natlholocaustmus-whatdidamericansknow-fredericksburgva-1938

Here’s something to consider in this new era of alt-right anti-Semitism in the U.S.: an exhibit at the National Holocaust Museum in Washington asks the question, What did Americans know about the Holocaust as it was happening? This front page story in the Fredericksburg, Virginia newpaper makes clear that the information was available in 1938, and some editors gave the story prominence. But the museum’s study shows that big-city papers ran fewer stories about it and tended to bury them in the back pages. A year after this article, the United States refused entry to 900 Jewish refugees on board the St. Louis; coverage of it was heavy and sympathetic, but the State Department and President Roosevelt turned a deaf ear – and none of the papers editorialized in favor of admitting them. When good people do nothing, evil triumphs.

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