The extent of Breckinridge Long’s insidious efforts to impede immigration to safe harbor in the U.S.A. for Jews and gentiles alike is painted by Mr. Rolde with deft strokes and brought into the light of day in this detailed and intriguing account.
Mr. Rolde takes us through the story using Long’s personal diary to provide insights into Long’s motivations. Rolde makes convincing and powerful assertions that Long, heartless and uncharitable, played by the book with devastating consequences, actions that parallel those of his peers in Hitler’s Third Reich.
“Students of mid-twentieth-century American political and diplomatic history remember Breckinridge Long as a well-connected and influential force, particularly during he Roosevelt years. Those with a particular concern for the tragically inadequate American efforts to rescue victims of the Holocaust point to Long as a central figure in resisting and obstructing those efforts. He has been characterized as an anti-Semite, a xenophobe, and alternatively as an anti-communist who opposed immigration out of fear of communist infiltration. Interesting historical figures are, regretfully, often reduced to single dimensions, and the complexity of their lives and motivations are lost. In this erudite, thoughtful and well-written biography, Neil Rolde has fleshed out a multidimensional portrait of this gifted, influential and flawed public figure, traced his extraordinary career, and explored a range of theories as to Long s motivations. In so doing, Rolde has provided a wealth of information not only about Long but also about this critical and troubled chapter in modern American political and diplomatic history.”-David M. Gordis, PhD, President Emeritus, Hebrew College
“My grandmother, Francis Perkins, worked to open the doors wider, while authority for immigration was under the Department of Labor, where it resided when she took office. In May of 1940, partly because of her resistance to stemming the tide of immigrants, Long was successful in moving authority for immigration to the Department of Justice, effectively removing her from that role. Yet she remained one of the voices in the FDR administration that encouraged Jewish immigration and continued to do all that she could to help. This book reveals the behind-the-scenes machinations of a political operative who may well be responsible, albeit indirectly, for the death of many Jews in Nazi Germany. “-Tomlin Perkins Coggeshall, grandson of Francis Perkins, Secretary of Labor, 1933-1945
“This book will fill a large, gaping hole in the field of Holocaust studies. It provides a window into Washington and into FDR s White House (not to mention the State Department) and Democratic Party politics that is marvelous.”-Chris Breiseth, Fmr. Director, Franklin Delano Roosevelt Library, NY
Breckinridge Long: American Eichmann??? by Neil Rolde, 296 pages. Quality Paperback, ISBN-13: 978-1882190133 US $16.95