Emigration of Israel-bound Jews from Poland Seen As Leading to Assimilation of Others

The complete disappearance of Polish Jewry as a result of the expected renewed mass emigration of Polish Jews to Israel and “disintegration and assimilation of the remainder” of the community was predicted today in a dispatch to the London Times from Warsaw.

Comparing the attitude of the Polish Government with that of other East European regimes, the Times says that government circles in Warsaw have felt for some time that a policy of preventing Jews from leaving the country would be politically unwise. “Most of the Polish Jews,” the report says, “suffered terribly in German concentration camps or while hiding out from the Gestapo. Their nerves are shattered, they have the most demonstrative sense of grievance and with their pronounced middle-class background they continue to serve as an additional source of dissatisfaction and ferment,” the dispatch adds.

The report notes that government circles further argued that by refusing to yield to assimilation themselves, these Jews–” of Orthodox and strongly nationalistic tendencies” –were exercising a strong and detrimental influence on Jews who were anxious to be assimilated. Their speedy departure, it was contended, would hasten the assimilation of thousands of Polish Jews, chiefly Communists, who decided to remain in Poland and who will “ultimately disappear in the melting pot of the Socialist Polish society.”

The report estimated that there are now some 10,000 Jews occupying posts in the administration who have changed their names and who are “severing relations with Jews and with their own Jewish past.” The article adds: “The rest, once this Jewish residue of opposition to Communism departs, will sooner or later have no alternative but to merge with the rest of the population.” The dispatch concludes by noting that “although Yiddish is still used by Jewish workers and farmers, and may continue to be spoken by those few remaining here, Poland will no longer be the center of Orthodox Jewish culture and learning.”

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