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Britons Go on Trial for Exploding Smoke Bomb at Showing of “sword in the Desert

March 2, 1950
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Two young Britons charged with setting off a smoke bomb and creating a disturbance during the showing of “Sword In The Desert,” an American-made film about the Jewish-British conflict in Palestine, today went on trial in magistrate’s court here. After part of the testimony was heard the trial was postponed until March 15.

During the trial the attorney for the defendants, John Cook and Bertram Duke Pile, asked police superintendent James Cole whether it was not true that “a good many of the Jewish fraternity” in the audience viewing “Sword in the Desert” had cheered when the film showed a British convoy being blasted by fighters of the Jewish underground. The police official denied the allegation. Pile is a notorious fascist troublemaker who has been arrested before on similar charges.

The film was withdrawn from public showing several weeks ago following two days of demonstration and hooliganism by Mosleyite fascists and after the police said they would not be responsible for public order unless the film were withdrawn. During the performances the fascists released stench bombs and live rats in the theatre.

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