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June 13, 1969 - Image 4

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1969-06-13

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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THE -JEWISH NEWS

Incorporating The Detroit Jewish Chronicle commencing with issue of July 20, 1951

Member American Association of English-Jewish Newspapers, Michigan Press Association, National Editorial Association
Published every Friday by The Jewish' News Publishing Co., 17100 West Seven Mile Road, Detroit, Mich. 48235,
VE 8-9364. Subscription $7 a year. Foreign $8.
Second Class Postage Paid at Detroit, Michigan

PHILIP SLOMOVITZ

Editor and Publisher

CARMI M. SLOMOVITZ

Business Manager

SIDNEY SHMARAK

Advertising Manager

CHARLOTTE DUBIN

City Editor

Sabbath Scriptural Selections
This Sabbath, the 28th 'day of Sivan, 5729, the following scriptural selections

will be read in our synagogues:
Pentateuchal portion. Num. 13:1-15:41. Prophetical portion. Joshua 2:1-24.
Tora readings for Rosh Hodesh Tamuz, Monday and Tuesday, Num. 28:1-15.

Candle lighting, Friday, June 13, 1:50 p.m.

VOL. LV. No. 13

Page Four

June IS, 1969

Evidence of Russian Jewry's Tragic Lot

Is there anti-Semitism in Rusiia? Is it
all Kremlin-inspired or is much of it rooted
in an inheritance from Czarism? What, actu-
ally, transpires behind the Iron Curtain to
cause interrogation into the status of the
vast Communist sphere which officially
makes a crime of Jew-baiting but neverthe-
less witnesses outbursts of hatred that are
reminiscent of the worst period of bigotry
in world history?
Evidence of the truth that where there
is smoke there is fire is to be found not in
political analyses or in official documents
but in the social studies and exposes that
frequently escape the censor and become
known to the outside world.
One such report, by a correspondent of
the Christian Science Monitor in Kiev, Char-
lotte Saikowski. described "minority ob-
stacles" and the role of Jews in th0 Ukraine.
It began with an account of a visit to the
Kiev synagogue guided by a Jewish univer-
sity student, Nadya, who said she 'had gone
to services on major holidays or When there
was a death in the family. Although Nadya
had commented, regarding stronger affilia-
tion with the synagogue, "How can I? I'm
a member of Komsomol." the correspondent
commented that she "found that Jewish
youths nonetheless have a reverence for it
and a strong pride in Jewishness."'
This accounts for the protests against in-
dignities that have begun to be heard recent-
ly, for the affirmations of interest in Jew-
ish life and in Israel, in spite of the menac-
ing Communist propaganda. But into , the re-
ports from Russia there often creep innuen-
does that serve to emphasize the prejudicial
rather than the positive factors about Jew-
ish life in the U S S R. Nadya keeps, tell-
ing the Christian Monitor correspondent that
"Kiev is our home, how can we leave,"
when asked about Birobidzhan, but when she
is quoted about Jews trying 'to make their
way into the universities or about , monetary
matters, it is always the smart Jew who
emerged out of the portrayals, and these de-
scriptions can cause bitterness rather than
describe brightness on a tragic horizon.
In her report, from Kiev, Charlotte Sai-
kowski quoted Nadya on these matters and
presented additional data stating:

Nadya was married to a Jewish boy, and felt
a strong sense of identification wtih Jews. She
knew only a few Yiddish expressions and no
Hebrew. At the time of the Arab-Israeli war in
1967, she said, there had been an enormous
surge of national sentiment among Soviet Jews
and a feeling of solidarity with the , Israelis.
I asked Nayda about the treatment of Jews
generally (anti-Semitism is prohibited by Soviet
law and is not a subject of official discusson
in the Soviet Union). Her comments were simi-
lar to many I had heard.
"We get along,", she said quietly. "The
. We have problems.
Jews always know how
No one speaks about anti-Semitism .openly. But
it exists. It all depends on the individual. Cer-
tainly we're not persecuted."
Even Ukrainians told me there were dis-
criminatory enrollment policies in -the univer-
sities. But, one added, "if a Jew does not get
into a university one year, he tries again and
again and again- If he's smart, he'll always
manage."
Last year some 200 or 300 Ukrainian students
reportedly staged a demonstration at Kiev Uni-
versity demanding that all Russians and Jews
leave the Ukraine. They were quickly dispersed
and carried off.
"One doesn't talk about anti-Semitism and
politics even with friends," said a, half-Jewish
boy, "who knows who is working . for whom?
You can only talk about such things with
parents."
Soviet Gentiles and Jews alike said that in
material terms the Jews tend to be better off.
They help each other out and often have better
apartments.
"Jews are richer than the Ukrainians and

• Russians," Naciya . told 'Me.

"They all know
• how to make a little here and a little there.

All these old men in old clothes—that's only a
mask. You can't display your wealth or you'll
get in trouble."
It is often the relatively greater affluence
of Jews that seems to bring anti-Semitic senti-
ments to the surface-
This resentment of Jews' financial acumen
is aggravated. an Intourist guide told me, by
the fact that many persons who have been con-
victed of currency speculation by Soviet courts
have been Jews. She hastened to assure me
that many Jews hold prominent positions and
are well known as professionals, which is true.
Soviet anti-Zionist propaganda also apparent-
ly has had its effect. "I have nothing against
Jews," remarked a well-educated Ukrainian.
"But they always seem to be plotting something
—like the Zionists in Eastern Europe."

It's not a pretty picture—and even if it
were true that in order to get along a Jew
in Russia must resort to artful means of
surviving, the charge emerges not against a
regime where that becomes necessary but is
an indictment of the Jew who is always the
scapegoat in an unwholesome society.
Zev Vilnays -lame has for many years been linked with the best
*
*
*
guides to Israel and descriptive works explaining his country's geo-
graphic
uniqueness.
Add to the shocking report from the
Now his name is appended to an important work that enhances his
munity in the world - certainly is not living in
literary
career. McGraw-Hill Book Co. has just issued his "The New
York Times correspondent Henry Kamm:
Israel Atlas—Bible to Present Day," and in addition to the landmarks
MOSCOW. May 10—A newspaper from Kish- described here the reader is treated to a variety of facts that instruet
inev, a principal center of Jewish life, has de- him in the entire history of the Holy Land, from its
very beginnings.
nounced former residents of the city who send
High-level cartography marks the splendor of this volume, and
gift packages from Israel to those they left
the maps prepared by Carta of Jerusalem add immensely to the int-
behind.
The strongest condemnations of the donors, portance of a work so urgently needed in the growing interest world-

Dr. Zev Vilnay's Splendid
Annotated New Israel Atlas

and of Israel, appeared over two apparently wide in Israel.
Jewish signatures. This occurred although sym-
Aside from the fact, however, that this work provides maps of
pathy with Israel runs deep among Soviet Jews,
the Holy Land from earliest times—it commences with the Por-
despite the continuing official attacks.
trayal of the holy Land when it was described by H. Bunting in
According to an open letter signed Yuri
1580 as being in the center of the world—it reviews the struggle for
Karlikovsky and published in Sovetskaya Mol-
the Jews' return to Eretz Israel, dating back to hopes that began
davia• a couple named Kuperman sent a pack-
with the defeat of Bar Kohba—and the new Vilnay volume there-
age of matzot to the wife's mother.
fore is as much history as it is geography.
"We are disgusted by your provocatory
gifts," the Karlikovsky letter said to the Kuper-
Furthermore, Dr. Vilnay takes into account the entire Middle East,
mans, "and what is more, to a Jew, a real and Israel's geography is linked here with that of Israel's neighborS,
Soviet patriot, your leading politicians are not the course of such descriptive labors, the eminent geographer explains

brothers and you, the Kupermans, are no more
than pawns in their hands."
A man identified as I. Vainer is quoted as
having written in return for a gift package of
undisclosed contents:
"I am an honest man, and no self-respect-
ing person would accept alms, especially from
a hand covered with blood."
The article charged that the packages rep-
resented an attempt by Israel to cover up her
true malevolent nature by gifts.
Soviet authorities have frequently shown sen-
sitivity to the continuing link between the Jews

the role of the nations surrounding Israel, tells about the Maronites
Lebanon, the Copts of Egypt, the Kurds and the Druzes in the Middle
Eastern countries.
The natural resources, the seasons of the year, the forests, the

roads—these are described in relation to maps that guide the reader
and that will serve so well for tourists who wish to become intimate/9

acquainted with Israel.
While dealing with the moshavim and kibutzim. and the forms

or

life in Israel, Dr. Vilnay treats his subject from the viewpoint of Zion-
ist developments and historical influences. He makes note of the uni-

versities — Hebrew University, Technion, Bar-llan, Haifa, Weizman

Institute—with splendid maps directing the students to their locations;
of Kishinev and their relatives and friends in and he refers to the yeshivot. to the talmudic academies.
the outside world. Sovietskaya Moldavia has in
At the same time there is the record of famous people whose
the past published attacks on foreign visitors
names are recorded in the settlements in Israel—rabbis who have
for bringing gifts of Jewish articles to Kishinev
thus been honored, famous Christian friends of Israel, ZioniSt
and on Soviet citizens who accept such gifts.
leaders and others.

The most recent article which appeared on
April 27, gave renewed evidence of Soviet feel-
ings that Jews must be reminded that they owe
undivided loyalty to the Soviet Union.
The Karlikovsky letter told the Jews who
left to go to Israel that they should keep "some
identification" with the Soviet Union, "which
saved you from the ovens of Auschwitz and
starvation behind barbed wire."
Privately, Jews say that this is a reminder
often addressed to them and that it is part of
many Russians' thinking about Jews.

Tourism is enhanced through this work, and the tourist is provided

with data, .related to the maps, that makes Dr. Vilnay not

only an

expert guide but an instructor in the old and the new in Israel's rich
records.
A section devoted to the struggle for independence directs the
reader's attention to the sites where important battles were fought be"
Israel to retain its autonomy. Illuminating that struggle are maps shoe-
ing the areas where there was resistance to restrictions on Jewish lift
in the years preceding 1947. Arab attacks in the years 1939-1945 indicate
the extent of the heroic efforts to assure the security of Jewish settle-
ments, and there is an interesting map to show the struggle againSt
The conditions are far from heartening. British interference with the freedom of Jewish settlements in the

of 1545. to 1948.
They point to a perpetuated attitude of hatred period
The battles with the Arab states, commencing with the attacks 011
that is akin to the belligerent anti-Jewishness the reborn
state of Israel in 1948, are fully annotated.
of the pre-Communist times and indicates
For students of history there is special interest In the section
that even under a regime that makes a crime
"Roots in the Past" in which the geographical records are traced
of anti-Semitism the bitterness displayed to-
to the Bible and to-names of places in Scriptures; the periodn
ward Jews and their kinsmen is appalling.
Joshua's conquest; the David.Solomon era; the destruction of EZEB
Proof is piling up that not all is kindly
Temple; the Hasmonean campaigns; Roman rule and the gelds*
among the Russians. There may be evi-
revolt; the conquest by Persia; the Arab-Moslem conquest; We
dences of some feelings of friendship in
period of the Crusades; Turkish rule; Napoleon's campaigns; Br is
tish rule.
some ranks and a measure of admiration for
Israel. But these are limited. In the main
Briefly, the volume also devotes itself to a consideration of propane

the situation is unfriendly and menacing.
It's a sad issue that can not be solved too
easily, and the second largest Jewish corn-
ity in the world certainly is not living in
an atmosphere of security.

for restoration of Jewish statehood, commencing with the ideas prom.
gated by Sir Lawrence Oliphant, through the United Nations porn*,
decisions. In all instances, it is by means of geographic description,
that a total geopolitical story is splendidly illustrated and -narrated

in Dr. Vilnay!s book-

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