Widespread Support Found for Boycott of Poland’s Warsaw Ghetto Ceremony
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Widespread Support Found for Boycott of Poland’s Warsaw Ghetto Ceremony

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Widespread support was reported here today for a total Jewish boycott of Poland’s official observance of the 25th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto revolt and the unveiling of the Warsaw sponsored Jewish pavilion of the Auschwitz death camp site. Sentiment for the boycott, stemming from the Polish regime’s current anti-Jewish campaign, was described to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency by Stefan Crajek, president of the Organization of Partisans, Combatants and Ghetto Fighters. Mr. Crajek, who stopped here briefly on his way back to Israel after visiting the United States, Canada and Belgium, said that the boycott was enthusiastically supported by groups of survivors and resistance fighters wherever he went.

In a related development, Jewish student groups here invited other Jewish youth organizations to loin them in a march to the Polish Embassy on April 21, following a mass meeting to commemorate the Ghetto uprising.

Mr. Crajek said that Jews everywhere would mark the Warsaw Ghetto anniversary. A world assembly of concentration camp survivors and resistance fighters will be held in Israel from July 22 through July 26 where the main subjects will be the continuing struggle against neo-Nazism and the fate of Polish Jewry. Mr. Crajek said.

A counter-movement meanwhile seemed to be developing in Poland with the apparent purpose of removing the stigma of anti-Semitism. A Polish veteran’s organization, the Union of Fighters for Freedom and Democracy announced, according to reports reaching here, that it would sponsor historical research to document Polish aid given to Jews during World War II. The organization said that the move was intended as a tribute to Poles who saved Jews during the Nazi occupation. Polish newspapers, in their denunciations of “Zionist elements” in Poland, have been denigrating the role of Jews in the anti-Nazi resistance. Some papers have charged collaboration between Jewish ghetto leaders and the Nazis and have claimed that only a relatively small number of Jews took part in the 1943 ghetto revolt.

The Observer reported from Warsaw today that two factions in Poland are chasing “the Zionist phantom in different directions.” The “nationalist” faction, led by Interior Minister Moczar, is trying to force a massive purge of all unreliable elements, either “Zionists” or opposed to the regime. The other faction, close to Communist Party chief Gomulka. is attempting to distinguish between “Zionists” and “assimilated Jews’ loyal to the regime.

So far, reports from Warsaw indicate that the Moczar faction has the upper hand. Two officials of the film school at Lodz, both Jews, were dismissed from their posts. One is the school’s rector, Jerzy Toeplitz and the other, Roman Wajdowicz, one of two deputy directors. The Lodz school, which produced such prominent young directors as Roman Polanski and Jerzy Skolimowski, was attacked by a Communist Party official last week for producing films “falsifying the facts of the period of Nazi occupation.”

The Polish news agency announced the dismissal of Tomasz Lempart, counselor of the president of the Polish Olympic Committee, and Aleksander Gutowski, director of the Scientific Institute of Physical Culture, both Jews. They bring to 25 the number of officials, mostly Jewish, ousted from their jobs or from the Communist Party.

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