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April 25, 1969 - Image 13

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1969-04-25

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.



Anti-Semitism Rears Its Head in Czechoslovakia

By JIM COLLINS

(Copyright 1969, JTA, Inc.)

LONDON — There is mounting
evidence that anti-Semitism is
again raising its head in Czecho-
slovakia as it did in the closing
stages of the Novotny regime prior
to January 1968. Whether it is Rus-
sion-inspired or of the home-grown
brand promoted by the Czech and
Slovak diehards is difficult to say.
It is probably promoted by the
protagonists of both factions who
are trying hard to recapture their
lost popularity and positions.
The reaction of the communal
leaders of 10,000 Jews left in the
country followed a familiar pat-
tern. The president of the Council
of Jewish Communities in Czecho-
slovakia told a meeting in Prague
early in February that the govern-
ment had shown great understand-
ing towards the country's Jews
and that progressive attitudes
were being adopted by government
institutions. especially the state
secretariat for church affairs.
But the government understand-
ing had not yet borne fruit.
Frantisek Vodslon, chairman
of the Czechoslovak Olympic
Committee and a member of the
Czechoslovak Communist Party
Central Committee, told listen-
ers over Prague Radio bluntly
that he was losing patience with
"threatening, anti-humanist and
anti-socialist letters full of hate
and anti-Semitism." He said he,
among others, had been receiv-
ing them for some time. Some
of these letters, he added, were
anonymous; others were signed
in "various forms."
This type of letter was the
"daily ration" of Jewish party
members such as Prof. Eduard
Goldstuecker, Frantisek Kriegel,
Ota Sik, Vilem Novy, Evzen Klin-
ger, and Jewish writers, journal-
ists and critics during the battle
for the Prague "spring." It was
an ominous sign that the circula-
tion of these letters had been ex-
tended to the non-Jewish sector
of the establishment.
Vodslon was genuinely irritated
and wanted to know what it was
all about. A man in his early 60s,
he been a member of the Cen-
tral Committee since 1952; he also
spent the war years in a prison
camp and has some personal ex-
perience of the suffering caused
by racial or national hatred, and
he has the courage of his convic-
tions. "Those who constantly dis-
turb our unity and create doubts—
what sort of unity do they want?"
he asked in a rhetorical question
that might have been directed to
Moscow and to the political adver-
saries of the establishment at
home.
Meanwhile the distribution of

inflammatory literature in
Czechoslovakia is flourishing.
More than six months after its
first appearance, Zpravy, the
Soviet-produced Czech-language
newspaper which offers a good
portion of anti-Semitic invective
in its editorial menu, continues
to be printed and distributed by
Soviet military units. The gov-
ernment says the paper is un-
lawful, but in spite of occasional
arrest on charges of distribut-
ing an illegal paper, it has been
unable to put a stop to it. "The
Rag," as Czechs call the news-
sheet, has been condemned by
workers and the intelligentsia
alike. But the bill for the mis-
chief it causes has yet to be
paid.
Slovakia. now a federation
within the Czechoslovak State, has
not remained immune to such
developments. Dr. Samuel Faltan,

vice-premier of the Slovak fed-
eral government and a member
of the Czechoslovak Communist
Party's Central Committee, said
in an interview at the end of Feb-
ruary that in Slovakia, "a nation.
alistic trend was now becoming
markedly manifest."

Against this background, the
Jewish corn infinity of Czechoslo-

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS
Friday, April 25, 1969-13

ra rtt

vakia has drawn the attention of Brown Gold Medalist

world Jewry to the celebrations,
originally scheduled for last year,
which marked the millenium of
settlement of Jews in the lands of
the anicent Bohemian crown.
Many Jews from Western coun-
tries like to give Prague the bene-
fit of believing that commemora-
tion of this remarkable period of
cultural development in Europe
and in Jewry is more than an
exercise in public relations and
publicity for the tourist trade. A
recent exhibition of some of the
religious treasures from Bohemia
and Moravia was shown in the
Netherlands by the State Jewish
Museum of Prague.
But with anti-Semitism still
evident, the concern of world
Jewry is less likely to turn to the
treasured relics of the past than
to the immediate fate of their con-
temporaries.
On the issue of anti-Semitism,
some Czech and Slovak leaders, in
the Communist Party and out,
have spoken up with courage and
determination. Yet—one important
omission has yet to be made up.
Alexander Dubcek, so far, has re-
mained conspicuously silent. Will
he permit anti-Semitism to con-
tribute to his own eclipse?

P

Larry Brown, the new head bas-
ketball coach at Davidson College,
won gold medals as a member of
the 1964 United States Olympic
Team and 1965 United States Mac-
cabia Team.

Cr

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ly:

Noble states that "little Lebanon Is
a microcosm of the United States
with all races and creeds." Yet in
the preceding paragraph he quotes
an Arab leader who says that Israel
is "an island of 2% million people
surrounded by a sea of 100 million
Arabs." If Lebanon, which neighbors
on Israel, is so heterogeneous in its
population composition, then the
"Arab sea" surrounding Israel is cer
tainly not so menacing.
To set the record straight, it should
be pointed out that the number of
Arabs in the Asian Middle East is
aproximately equal to that of the
Turks (about 32 million), and is only
slightly above that of the Iranians
(27 million), both of whom inhabit
the same area. This region contains
many other ethnic groups (like the
Kurds and Druze) whose attempts to
rid themselves of Arab domination
have not yet been as successful as
that of the Israelis.
The thesis of the article is that the
"Arab countries are as much unlike
Lebanon as a camel and a mouse." If
Lebanon is so clearly different from
the other Arab nations, how can one
expect to learn about Arab views
from Beirut? Lebanon's desire for
peace is most probably sincere, but
does this attitude reflect "The Arabs'
side" as the title of the article seems
to suggest?

FE 8-9222

Detroit LI 9 6161

SPARTAN DODGE

(Tell Us If We're Wrong)

BE A DODGE FEVER BELIEVER

GEORGE RUSKIN
President

855 Oakland Ave.
Pontiac, Mich.

INSIST THAT YOUR LEGISLATORS VOTE "NO!"
ON ANY PLAN TO USE PUBLIC FUNDS FOR PRIVATE SCHOOLS.

I do not mind lying, but hate
Inaccuracy.—Samuel Butler.

Representative Robert Waldon -.(District 1)
Representative Ted Mrozowski (District 2)
Representative William A. Ryan (District 3)
Rep. William B. Fitzgerald (District 4)
Representative E. D. O'Brien (District 5)
Rep. Robert D. Mahoney (District 6)
Rep. Stephen Stopczynski (District 7)

-

SELLS FOR LESS

IF ENOUGH OF US CONTACT OUR LEGISLATORS,
WE CAN PREVENT A SELF-SERVING GROUP FROM
DESTROYING OUR CONSTITUTION.

ADDRESS: Senate Chamber
State Capitol
Lansing 48902

/ t•er.2...

Phone:342-5666

Your Church and Your Public School!

YOUR LEGISLATORS ARE:



^

20010 . 1. ,,Int—•CuLzertsDril.••

PROTECT

Senator George S. Fitzgerald (District 1)
Sen. Charles N. Youngblood, Jr. (District 2)
Senator Stanley F. Rozycki (District 3)
Senator Coleman A. Young (District 4)
Senator Arthur Cartwright (District 5)
Senator Basil W. Brown (District 6)
Senator Raymond D. Dzendzel (District 7)
Senator Michael J. O'Brien (District 8)
Senator Stanley Novak (District 9)

T L D

v19 ••••••••••••••••••••••6

Lebanon's Role

Replying to an article on "The
Arabs' Side" by William Noble, in
the Detroit News, Assistant Pro-
fessor David Grossman of Eastern
Michigan University wrote recent-

; ' •-•

Representative James Bradley (District Si
Rep. Rosetta A. Ferguson (District 9)
Rep. David S. Holmes, Jr. (District 10)
Rep. Nelis J. Saunders (District 11)
Rep. George H. Edwards (District 12)
Rep. Michael Novak (District 13)
Rep. Raymond W. Hood (District 14)
Representative Jack Faxon (District 15)
Rep. Josephine D. Hunsinger (District 16)
Rep, Weldon 0. Yeager (District 17)
Rep. Leonard S. Walton (District 18)
Rep. Casmer P. Ogonowski (District 19)
Rep. George Montgomery (District 20)
Rep. George F. Montgomery (District 21)
Representative Daisy Elliott (District 22)
Representative Jackie Vaughn (District 23)
Represenative James Del Rio (District 24)
Rep. Frank V. Wierzbicki (District 25)
'Rep. Mathew McNeely (District 26)

ADDRESS: House of
Representatives
State Capitol
Lansing 48902

MICHIGAN EDUCATION ASSOCIATION

Representing the welfare of 2,400,000 children

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