Tuesday, October 12, 2021

  • Tuesday, October 12, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon
Yair Rosenberg points to a 2011 Jewish Telegraphic Agency article that shows one reason the Western world didn't know about the Holocaust.

In JTA's words:

At no time in history were JTA correspondents more needed than during the 12 long years of the Hitler regime. The JTA reported on the persecution and then the annihilation of Europe’s Jews, often providing the first, and sometimes the only, reports on the unfolding Holocaust. And at no time did its correspondents face more peril to their livelihood and lives.

As soon as Hitler came to power in 1933, problems began for the agency. It was, after all, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency in a country that was determined to deprive all Jews of their rights. The agency faced the Nazi regime’s physical attacks on its operations and rhetorical attacks on its journalistic integrity. “Much of the JTA’s superb reporting from Germany … was labeled Jewish anti-Nazi propaganda,” JTA’s founder and editor, Jacob Landau, explained years later in a report to the JTA board.

The German government was not the agency’s only problem.

“About 1933 …a resistance began to develop in the world press to acceptance of news involving Jews and others from what was considered a partisan (Jewish) source,” Landau wrote.

The New York Times dropped the service in 1937 despite repeated entreaties from JTA editors. The Associated Press followed suit. So many non-Jewish newspapers canceled that the agency felt compelled to form the Overseas News Agency so it could report from Europe under a non-Jewish moniker. 

Still, JTA maintained its mission of serving as “the eyes and ears of world Jewry.” To the rest of the press, the destruction of Europe’s Jews was a secondary story, buried deep within newspapers. To the JTA, the extermination campaign was the story. As Germany marched into Austria and then into Czechoslovakia and other European countries, JTA correspondents chronicled the ensuing anti-Semitic legislation, property confiscations, sporadic violence, work formations, round-ups, and deportations.
 At the very time that the US and the world needed accurate reports about the impending genocide of Jews in Europe, the major news agencies decided to no longer trust the Jewish news agency that they had used for decades - because it couldn't be unbiased.

That decision is based on antisemitism, saying that Jews cannot accurately report about other Jews.

Who knows how many lives could have been saved if Americans could have been reading about the Holocaust a year or two earlier than they did?

I found an example of the media's skepticism of JTA's objectivity in this January 1940 article about how difficult it was for Western reporters to know what Germany had done to Poland, because the only sources were from Polish, Catholic and Jewish sources.

Note the scare quotes about "authentic details." Clearly United Press didn't believe the reports of Jews about massacres of Jews either.


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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

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