Soviet Israel: How did Stalin want to build a Jewish state in the Far East?

The Jewish Autonomous Region is the only place in the world besides Israel that has been specially created as the new historical homeland of the Jewish people. The USSR, led by Stalin, intended to create a national autonomy where Jews from all over the world could live.

How did this idea come about, why did Soviet Israel appear in the Far East, and how many Jews live there today?

The problem of creating a Jewish autonomous region appeared in the framework of the solution of the general national question in the USSR. The party’s program provided for the right to national and cultural self-determination for all peoples that make up the country.

Under these conditions, the birth of the Jewish Republic was only a matter of time. In 1924, Komzet was formed — a committee for the land arrangement of Jews, whose task was to search for free land in the Crimea and Ukraine. And in 1926, the committee tried to create a full-fledged republic there.

True, neither the Jews nor the locals were happy about this decision. It’s all about the centuries-old discrimination of the people. Since the 17th century, Jews

It also turned out that the Jews did not want to move to the village and engage in agriculture. Allocated arable land quickly fell into disrepair. The Jews often moved from place to place and lived by trade, which the Soviet authorities did not like. Because of this, the Jews sought to flee to other countries.

It seemed that there was no way out of the situation, but Stalin was not the person who stopped before such difficulties. Since it was not possible to create a Jewish autonomy in Ukraine and Crimea, in 1928 Komzet proposed to create a republic in the Far East.

The village of Birobidzhan was chosen as the center of administrative education. By this time, only 1200 people lived in the area. The region was practically uninhabited and was located at the very borders with China.

With the emergence of a new Soviet republic, Stalin tried to achieve several goals at once: to develop the sparsely populated Amur region, to strengthen the border with China, to raise the country’s prestige and, finally, to put Jews on the ground.

The free territories of the Far East excluded the emergence of anti-Semitic unrest, and the relatively mild climate of Birobidzhan made it possible to live in comfort, relative to the northern regions of the country.

The Soviet government even enlisted the support of American Jewish organizations. The foreign community organized a fundraiser in support of the Far Eastern autonomy and donated more than $ 250 million to the Soviet fund.

Along with the money, the settlers were supplied with equipment, seeds and lifting money from the state. The conditions could not have been better imagined. The first settlers immediately poured into the region. True, Jews accounted for only 28% of their number. By 1935 population

The idea of ​​creating a Soviet Israel, where Jews from all over the world would come, failed due to the emergence of a Jewish state in the Middle East. The people preferred to return to their historical homeland, where they lived for hundreds of years.

Since 1949, Jews began to leave the USSR en masse. For 40 years

Currently, the Jewish Autonomous Region has more than 150 thousand inhabitants, but Jews are among them