail; meeting more Jewish Leaders from Palestine and listening to more and more reassurances -- it has all been arranged.

It was all settled shortly after the emissary from Hungary's doomed arrived in Istanbul. He is to be kept from telling his story to the world, he is to be kept from returning to Budapest with his precious document. He is to be lured to Aleppo. In Aleppo the British will arrest him.


Aleppo-bound Joel Brand sits in his train compartment with his friend Avriel, who smiles and chats like a parent calming a troubled child.

The train stops at Ankara and Fate comes aboard. A young Jabotinsky disciple from Palestine, Joseph Klarman, nnds Brand in his compartment and speaks to him. He warns Brand. The British are waiting to arrest him in Aleppo. He begs Brand not to go on.

Jewish Leader Avriel sneers on hearing of the intruder. He knows him -- one of the toughs from Tel Aviv, a Jabotinsky hothead.

Unknowing, the million Hungarian Jews, still alive, wait for the outcome of this talk on the train at Ankara. If Joel Brand will believe what this "troublemaker" from Palestine tells him, the million may escape the German ash barrels. What a moment this is, a moment that could change history.

But it changes nothing. Joel Brand does not believe the "troublemaker." Brand is a Jew trained to believe only in Respectability, such as rides with him in the compartment. Truth can scream itself hoarse at him in a compartment. But his allegiance must go to the patrician Vandyke beard of Weizmann, to the diplomatic frock coat of Sharett. Besides, does not his friend Avriel remind him constantly by his presence and purring cheeriness that all is well?

Emissary Brand shakes off the truth-teller. He rides on to Aleppo. His ride is a death march for a multitude. But there is Leader Avriel to purr cheery words to him. Nothing can possibly go wrong, dear Joel. Remember that the highest Jewish officials have told you this again and again --

Suddenly, an hour out of Aleppo, All-is-Well Avriel whispers to companion Brand that something may happen. He, Brand, may be arrested by the British, and separated from his good guide, Avriel. If this happens, Joel must promise not to answer any British questions unless an official of the Jewish Agency is present.

Brand stares at his sly companion as the train roars on. He may be arrested? But he was assured when he started for Aleppo! He asks desperately for more assurance.

But now Jewish Leader Avriel is silent as in a nightmare. In Aleppo the British take over. They will hold Joel Brand captive for four and a half months.

One of the cruelest moments in Brand's story is in Avriel's farewell sentence -- before he ducks out of the compartment -- the speech bidding Brand not to answer British questions unless a member of the Jewish Agency is present.

At the last moment the betrayer demands a pledge from his victim -- in the name of Jewish loyalty. Most certainly the British will do all in their power to keep the secret. Still, Avriel feels, it won't harm to get Brand to be his own policeman.

And Brand, still trusting, promises. He will speak only in the presence of his Jewish Leaders. The rest of the time -- silence.

When he is arrested and marched to British headquarters, Brand's feverish dream seems to be coming true. He meets one of the great Jewish Leaders. Not quite Chaim Weizmann, but almost. Moshe Sharett is there to hear his wild tale of Eichmann's Blood for Cargo offer.

Israel's leading diplomat Moshe Sharett, Reuven Shiloach, Zvi Yehieli, and other Jewish Leaders are present. Here are the rescuers of whom the doomed Jews of Europe dreamed, and in whose support the Jews of the United States are united today (1961).

But something has gone wrong. In a nightmare our loved ones suddenly appear with unfamiliar faces and look at us with queer expressions. We shudder and move deeper into the bad dream. Brand feels this terror.

Brand talks to Sharett for eighteen hours, without stop. He has a tale to pour out, an Iliad of murder and hope. The English take shorthand notes. Sharett listens solemnly and clucks with compassion.

When his wild sales talk for the doomed Jews is finally done, Brand hears the Leader of the Jews, Moshe Sharett, speak the decision. Says Leader Sharett,

''I'm very sorry, Mr. Brand. I have been given to understand that you will have to travel southwards (to British Cairo) and not go back at this time to Budapest."

And now a hoarsened, bewildered Brand is put in an army car and driven by British guards through Haifa, through Tel Aviv, through the new land of the Jews, past the offices of the Leaders of the Jews -- to a British jail. As the car moves on, a wild hope keeps Brand staring at the crowded streets. The Jews will rescue him! They will stop the car, take him from the two English soldiers in the car, and bring him in triumph to the high quarters of Dr. Weizmann and Ben-Gurion.

But no Jews rescue Joel Brand. He arrives at his British prison. Sharett, Weizmann, Ben-Gurion have kept Brand, his mission, and his imprisonment, a secret. During all this time the Hungarian Jews have been burning -- 12,000 a day. Soon there will be no further danger of Jews disturbing the White Paper by trying to pry their way into Palestine.

After Sharett leaves, Brand recalls an odd thing. Moshe Sharett said he had been a guest at the British villa for a day or two before Brand's arrival. Then everybody must have known the British were going to arrest him. All the Jewish officials who had talked to him day after day in Istanbul. And wept over his story. And drawn up the paper for Eichmann. They all must have known, and hid their knowledge.

In the British jail Joel Brand's innocence leaves him. His faith in the honesty of Jewish hearts no longer blinds his soul.

The British asking him polite questions are no different from the German bargainers! He has told them about the furnaces Eichmann has lighted now. It is a month since he left Budapest on his salesman errand. It is going on now -- the killing of twelve thousand a day!

Brand pleads for the burning ones. He screams. He goes on a hunger strike.

The British officers evidently complain to the Jewish Agency officials in Tel Aviv about Brand's unmannerly behavior. And the Agency rebukes Brand. Leader Avriel himself instructs him to cooperate with the British. It seems he is somehow misbehaving toward his captors.

During the four and a half months, a number of Jewish officials visit Brand, and other big shots keep dropping in on him for chats. No reason for this is given by Brand. I wonder at their boldness. I would not like to hear his wild, honest heart begging for the burning Jews of Hungary.

As each Day of the Twelve Thousand passes, Brand sees more and more clearly what his soul refused at first to imagine. He sees, detail by detail, the trickery that wrecked his mission. The sly arguments. The lies, the ruses, hypocrisies. Remembering them all in their true light now, Joel Brand wants only to die.

For seventeen days Brand takes no food. His hunger strike is more than a wish for death. It is his judgment on the world. He cannot break bread with human beings. He has seen all the faces conspiring in massacre.

Everywhere he looks with his awakened mind he sees the humanless face of man. Everyone -- Great Britain, the United States, and the leaders of world Jewry -- traitors all! Murderers. How can the kindly, human-loving world turn its back on the wild destruction of six million guiltless people?

Answer -- it can.

After four and a half months, Joel Brand is released. Here, (I am not sarcastic) is curious evidence of Anglo-Saxon "humanity."

It would have been shrewder for the British to see that no Joel Brand survived with his horror tale to tell. He could well have died "as a result of his hunger strike." The Jewish Leaders of Palestine would have raised no outcry over such a bulletin.

But Brand is allowed to stay alive. Like the Americans, the British are humane as individuals. Political murder is one thing. Murdering innocent captives is another.

So the British let him go. Nobody feels too happy about the Joel Brand business. On the other hand, nobody feels too unhappy. Political objectives exonerate leaders from feeling guilt. They regard their actions, however cruel and vicious their results, as impersonal deeds dictated by national demands.

Thus it comes to pass that though there are six million Jews murdered, there is no guilt. Neither German, Briton, American, nor Jew feels guilty.


The Hungarian Jews are nearly over and done with. Joel Brand, released from prison, arrives in Palestine. The Jewish Leaders are as humane as the British. They also allow Brand to stay alive. And Joel Brand walks the streets of the new Zion.

He walks these streets, still intent on his mission. He visits the headquarters of Mapai, of Histadrut, of the Jewish Agency. Wherever there is a Headquarters for important Jews, there Joel Brand enters, talks, pleads. And he sends out scores of letters to all the Jewish Bosses of Palestine. There are still Jews to be saved in Hungary, he pleads. He pleads also that the Jewish Bosses allow him to return to Budapest, and share the fate of the Jews he was unable to save.

But his pleas and letters arouse only indifference or irritation. A last hope flickers in this nuisance of an Emissary. He has written to Sharett, Ben-Gurion, Bader, Avriel, Barlas. These are all big Jewish leaders. But there is one above them, Dr. Chaim documents of our century. I have read it a number of times and each time it makes a new confession.

At first reading I thought it only the callous letter of a leader whose sense of importance had blinded him to all human values. I noted that Dr. Chaim Weizmann, "the greatest Jewish statesman," has no word of sympathy to offer Joel Brand on the extermination of Hungary's Jews.

Instead, with mock humility the great man requests, "I beg you to forgive me for having delayed, etc."

In this pose of punctiliousness, Dr. Weizmann politely sidesteps the genocide in Hungary as if it were a faux-pas not for discussion.

"Manners before morals, Lord Windermere."

Manners before murder, Chaim Weizmann.

But a re-reading of the opening line startles me. This opening line addressed to Joel Brand, the betrayed emissary of the Jews, begins, "I beg you to forgive me -- "

These six words are a social cliche out of the "Ever-Ready Letter Writer" in all languages. They are also written by a Jew who conspired to turn a Jewish emissary from the pogrom over to the British.

After first reading this callous and vacuous letter from Weizmann, I wondered why he had written it. Why send so evasive a letter to a man whose soul is in an inferno? Surely Joel Brand is as easy to ignore as Eichmann's offer to spare the lives of a million Jews!

A re-reading brought a deeper meaning to its words. Masking its utterance in glibness, Chaim Weizmann's unhappy soul spoke its atonement to Joel Brand -- and felt a certain relief -- "I beg you to forgive me -- "

Weizmann's second sentence reads,

"As you may have seen from the Press I have been traveling a good deal and generally did not have a free moment since my arrival here."

This sentence, on the surface, seems to say a number of foolish things. In it Chaim boasts of his fame a little whimsically. The Press reports all his movements in large and constant headlines. You say kittenishly "as you may have seen" about something enormously visible.


Footnote 7. The following letter was written by Henry Montor, Executive Vice-Chairman of the United Jewish Appeal. It states the official attitude of the Jewish leaders of Palestine toward the rescue of the six million European Jews whose extermination was well under way.

February 1, 1940

Rabbi Baruch E. Rabinowitz
Congregation B'nai Abraham
Hagerstown, Maryland
Dear Rabbi Rabinowitz:

· . . I am enclosing herewith two items which may be helpful in revising your judgment on several aspects of the situation relating to the refugees on the Danube ....

The United Palestine Appeal is a fund-raising instrument of the Jewish Agency for Palestine, as well as the Jewish National Fund. Whatever may be the attitude of the Jewish Agency toward unregistered migration [the refugees from Nazi persecution] to Palestine, it cannot, as a legally constituted body, publicly emphasize any interest in or sympathy with such immigration as it may and does have.... As you know, provisions of the White Paper provide for an annual immigration schedule of 10,000 a year .... Public emphasis on unregistered immigration and acknowledgment by such a body as the Jewish Agency that it not only endorses, but finances, such unregistered immigration can only strike a disastrous blow at the possibility of facilitating the entry of legal, properly qualified immigrants into Palestine. . . .

· . . "Selectivity" is an inescapable factor in dealing with the problem of immigration to Palestine. By "selectivity" is meant the choice of young men and women who are trained in Europe for productive purposes either in agriculture or industry and who are in other ways trained for life in Palestine, which involves difficulties and hardships for which they must be prepared physically and psychologically. Sentimental considerations are, of course, vital and everyone would wish to save every single Jew who could be rescued out of the cauldron of Europe.

But when one is dwelling with so delicate a program as unregistered immigration, it is, obviously, essential that those people sent to Palestine shall be able to endure harsh conditions under which they must live for weeks and months on the Mediterranean and the difficulties which await them when they land on the shores of Palestine.

· . . There could be no more deadly ammunition provided to the enemies of Zionism, whether they be in the ranks of the British Government or the Arabs, or even in the ranks of the Jewish people, if Palestine were to be flooded with very old people or with undesirables who would make impossible the conditions of life in Palestine and destroy the prospect of creating such economic circumstances as would insure a continuity of immigration. . . .

Until the resources of Palestine are adequately developed, immigration of from 30,000 to 60,000 a year may be possible.... Under these circumstances, therefore, is it not essential for responsible leaders to concern themselves with the necessity of selecting immigration, particularly under the arduous conditions that surround unregistered immigration at the present time . . . ?

Cordially yours,
Henry Montor
Executive Vice-Chairman
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