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French Communist Party Criticizes Moscow for Anti-semitic Book

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L’Humanite, the official organ of the French Communist party, took the unprecedented step today of criticizing the Soviet Union in an editorial strongly condemning the publication in Kiev of a booklet, “Judaism Without Embellishment,” which has been widely criticized in the West as incitement to anti-Semitism.

The criticism was in the form of reprinting an editorial in the “Neue Presse,” the Yiddish-language organ of the Jewish section of the party, which demanded the formal disavowal by Soviet officials of the pamphlet, published last year in Kiev by the Ukrainian Academy of Science. The editorial was the third on the subject in Neue Presse and was the first time that the newspaper had ever criticized the Soviet Union. (Similar criticism was voiced also by the Jewish Communists in New York.)

The “Neue Presse” had submitted a formal request to the Soviet Press agency Novosti for clarification of the status of the pamphlet which Neue Presse said contained anti-Jewish caricatures reminiscent of the Hitler period. Today Neue Presse announced on its front page that it had received a reply from Novosti and that it would publish the reply tomorrow.

Here Presse’s editor wrote that while the anti-Soviet press and Jewish organizations had been carrying on a strong anti-Soviet campaign on the basis of the pamphlet, “we say frankly this booklet shocks us. We think its drawings are harmful. This kind of caricature is an inducement to incitement and cannot serve to convince or to defend a just cause.”

A meeting arranged by Jewish writers and Journalists was held here tonight to protest the appearance of the pamphlet.

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