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Journalist Reports Death of Kaganovitch, Jew Who Was Top Stalin Aide

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Isaac Don Levine, journalist and expert on Soviet affairs, confirmed to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency today that he had been reliably informed in Moscow last June that Lazar Kaganovich, who had been a member of the Soviet Politburo and leading economic planner till he was downgraded by Premier Khrushchev, died of a heart attack last December, Mr. Kaganovich, a Jew, had attained the highest rungs of the Soviet hierarchy under Joseph Stalin.

Mr. Levine said he had been informed of the death of Kaganovich during a visit to Moscow. He also said that he had visited the Novo Devichye cemetery, where many former Soviet greats lie buried and was given detailed instructions by the caretaker on how to find the Kaganovich grave. He found a mound at the designated place, he said, but no marker or tombstone of any kind. He said he learned on further inquiry that it was a practice of Soviet authorities to wait about a year for the ground to settle after a burial before placing a marker.

Mr. Levine said he had not sought to contact members of the Kaganovich family to seek to verify the death report because he had come to Russia as tourist to do some research in Soviet archives, and did not want to compromise his status.

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