June ’45 in the Exponent: War Dept. Admits Anti-Jewish Propaganda; Local Catholic Paper Calls Jews Enemies of the Church


Adolf Hitler was dead and Germany had surrendered a few weeks earlier, but troubled times for Jews weren’t over, according to articles in the June 29, 1945 Jewish Exponent.

A War Department spokesman admitted that “anti-Jewish views were disseminated among the U.S. armed forces throughout the world in an official educational correspondence course established under the auspices of the Army and Navy,” one article read.

Materials included a chapter from the 1925 book The Melting Pot by Andrew Siegfried that was presented as a “lesson” in English composition. That lesson said Jews were not good Americans and didn’t assimilate well, among multiple other slurs.

The unnamed spokesman said the War Department withdrew those materials from usage in late 1944 and taught soldiers to combat prejudice.

If that wasn’t disturbing enough, another article reported that a local Ukrainian Catholic newspaper called Shlyakh said Jews “murdered Jesus Christ” and are “materialists and fanatic enemies of Christ and His Church.”

There also was an article about a London Times letter from Chief Rabbi Joseph Hertz calling for Allied governments to prevent Jewish orphan children in Europe from being converted.

“It is the clear duty of the United Nations [which was in the process of being organized] to institute guardianship and adoption by Jews of these unfortunate orphans and to put an end to the misdeeds of spiritual kidnapping,” Hertz wrote.

And the lead article in the issue reported on calls for those in the Oswego, N.Y. refugee camp — which largely contained Jewish refugees — to be permitted to remain in the United States because they had no homeland of which to return.


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