Rehearsal for Destruction, by Paul Massing
Rehearsal for Destruction is an illuminating and often moving account of the tactics of various groups in the Germany of the Kaisers in politically manipulating a latent, widespread, and often virulent anti-Semitism. This full-length study in English of the subject is the second published volume in the Studies in Prejudice series undertaken by the Department of Scientific Research of the American Jewish Committee.
Rarely a principal concern of the prominent political figures of the era, and never a monopoly of any important political party, anti-Semitism was nevertheless the means, always available and often used, to gain political advantage. Concerned with power, politicians scorned the Biblical injunction to love one’s neighbor in favor of an old adage: “He who persecutes Israel becomes a leader.” If this adage was not invariably confirmed, its success was sufficiently outstanding. And as the conditions which gave rise to anti-Semitism were not obliterated, a later generation of politicians, in a rage for power, hastened not merely to resurrect slogans half a century old, but also to fulfill their promise in gruesome detail.
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