They Did Not Dwell Alone: Jewish Immigration from the Soviet Union, 1967-1990 (Woodrow Wilson Center Press)

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9780801856167: They Did Not Dwell Alone: Jewish Immigration from the Soviet Union, 1967-1990 (Woodrow Wilson Center Press)
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From the time of its founding Israel placed the emigration of Soviet Jews at the top of its foreign policy agenda. But Soviet authorities permitted few Jews to depart; and in 1967, Soviet-Israeli diplomatic relations were broken following the Six Day War. From that time until 1990, Jewish emigration, along with other Israeli interests, was handled by the Netherlands embassy in Moscow.

Drawing on his experience as former Netherlands ambassador to the USSR as well as on extensive interviews with emigrants and on recently opened Dutch archives, Petrus Buwalda describes the turbulent events of the period when Jewish emigration from the USSR became an international human rights issue. As Soviet rulers opportunistically opened and closed barriers to emigration, Jewish "refuseniks" risked jail by demonstrating, and private organizations and Western governments alike protested their treatment. Nearly 560,000 Jews did succeed in emigrating from the Soviet Union.

Since his retirement in 1990, Buwalda has discussed emigration with many Jewish emigrants, and examined archives and interviewed officials in his own country, the United States, Israel, and Russia in order to tell the full story -- analyzing the motives of would-be emigrants, the erratic Soviet response, and international interventions.

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Book Description:

From the former ambassador to the USSR from the Netherlands -- the country representing Israeli interests in Moscow -- the story of the Soviet Jews who sought to leave.

About the Author:

Petrus Buwalda is retired from a career with the Netherlands foreign service, which culminated in ambassadorships to Egypt, Sweden, and the USSR. He was a guest scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in 1993.

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