Moscow (Oct. 7)
The Presidium of the Central Executive Committee of the Union of Soviet Republics, the supreme legislative, executive and administrative organ of authority of the Union of Soviet Republics, has adopted a resolution instructing the Commissariat of State Planning and Statistics of the Russian Soviet Republic, the Far East Regional Executive Committee, and the Government Commission for Jewish Settlement (Comzet) to begin immediately to draw up the governing figures concerning all branches of economic, cultural, and building activities in Bureya, with a view to the fact that the projected Jewish autonomous territorial unit of Bureya has to be constituted by the end of 1933 as an integral part of the Far Eastern region.
The organisations in question have been instructed to complete their plans and to present them to the Presidium of the Central Executive Committee at the latest by the end of November.
M. Kalining, the President of the Union of Soviet Republics, and M. Smidovitch, Vice-President of the Union of Soviet Republics, who is also the head of the Comzet, repeated last month to M. I. Levin, the Secretary of the Bureya Pegional Communist Party, the assurances which have been made several times within the last few years, since the Bureya Jewish settlement scheme was first launched, that the region would be ultimately proclaimed a Jewish territorial administrative unit.
If Jewish immigration to Bureya continues at its present rate, Mr. Levin said to the J.T.A. representative in Moscow after his conference with the Soviet leaders at the time, the Jewish population there will number 80,000 at the conclusion of the Five-Year Plan in 1933, and then, he added, we shall be able to proclaim Bureya as a Jewish Republic.
M. Rykov, at that time Chairman of the Council of People’s Commissaries of the Soviet Republic, dwelt on one occasion in an official address on the prospect of Bureya becoming a Jewish autonomous territory, and announced that Bureya was included in the Soviet Five-Year Plan, which provided for 12,000 Jewish families being settled in Bureya within five years.
As far back as July 1929, M. Smidovitch declared at a Moscow meeting that “very soon the official name of Bureya will be the Y.S.S.R., meaning the Jewish Socialist Soviet Republic”.
The term Republic in this connotation is understood to mean actually a self-administrative territorial unit, on the lines of the already existing Jewish administrative regions of Kalinindorf, Freidorf, etc., and not a Republic in the generally accepted sense.
The work carried on in Bureya, so far, has been repeatedly described by leading Communist authorities as extremely disappointing, and many of the Jewish settlers who went out there, have gone back to their old homes, unwilling to stay there under the unpromising conditions obtaining there. M. Larin, a leading Communist, has contended that the Bureya plan is impracticable. The authorities have also found it increasingly difficult, in spite of all their efforts, to induce Jews in the Soviet countries to go to Bureya, and recently a new movement was started to recruit unemployed Jews in Lithuania, Latvia and other countries, as emigrants to Bureya.
According to the latest figures available last month, there are now less than 4,000 Jewish souls in Bureya.