Menu JTA Search

Anti-semitic Incidents in Poland Said to Be the Work of Former Anti-communist Underground Forces

– The recent anti-Semitic incidents in Poland were a minor manifestation by former anti-Communist underground forces dating from World War II, according to Stefan Grayek, chairman of the World Federation of Jewish Fighters and Partisans, who just returned from a visit to Poland and Czechoslovakia.

Grayek, sometimes described as Israel’s “unofficial ambassador” to Poland in the absence of diplomatic relations, said the anti-Semitic demonstrations were opposed by the government and denounced by the Catholic Church and the Solidarity free trade union movement. (See related story.)

While in Poland he held talks with government leaders and said he anticipates a renewal of trade relations between Poland and Israel. Grayek, the former hero of the Warsaw ghetto uprising, laid special stress on his talks with Gen. Mieczyflaw Moczar who was Interior Minister during the 1968 official anti-Semitic period in Poland and responsible for issuing anti-Jewish pamphlets at the time. He has since returned to the Politburo and is expected to be the next President of Poland.

MOCZAR REGRETS HIS FORMER POLICY

Grayek said Moczar told him he regretted his anti-Semitic policy in the past and has made statements and published articles praising the part played by Jews in the wartime underground and Jewish contributions to Poland’s economy in the past. A delegation of Polish Jews and non-Jews from the former partisan organization Moczar now heads will visit Israel in two months.

Grayek said that between 7000-8000 Jews remain in Poland, most of them elderly people living on state pensions. Some Jews hold minor posts in the government and there are a number of Jewish authors and journalists at work, he said. Before going to Poland, Grayek attended a meeting of the International Auschwitz Committee in Marienbad, Czechoslovakia.

He said that arrangements were now being made for the resumption of activities of the Joint Distribution Committee in Poland and Czechoslovakia. Some 6000 Czech Jews are registered as such in Czechoslovakia and an estimated 10,000 others have not registered themselves as Jews. Israel’s Worst Merchant Marine Disaster:

NEXT STORY