The anti-Semitic disturbances in Kishinev, Roumania, on February 13 on the part of a group of theological students are reported fully in the next day’s issue of the Kishinev Yiddish daily, “Unser Zeit,” which has the following to say about them:
“Last night Kishinev lived in fear of a pogrom. A group of 30-40 students of the Theological Faculty, future priests, assembled and with sticks and stones broke windows and wounded passers-by on Alexandrowska Street. The police were present during these disturbances, but prevented the hooligans from being touched. Needless to say, they didn’t protect the peaceful population. Instead of arresting the students, they arrested three Jews who were standing on the street. This is the usual system. They acted in the same way in Piatro-Niamcz, in Jassy and in Bucharest. Those who are beaten are arrested, in order to hide the mild treatment of the attackers.
“The police were remarkably tolerant towards the attackers. A half hour after the occurrences there came the gendarmes to disperse the Jews who had gathered to protest against the indifference and weakness of the police. In making arrests of Jews the police showed great ‘ability.’
“It is interesting that whenever a Communist demonstration is attempted, there are instantly on the spot enough armed forces to arrest the Communists immediately and to render them harmless. Here also the police knew that a pogrom, not merely a demonstration, was being prepared. Nevertheless no means were taken to prevent it.
“The National-Zaranists (government party) complain about the Jews who compare them to other parties which have openly practiced anti-Semitism. They believe that we Jews should be satisfied with their programs and fine promises that ‘such things will not be repeated again.’
“The government should know that we don’t believe in promises, for we know that if it wished to, it could keep order in the country. The Jewish population is aroused by yesterday’s happenings and it demands the most far-reaching and satisfying guarantees against their future recurrence.”
A delegation of the Kishinev Kehillah, consisting of Rabbi Zirelson, Engineer Dr. Slutzky and Deputy Landau, visited the Director of Bessarabia, Moldavanu, and protested to him on behalf of the Jewish community against the anti-Semitic disturbances. Rabbi Zirelson said that he was amazed that theological students, future priests and spiritual leaders of the Roumanian people, should indulge in such acts of hooliganism; he protested against the attitude of the police during the excesses and demanded that the guilty parties be punished. Dr. Slutzky and Deputy Landau also spoke in the same spirit.
Director Moldavanu in his answer to the delegation said he was convinced that the police didn’t conduct itself properly during the riot. Subsequently he issued a statement in which he deplored deeply the excesses and stated that measures have been adopted to preserve peace and order in Roumania in the future.
Director Moldavanu also told the delegation that he conferred with Father Gala-Galaktian, Roumanian savant and friend of the Jews, who burst into tears while speaking of these anti-Semitic excesses. Father Gala-Galaktian told him that he was particularly ashamed over the fact that these excesses occurred on the last day of his deanship of the Theological Faculty. Gala-Galaktian told Moldavanu that in the Theological Faculty there are several professors, who are open anti-Semites and who incite the students.
After its conference with Director Moldavanu, the delegation of the Jewish Kehillah sent a telegram to Premier Juliu Maniu, protesting against the riots and demanding that the premier take steps to preserve peace among the various nationalities of Roumania and punish the hooligans as well as the police which tolerated the excesses. Deputy Landau also sent a telegram to the Premier in the same vein.
A delegation of anti-Semitic students which wanted to see Director Moldavanu was refused admittance. Another delegation of Christian students came to the Prefect Jevitzki and demanded that one of their comrades who had been arrested be freed; otherwise they threatened that they and their comrades would make pogroms in Jassy and Bucharest.