JERUSALEM (Jan. 19)
The Soviet Government was tonight accused in the Israel Parliament of promoting anti-Jewish hatred after “spiritually liquidating the Jews.” A resolution condemning the Soviet anti-Jewish campaign was introduced in Parliament by the parties which compose the coalition government.
Foreign Minister Moshe Sharett told the deputies that “the Israel Government will expose in the United Nations and on every other platform the campaign of instigation against the Jewish people and its competent public bodies which is now going on in the countries under Communist rule, and will raise its voice in warning of the danger threatening the millions of Jews therein.
“The Israel Government,” he continued, “will continue to demand with the utmost vigor that all Jews who desire to seek their salvation in Zion shall be permitted to do so. Any attempt by persons or public bodies in Israel to justify or attempt to defend anti-Jewish instigation imperilling the safety of Jews in any land will be regarded by the State of Israel as a hostile act against Israel, from which the necessary consequences will be drawn.”
Mr. Sharett stressed that Israel’s anxiety at the time of the Prague trial has proved justified. “This time again, as in the case of the Prague trial, the falseness of the indictment is inherently demonstrated,” he said. “But its fantastic motives are sufficient to tear the whole accusation to pieces.”
Meir Argov, chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs Committee, speaking for the Mapai Party, termed the Moscow charges against Zionism and Jews a “blood libel.” He charged the Soviet Government with suppressing the spiritual and cultural life of the Russian Jews–stopping the publication of Yiddish newspapers; closing Yiddish theatres and doing away with the best of Jewish writers, actors and spiritual leaders.
The “defamation of Jewish doctors” is the climax of this campaign, Mr. Argov declared. It is not only an anti-Jewish insult but a threat which “the entire Jewish nation must repulse.” He called upon Parliament to “defend the purity and nobility of the world Jewish organization, the Joint Distribution Committee, which saved millions of lives” in the two world wars. He stressed that the J.D.C. rehabilitated millions of persons in the period between the two wars, pointing out that the recipients of its benefits were Christians as well as Jews. “We are proud of such an organization,” he declared.
Agitation in the house reached its peak when Communist deputy Shmuel Mikunis rose to defend the Communist countries. Speaker Sprinzak was several times forced to call the house to order and warned Mr. Mikunis against continuation of such remarks as: “the gang of criminal doctors” and ‘this excitement is made here on orders from Washington.” Even Ministers of the government forgot their dignity and shouted at the Communist deputy.