Friday, January 17, 2014

The opening salvo for Birobidzhan in Siberia.

Thanks to the JTA archive, I discovered what must have been the opening salvo for the establishment of Birobidzhan in Siberia, the Soviet answer to Zionism, a report in the Herald Tribune in 1926, that a plan was in the works in the former Soviet Union. So, in 1934, tens of thousands of Jews traveled eastward to the “Jewish paradise in the Russian Far East. But they were duped; it was a sham. Many would suffer in the Stalin purges later that decade. But the Jewish community survived. Today there are several thousand Jews in Birobidzhan. I traveled there. Check out what I saw there a few years ago  in “The Scattered Tribe: Traveling The Diaspora from Cuba to India to Tahiti & Beyond,” (Globe Pequot Press).


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