Congressman Charges Marine Was Brutalized for Being Jewish, Asks Courts Martial

A New York Congressman charged today that a Jewish Marine Corp recruit suffered a mental breakdown as a result of brutal treatment he received at the hands of anti-Semitic drill instructors at the Parris Island, S.C. Marine training base. Rep. Mario Biaggi, a Democrat, told JTA that the youngster, who received a medical discharge from the Marine Corps last July, is now confined to the North Shore Mental Hospital in New York for psychiatric treatment. Rep. Biaggi said the boy’s name is being withheld at the request of his mother.

He said that Dr. Robert Hirsch, a medical doctor psychiatrist, has verified that the recruit’s breakdown was precipitated by anti-Semitism and beatings at the hands of non-commissioned officers. According to Rep. Biaggi, he was “treated like a prisoner in a Nazi concentration camp.” Drill instructors allegedly painted a Star of David on the youth’s forehead, struck him repeatedly on the head and called him “Jew boy” and “bagel.” Rep. Biaggi said that witnesses in the same platoon confirmed that the recruit was systematically brutalized by drill instructors because he is Jewish. He said he has asked the Marine Corps Commandant to court martial two drill instructors named in the complaint. Marine authorities had no comment. Rep. Biaggi described the boy as “a very sensitive young man of marked intelligence” who had been president of his high school student council. Rep. Biaggi has previously disclosed other episodes of alleged racism at Parris Island involving Negro and Puerto Rican recruits.

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