A warning that the Jews must learn a lesson from the Jewish situation in Germany was sounded at the Hotel Commodore yesterday by Professor Albert Einstein at a reception in his honor by the women’s division of the American Jewish Congress, at which 2,000 persons were present. Mrs. Nathan D. Perlman, presided.
“At this time,” Professor Einstein said, “the unity of Jews the world over and their mutual assistance is an unyielding law. Would that all Jews would learn from the mistakes of the German Jews during the last twenty years! For most of the German Jews there existed no international Jewish community. In their own eyes they were Germans and nothing but Germans. The Eastern Jew, the so-called ‘Ostjude’ was to them but a foreigner. When aid was given, it was administered to him with condescension. And the recipient of such charity was not too happy.
COPIED MODES SLAVISHLY
“Slavishly these German Jews copied the still foreign-to-them modes of life of the German people with the sole purpose of making themselves forgetful of their Jewish origin. How greatly did I suffer under this lack of pride and dignity on the part of these German Jews who were so lacking in self-respect that they were insensible to its loss.
“A single political upheaval was sufficient to destroy all their illusions,” Professor Einstein continued. “In a single moment they lost all those insecured possessions whose acquisition was bought at the sacrifice of their inner dignity and their traditional historical individuality. Materially and spiritually broken, the help of those Jews abroad, who did not admit of such a ruinous course of assimilation, became their sole protection.
“Learn from the destiny which has befallen the German Jews and preserve your independence by the creation of an appropriate institution which you will need in the hour of oppression. Do not trust that this hour will never come, but keep the international community of all Jews sacred and holy! In this way, you will serve best the interests of international relations, for integrity and honesty is sorely needed everywhere.
“With this consideration in mind, I greet with especial delight and satisfaction the unselfish work of the women’s division of the American Jewish Congress in their establishment of a home for exiled Jews. All respect for the tireless work of Mrs. Stephen S. Wise who prepared the home with such love and sympathetic understanding. Everyone who is received there, will never forget what brotherly solidarity means for those Jews who remained steadfast and upright,” Professor Einstein concluded.
Other speakers at the reception included Mayor Fiorello H. LaGuardia, Sholom Asch, distinguished writer, and Dr. Stephen S. Wise, honorary president of the American Jewish Congress.