THE JEWISH NEWS
A Fair Shake
Incorporating the Detroit Jewish Chronicle commencing with issue . of July 20, 1951
Member American Association of English—Jewish Newspapers, Michigan Press Associations, National
Published every Friday by The Jewish News Publishing Co., 17100 West Seven Mile Roan, Detroit 35,
Mich., VE 8-9364. Subscription $6 a year. Foreign $7.
Second Class Postage Paid At Detroit, Michigan
PHILIP SLOMOVITZ CARMI M. SLOMOVITZ
Editor and Publisher
Sabbath Scriptural Selections
This Sabbath, the eighth day of She-vat, the following Scriptural selections will be read in
Pentateuchol portion: Bo; Exod. 10:1-13:16. Prophetical portion; Jeremiah; 46:13-28.
Licht Benshen, Friday, Feb. 1, 5:29 p.m.
VOL. XLII. No. 23
U.S. Attitude on UN Genocide Convention
While 65 countries already have
ratified the United Nations Genocide
Convention, which views mass murder of
racial, religious or ethnic groups as an
international crime, the United States
thus far has failed to approve of this
Genocide, a term coined by the late
Dr. Raphael Lemkin after the horrors
that were imposed upon Jewry and the
world by Nazi Germany, has become an
accepted- term for the most unimaginable
crimes Tin. world terminology.
The failure of our Government to act
against a repetition of the mass murders,
by -giving the UN authority by unanimous
action of the nations of the world to out-
law every semblance of repetitive Nazism,
has been a matter for grave concern and
deep disappointment. While the UN Gen-
eral Assembly adopted the Genocide Con-
vention unanimously on Dec. 11, 1948,
the U. S. Senate, whose Foreign Relations
Committee has jurisdiction over such
matters, has failed to act in support of
the Genocide Convention.
A movement has been set afoot, by
the American Jewish Congress and by
the Zionist Organization of America, to
secure favorable Senatorial action. While
a number of Senators have gone on record
in support of the UN Genocide Conven-
tion, Senator Eugene J. McCarthy of
Minnesota said: "I am in favor of such
ratification, but I . think that if such action
is to be taken . . . there will have to be a
strong push from the .White House." It
had been reported previously that the
State Department looks askance upon
such action and it is a known fact that
the main opposition to • the Genocide
Convention stems from the American
It is apparent that a new educational
campaign may have to be instituted to
inspire favorable action in a matter that
has developed as a result of the horrible
holocaust. Surely, the world can't forget
so quickly the terrors that were imposed
upon mankind, the mass murders of
human beings, the extermination scheme
that resulted in the brutal death of a
third of the world Jewish population. .
Great Britain also has failed to act in
support of the Genocide Convention, yet,
Soviet Russia is one of the 65 supporting
nations of the important UN decision. •
In an appeal to our Government to
back the Convention, Dr. Max Nussbaum,
president of the Zionist Organization of
America, claimed that "reliable reports
indicate that the unwillingness of the
State Department to throw its full weight
and support behind the ratification of the
• Convention in the U.S. Senate is due to
apprehension lest the Soviet bloc exploit
this at the United Nations in connection
with the anti-negro violence in various
But even in Russia's instance there
"What manner of man is the prophet?" What were the moral
is an interesting highlight. Dr. Nussbaum
pointed out: "In the light of the treat- problems that disturbed them? What was the divine experiences
ment accorded Jewish religion and cul- that were inspired by Israel's prophetic teachers?
Dr. Abraham J. Heschel, in the new classic issued by the
ture in Soviet Russia, it is significant to
point out that during the 1948 debate Jewish Publication Society of America, "The Prophets," provides
the answers to many questions that may be posed on these sub-
on the Genocide Convention in the UN jects
and in doing so has produced a- noteworth source book on
General Assembly, the Soviet Union sub- one of
the most important subjects in Jewish lore.
mitted an amendment to extend the defi-
The prophets emerge in the Heschel text as men who con-
nition of genocide to include 'cultural veyed the word of God. "The prophet," Dr. Heschel tells us
genocide', encompassing within this term "is not a mouthpiece but a person; not an instrument but a
deliberate destruction of language, reli- partner, an associate of God."
gion or 'culture of any national, religious
It is not only in what the prophets
or racial group."
said but also in what they were that Hes-
The ZOA president qualified the above
chel sees their significance. In this 500-
statement by asserting that the "Soviet
page study he therefore aims — to attain
an understanding of the prophet through
Russian: amendment was not adopted at
an analysis and understanding of his con-
that time since it was felt that the preser-
sciousness, to relate what came to pass in
vation of these rights belong within the
his life—facing man, being faced by God
sphere of human rights."
—as reflected and affirmed in his mind."
Thus, there may also be a power
His study seeks an understanding of
struggle in relation to the Genocide Con-
the decisive moments of the prophets' ex-
vention. Soviet Russia approved it, but in
istence, searching their minds, confining
the light of new developments there the
attention to the prophetic books.
question arises whether the USSR would
Explaining that his book deals with
8th and 7th century BCE classical or lit-
have pursued the same policy today.
erary prophets, Dr. Heschel points out that
Many reasons have been advanced by
"the destruction of Jerusalem in 587 marks
the American Bar Association for its
the end of the classical era 'in the history
refusal to condone passage of the Senate
of prophecy, and the understanding of
approval of the Convention and the issue
the prophetic figures who emerged during
was a heated one at the association's con-
Dr. Heschel the exile raises problems of a special
ventions. It is urgent that the issue kind." He adds that he makes only occasional mention of other
should be brought into' public light for prophets, "with the exception of Second Isaiah, whose message
a complete airing. There may be no illumines many of the enigmas in the words and intentions of
other way of inducing both the State his predecessors."
"The prophet," Dr. Heschel states at the outset, "was an
Department and the White House to
support the movement completely to individual who said No to his society, condemning its habits
outlaw mass murders, wherever they and assumptions, its complacency, waywardness, and syncretism.
He was often compelled to proclaim the very opposite of what
may take place.
his heart expected. His fundamental objective was to reconcile
Prophet Depicted by Heschel
as Reconciling Man and God
Khrushchev Borrows from Bigotry's Canards
Mr. "K" of the Union of Socialist
Soviet Republics resorts to another imi-
tation of the worst elements in the West
with his resort to the tongue-in-cheek ad-
vice to Jews not to seek high government
positions because it will "only provoke
This type of advice has been heard
in the past. It originated from two
sources—from the ranks of those who
had hidden under the cloaks of veiled
anti-Semitism and from Jewish groups
who evidenced a deplorable type of cow-
ardice when attainment of justified rights
by qualified Jewish applicants for impor-
tant posts was involved.
The first aimed at frightening Jews
away from public positions. There were
some among them who, like their fright-
ened Jewish counterparts, may have been
sincere in their beliefs that Jews ought
not to attract too much attention lest
they infuriate their enemies. But in the
main that group consisted not of friends
but of enemies. Had they been friendly,
they would have defied arrogance and
would have urged all who have services
to offer to make them available.
More deplorable was the attitude of
the panicky Jews who advised their kins-
men not to seek or accept public posts.
Some of them even advised the govern-
ment officials in power not to make such
appointments because they might inspire
Such were the experiences when Felix
Frankfurter first was mentioned for a
Supreme Court Justiceship, when Henry
Morgenthau -Jr. was about to be named
Secretary of the Treasury, when numer-
ous appointments were pending in state
There was a time when Jews were
hesitant to participate in politics as a
result of such an at t i t u d-e. That has
changed. Fright ha's been abandoned.
There no longer are any inhibitions about
every person who has something to offer
his government possessing a right, nay,
an obligation, to make such an offer.
In the course of time, Khrushchev
will surely learn another lesson: that in
a democracy one does not mimic the
cowards and the anti-Semites; that in an
environment of freedom merit alone
counts. The panic-stricken in this country
learned this lesson, and so will Khrush-
chev in his own domian. Time has a way
of disposing of bigots and of making
changes in political thinking and action.
man and God. Why do the two need reconciliation? Perhaps it
is due to 7111111: S false sense of sovereignty, to his abuse of
freedom, to his aggrssive, sprawling pride. resenting God's in-
volvement in history. Prophecy ceased; the prophets endure and
can only be ignored at the risk of our own despair. It is far us
to decide whether freedom is self-assertion or response to a
demand; whether the ultimate situation is conflict or concern."
Amos, Hosea, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Micah. Habakkuk, are among
the prophets whose wrath is studied and analyzed. Their relation-
ship to the kings of their time, their chastisement of the people,
are viewed in their historical significance.
In his discussion of the Second Isaiah, Heschel shows that
"the deliverance of Israel and the return to Zion are depicted
as an event of both universial and cosmic significance."
Dr. Heschel shows that there were efforts on the part of
kings and priests "to avail themselves of the power exercises by
prophets," that there were kings who were surrounded by false
prophets and false prophets who were attached to the Temple.
The prophets, in turn raised their voices agains these nebiim
and charged that they were "divine for money." Hosea condemned
them and Isaiah thus depicted their degeneration (28:7-8):
The priest and the prophet reel with strong drink,
They are confused with wine,
They stagger with strong drink; they err in vision,
They stumble in giving judgment.
For all tables are full of vomit,
No place is without filthiness.
Dr. Heschel emphasizes that "in the light of prophetic in-
sights, we are faced not merely with a relation to God, but also
with a living realty which is a relationship, haVing its origin in
God. The a priori of man's relationship to Him is the fact of
His relationship to man." He concludes by asserting that " 'Know
thy God' (I Chron. 28:9) rather than 'Know Thyself' is the
categorical imperative of the biblical man. There is no self-
understanding without God-understanding."
A supplementary note on the meaning of Pathos appears as
an appendix to the book.