Handlin Says Jews Face Split Loyalties

American Jews may soon have to choose between loyalty to America or to Israel because of changes in U.S. foreign policy over the past 20 years, Oscar Handlin, Pforzheimer University Professor, said yesterday.

"There was no discrepancy between the desire of American Jews to support Israel and the desire of all Americans to do the same" in the 1950s and 1960s, Handlin said. But as self-interest has become the basis for U.S. foreign policy, he said, a clash might develop between the interests of a group, like American Jews, and the national self-interest.


Handlin, speaking before a Sabbath table talk sponsored by the Hillel Society, said that most people would decide their loyalties on the basis of convenience, though some would rely on strongly held principles.

"There's always a temptation to blame the victim of aggression and remain neutral," he said. "We're a long way from that attitude towards Israel, but not so long as you might think."


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