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October 02, 1987 - Image 32

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1987-10-02

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

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Henry Ford II

Continued from preceding page

t INFO - OR A FREE QUOTE

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FINE BATH, KITCHEN, AND DOOR HARDWARE

Much about Henry Ford II
is in The Public Image of
Henry Ford (Wayne State
University Press) by Prof.
David Lewis, who heads the
business history department
of the University of Michigan
College of Economics. Prof.
Lewis had been selected by
Henry Ford II to be his
authorized biographer, the
completed work to be publish-
ed posthumously.
In the January 1984 issue
of Michigan Jewish History,
official publication of the
Jewish Historical Society of
Michigan, Prof. Lewis wrote:

'

As.

,\\
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\

'

Almet • Arrow • Baldwin • Hager •
Hewi • Jado •Kwikset• Lawrence •
Normbau • Dorma Door Closers •
Schlage • K.W.C.• Moen • Paul
Associates • Fusital/Forges •
Grohe • Kohler •Valli & Columbo
• Baldwin Bath • Delta. Aqua
Glass • Steamist • Artistic Brass •
The Broadway Collection •
Bathroom Jewelry• Dornbracht •
Bormix . 80 • Bormalux •

32

FRIDAY, OCT. 2, 1987

L
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in operation, even though
it has meant a boycott of all
Ford products in Egypt,
Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, and
Saudi Arabia. In recent
months I have carefully
scrutinized the operations
and management policies
of Ford Motor Company
for any remnants of Henry
Ford Senior's legacy of
hatred. I have found none,
and would hope that the
sins of the grandfather
revealed in this book are
not visited upon the grand-
sons nor upon the com-
pany which bears the fami-
ly name and which
employs 230,000 people.
Rather, this book can
serve to more honestly
define Henry Ford's place
in the history of this cen-
tury. It is an object lesson
in misdirected power and
the all-too-common error
of allowing knowledge in
one area to lend credibili-
ty in another. Perhaps
most important, this book
may serve as another
reminder of an era of the
most heinous crime in
recorded history. If we can-
not understand Auschwitz,
we must at least never
forget the lesson of its
causes and consequences.

R

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• F 1 R • Monarch • Stanley •
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In atoning for the sins of
its founder, Ford has
adopted and adhered to
Middle Eastern policies
which have cost it hun-
dreds of millions of dollars
in lost sales and tens of
millions of dollars in lost
profits, and these figures
will mount with each pass-
ing year.
Just as Ford Motor Com-
pany has done more in
behalf of Jewry than any
other non-Jewish-owned
company in the U.S., so has
Henry Ford II done more
for Jewry than any other
gentile business figure. To
his credit, he has never
wavered in his decision to
sacrifice the expanding
Arab market. In 1967 he
permitted his company to
accept an award of merit
from the American-Israel

Chamber of Commerce
and Industry for asembl-
ing vehicles in Israel.
Three years later he told a
delegation of Jewish
visitors to his office, Phil
Slomovitz among them,
that his only regret over his
decision was "the harm im-
posed on Ford's Arab
dealers who were innocent
victims:' In 1972, Ford
visited his company's
Nazareth assembly plant,
whose 1,200 employees
built commercial vehicles
and the Escort car. "I have
been a friend of Israel for
many years," he told the
transport minister, "and
after my visit here, I am
even a bigger friend!'
It is not too much to say
that Henry Ford II has
done more for Jews than
any other American gen-
tile over the past four
decades. He repeatedly has
been honored for his ef-
forts in behalf of Jewry. A
few years ago, the Tech-
nion established a Henry
Ford II Chair in Transpor-
tation, the first to be nam-
ed for a non-Jew at the
university. Ford was
honored, said Evelyn de
Rothschild, international
chairman of Technion's
Board of Governors, "in
recognition of his many
years of interest in the
Technion, his opposition to
the Arab boycott, and his
support of Israel:'
Almost all Jews ac-
quainted with the Ford
story, including those who
have neither forgotten nor
forgiven the first Henry
Ford, are gratified by the
friendliness and generosi-
ty of the Ford family and
the Ford Motor Company
toward the Jewish com-
munity since the late 1940s.
"The grandchildren, and
Mrs. Edsel, too," obseved
Isidore Sobeloff, then the
head of the Detroit Jewish
Welfare Federation, "are
just fine, just wonderful:'
"The new generation of
Fords," declared Phil
Slomovitz in a statement
typical of many he has
made on the subject,
"looks back at the era of
their grandfather with a
sense of deep regret, rejec-
ting whatever smacked of
prejudice:'
Ford's involvement with
Jews also is a prime exam-
ple of the maxim that
something good sometimes
comes from something
bad. Henry Ford's anti-
Semitism was bad. But the
Ford Motor Company's
and Ford family's efforts to
redress his wrongs are
good.

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