Since 1914 great historic events have taken place. There was the World War, the Russian revolution, and the upheavals in Europe and elsewhere. These historic events brought to mankind disillusionment and bitter disappointment. The World War, which was expected to end all wars, only prepared the ground for still more frightful wars ; the Russian revolution, which was expected to bring to the working masses freedom, emancipation and communism, only brought them an oppressive dictatorship, a more intense exploitation and state capitalism ; and the upheavals in Europe and elsewhere, which were conceived in democracy, internationalism and socialism, only brought fascism, an insane nationalism and Hitlerism. And whatever these events brought to other nations, to the Jews they brought only greater misery, suffering and despair. Anti-Semitism, which before 1914 found open outbursts among backward nations and in semi-civilized countries, since then has become the social philosophy and economic-political policy of the most cultured people in the
most civilized countries. Modern Balaams came to the fore and, in the name of culture, religion, science, art and philosophy, endeavored to prove that the Jews and Judaism are inherently wicked and evil, and a deadly menace to the Western nations, their culture and their civilization ; and that, to save the Western nations, their culture and civilization from decline and extinction, it is necessary to exterminate the Jews and Judaism. Hence the slogan : Death to the Jews and Judaism.
Following up the world events, reflecting on the new philosophies that came to the fore, I convinced myself that human society is irresistibly and inevitably moving towards state capitalism and fascism. Further reflection also convinced me that this social transformation would inevitably bring upon the Jews great suffering. How could the Jews face this world situation? This question occupied my mind for the last twelve years, and thesewere to me years of intellectual and spiritual agony. At last I reached the conclusion which I embodied in a program for the Jews. Since then I often spoke on this program. When the Jews declared war against Nazi Germany and fascism, I saw that that was a suicidal policy, which would bring to the Jews infinite suffering. I spoke against that policy, but no attention was paid to it. Thus passed more than five years of ever-increasing suffering for the Jews. When the situation became so grave that the Jews themselves began to realize the gravity of the situation, the members of the Spinoza Institute of America asked me to formulate my program. In an address delivered by me before the members of the Spinoza Institute on October 23, 1938, I presented to them, in brief, my program. As a result of this address, a committee organized itself under the name The Committee for the Preservation of the Jews, and this committee published my address under the title : A Program for the Jews. Ten thousand copies of that program were published and distributed. Thus far, this program met with universal condemnation. This I expected. But I soon realized that, if my program is to receive a more friendly hearing, it must be presented adequately. The following is a more adequate basis for my program.
Dated : Belle Harbor, New York, March 28, 1939. Harry Waton.