The 'Yishuv' in the shadow of the Holocaust : Palestinian Jewry and the emerging Nazi threat, 1933-1939 / by Abraham Jacob Edelheit
Includes bibliographical references (p. 596-613)
The Nazi persecution of German Jewry between 1933 and 1939 elicited a strong response from virtually every corner of the Jewish world. The response of the Yishuv (the organized Jewish community in pre-1948 Israel) was of special importance, and it found its main expression in a policy of constructive aid known as rescue aliya. At the same time, the Yishuv experienced an intense ideological conflict concerning this policy--primarily between MAPAI and HA-ZOHAR--whose implications lingered after the creation of the State of Israel in 1948. To date, Holocaust historians have viewed the story of rescue aliya as a prelude to the response of world Jewry to the Nazi Endlosung; historians of Zionism, on the other hand, have viewed it as merely background to the history of the conflicts that preceded the rise of Israel. This dissertation seeks to broaden the context into which the history of rescue aliya is placed, by examining the constructive aid program in both its ideological and political contexts. Thus, the nature of the different responses to the fate of diaspora Jewry is charted and the Yishuv's leadership's appraisals of the Nazi threat to European Jewry are correlated. The question of how best to aid European Jewry--a source of contention among Zionists and non-Zionists alike--was of daily concern to the entire Yishuv. This study details the alternative strategies advocated by the Yishuv's leaders as they faced the painful dilemma of rescuing the Jews of Europe. Finally, this dissertation seeks to answer four important questions: (1) Did differing party ideologies reflect clear divergences in rescue-related questions? (2) Were the policies advocated by the Yishuv's leadership (and by their opponents) reasonable responses to the actual and perceived threat? (3) Were these policies pursued creatively and energetically? and (4) To what extent did the Yishuv's disunity impact on the success or failure of the rescue program?
Record last modified: 2018-05-22 11:46:00
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