LONDON (Dec. 15)
Six Soviet Jewish officials will go on trial in Odessa on charges of “violating Soviet laws and pilfering state property,” it was reported here today. The first news of the coming trial was given in a special article published in Pravda, official organ of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, in which the names of all the six Jews were given.
Commenting on this article, the Manchester Guardian today said that it can be taken for granted that “something of importance is afoot” in the Soviet Union. The forthcoming trial of the six Jewish officials in Odessa is considered here a part of the general Soviet trend to discredit Jews as an “untrustworthy element” in Communist-dominated countries.
The London Times, in an editorial, charged today that the Communist satellite countries have embarked on a new campaign against the Jews “in obedience to directions from Moscow” and that recent developments in those countries must be interpreted as part of Moscow’s general campaign against “cosmopolitanism.” The Times asserted that “three events in recent weeks have given evidence of Soviet hostility toward the Jews.” These developments, it said are:
“An unusual proportion of victims of the Communist purge in the East German village of Klein Machnow were Jews; Russian diplomatic representatives were conspicuously absent from the ceremonial inauguration of Isaac Ben Zvi, the new President of Israel last Wednesday and finally, and most dramatically, eleven of the fourteen Czechoslovak Communists condemned at the Prague treason trial were also Jewish.”
JEWS IN BRITAIN RESIGN FROM COMMUNIST GROUPS
Numerous Jewish members of the British-Czech Friendship Society, as well as of the Communist Party of Britain, have resigned their membership in protest against the anti-Jewish tone of the Prague “purge” trial, it was reported here today. The annual meeting of the British-Czech group here, which was to have been held yesterday, was postponed indefinitely in view of the mass resignation of active members.
Among the prominent persons who left the British Communist Party is Benjamin Frankel,” well-known composer and conductor. In a statement published in the press he emphasized that his resignation was a reaction to the Prague trial and indicated that other party members among British musicians were considering resigning, He has been a party member for 12 years.