“A Menace to Jews Seen If Hitler Wins”: British and American press comment on German antisemitism 1918-1933

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To what extent did Anglo-American newspapers report on antisemitism in the Weimar Republic? Which aspects of this antisemitism - physical vio- lence, discrimination and boycotts, or anti-Jewish propaganda - aroused the particular interest of the foreign press or were neglected? Were there simi- larities or differences in the coverage of newspapers of diverse nationalities and opposing political orientations? When and why did changes in the report- ing occur? Above all, how did foreign papers perceive the antisemitic prop- aganda and violence of the rising Nazi party? Did they understand the central role of antisemitism in Nazi ideology and the threat that this posed to German Jewry?

Despite a considerable body of literature on the Jews and antisemitism in Weimar Germany, these questions have hardly been addressed.1 Whereas the foreign media responses to Nazi antisemitism after 1933 and to the Holocaust aroused scholarly interest as early as the 1960s, and more recently during the last ten to fifteen years,2 research on the foreign press coverage of

1 See e.g. n. 7. For the few studies dealing explicitly with the German press and antisemitism, see n. 41.

2 Andrew Sharf, "The British Press and the Holocaust", Y ad Vashem Studies 5 (1963): 169-91; Andrew Sharf, The British Press and Jews under Nazi Rule (London, 1964); Deborah E. Lipstadt, "The American Press and the Persecution of German Jewry: The Early Years 1 933-1 935", Leo Baeck Institute Year Book 29 (1984): 29-39; Deborah E. Lipstadt, Beyond Belief: The American Press and the Coming of the Holocaust 1 933-1 Q45 (New York, 1986); Tony Kushner, The Politics of Marginality: Race , the Radical Right and Minorities in Twentieth Century Britain (London, 1990); Tony Kushner, The Holocaust and the Liberal Imagination (Oxford, 1994); Robert Moses Shapiro, ed., Why Didn 't the Press Shout? American and International Journalism During the Holocaust (Jersey City, 2003); Laurel Leff, Buried by >(The Times": The Holocaust and America's Most Important Newspaper (Cambridge and New York, 2005); Stephanie Seul, "The Representation of the Holocaust in the British Propaganda Campaign Directed at the German Public, 1938-1945", Yearbook of the Leo Baeck Institute 52 (2007): 267-306; Stephanie Seul, "'Any reference to Jews on the wireless might prove a double-edged weapon': Jewish Images in the British Propaganda Campaign Towards the German Public, 1938-1939", in Jewish Images in the Media , eds. Martin Liepach, Gabriele Melischek and Josef Seethaler (Vienna, 2007), 203-32.

Weimar antisemitism is still in its early stages.3 Recent studies of Anglo- American press reporting on the Weimar Republic do not touch on this matter.4 Studies of British and American diplomatic perceptions of the Weimar Republic have likewise neglected the issue.5 However, a brief glance at the contemporary sources shows that British and American papers, in par- ticular the quality press for an educated readership, reported regularly on German antisemitism at that time. Andrew Sharf noticed in his pioneering study of the British press coverage of the Holocaust that British quality papers such as The Times , the Manchester Guardian and the Daily Telegraph provided the fullest

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