Bohlen Warns Soviet Mideast Involvement Spurs Anti-semitism at Home

Charles E. Bohlen, former United States Ambassador to Moscow, warned here last night that the deeper the Soviet Union becomes involved in the Middle East the worse anti-Semitism will get in Russia. Mr. Bohlen, regarded as one of the leading American authorities on Soviet Russia and Communism, addressed the annual dinner meeting of the Washington chapter of the American Jewish Committee. “I wish with all my heart that I could give you hope” for the Jews in the Soviet Union, Mr. Bohlen said, but the “logic of developments in the Middle East where the Soviets are digging in deeper and deeper, especially in Egypt, means that it will be more and more anti-Israel. There is very little chance of the Soviets looking upon Israel with sympathy.”

Mr. Bohlen went on to observe that “it is a sad commentary on the state of civilization in 1970 to contemplate the plight of Jewry in the Soviet Union. It attacks the conscience not only of Jewry but of all nations. It should be the pre-occupation not only of the United Nations but of our own government.” Mr. Bohlen’s remarks at the AJ Committee dinner were taped by the Voice of America for broadcast overseas. He said two elements were responsible for the “hostility” of the Soviet government toward the Jewish people. One was “the basic ideology of the Communist Party in the Soviet Union and the other was the State of Israel itself.” He said the “extraordinarily enthusiastic reception” Mrs. Golda Meir received when as Israel’s first Ambassador to Russia she visited the Moscow synagogue, “convinced Stalin that Jewry was evil and that Jews were not the kind of Russian citizens he desired,” Mr. Bohlen said.

NEXT STORY