Black Edwin - The transfer agreement

Author : Black Edwin
Title : The transfer agreement The dramatic story of the pact between the Third Reich and Jewish Palestine
Year : 1983

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Introduction to the 2009 Edition. Confronting the Transfer Agreement. During the first months of the Hitler regime, leaders of the Zionist movement concluded a controversial pact with the Third Reich which, in its various forms, transferred some 60,000 Jews and $100 million — almost $1.7 billion in 2009 dollars — to Jewish Palestine. In return, Zionists would halt the worldwide Jewish-led anti-Nazi boycott that threatened to topple the Hitler regime in its first year. Ultimately, the Transfer Agreement saved lives, rescued assets, and seeded the infrastructure of the Jewish State to be. Fiery debates instantly ignited throughout the pre-War Jewish world as rumors of the pact leaked out. The acrimony was rekindled in 1984 with the original publication of The Transfer Agreement — and has never stopped. Why? Understanding the painful process and the agonizing decisions taken by Jewish leadership requires a journey. This journey will not be a comfortable one for any reader. It offers few clear-cut concepts and landmarks. The facts, as they unfold, will challenge your sense of the period, break your heart, and try your ethics…just as it did for those in 1933 who struggled to identify the correct path through a Fascist minefield and away from the conflagration that awaited European Jewry. Why? Simply put, The Transfer Agreement came out a decade ahead of its time. When the book first appeared, in 1984, the world was still preoccupied with the enormity of nazi genocide. The world’s emphasis was on the murderous events of the war years. The Jewish community’s rallying cry was “never Forget.” Organized remembrance was collectively fighting an anti-Semitic revisionist movement that was trying to deny or minimize the Holocaust with rabid pseudo-history. For perspective, consider that the very first television attempt to treat the Holocaust was a TV series called “The Holocaust,” which aired in 1978 — the same year neo-nazis marched through Skokie. That was the year, 1978, I began researching The Transfer Agreement . At the time, the Second Generation movement, of children of survivors, was just forming. The First World Gathering of Holocaust Survivors was only in the planning stage. The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, which received its charter in 1980, was several years and many controversies away from opening. Organized Holocaust education was essentially nonexistent. For society and for survivors, the dominant priority was coming to grips with the genocide. Twenty-five years ago, the world was not ready to comprehend the notion of Zionists and Nazis negotiating in Reich economic offices over commercial pacts involving blocked Jewish bank accounts and German merchandise sales volume. The wounds of destruction were too fresh, too exposed, too unhealed. But I had to step into this world to recapture that history. I was not prepared. Nor was the public prepared. When the book launched on Passover 1984 as an explosive volume kept under wraps, the media everywhere headlined the story. This included a nearly simultaneous cover story in the Chicago Tribune Sunday Magazine , a feature centerspread in the Chicago Sun-Times , cover stories in all the main Jewish newspapers and magazines, a special extended news special on the NBC affiliate, morning show appearances, radio interviews, excerpts and a multi-city book tour. This was a decade before the internet. One Jewish communal leader complained he had never seen such publicity for any book on the Holocaust in recent times. Understandably, The Transfer Agreement battered readership and leadership alike who struggled to reconcile its implications. despite my scores of speaking engagements and explanatory articles on the subject, too many were simply not prepared for the details. Years later, the Transfer Agreement is still continuously debated, every hour of every day, still the source of conflict and emotion. On the Web, in articles, in books, and in personal exchanges, few are neutral about this extraordinary pact. ...

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