Antisemitism in Soviet Works.

Another case of factory antisemitism is reported from the town of Bobruisk, in White Russia, where the notorious Barshay case occurred in 1928, which stirred the country at the time because of the revelations about the inhuman treatment of a Jewish girl worker named Barshay by her non-Jewish fellow-workers.

A worker named Wasiliev, employed in the Bobruisk timber combine, trapped a Jewish worker named Palaies in the drying chamber of the veneer department, in which the heat is kept at 65?? Centigrade. When the Jewish worker put out his hand to unbolt the door Wasiliev hacked off his fingers with a hatchet. Five hours later Palaies was found in the drying chamber unconscious.

The Communist Party cell of the Trade Union immediately called a special meeting at which a resolution was adopted demanding that the court should inflict severe punishment on Wasiliev.

The Yiddish daily “Oktiabr”, of Minsk, the organ of the Jewish Communists of White Russia, reports a number of antisemitic manifestations in the Minsk machine-building works, Communar, and declares that there are a number of Communists among those who are infected with antisemitism. There are over 1,000 workers in the Communar, it says, 565 White Russians, 304 Jews, 33 Russians, and 23 Poles. The rest belong to various nationalities. The workers have for a long time been grumbling that Jewish workers are being placed in responsible positions and that Russians are being passed over. One of the leaders of the antisemitic movement was a Russian worker named Shtshegolov, who is a member of the Minsk Communist Party Control Committee, the supreme Party organ in the city.

Another worker named Pitkewitch, also a Communist, sent a report to the City Party-Committee, accusing the Jews of being always on the look-out for cushy jobs. The Jews are not able to do good work, he wrote, but they are being sent to the classes to be trained as specialists. Why are funds provided for this purpose for one nation, and not for us Russians, he asked.

The Investigating Committee has found, the “Oktiabr” says, that the works are saturated with chauvinism and antisemitism. The “Oktiabr” accuses the Communist Party and the trade union organisations in the works of failure to conduct an enlightenment campaign for internationalisation and demands that the antisemites should be treated as counter-revolutionaries and expelled from the Party.

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