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Jews Will Hold Counterdemonstration in Skokie Unless Nazis Return March Permit

June 22, 1978
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

A spokesman for the Public Affairs Committee (PAC) of the Jewish United Fund of Chicago said today that PAC was proceeding with its plans for a counterdemonstration to the much-publicized Nazi march in Skokie Sunday unless the tiny Chicago Nazi Party returns to Skokie officials its permit for the June 25 march.

His comment followed issuance of a statement by the PAC late yesterday after federal Judge George Leighton dismissed a requirement of the Chicago Park District for posting of a bond by the Nazis for a permit to march in Marquette Park, in a southwestern section of Chicago considered racially volatile. Frank Collin, head of the miniscule Nazi Party, said, after Judge Leighton’s decision, that the Nazis had “gotten what we wanted” in the Leighton decision and would march in Marquette Park July 9, cancelling plans for the Sunday march in Skokie, home of 7000 Holocaust survivors. The PAC spokesman said there was no confirmation of press reports that the Chicago Park District planned to appeal Judge Leighton’s ruling. Collin said he would meet with newsmen tomorrow after he receives the formal order from Judge Leighton authorizing his Nazis to march in Marquette Park.


In the PAC statement, David Smerling, president of the Jewish United Fund, and Sol Goldstein, a Holocaust survivor and chairman of a PAC committee helping to coordinate the counter-demonstration, said, “we are still proceeding with our plans for a counter-demonstration Sunday starting at noon at Niles East High School in Skokie. Up to this time, we have received no information from the Skokie Village authorities that the permit for the Nazi march on June 25 has been cancelled or withdrawn.”

The PAC spokesman, asked at what point the counter-demonstration could be canceled if the Nazis dropped their Skokie march Sunday, said the PAC was uncertain. It was noted that individuals and groups from points as distant as Canada and California reportedly were planning to send protesters to Skokie and confusion was widespread as to whether the momentum already was so great that it would be difficult if not impossible to stop protesters from outside Illinois from going to Skokie even if the Nazis did cancel their Sunday march.

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