One Minute to Midnight
the New York Times reported.
The latest problem with the Saudis is typical of what happens when the U.S. seeks help from its "moderate" Arab "allies" against Arab terrorists. No matter how many billions of dollars worth of military and economic aid the U.S. gives Saudi Arabia, no matter how many American soldiers died defending the Saudis from Iraqi invasion during the Gulf War, the Saudis will not cooperate with the U.S. against its "brother" Arabs.
Similarly, even though the U.S. is giving the PLO $500-million in aid, the PLO refused to let FBI agents enter Gaza last year to investigate the murder of Brandeis University student Alissa Flatow.
Will the U.S. ever learn that Arab dictators simply don't make reliable allies?
There was no applause when I stopped talking. Not that I expected any. The authors of hit plays and novels are more interested in receiving applause than in giving it. But the nature of the silence was revealed to me when a half-dozen of the guests stood up and without saying "Boo" walked out of the room.
"It looks like I struck out," I said to my hostess as the silence kept up.
Edna Ferber's voice rose sharply. "Who is paying you to do this wretched propaganda," she demanded, "Mister Hitler? Or is it Mister Goebbels?" Her query started irritated and angry talk. The anger and irritation were against me.
In the vestibule, Beatrice said to me, "I'm sorry it turned out like this. But I didn't expect anything much
different. You asked them to throw away the most valuable thing they own--the fact that they are Americans."
How argue with Beatrice, a fine woman with as bright a mind and as soft a heart as anyone I knew? How convince any of her high-faluting guests that they had not behaved like Americans but like scared Jews? And what in God's name were they frightened of? Of people realizing they were Jews? But people knew that already. Of people hearing that they had Jewish hearts? What kind of hearts did they imagine people thought Jews had, non-Jewish hearts? Or did they think they would be mistaken for "real" Americans if they proved they had no hearts at all? Two of the thirty guests came into the vestibule to say good night to me.
"I thought I'd tell you that if I can do anything definite in the way of Jewish propaganda call on me," said Moss Hart.
Kurt Weill, the lone composer present, looked at me with misty eyes. A radiance was in his strong face.
"Please count on me for everything," Kurt said. (Hecht, Moss and Weill would cooperate in creating the pageant "We Shall Never Die" which was staged in Madison Square Garden. The three were joined by showman Billy Rose of whom Hecht writes "A third Jew soon joined us--Billy Rose. He needed no briefing. He came under his own steam, which was considerable.")
Americans for A Safe Israel
147 East 76 Street
New York, NY 10021
Outpost - 12 - November 1996