Rabbi Meir Kahane, founder of the Jewish Defense League, was prevented forcibly today from entering the Salle des Congres hall to participate in the second World Conference on Soviet Jewry. Kahane, who was refused an invitation to address the conference on grounds the JDL was not one of the sponsoring organizations, was overpowered by conference guards, who threw him to the floor and had him carried out by Belgian police. “I am a Jew, let me speak,” the JDL leader shouted as police removed him from the convention hall.
He was taken to police headquarters where it was indicated he would probably be expelled from Belgium on an expulsion order issued against him five years ago in connection with a similar futile attempt to appear at the first Brussels conference. A conference spokesman said, after the incident, that the conference presidium had decided a month ago against admitting Kahane as a delegate, adding that the decision had been approved by the conference steering committee.
Though the militant JDL leader approached the hall followed by a crowd of newsmen and television cameramen, the security guards posted outside the building failed to recognize him. Once the entered the building, he was recognized and guards wrestled him to the floor.
The conference spokesman said police intervention had not been asked but eye-witnesses said conference guards called the police. Kahane was expelled from the first conference in February, 1971 at the request of the first conference organizers.
DETENTE IS USSR’S ACHILLES HEEL
According to information provided to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency. Kahane had planned to call on the conference to approve a program calling on the United States to lead a Western effort to end all talks with the Soviet Union, embargo all trade with the USSR and halt all cultural, entertainment and sports exchanges with the Soviets.
He had planned to state that “the sudden outpouring of Soviet Jews from 1970 to 1973 in numbers undreamed of by the slow-thinking and unimaginative Jewish Establishment, was the direct result of Jewish Defense League and militants’ grasp of the significance of detente as the Achilles heel of the Soviets and their acting on it.”
Kahane had also planned to assert that “if the Soviets still desire detente badly, the leverage remains with Jews to threaten the Kremlin with possible loss of that detente they want so badly.” He had planned to declare that the “threat” could not be “the once-a-year extravaganza which the Establishment spends most of its time planning and which not only ends up in a picnic or carnival atmosphere but worse, sends tens of thousands of Jews home with a clear conscience, convinced they have done something’ for Soviet Jewry.”
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.