GLORIA M. STEINEM
DR. PAUL E. SIGMUND, JR.
LEONARD N. BEBCHICK
from Report on the Vienna Youth Festival,
Independent Research Service, 1961
SUPPLEMENT TO THE FIRST EDITION:
NOTES ON THE PREPARATIONS FOR THE EIGHTH FESTIVAL
This report on the Vienna Youth Festival has been compiled from information given out by the Festival's organizers, from articles in the international press, from reports of Austrian and other student and youth groups present in Vienna, and from the personal observations of Festival participants. The Independent Research Service, a privately-supported educational foundation which provides research on international subjects of interest to youth and students, has published this report in English, French, and Spanish in the hope that it will be useful both as a research document in future studies of the Communist youth movement and as an aid to groups and individuals deciding their attitude toward future festivals.
Thus far, the organization, aims, and techniques of the Eighth Festival seem to be identical with those of its predecessors. In the light of these developments, it is perhaps even more necessary that these individuals and groups debating attendance in Helsinki examine closely the case history of the Festival in Vienna.
New York, New York
The following are excerpts from a Research Release Published By International News Bureau, Vienna:
SOME BIOGRAPHICAL DATA ON FESTIVAL PERSONALITIES
A major effort has been made by the sponsors of the Seventh Youth Festival to make the event appear non-partisan. As evidence, the sponsors often have pointed to individuals outside the Soviet orbit who have endorsed the Festival, maintaining that the Festival staff is international and representative of all political tendencies.
The following list of individuals associated with the Festival's organization -- often very much in the background -- would seem to indicate a far greater communist control of this event than the sponsors wish to admit. This list has been compiled from Festival documents and careful research by those who have observed the organizers in action.
[deleted] -- Italy. A WFDY vice-president since March, 1958, [deleted] has worked on the PC in Vienna since April of that year. He was initially named Treasurer but later was replaced in this position by [deleted], an Italian Communist. [deleted] was also one of the leaders of the Italian delegation to the Moscow Festival. In actively working on the PC, he is ignoring the directive of the Italian (Nenni) Socialist Party of which he is a member, which requests that there be no official participation in the Vienna Festival. [deleted] PSI membership has been cited in the Festival journals as proof of the non-partisan character of the event. (Ed's note: Since the Festival, the PSI youth disaffiliated from WFDY.)
[deleted] -- Italy. Another PSI member who is violating the party's request against official Festival participation, [deleted] has been a member of the PC since October 1958 when he replaced Bahomonde of Chile.
[deleted] -- Niger. A non-communist and representative of the French West African Council of African Youth (CJA), [deleted] apparently is an individual who sees the Festival as an opportunity to contact youth in the communist countries. As a Catholic and non-communist, he often has been asked to sign Festival correspondence and act as a Festival spokesman. Through this use of his name, the communists have successfully used the reputation of the genuinely neutral CJA to imply that a major responsibility for Festival Organization rests with CJA and [deleted].
[deleted] -- China. Publicly active in communist youth affairs since 1949, the 35-year-old [deleted] came to Budapest in the fall of 1956 to work in WFDY headquarters, where he was to head the WFDY Asian-African Commission. He, too, participated in the organization of the PC while attending the Stockholm meeting and has lately been working with the PC in Vienna.
[deleted] -- Federal German Republic. A member of the Socialist Party of Western Germany (which has asked its members not to be official Festival participants), [deleted] has been working on the PC since early 1959 as a member of the publications board and as the person in charge of Western European affairs. In the latter role he has traveled in Western Germany to stimulate participation. His efforts have been largely unsuccessful on the representative youth group level, since nearly all such German groups have boycotted the Festival in solidarity with the Austrian organizations.
[deleted] -- Argentina. A well-known Festival personality -- perhaps because he maintains he is an anarchist rather than a communist and hence appears more respectable -- [deleted] is chairman of the Student Commission of the PC of which the Bulgarian, [deleted] is secretary. [deleted] has been active in the Festival from the start and has traveled widely in its support.
[deleted] -- Argentina. [deleted] is a member of the Radical Intransigent Youth of Argentina and has worked on the PC since April 1958. Festival publicity has given much attention to the fact that Argentine President Frondizi also is a member of the Radical Intransigent Party. It has not mentioned another significant fact -- that in late May the government of Frondizi closed the office of the Argentine National Festival Committee under a decree which bans all communist activity in Argentina.
[deleted] -- United States. As chairman of the United States Festival Committee, [deleted] has been working on the PC, both in Vienna and in the U.S., since June 1959. He has been head of the Marxist Discussion Club of the City College of New York.
[deleted] -- As an important functionary of the small Communist-front Union of Democratic Women of Austria she has been playing an active role in the Austrian Communist Party's preparations for the Festival.
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