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January 23, 1987 - Image 34

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1987-01-23

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

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34

Friday, January 23, 1987

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

NEWS

British Jews Protest
New London Play

London (JTA) — The Royal
Court Theater, one of the
most prestigious in London's
West End, will shortly pre-
sent a play titled "Perdition"
which depicts Zionists as will-
ing collaborators with the
Nazis in the mass extermina-
tion of Hungarian Jews. The
play recently drew angry pro-
tests from British Jews,
Holocaust survivors and
others as an insidious libel
and propaganda windfall for
the Soviet Union and anti-
Israel hatemongers in Libya
and Iran.
Scholars of the Holocaust,
including Winston Churchill's
biographer, Martin Gilbert,
and Dr. Stephen Roth, direc-
tor of the Institute of Jewish
Affairs and himself a member
of the Zionist movement in
Hungary during World War
II, have called the play
"preposterbus" after reading
it in script.
According to Gilbert, it is a
"vicious travesty of the
facts." Roth branded it "a
libel against all those who
lived through, fought and
mostly perished in the
Holocaust."
The playwright, Jim Allen,
a former miner, admits to be-
ing an outspoken foe of Israel

but claims to be "very pro-
Jewish" and that he is "rescu-
ing the Jews from Zionism."
In an interview published
in The Guardian, Allen main-
tained that the Zionists were
"Hitler's favorite Jews"
because their interest coin-
cided with his "on the basis of
opportunism?'
Allen's rationale is that
"Hitler wanted the Jews out
of Europe and the Jews
wanted a state in Palestine. It
was almost a volkist (folk)
thing, blood and land. Hitler
was fond of the Zionists, they
were good Jews, prepared to
fight for land."
Ironically, the Royal Court
Theater has several wealthy
Jews among its patrons and
its chief fundraiser in the U.S.
is believed to be the impre-
sario Joseph Papp, a strong
supporter of Israel.
Allen's play is loosely based
on events in Hungary in 1944
when the Zionist leader,
Rudolf Kastner, engaged in
hopeless negotiations with
Adolf Eichmann to buy Jew-
ish lives in exchange for
trucks and money. Kastner's
activities were the subject of
bitter controversy in Israel
after the war.

NCSJ Rebukes USSR
For 'Hollow' Gestures

New York (JTA) —. The Na-
tional Conference on Soviet
Jewry (NCSJ), in its year-end
report, last week rebuked the
Soviet Union for "a year of
dramatic, but largely disap-
pointing developments" in
human rights and Jewish
emigration.
In a wrap-up of Soviet
moves and statements on
human rights, released at a
press conference, the NCSJ
assails the new policy of what
is being called "glasnost," or
openness, in the USSR since
Mikhail Gorbachev assumed
leadership as merely a tac-
tical shift, more cosmetic
than real, and decries the new
Soviet "humanitarian cam-
paign" as "hollow."
The NCSJ reports that
Jewish emigration dropped
20 percent from the already
low 1985 figure, with only 914
Jews leaving the Soviet
Union last year as compared
to 1,140 in 1985. The NCSJ
also accuses the USSR of at-
tempting to "close the book"
on Jewish emigration by
making statements such as
that at the Bern follow-up
conference on the Helsinki
Accords in April, when they
said that "they could not per-
mit the sending of Jews to the
`war danger zone' of Israel?'
Such statements have been
followed, says the NCSJ, by
the concrete new emigration

regulations which went into
effect January 1, which "fixed
in law the narrowly defined
family" of parents, children
and siblings who may invite
relatives to join them abroad,
"condemning hundreds of
thousands of Jews from ever
applying for, much less
receiving, permission to
emigrate?'
The NCSJ report says that
"nearly 380,000" have begun
the process of applying to
emigrate. Of the 380,000, the
NCSJ identifies over 11,000
refuseniks. These cases,
states the NCSJ, have been
repeatedly raised with Soviet
officials, notably by President
Reagan at the Reykjavik
summit last October.

Hoopsters
Defeat
USSR Team

1b1 Aviv (JTA) — Israeli
basketball champions Mac-
cabi rIbl Aviv defeated the
USSR champions Zalgeris
Kaunus 81 to 74 in their
return game in Brussels last
week.
Maccabi had lost to the
Lithuanian term by 74 to 82
in their first match the
previous night.
The games are being played
for the European cup of na-
tional basketball.

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