Thursday, January 28, 2010

Was Old Man Kennedy Antisemitic?

Judge for yourselves:

Joseph Kennedy and Hollywood

Sir, – Supporting Paula Marantz Cohen’s comment that “Joseph Kennedy’s influence on Hollywood, however, was far-reaching, though hardly for the good” (January 15) is the following incident. In 1940, a year before Pearl Harbor, Kennedy, speaking to groups of Hollywood movie producers (most of them Jewish), warned his listeners to avoid making anti-Nazi movies that might be construed as propaganda for the United States to enter the war against Germany; the actor Douglas Fairbanks Jr (whose father was Jewish) complained of the intimidation in a letter to President Roosevelt. (See Steven Alan Carr, Hollywood and Anti-Semitism, p159.)

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