Italian Jews Hail End of Fascist Regime As Opening Door to Abolition of Racial Laws

Letters from leaders of large Jewish communities in Italy hailing the downfall of the Fascist regimes as opening the doors to the abolition of racial legislation in Italy were received here today.

(Stefani, the official Italian news agency, reported today that Marshal Badoglio had issued a decree in Rome canceling the anti-Jewish laws, restoring Italian citizenship to persons deprived of it on racial grounds and ordering the liberation of Jews confined in camps or jails because they were Jewish or because they refused to divorce their Jewish spouses.)

These letters, which stated that the anti-Semitic legislation had never had much influence on the Italian people, also disclosed that shortly before he was forced to abdicate Mussolini moved 16,000 Jews from labor camps in southern Italy to the northern part of the country to prevent their liberation by invading Allied armies.

The Italian racial laws were introduced on July 14, 1938, after Mussolini had established close relations with Hitler. Previous to that leading Fascist spokesmen, including Mussolini himself, had ridiculed the concept of “pure races” and had disclaimed all connection between the philosophy of Fascism and anti-Semitism.

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