A Second Exodus: The American Movement to Free Soviet Jews by Murray Friedman, Albert D. Chernin

By Murray Friedman, Albert D. Chernin

Because the early Sixties, a few 1.3 million Jews from the Soviet Union and its successor states have immigrated to the West, basically to Israel and the USA. mostly as a result of imaginitive and skillful mobilization efforts of Jews and their buddies through the international this nice exodus had vital ramifications for US kin with the Soviet Union/Russia and Israel. furthermore, the luck of yankee Jews in mounting and maintaining this lobbying attempt represented a coming of age for the neighborhood, which on a number of many years prior to have been not able to extricate hundreds of thousands of Jews from Europe and the Nazis. This ebook, half background, half occasion, combines essays via students with memoirs and primary hand money owed to chronicle this striking rescue undertaking.

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Extra resources for A Second Exodus: The American Movement to Free Soviet Jews

Sample text

The American Zionist Council responded to their suggestion to convene a meeting of thirty-four major national Jewish organizations. It was held 6 January 1952, only days before the Soviet “announcement” of the Doctors’ Plot. At that meeting, Isaiah M. Minkoff, executive director of NCRAC, asserted that while Stalin had never adopted anti-Semitism as a racist theory, the Communists had long been engaged in the actual liquidation of organized Jewish life in the Soviet Union, and now (1953) had embarked upon the use of anti-Semitism as a political weapon.

In the past, there was the ever-present fear among American Jewish leadership, as well as most Soviet Jews, that the ruthlessness of the Soviet regime could lead to reprisals against Soviet Jews. Such fears were expressed to me by Chief Rabbi Yehuda Leib Levin in his study in the Grand Chorale Synagogue in Moscow in January 1967. “Even a fly can irritate an elephant, and the elephant will then smash it,” he said. Thus, there had been a general tendency until the early 1960s to avoid public protests.

Eleanor Roosevelt expressed her concerns about Soviet government discrimination against Jews in a meeting with Khrushchev, who rejected the accusation. 33 Fifteen years would pass before the Soviet government would make even a gesture toward carrying out this promise. In January 1958, the Congress for Jewish Culture marked the tenth anniversary of the murder of Mikhoels and the liquidation of Jewish intellectuals and Jewish culture in the Soviet Union with a meeting attended by more than one thousand people.

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A Second Exodus: The American Movement to Free Soviet Jews by Murray Friedman, Albert D. Chernin
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