ROME (Jan. 1)
An attack on the French Jews appearing in yesterday’s Popolo d’Italia of Milan was aimed against France and did not foreshadow an anti-Semitic policy in Italy, it was believed today in informed political circles.
These circles professed surprises at the strong wording of the article in the personal organ of Premier Benito Mussolini.
Since the paper is regarded as I1 Duce’s principal mouthpiece, it was believed that the article might have been inspired. (The belief is strongly supported by the fact that censorship of Italian newspapers is so rigid that nothing not approved by the authorities is ever published.)
(The New York Times, in a dispatch from Milan, however, quoted well informed circles in Rome as saying that the article was printed on the private initiative of the Popolo d’Italia and “can in no way be considered inspired.”)
The article charged that the Jews themselves were to be blamed for the revival of anti-Semitism because they were “intrusive and vicious and push themselves too conspicuously.”
Referring to Premier Leon Blum and other Jewish statesmen of France as examples, the article contended that Jews were only two per cent of the entire French population, yet the proportion of Jewish statesmen was greater, and this caused anti-Semitism there.
“The Jews themselves create and justify anti-Semitism,” the article declared. “Anti-Semitism is inevitable in countries where Semitism is emphatically displayed by its viciousness and intrusiveness.”
Previous anti-Semitic articles in other Italian newspapers, notably Regime Fascista, of which Roberto Farinacci is the editor, have been dismissed in official circles here as reflecting merely personal views rather than those of the Government.
The United Press further quoted Popolo d’Italia as follows:
“It is clear in view of the ferocious exclusiveness of the (Jewish) tribe that Christians would be totally banned from public life and doomed to be slaves toiling in order to permit Jews to celebrate their Sabbath in complete rest.
“He who justifies anti-Semitism is always, everywhere the same person — the Jew himself — the Jew in his habit of exaggerating, a thing which he does often.”