“200 Years Together”
Bob Kordecky (Chicago)
In the current conflict between Russia and Ukraine both sides accuse each other of anti-Semitism, but paradoxically, it happens at a time when oligarchs of Jewish origin play a huge role in both countries. The presence of anti-Semitic sentiments in both countries is easy to understand, given the history of this part of Europe. The great Russian writer and thinker, Soviet dissident Alexander Solzhenitsyn wrote book titled200 years together, in which he described a disastrous impact of Jews on the history of Russia and Ukraine. Not coincidentally, this book was almost entirely ignored in the West, in contrast to other works by the same author The Gulag Archipelago, which brought him fame and a Nobel prize. This is because his book violated certain taboos and dogmas of the left-wing reality, existing in the West. The reason for this state of affairs lies in the pervasive environment of intellectual, politically correct atmosphere, self-censorship and the stifling fumes of philo-Semitism – which impairs Western academics, journalists, politicians, etc. transforming them into a dwarf pseudo-intelectual creatures. This condition should be changed, throwing a spotlight on the historical truth deceitful topics.
In the second part of his work Solzhenitsyn described the Jewish domination of the Russian Communist Party, American support for the Bolshevik Revolution, the dominance of Jews at all levels of government of Bolshevik Russia, the extermination of the Russian national elite and Orthodox Church, Jewish communists responsibility for the communism crimes, Soviet purges, Jewish nepotism in the Soviet government administration. Author presented in his book bluntly history of the Jews in the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union ( 1795-1995), and in particular their participation in the revolutionary movement and destroying Christian Russia during the Bolshevik Revolution and the Soviet state. The author confronts one of the last taboos of the communist revolution: that Jews were as much perpetrators of the repression as its victims. His book 200 years together is the real key to the recent history of Russia and should be read by everybody who wants to understand history of Eastern Europe.
Solzhenitsyn was aware of the fact that after publication of his book he would be immediately accused of anti-Semitism, therefore he stressed that the Bolshevik Jews were not real Jews but Jewish dissenters and not the Jews of the spirit. However, the prominent role of Jews in the Soviet regime cannot be denied. In a recently published book about Jews in Russia in the twentieth century, the Jewish writer of Russian origin S. Margolin called Jewish support to the Bolshevik regime “historic sin of the Jews.” For example, the import_ant role of Jews as commandants of Soviet Gulag concentration camps and labor camps, as well as, huge role of Jews in the systematic destruction of churches in Russia. Moreover, he adds: “The Jews all over the world supported Soviet power; silent in the face of any criticism of the opposition. ”
Kevin McDonald, a professor from California who wrote series The Culture of Critique, presented a wider problem. He explained the role of Jews in the radical movements of the twentieth century, from Bolshevism to feminism. Probably not always consciously, they used those movements for benefits of Jews as a social group. Thus, the destruction of the nobility and the upper middle class in Russia made ââa place for climbing up the social ladder by Jews.
Although the Bolshevik Jews were atheists and hostile to all religions, but they felt a special hatred towards Christianity, seeded them in childhood. After all, most of them came from families of orthodox Jews. Christian priests sent to the gulag were treated with an exceptionally perverse cruelty. Solzhenitsyn once described the scene in which the imprisoned priests were driven naked in the biting cold and drenched in water. Has anyone heard of a similar procedure applied to the rabbis?
Under the Bolshevik rule Christian churches in Russia become true ” churches of martyrdom “. For decades, they were subjected to the awful terror and the physical extermination of a large part of the clergy. According to official data provided by Alexander Yakovlev, chairman of the commission appointed to investigate the crimes committed during the communist regime and rehabilitation of the innocent, in the period from 1917 to 1985 under Soviet rule about 200,000 clergy of various denominations were murdered , and 300,000 were interned. Only in 1918-1939 Bolshevics killed more than 130 Orthodox bishops. They also murdered hundreds thousands of the faithful for their attempt to defend the faith and churches.
Communists wanted to pluck out Christianity by the roots from the Russian soul completely. Fact that Christianity survived in Russia can be considered almost as a kind of miracle. Unfortunately, contrary to Orthodox Christians, the modern Catholic Church hierarchy, ignoring that sad history lesson, adopted penitential pose beating their breasts for “sins against Jews”. This seems to be the best proof of the deepening process of “Judaization of the Catholic Church.”
For Poles extremely interesting could be the first part of the book by Solzhenitsyn , titled Before revolutionary Russia, as the author describes the historical role of Poland in a particularly irresponsible, even reckless favorable treatment of the Jews during ages. In the situation when Jews were expelled from the most of European countries, Polish kings and Polish gentry Parliament opened for them wide gates of the country, giving them special privileges. Poland was sometimes called a haven for Jews (paradisus Judaeorum) and even Judeo-Polonia http://www.pogonowski.com/?s=Jews+in+poland+
As a result of such policy, in XVIII century, the Jewish ethnic group in Poland made about 10% of the population of the country and was the largest in Europe. As most of Polish Jews lived in eastern part of the Kingdom of Poland, after partition of Poland in the end of XVIII century by its neighbor monarchies Austria, Prussia and Russia, huge number of Polish Jews became subjected to the authority of Russian tsar. That’s why Solzhenitsyn titled his book about Russian-Jewish relationships 200 years together.
According to some authors, if not Poland, Jews could disappear from areas of Europe. Polish kings were well known in Europe as âśprotectors of Jews.” When in 1550 the Polish King Sigismund Augustdesired to permit them free entry into Russia, this was denied by tsar Ivan the Terrible with these words: âśWe absolutely do not permit the entry of the Jew into my lands, because we do not wish to see evil in our lands, but rather may God grant that the people in my land may have rest from that irritation. And you, our brother, should not write us on account of the Jews again, for they had alienated the Russians from Christianity, brought poisonous alcoholic liquids into our lands and done much evil to our lands.”
Greedy Polish Jews took an active part in the Polish Drang nach Osten, which ended badly for Poland. After signing in 1569 year the Union of Lublin, territories of the the former Kiev Russia were incorporated into Poland.
“The main population of this land were Orthodox peasantry, long with significant freedom and freedom from taxes. Now began an intensive colonization of Ukraine by the Polish nobility with the participation of Jews. Cossacks were tied to the land and were required to serfdom and contributions … Catholic landowners burdened Orthodox peasants with various taxes and duties, and Jews played a special role in this process. Jews bought up the right for production and sale of vodka and the right to obtain an activity in other sectors of the economy. Jew-inn-keeper, took the place of Polish landlord, in fact he received the power over the peasants, who had previously belonged to the landowner. The Jew-inn-keeper tried to pull out of a peasants greatest possible profit. In this case, peasants hatred headed for the Catholic lord and his partner a Jew administrator.” So, when in 1648 a terrible Cossacks uprising started under the leadership of Khmelnitsky, Jews, along with the Polish landowners were victims. Cossacks and Ukrainian peasants killed a few hundred thousands of Jews and Polish citizens with unimaginable cruelty.
Jews, attracted by Ukraine natural wealth and encouraged to do so by the Polish magnates, colonizing country, occupied a prominent place in the business side of Ukrainian life … serving the interests of the landowners and the government … the Jews brought upon themselves the hatred of the population. “N.I. Kostomarov adds to this that the Jews “leased not only different areas of the gentry economy (Poles), but also and Orthodox churches, imposing even charge for infant baptism.” “Around the eighteenth century trade in wines and vodka has become almost the main occupation of Jews”. “The dealings often created tension between Jew and deprived of their rights peasants, who drank at a Jewish tavern not due to their wealth but because of extreme poverty.”
It is horrifying how deeply the historical Polish-Jewish oppression and grievances have stuck in the minds of the Ukrainian society, when a few centuries later during WWII hatred of “Polish lords” was the reason of terrible crimes committed by the Ukrainian nationalists on the Polish population in so called Volhynia slaughter. This time, however, their main victims were not Polish nobility or the Jews, but innocent Polish farmers – settlers in Ukraine.
On the other hand, whilst Jewish suffering during Holocaust is very well known all over the world, over the years the crime communists made ââon Ukrainian people, when in the 1930s starved to death millions of Ukrainian Orthodox peasants, was a big taboo. Ukrainian lands became a huge death camp. Extinction of entire villages and mass graves covered the local landscape. Almost 25% of population disappeared. One of the reasons for this silence was a huge participation of Jewish commissioners and Jews employed in secret communist police NKVD in the conduct of the mass murder of Ukrainians called Holodomor. For all the action Russian Jew Lazar Kaganovich Moiseevich (Kogan) was responsible on behalf of Stalin.
Sometimes, those crimes are attributed to Russian nationalism and chauvinism in the fight against Ukrainian nationalism. Therefore, this reminder was necessary here to make it easier to understand mutual historical roots of hatred between Russians, Ukrainians, Poles and Jews.