The Transfer Agreement
The Untold Story of the Secret Pact
Between the Third Reich
& Jewish Palestine

by Edwin Black
Published by MacMillan Publishing Company, 1984

The Transfer Agreement is the stunning, compassionate account of the "deal with the devil" that saved 60,000 Jews from the Holocaust. The deal was made desperation in 1933 between the Jewish leadership in Palestine and the Third Reich. The terms: that the Jewish-led boycott of German goods would cease in return for the transfer of German Jews to the Holy Land. Eventually one-tenth of Germany's Jews were saved, thus helping to form the seedbed of modern Israel.

Edwin Black reveals for the first time the inside details of the controversial pact and re-creates the drama: the personalities, the cliff-hanger negotiations, and the anguish of world Jewry over their choice. And Black does more. He provides a true understanding of Israel's founding, and the heartbreaking realities of the Jews' plight in Hitler's Europe.

The Transfer Agreement presents certain truths that have long eluded historians - the financial nexus that served Hitler's obsessions with expelling the Jews as an essential prelude to conquering Europe, together with the Zionists' resolve to bring their dispossessed people to Palestine. The American Jewish involvement is of special interest as the author reconstructs the magnitude of the pro- and anti-boycott meetings and the passion invested in them.

The author spend five years on three continents researching and writing this work. He was aided by a team of translators and researchers who unearthed previously suppressed and widely dispersed documents and archives. Already acclaimed by a dozen diverse experts and Holocaust scholars, The Transfer Agreement was described by Dr. Sybil Milton of the Simon Wiesenthal Center as a "spellbinding, exciting book."

Edwin Black has given us a work of history that will make history.


Edwin Black is the son of Jewish survivors of the Holocaust. He was a founder of Chicago Monthly and frequently contributes to the Chicago Tribune and other publications. He lectures and writes extensively on Jewish and Israeli subjects.



Comments on The Transfer Agreement

"A spellbinding, exciting book. This subject has not been previously explored. It adds a significant new dimension to our understanding of this critical era."

Dr. Sybil Milton
The Simon Wiesenthal Center


"Truly a brilliant piece of work. It has captured the passion, veracity, exulation and yes, naivete, of that moment in history. An artisitic tour de force."

Morris Fromer
Author of The American Jewish Congress, A History, 1914-1950


"Important new ground in our understanding of American Jewry's role in rescue efforts of Jews in Germany and Eastern Europe, in Zionist aims and methods in creating the state of Israel, and in Nazi thinking on the road to the 'final solution.' Black's research efforts extend far beyond the capabilities of one or even two authors. These things have been hinted at before; now they have been exposed."

Abraham Peck
American Jewish Archives


"Edwin Black's research is striking in its dimension and scope. The vast uncovering of source material and its extensive use are almost overwhelming. He penetrates deep into the political and economic processes of inter-Jewish relations and into gentile attitudes involving the rescue of Jews from Nazi rule for the benefit of the Zionist enterprise in Eretz Yisrael."

Yoav Gelber
Yad Vashem, Israel Holocaust Memorial


"Excellent and revealing. Fills the vacuum in the history of both the German economy and the Zionist movement. The book is informative, exciting as well as challenging and morally disturbing."

Arthur Schweitzer
Author of Big Business and the Third Reich


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