Moscow (Aug. 19)
After many weeks of discussions and suggestions and reports the praesidium of the Union Central Executive Committee of the Soviet Union today decided to separate Bira Bidjan, Far Eastern Republic, into a self-contained administrative unit including the previous districts of Michailosemionovski and Yekaterinonikolski and parts of other districts which had been principally allotted for Jewish settlement in accordance with plans for a Jewish Republic at Bira Bidjan.
The Jews here are greatly disappointed at the failure to declare the new district Jewish, but the Moscow “Emes,” Yiddish Communist paper, is already retreating from its program of a Jewish district, saying that for Jewish Communists national territorial unification is not an aim in itself, their chief desire being productivization of the Jewish masses.
Nevertheless there is still some hope in Jewish circles here that if the plan of the land commissariat to settle 50,000 Jews at Bira Bidjan in the next five years succeeds, which means the creation of a Jewish majority, the district will be declared Jewish.
The decision to make of Bira Bidjan a self-contained administrative unit desulted from the many reports emanating from Bidjan that the management, which had been entrusted to the Comzet and the Ozet, was not satisfactory, and from the recommendation of the land commissariat last week that Bira Bidjan be made an independent administrative and economic center with its own district executive committee supervising.
On a number of other occasions there have been indications that the Soviet government had abandoned its plan to establish a Jewish republic at Bira Bidjan.