LONDON (Aug. 18)
Nearly 100 Jewish students Monday night demonstrated in Edinburgh against the first public performance of “Perdition.” a play which suggests Zionist complicity in the Nazi Holocaust.
Jewish youth groups, some of which travelled from London, Manchester and Glasgow, stood outside Edinburgh’s Royal Lyceum Studio Theater and held placards, distributed leaflets and gave pavement readings of literature about the Holocaust.
The play has been the center of controversy since last January when London’s Royal Court Theatre scrapped the premier at only two day’s notice.
Performances have also been abandoned in other cities following protests by Jewish groups that the play is malicious distortion of events in Hungary in 1944.
Playwright Jim Allen, a leftwinger who claims flawless anti-racist credentials, said Monday night that he was out to counter the “Hollywood version” of the Holocaust and the State of Israel epitomized by the film Exodus.
His theme, dramatized in the form of a postwar libel action in a London court, is that Hungarian Zionist leaders entered a conspiracy of silence with the Nazis about Auschwitz, thereby sharing responsibility for the death of more than half a million people deported there from Hungary.
Allen, hailing the showing as a victory for free speech, now intends to seek more venues for “Perdition.” However, Monday night the young Jewish protesters had the last word. As the Edinburgh audience dispersed in the setting sun, they stood in a circle in the road and sang Hatikva.