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Bucharest Charged with Framing ‘spurious Alibi’ for Pogroms

Dominant elements in Bucharest are creating a “spurious alibi” for pogroms against Rumania’s Jews in order to divert attention from the Soviet invasion, it was charged today in a statement signed by Adolph Held, president of the Jewish Labor Committee; Henry Monsky, president of B’nai B’rith; Sol M. Stroock, chairman of the executive committee of the American Jewish Committee, and Dr. Stephen S. Wise, president of the American Jewish Congress. The statement follows:

“Recent dispatches based on Government propaganda releases in Berlin, Rome and Bucharest describe what purport to be armed uprisings of ‘Jews and Communists’ in the Rumanian territories of Bessarabia and Northern Bukowina which have been annexed by the Soviet Government. The official German news agency and the Bucharest Curentul have also published inflammatory anti-Jewish articles accusing the 300,000 Jews of the lost area of ‘excesses’ designed to cause internal unrest.

“This language, published by permission of the Rumanian censor, is familiar to any American who recalls the ‘justifications’ advanced by the Nazis for their persecutions in the past. In order to divert the attention of the Rumanian people from the loss of territory to the Soviet Government it is apparent that the dominant elements in Bucharest are whipping up a spurious alabi for a deliberately plotted pogrom against Jews.

“The Rumanian Government is cooperating with the Nazi Government. The newly formed totalitarian ‘Party of the Nation,’ which bars Jews from membership, is now all-powerful. Newly instituted laws now applied with redoubled severity aim at eliminating Rumania’s Jewish citizens–some four per cent of the population–from the nation’s political and economic life. Now, by spreading inspired stories, unconfirmed by any impartial observer, the Nazified elements in control at Bucharest are attempting to throw a mask of terror and pogroms over their own shortcomings.

“The reported massacre of 600 Jews in Galati may be followed by even more awful slaughter, as the Rumanian people is whipped up to seek an outlet for despair at seeing their land so brutally partitioned. The Smoke screen of ‘insurrection’ attached to an impoverished, weak and politically helpless group, will not mislead intelligent Americans.”

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