THE JEWISH NEWS
Incorporating The Detroit Jewish Chronicle commencing with issue of July 20, 1951
Member American Association of English—Jewish Newspapers, Michigan Press Association, National Editorial
Published every Friday by The Jewish News Publishing Co., 17100 West Seven Mile Road, Detroit 48235 Mich.,
VE 8-9364. Subscription $6 a year. Foreign $7.
Second Class Postage Paid at Detroit, Michigan
Editor and Publisher
CARMI M. SLOMOVITZ
Sabbath Scriptural Selections
This Sabbath, the third day of Tammuz, the following Scriptural selections will
be read in our synagogues.
Pentateuchal portion: N21111. 16:1-18:32. Prophetical portion: I Samuel 11:14-12:22
Licht henshen, Friday, June 12, 7:49 p.m.
VOL. XLV. No. 16
June 12, 1964
Inflated Figures That Inspire Preiudice
When Israel emerged victorious as an
independent nation, not more than 650,000
Arabs. were involved in the flight from what
was still Palestine—before the declaration of
the new state's independence on May 14,
That number has grown, on the list of
recipients of relief from the United Nations
Relief and Works Administration, to a mil-
lion. Included in the latter of ration cards
are the names of many who are no longer
among the living, but whose cards are used
to secure extra supplies for those who are
now in the ranks of the refugees in Jordan.
When the Arabs and those who have been
drawn into their ranks as their friends and as
Israel's enemies ordinarily speak about the
Palestinian refugees, they use the number
one million. But at the meeting of the
"Palestine Liberation Organization" in the
Jordanian sector of Jerusalem last week, they
spoke about a million and a half refugees.
How long can such a campaign on mis-
leading propaganda continue?
A display of the map at the meeting of
the Palestinian organization showed the por-
tion that is Israel as being an "occupied"
area, and inscribed on the map was the call
to war that stated: "We shall return."
King Hussein, who spoke at various func-
tions while a guest in this country, to suit each
occasion, often minimizing the war threats,
was again militant.
It is clear that the anti-Israel element is
bent upon propagating war, and it will take
all the efforts that can be exerted by the
Western powers to avert a conflict.
It is when men in responsible positions
in Washington attempt to belittle the dan-
ger that the menace grows more serious.
There are war threats and we should rec-
ognize them, no matter how remote the dan-
ger of war in the Middle East may be. It is
by recognizing the threats and by being aware
of the dangers that there also will be an as-
surance of preparedness against a possible
attack on Israel and an eventual emergence
of a war that may involve all of us.
The State Department already has re-
buked the Arab repTesentatives in this coun-
try for their ill-mannered public pronounce-
ments of resentment over the visit in our
capital last week of Israel's Prime Minister
Levi Eshkol. Their grumbling was assailed as
an attempt to interfere in the internal affairs
of our government. We doubt whether even
such a reprimand will teach them the lesson
they need, but at least it is on the record
that statesmen should act like gentlemen and
not like rude propagandists.
Dangers of Making 'God' a Political Symbol
While it is now generally believed that observances in our schools, • nevertheless
the prayers-in-the-school issue forced upon recognizes "the educational value of teach-
Congress by the proposed Amendment to ing about the major religion." While such
the Constitution would negate the de- studies in schools of higher learning have
decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court in de- a place in curricula, there remains the serious
fense of the First Amendment, there is a doubt whether the high schools already are
fear that the controversy may be injected prepared to ignore the "separation" prin-
in the Presidential campaign this year. If ciple.
A Yeshiva University professor, advo-
God should become an issue in the political
battle and godlessness should again be made cating government support for parochial
a test of citizenship, then we may once again schools, even contends that they never even
have a situation worse, perhaps, than the had church-state "separation" constitution-
ally and historically. If that were so, then
problem of Catholic candidacies in 1928
and the more recent one, in 1956, when a the Supreme Court, the Congressional com-
majority of our citizens rejected the appeal mittee and those who have debated the issue
to religious bigotry by electing John F. Ken- have waited their time!
When the issue first came up, Senator
nedy to the Presidency.
There were some very effective declara- Philip A. Hart of Michigan said:
"The question that inevitably confronts any-
tions against tampering with the Constitu-
one considering school prayers is this: 'Who writes
tion in the matter of religion at recent hear- the
prayer?' Although I am a Catholic, I would not
ings before the House Judiciary Committee. approve of a Catholic prayer in a classroom where
The wisdom of the proposed amendment there are non-Catholic children. Neither would
has been questioned by the country's most I want my children to recite a Protestant or Jewish
distinguished legal authorities, by church- prayer. And what about the child whose parents
men, by leading rabbis and by spokesmen have no religious affiliation at all?
"The hest solution. it seems to me, would be
for the major religious movements in the
morning prayer at the family breakfast table.
give a meaningful prayer, not
Yet, there continues to be a measure of Then children could
tampering with the separation idea. There a homogenized
"Or I would have no objection to a minute of
are Jewish spokesmen who are trying to find silence in the classroom where a child, if he chooses,
a way out of the dilemma—as if it were an could pray or not pray in accord with his home
issue affecting a single group, or one that training."
needs conceding to those who plead for the
These are the views of men who will not
God-idea, rather than one that concerns a be swayed by hasty decisions or sheer senti-
basic American ideal.
mentalism, without resort to rational analyses
The Lubavitcher Rebbe, for instance, has of major issues.
seen fit to propose a non - denominational
After 173 years of adherence to the First
prayer while opposing Bible reading in the Amendment, we have begun to play with
fire. God has become an element by Whose
The president of the Union of Orthodox grace to challenge political contestants or
Jewish Congregations has conceived a curi- by Whose divinity to judge our neighbors.
ous notion of "silent meditation" by pupils Instead of keeping religion in the home,
in our schools. While opposing the reading in the house of worship and the schools
of the Bible in the schools, because there sponsored by houses of worship, we face
are differing interpretations, he has con- the danger of having it serve as a measuring
concted a plan for the use of a card system rod by which to judge our fellow men. In-
—prayers on cards to be read silently by stead of retaining religion as a powerful
the children. As if that were to obviate the spiritual force, there are misguided Ameri-
introduction of religion in our most vital cans who would make of it a test for citi-
zenship. That would be wrong, and we know
A plan for teaching in the high of nothing else that could possibly under-
schools has been suggested by the president mine our freedoms or our American honor
and dignity than an attempt to end church-
of the American Jewish Committee who
while remaining opposed to religious,
'Roman Holiday' by Rosenberg
Issued as a Separate Volume
In his monumental work, "Painter's Self-Portrait," James N. Rosen-
berg, the distinguished American Jewish leader, incorporated many re-
collections. Among them was the story of his visit, with Mrs. Rosen-
berg, in Rome, in the era of Mussolini's emergence to power and the
resultant outbursts of anti-Semitism that accompanied
the Fascists' arrogance.
This poem has been reprinted by Thomas Yoseloff
as a separate volume, in a limited edition of 1,000
copies, "as a tribute to the timelessness of its theme."
The publisher, in an explanatory note, tells about
the genesis of the poem and declares: "The poem af-
fords a glimpse of the indomitable courage of the Jew-
ish people in their centuries old struggle against persecu-
tion, calumny and physical destruction. It is a poem not
of despair, but of hope and faith, and as such it de-
serves a special place in Jewish literature."
When "Portrait of a Painter" was reviewed in the Commentary
column of The Jewish News (Feb. 13, 1959), Rosenberg's activities were
reviewed and there was reference to his visit in Rome in 1926 in the
course of his travels for the Agrojoint and the JDC, and the reviewer
quoted the following from the eminent leader's explanation of how he
came to write his poem on the back of the karge Ulpia Restaurant menu
"While we were in Rome an old foreign roman attempted to as-
sassinate Mussolini. 'Jews,' cried the Fascisti, and mobbed old bearded
Hebrews. This led to my writing a poem on the very large menu of the
Ulpia Restaurant—once a basilica—where Bessie (Mrs. Rosenberg) and
I had a copious luncheon. Twenty years later I found that poem among
some papers in my studio. In 1947 it was published in the Menorah
journal, whose editor, Henry Hurwitz, has consented to its pub/ication,
in this book. That poem being as revealing a part of me as anything in
my entire life. 1 include it as a sort of epilogue. It is an overture to the
somber paintings of my late years."
The Commentator thereupon quoted from the poem:
"Indeed, this Roman Holiday Conversation Piece is most revealing:
An Irish woman, the papers say,
Canie all the way
To murder Mussolini.
The aged lady sought his life
With an appropriate butcher's knife.
At once a Fascist mob cries out.
"Behold! It is a Jew who seeks
To slay our noble master."
Faster then speed of light
Ten thousand blackshirts
Armed for fight;
March on the Jewish ghetto.
They are going to sack it
And hack it to bits.
Someone is quick
And in the lucky nick
Of time the truth is out.
With courses, the mob disperses.
There remain. only jeers and hoots;
And iron boots.
Only a few dozen patriarchs' beards
Are plucked out by the roots.
That always seems to be the story
Ancient and hoary.
Always we are strangers at the gate.
We come too soon; we come too late.
We are unwanted. Wherefore? Look!
Is it because we always
Carry an unwelcome Book?
Must we be smitten
For what we have written?
Is it libel
To speak so of the Bible?
"The large 14 pages devoted to the complete 'Roman Holiday' pools
have a great spirit imbedded in it."
This incident remains as a lesson to all generations, and Rosen-
berg's poem becomes part of the literature on the era of horrors under
Hitlerism and Mussolinism.