World Report

SEOUL (JTA) — The Simon Wiesenthal Center protested to South Korea's ambassador to the United States about two nightspots in the country displaying Nazi symbols.

The center called for closing the Hitler Techno Bar and Cocktail Show and the Gestapo pool hall, demanding "intervention" by the South Korean government.

A year ago, a bar here removed its Nazi-themed decor under government pressure after complaints from the center and the German and Israeli embassies.

Jews are scapegoated in Greek ID card flap

ATHENS (JTA) — Jews are to blame for the Greek government's plans to remove religion from the country's identity cards, according to the leader of Greece's Orthodox Church.

Archbishop Christodoulos said U.S. Jewish leaders persuaded Prime Minister Costas Simitis in 1996 to change the identity cards.

The leader of Greece's Jewish community said that Greece's 5,000 Jews do oppose listing citizens' religion on their identity cards, but did not pressure the government on the issue.

E.U. goes garbanzos during bovine plague

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Europeans are turning to hummus as they avoid meat during the foot-and-mouth epidemic affecting cattle and other cloven-hoofed animals, Israel's financial newspaper Globes reported.

The high-protein chickpea dish has been flying off the shelves in European supermarkets, the director general of Israel's Tzabar Salads company said.

The company's hummus sales in Europe jumped 24 percent in the past two months.

Russian media warn of spreading Nazism

MOSCOW (JTA) — The Russian press is expressing concern about the "rabid flourishing of Nazi ideology" in St. Petersburg, according to the Union of Councils for Soviet Jews.

Long considered a tolerant city with an ethnically diverse population, St. Petersburg has recently become a hub for neo-Nazi activities that include marches and the publication of anti-Semitic diatribes.

Poles take first steps to confront dark past

ROME (JTA) — Polish authorities recently removed a stone monument that for decades blamed the Nazis for an infamous World War II massacre of Jews.

On July 10, 1941, some 1,600 Jews of the town of Jedwabne were herded into a barn that was then set afire — not by the Nazis but by Polish villagers — according to a recent book on the subject.

With the 60th anniversary of the atrocity approaching, there has been much debate about Poles coming to terms with their own Holocaust-related crimes.

Lubavitch positioned for top post by Putin

MOSCOW (JTA) — The Lubavitch movement's chief rabbi in Russia was named Tuesday to a high-profile Kremlin advisory panel that includes leaders of all the religions officially recognized by the Russian government.

While Berel Lazar was appointed to the council, the other chief rabbi of Russia, Adolph Shayevich, was excluded from the body, which he served on for years.

Observers called the move a clear indication of President Vladimir Putin's support for Lazar as the sole leaader of Russian Jewry.