Jews in USSR
Up to the moment of the downfall of the Provisional Government in October, 1917, Jews, as mentioned above, occupied almost all leading positions in Soviets, committees, revolutionary party organizations and in the central committees, whose authority among the broad masses of the populations surpassed that of the Provisional Government.
But they did not enter into the government, preferring to exert pressure on it without taking responsibility on themselves for its action and general political orientation. There was not a single Jew in the Provisional Government; likewise, not a single Jew was appointed as a diplomat right up to the October overthrow and proclamation of Soviet Power. And, at the same time, no single minister or all ministers together could be sure that their decisions or orders would be carried out if there was no consent for this from the all powerful Soviet Deputies and various revolutionary committees.
As a result, when the moment arrived for decisive actions to be taken to defend that law and order which the Provisional Government should have been on guard against, it turned out that the government had neither the necessary resolutions for this, nor the strength.
In a comparatively short time all the power in both capitals and in the army (in so far as it still existed as an organized power) fell into the hands of those who up to now had guided the Soviet Deputies and committees.
Armed resistance was put up only by small military units, during the days of the overthrow and many months later by the anti-communist armies of the White Russian movement. After a long stubborn struggle the White Russians, supported by the interventionists, were unable to win. Power remained in the hands of the All-Russian Soviet Deputies.
Who made up the Soviet Deputies and what rôle the Jews played in them is explained in the previous account in the Provisional Government's period.
After the proclamation of Soviet Power, the leaders of the Soviet Deputies and the members of the Central Committee of the Bolshevik Party became "People's Commissars", replacing former ministers, or occupying leading posts in all spheres of Russian life.
Jews made up an overwhelming majority, occupying leading positions in the apparatus of the new power. This can be seen in the lists, given in full in Part II of this work, supplement No. 13.
Robert Wilton, an English correspondent of the London "Times", lived in Russia for seventeen years and had an opportunity to observe all that took place there during the revolution; writes that of 556 persons who occupied leading positions in all branches of the administration, 447 were Jews.
In Petrograd itself, as already mentioned above, according to the account of the Methodist priest who lived there many years, right up to year 1919, the government apparatus consisted of 16 Russians and 371 Jews, of whom, moreover, 265 had arrived from New York.
A commercial attaché at the American embassy in Petrograd, serving there from July 1916 to September 1918, confirmed on his arrival back in the USA, that two-thirds of the Bolsheviks were Russian Jews. (Evidence given before the Overman Commission.)
The London “Times” in its 5 March 1919 issue reported that 75% of the Bolsheviks were Russian Jews. (The word "Bolshevik" is understood here to mean not a member of the Bolshevik Party, but a person occupying this or that position in the administrative apparatus.)
The information given above, as well as many other similar situations, is confirmed by Jewish investigators of these questions and also by Lenin himself, who undoubtedly had a good knowledge of the rôle Jews played in the creation of the Soviet Power.
Here is what Lenin said in conversation with Diamantstein, the commissar on Jewish matters, under the "Commissariat on Matters of Nationalities", headed by Stalin in the beginning of the Soviet Power.
"Of great importance for the revolution was the circumstance that during the war years a large number of the Jewish intelligentsia settled in Russian cities. They eliminated the general sabotage which we encountered after the October Revolution...
Jewish elements were mobilized against the sabotage and thus saved the revolution in a difficult hour. We were able to seize the state apparatus owing exclusively to this reserve of intelligent and well-educated workers.
We have in the given case a clear example of an action of special sociological conformity with a law to which is subordinated changes in economic and social structure of ethnic minorities dispersed among other nations. This structure must always correspond to the requirements and necessities of the majority of people, to the requirements and aims of a state, to the politics of government, to the interests of ruling classes or groups".
The above stated opinion of Lenin was recorded in the book "Jewish Worker" p. 236, written by the Jewish communist Kirznits and published in Moscow, in 1926.
It was repeated by Solomon Goldenman in "Yiddishe Galutwirshaft", Prague, 1934-1935.
This was cited in the "Herald of the Institute of USSR Studies" No.4 p. 32, October-December 1959, Munich.
* * *
Even without Lenin's words, which at that time were read by few, the whole population of Russia saw how the change of the ruling class came about with lightning speed. The population saw how Jews turned into Soviet dignitaries, commissars and commanders, and how they took along their numerous relatives and fellow-tribesmen, filling all the government departments.
Here is what I. M. Bikerman, the well-known Russian-Jewish social and political figure writes on this question: "A Russian man never saw a Jew in power; he saw him neither as governor, nor as police officer, nor even as a postal official. There were, of course, better and worse times, but the Russian people lived, worked and got rich; the Russian name was great and menacing. Now the Jew is in every corner and on all levels of power. A Russian sees him at the head of the first capital, Moscow, and at the head of the Neva-Capital, and at the head of the Red Army, an absolutely self-destructive mechanism. He sees that avenue of St. Vladimir now bears the famous name of Nakhamkes; the historic Liteinyi Avenue has been renamed Avenue of Volodarsky, and the city Pavlovsk into Slutsk. A Russian now sees Jews as judges and executioners. He encounters Jews who are not communists, and are also as unfortunate as he himself might be, but nevertheless being involved in Soviet Power: it is everywhere, and there is nowhere one could get away from it. This power is such, that had it risen from the very depths of hell, it could not have been more wicked, nor more shameless. It is not surprising that a Russian comparing the past with the present is convinced in his mind, that the present power is Jewish and that that is precisely why it is so rabid, and that the power exists for them, and that it is doing the Jewish things which are consolidated by the power". ("Russia and the Jews". First collection pp. 22-23, published by “Osnova”, Berlin, 1924.)
Further, in the same book (pp. 11-12) Bikerman says: "A Russian repeats over and over again, "the Jews ruined Russia". In these four words resound tormenting moan, an anguishing howl and the gnashing of teeth". Take note that "waves of Judaeophobia now flood countries and nations, and ebb is not in sight yet. Precisely, Judaeophobia: fear of the Jews, as of destroyers.
How do the Jews respond to all this? Not only the Soviet Jews and those that emigrated from there but all Jews in general? Bikerman answers this with the following words: "A Jew answers to all this with the usual gesture and the usual words: it’s a known fact that we are to blame in everything; wherever misfortune occurs, a search could be made and a Jew would be found. Nine times out of ten what is written in Jewish periodicals concerning the Jews in Russia, constitutes only a retelling of this stereotype phrase. Since always and in everything we, of course, cannot be guilty, then a Jew hence makes a quite flattering and, at first glance, a quite convenient worldly conclusion, that we are always right. Not only that — still worse, he simply refuses to subject himself to his own judgment of his own behavior, to give himself an account of what he is doing, what he is not doing, and what he perhaps ought to have done. And since pretentions are presented to us from all sides, reproaches and accusations are poured at us, then our accusers are guilty, the whole world is guilty — guilty are others, but not we ourselves."
The above statements of I. M. Bikerman do not represent only his personal opinion on this question, under which lies a conspiracy of silence but also of the whole group of Russian-Jewish emigrants who found in themselves enough courage to tell the truth directly and openly on the pages of the press.
This group was not large, but consisted of highly cultured people who understood that there are questions which must not be suppressed. At the beginning of the Twenties, this group created an organization called the "Patriotic Society of Jews in Foreign Countries". It is this organization that published the book written by Bikerman, describing Jewish rôles and significance in creating that repulsion of the Jews from the whole Russian population which Bikerman defined so exactly as "Judaeophobia". The word "Judaeophobia" is replaced now by the word "anti-Semitism", which cannot be acknowledged as the right one, because it does not define exactly those feelings and attitudes of the whole population of Russia towards the Jewish ethnic group, feelings and attitudes that were provoked by the activities of this group. The negative and critical attitude of the Russian population does not exist towards all Semites, but only towards an insignificant tribal Semitic group, the Jews.
The most remarkable thing in this book is the "Appeal to Jews of All Countries" written at the beginning of the "First Collection" (and the last one), published by the above mentioned "Patriotic Society of Russian Jews in Foreign Countries".
In this appeal World Jewry (Jews of all countries) is called upon to dissociate from those Russian Jews who, with their activities, provoked the burning hatred of the whole population of the country, thereby creating psychological preconditions for active, anti-Jewish, pogromist feelings.
"And not only in Russia," — is stated further in the appeal — "all, positively all, countries and nations are flooded with waves of Judaeophobia, rushed by the storm, toppling over the Russian power. Never before have so many threatening clouds gathered over the heads of the Jewish people."
The address of the "Patriotic Society of Russian Jews" not only got no response in wide circles of Jewry but it was met with definite hostility: this question should not be touched at all: those who raised it are acting against Jewry and Jewish people.
And the voice of Jews who dared to "thrust the hand into the wound" and honestly and openly discuss this "sore question" fell silent and rose no more to the present day. The question arose neither in the USSR nor abroad, in spite of the abundance in emigration of periodicals in the Russian language that were and are controlled by the Jews.
When the "percentage quota" existed in Russia (whether or not it was justified is not touched upon here), the press was full of discussions and criticism of it, condemning it without reservation. But when the "inversely proportional" relation came, that is, when the numerously insignificant Jewish ethnic group occupied positions, inversely proportional to its number in the cultural and political life of Russia, and actually turned into a privileged "ruling class", then silence reigned, and the question was "removed from the order of the day". No one among numerous journalists, publicists and writers-Jews playing an important rôle in the periodic press in the Russian language considered it his duty to raise and comprehensively discuss this question directly and openly.
And if someone among the non-Jews attempted to touch the question of an "inversely proportional" quota actually being established in the USSR from the beginning of Soviet power, he was accused of "secret or overt anti-Semitism".
Attempts to investigate the first thirty years of Soviet power will be in vain, because nothing will be found about this "inversely proportional" quota in the newspapers of large circulation published in Russia. No explanations will be found either in thick journals or in any articles about how and what happened that representatives of an ethnic group, which make up only 2% of the population in Russia, had occupied about 80% of all key positions in all the spheres of the country's life. Such an occurrence up to now is unknown in history.
Only in folklore did this mass penetration by Jews into leading posts find its reverberation in songs and chastooshkas which could be heard at that time: "Tea by Vysotsky, sugar by Brodsky; all of Russia belongs to Trotsky" (they were all Jews). In the Ukraine the folk-song was spread: Hey, hey asses! All the Jews are bosses!
But as soon as Soviet power was consolidated, the iron hand of Cheka put an end to all kinds of anti-Jewish expressions.
Still, on 27 July, 1918, the newspaper ''Izvestia'' published a special decision by the Soviet Government about the energetic struggle with "anti-Semitism". It must be assumed that the negative response to the Jews, called "anti-Semitism" by many, took such dimensions that a special decision was needed, whereby enemies of Jews were declared "outlaws".
Guided by this decision, organs of Cheka, which had many Jews in leading posts, used to decide themselves who was a "pogromist" and ruthlessly did away with him, without an investigation and trial, and without waiting until a "pogromist" revealed something. Under the concept "pogromist" it was not too difficult to bring anyone disagreeable to the new power.
Besides that, in the very same year of 1918, a decree was issued about the "red terror", which opened wide possibilities for the physical extermination of persons disagreeable to the new regime. By the order of the "red terror" all those "who due to their social origin and standing, and also due to their previous political activity and profession, were able to join the ranks of its enemies in time of danger for the Soviet rule, were destined to extermination".
During the first years of Soviet rule, especially during the years of the civil war, ignorant and vengeful organs of the new power, using this decree as excuse, "liquidated" many of those whom they considered potential enemies of the new regime.
It would hardly be possible to establish some day the exact number of those "liquidated". But that this number is great and involved hundreds of thousands in the opinion of some, and even millions, according to others, is beyond any doubt. It is not disputed even by those who fully justify such methods of struggle with potential opponents and enemies.
The lists of those liquidated "by means of red terror" or as "hostages" (occasionally, but far from always) had been published in newspapers and contained hundreds of names. Jewish names were rarely, if at all, encountered in these lists; when they were, it was very noticeable! But, of course, no one dared to say a word about this. People have read, thought, remembered... And a thought would occur of who the executioners were and who the victims were...
In 1919, when Kiev was occupied for short time by the Volunteer Army of General Denikin, a "Special Investigative Commission of South Russia", comprising highly qualified jurists whose objectivity was indubitable, established that 75% of the Kiev Cheka were Jews. The commission also had established that among those whom the Cheka had executed there was no Jewish person. (The list of Cheka members and the list of those who were shot is given in Part II of this work.)
On the list among those who was shot is also the name of the first Chairman of Soviet Workers' Deputies Khrustalev-Nosar, who was active during the revolution of 1905. Khrustalev-Nosar severely criticized the seizure of power by the Jews, and the “squandering of Russia” by the members of Central Committee of the Bolshevik party, a squandering that took place during the conclusion of the Brest-Litovsk treaty.
When Uritsky was killed in Petrograd in August 1918, ten thousand people were shot "by the order of red terror". The lists of the ten thousand victims were attached to fences and walls of houses adjacent to No.2 Gorokhov Street, where the Cheka was. Whether they were fully published in newspapers is impossible to establish at the present time without access to the archives. But the fact that the typewritten lists, containing ten thousand names, as confirmed by witnesses, were posted is not disputed in various autobiographic literatures even now.
What struck readers about these lists was the complete absence of Jewish names although the city of Petrograd was overfilled with Jews. This without even mentioning those big capitalists and "bourgeois" Jews who had lived in the city permanently even before the revolution.
Here is what one of those who read the lists tells us about them: "I was a worker then at the Putilov plant. At that time I was an ardent advocate of Soviet rule, for which I was ready to cut the throat of anyone who spoke ill about it. After the murder of Uritsky, literally all of Petrograd was in a state of fear and uncertainty. Mass arrest ensued. No one was certain of tomorrow, or yet of the next hour, even those who were one hundred per cent proletarians and advocates of Soviet rule. Rumors about mass red terror, declared in revenge for Uritsky and to frighten all enemies of workers-peasants' power, circulated in the city.
Passing by Gorokhov Street my attention was drawn to some typed announcements posted on the front of house No.2, which was occupied by the Cheka. I stopped and started to read. As it turned out these were lists of those executed on the order of red terror for the murder of Uritsky. I stood for a long time reading these lists. Whose name was not listed: officers, landlords, proprietors, merchants, professors, scientists, priests and students, even artisans and workers! But what struck me odd was that in these listings not a single Jewish name appeared. Yet all that had happened was that one Jew, Kenigisser, killed another Jew, Uritsky.
'Jews are quarreling among themselves and our people are the ones to get shot', I thought. And I myself got frightened, fearing that I might be saying this too loudly, because in those days, and even many years thereafter, you may be sure that they would stand you up against a wall, or at least throw the book at you' for such words.
Afterwards I completed the Workers' Faculty Institute, had quite a few promotions, and visited the whole immense Soviet Union. And everywhere, right up to the war, I saw the very same thing: 'they' run everything, 'they' execute, 'they' forgive, 'they' order, whereas' ours' are slaves overexerting themselves, daring not to utter a word... Only silently, they would look distrustfully at some Frenkel, rushing by on the great trans-Siberian railroad in a brilliantly-lit saloon-car, checking the forced labor camps. The camps that were organized by the very same Frenkel did not, as a rule, have many of his tribesmen, but if there were any, they were in commanding positions. This was the situation before the war, as well as when the war broke out, and the Germans invaded and had to be expelled from Russia. There were not many Jews in the front lines. But to make up' for this; medical units and supply units were overfilled with them especially deep in the home-front, behind the Urals. They preferred 'to wage war' there. Of course, there were exceptions. But these exceptions were not many. The officers and soldiers of the Soviet army and the whole population of the country saw everything; and it is not surprising that critical thoughts began to grow and strengthen about the Jewish rôle in the life of the country. The new 'ruling class' did not prove itself worthy of the position it occupied.
That equality which they did not have under the Czar regime they got after the overthrow and no one voice was heard protesting against it. Scarcely a few years passed when these equals turned into the privileged. And how! Much more firmly than the previous princes and nobles... Previously it was possible to become a nobleman, even a count or a prince. How many there were, as Pushkin said, 'who leaped from Ukrainian peasantry to princehood.' But try to leap into being a Jew? This is impossible!
I and a few other former Soviet engineers found ourselves in one of the refugee camps in conquered Germany after the war and one evening we were discussing this question. 'Yes, they behaved like Polish lords!', said one of the interlocutors, a Ukrainian from Poltava. 'Not like Polish lords, but like Gods', corrected his countryman from Kharkov... And when I, as a Great-Russian, asked what this meant, he explained to me that 'like Gods' meant to live like Gods...
'Then what to do? How to treat them, once the people will be free to decide for themselves how to organize life in their own country?', one of us asked. 'Destroy them all, young and old alike!', angrily growled our fourth interlocutor, a gloomy and silent Mordvinian, who once studied with us at the Workers' Faculty. All of us were shocked: 'How so? Like Germans? Why, we are not beasts!' 'But I was not alone; all spoke thus, when we saw them with belongings and families in rail cars and automobiles, whereas we, Leningraders, escaped from the encirclement on foot, leaving everything behind. If we would have got them at that time, we would have torn them to shreds... My whole family perished from hunger in Leningrad.'
We all lapsed into silence. We were recollecting our encounter with the new ruling class. I also recalled, perhaps for the hundredth time, the lists on Gorokhov Street.
At this moment one of the interlocutors pulled a Bible out from his knapsack. He had received the Bible not long ago from some Baptist, Bible which he studied diligently. He turned to us and said, 'Here, listen to this, which is very similar to our times and to what we all witnessed ourselves'. And slowly, with deep feeling, he read the 'Book of Esther'. We listened holding our breath. For us, who had grown up under the Soviet rule, not knowing either the Gospel or the Bible, this was a revelation... To wipe out 75,000 men with impunity in one day just because in the opinion of the Jews, they were thinking maliciously but not doing anything, is not this the very same red terror? And still to celebrate this day from year to year! It was simply unbelievable that something like this could be in the Holy Scripture.
For a long time we sat and shared our recollections and thoughts that began from the lists on Gorokhov Street and ended with Bible reading. To act as the Bible tells us or as Hitler has done in our time ought not to be allowed; but it also impossible to reconcile this with the fact that this new 'ruling class' will forever remain what it became after the October overthrow, while we still further will continue to be in our own country citizens of second or third class."
* * *
The above narration deserves deep thought, because everything that was said is not an invention, not a malicious propaganda of those who are called "anti-Semites". These are not inventions but facts, names, a real picture of that which took place in Russia during the first three decades of the Soviet regime. This took place during the time when, as Bikerman said, "Russians see Jews as judges and executioners", when all the commanding positions and leading posts of the government, without exception, are in the hands of a foreign, alien, and insignificant minority.
To deny everything said is impossible because, in fact, it was so.
The broad people's masses saw all this, but were forced to keep quiet. They were intimidated by the severe measures of the new "ruling class" which ruthlessly suppressed all attempts of overt dissatisfaction. Not only mass demonstrations and crowds were suppressed but also any criticism or discussion of the abnormal situation created by the insignificant alien minority.
Here is what we read about this matter in the book "Russia and the Jews" (p. 63) written by I. Bikerman. "And the least of fall it (the new power) can tolerate are crowd attacks on the Jews, because it knows very well that after the destruction of the Jews there remains only one step to the destruction of the power, deeply hated and considered to be Jewish. A Jewish pogrom therefore was announced as counter-revolutionary, that is, directly against the Soviet Power". The fact these words were written by a Jew and published in a Jewish collection deserves special attention.
But whenever there was a moment when the new power was losing its strength somewhere, the feelings of the revolutionary masses and Red Guards used to pour out into severe anti-Jewish pogroms. Such an occurrence took place in Glukhov and Novgorod-Seversk in the year 1918. "These pogroms in number of victims, deliberate brutality and torture, surpassed the well-known pogrom of Kalusha in 1917, committed by the revolutionary soldiers. More than once Red troops tried to deal with the Jews, and in many cases they succeeded. Sometimes the pogroms were committed by civilians: Jews were ransacked by townspeople, by peasants and by returning soldiers from the front. Not only did pogroms occur at that time (in 1919) but they went unpunished. Soviet authorities hushed up Glukhov's and Novgorod-Seversk slaughter: they did not find anyone guilty because they did not look for anyone." (p. 64 from the collection, "Russia and the Jews", Berlin, 1924).
That is how matters stood with Jewish pogroms, which were called "counter-revolutionary", during the first years of the new rule. The new ruling class could neither curb nor avert these pogroms in spite of doubtless revolutionary inspiration by the armed forces of the country which were subordinated to it and this in spite of the fact that at the head of these forces at that time was Bronstein-Trotsky, and a great number of propagandist Jews, the commissars. The feelings of the masses were such that, as said above, authorities did not dare to undertake investigations and punish those guilty "pogromists" who were "outlaws" and were liable to be shot on the spot.
Jewish pogroms accompanied the armed forces of the Ukrainian Nationalists — the "Petlura group", "Makhno group" and various other 'Chiefs during all the time of their activity in these stormy years. Moreover, pogroms were committed by the military units and were followed by incredible brutality.
The most noted of all pogroms was the one that took place in the town of Proskurov, and which was committed by regular troops of the Ukrainian People's Republic, whose government consisted of Social Democrat-Marxists and had in its membership a minister, a Jewish lawyer from Kiev, A. Margolin.
On March 4, 1919, a "Zoporozhie Brigade" encamped near the town of Proskurov. The twenty-two year old Semesenko, who was in command of the brigade, gave the order to destroy all the Jewish population of the town. In the order he stated that there will be no peace in the country as long as even one Jew remains alive.
On the 5th of March, the whole brigade split into three groups. With officers at the head, the brigade entered the town and started the extermination of the Jews. The troops used to burst into houses and slaughter whole families. During that whole day, from the morning to evening 3,000 Jews were slaughtered, including women and children. (According to other sources 5,000 were slaughtered.) The killing was done only with side-arms — sabers and daggers. The only man who perished in Proskurov from a bullet was an Orthodox priest, who, with cross in hand, attempted to stop the "Zaporozhtsevites" and was shot by one of the officers. A few days later the “chief”, Semesenko, gave the town of Proskurov a contribution of 500 thousand rubles and, after they received it, he thanked the "Ukrainian citizens of Proskurov" for their help rendered to the "Army of the Ukrainian People's Republic".
This slaughter took place literally under the nose of the Ukrainian Government, located at that time nearby in the city of Vinnitsa. This government did not take any measures against the pogromists, neither during nor after the pogrom. The Proskurov pogromists remained unpunished.
All the other pogroms committed by the "Petlura men" at that time, pogroms in 180 settlements on the territory of the Ukraine, also remained unpunished. During these pogroms tens of thousands of Jews were exterminated. Some claim that over 25,000 Jews were slaughtered; others raise this figure up to 100,000.
To enumerate all pogroms with their corresponding numbers of victims is difficult owing to the volume of this work and the absence of strictly verified data.
In general, all of them were similar to the Proskurov pogrom and differed only in numbers of victims and in degree of organization and direct participation by the members of the Ukrainian People's Republic Army.
Pogroms committed during this time by various "chiefs" — Gregoriev, Sokolovsky, Zeleny, Angel and others not under the command of the Ukrainian Government — were also no less cruel in distinction.
The partisans of Makhno especially glorified themselves in this respect. They called themselves "anarchists" which in fact they were until the summer of 1918, when they turned all their fury towards the extermination of the Jews.
The Central Committee of the Anarchists, as is known, consisted almost exclusively of Jews. Some Jews, like Keretnik, Lemonsky, Shneider and others, were closest collaborators with Makhno.
After the February Revolution in the big commercial settlement of Gulai Pole (Ekaterinoslavskoy Province) and native village of Nestor Makhno, the anarchist-terrorist, the anarchists acquired special influence; local Soviet Deputies, as well as those in adjacent towns and villages consisted almost exclusively of anarchists.
Among them were many Jews against whom there were no hostile feelings from the rest of the anarchists: on the contrary, quite a few Jews were promoted to commanding positions. In the uneasy months before the German occupation of the Ukraine (at the beginning of 1918), the anarchists had even their own fighting units and separate companies for the struggle against the regime of the Ukrainian Central Rada and its allies, the Germans. Among these units was also a Jewish company, under the command of Taranovsky, Whose closest collaborators were Lev Shneider and Lemonsky — people who according to Makhno, were "unstable and inclined to accommodate themselves".
When the combined Ukrainian-German forces approached the Gulai Pole, "free companies" of anarchists and communists were sent to meet them with an order to stop their advance and hurl them back, while in the Gulai Pole itself, the Jewish company was left to carry the duty of garrison. This company not only did not try to defend the Gulai Pole but at once went over to the side of the Ukrainian-German forces and took a most active part in the destruction of the Revolutionary Committee and the Soviet Deputies. The company also played a major rôle in arresting individual anarchist and their sympathizers, whom the Jews from the company, being local dwellers, knew well.
This action by the Jewish company made such enormous impression on the whole surrounding population and engendered (in the words of Makhno) in Gulai Pole a previously unknown "anti-Semitism" and ferocious hate towards the Jews in general. In his memoirs (published in Paris in 1937), Nestor Makhno speaks about his attempts to struggle with this anti-Jewish feelings of peasants and workers and about little success in his attempts. The masses were burning with hate towards the Jews. They did not believe them any longer and at the first opportunity committed reprisals against the Jews, no less bloody and brutal than were once done by the Ukrainian-Petlurists.
And the word "Makhnoists" also became synonymous with pogromists who exterminate Jews, in the same way as the word "Petlurists".
Of whom were these "Makhnoists" and "Petlurists" composed?
They were composed of the very same peasant and town proletariat which followed the new Soviet power and approved its politics wholeheartedly except for one thing, the Jewish question. In this question, whenever the power relented, the population used to manifest its anti-Jewish feelings.
The Jewish population of many millions in the Ukraine, where now the "Petlurists", now the "Makhnoists" were the masters, knew these feelings very well and could not expect anything good, neither from one nor from the other. The only authority on which Jews could count for personal safety was the Soviet power. And even here they were not always safe, for we have seen events that occurred in Glukhov and Novgorod-Seversk, which formerly were under the control of Soviet power, were bloody pogroms took place in spite of this.
It is not surprising then that the Jews, choosing the lesser of many evils, gave preference to the Soviet power, which did not exterminate them physically, but only brought them material losses. However, this material loss compensated itself with redundancy, owing to the fact that the new power consisted mainly of their fellow tribesmen who widely opened all kind of possibilities for Jews. These possibilities enabled Jews to occupy all kinds of materially rewarding and morally satisfying positions.
The population saw this and, not without foundation, considered that now came "their rule", the Jewish rule. And because this new power presented demands to the population, demands that the population considered to be unjust and unbearably difficult, all the dissatisfaction was pouring out in anti-Jewish feelings, the same feelings that were restrained only by fear of severe punishment.
Such was the situation in general in that part of Russia and Ukraine, where events ran high in the civil war, during which the ruling authority in many places repeatedly changed.
It was during these changes that Jewish sympathies were evident. As a rule, their sympathies were on the side of the Reds, even in those cases when their enemies were the ones bringing with them the re-establishment of property rights and that social system under which many Jews enriched and prospered.
In 1919 Kiev was occupied by units of the Volunteer Army of General Denikin. These units fully re-established the previous social order, including the property rights of numerous Jews who lived in Kiev.
After a few months units of the Twelfth Red Army broke through into the suburbs of Kiev. The threat arose that the whole city might be occupied by the Reds. The Kievites, who had already undergone Red rule once before, rushed by the thousands over the bridge (on Dnieper) to the left shore, which was under the control of the Volunteer Army. There were many thousands of Kievites of all ages and all social positions who crossed the bridge at that time. But among them there was not a single Jew, although Kiev at that time was full of rich Jews who were quite far from being sympathetic with the communist-socialist undertakings proclaimed by the new power.
This absence of Jews among the refugees attracted general attention. And it came to mind that only two months ago the lists of those Kievites who were executed on the order of "red terror", as well as the listings of Cheka members who carried out these executions were made public. Among the former there was not a single Jew; among the latter, they were in overwhelming majority.
When in December of the same year (1919), "Whites" left Kiev "Reds" took over again, the Kiev Jews, even those that were "socially alien and hostile" quickly adapted to the new order and occupied many posts in departments and commissariats of the new power.
Episodes, analogous or similar to those described above in Gulai Pole and Kiev, were seen in different versions and degrees in many other places during changes of power, when, in the process of civil war, they were taken over by the Reds or their opponents.
With their conduct during all these changes, the Jews, who were numerous in these regions, showed clearly and unambiguously on whose side their sympathies were, or to be more precise, to which of the changing powers they behaved less negatively.
Here we have in mind the Jewish masses, and not politically active groups, both in the political and social life of Jews, and in All-Russian areas, in which Jews used to take a most active part.
Politically active Jewish groupings at once determined their attitude to the power of the "new ruling" class, in which their fellow tribesmen predominated.
The purely Jewish Marxist "Bund", where non-Jews were not admitted, always and invariably was on the side of the new power in the struggle with its opponents. It opposed the "White movement" of all shades; was against various Ukrainian nationalist-separatist movements and even against the Ukrainian Social-Democrat-Marxists, including the forces of the Ukrainian People’s Republic.
All-Russian social-democratic and socialist-revolutionary parties, at the height of the civil war in 1919, passed a resolution to cease all struggle against Soviet power and to direct all their strength against the enemies of Soviets and towards disorganization and corruption of the rear organizations of the "White movement". In the ranks of these two parties were a lot of Jewish intelligentsia, and its central organs had a Jewish majority.
The resolution of these two parties, which received an absolute majority during the election in the Constituent Assembly, deserves special attention in examination of the rôle and the importance of Russian Jewry in the creation and preservation of Soviet power in Russia. The rôle, which was noted by Lenin in his conversation with Diamantstein, pointed out that the “Jews saved Soviet power.”
That the decision of these two largest and best disciplined parties had played a significant rôle in gaining the victory by the "Reds" over the "Whites" is beyond any doubt. Party discipline pushed many undecided social-democrats and social-revolutionaries into the ranks of active defenders of this power and towards voluntarily joining the Red Army. The decision pushed not only the rank-and-file members of these parties but also those who were promoted by the parties to responsible posts still in the period of the Provisional Government.
Thus, for example, the Menshevik-"Bundist" Solomon Schwartz was appointed under the Provisional Government as director of the Ministry Department. This post was in the "generalship" rank. The director of the department, according to his occupied position, was a "personage of IV class" — "His Excellency". But when, dispersed by the Bolsheviks, the Provisional Government scattered without resistance and began the civil war, Solomon Schwartz, obeying the call of his party, voluntarily joined the Red Army. Thus Schwartz fought until demobilization on the Soviet side which dispersed the Constituent Assembly and the Provisional Government, of which Schwartz was a member. Afterwards Schwartz left Russia and became one of the active members in the Menshevik party. And his wife — "Vera Alexandrova" — was a constant collaborator of the "Socialist Vestnik" and editor of "Czechoslovak Publishing" in New York.
Schwartz and many of his fellow tribesmen — social-democrats and social-revolutionaries saved the Soviet power in the years of civil war, not in words but in deeds: Lenin himself acknowledged this.
The rescue of Soviet power, as is known, was done with measures of brutal terror; this provoked corresponding feelings in the broad masses. And when, as Lenin said, "Jews saved Soviet power", they, the Jews, made up the framework of this power and thereby provided people with a reason to identify the Soviet power with the power of Jewry. What this led to is explained by S. Maslov, founder and leader of the new party. In 1917, S. Maslov created a new party called "Krestianskaia Rossia" — the Russian peasant party. Maslov had been a member of the social-revolutionary party, which during the elections received a majority in the Constituent Assembly.
“This is a fact, that in South Russian cities, which changed hands often during the civil war, the appearance of Soviet power used to provoke the greatest joy and the greatest show of feeling in Jewish quarters, and often only in their quarters alone...” ("Russia after Four Years of Revolution", by S. Maslov, published in 1922.)
In the same book S. Maslov writes the following lines: "Judaeophobia is one of the sharpest traits on the face of contemporary Russia. Perhaps it is the sharpest. Judaeophobia is everywhere in the north, in the south, in the east, in the west. One is not protected from it, neither by a degree of intellectual development, nor by membership in a party, nor by tribe or age ... I do not know whether one is protected from it even by the level of the general moral aspect of a contemporary Russian. Pogroms are in the air. Strained hate cannot end by ignoring it in the transitional period between the fall of Soviet power and the strengthening of the power-successor..."
E. Kuskova writes more extensively in her article "Who Are They?” published in "Jewish Tribune", in the same year (1922) about the same anti-Jewish feelings throughout Russia. (The article as supplement is included in Part II of this work.) To suspect E. Kuskova, the well-known public activist and national socialist, of a negative partiality towards Jews is impossible. During her whole life she was a Judaeophile and collaborator of many Jewish periodicals. And not with malignant joy but with feelings of deep bitterness did she describe anti-Jewish attitudes in Soviet Russia, not delving, however, into examinations of causes which engendered these attitudes.
And a quarter of a century later, in the middle of the Fifties, we read the following lines in the article of David Burg: "In case of an overthrow of the Soviet regime there is the danger that in a period of unavoidable anarchy, the Jews, one and all, will be physically destroyed, as a result of the population's feelings".
A well-known investigator of the Jewish question Djude L. Teller says the very same thing in his book "Kremlin, Jews and the Middle East": "A Jew must think with trepidation about a moment which will come after overthrow of the communist power. This will be the blackest and bloodiest night in the life of Jewry..."
The above statements of four authors, of whom two were Russians of "Left" orientation and two others were Jews, writing 25 years later, speak about the very same thing about the presence and even growth of anti-Jewish feelings in USSR.
And what is peculiar is that these feelings have seized those circles of Russian intelligentsia to which they were always alien. E. Kuskova in her article, "Who Are They?” mentioned above, also points this out.
These feelings were alien to Russian students who, in the war years, almost completely replaced regular officers and from the start of the civil war formed the basic cadres of the White Russian movement. If not all, then an overwhelming majority of these "White Guards" were sons of the Russian intelligentsia.
However, in the year of the civil war the anti-Jewish feelings were characteristic among these youth and not infrequently poured out in inadmissible excesses, against which authorities were powerless to struggle.
These excesses engendered repulsion from the White Russian movement even among those Jews to whom the White Russian movement was bringing protection to their properties and law and order which had been disturbed by revolutionary events. And there were many such Jews among the Jewish bourgeoisie who were against socialistic experiments and breaking up of the social order by revolutionary methods. But they were not in the White Russian movement, neither in the ranks fighting at the front, nor among those who morally supported and justified this movement. "A Jew in the White Russian movement is just as rare as a white crow" a Jew, Pasmanik, said once with bitterness to his fellow-tribesmen. Yet this man D. Pasmanik entirely supported the armed struggle with Soviet power.
Anti-Jewish excesses in districts occupied by White Russian army took place and no one denies them. Even Denikin writes about them in his "Sketches of Russian Disturbances" (volume V, p. 145) and sharply condemns them. However, he does not give much attention to an analysis of the causes that gave rise to these excesses, although this is extremely important for a correct understanding of this question; that is, to give an explanation of anti-Jewish excesses within the White Russian movement (This does not mean justification). An explanation, establishing the causes of these excesses does not at all mean justification of the actions engendered by these causes.
Anti-Jewish attitudes among cultured and educated Russians' whose sons joined the White movement, did not appear at once, but grew gradually under the influence of events of the World War and the revolution.
At the start of the war patriotic feelings enveloped the whole of Russia, especially its youth. But these feelings were taking skeptically by Jewry as a whole, although, as mentioned in the previous account, it was generally an advocate of war against the German-Austrian monarchies in the hope that defeat of these empires would lead to a change in the internal politics of Russia, which was favorable to Jewry. Therefore Russian Jewry formally was loyal, but this does not mean at all that the Jews experienced patriotic enthusiasm.
Russia, in their understanding, was not their motherland, but only a country of temporary sojourn. Their motherland was Palestine, the "Promised Land", whither they expected from childhood to return.
If to this is added the presence of limitations for Jews in the Russian army, then striving to avoid, even by loyal Jews, joining the ranks of Russia's defenders will become understandable. And the Jews were not condemned for this; neither was anti-Jewish feeling engendered by such evasion.
Russian intellectual young people, being in the army, reacted quite differently to the defeatist propaganda in which the Jews played a notable rôle. For these young people Russia was their motherland, which they wanted to defend at the start of the war, and the defeatist propaganda, therefore, provoked in them feelings of deep indignation and resentment. Not only the young people had such feelings and attitudes but also people of older generations, regardless of their political orientation and party sympathies. Even those who were in emigration, revolutionaries — irreconcilable enemies of the Czarist Government, realized that the motherland was in danger and often came back voluntarily to Russia to declare it their duty to take part in the defense of the motherland. One of the many to have done this was Khrustalev-Nosar, the former chairman of the Soviet Workers' Deputies. For this revolutionary activities in 1905 he was sentenced to exile, but escaped to a foreign country. And now he came back, while his deputy chairman, Bronstein-Trotsky, remained in New York and conducted defeatist propaganda. The defeatist propaganda Trotsky conducted was useful only to the Germans; moreover, his numerous fellow tribesmen were helping him in spreading this propaganda. Many of these tribesmen afterwards arrived in Russia "to deepen and to widen the revolution": they were Uritsky, Volodarsky and many others.
A well-known revolutionary-terrorist, Vladimir Burtsev, did the same thing as Khrustalev-Nosar and many other emigrant-enemies of the Czarist regime. However, there were no Jews among them, neither "defeatists", which is understandable' nor Jewish "defenders". They preferred to "defend" by sitting out in emigration, undermining in all possible ways the authority of that government which led the fight to death (true, not quite successfully) against the German invaders.
And when, in the spring of 1917, all these "defenders" arrived in Russia (in sealed cars or in specially chartered ships at the expense of American Jews) they could not find even a word to condemn the defeatist propaganda which was proclaimed by Nakhamkes. The extent of this propaganda at that time reached the point of a call to have all those who stood for defense — that is for continuation of the war — killed. Nakhamkes, who at that time was not a Bolshevik, but a Menshevik, remained unpunished, although accomplices in his party and his fellow tribesmen could without difficulty at that time put a limit to his treacherous activity. By putting an end to his defeatist propaganda, the lives of many thousands of young Russian patriots, fighting with the enemy at the front, could have been saved. A whole legion of small Nakhamkeses in all corners of huge Russia, and in the active army, and in its rear started to incite the dark masses of soldiers against all those who did not wish to see defeat of their country. Officers were hounded first, and then came their supporters. Of course, not all those who spread the defeatist propaganda and condemned officers to death were Jews. But it is hardly possible to dispute that there were very many among them and that with their propaganda they assisted in demoralizing the army.
What kind of feelings and attitudes provoked all this, not only among officers but also in the whole population of Russia, sending its sons for its defense requires no explanation.
And when the work on disorganizing the army was completed in the name of Russia, four Jews went to Brest-Litovsk to conclude a shameful and humiliating peace treaty. These Jews were Trotsky, Joffe, Karakhan and Kamenev. And no one of their fellow tribesmen, who made up the majority at that time of the Soviet Deputies, noticed the somewhat peculiar composition of the delegation.
But, to make up for it, all of Russia noticed it, and it is doubtful that this would ever be forgotten. Memories of Russian people are no worse than memories of Jewish people, who even to this day "recall" their enemy, Haman, every year, and glorify Mordecai and Esther. What do they glorify them for? Because Mordecai and Esther through their efforts were able to obtain the destruction in one day of 75,000 of those who, in the opinion of Jews, were their enemies.
The whole population of the great country of Russia thus felt deep national humiliation and insult, regardless of the political views or party adherence of each individual. Especially the young people, who had sacrificially defended their motherland, had to go through this acute and bitter experience. Under the new power they became the object of mockery, humiliation, torments and mob laws of the inculcated masses, under not only the connivance but also the full approval of the new ruling class, which consisted of foreigners with an ideology and an understanding of sense of justice alien to Russian people.
It is not surprising then that all this gave rise to anti-Jewish feelings in places where they did not exist before, and demanded a revision of the attitudes of the Russian intelligentsia towards the Jews. Kuskova writes about this in detail in her article mentioned above.
Massacres committed "on the order of red terror" with countless victims shot without investigation or trial still further intensified and aggravated these anti-Jewish feelings. Because in these massacres Jews played too noticeable rôles, aggravated feelings, created conditions for an armed struggle, pouring out into the White movement.
The August days of 1918 when for the murder of one Jew by another Jew, 10,000 non-Jews were shot were firmly remembered by the whole population of Russia.
And when Steinberg, Uritsky, Volodarsky, and their like, escaped from bloody justice, the young people of Russia started to wage a struggle in the ranks of the White movement; frequently the activities of some reached excesses against which even the command was unable to do anything, because some of these young Russians were embittered by traces of reprisals encountered on their way, like that of Uritsky, and unconcealed sympathies of the Jewish population to those who committed these reprisals.
But these excesses were of somewhat different character than those committed by the Ukrainian armed forces and by the Makhnoists, who used to slaughter the complete population of individual Jewish settlements and towns. The excesses of the “Whites” were mainly intentional "requisitions", difficult to separate from ordinary robbery. Such excesses were accompanied by frequent killings of Jews, at whose places the "requisitions" were made. Besides that there were many cases of executions of collaborators of Cheka, political commissars and active communists newly discovered or designated by local dwellers. And since the above categories of enemies of the "White" abounded with Jews, then naturally the majority of those executed were Jews.
But there were no cases in the "White" movement where a whole military unit, under the command of its officers, could have systematically destroyed Jews, including old men, women and children. This can be asserted with trustworthiness, for had there been, no doubt there would have been information about it in biographical literature and in the periodical press.
However, this does not confirm that the "Whites" were not among the ranks inclined definitely towards Judaeophobia and that anti-Jewish feelings were not apparent during encounters with the Jewish population on occupied territories.
Generally speaking, at that time (during the first three years of Soviet rule) anti-Jewish feelings were predominant. And such feelings dwelled in the Petlurists, the Makhnoists, the "Whites", the greens and even the Red Army, which was commanded by Trotsky. As soon as discipline in the Red Army weakened, Red Army soldiers would at once create pogroms which equaled those of the Petlurists or Makhnoists.
These feelings enveloped then all areas of Russia and all the strata of its population, from the dark peasants and working masses to highly cultured circles. There were frequently revealed cases of Judaeophobia even among the non-Jewish members of the communist party.
Slogans such as “Soviets without Jews!” or "Communes without Jews!" were at that time quite widespread and reflected the feelings of the broad masses.
But at the very same time the Jew Sverdlov was the all-powerful leader of all internal politics, the Jew Bronstein-Trotsky was at the head of all armed forces of the country, the Jew Steinberg was in charge of justice, the Jew Goldendakh-Riazanov formulated the ideological bases of the new system, the Jew Apfelbaum-Zinoviev actually was a director of Petrograd, the Jew Goubleman-Kohan-Yaroslavsky was in charge of the struggle against religion, and both deputies of the chairman of the Cheka, Dzerzhinsky, were Jews — Trilisser and Yagoda.
For the new ruling class, overfilled with Jews, these feelings, of course, were no secret, because already in the first year of Soviet rule the struggle had started against Judaeophobia, otherwise called "anti-Semitism". The struggle was waged by means of prohibition and fright, but not by studying the causes and their elimination. The very thought that one of the causes of Judaeophobia may have been the Jewish people themselves with their peculiarities was completely inconceivable and considered as "anti-Semitic". If in those times someone dared to state that "Jews carry anti-Semitism and Judaeophobia within themselves", as Spinoza once said and as Arnold Toynbee, the well-known historian repeated not long ago, he would be considered "pogromist", with all ensuing consequences. No one wanted to risk his own freedom or even life; this is why all kept silent...
The power of the new ruling class was very sensitive to the Jewish question and used to punish ruthlessly not only open manifestations of anti-Jewish feelings but even the slightest hint of them.
Saying aloud the word "Zhid" – Yid, could have entailed serious consequences, although in the Ukrainian, Byelorussian and Polish languages Jews are called "Zhid" and even Jews call themselves "Zhidy" in reference to their own nationality. This word can be found in the works of Russian writers, who published their works before the year 1917. The word can be found, for example, in the works of Turgenev, Tolstoy and others; however, no one called them "anti-Semites". But under the new power people were afraid to pronounce this word.
At that time the populace of the whole country still firmly remembered the decree proclaimed by the new power on July 27, 1918: "the Soviet People's Commissariat prescribes to all Soviet Deputies to take resolute measures to suppress anti-Semitic movements at their outset. Pogromists and those who conduct pogrom agitation will be considered outlaws..." The population also witnessed numerous bloody reprisals committed on the basis of this decree.
Thus "anti-Semitism" was brought to silence. But it was far from "suppressing at the outset": anti-Jewish feelings remained. They were only chased inside.
Authors of books about "anti-Semitism" in the Soviet Union (for instance S. Schwartz) maintain that the decree of 27 July, 1918 "soon lost any meaning". As proof, they point at the absence in the criminal code of 1922 and in its following issues of special instructions on "anti-Semitism" and a change of qualification of this criminal offence by the general phrase: "agitation of national enmity". But this "argument" was not convincing to anyone, and everyone perfectly understood what the matter was. They understood, and this is why they kept silent.
It was this silence that gave Solomon Schwartz reason to maintain that at the beginning of the Twenties the "wave of anti-Semitism subsided".
It is quite difficult to agree with this assertion. And Schwartz himself, in the very same book, extensively writes about a "new wave of "anti-Semitism" in the Second part of the Twenties. But he writes nothing about the causes for the appearance of this wave.
Meanwhile, anti-Jewish feelings among the broad masses of the population, particularly among the workers, began to appear distinctly soon after the Jews filled the whole administrative apparatus in Russia.
In the April 28, 1918 issue of Izvestia, an extensive decision of the Executive Committee of the Moscow Soviet was published "on the question of anti-Semitic pogromist agitation in Moscow and in the Province of Moscow".
Paragraph No.2 of this decision states: "to acknowledge the necessity of not creating a special Jewish militant organizations". Special militant organizations began to spring up arbitrarily in Moscow, composed of Jews, in case of an armed struggle when, in their opinion, they would be threatened by ''black hundreders". On these grounds, relations between Jews and non-Jewish workers and white-collar workers in institutions, factories and plants were strained to the extreme. Authorities had to intervene and quickly disband the Jewish militant squads in order to avert developing bloody clashes.
The question about these Jewish militant squads is now diligently hushed up. But the presence of the paragraph No.2 in the above given decision testifies that the question of these squads had been discussed; by that point they actually existed. Yet in the decision nothing is mentioned about the disbanding of already existing squads, but only about the "necessity not to create them", Muscovites knew very well that many Jewish militant squads had been created and were disbanded only after this decision.
Subsequent measures and decrees of Soviet power on the Jewish question, and also bloody reprisals of the Cheka against "enemies of the regime", to which were added all "anti-Semites", put such a fear of God into the population of Russia that, as S. Schwartz said, "The wave of anti-Semitism subsided".
However, after the introduction of the New Economic Plan and some general indulgence that came with NEP, the population got somewhat more daring and the wave of anti-Jewish feelings started to rise again. These anti-Jewish feelings were a certain reaction against the dominant position which Jews occupied under the new system (that system that made it possible for them to become a privileged ethnic group, which, in regard to the native population of Russia, behaved far from tactful).
During the lean years of the "militant communism", when the whole population was hungry or underfed, when American help had been distributed by the ARA organization, the population of the country saw only or almost exclusively Jews working with this organization as interpreters or as assistants. And the conviction in the population grew that the help, ill the first place, goes to Jews — "to their own". Since the distribution of help to a considerable degree lay with government bodies or interpreters, in both of which the majority were Jews, corresponding feelings in regard to the latter were engendered in the population.
Besides that, in those years, Jewish charitable organizations in foreign countries developed activities to render assistance to the famished in Russia. Moreover, a quite considerable part of this assistance went only and exclusively to the Jews. The population saw this and on the basis of its observation came to a conclusion far from favorable towards the Jews although it was bound by fear and was silent.
The population of Moscow saw the irresponsible flow of Jews that rushed into Moscow as soon as the new power was established. The population also observed how, in overfilled Moscow during the acute housing shortage, houses and apartments were found for these new "Muscovites".
The new power also had the remarkable attitude that "religion is the opiate of the people", for both the Orthodox and the Jewish religions. The Jew, Goubleman-Yaroslavsky, quite zealously fought with Christians in general, and with Orthodox in particular, plundering ("confiscating") church properties and organizing all kinds of blasphemous and mocking shows of "atheists". But the synagogues remained untouched and its properties were not "confiscated". Muscovites did not see also the blasphemous parodies, shown on the days of Jewish religious holidays.
Of course, not only the Jews alone made up the army of "militant atheists". The head of this group, Goubleman, also had many able and ardent collaborators and assistants from among the Russians. Some of them made for themselves a fairly good career of the “atheistic activity” and even became members of the Union of Soviet Writers.
The demand for blasphemous literature at that time was very great. Rewards and royalties for such literature attracted many prominent workers, who made their career on literary works, written in the spirit and style of chapter 39 in the novel "Resurrection" b L. N. Tolstoy. Before revolution this chapter was banned by the censors, but it was widely spread throughout Russia illegally.
Jewish students were placed in special privileged positions when (in 1923) mass expulsion of students took place throughout the country on the basis of social origin. Even those who were on their last semester were expelled, if it was established that their origin was not proletarian. Not only the sons of nobles, landowners, officers, merchants, industrialists and dignitaries of the Czarist time, but also those of free professions, priests, deacons and even sons of sextons had been expelled without the right to enroll in any other institutions of higher learning. In connection with these expulsions, the periodical press wrote about numerous cases of suicides. But the Jews were not expelled and there were no suicides among them on these grounds.
The new ruling class introduced a clause into the government instructions about "purges" on the basis of origin to the effect that the students, being representatives of "national minorities", were not subject to them, because they had been oppressed and persecuted under the old regime. This was applied to all Jewish students.
All this recounted above did not, of course, go unnoticed by the population of the country and consequently anti-Jewish feelings arose where there had been non before and where they were least expected: among workers, among young people — students and Komsomol, even among members of the communist party and the new bureaucracy of non-Jewish origin.
This was not at all "anti-Semitism" or Judaeophobia in the old meaning of this word, that is, hostility and hatred on the basis of race and religion. This was a sense of enmity and repulsion towards the privileged class which had been identified with the Jewry. Undoubtedly the signing of the "obscene" and shameful Brest-Litovsk peace treaty with the Germans played a certain rôle, especially for the cultural part of the population. Because the treaty was signed in the name of the Russian people by four Jews who agreed to this peace with such ease. It was an insult to the national feelings of Russian people.
In the second part of the Twenties, when the "rise of the anti-Semitic wave" became noticeable, the press started to sound the alarm. Articles began to appear about the insufficiently energetic struggle with this phenomenon, about the appearance among the workers of "dangerous recidivists of nationalism".
At the beginning of May 1928, the Agitation Propaganda Board of the Central Committee of the All-Russian Communist Party discussed the question of anti-Semitism and outlined the following suggestions:
1) "To include the question about the struggle with anti-Semitism in the program of political education".
2) "To expose the class behind the scene of anti-Semitism, using for this purpose art, literature, theatre, cinema, radio and the daily press".
3) "The party must create an atmosphere of well-known contempt of anti-Semitism".
Besides these propositions of a general nature, a special commission of the Agitation Propaganda Board also worked out a number of concrete suggestions, subject to the approval of the Central Committee of the ACP.
1) "To train personnel especially for the struggle with anti-Semitism".
2) "To include a theme about the struggle with anti-Semitism in school textbooks, films, the periodical press and literature".
3) "To organize public debates and lectures about anti-Semitism".
But in spite of all these resolutions and recommendations, as the investigator of this question, Solomon Schwartz, pointed out, "for the actual struggle with anti-Semitism, the Communist party could not find in itself sufficient decisiveness". Another investigator and author of works on anti-Semitism, Lourie-Larin, writes the following about the causes of this "insufficient decisiveness": "The false shame to overemphasize the Jewish question (in order not to stimulate anti-Semitism still further) actually leads to softening of the struggle with bourgeois counter-revolutionary sabotage in this section of the ideological front".
Manifestations of anti-Jewish feelings, and also public debates on this question, were numerous at that time throughout the whole Soviet Union. Many anti-Jewish speeches and statements made at public gatherings are quoted by Solomon Schwartz in his book, "Anti-Semitism in the Soviet Union".
Because it is impossible to produce in full all that has been written on this question by Mr. Schwartz, the facts given here are considerably abridged.
Here are a few cases of feelings manifested by the population:
1) "From different parts of the country reports are coming that among students in Soviet learning institutions it has become customary to speak about Jews using the word 'Zhid' — Yid".
2) "In Kharkov student communists are contaminated by anti-Semitism and frequently ask why the percentage quota is not introduced for Jews in institutes of higher learning".
3) "The meeting of student communists in Kiev has demanded the introduction of the percentage quota for Jews at the time of enrolment in the University. This demand received preliminary discussion at the sitting of the Komsomol bureau".
All the above reports were made in the years 1928 and 1929, that is, at the time when all students were of proletarian origin, sons of workers and peasants. This deserves special attention, because these attitudes are of those who afterwards occupied various positions in the administrative, cultural and economic life of the country.
Feelings among workers were similar to that of students. So, for example:
1) ''In Leningrad at the' Lit' plant, under the leadership of the foreman-instructor, shouts were raised in the direction of Jewish workers: 'Zhidy!' Then, this slogan was drawn on the walls: 'Beat the Jews, save Russia!' After that, inspired by impunity, they beat up comrades Miller and Elashevich and a number of other Jews, with bricks".
2) "Another case, also in Leningrad: at the plant named Marti, a member of a collective bureau of this plant threatened a Jew, a member of the Komsomol, who spoke against him at a gathering: 'If you, Jewish idiot, dare once more to speak against me, I'll straighten you out.'"
3) ''In Kerch, at the canning factory 'Volia Truda', a group of workers, victimized a Jewish worker, Gootmanovitch, beating him on his back with wire. The anti-Semite, Nichugin, in the presence of the chairman of the factory committee and a crowd of workers, shouted: 'If this little Jew is not taken away from us, I will choke him.'"
4) “In Kharkov at the state distillery No.2, during a break for breakfast, an argument broke out between Jews and non-Jews. At this point one of the arguing workers, a member of the Komsomol, Dobrynin, shouted to a Jewish worker: 'You want to attend universities? This won't work!' Meanwhile, another member of the Komsomol, a candidate of the Communist party, student of the agricultural faculty, Anikeev, approached the arguing workers and began to shout: 'Look here, you Jewish punk, what do you want here? Come to take bread away from our brothers? We won't leave you, Jews, in peace. If this was 1920, I would settle accounts with you fast. You are all speculators. And still you come to work here”
5) "The chairman of the local committee, Kuzmichev, a member of Communist party, said during the discussion (in one of Moscow stores) about the dismissal of a Russian worker who beat up a Jewish worker: 'We won't allow dismissals of Russians because of a Jew'".
(All the above cases of anti-Jewish manifestations among students and workers are taken from the book written by S. Schwarts, "Anti-Semitism in the Soviet Union" pp. 21, 22, 28.)
In the same book S. Schwartz also quotes the speech made by M. Kalinin on the Jewish question in November, 1926. Here is what Kalinin said:
"Why is the Russian intelligentsia, perhaps, more anti-Semitic now than it was under Czarism? This is quite natural. During the first days of the revolution, intelligentsia and half-educated Jewish masses rushed into the channel of revolution. As an oppressed people, never being in administration, the Jews naturally rushed into the revolutionary construction, with which the task of administration is also linked. At the time when a considerable part of the Russian intelligentsia rushed-back, got frightened of the revolution, precisely at this moment, Jewish intelligentsia rushed into the channels of revolution, filled the positions of this channel with a much greater percentage in comparison to its population and started to work in administrative organs.
For the Jewish people, as nation, this phenomenon (that is, wide Jewish participation in "revolutionary organs") had immense importance, and, I must say, negative importance. When at one of the plants I was asked: 'Why are there so many Jews in Moscow?' I answered, 'If I was a rabbi, grieving about the Jewish nation, I would curse all Jews coming to Moscow in Soviet positions, because they are lost to their nation. In Moscow Jews mix their blood with Russian blood and in two or, at most, in three generation they are a loss to their nation. They turn into ordinary Russifiers. It, (pp.1617 of the above book.)
Almost coincident with Kalinin's statement, a meeting dedicated to the Jewish question was held on the second of December at the Conservatory in Moscow. At this meeting Professor U. V. Klyutchnikov said the following:
"The February Revolution of 1917 already established the equality of all citizens in Russia, including also the Jews. The October Revolution went further. The Russian nation showed self-denial. A definite disparity has been created between the quantitative composition of Jews in the USSR and in those places which Jews have occupied temporarily in cities.
You see how throughout Moscow small Jewish stalls with bread and sausages have sprung up. Here you have a primary source of this dissatisfaction. When Russians see how their women, old men and children freeze nine to eleven hours on a street and get wet in the rain at a stall in Moscow, and then they see these comparatively warm Jewish stalls with bread and sausages, a sensation of dissatisfaction rises up in them.
This phenomenon should not be ignored; it must be taken into consideration. A watchful feeling can occur in dwellers of big cities, since the proportionality is disturbed in state projection, in practical life and in other spheres, as well as between the numerical composition of the Jews and native population. We in Moscow have crisis: masses of people are cramped in lodgings where it is almost impossible to live; at the same time, you see how people come from other parts of the country and occupy living quarters. These newcomers are Jews.
The matter is not in anti-Semitism, but in the fact that national dissatisfaction, national watchfulness and watchfulness of other nationalities grow. We should not close our eyes to this. What a Russian would tell a Russian, he would not tell a Jew! The masses say that there are too many Jews in Moscow. Take this into consideration, but do not call it anti-Semitism..." (The above extract from the speech of Professor Klyutchnikov is taken from the shorthand record of Lourie-Larin, who was present at the meeting and recorded the professor's words. Eventually these words found their way to pp.124-126 in the book "Jews and Anti-Semitism in the USSR". State-publishing, 1929, Moscow-Leningrad.)
The question of constantly growing numbers of cases of sharp anti-Semitic manifestation of feelings troubled the power more and more; it threw all its forces into the struggle with this phenomenon, because it understood very well that the very existence of its power and its ruling class, consisting at that time mainly of the Jews, were threatened. Throughout the country explanatory work was started on this question. One aspect of this explanatory work was "consultation on anti-Semitism". Lourie-Larin reports, in the above book, "Jews and Anti-Semitism in the USSR", that these consultations were held in Moscow on August 23, 1928.
At the meeting ("consultation") were present a few dozen workers from various Moscow industrial enterprises. They were foremost people in the industry: "all party members", Komsomol members and a few "sympathizers", in a word, all that human material out of which are molded party members, Komsomol members and union activists.
At the "consultation", after the lecture, participants forwarded notes with questions, extremely characteristic for a definition of their feelings. In his book, Lourie-Larin gives a list of six questions in full. The questions are interesting and deserve to be presented word for word:
1) "Why do Jews not want laborious work?"
2) "Why do Jews get good positions?"
3) "Why are there so many Jews in universities: don't they forge documents?"
4) "In case of war won't the Jews betray and won't they evade military service?"
5) "Why was good land given to the Jews in Crimea, whereas the Russians received a much worse land?"
6) "Causes of anti-Semitism should be sought within the Jewish nation itself, in its moral and psychological education".
The remaining notes with questions were in about the same spirit. In none of these notes could racial-religious motives be detected, which mentioned that the Jews crucified Christ, motives that were characteristic of real anti-Semitism in the old classical understanding of pre-revolutionary antagonists of the Jews.
The economic aspect is predominant in all the questions of these notes, along with dissatisfaction with the privileged position the Jewish ethnic group occupied under the new regime.
From the speeches described above made by three notable communists — two Russians (Kalinin and Klyutchnikov) and one Jew (Lourie-Larin) — can be seen how serious and threatening the Jewish question at that time (at the end of the Twenties) was in the Soviet Union. And the authorities, not without reason, sounded the alarm.
Under the conditions of the communist regime, discussion of this question in the press was unthinkable. Only a one-sided dealing with this question was possible. It was possible to discuss from the point of view of the ruling class, which through its control of the news media, reduced the whole thing to press information, and even then it rarely took place, but when it did, the elucidation or the interpretation of this question was usually reduced to separate incidents of expressed dissatisfaction with the "inversely proportional percentage quota" which was established under the new regime. Moreover, these incidents were called "recidivism of black hundreders", "tricks of pogromists" or "a sabotage of bourgeois capitalists". And no one then could dare to substantiate anti-Jewish feelings, to argue or to refute.
When at the very end of the Twenties and the beginning of the Thirties the Five-year Plans and collectivization began, which were accompanied by sharp government measures towards all those dissatisfied or sabotaging new measures, then apparently everything quietened down and open manifestations of anti-Jewish feelings became considerably less. (Which does not mean that anti-Jewish feelings disappeared,) This apparent calming down was taken by S. Schwartz as an "abatement of the anti-Semitic wave".
What the real feelings of the broad masses were, neither S. Schwartz, nor Lourie-Larin, nor various other Jews of the ruling class could have known, the reason being that "what a Russian would tell a Russian, he would not tell a Jew", as Schwartz wrote in his book, quoting Prof. Klutchnikov's speech. It is hardly possible to doubt that "what a Jew would tell a Jew, he would not tell a Russian". In this, perhaps, lies the cause of that watchfulness, and sometimes also of repulsion, which are characteristic in Russian-Jewish relations during the whole time of the Jewish sojourn within the borders of the Russian State. Of course, in these relations there were also exceptions, but exceptions, as is known, only confirm a general rule. It is unnecessary to judge whether this is good or bad. But to deny this phenomenon (good or bad) is also impossible. It exists.
Only in private life, in the conversations of persons undoubtedly trusting one another, could silence sometimes be broken and people would express, more or less frankly, their dissatisfaction. And sometimes, in a state of excitement careless phrases and words would escape their lips, words for which some paid dearly.
In the literature of that time, the literature which one would think should have reflected national feelings concerning the "Jewish Question", or to be more precise, concerning the question of dissatisfaction with the Jewish rôle in the country was "taboo" and this question was not touched. And if any Soviet writers of the time wrote something in scenes from daily life, endeavoring to be more realistic, which could have been interpreted as a manifestation of anti-Semitism, this could have entailed consequences quite unpleasant for the author. In such cases an author had to justify himself on the pages of the press and express his "admiration for the Jewish people", as the writer Boris Pilniak had to do in 1931.
The history of this "repentance", in brief, is as follows: in his story "Floating Ice", written in 1924, Pilniak tells how a detachment of "rebels" occupied a small town in the Ukraine. A chief of the detachment is an anarchist, but its commissar is a communist. In the detachment, ''Izvestia'' is regularly received and read, and the detachment lives a life of Soviet insurgents. But they do hang Jews, and create Jewish pogroms in the town, which Boris Pilniak describes thus: "In the town the Jewish pogrom was started in the early morning. Such pogroms were always dreadful in that — gathering by the hundreds — Jews begin to howl more dreadfully than a hundred dogs howling at the moon, and perform the villainous traditional ceremony of Jewish feather-beds, covering the streets with down, under the wind... ". (Vol. 3, p. 81)
At that time, right up to the very end of the Twenties, the situation was such that, as Lourie-Larin said in the above account, there existed "the false shame to over-emphasize the Jewish question, in order not to stimulate anti-Semitism still further". It must be assumed that for this reason there were no protests or objections on the pages of the press in connection with the content of the story "Floating Ice". This story was even included in the collective works of B. Pilniak in 1929.
But he was not forgotten. He came to mind at the beginning of the Thirties, when, as the result of sharp government measures, the lips of the population had been sealed. As S. Schwartz says "there ensued an abatement of the anti-Semitic wave" and it was possible to forget about "the false shame to over-emphasize the Jewish question".
On June 24, 1931, in "Izvestia" in the article written by M. Gorky "About Anti-Semitism", Pilniak's story, "Floating Ice", was mentioned. In the article, it was stated that this story indicates a passive-tolerant attitude by the author to the extreme manifestation of "anti-Semitism". There existed at that time in Moscow the "Jewish Telegraph Agency" — JTA, which at once telegraphed this to New York and on the next day in the "New York Times" a corresponding article about Pilniak's attitude to "anti-Semitism" appeared. Boris Pilniak at that time was in the USA.
After ten days, on July 5, 1931, in the same "New York Times" a protest was published by B. Pilniak against the accusation of "anti-Semitism". In this protest, Pilniak expresses his "admiration of the Jewish people", and categorically rejects that he ever had hostile feelings towards Jews. He points out that his works were translated in "Yiddish", and reports that his grand-mother was a Jewess.
Anti-Jewish feelings of the broad people's masses arose as a result of the Jewish activities that turned them into the privileged "estate". So write many Jewish investigators of this question. These investigators write that anti-Jewish feelings were "active, massive and spontaneous". They call these feelings "anti-Semitism", although, as stated above, this has nothing in common with the real anti-Semitism.
And maybe, involuntarily and unconsciously, some talented writers and poets of that time, depicting negative characters that stir up fear and hatred, picture them as Jews, and give them Jewish names.
So, for example, the famous poet, Sergey Yesenin, wrote the following dialogue:
Have you become a foreigner?
I know that you are a Jew,
Your name is Leibman,
And to hell with you,
that you lived abroad.
It makes no difference — in Mogilev is your home.
Ha – ha!
I am a citizen from Weimar.
And arrived here not as a Jew,
But as one who possesses the gift
To tame fools and beasts;
I swear and will persistently
Curse you even for a thousand years.
For this work, Yesenin, as much as is known, did not have any unpleasantness and he did not have to write in the "New York Times" about his "admiration of Jews". On the contrary, the Russian Jews living in New York admired him and during his stay in New York made a feast in his honor in the Bronx, at a private house. Towards the end of supper, after heavy drinking, Yesenin began to behave not quite decently and started to "bring his fists into play". Wishing to pacify him, the hosts and the rest of the guests grabbed him by his arms and intended to tie him up. Yesenin fought back and would not yield... He ran up to an open window and in a heart-rending voice started to yell: "Rescue me! Jews cut my throat. Beat the Jews, save Russia! The incident was, of course, hushed up and no action was taken against Sergey Yesenin.
Another well-known Soviet poet, Edward Bogritsky (a Jew from Odessa), wrote "Thoughts about Opanas", where the following seditious lines are found:
I fled from the provisions detachment
From Kohan, the Jew.
In ravines and on slopes
Kohan growls like a wolf,
He pokes his nose in huts,
Which are cleaner.
He glances right, and glances left,
And puffs angrily:
Rake out from the ditch
Well, but if someone kicks up a row,
Don't make noise, little brother!
With moustache into the rubbish-heap,
Shoot him — that's how to put the lid on him.
"Thoughts about Opanas" did not provoke any response, although there is in it the word "Zhid" — Yid, which was considered at that time a manifestation of "anti-Semitism". But then the poet himself was a Jew.
All three recounted extracts from the works of Soviet writers and poets were written and published in the first decade of the new ruling class power, during the Twenties.
In the second decade nothing of the sort could be found on the pages of the USSR press. The start of the Five-Year Plans and collectivization were accompanied by government measures which tightly sealed the lips of all dissatisfied people. And the population of the country was afraid not only to speak but also to think about the "Jewish Question". Silence' which S. Schwartz called an "abatement of anti-Semitic wave", fell. People were silent. But this does not mean that they did not see and did not think... Once Shevchenko said: "the people are silent... because they prosper". And people became silent under the power of Koganoviches' dynasty..." Whether this silence was the result of "prosperity" or of fear, was revealed only at the end of the Forties and the beginning of Fifties, when, as David Burg says, the attitude of the Soviet population is such that, in case of an overthrow of Soviet power, all the Jews "will be simply slaughtered" in this moment of inevitable anarchy. And the Government of the USSR, after the victorious war, took these attitudes in considerations, and gradually started to replace members of the ruling class, by appointing and promoting representatives of the native population of the country to responsible positions. To call this "anti-Semitism" means to distort reality intentionally and consciously.
Ought not this cause to be considered in the "inverse proportionality" of the tribal composition of the ruling class, which consisted of less than 2% of the total population and occupied more than 80% of the leading positions? And ought not this cause to be considered also in the very own behavior of the Jews, who, after the year 1918, made up the privileged part of the Russian population?
But this question, as already mentioned above, is being diligently hushed up. The cause was very well understood by all Jews, both in the USSR and in the West, but this cause did not figure in explanations of that phenomenon called "anti-Semitism"... However, by attentive reading of articles and research, written by Jews in the Russian language in emigration in various periodical issues and separate books, one clearly perceives an almost panic terror creeping before the possibility of weakening or fall of power, which restrains "anti-Semitism" and does not allow pogroms or beating of Jews to occur.
Being unable to enumerate many similar and analogous statements made by authors, Russian Jews, we will limit ourselves therefore to a few extracts from the sketch "Jews and Soviet Dictatorship", published in the yearbook "Jewish World" (1939). The sketch was written by Simon Osipovich Portugaise who wrote under the Russian pen-name (nom-deplume) "Stepan Ivanovich". (In emigration Portugaise was editor of the Social-Democratic journals "Dawn" and "Notes of Social-Democrat" and other socialist organs of the press in the Russian language.)
Here is what "Stepan Ivanovich" writes: "In foreign countries many believe that there is no anti-Semitism in Russia, and for this are well disposed to Soviet rule. But in Russia people know that this is not true and, knowing such, set great hopes for the longevity of Soviet power, which, however, does not allow pogroms to occur, as is hoped, will never allow them to happen. In foreign countries, people are well-disposed to Soviet rule, because they believe in this advertisement: 'in the USSR there is no anti-Semitism'; in Russia they are well-disposed to Soviet power and are very frightened of its death, because they do not believe this advertisement, knowing that there is 'anti-Semitism' in USSR... but Stalin does not allow pogroms to occur and hopefully will not allow them to occur".
At another point in the same article "Stepan Ivanovich" writes the following lines: "The fall of Soviet power will be catastrophic for Jews, and any friend of the Jewish people must with horror cast away such view."
Although giving the above explanations about Jewish support of Soviet power in his article, "Stepan Ivanovich" personally did not share his opinion with them, but he gives them as "typical and quite widespread opinions among the Jews in the USSR, Jews in foreign countries and also among the friends of the Jewish people in the whole world".
"Stepan Ivanovich" had written his sketch after 20 years of stay of his fellow tribesmen in positions of the ruling class in the USSR, almost on the eve of the World War II, while the yearbook "Jewish World" was printed in the same year that Stalin concluded his treaty with Hitler. What is more, this treaty was approved also by the Comintern, in which Jews played far from small rôles. Jews then played a still bigger rôle (in the years preceding this treaty) in the external politics of the USSR. An overwhelming majority of the ambassadors were Jews, as well as being among the responsible workers in the People's Commissariat of External Affairs. And only a few months before signing the treaty with Hitler, Stalin replaced the Commissar for External Affairs, the Jew, Finkelstein-Litvinov, by a Russian, Molotov (true, he was married to a Jewess who was very active politically). This was done to please Hitler, who could not agree to carry on negotiations with Finkelstein. What considerations prompted the Jews, who at that time ruled the political life in the USSR and the Comintern, to enter into agreement with Hitler has not been found out up to now. This question, it must be assumed, will occupy future historians, to whom archives and data connected with this treaty will be accessible. For us contemporaries it is difficult to understand. Opinions on this question are different and contrary. Some hold the opinion that the rulers of the USSR considered that conflict with Germany was inevitable. By concluding the treaty with Hitler, the rulers wanted to postpone the clash, and step forward only when Germany was weakened by the war in the West. It was believed that Hitler would go to war against the West only after he would secure himself with a treaty with the USSR (as actually happened).
True, calculations did not justify themselves. From September 1939 and up to June 1941, the West was unable to create a front which would have tied up Hitler's armies, thereby giving him possibilities to commit an attack on the USSR, entailing incalculable sacrifices both of human life and of material. Theoretically, however, it is possible to acknowledge this as a logical calculation, of course, in view of the inevitable clash between the two countries.
But there is also another opinion: that the leadership of the USSR did not consider a military conflict with Germany as inevitable, at least not in the near future. Taking into consideration the attitude of the broad masses, and also the tendencies of the new ally — Hitler — a sharp turn of the USSR politics in the Jewish question was possible: for the sake of preserving power, heads of the USSR would bring Jews to sacrifice, in spite of the fact it itself was composed almost entirely of Jews.
At first glance this opinion sounds paradoxical. But by attentive reading of statements expressed by Russian-Jewish emigrants in the period directly preceding the conclusion of the treaty with Hitler, we find many statements confirming this paradoxical opinion.
So, for example, in the above mentioned book "Jewish World" (1939, p.51), we read the following: "If the dictatorship, reverting now to some national traditions of Moscow Russia and Imperial Russia, will consider it useful for itself and for its power over the minds and souls of its subjects to resort to this tradition of persecuting the Jews, should it need this "opiate of the people", then neither in the past nor, especially so, at present are there absolutely any obstacles for Soviet power. A right guaranteeing something, a right not to be persecuted, not to be given away in sacrifice to the "national indignation" — such a right the Russian Jews do not have right now, and indeed never had under the Bolsheviks. There was only a great opportunity for this, but there never was the right".
This was written at the end of the Thirties, that is, in the period of maximum occupation by Jews of all key positions of the cultural, economic and political life of the USSR, when the "dynasty of the Koganoviches" dominated the ruling head of the country.
What did the author (Portugaise-Ivanovich) perceive in the above "reverting to national traditions of Moscow Russia and Imperial Russia"? He does not explain, or he attempts to substantiate his apprehensions by the following words: "As is clear from materials collected and published by G. Aronson, the Soviet power had already became shy about Judaeophilia and Judaizing ascribed to it, and in a number of facts its active and consistent desire to hush up completely the existence of the Jews in USSR is being revealed. Jews are being systematically removed from the texts of such official documents as those in which dozens of the smallest nationalities and tribes are marked, the very name of which became known only recently. The Soviet power ceases to be, so to say, 'responsible for the Jews '. They became clearly an object of inconvenience for that course of 'love towards the motherland', of 'national pride' and of easy victorious 'patriotism', which is now being implemented foolishly and crudely in the USSR".
Taken in quotation marks, the meanings of "patriotism", "national pride" and "love towards the motherland" the authors of the above statements express, by the very act, the subjective Jewish attitudes to the feelings of love towards the motherland, to national pride and to patriotism of the Russian people, the same people who created the greatest state on earth, within the borders of which many Jews made enormous material fortunes up to 1917, received an education and, after the year 1917, became magnates of this great country and masters of its destiny.
As is known, each people, and especially the Jewish, cultivate its patriotism and are proud of it. Why then does not the patriotism of the Russian people find approval by Portugaise and Aronson? They do not explain this, but simply express a quite distinctly negative attitude towards it.
Professor Solomon Lourie in his book "Anti-Semitism in the Ancient World" scientifically explained and substantiated this invariably negative attitude of the Diaspora Jews towards patriotism and nationalism of any country and any people among whom they live, as a "nation without a language and territory". Extensive excerpts from this book are given in Part II of this work.
Ardently guarding their Jewish originality and purity of race, inseparably linked with religion, Jews do not admit strangers into their midst. But they themselves, Jews of Diaspora, strive to penetrate into all branches of the life of those foreign people among whom they live, and if there is an opportunity to occupy leading positions, they will do so. In countries and states with highly developed patriotic and national feelings and populations of homogeneous tribal composition, this is much more difficult to achieve and provokes a rebuff of the native population, which regards itself as a widened family of descendents of the same forefathers. It is much easier for them to achieve their ends in countries with a multitribal population, bound only by territorial unity and supreme power, or in states in which, for some reasons, patriotic feelings are suppressed and brought into latency.
In countries with a multitribal population unlimited possibilities are open for Jews to penetrate into the ruling class, without any opposition from the native population. The awakening of patriotism in a native population, naturally, is regarded by the Jews as a possibility that the question will be raised about their rôle in the country's life, about the possibility of occupying leading posts in the political and cultural life of the country in which they live at a given time and still maintain their own ideology and sense of justice, thus remaining alien to the native population.
All Jews in all countries of their sojourn understand this circumstance very well, and this is why they regard any manifestation of national pride and patriotism as a threat to themselves and to their position in a country.
Often this threat is felt even when it does not exist, as for example, in the USSR in the second part of the Thirties, when any manifestation of Russian patriotism was qualified as "great-power chauvinism" and was brutally persecuted. And, of course, there was no "reverting to national traditions of Moscow Russia and Imperial Russia" whatsoever at that time in the USSR.
But pre-conditions by the end of Thirties were already created for the awakening of national pride and patriotism of Russian people, whom aliens, turning into the privileged class, had ruled and for whom they had spoken for two decades. The discontent created by this privileged class was already floating in the air at that time; this could not have remained unnoticed by Jews, and they sounded the alarm in advance. They sounded the alarm because they anticipated events a whole decade in advance and, with subjectivity peculiar to them, exaggerated them as in the statements by Portugaise-Ivanovich and Aronson, the mouthpieces of Jewish attitudes and apprehensions in the USSR and without.
"The Soviet power already became shy about the Judaeophilia and Judaizing ascribed to it", we read in the "Jewish World" (1939). Non-Jews have not been noticing this "shyness", observing how, precisely in this period, the "inversely proportional" percentage of Jews in the highest positions and in diplomacy has reached its maximum.
Without exception, all ambassadors in the largest European countries in 1937 were Jews: in England there was Maisky; in France, Surits; in Germany, Yourinev (Ganfman); in Italy, Stein; in Belgium, Rubin.
There was not a single Russian in the USSR delegation in the League of Nations. The delegation consisted of eight members: Finkelstein-Litvinov, Rosenberg, Stein, Markus, Brenner, Girshfeld and Svanidze. The only non-Jew was the Georgian, Svanidze. At the head of the Commissariat of Foreign Affairs was Finkelstein-Litvinov.
If in any country the ambassador of the USSR was not a Jew, then all the remaining personnel (counselors, secretaries, attaches) were Jews, as seen from the list below.
Approximately the same proportion of Jews was represented in numerous Trade Delegations of the USSR in foreign countries.
The personnel of the Diplomatic Courier Section of the Commissariat of Foreign Affairs consisted almost exclusively of Jews.
Thus the matter stood with USSR representation in foreign countries; so it stood also in all other branches of USSR life in the second part of the Thirties, that is, in the years before the Second World War.
In order to give, as fully as possible, the picture of Jewish participation in the life of the USSR, a list is given below of the USSR personnel in various branches of the state apparatus (see supplement No.2).
This list, in general, did not undergo changes right up to the beginning of the Second World War. The ruling class in the USSR consisted chiefly of the Jews, occupying key positions in all branches of the country's life.
Trials and purges in the Thirties, as a result of which many Jews were not only dismissed from their positions but also shot or exiled (Apfelbaum-Zinoviev, Sobelson-Radek and others), did not change the correlation of Jews and non-Jews in the state apparatus of the USSR. They, as before, preserved after themselves and their relatives those positions which were occupied during the first years after October 1917.
Of course, in the new ruling class there were also non-Jews, who marked the beginning of this ruling class. But they all held the common spiritual view in their negative attitude to Russia as a national state. They were all "tied with the Germany of Marx as their spiritual motherland". And they did not limit their future activity to the borders of anyone state, but presented themselves on an international scale.
Professor Felatov writes about how views were formed of that group of people into whose hands fell the control of Russia in 1917 in "Present and Future Reflections about Russia and the Revolution".
"In the decade of reaction (1907-1917) in foreign countries, a rapprochement was taking place with the Bolshevik Headquarters and the leaders of the Left International. A lull in Russia and the compelled idleness of emigration attracted their attention to European affairs. Here solid ties were set up by Lenin, Zinoviev, Menshevik Trotsky, Rosa Luxemburg,
Radek and Rakovsky with Polish-Jewish-German radicals roaming from country to country, who were, however, tied to the Germany of Marx as their spiritual motherland.
During the war, at the time of the socialist betrayal of the revolutionary cause, the Third International was born in Zimmerwald-Kental, tying the expectations of a worldwide revolution to the World War. At this time Lenin, and especially Trotsky, felt themselves the least Russian revolutionaries. Like Radek and Rokovsky, these were spirits craving to incarnate themselves in any country: it could just as easily have been Austria or Germany, had Russia not collapsed first. The only Russian that Lenin felt at that time was an antithesis of patriotism – a special hate towards Russia as the most vicious of the so-called "imperialist countries".
However, the centre of his political interest (and of the Bolsheviks in general, up to 1918) was, of course, Germany, which impressed him spiritually by having in it two extremes: Marx and Ludendorff. France and the Latin countries they despised. A Russian revolution always appeared to them as a prelude, a provincial mutiny. Only in Germany could the construction of socialism have started".
Returning to Russia, Lenin carried away with him also the intellectual nucleus of the Third International. These leaders were, as is known, almost exclusively Jews, both Russian and German-Polish Jews.
This leadership had quickly expanded at the expense of Russian Jews, reinforcing its ranks and creating that ruling class which for almost thirty years humiliated and degraded everything that was national-Russian, even Russia itself, thereby provoking antipathy in the nation. And when at the end of the Forties, the words "a cosmopolitan without kith or kin" were pronounced, the broad masses felt that this was the beginning of the end of the ruling class. And the Jews, not only in the USSR but also in the whole world, perceived in this the beginning of "government anti-Semitism".
In his time, as is known, Lenin said: "What do I care about Russia!" And the leaders of the Third International, brought by him to Russia, took into its hands the education of the Russian people and wrote the following in the government organs of the press: "We do not have national power – we have international power. We do not defend the national interests of Russia, but the international interests of workers and deprived people of all countries" ("Izvestia", February 8, 1921). "Russia! Putrefied? Collapsed? Died? What then? May your memory live forever" ("Pravda", August 13, 1925). "Writers must throw overboard their literary mysticism, indecency, national point of view" ("Pravda", January 1, 1925). Between the national point of view and the indecency had been put the equal sign.
Thus the politics of Russia and the education of the people's masses were conducted in this spirit for thirty years, masses that found themselves under the rule of that "Third International nucleus" which was brought to Russia by Lenin. Moreover, this nucleus had swelled and expanded, absorbing in itself not only the dwellers of the USSR with an international attitude but also many natives of various western countries, related in spirit and tribe. The same natives who outside of the country already acted as representatives of the USSR, "the motherland of all proletarians".
In connection with this it would be of interest to mention an excerpt from the newspaper "Novoe Russkoe Slovo" (that of February 25, 1965) with a description of the personalities acting in Spain during its civil war in the years 1936-39.
Lazar Stern from Bukovina (according to his passport he was "Emil Kleber" from Canada, but had never been in Canada) was in command of International Brigades. Another, Stern-George, Division Commander in the Rea Army, was called "Grigorivich" in Spain. Jacob Smushkevich, Corps Commander in the Red Army was called "Douglas" in Spain. General Batkin was called "Fritz". The Hungerian Jew-communist M. Zalka worked in Spain under the pseudonym "General Lukatch". Abram Slutsky, who was in charge of the foreign section in the NKVD, travelled to Madrid under the name "Chernigovsky". The chief resident of the NKVD in Spain was "General Alexander Orlov" who had even "his own jail in the city of Alcalad, but in fact at Lubianka he was called "Nickolsky" or "Katznelson".
The ambassador of the USSR in Spain was Marcel Rosenberg. The assistant to the military attaché at the embassy was Lvovich, also acting under the pseudonym "Lotti". All the named representatives of the USSR were Jews. The only non-Jew was a Latvian named Ian Berzin, who for 15 years had been in charge of the Central Intelligence of the Red Army. In Spain he worked under the pseudonym "General Grishin".
All the foreign intelligence services, of course, knew very well of which nationality all these "Russians" were, "Russians" who were representing the USSR in Spain. But nothing was written about this in the world press. The fear of being suspected of "anti-Semitism" was stronger than the wish of reporting the biographical data about these "Russians" to readers.
Jews filled the ranks in embassies and trade delegations that represented the USSR in all other countries in approximately the same proportion.
In connection with this a characteristic joke was spread on the eve of the Second World War in Europe. It was agreed to have a conference of the USSR ambassadors and trade delegates in Geneva representing the USSR in all large European countries. Of course, the English Intelligence Service wanted to know what the conversation would be about at the conference. The Englishmen installed microphones, found two Russian emigrants who spoke good English and one Englishman who spoke good Russian, and were set to take down in shorthand the whole talk of the conference. But a big confusion occurred: none of the three could write down anything, because the "Russian Diplomats" conducted their whole conference in Yiddish.
But the matter did not go any further than the joke; even at that, it was passed around only orally. Neither the émigré nor the world press touched this "ticklish" question.
The Jewish press outside of the USSR also kept silent, press which wrote so frequently earlier about the percentage quota and all kinds of discrimination of Jews in Russia.
The very same phenomenon, in the sense of overfilling by the Jews of various departments, was seen not only in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs but also in all other ministries (People's Commissariats) of the USSR.
Here are impressions of foreigners who visited Moscow in 1935 and had an opportunity to convince themselves in this "proportionality" between the Jews and non-Jews in important state departments in the USSR.
These impressions and observations are related in the book "Fair of Insanity", which was written by the Englishman Douglas Reed, who was a journalist and spent several days with Anthony Eden in Moscow. On pages 194, 199 and 200 of this book he writes the following:
"Two big British establishments, represented by Anthony Eden and myself, have never sent their representatives into Soviet Russia up to now... Not one statesman has visited Moscow… My newspaper has never sent a correspondent to Moscow because of the censorship. Thus these two visits were big events, each in its own field.
The Soviet Government repeatedly complained that the Russian news (correspondence from Moscow) was transmitted from Riga, and asked why the newspaper would not send its representative to Moscow. The answer was always 'censorship'.
Thus my visit was long awaited and desirable. I stayed there no longer than five minutes, when representatives of the government began to argue with me about insignificant things. They said that I wrote (in my correspondence) that Eden was passing the street where a 'silent crowd in worn-out clothes stood in lines'. At once a small Jewish censor appeared and demanded that I must strike out this expression (from the transmitted correspondence). To this demand I answered: 'would you like me to write that the streets are filled by bourgeoisie in top-hats?' He remained unchanged. Such was the cultural level of the censors.
The Ministry of Censorship, which consisted of the whole control machine (muzzles) for representatives of the foreign press, was packed with Jews and this surprised me more than anything else in Moscow. They were the same Jews that were also in New York, Berlin, Vienna or Prague — well fed, well made up, with a touch of dandyism in clothing.
I was told earlier that the percentage of Jews in the government was not as great. But in this ministry, which I got to know very closely, they were monopolists". Further, in the very same book, Douglas Reed writes the following: "And where are the Russians? It must be assumed they are those silent, badly dressed crowds that are standing in lines..."
We find other evidence about Jews being in the government apparatus of the USSR in the book "From Freedom to Brest-Litovsk", published in 1919, in London. The author of this book is Tyrkova-Williams, wife of Harold Williams who for many years was a correspondent for the English newspaper "Manchester Guardian". A. Tyrkova-Williams was herself a journalist by profession. She took an active part in politics and participated in the ranks of the "Constitutional Democratic Party" as a member of the Central Committee. Here is what we read in her book:
"Among Bolshevik bosses there were very few Russians, that is, very few people of the profound Russian culture and who had an interest in the Russian people. None of them in any sphere had occupied notable positions in Russian life before the revolution.
Side by side with foreigners, Bolshevism attracted many followers who lived among the emigrants that were for many years in emigration in various foreign countries. Most of them were Jews. They spoke very poor Russian. Some of them had never been in Russia before.
The nation from which they seized power was alien to them. Besides, they conducted themselves as victors in a subjugated country.
Generally, during the whole revolution, and particularly during Bolshevism, Jews occupied very influential posts everywhere. This phenomenon is very complicated and strange, however, the fact remains... For example, there was the famous trio: Leiber, Gotz and Don who were elected in First and Second Soviets 1905-1917.
In the Soviet Republic all the committees and commissariats were filled by Jews. They frequently changed their names. But this masquerade deceived no one. Rather, quite the reverse, the pseudonyms of commissars emphasized the international and even foreign character of the Bolshevik power.
Of course, among the Bolsheviks there were also Russians — workers, soldiers and peasants, and influential Bolsheviks such as Lenin, Lunacharsky, Banch-Bruevich, Kollontai and Chicherin, who were of Russian origin.
However the dominating class, which very quickly crystallized around the Bolsheviks, consisted primarily of aliens, people who were strange to Russia. This fact, perhaps, was useful to them in holding the masses in subordination, since the Bolshevik autocracy was built on their absolute contempt and disregard for the people whom they were running. (pp. 207-299 of the book, "From Freedom to Brest-Litovsk".
* * *
What was the population of the Jewish ethnic group within the boundaries of the USSR in the second part of the Thirties, the years when the Jews were in the ruling majority in all branches of the country's life? It is impossible to give an absolute figure owing to various reasons, many Jews took typical Russian pseudonyms and acted under them; still many more quite officially changed their Jewish names and surnames. In the beginning of the Twenties whole pages of "Izvestia" were filled with reports about changes of names and surnames. This was allowed by law and did not entail an expense or red tape. Besides that, it must e taken into account "that during the general census of the population the heading "religion" did not exist at all, and to answer the question about "nationality" was left to the individual. Using this opportunity, many Jews, without changing their surnames, could state that they were ''Ukrainians'', "Byelorussians" etc., which in fact they did.
In statistical reports, under the heading "Jew", were listed, without any verification, all those who, during census, called themselves and their underage children "Jews". Naturally under such methods of conducting a census, a number of real Jews did not enter their names under the heading "Jew" and thereby had reduced the actual number of Jews residing in the USSR.
Perhaps purely Jewish organizations kept their own statistical records more precisely than did the official Soviet ones: however, there is no data about these in statistical research.
This assumption is not inconceivable. In 1965, in New York, an association of purely Jewish organizations accused administrations of fifty New York banks of not admitting Jews to leading executive and administrative positions, and when they did, the percentage ratio did not correspond to the percentage of Jews living in New York. The Jewish association insisted that Jews made up 25% of the New York residents, whereas in executive positions in banks Jewish representation equaled only from 2 to 3%. In this accusation it is further stated that 82% of New York banks did not have Jews in its administrative ranks.
All the figures given above are the result of four months of secret inquiry into the nationality of 1,250 of the highest executives and members of administrations in fifty New York banks.
The chairman of the association for New York banks, Osten S. Murphy, answered that banks do not know and do not take interest in who of its executives, directors and members of administrations are Jews, and who are not. In forms and personal records of executives there is no heading about racial origin, color of skin, religion. This should have been known by Jewish organizations. It is unknown how and on the basis of what data the Jewish organizations came up with the given figures and percentages. (Published in "Herald Tribune" October 21, 1965).
After this reply the association of Jewish organizations did not raise this question again in newspapers, although this does not mean, of course, that this question was finally taken off the line.
The incident above shows how Jews are watching attentively and in an organized manner the successes and failures of their fellow tribesmen in all countries of the world.
For example, a bulletin is regularly published in London called "Jews and the Jewish People", a collection of material from the Soviet press. The bulletin is published in the Russian and English languages. In this bulletin all data is given about appointments, promotions to higher ranks, rewards and medals received by Jewish citizens of the USSR, for the current period (usually three months). The data begins with generals and ends with cow-milkers and Jewish labor-heroines. The given data is commented upon and emphasized, if, in the opinion of Jews, their fellow tribesmen were not sufficiently rewarded or promoted in the USSR.
Thus, in order to establish the number of Jews living in the USSR one has to rely on official Soviet statistics and, taking into consideration the above, make adjustments for those Jews who proclaimed themselves as ''Russians'', "Ukrainians", "Byelorussians" or as representatives of any other nationality.
According to the information published in 1939 in the year-book "Jewish World" (article by S. Pozner), the number of Jews living in the USSR in 1935 was 2,900,000, equal to 1.8% of the whole population of the country. It must be assumed, however, that actually there were more, but how much more is unknown. Supposedly there were no less than 3,000,000.
It is these three million Jews who gave, from amidst their ranks, almost the whole ruling class of the Soviet State, numbering two hundred million people. This is obvious with utmost clarity from the lists featured in this work, and also from the above statements and the evidence of foreign observers.
In the first period, in the period of the seizure of power in Russia, special knowledge, education, experience, qualifications to occupy responsible leading positions in all the spheres of the country's life were not required. To achieve this, it sufficed to be aggressive, self-assured, loyal to the party and, of course, to have a kindred and tribal closeness with those who made up the nucleus of the power.
But when the power was seized, the new ruling class encountered the necessity of having a corresponding education in order to occupy responsible posts. Lacking the required education, the various "activists" were trying with brave ignorance to solve all questions.
The pre-revolutionary intelligentsia and big specialists were ruthlessly exterminated, and those who survived were not trusted by new power. And if someone was admitted to the service, then he was assigned a "commissar", who, not having knowledge or understanding, only hindered the work.
It was necessary to create a new intelligentsia, cadres of educated people from those groups of the population in whose loyalty and trust the new power could not have been in doubt. These groups were almost the whole Soviet Jewry and those numerous activists who advanced themselves in the beginning of the revolution and were utterly devoted to the new power.
The first task of the new power, in the field of education, was to safeguard itself from the danger of infiltration by "socially alien" elements, the unreliable ones; that is, not to admit sons of former aristocratic and wealthy families in the higher learning institutions, except Jews who fell under the classification of "oppressed and persecuted" people under the old regime. When this was secured the power proceeded to create the new intelligentsia, the new elite of the country.
Theoretically it should have been created of the people "from a wooden plough and a machine-tool". It was for this purpose that the so-called "workers' faculties" were created to train these activists that they be able to go through courses in higher learning institutions.
What this turned out to be in practice is shown by the statistical information about the tribal composition of students in higher learning institutions of the USSR. According to the information given by Pozner in the "Jewish World", 1939, there were more than 20 percent (20. 4%) of Jewish students in higher learning institutions", while the Jewish ethnic group consisted of less than 2 percent (1.8 %) in relation to the whole population of the USSR.
In considering students as a rate per thousand of population, we find the following comparison:
- Per one thousand Russians there were 2.8 Russian students.
- Per one thousand Ukrainians there were 2.0 Ukrainian students.
- Per one thousand Byelorussians there were 2.4 Byelorussian students.
- Per one thousand Jews there were 20.4 Jewish students.
The above records are for the year 1935. In the next decade the percentage of Jewish students steadfastly grew. There are no exact data about the percentage of Jewish students for this decade; there is only an indirect indication concerning this. Thus, for example, the former Moscow student David Burg, in his article "The Jewish Question in the USSR", which is included in the Part IT of this work, reports that, before the World War II in one of technical faculties of Moscow, the percentage of Jewish students was 40%. And according to numerous reports from various students of that time, the percentage of Jewish students was considerably higher.
This circumstance provoked corresponding attitudes among the remaining non-Jewish masses of students. The non-Jewish students, as well as the whole population of the country, understood very well that if the percentage growth of the Jewish students would continue at the same rate as before the war then in the not too distant future a non-Jewish student would become a rarity in the higher learning institutions of the country.
To this we must add another circumstance: during exams, some Jewish students, dissatisfied with ratings received for their knowledge, accused professors of "anti-Semitism", of negative partial treatment of Jewish students. Such accusations used to send chills under the professors' skins. Of course, this was not invariably so. But it did occur, and quite frequently. While passing examinations, a Jewish student reveals his lack of knowledge and unpreparedness. An examiner expresses his opinion. In reply, the Jewish student says: "You are cutting me, because I am a Jew". The confused professor asks a few more "childish" questions, which were not too difficult to answer. Then the professor gives a satisfactory mark and the Jewish student, with an air of victory, returns to his place.
Former students of higher learning institutions of the USSR tell about similar methods of passing exams. After World War II, quite a few such students found themselves outside the USSR. Former professors also tell about this occurrence, but of course, not to foreigners (Jews), but to their own (Russians), to whom they would tell what they would not tell a Jew, as S. Schwartz writes in his book.
Knowing all the above, there is no reason for surprise about S. Schwartz's report that students demanded the introduction of the percentage quota for Jews, as was explained in more detail in the previous account.
It is also impossible not to take into account still one more circumstance. An overwhelming majority of Jewish students, in a material respect, were in a much better situation than the rest of the students, for the very simple reason that they were children or relatives of the ruling class people. These were well-off and could, if not support fully, then at least help their student children or relatives quite substantially.
All these circumstances have contributed to Jewish students so much that they were able to complete universities and institutions much easier and quicker, and, upon receiving their degree, get jobs wherever they wanted and with less difficulty than other students.
The new ruling class quickly prepared "replacements" for itself, which already filled up Soviet establishments, not on the basis of merits, but on the basis of university degrees. They filled up the establishments to such an extent that "even now" (in the middle of the Fifties, that is almost ten years after the Jews started to lose their monopolistic position in the USSR), as Furtseva said "there are ministries in which more than half of the personnel is Jewish". The minister of Public Education of the USSR, Cathrine Furtseva said this when she addressed a meeting of Moscow University students. It must be assumed that Furtseva spoke the truth, because her assertion was not refuted in the Jewish press, which published the content of her speech.
True, by that time, (that is, by the middle of the Fifties) under the pressure of the general feelings of the whole USSR population, after the Jewish-Arab war and the subsequent creation of Israel, and in the interest of state security, Jews were removed from leading posts and the previous confidence in them ceased to exist. But no one persecuted them. And the establishments, previously filled to capacity with Jews, only gradually started to get replacements from the representatives of the native population of Russia. How slowly this process went is evident from the unrefuted assertion of Furtseva.
After 30 years of ruling in Russia the Jews ceased to be the ruling class. But no one exterminated them, as they did in their time with the overthrown class of pre-revolutionary Russia, a class that was partially exterminated physically, and whose survivors were forced to deprivation.
We will see now what this ruling class did while holding its privileged position, and how it dealt with the enormous cultural heritage of the great nation within which it found itself.
* * *
Material valuables that ended up in the hands of the ruling class after its coming to power were enormous, innumerable.
"The whole 'crystallized labor' turned into capital, in all its kinds and forms. It is the fruit and the results of capitalist plunder of workers" — so various orators of all calibers and shades preached at meetings. They used to throw the fiery and rousing slogans to the dark masses: "plunder what was plundered!"
And the All-Russian plunder began: at that time it was called "socialization", "nationalization", "requisition"... Everyone plundered everything, starting from underwear, crosses worn around the neck, wedding rings and ending with treasures and priceless works of arts... You see, all these were "plundered", "all these belong to the people"...
It is impossible (and it is doubtful that it will ever be established) to calculate or to account for how much was looted.
It is only possible to judge where the loot went on the basis of indirect information and memoirs of active participants of this All-Russian plunder. So, for example, in the newspaper, "Novoe Russkoe Slovo" of 1965-1966, there is an indication of who was in charge and how he managed the "socialized" treasures. Extensive excerpts from the memoirs of participants are given in the supplement of Part II of this work. ("Socialized Treasures and their Use".)
During the first post-revolutionary years, whole freight cars and trucks loaded with silver used to arrive in Teheran, silver that was sold by weight as "scrap". At that time in Persia there were silver "tumans" (markets specializing in silver trading). On one plate of weights would be placed the silver "scrap", and on the other, Persian silver coins weighing the same amount. Thus the "scrap" went kilogram for kilogram.
This silver "scrap" had been torn off from gospels, icons set in the framework and vestries, and it also included various other articles made of silver: glass-holders, silver dishes, icon-lamps. In this "scrap" there were also many articles made by the famous Russian jewelers: Khlebnikov, Ovchinnikov and Fabergé.
More valuable and more portable "scrap" went to the large antique stores of Europe and America and was sold, of course, not by weight.
Even now, after half a century, in various antique stores and at auctions from time to time, jewels, icons and art works of doubtless Russian origin appear. However, the ways and means by which all these ended up in salesmen's hands is unknown. One can only speculate.
The capitalist world, so zealously guarding private property and severely punishing violators, shut its eyes in this case to the origin of what was sold and readily bought that which was "deliberately stolen", bought without asking immodest questions.
Was this not an indirect justification of the All-Russian plunder and the recognition of the rights of those who stood in power then to dispose of the loot in accordance with their own orders?
It would be appropriate to recall here the case of policyholders from the Insurance Company "Rossia", which also had capital in the USA. A few emigrants, with policies in their hands, appealed to the American court with a request to settle payments due them from the capital of "Rossia" that was in USA banks. These policyholders had incontestable rights to receive certain sums of money from the insurance company. The court made a decision in favor of the policyholders. But the USA Government intervened and "explained" that even in the year 1918, the Insurance Company "Rossia" was socialized by the decree of Soviet power and therefore the claims must be refused. This, however, did not prevent the frozen capital of the Insurance Company "Rossia" in USA to be used in satisfying claims analogous to those of Russian emigrants, but presented by persons, who had American citizenship at the time of the socialization decree.
* * *
Besides the treasures, precious stones, gold, silver and articles of art which were easy for the new ruling class to squander throughout the world, the innumerable national historic treasures and cultural monuments of the great nation fell into their hands. Under their charge was the culture that was created by whole generations during its thousand year history; monasteries, temples with priceless frescos, places and centers of art where Russian history and Russian culture were manifested. All these things which were cherished and were an integral part of the past were under their control.
For the new rulers of the country all this was not only strange and alien but also harmful and even dangerous. It reminded them of those times when Russia was ruled by Russians, when behind monastery walls Russians sat out from enemy raids, when in monastery cells chronicles were written, when the Russian national concept and sense of justice were forged.
This is why the new power, unable to sell or to squander this part of the All-Russian property, property of the whole Russian people, began, with exceptional ferocity, to destroy it. This task was entrusted to Goubleman, who took the pseudonym "Yaroslavsky". He occupied himself with the defamation and destruction of the temples, applying blasphemous, humiliating methods in his activity. Under his leadership, the "militant atheists" mocked and jeered everything that was sacred and dear to the people.
How many of the unique and irreplaceable monuments of Russian culture, inseparably linked with its Orthodoxy, were destroyed, sullied or profaned is impossible to account for or to enumerate. Perhaps this will be done by generations to come. We, however, not only should but must remember this. We must also remember that emerging now among the young people of the USSR there is a heightened interest in the past of their people. This heightened interest demonstrates that it is not so easy to kill in a people their national spirit, their conscience.
* * *
Russian culture (literature, art, science) at the beginning of this century occupied, if not the first, then, undoubtedly, one of the first places in the world. At the turn of the Twentieth Century, the cultural elite in Russia was raised and educated in humane and liberal traditions, equally alien to the xenophobia of the French, as to the cold and haughty utilitarian attitude of the Anglo-Saxons, and to the self-conceited and pompous Germans. These elite bore within itself the germs of cosmopolitanism and this is why it has so easily and freely admitted representatives of all tribes, races and nationalities into its environment.
Russian nationalism was in a latent state and the "national repulsion", strikingly manifested in other nations, was almost absent among the Russian cultural elite.
Such circumstances, it must be assumed, explain why alien and foreign elements at first penetrated as equals into the ranks of the Russian cultural elite with unusual ease. And after the year 1917, they almost completely captured in their hands the leading positions in all spheres of the cultural life in Russia.
Somehow this capture occurred unnoticed. When the Russian elite realized itself nationally, it was already' too late. The new ruling class, with uncommon energy and determination, rushed in to struggle with the historical past of Russia, and well succeeded in capturing the power during the first quarter of the century. Even the very words "Russia" and "Russian" were under prohibition. If anyone was caught or simply was suspected of showing the least amount of discontent with this new course of Russian culture, he could easily end up in a not so distant place.
The teaching of Russian history and subjects connected with it, both in secondary and in high schools, became quite a dangerous profession. The history of Russia had been going through changes and adjustments to the new course. Changes in this subject occurred frequently and one had to be on the alert, in order not to end up in heresy. In the Soviet press, of course, it was not mentioned. In the world press, if there was something written about it, then it had to be approved by the Jewry, because this was regarded as a struggle with Russian chauvinism and the eradication of the remnants of "red patriotism".
Only in 1966, in the book "Russia in the Years 1917-1964" written by Westwood, the American historian-investigator, can you read the following truthful lines: "communists struggled not so much with Whites, bourgeoisie, kulaks or Fascists, as they did with the historical past of Russia".
This is, perhaps, the first incident when the main aim of the ruling class was correctly noted and distinctly formulated. This aim consisted of eradicating any feelings of national belonging and converting the new generations into "Soviet people" with a psychology of "a cosmopolitan without kith or kin".
Immediately after coming to power, the new ruling class, understanding and taking into consideration the great importance of instilling their ideas in the masses: first, prohibited throughout the country all periodical issues of non-communist orientation; and secondly, at the head of all newspapers and magazines it placed its own people, who not only held the same political views but also were of the same tribal identity. (In order not to enumerate here all the editors of influential newspapers and magazines in the USSR during different periods of rule by the new class, it is recommended to look in the corresponding listings, placed at the end of this book.)
At once the new heads of the USSR press started to implement the general line of the Third International, which, with its headquarters, arriving from foreign countries and began an undeviating struggle with the historic past of Russia.
This struggle advanced on a wide front. Besides the press, which in every possible way tried to denigrate the past of the Russian people who created the great state, the literature of that time also undertook the same task. The huge state machinery of "public education" got into the same act as well, striving to educate the new generation completely ignorant of the past and its people and country...
The aim was to create the "new man", the international man, who would be unable to remember his kinship and would not know and understand what his motherland was.
Anything that could interfere with this new course of upbringing was subject to prohibition and extermination. Various stooges of buffoonery in the ruling class "were using brooms to sweep out Russian classics and other trash which cluttered the brains of the proletarians". Pushkin was under prohibition, to say nothing of Dostoevsky, Leskov and other leading figures of Russian literature. The dictator of literature was the nephew of Sverdlov, Leonid (Laiba) Averbakh, whose activity is described in the separate supplement in Part II of this work (see "Lenka and Henrikh of Iron").
The whole legion of the new Jewish "Soviet writers and journalists" appeared on the proscenium of literary life. These Jews were in addition to those who even earlier had congested the pages of Russian newspapers and magazines, for example, Bagritsky, Silvinsky, Babel, Kataev, Petrov, Scklovsky, German, Ilf, Kaverin, Lidin, Goldberg, Nickulin, Kirshon and many others.
As a result, in the second part of the Thirties it was just as difficult to find a Russian among "Russian" (Soviet) journalists and writers as among numerous "Russian" (Soviet) diplomats, trade delegates and the rest of the personnel in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The very same picture had been observed in the spheres of art, music, theatre and cinematography. The volume of this work restricts the enumeration of all the names; furthermore many Jews acted under Russian pseudonyms.
The population of Russia was silently observing everything that took place. However it was unthinkable to condemn the situation as it stood then, when the numerically insignificant minority, alien to the Russian people in their ideology and sense of justice, had captured almost all the leading positions in the country. Concerning protests, people were afraid even to think about them because this would have been deemed "anti-Semitism" and would have entailed severe punishment.
Solomon Schwartz, the investigator of "anti-Semitism in the USSR", calls this silence "subsiding of the anti-Semitic wave". A. S. Pozner reports in "Jewish World" (for the year 1939) that the "Jewish foreign press was carefully watching for any rise of anti-Semitism in Soviet Russia, and it must be stated, that it was able to note only an insignificant number of incidents. The last such incidents took place during 1935-1936. The Jewish Telegraph Agency detected two incidents in 1935, and in 1936 only one. Court actions were taken in all three incidents against the ones guilty of anti-Semitism, and they paid for it with jail terms, ranging from two to five years.
"A generation grown up during the Soviet rule, in all probability, was free of anti-Semitic feelings, because it was brought up without the influence of racial and religious ideologies." Yet on the very page S. Pozner wrote: "At the Eighth All-Russian congress of Soviets, Molotov spoke; it was possible to conclude from his words the presence of anti-Semitic feelings in the country and in the administration. He threatened to consider manifestations of such feelings as a capital crime in the name of the government".
An explanation of that phenomenon which S. Schwartz calls "subsiding of the anti-Semitic wave" should be found perhaps in this last threat of the death penalty, stated on behalf of the government, and perhaps also in the insignificant number of court cases dealing with "anti-Semitism". Was it not the fear of the death penalty that closed the lips of the population so tightly and so reliably that even such experts on "anti-Semitism" as Solomon Schwartz could not discern these feelings?
The death penalty for the show of feelings is an unheard punishment, not only in peace time but even in a war situation or an occupation.
It is no wonder that the population of Russia kept silent and did not protest the new ruling class and all the experiments this new ruling class tried on the Russia which it had seized.
At that time — during the second part of, the Thirties this new ruling class seized the power in the USSR widely and all-embracing.
The closest collaborator of Stalin (married to a Jewess) was his brother-in-law, Lazar Kaganovich. The other brother-in-law, Moishe Kaganovich, was at the head of all heavy industry in the country. The People's Commissariat of Internal Affairs (NKVD) was in the hands of Hershel-Yagoda and his deputy and assistant Agranov-Sorenzon. The criminal investigation department was in the hands of Lev Belenky. Concentration camps were run by Mendel Berman, whose closest associates were Jacob Rapoport, Lazar Kohen and Simon Firin. All the jails in the country were run by Khaym Apeter. Political administration of the Red Army was in the hands of Yankel Gamarnik and Moses Vladimirsky. Internal trade was managed by I. Veizer and co-operatives by I. Zelensky. Lev Mariazin was in charge of the State Bank and all the treasuries of the country. Light industry was in the hands of I. Lubimov (Kozlevsky). Moses Kalmanovich was in charge of all food products in the country. Transport and all modes of communication were under the authority of Stalin's brother-in-law, Lazar Kaganovich, under whom Sigal occupied the position of Chief Procurator of Transport. Samuel Ginzburg was the head of all construction materials in USSR. All the metallurgy of the country was in the hands of A. Gurevich. The head of the trust, "Ore of the USSR", was Trakhter; at the head of the trust, "Potassium of the USSR", was Tsifrinovich and the head of the trust "Leather of the USSR" was Margulis.
All the main articles for export from the USSR were also in the hands of Jews: "Export-grain" — Abram Kusin; "Export-wood" — Boris Kraevsky.
Saul Bron was chairman of the Chamber of Trade of the USSR. His closest collaborators were also Jews. The whole external trade was in the hands of Aron Rosenberg.
The struggle with religion was led, as already mentioned, by Goubleman, and atheistic literature was in the hands of L. Averbakh.
Sobelssohn-Radek managed the periodic press; he spoke poor Russian, yet gave orders to editors of newspapers and magazines.
The Telegraph Agency of the Soviet Union (TASS) was in the hands of the Jews Vaisberg, Ginsburg (Koltsov), Shatsky, Tsekhar, Heifets and others.
The names of those enumerated above are also in the more detailed listings, placed in this book as "supplement". Here they are given, without fear of repeating them, clearly to demonstrate who at that time ran all the resources of the USSR as well as its cultural life.
But at the same time this ruling class zealously guarded "national-cultural" life of its fellow tribesmen who created a certain state within a state. They named this state "personal-national autonomy", without letting anyone interfere (except Jews) in the internal affairs of this state within a state, which possessed neither its own territory nor language.