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The Nation of Islam's "Secret Relationship between Blacks and Jews "has been called one of the most serious anti-Semitic manuscripts published in years. This work of so-called scholars received great celebrity from individuals like Louis Farrakhan, Leonard Jeffries, and Khalid Abdul Muhammed who used the document to claim that Jews dominated both transatlantic and antebellum South slave trades. As Saul Friedman definitively documents in "Jews and the American Slave Trade, "historical evidence suggests that Jews played a minimal role in the transatlantic, South American, Caribbean, and antebellum slave trades.

"Jews and the American Slave Trade "dissects the questionable historical technique employed in "Secret Relationship, "offers a detailed response to Farrakhan's charges, and analyzes the impetus behind these charges. He begins with in-depth discussion of the attitudes of ancient peoples, Africans, Arabs, and Jews toward slavery and explores the Jewish role hi colonial European economic life from the Age of Discovery tp Napoleon. His state-by-state analyses describe in detail the institution of slavery in North America from colonial New England to Louisiana. Friedman elucidates the role of American Jews toward the great nineteenth-century moral debate, the positions they took, and explains what shattered the alliance between these two vulnerable minority groups in America.

Rooted in incontrovertible historical evidence, provocative without being incendiary, "Jews and the American Slave Trade "demonstrates that the anti-slavery tradition rooted in the Old Testament translated into powerful prohibitions with respect to any involvement in the slave trade. This brilliant exploration will be of interest to scholars of modern Jewish history, African-American studies, American Jewish history, U.S. history, and minority studies.

No Haven for the Oppressed is the most thorough and the most comprehensive analysis to be written to date on the United States policy toward Jewish refugees during World War II. Friedman draws upon many sources for his history, significantly upon papers which have only recently been opened to public scrutiny. These include State Department Records at the National Archives and papers relating to the Jewish refugee question at the Roosevelt Library at Hyde Park. Such documents serve as the foundation for this study, together with the papers of the American Friends Service Committee, of Rabbis Stephen Wise and Abba Silver, Senator Robert Wagner, Secretary Hull and Assistant Secretary of State Breckinridge Long, of the American Jewish Archives, the National Jewish Archives, and extensive interviews with persons intimately involved in the refugee question. Professor Friedman describes America's pre-war preoccupation with economic woes: immigrants, particularly Jewish immigrants, were viewed as competitors for scarce jobs. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, although personally sympathetic to the dilemma of Jews, was not willing to risk public and congressional support for his domestic programs by championing legislation or diplomacy to increase Jewish immigration. The court-packing scandal and the unsuccessful purge of Southern Democrats had left his popularity at an all-time low. Jewish leaders were equally unwilling to antagonize the American public by strong advocacy of the Jewish cause. They feared anti-Semitic backlash against American Jews and worried that their own "100 percent" loyalty to the nation might be questioned. Although he takes issue with authors who propose that anti-Semitism at the highest levels of the State Department was the major block to the rescue of the Jews, Friedman demonstrates that some officials continually thwarted rescue plans. He suggests that a disinclination to sully themselves in negotiations with the Nazis and a fear that any ransom would prolong the global conflict, caused the Allies to offer only token overtures to the Nazis on behalf of the Jews.
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