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September 08, 1967 - Image 11

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1967-09-08

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Arnold's Novel, 'A Nightof Watching,'
Gives Emphasis to Danish Rescue Era

One of the most dramatic oc-
currence's of the last war was the
rescue of the Jews of Denmark. It
was a great . act of defiance by the
Danes who refused to yield to
Nazism and who expressed their
resentment by rescuing nearly all
Of the Jews of Denmark when the
order came from Hitler that the
Jewish community was to be as-
sembled for expulsion to con-
centration camps on Rosh Hashana
of 1943.
The story of that historic opera-
tion is told by Elliott Arnold in
his new novel, "A Night of Watch-
ing," published by Scribners.
A note appended to his story by
Arnold provides a skeletonized
account of what actually happened.
He gives an account of the 8.007
Jews-686 of them half-Jews-
who were rescued in a short time
by being taken in boats from Den-
mark to Sweden. Then there were
460 Jews who remained in Den-
mark—there are always those
who have faith and stay behind
in spite of warnings! Of these.

who were sent to Theresienstadt
concentration camp. most survived
and only a handful perished at the
hands of the Nazis.

highly. By indicating the heroism
of the Danes, by showing that
there were Germans who rejected
the orders of the Nazis to resort
The historicity, as described to a mass murder scheme, in the
in the concluding note by the description of the differences of
author, relates how Dr. Werner opinion among Jews. some of whom
.
Best, the Hitler emissary in felt they were secure in Denmark,
Denmark, had cabled his fuehrer the author has indicated the
romance of a period during which
that the operation had been corn-
; pleted and the Jews rounded an entire people stood by a per-
secuted
religious minority and
up—it was an assumption that,
of course, did not materialize— that not all Germans took orders
and "after Dr. Best sent his given them without rebellion.
"A Night of Watching" could
famous telegram to Hitler, the
warning of the planned action well be considered an addition to
the
vast literature on the holocaust.
against the Jews on the Jewish
New Year was given to the If some of the sex incidents and
Danes by an official of the assumed love affairs could have
German Consulate in Copen- been toned down, it would be
hagen, Georg Ferdinand Duck- even more powerful. In its pre-
witz, who became the first sent form such a place in holocaust
ambassador from West Germany literature is weakened. But the
novel will, in spite of these excep-
to Denmark after the war."
tions. be read with the keenest
• The role of the other Scan- interest. —P. S.
dinavian countries, the attitude of
•the Jewish community of Den-
mark. the divided opinion as to
DAN NY
the ability of the Nazis to overrule
Danish decisions and to defy
RASKIN
Hebrew Corner
agreements not to molest Jews—
UN. 4-6868
these are part of the brief adden-
10235 W. 6 MILE
dum relating facts and the book
Agriculturists'
itself which is purely fiction.
It is in the narrative—the fic-
tion- -that Arnold resorts to the
The inhabitants of Jerusalemare ac-
novelist's license of straying from
customed to seeing tourists in the
facts, of resorting too many fan-
streets of the city, but this time the
visitors aroused special interest. Every
tastic stories, of building- up sev-
Visitor bore a card on his coat upon
which his name and his country 0 err eral love affairs and of describing
written. One group of visitors. num- . the activities of the underground
bering about thirty, for example, came
in Denmark.
from Cyprus. For many years the
public • in Israel has read about this
Then there is cause for regret
island, and now inhabitants of the
The underground's role was far
Island appeared in Jerusalem.
Cyprus was only one of the many
more
idealistic than described in
Countries from which representatives
the novel. Arnold introduces, for
came to take part in the International
Conference of Agriculturists, which was ! example. the question of moral
held in Israel in the spring. One could
right for Danes—and Jews—to
see agriculturists from England and
from Holland. from Italy and from
retaliate in fashions similar to
Spain, from South Africa and from
i
those
used by the Nazis. It is a
Norway. etc.
What brought all these people to
cruel way of equating wrongs
Israel? They had heard and read a
when there is here a matter of
lot about the development of agri-
culture in Israel and now they had
defense as well as retaliation.
been granted the opportunity to see

Friday, September 8, 1967-11

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

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Conference

it with their own eyes.
The conference was only the be-
ginning (opening) ) of their visit to
this country. When the conference
was concluded the visitors went out
for tours throughout the country. and
visited t he kibutzim, the moshavint
and other forms of agricultural settle-
ment in Israel. Most of the visitors
remained for a few days in the settle-'
Ments. and worked together with the
people of the place.
The agriculturists in Israel found a
Common language with agriculturists
from abroad. They discussed various
common problems with them. and in a
number of cases even succeeded in
finding a solution to their,
Published by Brit writ 01,on t.••

It is questionable, also,
whether Arnold's description of
the head of the underground
is either proper or realistic or
justified. The role depicted in
"A Night of Watching" is a
bit repulsive. Facts do not
totally sustain the picture por-
trayed in this novel.

Nevertheless "A Night of Watch-
ing - has many other elements
that commend the book most

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The beans that
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Close to 40 years ago, the House of placed on our label.
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products with the CE-' ,
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To reassure our customers of Kash- Today, von will find the Cri on ma ny
• hundreds of wellknownprod-
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ucts, but no one of them is
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more welcome inJewish
THE UNION OP ORTII0-
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DOX JEWISH CONGREGA-
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