Dr. Goldmann Asks Moscow to “rectify the Wrongs” Done Soviet Jews

Asserting that “the Communist regime in Soviet Russia has not solved the Jewish problem,” Dr. Nahum Goldmann, president of the World Jewish Congress and of the World Zionist Organization, today called on the Soviet Government “to rectify the wrongs done to the 3, 000, 000 Jews of Soviet Russia.” He asked that “Jews in the Soviet Union get the same facilities as other national and religious minorities in the U.S.S.R., namely, to organize their own institutions and to foster their own culture.”

Dr. Goldmann was the guest of honor at a luncheon meeting of the national administrative committee of the American Jewish Congress, held at the Stephen Wise Congress House here. He participated in a ceremony dedicating the Nahum Goldmann Library in the Congress House.

Addressing the gathering. Dr. Goldmann said: “Our insistence upon these demands is not a fight against the Soviet Union. We ask from the U.S.S.R. what we are asking from any country in the world, whatever its regime or social system may be–the right for Jewish citizens to live in full equality and the right for the Jewish community to maintain its identity.”

There is nothing in the theory and program of Communism, Dr. Goldmann continued, which rules out Jewish life and the survival of Jews as an entity. “In the last years of Stalinism,” he said, “all remnants of Jewish life were recklessly eliminated. This policy of the Stalin regime was only recently publicly condemned by Soviet leaders who have tried to make good the wrongs and crimes committed by the Stalin and Beria regimes against various minorities. The one minority,” Dr. Goldmann said, “for which no such correction was made is the Jewish minority.”

CITES ANTI-JEWISH DISCRIMINATION IN ECONOMIC AND CULTURAL FIELDS

While noting that anti-Semitism is officially outlawed in the Soviet Union, Dr. Goldmann asserted, “there is no doubt that in reality discrimination exists as regards the economic and cultural opportunities for Jews. This,” he said, “has been admitted in statements of Soviet leaders themselves.”

“The main issue,” Dr. Goldmann continued, “which compels us to take a public stand is that the Jewish community of the Soviet will, in the long run, disintegrate and disappear if present conditions prevail. Jews, throughout history, could mostly survive as individuals by conversion or by assimilation. As a people, we have the right not only to secure the physical survival of the members of our people, but to continue living as part of the Jewish community. It is this right which is so gravely endangered in the Soviet Union today.”

The Jewish leader emphasized that the World Jewish Congress will continue to urge the Soviet Union to allow Jews to emigrate from Russia. “Many Communist countries in the past and in the present,” he said, “have shown understanding for this right and the desire of Jews to go to Israel, to be reunited with their families and to live a full Jewish life in Israel. Is it impossible to hope that the Soviet Union just as other Communist countries will be fair and generous enough to allow her Jewish citizens to go to Israel if they wished.”

Dr. Goldmann expressed the “profound disappointment of world Jewry at the spectacular deterioration in the Soviet Union’s attitude towards Israel.” Israel, he said, wants nothing more than to live in friendship with all countries, Communist and non-Communist alike. “Recent Soviet policy of partisanship is unworthy of a great power and defeats her peace aims and the prospects of establishing stability in the Middle East.”

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