It was a very unpleasant surprise for me to read in the Manchester Guardian that the “Intourist,” a Soviet travel agency which has branches also in New York, has taken advertising space in Der Stuermer, the Jew-baiting organ of the notorious Nazi leader, Julius Streicher.
Curiously enough the “Intourist” has inserted an advertisement in Der Stuermer inviting German tourists to the Moscow theatre festival which opens in September.
At a time when the Nazi government definitely prohibits its citizens from visiting Soviet Russia; at a time when the entire civilized world is boycotting Nazi trade; at a time when Der Steuermer is considered even in Germany an obscene sheet; at a time when this publication of Julius Streicher is devoted exclusively to anti-Jewish incitementâ€”at such a time it is difficult to explain how the “Intourist,” a Soviet government institution, has seen fit to patronize Der Stuermer with its advertising.
‘INTOURIST’ MUST EXPLAIN
The leaders of the “Intourist” will have a hard job explaining what prompted them to insert their advertisement in such a publication as Der Stuermer which is as much opposed to Communists as it is to Jews. In the same issue where the advertisement of the “Intourist” appears one can read several attacks against Communism. Do the leaders of the “Intourist” believe that their paid advertisement will move Julius Streicher to cease his attacks against Soviet Russia? Do they sincerely assume that the readers of Der Stuermer are of an element which would be ready to visit Moscow for the theatre festival there?
The fact that a Soviet institution which is largely patronized by Jews abroad is helping to break the boycott against Nazi Germany by inserting advertisements in the most venomous anti-Jewish publication extant will disappoint many sincere friends of this institution. The Soviet government would certainly not wish to be held responsible for this irresponsible act of the “Intourist” leaders, but the “Intourist” office will no doubt invite upon itself a lot of justified criticism.
SOVIET FUNDS TO STREICHER
The act of the “Intourist” could perhaps be reasonably explained if relations between Soviet Russia and Nazi Germany were normal. This is, however, not the case. Every newspaper reader knows that if Germany is now preparing for war it is conducting these preparations with an eye to crushing Soviet Russia. Under such circumstances how can Soviet money be paid to Nazi papers which are advocating the downfall of the Soviet government?
The Jews of the world felt very much embittered several days ago when the news came from Poland announcing that the Polish government has forbidden the Jews to conduct anti-Nazi boycott propaganda. This prohibition was a result of the secret agreement existing between Nazi Germany and the pro-Nazi Polish government which provides for the suppression of anti-German acts in Poland.
Whether the Polish government acted wisely in suppressing the anti-Nazi boycott conducted by Jews in Poland is a different matter, but one can imagine the resentment which an advertisement of a Polish government institution would arouse if it appeared in such a Jew-baiting-organ as Der Stuermer. The Polish government would then have been directly accused of financially supporting Streicher’s organ.
A SERIOUS ACCUSATION
The same accusation can be hurled now at the “Intourist.” Though nobody doubts that the “Intourist” is far from supporting the anti-Jewish policy of Der Stuermer one cannot pass with silence the fact that this Soviet, organization inserts its paid advertisements in this Nazi paper. The mistake ought to be rectified. The “Intourist” owes an explanation to the Jews for patronizing the vilest anti-Jewish newspaper in the world.