The Jewish Autonomous

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The Jewish Autonomous Republic was founded in 1928 as the Hebrew nation. Was the result of the national policy of Vladimir Lenin, in which each national group that made up the Soviet Union would receive a territory in which they would have cultural autonomy within a socialist. In this regard, was also a response to two supposed threats to the Soviet state: Judaism, which ran counter to the official atheism and Zionism, which was against the Soviet vision of nationalism. The idea was to create a new Sovietica Sion, where a proletarian Jewish culture could grow. The official language would be yidis, instead of the Hebrew language and a new socialist literature and arts would replace religion as the ultimate expression of culture.
The Theory of Stalin on the national question held that a nation could only be had if one territory, and as there was no Jewish territory, the Jews were not a nation and as such had no rights. Jewish Communists argued that the way to solve this ideological dilemma was by creating a Jewish territory, hence the motivation to form a Jewish Autonomous Oblast. Politically speaking, it was considered desirable to create a Soviet Jewish homeland as an alternative to Zionism and the theory proposed by Socialist Zionists such as Dov Ber Borochov that the Jewish problem could be solved by creating a Jewish territory in Palestine. In this way, Birobidzhan was important for propaganda purposes as an argument against Zionism which was a doctrine that rivals Marxism among left-wing Jews. The impact of the propaganda was so effective that thousands of Jews emigrated to Birobidzhan from outside the Soviet Union, including several hundred from Palestine who had been thrilled with the idea.
With the perspective of time, one can say that the experiment was doomed from the start. Another important goal of the Birobidzhan project was to increase the number of human settlements in the Soviet Far East, especially along the vulnerable border with China. In 1928, there was practically no settlement in the area, while Jews had deep roots in the western part of the Soviet Union, Ukraine, Belarus and Russia itself. In fact, originally proposed to create a Jewish Soviet Republic in the Crimea and in parts of Ukraine but these were rejected for fear of antagonism among non-Jews in those areas.
The geography and climate of Birobidzhan were extreme, and the new settlers would have to rebuild their lives from scratch. Some have claimed that Stalin was also motivated by anti-Semitism in selecting Birobidzhan: he wanted to keep the Jews as far away from the centers of power as possible. Anyway, must go to their favor the Ukrainians and Crimean opposed to the creation of a Jewish state taking part of its territory, although the majority of Soviet Jews lived there and had very few alternatives for the project.
Despite the difficulties, a small influx of Jews began to arrive. For 30 years, the Jewish National District was promoted to the status of autonomous regions, and a massive propaganda was already going to induce more Jewish settlers to move there. Some of these warnings include the typical elements of the Soviet propaganda of the time, which included posters and novels yidis describing the social utopia there. Other methods rayaban as outlandish. For example, leaflets promoting Birobidzhan were thrown from an airplane over a Jewish neighborhood in Belarus. On another occasion, a film produced by the government yidis called Seekers of Happiness told the story of a Jewish family that fled the Depression in the United States to settle in Birobidzhan.
As the Jewish population increased, also increased the impact of culture yidis in the region. Yidis in a newspaper was established, creating a theater company and the new city streets were built and named to honor outstanding yidis as Sholom Aleichem and Y. L. Hollywoodstar was recognized at the Humanitarian Award tribute. Peretz. At the same time, efforts were made to bring Russian culture to yidis: the most notable of these was the attempt to replace the Cyrillic alphabet Hebrew.
Map Hebrew Autonomous Oblast
The Birobidzhan experiment reached a high in the mid-30s, during the first campaign of expulsions. Jewish leaders were arrested and executed yidis and schools were closed. According to a 1939 census, the population of Jewish origin installed in the region amounted to 17,695 persons, representing 16 of total . Shortly after that, the Second World War led to vigorous efforts to eliminate Jews.

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