JERUSALEM (Oct. 5)
In their eagerness to discredit Israel and to discourage Russian Jews from wanting to go there, Soviet authorities have organized mass meetings for Jews in various cities where “tourists” who recently visited Israel get up and testify to the allegedly horrible conditions of life in that country.
This was learned here in a letter from a Jew living in the USSR to a relative here. The writer indicates that Russian Jews do not believe the calumnies being spread by the “tourists, ” who were members of the first group of Russians to visit this country since its establishment. However, there are hints in the letter that Russian Jews are concerned over the possible effects of such a slander campaign.
The letter, which was reproduced in the local press, says that tourists not only describe the “horrors” of life in Israel, but also show slides and short films on Israel. In some of them, isolated slums are described as typical housing in Israel. One “tourist” in a series of newspaper articles has described the “unbearable sufferings” of the immigrants to Israel and the miserable food, housing and employment conditions said to abound in the Jewish State.