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Saturday, January 28, 2017

The Truth About FDR and the Jews | The Louis D. Brandeis Center Blog

The Truth About FDR and the Jews | The Louis D. Brandeis Center Blog



Fair Use Excerpt from article:



Consider Roosevelt’s record of private statements and actions regarding Jews.

·      In 1923, as a member of Harvard’s Board of Overseers, Roosevelt became concerned that, as he put it, “a third of the entering class at Harvard were Jews.” He helped institute a quota to limit the number of Jews admitted to 15% of each class. Even many years later, FDR was still proud of doing that–and said so to Treasury Secretary Henry Morgenthau, Jr., in 1941.


·      In 1936, he characterized a tax maneuver by the publisher of the New York Times as “a dirty Jewish trick.” In 1938, FDR privately suggested to Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, the era’s most prominent American Jewish leader, that Jews in Poland were dominating the economy and were to blame for provoking antisemitism there.  In 1939, Roosevelt expressed (to a U.S. senator) his pride that “there is no Jewish blood in our veins.”  In 1940, he dismissed pleas for Jewish refugees as “Jewish wailing” and “sob stuff.” In 1941, President Roosevelt remarked at a cabinet meeting that there were too many Jews among federal employees in Oregon. 


·      The most detailed of FDR’s statements about Jews was made during his meeting on January 17, 1943, in Casablanca, with leaders of the new local regime in Allied-liberated North Africa. U.S. ambassador Robert Murphy remarked that the 330,000 Jews in North Africa were “very much disappointed that ‘the war for liberation’ had not immediately resulted in their being given their complete freedom.”

·         [ The revelations] about FDR’s personal prejudices do help explain key questions such as why he suppressed immigration far below its legal limits; why he turned away the refugee ship St. Louis; and why he created only one token haven, for just 982 refugees (in Oswego, NY) when there was plenty of room where refugees could have stayed temporarily until the end of the war.



Medoff, Rafael. 2013. "The Truth About FDR And The Jews". The Louis D. Brandeis Center Blog. Accessed January 29 2017. http://brandeiscenter.com/blog/the-truth-about-fdr-and-the-jews/.

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