WASHINGTON (Sep. 1)
National Commander Ralph Plofsky, of the Jewish War Veterans, announced today that his group is alerting other veterans organizations and taking steps to expose and debunk the planned September 19 “pilgrimage” organized by a right-wing group to honor the memory of three Russian Fascists who served the Nazi cause.
The Russians, held at Fort Dix, N.J., among Nazi prisoners of war, committed suicide in June, 1945, to avoid return to Russia by the U.S. Army and trial as war criminals. A conservative youth organization, “Young Americans for Freedom,” announced that it is organizing a ceremony to honor the Fascists as “freedom fighters” and anti-Communist heroes. Participation of patriotic and veterans groups was sought.
Mr. Plofsky said the JWV would undertake to expose “this absurd gesture which does such a grave disservice to Americans who fought and died to liberate Europe from Nazism.” “If it is now desirable to honor all those who fought against Russia during World War II,” he continued, “the next logical step in this illogical concept would be to pay homage to Adolf Hitler because he, too, was an anti-Communist.”
The Jewish Veterans leader said the Y.A.F. demonstration actually aided Communist propagandists and facilitated efforts to depict America as pro-Fascist. The September 19 “pilgrimage” would make “a mockery” of the vigil against Soviet anti-Semitism, scheduled to be held here that same day by Jewish and other groups, Mr. Plofsky declared.