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HOLOCAUST HANDBOOK SERIES ■ VOLUME 29 


THE DISSOLUTION OF EASTERN EUROPEAN JEWRY 

B efore the Second World War, Eastern Europe was the demographic 
center of World Jewry. After the war, however, only a fraction of it 
was left behind. What happened? 

The “Holocaust, ” of course, most will say. 

The author of this book did not stop there, though, but thoroughly ex¬ 
plored European population developments and shifts mainly caused by 
emigration as well as deportations and evacuations conducted by both 
Nazis and the Soviets, among other things. The book is based mainly on 
Jewish, Zionist and mainstream sources. It concludes that a sizeable share 
of the Jews found missing during local censuses after the Second World 
War, which have so far been counted as “Holocaust victims,” had either 
emigrated (mainly to Israel or the U.S.) or had been deported by Stalin to 
Siberian labor camps. 

This is the slightly corrected second edition with an updated foreword 
by Prof. A.R. Butz and an important epilogue by Germar Rudolf. It com¬ 
pares Sanning’s study with a mainstream investigation into the numerical 
dimension of the Holocaust which appeared eight years after Sanning’s 
first edition and was designed to refute it. Both studies come to similar 
results of Jewish population losses in all European countries once ruled 
by the Nazis, except for two: Poland and the Soviet Union. These two 
countries harbored the vast majority of the world’s Jews prior to the war. 
While Sanning dedicated the majority of his book to a thorough study of 
both countries’ demographic developments, the mainstream book meant 
to refute him remains notably silent on those subjects. Also, while San¬ 
ning investigates worldwide Jewish migration patterns prior to, during 
and after the war, his detractors ignore the topic and simply assume that 
every Jew missing in Europe today was killed by the Nazis - as if there 
had never been Jewish emigration from Europe during and after the war. 


Castle Hill Publishers 
PO Box 243 
Uckfield, TN22 9AW 
Great Britain 



SANNING • THE DISSOLUTION 





HOLOCAUST HANDBOOK SERIES ■ VOLUME 29 






































The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


The 


Dissolution 

of Eastern European Jewry 


By Walter N. Sanning 



Castle Hill Publishers 
P.O. Box 243, Uckfield, TN22 9AW, UK 
February 2015 



HOLOCAUST HANDBOOKS, vol. 29: 

Walter N. Sanning: The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 
2nd, corrected edition 
Translation by Thomas Francis 

With a foreword by Dr. Arthur R. Butz and an epilogue by Germar Rudolf 
Uckfield, East Sussex: Castle Hill Publishers 
PO Box 243, Uckfield, TN22 9AW, UK 
February 2015 

ISBN10: 1-59148-083-3 
ISBN13: 978-1-59148-083-9 
ISSN 1529-7748 

Published by Castle Hill Publishers 

Manufactured in the United States of America and in the UK 

© 2015 by Castle Hill Publishers 

Distribution: Castle Hill Publishers 

PO Box 243 

Uckfield, TN22 9AW, UK 

Distribution USA: TBR Books 

The Barnes Review 
P.O. Box 15877 
Washington, D.C. 20003, USA 
1-877-773-9077 

Set in Times New Roman 

Cover Illustration: Eastern European Jewry, symbolized by the Star of Da¬ 
vid and the Menorah, dissolves between the combined onslaught of National 
Socialism from the West and Soviet Communism from the East. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


5 


Table of Contents 

Page 

Foreword.9 

Addendum for the 2015 edition.11 

Introduction.13 

PARTI.17 

THE SOVIET UNION AND THE EASTERN JEWS.17 

FIRST CHAPTER: Eastern Jewry.19 

The Demographic Structure of Polish Jews.20 

Jews in Other Eastern European Countries.32 

SECOND CHAPTER: The Growth of Soviet Jewry.37 

The Division of Polish Jewry.37 

Jewish Newcomers to the Soviet Empire.44 

Jewish Population Trends in the Soviet Union.46 

THIRD CHAPTER: Scorched Earth.53 

Soviet Military Build-up.53 

Soviet Policy of Destruction.58 

Soviet Mass Deportations.64 

Vacated Cities.74 

Depopulated Ukraine.83 

FOURTH CHAPTER: The Jewish Fate in the Soviet Union: 

1941-1945 .89 

Soviet Jews in the German Sphere of Influence.89 

The Evacuation of Wolhynia.93 

Some Remained Behind.99 

Death in Siberia.103 

FIFTH CHAPTER: The Jews in the Post-War Soviet Union.107 

The Survivors.107 

Revised Estimates.113 

The Jewish Cost of Lives and Overall Soviet Losses.121 

PART II.125 

THE WESTWARD DRIVE.125 

SIXTH CHAPTER: The Jewish Fate in German-Occupied Europe.... 127 

France, Benelux Countries, Denmark, Norway and Italy.127 

Greece and Yugoslavia.131 

Germany and Austria.132 

Hungary.135 

Czechoslovakia.141 

Rumania.144 





































6 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Bulgaria.151 

Summary.152 

SEVENTH CHAPTER: Jewish Emigration after World War Two.155 

United States.156 

Israel.162 

Latin America and the Anglo-Saxon Countries.167 

France.168 

The “Missing”.169 

Organized Flight.172 

EIGHTH CHAPTER: The World Jewish Population.177 

The Demographic Development before the War.177 

A Question of Millions.185 

The Great Migration.195 

EPILOGUE: Sanning Put to the Test.201 

A New Hope.201 

The Empire Strikes Back.203 

The Return of the Jedi.205 

Appendix.211 

Document.211 

Bibliography.212 






















W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


“[...] it is questionable whether one should accept 
improbable figures supplied by a not overly friendly 
source. ” 

— American Jewish Year Book, 1972, Vol. 73, p. 536, 
on the Soviet Union being engaged in making Soviet 
Jews disappear statistically 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


9 


Foreword 


It is an understatement to say that the study of 20th century Jewish pop¬ 
ulation changes presents us with irresolvable problems, but there is much 
that can be reliably observed. The principal background developments were 
the rise of Zionism as a significant international political force and the rise 
of anti-Jewish movements in Europe, notably in Germany. Implicit in both 
developments were policies, however differently motivated, that would 
have relocated European Jews in great numbers. Indeed this common ob¬ 
jective was the basis for a not negligible amount of cooperation between 
Zionist and German authorities in the 1933-1939 period. 

Other background developments were the adoption of pro-Jewish poli¬ 
cies by the USA and the USSR, the latter maintaining those policies through 
1948 (the year of Israel’s establishment). These victors in World War II 
continued, also from various motivations, processes of relocating Jews that 
had been carried on by Germany, while Germany in turn had not been the 
first in the field, as large relocations of Jews had been carried out earlier 
under Zionist and Soviet auspices. 

As these massive movements subsided to trickles in the postwar period, 
the broad outlines of what had happened were clear. Jewish communities 
had drastically shrunk or even virtually disappeared in much of central and 
eastern Europe, particularly Poland. Correspondingly, there had been great 
transfers of Jews to Palestine, the USA and other countries, employing 
means provided by Jewish organizations or by the U.S.-controlled UNRRA, 
whose Directors had been New York Zionists Herbert Lehman and Fiorello 
LaGuardia. There had also been a large dispersion of Jews, especially Polish 
Jews, into the Soviet Union. Thus the excellent title of this book. 

While such broad outlines were clear, many details remain obscure, 
shrouded or inaccessible. Particularly troublesome are quantitative aspects. 
We do not know how many were absorbed into the Soviet Union, how many 
emigrated to the USA or other specific countries, or how many remained or 
resumed living in central or eastern Europe, and the not insignificant number 
of those who perished has not been firmly reckoned. On the last matter, only 
propagandists and uninformed people come forward with a purportedly 
accurate number. 

Reasons for this ignorance are not difficult to give. The movements of 
Jews through the UNRRA camps were camouflaged as much as was possi¬ 
ble under the circumstances, for the excellent reasons, among others, that the 


10 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


subsequent movements to Palestine were illegal and in any case UNRRA 
was supposed to be for “United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation” in a war 
ravaged continent, not for conquest of non-European territory by indigenous 
European populations. 

Useful data on postwar migration and resettlement is difficult to impos¬ 
sible to obtain. Since 1943 the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service 
has made no attempt to count immigrant Jews as such, and Soviet-domina¬ 
ted eastern Europe does not welcome foreign or scholarly curiosity on po¬ 
litically sensitive matters. 

Census data is not of much help. In the USA, which is today the leading 
center of Jewish population, “Jews” are not a category for census purposes, 
and indeed Jews do not like being counted. The ongoing controversy in 
Britain on this point is a current illustration of this aversion. 1 The Soviet 
census attempts to count Jews, but the procedure of the census takers is to 
accept the word of individuals on this question. When to that observation is 
added the aforementioned Jewish aversion (operating in a state-encouraged 
climate of anti-Zionism) and the usual skepticism appropriate to evaluating 
Soviet claims, the Soviet census figures are seen to be of little value. Jewish 
spokesmen in the West claim that the Soviet figures are unrealistically low. 2 

To these considerations should be added the difficulty of producing an 
operationally useful definition of a “Jew.” This is an especially grave prob¬ 
lem in western liberal democracies, on account of the large extent of in¬ 
termarriage and the larger extent of religious apostasy. 

This book jumps squarely into the uninviting waters of 20th century 
Jewish demography and migration and attempts to reconstruct these Jewish 
population changes, especially in their quantitative aspects. One immediate 
consequence of this choice of subject is that the person looking for light 
reading is advised to look elsewhere; this book is difficult to read even for 
somebody who is accustomed, as I am, to reading texts with high quantita¬ 
tive components. Another consequence is that the reader looking for final 
and definitive answers to “how many?” type questions, as distinct from at 
best provisional estimates, will be disappointed. There is scarcely an esti¬ 
mate arrived at in this book that cannot be challenged on some plausible 
grounds. 

Such limitations of this book are not the author’s fault. There is no way 
his subject can be served adequately with easily readable text, and there is no 
way to determine the more important numbers involved with the accuracy 
and reliability of, say, a total population census in a contemporary western 
country. The author is well aware of such constraints and limitations, and 


1 Jewish Chronicle, 28 Dec 79, p. 5; 7 Mar 80, p. 9; 11 Feb 83, p. 4; Patterns of Prejudice, Jan 80, 

2 PP- 24+. 

American Jewish Year Book, 1981, pp. 239f. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


11 


specifically cautions the reader that one vitally important estimate “has no 
claim on absolute certainty.” If I were to select only one respect in which I 
wish the author had done something differently, it would be that I wish he 
had been more emphatic on the rather tentative nature of most of the quan¬ 
titative conclusions reached here. 

Such negative features of this book having been conceded at the outset, 
what are the positive features that excited my admiration for this work when 
it was in manuscript, and caused me to strongly urge its publication? 

This book is the first full-length serious study of World-War-II-related 
Jewish population changes. Its esoteric air is perhaps, on the perceptual 
level, the perfect antidote to the vulgar idiocies that are today monotonously 
peddled by the media, for whom recent Jewish population changes are also 
of major interest, although such dry terminology is rarely employed by 
them. 

This book presents the fundamentally correct account of the subject. 
While the basic structure of that account is not original with this book, the 
scope and depth of the study are great enough that I daresay that, barring the 
miraculous release of hitherto confidential data - especially by Zionist and 
Soviet controlled sources - the treatment has been carried here about as far 
as it can be. 

While the complexity of the subject may disturb some, it is important to 
learn, as we do from this book better than from any other, why this com¬ 
plexity exists. While many of the numerical estimates are not conclusive, it 
is important to learn, as we do from this study better than from any other by 
examining its sources, that such estimates can be made by conscientious 
deduction from widely accepted, accurately cited and, on very important 
points, mostly Jewish literature. 

The result is that the simplistic legends that have petrified postwar 
thought on the Jewish aspect of World War II are dealt another of the many 
blows they have received in recent years. 

Arthur R. Butz 
Evanston, Illinois 
February 1983 


Addendum for the 2015 edition 

In 1983 I wrote, “these massive movements subsided to trickles in the 
postwar period,” but now it is 2015, and the trickles have changed many 
details. Notable was the passage in the U.S. in 1974 of the “Jackson-Vanik 
Amendment,” dropped in 2012, which successfully encouraged, especially 
after the mid-1980s, emigration of Jews from the Soviet bloc. 


12 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


In that period the population of Israel has grown from about 4 million to 
more than 8 million today, much of the increase consisting of Jews from the 
former Soviet bloc and elsewhere. 

Thus an analysis of Sanning’s subject would produce some different 
numbers today, but that is inevitable. The subject matter, after all, is “the 
Wandering Jew,” and it just won’t stand still! 

Arthur R. Blitz 
Evanston, Illinois 
February 2015 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


13 


Introduction 


Just one hundred years ago eastern Europe - Galicia, Ukraine, Hungary - 
was the center of the world’s Jewish population, but today that center has 
moved overseas to the Western Hemisphere and Israel. Whereas previously 
there was little doubt as to who was a Jew, today it is much more difficult to 
arrive at a satisfactory definition. The increasing secularization of industrial 
society in the recent past affected the Jewish people in particular. No wonder 
that today the question of the numerical size of the world Jewish population 
is one of the most controversial of demographic statistics. Nowhere does one 
encounter as many contradictions as in the attempt to assess the world’s 
Jewish population even within the margin of error of a million. The repu¬ 
table American Jewish Year Book, for example, lists the size of the world’s 
Jewish population in 1979 as 14.5 million; looking a little closer, the sur¬ 
prised layman will find that this number includes several hundreds of 
thousands of gentiles. Other highly regarded experts such Dr. Nahum 
Goldmann, for example, believe that Israel’s almost 3.3 million Jews con¬ 
stitute almost one-fifth of World Jewry; in effect, he has put the figure for 
the world’s Jewish population at 1614 million. 

Also, if one learns that only eleven million Jews are supposed to have 
survived World War Two and that this decimated remnant - with the ex¬ 
ception of the Israelis - experienced a very slow natural growth in the post¬ 
war period due to over-aging, small families, rising assimilation tendencies 
and widespread mixed marriages, both of the above figures for the world’s 
Jewish population become questionable. 

Any attempt to trace the flow of migration of the Jewish people during 
the past fifty years and to narrow down the size of the Jewish population - 
then and now - can only be successful if the enigmatic demographic char¬ 
acteristics of the Jews in their areas of departure - i.e. eastern Europe - 
become unraveled and, furthermore, if the migration movements are seen in 
the historical framework. 

Unquestionably, the Second World War had by far the largest impact on 
the numerical development of the Jews in modem times. For this reason, 
especially the German-Soviet confrontation until 1945 and, thereafter, the 
determined effort of the Jews to leave the devastated historical countries of 
origin deserve to be paid the utmost attention. 

Primarily in order to meet possible objections, this analysis is based 
almost entirely on Allied, Zionist and other “sympathetic” sources. The 


14 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


significance of the statistical accountings in this study is also in the 
demonstration that they at least can be made on the basis of allegedly au¬ 
thoritative and largely Jewish sources. The most striking findings of this 
study are: 

A. The world’s Jewish population faced a serious demographic crisis even 
before World War Two. This was also true of the Jews in eastern Europe. 

B. During the 1930s roughly one million Jews left the historic places in 
central and eastern Europe for North and South America, Palestine, 
western Europe and several other minor recipient countries. 

C. At the beginning of World War Two there were fewer than 16 million 
Jews in the world (Zionist data are listed in parentheses): 


United States 

5.0 

(4.8) million 

USSR (incl. Baltic states) 

5.3 

(3.3) million 

Palestine 

0.4 

(0.4) million 

European countries occupied by 



Gennany during WWII 

2.9 

(6.0) million 

Rest of the world 

2.4 

(2.2) million 


16.0 

(16.6) million 

D. Of the 5‘/2 million Jews in the Soviet Union at the outbreak of WWII, by 

far the largest part was evacuated to 

Siberia; less than 15% fell into 

German hands. 



E. One million Jews died while fighting 

in the Red Army or in Siberian 

labor camps; this aspect is generally passed over in Zionist accounts. 

F. 1414 million Jews survived the last war (Zionist data in parentheses): 

United States 

5.2 

(5.0) million 

USSR 

4.3 

(2.0) million 

Palestine 

0.6 

(0.6) million 

European countries occupied by 



Gennany during WWII 

2.4 

(1.1) million 

Rest of the world 

2.2 

(2.3) million 


14.7 

(11.0) million 

G. Today, the world’s Jewish population numbers 

16 54 million (American 

Jewish Year Book data listed in parentheses): 


United States* 

6.7 

(5.9) million 

USSR 

3.4 

(2.6) million 

Israel 

3.2 

(3.2) million 

European countries occupied 



by Germany during WWII 

1.0 

(1.0) million 

Rest of the world 

2.0 

(1.8) million 


16.3 (14.5) million 

* including several hundreds of thousands of gentiles in the case of the 
5.9 and 14.5 million figures of the American Jewish Year Book. 





W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


15 


H. The Jewish world population is likely to decrease at accelerating rates 
during the coming decades. 

This study represents just one step in the attempt to trace the dissolution of 
Eastern Jewry in the course of the last fifty years. Many of the figures pre¬ 
sented will, no doubt, be adjusted as further research discovers new and/or 
more reliable sources. In particular, it is to be hoped that students of this 
fascinating subject will follow the main thrust of this analysis which points 
to three distinct areas where further search should prove rewarding: 

I. Soviet deportation of civilians, particularly Jews, before and during the 
Second World War. 

2. The importance of Turkey as a transit country for refugee Jews arriving 
there by train (Bulgaria) or by ship (Constanza/Rumania); Turkish ar¬ 
chives are virgin territory in this respect. 

3. Jewish displaced persons camps (UNRRA) from Iran to Morocco. 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


PARTI 


THE SOVIET UNION 
AND THE EASTERN JEWS 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


19 


FIRST CHAPTER: 

Eastern Jewry 


Myths die slowly, but historical myths sometimes go on to become 
“facts.” Often it is all but impossible to unmask them for what they are, 
because myths have that certain ingredient generally lacking in cold facts, 
namely, that people want to believe them - often for contradictory reasons. 
One of the myths with a questionable influence on our understanding and 
analysis of historical developments concerns the fertility of Europe’s East¬ 
ern Jewry. 

If there is one Eastern Jewish trait which both National Socialists and 
Zionists agreed upon, then it was undoubtedly that particular eastern Eu¬ 
ropean minority’s proclivity to multiply rapidly. What one side considered 
being a threat, was a well of hope for the other. 

Eastern Jewry, while steeped in orthodoxy and tradition, had achieved 
prolific natural growth rates in the 19th century. The reasons are close at 
hand: Its higher educational level enabled it to reduce death rates much 
sooner and faster than the surrounding native host population. At the same 
time, traditional values, religious beliefs and strong family bonds induced 
them to go on raising large families. 

However, as political self-consciousness rose and industrial society en¬ 
forced increased secularization, the old social fabric began to crumble - 
often with lightning speed. - Social characteristics were overturned within a 
short time span. In addition, the upheavals of World War One left lasting 
imprints on Eastern Jewish life. The rapidity of this development went al¬ 
most unnoticed by Zionists and their foes. 

In this Chapter we will show that the Eastern Jewry of the 1930s had 
changed fundamentally since the turn of the 19th to the 20th century and 
especially since World War One. Outside the Soviet Union, two-thirds of 
eastern Europe’s Jews lived in Poland at the end of the 1920s and, therefore, 
we will place our emphasis on the Polish Jews in the attempt to ascertain 
their demographic characteristics. 


20 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


The Demographic Structure of Polish Jews 

According to the Anglo-American Committee on European Jewry and 
Palestine (Anglo-American Committee) the Jewish population in Poland 
numbered 3,351,000 at the beginning of World War Two. The Jewish author 
Gerald Reitlinger asserted, though, that the Polish census of December 9, 
1931, discovered only 2,732,600 “racial” Jews. 1 However, a natural in¬ 
crease by 620,000 during the following eight years is impossible: This 
would have been equivalent to an annual growth rate of 2.6%, far exceeding 
the fertility of the native Polish and Ukrainian host population; the Uni¬ 
versal Jewish Encyclopedia (Universal) denies this possibility outright, and 
a Jewish immigration into anti-Semitic Poland was non-existent. 2 

The Statesman’s Yearbook 1944 reported that the Polish census con¬ 
tained two different figures for the Jewish population group: One based on 
“language” and the other on “religion.” 3 The first corresponds exactly with 
Reitlinger’s figure for the so-called “racial” Jews. As to religious preference 
the Statesman’s Yearbook mentioned 3,113,900 Polish residents of the 
Mosaic faith. The resulting difference of 23 7,000(3,351,000 less 3,113,900) 
could well represent the natural growth of a purportedly very fertile Eastern 
European Jewry during the period from the end of 1931 until the end of 1939. 

Also, the Universal reported the average number of births among Polish 
Jews in the period from 1930 to 1935 to have been 85,000, 4 a figure which 
would constitute 2.8% of a population of roughly three million. If the mor¬ 
tality figure of about 40,000 annually as provided by the same source is 
correct, 5 the surplus of births over deaths between 1930 and 1935 would 
have averaged 45,000 per year. Projected for the time span 1932 to 1939, the 
Polish-Jewish population might have increased by 360,000 to reach 3.5 
million by the start of the war; this latter number is also often being men¬ 
tioned in post-war literature in connection with Polish Jews. 

Still, the above remarks show that the size of Poland’s Jewish population 
at the outbreak of WWII is by no means certain; Jewish sources differ to a 
substantial degree from one another and often they even contradict each 
other. In order to remove or, at least, limit these uncertainties, it is necessary 
to trace the structure and development of the Jews in Poland by resorting to 


Reitlinger, Gerald. The Final Solution, New York, 1961, p. 497. 

2 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, New York, Vol. 10., 1943, p. 33. 

3 Statesman’s Yearbook (The). New York, 1944, p. 1196. 

4 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 10, p. 36. 

5 Ibid., p. 36. From 1930 to 1937 the mortality in Poland averaged 479,000 (Schlag nach iiber 
Polen. Leipzig: Bibliographisches Institut, 1940 [?], p. 15). The Jewish population accounted 
for 9.8% of Poland’s population in 1931, but in the age group 50 years and over, where most of 
the natural deaths occurred, it was 10.9% (for source see Graph 2). Even conceding a smaller 
age-specific death rate for Jews than for the Polish or Ukrainian population, the average number 
of Jewish deaths in Poland in the 1930s must have been at least 45,000 per year. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


21 


available primary sources; only then will it be possible to shed more light on 
pre-war Eastern European Jewry. 

The Polish census of December 9, 1931 found 3,113,933 of the 
31,915,779 inhabitants (excluding armed forces) belonging to the Jewish 
faith 6 and representing almost 9.8% of the total population. Compared to the 
non-Jewish population, the Jews exhibited marked differences as to geo¬ 
graphic distribution, urban concentration, professions, natural increase and 
emigration. 

15% of the non-Jews, for example, lived in the western provinces (Poz¬ 
nan, Pomerania and Silesia), but in the case of the Jews it was only 1%. The 
other 85% of the non-Jews divided rather evenly between the eastern and the 
central provinces. Because of the large Jewish population in Warsaw - every 
ninth Jew lived in the capital city in 1931 - the central provinces contained 
far more than half of all Jews, and still the eastern provinces accounted for 
over forty per cent of the Jewish population ( Table 1). 

Table 1: Percentage Distribution of the Jewish and the non-Jewish 


Population in Poland by Provinces as of December 9, 1931 6 


Provinces 

Jews 

Others 

Bialystok 

6.34 

5.02 

Wilna 

3.56 

4.05 

Nowogrodek 

2.66 

3.38 

Polesia 

3.66 

3.53 

Wolhynia 

6.67 

6.52 

Lvov 

11.00 

9.67 

Stanislav 

4.49 

4.65 

Tarnopol 

4.31 

5.09 

Eastern Poland 

42.68 

41.92 

Warsaw-City 

11.33 

2.84 

W arsaw-Pro vince 

7.04 

8.02 

Lodz 

12.16 

7.82 

Kielce 

10.18 

9.09 

Lublin 

10.09 

7.47 

Cracow 

5.58 

7.38 

Central Poland 

56.37 

42.62 

Poznan 

0.23 

7.29 

Silesia 

0.61 

4.43 

Pomerania 

0.11 

3.74 

Western Poland 

0.95 

15.46 

Poland total 

100.00 

100.00 


6 Drugi Powszechny Spis Ludnosci Z Dn. 9.XII 1931 R. “Polska (Dane Skrocone): Mieszkania 1 
Gospodarstwa Domowe, Ludnosc, Stosunki, Zawodowe,” Glowny Urzqd Statystyczny Rzec- 
zypospolitej Polskiej, Statystyka Polski, Seria C, Zeszyt 62 (Deuxieme Recensement General 
de la Population du 9 Decembre 1931. “Pologne (Donnees Abregees): Logements et Menages, 
Population, Professions,” Office Central Statistique de la Republique Polonaise, Statistique de 
la Pologne, Serie C, Fascicule 62), Warsaw, 1937. 














22 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Table 2: Jewish Population in Polish Provinces (in per cent) 
as of December 9, 1931 6 


Provinces 

Total 

Cities 

Bialystok 

12.01 

38.40 

Wilna 

8.68 

29.17 

Nowogrodek 

7.84 

42.55 

Polesia 

10.07 

49.14 

Wolhynia 

9.96 

49.12 

Lvov 

10.95 

33.23 

Stanislav 

9.44 

34.83 

Tarnopol 

8.38 

34.68 

Eastern Poland 

9.92 

36.90 

Warsaw-City 

30.01 

30.01 

Warsaw-Province 

8.66 

29.70 

Lodz 

14.38 

31.24 

Kielce 

10.80 

30.17 

Lublin 

12.75 

43.71 

Cracow 

7.56 

24.77 

Central Poland 

12.51 

30.94 

Poznan 

0.34 

0.81 

Silesia 

1.46 

3.90 

Pomerania 

0.27 

0.85 

Western Poland 

0.66 

1.62 

Poland total 

9.76 

27.26 


Source: Same as Table 1. 


In the central and eastern provinces the Jewish element represented 
“only” every eighth or tenth inhabitant, but in the cities it was an entirely 
different matter. There, the Jewish share was 31 and 37%, respectively 
(Table 2). Cities with a Jewish contingent of 50% and more were not at all 
unusual, especially in the smaller towns of eastern Poland. 

Contrary to the huge percentage of Jews in Polish cities and towns, there 
were relatively few in rural areas: In all of Poland there were about 108 Jews 
for every 1,000 non-Jews; in the urban areas, however, this number rose to 
375 and fell to a mere 33 in the countryside ( Table 3). 

Only one-quarter of the non-Jewish population was urban, with the Jews 
it was t/zree-quarters. Also, official statistics tended to overstate the portion 
of the “rural” Jewish population to a considerable extent. Eastern Jewry still 
lived in large part in mostly small, yet town-like so-called “shtetls” which 
constituted some kind of a local trading and manufacturing center for the 
surrounding peasantry. These “shtetls” were not at all comparable to “vil¬ 
lages” (in the European sense), which is indicated by the fact that the vast 
majority of the Jewish population of those “shtetls” was not engaged in 
farming. 













W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


23 


Table 3: Urbanization in Poland: 

Jewish and non-Jewish Population as of December 9, 1931 6 

_ Population _ Jews per 



Jews 

(%) 

non-Jews 

(%) 

thousand 
non-Jews 

Country 

733,858 

(23.6) 

22,450,874 

(77.9) 

33 

Cities 

2,380,075 

(76.4) 

6,350,972 

(22.1) 

375 

of which: 

Cities with a 
pop. of 
< 20,000 

929,852 

(29.9) 

2,301,566 

(8.0) 

404 

> 20,000 

1,450,223 

(46.6) 

4,049,406 

(14.1) 

358 

Total 

3,113,933 

(100) 

28,801,846 

(100) 

108 


In all of Poland only 125,123 Jews (including family members) out of 3.1 
million were classified as peasants. Assuming that two-thirds of them lived 
in the eastern provinces, only one in five of the 400,000 “rural” Jews of 
eastern Poland may be counted among the peasants. For these reasons the 
degree of urbanization of Polish Jews should be seen to been nearer 90% in 
1931. In the case of non-Jews the opposite was true: Of the 22.5 million rural 
non-Jewish inhabitants in Poland 19.2 million, or 85%, were engaged in 
agriculture. 

Unfortunately, the Polish census was somewhat deficient in providing 
data on religious affiliation in individual cities. For the eastern Polish pro¬ 
vinces which are of primary interest in this study only 23 towns and cities 
could be found for which the Jewish population was specified: In two towns 
the Jewish percentage was 56 and 63%, in eleven towns it ranged from 40 to 
49%, in seven towns it was between 31 and 36%, and in three towns 27 and 
28%! In other words, not one town contained fewer than 25% Jews ( Table 
4). 

The insignificant representation of Jews in Polish agriculture was men¬ 
tioned before. It is clear, therefore, that the role Jews played outside Polish 
agriculture was that much larger in relative and absolute terms. For every 
single Jew in industry, handicrafts, trade and the other non-agricultural 
professions there were only a little more than three non-Jews despite the fact 
that Jews constituted less than one-tenth of the total population. 







24 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Table 4: Eastern Polish Cities: Total Population and Jews 
as of December 9, 1931 




Total 

Jewish 

Jewish 

Provinces 

Cities 

Population 

Population Share-% 

Wilna 

Wilna 

195,071 

55,006 

28 

Nowogrodek 

Baranowicze 

22,818 

9,680 

42 

Biafystok 

Bialystok 

91,101 

39,165 

43 


Grodno 

49,669 

21,159 

43 


Lomza 

25,022 

8,912 

36 


Suwalki 

21,826 

5,811 

27 

Polesia 

Brest 

48,385 

21,440 

44 


Pinsk 

31,912 

20,220 

63 

Wolhynia 

Kovel 

27,677 

12,842 

46 


Rovno 

40,612 

22,737 

56 


Lutsk 

35,554 

17,366 

49 


Wlodzimierz 

24,591 

10,665 

43 

Lvov 

Lvov 

312,231 

99,595 

32 


Boryslav 

41,496 

12,996 

31 


Drohobycz 

32,261 

12,931 

40 


Jaroslav 

22,195 

6,272 

28 


Przemysl 

51,038 

17,326 

34 


Rzeszov 

26,902 

11,228 

42 


Sambor 

21,923 

6,274 

29 

Stanislav 

Kolomyja 

33,788 

14,332 

42 


Stanislav 

59,960 

24,823 

41 


Stryj 

30,491 

10,869 

36 

Tarnopol 

Tarnopol 

35,644 

13,999 

39 


23 Cities 

1,282,167 

475,648 

37 




Total 

Jewish 

Jewish 

Group 

Cities 

Population 

Population Share-% 

50-63% 

2 Cities 

72,524 

42,957 

59 

40-49% 

11 Cities 

452,706 

195,631 

43 

30-39% 

7 Cities 

517,845 

169,971 

33 

27-29% 

3 Cities 

239,092 

67,089 

28 

27-63% 

23 Cities 

1,282,167 

475,648 

37 


Other Cities 

1,221,809 

448,364 

37 


All Cities 

2,503,976 

924,012 

37 


Countryside 

10,898,567 

405,069 

4 


Eastern Poland 

13,402,543 

1,329,081 

10 

Source: Same as Table 1 , but Zeszyt 48 (Miasto Wilno); 


58 (M. Lwow); 65 (Wojewodztwo Stanislawowskie); 


68 (W. Lwowskie); 70 (W. Wolynskie); 



71 (W. Nowogrodzkie); 78 (W. Tamopolskie); 


83 (W. Bialostockie); 87 (W. Poleskie). 















W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


25 


In this connection, it is of some interest that in the category “self-em¬ 
ployed,” i.e. merchants, artisans, doctors, lawyers, etc., the relationship of 
non-Jew to Jew was about one to one. Considering the small Jewish pres¬ 
ence in the western Polish provinces - which because of their more ad¬ 
vanced economic structure contained a considerable portion of the non- 
Jewish “self-employed” - the enormous Jewish influence in the secondary 
and tertiary sectors of the central and eastern Polish provinces becomes 
clearer yet. Among the Jews there were seven times as many “self-em¬ 
ployed” as among the non-Jews; among salary earners the Jewish proportion 
was still 50% larger than their number would have warranted, and only 
among blue-collar workers was there no difference between the two popu¬ 
lation segments ( Table 5). 

As one would expect, these pronounced socio-economic differences be¬ 
tween Jews and non-Jews also affected their respective natural increase. In a 
population of 3.1 million the portion of the less-than-one-year-old children 
was only 1.7%, in numbers 52,305, but with the non-Jewish population it 
was 2.6%. Surprisingly, this enormous gap between Jewish and non-Jewish 
fertility rates actually developed only since WWI. Until the early 1920s the 
Jewish population averaged roughly 12% of the non-Jewish - even though a 
slight recessive trend from 13 to 11% was obviously in progress; after 1924, 
however, the tendency was steeply dow nh ill ( Graph 1 ). Finally, in 1931 
there were only seven Jewish births for every 100 non-Jewish births! 


Table 5: Professions in Poland: Jews and non-Jews 
as of December 9, 1931 


Economic 

Sector 

[1] 

Jews 

(%) 

[2] 

non-Jews 

(%) 

Over- and Underrep¬ 
resentation of Jews 

Agriculture 

125,123 

(4) 

19,221,825 

(67) 

- 94% 

Non-agricultural 

Sectors 

2,988,810 

(96) 

9,580,021 

(33) 

+189% 

of which: 
Self-employed 

699,244 

(22) 

763,617 

(3) 

+747 % 

White-collar 

91,970 

(3) 

555,274 

(2) 

+ 53 % 

Blue-collar 

277,555 

(9) 

2,473,344 

(9) 

+ 4% 

Others 

54,256 

(17) 

420,206 

(15) 

+ 19% 

Not gainfully 
employed 

1,865,785 

(60) 

5,367,580 

(19) 

+222% 

Total 

3,113,933 (100) 28,801,846 

(100) 



Source: Drugi Powszechny SpisLudnosci ZDn. 9.XII 1931 it.; Polska: Stosunki Zawodowe 
- Ludnosc, Poza Rolnictwem (Czesc II); Glowny Urzqd Statystyczny Rzeczypo- 
spolitej Polskiej, Statystyka Polski, Seria C, Zeszyt 94d (Deuxieme Recensement 
General de la Population du 9 Decembre 1931\ Pologne: Professions - Population 
hors l’Agriculture - II Partie; Office Central de Statistique de la Republique Pol¬ 
onaise, Statistique de la Pologne), Warsaw, 1939. 






26 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Graph 1: Relationship of the Jewish to the non-Jewish Population in Po- 



Source: Drugi Powszechny Spis Ludnosci ZDn. 9.XII1931 R.; Mieszkania I Gospodarstwa 
Domowe. Ludnosc; Glowny Urzqd Statystyczny Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej, 
Statystyka Polski, Seria C, Zeszyt 94a (Deuxieme Recensement General de la 
Population du 9 Decembre 1931; Logements et Menages, Population), Warsaw, 
1938. 

But the non-Jewish population in Poland also showed a clear decelera¬ 
tion in its birth rate. Both the Jewish and non-Jewish population suffered 
great losses in the number of births during WWI and both registered a steep 
rise after hostilities ended. To be sure, the non-Jewish population saw no 
further rise in the number of births since the early 1920s, but they were kept 
at a relatively high level of 730,000. Not so with the Jews; after reaching 
a-high of 74,875 in 1925, their number of births dropped consistently until it 
reached 52,305 in 1931 ( Graph 2). 

Thus, while the 1931 age group of the non-Jewish population was almost 
twice as large as the age group of the war-year 1917 and of the turn of the 
19th to the 20th century - 30 to 35 years earlier - in the case of the Jews it 
was just barely greater in either instance. The Universal proved quite right 
when it wrote referring to the Polish Jews: “But even in Eastern Europe the 
birth rate was falling, and began to approach that of Western Europe” 7 - and 
that was already negative before WWII. 


7 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia , Vol. 10, p. 33. 









































































W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


27 


Graph 2: Population Pyramid of the Jewish and the non-Jewish Population 
in Poland as of December 9, 1931 (in 1,000) 



Source: See Graph 1. 


As far as is known, there are no official statistics on Polish-Jewish 
mortality rates before the war. If one accepts the mortality figures of the 
Universal of an average of 40,000 per year for the period 1930 to 1935 - for 
the Soviet Jews with a numerically similarly large population an average 
mortality figure of 43,000 was indicated - then the Jews should have en¬ 
joyed a surplus of births over deaths of about 12,000 in 1931 (52,305 minus 
40,000), or 0.4%\ 

Obviously, the huge emigration of Polish Jews prior to and following 
WWI influenced their natural growth rate very negatively because it is 
generally the younger, fertile age groups who decide to leave; the older 
people often have too deep roots in the country in which they were born. An 
excellent example of the strong ties of older people to their country of birth 
is provided by the very different emigration pattern of younger and older 
German Jews in the 1930s. 

Of the roughly 500,000 Jews living in Germany in 1933 about 160,000 
were 50 years or older. By August of 1939, the German-Jewish population 
had dropped to 272,000; included in this figure were 140,000 people aged 50 
years and older. This means that the Jews of 50 years and younger had seen 



















28 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


their numbers reduced by almost two-thirds from about 340,000 to less than 
130,000, while the age group “50 years and older” had shrunk only 
one-eighth from 160,000 to 140,000. 8 

Now, comparable figures are not available for the Polish-Jewish popu¬ 
lation of the 1930s, but the Polish census of 1931 nevertheless provides an 
indication that similar developments were under way among the Jews of 
Poland. The ratio of the male to female population for the age group bom 
between 1917 and 1931 - children between zero and 14 years - averaged 
102.9 to 100 for Jews and 102.5 to 100 for non-Jews. The 15-to-29-year- 
olds (age group 1902-1916), however, differed markedly with ratios of 
85.7/100 and 93/100, respectively. 9 

It is only natural that the original numerical male predominance should 
change over time in favor of a slight female majority; but such a drastic 
reduction of the male side during peacetime must either be due to a com¬ 
parably much larger emigration of young men or - as the Polish census did 
not include 191,473 members of the armed forces - to military service or 
both. If one assumes (data are unavailable) that three-quarters of these mil¬ 
itary men were less than 30 years old and that Jews constituted about 10% 
(in keeping with their share of the population), then we obtain additional 
14,361 young Jews to be added to the 424,575 aged 15 to 29 years. Com¬ 
pared with the 495,405 Jewesses of that age group, the ratio obtained is 
88.6/100; the same non-Jewish age group shows an adjusted ratio of 96/100. 

To be sure, the age groups of 1902 and before also show a clear female 
majority, but this should be expected considering the higher life expectancy 
of the fair sex and the losses suffered by men in WWI. The male/female ratio 
in the age groups “1872-1901” who were subject to military service during 
WWI was the same for Jews and non-Jews, namely, 88/100. It is thus very 
surprising to see the Jews of the age groups “1902-1916” evidence a 
male/female ratio of 88.6/100. In other words, there must have been very, 
very many young Jewish men who left Poland after WWI single without 
families. 10 Their approximate number may be estimated by taking the dif¬ 
ference between male and female Jews in that age group: It is about 56,000! 


Ruppin, Arthur. The Jewish Fate and Future, London, 1940, p. 100. 

9 Computed on the basis of information contained in Table 12 of the Drugi Powszechny Spis 
Ludnosci Z Dn. 9.XII 1931 R. "Polska: Mieszkania I Gospodarstwa Domowe, Ludnosc,” Seria 
C, Zeszyt 94a (Deuxieme Recensement General de la Population du 9 Decembre 1931, “Po- 
logne: Logements et Menages, Population,” Serie C, Fascicule 94a), Warsaw, 1938. 

10 An indication of the validity of this conclusion can be found in the Statistical Abstract of Israel. 
According to issue no. 31 (1980), p. 133, 35,183 and 81,613 Jews immigrated in the years 
1919/1923 and 1924/1931, respectively. Issue no. 2 (1950/51), p. 26, fixed the male share 
among the immigrants at 63.2 and 54%, respectively. This translates into an average share of 
57% male Jewish immigrants in Palestine between the end of World War One and 1931, i.e. 
male Jews outnumbered Jewesses by one third. A large, probably the largest part of these im¬ 
migrants hailed from Poland. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


29 


It is a fact that official Polish statistics indicate only a relatively small- 
size Jewish emigration. But to conclude that only a small number of Jewish 
emigrants left Poland would be just as mistaken as to infer a small Mexican 
immigration in the United States after WWII on the basis of Mexican emi¬ 
gration statistics. Illegal border crossings cannot be traced by means of of¬ 
ficial emigration statistics. 

Polish statistics list 294,139 emigrant Jews in the period 1921 to 1931. 11 
Deducting the above mentioned 56,000 single young male Jews without 
families, there remain 238,000 who left in family groups. On the basis of 
five persons per family one obtains fewer than 48,000 heads of households. 

The misery of the Jews in Poland following WWI unfolds in the huge 
number of these young, often very young men who went abroad in search of 
a livelihood. In Jewish historical experience this is quite without precedent. 
In view of the large number of Jewish families who fled the USSR in the 
course of the Russian Civil War, who lost their homes during WWI and the 
ensuing Polish-Soviet War and who practically saw no other solution to 
their desperate situation than to leave troubled, anti-Semitic Poland, it looks 
rather ridiculous to place the number of emigrant Jewish families below the 
number of single young Jewish males, particularly as most Eastern Jews had 
numerous relatives abroad, especially in North America. There is only one 
conclusion possible: The Polish emigration statistics are worthless. 

Official Polish figures mention only 75,527 Jewish emigrants for the 
years 1934 to 1937. 12 How far removed these figures are from reality may 
be seen from the enormous Jewish immigration in Western countries and in 
Palestine prior to WWII, from the fact that the vast majority of extra-Soviet 
Eastern European Jews lived in Poland (until 1939), and from the naked 
truth that no country treated the Jews worse than did Poland (at least until 
1938). The Poles tried to get rid of their Jews by all means at their disposal; 
on the other hand, the Western countries refused to accept Jewish immi¬ 
grants. Therefore, it was in the Polish interest not to draw the world’s at¬ 
tention to the actual extent of Jewish emigration from Poland. 

Between 1934 and 1937, for example, 68,000 Jewish immigrants from 
Poland arrived in Palestine. 13 If Polish emigration statistics were accurate, 


11 Lestschinsky, J. “National Groups in Polish Emigration,” Jewish Social Studies , Vol. 5, 1943, 
p. 109. 

12 Ibid., p. 109. 

13 The figure of 68,000 Jewish immigrants in Palestine from Poland between 1934 and 1937 was 
computed as follows: The Jewish immigration in Palestine was listed by the Encyclopaedia 
Judaica , Jerusalem, 1972, Vol. 4, p. 534: 45,267 (1934), 66,472 (1935), 29,595 (1936), 10,629 
(1937). The number of Jews coming from Poland according to Arieh Tartakower and Kurt R. 
Grossmann, The Jewish Refugee , New York, 1944, p. 345 was 43% (1934), 49% (1935), 41% 
(1936) und 35% (1937); the share of Jewish immigrants from Gennany was listed as 16%, 

11%,27% und 34%, respectively, and the share of Jewish immigrants from all other countries as 
41%, 40%, 32% und 31%, respectively. Inasmuch as the “other” Jewish immigrants could only 
have come from eastern Europe, the Jews coming from those “other” eastern European coun- 



30 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


90% of the Polish-Jewish emigrants would have left for Palestine, even 
though Polish Jews enjoyed the closest ties of kinship to hundreds of thou¬ 
sands of Jews in the U.S. We will show in the Seventh Chapter that 400,000 
Jews entered the United States between 1933 and 1943. Only a small frac¬ 
tion of them hailed from Germany; Jewish sources maintain anyway that 
until the end of 1940 just 26% of German-Jewish emigrants went to the 
United States, i.e. 100,000. 14 

Of course, other central and eastern European countries, too, recorded a 
large flow of Jewish emigration, but the largest segment of Jewish immi¬ 
gration into the United States must have originated in Poland. Of the 4.3 
million Jews in the geographic area encompassed by Poland, the Baltic 
countries, Rumania, Hungary and Czechoslovakia before the war, ap¬ 
proximately two-thirds lived in Poland. Therefore, the largest contingent of 
Jewish immigrants in North America between 1933 and 1943 simply must 
have come from that country. 

At the same time, western European countries accepted uncounted tens 
of thousands of Jewish refugees and immigrants from Germany and eastern 
Europe during the 1930s. At the end of the 1920s a total of 315,000 Jews 
lived in France and the Benelux countries, 15 by the beginning of the war 
their number was put at 480,000. 16 The natural increase of this highly ur¬ 
banized population with its low fertility was minimal; the growth of 165,000 
was almost exclusively the result of net immigration. But since Jewish 
sources specify that 83% of the Jews leaving Germany were headed for 
North and South America, Palestine, Shanghai and England, 17 by far the 
largest part of these Jewish immigrants in France and the Benelux countries 
must have come from countries to the east and southeast of Germany, and 
again there is only one country in eastern Europe qualifying as the main 
source of Jewish emigration, namely Poland. 

In this respect, even the Institute for Contemporary History in Munich 
(Institut fur Zeitgeschichte) admitted: 18 

The wave of emigration of German Jews was only a part - and not even the 

largest one at that - of a general Jewish emigration from central, eastern and 


tries were almost as many in number as those from Poland. Because of the overwhelming size 
of the Polish Jews relative to the other eastern European Jews (excl. the USSR), this does not 
seem realistic; in all probability, the “other” Jewish immigrants in Palestine included many 
Jews who originally hailed from Poland as well. The Polish-Jewish group of immigrants in 
Palestine between 1934 and 1937 must have numbered far more than 68,000, possibly more 
than 80,000! 

14 Adlerstein, Fanny R., “Foreign Department,” The Jewish Social Service Quarterly , New York, 
Vol. XVII, No. 4, June 1941, p. 386. The figure of 100,000 also includes Jewish emigrants from 
Austria. 

15 Brockhaus (Der Grosse). Leipzig, 1931, Neunter Band, J-Kas, p. 473. 

16 Reitlinger, Final Solution , p. 71. 

17 Adlerstein, Jewish Social Service Quarterly, June 1941, p. 386. 

18 Gutachten des Instituts fur Zeitgeschichte, Munich, 1958, p. 79 and 80. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


31 


southeastern Europe. In the years following 1933 about 100,000 Jews left Po¬ 
land every year, partly because of the increasingly anti-Semitic policies of the 
Polish government, but also because of the progressively worsening pauperi¬ 
zation of the Polish Jews. Similar tendencies existed in Latvia, Lithuania, Ru¬ 
mania and, to a lesser degree, in Hungary. 

The economic situation of Polish Jews deteriorated drastically during the 
1930s. Systematic campaigns were organized to crowd them out of the 
economy; the boycott of Jewish stores was enforced with brutality, and was 
found to be within the law by the courts, was blessed by the Catholic Church 
of Poland, and officially sanctioned by the central government. Anti-Semitic 
incidents spread throughout Poland and resulted in many victims. Bloody 
persecutions took place in 1937 in Brest-Litovsk and in Czestochowa. 19 

The statement by the Institute for Contemporary History, whose pro- 
Zionist credentials are excellent, that the largest wave of emigration did not 
originate in Germany is thus quite correct. Just as correct are its findings that 
100,000 Jews emigrated from Poland every year after 1933; this may con¬ 
tradict official Polish emigration statistics whose reliability is subject to 
doubt, but the tremendous Jewish immigration in Palestine, the USA, South 
America, France, the Benelux countries, England, etc., prior to WWII 
support the Munich Institute’s testimony. 

The persistent emigration, especially of young single Jewish males who 
would normally have raised families of their own, and the growing eco¬ 
nomic distress make it rather improbable that the reduction of the birth rate 
since the mid-1920s could have stopped after 1931. Everything points to an 
excess of deaths over births for the Jewish population in the latter part of the 
1930s. Therefore, even an average growth rate of 0.2% per year between 
1932 and 1939 seems somewhat high for the Polish-Jewish population. 20 

Placing the number of Jewish emigrants from Poland in the seven years 
and eight months from the beginning of 1932 until September 1939 at 
500,000 - the Munich Institute for Contemporary History mentions 100,000 
annually after 1933 - the size of the Jewish population in Poland may thus 
be estimated at 2,664,000 at the beginning of the war. Subtracting the 31,216 
Polish-Jewish soldiers reported by the Polish general staff to have been 
killed in the subsequent German-Polish war, 21 the final number of Polish 
Jews following the cessation of hostilities at the end of September 1939 may 
be said to have been 2,633,000. The figure of 3,351,000 as reported by the 
Anglo-American Committee thus is shown to be too large by 700,000! 


19 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 8, p. 574. 

20 According to official Polish surveys, the birth rate fell in Poland between 1931 and 1937 from 
3.02% to 2.49% (Schlag nach iiber Polen, p. 15). The Jewish rate reached 1.7% in 1931 al¬ 
ready, and it is not likely that it moved against the weakening Polish trend thereafter. A negative 
net growth rate is thus quite probable for Poland’s Jewish population at the end of the 1930s. 

21 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 8, p. 576. 



32 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Jews in Other Eastern European Countries 

Much of what was said regarding Polish Jews applies to Jewry of the 
other countries in eastern Europe as well. With few exceptions its birth rate 
was low, even negative on a net basis, and its urban concentration was ex¬ 
traordinary. Its average marriage age far exceeded that of the host popula¬ 
tions, and emigration, particularly among young males, was widespread. 
Still, there are some noteworthy differences in degree from the situation 
found in Poland. 

The Czechoslovakian Jews cannot be treated as a single group; too large 
are the differences between Czech, Slovak and Ruthenian (Carpathian) 
Jews; they reflect the gap in economic development in this artificial heter¬ 
ogeneous country, as one proceeds from west to east. There, too, young 
Jewish males left the impoverished eastern areas but instead of going out¬ 
side the country, they merely migrated to the highly industrialized Bohe¬ 
mian and Moravian areas. Thus, whereas Ruthenian and Slovak Jewish 
males aged 15-29 years numbered only 81.3% and 95.1%, respectively, of 
the Jewesses of the same age group, the situation was reversed in the Czech 
areas of Bohemia and Moravia. There, Jewish males aged 15-29 exceeded 
the opposite sex by 23.5% as registered by the census taken in 1930. 22 This 
uneven migration affected the fertility of the Jews in Slovakia and Ruthenia 
rather adversely, yet no positive growth effects could be registered in Bo¬ 
hemia and Moravia. 

In the latter two provinces, Jewry was declining since before WWI. In 
1930, the largest age group was accounted for by those bom between 1906 
and 1910; this group represented almost 10% of the total, or 2% for each 
year. From then on a rapid decline dropped the annual average to 1.35% for 
the years 1911-1915 and 0.77% for 1916-1920; after WWI, a small baby 
boom let the group bom from 1921-1925 reach 1.1% per year, only to fall 
again to an annual average of just over 0.8% in 1926-1930. Given the trend 
of those years, it is fair to state that those less than one year old in 1930 
accounted for just 0.6% of the Czech Jews. This low rate would imply an 
excess of deaths over births somewhere between 0.5% and 1% per year. 

In Slovakia, the Jewish demographic crisis was not yet as deep, but the 
trend was similar. From the 1906/1910 period to 1926/1930 the average 
annual strength of the mentioned age groups fell from 2% to 1.66%. Those 
bom in 1930 probably constituted only about 1.5% of Slovakias Jews, which 
was just barely greater than the natural death rate. 


Scltanl Lidu V Republice Ceskoslovenske Ze Dne 1. Prosince 1930 (Dll I.: Rust, Koncentrace 
A Hustota Obyvatelstva, Pohlavl, Vekove Rozvrstvenl, Rodinny Stav, Statnl Prislusnost, 
Narodnost, Nabozenske Vyznanl), Vydal Statnl Urad Statisticky, Ceskoslovenska Statistika - 
Svazek 98, Rada VI., Sesit 7, Prague, 1934, Tab. 19, p. 156-164. 


22 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


33 


Only in backward Ruthenia was the traditional Eastern Jewish family 
still intact, but it seems that there, too, a turning point had been reached. The 
age group 1926/1930 averaged almost 2.9% per year, compared to 2.8% for 
1921/1925. A birth rate of 2.9%, if maintained, would have resulted in a 
high natural increase during the 1930s of maybe 1.5% p.a. or more. Given 
the considerable emigration of young males to the Czech areas, the eco¬ 
nomic crisis of the 1930s and the growing secularization of life in Ruthenia 
prior to WWII, it is likely that after 1930 there was a drop in the birth rate, 
even though it probably remained fairly high by general Jewish standards of 
those years. In any case, when Hungary, which meanwhile had regained 
Ruthenia from Czechoslovakia, conducted a census in 1941, only about 
109,000 (see Sixth Chapter) were found there compared to 102,542 as rec¬ 
orded by the Czechoslovak census of 1930; this is equivalent to a natural 
increase of 0.6% p.a. between 1930 and 1941. This rate would appear 
somewhat low for that fertile, but tiny segment of Eastern Jewry, and 
probably reflects a continuing emigration of young males to the industrial 
Czech areas. 

Hungary’s Jews - according to the census of 1930 there were 444,567 23 
- lived overwhelmingly in the larger cities. 204,371, or 46%, were concen¬ 
trated in the capital city, another 130,207 lived in the Great Plain districts 
east of the Danube, 49,252 in the north, and just 60,737 west of the Danube. 
Since 1920, the total Jewish population had decreased by 28,788 from 
473,355. 24 

After 1927 Hungary’s Jews recorded considerable excesses of deaths 
over births. From 1927 until 1930 the average annual decrease amounted to 
467 (0.1% p.a.) 25 and reached 0.5% in 1938. 26 

Natural Growth 

In% of the Jewish 


Year 

Births 

Deaths 

Balance 

population 

1930 

5,533 

5,917 

- 384 

- 0.1 

1931 

5,187 

6,244 

- 1,057 

- 0.3 

1937 



- 1,574 

- 0.4 

1938 



- 1,899 

- 0.5 


Obviously, the Hungarian Jews were in the midst of a serious demo¬ 
graphic decline during the 1930s with the number of deaths probably 40% 
higher than that of births. 


23 Annuaire Statistique Hongrois 1931, Nouveau Cours XXXIX, T Office Central Royal Hongrois 
de Statistique, Budapest, 1933, Tab. 10, p. 11. 

24 Ibid., Tab. 9, p. 10. 

25 Ibid., Tab. 21, p. 28. 

26 Magyar Statisztikai Evkonyv 1942, Uj Folyam L, A Magyar Kir Kozponti Statisztikai Hivatal, 
Budapest, 1944, Tab. 21, p. 36. 




34 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


By 1941, after the acquisition of neighboring territories containing may¬ 
be 325,000 Jews, i.e. an increase by 73% over 1930, the total number of 
births (8,380) still was only 50% larger than in 1930, but deaths of 10,074 
exceeded their 1930-level also by 73%. In 1942, the roughly 725,000 
Greater Hungarian Jews counted only 8,413 births but 10,787 deaths, in 
relation to their total number, 1.2% and 1.5%, respectively - a natural de¬ 
crease of 0.3% p.a. 27 

In other words, the addition of the 325,000 Jews in the acquired territo¬ 
ries (see Sixth Chapter) brought no significant improvement to the average 
rate of natural decrease despite the fact that one-third of those 325,000 
“new” Hungarian Jews belonged to the relatively fertile Ruthenian Jewry. 
Obviously, the Jews living in the newly acquired territories of northern 
Transylvania, Banat and southern Slovakia had registered birth and death 
rates quite similar to those of the “old” Trianon-Hungary, Which is to say, 
their natural demographic development also was gravely negative. 

Thus, as a matter of record, the Jewry of the areas covered by Trianon- 
Hungary, the former Slovak areas, the Banat (Serbia) and northern Tran¬ 
sylvania (Rumania) suffered large annual population decreases as a result of 
very low birth rates. The Ruthenian Jews, whose fertility, no doubt, had 
lessened as well until WWII, nevertheless registered positive growth rates. 
But they were the exception to the general Jewish demographic pattern in 
eastern Europe and the Balkans, and their small total number could not af¬ 
fect the numerical decline of Eastern Jewry before the war. 

As to the growth of Rumanian Jewry during the 1930s, the Universal 
Jewish Encyclopedia ( Universal) has this to say: 28 

[...] in 1932 it [the number of births] was 12,586 for Greater Rumania and 
10,039 in 1938, whereas the death rate for the corresponding years was 9,891 
and 10,250. Thus from a surplus of2,695 in 1932 there was a deficit of 213 in 
1938. The birth rate steadily declined. 

The surplus of births - in 1932 it averaged just 0.35% - had turned into a 
deficit by 1938; it seems that allowing for an average growth rate of 0.2% 
during the 1930s would be ample. 

In Latvia, the general population’s fertility rates fell long before WWI. In 
1935, the birth rate was down to 1.67%, and the mortality rate of the pre¬ 
vious 5-year-period averaged 1.38%. As a result, the net natural population 
increase was less than half a percent and dropping further. The Jewish 


27 

28 


Ibid., Tab. 14, p. 33 and Tab. 16, p. 34. 
Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 9, p. 265. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


35 


population - 93,479 according to the 1935 census 29 - constituted less than 
5% of the total population. 

Regionally, about 50% of the Latvian Jews lived in or near Riga, the 
capital; another 30% populated the easternmost province of Latgale. Ur¬ 
banization was almost total: Almost 93% of Latvia’s Jewry lived in the cities 
in contrast to only 34% of the non-Jewish population; but because of their 
relatively small number, Jews made up a smaller portion of the urban pop¬ 
ulace than was usual for eastern Europe. Among the larger cities only 
Daugavpils and Rezekne had a Jewish share of 25%; in all the other urban 
centers (including Riga) Jews averaged only 11% of the population/ 0 

As to natural growth, the Latvian Jews showed traits very similar to those 
in Poland. Until the turn of the century there was a rapid growth, followed by 
a levelling off until WWI. The war almost halved the number of births, but 
after the cessation of hostilities the birth rate jumped briefly to a level close 
to, but still below pre-war years. According to the census, young Jews 11 
years of age numbered 1,787, thereafter a rapid decline set in. At the time of 
the 1935 count, only 1,137 were less than one year old - a decline of at least 
36% compared with 1924. Thus, the birth rate was only 1.2%. 31 As men¬ 
tioned before, Latvia’s total mortality rate averaged 1.4% in the early 1930s; 
while Jewish mortality is not known, it is not likely to have departed much 
from the national average. This means that already in 1935 and in the years 
just previous the Jews failed to replace themselves. With economic condi¬ 
tions worsening thereafter, the birth rate probably declined further, pro¬ 
ducing ever larger rates of natural decrease as the decade wore on. 

This brief sketch of the demographic patterns of the various Eastern 
European Jewish communities outside the Soviet Union allows us to state 
that, on average, far from general fertility, eastern Europe’s Jews had no 
natural increase whatsoever during the 1930s. We considered a total popu¬ 
lation numbering almost 4.8 million in the early 1930s - 93% of Eastern 
Jewry outside Russia. This population, concentrated in an area reaching 
from Riga to Budapest and Bucharest, was in the midst of a demographic 
revolution. Rapid concentration in the larger cities, the decline of Yiddish in 
favor of the native national languages, large-scale emigration of young 
single Jewish males, late marriages, the turn to the one- and two-children- 
family had already destroyed Jewish orthodoxy; only a few tiny remnants 
remained, for example in Carpathian Ruthenia, too small to offset the losses 
suffered elsewhere and themselves subject to secularization pressures. By 
the end of the 1930s, there was no country in eastern Europe where Jews 


29 Ceturta Tautas SkaitTsana Latvija 1935 gada, III: Vecums, Qimenes Stavoklis (Quatrieme 
Recensement de la Population en Lettonie en 1935, III: Age, Etat Civil), Valsts Statistiska 
Parvalde, Riga, 1937, Tab. 10, p. 217; Tab. 8, p. 206, and pages 120-121. 

30 Ibid., p. 297, 298 and 319. 

31 Ibid., p. 216-217. 



36 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


were able to register natural growth gains. In some, mortality rates for Jews 
far exceeded birth rates. It is fair to state that - on average - eastern Europe’s 
Jewry even registered a small natural decline between 1930 and 1939. 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


37 


SECOND CHAPTER: 

The Growth of Soviet Jewry 


The Division of Polish Jewry 

Still unclear is the distribution of these 2,633,000 Polish Jews over the 
various areas incorporated into the German Reich, combined in the so-called 
“Government General of Poland” or occupied by the Soviet Union. Ac¬ 
cording to the Universal, a German statistician calculated on the basis of the 
Polish census of December 9, 1931, the following geographic distribution of 
Jews among the three specified regions: 1 


Areas incorporated by Germany 
Government General of Poland 

632,000 

1,269,000 

( 20.3%) 

( 40.8%) 

Under German administration 

Annexed by the Soviet Union 

1,901,000 

1,212,900 

( 61.0%) 

( 39.0%) 

Former Polish Jews (1931) 

3,113,900 

(100.0%) 


The Polish census of 1931 showed that the natural development of 
eastern Polish Jewry did not differ from the national Jewish average, but it is 
unknown whether there was any change thereafter - which is improbable - 
and whether emigration flows during the 1930s were similar in the three 
areas. Thus, we have to assume that all three areas experienced roughly the 
same demographic development between 1932 and 1939 as far as the Jewish 
population is concerned. 

As mentioned in the First Chapter, the number of Polish Jews declined 
from 3,113,900 to 2,633,000, i.e. by 15.4%, between the end of 1931 and 
September 1939. On the basis of this relative reduction we obtain the fol¬ 
lowing Jewish population for the three areas: 


Areas incorporated by Germany 

534,000 

( 

20.3%) 

Government General of Poland 

1,073,000 

( 

40.8%) 

Under German administration 

1,607,000 

( 

61.0%) 

Annexed by the Soviet Union 

1,026,000 

( 

39.0%) 

Former Polish Jews (1939) 

2,633,000 

(100.0%) 


Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 8, p. 577. 









38 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


As the Polish defeat began to crystallize shortly after the outbreak of the 
hostilities, many Polish Jews didn’t bother to await the German occupation; 
they fled in droves to the eastern Polish cities and towns which later were 
occupied and annexed by the Soviet Union in the second half of September - 
but smaller numbers also crossed the border into Rumania. Referring to this 
massive flight, the Latvian Chief Rabbi and leader of the Mizrachi Organ¬ 
ization and of the World Jewish Congress, Mordecai Nurok, said on March 
28, 1946 at a press conference in New York: 2 * 

It must be emphasized that several hundred thousands of Polish and other Jews 

found a haven from the Nazis in the U.S.S.R. 

This flight away from the sphere of German influence was facilitated by the 
circumstance that the Soviets originally also occupied the territory between 
the Vistula and Bug rivers as specified in the German-Soviet agreement on 
the division of Polish territory; because of this, many Jewish inhabitants of 
the crumbling Polish state succeeded in escaping from the nearby larger 
cities - Warsaw, Lodz, etc. - to reach Soviet-occupied areas. One week later 
the Soviets withdrew from the area west of the Bug, taking the entire live¬ 
stock with them. 1 The Jewish refugees, along with many local Jews, ac¬ 
companied the Red Army, as it pulled back towards positions east of the 
Bug. The city of Tomaszow Lubelski may serve as an example of this sys¬ 
tematic evasion by the Jews away from German control; according to the 
Encyclopaedia Judaica (Judaica) 75% of the city’s 6,000 Jews left together 
with the Red Army, as it withdrew to the newly established line of demar¬ 
cation further east. 4 

Official German calculations show that the area between the Vistula and 
the Bug contained a Jewish population of 386,600 at the time of the last 
Polish census in 1931. If the Jewish population loss of that area in the years 
before the outbreak of the German-Polish war amounted to the same per¬ 
centage as for the Polish Jews in general, only 330,000 Jews could have 
been present at the time of the Soviet occupation (after September 17, 1939). 
It is not known how many Jews accompanied the Soviet Army when it va¬ 
cated that region after September 28, 1939, but the massed flight of Polish 
Jews in an easterly direction - attested to by many witnesses - and the 
example of Tomaszow Lubelski permit the conclusion that the vast majority 
of Jews living between the Vistula and the Bug must have left together with 
the Red Army. It is strange, therefore, that the discussions about the number 
of Jews who might have succeeded in escaping into Soviet-controlled ter- 


2 American Jewish Year Book ( AJYB ), New York, 1946, Vol. 48, p. 324. 

Fischer, Dr. Ludwig and Dr. Friedrich Gollert, Warschau unter deutscher Herrschaft, Cracow, 
1942, p. 186. 

4 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 15, p. 1214. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


39 


ritory pass over this episode almost completely, even though these more 
than 300,000 Jews had the best chance to evade German control. 5 

Among the Jewish refugees fleeing eastward was also the 26-year-old 
Menachem Begin; bom in Brest-Litovsk in 1913, the latter-day Israeli Prime 
Minister studied at the University of Warsaw where he headed the Betar 
Zionist Youth Movement in Poland until 1939. 6 

In the Eichmann “Trial” in Jerusalem, the Polish Jews Zwi Patscher and 
Yakov Goldfine testified that the Germans drove Polish Jews marching four 
abreast in long columns onto the Soviet portion of occupied Poland. 7 The 
Judaica reported in a similar vein: 8 

With the outbreak of the war in September, the Poles began to loot stores and 
attack the Jews. [...] the Jews were deported by the Germans [September 1939] 
to the area under Soviet control on the other side of the San River. [...] Those 
who were deported to the Soviet Zone lived there in very difficult economic 
conditions. In the summer of 1940 many of them were deported to the Soviet 
interior. 

No one knows for certain how large the number of Jews was who either fled 
or were driven to the Soviet-occupied former Polish territory and who, 
within less than a year’s time, found themselves in Siberian labor and con¬ 
centration camps - if they survived the murderous trip. But we do know that 
the eastern Polish cities and towns which contained a large Jewish element 
already, suddenly had to cope with untold masses of displaced Jews: In 
many towns in eastern Poland the Jewish population doubled overnight: The 
Judaica refers to this mass flight again and again. Regarding Vladimin-Vo- 
lynsk it writes: 9 

[...] thousands of Jews from western Poland sought refuge in the city, bringing 
the number of Jews in the City to 25,000. [1931: 10,665 or 44% of the popula¬ 
tion. .. ] In the summer of1940 many Zionist leaders and refugees were exiled to 
the Soviet interior. 

Lutsk: 10 

Many refugees who had fled to Lutsk from Nazi-occupied western Poland were 
deported to the Soviet interior. 


5 The Jewish population of the area between the Vistula and the Bug, from which the Soviets 
withdrew after 9/28/1939, contained 386,600 Jews on 12/9/1931 according to the Bundesarchiv 
in Koblenz, Bestand R 153, Aktenband 287: Die Bevolkenmg des ehemaligen polnischen 
Staatsgebiets westlich der Grenzlinie vom 28.9.1939 nach dem Bekennlnis auf Grand der pol¬ 
nischen Volkszdhlung von 1931 as well as Die Bevolkenmg des polnischen Staatsgebiets 
westlich der Demarkationslinie vom 21.9.1939 nach dem Bekenntnis auf Grand der polnischen 
Volkszdhlung von 1931. 

6 International WHO'S WHO (The). London, 43rd edition, 1979, p. 93. 

7 Rassinier, Paul. Zum Fall Eichmann: Was ist Wahrheit?, Leoni, 1963, p. 99. 

8 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 11, p. 184. 

9 Ibid., Vol. 16, p. 201. 

10 Ibid., Mol 11, p. 589. 



40 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Pinsk: 11 

A large number of Jewish refugees from western Poland found shelter in Pinsk, 

but were deported to the Soviet interior in 1940. 

Rovno: 12 

Many Jewish refugees from western Polandfound shelter in Rovno [...] 

Nine years after WWII, on September 22 and 23, 1954, an investigating 
committee of the U.S. House of Representatives (Select Committee on 
Communist Aggression) conducted hearings where representatives of sev¬ 
eral Jewish organizations testified under oath on the subject of the persecu¬ 
tion of Jews by the Soviet. One Herschel Weinrauch, formerly an associate 
editor of the Soviet newspaper The Star , declared that he was an official in 
the civil administration of Bialystok following the Soviet occupation in 
1939. In his testimony he said the Communists made all refugee Jews from 
German-occupied Poland choose in the spring of 1940 between accepting 
Soviet citizenship or returning to German control. 

Because of the barbarian treatment accorded these Jews from the western 
portion of divided Poland by the Soviets, most of them opted for a return. 
Shortly thereafter, though, the Soviet government arrested all those who had 
decided to return and transported them to Siberia. In Bialystok alone, 50,000 
to 60,000 Jewish refugees were arrested. All in all, the Soviets deported 
roughly 1,000,000 Jewish refugees from western Poland to Siberia. 13 

Another witness, Bronislaw Teichholz, chairman of the International 
Committee for Jewish Refugees from Concentration Camps from 1945 to 
1952, confirmed Weinrauch’s testimony. At that time he had been working 
in Lvov, where about 50,000 Jewish refugees had decided to return; all of 
them were deported by the Soviets, in the process crowding 70 to 80 persons 
into railroad cars and then moving them eastward. 14 

A third witness, Adolph Held, chairman of the Jewish Labor Committee, 
was absent due to an incident of death in his family, but he had his testimony 
read to the investigating committee by the vice chairman Jacob T. Zuker- 
man. This witness, too, confirmed that up to 1,000,000 Jews escaped to 
Russia. 15 Another witness, Henry Edward Schultz, national chairman of the 
Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith, put the number of Jewish refugees 
from western Poland deported on Stalin’s orders to Siberian labor camps at 


11 Ibid.-, Vol. 13, p. 543. 

12 Ibid, Vol 14, p. 357. 

13 Treatment of Jews by the Soviet. 17th Interim Report of Hearings before the Select Committee 
on Communist Aggression, House of Representatives, 83rd Congress, New York, September 
22 and 23, 1954, p. 40. 

14 Ibid., p. 46 and 47. 

15 Ibid., p. 61. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


41 


600,000; 450,000 of these unfortunate people have vanished without a 
trace. 16 

The Polish Government-in-Exile, too, declared the Soviets deported 
600,000 Jewish refugees from western Poland in the spring of 1940. The 
Jewish statistician, J. Kulischer, asserted that Stalin evacuated 530,000 Jews 
- 500,000 from eastern Poland and 30,000 from the Baltic countries. 17 
Other Jewish sources arrive at even lower figures. 

Rabbi Aaron Pechenick described the Soviet mass deportation in his 
book Zionism and Judaism in Soviet Russia published in New York in 1943 
as follows: 18 

In two days and two nights [end of June 1940] almost one million Jews were 
loaded into cattle wagons under the most horrible circumstances and deported 
to Siberia and the Ural. [...] The terrible journey lasted from four to six weeks. 
Having arrived at their destinations, the Jews obtained only bread and water to 
sustain their lives after the long working days in the forests. 

The Universal reported that the Joint Distribution Committee - a large in¬ 
ternational Jewish refugee aid organization - initiated a relief program in 
early 1942 for 600,000 Polish-Jewish refugees in Asiatic Russia. 19 How¬ 
ever, if there were 600,000 of these Jewish refugees in Soviet Asia in early 
1942, many more must have been shipped off to Siberia by the Soviets, 
because the journey brought death and hardship to many. In connection with 
the inhuman transport to the east, the Joint Distribution Committee wrote in 
its Bulletin of June 1943: 20 

From a fifth to a third of the number of refugees died [...] whoever did not see 
the thousands of graves, mostly of children, cannot understand. 

This means that the number of Jewish refugees from western Poland who 
were arrested by the Soviets and deported to Siberia ranged from 750,000 to 
900,000! But only 600,000 survived the incredible journey and arrived at 
their destination. 

Menachem Begin belonged to these deported unfortunates also. The 
Soviet secret police arrested him a short time after his arrival in Sovi¬ 
et-occupied eastern Poland and put him into a Siberian concentration camp. 
Following the outbreak of the German-Soviet war (June 22, 1941) he joined 
the Soviet-sponsored Polish army which left the USSR in 1942 by way of 
Iran. In the very same year we find the former Soviet concentration camp 


16 Ibid., p. 25. 

17 Haganov, Gedeon. Le Communisme et les "Juifs, ” Supplement de CONTACT, Paris, May 
1951, p. 9-15; see also Aronson, Gregor. Soviet Russia and the Jews, New York, 1949, p. 12. 

18 Pechenick, Rabbi Aaron. Zionism and Judaism in Soviet-Russia, New York, p. 60. 

19 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 6, p. 176. 

20 Aronson, Soviet Russia and the Jews, p. 12. 



42 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


inmate and subsequent recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize as the com- 
mander-in-chief of the murderous IRGUN gang in Palestine. 21 

The extent of the Jewish flight before the German armies is not at all 
unusual. As a result of years of continuous Zionist campaigns and Polish 
inflammatory propaganda, the Jewish fear of the Germans knew no limits; 
this is probably the most likely explanation for the panic which gripped 
Polish Jews and non-Jews. Similar events developed in May 1940 when 1‘A 
to 2 million panicky Belgians sought refuge in France, where they suffered 
severely; in mid-August 1940, there were still 1 million Belgians in France 
waiting to return home. 22 

Considering that up to one-fourth of this nation of just eight million fled 
in panic, even though the German Government can hardly be accused of 
hostility towards the Belgian people (but certainly towards the Jews), the 
extent of the Polish-Jewish flight is not very surprising. It is worth noting 
that in terms of time and geography, Polish Jews were much better situated 
to escape in an easterly direction; after all, during the German Western 
Campaign, Guderian’s Panzer divisions had cut the escape route from Bel¬ 
gium to France in little more than a week. 

For lack of further proof, we will accept the lower figure of 750,000 Jews 
as having fled from western Poland to the Soviet-occupied former Polish 
territory. The distribution of the Polish-Jewish population between the Ger¬ 
man and Soviet occupation zones in Poland therefore changed as follows: 

Areas under German control 857,000 ( 32.5%) 

Areas under Soviet control_1,776,000 ( 67.5%) 

Former Polish Jews (end of 1939) 2,633,000 (100.0%) 

But not only the USSR, Rumania also served as an escape valve for the 
scared Jewish masses of Poland; this was especially true of the Rumanian 
provinces of Bukovina and Bessarabia. As will be discussed in the Sixth 
Chapter, this route was used by at least 100,000 Jews. The final distribution 
of the Jewish population of the former Polish state thus assumes the fol¬ 
lowing shape: 

Areas under German control 757,000 ( 28.8%) 

Areas under Soviet control 1,776,000 ( 67.5%) 

Refugees in Rumania 100,000 ( 3.8%) 

Former Polish Jews (end of 1939) 2,633,000 (100.0%) 

All of these statistics have been gathered from Polish, Zionist, post-war 
German and American sources, and they show that no more than 757,000 


21 

22 


Zoller, Henri. “Dunkelheit umgibt uns,” Der Spiegel, No. 20, 5/11/1981, p. 31. 

Krakauer Zeitung, Krakau, “Noch 1 Million Belgier in Frankreich,” No. 195, 8/18-19/1940, p. 

4. 







W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


43 


Jews came under German administration, as German and Soviet armies 
occupied Poland in 1939. 

How close to reality these figures are may be seen from a piece of in¬ 
formation from the Joint Distribution Committee which stated that it had 
been active in German-occupied Poland without interruption, in the process 
reaching 630,000 persons in over 400 localities and providing them with 
food, medical aid, child care, clothing and other economic help. 2. Many 
more Jews than that simply did not exist in German-controlled former Polish 
territory! 

But what do German sources say about the number of Polish Jews under 
German control? Unfortunately, the answer is: Nothing. Of course, the 
Germans spoke of millions of Jews in the occupied Polish territory, but their 
figures were not based on a census, not even on estimates. They simply used 
the figures of the last Polish census of 1931 and added a certain number to 
allow for a natural population growth. In the ghettos the Jews were accorded 
some kind of self-administration, and the Germans never bothered to count 
them. 

Thus, the Krakauer Zeitung, for instance, put the number of Jews in the 
Government General of Poland at 1.4 million as of the middle of 1940. 24 
But a closer look shows quickly that this figure matches almost exactly that 
of the Polish census of 1931, inflated by 10% for the assumed population 
growth. The huge emigration before the war and the massive Jewish flight to 
Soviet-occupied territory - a fact which is admitted to by the Zionists 
themselves - were not taken into account. 

After Soviet-occupied, former Polish Galicia was incoiporated into the 
Government General following the outbreak of the Russo-German war, 
German statements suddenly referred to a Jewish population of 2 million in 
the enlarged Government General. 25 

The difference of 600,000 corresponds precisely to the 545,000 Jews 
living in the added area according to the census of 1931, augmented by 
10%. 26 In this case, too, the massive Soviet evacuation of the urban popu¬ 
lation - attested to by German and Zionist sources - was not taken into 
consideration. 

These German figures are not very surprising. For propaganda reasons 
the Germans were interested in magnifying the “Jewish danger” wherever 
possible. There are plenty of examples. In the case of Rumania, the German 


23 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 6, p. 175. 

24 Krakauer Zeitung, “Goralen in die Tucheler Heide verschoben,” No. 157, 7/5/ 1940, p. 5. 

25 Kauener Zeitung, Kovno (Kaunas)lLithuania, “Die Bevolkerung des General-Gouvemements,” 
No. 42, 2/19/1942, p. 7. 

26 Die Bevolkerung des polnischen Staatsgebiets westlich der Demarkationslinie vom 21.9.1939 
nach dem Bekenntnis auf Grund der polnischen Volkszahlung von 1931, Bundesarchiv in 
Koblenz: Bestand R 153/287. 



44 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


estimate of that country’s Jewish population was 1.5 to 2 million, 27 although 
the Rumanian census found only three-quarters of a million, and even the 
largest Zionist estimates never exceeded 900,000. As for France, which 
according to the largest Zionist estimates contained about 300,000 Jews, the 
Germans mentioned 1.2 million. 28 All of these German figures on the Jew¬ 
ish population in other European countries - France, Rumania, Government 
General - are instances of obvious exaggeration; in truth, the Jewish popu¬ 
lation was far less than half that size. 

What happened to these 757,000 Jews in areas under German control? At 
the end of June of 1946(1), when the option for a return from the Soviet 
Union expired for the Jewish refugees of 1939, only 240,489 registered 
Jewish survivors were tabulated in Poland. Of the many hundreds of thou¬ 
sands who had fled to the Soviet Union in 1939, only 157,420 took ad¬ 
vantage of this option and returned to Poland. In other words, the primary 
source which released these figures, the Central Committee for Jews in 
Poland, a Communist organization, wants to make us believe that only 
83,069 Jews of western Poland (240,489 minus 157,420) survived the 
Second World War under German administration. 29 But even if these fig¬ 
ures were correct, they refer only to registered Jews. But how many Jews 
survived the war as “gentiles” in disguise and/or fled to the West between 
the end of the war and June 1946, never to register at all? 

It is possible that hundreds of thousands of Jews used the fourteen 
months between the end of the war and the deadline to exercise the option to 
return from the Soviet Union (June 1946) in order to emigrate, flee or be 
evacuated from Poland; this aspect will be looked into at a later stage. But 
assuming that all Polish Jews survived the war under German, administra¬ 
tion, can one imagine a Communist Polish government admit to this in the 
face of the Soviet declaration at the so-called war crimes trials in Nuremberg 
that the Germans had killed just about every Polish Jew? 

Still, if 757,000 Polish Jews fell under German control, but only 83,069 
of them were found “officially” in June 1946, then this amounts to a dif¬ 
ference of 674,000 missing Jews - at least statistically. 


Jewish Newcomers to the Soviet Empire 

Let us summarize: 1.8 million Jews of the former Polish state found 
themselves overnight in the Soviet sphere of influence; of this number, one 
million remained for the time being as Soviet Citizens in former eastern 


27 

28 
29 


Krakauer Zeitung, “Kein Jude in Rumaniens Einheitspartei,” No. 152, 6/29/ 1941, p. 3. 
Kauener Zeitung, “Die jildische Pest in Frankreich,” No. 120, 5/23/1942, p. 3. 
Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 498. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


45 


Poland, and three-quarters of a million Polish-Jewish refugees, who refused 
to accept Soviet citizenship, were deported to Siberian labor and concen¬ 
tration camps in the most inhuman manner. This action alone cost the Jews 
up to 300,000, but at least 150,000, dead according to Zionist data! 

In 1940, further large Jewish congregations were to disappear in the 
Soviet empire, as the Baltic states and parts of Rumania were forcibly an¬ 
nexed. The last censuses in the Baltic countries found the following Jewish 


minorities: 30 

Lithuania (1923) 155,125 

Estonia (1934) 4,302 

Latvia (1935)_93,479 

Baltic countries 252,906 


As mentioned by the Munich Institute for Contemporary History, the 
Baltic states, too, witnessed a considerable Jewish emigration before the 
war. In the case of Lithuania, the last census goes back to 1923, which 
makes it necessary to allow for the emigration in the 1920s as well. Even if 
one assumes a relatively much smaller flow of emigration from these three 
countries than was true for Poland, a net reduction of at least 10% is prob¬ 
ably a minimum, particularly as a much longer period of time must be ac¬ 
counted for in the case of Lithuania. A considerable emigration and a low 
fertility before the war probably added up to no more than 225,000 Baltic 
Jews coming into the Soviet sphere of influence in 1940. 

As will be shown in the Sixth Chapter in some detail, Bessarabia and the 
northern Bukovina contained 225,000 local Jews at the time of the Soviet 
occupation in 1940. In addition, there were about 100,000 Polish-Jewish 
refugees in Rumania. These refugees were spread all over northern Ruma¬ 
nia: northern Transylvania, Bukovina and northern Bessarabia. It is not 
certain how many of these refugees who fled before the German armies in 
September 1939 lived in Bessarabia and in the northern Bukovina at the time 
of the Soviet a nn exation. Jewish sources maintain anyway that 65,000 Jews 
- most of them apparently of Polish origin - crossed over from Rumanian to 
Soviet-occupied territory at the time of the Soviet occupation of eastern and 
northern Rumania. 31 Furthermore, there is some evidence - see the Sixth 
Chapter - that 9,000 Polish refugees remained in northern Transylvania 
when Rumania had to cede that section to Hungary in 1940. Thus, it seems 
that the Soviet Union obtained not only the 225,000 native Rumanian Jews 
when it occupied those two Rumanian regions in 1940, but also at least an¬ 
other 91,000 Jewish refugees from Poland. 


AJYB, 1940, Vol. 42, p. 602. 
Ibid., 1941, Vol. 43, p. 330. 





46 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


The territorial expansion of the Soviet Union until June of 1941 thus put 
2,317,000 Jews within Stalin’s empire: 

Polish Jews: 

in eastern Poland and Baltic states 1,776,000 

in Rumania 91,000 1,867,000 

Baltic Jews 225,000 

Rumanian Jews 225,000 

Jewish newcomers to the USSR inl939/1940 2,317,000 

Before the month of September 1939, fewer than 20% (app. 3 million) of 
the roughly 16 million Jews of the world were subject to Soviet domination. 
The consequence of the German-Polish war was that by 1940 one-third of 
world Jewry> found itself within the borders of the Soviet Union. For the 
non-Soviet Eastern European Jewry - which had suffered continuous losses 
during the 1930s due not only to persistent flows of emigration, but also to 
an excess of deaths over births and changes in religious preference - the 
Soviet “confiscation” of 2.3 million people of Jewish origin represented a 
blow from which it was never to recover. 


Jewish Population Trends in the Soviet Union 

The Soviet census of December 17, 1926, found 2,680,181 Jews. 32 
Twelve years later the census of January 17, 1939, put the Jewish population 
figure at 3,020,141 - an apparent increase of 340,000 persons. 33 This 
change would be equivalent to an annual increase of 1%; but this interpre¬ 
tation of the difference between the two censuses fails to consider some 
important aspects. 

In 1946, the American scholar and professor at Princeton University, Dr. 
Fra nk Lorimer, published a book, The Population of the Soviet Union: 
History and Prospects, under the auspices of the League of Nations. In this 
book he traced important differences in data collection by the Soviets in the 
censuses of 1926 and 1939. The census of 1926, for instance, was based on 
the criterion of “ narodnost ” (tribe, ethnic group), which corresponds more 
to an ethnic “tribal” affiliation than the criterion “ nationalnost ” (nationality) 
as used in the census of 1939. In any case, the result of these definitional 
criteria alterations was such that the changes in the numerical size of the 


Ruppin, Arthur. The Jews in the Modern World, London, 1934, p. 26 and 27. 
33 AJYB, 1944, Vol. 46, p. 501. 






W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


47 


various ethnic groups in the USSR from 1926 to 1939 bore little relationship 

i • 34 

to reality. 


Soviet Population Counts 


Nationality 

1926 

1939 

Changes 

Russians 

77,791,124 

99,019,929 

+21,228,805 (+27.3%) 

Ukrainians 

31,194,976 

28,070,404 

-3,124,572 (-10.0%) 

White Russians 4,738,923 

5,267,431 

+528,508 (+11.2%) 

Jews 35 

2,680,181 

3,020,141 

+339,960 (+12.7%) 

Germans 

1,246,540 

1,423,534 

+176,994 (+14.2%) 

Others 

29,376,171 

33,665,747 

+4,289,576 (+14.6%) 

Total 

147,027,915 

170,467,186 

+23,439,271 (+15.9%) 


This juxtaposition of the two censuses seems to reveal three develop¬ 
ments: 

a) The Russians, with barely 53% of the total population in 1926, never¬ 
theless furnished 90% of the population increase of the Soviet Union 
between 1926 and 1939! 

b) The rural Ukrainians decreased by 10%! 

c) The urban Jews increased at a rate which exceeded that of the children- 
blessed White Russians, and almost equaled that of the rural German 
population in the USSR! 

A comparison of the Jewish population figures for the USSR in 1926 and 
1939 thus is bound to lead to wrong conclusions as to the fertility of this 
minority. In order to ascertain the natural fertility of each of the ethnic 
groups, Prof. Lorimer investigated the so-called “Child-Woman Ratios,” i.e. 
the number of children aged 0-4 years per 1,000 women aged 20-44 years. 
For the year 1926 he found the following ratios: 36 


Needed for permanent population replacement 

500 

European Russia 

844 

Russians 

832 

Ukrainians 

871 

White Russians 

966 

Jews 

509 (!) 

Germans 

933 


These fertility figures contrast sharply with the purported changes of indi¬ 
vidual ethnic groups. 


34 Lorimer, Dr. Frank. The Population of the Soviet Union: History and Prospects, Geneva 
(League of Nations), 1946, p. 138. 

35 Dr. Lorimer mentioned a Jewish population of 2,672,499 ; this figure is 6,742 smaller than 
Zionist sources usually mention. 

36 Lorimer, Population of the Soviet Union, p. 95 and 96. 







48 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Even supposing the enforced collectivization at the end of the 1920s and 
beginning 1930s caused much greater losses among the Ukrainians than 
among the other peoples of the Soviet Union, the result of the census of 1939 
can only be explained by the changed definitional criteria. The fertility of 
the Russians was below the European part of the Soviet Union and - much 
more important for our analysis - the Soviet Jews had barely enough chil¬ 
dren to replace themselves. Prof. Lorimer noted: ' 7 

The lowest fertility is indicated by the Jews, a predominantly urban and highly 

literate group. [...] It is apparent that the Jewish population was barely re¬ 
placing itself [...] 

This was true in 1926 already! 

It is impossible that the Jewish fertility improved markedly during the 
following twelve years, because in those years the Soviets initiated a huge 
program of forced industrialization with an accompanying scarcity of homes 
and apartments in the cities. In addition, the Jews continued to migrate 
northward to Leningrad, Moscow and other Russian cities. The pronounced 
tendency toward mixed marriages between Jews and the native population 
of the Russian cities certainly added to a still lower fertility of the Jews until 
1939. 

This is not to deny that there were 3 million Jews in the Soviet Union in 
1939. Considering the aspirations of the Jews to assimilate, it is quite 
probable that the census of 1939 still left several thousands of them un¬ 
counted. However, Prof. Lorimer’s investigations showed that the Jewish 
population figure for 1926 was understated to the tune of several hundreds 
of thousands. The conclusion thus must be that the Jewish population of 
pre-war USSR was already stagnating, and an excess of deaths over births 
cannot be excluded altogether. 

Of the 2.7 million Jews as published by the Soviet census of 1926, 
1,981,487 lived in the Ukraine and in White Russia. 38 In 1939 only 
1,907,951 Jews were counted in those regions. 39 The foregoing illustrations 
prove, however, that the Soviet census of 1926 had underestimated the 
Jewish population by perhaps 300,000, or 11%. If this underestimate was 
distributed rather evenly throughout the Soviet Union, it is possible that the 
Ukraine and White Russia really had 2.2 million Jews in 1926 instead of the 
published 1.98 million. Compared to 1939, this represents a reduction of 
about 300,000 or 25,000 per year. 

The north and the east of the Soviet territory, which up until WWI con¬ 
tained only very few Jews, thus must have been populated by the beginning 
of 1939 by over 1.1 million Jews, the majority of whom lived in Moscow 


37 Ibid., p. 94 and 97. 

38 AJYB, 1939, Vol. 41, p. 588. 

39 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 10, p. 24. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


49 


and in Leningrad. The unbelievable migration of Jews from the west and the 
south is best demonstrated by these two large cities: 40 


Jewish Population in 


Year 

Leningrad 

Moscow 

1920 

25,453 

28,000 

1923 

52,373 

86,000 

1926 

84,505 

131,000 

1940 

200,000 

400,000 (450,000) 41 


Obviously, between the two world wars one-third of the Soviet Jews had 
left the once traditional area of settlement in the west and south of the Soviet 
Union and moved to the less anti-Semitic north and east. 

The Universal, too, took account of this enormous migration from the 
Ukraine and White Russia to the north and east (incl. Siberia) in its calcu¬ 
lation of the Jewish population distribution within the Soviet Union. The 
Universal calculated that in 1939 alone the Ukraine and White Russia lost 
33,000 (net) of their Jewish population to the east and north. 42 The basis on 
which the Universal made the estimate is not known - official figures are 
not available - and, to be conservative, one should not assume that the mi¬ 
gration movement accelerated. Therefore, if we limit ourselves to the as¬ 
sumption that the trend existing before 1939 continued until the middle of 
1941, this would amount to a net migration loss for both “republics” totaling 
63,000 Jews. The Jewish population of those Soviet areas, i.e. the north and 
the east, which were never occupied by German forces, thus could have 
increased by 63,000 as a result of an internal migration from the south and 
the west. 

According to Zionist sources, on January 17, 1939, 2,092,951 Jews lived 
in those areas which were later occupied by the Germans during WWII. 43 
These areas included primarily the Ukraine and White Russia. 

In the “free” territories, i.e. those regions which never saw German oc¬ 
cupation during the war, there were 927,190 Jews at the time of the last 
census. If one adjusts both parts of the USSR, the “free” and the occupied, 
by the changes incurred until June 1941 - primarily arising from an internal 
migration of 63,000 from the south to the north, because the excess of births 
over deaths, if it existed at all, probably was minimal indeed - then the dis- 


40 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 11, p. 17 and Vol. 12, p. 365. 

41 Kauener Zeitung, “Juden-Metropole Moskau," No. 130, 6/4/1943, p. 2, mentions the same 
statistics for the years 1920, 1923 and 1926, but none for 1940. On the other hand, this news¬ 
paper wrote that the latest published statistical material placed the number of Moscow’s Jewish 
inhabitants in 1937 already at over 450,000. 

42 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vo\. 10, p. 24. 

43 Institute of Jewish Affairs. Hitler’s Ten-Year War on theJews, New York, 1943,p. 184. 





50 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


tribution of the 3.02 million “old” Soviet Jews must have looked something 
like this: 


“Free” Soviet territory 

Soviet territory occupied by Gennan forces 
in the course of the war 

990,000 

2,030,000 

“Old” Soviet Jews in June 1941 

3,020,000 

Adding it all up, there were 5,337,000 Jews 
ence at the beginning of the war: 

in Stalin’s sphere of influ- 

Jews “acquired” in 1939/1940 
“Old” Soviet Jews 

2,317,000 

3,020,000 

Jews in the Soviet Union in 1941 

5,337,000 

These figures match just about the numbers as provided by the Universal, 
according to which the Soviet Union contained 5.5 million Jews as of June 


22, 1941, after having acquired roughly 2.2 million through the annexation 
of neighboring areas to the west. 44 The American Jewish Year Book (Year 
Book) even believes this figure of 5.5 million may be a “conservative es¬ 
timate.” 45 

Now, if reputable Zionist sources put the number of Jews living in the 
Soviet Union at the outbreak of the war at 5.5 million - obviously, this figure 
includes those who didn’t survive the inhuman deportation of 1940 - then 
they are in effect providing a rough indication of the number of Polish Jews 
who fell into German hands. In the course of its territorial expansion, the 
Soviet Union acquired the Jewish populations of the Baltic states - at most 
225,000 - and of eastern Rumania estimated at 225,000. If one adds the 
“old” Soviet Jews of 3.02 million and subtracts the total from the 5.5 mil¬ 
lion, the remaining figure should correspond with the number of those Jews 
whom the USSR acquired from Poland; it is about 2 million. This figure 
exceeds the one arrived at in this analysis by far more than 100,000 and 
shows the relative conservatism with which our computations were made. 

Since Poland had no more than 214 million Jews at the outbreak of 
WWII, it is impossible that more than three quarters of a million Polish Jews 
could have fallen under German control. 

Summarizing the events until the spring of 1941, one obtains the fol¬ 
lowing table: 


44 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia , Vol. 9, p. 670. 

45 AJYB, 1941, Vol. 43, p. 319. 







W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


51 


Poland (August 1939) 2,664,000 

Soviet Union (1939) 3,020,000 

Baltic states (1940) 225,000 

Bessarabia and northern Bukovina (1940) 225,000 

Total 6,134,000 


deduct: 

Polish-Jewish soldiers killed in action 
Polish-Jewish refugees in N. Transylvania 
Polish-Jews under German administration 
Jews under Soviet domination in (1939/1940) 

deduct: 

Jewish losses during the deportation to Siberia 
in the spring of 1940 
Jews living in the USSR in 1940 max. 

deduct: 

Polish-Jewish refugees in Siberia 600,000 

“Old” Soviet Jews in the “free” parts of the 
Soviet Union 990,000 

Jews in the area of the Soviet Union which always 
remained outside the limits of German military 

expansion (1940) -1,590,000 

Jews living in the subsequently German-occupied 
parts of the Soviet Union (spring 1941) 


-150,000 

5,187,000 


31,000 

9,000 

757,000 -797,000 

5,337,000 


3,597,000 









W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


53 


THIRD CHAPTER: 

Scorched Earth 


Soviet Military Build-up 

After Hitler’s refusal to accede to further Soviet demands for territorial 
concessions in Europe, the Soviet Union changed over to a war economy in 
the summer of 1940; on June 26, 1940, the obligatory eight-hour-workday 
and the seven-day workweek was decreed in this connection. 1 Other decrees 
made it a criminal offense if workers arrived more than twenty minutes late 
for work, punishable by up to six months forced labor. No one was allowed 
to change jobs except with the written permission of the director in charge; 
in contrast, the commissariats were empowered to send any worker any¬ 
where in the Soviet Union if they so desired. The Soviet press, the radio, the 
teachers, the travelling public speakers as well as party, union and youth 
organization functionaries lectured the population in innumerable meetings 
that a “Capitalist” attack allegedly planned for a long time was liable to be 
forthcoming at any time. 

The American engineer John Scott, who had been working in the USSR 
until 1942, described the Soviet preparation for war as follows: 2 

The Russian defense budget doubled almost every year. Huge reserves of war 
materials, machines, fuels, food and other supplies were stored. The Red Army 
grew from about two million in 1938 to 6.5 million men in the spring of1940. 

Already in early 1940, the USSR had gathered 150 divisions in the western 
military districts, 100 of which were stationed in the former eastern Polish 
territories, confronting only 6 (six!) German divisions. 3 

At the end of March 1941, another 500,000 reservists were called up and 
placed in the military districts bordering the German frontier; they were 
followed by a further 300,000 specialists from the reserve units. With these 
measures the Red Army grew a total of 800,000 men just before the outbreak 


1 Helmdach, Erich. Uberfall? Der sowjetisch-deutsche Aufinarsch 1941, Neckargemiind, 1978, 
p. 31. 

2 Scott, John. Jenseits des Ural: Die Kraftquellen der Sowjetunion, Stockholm, 1944, p. 301-302. 

3 Helmdach, Uberfall?, p. 10. 



54 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


of the war. Subsequently, General Zhukov confirmed the mobilization of 
170 divisions and 2 brigades in the districts close to the border. 4 

The Swedish air attache in Moscow estimated that by mid-1941 60% of 
the Red Army had been positioned in the western Soviet Union, concen¬ 
trating particularly heavily in areas near the Rumanian border. Obviously, 
Stalin was aiming at the Rumanian oil fields whose possession would have 
given him a stranglehold on the German war machine. The Rumanian es¬ 
pionage learned of Stalin’s remarks to the effect that the Soviet Government 
would still have to make great sacrifices in order to gain time, because the 
coming war could be postponed but it could not be averted. 5 The Yugosla¬ 
vian ambassador in Moscow warned Stalin early in 1941 of the German 
“Barbarossa” Plans; in his reply Stalin speculated on the possible date of the 
German attack and said: “Let them come. We will be ready for them!” 6 

In April, the Soviet infantry was equipped for military action. 7 German 
intelligence discovered that the Russians had been building airports and 
ammunition depots in feverish haste throughout the entire spring. Polish 
agents reported Russian troop movements from the Far East to the western 
border, and the formation and movement of new armies which could only 
serve aggressive purposes. The Soviets instructed their commissars that they 
should prepare for a long and cruel war with Germany. 8 Scientists and party 
functionaries sent to the Baltic countries from Moscow spoke openly of the 
Soviet Union’s intention to enter the war: The Soviet Union is prepared “to 
come to the assistance of the European nations suppressed by Capitalism 
just as it had come to the assistance of the Baltic nations.” The start of the 
war, they said, depended only on the Soviet Union, but first, all of the pre¬ 
paratory work must be finished. 9 Also, the amply staffed and equipped air 
support organization established near the border in the center of the frontier 
with Germany was of a clearly offensive character, because for defensive 
purposes new airports packed with planes make no sense near the border. 10 

After April 7, even the German embassy in Moscow was able to observe 
the steady call-up of reservists and raw recruits. On April 8, the Russians 
started to evacuate the families of the members of their trade delegation in 
Berlin. In Kiev, trainloads of military hardware could be seen moving to¬ 
ward the former Polish border. On April 9, the German military attache in 
Bucharest reported that Marshall Timoshenko, regarded by many as the only 


4 Ibid., p. 30. 

5 Irving, David. Hitler’s War, New York, 1977, p. 238. 

6 Ibid., p. 234. 

7 Helmdach, Uberfall?, p. 30. 

8 Irving, Hitler’s War, p. 236. 

9 Kauener Zeitimg, ‘“Rote Professoren’ wussten langst vom Krieg,” No. 172, 7/25/1942, p. 5. 

10 Helmdach, Uberfall?, p. 35. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


55 


really capable Soviet general, had called a council of war in Kiev and or¬ 
dered an alert for all units along the western border. 11 

The extent of the Soviet military preparations was such that General 
Haider, the German Chief of the General Staff, feared that - according to his 
diary entries of April 6 and 7 - the Soviet attack could be expected at any 
time. 12 General Haider, a member of the “Resistance,” wrote after the war: 13 

[...it] was his [Hitler’s] unshakable and not unfounded conviction that Russia 
was preparing to attack Germany. We know today from excellent sources that he 
was right. 

At the political level, too, Stalin was taking calculated steps to solidify his 
position vis-a-vis Germany. A high point of Soviet hostility toward Ger¬ 
many was reached on March 27, 1941, when Soviet agents in the Serbian 
army overthrew the pro-German government in neighboring Yugoslavia just 
two days after Yugoslavia had joined the Axis. 14 Already on April 5, 1941, 
Stalin hastily signed a treaty of friendship with the new anti-German regime; 
the following day the German air force attacked Belgrade. 15 Still more 
ominous from the German point of view was the treaty of neutrality signed 
by Japan and the Soviet Union on April 13; with this, Moscow was now free 
to devote all of its attention to the European theater, as the immediately 
accelerating pace of troop movements from the Far East to the European 
parts of the country showed. 

Hitler and his advisors now had no further doubts about Stalin’s martial 
plans. Haider was sure that, if one would have shown the Soviet military 
build-up to a neutral military expert, he would have had to admit that it was 
of an aggressive design. Throughout the month of March the Soviet troop 
movements near the border were so intense and the supply transports from 
Moscow toward Smolensk and Minsk assumed such proportions that Haider 
feared a Soviet attack on Germany could be imminent. At the time, he said 
that this danger could last until April 20, 1941, because the Soviets were 
expected to have far superior forces until then. 16 

But then, the Soviets knew very well that the Germans had no illusions 
about the Soviet intentions and were preparing hastily to attain first-strike 
capability. Already on April 10, high alert was ordered for the entire Red 
Army. 17 General Klokov of the Politburo announced on April 16 to a select 


11 Irving, Hitler’s War, p. 236. 

12 Helmdach, LJberfall?, p. 35. 

13 Haider, Franz. Hitler als Feldherr, Munich, 1949, p. 36-37. 

14 Hoggan, David. Der unnotige Krieg, Tubingen, 1977, p. 438 and 486 f. 

15 Payne, Robert. Stalin: Macht und Tyrannei, Munich, 1981, p. 507f. 

16 Irving, Hitler’s War, p. 235. 

17 Helmdach, LJberfall?, p. 38. 



56 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


group of officers that the war could erupt “at any moment” and that the Red 
Army should not be “caught off guard.” 18 

On April 23, new reports of gigantic Soviet reinforcements in the Bu- 
kovina and Bessarabia arrived from Bucharest; the following day the Ger¬ 
man military attache in Bucharest reported from Bucharest that ships loaded 
with Red Army men arrived in Odessa and were being transported from 
there by train to the Bug and Dniester rivers, and that the Soviets were 
evacuating the civilian population along their side of the Pruth river. 19 
German intelligence had reported since February 1940 already that the So¬ 
viets were systematically deporting the Polish, Jewish and Ukrainian pop¬ 
ulation from the western Ukraine. The people to be deported were given 
only a little time to prepare and were allowed to take just a few bags along. 20 
The accuracy of these reports was verified after the recapture of the former 
Rumanian areas by the combined German and Rumanian armies. The census 
conducted by Rumania in the regained territories on August 16, 1941, reg¬ 
istered a total population loss of about 20%. The urban population in par¬ 
ticular had suffered from the Soviet measures; its share of the total popula¬ 
tion had shrunk to 10% (before the war it was about 20%). Kishinev, for 
example, lost 62% of its inhabitants, and Chemovitsy approximately 42%. 21 

In May 1941, several armies were moved from the interior to the western 
USSR: 22 

- The 22. Army from the Ural to the Velikie Luki area north of Vitebsk; 

- the 21. Army from the Volga to the Gomel area; 

- the 19. Army from northern Caucasus to the Shepetovka area midway 
between Kiev and the German-Soviet line of demarcation; 

- the 16. Army from Transbaikalia (near Manchuria) to the Belaya Tser- 
kov area (southwest of Kiev); 

- the 25. Rifle Corps to the western Dvina. 

On May 5, Stalin delivered speeches to officers of the Frunse Military 
Academy. Among the listeners were Molotov, Mikoyan, Voroshilov, Kali¬ 
nin and Beria; also present were two generals and a major who later hap¬ 
pened to fall into German hands and independently reiterated the contents of 
that speech with a high degree of unanimity. Both Ribbentrop and Goring 


Ibid., p. 75. 

19 Irving, Hitler’s War, p. 237. 

20 Aschenauer, Rudolf. Krieg ohne Grenzen, Leoni, 1982, p. 115. 

21 Publikationsstelle Wien. Die Bevolkerungszahlung in Rumanien 1941 (Geheim), Vienna, 1943: 
In 1930, Bessarabia and the northern Bukovina had a population of 3.41 million (p. 17); as¬ 
suming a natural increase of maybe 1.5% p.a., there should have been 4.02 million people in 
1941. Deducting the 137,000 resettled ethnic Germans (p. 27), there remain 3.88 million; 
however, only 3.22 million were found (p. 17) - a decrease by 20%. Kishinev had 140,000 
inhabitants before the war (1930: 114,896), but the Rumanians found only 52,962 - a reduction 
by 62%; Chernovitsy’s population of roughly the same size before WW1I (1930: 112,427) was 
down to 78,825 in August 1941 - a minus of 42% (p. 70-73). 

22 Helmdach, Uberfall?, p. 30. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


57 


claimed in 1943 and after the war, respectively, that details of this speech 
had been forwarded to Hitler by agents almost immediately. The gist of 
Stalin’s speech was: 23 

Tie referred to the need to prepare for the coming war with Germany and 
promised that within two months the Soviet Union would possess some of the 
best and fastest aircraft in the world. The war plan, he said, is completed, the 
airfields have been built, and the frontline aircraft are there already. Everything 
has been done to clear out the rear areas; all the foreign elements have been 
removed. Within the next two months the USSR can begin to battle Germany. 
The pact with Germany was just a trick. A carefully developed, vast partisan 
movement built up throughout Europe since the war began in 1939 would par¬ 
alyze the supplies of the German Army. The era of forcible expansion for the 
Soviet Union has begun. 

On May 10, the German Air Force reported the concentration of 4,000 So¬ 
viet aircraft on the airfields near the border and the stationing of another 
1,000 in rear areas as detected through radio reconnaissance. 24 

General Vlassov, taken prisoner in 1942, confirmed later that the Soviets 
intended to attack in late summer of 1941. 25 Jacob Jugashvili, Stalin’s son 
who fell into German hands in July 1941 as an artillery lieutenant in an 
armored division, told his German interrogators “that they were preparing to 
attack when, suddenly, they [...] were smashed to pieces.” 26 

No doubt, the German preventive action of June 22, 1941, hit the Soviet 
military build-up before the Red steamroller started to move. Six weeks 
earlier, on May 12 and 15, the Soviet spy Sorge had reported the imminent 
attack by 150 German divisions, disclosing the exact date of June 22, 1941, 
and the German operative plans to Moscow. 27 

The very first days of the German invasion furnished ample proof that the 
Soviet Army had indeed been prepared for an attack on central Europe. Even 
in those frontier pockets extending far to the west around Lvov and Bi- 
alystok - which were quite exposed to German encirclement and for this 
reason were useless for defensive purposes - the German troops encoun¬ 
tered massive Soviet assault forces. As a result, the head-on clash with the 
Soviet army and air force occurred just as soon as the Germans crossed the 
border. 

But since the Soviet high command was limited to just 150-200 air strips 
adjacent to the German border because of the unfavorable terrain (large parts 
in the center portion of the German-Soviet border were swampy), the 
available strips were particularly crowded with planes ready to execute the 


Irving, Hitler’s War, p. 238-240. 

24 Ibid., p. 265. 

25 Helmdach, Uberfall?, p. 58. 

26 Ibid., p. 99. 

27 Ibid., p. 42. 



58 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


planned attacks on German positions. Thus, the very first military operations 
of the German fighter and reconnaissance squadrons encountered numerous 
airfields of which several were packed with up to 100 Soviet planes. The 
German air force cut into this massive concentration of several thousand 
Soviet planes which were ready for the onslaught on Germany. Just between 
June 22 and 28, 1941, 4,107 Soviet planes were destroyed, about 3,000 on 
the ground. 2S Similar losses were suffered by the Red Army in the Bialystok 
area. Between June 22 and July 1, it lost 5,774 tanks, 2,330 artillery pieces 
and 160,000 prisoners, not counting the fallen Red Army men. 29 


Soviet Policy of Destruction 

In his speech of February 25, 1956, at the 20th Party Congress.in Mos¬ 
cow, N.S. Khrushchev called Stalin’s claim of a German surprise attack a lie 
and noted that the Soviet leadership knew from many excellent sources (for 
instance, Churchill; the British ambassador to the USSR, Cripps; the Soviet 
embassy in London and other Soviet military and diplomatic channels, as 
well as the Soviet deputy military attache in Berlin, Chlopov) that the 
German attack was imminent. 30 

Also, Stalin’s preparations to wage war against Europe were made from a 
strategic-economic point of view long before Hitler appeared in the political 
arena as the leader of a resurrected Germany. In contrast to Stalin, Nikolaj 
Bukharin, who was liquidated in 1938, and other old Bolsheviks favored the 
development of light industry; they felt that total industrialization could only 
be pursued once consumer goods were made available to the population. 
Stalin won the dispute and silenced the others: The Soviet Union thereupon 
embarked on the most gigantic industrialization program the world had ever 
seen. 

The foundations for this giant undertaking were laid in the first Five- 
Year-Plan (1928-1932), which called for the establishment of completely 
new industrial sectors and bases. The core of the Plan was the development 
of heavy industry in the Urals and in Siberia. 

The German army had penetrated the Ukraine in 1918, and a repetition 
could not be excluded entirely; therefore, in Stalin’s opinion the Soviet 
Union needed a heavy industry located out of reach of possible enemies. In 
February 1931 Stalin said: 


28 Krakauer Zeitung, “Die Sowjetflugplatze viel zu dicht belegt,” No. 151,711/ 1941, p. 2. 

29 Ibid., “Entscheidung von weltgeschichtlichen AusmaBen,” No. 153, 7/3/1941, p. 1 

30 Telpuchowski, Boris Semjonowitsch. Die sowjetische Geschichte des Grofien Vaterlandischen 
Krieges 1941-1945, (Andreas Hillgruber and Hans-Adolf Jacobsen, eds.) Frankfurt am Main, 
1961, p. 27E and 28E. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


59 


Russia must overtake the most advanced capitalist countries with respect to 
industrial and military capacity within ten years [i.e. until 1941], or else those 
countries are going to destroy us. 

He emphasized that these new industries would be located in the Urals and 
in Siberia thousands of kilometers from the nearest border and outside the 
reach of enemy planes. 

In order to attain this goal, thousands of foreign experts were engaged 
who, while working for the Soviet Union or foreign companies, had to be 
paid in gold. The American John Scott wrote that in Magnitogorsk alone 
there were three to four hundred German and American specialists. Relative 
to general Soviet living conditions, these foreigners enjoyed almost unbe¬ 
lievable luxuries, while millions of men and women died of hunger, froze to 
death or succumbed to inhuman work requirements and living conditions. 31 

Thus, the naivete of many Western historians is best demonstrated by 
their stubborn adherence to the thesis that Stalin, who from the very start 
concentrated the Soviet Union’s forced industrialization in the Urals for 
strategic reasons only and who was very well informed of German military 
preventive plans, had been surprised by Germany’s attack. The opposite is 
true. Even before the outbreak of hostilities, the Soviet Union was hurriedly 
moving people and industrial installations out of the western provinces and 
districts. John Scott reports that 32 

before war broke out, important installations for the production of electrical 
materials had been moved from White Russia and the area around Leningrad to 
western Siberia, [and] at least one armaments factory, formerly located near 
Leningrad, was transferred to Magnitogorsk together with the entire machinery 
and all of the personnel. [...] Except for the largest blast furnaces, steel making 
and chemical installations, everything else was transported by rail rather easily 
to other regions and without significant damages. 

According to Prof. Lorimer, the Soviet plans for transporting people and 
machines to the interior were immediately put into action at the start of the 
hostilities. 33 Prof. Boris Semjonowitsch Telpuchowski from the Institute for 
Marxism-Leninism at the Central Committee of the Communist Party in 
Moscow confirmed that this eventuality had been taken into account in the 
plans to switch the railroad traffic immediately to serve military needs. In 
the first few months one million railroad cars loaded with industrial equip¬ 
ment, materials and people left the endangered areas near the frontline. 34 

The Germans estimated the Soviet stock of passenger and freight cars at 
the beginning of the war at 36,000 and 850,000, respectively. At the end of 


Scott, Jenseits des Ural , p. 76, 79, 105, 304-305. 

32 Ibid., p. 307 and 312. 

33 Lorimer, Population of the Soviet Union , p. 195. 

34 Telpuchowski, Die sowjetische Geschichte, p. 84. 



60 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


1941, 40% of the Soviet railroad network was in German hands; still the 
Soviets managed to take the bulk of the rolling stock along with them: At the 
end of 1941 German troops had captured only 1,100 passenger and 43,300 
freight cars 35 - almost half of these during the first four weeks. In other 
words, the Russians were not at all surprised by the German attack; they 
seem to have expected it. 

Assuming that up to 50%, i.e. more than 400,000 railroad cars, had their 
home stations in the areas occupied during the war by German forces, the 
Soviets obviously were able to evacuate about 90% of that rolling stock 
before the Germans could lay their hands on them. Of course, all these 
railroad cars were shipped further east fully loaded. If one adds to these the 
number of cars arriving from the east carrying military personnel and 
weaponry, ready to transport people, materials and machines on their return 
trip, then one can understand how the Soviets managed to evacuate huge 
masses of people in such a short time; the fact that the areas close to the 
German border were neither very highly industrialized nor greatly urbanized 
permitted the use of a correspondingly greater number of cars for the re¬ 
moval of the relatively small urban population. John Scott had this to add: 

The Russian railroad tracks running in an east-west direction are crowded with 
trains bringing supplies and reserves to the front. Going east the freight trains 
are loaded with machines and workers. Even though I know of no numbers, lam 
convinced that a large part of the industrial machinery, which was located 
previously in the areas temporarily occupied by Germany, did not fall into 
German hands, but is in full operation in Stalin’s Ural fortress fifteen hundred 
or two thousand kilometers east of the frontline of spring of1943. 

The Ural area was capable of producing every type of material required for 
the production of tanks, heavy trucks, artillery and airplanes. Until the out¬ 
break of the war, two things still were in short supply in that region: ma¬ 
chines and labor. “Both,” Scott continued, “have been transferred there re¬ 
cently in large numbers.” 36 

Prof. Lorimer confirmed also that the Soviets set out immediately after 
the German attack to activate their plans for the dismantling of factories and 
resurrecting them in the interior; in addition, he says, a large part of the ag¬ 
ricultural machinery and a lot of livestock was removed. Even Khrushchev 
admitted that the Soviets succeeded in increasing military production during 
the war in the eastern sections of the country and to re-install the removed 
means of production from the western industrial territories. 37 


j5 Reichswirtschaftsministerium. Die UdSSR Anfang 1942, (Date unknown), Bundesarchiv 
Koblenz, Bestand R 24/817. 
j6 Scott, Jenseits des Ural, p. 312-313. 

37 Telpuchowski, Die sowjetische Geschichte, p. 28E. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


61 


The re-use of the machines transported from western regions was facil¬ 
itated by the circumstance that the Soviet leadership had put up factory 
shells in the Urals and Siberia long before the war started, ensuring that 
sufficient electric energy was available. John Scott, an eyewitness to these 
happenings, wrote: 

Railroad and factory construction in the Urals, Central Asia and Siberia was 
speeded up. [Until the spring of 1941...] Here, new factory’ buildings rose which 
were not to be found on any blue-prints. Nobody knew what they were to be used 
for. At the same time, great efforts were undertaken in order to enlarge the 
output ofpower stations even though there was enough power for the local in¬ 
dustry, at least in Magnitogorsk. 

This, Scott emphasized, occurred only in the Urals region. 38 

The Soviets had covered the entire Ural industrial region with a fine 
railroad system and a far-flung network of power lines together with the 
appropriate power stations. In 1934, the electric power plants in the Ural 
area produced 2 billion kWh already; in 1940 it was twice as much. 39 Until 
the outbreak of hostilities and during the war, electric power production was 
increased further. Possibly, these figures are more meaningful to the reader 
once he realizes that the entire occupied Soviet territory, administered by the 
Germans under the name of “occupied eastern territories,” with its huge 
heavy industry produced no more than 10 billion kWh of electrical power 
before the war. As I have shown elsewhere, the Germans were able to 
produce just 1 billion kWh in this wide area in 1943 despite their utilization 
of large numbers of German personnel and considerable amounts of German 
equipment. 40 Comparisons not only show the extent of the Soviet orgy of 
destruction, but also the gigantic potential for the production of armaments 
built up by the Soviets east of the Volga before the war. Telpuchowski de¬ 
scribes the Russian measures as follows: 41 

The evacuation of industrial enterprises proceeded along a uniform economic 
plan of mobilization. The plan specified the places of destination where the en¬ 
terprises were to be transported and the successive turns in which the removal 
was to take place. The interconnections between the individual factories and 
plants and their dependence on one another was also taken into account. [...] 
Hundreds of industrial enterprises were transplanted to the eastern territories. 
455 enterprises were moved to the Urals which served as the arsenal of the 
Soviet Army. In just three months of the year 1941, more than 1,360 industrial 
complexes were transplanted. The movable equipment of thousands of collective 


Scott, Jenseits des Ural, p. 301 and 303. 

39 Ibid., p. 310. 

40 Niederreiter, Wilhelm [aka Walter N. Sanning], “Verbrannte Erde - Sowjetischer Wirt- 
schaftskrieg im Zweiten Weltkrieg,” Deutschland in Geschichte und Gegenwart (Wigbert 
Grabert, ed.), Tubingen, 29th Year, No.l, 1981, p. 20. 

41 Telpuchowski, Die sowjetische Geschichte, p. 81-83, 86. 



62 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


and state farms was transported to the interior. Thanks to the heroic work of the 
blue- and white-collar workers, the evacuated enterprises rose in a very short 
time at their new locations. It should be noted that, as a result of the evacuation 
of the enterprises, the enemy did not succeed in using the industrial stock of the 
occupied regions for his own purposes as he did in western Europe. Because of 
the successful removal and re-activation of the enterprises, the main stock of 
industrial equipment was saved. All of this made it possible that the production 
of tanks, planes, cannons and other arms could even be increased a few months 
later. [...] The evacuated enterprises rose in an unbelievably short time at their 
new localities. The workers and cadres [...] worked under the open sky, quite 
often in rain and snow. [...] Work continued throughout the day. The workday 
often lastedfrom 12 to 14 hours and even more. [...] The assembly of the larger 
plants and factories was finished in three to four weeks and within 3 to 4 months 
production attained pre-war levels. On average, one-and-one-half to two 
months were needed to reactivate the evacuated plants. [...] The falling trend of 
production was stopped already in December of 1941. 

The accessible remains of the secret documents of the German Economy 
Staff East (Wirtschaftsstab Ost) 42 show clearly that the Soviets succeeded 
indeed in evacuating a large part of their means of production within the 
framework of a detailed plan of removal, or at least to make them unusable 
for the Germans. In this connection, the secret No. 3 Fourteen-Day-Report 
of the German Economy Staff East dated August 30, 1941, has this to say: 43 

The Russian and Jewish upper classes withdrew together with the Red Army. 
The leading Ukrainians have been partially deported and, if they held leading 
positions in administration and industry, they were also forced to move east of 
the Dnieper. Numerous tractor drivers and other specialists on the countryside 
met the same fate. In June, many young men were called up and put in garrisons 
in the interior of the USSR. [...] Because of this development, there is a tre¬ 
mendous scarcity of people capable of assuming responsible positions in ad¬ 
ministration, industry’ and agriculture in the Ukraine. [...] 

Extensive economic losses have been sustained because of the systematic 
clearing and destruction operations of the Red Army before withdrawal. These 
damages have increased progressively from west to east. In the cities, the 
damage caused in this way affects factories and stores, and in part also the 
living quarters and their contents; in the countryside, especially the stock of 
machinery, livestock, grain dumps and the gasoline supplies of the collective 
and state farms have suffered. 

The clearing action begins usually about 8-10 days before the withdrawal of the 
Red Army. The critical machines of the enterprises, especially motors, have been 
removed, carefully packaged and loaded to be shipped to the east of the USSR. 


42 The economic administration of the occupied Soviet areas was in the hands of the so-called 
Wirtschaftsstab Ost (Economy Staff East). 

43 Wirtschaftsstab Ost. Vierzehntagesbericht Wi Stab Ost (3.8.-16.8.1941), 8/30/1941, Militar- 
archiv Freiburg, Bestand RW 31/11. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


63 


Destination addresses found in the Ukraine as a rule point to the Ural industrial 
area, specifically the region encompassed by Sverdlovsk - Molotov (Perm) - 
Ufa - Chkalov (Orenburg) — Magnitogorsk. It seems that in that area ar¬ 
rangements have already been made for the re-use of the machines removed 
from the Ukraine. [...] The destruction usually sets in 24 hours before the Soviet 
troops withdraw. These actions are prepared carefully and include the burning 
of smaller factories, the blasting of important machine complexes and appar¬ 
ently also the handing over of supplies to the population to loot (contents of the 
stores in the cities, grain supplies in rural areas). It is quite obvious that the 
military resistance met in several places (e.g. the giant power station Dne- 
pro-Ges and the aluminum complex in Zaporoshye as well as the iron works in 
Dnepropetrovsk) had one purpose only, namely to destroy the remaining im¬ 
portant industrial works. 

Similarly, the Mid-Month-Report dated December 8, 1941, explained that 

the destruction of the city of Kharkov began on October 21, 1941, according to 
accounts of the population. The destruction was carried out with extreme bru¬ 
tality. In many cases, the inhabitants had their houses burned to the ground 
before they could vacate them. Without doubt, only the rapid occupation by 
German troops prevented them [the Soviets] from carrying out their plans to 
burn down the entire city. [...] Totally destroyed are especially the water works, 
a bread factory, a large laundry, and by far the largest portion of factory in¬ 
stallations. [...] Local inhabitants reported that the systematic clearing of the 
most important industrial works started in August already and assumed a vast 
scale. Specialists and their families were forcibly evacuated. Apparently, 
Kharkov’s industry has been re-assembled in a rough-and-ready manner above 
all in Chelyabinsk (western Siberia). The inhabitants say that they received 
letters from there, according to which the deportees face a desperate situation, 
lack of living quarters and hunger. Observations in other places, too, reinforce 
the impression that the disassembly and removal of machinery follows a detailed 
clearing plan with the objective of moving important bottleneck eqiupment to 
areas not endangered as much in order to restart the production of war mate¬ 
rials in substitute factories. Thus, the Soviets not only disassembled and re¬ 
moved machinery, but also smaller equipment and tools. 44 

Even before the war, the lot of the people exiled to the new industrial regions 
in the Urals and western Siberia was sad indeed. As elsewhere in the USSR, 
shoes and clothing were practically unavailable in 1939 already, and in 1940 
even bread was rationed. Hospitals consisted of barracks, were without 
running water, brutally hot in the summer, ice-cold in the winter, rarely 
clean and always overcrowded. In 1938 still, only 25% of the population of 
Magnitogorsk was fortunate enough to live in houses, whereas 50% were 
crowded into barracks and other “temporarily constructed houses,” and 25% 


44 


Ibid., Halbmonatsbericht Wi Stab Ost (1.-15.11.1941), 12/8/1941, Militararchiv Freiburg, Be- 
stand RW 31/68. 



64 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


had to be satisfied with so-called “semlia nk i” (Tatar huts, etc.). 43 Into this 
region, deficient in even the most basic civilian infrastructure, the Soviets 
deported shortly before and after the outbreak of hostilities untold millions 
of Russians, Jews, Ukrainians and other nationalities of the western Soviet 
Union. 

The hopeless situation of the deportees in Siberia is also evident in the 
words of the Soviet court historian Telpuchowski who said, referring to the 
evacuation of millions of civilians, 

the accommodation of the masses going into the millions, who had been evac¬ 
uated from the areas occupied or threatened by the enemy, posed a serious 
problem in the hinterland [...] which lacked the most elementary lodging facil¬ 
ities; they had to live in tents and sod huts. Food was scarce. 

Obviously, there are no large differences between Telpuchowski’s descrip¬ 
tion of the Soviet measures and the secret reports of the German Economy 
Staff East with regard to the desperate situation in the Soviet areas of retreat 
- with the one exception that Telpuchowski did not think it worth men¬ 
tioning the application of the inhuman Soviet “scorched earth” policy even 
towards the infrastructure and supplies critically needed by the civilian 
population that remained behind. 


Soviet Mass Deportations 

The Soviet rulers believed that hostilities would break out at the Ger¬ 
man-Soviet line of demarcation regardless. An evacuation of the “threat¬ 
ened” and “foreign” civilian population near the border was thus entirely 
possible before June 22, 1941, and was carried out, too, as we learned from 
Stalin’s speech. When the German naval attache left Moscow on May 19, 
1941 - five weeks before the beginning of the war - taking the train through 
Soviet-occupied former eastern Poland in the direction of Berlin, he met 
locked prison trains escorted by blue-uniformed GPU troops deporting 
“undesirables” from eastern Poland. 47 

The extent of the Soviet deportation program is subject to the most con¬ 
tradictory speculations. Contrary to Edward C. Carter, president of the 
Russian War Relief, who mentioned 37 millions in September 1942, 48 the 
Year Book maintains that the German advance was so rapid that the Soviet 
railroad system was incapable of effecting evacuation to any noteworthy 


45 Scott, Jenseils des Ural, p. 262, 281, 301. 

46 Telpuchowski, Die sowjetische Geschichte, p. 82 and 88. 

47 Irving, Hitler’s War, p. 272. 

48 Institute of Jewish Affairs. Hitler's Ten-Year War, p. 184. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


65 


degree. 49 The Soviets, anyway, have never actually published figures on the 
magnitude of this human tragedy. 

The task to obtain a somewhat reliable picture is complicated by the fact 
that there are no exact figures available for the total Soviet population at the 
beginning of the war in 1941; the census of January 1939 was outdated soon 
after, because of the Soviet annexation of huge regions on the western 
border in 1939 and 1940. Of course, the German administration carried out 
more or less detailed counts of the population present, but a comparison with 
pre-war figures is difficult, because the borders of the various German ad¬ 
ministrative districts in the occupied territories were rarely comparable to 
the administrative and political pre-war borders. The Reichskommissariat 
(RK) Ostland contained the Baltic countries as well as parts of former 
eastern Poland and of the Soviet-Republic of White Russia. The RK Ukraine 
included parts of eastern Poland in the west (until Brest-Litovsk) but not 
Galicia. On the other hand, Rumania not only regained its former provinces 
of Bessarabia and northern Bukovina, but also annexed a part of the former 
Soviet-Republic Ukraine, calling it “Transnistria”; towards the east, large 
parts of the former Socialist Soviet Republic (SSR) Ukraine was subject to 
German military and not civilian rule. For these reasons, it is necessary to 
scrutinize the pre-war population of the Soviet Union very closely. 

The census of January 17, 1939, found a total population of 170.5 mil¬ 
lion. 50 Since the last count on December 17, 1926, the population of the 
USSR had grown by 15.9%, which corresponds to an annual rate of 1.2%. 
The natural growth rate, though, must have been much higher, because the 
enforced collectivization of agriculture in the early 1930s cost the lives of 
millions of people, especially in the Ukraine. Exact figures, of course, will 
never be available on the mass starvation of the early 1930s, but a compar¬ 
ison of the census of 1926 (before the forced collectivization) and of 1939 
should provide some indications. 

A comparison of the two censuses shows that between 1926 and 1939 
there was an unbelievably large reduction of those bom in the years 
1919-1926 - the group which at the time of the Great Hunger in the early 
1930s was still of childhood age. Between 1926 and 1939 (peacetime!), this 
population group shrunk 11%, or 3.5 million, from 31.9 to 28.5 million. The 
age groups 1899-1918 numbered 60.4 million in 1926 but only 56 million in 
1939 - a reduction of 4.4 million or 7.3%! In short, of the 92.3 million So¬ 
viet inhabitants who were less than 28 years old in 1926, only 84.4 million, 
or 91.4%, had survived until 1939! 


49 AJYB , 1947, Vol. 49, p. 395. 

50 Lorimer, Population of the Soviet Union, p. 138. 



66 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Soviet Censuses of 1926 and 1939 (in millions) 51 


Year 

Age (Year) 
1926 1939 

Census of 

Dec. 17, 1926 Jan. 17, 1939 

Changes 
Millions % 

1927-1938 

- 

0-11 

- . - 

47.82 

+47.82 

( -•-) 

1919-1926 

0-7 

12-19 

31.94 

28.46 

-3.48 

(-10.9) 

1909-1918 

8-17 

20-29 

32.91 52 

30.64 

-2.27 

(- 6.9) 

1899-1908 

18-27 

30-39 

27.47 

25.33 

-2.14 

(- 7.8) 

< 1899 

>27 

>39 

54.71 

37.27 

-17.44 

(-31.9) 

Total 



147.03 

169.52 53 




Even if one postulates a reduction by 2% as a consequence of a normal 
mortality for these young age groups in the period 1926-1939, 54 there are 
still 6.6% whose disappearance must have been caused by the starvation 
policy; applied to the 92.3 million, this amounts to 6 million people. Applied 
to the 150 million Soviet citizens at the end of the 1920s, we obtain 10 mil¬ 
lion people who starved to death - and in this connection we haven’t even 
considered the much higher, hunger-induced infant mortality of those chil¬ 
dren bom after December 17, 1926, but before and during the Great Hunger. 

Without the more than ten million victims of the great starvation of the 
1930s, the census of January 17, 1939, would have found far more than 180 
million people. Compared to the 147 million Soviet citizens of 1926, this 
would have corresponded to a natural increase of over 22%; since emigra¬ 
tion and immigration were almost impossible, this is equivalent to an annual 
rate of natural growth of 1.8%! Applying this growth rate to the 2'A years 
from January 1939 to June 1941, the actual Soviet population (excl. the 
inhabitants of the newly acquired western territories) would have increased 
from 170.5 million (January 1939) to 178 million (June 1941). 

After the incorporation of the Ukrainian and White Russian regions of 
former eastern Poland and the annexation of Bessarabia and the northern 
Bukovina, the Soviet population rose by another seventeen million." In 
addition, there was the occupation and annexation of the Baltic countries in 
1940 with a population of six million. 56 Finally, many Polish citizens from 


51 Statistisches Reichsamt. Wirtschaft lind Statistik, Berlin, 20th Year, No. 14, 2nd July-issue 
1940, p. 290. 

52 For 1926, Wirtschaft und Statistik provided figures for the age groups 1897/1906, 1907/1911, 
1912/1918; for 1939, the age groups 1899/1908, 1909/1918. In order to match the age groups of 
1926 and 1939 censuses, three average years were deducted from the group 1907/1911, and 
added to the group 1909/1918. The group 1899/1908 for 1926 was calculated in a similar 
fashion. 

53 The sum does not add up to the final census figure for 1939; the difference applies to the ex¬ 
treme North of the Soviet Union where the census was taken somewhat later. 

54 Normally, this young age group should have had a mortality of maybe 1% for a 12-year-period; 
in order to take account of the worse hygienic and social environment in the Soviet Union of the 
1920s and 1930s, a mortality of 2% was assumed, even though this is probably too high. 

55 Wirtschaft und Statistik, 2nd July-issue 1940, p. 288. 

56 AJYB , 1940, Vol. 42, p. 602. 







W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


67 


western Poland - Jews in particular - fled in the first half of September 1939 
to the eastern parts, which were occupied by the Soviet Union after Sep¬ 
tember 17, 1939. 

As a result, the population living in the Soviet Union on June 22, 1941, 
must have reached at least 202 million. Thus, the findings of the American 
scholar Prof. Lorimer that the total population of Soviet Russia was about 
200 million in those days matches just about our own calculations. 57 

Besides these newly acquired Soviet territories with a population of 
roughly 23 million (excl. refugees), the German Wehrmacht succeeded in 
occupying the following “old” Soviet areas, wholly or in part: 


“Old” Soviet Areas under German Occupation 58 


Region 

1,000 
sq. km 

Population (in 1,000) 
as of January 17, 1939 
Total Cities 

White Russian SSR 

126.8 

5,568 

1,373 

Ukrainian SSR 

445.3 

30,960 

11,196 

Crimea AS SR 

26.0 

1,127 

586 

Rostov Oblast 

100.7 

2,894 

1,263 

Orel Oblast 

64.4 

3,482 

693 

Kursk Oblast 

55.7 

3,197 

286 

Voronesh Oblast 

76.7 

3,551 

658 

Kalinin Oblast 

106.4 

3,211 

703 

Smolensk Oblast 

72.2 

2,691 

448 

Krasnodar Kray 

81.5 

3,173 

765 

Ordzhonikidze Kray 

101.5 

1,949 

394 

Kabardino-Balkar ASSR 

12.3 

359 

85 

North Osetin ASSR 

6.2 

329 

155 


1,275.7 

62,491 

18,605 


In addition, large portions of the Stalingrad, Tula, Moscow and Lenin¬ 
grad districts (oblast) had been conquered, but the capital cities of these 
oblasts always remained outside German control. Without the urban popu¬ 
lation of Tula, Moscow, Leningrad and Stalingrad, the population of these 
areas amounted to 11.6 million as of January 17, 1939. If the German forces 
occupied only a section containing just one fifth of their total population, 
another 2.5 million must be added; therefore, it seems that the “old” Soviet 
regions which were occupied by German troops in the course of the war 
were populated by 65 million people as of January 17, 1939. 

Considering, furthermore, a natural increase of about 3 million until 
mid-1941, the population of all Soviet territory occupied by the Axis armies 
- including the newly acquired regions to the west in 1939/1940, must have 
numbered 91 million at the time German-Soviet hostilities began. This fig- 


57 Lorimer, Population of the Soviet Union , p. 194. 

58 Ibid., p. 241 and 242. 







68 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


ure comes rather close to Lorimer’s own of 85 million; 59 but Prof. Lorimer 
obviously didn’t allow for a natural population increase in the 2 l A years 
between the last census and the outbreak of the war. 

Telpuchowski wrote, “40% of the population of our country [lived] in the 
area occupied by the enemy until November 1941.” 60 This means that offi¬ 
cial Soviet sources put the pre-war population of the territories occupied by 
the Germans until November 1941 at about 81 million (i. e. 40% of 202 
million). If one adds the additional territory conquered in 1942, it seems that 
our calculations of 91 million people are almost too low. 

German investigations during the war provide a similar picture. In the 
areas under German control on November 1, 1942, the pre-war population 
was calculated at 83.81 million. 61 It should be noted that in the meantime 
there had been some losses of territory due to military reverses by the Ger¬ 
mans, so that these figures were already reduced by several millions. If a 
natural increase until mid-1941 is taken into account, it would seem that 91 
million is to be regarded as the absolute minimum prewar population of all 
the Soviet territories conquered by the German armies. 

According to Prof. Lorimer, 31% of the population of occupied “old” 
Soviet regions was urban before the war; 62 a similar situation existed in 
Estonia and in Latvia. However, in Lithuania the urban population was 
smaller, and it was still smaller in the areas taken from Poland and Ruma¬ 
nia/” All in all, one may say that the total urban pre-war population of the 
occupied Soviet Union must have been at least 25 million. 

Regarding the time and the number of the evacuated civilian population 
Prof. Lorimer wrote: 64 

Another wartime movement, begun on a relatively small scale at an early stage 
and augmented just before and after the German attack, was the selective eva¬ 
cuation of such persons as former army officers, government officials and ex¬ 
ecutives, and, later, workers of various kinds from areas annexed by the U.S.S.R. 
to the interior of the Soviet Union. [...] Kulischer estimates the total number of 


59 Ibid., p. 194. 

60 Telpuchowski, Die sowjetische Geschichte, p. 78. 

61 Reichswirtschaftsministerium. Annahernde Angaben iiber die am 1. November 1942 besetzten 
Gebiete der UdSSR, (Date unknown), Bundesarchiv Koblenz: Bestand R 24/804. 

62 Lorimer, Population of the Soviet Union, p. 194. 

63 Reichswirtschaftsministerium. Gebiet und Bevolkerung der UdSSR, (Date unknown), Bun¬ 
desarchiv Koblenz: Bestand R 24/804. The urban population for the areas annexed by the So¬ 
viet Union in the years 1939 and 1940 (Baltic countries, eastern Poland, northern Bukovina and 
Bessarabia) is given as 3.42 million. In order to estimate the urban population before the out¬ 
break of the war in the subsequent German-occupied Soviet territories, one has to add part of 
the urban population of those Soviet areas which were not fully occupied by German troops, 
like the oblasts of Stalingrad, Leningrad, Moscow and Tula; we also have to take into account 
that, since the last census in 1939, continued war preparations and industrialization measures 
may have forced at least another two million people into the cities. 

64 Lorimer, Population of the Soviet Union, p. 195-197. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


69 


civilians evacuatedfrom the annexed areas at 1,500,000 to 2,000,000persons... 
Finally, we come to the most important population movement in the U.S.S.R. 
during the war — apart from the mobilization of military’ personnel, which we 
shall not attempt to estimate — namely, the planned, selective evacuation from 
the path of the invader. When the Germans crossed the frontiers, plans were 
immediately put into effect for the rapid removal of people and equipment. In 
fact, large-scale evacuation of persons from the annexed areas bordering on the 
German zone seems to have been initiated at least several days before June 22, 
1941. Most of this evacuation was by railway. Whole factories were dismantled 
and set up in the interior; a large part of the farm machinery and much of the 
livestock were removed. There is no precise official information about the 
number of persons evacuated, and widely divergent estimates have been made 
by competent authorities. [...] 

In general, the population of Ukrainian cities in 1942 seems to have been half as 
large or less than it was in 1939. [...] The depletion of urban population by 
evacuation may have been less marked in the most western districts of the an¬ 
nexed areas than in the Ukraine as a whole, but scattered Soviet references in¬ 
dicate far greater depletion of population in some other cities, such as Smolensk 
and Kalinin. German discussions of agricultural problems in the occupied area 
give added evidence of the large-scale removal or destruction of farm equip¬ 
ment, but indicate the shortage of agricultural labor was not serious except in 
certain districts. [...] This evidence furnishes some reason for believing the 
thesis of the Chief of the War Economy Department in the German Economic 
Administration in the East [Assistant Secretary Dr. Rachner] that the evacuation 
from the area occupied in 1941 was equal to about half of the urban population, 
with refugee movements to rural districts about offsetting the evacuation of the 
rural population. This German authority estimated on this basis that the number 
of evacuated from occupied to free Soviet territory in 1941 was about 12.5 mil¬ 
lion persons. 

Two estimates by independent authorities, based on an analysis of the railway 
carrying capacity’, result in divergent figures for evacuation from areas occu¬ 
pied prior to 1942. Habicht estimates 15 million as a maximum, and Vassiliev 
places the total number of evacuees from 7.5 to 10 million. [...] Kulischer es¬ 
timates the grand total of evacuees from both the annexed and original Soviet 
territories at 12 million persons, excluding only military personnel mobilized 
before the German invasion. This is a very possible figure. [...] 

In general, these displaced people were located in the area of the Central In¬ 
dustrial Region which had been marked by most rapid expansion during the 
preceding decade. [...] It would appear that large numbers were located in re¬ 
gions near the Turkestan-Siberian Railway, and that Tashkent was an important 
distributing point for refugees and evacuees. A great many were assigned to 
various established and relocated industries in the Central Volga Region, the 
Urals, western and central Siberia, Kasakhstan, Central Asia, and the Far 
North. Die industrial output of the Ural region is reported to have increased 
threefold during the war. 


70 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Referring to these Soviet measures, the Zionist author Reitlinger wrote: 65 

[...] it became the Russian policy to remove the working population so that the 
towns should not benefit the enemy. [...] Not to consent to be evacuated was 
regarded as a hostile act, often visited with dire consequences later. 

And the Jewish Chief of the Soviet Information Bureau, S.A. Lesovsky, 
announced the official version of the Soviet Government with these gory 
words: 66 

In fact, the Germans never did occupy any territory with a population of 
75,000,000. Well aware of the wolfish proclivities of the Nazi plunderers, rav- 
ishers and murderers, the mass of the Soviet population departed beforehand for 
the Eastern districts of the Soviet Union. 

The fourteen large Ukrainian cities listed by Prof. Lorimer were evacuated 
by 53% on average. However, Prof. Lorimer did not take into consideration 
that these cities must have had a much larger population in mid-1941 than in 
early 1939. At the start of the First Five-Year-Plan (1928) blue- and 
white-collar workers represented just 17% of the Soviet population ac¬ 
cording to Molotov’s remarks at the 18th Party Congress in 1939, but eleven 
years later, in 1939, their percentage was 50%. 67 This revolutionary indus¬ 
trialization policy of the Five-Year-Plans not only had an enormous effect 
on the societal composition of the masses, but on the growth of the cities as 
well. The 174 cities with 50,000 or more inhabitants in January 1939 con¬ 
tained a total population of 34.1 million (1939) compared to only 16.2 mil¬ 
lion in 1926; this is equivalent to a rate of increase of 6.5% annually during 
this 12-year-period. 

But the 14 Ukrainian cities as listed by Prof. Lorimer registered “only” a 
per annum growth rate of 5.5% since 1926. 68 There is no reason to assume 
that the expansion of Soviet cities slowed between 1939 and 1941 while 
preparations were made for the coming war with Germany; the opposite is 
true, as the feverish war preparations of the Soviets made a still more rapid 
industrialization necessary. The assumption is not far-fetched that the cities 
listed by Lorimer - Kiev, Odessa, Dnepropetrovsk, Zaporoshye, Mariupol, 
Krivoi Rog, Nikolaev, Dneprodzerzhinsk, Poltava, Kirovograd, Kherson, 
Shitomir, Vinnitsa and Melitopol - evidenced large rates of growth after 
January 1939 also. 

Assuming a rate of increase somewhat less than the average of the past 
twelve years, let us say 10% for the 2Vi years from January 1939 to June 
1941, those fourteen Ukrainian cities must have had a total population of 
over 4 million when the Germans crossed the border. Following the occu- 


65 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 228. 

66 Institute of Jewish Affairs, Hitler’s Ten-Year War, p. 184. 

67 Wirtschaft und Statistik, 2nd July-issue, p. 290. 

68 Lorimer, Population of the Soviet Union, p. 196,250-252. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


71 


pation of these cities, the Germans found only 1.69 million inhabitants; thus, 
the Soviets succeeded in evacuating almost 60% of their urban population. 
Applied to the entire urban population of more than 25 million, this would 
mean that only ten million inhabitants remained in the cities when the 
Germans arrived; the other 15 million had been removed by the Soviets 
before the Germans reached the cities. 

Reitlinger, too, noted categorically in his book The Final Solution : “In 
most captured towns less than half the population stayed.” 69 Dr. Rachner 
commented in the Reichsarbeitsblatt : 70 

[...] in general, one can assume that the countryside in the occupied areas has 
suffered no loss of its population. Granted that the occupied regions contained a 
total population of 75 million before the start of hostilities, about 50 million of 
these were living in rural areas. If one assumes this population to be still present 
and needed - one should note that agricultural work had to change over in part 
to more manual labor because of the loss of machinery - then a figure of 25 
million is left for the cities of the occupied areas. Investigations show, though, 
that only one half of the [urban] population was left at most; this is equivalent to 
12/2 million. ” 

One should not forget that Dr. Rachner’s remarks were made in early 1942 
when German population counts had only started. To what extent political 
considerations colored his statements is uncertain. The Soviets in any case 
were busy exploiting the success of their policy of evacuation, destruction 
and sabotage propagandistically in every way. The Japanese Government 
was so impressed by the Soviet propaganda that the Japanese ambassador in 
Berlin, Oshima, notified the German Government to this effect with the 
accompanying request to supply him with data on the raw material and 
production situation in the agricultural and industrial areas of the Ukraine 
and White Russia, as well as the size of the population under German ad¬ 
ministration, especially in the Ukraine; he wanted to forward this infor¬ 
mation on to Tokyo to counter Soviet reports. 71 One should certainly as¬ 
sume, therefore, that Dr. Rachner’s evacuation figure of 1254 million people 
evacuated by the Soviets probably tended to be somewhat too rosy. 

In any case, Inspector Kruger of the Chief Group Economy, Statistical 
Department, in the Economy Staff East noted on February 17, 1943, in a 
secret report that the population of the so-called “occupied eastern territo¬ 
ries” contained a population of 70 million before the war and that only 50 


69 Reitlinger, Final Solution , p. 228. 

70 Rachner, Dr. “Der Arbeitseinsatz in den neu besetzten Ostgebieten,” Reichsarbeitsblatt (pu¬ 
blished by the Reichsarbeitsministerium), Berlin, 22nd Year, No.7, March 5, 1942, p. V 131. 

71 Letter of February 10, 1942 from the Oberkommando des Heeres, GenStdH/Attacheabteilung, 
to the Reichsminister fur die besetzten Ostgebiete, attn. Reg.Rat Disch, Berlin; Militararchiv 
Freiburg, BestandRW 31/134. 



72 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


million had been found. 72 The “occupied eastern territories” mentioned by 
Kruger included only the Reichskommissariats Ostland and Ukraine, which 
were under civilian administration, and the military-ruled areas east of them. 
They did not include the population of the district of Bialystok and Galicia, 
which was incorporated in the Government General of Poland, the provinces 
of northern Bukovina and Bessarabia regained by the Rumanians, and the 
so-called “Transnistrian” part of the former SSR Ukraine. The total popu¬ 
lation of these excluded former Soviet territories, which were administered 
neither by the Economy Staff East nor by the German military, probably 
contained at least 13 million people before the war. However, if one can 
assume that these areas, too, because of their proximity to the German 
border and their relatively small urban population, lost only 15% of their 
population, which was the percentage missing in the RK Ostland, then the 
Soviets could have evacuated 2 million of these 13 million people. 73 

Finally, adding a natural increase of perhaps 4 million likely to have 
occurred in the period between January 1939 and June 1941, it seems that 
the area which was in German hands as of February 17, 1943, must have 
contained 87 million people before the war, the whereabouts of only 61 
million of whom, however, could be traced; 26 million, or almost 30%, had 
disappeared! 

Other German sources, too, point to a similar figure. The Deutsche 
Zeitung im Ostland, for instance, reported in 1943 that the losses of the 
Soviet Union in terms of soldiers and resident population in the lost territo¬ 
ries must be put at at least 70 million. 74 Deducting the many millions of 
Soviet prisoners in German custody and fallen Red Army soldiers, the re¬ 
maining figure for the Soviet population in German-occupied territory was 
about 60-65 million. 

Indications are that Dr. Rachner’s figures on the number of the deported 
Soviet population were too small and that Stalin’s propaganda of having 
denied the Germans a large portion of the human and industrial stock in the 
occupied areas - and, from the point of view of martial requirements, the 
most important part at that - matched reality more closely than the Germans 
might have wished. 


72 Wirtschaftsstab Ost (Krliger, Chefgruppe W, Statistik). Bevdlkenmg in den besetzten Ostge- 
bieten, Berlin, 2/17/1943, Militararchiv Freiburg, Bestand RW 31/260. 

73 The 1930 census recorded a total population of 2,864,402 in Bessarabia. Natural growth of this 
largely agricultural population probably was at least 1.2% p.a. Thus, until mid-1941 there 
should have been an increase by over 380,000 to at least 3,245,000. But the Rumanian census of 
August 1941 taken immediately after that region’s liberation from the Soviet yoke found only 
2,733,565 inhabitants (Publikationsstelle Wien, Die Bevolkeningszdhhing in Rnmdnien , p. 51) 
- more than half a million persons, including almost the entire Jewish population, was missing. 
This amounts to a loss of more than 15%. 

74 Deutsche Zeitung im Ostland , “Die wehrwirtschaftlichen Verluste der Sowjetunion.” No. 14, 
1/14/1943, p. 6. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


73 


These figures are supported by an analysis of the Chief of Supply of the 
200th Rifle Division of the 5th Army on the “Perspectives on the Supply 
Situation of the USSR in the Winter Campaign 1942/1943.” 75 The study 
notes that 65 million people lived under Axis administration in all of the 
regions taken from the Soviets (as of autumn 1942). The author of the 
analysis assumed, however, that 100 million people had populated that area 
before the war and thus arrived at an evacuation figure of 35 million - 
probably erroneous. If, as explained, that region actually contained only 91 
million, this estimate, too, would arrive at 26 million evacuated. 

On the other hand, it is rather interesting that this German figure of 35 
million is almost a duplicate of the 37-million-number of the American 
Edward C. Carter. Carter’s number, however, apparently includes not only 
the evacuees from the German-occupied territories, but also the civilians 
evacuated from endangered cities near the frontline - i.e. Leningrad, Mos¬ 
cow, etc. - which were never conquered by the German armies. As vice 
chairman of the American Institute of Pacific Relations and president of the 
Russian War Relief, Carter was indeed well placed to size up the entire ex¬ 
tent of Soviet evacuation actions. The Russians knew why they decorated 
this gentleman with the Order of the Red Banner of Labor. 76 In any case, 
Carter’s figure is an indication that our computations of over 25 million 
evacuees from the German-occupied areas are about correct. Already in 
mid-November 1941 - less than five months after the Russo-German war 
began - Andrew Grajdanzev mentioned an evacuation and refugee figure of 
10 to 20 million in the Far Eastern Survey published by the Institute of Pa¬ 
cific Relations; in this number the men called to arms from the occupied 
areas hadn’t even been included. 77 

In his distorted description of the German administration of the “occu¬ 
pied eastern territories,” the Jewish author Alexander Dallin, too, specifies 
the size of the population under German control at 65 million. 78 But the 
“most official” Allied statistic on the number of the people remaining be¬ 
hind in German-occupied Soviet territory came from Wendel Willkie, the 
presidential candidate of the Republican Party in the United States. In Sep¬ 
tember 1942 Willkie visited the Kremlin where he was briefed on the mili¬ 
tary and economic situation of the battered Soviet empire. On September 26, 
Stalin hosted a dinner for Willkie; other Soviet notables present at the dinner 
were Molotov (Foreign Affairs), Mikoyan (Foreign Trade), Beria (Secret 


75 Perspektiven zur Verpflegungsversorgung der U.d.S.S.R. im Winterfeldzug 1942/43, (Date 
unknown), Chef d.Vers.d.200.Schtz.Div. der 5. Armee, Militararchiv Freiburg, Bestand RW 
31/232. 

76 WHO’S WHO in America, Chicago, Vol. 27, 1952-1953, p. 403. 

77 Grajdanzev, Andrew. “Asiatic Russia’s War Potential,” Far Eastern Survey, New York, Vol. 
X, No. 22, 11/17/1941, p. 25. 

7S Dallin, Alexander. German Rule in Russia. 1941-1945, London, 1957, p. 365. 



74 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Police), Marshall Voroshilov, Admiral Kuznetozov and Information Di¬ 
rector Alexander Sherbakaf. 79 On that occasion Willkie detailed the re¬ 
quests and information provided to him by the Soviet leadership stating that 
at least 60 million Soviet citizens were now living in the Soviet areas oc¬ 
cupied by the Germans. 80 The release of this figure by Stalin to Willkie 
represents an official, though indirect, Soviet admission of the magnitude of 
their evacuations - up to 30 million people. It is not possible to pin down the 
evacuees to the exact million, but concluding the subject one may state that 
the people evacuated and deported to the Urals and Siberia - including the 
mobilized men - must have numbered more than 25 million; of these, over 
15 million came from the cities in the occupied Soviet areas. 

These evacuation and deportation measures of the Soviet rulers must be 
seen in the context of the Soviet policy to wage war. Everything which could 
aid the German enemy in any way had to be destroyed or at least removed. 
This strategy affected not only the countryside, the factories, the infra¬ 
structure, etc. but also, or rather especially, people; after all, it had to be 
prevented - by means of evacuation, deportation or mass murder - that the 
Germans could lay their hands on trained specialists ready to be integrated 
into their war machine. The leading and industrial sections of the popula¬ 
tion, of course, were given “preferential” treatment in this evacuation pro¬ 
gram. So far, the extent of this horrendous action has not been given the 
attention in the literature which it deserves. 


Vacated Cities 

Soon after the occupation of the various Soviet cities, the German au¬ 
thorities began to initiate detailed counts of the remaining population. Ob¬ 
viously, the German occupiers had to obtain some information on the 
available stock of the working population. In this connection, Dr. Rachner 
wrote, 

the labor service offices [...] were instructed again and again to obtain exact 
data on the local population based on the methods used in Germany. [...] It 
shoidd be noted that in most places not only the unemployed have been recorded 
but also those employed in the factories and in the public offices, classified by 
professional groups and types. 

In addition, the Soviet policy of systematic destruction of food supplies 
caused a stinging crisis in feeding the local population; just to carry out an 


New York Times (The), 9/29/1942, front page. 

80 Baltimore Sun (The), “Willkie Urges Second Front at First Possible Moment” (An Associated 
Press report), September 27, 1942, p. 1; also see New York Times (The), “Willkie’s Statement 
about Russia’s Needs,” 9/27/1942, p. 3. 

81 Rachner , Reichsarbeitsblatt, 3/5/1942, p. V 131 - V 132. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


75 


effective program of rationing, it was necessary to obtain an exact count of 
the population. Understandably, these population censuses were handed to 
the press only intermittently, and the war documents in German archives 
today are so incomplete that, as far as we know, there are only very few 
cities for which evacuation figures are available. 

The Soviet cities listed on Table 6 have been grouped regionally former - 
Baltic, eastern Polish, Rumanian and “old” Soviet - in the rough order of 
their occupation. Quite noticeably, the Baltic cities’ evacuation rate of 
“only” 26% is very much lower than those of the “old” Soviet and former 
Polish cities. Furthermore, the table furnishes no evidence that the cities 
conquered later in time registered a higher deportation loss than those cities 
occupied in the very first days of the war. 

It is not clear to what extent these listed cities are representative for all 
occupied urban centers; nevertheless, they constitute almost one fourth of 
the urban population present in the German-occupied areas at the beginning 
of the war. The average evacuation rate of 50% is almost certainly too low. 
Table 6 shows that the Slavic cities suffered much more extensive deporta¬ 
tions; unfortunately, rates were available for only one-fifth of the urban 
inhabitants of the Slavic cities, which made up the lion’s share, while in the 
case of Baltic cities - whose urban population amounted to just six per cent 
of the pre-war population of all Soviet cities occupied by Germany during 
the war - data for more than half the urban population was available. In 
short, the Baltic cities are overrepresented in Table 6\ but inasmuch as they 
registered relatively low evacuation losses, the average evacuation rate for 
the entire Soviet urban population turns out to be too low. 


76 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Table 6: Soviet Deportation of the Urban Population in World War Two 




Total Population 

Deported 


C'itiov* 

Jewish 

before and after 

and/or 


C_> ll l(dS 

Population 

Deportation 

Evacuated 






Population 

(%) 

Former Baltic Cities: 






Taurage” 

? 

13,000 

7,900 

5,100 

39 

Kaunas (‘34) 

27,200 c 

150,000 b 

117,000 b 

33,000 

22 

Daugavpils (‘35) d 

1 l,106 c 

49,700 d 

24,227 d 

25,473 

51 

Lepaya (‘35) d 

7,379 c 

62,800 d 

45,982 d 

16,818 

27 

Riga (‘35) d 

43,672° 

423,600 d 

301,391 d 

122,209 

29 

Ventspils(‘35) d 

1,246° 

17,200 d 

13,226 d 

3,974 

23 

Jelgava (‘35) d 

2,039° 

37,500 d 

28,908 d 

8,592 

23 

Rezekne (‘35) d 

3,342° 

14,500 d 

7,994 d 

6,506 

45 

Other Latvian Towns: 






8 (5-9,000 inhabitants) 11 

? 

63,100° 

49,318° 

13,782 

22 

19 (2-5,000 inhabitants) 11 

? 

74,300° 

55,743° 

18,557 

25 

20 (1-2,000 inhabitants) 11 

? 

32,800° 

23,980° 

8,820 

27 

Kallaste (Lake Peipus) 

? 

? 

? 

? 

33 f 

Paernu 

? 

22,600 g 

18,815 88 

3,785 

17 

Toerva 

? 

? 

? 

? 

27 f 

Tartu 

? 

58,400 8 

48,194 88 

10,206 

17 

Vijandi 

? 

12,900 g 

10,679 88 

2,221 

17 

Joegeva 

? 

? 

? 

? 

26* 

Narwa 

? 

25,300 g 

19,615 88 

5,685 

22 

Tallin (‘34) 

2,203° 

164,296 

134,705 88 

29,591 ff 

18 

"Baltic" Cities app. 

100,000 

1,250,000 

930,000 

320,000 

26 

Former Eastern Polish Cities: 





Brest-Litovsk (‘31) h 

21,440’ 

58,100’ 

33,563’ 

24,537 

42 

Vladimir Volynsk (‘3l) h 

10,665’ 

29,500’ 

8,628-’ 

20,872 

71 

Kovel (‘31) h 

12,842’ 

33,200’ 

16,233’ 

16,967 

51 

Baranowicze (‘31) h 

9,680’ 

27,400’ 

2,740’ 

24,660 

90 k 

Lutsk (‘3 l) h 

17,366’ 

42,700-’ 

16,495’ 

26,205 

61 

Rovno (‘3 l) h 

22,737’ 

48,700-’ 

17,531 J 

31,169 

64 

Sdolbunov 

? 

10,200’ 

7,650-’ 

2,550 

25 

Pinsk (‘3l) h 

20,220’ 

38,30a’ 

12,029 J 

26,271 

69 

"Eastern Polish" Cities 

120,000 

288,000 

115,000 

173,000 

60 


Former East Rumanian Cities: 





Chernovitsy (‘41) 

50,000° 

135,900** 

78,825** 

57,075 

42 

Kishinev (‘41) 

70,000° 

137,900** 

52,962** 

84,938 

62 







Cities 

120,000° 

274,000 

132,000 

142,000 

52 


continued on next page 















W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


77 


Table 6: Soviet Deportation of the Urban Population in World War Two 




Total Population 

Deported 



Jewish 

before and after 

and/or 


c_x in as 

Population 

Deportation 

Evacuated 






Population 

(%) 

Former "Old" Soviet Cities: 





Minsk (‘41) m 

90,000 e 

262,600" 

100,000° 

162,600 

61 

N o vograd-Volynsk p 

9 

? 

? 

? 

90 1 

Shitomir (‘39) m 

50,000 q 

104,600" 

42,000' 

62,600 

60 

Proskurov (‘26) r 

13408 c 

48,000 s 

12,510 J 

35,490 

74 

Kamenets-Podolsk (‘26) r 

12,774° 

64,000 s 

15,044' 

48,956 

76 

Vinnitsa (‘26) m 

21,812° 

102,200" 

42,500 J 

59,700 

58 

Smolensk (‘26) m 

12,887° 

172,300" 

20,000‘ 

152,300 

88 

Kirovograd (‘26) m 

18,358° 

110,400" 

63,403 J 

46,997 

43 

Odessa (‘39) m 

180,000° 

664,600" 

300,000' 

364,600 

55 

Nikolaev (‘39) m 

30,000° 

183,800" 

84,2131' 

99,587 

54 

Krivoi Rog (‘26) m 

5,730° 

217,400" 

125,000' 

92,400 

43 

Kherson (‘39) m 

30,000° 

106,900" 

59,210 J 

47,690 

45 

Dneprodzerzhinsk 111 

? 

162,600" 

75,000' 

87,600 

54 

Dnepropetrovsk (‘39) m 

100,000° 

550,700" 

280,000' 

270,700 

49 

Zaporoshye™ 

? 

318,100" 

120,000' 

198,100 

62 

Mozhaisk 11 

? 

18,000" 

5,000 

13,000 

72 

Melitopol (‘39) m 

11,000° 

83,300" 

65,054' 

18,246 

22 

Chernigov (‘26) m 

10,607° 

74,100" 

30,000 v 

44,100 

60 

Poltava (‘39) m 

35,000° 

143,300" 

74,821 J 

68,479 

48 

Kiev (‘39) m 

175,000° 

930,900" 

304,570' 

626,330 

67 

Mariupol (‘26) m 

7,332° 

244,700" 

178,358' 

66,342 

27 

Taganrog (,26) m 

2,673° 

207,700" 

120,000 w 

87,700 

42 

"Old" Soviet Cities app. 

860,000 

4,792,000 

2,120,000 

2,672,000 


Soviet Cities app. 

1,200,000’ 

6,604,000 

3,297,000 

3,307,000 



Sources and Notes: 

*) The annual figures listed right after the city name refer to the Jewish population only. 

**)The deported and evacuated inhabitants of the Soviet cities were determined either on the basis 
of the difference between the number of inhabitants before and after the deportation or, if only 
the percentage of the deported and the figures for the pre-war population were available, by 
multiplying the latter two figures. 

a) Kauener Zeitung, Kovno/Lithuania, “Wiederaufbau in Kelmen und Tauroggen,” No. 31, 
11/15/1941, p. 3. 

b) According to the Kauener Zeitung, “Die Stadt Kauen vor neuen Aufgaben,” No. 76, 3/31/1943, 
p. 5, the city’s population was 150,000 in 1939. In issue No. 87, 4/13/1943, p. 3, the population 
under German control within the same urban area was given as 117,000. 

c) Encyclopaedia Judaica, Jerusalem, 1972 (diverse volumes); for Kovno, see Kauener Zeitung, 
“Jerusalem im Osten,”No. 15, 8/19/1941, p. 3. Further: Publikationsstelle Berlin-Dahlem. 
Bevolkerungsstatistik Lettlands (Joh. Papritz and Wolfgang Kohte, ed.), Berlin, 1942, p. 10/11, 
28/29, 32/33, 38/39, 42/43, 46/47; for Melitopol: Hilberg, Raul. The Destruction of the Euro¬ 
pean Jews, New York, 1973, p. 192; for Poltava, Kherson and Nikolaev: Reitlinger, Gerald. 
The Final Solution, New York, 1961, pp. 237 and 241. 

d) Zahl der Einwohner Lettlands fur das Jahr 1941 (Stand 1.8.1941), Lettl. Statistisches Amt 
(Bundesarchiv R 92, Vorl. 1427). For the individual cities the following population figures 
were obtained for 1935 and 1941, respectively: Riga (385,063/301,391), Lepaya 








78 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


(57,098/45,982), Daugavpils (45,160/24,227), Jelgava (34,099/28,908), Ventspils 
(15,671/13,226), Rezekne (13,139/7,994). The “normal” increase since 1935 amounted to at 
least 10%. 

e) Ibid.', eight of the listed towns of 5-9,000 inhabitants contained a population totaling 57,336 and 
49,318, respectively (1935 and 1941), 19 of 2-5,000 inhabitants each possessed a total popu¬ 
lation of 67,517 and 55,743, respectively, and 20 townlets of 1-2,000 inhabitants each had a 
total population of 29,789 and 23,980, respectively. 

f) Deutsche Ukraine-Zeitung, Lutsk/Wolhynia, No. 7, 1/30/1942. 

ff) Deutsche Zeitung im Ostland, Riga/Latvia, “Estlands Aderlass,” No. 107, 11/19/1941, p. 5. 

g) Parming, Tonu. “Population Changes in Estonia, 1935 - 1970,” Population Studies, London, 
Vol. 26, No. 1, March 1972, p. 68. 

gg)Deutsche Zeitung im Ostland, “Der Blutverlust des estnischen Volkes,” No. 213, 8/6/1943, p. 5. 

h) The last available census figures for Polish cities exist for 1931; from these it is possible to infer 
that the natural increase in Poland must have been around 1.5% annually. During the economic 
difficulties of the 1930s the rate of growth decelerated, but the pace of urbanization continued 
unabatedly. The average growth of the Polish cities during the 1930s was, nevertheless, set at 
only 20% in order to remain on the cautious side. 

i) The population figures of the Polish census for the listed cities may be taken from Table 4. 

j) Zentralblatt des Reichskommissars fur die Ukraine, Rovno, No. 2/2, January 9, 1943, p. 8-20. 

k) Institute of Jewish Affairs. Hitler’s Ten-Year War on theJews, New York, 1943,p. 186. 

kk)Publikationsstelle Wien. Die Bevolkerungszahlung in Rumanien 1941 (Geheim), Vienna, 1943, 

p. 70-73: On August 16, 1941 - before the Rumanian deportations of parts of the Jewish pop¬ 
ulation to Transnistria - a census was conducted in the regained provinces of northern Buko- 
vina and Bessarabia: In Chemovitsy only 78,825 inhabitants (1930: 112,427) were found, and 
in Kishinev just 52,962 (1930: 114,896); the population of these cities must have increased by 
at least 20% between 1930 and 1941. 

l) Deutsche Ukraine-Zeitung, 3/8/1942. 

m) As mentioned in the text already, between 1926 and 1939 the Soviet cities experienced a popula¬ 
tion growth of 6.5% per annum (in the Ukraine 5.5%). For the listed “old” Soviet cities the figures 
were raised 10% above that of January 1939; considering the preparations for war against Ger¬ 
many and the continuing industrialization efforts, this must be viewed as a minimum. 

n) Lorimer, Frank. The Population of the Soviet Union: History and Prospects , Geneva: League of 
Nations, 1946, p. 250-253. Prof. Lorimer lists the following population figures for 1939: Kiev 
(846,293), Odessa (604,223), Dnepropetrovsk (500,662), Zaporoshye (289,188), Minsk 
(238,772), Mariupol (222,427), Krivoi Rog (197,621), Taganrog (188,808), Nikolaev 
(167,108), Smolensk (156,677), Dneprodzerzhinsk (147,829), Poltava (130,305), Kirovograd 
(100,331), Kherson (97,186), Shitomir (95,090), Vinnitsa (92,868), Melitopol (75,735), Cher¬ 
nigov (67,356). 

o) Reitlinger, Final Solution, p: 223; Kauener Zeitung, “Die Stadt Minsk im Aufbau,” No. 298, 
12/19/1942, p. 5, mentions the same figure. 

p) The pre-war population of Novograd Volynsk is unknown, but must have been between 20,000 
and 30,000. Regarding the number of the evacuated, there are contradictory reports, Gennan 
investigations (for source see footnote j above) found 12,000 inhabitants, but the Zionist In¬ 
stitute of Jewish Affairs {Hitler’s Ten-Year War, p. 186), maintains that 90% of the population 
had withdrawn with the Red Anny. 

q) Institute of Jewish Affairs, Hitler’s Ten-Year War, p. 196. 

r) Census figures for 1939 are not available in the case of Proskurov and Kamenets-Podolsk; the 
last obtainable were for 1926. Even though the urban population in the Soviet Union more than 
doubled between 1926 and 1941, we assumed only an increase of 50%. 

s) According to the Encyclopaedia Judaica (Vol. 13, p. 1195), 13,408 Jews lived in Proskurov in 
1926, constituting 42% of the population; this means that the total population of the city in 1926 
must have been 32,000. In Kamenets-Podolsk were 12,774 - 29.9% of the population; thus, this 
city’s total population must have amounted to 42,700. 

t) Institute, of Jewish Affairs, Hitler's Ten-Year War, p. 185; Kauener Zeitung, “Odessa - Laune 
einer Zarin,” No. 182, 8/6/1942, p. 3, mentions the same figure for Odessa 

u) The New York Times, 1/27/1942. 

v) Deutsche Ukraine-Zeitung, No. 57, 3/29/1942. 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


79 


w) Ibid ., No. 175, 8/14/1942. 

x) This figure probably is too low by one-quarter of a million because 

(1) for some cities no Jewish population is known at all, and 

(2) in the case of several “old” Soviet cities, only the population figures for 1926 could be ob¬ 
tained; not only did the Soviet census of 1926 understate the Jewish population, since 1926 
the huge industrialization program had been set in motion, in the course of which many rural 
Jews migrated to the cities. 


The weighted average - evacuation rates of Baltic and Slavic cities 
multiplied by their share of the pre-war population - is nearer 55%: 



Baltic 

Cities 

Eastern Eastern 
Polish Ruman. 
Cities Cities 

"Old" 

Soviet 

Cities 

All 

Soviet 

Cities 

Rate of evacuation as shown in Table 6: 

26% 

60% 

52% 

56% 

50% 

Weight: Share of the Baltic, eastern Polish 
an "old" Soviet urban population in per 
cent of the entire urban population of the 
regions later occupied by Gennany 

6% 

11% 

3% 

83% 

100% 

Probable evacuation rate of the entire 
pre-war urban population of the occupied 
Soviet territories 

1.6% 

6.6% 

1.6% 

45% 

55% 


In order to show the varying degrees of evacuation more clearly, these 48 
cities were divided into three groups - according to the severity of popula¬ 
tion loss - and entered on Chart 1. As expected, the Baltic cities are to be 
found in the group with the lowest evacuation rates, while the Slavic cities - 
with few exceptions - showed high evacuation rates throughout. It even 
appears that the western Soviet cities suffered greater percentage losses than 
those further east! 

The element of surprise, which is cited regularly today as one reason for 
the swift German advance, cannot be substantiated from the evacuation and 
deportation rates. Surprising is rather that the Soviet cities near the German 
frontier, occupied in part by German troops during the very first days of the 
war, had up to two-thirds of their population removed by the Soviets. 

Certainly, the high rates of evacuation for the White Russian and western 
Ukrainian cities prove two points: 

a) Prof. Lorimer’s findings, that the Soviets had begun to evacuate the ci¬ 
vilian urban population near the frontier some time before war erupted, 
are correct, and 

b) the assertion that the fast German advance delivered the largest part of 
local urban population into German hands is simply wrong! 

These numbers show quite clearly that the clearing actions of the Soviets 
were extremely successful. Even though millions were evacuated by force, 
the Soviet measures were facilitated by the circumstance that a large number 
of the evacuees moved willingly, at least without much opposition. This is 




80 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


especially true of Ukrainian communists in leading positions, and probably 
even more so of the non-Ukrainians who controlled the peasant Ukrainian 
population in this Soviet Republic in the name of Moscow - the Russians 
and the Jews. 

Ukrainians were in the minority in their own cities; only 47.4% of all city 
people in the SSR Ukraine were Ukrainians, and the remaining 52.6% were 
largely accounted for by Russians (25%) and Jews (23%). Both of these 
latter two nationalities occupied most of the important positions in industry, 
party and administration; in the eyes of the Ukrainians they represented the 
long and heavy hand of Moscow. The entire grotesque situation is depicted 
in the professional structure of Ukraine’s pre-war population: 82 


Education and Professions 

Ukrainians 

Russians 

Jews 

1) Among 1,000 inhabitants were in 



- primary colleges 

8% 

13% 

24% 

- secondary colleges 

10% 

24% 

60% 

2) Public officials and employees: 



- enterprise management 

34% 

20% 

41% 

- “arts” 

27% 

31% 

36% 

- doctors and medical aides 

38% 

23% 

32% 


(mainly 


(mainly 


orderlies 


doctors) 

3) Industrial blue- and 

40% 

22% 

32% 

white-collar workers 




4) Construction 

38% 

51% 

? 

5) Mining 

31% 

58% 

? 

6) Servants 

60% 

28% 

5% 


Naturally, the much larger income disparities in the Soviet Union en¬ 
larged the gap between the masses of the Ukrainian population on the one 
side and the Russians and especially the Jews on the other. John Scott, for 
example, mentions the following earnings patterns for 1933: 8 ’ 


Untrained laborer 

100 

rubles 

monthly 

Qualified worker 

300 

11 

11 

Engineer (without experience) 

400-500 

It 

11 

Engineer (practical experience) 

600-800 

tl 

11 

Administrators, directors, etc. 

800-3,000 

11 

11 


Whatever changes in income may have occurred until 1941, it is certain 
that there was no equalization of the drastic income disparities in the interim 
period. 

The Ukrainians not only constituted a minority in their own cities, they 
were the real proletarians, while Russians and Jews occupied the socially 


82 

83 


Deutsche Ukraine-Zeitung, “Ukraine auf dem Weg nach Europa,” 2/22/1942, p. 3. 
Scott, Jenseits des Ural , p. 63. 




W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


81 


and economically more lucrative positions. The idea that the subjugated 
Ukrainian population might not behave very friendly towards the Russian 
and Jewish upper classes after liberation from the Soviet yoke certainly must 
have crossed the mind of many of these “foreigners.” Under these circum¬ 
stances, an evacuation must have appeared as the lesser evil to large sections 
of both minorities in the Ukraine. In White Russia, the situation was not very 
different. 

For the Soviet government this proved to be a favorable starting position 
from which to evacuate the urban population. The politically more reliable 
non-Ukrainian population groups accounted for more than 50% of the urban 
inhabitants. Secondly, the two large minorities - Russians and Jews - oc¬ 
cupied mostly leading and specialist positions in industry and administra¬ 
tion, whereas Ukrainians were to be found largely in the lower ranks. 
Thirdly, the two population groups which were most valuable under the 
circumstances on account of their better training, experience and attitudes, 
i.e. the Russians and the Jews, showed a considerably greater willingness to 
go on the uncertain journey to the east. 

The fact that the evacuated population included a relatively large share of 
women and children must be explained by the phenomenon of the eminent 
role of women in the economic life in Communist societies; no doubt even a 
dictatorship would find it difficult to separate these working mothers from 
their children. Also, considerations of maintaining morale in the case of 
these minorities certainly called for the evacuation of the closest relatives as 
well. 

Quite obviously, the Soviet evacuation measures were very well orga¬ 
nized in anticipation of the coming German-Soviet conflict. If, as happened 
in Melitopol and Mariupol, both of which fell into German hands in the 
autumn of 1941, a relatively large part of the population remained behind, 
this was simply the exception to the rule. German war reports mention that 
both cities were taken by surprise action - apparently catching the Soviets 
off guard - and that for this reason the destruction inflicted by the Soviets 
was relatively minimal. Another indication of the Soviet expectation of the 
German attack is the Soviet success of taking with them almost the entire 
rolling stock of their railways: 40% of the railroad network was in German 
hands, but they captured only 5% of the rolling equipment. 

Finally, reports of the German administration of the conquered territories 
provide a glimpse of the single-mindedness with which the Communists 
carried out their evacuation program. We mentioned before that non-Ukrai¬ 
nian population groups dominated Ukrainian cities. German publications 
show, though, that this picture changed drastically in the course of these 
evacuations. Many cities, i.e. Vinnitsa, Dnepropetrovsk, Kirovograd, Cher¬ 
nigov, Kherson, etc., all of a sudden had a Ukrainian majority, which in 


82 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


some cases attained 80% and more. 84 In other words, the Soviets geared 
their evacuation actions to very particular population segments, namely 
public officials, party functionaries, specialized industrial blue- and white- 
collar workers, artisans and the so-called intelligentsia. But since the 
Ukrainians had been regarded to be politically unreliable, educational and 
other training facilities were made available to them within narrow limits. 
As a consequence, the Ukrainian - unless he was active in agriculture - 
usually performed the less demanding jobs. In short, in their understandable 
attempt to save that part of the population which was most valuable for their 
own war effort, and vice versa to prevent the Germans from making use of 
their skills, the Soviets evacuated above all the Russians and the Jews. 

Therefore, the obviously much higher evacuation ratios for the Slavic 
regions as compared to the Baltic countries are not the result of longer pe¬ 
riods of preparation before the war. Decisive was whether or not the cities 
contained large minorities which, at the same time, were dominant in the 
management of enterprises and in public administration. These criteria were 
met by the Ukrainian and the White Russian, but generally not by the Baltic 
cities. It is no coincidence that the Latvian cities of Daugavpils and Rezekne 
registered large evacuation ratios. In this exceptional case, the native Lat¬ 
vian population was in the minority in both cities, while the Russian and 
Jewish inhabitants together accounted for 40% to 50% before the war; in 
contrast, the remaining urban population of Latvia was largely of Latvian 
origin, with the Russian and Jewish elements averaging about 17%. 85 

Chart 1 shows the eastern frontlines as of July 1, July 11 and August 20, 
1941. It also shows which Soviet cities were occupied (or encircled) by Axis 
troops within the first ten days, during the second ten-day period, and the 
following 40-day period, and after the sixtieth fighting day. The evacuation 
ratios for the cities were taken from Table 6. 

Comparing these four time periods with the average evacuation ratios of 
the Baltic and Slavic cities, one obtains a remarkable development (Table 
7). In general, Ukrainian and White Russian cities occupied during the first 
ten fighting days and containing large Jewish populations had been more 
thoroughly evacuated by the Soviets than the Slavic cities to the east, which 
were occupied as late as September and October. 

Also, the fact that the evacuation ratios of the Baltic and Slavic cities did 
not increase as time elapsed but actually decreased, allows the following 
conclusions to be drawn: 

a) The Soviets did indeed begin to evacuate the frontier towns before the 

start of the hostilities. This action was facilitated by the circumstance that 


84 Deutsche Ukraine-Zeitung, 2/15/1942, p. 3; 2/25/42, p. 3; 3/29/42, p. 3; 5/17/42, p. 3; 7/10/42, p. 3. 

85 Publikationsstelle Berlin-Dahlem. Bevolkerungsstatistik Lettlands (Joh. Papritz and Wolfgang 
Kohte, eds.), Berlin, 1942, p. 10/11, 42/43, 46/47. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


83 


the western Soviet regions were not very highly industrialized and that 
the urban population was accordingly relatively small, 
b) As the German military successes continued, the industrial areas were 
drawn into the fighting arena; consequently, it became more and more 
difficult to withdraw not only the retreating Red Army, but also the 
growing volume of machinery and the millions of the civilian population; 
as a result, the evacuation ratios for the cities began to decrease as the 
war progressed. 


Table 7: Soviet Evacuation of Baltic and Slavic Cities by Periods of Time 


Period of German Occupation 

Evacuation in Per Cent 

Baltic Cities Slavic Cities 

1 st - 10th day of war (6/22-7/7/1941) 

29% 

60% 

11th - 20th day of war (7/2 - 7/11/1941) 

25% 

59% 

21st - 60th day of war (7/12 - 8/20/1941) 

21% 

55% 

After the 60th day of war (after 8/20/1941) 

- 

54% 


26% 

57% 


Source: Chart 1 and Table 6. 


The size of the cities was of no major consequence for the evacuation 
program. Large cities with a population of a quarter of a million and small 
towns with fewer than 50,000 inhabitants were treated alike; all of them 
averaged evacuation ratios of around 50%. 


Number of 

City Size 

Pre-war 

Evacuated Inhabitants 

Cities 

(in 1,000) 

Population 

Persons 

Per Cent 

6 

>250 

3,150,500 

1,744,539 

55% 

21 

50-250 

2,744,696 

1,238,862 

45% 

64 

<50 

658,900 

299,679 

45% 


(Note: The low evacuation rate of the smaller towns is due to the relatively large 
number of small Baltic cities in this group.) 

There are no indications whatsoever that the distance from the German 
frontier or the size of the city had any direct connection with the extent of the 
evacuation. The Soviets concentrated their evacuation efforts above all on 
the White Russian and the Ukrainian cities with their large, dominant mi¬ 
norities - the Russians and the Jews. 


Depopulated Ukraine 

The German authorities embarked on a rather extensive program of reg¬ 
istering the popidation that remained behind. Unfortunately, the largest part 
of these statistics is not obtainable. But even the sorry remains provide 








84 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


enough clues to permit a size-up of the Soviet evacuation effort. Regretfully, 
precise pre-war figures which would allow an exact determination of the 
extent of the evacuation are not available either. 

The local population living under German administration in the RK 
Ukraine numbered 16.91 million as of January 1, 1943. The total number of 
inhabitants - classified by general districts, areas and counties - was pub¬ 
lished in the Zentralblatt des Reichskommissars fur die Ukraine* 6 


General District 

Area in sq.km 

Inhabitants 

1. Wolhynia-Podolia 

80,508 

4,211,916 

2. Shitomir 

64,800 

2,916,890 

3. Kiev 

71,790 

4,455,927 

4. Nikolaev 

46,880 

1,920,253 

5. Dnepropetrovsk 

52,398 

2,743,041 

6. Crimea (Tauria) 

22,900 

661,981 

RK Ukraine 

339,276 

16,910,008 


German estimates of the pre-war population pertain either only to Janu¬ 
ary 1939 or else they just mention rough ranges within which the probable 
pre-war population size was estimated to have been. The Jahrbuch fur 
Weltpolitik 1943, for example, cites the figure of 21.5 million without 
mentioning the year to which it applies. 87 The context, however, makes it 
apparent that the above figure refers to the year 1939, as far as “old” Soviet 
areas are concerned, and to the year 1931 for the former eastern Polish areas 
located in the RK Ukraine. If one adds the population increase likely to have 
occurred between those dates and mid-1941 - perhaps 1.2 million - the 
pre-war population of the RK Ukraine must have numbered more than 22.5 
million; however, the Germans found less than 17 million. One-quarter of 
the population had disappeared. 

The secret documents of the German Economy Staff East put the number 
of the pre-war population in a range between 20 and 25 million; this, of 
course, could not be used as a basis for calculating the evacuation ratio. 88 

Luckily, the Soviet census of 1959 provided some comparable statistics 
for the year 1939. 89 These indicate that those Ukrainian oblasts which re¬ 
mained outside the RK Ukraine under German military rule contained 10.98 
million people in early 1939, 51% of whom lived in the cities. The oblasts 
later administered by the RK Ukraine were populated by 18.25 million in- 


Zentralblatt des Reichskommissars fur die Ukraine, Rovno, No. 2, 2nd Year, 1/9/1943, p. 8-20, 
Bundesarchiv Koblenz: R 43 II/690c. 

87 von Mende, Gerhard. “Die besetzten Ostgebiete,” Jahrbuch der Weltpolitik 1943, Berlin 
(Deutsches Auslandswissenschaftliches Institut), 1943, p. 231. 

88 Wirtschaftsstab Ost (Kruger, Chefgmppe W, Statistik). Bevolkerung in den besetzten Ostge- 
bieten, Berlin, 2/17/1943, Militararchiv Freiburg, Bestand RW 311260. 

89 Centralnoye Statisticeskoye Upravlenie pri Sovete Ministrov SSSR. ltogni Vsesojuznoy 
Perepnizi Nazeleniya 1959goda : Ukrainskaya SSR, Moscow, 1963, p. 12-17. 






W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


85 


habitants, of whom only 27% were urban. The Rumanian-administered 
oblast Odessa contained 2.07 million people in 1939 (0.78 million in the 
cities). This means the area encompassed later by the RK Ukraine included 
only 60% of the 31 million inhabitants of the old SSR Ukraine. In the case of 
the urban population it was even less, namely 43%! The industrial part of the 
“old” SSR Ukraine obviously remained outside the RK Ukraine. Inasmuch 
as the Soviet evacuation efforts were concentrated on the urban population, 
it is to be expected that the share of evacuees in the RK Ukraine should have 
been below the general average of around 30%. 

Of the 16.91 million people of the RK Ukraine, several millions lived in 
the former Polish provinces Polesia and Wolhynia as well as the former 
Soviet SSR White Russia. Fortunately, the German statistics on the RK 
Ukraine were detailed enough that it was possible to determine the popula¬ 
tion within those areas: In former Polish Polesia and Wolhynia there were 
2.78 million, and in the part of the former Soviet SSR White Russia 0.48 
million. Deducting both numbers from the 16.91 million of the total RK 
Ukraine, we obtain 13.65 million people in the “old” Soviet areas of the 
German-occupied RK Ukraine. Before the war, this area had a population of 
18.25 million; 90 hence, one-quarter of the total population had disappeared. 

Before the war, the greater portion of the Ukrainian urban population, 
however, was concentrated in the eastern Ukraine, which remained under 
German military rule. Since the Soviets concentrated their evacuation ef¬ 
forts on the cities, and because the share of the urban population was over 
50% in the eastern Ukraine, it is certain that the portion of the population 
evacuated there was comparably larger than in the western Ukraine. Quite 
probably, almost every third inhabitant of the Ukraine had been deported or 
evacuated by the Soviets before the Germans occupied that region. 

The degree of urbanization in the Soviet Union increased from west to 
east, and Soviet evacuation measures concentrated above all on the urban 
population important to the armaments industry. Thus, as the German-So¬ 
viet battlefront moved eastward, an ever larger share of the population had 
been removed by the Soviets, despite the fact that the urban evacuation ratio 
tended to decrease at the same time. As a result, while westernmost areas 
lost “only” one-sixth of their total population, the western “old” Ukraine 
suffered a loss of one-fourth, and the highly industrialized Donets basin and 
eastern Ukraine may even have registered a population decline of up to 40%. 


90 The figure of 18.25 million contains the oblast Vinnitsa with a population of 2.28 million. In 
part, this oblast stretched onto the area west of the Bug, which came under Rumanian admin¬ 
istration during World War Two (northern Transnistria). It is possible that up to one third of the 
population of the oblast Vinnitsa should be allocated to Rumanian Transnistria and not to the 
RK Ukraine. On the other hand, we should also take account of the natural increase of 4-5% for 
the 214 years until mid-1941. Both corrections amount to about 750,000 persons and offset each 
other. 



86 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 



FINLAND 


M DaygavpflsY^ 

/ 

iK^vrio (Katyas) /, 


Vladimir Volynsjc# 


Dneprodzerzhinsk 

"AClDnepropetrovsk 

•^lZaporoshye 

Taganrog®. 
f MahupoQ® 

Mei'topoO 

00 .^^SEAOF 
: Azov 


CRIMEA 


BLACK SEA 


Soviet Evacuation of 
the Urban Population 


Moscow 


V::--, ;• 


© Poltava 


ioo 200 km 


Chart 1 


Eastern front: 


O 11-29 % evacuated ■****■«» on July 1, 1941 

© 30-59 % evacuated xxxxxxxxx 0 n July 11, 1941 

® 60-90 % evacuated .on August 20, 1941 


Source: Table 6 and Jacobsen, Hans-Adolf. Kriegstagebuch des Oberkommandos der 
Wehrmacht (Wehrmachtfuhrungsstab), Band 1:1. August 1940 -31. Dezember 1941, 
Frankfurt am Main, 1965. 







W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


87 



Finland 


OJeJgava 


'<4 Dayga^jteY^- 

/ y 

'Kyvrtb (Kaunas) /_» 


Utovslv 


Vladimir V< 


Taganrogft 
Mariupol gjgf 


SEA OF 
AZOV 


CRIMEA 


Jewish Population in 
Pre-War Soviet Cities 
(in per cent) 


Moscow 


C Poltava 


o too 200 km 

l i i 


Chart 2 

O 00-15 % of the urban population 
C 16-30 % of the urban population 
® 31-53 % of the urban population 


Eastern front: 
«===«=» on July 1, 1941 
xxxxxxxxx on July 11, 1941 
.on August 20, 1941 


Source: Table 6 and Chart 1. 












W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


89 


FOURTH CHAPTER: 

The Jewish Fate in the Soviet Union: 1941-1945 


Soviet Jews in the German Sphere of Influence 

The Jewish population was accorded a very special attention within the 
framework of the Soviet clearing measures. The Zionist Institute of Jewish 
Affairs (Institute) wrote for instance: 1 

In numerous cities and towns, particularly in the Ukraine and White Russia, 
Jews were among the first to be evacuated. 

The reason for this preferential treatment was seen by the Institute to be 
connected with the high percentage of Jews in the Soviet administration, 
among the office and blue-collar workers and the intelligentsia; it added: 

For this reason, despite the Army’s urgent need for transportation, thousands of 
trains were providedfor evacuation. Thus, not only were hundreds of thousands 
of human lives saved, but military highways were quickly cleared of millions of 
refugees. 

The Institute emphasized that there was no shortage of time to remove the 
civilian population, especially in the larger cities such as Kiev, Odessa, 
Smolensk, etc.: 2 

... there was time enough to evacuate the civilian population. 

The technical prerequisites had been met, and the same means of transpor¬ 
tation which brought the masses of the Red Army to the western front were 
used on their return trip for the evacuation and the deportation of the civilian 
population. Also, one must assume that the Soviets, following their own 
example of the spring of 1940 when they had deported the Polish-Jewish 
refugees from eastern Poland to Siberia, were not overly concerned with the 
comfort of the population scheduled to be removed. 

Shitomir, which contained 50,000 Jews before the war, was presented by 
the Institute as an example of the relatively high percentage of Jews evacu¬ 
ated. Of these, 44,000 (88%) left with the Soviet troops; considering that 


1 Institute of Jewish Affairs, Hitler’s Ten-Year War, p. 186. 

2 Ibid.,p. 186. 



90 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


53,000 of the 95,000 inhabitants (minimum) of Shitomir had been evacu¬ 
ated, the Jewish share amounted to four-fifths of all evacuees! 1 * * 

Minsk, too, confirms Zionist reports of a preferential treatment accorded 
the Jews by the Soviets in the evacuation program. After the occupation of 
Minsk within the first few days of the war, General Haider found no more 
than 100,000 of the former population of 240,000 (1939); the rest had fled, 
been evacuated or deported. 4 Kube, the German Reich Commissar for 
White Russia, stated that all but a few thousand of the Jews of Minsk had 
gone with the Red Army. 5 Before the war, there were approximately 90,000 
Jews in Minsk. 6 Assuming that the words “few thousand” referred to a 
figure of 5,000, we obtain the following picture. About 60% of all evacuees 
(85,000 of 140,000) were Jews, even though they constituted only 38% of 
the population; the Jewish population was removed almost in its entirety, in 
the case of the non-Jewish population it was just over one-third. 

A Soviet Union specialist, Joshua Rothenberg of the Brandeis Univer¬ 
sity, put it bluntly: 7 

Much of the Jewish population of the conquered territories escaped annihilation 

by fleeing before the invading armies arrived. 

The Judaica says that most of the 7,000 Jews of Lepaya (a few miles from 
the German border) escaped, before German troops occupied the city six 
days after hostilities began. In Lithuania, too, which was liberated from the 
Soviet yoke within a week, a considerable number of Jews escaped to the 
interior of the Soviet Union, even while the German invasion was in pro¬ 
gress. 8 

Baranowicze, a town with a very large Jewish population, was populated 
by just 10% of its former population, even though occupation by German 
troops occurred within days after they crossed the border. 9 Of Vitebsk’s 
100,000 Jews, only 22,000 remained behind according to a report by the 
Soviet Jewish author David Bergelson of the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee 
in the Moscow newspaper Eyntkeyt dated 9/5/1942. 10 Reitlinger, who es- 


Ibid., p. 186; the census of January 1939 found a total population of 95,090 in Shitomir. Until 

mid-1941 the city must have grown by at least another 10,000. Since the German administration 
found only 42,000, at least 63,000 inhabitants must have been deported; of these, 44,000 were 

Jews. Thus the Jewish share among the evacuees probably was closer to 70% than 80%. 

4 Reitlinger, Final Solution , p. 223. 

5 Institute of Jewish Affairs, Hitler’s Ten-Year War, p. 186. 

6 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 11, p. 57. 

7 Rothenberg, Joshua. “Jewish Religion in the Soviet Union,” The Jews in Soviet Russia since 
1917, (Lionel Kochan, ed.), London, 1970, p. 172. 

8 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 11, p.232. 

9 Institute of Jewish Affairs, Hitler’s Ten-Year War, p. 186. 

10 Aronson, Soviet Russia and the Jews, p. 19. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


91 


timated the number of Jews in Soviet White Russia (borders of 1941) at 
861,000, said the Germans found no more than 172,000 of them. 11 

Kishinev in Bessarabia was occupied by the Axis on July 17, 1941. The 
Rumanian count of August 16, 1941, however, found only 201 Jews of the 
former 70,000 living there before the war. 12 The non-Jewish population 
apparently suffered a loss of roughly 15,000 because of deportations; this is 
equivalent to a rate of “only” 20-25%. Of the approximately 200,000 Bess¬ 
arabian Jews, the Soviets had removed all but 6,882; fewer than 5% could be 
traced by the census. 13 

The situation was very similar in the Ukrainian town of Novograd Vol- 
ynsk, which also was located very close to the border and contained a very 
large Jewish population. Only 10% of the town’s inhabitants remained be¬ 
hind when the Germans occupied it three days after war broke out. As for 
Kiev, the Institute said: 14 

In Kiev, practically the entire Jewish youth left the city together with the Soviet 
Army. Only elderly people remained behind. 

The Zionist sources are unanimous that the evacuation or deportation of the 
Baltic Jews and the native population was started some time before the war 
began. The Institute dates the initiation of mass arrests and deportations in 
Lithuania at ten days before hostilities started. 15 The Judaica declared that 

the phase before the German attack on Lithuania was marked by deportations to 
Siberia. [...]/« mid-June 1941, one week before the German-Soviet war, many 
people, including Jews, were hastily reported as politically unreliable [.. .] 16 

And the Year Book complained: 17 

The evacuation of Baltic Jews was not started until a week before the actual 
invasion. 

German investigations after the conquest of the Baltic countries confirm 
these reports. It was found that the Soviets had initiated sudden arrests, de¬ 
portations and murders in the night from June 13 to 14, 1941. These atroci¬ 
ties continued until the liberation of these countries by the German army. 18 

Thus, if in a larger town like Dnepropetrovsk only 20,000 of the former 
100,000 Jews remained behind 19 - German reports, however, mention less 


11 Reitlinger, Final Solution , p. 498. 

12 Publikationsstelle Wien. Die Bevdlkenmgszahlung in Rumanien 1941 (Geheim), Vienna, 1943, 
p. 73. 

13 Ibid., p. 51. 

14 Institute of Jewish Affairs, Hitler’s Ten-Year War, p. 186. 

15 Ibid.,p. Ml. 

19 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 11, p. 385-386. 

17 AJYB, 1942, Vol. 44, p. 240. 

18 Kauener Zeitung, “Ftinftausend Tote klagen an,” No. 138, 6/15/1942, p. 1; as well as the 
Deutsche Zeitung im Ostland, "Das Schicksal der Verschleppten,” No. 161, 6/13/1943, p. 5. 

19 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 6, p. 141. 



92 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


than 1,000 * 2 ° - then this is not very surprising in view of the Soviet prepa¬ 
rations for a mass removal in case of war and the available time interval until 
German troops reached the larger cities. Melitopol and Mariupol, two large 
cities on the Sea of Azov where only a quarter of the total population was 
missing because German troops had taken these cities in a surprise action, 
are just the exception to the rule; still, in the first city only 18% of the Jewish 
population was present, and in the second it had disappeared completely. 21 

However, it is truly remarkable that the towns which were located far to 
the west and which contained often very large Jewish populations had been 
almost completely denuded of their Jewish inhabitants by the time the 
German troops took control of them. This was only possible because - as 
Zionist sources confirm - the evacuation program had been put into action 
long before the war began and because the Soviet clearing measures even 
allowed for a removal of the population as the German invasion was in 
progress. 

The large degree of urbanization and concentration of the Jewish popu¬ 
lation certainly aided this effort. In the “old” Ukraine, 39% of the Jews lived 
in just four cities - Kiev, Odessa, Kharkov and Dnepropetrovsk - none of 
which were occupied or cut off until 714 weeks after June 22, 1941. 22 In 
total, 85.5% of the Ukrainian Jews lived in the cities in 1939; in White 
Russia it was 87.8%. 

This advantage was reinforced by the circumstance that the population 
group upon which the Soviets put the greatest emphasis in their evacuation 
efforts consisted of government officials, party functionaries, specialists and 
office workers; in this group the Jewish share was far in excess of their 
numerical size. 23 

No wonder that David Bergelson was able to declare at the end of 1942 
(!) that 80% of the Jews in the conquered areas had been evacuated. He 
continued in the Moscow newspaper Eynikeyt of December 5, 1942 - 114 
years after the war started: 24 

The evacuation saved a decisive majority of Jews of the Ukraine, White Russia, 
Lithuania, and Latvia. According to information coming from Vitebsk, Riga and 
other large centers which have been captured by the Fascists, there were few 
Jews there when the Germans arrived. [...] This means that a majority of the 
Jews of these cities was evacuated in time by the Soviet government. 

The Soviet poet Itzik Feffer declared formally in New York during the war 
that the Red Army “saved a few million Jews!” On March 15, 1943(!), 


20 Deutsche Ukraine-Zeitung, 2/611942, p. 3, reported that the population count found only 702 
Jews. 

21 Hilberg, Raul. The Destruction of the European Jews, New York, 1973, p. 192. 

2 “ Encyclopaedia Judaica,\ ol. 15, p. 1515. 

23 Institute of Jewish Affairs, Hitler’s Ten-Year War, p. 185. 

24 Aronson, Soviet Russia and the Jews, p. 18. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


93 


Eynikeyt reported D. Zaslavsky telling a plenary session of the Soviet-spon¬ 
sored Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee: 25 

The Red Army saved the Jewish people at the most critical hour of its history. 

Also, the fact that in many cities for which Jewish evacuation ratios were 
ascertained - e.g. Baranowicze, Lepaya, Novograd Volynsk, Minsk, Ki¬ 
shinev - much more than 80% of the Jewish population was gone, even 
though these cities were occupied by German forces within days after hos¬ 
tilities began, points toward an almost total evacuation by the Soviet au¬ 
thorities. 

In this connection, we should refer back to the findings in the Third 
Chapter which show that the evacuation ratios of the Baltic cities were far 
below those of the Slavic Cities. It is truly astonishing how close the rela¬ 
tionship is between the evacuation ratios of the urban population and the 
relative size of the Jewish population in those cities. On Chart 2 we recorded 
the Jewish population share of individual Soviet cities - to the extent 
available. Quite obviously, in the center area of the war theater where the 
evacuation ratios were very high (see Chart 1 ), the Jewish share of the urban 
population also was very large. 


The Evacuation ofWolhynia 

The General District Wolhynia-Podolia in the RK Ukraine encompassed 
not only the “old” Soviet areas in Podolia, but also the former Polish prov¬ 
ince ofWolhynia and the largest part of former Polesia. The northern sec¬ 
tions of Polesia had been incorporated in the RK Ostland. Thus, the only 
area for which we can obtain relatively exact population figures for the pe¬ 
riods before and after the German occupation is Wolhynia. 

The territory of the former Polish province ofWolhynia included in the 
General District of Wolhynia-Podolia covered the areas of Dubno, Goro- 
chov, Kostopol, Kovel, Lutsk, Kremianets, Lubomil, Rovno, Sarny and Vla¬ 
dimir Volynsk. 26 In this region the Polish census of 1931 registered a total 
population of 2,085,574, including 207,792 Jews. 27 

For years the birth rate of the non-Jewish population was around 2.7%, or 
even slightly more, while that of the Jewish population was only 1.8% in 


Ibid., p. 18. 

26 Zentralblatt des Reichskommissarsfur die Ukraine, Rovno, No. 2, 2nd Year, 1/9/1943, p. 8-20, 
Bundesarchiv Koblenz: R 43 II/690c. 

27 DrugiPowszechny Spis Ludnosci Z Dn. 9.X111931 R .; Wojewodztwo Wolynskie: Mieszkania 1 
Gospodarstwa Doraowe. Ludnosc. Stosunki Zawodowe;; Glowny Urzqd Statystyczny 
Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej, Statystyka Polski, Seria C, Zeszyt 70 (Deuxieme Recensement 
General de la Population du 9 Decembre 1931; Voievodie de Wolyn: Logements et Menages, 
Population, Profession), Warsaw, 1938, Table 13. 



94 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


1931 - a drop by 33% since the early 1920s. Applying a mortality rate of 
1.2%, the surplus of births over deaths must have registered 1.5% in the case 
of the non-Jewish and 0.6% in the case of the Jewish population. It may be 
assumed that this positive growth rate was reduced in the course of the 
economic crisis of the 1930s, especially as far as the Jews are concerned. For 
the period after 1932 one should, therefore, apply natural population 
changes of 1.4% and 0.5%, respectively. 

In the First Chapter we referred already to the enormous emigration of 
young male Jews in the inter-war period. For the years 1932-1939, we also 
calculated a Jewish emigration loss of 15%. To be sure, there is no reliable 
information as to whether or not this emigration was as high among the 
eastern Polish Jews, but the even more unfavorable male/female ratio of 
86/100 (after adjusting for men in military service) of the age group “15 to 
29 years” in Wolhynia indicates that emigration among the eastern Polish 
Jews was possibly even higher than that of all Polish Jews, certainly not 
lower. 

Table 8 provides details on Wolhynia’s total population as recorded by 
the Polish census of 1931, as well as adjustments for population growth and 
Jewish emigration thereafter. Furthermore, both population groups have 
been classified by age in order to show that age group separately which later 
became subject to Soviet military draft calls. On this basis, one should have 
expected to find 2,374,663 inhabitants in Wolhynia in 1942 under “normal” 
circumstances, including 186,585 Jews and 585,134 males (Jewish and 
non-Jewish) of the years of birth 1897-1926. 

The German count, however, found only 1,984,406 inhabitants as of 
January 1, 1943; 28 more than 16%, or 390,257, were missing. But since this 
figure included those former Red Army men who had been released from 
prisoner-of-war camps in the meantime, the actual number of missing peo¬ 
ple right after the occupation must have been somewhat larger yet. The 
question is which nationalities and which age groups accounted for the bulk 
of these 390,257 missing persons. 

If it were true that the Soviets were unable to evacuate the civilian pop¬ 
ulation because of the rapid German advance, all or most of the 390,257 
missing should be allocated to the young men of the years 1897-1926 sub¬ 
ject to the Soviet draft. In this case, of the 585,134 in this age group only 
about 200,000 remained behind; the majority would have gone with the re¬ 
treating Soviets. Applied to all male age groups, the Soviets would have 
taken one-third of the entire male population with them, and the male share 
of the population would have fallen from 49% to 39%. 


28 


Zentralblatt, 1/9/1943, p. 8-11. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


95 


Table 8: Development of the Wolhynian Population: 

1931 until the German Occupation 

Total Population_Non-Jews_Jews 


Year of Birth 

Total 

Male 

Female 

Male 

Female 

Male Female 

A) According to Polish Census of December 9. 1931: 





Years 1897-1926 

1,217,412 

595,630 

621,782 

539,427 

559,007 

56,203 

62,775 

Other Years 

868,162 

425,418 

442,744 

382,515 

396,833 

42,903 

45,911 

Total 

2,085,574 

1,021,048 

1,064,526 

921,942 

955,840 

99,106 

108,686 

B) Population after correction for the number of births 

over deaths for the period 1931 to 1942 (1,4 

% and 0,5% p,a, for the non-Jewish and Jewish natural rate of increase): 



Years 1897-1926 

1,217,412 

595,630 

621,782 

539,427 

559,007 

56,203 

62,775 

Other Years 

1,190,176 

586,425 

603,751 

537,663 

551,981 

48,762 

51,770 

Total 

2,407,588 

1,182,055 

1,220,533 

1,077,090 

1,110,988 

104,965 

114,545 

C) Population after correction for Jewish emigration of 15%, for the period 1932 to 1939 (two-thirds 

of the immigrants were applied to the years 1897-1926 and one-third to the other years): 


Years 1897-1926 

1,195,461 

585,134 

610,327 

539,427 

559,007 

45,707 

51,320 

Other Years 

1,179,202 

581,177 

598,025 

537,663 

551,981 

43,514 

46,044 

Total 

2,374,663 

1,166311 

1,208,352 

1,077,090 

1,110,988 

89,221 

97,364 


Source: Drugi Powszechny Spis Ludnosci ZDn. 9.XII1931 R.\ Mieszkania I Gospodarstwa Do- 
mowe. Ludnosc. Stosunki Zawodowe; Wojewodztwo Wofynskie; Glowny Urzqd Stat- 
ystyczny Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej, Statystyka Polski, Seria C, Zeszyt 70 (Deuxieme Re- 
censement General de la Population du 9 Decembre 1931\ Logements et Menages, Popu¬ 
lation, Profession), Warsaw, 1938. 

This interpretation contradicts the fact that, even though German reports 
tell of huge losses among the male population of the occupied territories, no 
deportation of this magnitude among the economically most active popula¬ 
tion part has ever been mentioned. Fortunately, German population counts 
in the Baltic countries which, like eastern Poland, were incorporated into the 
Soviet empire just prior to the war gave separate figures for the two sexes; 
the statistics indicate that thousands of families were deported by the Soviets 
before the Germans arrived, but that the majority of the evacuees were male. 
And still, the male share of the total Baltic population had shrunk to only just 
over 46%, 29 even though large parts of the Baltic countries, especially Es¬ 
tonia, were conquered as late as eight weeks after the occupation of Wol- 
hynia. 

The Soviets deported especially the urban minorities - by family - which 
belonged to the pillars of an industrial society; in Wolhynia, this was true 
particularly of the Jews. The enormous evacuation ratios of the former 
eastern Polish cities - e.g. Brest Litovsk, Vladimir Volynsk, Kovel, Bar- 
anowicze, Lutsk, Rovno, Sdolbunov and Pinsk, all of which registered rates 
of between 25 and 90% (see Table 6) and may have averaged 50%, if we 


Bevolkerung in den besetzten Ostgebieten, 2/17/1943, Militararchiv Freiburg, Bestand RW 
31/260. 











96 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


allow for an increase in the urban population since 1931 - prove that the 
roughly 400,000 missing persons in Wolhynia were not to be found pre¬ 
dominantly among the male age groups subject to the Soviet draft. 

Everything seems to indicate that the above mentioned evacuation ratios 
for the eastern Polish cities were quite typical. If we assume that the urban 
population of this region had increased by 50,000 since 1931 and if we add 
the population of the Jewish “shtetls” as well, we obtain a total urban pop¬ 
ulation of roughly 400,000 for the former Polish province for mid-1941; of 
these, 200,000 were deported by the Soviets. 

The gender composition of Wolhynia’s population probably was similar 
to what we found in the Baltic countries after the German occupation; there, 
the male/female ratio was 46/54. Consequently, Wolhynia’s remaining 
population before and after the German occupation looks as follows: 

_Total (%) Male (%) Female (%) 

Before occupation 2,374,663 (100) 1,166,311 (49) 1,208,352 (51) 

After occupation 1,984,406 (100) 912,827 (46) 1,071,579 (54) 

Missing persons 390,257 (100) 253,484 (65) 136,773 (35) 

Now, the question is, how these missing persons should be divided be¬ 
tween the Jews and the non-Jews. Between 1931 and WWII, urbanization 
proceeded in eastern Poland as almost everywhere else, and then there was 
the emigration of large numbers of Jews. Thus, the Jewish population con¬ 
stituted roughly 50% of the Wolhynian urban population in 1931, but just 
before WWII this was hardly the case; by then, their share must have been 
less than that. On the other hand, it is a fact that the Jews were much more 
affected by the Soviet evacuation program than other population segments. 

The large number of women among the missing persons (35%) points to 
the evacuation of tens of thousands of families. The population group in this 
category probably consisted of artisans, doctors, specialists, the intelligent¬ 
sia, office workers, etc., among all of whom the Jews may have had an ab¬ 
solute majority. Also, the willingness to be evacuated probably was much 
greater among the Jewish families than among the Polish and Ukrainian. 

In view of the almost grotesque relationship between evacuated Jews and 
non-Jews in Soviet cities - e.g. Minsk, Shitomir, Lepaya, Dnepropetrovsk - 
and the political unreliability of the Polish and Ukrainian population seg¬ 
ments in Wolhynia, it would indeed have been very surprising, if less than 
60% of the evacuated female civilians would have belonged to the Jewish 
group, particularly as almost half the urban population was Jewish. Apply¬ 
ing a matching male share corresponding to the composition of the pre-war 
Jewish and non-Jewish populations, and finally subtracting the evacuated 
family members (as calculated) from the total number of missing persons, 
one obtains 125,243 young men subject to the draft; these males probably 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


97 


were drafted directly from the countryside into the Red Army. In table-form 
it looks as follows: 

Total population of which: Male Female Population group 

before the Ger- Missing (%) 

man occupation persons_ 

2,374,663 390,257 (16) 253,484 136,773 (Missing females: 60% 

_Jewish, 40% non-Jewish) 

186,585 157,265 (84) 75,201 82,064 Jewish civilians 

2,188,078 232,992 (11) 53,040 54,709 non-Jew. civil. 

125,243 Men subject to draft 

(The computed figure of 125,243 “drafted” individuals, of course, is much too low since 
some of the male “civilians” certainly were also drafted into the Red Anny). 

Thus, it seems that more than 80% of Wolhynia’s Jewish population was 
removed by the Soviets. Considering that the vast majority of the Jewish 
population of many Soviet cities conquered by German troops during the 
first ten days of the war had been removed by the Soviets, the computed 
ratio of 84% evacuated Jews in Wolhynia is quite realistic. To be sure, 
compared to the “old” Soviet cities which registered Jewish evacuation ra¬ 
tios of over 80% (Table 9), the Soviet evacuation of the Jewish population of 
these Wolhynian cities close to the German frontier is quite impressive, but 
not surprising (see Chart 1). 

Before the war, 2.03 million Jews lived in the “old” Soviet areas occu¬ 
pied by the Axis troops (Second Chapter). More than half of them were 
concentrated in the cities listed on Table 9, and fewer than one-fifth fell into 
German hands. Reitlinger put it like this: 30 

Not only did the bulk of the three million Jews of pre-war Soviet Russia escape 
into the interior, but also a very large proportion of the 1,800,000 Jews of the 
annexed territories. [...] in the historic towns of the pre-industrial Russian 
Ukraine, Vinnitsa, Zhitomir, Berdichev, Uman, Nikolaev, and Kherson, only a 
quarter or a fifth of the Jews stayed on, and this was equally true of the enor¬ 
mous Jewish agglomerations to the East, the towns along the Dnieper, Kiev, 
Kharkov, and Dniepropetrowsk. Further East still, in the Donetz and Kuban 
basins and North of the Caucasus, only a small percentage of the Jews awaited 
the Germans. 

The picture unfolding here is one where Wolhynia fits perfectly into the 
overall clearing and evacuation program of the Soviet leadership. No matter 
whether we turn to the Baltic countries, former eastern Poland, White Russia 
or the Ukraine, the bulk of the Jewish population of all of these Soviet areas 
had been removed either before hostilities started or withdrew together with 
the retreating Red Army to the east on a more or less voluntary basis. Reit¬ 
linger’s admission certainly is not subject to suspicion and matches the 


30 


Reitlinger, Final Solution , p. 227-228. 





98 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


evacuation ratios for the Jewish population of the “old” Soviet cities as listed 
on Table 9. 

The fact that the main area of settlement of the urbanized Soviet Jews 
was still concentrated in the western Soviet Union at the beginning of the 
war did not hinder the Soviet efforts to remove the Jewish population to the 
east. Quite the opposite is the case; because urbanization was much lower in 
the west than in the east, and the bulk of industry was to be found in the 
eastern Ukraine, the Soviets were in a position to devote a greater proportion 
of their efforts to the evacuation of the urban population of the western ter¬ 
ritories than was possible in the industrial east. 


Table 9: Soviet Evacuation of the Jewish Population 
of “Old” Soviet Cities 


Cities 

Jewish Population 
before after 

Evacuation Evacuation 

Evacuation 
in percent 

Minsk 5 ' 6 

90,000 

5,000 (est.) 

94 

Shitomir 3 

50,000 

6,000 

88 

Novograd-Volynsk 14 

? 

? 

90 

Vitebsk 10 

100,000 

22,000 

78 

Dnepropetrovsk 19 

100,000 

20,000 

80 

Nikolaev 31 

30,000 

5,000 

83 

Kherson 31 

30,000 

5,000 

83 

Poltava 32 

35,000 

1,500 

96 

Odessa 

180,000 33 

30-60,000 34 

67-83 

Melitopol 21 

11,000 

2,000 

82 

Kharkov 

130,000 a 

20,000 32 

85 

Kirovograd 

18,400 b 

6,000 35 

min. 67 

Chernigov 

10,600 b 

300 21 

97 

Mariupol 

7,300 b 

none 21 

100 

T aganrog 

Vinnitsa 

2,70 b 

21,800 b 1 

none 21 

100 

Kiev 

Uman 

Berdichev 

175,000 37 
25,300 b | 
28,400 J 

50-62,000 36 

75-80 


1,045,500 

173-215,000 

79-83 c 


31 Ibid., p. 241. 

32 Ibid., p. 237. 

j3 See Table 6. Reitlinger, however, arrived at only 175,000. 

j4 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 240: He says that two-thirds of the Odessan Jews left by train for 
the eastern Soviet Union before the city was encircled by Rumanian troops on 8/13/1941. It was 
not captured by German and Rumanian troops until 10/16/1941. In the meantime, the Soviets 
deployed their Black Sea Fleet to deport tens of thousands of civilians, including many Jews. 

j5 Encyclopaedia Judaica,N ol. 10, p. 1049. 

36 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 221, writes that the number of those remaining behind in Vinnitsa, 
Kiev, Uman und Berdichev was about one-fourth or one-fifth. 

’ 7 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 10, p. 994. 







W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


99 


Sources and Notes (Table 9) 

(a) Reitlinger 32 said the last Jewish census figures for Kharkov pertain to 1926 (81,139); until 
1939, Kharkov’s total population more than doubled to 833,400, but it is unlikely that the city’s 
Jewish population doubled, too. On the other hand, the Judaica 21 notes that Kharkov, Kiev, 
Odessa and Dnepropetrovsk contained 39% of the Ukraine’s Jewish population in 1939. This 
means that 585,000 of the 1.5 million Ukrainian Jews were accounted for by these four cities; 
the Jewish population of the last three towns added up to 455,000. Consequently, 130,000 
remain for Kharkov. 

(b) For these cities no more recent population data for Soviet Jews are available. The listed Jewish 
population figures pertain to the year 1926, and in the case of Taganrog, Mariupol, Vinnitsa, 
Chernigov and Kirovograd they have been taken from Table 6; for Uman and Berdichev Hil- 
berg’s 38 Jewish population figures refer to 1920 and 1923, respectively. It is all but certain that 
the Jewish population of these cities was considerably higher m the year 1939 than in 1920, 
1923 or in the census year 1926, because the census of 1926 tended to underestimate the Jewish 
population and because many Jews had moved from the smaller country towns into the larger 
cities in the course of the enforced Soviet industrialization program. 

(c) The stated evacuation rate of 79-83% is almost certainly too low for the following reasons: (i) 
for some cities the higher 1939-population figures were not available, and the utilized 
1926-figures are known to be too low; (ii) Reitlinger writes in the case of Odessa that two-thirds 
of that city’s Jews had been removed by train. 39 Odessa was encircled on August 13, 1941, by 
the Rumanians and taken on October 16. In the meantime, the Soviets evacuated tens of 
thousands of Red Army men and civilians, 86,000 soldiers and 15,000 civilians just in the pe¬ 
riod from October 1 to 10. The number of civilians evacuated in August and September is not 
known to the author, nor is the percentage of Jews among them. In view of the obvious pref¬ 
erence for the Jews in the evacuation of other cities, their share must have been large. For these 
reasons one should assume that the number of Jews who fell into Rumanian hands must have 
been less than 50,000. 


Some Remained Behind 

Reitlinger’s data are rather informative when attempting to pin down the 
number of those Jews who remained behind to face German occupation. 
Providing many examples, including evacuation ratios, he wrote that the 
“bulk” of the Jews of pre-war Russia escaped. Since one-third of the Jews 
found in the Soviet census of 1939 lived outside those areas later to be 
conquered by Germany, only a small number of the remaining Jews - in 
absolute and relative terms - of the pre-war Soviet Union can possibly have 
fallen into German hands. In addition, “a very large proportion,” as he puts 
it, of the 1,800,000 Jews of the annexed areas escaped German control. The 
conclusion thus is compelling that Reitlinger himself believes the number of 
Jews who remained behind to be less than a million. Actually, this puts 
Reitlinger in direct opposition to the usual post-war literature on Soviet 
Jews. 

In early 1941, 3,597,000 Jews lived in the Soviet areas occupied by Axis 
troops in the course of WWII (see Second Chapter). If only 80% of this 


38 

39 


Hilberg, Destruction of the European Jews , p. 190. 
Reitlinger, Final Solution , p. 240. 



100 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


number were evacuated during the war, this would be equivalent to 
2,877,000. Subtracted from the 3.6 million, one obtains a mere 720,000 as 
the number of Soviet Jews remaining under German administration. In this 
connection, a report by the Canadian-Jewish journalist Arthur Raymond 
Davies is rather interesting, who spent the war years in the Soviet Union as a 
correspondent and published his impressions and experiences after the war 
in New York. Besides his words of praise for the valor of the Jewish Red 
Army men and partisans, he mentioned a plenary session of the Jewish An¬ 
ti-Fascist Committee in the autumn of 1944 (!), on the occasion of which its 
secretary Shachne Epstein reported the evacuation of 3.5 million Jews from 
the territories occupied by Germany. 40 Epstein’s figure of 3.5 million 
evacuees - which apparently also included the three-quarters of a million 
Jewish refugees from Poland deported to Siberia in the spring of 1940 - 
matches our own computations on the number of Jews removed by the So¬ 
viets until 1941 and 1942 very well. 

We should also remind ourselves that most of these 720,000 Jews in 
German-occupied Soviet territory belonged to the older age groups, because 
the Soviets had little interest in the evacuation of additional eaters, and also, 
as one witness before the investigating committee of the U.S. House of 
Representatives put it, because “the older people who knew the Germans 
from World War I, they thought that the Germans are not so bad and that 
they can live better with Germans than the Soviets.” 41 The natural mortality 
rate of a population group consisting mainly of older people is of course far 
higher than for a normal age structure. This should not be forgotten when 
considering those events, particularly because in this case births were prac¬ 
tically non-existent. 

Certainly, a large number of these roughly 700,000 remaining Soviet 
Jews did not survive the war. The age structure itself must have effected a 
considerable negative natural change. The extremely hard, often fanatical 
battles between German and Soviet troops happened to take place to a large 
extent in and around the cities; since almost 90% of the Jews were city 
dwellers, it is quite probable that the remaining older Jews suffered propor¬ 
tionately greater civilian losses. In addition, there were many pogroms 
against the Jews initiated by the local populations the Baltic countries, 
White Russia and in the Ukraine after the Soviet troops had pulled back. 
Only the decisive action taken by German and allied troops put a stop to 
these murderous activities. 42 Shootings of Jewish hostages in retaliation for 


Davies, Arthur Raymond. Odyssey through Hell, New York, 1946, p. 142. 

Treatment of Jews by the Soviet, 1954, p. 40. 

Burg, J.G. Schuld und Schicksal: Europas Juden zwischen Henkern itnd Heuchlern, Munich, 
1965, p. 50. 


40 

41 

42 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


101 


the murder of German soldiers by the partisans, 41 among whom the Jews 
were very active according to their own accounts - Soviet statistics mention 
more than 500,000 German soldiers murdered by partisans 44 - were not at 
all unusual. 

To what extent the taking of hostages among the Jewish population was 
practiced in the sense of a systematic annihilation program is not our sub¬ 
ject. All one needs to do is to check the pertinent literature of the post-war 
period in order to appreciate the extraordinary role Jews played during the 
war as partisans against the German Wehrmacht. Even Dr. M.W. Kempner 45 
does not question the taking of hostages as “in accordance with international 
law.” He writes: 46 

Hostages are taken in periods of occupation, in order to keep the population of 

the occupied territories from committing crimes against the occupation forces. 

Lastly, hunger, cold, epidemics and lacking medical attention among the 
mainly elderly remaining Jews probably caused many losses. 

The Zionist Gregor Aronson mentioned that the Soviet Jew Lev K. 
Zinger reported in his book Dos Oifgekumene Folk (Moscow, 1949) that 
tens of thousands of Jews could be found in early 1946 in the various smaller 
and larger towns of the Ukraine, White Russia, Moldavia, Latvia and Lith- 


uania. He cited the following cities: 47 

Kharkov 

30,000 

Dnepropetrovsk 

50,000 

Odessa 

80,000 

Mohilew-Podolsk 

3,000 

Novograd Volynsk 

3,000 

Malin 

1,000 

Czemowitz 

70,000 

Reitlinger, who based his figures on the Moscow newspaper Eynikeyt, 
mentioned the same figures for Odessa and Dnepropetrovsk and added: 


43 Most of the Jewish publications mention with pride a strong Jewish participation in partisan 
activities during the last war; examples may be found in almost all volumes of the Encyclo¬ 
paedia Judaica. 

44 Telpuchowski, Die sowjetische Geschichte , p. 284, asserts that White Russian partisans alone 
murdered about 500,000 German soldiers and officers and 47 generals. 

45 WER 1ST WER? (Walter Habel, ed.), Frankfurt, 1975, describes this gentleman, inter alia, as 
follows: “after the war dept.head of chief prosecutor (Jackson) at Intern. Mil. Tribunal Nu¬ 
remberg, asst, prosec. against Reichs-Min. of Interior Frick, beg. 1947 American dep. chief 
prosec. Wilhelmstr.Trial against cabinet members and diplomats of the III. Reich.” The 
American professor A.R. Butz, The Hoax of the Twentieth Century, Los Angeles, however, 
arrived at vastly different conclusions in 1977; see in particular pages 29, 160-161, 163-169, 
194, 195, and 244. 

46 Kempner, Dr. Robert M.W. “Briefe an den Herausgeber,” Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 
Frankfurt am Main, No. 23, 1/28/1981, p. 9. 

47 Aronson, Soviet Russia and the Jews, p. 23. 



102 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Kiev 100,000 

Vinnitsa 14,000 

Shitomir 6,000 

He remarked, furthermore, “these figures were recorded at a time when 
the homeward trek from the deep interior had only begun.” 48 It is also in¬ 
teresting that Shitomir’s population size of 1946 equaled exactly that of the 
Jews who remained behind to face German occupation in 1941. 49 

In other words, these listed cities, which contained a total of about 
360,000 Jews in the former German-occupied parts of the Soviet Union, 
represent largely the Jews who survived the war and the German occupa¬ 
tion. Also, a homeward trek must be understood to mean that these people 
had been evacuated previously; here, too, Reitlinger contradicts the current 
literature, according to which the rapid German advance prevented the Jews 
to escape in appreciable numbers. 

Nobody knows the number of Jews who survived in the western parts of 
the Soviet Union at the time the Red Army proceeded to reoccupy that ter¬ 
ritory. But this extract of only ten cities with a population of 360,000 Jews 
(in early 1946!), as well as the fact that other Soviet republics - e.g. Mol¬ 
davia, Lithuania and Latvia, which Zinger mentioned by name without 
providing figures - also were inhabited by thousands of survivors, show that 
the vast majority of the three-quarters of a million Soviet Jews under Ger¬ 
man administration survived the war. 

The extent of the losses suffered by the Soviet Jews who remained under 
German control is debatable. It seems that because of their age structure - 
elderly people predominated - the natural excess of deaths must have 
reached at least 3% per year; 50 in three occupation years, this adds up to a 
reduction of 65,000. This means that the Jewish population under German 
control - the figure of 720,000 probably is too high - was reduced to 
655,000. Other losses could have occurred on account of the general nega¬ 
tive environment as described above, and because of the Jewish participa¬ 
tion in partisan activities in violation of international law. All of this makes a 
further reduction by roughly 10%, or 65,000, to about 590,000 possible. 
Thus, it would seem that, if 360,000 Jews were found in just ten cities in 
former German-occupied territories in early 1946 and many other thousands 


48 Reitlinger, Final Solution , p. 500. 

44 Compare Institute of Jewish Affairs, Hitler’s Ten-Year War, p. 186. 

50 The Jewish mortality rate in the Soviet Union must have been greater than 1.2%. Since natural 
deaths occur primarily in the age groups 50 years and over, and these age groups accounted for 
roughly 30% of the population, it may be presumed that at least 3.5% of the population over 49 
years of age died annually of natural causes. We based our calculations on a rate of 3%, because 
the exact composition of the remaining Jews is not known, but the older age groups neverthe¬ 
less constituted the vast majority. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


103 


survived in other, not specified Soviet cities, our figure of 590,000 surviving 
Jews after the German retreat seems realistic. 


Death in Siberia 

Fate was much worse for the Jews living under Soviet domination during 
the war. Among the 750,000 Polish-Jewish refugees, 150-250,000 died from 
hardships on the way to the east and the north. Those who arrived in Asia 
were put into labor and concentration camps. As mentioned already, among 
these unfortunates was also Menachem Begin, the subsequent Jewish 
IRGUN-terrorist in Palestine and recent recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. 

Even the Universal, which was quite sympathetic to the Soviet cause in 
1943, spoke of “Siberia, where they underwent great hardships.” 51 The Joint 
Distribution Committee, which aided the Jewish victims in Siberia and the 
Russian North during the war with food and medicine, was a little more 
outspoken. In its Bulletin of June 1943 it informed us that the survivors of 
the deportations had to put up with further privation: 52 

The [Soviet] government gives each refugee from a half to one pound of bread 

each day. [...] Food can only be bought with things. Money has lost its value. 

Apart from the monotony of this kind of food supply, those tortured people 
received less than a third of the calories needed for survival - a fatal defi¬ 
ciency in the inhumane environment of Siberian labor and concentration 
camps. The Jewish author Reitlinger commented: 53 

In Southern Siberia, the death-rate was very high for [...] Jews [...] 

The small number of 157,500 Polish-Jewish refugees returning from Siberia 
to Poland in 1945/1946 gives us an idea of the terrible fate Jewish deportees 
from Poland met in Siberia. 600,000 have disappeared. Even if one includes 
those few who unimaginably preferred to remain in the Soviet Union, the 
total of the Jewish victims of Soviet labor camps hardly would be affected. 
The argument that the Soviets forced most of them to stay there after the war 
does not hold up. The 157,500 returnees left Poland soon after their arrival 
from Russia to move on to the West. They would have known if a consid¬ 
erable number of their compatriots had been kept in Soviet Russia against 
their will. But there are no indications of this to be found in post-war liter¬ 
ature. Everything seems to point to the horrible fact that 600,000 Polish- 
Jewish refugees died in and on the way to Siberia. 54 


51 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 9, p. 681. 

52 Aronson, Soviet Russia and the Jews , p. 12. 

53 Reitlinger, Final Solution , p. 499. . 

54 Understandably, there are no exact figures on the extent of this vast number of deaths. But the 
fact that post-war literature contains no hints to the effect that a considerable number of former 



104 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Another 2.9 million were evacuated to Siberia shortly before and after 
the start of the German-Soviet war. The fate of these people is unknown, but 
the sacrifice of the Jewish refugees from Poland is not a good omen. Cer¬ 
tainly, in 1940 foreigners were deported after having refused the citizenship 
of the workers’ and peasants’ paradise, proving in this way that they were 
truly enemies of the glorious Soviet Union, whereas in 1941 the USSR’s 
own citizens were moved to “safety.” On the other hand, in 1941 the cir¬ 
cumstances were such in many places that the Soviets had to introduce hasty 
measures; after all, their primary goal was to deny these trained people to the 
Germans and, in the second place, to save as many good workers for their 
own war effort. The transport of millions of people in a few weeks across a 
distant and rather primitive railroad network simply must have been costly 
in terms of human lives. These people, too, faced a life of hardship and 
misery in Siberia. 

How badly those evacuated and deported Soviet citizens fared in Siberia 
in 1941/1945 may be gleaned from the words of the Soviet court historian 
Telpuchowski: 55 

The provision of accommodations for the millions evacuated from the ene¬ 
my-occupied territories to the areas of the hinterland posed a serious problem. 
[In re-constructing the transplanted factories the evacuated people] worked 
under the open sky, quite often in rain and snow. The most elementary lodging 
facilities were lacking; they had to live in tents and sod huts. Food was scarce. 
Work continued throughout the day. The workday often lasted from 12 to 14 
hours and more. 

No comments. 

Referring to the mass deportation measures initiated in Lithuania one 
week before June 22, 1941, the Judaica says that the deported people were 
interned in forced labor camps and set to work in coal mines, wood cutting, 
and other heavy labor. 56 Without question, death must have reaped a terrible 
harvest under those conditions. After the liberation from the Soviet yoke, the 
shocked Baltic population told of unimaginable occurrences during the 
deportation and evacuation measures initiated on June 13/14, 1941. Thou¬ 
sands upon thousands of people simply were shot to death. If persons the 
Soviets were looking for could not be found, another family member or 
person living in the same house was taken in their place. The arrested people 


Polish-Jewish refugees remained behind in the Soviet Union after the war, allows us to con¬ 
clude that, except for those 157,500 returnees, almost all the others died in Siberia. The Jewish 
economist Jacob Lestschinsky ( AJYB , Vol. 49, p. 397) puts the number of those who died in 
Siberia and central Asia at 500,000 Jews, while Gedeon Haganov ( Le Communisme et les 
"Juifs, ” Supplement de CONTACT, Paris, May 1951) arrived at about 450,000. The American 
Jewish Committee noted that only 200,000 had died in Siberia (AJYB, Vol. 49, p. 394). 

55 Telpuchowski, Die sowjetische Geschichte, p. 82 and 88. 

56 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 11, p. 385-386. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


105 


were crowded into cattle wagons in batches of 50 to 60, the men were sep¬ 
arated from their wives, the children tom from their mothers. Doors and 
ventilation openings were nailed shut; there were no benches. The locked-up 
people were left to themselves, without food or drink. Many died on the way 
east. In a car left behind at the Oger railroad station, 60 suffocated children 
were found. These people were treated worse than cattle. 57 

Some deportees managed to return to Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania; they 
told of terrible conditions in Soviet territory. People, they said, were being 
forced to work in the icy cold of the north and east with no other clothes and 
shoes than those they wore when they were arrested. Medical attention was 
lacking completely, and the persistent undernourishment caused people to 
die in huge numbers. 58 

It is all but impossible to place a figure on the total number of Jewish 
victims in Siberia and the Urals. One should keep in mind that the evidence 
given by Western Zionist sources on the extent of Jewish losses in Siberia 
can hardly be called objective. The Soviets would never assume moral or 
financial responsibility. The temptation to keep that number as low as pos¬ 
sible is obvious; after all, defeated Germany presented an easy scapegoat to 
be blamed for all of the Jews who were missing, killed in action or murdered 
by the Soviets. 

The Hungarian Minister in Moscow, Prof. Szekfu, provided a vivid de¬ 
scription of the shape in which the Jewish deportees and evacuees returned 
from Siberia; he said to Dr. Zoltan Klar from the Council of the Budapest 
Jewish Community: 59 

[...] these people arrived from Siberia in Moscow in a desperate situation, sick 
and enfeebled, starved and bedraggled, in rags, without clothes or any other 
possessions. 

If the condition of the Jews in Siberia was this terrible in 1946, what might 
the situation have looked like during the war? Obviously, putting the num¬ 
ber of Jewish dead in Siberia at 700,000 probably is not enough to allow for 
all the victims of the barbarian Soviet policy. 

But the war itself also created huge gaps in the Jewish population. From 
1939 to 1942, 200,000 Jews fell in all Allied armies. 60 Deducting the Polish- 
Jewish soldiers killed in action and the unknown number of killed Jews in 
the British, French and U.S. forces - in the U.S. Army 550,000 Jews are said 
to have served during WWII - then it is quite possible that the Red Army 


57 Deutsche Zeitung im Ostland, “30.000 Verschleppte nachgewiesen,” No. 5, 8/5/1941, p. 4, as 
well as “Die Schreckensnacht zum 14. Juni,” No. 12, 8/16/1941, p. 5; Kauener Zeitung , “Die 
Sonne Stalins fiber Litauen,” No. 6, 10/17/1941, p. 2, as well as “So fuhren sie in die Ver- 
bannung,” No. 140, 6/17/1942, p. 5. 

5S Kauener Zeitung, “Schicksale, die ganz Europa angehen,” No. 88, 4/14/1943, p.5. 

59 Treatment of Jews by the Soviet, 1954, p. 86. 

60 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 10, p. 23. 



106 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


suffered 100-150,000 Jewish soldiers killed in action during the first 114 
costly years of war against Germany. In any case, the Judaica maintained as 
late as 1971 that the Soviet-Jewish losses among the soldiers killed “in ac¬ 
tion” amounted to 200,000. 61 

The “loss” of 157,500 returned Polish-Jewish refugees after the war was 
compensated by the Soviets by chalking up “gains” among other European 
Jews. As will be shown in the Sixth Chapter, 65,500 Hungarian Jews dis¬ 
appeared in the Soviet Union. In addition, the Soviets annexed Ruthenia in 
1945 with a Jewish population of probably less than 100,000. 

Adding it all up, one obtains the following picture: Of the 5.3 million 
Jews under Soviet domination in 1939/1940, at least 700,000 lost their lives 
during the deportation to the east or in the Siberian “accommodations,” la¬ 
bor and concentration camps. 200,000 were killed in combat while serving 
in Red Army and partisan units, and a further 130,000 may have died be¬ 
cause of the fighting in the cities, pogroms of the native population, hunger, 
epidemics, lack of medical attention, over-aging and, last but not least, be¬ 
cause of German retributions against Jewish hostages in retaliation for 
Germans murdered by partisans. All of these developments may well have 
caused a loss of over one million. For this reason, one should not expect that 
more than 4.3 million Jews survived the war in the Soviet Union - a loss of 
20% compared to early 1940. In table-form the development looks like this: 

Under Soviet domination - 1939/1940 5,337,000 

deduct: 

War and deportation losses 

- Jewish Red Army men killed in combat 

- Deportation and concentration camp losses 
in Siberia 


Losses in the German-Soviet theater of war 
Total losses 
Remaining 
Other changes: 

Hungarian Jews retained in the USSR 62 
Annexation of Ruthenia 62 


Jewish refugees returned from the USSR 
Jewish population in the USSR 
at the end of WWII (max.) 4,301,000 


200,000 

700,000 

900,000 

130,000 

-1,030,000 

4,307,000 


65,500 

86,000 

151,500 

-157,500 -6,000 


61 

62 


Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 14, p. 479. 
See Sixth Chapter. 








W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


107 


FIFTH CHAPTER: 

The Jews in the Post-War Soviet Union 


The Survivors 

Post-war literature usually puts the number of surviving Jews in the So¬ 
viet Union at about two million or even fewer. The Year Book arrived at 
2,032,500, 1 and other Zionist sources mentioned figures as low as 
1,500,000. They simply deny the established historical fact that the Soviets 
succeeded in evacuating the bulk of the Jewish population before and after 
the German “surprise” attack. If 600,000 Jews served in the Red Army, 2 
then this must probably be explained by the Soviet evacuation of the male 
Jews of military age. 

Age-specific data on the Jews living before the war in areas never oc¬ 
cupied by Germany are not available as far as we know; for this reason, the 
age structure of the Polish Jews of 1931 was used. On this basis, males aged 
16-45 years composed 22.7% of the total Soviet-Jewish population. 3 Before 
the war, 1.6 million Jews lived in those parts of the Soviet Union never 
occupied by Germany (see Second Chapter). 22.7% of 1.6 million amounts 


1 AJYB, 1948, Vol. 49, p. 740. 

2 Ibid., 1942, Vol. 44, p. 234. Other Jewish sources provide somewhat lower figures for Jewish 
Red Army soldiers; Solomon Grayzel mentions only 500,000 Jews in the Red Army in his book 
A History of the Jews (Philadelphia, 1948, p. 766). Unfortunately, Grayzel does not indicate the 
source where his figure originated; the AJYB however refers expressly to Soviet reports. It is 
interesting that Grayzel also mentions 550,000 and 17,000 Jews, respectively, in the armed 
forces of the United States and Canada. Relative to the entire Jewish population in those two 
countries (for more details see the Seventh Chapter), this is equivalent to a rate of about 10%. 
The same applies to South Africa. In the case of Great Britain, 60,000 Jews are said to have 
served in Her Majesty’s armed forces; this is an excellent indicator that the actual size of the 
Jewish population in England during the war was not 350,000, as Zionist sources maintain, but 
probably around 600-700,000. Since the Soviet Union had a somewhat larger Jewish popula¬ 
tion at the beginning of the war than the USA, and as the Soviets mobilized a relatively larger 
share of the male population, even the figures published in Moscow seem to be on the low side. 
But Grayzel’s figure is lower yet, and thus even less likely. 

3 Drugi Powszechny Spis Ludnosci Z Dn. 9.XII1931 R.; “Polska: Mieszkania I Gospodarstwa 
Domowe. Ludnosc,” Glowny Urzqd Statystyczny Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej, Statystyka Polski, 
Seria C, Zeszyt 94A (Deuxieme Recensement General de la Population du 9 Decembre 1931; 
“Pologne: Logements et Menages, Population,” Office Central de Statistique de la Polonaise, 
Statistique de la Pologne, Serie C, Fascicule 94A), Warsaw, 1938, Table 13. 



108 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


to 360,000 male Jews aged 16-45 years in 1941 in the “free” Soviet territo¬ 
ries. 

It is not likely that all Jews of military age were drafted into the armed 
forces. Deferments on account of the necessity to leave specialists in in¬ 
dustry and administration, physical impairments, etc. hardly permitted more 
than 70%, i.e. 250,000, to be inducted. This means that 350,000 must have 
come from the occupied areas. Assuming the same deferment ratio for them, 
the Soviets must have evacuated 500,000 Jewish males of military age from 
the occupied territories. 

On the basis of these calculations we arrived at 2.1 million. Deducting 
from it the 200,000 Jews killed in combat and adding the supposedly very 
few Jews who survived German occupation, one obtains about 2 million or 
even fewer surviving Soviet Jews. The contradiction of so many Jews 
serving and dying in the Red Army, even though most Jews supposedly fell 
into German hands, can only be resolved in this way. 

But there is a catch to it. All in all, 860,000 male Jews of military age 
were available to the Soviets; most of them were drafted, and 200,000 never 
returned. At the end of the war, only 660,000 male Jews of this age group 
remained. Now, if the Soviets restricted themselves to evacuating just half a 
million male Jews of military age and left the bulk of the elderly, women and 
children behind to face German annihilation, the surviving 660,000 male 
Jews would have faced only about 400,000 Jewesses of the same age group 
- a ratio of 66 to 40! However, such an “upside-down” gender ratio never 
has been reported in post-war literature - which is very strange. 

The opposite proved to be true. The Soviet census of 1959 recorded a 
gender distribution for the Jews as is “normal” for a population that suffered 
huge losses of men in two world wars; similar developments occurred in 
other countries affected by these terrible wars. Specifically, the male/female 
ratio for Soviet Jews in 1959 was 45.4% (i.e. 1,030,629) to 54.6% (i.e. 
1,237,185). 4 Ten years later the Soviet census of 1970 began to show the 
first slight indication of a normalization of the gender structure among the 
Jews: It was 45.9% to 54.1%. 5 

On the basis of the age distribution of the Jews in the RSFSR, 6 705,290 
Jews of the recorded 2,267,814 Jews in the Soviet Union (1959) belonged to 
the age group “0-28 years,” which, at the end of WWII, either had not been 
bom yet or was too young for military service. Its gender structure should 
have been more or less balanced. The male/female composition among those 
29 years and older thus was 677,984 and 884,540, respectively: 


4 AJYB, 1964, Vol. 65, p. 268. 

5 Ibid., 1976, Vol. 77, p. 165. 

6 Schmelz, U.O. "New Evidence on Basic Issues in the Demography of Soviet Jews,” The Jewish 
Journal of Sociology, Vol. XVI, No. 2, December 1974, p. 210-214. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


109 


Age group 

Male 

Female 

Total 

All age groups 

1,030,629 

1,237,185 

2,267,814 

0-28 years old 

352,645 

352,645 

705,290 

29 years and older 

677,984 

884,540 

1,562,524 


For the age groups over 28 years this corresponds to a male/female ratio 
of 43.4/56.6, which is far better than the overall Soviet ratio (1959) of 
38.4/61.6 for those aged 30 years and more. 7 

In any case, the age groups which participated actively in both world 
wars showed a gap of 200,000 in favor of the fair sex. Several tens of 
thousands of this difference, no doubt, must be attributed to the lower life 
expectancy of men; further tens of thousands are accounted for by World 
War One. The Second World War cannot be responsible for very many more 
than 100,000 men killed in action. 

As mentioned above, Zionist sources put the number of Jews who died in 
the Soviet armed forces at at least 200,000. It is obvious that the Soviet 
census of 1959 did not register the Jewish population in its entirety; other¬ 
wise we would have found more than 100,000 or maybe even 125,000 male 
casualties of WWII. 

The following facts crystallize: 

1. More than half a million male Jews served in the Red Army during 
WWII. 

2. It would have been impossible to draft 600,000 soldiers from a popula¬ 
tion of only two million; therefore, the largest part of the Soviet-Jewish 
population must have been evacuated by the Soviets to areas outside the 
German sphere of influence. 

3. The contention that the Soviets removed only the male population of 
military age, leaving the elderly, women and children behind to be an¬ 
nihilated, is untenable; if so, the number of male Jews would have had to 
be far larger after the war than that of the Jewesses despite the many men 
killed in action. This, however, is not the case as is shown by the census 
of 1959 which - 14 years after the war - still evidenced a gender ratio of 
43% to 57% in favor of the female sex for the age groups subject to 
military duty in the Second World War. 

The Soviet census of 1959 thus can serve as proof that the mass evacuation 
of the Jewish population by the Soviets did indeed take place in 1941. At the 
same time it provides information on the relative size of losses incurred by 
Jews in the Red Army. 

How reliable is the Soviet census? The stigma of manipulation attaches 
to all Soviet statistics. But even leaving this argument aside, the greatest 


7 Statistisches Bundesamt. Statistisches Jahrbuch fur die Bundesrepublik Deutschland , Wies¬ 
baden, 1962, p. 29 . 






110 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


disadvantage must be seen in the manner in which the census was con¬ 
ducted. It was left up to each individual to register for statistical purposes 
under any nationality desired. In this way, the Soviets provided an oppor¬ 
tunity not only for the assimilated Jews but also for those who still main¬ 
tained ties to Judaism, not to appear to the outside world as Jews; in view of 
the anti-Semitic attitudes of large sections of the Slavic and Baltic popula¬ 
tions, many Jews tried to evade recognition by having themselves recorded 
as Russians, etc. 8 

Fortunately, other means exist for verification. During the 1970s a 
growing number of Jews left the Soviet Union for Israel. Contrary to the 
immigrants of the first post-war years - mainly from Europe - whose male/ 
female ratio among those aged 50-64 years averaged 49/51, 9 the elderly 
Jewish immigrants from the USSR in the years 1976-1979 recorded a male 
share of only 37-40%: 10 

1976 40% 

1977 37% 

1978 38% 

1979 37% 

In other words, the Jews arriving in Israel from the Soviet Union showed 
a gender ratio roughly in line with that indicated by the Soviet census of 
1959. 

We can summarize as follows: The Soviet census of 1959 is reasonably 
correct as far as the gender and probably also the age distribution of the 
Soviet Jews is concerned, but it vastly understates the total number of Soviet 
Jews. 

The figures published before 1959 in post-war literature of about two 
million surviving Jews in the Soviet Union are by no means based on official 
Soviet statistics. The way this number was “created” originally is described 
by the Year Book : 11 

Statistics concerning the Russian Jews were meager and not always reliable 
even before the war. [...] Pieced together from a wide variety o/ unofficial So¬ 
viet data and other sources, available information is necessarily fragmentary> 
and often hypothetical. There is no adequate basis for presenting a complete 
picture of present-day Soviet Jewry or assessing the far-reaching changes 
caused by the war and the period ofpost-war reconstruction. [...] 


8 AJYB, 1971, Vol. 72, p. 402-405. 

9 Israel. The Central Bureau of Statistics and Economic Research. Statistical Abstract of Israel 
1951/52, No. 3, Table 9, p. 27: Between May 15, 1948, and Dec. 31, 1951, 77,536 Jewish 
immigrants aged 50-64 were registered; of these, 49% were male. 

10 Ibid., Central Bureau of Statistics. Statistical Abstract of Israel 1977, Tables V/5 in (No. 28, p. 
125), 1978 (No. 29, p. 139), 1979 (No. 30, p. 138) and 1980 (No. 31, p. 136). 

AJYB, 1947, Vol. 49, p. 393-397. 


li 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


111 


In 1939-40 the eastern part of Poland, Bessarabia and Bukovina, and the Baltic 
states were incorporated into the USSR. [...] the total number of Jews within the 
boundaries of the Soviet Union before the outbreak of the Russo-German war in 
June 1941 can therefore be taken as about 5,500,000, including about 350,000 
war-refugee Polish Jews. Corliss Lamont (The Peoples of the Soviet Union, 
Harcourt, Brace & Co., New York, 1946) estimates the number of Soviet Jews at 
this period as 5,300,000, exclusive of non-Soviet refugees. 

But these figures by themselves contribute little to an estimate of present Jewish 
population of the Soviet Union. For this we would have to know not only the 
number of those who lost their lives as a result of Nazi atrocities, but the birth 
rate of the Soviet Jews, the number of Jewish soldiers who fell during the war, 
mortality’ among those deported and evacuated to Central Asia and Siberia, and 
the scope of postwar repatriation to Poland and Rumania. Only on the last of 
these points, however, do we have accurate information. Of about 350,000 Jews 
from Eastern and Central Poland who sought refuge in the Soviet zone in 
1939-40, the vast majority’ were deported by the Soviet authorities to Sibena, 
Central Asia, etc. (a substantial number to concentration camps). It must be 
emphasized that these people went as compulsory exiles, not as refugees. A few 
thousand left the USSR with the Polish army evacuated to Iran in 1942, ap¬ 
proximately 150,000 returned to Poland in 1946, and only a few thousand 
elected to stay in the USSR. The remainder - about 200,000 - probably died 
there. 

The most conspicuous discrepancies concern the estimated number of victims of 
the German mass-murders. These estimates range between 1,500,000 (Corliss 
Lamont, op. cit.) and 3,000,000 (Jacob Lestschinsky). Only an insignificant 
percentage of Jews (perhaps only 1 per cent) who remained in the territories 
overrun by the Germans managed to escape alive. The number of Jews evacu¬ 
ated from these territories prior to the German occupation is, therefore, ex¬ 
ceedingly important, but this cannot be accurately determined. It seems certain 
that the optimistic estimates published outside the Soviet Union both during the 
war and at its close were exaggerated. The German occupation of the Baltic 
states, the Ukraine and White Russia -all areas with large, concentrated Jewish 
settlements -proceeded very quickly, and the Soviet transportation system was 
unable to carry out the evacuation speedily enough, nor on a sufficiently large 
scale. Many evacuation transports were overtaken by the swift German offen¬ 
sive. 

Kulischer, in his study The Displacement of Population in Europe (International 
Labor Office, Montreal, 1943), estimates that 1,100,000 Jews from the pre-1939 
territory of the Soviet Union, 30,000 from the Baltic States, and 500,000 from 
Western Bielorussia and Western Ukraine, were evacuated into unoccupied 
Soviet territories. In this latter figure he includes those forcibly deported in 
1939-1940. Others consider these figures excessive. 

These discrepancies naturally lead to different estimates as to the number of 
Jews living in Russia. Even Dr. Frank Lorimer of Princeton, an outstanding 
authority, in his work, The Population of the Soviet Union: History and Pro- 


112 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


spects (Geneva, League of Nations, 1946), does not venture such an estimate. 
Unofficial Soviet publications mention 2,500,000 as the present [1947] Jewish 
population of the USSR. This figure, which is also Kulischer’s estimate, [Res¬ 
cue, July-August 1946), appears to be exaggerated. [...] These unofficial esti¬ 
mates are severely criticized by the Jewish economist Jacob Lestschinsky. Ac¬ 
cording to his analysis, the total number of Jews within the present Soviet 
boundaries does not exceed 1,500,000 [The New Leader, March 8, 1947, New 
York). He claims to have calculated, on the basis of unofficial Soviet infor¬ 
mation, that the maximum number of Jews living in the 60 major settlements of 
European Russia is 800,000. To the smaller settlements of the European part of 
the USSR, Lestschinsky ascribes a figure of less than 100,000 Jews; to the Asi¬ 
atic parts, 500-600,000 Jews. Thus he arrives at his total of 1,500,000 Jews in 
the Soviet Union. 

This figure, when compared to the 5,500,000 Jews on Soviet soil before the 
outbreak of the war in 1941, shows a difference of4,000,000. To explain these 
missing 4,000,000 Jews, Lestschinsky estimates that about 200,000 Jewish Red 
Army men lost their lives in the fighting, and about 500,000 Jews died in Siberia 
and Central Asia (principally from among the deported and evacuated). It would 
thus follow that the Germans massacred more than 3,000,000 Soviet Jews. 
Lestschinsky’s figures are also, obviously, hypothetical. 

The Research Department of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee 
in New York estimates the present number of Soviet Jews as 1,800,000. This 
includes the Asiatic provinces, but is exclusive of the Baltic states [Lithuania, 
Latvia, Estonia] where there are reported to be 32,500 Jews. (The pre-war 
Jewish population of these countries was 255,000.) 

The estimates of the JDC appear to be closest to the facts; however, until the 
publication of official, reliable statistics, the actual present Jewish population of 
the USSR cannot be definitely determined. 

In the following year’s issue the Year Book wrote again: 12 

[...] neither the Russian-Jewish organizations nor the general USSR statistics 
contain information on this very important subject. Our estimates, based on a 
careful study of Russian and Jewish material concerning persons evacuated to 
the unoccupied part of the country [...] 

Here is the confirmation of a leading Zionist publication that the information 
on Soviet Jewry is fragmentary at best, that the number of Jews supposedly 
killed by the Nazis is totally unknown, and that the guesswork about the 
number of Jewish survivors in the Soviet Union has led to great differences 
of opinion and figures of a purely speculative character. It is even admitted 
that the number of only two million or fewer surviving Jews rests on two 
hypotheses'. First, the Germans allegedly killed most of the Jews who re¬ 
mained behind in German-occupied territory. Secondly, it is assumed that 
only a small part of the Jewish population managed to escape. The “esti- 


12 


Ibid., 1949, Vol. 50, p. 696. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


113 


mates” for the number of the deported supposedly have been arrived at by a 
“careful study” of Russian and Jewish material on the number of people 
evacuated to the unoccupied territories. The lack of diligence applied be¬ 
comes obvious when one observes that the enormous evacuation carried out 
by the Soviets in 1941 is simply denied. That’s how history is fabricated. 


Revised Estimates 

The number of two million surviving Jews in the Soviet Union is seen to 
be without foundation, as the “creators” of that figure freely admit. Still, 
they had to wait until 1959 for an official confirmation of this hypothetic 
figure when the Soviets conducted a census in 1959; the published figure of 
2,267,814 was not all that different from Zionist “estimates.” To be sure, it 
was known that the Soviet method of taking a census leads perforce to too 
low a Jewish population figure, but, said the Year Book, there is nothing one 
can do but accept it. It continued: 1. 

The question of the number of Jews in the Soviet Union was to a large extent 

answered by the publication of the January’ 1959 census of Soviet population. 

However, the following census of January 1970 recorded only a Jewish 
population of 2,151,300 - 117,000 fewer than eleven years before. 14 The 
Soviet demographer A.M. Maksimov commented, in the USSR there is 
going on “a process of fusion of nations which, under the conditions of a 
socialist society, has the character of friendship [...].” 

Shaken by this process of friendship, the Zionists noticed that the Soviets 
were engaged in having the Jews disappear statistically in a slow but steady 
manner. The Year Book objected: “[...] a ‘hidden’ Jew, or an assimilated 
Jew, remains a Jew and should be counted as such,” and “it is questionable 
whether one should accept improbable figures supplied by a not overly 
friendly source.” 15 An excellent question. In any case, the Year Book is 
again of the opinion that under the circumstances it is impossible to specify 
at present the exact number of Soviet Jews. 

To be sure, already prior to 1970 the press carried reports that there are 
probably more Jews in the USSR than “estimated” until then; but ever since 
about that year, reports are regularly being published which draw an entirely 
different picture of the numerical size of post-war Soviet Jewry. Among the 
most prominent was the Year Book, which admitted that well-informed 
Russian Jews in the USSR and Soviet emigrants continue to assert that there 


Ibid., 1961, Vol. 62, p.284. 
Ibid., 1971, Vol. 72, p. 403. 
Ibid., 1972, Vol. 73, p. 536. 



114 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


are up to 4,000,000 Jews in the Soviet Union. 16 Similar figures were men¬ 
tioned by the New York Times on January 22, 1975. 17 

Prof. Shapiro, who is in charge of the Jewish world demographic statis¬ 
tics published by the Year Book, wrote: 18 

The estimate of the emigrants is also important since all of them (with whom I 
spoke) suggest a more or less similar figure, which they say is current among the 
Jews in Russia. 

The Judaica, too, behind which there are Zionist personalities of the stature 
of an Arthur J. Goldberg and Dr. Nahum Goldmann, speaks of 3 to 4 million 
Jews in the Soviet Union at the beginning of the 1970s. 19 

Prof. Michael Zand, who is teaching at the Hebrew University in Jeru¬ 
salem today and who left the Soviet Union after a great many difficulties 
some years ago, said, according to a report by the Israeli newspaper Beth 
Shalom, that there are still 4.5 million Jews in the USSR as far as he knows. 
In his opinion, the official statistics of the Soviet Union reflect merely those 
Jews who are willing to acknowledge their Jewish nationality. 20 

We should note at this point that a Soviet census does not represent the 
official Soviet version on the question of the actual number of the Jewish 
population. In that society the purpose of a census is not at all to determine 
the numerical size of a particular people in an ethnic sense. It was possible, 
for instance, that, due to a change in the definition of nationality between 
1926 and 1939, the share of the Russians increased from 52.9% of the total 
population to 58.1 % despite the fact that the fertility of the Russians was not 
only below the national, but also below the Ukrainian and the White Russian 
averages. Following the territorial expansion in the years 1939/1940, the 
Soviet Union acquired another 25 million inhabitants - Ukrainians, White 
Russians, peoples from the Baltic countries, Rumanians (but only very few 
Russians). One should have expected, therefore, that the Russian share 
would have dropped back to about 51% before the outbreak of the Ger¬ 
man-Soviet war. Since then the Russian surplus of births over deaths was 


16 Ibid., 1977, Vol. 78, p. 432. 

17 New York Times, 1/22/1975, quoted in AJYB, 1976, Vol. 77, p. 460. 

Is Private letter dated January 3, 1980, from Prof. Leon Shapiro who is in charge of population 
statistics at the American Jewish Year Book. 

19 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 9, p. 542. 

20 Kern, Erich. Die Tragodie derjuden, Preussisch Oldendorf, 1979, p. 260. With letter dated 
8/15/1980 Prof. Zand (Hebrew University of Jerusalem) was requested to confirm the figure of 
4.5 million in the Soviet Union ascribed to him; since no answer was forthcoming, another 
letter was sent to him on 1/2/1981. Thereupon, Prof. Zand answered with letter dated 2/13/1981 
asking to have the question sent to him on 8/15/1980 repeated; he promised to reply if at all 
possible. Unfortunately, he failed to do so in spite of repeated reminders (letters dated 
2/25/1981 and 6/18/1981). 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


115 


below the average, yet still, the census of 1959 recorded the Russian share to 
be 54.6% of the Soviet population. 21 

It is evident that the “Russians” as shown in the Soviet census include 
millions of people of White Russian, Ukrainian, Jewish and other origin. 
Small wonder that other official publications - e.g. Jews in the Soviet Union, 
Moscow, 1967, p. 45, by Solomon Rabinovich - speak of 3 million Jews in 
the USSR. 22 

Unfortunately, Western Zionist circles still have not come around to 
accepting “for the record” a higher estimate of the Soviet Jewish population. 
Nor is this very surprising, because the overdue correction would, of course, 
invite inconvenient questions. 

Nevertheless, one can observe a slow, almost unnoticeable turn of atti¬ 
tude, if one is willing to scratch below the surface. The Judaica, for exam¬ 
ple, published under the guidance and cooperation of prominent Jewish and 
Israeli personalities, 23 cites the Jewish population figure in the usual manner 
as published in Soviet statistics for 1970, but then arrives at the significant 
conclusion that hundreds of thousands of Soviet Jews were not recorded as 
Jews during the Soviet census; it continued, “for more correct estimates, see 
articles on individual cities.” 24 

Well, we did; and we found fifteen Soviet cities for which Jewish pop¬ 
ulation figures were published in the Soviet census of 1959 and for which 
the Judaica listed corresponding Zionist estimates as well. The comparison 
is depicted in Table 10. 

According to the Soviet census of 1959, these fifteen cities included 
906,479 Jewish inhabitants, or 40% of all “official” 2.27 million Soviet 
Jews. The estimates of the Judaica arrive at 1,493,000 Jews for the same 
fifteen cities - 65% more than recorded officially. In other words, among ten 
Soviet Jews only six acknowledged their Jewish nationality at the time the 
census was taken. Now, there is no reason why the Jews living in other So¬ 
viet cities behaved very differently; the logical conclusion is that leading 
Zionist circles put the number of Soviet Jews in 1970 at 3% million (i.e. 
165% of 2.27 million). 

Considering that cautious estimates for the Soviet-Jewish population are 
still in the Zionist interest, one may presume that leading and knowledgeable 
world Zionist personalities themselves believe that the real size of the Jew- 


- 1 Fortune , New York, 8/14/1978, p. 158. 

2 “ Rabinovich, Solomon. Jews in the Soviet Union , Moscow, 1967, p. 45; in: S. Ettinger, “The 
Jews in Russia at the Outbreak of the Revolution,” The Jews in Soviet Russia since 1917 (Lionel 
Kochan, ed.), London, 1970, p. 32. 

23 Research Foundation of the Encyclopaedia Judaica'. Ambassador Arthur J. Goldberg, Hon. 
Chairman; Dr. Nahum Goldmann, Hon. President; Dr. Joseph J. Schwartz; Prof. Salo W. 
Baron, Consulting Editor. 

24 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 14, p. 482. 



116 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Table 10: Jewish Population in 15 Post-War Soviet Cities 


City 

Soviet Census 
of 1959 

Estimates of the 
Judaica for 1970 

Difference 

Moscow 

239,246 

500,000 

260,754 

Leningrad 

162,344 

200,000 

37,656 

Kiev 

154,000 

200,000 

46,000 

Odessa 

102,200 

180,000 

77,800 

Kishinev 

42,934 

60,000 

17,066 

Minsk 

38,842 

55,000 

16,158 

Riga 

30,267 

38,000 

7,733 

Baku 

26,263 

80,000 

53,737 

Rostov 

21,500 

30,000 

8,500 

Donetsk (Stalino) 

21,000 

40,000 

19,000 

Gorki 

17,827 

30,000 

12,173 

Nikolaev 

15,800 

20,000 

4,200 

Shitomir 

14,800 

25,000 

10,200 

Dnepropetrovsk 

13,256 

25,000 

11,744 

Proskurov 

6,200 

10,000 

3,800 

15 Cities 

906,479 

1,493,000 

586,521 


(100%) 

(165%) 

(65%) 


Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica, Jerusalem, 1972 (div. volumes) 

ish population in the Soviet Union is as high as 4 (four) million! One ex¬ 
ample of the restraint with which these estimates for Soviet cities listed on 
Table 10 have been arrived at, is offered by another unsuspicious Zionist 
source, the American Jewish Year Book: It put the Jewish population of 
Leningrad, for instance, as high as 325,000 in 1963 already; this is 60% 
more than admitted to by the Judaica, and 100% more than the number 
found by the Soviet census of 1959. 25 

The complete lack of credibility for the official Soviet statistics on the 
number of Soviet Jews can also be demonstrated by the example of Mos¬ 
cow. In 1940, this Russian city contained at least 400,000 Jews (see Second 
Chapter), but in 1959 only 239,000 were reported by the census. This is 
strange. The Germans never occupied Moscow, and the attractiveness of this 
hub of Soviet life with its incomparable career possibilities more likely than 
not increased during these decades. A reduction of the Jewish minority by 
40% (!) between 1940 and 1959 is completely out of the question. To the 
contrary, reinforced by a migration to this city from other sections of the 
country, Moscow’s Jewish population should have been expected to in¬ 
crease, and even the Judaica’s estimate of 500,000 Jews in 1970 appears 
conservative. 

According to the calculations of this study, the USSR was inhabited by 
4.3 million Jews at the end of World War Two. Is there a logical explanation 


25 


AJYB , 1962, Vol. 63, p. 350. 







W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


117 


for a possible reduction of this number to 4 million or less during the 25 
years between 1945 and 1970? There are many indications that the Soviet 
Jews suffered indeed a drastic numerical decline during the post-war period. 
The huge war losses among men and the enormous children mortality rate in 
the course of the Soviet evacuations in the years 1940/1941 were mentioned 
already. These developments were compounded by the high degree of ur¬ 
banization (96%) of Soviet Jews. 26 

Another factor - probably the most important today - for a negative 
growth balance is the trend toward assimilation through mixed marriages; 
this development set in long before WWII, and grew in strength after the 
war. As a rule, the children born to these couples are lost to the Jewish na¬ 
tionality. 27 In 1926 already 26% of all Jewish males living outside the 
Ukraine and White Russia married gentile women; in the latter two prov¬ 
inces, the percentage was only 4.6 and 2.0%. 28 

The shift of the Jewish population center from the traditionally anti-Se¬ 
mitic regions (Ukraine and White Russia) to the north and east persisted ever 
since the Revolution, and was further reinforced by the mass deportations of 
1940/1941. The Year Book complained: 26 

According to a reliable source, intermarriages involving Jews in Moscow and in 
Leningrad had reached about 50 per cent in the early 1960s. The same source 
indicated that in the new cities of Siberia - many with a young academic pop¬ 
ulation - the rate remained extremely high. 

Of course, mixed marriages do not change the nationality of either partner. 
But if the children from these marriages are lost to the ethnic minority, the 
effects on the natural growth of this ethnic group are the same as if those 
marrying outside their group remain childless. 

If, as the Judaica maintains, 20% of the Soviet Jews of the postwar pe¬ 
riod lived in Leningrad and Moscow, 30 where every second member of the 
Jewish community married outside his nationality, the effect is the same as 
if 10% of all young Jews of marriageable age remain without children. Zi¬ 
onist literature claims, however, that these two cities are not unique in this 
respect. In the 1920s the percentage of mixed marriages involving Jews was 
less than 5% in the traditionally anti-Semitic regions of the Soviet Union. 
Assuming that the native population of these non-Russian areas continues to 
exhibit those attitudes even today, although possibly in a milder form, the 
share of mixed marriages among the Jews living there - about 45% of all 
Soviet Jews - might have risen to, let us say, ten per cent. 

26 Ettinger, S. “The Jews in Russia at the Outbreak of the Revolution,” The Jews in Soviet Russia 
since 1917 (Lionel Kochan, ed.), London, 1970, p. 35. 

27 AJYB, 1976, Vol. 77, p.472. 

28 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia , Vol. 9, p. 670. 

29 AJYB , 1973, Vol. 74, p. 481. 

30 I.e. 700,000 (see Table 8) of about 3-4,000,000 (see footnote 19). 



118 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Conceding furthermore that the Jews living outside the traditional set¬ 
tlements in the south and west, but excluding Moscow and Leningrad, did 
not experience the enormous mixed marriage rate of the two metropolitan 
areas, one can use a rate of 30% as a starting point; in this case, the incidence 
of mixed marriages among the Soviet Jews might appear as follows: 

Percentage Percentage “Childless” 

Region of Jews in the of mixed Jewish mixed 

USSR_marriages marriages partners 


Moscow and Leningrad 

20% 

50% 

10.0% 

Other areas in the north and 

35% 

30% 

10.5% 

the east 




Ukraine, White Russia, Mol- 

45% 

10% 

4.5% 


davia and Baltic area _ 

25.0% 

Following this hypothetic example, every fourth Jew in the Soviet Union 
remains “without children” - at least as far as the growth of his nationality is 
concerned - because he is marrying outside his ethnic group and because the 
children bom to these mixed couples are lost to the Jewish minority as a rule. 
Now, the purpose of this exercise was not at all to pinpoint the exact per¬ 
centage of “childless” Jews (as defined); it does not matter at all whether the 
average percentage of mixed marriages among Soviet Jews is closer to 20 or 
30% or even higher. The fact is that mixed marriages are extremely common 
among the Jews of the USSR. Inasmuch as the highly urbanized Soviet Jews 
had a preference for the small family in the 1920s already (as shown by Prof. 
Lorimer), and total births in those days barely managed to cover natural 
mortality, one has to presume that the enormously strong trend toward 
mixed marriages in the post-war period must have resulted in large annual 
excesses of deaths over births. 

The Israeli demographer and professor U.O. Schmelz of the Hebrew 
University in Jerusalem reported that only 7% of the Jews in the Russian 
Soviet Federated Socialist Republic (RSFSR) belonged to the age group “0 
to 10 years,” and 26.5% were sixty years and older - a very high “aging” 
indeed. For the sake of comparison: the Federal Republic of Germany, 
which does not have a “young” population, had percentages of 13.5 and 
19.7%, respectively, in 1977. The extent of “aging” of the Soviet Jews and 
their lower birth rate is shown in the table below: 31 


31 


Schmelz, U.O. "New Evidence on Basic Issues in the Demography of Soviet Jews,” The Jewish 
Journal of Sociology, London, Vol. XVI, No. 2, December 1974, p. 214. 






W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


119 


Jews in the Russian Federated Republic (RSFSR) 
Distribution by Age - 1970 

Age Group 

Share (%) 

Average Share 
per Year 

0-10 years 

6.9 

0.63 

11-15 years 

4.3 

0.86 

16-19 years 

3.9 

0.98 

20-29 years 

10.9 

1.09 

30-39 years 

15.1 

1.51 

40-49 years 

16.1 

1.61 

50-59 years 

16.3 

1.63 

60 years and older 

26.5 

? 

Total 

100.0 



Considering that the men in the age groups from 40 to 59 years had 
suffered huge losses during the war, their share would have been even larger 
without this external effect. It is fairly obvious that the decline of births is 
not a post-war phenomenon but that it started decades before the war. In the 
1960s, finally, the birth rate seems to have fallen to 6 per 1,000 Jewish 
persons; but in order just to maintain their population size, the share of the 
youngest age groups would have had to be more than twice as large! 

The very large proportion of the older age groups indicates also a rather 
high natural mortality rate. Prof. Schmelz wrote that the natural decrease of 
the Soviet-Jewish population amounted to 1 (one) per cent per year between 
1959 and 1970! The above age distribution shows furthermore that a pop¬ 
ulation decline must have been recorded in the 1950s already. And there are 
no signs whatsoever that this situation has improved during the past ten 
years. Even if there had been a surplus of births over deaths right after the 
war, this must have been of a very short duration due to the catastrophic 
losses of men in the war and the difficult post-war conditions; this is defi¬ 
nitely indicated by the relative size of the age group “20 to 29 years.” 

The size of the average excess of births over deaths in the post-war pe¬ 
riod cannot be determined with the data available. Prof. Schmelz argues that 
the Jewish population of the other Soviet republics registered essentially the 
same age distribution as the RSFSR. All we kn ow is that since 1945 the 
Jewish population must have suffered substantial negative average growth 
rates. Whether this deficit averaged a rate below or above minus 0.5% is 
impossible to determine, given the paucity of Soviet statistics. 

As mentioned above, the number of Soviet Jews at the end of WWII must 
have been 4.3 million at most. Applying various average negative growth 
rates for the period since 1945, and accounting for the roughly 250,000 







120 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Jewish emigrants between 1970 and 19 8 0 32 - before 1970 emigration was 
negligible - we obtain the following alternative developments: 


Average decrease per 
annum since 1945 

Jewish Population in the Soviet Union 

1970 

1980 

a) -0.3 % 

3.98 million 

3.61 million 

b) -0.4 % 

3.88 million 

3.48 million 

c) -0.5 % 

3.77 million 

3.35 million 

d) -0.6 % 

3.69 million 

3,23 million 


Obviously, it is not just a possibility, but there is a high degree of prob¬ 
ability that the Soviet-Jewish population fell by more than 10% below 4.3 
million by 1970. This figure is completely in accord with statements by 
Soviet Jews on the size of their ethnic group in Russia; Prof. Shapiro from 
the Year Book confirmed this in writing. 

Even the Judaica, whose estimates of the Jewish inhabitants of indi¬ 
vidual Soviet cities point to a total population of just under 4 million, con¬ 
cludes that this number of present-day Jews in the USSR is not the result of a 
positive natural growth; it wrote: 33 

Moreover, there are fragmentary indications and a general likelihood that the 
growth of the Jewish group in the U.S.S.R. since the War has been small, if there 
has been any at all (because of aging, enhanced by war losses; low fertility; 
intermarriage; assimilation pressure by the majority population; etc.) 

This is putting it very cautiously. The Judaica could have said as well that at 
the end of WWII there were at least as many Jews in the Soviet Union as 
there are today, probably even more - over 4 million! 

In this connection we received an interesting admission from Dr. Nahum 
Goldmann, the one-time chairman of the World Jewish Congress. He de¬ 
clared without qualifications that the Jewish population group in the USSR 
numbered about three to three-and-one-half million people in 19 8 0. 34 This 
figure corresponds to a population size which might have been expected 
considering the emigration of a quarter million Soviet Jews in the 1970s and 
a negative growth rate of at least 0.5% per year since 1970. Now, since he is 
probably one of the last persons who would tend to exaggerate the size of the 
Soviet-Jewish population, we are confronted with the following facts: In 
1970, the number of Soviet Jews was probably somewhat less than 4 mil¬ 
lion, and today it is around 3.5 million, after several hundreds of thousands 
of Jews had left the USSR in the interim period. 


32 New York Times (The). “What Price a Soviet Jew?”, in International Herald Tribune, Paris, 
March 6, 1981, p. 2. 

j3 Encyclopaedia Judaica 1973 Year Book, Jerusalem, 1974, p. 190. 

34 In reply to a personal letter dated Feb. 5, 1981, Dr. Nahum Goldmann replied in writing through 
his secretary on Feb. 13, 1981, that “the Jewish population of the Soviet Union counted ap¬ 
proximately three to three-and-one-half million persons.” 







W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


121 


The Jewish Cost of Lives and Overall Soviet Losses 

Obviously, our calculated number of 4.3 million surviving Soviet Jews is 
confirmed by respectable and knowledgeable Jewish sources. The remain¬ 
ing question is thus how the losses suffered by the Jews in the USSR com¬ 
pare to the overall losses of the Soviet population. The American engineer 
John Scott, who worked for years in Stalin’s armaments industry and was 
married to a Russian woman, published a book upon his return from Mag¬ 
nitogorsk. There he describes how the inhuman Soviet “work methods” 
caused millions of men and women in Siberia to die of hunger and cold 
while further millions succumbed to the unspeakable living conditions. 35 

Following the huge losses of the Red Army, the Soviets mopped industry 
ruthlessly for men needed in the formation of armies which were to replace 
those annihilated. In their place, women were mobilized who had to work 
day and night in two shifts like Stakhanovites. In order to muster the last bit 
of energy, the so-called “Marshall-Plan” - honoring Stalin’s self-appoint¬ 
ment to Marshall of the Soviet Union - was initiated: Every Soviet resident 
aged 14 to 70, regardless of sex, was obligated to double his output, even if 
he was working at maximum capacity already. People died like flies. 36 

Willkie, who visited the Soviet Union in September 1942, described the 
conditions he found there as follows: 37 

Food in Russia this Winter will be scarce-perhaps worse than scarce. [... ] Fuel 
will be little known this Winter in millions of Russian homes. Clothing except for 
the army and essential war workers is nearly gone. Many vital medical supplies 
just don’t exist. Russian women by the millions side by side with their children - 
some of them as young as eight and ten - are manning machines in the war 
factories and running the farms. Every able-bodied man is in the army or giving 
the maximum hours of hard work [...] 

The magnitude of this human tragedy was reported in 1943 by Paul Holt, the 
Moscow correspondent of the London newspaper Daily Express. Returning 
to London after a 15 month stay in the Soviet Union, Holt wrote that until 
then the Soviets had lost 30 million fallen and wounded soldiers, prison¬ 
ers-of-war and civilians who had died of hunger and illness/ 8 It is not 
known how this huge figure should be divided between military and civilian 
losses, but certainly the bulk must be attributed to the Red Army. At that 
time, 5.4 million Red Army men were taken prisoners-of-war by the Ger- 


35 Scott, John. Jenseits des Ural, Stockholm, 1944, p. 12 (Engl, original: Behind the Urals, Bos¬ 
ton, 1942). 

36 Deutsche Zeitung im Ostland, Riga/Latvia, "Neuer Stalin-Terror,” No. 77, 3/18/1943, p. 7. 

37 New York Times {The), “Willkie’s Statement About Russia’s Needs,” 9/27/1942, p. 3. 

3!i Daily Express, “Your Questions about Russia - Answered by Paul Holt,” London, (a few days 
before) May 6, 1943. 



122 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


mans, 39 and a similar number must be allowed for the fallen soldiers. 
Adding several millions of wounded, there remain 10-15 million civilians 
who died of hunger, epidemics and cold. Further losses running into the 
millions occurred until the end of the war. 

We noted in the Third Chapter that the total population in the Soviet 
Union numbered at least 202 million at the beginning of the war in June 
1941. We do not know its size as of May 1945, since the first post-war 
census was taken in 1959, followed by a second in 1970. Between 1959 and 
1970, the Soviet population increased by 33 million from 209 million to 242 
million - a growth rate of 1.3% p.a. But, inasmuch as the Soviet peoples, 
too, experienced a decline of their fertility following the first baby boom 
years after WWII, one has to presume that the natural growth rate was 
somewhat higher between 1945 and 1959 - let us say, 1.5%. This means that 
there must have been an increase by 39 million in those 14 years. In other 
words, there could have been no more than 170 million people in the USSR 
by the end of the war - 32 million fewer than at the beginning of the war. 

Red Army losses during WWII are said to have totaled 13.6 million; 40 
accordingly, 18.4 million dead must have been suffered by the civilian 
population. The respective figures for the Soviet Jews were 200,000 and 
830,000 for a total of 1,030,000. In relation to the total population, the So¬ 
viet Jews registered a rate of military losses of “only” 3.8% (200,000 of 5.3 
million) compared to the horrendous 6.7% (13.6 million of 202 million) of 
the overall Soviet population. Obviously, the Soviet Jews were engaged to a 
much smaller degree in the actual fighting, because they were sorely needed 
in the armaments industry. These facts explain why the census of 1959 
showed the overall Soviet population having a considerably smaller per¬ 
centage of men (of the war generation) than was true for the Jewish segment, 
namely, 38.4% to 43.4%. 

However, the Jews registered a much higher overall and civilian loss: 


Civilian losses of the 

- entire Soviet population 

- entire Jewish population 

Total losses of the 

- entire Soviet population 

- entire Jewish population 


9.1% (18.4 million of 202 million) 
15.7% (830,000 of 5.3 million) 

15.8% (32 million of 202 million) 
19.4% (1,030,000 of 5.3 million) 


This method of analysis does not pay attention to the fact that large por¬ 
tions of the Slavic and Baltic populations, but only relatively few Jews, 
remained behind in German-controlled territory. We found only about 65 
million people in the occupied areas, including almost three-quarters of a 


39 Kauener Zeitung, “18 Millionen Gesamtverluste der Sowjets,”No. 149, 6/28/1943, p. 1. 

40 Die Tat, Zurich, "Die erschtittemde Bilanz zweier Weltkriege,” No. 18, 11/8/1955, p. 2. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


123 


million Jews. Looking at it from the other side, 137 million Soviet residents 
were under Soviet domination, including 4.61 million Jews outside the 
German sphere of influence. Comparing this Soviet-controlled population to 
the human losses, one obtains the following figures: 


Civilian losses of the 

- Soviet population outside the 
German sphere of influence 

- Jewish population outside the 
German sphere of influence 

Total losses of the 

- Soviet population outside the 
German sphere of influence 

- Jewish population outside the 
German sphere of influence 


13.4% (18.4 million of 137 million) 
18.0% (830,000 of 4.61 million) 

23.4% (32 million of 137 million) 
22.3% (1,030,000 of 4.61 million) 


Thus, while the military losses of the non-Jewish population were con¬ 
siderably larger than those of the Soviet Jews, the civilian losses of the Jews 
and non-Jews who remained under Soviet control showed the opposite de¬ 
velopment. Reasons for this phenomenon are not difficult to find: Already in 
1940, the Soviets deported a relatively large segment of the Jews from the 
western territories to Siberia; of the three-quarters of a million Jews in 
question, hundreds of thousands died on the way, and many others of these 
“foreign elements” lost their lives in Siberian labor and concentration camps 
due to cold, undernourishment and physical exhaustion. Children especially 
were affected by this barbarous treatment. In the case, of the evacuated 
Slavic population in 1941, large portions were men of military age; as a 
result, the proportion of the very old and children was relatively small. Both 
factors affected the disproportionately larger civilian losses among the So¬ 
viet Jews. 

Yet, it is interesting that the total losses of the population remaining 
under Soviet control were just about equal for Jews and non-Jews - roughly 
23%! However, since Stalin had evacuated about 80% of the Jewish popu¬ 
lation, but only a fourth of the other, mainly Slavic residents, the Jewish total 
losses were noticeably higher (20%) than those of the entire Soviet popula¬ 
tion (16%). In short, the massive Soviet evacuation during WWII proved to 
be the single most important cause of the huge human losses suffered by 
Soviet Jewry. 

The calculated number of 4.3 million surviving Soviet Jews thus turns 
out to be quite realistic: Statements by Dr. Nahum Goldmann, the Judaica 
and the Soviet-Jewish dissidents confirm it. For the purpose of this analysis 
it is of no significance whether the actual number is closer to 4 or 4 A mil¬ 
lion. Whatever the case may be, the Jewish losses are quite in line with the 


124 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


decimation experienced by the entire Soviet population as a result of Stalin’s 
evacuation, forced labor and battle strategies. 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


PART II 


THE WESTWARD DRIVE 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


127 


SIXTH CHAPTER: 

The Jewish Fate in German-Occupied Europe 


France, Benelux Countries, Denmark, Norway and Italy 

The victory of German arms in the West affected almost half a million 
Jews in Denmark, Norway, Luxemburg, the Netherlands, Belgium and 
France, including more than 90,000 refugees, according to the American 
Jewish Committee. 1 Reitlinger arrives at a similar figure: 2 

In the six weeks between May 10th and June 25th, 1940, not less than 350,000 

Jews of Western Europe passed under German ride . [...] a further 130,000 

Jews came indirectly under German orders in Vichy territory. 

If one adds the 8,000 Jews of Denmark and Norway to these 480,000 in 
France and the Benelux countries, one does indeed obtain the “nearly half a 
million” of the American Jewish Committee. 

Yet, some reservations are in order as far as the actual number of Jews in 
these countries is concerned. Before the outbreak of hostilities, Jewish ref¬ 
ugees from Greater Germany and eastern Europe were to be found in all 
western European countries. After the fighting erupted, many Jews - mainly 
foreigners - fled from Holland to Belgium. Native and other Jews living in 
Belgium escaped together with those from Holland to France; in many 
cases, they were rounded up by the Belgians, forcibly interned - affected 
were mainly male refugees with German passports - and transported by rail 
to France, where they were put in French concentration camps and subjected 
to terrible hardships, if we may believe Zionist reports. 3 The American 
Jewish Committee estimated the number of refugee Jews living in Belgium 
and in Holland before the “invasion” at 25,000 and 23,000, respectively. 
The total number of Jews escaping from the Benelux countries to France 
during the few weeks of fighting reached perhaps 30-40,000, but the reports 
differ greatly from each other. 

The number of Jews in France was augmented in November 1940 by an 
additional 10,000 German Jews deported from the Palatinate and Baden; it is 


' AJYB, 1940, Vol. 42, p.595. 

2 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 71. 

3 AJYB, 1941, Vol. 43, p.324. 



128 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


possible that up to 100,000 German, Czech and Polish Jews lived as refu¬ 
gees in France. 4 In turn, many Jews left France for other countries in the 
course of time: Switzerland, Portugal, Spain. The Institute of Jewish Affairs 
places the number of Jews who escaped from France until August 1943 at 
30,000. 5 

There are no precise pre-war figures available on the native Jewish 
population of France and the Benelux countries. Only Holland counted its 
Jews in the census of 1935, and found 111,917. 6 Estimates of Belgium’s, 
France’s and Luxemburg’s Jewish population for the pre-war period - ref¬ 
ugees from Germany and eastern Europe excluded - show great differences. 
In any case, the total number of Jews we are concerned with in the case of 
these four countries is 460,000 (i.e. 350,000 plus 130,000 plus 10,000 minus 
30,000). 

Denmark and Norway counted 8,000 Jews; of these, 7,000 fled to Swe¬ 
den in 1943. 7 Italy’s census of 1931 found 47,825 Jews, 8 but in 1938 the 
figure was much higher at 57,425, 9 because Italy, too, was a target of Jewish 
migration before the war. Until September 1943, when Germany occupied 
the peninsula after Italy’s defection, the country’s Jewish population had 
decreased by 9,000 to 48,000 as a result of flight and emigration (Switzer¬ 
land, North Africa, etc.). 10 In total, the number of Jews in these seven 
countries within the German sphere of influence reached 525,000 in 1941. 

If one can believe Reitlinger, the German authorities carried out the 
following deportations: 


Netherlands 

110,000 

Belgium 

25,437 

Luxemburg 

512 

France 

65,000 

Denmark and Norway 

893 

Italy 

10,271 


212,113 


Of these, the following returned: 


4 Ibid., p. 325. 

5 Institute of Jewish Affairs, Hitler's Ten-Year War, p. 265. 

6 AJYB, 1939, Vol. 41, p.585. 

7 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 349 and 351. 

8 AJYB, 1940, Vol. 42, p. 602. 

9 Ibid., 1939, Vol. 41, p. 585. 

10 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 352. 

11 Ibid., p. 329. 

12 Ibid., p. 494. 

Ibid., p. 87 and 494. 

Ibid., p. 328. 

Ibid., p. 349 and 351. 

Ibid., p. 495. 


16 




W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


129 


Netherlands 6,000 17 


Belgium 1,276 18 

France 2,800 19 


Italy 605 20 

-10,681 

Deported Jews (net) 

201,432 

According to Reitlinger these Jews survived: 


Netherlands 

36,500 21 

Belgium 

61,000 22 

Luxemburg 

500 23 

Denmark and Norway 

? 

France 

238,000 24 

Italy 

39,000 25 

Total surviving Jews 

375,000 

Reducing the total number of 525,000 Jews (1941) by the 7,000 who fled 
from Denmark and Norway and by the 9,000 Jews who escaped from Italy 
until September 1943, only 509,000 remain; if one subtracts from these the 

surviving 375,000 Jews, the number of “missing” 
134,000: 

Jews is reduced to “only” 

France and Benelux countries 

460,000 

Denmark and Norway 

8,000 

Italy 

57,000 

1941 total 

525,000 

deduct: 

Danish and Norwegian Jews in Sweden 7,000 

Escaped Italian Jews 9,000 

-16,000 


509,000 

Purported survivors 

-375,000 

“Missing” Jews 

134,000 

Reitlinger, however, asserts that he found at least 201,200, but at most 


210,200 “annihilated” Jews, and the Anglo-American Co mm ittee even 
claims to have discovered 341,000! 26 

The urban Jews of these western European countries showed all the 
characteristics typical of populations of large cities: Rising mortality rates 


17 

18 

19 

20 
21 
22 

23 

24 

25 

26 


Ibid., p. 329. 

Ibid., p. 494. 

Ibid., p. 328. 

Ibid., p. 495. 

Ibid., p. 329. 

Ibid., p. 342 and 344. 

Ibid., p. 494. 

Ibid., p. 328. 

Ibid., p. 352 and 495. 

Reitlinger, Final Solution , p. 501. 










130 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


and falling birth rates. These four countries - France, Holland, Belgium and 
Italy - are supposed to have had a total Jewish population of 400,000 in the 
early 1930s. Looking at this figure a little more closely, it begins to evapo¬ 
rate. The Universal published the following mortality figures (Norway, 
Denmark and Luxemburg were not listed, probably because of the small 
numerical size of their Jewish populations): 27 


France 1,500 

Netherlands 1,000 

Belgium 500 

Italy 500 


Applying a mortality rate of 1.1% per annum, the Jewish populations 
must have recorded the following sizes: 


France 

Netherlands 

Belgium 

Italy 


137,000 

91,000 

45,000 

45,000 

318,000 


It is unfortunate that the Universal rounded these numbers to a full 500. 
In the case of Belgium and Italy, the computed population size is somewhat 
lower than is usually given by Zionists, but they are still acceptable. For the 
Netherlands, the calculated figure of 91,000 compares with the census list¬ 
ing 112,000 - a large gap; but this may be explained by the fact that the 
mortality figure was rounded off to 1,000. 

As for France, it does not matter whether we round up or off, whether the 
mortality rate is pushed down to 0.9%, and whether the number of mortality 
cases per year is increased even to 1,700; the resulting population figure 
would always remain below 200,000. Since the mortality figures given for 
other countries by the Universal are generally acceptable, there is no reason 
why we should reject them in this instance. Consequently, one must con¬ 
clude that the estimates for the Jews of pre-war France - usually given as 
240,000-260,000 (excl. refugees) - are completely wrong and that France 
probably contained 50-100,000 fewer Jews when war broke out than certain 
people would like us believe. The only other explanation for this discrep¬ 
ancy is that tens of thousands of eastern European Jews had immigrated in 
France in the early 1930s - at a time when only few Jews had left Germany. 
If this is the case, we would have another confirmation for the mass emi¬ 
gration from eastern Europe as mentioned by the pro-Zionist Institute for 
Contemporary History. 


27 


Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 10, p. 36. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


131 


Greece and Yugoslavia 

Emigration has far exceeded the positive growth rate for Greek Jews ever 
since the turn of the 19th to the 20th century. The result was a continuous 
decrease in the number of Jews in Greece. This persistent emigration pat¬ 
tern, reinforced by economic misery, probably caused the Jewish population 
to drop further since the census of 1931 found 67,200 Jews. 28 Precise fig¬ 
ures are not available for 1940. For this reason, we assumed only a small 
decline of the Jewish inhabitants to 65,000 during the 1930s. 

How many of them were deported? A report by the International Red 
Cross mentioned only that all male Jews between the ages 18 and 45 years 
were registered in July 1942 and, after a temporary incorporation in labor 
battalions, were deported to Germany in May 1943. 24 Nothing in the report 
was said about Jewesses being deported as well. At the end of the war, the 
Zionist scholar Hilberg claimed to have found only 12,000. 10 The rest of 
53,000 is said to have been deported. There is a good probability that this 
figure is untenable in view of the IRC Report, but we accepted it, because we 
want to base this analysis on Zionist sources, if at all possible. 

Hilberg insists that “ mass emigration from eastern Europe was easiest in 
non-Communist Greece and in the neighboring states of Yugoslavia and 
Bulgaria.” 31 Disregarding his own words, this splendid scholar begins to 
cite statistics which leave no room at all for emigration from these countries 
between 1945 and 1948. The assumption that tens of thousands emigrated 
between 1945 and 1948 - in part, already during the war - and that, finally, 
only 12,000 remained in Greece in the year 1948 probably is not far-fetched; 
and yet, these 12,000 of 1948 are listed as the only survivors. 

The Yugoslavian case is not very different. There, too, we find exagger¬ 
ations regarding the Jewish population size at the beginning of the war, 
understatements as to the number of survivors, an inflation of the number of 
deported and, lastly, no figures at all -not even estimates - on the number of 
those who emigrated right after the end of the hostilities by way of Italy or 
Austria to Palestine, overseas or to other European countries. 

The census of 1931 counted 68,405 Yugoslavian Jews. Reitlinger be¬ 
lieves that emigration could have decreased their number until the beginning 
of the war or, at least, allowed no further growth. 32 Communist post-war 
Yugoslavia’s census of 1946 found only 10,446 Jews. Hilberg, however, 


28 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 496. 

29 Butz, Hoax of the Twentieth Century, 1977, p. 137. 

30 Hilberg, Destruction of European Jews, p. 737. 

31 Ibid., p. 737. 

32 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 495-496. 



132 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


who apparently had finished his count prior to this “census,” discovered 
12,000 survivors. 33 

One can safely assume that many thousands succeeded in fleeing to Italy 
and from there to Palestine or overseas, as Yugoslavia, too, belonged to 
those countries where mass emigration was easiest after the war according to 
Hilberg. Reitlinger admits to this and says that the census of the Communist 
government of Yugoslavia hardly can be taken seriously, because many 
Jews had lived as gentiles during the war years and did not choose to reveal 
themselves as Jews after the war/ 4 

How many tens of thousands survived for the reasons mentioned and are 
listed as “missing” in the statistics? And how many emigrated right after the 
war? We do not know. The number of “missing” Jews for both of these 
countries adds up to 109,000: 


Greece (1939) 65,000 Jews 

Yugoslavia (1939)68,000 Jews 




133,000 Jews 

Purported survivors in 1945: 



Greece 

12,000 


Y ugoslavia 

12,000 

-24,000 Jews 

“Missing” 


109,000 Jews 


Germany and Austria 

As of January 1933, the number of Jews living in Germany was 
522,700. 35 If one adds the 16,600 Jews of the Saar, Memel and Danzig, their 
total number was 539,300. 36 281,900 emigrated from the “old” Reich until 
December 1939, 13,000 from the Saar, Memel and Danzig; another reduc¬ 
tion by 38,400 occurred because of an excess of deaths over births. As a 
result, only 206,000 remained in Germany (“old” Reich) at the end of 1939. 
The emigrants consisted mainly of the young; most of the elderly remained 
behind. 

The Jewish statistician Dr. Bruno Blau wrote in the Wiener Library 
Bulletin that the Reichsvereinigung Deutscher Juden (Reich Union of 
German Jews) published data in October 1941 according to which 164,000 
Jews were living in Germany at the time. 37 This was prior to the large de¬ 
portations of German Jews to Russia. Dr. Blau said that, of these remaining 
164,000, about 13,800 may have died of natural causes. It seems though that 


Hilberg, Destruction of European Jews , p. 670. 

34 Reitlinger, Final Solution , p. 496. 

35 AJYB , 1940, Vol. 42, p. 595-596. 

36 Ibid., p. 600. 

37 Reitlinger, Final Solution , p. 492. 






W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


133 


the mortality rate of 2.4% per annum for the 3 Vi years until the end of the 
war probably is too low. A population mainly composed of older people 
where births naturally were the exception simply must have had a much 
greater natural decrease/ 8 

Be that as it may. Applying the same rate of 2.4% p.a. to the period 1939 
to mid-1941, one obtains a natural excess of deaths over births of around 
7,000. Thus, if 206,000 Jews lived in Germany in 1939 (“old” Reich), the 
natural excess of deaths amounted to 7,000, and 10,000 were deported to 
France in November 1940, then another 25,000 must have emigrated prior to 
1941. 

19,000 Jews remained at liberty in Germany throughout the war, and a 
mere 8,000 are supposed to have returned from the various concentration 
camps after Germany’s defeat. 19 This leaves 123,000 German Jews unac¬ 
counted for. 

As for Austria, its Jewish population decreased since 1934 because of a 
negative net birth rate by 10,000 to 181,778 at the time of the unification of 
Austria with Germany in March 1938. 40 The ensuing massive emigration 
(117,000) and further excesses of deaths over births (8,000) reduced the 
Jewish population to 57,000 at the end of 1939. 35 

According to reports in the Zionist press, German statistics published on 
February 5, 1941, put the number of Austrian Jews at 50,000. 41 Applying 
Dr. Blau’s data for the “old” Reich to Austria, the difference of 7,000 must 
have consisted of a natural decrease by 2,000 and emigration by another 
5,000. Reitlinger, though, mentions 4,000 emigrants after 1939. For the 
remaining four war years, the mortality excess may well have amounted to a 
further 5,000 (2.4% p.a. of 50,000 in four years). 

As for the survivors, Reitlinger has this to say: 42 

[...] there survived on October 24th, 1947 [!], some 8,552 Austrian-born Jews in 

Vienna and a few hundred in Linz and other towns. ” 

But he, too, is silent on the number of Austrian Jews who left the camps after 
the war to proceed directly to Palestine and overseas. The development of 
the Jewish population in these two German countries appears as follows: 


38 According to Statistisches Jahrbuchfur die Bundesrepublik Deutschland, for example, the 
mortality rate (in West Germany) for 1977 was 3% p.a. for those aged 47 years and more. 

39 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 492. 

40 AJYB, 1940, Vol. 42, p. 595. 

41 Ibid., 1941, Vol. 43, p.663. 

4 “ Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 492. 



134 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Germany (1933) 
Austria (1934) 

Total 


539,000 

192,000 

731,000 


deduct: 

a) Development until 1939 
- Emigration: 


Germany (“old” Reich) 

Austria 

295,000 

117,000 

412,000 


- Excess of deaths over births: 
Germany (“old” Reich) 

Austria 

38,000 

18,000 

56,000 

-468,000 

- Total in 1939 



263,000 

b) Development 1939-1941 
- Emigration: 

Germany (“old” Reich) 

Austria 

25,000 

5,000 

30,000 


- Excess of deaths over births: 
Germany (“old” Reich) 

Austria 

- Deportation to France (1940) 

7,000 

2,000 

9,000 

10,000 

-49,000 

-Total 1941 



214,000 

c) Development 1941-1945 

- Emigration/flight 

- Excess of deaths over births: 
Germany (“old” Reich) 

Austria 

unknown 

14,000 

5,000 

19,000 

-19,000 

Calculated remainder in 1945 



195,000 

Purported survivors after the war: 
Germany 

Austria 

27,000 

9,000 

36,000 

-36,000 


“Missing” Jews 


159,000 










W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


135 


Hungary 

The census of 1930 recorded a Jewish population of 444,567 . 4j In 1941, 
the census listed 725,007 Jews in Greater Hungary enlarged by the acquisi¬ 
tion of neighboring territories. 44 A direct comparison between the two 
counts is difficult, because many districts which had been reduced in size as 
a result of post-WWI border changes were again reconstituted to their for¬ 
mer size. Not affected by border changes were the districts located in 
Hungary’s interior; they contained 147,177 Jews in 1930, 45 but only 
132,495 in 1941 4(1 - a reduction by 10%. Budapest’s Jewish population 
decreased in the same period from 204,371 to 184,453 - also a minus of 
10%. Applying this rate to all of Trianon-Hungary’s Jews of 1930, there was 
a reduction by 44,500 to 400,000 in 1941. 47 

From 1930 to 1939, deaths exceeded births by 14,436, and another 1,600 
should be allowed for 1940, bringing the total natural decline between 1930 
and 1941 to about 16,000 (0.3% p.a.). Changes in religious preference re¬ 
sulted in a loss of 21,125 between 1930 and 1939 and possibly a further 
2,000 in the year 1940. On balance, these changes reduced Trianon-Hun¬ 
gary’s Jewish population by about 39,000 until 1941. This leaves another 
reduction of about 5,500 due to emigration. 48 Greater Hungary’s Jewish 
population in 1941 thus was distributed as follows: 


Census of 1941 725,007 

“Old” Trianon-Hungary -400,000 

Newly acquired territories 325,007 

Fonner Slovak areas 42,000 49 

Banat (from Yugoslavia) 25,000 49 

Northern Transylvania (from Rumania) 148,621 50 _ -215,621 

Ruthenia (from Czechoslovakia)109,386 


According to the usual post-war version concerning the developments in 
Hungary, the Germans deported about 400,000 Jews from Greater Hungary 
by rail between mid-May 1944 and early July 1944 from the areas outside 
the capital of Budapest, killing almost all of them in Auschwitz-Birkenau. 


43 Anrmaire Statistique Hongrois 1931, Nouveau Cours XXXIX, T Office Central Royal Hongrois 
de Statistique, Budapest, 1933, Tab. 10, p. 11. 

44 Magyar Statisztikai Evkonyv 1942 , Uj Folyam L, A Magyar Kir Kozponti Statisztikai Hivatal, 
Budapest, 1944, Tab. 11, p. 17. 

45 Annuaire Statistique Hongrois 1931 , Tab. 10, p. 11. 

46 Magyar Statisztikai Evkonyv 1942, Tab. 11, p. 14-17. 

47 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 10, p. 24, estimated Hungary’s Jewish population at the 
end of 1939 at 403,000. 

4S Ibid., p. 25; the Universal mentions 5,250 Jewish emigrants until 1939. 

49 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 415. 

50 Publikationsstelle Wien. Die Bevolkerungszahlung in Rumdnien 1941 (Geheim), Vienna, 1943, 






136 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


The killing was supposedly the main purpose of these deportations. With the 
exception of Budapest, where Jews were left in peace more or less, this 
operation “cleansed” Hungary of almost all Jews. On January 31, 1941, the 
number of Jews in Budapest numbered 184,453, 47 a reduction by 15,000 
from the 200,000-figure published by the Jewish statistician Arthur Ruppin 
for the year 1930. 51 

Now, it just so happened that the International Red Cross (IRC) was 
represented in Budapest during the war and that the Jewish Senate’s head¬ 
quarters was in the buildings of the IRC. In 1948, the IRC published a report 
on the events in Hungary during the war, paying special attention to Jewish 
fate. 52 It is certain that the IRC knew about all the anti-Jewish measures 
either through its own sources or else through the Jewish Senate quartered in 
the same buildings. The report mentions some deportations for the period 
March to October 1944 without specification of figures. It said: 52 

\...\from March 1944 onwards, the position of the [Hungarian] Jews became 
critical, [...] On October 8, the Hungarian authorities, in conformity with the 
undertaking given to the Committee, announced the final suspension of depor¬ 
tations and made known that the Kistarcea Camp for Jewish intellectuals doc¬ 
tors and engineers, had been broken up and the internees released. 

Only after the arrest of the war-weary Horthy-government by German 
troops did the real misery of the Hungarian Jews begin. The IRC Report 
continues: 54 

A few days later [after October 8, 1944] the full tide of the great tribulations of 
the Hungarian Jews was to set in. [...] The replacement, in October 1944, of 
Horthy’s Government by one in bondage to Germany provoked a violent crisis; 
executions, robberies, deportations, forced labour, imprisonments - such was 
the lot of the Jewish population, which suffered cruelly and lost many killed, 
especially in the provinces. [...] It was immediately decided to remove them 
from Budapest and to confiscate their property. Sixty thousand Jews fit for work 
were to be sent to Germany, on foot, in parties of one thousand, by way of Vi¬ 
enna. Moreover, among the able-bodied, men between sixteen and sixty, and 
women between fourteen and forty were commandeered for forced labour in 
building fortifications in Hungary. The rest of the Jewish population, including 
the disabled and sick, was confined in four or five ghettoes near Budapest. The 
only Jews to escape evacuation were those in possession of passports with visas 
for Palestine, Sweden, Switzerland, Portugal or Spain. [...] In November 
[1944], one hundred thousand Jew’s poured into Budapest from the provinces. 


51 Butz, Hoax of the Twentieth Century, p. 149. 

52 Ibid., p. 133. 

53 Ibid., p. 138. 

54 Ibid., p. 138-139. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


137 


To repeat: There were certain events before October 1944, including de¬ 
portations, which were too unimportant for the IRC Report even to bother 
mentioning the figures; but the IRC Report emphasizes that the really 
dangerous occurrences for the majority of the Jews began in October 1944. 
The maximum number which the report says were to have been deported 
was given as 60,000, and nowhere do we find any trace whatsoever that this 
number was exceeded or even attained. To the contrary, there are indications 
that the actual number of deportees was even less. 55 Still, in this analysis we 
will assume that, including those deported between March and October 
1944, the total number of deported Jews from Hungary reached 100,000, 
which is probably much too high. 

Jews were not allowed to serve in the armed forces; the mobilization law 
prohibited that. Instead, Jews were drafted into an auxiliary service, the 
Hungarian military labor force. According to Dr. Rudolf Kastner, the former 
associate president of the Zionist Organization of Hungary, this labor force 
included at times 80,000 Jews; all in all, about 130,000 Jews had been 
drafted into this service. Dr. Kastner estimated that 30-40,000 Jews fell 
while serving in this force. 56 But the Judaica mentioned that in January 
1943 alone, after the great Don-breakthrough of the Red Army, when the 
2nd Hungarian Army practically disintegrated, 40-43,000 of the 50,000 
Jews serving in the military labor force lost their lives in the panic that fol¬ 
lowed. 57 If that many died in this one military catastrophe, further losses 
certainly occurred during the battles of retreat until Budapest. The total 
number of fallen Jews in the Hungarian labor force must have exceeded the 
50,000-mark by far - if Zionist statistics are correct. 

Dr. Zoltan Klar, former elected member of the Council of the Budapest 
Jewish Community, testified under oath at the hearings of the investigating 
committee of the U.S. House of Representatives of September 22 and 23, 
1954, looking into the treatment of Jews by the Soviets. Klar said that the 
Hungarian Minister in Moscow, Prof. Szekfu, visited the Jewish Council in 
1946 and declared that 30,000 Hungarian Citizens, former members of the 
military labor force, were still in Soviet prisons, as far as he knew; of these, 
90% were Jews. Prof. Szekfu thought that they would return home soon. In 
actual fact, no more than 1,500 ever returned according to Dr. Klar. 25,500 
Hungarian Jews had disappeared in Soviet prisons without a trace. 58 

These developments have been summarized in table-form (in 1,000): 


55 Ibid., p. 144. 

56 Hilberg, Destruction of the European Jews, p. 517. 

57 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 8, p. 1098. 

58 Treatment of Jews by the Soviet, 1954, p. 85-86. 



138 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Greater Trianon Ruthenia Northern Slovak Banat 
Hungary Hungary Transyl- areas 

vania 


Jewish population 1941 

deduct: 

725 

400 

109 

149 

42 

25 

- Deportation to 
Germany 

- Losses in the military 

-100 

-55 

-15 

-21 

-6 

-3 

labor force 
- Members of the 

-50 

-27.5 

-8 

-10.5 

-3 

-1 

military labor force 
lost in the Soviet 

Union 

-25.5 

-25.5 

? 

? 

? 

? 

Remainder 

549.5 

292 

86 

117.5 

33 

21 


The Jewish losses in the Hungarian military labor force were divided 
proportionately among all the regions, because no information is available 
as to the origin of the victims. The same procedure was followed with regard 
to the 100,000 (max.) Jews deported to Germany in 1944. But Dr. Klar’s 
testimony was quite specific concerning the Jews who were in Soviet prison, 
and that most of them had disappeared. These were former residents of the 
“old” Hungary (Trianon-borders), and for this reason we entered the entire 
figure of 25,500 in the column “Trianon-Hungary.” The above table indi¬ 
cates that 292,000 Jews should have been found in Hungary after the war. 

As for the natural demographic development during the war, one has to 
pay due regard to the generally insecure and economically precarious situ¬ 
ation of the Hungarian Jews, and to the fact that at times up to 22% of the 
entire male population (i.e. 80,000 of about 360,000 males) was serving in 
the military labor force. These circumstances must have had a considerable 
negative impact on the birth rate, which had been too low during the 1930s 
already. 

As was shown in the First Chapter, Greater Hungary’s Jewish net birth 
rate was -0.3% in 1942. This negative figure came about, because the rela¬ 
tively high fertility of the Ruthenian Jews was more than offset by the very 
unfavorable net birth rate in the other regions. In particular, the Jews of 
“old” Trianon-Hungary had reached a net natural decrease of 0.5% in 1938 
already. Also, it is certainly wit hi n the realm of possibility that the fatal 
circumstances of the war caused a further drop in the birth rate. In Germany 
and Austria, the negative Jewish natural growth rate was much worse before 
the war, and it is safe to assume that the situation of the Hungarian Jews 
during the war was much more difficult than the one faced by German and 
Austrian Jews before 1938. Between 1930 and 1935, the annual Jewish 
excess of deaths over births in Germany and Austria was 5,500 and 2,500 





W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


139 


respectively. 59 This is equivalent to an annual decrease of about 1.0 and 
1.3%! Following this line of thought, it is probable that the natural decrease 
of the “old” Flungarian Jewish population during the five war years was near 
1% annually, causing a decrease totaling 20,000. 

We noted above that Jewish sources claim 2,113 Jews had switched 
annually from the Mosaic to a Christian faith between 1930 and 1939. It 
stands to reason that many more Jews must have taken advantage of this 
possibility during WWII in order to secure a greater personal and economic 
security for themselves and their families. Even assuming only the same 
annual number of changes, there would still have been 10,000 conversions 
during the five war years and a corresponding reduction in the number of 
adherents to the Jewish faith. Another 6,000 have been found after the war in 
Rumania. 60 It is quite possible that these 6,000 Hungarian Jews in Rumania 
had tried to reach Turkey by way of Bulgaria or the port of Constanza in 
Rumania. As we go on, evidence will be forthcoming on the massive emi¬ 
gration via these two channels. 

As was pointed out, the number of Jews deported to Germany reached at 
most 100,000; of these, about 55,000 should be applied to “old” Hungary. 
We know that thousands returned to Hungary after the war from the German 
camps. Their number, however, is not known. In this connection, the Hun¬ 
garian Jew Dr. Klar testified before the U.S. investigating committee that the 
Soviets prevented many of the returning Jews from entering Hungary after 
the war; instead, they arrested them at the border and transported them, male 
and female, to the east. He put their number at 40,000 Hungarian Jews! 61 

Today’s “official” version of the Jewish fate in Greater Hungary is that, 
with the exception of the Jews of Budapest, almost all the other Jews were 
deported before early July 1944. Budapest contained 184,453 Jews as of 
January 31, 1941. But even if one allows for some deportations, natural 
population decrease, emigrants, proportionate losses incurred in the military 
labor force, etc., it is still impossible that Budapest was populated by fewer 
than 150,000 Jews when deportations ceased (July 1944 according to the 
Zionist version). If one adds those few Jews who survived on the country¬ 
side, then it would have been possible indeed that Hungary’s Jewish popu¬ 
lation had shrunk to only 200,000 by war’s end, as the Anglo-American 
Committee claims. 

This figure is subject to some doubt. First, the International Red Cross 
was quite clear when it said: 62 

In November [1944], one hundred thousand Jews poured into Budapest from the 

provinces. 


59 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 10, p. 36. 

60 Butz, Hoax of the Twentieth Century, p. 141. 

61 Treatment of Jews by the Soviet, 1954, p. 72. 

62 Butz, Hoax of the Twentieth Century, p. 139. 



140 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


In other words, these people fled from areas from which, according to the 
Zionist post-war version, all Jews supposedly had been removed already! 
This happened at a period of time when even Zionist reports say the deporta¬ 
tions to Germany (“Auschwitz”) had ceased. The U.S. War Refugee Board 
under the leadership of the Zionist Morgenthau admitted that, as a result of 
the negotiations between Saly Mayer from the Joint Distribution Committee 
and SS-Colonel Kurt Becher, the deportation of the more than 200,000 Jews 
living in Budapest in August 1944 did not take place. 6j This means, of 
course, that far more than 300,000 Jews must have survived in Hungary 
(Trianon-borders) according to the best of sources. We should remember 
that the IRC Report did not say either that all of the Jews had left the provin¬ 
ces and come to Budapest in November 1944. 

Secondly, there is no question that thousands of Jews fled west after the 
war. Hilberg confirms this expressly. 64 Thirdly, figures for the surviving 
Hungarian Jews as provided by the Anglo-American Committee (200,000) 
pertained not to the end of the war but to April 1946. 65 If the figure of 
200,000 for 1946 is correct, then this would mean that more than 100,000 
Hungarian Jews must have left Hungary during the interim twelve months 
and gone to the West (Austria and Italy)! 

Considering all the fallen, deported and escaped, the number of Jews in 
Hungary should have been expected to be around one-quarter of a million 
(see the summary below) - about 50,000 fewer than the more than 300,000 
who were actually there. The only possible explanation for this discrepancy 
is that it reflects the Jews who poured into Hungary from other countries - 
Poland and Czechoslovakia - looking for a place to hide and relative secu¬ 
rity. Until April 1946 more than 100,000 had left Hungary - if the figure of 
200,000 as published by the Anglo-American Committee is correct. 

The following is a statistical summary of the Jewish fate in Hungary: 


Jewish population at the end of 1939 

deduct: 


400,000 

- Fallen Jews in military labor force 

27,500 


- Missing as Soviet prisoners-of-war 

25,500 


- Deported east by the Soviet in 1945 

40,000 


- Negative net birth rate during the war 

20,000 


- Hungarian refugees in Rumania 

6,000 


- Conversions to Christian faiths 

10,000 

-129,000 

Remainder 


271,000 

Purported “survivors” April 1946 


-200,000 

“Missing” Hungarian Jews 


71,000 


63 U.S. War Refugee Board. Final Summary Report of the Executive Director, War Refugee 
Board, Washington, D.C., 9/15/1945, p. 42. 

64 Hilberg, Destruction of European Jews , p. 729. 

65 Reitlinger, Final Solution , p. 497. 






W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


141 


Czechoslovakia 

This state, forcibly established by the “Treaty” of Versailles, experienced 
a very lively history during its short existence. Its subsequent division makes 
a separate treatment of the various regions mandatory. 

The census of 1930 recorded 356,830 Jews on the basis of religion, re¬ 
gionally distributed as follows: 66 


Czech areas (Bohemia and Moravia) 117,551 

Slovakia 136,737 

Ruthenia_102,542 

Total 356,830 


Because of low birth rates, the first two regions registered a slow de¬ 
crease of the Jewish population, whereas the Jews in Ruthenia proved very 
fertile. After the Munich Accord, a huge emigration set in, especially from 
the Czech areas. Reitlinger, who in turn refers to the Anglo-American 
Committee, reports that at the end of 1939 only 315,000 Jews lived in the 
former Czechoslovakian territory. 67 

As was pointed out in the First Chapter, Ruthenian Jews were quite fer¬ 
tile; on the other hand, they suffered from a migratory loss of young males 
who left for the industrial Czech areas. In any case, the Hungarians found 
only roughly 109,000 Jews in Ruthenia after the dismemberment of the ar¬ 
tificial Czechoslovakian state. 

In other words, the Jewish population of the first two regions may have 
been 206,000 in 1939 (i.e. 315,000 minus 109,000). This means that the 
Jews of Bohemia, Moravia and Slovakia decreased by 48,288 (i.e. 117,551 
plus 136,737 minus 206,000). 

Even before the war, Hungary had annexed a section of Slovakia con¬ 
taining 42,000 Jews. 68 The remaining independent Slovak state is reported 
to have registered 85,045 Jews in 1939 according to the Year Book, which, 
in turn, referred to news published in Der Grenzbote (Bratislava) of January 
18, 1940. 69 Consequently, the total Slovak area must have had 127,000 Jews 
at the end of 1939. If correct, this would point to a net emigration of 9,700 (a 
small excess of deaths over births cannot be excluded, though). Thus, the 
Czech areas cannot have contained more than 79,000 Jews at the end of 
1939 (206,000 minus 127,000). Emigration, flight and a negative net birth 


66 ScitaniLidu VRepublice Ceskoslovenske Ze Dne 1. Prosince 1930 (Dil I.: Rust, Koncentrace A 
Hustota Obyvatelstva, Pohlavl, Vekove Rozvrstvenl, Rodinny Stav, Statni Prislusnost, 
Narodnost, Nabozenske Vyznanl), Vydal Statni Urad Statisticky, Ceskoslovenska Statistika - 
Svazek 98, Rada VI., Sesit 7, Prague, 1934, p. 156-190. 

67 Reitlinger, p. 492. 

68 Institute of Jewish Affairs, Hitler’s Ten-Year War , p. 304. 

69 AJYB , 1940, Vol. 42, p. 597. 





142 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


rate added up to a reduction of 38,600 between 1930 and the end of 1939 
(i.e. 117,551 minus 79,000). Further population losses ensued in 1940. 

Reports in the Zionist press, according to which German statistics pub¬ 
lished on February 2, 1941, put the number of Jews remaining in the “Pro¬ 
tectorate” at 70,000, confirm these calculations. 70 Reitlinger adds that until 
1942 another reduction of 7,000 Jews occurred because of emigration from 
Bohemia and Moravia and continuing low birth rates. All in all, 4,000 Jews 
are said to have succeeded in emigrating during the war. 71 But as one has to 
assume that the excess of deaths over births accelerated throughout the war 
period of 1942-1945, a further deduction of maybe 2,000 should be made. In 
summary, the Jewish population of the “Protectorate” decreased after 1939 
by 4,000 as a result of emigration, and by 5,000 as a result of negative net 
birth rates. 

In 1946(!), one whole year following the defeat of Germany, after Jews 
had left Bohemia and Moravia in huge droves for the American zone of 
occupation in Germany - we will come back to this later - Reitlinger still 
found 32,000 Jews in the former “Protectorate.” 72 

In Slovakia’s case, it is somewhat more difficult to trace the development 
because of the loss of large areas to Hungary just before the war began. At 
the outbreak of the war, 85,000 Jews lived in the smaller independent Slo¬ 
vakia. Apart from the 52,000 deported, the remaining Jews lived relatively 
securely until the end of 1944. 73 The IRC wrote: 74 

[...] at certain periods, Slovakia was even looked upon as a comparative haven 
of refuge for Jews, especially for those coming from Poland. Those who re¬ 
mained in Slovakia seem to have been in comparative safety until the end of 
August 1944, when a rising against the German forces took place. 

The consequence of this uprising was that many Jews were deported. In 
post-war Slovakia - again, including the areas formerly occupied by Hun¬ 
gary - Reitlinger found 45,000 Jews, whereas Gregory Frumkin managed to 
discover even 60,000. 75 Let us agree on 50,000. The fate of the Jews in the 
Hungarian-occupied Slovak regions was covered in the context of the 
Hungarian Jews. 

Ruthenia, which was part of the Czechoslovakian state until its dis¬ 
memberment, was first annexed by Hungary, and after the war by the Soviet 
Union. For this reason, the local Jewish population shared the fate of the 
Hungarian Jews just like part of the Jews of Slovakia. The human losses of 
all the Rumanian, Slovak and Serbian Jews under Hungarian domination 


70 Ibid., 1941, Vol. 43, p.663. 

71 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 492-493. 

72 Ibid., p.492. 

73 Butz, Hoax of the Twentieth Century, p. 208. 

74 Ibid., p. 137. 

75 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 493. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


143 


who were made Soviet prisoners-of-war as former members of the Hun¬ 
garian military labor force is not discussed in the pertinent literature. All we 
kn ow is that 27,000 Hungarian-Jewish labor force members were in Soviet 
prisons, and that only 1,500 ever returned. In the case of the Jews of Ru- 
thenia their number would have to be reduced by those who disappeared in 
Soviet prisons. The remainder of the Ruthenian Jews has been added to the 
Soviet Union in the Fourth Chapter. Consequently, we will exclude the 
Ruthenian Jews on account of the annexation of that region by the Soviet 
Union after the war. The developments in Czechoslovakia can be summa¬ 
rized as follows: 


Czech areas (Bohemia and Moravia - 1930) 
Slovakia (1930) 

Ruthenia (1930) 

Czechoslovakia (1930) 

Ruthenia annexed by the USSR in 1945 

Czechoslovakia without Ruthenia (1930) 
deduct: 

Emigration (inch excess of births over deaths 
before the war): 

- Czech areas 

- Slovakia 

Jews in Bohemia, Moravia and Slovakia in (1939) 
deduct: 

Changes after 1939: 

- Emigration from Czech areas 

- Excess of deaths over births in Czech areas 

- Fallen Slovakian-Jewish members of the Hun¬ 
garian military labor force 

Remainder 
Purported “survivors” 

“Missing” Czechoslovakian Jews 


117,551 

136,737 

102,542 

356,830 

-102,542 

254,288 


38,600 

9,700 -48,300 

206,000 


4,000 

5,000 

3,000 -12,000 

194,000 

-82,000 

112,000 


Rumania 

The Rumanian census of December 29, 1930, recorded the population on 
the basis of language, nationality and religion. Accordingly, the “Jewish” 
figures were 518,754, 728,115 and 756,930, respectively. Since many Jews 
had already given up Yiddish and, despite their Mosaic faith, considered 








144 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


themselves of other than Jewish nationality, the figure of 756,930 represents 
the best indication of Rumania’s Jewish population. 76 

In 1940, three neighboring countries acquired slices of Rumanian terri¬ 
tory: The Soviet Union on June 28 (Bessarabia and northern Bukovina), 
Hungary on August 30 (northern Transylvania) and Bulgaria on September 
6 (southern Dobrudja). The remaining Rumanian territory - Core-Rumania 

- counted 328,930 persons of the Mosaic faith at the time of the last census 
of 1930, 77 northern Transylvania 148,660, southern Dobrudja 846, 78 Bes¬ 
sarabia 206,958, 79 leaving 71,536 for northern Bukovina. In total, the area 
seized by the USSR in 1940 thus had a Jewish population of 278,494 as of 
December 29, 1930. Of course, until mid-1940 these figures were subject to 
change due to natural growth patterns, emigration and a large migration 
from the country to the cities, especially to Bucharest. 

In the seven-year period from December 1930 until early 1938, an av¬ 
erage of 724,600 Jews lived in Rumania. 80 An average growth rate of 0.2% 

- as suggested in the First Chapter - would have resulted in an excess of 
births over deaths of 10,200. Thus, about 74,900 Jews must have emigrated 
during this time: 


Census of 1930 756,930 

Excess of births over deaths from December 1930 until 

early 1938 10,200 

767,130 

Jewish population in early 193 8 81 81 -692,244 

Emigration 1930-early 1938 74,900 


During these seven years, 10,700 Jews left Rumania annually. The 
German Institute for Contemporary History in Munich also counts Rumania 
among those countries where, because of the poor economic situation, Jews 
were forced to emigrate in large numbers. It is obvious that the worsening 
conditions in Rumania in the latter part of the 1930s caused more and more 
Jews to look for an improvement in their personal lives abroad. Among 
these were especially the Jews of Bessarabia where many Jewish refugees 
from the Russian civil war had fled after WWI. Many other Jews sought to 


7f ’ Recensamantul General Al Populajiei Romtiniei Din 29 Decemvrie 1930, Volumul II: Neam, 
Limba, Matema, Religie; Institutul Central de Statistica, Bucharest, 1938, p. XXIV. 

77 Wirtschaft und Statistik, October 2, 1941, No. 20, p. 392. 

78 Publikationsstelle Wien. Die Bevolkerungszdhlimg in Rumanien 1941 (Geheim), p. 20. 

75 Recensamantul General..., p. LXXXV. 

80 In early 1938, the Rumanian Jews numbered 692,244 (see next footnote) compared to 756,930 
at the end of 1930; this amounts to an average of 724,600 for the years 1931 to 1937. 

81 The Institute of Jewish Affairs ( Hitler’s Ten-Year War, p. 83) wrote that under the law of 
January 21, 1938, all Jews in Rumania had to submit proof of citizenship, if they wanted to keep 
it. 617,396 registered, 44,848 abstained and 30,000 were not qualified to register. This adds up 
to 692,244 for early 1938. 






W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


145 


escape from the growing anti-Semitic tendencies by merging into the larger 
Jewish communities of the big cities. 

The size of emigration in the years 1938, 1939 and 1940 is u nk nown. 
However, one may be sure that the deteriorating economic and political 
situation persuaded even more Jews to emigrate. Even if we limit ourselves 
to the average emigration rate of the years 1931-1937 and apply that to 
1938-1940, and if we concede furthermore that the small excess of deaths 
over births did not expand in 1939 and 1940, then the number of Jews living 
in Rumania in mid-1940 could have been 665,500 at most: 

Jewish population in early 1938 692,244 

Emigration from 1938 until mid-1940_-26,750 

Jewish population in mid-1940_665,500 

By 1940, it seems, Rumania’s Jewish population had decreased by 
91,400, or 12.1% since 1930. 

On April 6, 1941, a census found only 315,509 Jews in Core-Rumania, 
291,674 of whom were urban. 82 Unfortunately, these figures are not entirely 
comparable to the census of 1930, because the 1941 census defined “Jews” 
as including all persons with at least one parent of Mosaic faith. It is unlikely 
that the latter factor accounted for more than several thousand persons. 
Deducting this “external” factor from the total of 315,509, only about 
300,000 “comparable” Rumanian Jews were left in April 1941. 

Thus, whereas Core-Rumania lost 28,930 Jews during the interim ten 
years, or 9%, Greater Rumania’s loss of Jews between December 1930 and 
mid-1940 totaled 91,430, or 12%. Furthermore, the areas ceded to Hungary, 
Bulgaria and the Soviet Union in the summer of 1940 recorded 428,000 
Jews at the end of 1930 (148,660 in northern Transylvania, 846 in southern 
Dobrudja, and 278,494 in Bessarabia and northern Bukovina combined), but 
during the 1930s a decrease by 62,500, or 15% had occurred: 


Jewish Population in Rumania 
December Before the war Changes 


Greater Rumania 

1930 

756,930 

665,500 (mid-1940) 

number 

-91,430 

(%) 

-12 

Core-Rumania 

-328,930 

-300,000 (April 1941) 

-28,930 

-9 

Ceded territories 

428,000 

365,500 

-62,500 

-15 


This considerably smaller decline in Core-Rumania compared to the re¬ 
gions ceded in the summer of 1940 probably has two reasons: First, eastern 
Rumania contained many Jews who had fled from the Ukraine during the 
Russian civil war; but Bessarabia’s agricultural economy was not developed 


82 


Publikationsstelle Wien. Die Bevdlkerungszdhlung in Rnmanien 1941 (Geheim), p. 23. 








146 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


enough to absorb these people, and emigration, therefore, often was the only 
possibility to escape poverty. 

Secondly, the beginning industrialization and the accompanying urban¬ 
ization lured many rural Jews to migrate to the cities - and in Rumania there 
was only one with more than 100,000 inhabitants, namely, the capital of 
Bucharest. The total population of this city had grown from 639,040 (De¬ 
cember 1930) to 999,658 (April 1941), i.e. by 56.4%. In the course of the 
general migration from the rural areas, the Jewish population of Bucharest 
increased as well, although not as rapidly as the Rumanian, because the Jews 
preferred emigration to a migration to the cities. Still, Bucharest’s Jewish 
population rose by 14,788 from 76,480 (December 1930) to 91,268 (April 
1941), that is, by 19.3%. 83 Obviously, the Jewish population of the area 
where the census was taken in April 1941 (Core-Rumania) would have de¬ 
clined much more than 9%, were it not for the internal migration from the 
regions to Bucharest and other larger central cities. 

The admission of tens of thousands of Polish-Jewish refugees in Sep¬ 
tember 1939 poses great difficulties in determining the Jewish population of 
the ceded territories precisely. To be sure, there is an official Rumanian es¬ 
timate of 148,621 Jews for the ceded portion of Transylvania as of January 
1, 1940, 84 compared to the census of 1930, which found 148,660, but it is 
completely unknown how many Jewish refugees from Polish Galicia were 
included in the 1940 estimate. Nevertheless, it appears that the Jewish 
population of Transylvania was stagnant during the previous decades al¬ 
ready. The Jiidisches Lexikon (Jewish Encyclopedia), for instance, mentions 
that the censuses of 1910 and 1920 for Transylvania, the Transylvanian 
foreland and the Banat recorded 172,294 and 181,340 Jews, respectively 85 - 
an increase of only 9,000 during that decade, or one half of one per cent 
annually. But the Jiidisches Lexikon also says that there had been a large 
Jewish immigration from Galicia at the time. Without this immigration, 
Transylvania and the Banat obviously would not have registered any in¬ 
crease at all. For this reason, it is probable that Transylvania - like all the 
other regions of Rumania - recorded a decrease of its Jewish population 
until 1940. Even assuming a rate of decrease only half the Rumanian aver¬ 
age - i.e. 6% - no more than 140,000 native Jews could have been living in 
northern Transylvania when it was ceded to Hungary. But the Rumanians 
insist that 148,621 Jews populated the area, and this figure agrees very well 
with a similar figure produced by the Hungarians for the Jews in their newly 


Wirtschaft und Statistik, 10/2/1941, p. 392. 

84 Publikationsstelle Wien. Die Bevolkerungszdhlimg in Rumanien 1941 (Geheim). p. 20. 

85 Jiidisches Lexikon , Berlin (Jiidischer Verlag), 1930, Vol. IV/2, S-Z, p. 650-651. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


147 


acquired territory. 86 The difference of 8,621 (148,621 minus 140,000) thus 
must consist of Jewish refugees from Polish Galicia of September 1939. 

Given the above information, one can now determine the native Jewish 
population of the areas ceded to the Soviet Union: 

Changes 



1930 

1940 

Number 

(%) 

All ceded territories 

428,000 365,500 

-62,500 

-15 

deduct: 

Northern Transylvania (excl. 
Polish-Jewish refugees) 

-148,660 -140,000 

-8,660 

-6 

Southern Dobmdja 

-846 

-412 78 

-434 

-51 

Territories ceded to the USSR 
(excl. Polish-Jewish refugees) 

278,494 225,088 

-53,406 

-19 


A decrease by 53,406 Jews, or 19%, in the areas handed over to the So¬ 
viet Union is not particularly large, considering that the majority of those 
278,494 Jews of 1930 lived in Bessarabia, a poorly developed region. 

Yet, it appears the Soviets acquired many more Jews than those 225,088 
when they occupied the Rumanian areas. In September 1939, Polish Jews 
fled en masse not only to the Soviet Union but also to Rumania. Reports on 
the number of refugee Jews in Rumania are very vague, however. An in¬ 
formative account, but unfortunately poor in statistics, of the flight of Gali¬ 
cian Jews to Rumania is J.G. Burg’s Schuld undSchicksal. 

We assumed that at least 100,000 Polish Jews found their way to Ru¬ 
mania, because reports in the Zionist press - if true - make this number seem 
quite realistic. We found 9,000 Polish-Jewish refugees in northern Tran¬ 
sylvania. Furthermore, up to 65,000 Jews - apparently consisting mostly of 
Polish-Jewish refugees - are said to have changed over to Soviet territory 
when the Soviet Union occupied northern Bukovina and Bessarabia in 
1940. 87 These 65,000 Jews must have lived in southern Bukovina and 
Moldavia since their arrival from Poland, which is not improbable in view of 
the geographic proximity of Galicia. Many other Jewish refugees from Po¬ 
land were living in the northern Bukovina and in Bessarabia when the So¬ 
viets annexed those areas. For these reasons, it is quite probable that more 
than 90,000 Polish refugee Jews fell under Soviet domination in the course 
of the Soviet occupation of large parts of Rumanian territory. Thus, it seems 
that the Soviets acquired a total Jewish population numbering 316,000 at the 
time of their acquisition of Bessarabia and northern Bukovina (225,000 na¬ 
tive Jews plus 91,000 Polish-Jewish refugees). 

But even after the outbreak of hostilities with the Soviet Union (June 22, 
1941), there were still many possibilities for Jews to leave Rumania, often 


86 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 497. 

87 AJYB, 1941, Vol. 43, p. 330. 






148 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


taking strange and risky routes. One escape route led from the port of Con- 
stanza to neutral Turkey: Many ships left this port under German protection 
at times - trying to reach extra-European destinations. In this connection, 
the tragic fate of the steamer Struma comes to mind; this ship had left Con- 
stanza for Istanbul on December 16, 1941, and was hit by British mines off 
the coast of Turkey; except for two saved, all of the 769 Jewish passengers 
died; 88 other ships met a similar fate. 

Reitlinger referred to this route as follows: 89 

[...] it was possible to run a daily small steamer from Constanza to Istanbul [...] 

Even if one allows only 100 persons per trip, a minimum of 100,000 Jews 
must have left Europe during the war on this route. The composition of the 
passengers is not known. But since the Jewish population of Rumania still 
numbered more than 400,000 after “liberation” by the Red Army, it would 
appear that the majority of the Jewish refugees leaving Constanza by ship 
during the war must have been of Polish, Hungarian, Czech or Slovak na¬ 
tionality. 

A second escape channel ran on land from Rumania through Bulgaria to 
Turkey and from there to Palestine, Persia or overseas. Reliable figures on 
the entire exodus by way of Rumanian ports and Bulgaria are not available. 
All we know is - this will be covered in greater detail in the next chapter - 
that tens of thousands of European Jews from all countries within the 
German sphere of influence escaped this way. The Universal commented: 90 

[...] during the Second World War [...] the State Department of the United 

States [helped] many Jews fleeing from Rumania to find a haven in Turkey and 

Palestine. 

Assessing the number of Rumanian Jews escaping this way between 
mid-1940 and the end of the war at only 20,000 is just to keep this exodus on 
record, because the actual number of Jewish refugees leaving Rumania 
during this period must have been much larger, probably many, many times 
larger. 

A comparison of the Jewish population of April 1941 with the purported 
survivors at the end of the war allows no conclusions as to the extent of 
flight from Rumania during the war. In 1945, Rumania regained northern 
Transylvania. The areas annexed by the Soviet Union in 1940 and recon¬ 
quered in 1941, however, were again occupied by the USSR. The post-war 
“estimates” thus refer to the Rumania within its post-war borders - an area 
which contained maybe 451,000 Jews in August 1939: 


' Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 405. 

89 Ibid., p. 409. 

90 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 9, p. 265. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


149 


Jewish population in early 1938 

Emigration from 1938 until mid-193 9 

692,244 
app. -16,000 

mid-1939 (borders of 1939) 

Rumanian Jews in the areas ceded to the USSR 

676,244 

-225,088 

Jewish population in mid-1939 (borders of 1945) 

ca. 451,000 91 


The number of Jews found in northern Transylvania after the war is not 
known. Our calculations show that 21,000 were deported to Germany during 
the war, but according to Reitlinger 20,000 returned from German camps. 92 
On the other hand, it is probable that at least 10,000 died in the Hungarian 
military labor force, and the number of those who disappeared in Soviet 
prisoner-of-war camps - as in the case of the Hungarian Jews - is a total 
mystery. Reducing the original figure of 148,621 for Transylvania by those 
1,000 failing to return from German camps and the 10,500 killed in action, 
the remainder of 137,000 probably is still too large; but this is the best one 
can do. 

As for the “survivors,” Dr. Isaac Glickman, former member of the ex¬ 
ecutive committee of the Federation of the Jewish Communities of Ruma¬ 
nia, gave evidence before the investigating committee of the U.S. House of 
Representatives in 1954. Dr. Glic km an says he left Rumania at the end of 
1947. He estimated the number of Jews in Rumania at 425,000 at the “time 
of liberation.” 93 Mr. Hilberg, though, found 430,000 in post-war Rumania. 94 

It is all but certain that the figure of 430,000 Jews in Rumania is too low 
by several tens of thousands. If Dr. Glickman put the number of Jews in 
Rumania at the “time of liberation” at 425,000, this must be a low figure. 
After all, Reitlinger mentioned 20,000 who returned from German camps 
after the war, i.e. after the “time of liberation,” and further thousands are 
supposed to have returned from the USSR after the war. All of this adds up 
to far more than 450,000 - at least 20,000 more than Hilberg claims to have 
found. 

Following our own cautious calculations, we should have found 433,000 
Jews (or even less, because we had no clues as to the number of former 
members of the Hungarian military labor force who did not return from 
Soviet prisons, and our imputed figure of only 20,000 emigrants between 
1941 and the end of the war is probably only a fraction of the real number). 
In other words, when war drew to a close in Rumania, tens of thousands of 


91 Millman, Ivor, “Romanian Jewry: a Note on the 1966 Census,” Soviet Jewish Affairs , No. 3, 
May 1972, p. 105; this Jewish author asserts that the Communist census authorities of post-war 
Romania put the size of the Jewish population within today’s borders at 452,000 for the time of 
the 1930 census. If this estimate were correct, our figure of 451,000 Romanian Jews in 1939 (in 
today’s borders) would be too large by at least 20,000! 

92 Reitlinger, Final Solution , p. 497. 

93 Treatment of Jews by the Soviet, p. 53. 

94 Hilberg, Destruction of European Jews, p. 737. 






150 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Jews were living in that country who had arrived there during the war. And, 
indeed, there is a report by the International Red Cross published in 1948 
about its activities during the war, saying that after the retreat of the Ger¬ 
mans 6,000 Hungarian Jews had been found in northern Transylvania in 
December 1944. This obviously vast immigration of non-Rumanian Jews 
during the war is another indication that Rumania was a real gateway for 
untold numbers of European Jews to leave Europe by water and by land. 
Statistically the development looks like this: 


Jewish population in early 1938 
Emigration from 1938 until mid-193 9 
mid-1939 

Admission of Polish-Jewish refugees (1939) 

September 1939 

deduct: 

Taken over by the Soviet Union: 

- Polish-Jewish refugees 

- Native Rumanian Jews 

Acquired by Hungary 
Acquired by Bulgaria 
Emigration 1940 

Persons considered Jewish according to the 
changed census definitions of 1941 (est.) 
Jewish population - census of April 6, 1941 
Emigration: April 1941- end of war 
Jews in Core-Rumania at end of war (maximum) 
add back on: 

Recovery of Transylvania 
Recovery of southern Dobrudja 

deduct: 

Fallen Jews in Hungarian military labor force 
Jews failing to return from German camps 
Calculated number of Jews in post-war Rumania 
Purported “survivors” according to Hilberg 
“Missing” Jews 


692.244 
-16,000 

676.244 
100,000 

776.244 


91,000 

225,088 

316,088 

148,621 

412 

10,700 -475,821 

300,423 

+15,086 

315.509 
- 20,000 

295.509 

148,621 

412 

149,033 

-10,500 

-1,000 +137,533 

ca. 433,000 
-430,000 
ca. 3,000 


Bulgaria 

The census of 1934 recorded 48,398 Jews. 95 In 1947(1), their number had 
been reduced to 46,500 according to the Year Book. 96 The difference of 


95 


AJYB , 1941, Vol. 43, p. 668. 













W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


151 


1,898 must be attributed to emigration and/or an excess of deaths over 
births, because not a single Jew was deported from Bulgaria during the 

97 

war. 

We will show in the next Chapter that 48,642 Jews emigrated to Israel 
from Bulgaria between May 15, 1948, and December 31, 1970. The number 
of Bulgarian Jews who might have left their country during or immediately 
after the war is completely unknown. But Bulgaria, too, belonged to those 
countries where large-scale emigration was easiest after the war according 
to Zionist scholar Hilberg. It is thus not far-fetched to assume that thousands 
(or tens of thousands?) made use of this possibility before 1947 in order to 
emigrate to Palestine and overseas. Also, there is no reason to believe that 
all of the Bulgarian Jews had left for Israel after May 15, 1948. 

In 1970, there were still 7,000 Jews in Bulgaria. 98 Since Bulgarian Jews 
were not known for their great fertility, it becomes quite obvious that Bul¬ 
garia’s Jews did not number 46,500 at the end of the war, as Zionists want us 
to believe, but many thousands, even tens of thousands more. In any case, 
56,000 (48,642 plus 7,000) is a minimum figure. This is another piece of 
evidence that Bulgaria - just like Rumania - was a transit country during the 
war for Jewish refugees from Yugoslavia, Hungary, Rumania, Slovakia and 
Poland! More than that, these contradictory figures show the relative mag¬ 
nitude of understatement contained in the “survivor”-figures as published by 
Zionist sources. 

Jewish population (1934) 48,400 

“Survivors” (1947)_56,000 

“Immigrants”_7,600 


Summary 

At the beginning of the 1930s, all the European countries (excl. the 
USSR and the Baltic countries) which later fell within the German sphere of 
influence contained about 6 million Jews (Table 11). Anti-Jewish measures 
and economic misery resulted in a massive emigration of over 1.1 million 
Jews from just five countries - Poland, Germany, Czechoslovakia, Hungary 
and Rumania (see also First Chapter). The largest part of this emigration was 
directed toward Palestine and overseas (more about that in the next chapter) 
and, to a smaller degree, to western Europe. Other unfavorable develop¬ 
ments (negative population growth in Germany and Hungary, conversions 
in Hungary) more than compensated for the relatively meager excess of 


96 Ibid., 1947, Vol. 49, p. 740. 

97 Reitlinger, Final Solution, p. 379. 

98 AJYB, 1971, Vol. 72, p. 476. 





152 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


births in other parts of Europe - if there was any at all. At the outbreak of the 
German-Polish war (end of 1939), the Jewish population in these European 
countries had dropped to about 5 million. 

The Year Book committed a serious error when it placed the number of 
Jews in these countries at 6 million for the year 1939." A comparison would 
show that the Year Book did account for emigration from Germany and 
Hungary (in part, at least), but not for that from Poland, Rumania and 
Czechoslovakia. To the contrary, the Jewish populations of these latter three 
countries were “increased” by assuming unrealistically high birth rates. The 
result is grave. In actual fact, Poland, Rumania and Czechoslovakia con¬ 
tained only 3.6 million Jewish inhabitants at the end of 1939, but the Year 
Book insists on 4.5 million! Since there were 956,000 fewer Jews in the area 
of the subsequent German sphere of influence in 1939 (Table 11), 90% of 
this difference must be attributed to just those three countries. In other 
words, here we have almost one million Jews who were not even in Europe 
at the start of WWII, but who are nevertheless included in the “Final Solu¬ 
tion” according to the Zionist statistical method. 

However, in 1941 -just prior to the German invasion of the USSR-only 
2.8 million Jews lived within the German sphere of influence. The decrease 
by 2.2 million was largely the result of the annexation of large parts of 
Rumanian and Polish territory by the Soviet Union in 1939 and 1940, when 
those regions’ numerous Jewish populations together with many hundreds 
of thousands of Jews fleeing before the German armies disappeared into the 
Soviet empire. It is well known today that the Soviets succeeded in keeping 
the vast majority of their Jews outside the reach of German military power - 
for reasons of self-interest. Therefore, it is simply misleading to calculate 
the number of “missing” Jews by deducting the “survivors” after WWII - in 
most cases figures are available only for 1946 and 1947(!) - from 
1939-figures which, to make it worse, are exaggerated by 1 million. There 
have been many changes between 1939 and 1945 due to emigration, low 
birth rates, conversions, deaths in combat, evacuation etc. Also, Poland and 
Rumania had suffered large losses of territory and population to the Soviet 
Union. 

Our investigation in the Second and Sixth Chapters found 1,443,000 
“surviving” Jews compared to 1,410,000 of the Year Book {Table 11). These 
“survivors” should be compared with the Jewish population in the European 
countries in 1941, taking into account the many changes which occurred in 
those countries during the war. On this basis, we arrived at a “miss- 
ing”-figure of 1,269,000. This number is about 3.3 million smaller than that 
of the Year Book. The reason is clear: The Year Book's pre-war figure is too 
large by almost one million, and did not take into account the Soviet net 


99 


Ibid., 1947, Vol. 49, p. 740. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


153 


Table 11: Jewish Population in the former German Sphere ofInfluence in Europe (exl. 
USSR and Baltic States) from the early 1930s until the End ofWWII (in 1,000) 



Early 3 

1939 b 

1941 b 

“Survivors” 

"Missing” Acquired 

Country 

1930s 



1946/47 b 

in Europe b 

byUSSR b 

Italy, Benelux, France, Denmark, 







Norway 

470 

545 

525 

375 

134 


Greece 

73 

65 

65 

12 

53 


Germany and Austria 

731 

263 

214 

36 

159 


Fonner Gennan-occupied western 







Europe 

1,274 

873 

804 

423 

346 


Yugoslavia 

68 

68 

43 

12 

56 


Hungary, of which: 


(551) 

(725) 




- Hungary (Trianon-borders) 

445 

400 

400 

200 

71 

66 

- Slovak areas 


42 

42 




- Ruthenia 


109 

109 



86 

- Northern Transylvania 



149 




- Serbian Banat 25 







Czechoslovakia, of which: 

(357) 






- Bohemia-Moravia (Protectorate) 

118 

79 

70 

32 

38 


- Slovakia 

137 

85 

85 

50 

74 


- Ruthenia 

102 




15 


Rumania 

757 

676 

315 

430 

3 

225 

Bulgaria 

48 

48 

48 

56 

-8 


Poland/Govemment General 3 

3,114 

2,664 

757 

83 

674 

1,867 

Former German-occupied eastern 







Europe 

4,789 

4,171 

2,043 

863 

923 

2,244 

Jewish refugees returned to Poland 







from the USSR 




+157 


-157 

Fonner Gennan-occupied Europe: 






2,087 

- according to our analysis 

6,063 

5,044 

2,847 

1,443 

1,269 


- according to A/TB-figures d 


6,000 


1,410 

4,590 


Difference 


-956 


+33 

-3,321 



Sources 

(a) With the exception of Germany and Austria, all figures in this column have been taken from 
Table 16 (Eighth Chapter). Germany (inch Danzig, Memel and the Saar) had 539,265 Jews in 
1933, and Austria’s census found 191,781 Jews according to the AJYB, 1940, Vol. 42, p. 600. 

(b) With the exception of the lines "Poland” and “A/TB-figures,” all of the figures listed in this 
column have been taken from the country-specific details in the Sixth Chapter. 

(c) See First and Second Chapter. 

(d) AJYB, 1947, Vol. 49, p. 740. 

acquisition of 2.1 million Rumanian, Polish, Hungarian and Ruthenian Jews. 
Just these two “mistakes” added up to an exaggeration of about 3.0 million 
“missing” Jews. 

Let us summarize: In 1941, 2,847,000 Jews lived within the German 
sphere of influence in Europe (excl. the USSR and the Baltic countries). 
After allowing for war losses, those missing in Soviet prisons, emigration 
and very low birth rates during the war, annexation of Ruthenia by the USSR 
in 1945, and the return of Polish-Jewish refugees from the USSR after the 










154 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


war, 2,712,000 (1,443,000 plus 1,269,000) Jews should have been counted 
in those countries after the war. On the basis of Zionist statistics - which 
refer to a large extent to 1946 and 1947, not to 1945 - we arrived at only 
1,443,000 “survivors.” A similarly large number of Jews, namely 1,269,000, 
is not accounted for. 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


155 


SEVENTH CHAPTER: 

Jewish Emigration after World War Two 


Following the defeat of Germany, a flood of non-German refugees 
poured from the East into the three Western zones of the occupied and di¬ 
vided country. Among them were many Jews. British General Sir Frederick 
Morgan, head of the UNRRA operations in Germany, declared in a press 
conference in Fra nk furt/Main at the end of 1945 that an unknown Jewish 
organization was bringing masses of Jews from the East to Germany and 
that all of them were well fed and well dressed. The Zionist Hilberg, too, 
commented: 1 

In Polattd, Czechoslovakia, and Hungary many Jews chose not to wait; they 
decided to embark on their journey. [...] From Poland the exodus began 
through Czechoslovakia to the American zone in Germany. From Hungary and 
even Rumania the Jews began to arrive in Austria. By November 1945, the flow 
was beginning to thicken, and thousands of refugees were spilling over into It¬ 
aly. 

In this connection, one should always keep in mind that the statistics on 
Jewish “survivors” do not pertain to May 8, 1945, but to the years 1946 and 
1947. The 1.4 million “survivors” thus cannot possibly include this huge 
number of refugees leaving their native countries in eastern Europe. 

Immediately after the war, more than 250,000 Jews inhabited the DP- 
camps in Germany, and in July 1947 more than 400,000 refugee Jews are 
said to have remained in western Europe. 2 These figures apply only to cer¬ 
tain fixed points in time, because in the interim periods hundreds of thou¬ 
sands of Jews left Europe in the direction of Palestine, North and South 
America and other places! 

These uncontrolled arrivals and departures in the chaotic post-war period 
prevented an official count of the wandering, fleeing and uprooted Jews. The 
only possibility to obtain a somewhat reliable picture of this mass migration 
is to determine the post-war Jewish immigration in the main countries of 
destination. 


1 Hilberg, Destruction of European Jews, p. 729-730. 

2 Butz, Hoax of the Twentieth Century, p. 232. 



156 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


United States 

Official U.S. statistics put the number of Jews in 1926 at 4,081,242; an¬ 
other official count in 1936 found 4,641,184/ Both figures refer only to 
communities with synagogues. As Special Agent of the United States Bu¬ 
reau of the Census, Dr. Harry S. Linfield made a study of all the communi¬ 
ties without synagogues and found that 4,228,029 Jews lived in the United 
States at the end of 1927. * * 4 A similar investigation by Dr. Linfield in the 
same capacity produced 4,770,647 Jews for 1937. 5 

It is not certain to what extent immigration and natural growth contrib¬ 
uted to the population increase of 543,000 in the ten-year interval. In the 
previous decades millions of Jews had entered the United States: About 1.8 
million between 1899 and 1924. At least three-fourths of them originated in 
Poland and Russia, countries with a very fertile Jewish population in those 
days. A large portion of the other fourth, too, hailed from countries such as 
Rumania, whose Jewish population had shown large natural growth rates. 6 
But the changes in the U.S. immigration laws in the 1920s are supposed to 
have led to a drastic reduction in the flow of Jewish immigration from 
eastern Europe. 

Besides, the new urban American environment soon began to show up in 
sharply dropping birth rates. It is thus quite reasonable to assume that the 
annual natural increase of American Jews amounted to 0.5% at most be¬ 
tween 1927 and 1937. Even this rate seems somewhat high, particularly in 
view of the 0.8% net growth rate of the total U.S. population - with its large 
and fertile colored and white rural sections between 1930 and 1939. 7 It 
would seem that an excess of births over deaths could have increased the 
U.S. Jewish population from 4,228,029 in 1927 to at most 4,444,000 in 
1937. In actual fact, however, 4.77 million Jews were found in 1937 - 
326,000 more than natural growth would have warranted. A check of U.S. 
immigration statistics reveals, though, that only 81,212 Jewish immigrants 
were recorded in this period. 8 An explanation for this wide discrepancy will 
be forthcoming below. 

The Year Book's post-war Jewish population statistics for the U.S. are as 
follows: 


The Immigration and Naturalization Systems of the United States, Report of the Committee on 

the Judiciary, U.S. Senate, 81st Congress, 2nd Session, April 20, 1950, p. 843. 

4 AJYB, 1976, Vol. 77, p.268 

5 Ibid., p. 271-274. 

6 The Immigration and Naturalization Systems, p. 21. 

7 U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census. Population Estimates and Projections, 
Current Population Reports, Series P-25, No. 632, July 1976, Washington, D.C., p. 1. 

8 AJYB, 1947, Vol. 49, p. 749. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


157 


1946 until 1956 
1957 and 1958 
1959 


5,000,000 

5,197,000 

5,367,000 

5,532,000 

5,869,000 

6,060,000 


1960 until 1967 
1968 until 1970 
1971 


These figures are fictitious. The purported population size for 1946 was 
simply maintained without change for ten years, at a time when hundreds of 
thousands of central and Eastern European Jews found shelter in the United 
States. Finally, when it was decided to proceed with the long overdue cor¬ 
rection, the increase by just 197,000 was barely enough to explain the net 
natural growth between 1946 and 1957. Obviously, these figures are polit¬ 
ically inspired. 

Already in 1943, the Jewish historian and former secretary of the 
Flilfsverein der Deutschen Juden (Relief Association of German Jews), Dr. 
Mark Wischnitzer, who was employed by the American Jewish Joint Dis¬ 
tribution Committee since 1938 and figured prominently in the edition of the 
Universal Jewish Encyclopedia , 9 wrote in an article in The Jewish Quar¬ 
terly Review that the Jewish population of the United States had reached 
5,199,200. 10 The rise by 429,000 from 4.77 million since 1937 amounts to 
an annual growth of 1.45% (!) - much too large for any possible natural 
increase. The answer to this contradiction was provided by Assistant Sec¬ 
retary of State Breckinridge Long. 

In March 1943, Long declared in the name of the U.S. Government that 
547,775 refugees had entered the United States since 1933. * 11 Eight months 
later, on November 26, Long testified before an investigating committee of 
the U.S. House of Representatives, the House Foreign Affairs Committee: 12 

The United States has admitted about 580,000 victims of persecution by the 
Hitler regime since it began ten years ago. [...] the majority of the refugees 
admitted were Jews [... ] 

It is not known what was meant by the term “majority.” If he meant at least 
70%, 406,000 of the 580,000 victims of persecution accepted by the United 
States must have been Jews. Unfortunately, the official immigration statis¬ 
tics show only 163,583 immigrant Jews between 1933 and 1943, which is 


9 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 16, p. 554-555. 

10 Wischnitzer, Mark. “The History of the Jews in Russia in Recent Publications,” The Jewish 
Quarterly Review, Philadelphia, 1944-1945, Vol. XXXV, p. 393. 

11 Sykes, Christopher. Kreuzwege nach Israel. Die Vorgeschichte des Jiidischen Staates, Munich, 
1967, p. 414. 

12 The New York Times. “580,000 Refugees Admitted to United States in Decade,” 12/11/1943, p. 
1; see also footnote no. 11. 



158 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


about 240,000 fewer. 13 The explanation for this further discrepancy is very 
simple. 

First, the Jewish statistician Arthur Ruppin pointed out that U.S. immi¬ 
gration statistics for Jews do not mean very much; the reason is that they do 
not include those Jewish immigrants whose culture and ordinary language 
makes them appear as members of the people of their country of origin. The 
Jewish immigrants from Germany, for example, were not registered as 
“Hebrews” but as Germans, whereas Galician Jews from Poland often ap¬ 
peared very “Jewish” because of their everyday language, looks, etc., and 
thus were registered in the column for “Hebrews.” 14 

Secondly, Long told the investigating committee that the United States 
allowed Jews to enter the United States on visitors’ visas before and during 
the war. This is of course another very important reason for the fact that US 
immigration statistics show only 165,583 Jewish immigrants between 1933 
and 1943 instead of more than 400,000. 15 

One way to arrive at the real number of Jewish immigrants before and 
after 1937 may be - despite unavoidable inaccuracies - to divide those es¬ 
timated 406,000 immigrant Jews on the basis of the registered Jewish im¬ 
migrants between 1933 and 1943: 


Jewish Immigrants in the United States: 1933-1943 


Period 

Registered 

Calculated 

1933-1937 

27,374 

67,000 

1938-1943 

138,209 

339,000 

1933-1943 

165,583 

406,000 


Adding the calculated Jewish immigrants numbering 339,000 between 
1938 and 1943 to the 4,771,000 Jews of 1937, one obtains a total of 5.11 
million, or 89,000 fewer than mentioned by Dr. Wischnitzer for the year 
1943. This difference is equivalent to a natural growth rate of about 0.3% 
p.a. - possibly somewhat low, but still quite plausible for an urban popula¬ 
tion whose birth rate was negatively affected by economic need during the 
Great Depression (1937-1940) and men absent on military duty (1941 to 
1943). 

According to the Year Book, however, the American Jewish population 
reached only 5,197,000 in 1957. This figure is still smaller than found in 
1943 by Dr. Wischnitzer, who was in an excellent position to judge the ac¬ 
tual size of Jewish immigration. Meanwhile, though, further hundreds of 
thousands of homeless European Jews entered the United States since 1943. 
Also, it is a matter of statistical record that the Jewish population, too, was 


13 AJYB, 1947, Vol. 49, p. 749. 

14 Ruppin, Arthur. The Jewish Fate and Future, London, 1940, p. 46. 

15 The New York Times. “580,000 Refugees Admitted to United States in Decade,” 12/11/1943, p. 

6 . 






W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


159 


affected by the baby-boom following WWII, although for a much shorter 
time period. The figure produced by the Year Book for 1946, therefore, is 
just plain wrong. 

In 1970, the Council of Jewish Federations and Welfare Funds sponsored 
a nationwide sampling survey of the Jewish population, the so-called Na¬ 
tional Jewish Population Study (NJPS). The survey did not aim at tracing all 
American Jews but only those who were still connected with Jewry in any 
form whatsoever. 16 Jews who had broken completely with their Jewish past 
and retained no further ties to their Jewish identity were not included. We 
shall attempt to obtain some answers from this study to questions regarding 
immigration, natural growth and assimilation. 

NJPS found 5,731,685 persons in Jewish households - defined as 
households with at least one Jewish person; among these there were 
5,370,000 Jews. If this number would have included all the Jews in the U.S., 
the increase over 27 years earlier would have been only 171,000! An ana¬ 
lysis of the age structure (Table 12) proves that such a tiny growth is totally 
impossible. 


Table 12: Age Structure of American Jews: 1970 


Year of Birth 

Age 

Share in % 

Share per Year 
of Birth (%) 

1966-1970 

1 

o 

5.7 

1.14 

1961-1965 

5- 9 

6.7 

1.34 

1956-1960 

10-14 

10.1 

2.02 

1951-1955 

15-19 

9.4 

1.88 

1946-1950 

20-24 

8.7 

1.74 

1941-1945 

25-29 

5.7 

1.14 

1936-1940 

30-34 

4.7 

0.94 

1931-1935 

35-39 

5.8 

1.16 

1926-1930 

40-44 

6.0 

1.20 

1921-1925 

45-49 

7.1 

1.42 

1916-1920 

50-54 

6.7 

1.34 

1911-1915 

55-59 

6.4 

1.28 

1906-1910 

60-64 

5.0 

1.00 

1901-1905 

65-69 

4.3 

0.86 

1896-1900 

70-74 

3.2 

0.64 

1891-1895 

75-79 

2.1 

0.42 

prior to 1891 

80 and older 

1.5 



unknown 

0.9 




100.0 



Source: AJYB. 1973, Vol. 74, S. 271. 


It is evident that the incidence of births was not very great from 1941 to 
1945, but between 1946 and 1960 it was considerable; after that it fell rap- 


16 


AJYB , 1974, Vol. 75, p. 300, and 1977, Vol. 78, p. 262-263. 







160 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


idly. The table points to a net growth rate between 1946 and 1960 of possi¬ 
bly around 0.8% per year. The decade of 1961-1970 saw a drastic reduction 
in the number of births. It may be assumed that the rate of natural increase 
fell to as low as 0.2% p.a. on average. 17 Given these growth rates, the Jewish 
population would have had to pass the 6-million-mark by 1970 even without 
the post-war immigration flows. 

The absolute impossibility of just 5.37 million American Jews in 1970 
was supported by other information made available by the NJPS. The study 
noted that 8.6% of all heads of households aged 20 to 24 years- born 1946 to 
1950 - were foreign-bom. 18 There is no reason to assume that the heads of 
households showed very different characteristics from the rest of the Jewish 
population; thus, we can apply that rate to the entire Jewish population as 
well. 

While there is no information on the percentage of those born abroad in 
the years 1946-1950 among the post-war Jewish migrants to the United 
States, the population statistics of the immigrant nation of Israel provide a 
rather good indication of the relative number of Jewish immigrants bom in 
Europe during the first few post-war years. 

As of December 31, 1954, there were 37,279 Jews in Israel bom in Eu¬ 
rope 19 between 1945 and 1949 (age 5-9 years). 20 From 1945 until May 15, 
1948, a total of 73,282 Jews entered Israel, 90%, or roughly 67,000, of them 
from Europe. 21 Between May 15, 1948, and December 31, 1954, another 
346,000 Jews arrived from there. 22 The total number of immigrants from 
Europe may have reached 413,000 between 1945 and 1954, about 
nine-tenths of them in the years 1945-1950. A relatively small number either 
returned or moved on to America, Australia, etc. Of all the Jews entering 
Israel between May 15, 1948, and the end of 1955, 7% are supposed to have 
left again. 2 ' The extent to which these emigrants consisted of European, 
North African or Middle Eastern Jews is not known. Applied to the 413,000 
European Jews who emigrated between 1945 and 1954, one may argue that 


17 It must be assumed that the Jewish natural rate of increase fell below zero in the USA in the 
1970s. The AJYB, 1976, Vol. 77, p. 310 wrote for instance: “[...] the current Jewish fertility is 6 
points below the rate that prevails in even the most intensely urbanized areas." The urban 
population, especially in the large cities, in the United States like in all industrial countries 
recorded natural increases far below that of the general population. But if, as the publication 
“Population Estimates and Projections” of the U.S. Department of Commerce notes, the av¬ 
erage American net growth rate was below 0.6% after 1972, the logical conclusion must be that 
the American-Jewish population is confronted with a serious demographic crisis since the early 
1970s. 

18 AJYB, 1973, Vol. 74, p. 276. 

19 The Statistical Abstract of Israel does not list the inunigrant Jews from America and Europe 
separately; but the Jewish immigrants from America represent only a tiny fraction of this group. 

20 Statistical Abstract of Israel 1955/56 , Table 16, p. 14. 

21 Ibid., 1980, Table V/l, p. 133. 

22 Ibid, 1954/55, Table 5, p. 33. 

23 Ibid, 1955/56, Table 3, p. 7. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


161 


the net immigration from Europe between 1945 and 1954 amounted to only 
384,000 (93% of 413,000). 

Evidently, the age groups 1945 to 1949 amounted to only 9.7% (37,279 
of 384,000) of the European Jews who immigrated in Israel between 1945 
and 1954. There is no reason to suppose the Jewish immigrants in the United 
States displayed a radically different age structure - after all, they too came 
from Europe. The implications for the American Jews are as follows: 

1. The age group “20-24 years” in the purported Jewish population of 5.37 
million amounted to 8.7% according to Table 12; in numbers, 467,000. 

2. Of these, 8.6% or about 40,000 were bom abroad in the years 1946-1950. 

3. These 40,000 immigrant Jews bom abroad in the years 1946-1950 con¬ 
stituted 10% of all immigrants; thus, total immigration must have num¬ 
bered about 400,000! 

Using the age structure as provided by NJPS, and the natural growth rate 
which may be estimated from it, the total natural increase must have been 
around 700,000 between 1946 and 1970. Deducting these excess births and 
immigration from the 5.37 million (1970), one should obtain the level of the 
Jewish population in the United States at the end of the war: Not surpris¬ 
ingly, the remainder of 4.27 million is even half a million below the semi-of¬ 
ficial figure of 1937! 

The conclusion to be drawn from this exercise is not that the data gath¬ 
ered by NJPS are worthless. They are probably quite correct. The problem is 
that the NJPS-study was only concerned with those Jews with continuing 
ties to the Jewish community; the assimilated Jews remained outside the 
study. In effect, the study shows the magnitude of the losses suffered by 
American Jews during the past decades through assimilation! 

But just how large was the Jewish population in the United States really 
in 1970? Publishing the Zionist population figures for the United States in 
1957, the World Almanac and Book of Facts apparently believed them to be 
far too anachronistic. To be sure, the Almanac cited the “official” Zionist 
figure of just 5.2 million but added that “an independent study places the 
percentage [of Jews] at 3.69%, and the possible number of Jews in the 
United States at 6,290,000.” 24 

Starting from these 6.29 million (1957) and projecting them until 1970 
on the basis of the growth rates implicit in Table 12, one obtains 6.6 million. 
This figure includes, of course, the assimilated Jews as well. If the latter did 
not exhibit drastically different characteristics, which is not likely, 8.7% of 
them were also bom in the years 1946-1950, and 8.6% of these, in turn, were 
foreign-bom. The relationship of this age group to all of the Jews immi¬ 
grating after the war also must have been 1 to 10. The resulting alternative 
development looks like this: 


24 


1958 World Almanac and Book of Facts , New York, p. 270. 



162 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Jewish population in the United States - 1970 6,600,000 

deduct: 

- Natural increase 1946-1970 25 865,000 

- Post-war immigration until 1970 26 490,000 

Total demographic changes after the war_-1,355,000 

Jewish population in the United States - 1945_5,245,000 

This calculated 1945-figure is just barely above the one mentioned by Dr. 
Wischnitzer for the Jewish population of the United States in 1943. If one 
deducts, furthermore, the semi-official figure of 4.77 million for 1937, it 
becomes apparent that Long’s testimony regarding the immigration of 
hundreds of thousands of Jews until 1943 fits neatly into the difference. 

The composition of the Jewish population in the United States by age and 
origin - as published by NJPS - provides the following conclusive results: 

A. In 1945, 5.25 million Jews inhabited the United States. 

B. Their number increased to 6.6 million by 1970. 

C. About 0.5 million Jews entered the United States between 1945 and 
1970. 

At the same time, NJPS admitted unintentionally that 1% million Jews, or 
one Jew in five, renounced their Jewish identity: 

Actual Jewish population 1970 6,600,000 

Jews found by NJPS 1970 _ 5,370,000 

Assimilated Jews 1970_1,230,000 

Such a high assimilation rate among Jews in the United States cannot 
surprise. Today, more than 40% of all U.S. Jews marry gentiles - four times 
as many as just a few decades ago. Only one third of these mixed couples 
raise their children in the Jewish tradition. In a study on “Intermarriage and 
the Jewish Future,” the American Jewish Committee complained that the 
United States’ Jewish population would drop below one million within fifty 
years unless these losses can be stopped. 27 


Israel 

The census of 1931 found 174,610 Jews in Palestine; by 1944, their 
number increased to 553,600, 28 and to 649,600 on May 15, 1948. 29 Offi- 


25 The excess of births over deaths numbering 865,000 for the years 1946-1970 was calculated on 
the basis of the age structure as published by NJPS. 

26 The immigration of 490,000 for the years 1946-1970 was computed as follows: 

a) The Jewish population bom in 1946-1950 is 8.7% of 6,600,000, or 574,000. 

b) Of these 574,000 8.6%, or 49,000 were bom abroad. 

c) These 49,000 represent about 10% of the immigrants. 

27 U.S. News <£ World Report, New York, April 7, 1980, p. 41. 

28 AJYB, 1947, Vol. 49, p. 742. 








W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


163 


dally, Jewish immigration - most of the immigrants came from Europe at 
the time - numbered 292,779 between 1932 and 1944, and 73,282 between 
1945 and May 15, 1948. 30 But these statistics are not as reliable as they 
seem. They represent only gross numbers, because comparable emigration 
figures appear not to exist for Palestine. Also, it is questionable whether the 
authorities really succeeded in keeping statistics on the considerable number 
of illegal immigrants. It is possible that emigration and illegal immigration 
cancelled each other; but it seems that the remaining difference, implying a 
natural increase of about 2% p.a., is too high even for the young Jewish 
immigrant population of those days. 

Between May 15, 1948, and December 31, 1970, another 1.4 million 
Jews entered the country, mainly from Europe, Africa and the Middle East. 31 
The immigration figures by countries of origin shown in Table 13 should not 
be taken at face value. Ostensibly, Israeli immigration statistics are kept on 
the basis of the country of origin. But there is good reason for doubt, as the 
following examples indicate. 

It can be shown that among the 60,581 Jews from Persia, there were few 
Persian Jews; almost certainly, most of them originated from eastern Europe 
or the Balkans. Another explanation is impossible: Before the war, Iran’s 
Jewish population numbered 40,000; 32 by 1970,60,581 Jews had left Persia 
for Israel, and yet, in 1971, there were still 80,000 Jews in Persia/ 3 A nat¬ 
ural increase of this size is unthinkable, leaving only one logical conclusion: 
They must have entered Persia between 1939 and the end of the war, coming 
from eastern Europe and the Balkans. The Soviet Union, Great Britain and 
the United States violated Iran’s proclaimed neutrality by force of arms and 
occupied that country against its will in World War Two. Persia was pow¬ 
erless to stop the immigration of Jews who had escaped from the German 
sphere of influence but whom no country wanted to accept. 

In theory, two roads existed for the fleeing Jews to reach Iran: One was 
by way of the Soviet Union, and may have been used by a few Polish and 
Rumanian Jews - provided the Soviets allowed it. The second, more im¬ 
portant route, led from Rumania through Bulgaria and neutral Turkey to the 
Anglo-Saxon occupied part of Persia. Now, if Israel alone obtained 60,000 
non-Iranian Jews from Persia, it would be only logical to assume that many 
other tens of thousands migrated to other countries and continents as well, 
for instance, to North and South America. The exact number is of no great 
importance, although it would be helpful, because if Iran accepted that many 
Jewish refugees during the war from eastern Europe, the bridge from the 


29 Statistical Abstract of Israel 1971, No. 22, Table B/2, p. 22. 

30 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 9, p. 534. 

31 Ibid., p. 541. 

32 AJYB, 1944, Vol. 46, p. 501. 

33 1972 World Almanac, p. 156. 



164 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Balkans across Turkey must have been used by more than one hundred 
thousand, possibly even two hundred thousand refugee Jews. One should 
keep in mind that the official immigration in Palestine between 1940 and 
1944 amounted to 45,066, 34 and to this must be added the many thousands 
of “illegal” entries. Almost all of these immigrants had come from eastern 
Europe and the Balkans. 

The census of 1936 listed 161,312 Jews in French-Morocco. 35 The high 
fertility of these Jews was offset, however, by a very high infant mortality 
rate, meaning that their natural increase was not all that different from that in 
other Oriental countries. In the early 1930s, the excess of births of Oriental 
Jews amounted to 5,000 according to the Universal , 36 Applied to a total 
Jewish population in Africa of perhaps 550,000, this excess is equivalent to 
a net growth rate of 0.9% p.a. For the period 1939-1945 the Year Book 
suggests an increase of the African Jews (excl. South Africa and Rhodesia) 
by 27,000 or 4,500 annually. This, too, would correspond to a net growth 
rate of 0.9% for an African-Jewish population (again excl. South Africa and 
Rhodesia), averaging barely more than 500,000. 37 Given a natural increase 
of, let us say, 1% p.a., Morocco’s Jewish population could have increased to 
reach at most 200,000 by the early 1950s, when most of the Jews left the 
country. Almost50,000 Moroccan Jews (1971: 48,000), 38 however, decided 
to stay. 

In other words, the total number of Jews who could possibly have left 
Morocco for Israel was 150,000 - provided that all of them decided to go to 
Israel. Israeli immigration statistics, however, list more than 250,000 im¬ 
migrant Jews from Morocco. The only explanation is that Morocco, a 
French protectorate during and after the war, was an intermediate station for 
Jewish refugees from devastated Europe. Western Europe’s resident Jews 
certainly saw little reason to move into Moroccan DP-camps after the war, 
and those 100,000 “surplus” Jews in Morocco, therefore, can only have 
originated in eastern Europe, or they consisted of western European Jews 
who returned from German deportation camps and who were neither willing 
nor capable of adjusting to a new life in their native countries. 39 

We can observe a similar development in Tunisia. The 1936 census 
registered 59,485 Jews, 40 but in 1950, 105,000 Jews inhabited the country, 41 
and 13,000 had left Tunisia meanwhile for Israel (Table 13). Even conced- 


j4 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 9, p. 533. 

35 AJYB, 1945, Vol. 47,p. 638. 

36 Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Vol. 10, p. 36. 

37 AJYB, 1946, Vol. 48, p. 609. 

38 1972 World Almanac, p. 156. 

39 Butz, Hoax of the Twentieth Century, p. 227. 

40 AJYB, 1944, Vol. 46, p. 501. 

41 Ibid., 1951, Vol. 52, p. 199. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


165 


Table 13: Jewish Immigration in Israel: 1948-1970 


Countries of Origin 

5/15/48-1970 

1952-1970 

5/15/48-1951 

Bulgaria 

48,642 

11,411 

37,231 

Hungary 

24,255 

10,624 

13,631 

Yugoslavia 

8,063 

468 

7,595 

Poland 

156,011 

52,279 

103,732 

Czechoslovakia 

20,572 

2,355 

18,217 

Rumania 

229,779 

110,839 

118,940 

Others 

4 

4 


Eastern Europe (excl, USSR) 

487,326 

187,980 

299,346 

England 

14,006 

11,863 

2,143 

Greece 

2,722 

717 

2,005 

France 

26,295 

22,287 

4,008 

Germany 

11,552 

2,696 

8,856 

Austria 

4,120 

1,126 

2,994 

Others 

16,342 

11,343 

4,999 

Western Europe 

75,037 

50,032 

25,005 

Soviet Union 

21,391 

16,693 

4,698 

Canada 

4,004 

3,771 

233 

United States 

34,288 

32,379 

1,909 

Argentina 

19,964 

18,830 

1,134 

Brazil 

5,590 

5,148 

442 

Chile 

2,782 

2,782 


Uruguay 

2,743 

2,743 


Others 

6,001 

5,131 

870 

Americas 

75,372 

70,784 

4,588 

Iraq 

124,647 

3,135 

121,512 

Iran 

60,581 

35,777 

24,804 

Yemen 

46,447 

1,248 

45,199 

Aden 

3,912 

757 

3,155 

Turkey 

53,288 

19,075 

34,213 

Others 

33,871 

25,531 

8,340 

Asia 

322,746 

85,523 

237,223 

Algeria 

13,119 

11,596 

1,523 

Tunisia 

46,255 

33,116 

13,139 

Libya 

34,265 

3,783 

30,482 

Morocco 

252,642 

221,892 

30,750 

Egypt 

37,867 

21,359 

16,508 

South Africa 

6,845 

6,261 

584 

Others 

1,450 

1,259 

191 

Africa 

392,443 

299,266 

93,177 

Other countries 

24,797 

4,633 

20,164 

Total 

1,399,112 

714,911 

684,201 


Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol, 9, S, 535 and 541, 











166 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


ing a natural increase of 1%, as in the case of the Moroccan Jews, Tunisia’s 
Jewish population could not have grown to more than 73,000 by the 
mid-1950s, when the majority of the Jews left the country. Obviously, Tu¬ 
nisia, too, had “surplus” Jews numbering 45,000 (105,000 plus 13,000 mi¬ 
nus 73,000). 10,000 were still living in Tunisia in 1971, about 46,000 had 
left for Israel, and the largest part of the rest of the remaining 60,000 had 
moved on to France. 

Without question, other countries in the Middle East and North Africa 
also gave shelter to refugee Jews, most of whom left for Israel after May 15, 
1948, but never appeared as European Jews in Israeli statistics. 

All of the western European countries were affected by the Jewish dra¬ 
ma. But it was the uprooted Jews looking for a new beginning who consti¬ 
tuted the bulk of the immigrants in Israel. Almost certainly, the 75,037 Jews 
who immigrated from western Europe either were eastern European in 
origin or else they belonged to those Jews returning from deportation camps. 
It is quite unlikely that western European Jews who survived the war in their 
home countries would have departed in large numbers for Israel. 

The 75,372 immigrants from the Americas also provide some food for 
thought. A resident population does not migrate abroad very eagerly. All of 
the listed American countries were prime destinations for Jewish immi¬ 
grants before, during and after the war. It is probable that the majority of 
these Jews also hailed from eastern Europe; but there is no direct evidence. 

The following summary of the immigrant European Jews in Israel after 
May 15, 1948, represents a minimum number: 


(Eastern) European Jews from Tunisia 45,000 42 

(Eastern) European Jews from Persia 60,581 

(Eastern) European Jews from Morocco 100,000 

(Eastern) European Jews from western Europe 75,037 

Jews from eastern Europe (excl. the USSR) _ 487,326 

Immigration of European Jews 1948-1970 767,944 


Not all of the 1.4 million immigrants between 1948 and 1970 remained in 
Israel. For the same period, the Statistical Abstract of Israel 1971 listed a net 
immigration figure of 1,155,100. 43 This means that 244,000, or every sixth 
immigrant, left the country; it is not known how many of them were of 
European origin. But since the European Jews were considerably better 
educated than the Jews from North Africa and the Middle East and also had, 
in many cases, close ties of kinship to Jews in other Western countries, it is 
probable that the majority of the emigrants, let us say 75%, were of Euro- 


42 It is not known whether the Jews coming to Israel from Tunisia belonged to the Oriental or to 
the immigrated (eastern) European part. We assumed them to belong to the European Jews; 
consequently, the Jews migrating to France from Tunisia were grouped among the Orientals. 

43 Statistical Abstract of Israel 1971, Table B/2, p. 22. 





W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


167 


pean origin, i.e. 183,000 of 244,000. On balance, the net, number of Euro¬ 
pean Jews immigrated in Israel between 1948 and 1970 must have num¬ 
bered 585,000 (768,000 minus 183,000). 


Latin America and the Anglo-Saxon Countries 

The other countries serving as main immigration countries besides the 
United States, Israel and France, which will be covered subsequently, are 
listed below: 44 


Jewish Population 



Pre-war 

1943 

Post-war 

Argentina 

260,000 (‘35) 

350,000 

500,000 (‘70) 

Brazil 

40,000 (‘33) 

110,750 

150,000(‘70) 

Chile 

3,697 (‘30) 

25,000 

40,000 (‘50) 

Colombia 

2,045 (‘35) 

5,800 

10,000 (‘70) 

Mexico 

20,000(‘35) 

20,000 

35,000 (‘70) 

Peru 

1,500(‘35) 

2,150 

5,300 (‘70) 

Uruguay 

12,000(‘30) 

37,000 

50,000 (‘70) 

Venezuela 

882 (‘26) 

1,600 

12,000 (‘70) 

Latin America 

340,124 

552,300 

802,300 

Canada 

155,614 (‘31) 

170,241 (‘41) 

296,945 (‘71) 

Australia 

23,553 (‘33) 

32,500 

72,000 (‘70) 

South Africa 

90,662 (‘36) 

99,000 

119,900(‘70) 

England 45 

300,000(‘31) 

365,000 

450,000 (‘50) 

Anglo-Saxon countries 

569,829 

666,741 

938,845 

Total 

909,953 

1,219,041 

1,741,145 


Until 1943, Latin America’s Jewish population of 340,000 had increased 
by 210,000. Of this total, no more than 30,000 may be attributed to a natural 
increase, and the remainder of 180,000 thus represents Jewish immigration. 
In the post-war period, the Jewish population increased to over 800,000 - an 


44 Tartakower, Arieh and Kurt R. Grossmann. The Jewish Refugee, New York, 1944, p. 343; also, 
AJYB, 1944, Vol. 46 (p. 500-501); 1951, Vol. 52 (p. 196-198); and 1971, Vol. 72 (p. 477-479). 

45 According to AJYB, 1969, Vol. 70, p. 276, the estimated number of Jews in Great Britain rose to 
450,000 in 1950 “and has stood at this figure ever since.” In the issue of 1977, Vol. 78, p. 
339-340, the AJYB wrote again: 

An outstanding feature [of British Jews] is a demographic decline. [...] demographers forecast 
that, in the foreseeable future, the Jewish population may fall to 225,000 compared with the 
410,000 currently [in 1971] estimated. The primary cause is the low birth rate. [...] Jewish fam¬ 
ilies [showed] only an average of 1.72 children per family [compared] to the general population, 
which had an average of 2.16 children. [...] intermarriage unmistakably emerges as the greatest 
single threat to the future ofBritish Jewry’. [... ] the true level ofassimilation [...]« approximately 
20per cent [...] ” 

The reduction since 1950 thus may be explained by both of these factors intermarriage and too 
few births. 










168 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


addition of 250,000. Since Latin America’s Jews are mostly urban dwellers, 
especially in Argentina and Brazil, it is quite improbable that the excess of 
births over deaths even reached 100,000; this means that at least 150,000 
must be due to immigration. 

In the case of the Anglo-Saxon countries, excl. the United States, there 
was an increase of 97,000 until 1943. In all four countries, however, the 
Jewish population was rather infertile. Between 1933 and 1943, the fol¬ 
lowing immigration occurred: 46 


Canada 

8,000 

Australia 

9,000 

South Africa 

8,000 

England 

65,000 

Total 

90,000 


In other words, the natural increase cannot have been larger than 7,000. 
After the war, the Jewish population rose by 272,000. Because of the rela¬ 
tively low birth rate and, in the case of England because of the short time 
interval, immigration must have been at least 250,000. 


France 

France is a special case in the group of the main immigration countries 
for Jews. It was the only country occupied by Germany during the war, and 
after the war it not only recorded a huge immigration from eastern Europe, 
but from North Africa as well. As mentioned in the Sixth Chapter, only 
238,000 Jews are supposed to have survived the war in France. In 1970, it is 
claimed 550,000 Jews were living there. 47 Up to 60,000 Jews had entered 
the country from Tunisia in the 1950s, and in the years 1962/1963 most of 
the 130,000 Algerian Jews decided to go to France. Only 13,000 moved to 
Israel, and 1,500 remained in Algeria after independence. 48 Without any 
natural growth at all, there would have been almost 400,000 Jews in France 
by 1970. But whatever their natural increase was, 150,000 would have been 
out of reach. 

Unfortunately, the 550,000-figure published by the Year Book turns out 
to be much too low! In the mid-1970s, an official investigation discovered 
700,000 Jews living in France. The International Herald Tribune com¬ 
mented: 49 


46 Tartakower and Grossmann, Jewish Refugee, p. 343. 

47 AJYB, 1971, Vol. 72, p. 476. 

48 Encyclopaedia Judaica, Vol. 9, p. 538-539. 

49 International Herald Tribune. “French Policies to Court the Jewish Vote,” May 10, 1977, p. 2. 





W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


169 


[...] a census report showed there were 700,000 Jews in France, at least 
150,000 more than had been believed. 

It is true that the North African Jews proved relatively fertile, but the 
native European Jews exhibited the low birth rate usual for Europe. It may 
be assumed that this mixed Jewish population was not much larger than 
670,000 in 1970 - seven years prior to the official count. Of these, in turn, 
185,000 may have been of North African origin (see footnote to Table 15). 
Consequently, the number of European Jews in France probably was 
485,000 in 1970. In view of the “original” 238,000 of the year 1945 and the 
relatively small growth rate, immigration from eastern Europe must have 
amounted to 230,000 Jews after the war. 

As for the pre-war immigration in France, a number of “estimates” exist. 
But the number of 90,000 (Sixth Chapter) also contained the - mostly for¬ 
eign - Jews who fled from Belgium and Holland. 


The “Missing” 

Summarizing, we may say that from the end of WWII until 1970 
1,778,000 Jews found shelter in the main Jewish immigration countries. 
This number is about one and a half times as large as the 1.1 million Jews 
who entered the same countries during the 1930s (Table 14). In analyzing 
Jewish emigration from the countries occupied by Germany during the war, 
however, we must disregard France, because this country, even though it 
was one of the large immigration countries for Jews both before and after the 
war, was in the German sphere of influence during WWII. Thus, Jewish 
immigration in all the above-mentioned main immigration countries outside 
the former German sphere of influence totaled 1,548,000 after the war (until 
1970). The only possible countries of origin of these more than 1.5 million 
Jewish immigrants are those European countries (excl. the USSR in today’s 
borders) which were occupied by Germany during WWII. 

In 1970, 860,000 Jews of European origin lived in these very same 
countries (Table 15). If one adds them to the 1,548,000 Jews who left these 
countries after the war for the main immigration countries (excl. France), 
then one obtains the minimum number of Jews who must have been living in 
the former German-occupied European countries (excl. the USSR and the 
Baltic states) at the close of World War Two, namely, 2,408,000. Their 
number was probably larger yet, because European Jewry was subject to 
considerable attrition during the interim 25 years on account of low birth 
rates and assimilation. 

However, highly regarded Zionist organizations like the American Jew¬ 
ish Committee put the number of Jews in those European countries in 


170 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Table 14: Immigration of EUROPEAN Jews in the Main Countries 
of Immigration before and af ter World War Two 



Before the war 

After the war 

Palestine 

293,000 (‘32-’44) 

73,000 (‘45-’48) 

Israel 


585,000 (‘48-’70) 

United States 

406,000 (‘33-’43) 

490,000 

Latin America 

180,000 (1930s) 

150,000 

Canada, Australia, England, 
South Africa 

90,000 (1930s) 

250,000 

France 

90,000 (1930s) 

230,000 

Main immigration countries 

deduct: 

1,059,000 

1,778,000 

France 

90,000 

230,000 

Main immigration countries out¬ 
side the German sphere of in¬ 
fluence during World War Two 

969,000 

1,548,000 


Source: Seventh Chapter. 


Table 15: Jewish Population of EUROPEAN Origin in the former 
German-occupied European Countries in 1970 50 


Bulgaria 

7,000 

Rumania 

100,000 

Yugoslavia 

7,000 

Czechoslovakia 

14,000 

Poland 

9,000 

Hungary 

80,000 


23,000 


194,000 


Communist countries excl. the USSR 

217,000 

Belgium 

40,500 

Netherlands 

30,000 

Denmark 

6,000 

Norway 

750 

Greece 

6,500 

Austria 

8,000 

Italy 

35,000 

Germany 

30,000 

Luxemburg 

1,000 

France 

485,000 


89,000 


553,750 

Western European countries app. 


643,000 

Approximate total 



860,000 


In 1977, 700,000 Jews were found in France. 44 The native Jewish population 
was stagnant, but the younger immigrant Eastern European Jews might have 


had some growth. Much larger excesses of births over deaths were recorded by 
the app. 170,000 immigrant North African Jews who arrived in the 1960s. 
Applying an average rate of growth of at most 0.8%, there were 670,000 Jews 
in France in 1970. It may be possible that the North African Jews recorded an 
excess of births amounting to 15,000; if true, 485,000 Jews of European origin 
were living in France in the year 1970. 


50 AJYB, 1971, Vol. 72, p. 476. The Jewish population figures (1970) given for European coun¬ 
tries (excl. France) are not necessarily identical with reality, as Table 15 shows. According to 
AJYB, 1969, Vol. 70, p. 285, the frequent intermarriages of European Jews, and the withdrawal 
from the Jewish community often resulting therefrom, caused considerable but unfortunately 
not ascertainable losses to the European Jewish population. 


















W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


171 


1946/47 at only 1.41 million. Thus, the missing million Jews (2,408,000 
minus 1,410,000) must have left Europe either during the immediate 
post-war period or - disregarding the possibility that we were given “polit¬ 
ical” figures - the count in 1946/47 was incomplete. 

The improbability of just 1.41 million “survivors” (1946/47), as pub¬ 
lished by the Year Book, is highlighted by the fact that in that case only half 
a million Jews (1,410,000 minus 860,000) from the former German occu¬ 
pied countries could have entered the main immigration countries between 
the end of the war and 1970. The fact is that Israel alone received more than 
half a million immigrants from these countries after 1948. 

Insisting on the 1.41 million figure is to deny the huge Jewish immigra¬ 
tion in the Western Hemisphere after World War Two. That, of course, is 
nonsense. Which European countries these surviving, but statistically “mis¬ 
sing” European Jews should be allocated to, cannot be reconstructed today. 
During the first post-war years, Jewish refugees were streaming week after 
week, month after month from the East to the West, being transported from 
camp to camp, and it often lasted years until they finally found their place of 
final residence. Hundreds of thousands were literally moving “between” the 
countries, and thus were not recorded in the statistics for individual coun¬ 
tries. Certainly, the Year Book published figures on the number of Jewish 
DP’s for 1947 in the case of Italy, Germany and Austria, but not for other 
countries. For instance, one cannot detect Cyprus - where the British held 
tens of thousands of Jews wanting to migrate to Palestine - or Morocco and 
Tunisia. 

By proving a large-scale immigration in many countries 
outside the former wartime German sphere of influence, it was 
possible to demonstrate that 

Jews left Europe between the end of the war and 1970 (Table 
14). In 1970, these European countries still contained 
European Jews (Table 15). Consequently, the number of Jews 
who survived must have been at least 

On the basis of largely Zionist or pro-Zionist data, however, 
the number of surviving Jews found was only (Table 11) 1,443,000. 

This means that the difference constitutes additional survivors 
in, and/or emigrants from, former German-occupied Europe; 
their numbers are 965,000. 

Thus, while the real number of Jewish survivors in former 
German-occupied Europe (excl. the USSR in today’s borders) 
was almost 2 A million, the sum of the actually missing Jews 
was much smaller. Based on Zionist statistics we arrived in 
Table 11 at 


1,548,000 

860,000 

2,408,000. 


1,269,000 




172 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


“missing” Jews. Deducting the additional 965,000 

survivors from them, European Jews not traceable statistically 

number 304,000. 

The extent to which these 304,000 represent actual missing persons is 
difficult to judge. It is known that the Jewish population of German-occu¬ 
pied Europe suffered from an extremely low birth rate. The resulting excess 
of natural deaths over births was not taken completely into account in the 
above analysis due to lack of data. In addition, we only considered Jewish 
immigration in fourteen countries which accepted the bulk of the large 
number of Jewish emigrants after the war. An investigation of some of the 
smaller countries of destination certainly would discover further emigrants. 

It is thus obvious that the figure of 1.3 million “missing” Jews arrived at 
on the basis of Zionist information for former German-occupied Europe 
(excl. the USSR in today’s borders) in no way reflects reality. The huge flow 
of Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe after the cessation of hostilities - 
as described by General Morgan and even Zionist sources - must have ex¬ 
ceeded 1.5 million until 1970. This flow also included the majority of the 
deportees and the Polish Jews under wartime German control. 


Organized Flight 

It was pointed out before that many Jews managed to escape during the 
war from the German sphere of influence. They, too, belong to the 965,000 
surviving, but statistically unaccounted for European Jews. The exact 
number of Jews who fled after the start, but before the end, of the Second 
World War to neutral or Allied countries and regions is not known; it must 
have reached several hundreds of thousands. 

To be sure, the Institute of Jewish Affairs reported that 180,000 Jews 
escaped from the countries controlled by the Axis powers between the be¬ 
ginning of the war and 1943, but their countries of origin and routes of es¬ 
cape are largely clouded in mystery. 51 

Hidden indications can be found here and there pointing to Turkey as an 
important receiving and transit country for fleeing Jews who tried to reach 
neutral or Allied overseas countries by ship via the port of Constanza 
(Rumania) or by rail via Bulgaria. Even more mysterious are the temporary 
receiving stations for these refugees. The Year Book, for instance, does list 
figures for the Jewish DP-camps in post-war Germany, Austria and Italy, 
but none for Cyprus, Persia or Morocco where - as was shown in this 


51 


Institute of Jewish Affairs, Hitler’s Ten-Year War , p. 306. 





W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


173 


chapter - many Jewish refugees were admitted before and just after the end 
of the war. 

An invaluable piece of evidence describing the extent and organization 
of this refugee movement during the last 16 months of the war is furnished 
by the U.S. War Refugee Board. The Board was established by Roosevelt on 
January 22, 1944, for the purpose, inter alia, of aiding the escape of as many 
Jews as possible from areas under German control. Special representatives 
of the Board were stationed in all “strategic” places important for the re¬ 
ception, shelter and transportation of these refugees, such as Turkey, Swit¬ 
zerland, Sweden, Portugal, Great Britain, Italy and North Africa. 52 

The diplomatic status of these representatives enabled them to negotiate 
with all friendly and neutral governments in the name of the U.S. Govern¬ 
ment, and even to contact German authorities for the purpose of obtaining 
the release of Jewish prisoners. The number of Jews freed from German 
control as a result of these direct negotiations is not specified, but the last 
U.S.-German exchange is supposed to have taken place in February 1945; 
the released Jews “were taken to an UNRRA camp in North Africa to await 
ultimate resettlement.” 53 

Of much greater importance for the escape of Jews from the German 
sphere of influence - especially during the last 1 ‘A war years - was their 
flight to Turkey and, to a smaller degree, to southern Italy. To be sure, the 
United States had no need to pay attention to a sovereign Italian govern¬ 
ment, but in the case of neutral Turkey an agreement had to be reached. In 
order to transfer the escaped Jews on to Palestine and to transit camps in the 
Middle East and North Africa, the consent of Great Britain and France, i.e. 
de Gaulle, was necessary. The United States Government 

assured the neutral governments that it would arrange for the maintenance of 
newly arrived refugees and for the evacuation to other places of safety as soon 
as possible. 

Representations were therefore made to the Turkish Government for consent to 
admit into its territory all refugees from Axis areas who might reach the Turkish 
border. Assurances were given the Turkish Government that the Board would 
arrange for maintenance of refugees in Turkey as well as for their eventual 
removal to other places. [...] the Turkish Government finally agreed to grant 
increased numbers of entrance and transit visas and transportation facilities, 
and generally to cooperate in this [U.S.] Government’s program to rescue Nazi 
victims . 55 


52 U.S. War Refugee Board, Final Summary Report, p. 4-5. 

53 Ibid., p. 34. 

54 Ibid., p. 7. 

55 Ibid., p. 20-21. 



174 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


In order to carry out this far-flung escape operation, the services of the 
UNRRA were utilized, which provided temporary shelter for the Jewish 
refugees and their transport and maintenance on the way to makeshift 
camps. UNRRA camps sprouted in the Middle East, Italy and North Africa 
ready to accept thousands of these refugees. 56 

The possibility to escape from the Balkans via Turkey to Palestine and 
other allied territory existed for Jews since the beginning of World War 
Two. The route of escape led from the port of Constanza (Rumania) across 
the Black Sea to Istanbul or by rail through Bulgaria. The Board assumed the 
task to systematically improve and expand these routes to “develop a steady 
flow of refugees over these routes through Turkey.” 57 

For this purpose, lesser German and other border officials were bribed, 
false identification papers were supplied, exit and entry visas were procured, 
and transportation by boat and by rail was provided for evacuation to safe 
areas. “Tens of thousands were rescued from the Nazis by these clandestine 
means,” the Board wrote. 58 

[...] refugees were collected, concealed from the Nazi-controlled Rumanian of¬ 
ficials, and placed in small vessels in the port of Constanza. [...The refugees] 
were herded by the hundreds on ships built to carry 20 to 50passengers. [...] 
late in March 1944, 48,000 Jews were moved from Transnistria to Rumania. 
Many of them, mostly children, were transferred with other [Jewish] refugees 
from Rumania to Palestine. 5 

A second route of escape from the Balkans to Allied territory led from 
Yugoslavia by boat across the Adriatic Sea to southern Italy. Partisan and 
other underground units in Slovakia, Hungary and Yugoslavia smuggled 
Jewish refugees to the coast, where boats organized by the Board waited to 
receive and transport them to southern Italian UNRRA camps. Approxi¬ 
mately 7,000 Hungarian Jews are supposed to have escaped this way, but it 
is not known whether they were Jews from Greater Hungary or from the 
Hungarian territory within post-war borders. 60 

In southern Italy the UNRRA maintained numerous camps for the Jews 
streaming across the Adriatic Sea. Soon, these facilities became overtaxed, 
and the inmates were transferred to “havens in other Allied territory.” 61 The 
reference was to the UNRRA camps in North Africa like, for instance, Camp 
Marechal Lyautey near Casablanca or Camp Philippeville in Algeria. 62 


56 Ibid., p. 9. 

57 Ibid., p.19-20. 

58 Ibid., p. 18. 

59 Ibid., p. 21-23. 

60 Ibid., p. 26. 

61 Ibid., p. 64. 

62 Ibid., p. 61-62. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


175 


The financial means to bribe officials, procure false identity papers, and 
obtain ship and rail transport in German-occupied areas was paid for by 
funds channeled through “neutral” Switzerland and from there to the Jewish 
organizations in Hungary and elsewhere. 63 

It is unfortunate that the Board made no references as to the total number 
of Jews who escaped from Axis territory through its assistance. Here and 
there the report mentions some figures for particular national Jewish groups, 
but generally the Board just mentions hundreds, thousands and tens of 
thousands coming out of German-occupied Europe. The fact that 

- at the end of the war, there were 8,000 more Jews in Bulgaria than at the 
beginning, 

- 6,000 Hungarian Jews were found stranded in Rumania after the war, 

- 60,000 and more than 100,000 European Jews, respectively, arrived in 
Israel from Persia and Morocco between 1948 and 1970, 

- the Jewish population of Palestine increased by about 100,000 between 
1939 and 1945, with only a fraction thereof accounted for by natural net 
growth, 

- the Institute of Jewish Affairs reported 180,000 escaped Jews between 
the beginning of the war and 1943, 

- the U.S. Government’s War Refugee Board and the UNRRA had sys¬ 
tematically organized the escape of a stream of refugees through Turkey 
and southern Italy, 

permits us to assume a gigantic flight and evacuation during the war from 
areas of former German-occupied Europe: it numbered many hundreds of 
thousands. 


63 


Ibid., p. 32-33. 




W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


111 


EIGHTH CHAPTER: 

The World Jewish Population 


The Demographic Development before the War 

As late as the early 1930s, 9.5 million Jews lived in Europe (incl. the 
Soviet Union). 1 Almost two-thirds of them either were never in the German 
sphere of influence or escaped from it. On the other hand, Europe’s Jewish 
population was in the midst of a process of dissolving its former concentra¬ 
tion long before Hitler’s ascension to power. This dissolution was the con¬ 
sequence of a large flow of emigration from eastern European countries, 
negative net birth rates, conversions and general assimilation tendencies. 
The economic crisis of the 1930s and the officially managed anti-Jewish 
measures in Greater Germany, Poland, Rumania, etc., intensified the efforts 
of Jews to turn their backs on Europe. The outbreak of World War Two fi¬ 
nally destroyed their one-time stronghold in Europe, except for a few rem¬ 
nants on the western rim of the Occident. 

About one million Jews left Europe before the war. Roughly half a mil¬ 
lion lived anyway in European countries never occupied by Germany, and 
between September 1939 and mid-1940 more than two million Jews dis¬ 
appeared in the Soviet Union and shared the fate of the other three million 
Soviet Jews. Consequently, only 2.8 million Jews remained in the countries 
that were to come within the German sphere of influence until June 22, 
1941. Another three-quarters of a million Jews fell into German hands when 
Axis troops struck in order to forestall a Soviet attack, bringing the total 
number of Jews in the German sphere of influence in Europe during the 
Second World War to 3.5 million. 

Of the 5 to 5.5 million Jews in the USSR (1940), one million inhabited 
from the start the territories outside the maximum German expansion in 
Russia, close to another million were deported by the Soviets from the 
western frontier areas to Siberia in the spring of 1940 already, and 
four-fifths of the remaining 3.5 million Jews withdrew more or less volun¬ 
tarily with the Red Army in 1941. 


AJYB, 1932, Vol. 34, p. 251. 



178 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Table 16: World Jewish Population in the 1930s 
- by Countries - 


Europe 


England (1931) 

300,000 

Gibraltar (1931) 

886 

Ireland (1926) 

3,686 

Malta (1920) 

35 

Portugal (1931) 

1,200 

Spain (1934) 

4,000 

Sweden (1930) 

6,653 

Switzerland (1930) 

17,973 

Unoccupied Europe 


Albania (1930) 

204 

Belgium (1934) 

60,000 

Bulgaria (1934) 

48,398 

Czechoslovakia (1930) 

356,830 

Denmark (1930) 

5,690 

Finland (1937) 

1,755 

France (1936) 

240,000 

Germany (1939) 

250,448 

Greece (1928) 

72,791 

Hungary (1930) 

444,567 

Italy (1931) 

47,825 

Luxemburg (1935) 

3,144 

Netherlands (1935) 

111,917 

Norway (1930) 

1,359 

Poland (1931) 

3,113,900 

Rumania (1930) 

756,930 

Yugoslavia (1931) 

68,405 

Former German-occupied Europe 

Estonia (1934) 

4,302 

Latvia (1935) 

93,479 

Lithuania (1923) 

155,125 

Soviet Union (1939) 

3,020,141 

Soviet Union and Baltic states 

Europe 


Africa, Asia, Australia 


Algeria (1931) 

110,127 

Congo (1923) 

177 

Egypt (1934) 

72,550 

Ethiopia (1936) 

51,000 

Kenya(1931) 

305 

Libya (1938) 

30,046 

Morocco (French) (1936) 

161,312 

Morocco (Span.) (1936) 

12,918 

Portug. East Africa (1923) 

100 


334,433 


5,584,163 


3,273,047 


9,191,643 









W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


179 


Rhodesia (1931) 

South Africa (1936) 

S.W. Africa (1925) 

Tanganyika (1931) 

Tangier (1936) 

Tunisia (1936) 

2,447 

90,662 

200 

10 

7,000 

59,485 


Africa 


598,339 

Aden (1931) 

4,151 


Afghanistan (1929) 

5,000 


Arabia (?) 

25,000 


China (1935) 

19,850 


Cyprus (1931) 

75 


Hong Kong (1935) 

250 


India (1931) 

24,141 


Indochina (1924) 

1,000 


Iraq (1935) 

90,970 


Japan (1938) 

200 


Malaya (1921) 

703 


Palestine (1939) 

424,373 


Persia (1935) 

40,000 


Philippines (1934) 

500 


Syria/Lebanon (1931) 

26,051 


Transjordan (1934) 

200 


Turkey (1935) 

78,730 


Asia 


741,194 

Australia (1933) 

23,553 


New Zealand (1936) 

2,653 


Australia and New Zealand 


26,206 

Africa, Asia and Australia 



North and South America 



Argentina (1935) 

260,000 


Brazil (1933) 

40,000 


Chile (1930) 

3,697 


Columbia (1935) 

2,045 


Costa Rica (1939) 

500 


Cuba (1933) 

7,800 


Curacao (1929) 

566 


Dominican Republic (1940) 

756 


Guatemala (1938) 

350 


Guiana (Brit.) (1938) 

1,000 


Haiti (1936) 

150 


Honduras (1938) 

25 


Jamaica (1935) 

2,000 


Mexico (1935) 

20,000 


Nicaragua (1938) 

100 


Panama (1930) 

850 


Panama Canal Zone (1938) 

74 



1,365,739 







180 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Paraguay (1930) 

Peru (1935) 

Salvador (1939) 

Surinam (1938) 

Uruguay (1930) 

Venezuela (1926) 

1,200 

1,500 

120 

799 

12,000 

882 


Latin America 


356,414 

Canada (1931) 

155,614 


United States (1937) 

4,771,122 


North America 


4,926,736 


Americas _ 5,283,150 

World Jewish population _ 15,840,532 

Source: AJYB, 1944, Vol. 46, p. 501 for all countries except Rumania and the 
Netherlands; for these two countries “estimates” were provided by the Year 
Book, even though the Dutch census of 1935 registered 111,917 Jews (AJYB, 

1940, Vol. 42, p. 602) and Rumania’s census of 1930 found 756,930 Jews 
(Hilberg, Destruction of the European Jews, p. 486). 

After World War Two, 2.4 million Jews were found to be alive in the 
former German-occupied European countries (excl. the USSR); about 
300,000 are statistically unaccounted for. Over one million of the more than 
five million Jews died during the war in the Soviet Union, the largest part 
either as Red Army men or in Siberian labor and concentration camps. 
Probably up to 4.3 million Jews survived the war in the Soviet Union, and as 
late as 1980 prominent Zionist personalities like Dr. Nahum Goldmann es¬ 
timated the number of Soviet Jews at up to 3.5 million. But meanwhile 
hundreds of thousands had left the Workers’ Paradise during the past three 
and a half decades, and considerable negative net birth rates and numerous 
mixed marriages caused Soviet Jewry to suffer great losses. 

Fitting the numerical development of the Jewish population in Europe 
into that of world Jewry is aggravated by the fact that there are no reliable 
figures on the actual number of Jews throughout the world. In most coun¬ 
tries, Jews are still not considered an ethnic, but a religious minority and, 
strangely enough, political Zionism was unable so far to persuade the gov¬ 
ernments of the Western countries with the largest Jewish populations to 
include them separately in the periodic censuses. 

This situation led to large differences in the estimates of the world Jewish 
population even before the Second World War. As a rule, the Jewish pop¬ 
ulation estimates were too low for the immigration countries, too high for 
the countries of emigration and, generally, Jewry was endowed with far too 
large rates of natural increase. This is particularly a problem for the last 
pre-war figure, namely, the world Jewish population estimated at 16.7 mil¬ 
lion in 1939. The huge shift of millions of Jews to the East, West and South 
caused by the war and its aftermath, and the political interest in keeping the 






W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


181 


pre-war figure high, made it impossible so far to attain an objective correc¬ 
tion of this number; yet, historical truth demands it. 

For most of the countries of the world the latest official and semiofficial 
pre-war figures are available only for the early or the middle 1930s. Ex¬ 
ceptions are the United States, Palestine, the Soviet Union and Greater 
Germany. On the basis of the last censuses or estimates for the countries 
listed in Table 16 one obtains the following summary: 


North and South America 

Asia, Africa, Australia 

European countries not occupied by Germany during 
World War Two 

5,283,150 

1,365,739 

334,433 

Countries outside the area of wartime German influence 
Countries inside the area of wartime German influence 

6,983,322 

5,584,163 

World Jewry outside the USSR and the Baltic countries 
Soviet Union and the Baltic states 

12,567,485 

3,273,047 

World Jewry 

15,840,532 


In Table 17 we listed the census years when the Jewish population of the 
individual countries was counted or estimated last before the war. Classified 
by periods of time, the summary is as follows (in 1,000): 


A B C D 

E 

1923/25 1926/321933/35 1936/38 

1939 Sum 


North and South America 

0 

175 

333 

4,774 

1 

5,283 

Asia, Africa, Australia 

2 

172 

352 

415 

424 

1,366 

Europe 

0 

5,199 

227 

242 

250 

5,918 

World excl. USSR and Baltic states 

2 

5,546 

912 

5,431 

676 

12,567 

Soviet Union and Baltic states 

155 

0 

98 

0 

3,020 

3,273 

World Jewry 

157 

5,546 

1,010 

5,431 

3,696 

15,841 

Years until 1939 (average) 

15 

8 

5 

2 

1 


Average percentage increase 

0.2 

0.2 

0.7 

0.5 

0.3 


Possible Jewish population at the end 







of 1939 

162 

5,635 

1,046 

5,485 

3,707 

16,035 


The main countries listed in columns A and B are Lithuania, Poland, 
Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Rumania and England. Poland registered a very 
small natural increase of only 0.2% for its Jewish population before the war 
already; Hungary’s Jews suffered a negative net growth rate. In Czecho¬ 
slovakia and probably in England, the Jewish population was stagnating, 
and Rumania’s Jews, too, recorded just a very small natural growth (0.2%) 
in the 1930s. The relatively high rate of growth of the small number of Asian 
and African Jews cannot possibly have affected the overall rate for these 
columns. An average rate of 0.2% seems ample under the circumstances. 












182 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Table 17 : World Jewish Population in the 1930s 
- by Census Years - 


Year 

Europe + Asia + Australia + Africa + Americas 

= World 

Unknown 

25,000 



25,000 

1920-1925 

155,160 1,703 

477 


157,340 

1926 

3,686 

882 

4,568 


1928 

72,791 



72,791 

1929 

5,000 


566 

5,566 

1930 

1,590,206 


17,747 

1,607,953 

1931 

3,532,216 54,418 

112,889 

155,614 

3,855,137 

1933 

111,917 

23,553 

47,800 

183,270 

1934 

116,700 700 

72,550 


189,950 

1935 

96,623 229,800 


285,545 

611,968 

1936 

240,000 

2,653 382,377 

150 

625,180 

1937 

1,755 


4,771,122 

4,772,877 

1938 

200 

30,046 

2,348 

32,594 

1939 

250,448 424,373 


620 

675,441 

1940 



756 

756 

World excl, USSR 6,171 ,502 741,194 

26,206 598,339 

5,283,150 

12,820,391 

1939 USSR 

3,020,141 



3,020,141 

World 

9,191,643, 741,194 

26,206 598,339 

5,283,150 

15,840,532 


Source: Table 16, 


The countries listed in column C are distributed quite evenly among the 
Western Hemisphere, Europe and Asia/Africa. The small or even totally 
absent growth rates in Europe were more than offset by the large growth 
rates in Asia. Still, the applied average rate of 0.7% seems somewhat high. 
U.S. Jews dominate column D almost completely. Their rate of natural in¬ 
crease is not certain, but we do know that the highly urbanized U.S.-Jewish 
population recorded much lower net growth rates than the U.S. average; 
also, other U.S. population sections (for instance, the non-white and the 
rural white population) were blessed with a growth rate far in excess of the 
U.S. average of 0.75% (1935-1939). 2 Thus, an average rate of 0.5% in 
column D is probably exaggerated. Column E also was provided with a 
growth for one year, because the Soviet census took place in January of 
1939. Here too, it seems that the applied increase of 0.3% is rather generous, 
because the Soviet-Jewish population stagnated long before the war, as Prof. 
Lorimer pointed out. 

The maximum size of the world Jewish population thus cannot have 
exceeded 16.04 million in 1939. A scrutiny of Table 17 shows that the 
census dates of the countries receiving Jewish immigrants in the Western 
Hemisphere and Palestine happened to fall into the second half of the 1930s, 
whereas those of the European emigration countries, excepting Germany, 


2 U.S. Department of Commerce, Population Estimates, p. 1. 








W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


183 


were to be found at the beginning of the decade, generally 1930/1931. No 
question, the census count of many immigration countries included Jews 
who were also covered by the population statistics of Poland, Rumania, the 
Baltic, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Greece, etc. Considering the half a mil¬ 
lion Jewish emigrants from Poland in the 1930s and the many tens of 
thousands from other European countries, it is certain that double counting 
must have amounted to at least 100,000, probably more. We can be sure that 
the Jewish world population of 1939 never reached the 16-million mark; it 
was at least 700,000 smaller than is usually assumed. 

The elusiveness of the figure of 16.64 million published by the Year 
Book J can be demonstrated another way: For this figure to be true, the Jews 
would have had to grow by an annual average rate of 1.2% since the last 
count in the individual countries until 1939. This rate is 50% larger than the 
populations of North America and Europe with their very large rural popu¬ 
lation were able to show! This is obvious nonsense. 

In the official Statistical Abstract of Israel, a similar unreal number may 
be found for 1939, namely, 16.7 million. The same source also mentioned 
the worldwide Jewish population for the years 1914 and 1925: 3 4 

1914 13.5 million 

1925 14.8 million 

An increase by 1.3 million from 13.5 million to 14.8 million within 
eleven years is equivalent to an annual rate of 0.85%. Before and after these 
dates, millions of Jews left eastern Europe and emigrated mainly to North 
America, where their natural increase soon began to decelerate in the new 
urban commercial environment. Also, the economic crisis of the 1930s 
produced the same trend to lower birth rates among the Jews as was true for 
all industrial nations. But an increase to 16.7 million in 1939 would corre¬ 
spond to an average rate of +0.9% per year. Not only would the Jews have 
had an actual rise in their rate of natural increase, but - contrary to the trend 
of those years - their fertility would have been considerably larger than was 
recorded for central and western European countries. This is absurd! 

However, an increase by 1.2 million from 14.8 (1925) to 16 million in 
1939 would amount only to an average rate of growth of 0.55% per annum. 
Even this rate would seem rather high in view of the drastically falling 
Jewish birth rates in eastern Europe, the negative tendencies in some central 
and southeastern European countries, and a moderate growth in the United 
States. Still, considering the whole development since 1914, it appears much 
more realistic. By way of comparison: The U.S. population recorded an 
average net growth rate of only 0.8% between 1930 and 1939 despite a fast 


3 AJYB, 1946, Vol. 48, p. 603. 

4 Statistical Abstract of Israel 1971, Table B/3. 



184 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


growing non-white and white rural population. 5 In Germany the net rate was 
0.7-0.8% (however, there was a decline from 0.9% in 1925 to 0.66% in 1930 
and a rise from then on to 0.8% by 1939). 6 

To be sure, the much publicized emigration from Germany and the im¬ 
migration into Palestine was reflected in the Year Book's figures, but the 
considerably larger emigration from eastern Europe was disregarded almost 
entirely. The fact that the United States had accepted more than 400,000 
Jewish refugees and immigrants was made public only in 1943 during 
hearings of an investigating committee of the U.S. House of Representa¬ 
tives. But those hearings did not receive particular notice. Thus, while 
Jewish immigration showed up to a small extent in the statistics for the 
immigration countries, emigration was disregarded in the statistics for 
eastern Europe. This situation had dire consequences for the ascertainment 
of the total number of the pre-war Jewish population and the number of 
missing persons. To all appearances, the overseas immigration countries 
displayed fewer Jews than actually were present before and after WWII, and 
the eastern European emigration countries were assigned numbers that were 
exaggerated by 800,000! 

The country-specific investigation in the First and Sixth Chapter points 
to a net emigration before and during the war of at least 1,121,000 ( Table 
18). It is possible, though, that this figure does include some negative net 
growth, because sometimes the data available was just too scanty. 


Table 18: Jewish Emigration before and during World War Two 


Czechoslovakia 

52,300 

Germany and Austria 

442,000 

Hungary 

5,500 

Poland 

500,000 

Rumania 

121,600 

Total 

1,121,000 


Source: First and Sixth Chapter. The escape of about 30,000 Jews from France 
in 1940 was not taken into account; they consisted mainly of refugees 
from Gennany, Poland and Czechoslovakia, and thus would in effect 
constitute a double counting. 

Analyzing immigration in the main immigration countries - i.e. Pales¬ 
tine, the United States, Canada, Australia, England, South Africa, France 
and seven Latin American countries - before the end of WWII, we found 
1,059,000 Jews in the Seventh Chapter ( Table 14). In addition, there were 
many other smaller countries which also accepted thousands of Jewish 
refugees, such as Switzerland, Sweden, New Zealand, China, for instance. 


5 

6 


U.S. Department of Commerce, Population Estimates, p. 1. 

Flardach, Karl. Wirtschaftsgeschichte Deutschlands im 20. Jahrhundert, Gottingen, 1976, p. 


246. 






W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


185 


It is apparent that the emigration and immigration figures for the period 
before the end of WWII as developed in this study are more or less balanced, 
each in effect confirming the other. 


A Question of Millions 


In order to check on the accuracy of the world population figures as 
published by the Year Book for the post-war period (1946), we established 
two groups which will be looked at separately: The Soviet (or those living in 
the Soviet Union) and the non-Soviet Jews. 

As mentioned above, the world Jewish population of 1939 numbered less 
than 16 million; of these, 3.02 lived in the Soviet empire; the non-Soviet 
Jews thus counted fewer than 13 million in 1939. Within a few months, the 
Soviets acquired millions of Polish, Baltic and Rumanian Jews. On balance, 
the division looked like this one year later: 


World Jewish population 1939 (maximum) 
deduct: 

-“Old” Soviet Jews (1939) 

- Former Polish Jews (1939/1940) 

- Former Baltic Jews (1940) 

- Former Rumanian Jews (1940) 

Total Soviet Jews _ 

Jews outside of the Soviet Union 1940 (maximum) 


16,000,000 


3,020,000 

1,867,000 

225,000 

225,000 

_ 5,337,000 

10,663,000 


Early in WWII, the rough distribution of these 10.7 million non-Soviet 
Jews was as follows: 





186 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


United States (1943) 7 

Canada (1941) 8 

Latin America (1943) 8 

5,200,000 

170,241 

584,384 

Western Hemisphere 

5,954,625 

Palestine (1939) 9 

424,373 

Asia (incl. Turkey) (193 9) 10 

376,500 

Africa (1939)'° 

609,800 

Australia/New Zealand (1939)'° 

33,000 

European countries not occupied by Germany 


during the Second World War 11 

384,500 

Countries outside the subsequent German sphere of influence 7,782,798 

European countries inside the subsequent German sphere of in¬ 
fluence 1939 12 2,952,000 


Jews outside the USSR 1939/1943 (maximum) _ 10,735,000 

For the Western Flemisphere no figures were obtainable for 1939. They 
are therefore somewhat too high and reflect the immigration during the first 
war years. On the other hand, the population of 384,500 for the unoccupied 
European countries probably is too low by several tens of thousands. Gen¬ 
erally though, the total of 10,663,000 is quite in line with the sum of the 
individual country groups for the years 1939/1943. It is rather improbable 
that the post-war figure for the Jews living outside the Soviet Union ex¬ 
ceeded the pre-war figure, because possible negative net growth rates in 
Europe during the war, direct war losses (soldiers and partisans killed in 
combat), chaotic conditions in the German camps during the closing months 
of the war, Allied bombing raids, etc., may have pushed the total down to at 
least 10.6 million or below. 

Comparing these 10.6 million survivors with the 9 million outside the 
Soviet Union as published by the Year Book for 1946 (Table 19), there is a 
gap of 1 l A million. 

The Year Book figure of 9 million for 1946 includes only 5.75 million 
Jews in North and South America. But the Year Book itself admitted to 5.95 
million Jews in this region in the year 1943, and in 1945 and 1946 other 
hundreds of thousands of Jews coming from devastated Europe had arrived 
in the New World. Evidently, the Year Book understated the 1946-figures 
for Western Hemisphere by half a million persons. 


7 See Seventh Chapter. 

8 AJYB, 1945, Vol. 47, p.637. 

9 Ibid., 1940, Vol. 42, p. 604. 

10 Ibid, 1947, Vol. 49, p. 741-744. 

11 Ibid., p. 740. 

12 In 1939 (before the outbreak of the German-Polish war), 5,044,000 Jews lived in those Euro¬ 
pean countries later occupied by Germany (excl. USSR and Baltic countries) according to Ta¬ 
ble 11. Of these, 1,867,000 Polish and 225,000 Rumanian Jews came within the Soviet empire 
before the start of the war; there remain 2,952,000. 







W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


187 


Table 19: Purported World Jewish Population: 1939 and 1946 - 
according to the American Jewish Year Book 1 ' 



1939 

1946 x Difference 

A. World outside the German sphere 
of influence in World War Two 
- North and South America 

5,489,620 

5,756,700 + 267,080 

- Asia, Africa, Australia 

1,494,300 

1,647,000 + 152,700 

- Unoccupied Europe 

384,500 

419,000 + 34,500 


7,368,420 

7,822,700 + 454,280 

B. German sphere of influence 
outside the Soviet Union: 

- Poland 

3,250,000 

120,000 -3,130,000 

- Czechoslovakia 

360,000 

55,000 - 305,000 

- Rumania 

850,000 

300,000 - 550,000 

- Other European countries 

1,539,700 

669,600 - 870,100 


5,999,700 

1,144,600 -4,855,100 

C. World excl. the USSR 

13,368,120 

8,967,300 -4,400,820 

D. Soviet Union and Baltic states 

3,275,000 

2,032,500 -1,242,500 

E. World Jewish Population 

16,643,120 

10,999,800 -5,643,320 

of which: 

F. Jewish population in the German 
sphere of influence (B + D) y 

9,274,700 

3,177,100-6,097,600 


x The Year Book listed the world Jewish population for 1946 as 11,123,800, but an 
addition of the individual countries totaled only 10,999,800; it is not clear where 
the difference of 124,000 should be looked for, but it seems the Rumanian figure 
may be wrong. 

y In this table the entire Soviet Union appears as having belonged to the German 
sphere of influence; in reality, in 1939 one million Jews lived already outside the 
territory later occupied by German troops. 

In Asia, Africa and Australia, too, the actual number of Jews in 1946 was 
not 1.67 million, as the Year Book would like us to believe, but hundreds of 
thousands more. As we mentioned already, the Jews coming from eastern 
Europe were moved from camp to camp in western Europe, and many were 
quartered temporarily in UNRRA camps in the Middle East, Cyprus and 
North Africa. We know, for instance, that about 200,000 European Jews 
immigrated into Israel after May 15, 1948, coming from Persia, Morocco 
and Tunisia (see Seventh Chapter). 

The figure of 1.6 million Jews in all of Europe (1,145,000 plus 419,000) 
as published by the Year Book for 1946 also is much too low. We have seen 
in the Seventh Chapter that roughly one million more Jews had survived in 
the countries within the former German sphere of influence (excl. the 
USSR) than was admitted to by the Year Book. In addition, the Year Book 
committed an obvious mistake in the case of the Rumanian Jews, because in 


13 


AJYB, 1946, Vol. 48, pp. 603-607. 












188 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


the following year already the figure for the Jewish population of Rumania 
was increased by 130,000. 

The statistical data published by the Year Book become even more 
doubtful when one realizes that the figure of 11.33 million for 1970 (excl. 
the USSR) is too low by several hundreds of thousands - despite the huge 
jump by 30% within only 24 years! The Year Book listed only 5.9 million 
U.S. and 550,000 French Jews. In reality, there were 6.6 million in the 
United States and almost 700,000 in France. 

For 1970, the Year Book mentioned the following Jewish population: 14 


in Europe (excl. France) 
in Asia (incl. Turkey and Israel) 
in Africa 

in Australia and New Zealand 
in Latin America 

837,150 

2,707,200 

196,600 

77,000 

812,925 

totaling 

4,630,875. 

Furthermore, the Canadian census of 1971 listed 15 
in the United States we found (Seventh Chapter) 
and in France (Seventh Chapter) 

296,945 

6,600,000 

670,000. 

In 1970, the world Jewish population outside the Soviet 
Union was at least 

12,200,000. 


It is almost certain that this figure of 12.2 million for 1970 is too low as 
well. As mentioned already, an official investigation in France found 
150,000 more Jews than was admitted to by the Year Book. In other coun¬ 
tries the situation may be very similar. The Zionists themselves admit that 
the Jewish population is suffering from attrition through assimilation in all 
European countries - in East and West. The number of Jews who fail to 
appear statistically as Jews because of this development is not known, but 
the examples of France, where the Year Book's estimate is 20% below the 
official figure, and of the United States, where more than one million Jews 
disappeared from the statistics, provide some food for thought. We may be 
sure that the real number of Jews outside the USSR exceeded 12.3 million in 
1970. 

In this connection, we find a very interesting piece of information in the 
Israel Almanack (1958-1959), published by the Zionist World Organization 
(ZWO) headquartered in Jerusalem. We learn from it that the 1.8 million 
Jews of Israel in 1958 were equivalent to one-eighth of the Jewish world 
population. 16 In effect, this renowned Zionist source was estimating the 


14 Ibid., 1971, Vol. 72, p. 475-476. 

15 Ibid., 1975, Vol. 76, p. 251. 

16 Departement de la Jeunesse et du Hehalouts de l’Organisation Sioniste Mondiale. Israel Al¬ 
manack 1958-1959, Jerusalem, p. 282. 







W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


189 


number of Jews in the world at 14.4 million in 1958. Unfortunately, the 
ZWO did not provide more detailed figures on this subject, and we are left 
guessing as to how many Soviet Jews were included in this estimate. Offi¬ 
cially, the figure which was current in those days in Zionist literature on the 
Jews in the USSR was around 2.3 million. Deducting it from the 14.4 mil¬ 
lion, we arrive at a Jewish population outside the USSR of 12.1 million for 
1958. This estimate is very close to our own calculations of at least 12.3 
million. 

Henri Zoller, the Israel-correspondent of the German newsmagazine Der 
Spiegel, wrote in the summer of 1980 that 80% of the world Jewish popu¬ 
lation was still living in the diaspora. 17 Thus, if Israel’s 3% million Jews 18 
constituted 20% of world Jewry in early 1980, this one-time Jewish member 
of the French Resistance is putting the number of Jews in the world at 16.3 
million in 1979/1980. 

Now, Henri Zoller may not be exactly an expert on questions of Jewish 
demography, but Dr. Nahum Goldmann, the former president of the World 
Jewish Congress and one of the most prominent leaders of world Zionism, 
was one of the best-informed experts on the size of the world Jewish pop¬ 
ulation. Dr. Goldmann, too, stated that 80% of world Jewry was living in the 
diaspora in early 1980. 19 In other words, only one-fifth was to be found in 
Israel. Dr. Goldmann rounded his figure for Israel to 3.5 million. Official 
Israeli statistics mention only 3% million Jews for early 1980. On the basis 
of these 3% million, one arrives at 16.3 million Jews in the world according 
to Dr. Goldmann. 

Contacted by personal letter, Dr. Goldmann replied that Soviet Jews 
counted 3 to 3.5 million in 1980. 20 Deducting the upper end of his estimate, 
let us say 3.4 million, from the world Jewish population of 16.3 million, 
there remain 12.9 million Jews in the world outside the USSR. 

It is noteworthy that Dr. Goldmann’s admission is putting him squarely 
in the comer of the Jewish dissidents in the USSR with regard to the number 
of Jews in the Soviet Union. If he places the number of Soviet Jews at 3 to 
3.5 million in 1980, he is saying in effect that in the early 1970s there were 
3.5 to 4 million Jews in the Soviet Union. After all, one-quarter of a million 
Jews left the Workers’ Paradise during the past decade, and the excess of 


17 Zoller, Henri. “Israel - Ein Nachtasyl?,” Der Spiegel, No. 37, 9/8/1980, p. 148-149. 

18 Statistical Abstract of Israel 1980, Table II/2. 

19 Goldmann, Dr. Nahum. “Aus Sorge um Israel,” Die Zeit, No. 29, 7/11/1980, pp. 13f. A short 
time before his death, Dr. Goldmann was still more specific: in Der Spiegel (“Israels Regierung 
hat das Volk betrogen,” No. 34, August 28, 1982, p. 9); he narrowed Israel’s share of the world 
Jewish population down to less than 20%; applying this rate to Israel’s Jewish population of 3.2 
million, Dr. Goldmann, in effect, placed world Jewry at over 16.5 million. 

20 Goldmann, Dr. Nahum. Private letter dated 2/13/1981. 



190 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


deaths over births may have reached up to one per cent per year for the So- 
viet-Jewish population during that period, or about 200,000. 

Ostensibly, the development of world Jewry looked like this during the 
past forty years: 

Purported World Jewish Population outside the USSR 
- 1940, 1946, 1970, 1979 - 

Year Population Changes Period Average Annual Changes 


in percent since 



(Mio.) 

(Mio.) 

(Y ears) 

1940 

1946 

1970 

1940 

10.6 

- 

- 

- 

- 

- 

1946 

9.0 

-1.6 

6 

-2.7 

- 

- 

1970 

12.3 

+3.3 

24 

0.5 

1.3 

- 

1979 

12.9 

+0.6 

9 

0.5 

1.1 

0.5 


We note that the entire increase for the last 9 years amounted to just 0.6 
million (or even less). This is quite a contrast to the thirty years prior to this, 
which were characterized by extremely large plus and minus changes but 
which, as the whole, recorded a most remarkable increase of 1.7 million. 
The suspicion is not unfounded that the contrary developments before and 
after 1946 are directly connected with each other. To be sure, one could 
blame the reduction between 1940 and 1946 on the German measures within 
the so-called “Final Solution,” but there is no sensible explanation for the 
unheard of “fertility” between 1946 and 1970, namely, +1.3% p.a.! 

The almost totally urbanized world Jewish population - which lived 
almost entirely in the large urban centers in the East and West and which not 
only recorded a birth rate that has been dropping for generations, but also 
suffered a relatively low net growth rate before the war already - would 
have demonstrated a fertility after the war close to the biological limit and 
nearly equivalent to the population growth in the developing countries. 21 
This is pure fantasy! 

There is only one reasonable conclusion: The figure published by the 
Year Book for the world Jewish population outside the USSR in 1946 did not 
conform to reality. Political reasons were decisive for putting the number so 
low. Leaving aside the Year Book's obviously manipulated figure for 1946, 
the 40-year demographic development of world Jewry outside the Soviet 
Union begins to look much more realistic: 


21 


AJYB, 1980, Vol. 81, pp. 61 f.: Since the middle of the 1960s at the latest, there has been a 
drastic drop in births. 






W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


191 


Probable World Jewish Population outside the USSR 

-1940, 1970, 1979- 

Year Population Changes Period Average Annual Changes 


in percent since 



(Mio.) 

(Mio.) 

(Years) 

1940 

1970 

1940 

10.6 

- 

- 

- 

- 

1970 

12.3 

+1.7 

30 

0.5 

- 

1979 

12.9 

+0.6 

9 

0.5 

0.5 


The development evident from the above compilation shows no contrast 
between the time before and after 1970. The growth rate for the 30-year-per- 
iod before 1970 was relatively large despite the losses in WWII, because it 
also included the short-lived Jewish baby boom of the immediate post-war 
period. This growth of 0.5% per year until 1970 of the highly urbanized 
extra-Soviet world Jewish population is relatively large and represents 
conclusive evidence that the losses suffered in the war were relative small - 
at least as far as the Jews outside the Soviet Union are concerned. 

At first glance it is surprising to see the growth rate maintain this level 
after 1970 as well, despite the reduction of the birth rate in all industrial 
countries since the early 1960s. This seemingly high rate of 0.5%, however, 
reflects also the quarter of a million Jews who emigrated from the USSR in 
the last decade. It is correct, of course, that Israel’s immigrant population 
registered notable growth rates even after 1970, but all Zionist statements 
regarding the Jewish population in the rest of the Western World and in 
eastern Europe point to a drastic aging process and frequent negative net 
growth rates. 22 


Ibid., 1969, Vol. 70, p. 275: 

In all diaspora Jewish communities for which we have data, the proportion of elderly and old 
people is greater than in the surrounding general population. This is basically due to low 
fertility over the last few decades. [...] Contributory factors may be the differential impact of 
withdrawals and a recent negative migration balance, involving particularly younger adults. 
[...] more than half of some European Jewish popidations are above the age of 40. In Europe 
and America the aging of the Jewish populations has led to an exaggerated proportion of 
persons no longer participating in reproduction while being subject to the comparatively 
high age-specific mortalitv of the elderly. 

The AJYB (pp. 274-275) goes on: 

The population dynamics of the Jews in Europe, the Americas, South Africa, Australia, and 
New Zealand should be viewed in the context of their socio-economic position. These Jews 
have a strong tendency toward urbanization, educational attainment, and concentration in 
white-collar occupations and higher income brackets. In most of these countries, the rela¬ 
tively small or highly dispersed Jewish communities are strongly affected by environmental 
influences, secularization and assimilation. [...] The keynote is the very low level of Jewish 
fertility. In all countries for which data are available, including the United States, the fertility 
of the Jews is below that of the general population. In several countries it has fallen below 
replacement level. After a short-livedpost-World War II baby boom, Jewish birth figures 
declined in the 1950s. 






192 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


The demographic development of the Jews in the Soviet Union was 
discussed before, and there is no reason to repeat the statistical details at this 
point. Adding the 354 million Soviet Jews - as confirmed by Soviet-Jewish 
dissidents, the Encyclopaedia Judaica and Dr. Goldmann - to the almost 13 
million Jews outside the USSR, one obtains a total of 16.5 million for world 
Jewry. This is about half a million more than in 1940! The losses of at least 
one million during the war - mainly while serving in the Red Army, during 
the more or less forcible Soviet evacuation to Siberia, and in the Siberian 
labor camps - caused the Jewish world population to drop below the 
15-million-mark. Since the end of WWII, it multiplied by at least 1.5 mil¬ 
lion, and thus more than compensated for the losses incurred as a result of 
the war and Soviet barbarism. This is equivalent to a worldwide net growth 
of 0.4% p.a. since the end of the war. 

Even today the world Jewish population figures still reflect the political 
interests of Zionism, and estimating “mistakes” usually lead to figures for 
the post-war Jewish populations which are too low. Nevertheless, the ever 
more frequent larger population statistics for the USSR represent a funda¬ 
mental admission by Zionism that the original post-war figures were much 
too low. Slowly, but steadily, they are working themselves toward the real 
world Jewish population size - even though the means applied are implicit, 
unrealistic assumptions regarding Jewish fertility. 

The purpose of this analysis was not to investigate the content of truth in 
the “Holocaust” story, but to outline the extent and the direction of the 
Jewish population movement before, during and after World War Two. If 
the developments as traced here are in conflict with the taboos of contem¬ 
porary historians, it is their task to reconsider an untenable position. 

Even though the well-known “Holocaust” figures are of only minor in¬ 
terest in this study, it is necessary, nevertheless, to sketch the main contro¬ 
versial positions as far as the statistical data is concerned. Between 1939 and 
1946, the Year Book found that the world Jewish population had been re¬ 
duced by one-third from 16.64 million to 11 million (Table 19). Admittedly, 
the largest reduction was registered by today’s Communist countries, but for 
the USSR itself the loss was put at “only” 154 million. In contrast, the 
countries beyond the former German sphere of influence recorded a plus of 
almost half a million Jews, obviously largely the result of migratory gains. 

The fact that the political boundaries of 1946 in no way corresponded 
with those of 1939 - especially in the cases of Poland, Czechoslovakia, 
Rumania and the Soviet Union - was not mentioned at all by the Year Book, 
let alone taken into account in the determination of war losses. Only in the 
case of Rumania did the Year Book mention that the post-war borders ex¬ 
cluded northern Bukovina and Bessarabia; yet this footnote was not re¬ 
flected in the purported number of “missing” Rumanian Jews. The annexa- 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


193 


tion of eastern Poland (1939) and Ruthenia (1945) by the USSR was com¬ 
pletely disregarded. In short, a comparison of Jewish population statistics 
for 1939 and 1946 is incorrect in principle. 

Certainly, this would make no difference as far as the total number of 
“missing” persons is concerned, if the figures for 1939 and 1946 were cor¬ 
rect. But the crucial question is precisely how reliable these figures are. 
After all, it was the Soviet Union which acquired most of the Polish Jews in 
1939/1940, besides hundreds of thousands of Rumanian and Baltic Jews. 
Any observer would immediately recognize the dubiousness of the “miss¬ 
ing” figures, if the comparison would depict the fact that the bulk of the 
“missing” Jews is ascribed to that country which, with regard to falsifica¬ 
tion, lies, deception and statistical manipulation, is in a class by itself, and 
whose inhuman “scorched earth” initiatives forced tens of millions of people 
from all walks of life to move from the embattled areas to Siberia during the 
war. 

Adjusting the pre-war figures to take account of the border changes and 
population movements until 1941, an entirely different picture develops 
(Table 20). To be sure, this table, too, points to five million “missing” Jews 
and creates the erroneous impression that eight million Jews came within the 
German sphere of influence, but otherwise it presents a very different view. 

First of all, we see that the Jewish population outside the former German 
sphere of influence in 1946 is too low by hundreds of thousands (point A). A 
reduction by 200,000 in the Western Hemisphere during the interim years, 
when hundreds of thousands of Jews immigrated from Europe, is hardly in 
conformity with reality. 

Secondly, the table shows clearly that the vast bulk of the “missing” Jews 
must be sought in the Soviet Union. 

Assuming that the Jewish population of the Western Hemisphere main¬ 
tained its size between 1943 and the end of the war, that the losses on the 
Soviet side exceeded one million, that the surviving post-war Jewish pop¬ 
ulation numbered more than four million in the Soviet Union, and that the 
number of Jews who left Europe after the war - although “officially” un¬ 
accounted for - reached one million, the comparison with 1941 produces 
considerable differences with the current version of contemporary histori¬ 
ans. These corrections were made on Table 21. There we see that the 
worldwide losses suffered by the Jews during the Second World War were 
in the neighborhood of 1 % million - 8% of world Jewry - caused largely not 
by the direct impact of the war, i.e. those killed in action, but by Soviet 
barbarism. Over two hundred thousand remain unaccounted for. This latter 
worldwide figure agrees roughly with the missing figure of about 300,000 
calculated for Europe in the Seventh Chapter. 


194 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Table 20: Purported World Jewish Population: 1941 and 1946 
1941: according to results of this analysis 
1946: according to the American Jewish Year Book (in 1,000) 



1941 

1946 x 

Difference 

A. World outside the German sphere 
of influence in World War Two 
- North and South America 

5,955 (‘43) 

5,757 

- 198 

- Asia, Africa, Australia 

1,444 

1,647 

+ 203 

- Unoccupied Europe 

384 

419 

+ 35 


7,783 

7,823 

+ 40 

B. German sphere of influence 
outside the Soviet Union: 11 
- Poland 

757 

120 

- 637 

- Czechoslovakia 

155 

55 

- 100 

- Rumania 

315 

300 

15 

- Other European countries 

1,511 

670 

- 841 


2,738 

1,145 

-1,593 

C. World excl. the USSR 

10,521 

8,967 

-1,554 

D. Soviet Union, Baltic countries 
and Ruthenia 

5,446 

2,033 

-3,413 

E. World Jewish Population 

15,967 

11,000 

-4,967 

of which: 

F. Jewish population in the German 
sphere of influence in the years 
1941-1945 (B + D) y 

8,184 

3,178 

-5,006 


x For 1941, see Table 11 excl. Ruthenia. 

y In this table the entire Soviet Union was listed as having belonged to the German 
sphere of influence; in reality, in early 1941 only 3% million Jews lived in the 
area later occupied by German troops (disregarding the Ruthenian Jews). 

Regardless of whether one traces the development of the Jewish popu¬ 
lation in Europe country by country or more generally for the world, the 
missing remainder seems to narrow to two or three hundred thousand. Even 
this figure has no claim on absolute certainty. Available data on population 
size, migration, flight and deportation, fertility and mortality rates, mixed 
marriages and assimilation tendencies often are so vague that it would not 
have been surprising to obtain a statistically unaccounted difference which 
is larger by several hundreds of thousands or near zero. 











W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


195 


Table 21: Probable World Jewish Population: 1941 and 1945 

(in 1,000) 



1941 

1945 

Difference 

A. World outside the German sphere 
of influence in World War Two 
- North and South America 

5,955 (‘43) 

5,955 

0 

- Asia, Africa, Australia 

1,444 

1,647 

+ 203 

- Unoccupied Europe 

384 

419 

+ 35 


7,783 

8,021 

+ 238 

B. German sphere of influence 
outside the Soviet Union acc. to 
Table 11 but excl. Ruthenia) 

- Poland 

757 

240 

- 517 

- Czechoslovakia 

155 

82 

- 73 

- Rumania 

315 

430 

115 

- Other European countries 

1,511 

691 

- 820 


2,738 

1,443 

-1,295 

C. World excl. the USSR 

10,521 

9,464 

-1,057 

D. Soviet Union, Baltic states and 
Ruthenia 

5,446* 

4,301 

-1,145 

E. Number of Jews who left Europe 
during and shortly after World 
War Two and who could not be 
traced statistically 


965 

+ 965 

F. World Jewish Population 

15,967 

14,730 

-1,237 

G. Jewish losses in the Red Army, in 
and concentration camps, etc. 

Siberian labor 


1,030 

H. Statistically unaccounted for 



- 207 


* Of the 5.5 million Jews, approximately 700,000 Soviet Jews fell into German 
hands besides the roughly 100,000 Ruthenian Jews. On balance, no more than 3.5 
million Jews were ever under Gennan control during World War Two. 


The Great Migration 

Today’s dispersion of the Jews in all parts of the world is without prec¬ 
edent in Jewish history. What irony of fate that just in the age when a po¬ 
litical force - Zionism - finally gave geographic substance to the old year¬ 
ning “Next year in Jerusalem,” assimilation in the diaspora became the 
driving force in a process of dissolution that may prove fatal in the end. 

The Second World War destroyed Jewry in Europe as an important, 
geographically concentrated population group for all time. Other centers 
appeared in the place of Europe - the United States, Israel and the Soviet 
Union - and one may presume that these three countries include 80% of 
world Jewry within their borders today. Basically, the world’s Jewish pop- 












196 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


ulation never was as divided and dispersed throughout the world as it is at 
present. 

But this process of dissolution did not start with the Jewish drama in 
World War Two, or with the growing anti-Semitism in the 1930s, or with the 
division of Eastern Jewry following the establishment of Soviet might on the 
ruins of Tsarist Russia. It began in the second half of the 19th Century with 
the swelling Jewish westward drive, when literally millions of Eastern Jews 
poured into the melting pot across the ocean. 

At the end of the 19th Century almost 90% of all Jews in the world lived 
in Europe, 23 and within Europe almost exclusively in an area whose “bor¬ 
ders” ran from Lithuania through Poland to Hungary, turning east to the Sea 
of Azov and from there, encompassing the Ukraine and White Russia, north 
towards the Baltic countries. In those days, world Jewry was concentrated in 
three European countries, but, nevertheless, occupied a relatively well-de¬ 
fined geographic core. More important, the Jewish population in this area 
was rather homogeneous with regard to language (Yiddish) and religion 
(little secularization). 

The so-called dispersion of the Jews throughout the world was nothing 
but a fable until the end of the 19th Century. It became a reality only in the 
20th Century. The emigration of millions of Jews to America, the acceler¬ 
ated migration to the east and north within the Soviet Union during the last 
war, as well as the settlement of Palestine after World War One brought 
about the dissolution of Eastern Jewry, which seemed so stable just three 
generations ago, and dispersed them to all comers of the earth. 

Today, four-fifths of the Jews live in regions where a hundred years ago 
not even three per cent of world Jewry could be found, i.e. the Western 
Hemisphere, Israel, Russia proper (excluding the Ukraine and White Rus¬ 
sia), Siberia, Africa and Australia. On the other hand, most of the historic 
regions of the traditional diaspora are almost entirely without Jews today; 
this applies especially to eastern Europe, the Balkans, North Africa and the 
Middle East. 24 

This process continued uninterruptedly after the last war. It is, however, 
very difficult to obtain a rough outline of this development since 1945 be¬ 
cause of a whole barrage of problems. Not only does the political character 
of Jewish population statistics make every “official” publication of relative 
data suspect, but the signs of disintegration in the course of accelerated 
secularization and assimilation tendencies in East and West, plus the diffi¬ 
culty in obtaining reliable data on Soviet Jewry, burden every attempt to 
trace the demographic development of world Jewry during the last 35 years. 


23 Schmelz. U.O. “A Guide to Jewish Population Studies,” Jewish Population Studies 1961-1968, 
(U.O. Schmelz and P. Glickson, eds.). London/Jerusalem, 1970. p. 34. 

24 AJYB, 1980. Vol. 81, pp. 61 and 62. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


197 


Nevertheless, there is great unanimity that the USA, Israel and the Soviet 
Union together account for 80% of the world’s Jews. The other fifth is 
composed of Jews in Europe, Latin America, South Africa, Australia and 
North African and Asian countries. No differences of opinion exist either on 
the generally largely urban character of world Jewry, and its much lower 
fertility than the surrounding gentile population. Only the Israelis register a 
healthy birth rate. In many countries - today probably in most - negative net 
growth rates replaced formerly small positive ones, and the trend toward 
assimilation and mixed marriages places a real question mark on the sur¬ 
vival of the Jewish people outside Israel. 

When looking into country-specific data, Zionist statistics suddenly be¬ 
come confused, even contradictory. Some Zionist experts insist on accepting 
the official Soviet statistics on Soviet Jewry (Schmelz), others are convinced 
that they underestimate the number of Jews in the USSR by 50% or more 
(Goldmann, Zand), while a third group prefers a figure somewhere in be¬ 
tween (Shapiro). Keep in mind, in just this one case millions of people are 
involved, and the “Holocaust” story is affected directly by the final outcome 
of this controversy. As if this were not enough, some place the natural in¬ 
crease of post-war Soviet Jews at up to +1% p.a. (Shapiro), while others take 
it for granted that they actually suffered huge net growth deficits of up to 
-1% p.a. in part (Schmelz). 

Similar inconsistencies could be listed for the United States, where the 
Jewish population was unscrupulously “reduced” to 5.4 million (1971: 6.1 
million, and at the end of the war: 5 million), even though half a million 
Jews immigrated meanwhile as a matter of record, and the excess of births 
over deaths in the late 1940s, in the 1950s and in the 1960s added almost 
another million. 

The way the Year Book sees the development of world Jewry since 1945 
can be seen in Table 22. For the United States, whose Jewish population was 
listed much too low for 1946 already, one finds a drastic drop since the early 
1970s. For the Soviet Union, whose Jews suffered drastic negative birth 
rates throughout the entire post-war period, a positive growth rate of 1% per 
year was applied until 1970. The other countries of the world purportedly 
lost only 0.7 million Jews between 1945 and 1970. This contradicts the fact 
that Israel and the United States alone received more than one million Jew¬ 
ish immigrants from there, and that the over-aged Jewish population re¬ 
maining behind in Europe registered huge negative growth rates in part. 


198 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Table 22: Purported World Jewish Population Development: 
1945/46, 1970 and 1979 (in millions) 

— according to the American Jewish Year Book — 






Changes in % p.a. 

Country/Region 

1945/46 

1970 

1979 

1945-1970 

1970-1979 

United States 

5.0 

5.9 

5.6 X 

+0.7 

-0.6 

Soviet Union 

2.0 

2.6 

2.6 

+1.1 

0 

Palestine/Israel 

0.6 

2.6 

3.2 

+1.6 y 

+1.5 y 


7.6 

11.1 

11.4 X 

+1.5 

+0.3 

Rest of the world 

3.5 

2.8 

2.7 

-0.9 

-0.4 

World Jewry 

11.1 

13.9 

14. l x 

+0.9 

+0.2 

deduct: 

Soviet Union 

2.0 

2.6 

2.6 

+1.1 

0 

World Jewry outside 






the Soviet Union 

9.1 

11.3 

11.5 X 

+0.9 

+0.2 


Source: AJYB , 1946, Vol. 48, p. 603-608; 1971, Vol. 72, p. 475-479, and 1980, 

Vol. 81, p. 285-289. Notes: ‘Excluding the non-Jewish members in the 
so-called “Jewish” households in the United States. .1 Refers only to the 
natural increase. 

In an analysis published in the Year Book, the Israeli demographer Prof. 
U.O. Schmelz from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem listed annual rates 
of natural increase or decrease for the following countries: 25 


_ Jewish Net Fertility Rates _ 

Country _ Period _ Percent 


United States 

1967-71 

0 

Canada 

1967-71 

+0.2 

Brazil (Sao Paulo) 

1965-69 

+0.3 

Argentina 

1956-60 

+0.1 

France (Paris): 



- European Jews 

1972-76 

-0.3 

- Oriental Jews 

1972-76 

+0.2 

Belgium (Brussels) 

1957-61 

-0.2 

Germany 

1961-65 

-1.8 

Switzerland 

1959-62 

-0.5 

Italy 

1961-65 

-0.5 

Soviet Union (RSFSR) 

1959-70 

-0.9 

Israel 

1971-75 

+1.7 


Since then, a further drop in Jewish fertility rates occurred in almost all 
countries of the world. Still, we should emphasize that at least in the United 
States and Canada the Jewish population developed more favorably in the 
first two decades after the war. 


25 


Ibid., pp. 68 and 69. 













W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


199 


The above-mentioned Jewish growth rates in the individual countries 
correspond much more closely to the population changes as traced in this 
study than with those utilized by the Year Book. Our investigation, which is 
based largely on Zionist sources, showed that world Jewry was clearly less 
than 15 million in 1945 but exceeded 16 million just as surely in 1980. The 
extremely low fertility rates of world Jewry - Israel excepted - simply did 
not permit a faster growth. The probable development of the Jewish popu¬ 
lation, and the factors behind it - migration or fertility - have been recorded 
in Tables 23 and 24. 

Table 23 shows that the 14.7 million surviving Jews multiplied by 0.4% 
annually between 1945 and 1970; but the smallness of the rise was almost 
exclusively due to the decrease of the Soviet Union’s post-war Jewish 
population, whose losses of men in the ranks of the Red Army, untold deaths 
in Siberian labor camps, and multitudes of mixed marriages effected a 
drastically dropping birth rate. In the last decade - signs of this were visible 
in the 1960s already - the Jewish population of the Western World had no 
further growth, Israel excepted. One might even say that from here on world 
Jewry will grow only as much as Israelis overcompensate for the net deficits 
in the USSR - and this, too, is becoming ever more questionable, as Israel’s 
excess of births over deaths begins to shri nk and the deficit of the Jews in the 
USSR grows year by year. 

Table 23: Probable World Jewish Population Development: 


1945, 1970 und 1979 (in millions) 

- according to results of this study - 










Natural growth 



Natural Migra- 


Natural Migra- 


in percent p.a. 

Country/Area 

1945 

growth 

tion 

1970 growth 

tion 

1979 

1945-70 1970-79 

USA 

5.2 

+0.9 

+0.5 

6.6 

0 

+0.1 

6.7 

+0.6 

0 

USSR 

4.3 

-0.4 

0 

3.9 

-0.3 

-0.2 

3.4 

-0.4 

-0.8 

Palestine or Israel 

0.6 

+0.8 

+1.2 

2.6 

+0.4 

+0.2 

3.2 

+1.6 

+1.5 

Subtotal 

10.1 

+1.3 

+1.7 

13.1 

+0.1 

+0.1 

13.3 

+0.4 

+0.1 

Rest of world 

4.6 

+0.2 

-1.7 

3.1 

0 

-0.1 

3.0 

+0.2 

0 

World Jewry 

14.7 

+1.5 

0 

16.2 

+0.1 

0 

16.3 

+0.4 

+0.1 

deduct: 

USSR 

4.3 

-0.4 

0 

3.9 

-0.3 

-0.2 

3.4 

-0.4 

-0.8 

World Jewry outside 
the Soviet Union 

10.4 

+1.9 

0 

12.3 

+0.4 

0.2 

12.9 

+0.7 

+0.4 


Today, only Israel has a growing Jewish population, and until two dec¬ 
ades ago this was also true in the United States. The Soviet Union and the 
group of the remaining countries in the world (within this group there were 
noticeable changes) registered a continually falling number of their Jewish 
population. 









200 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Table 24: Distribution of World Jewry: 
1945 and 1979 (in per cent) 


Country /Region 

1945 

1979 

United States 

35 

41 

Soviet Union 

29 

21 

Palestine/Israel 

4 

20 

Subtotal 

69 

82 

Rest of the World 

31 

18 

World Jewry 

100 

100 

deduct Soviet Union 

29 

21 

World Jewry outside the Soviet Union 

71 

79 


Source: Table 23. 


The percentage distribution of world Jewry can be seen in Table 24. In 
1945, the United States and Israel (Palestine) accounted for 40%, but today 
for more than 60%. In the Soviet Union - which contained more than 
one-third of world Jewry in 1940 - there were still almost 30% of the 
world’s Jews in 1945 despite the huge wartime losses of men and among the 
internees in Siberian labor camps. By 1980, this share had fallen to about 
20%. A similar reduction in the share of Jews was recorded by the rest of the 
countries of the world: From 30% at the end of the war to about 20% in 
1979/80. 

While 80% of world Jewry today may be found outside the USSR, and of 
these, in turn, 80% in just two countries - USA and Israel - only time will 
tell whether or not this development really was a net gain for the once im¬ 
mensely fertile Eastern European Jewry. The Jews in the U.S. seem to have 
entered a phase of low, much too low fertility and assimilation tendencies, 
and the rapidly rising phenomenon of mixed marriages promises large losses 
for the future. Only in Israel did a young Jewish population persist. But here 
it is essentially the Oriental Jews who provide a healthy birth rate and who 
finally may shape the future and culture of this island nation in an Arabian 
sea - if the dams don’t break. 









W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


201 


EPILOGUE: 

Sanning Put to the Test 

by Germar Rudolf 


A New Hope 

The present book is not about the Holocaust - that is at least what the 
author claims on page 192 of the present study. But that is more wishful 
thinking than reality. Of course, the core issue of the present study is the big 
elephant which is always present when Jewish demographic developments 
during World War Two are discussed: Many of the mystical Six Million 
Jewish victims are said to have died in the various homicidal gas chambers 
of the Third Reich’s camps, the largest and most notorious of which - with 
the highest claimed death tolls - are: 1 


Camp 

claimed Jewish death toll 

Auschwitz 

=1,000,000 

Treblinka 

=800,000 

Belzec 

=600,000 

Sobibor 

=250,000 

Chelmno 

=150,000 

Total 

=1,900,000 


In addition to this, somewhere between 1,300,000 and 3,000,000 Jews 
are said to have been executed either by shooting or in so-called “gas vans” 
behind the German-Russian front. 2 Finally, victims of all kinds of atrocities, 
mistreatments and neglect in other camps and in ghettos are said to make up 
the bulk of the rest to reach the Six Million. Since, as indicated, all these 
numbers vary widely, pinning down how many Jews died under which 
circumstances and where is almost impossible. 3 

With all these variations going on, it should strike one as rather peculiar 
that the Six Million number itself is a seemingly invariable constant. 


1 Claims as to the actual death toll vary wildly. I have given the most widely accepted figures 
here. See the respective chapters in my book Lectures on the Holocaust (2nd ed.. The Barnes 
Review, Washington, DC, 2010) for more details. 

2 On the “gas vans” see S. Alvarez, The Gas Vans, The Barnes Review, Washington, DC, 2011. 

3 Thomas Dalton has shown this in his seminal Debating the Holocaust , Theses & Dissertations 
Press, New York, 2009, chapter 4, pp. 67-81; and again in “The Great Holocaust Mystery: 
Reconsidering the Evidence,” in: Inconvenient History, vol. 6, No. 3, fall 2014. 






202 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


However, if one realizes that the emblematic number of Six Million 
suffering and dying Jews has been around since the late 1800s, that is to say: 
well before the outbreak of the FIRST(!) World War, as Don Heddesheimer 
was first to point out with a thorough study, 4 5 then it might dawn upon the 
reader that we are dealing here not with a number arrived at with thorough 
demographic studies, but with a purely mythical symbol of political import. 

Attempts at determining the Jewish death toll during World War Two are 
numerous, since every major work addressing this topic includes some kind 
of accounting/ But until the first edition of the present work was published 
in 1983, no monograph dedicated exclusively to this topic existed, which is 
quite astounding, considering the importance of this issue. 

How should one react to a book that proclaims that the Jews suffered a 
far lower death toll than Six Million during World War Two? Is such a 
message a reason to rejoice and hope, or a reason to become angry and to 
attack the messenger? The latter is no doubt the way many if not most people 
react - but why? 

Everyone who insists with zeal that at least Six Million Jews must have 
fallen victim to Nazi persecution should examine their own motives for 
doing so. For shouldn’t it be the normal reaction to find hope and comfort in 
the thought that fewer people died in a catastrophe than heretofore believed? 
The “Holocaust,” however, is not a normal catastrophe. It comes with all the 
hallmarks of a religion, and questioning any detail of it, as Sanning does in 
the present book, inexorably provokes the ire of the devotees and high 
priests of the religion. Hence, when the present book was first published, 
expecting it to be welcome by the mainstream with exultation was too much 
to hope. Insults and ad hominem attacks against the author were more likely. 

The first edition of the present book was honored by two mainstream 
historical periodicals with reviews, something which is nowadays quite 
unheard of for revisionist publications, 6 although the quality of these re¬ 
views was quite poor, as they merely contain unfounded suppositions and 
innuendoes rather than address any of the core issues at hand. 7 However, 
since giving any credence or respect to iconoclastic, i.e. revisionist publi- 


4 Don Heddesheimer, The First Holocaust, reprint of 2nd ed.. The Barnes Review, Washington, 
DC, 2011. 

5 The earliest and at once most prominent ones being Reitlinger’s The Final Solution, and 
Hilberg’s The Destruction of the European Jews, eh. VIII, section 3. 

6 John S. Conway, “History, Hitler, and the Holocaust,” The International History Review, vol. 
VII, no. 3, August 1985, pp. 441-450, here pp. 450f.; Huttenbach, Henry R., Martyrdom and 
Resistance, vol. 11, Sept.-Oct. 1984, pp. 2, 12. 

7 See Dan Desjardins’s “Critique of John S. Conway's Review,” The Journal of Historical Re¬ 
view, vol. 7, no. 3, 1986, pp. 375, 379; see also the exchange of letters by W. D. Rubinstein - 
making similar unfounded accusations - and W. N. Sanning as well as A. R. Butz in response, 
The Journal of Historical Review, vol. 5, nos. 2-4, 1984, pp. 367-373. 



W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


203 


cations may cause a lot of trouble for anyone doing so, not much more could 
be expected. 

That this book caused quite some discomfort in the ra nk s of the academic 
Holocaust orthodoxy can be gleaned from Henry Huttenbach’s review: 6 

The danger of this book (and of those that will doubtlessly follow) is its clever 
veneer of scholarship. [...] Not one in a thousand undergraduates could find 
faidt with it; only a few more graduates would be competent to identify its flaws 
and to convincingly question its credibility. The ultimate danger lies in the lack 
of a serious response to this continuing wave of attacks on history itself. 

Hence, what had to be expected was the publication of a major mainstream 
monograph that would lay claim to refuting Sanning by proving “once and 
for all” that Six Million Jews died during the Holocaust indeed. 


The Empire Strikes Back 

And so it happened: Eight years after Sanning had presented his research 
results to the Anglophone and German publics, the German official Institute 
for Contemporary History (Institut fur Zeitgeschichte) published an im¬ 
pressive 584-page study titled Dimension des Volkermords (Dimension of 
the Genocide). It is an anthology consisting of 17 individual contributions 
(plus the editor’s introduction), each written by an expert 8 in the field of 
Jewish demography for a particular European country that fell under the 
influence ofNazi rule at any point between 1933 and 1944. The editor of this 
anthology, Dr. Wolfgang Benz, at that time Professor for Research of an¬ 
ti-Semitism in Berlin, summarized the results of this study as follows: 9 

The bottom line indicates a minimum of 5.29 and a maximum of just over 6 

million [Jewish victims of the Holocaust]. 

Needless to say that Benz forestalls any suspicions by denying that the 
purpose of the demographic research project coordinated by him had been 
“to prove any pre-set figure (‘six million’),” 10 although that is inevitably the 
impression one gets. 

Now, 584 pages of thorough research by 18 expert authors should spell 
doom for the slender 200-page book written by the lone-wolf author Walter 
N. Sanning aka Wilhelm Niederreiter. But both books cannot be compared, 
really. While Sanning focused exclusively on demographic statistics and 


8 I am not sure what makes those contributing authors experts in demographics, but I take it that, 
by studying their subject in depth, they at least have become experts during the course of their 
preparatory research. 16 of the 18 contributing authors have a PhD title, and six of them are 
professors. 

9 W. Benz (ed.), Dimension des Volkermords, Oldenbourg, Munich, 1991, p. 17. 

10 Ibid., p. 20. 



204 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


ignored everything else, like anti-Jewish 
measures implemented in various coun¬ 
tries and the alleged means, locations 
and numbers of mass murders perpetra¬ 
ted, Benz et al. present elaborate peri¬ 
pheral matters for their readers. Each 
one of their contributions starts out with 
a summary of the history of the Jews in 
the country under discussion, and then 
gives a detailed account of all the an¬ 
ti-Jewish laws, measures and events that 
took place there. The size of Benz’s 
book is thus no indication of its statis¬ 
tically relevant contents, nor is that of 
Sanning’s indicative of any deficiency. 

But what about the part of Benz’s 
book which does address statistical is¬ 
sues? Does it refute or even address 
Sanning’s claims? 

The first surprising fact of Benz’s 
anthology is that Sanning’s book is mentioned only by one author, and then 
only in a footnote almost at the very end of the book. There one reads: 11 

“The author [Sanning] distinguishes himself through his methodologically un¬ 
sound handling of the statistical material as well as through daring and de¬ 
monstrably erroneous reasoning and conclusions. ” 

The huge discrepancy between the works’ final death toll make it seem ob¬ 
vious that this had to be this anthology’s conclusion, if not already its 
starting hypothesis. However, the reader’s hope to find out in which way 
Sanning handled the statistical material wrongly and why his reasoning and 
conclusions are erroneous is disappointed. All that is provided in Benz’s 
book is the above mere claim with nothing to back it up. 

Again, it is absolutely imperative for mainstream historians not to grant 
revisionists even a semblance of respect, so they hardly, if ever, quote re¬ 
visionist works, let alone discuss any of their claims, reasoning and con¬ 
clusions. If revisionist works are mentioned at all, then usually only in mere 
passing with unfounded derogatory remarks and often even with invectives 
against their authors, although the latter can fortunately not be found in 
Benz’s work. Hence nothing more than this footnote could be expected from 
these “reputable” scholars. 



Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Benz, a life 
spent researching anti-Semitism 


ii 


Gert Robel in his paper on the Soviet Union, in: W. Benz, op. cit. (note 9), p. 558, footnote 396. 
The book has 560 text pages. 






W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


205 


What one has to expect, though, is at least a “serious response” to San- 
ning’s contested claims, as Prof. Huttenbach had demanded - if only im¬ 
plicitly by refuting them without repeating or mentioning them - so that 
serious students of history may be equipped with the tools they need in order 
to see through the alleged web of lies spun by revisionists like Sanning. 


The Return of the Jedi 

When I learned about the existence of Benz’s anthology in 1992,1 had to 
find out whether it contained powerful arguments which could refute San¬ 
ning’s hypotheses. I read both books in parallel and made notes along the 
way pertaining to the population data each book provides for each country, 
as well as how and why they differ, if at all. After finishing my survey, I 
used this data to write a paper which I planned on publishing in a revisionist 
anthology edited by me at that time. 12 I sent an early version of this paper to 
Herr Niederreiter (aka Sanning), asking him for his comments. Unfortu¬ 
nately he had suffered a stroke a short while before this, so he managed to 
send me only a few comments. Mr. Niederreiter passed away shortly af¬ 
terwards. My paper comparing Sanning’s and Benz’s works was therefore 
published without major changes. The following is a brief summary of the 
most important of my findings. 

On the positive side, Benz’s book impresses with its richness and thor¬ 
oughness of the statistical source material used by each author analyzing a 
certain country. Most authors obviously had full access to the archival re¬ 
sources of the countries they were investigating. In this regard, Benz far 
excels Sanning, who had to make do with far less material. 

On the downside, the editor Wolfgang Benz did a bad job coordinating 
the work of each author involved in the project. Since the borders of many 
countries in Europe shifted considerably during and after the Second World 
War, it would have been mandatory to agree up front on certain borders, so 
that no area where sovereignty changed during the investigated time span is 
left untreated or is counted twice or even multiple times. Because this was 
not done, 533,193 alleged Holocaust victims were counted twice. 

The result of a country-by-country comparison of Benz’s and Sanning’s 
data for the countries which in some way came under German influence 
during World War Two is given in Table 25. It reveals that, by and large, the 
data both books come up with are relatively similar in most cases. Really 


12 G. Rudolf, “Statistisches iiber die Holocaust Opfer - W. Benz und W.N. Sanning ira Ver- 
gleich,” in: Ernst Gauss (ed. = Germar Rudolf), Grundlagen zur Zeitgeschichte, Grabert, Tu¬ 
bingen 1994, pp. 141-168; Engl.: “Holocaust Victims: A Statistical Analysis • W. Benz and W. 
N. Sanning - A Comparison”, in: G. Rudolf (ed.), Dissecting the Holocaust, 2nd ed.. Theses & 
Dissertations Press, Chicago, 2003, pp. 181-213. 



206 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Table 25: Country-by-Country Comparison of Benz and Sanning 


Nation 

Victims, Benz-reduced by 

Missing, Sanning 

duplicate counts 

Germany 

Austria 

139,000 

48,767 

123,000 

36,000 

Luxembourg 

1,200 


Belgium 

France 

OO CIO 

(Total: 207,852) Total: 124,500 

Netherlands 

102,000 


Denmark 


Norway 

lotai. i,uuu 

/ JO 

Italy 

5,914 

9,000 

Albania 

?200 

0 

Greece 

58,885 

53,000 

Yugoslavia 

60,000 

56,000 

Hungary 

277,000 

71,000 

Czechoslovakia 

164,000 

112,000 

Rumania 

107,295 

3,742 

Bulgaria 

0 

-7,600 

Poland 

1,800,000 

516,511 

Soviet Union 

2,890,000 

15,000 

TOTAL 

5,759,785 

1,113,153 


decisive differences of more than 100,000 missing persons exist only in 
three cases highlighted in italics: Hungary, Poland and the Soviet Union. 

Sanning’s figure for Hungary is based on the assumption that only few 
Hungarian Jews were deported to German labor camps in the spring and 
summer of 1944, while mainstream historiography insists that some 400,000 
Hungarian Jews shared that fate. Sanning bases his assumption on argu¬ 
ments first brought forward by Arthur Butz. 13 Butz’s thesis, in turn, has 
been challenged even by revisionists, 14 and in a 1993 letter to me, Mr. 
Niederreiter indicated that he changed his position in this regard and as¬ 
sumes that several hundred thousand Hungarian Jews were indeed deported 
to Germany in spring/summer 1944 - although for forced labor rather than 
for wholesale slaughter, as orthodox historiography claims. 

This leaves us with only two countries where Sanning and Benz pro¬ 
foundly disagree: Poland and the USSR. Hence, the core of the issue lies in 
the fate of the Jews of these two countries. 


13 See Chapter 5 in Butz’s book The Hoax of the Twentieth Century, 4 th ed., Castle Hill Publishers, 
Uckfield, 2015, pp. 181-229. 

14 Jtirgen Graf, “What Happened to the Jews Who Were Deported to Auschwitz But Were Not 
Registered There?,” The Journal of Historical Review, vol. 19, no. 4, July/August 2000, pp. 
4-18. 









W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


207 


Digging deeper into Benz’s anthology, I revealed another way the Hol¬ 
ocaust figure is inflated by it. This time it is not a matter of incompetence, 
but one of premeditation. It is based on the highly dubious method applied 
by Benz and his colleagues to ascertain the death toll for each country. This 
method is basically based upon a simple difference between pre-war and 
post-war population sizes. 15 All of the following reasons why the number of 
Jews in a country could have been reduced were simply lumped together as 
German Holocaust victims: 

- death due to Soviet deportation and imprisonment 

- death as partisan (battle or execution) 

- death as soldier/killed in combat 

- death due to pogroms by non-Germans, without German collaboration or 
sanction 

- death due to effects of war (labor service, bombing victims) 

- natural excess of deaths over births 

- religious conversions 

- unregistered emigration during and after the war 

- Jews not statistically registered or identified as Jews today 

The first point is particularly important in this context, since one of San- 
ning’s emphases is on the fate of Jews under Soviet rule. In Benz’s an¬ 
thology, on the other hand, all these many complex issues are basically ig¬ 
nored. Symptomatic for this is the following statement by Prof. Dr. Gert 
Robel, author of the contribution on the Soviet Union, about the reasons for 
the demographic decline of Soviet Jewry: 16 

It [the number of Jewish Holocaust victims in the USSR] also includes the 
casualties among Jewish soldiers and civilians [partisans] as well as those who 
succumbed to the strain of flight and to starvation. 

This is justified. They too were victims of violent National Socialist policies. 

Robel neither quantifies these categories, nor does he give reasons for this 
catch-all approach, for these are the closing words of this book. This is a 
convenient sleight of hand, though, as it puts the blame for all of Stalin’s 
wartime victims squarely on Germany’s shoulders and thus relieves Robel 
from the potentially unrewarding duty to conduct any in-depth investigation 
into the scope and scale of Soviet deportations and evacuations. If all casu¬ 
alties caused by the war are Germany’s fault, and if therefore all Jewish 


1 That flawed approach was also recognized by German historian Prof. Dr. Ernst Nolte in an 
expert report (in: Germar Rudolf, Resistance is Obligatory, Castle Hill Publishers, Uckfield, 
2012, p. 278): 

Wolfgang Benz [...] in fact proceeds from the premise worthy of critique that one could be 
able to determine the number of victims of the National Socialist measures of extermination 
by comparing the number of Jews in statistics before and after the Second World War. ” 

16 Gert Robel in his chapter on the Soviet Union, in: W. Benz, op. cit. (note 9), p. 560. 



208 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


casualties count as German Holocaust victims, then why bother looking into 
how, where and in whose hands they died? 

It is therefore not surprising that Robel doesn’t bother getting involved in 
this issue. Hence, regarding the all-decisive topic of Soviet evacuations and 
deportations immediately prior to and after the outbreak of the Russo-Ger¬ 
man war, Robel suggests merely that there are no systematic accounts of 
their extent and scope. He dismisses this very important aspect in merely 
two paragraphs with the comment that Stalin did not wish to provoke Hitler 
with evacuation activities, and that there were therefore hardly any note¬ 
worthy deportations. 17 This claim is backed up with - nothing. 

In contrast to this, Sanning devoted four entire chapters to the subject of 
Jews under the rule of the Soviet Union, with two of them focusing on Sta¬ 
lin’s mass evacuations and deportations. 

As for Poland, Benz’s and Sanning’s opposing positions can be sum¬ 
marized as follows: 


Table 26: Polish Jewry acc. to Benz and Sanning 



Benz 

Sanning 

1931 population 

3,100,000 

3,100,000 

pre-war fertility 

high (1.4% p.a.) 

low (0.2% p.a) 

1931-1939 emigration 

100,000 

500,000 

pre-war population 

3,350,000 

2,664,000 

fled to Russia/Rumania in 1939 

300,000 

850,000 

German-occupied western Poland (late 1939) 

2,000,000 

760,000 


For details and page numbers see my study mentioned in footnote 12. 

While Sanning devotes roughly 20 pages of intensive and thoroughly 
documented analysis to the problem of the demographic development of 
Polish Jewry in the years 1931-1939, Benz’s Poland author Prof. Dr. Frank 
Golczewski deals with this important issue in only two sentences: 18 

“[...] if we extrapolate the census figures [of 1931], taking into account natural 
increase and emigration, we arrive at a 1939 total popidation of 35,100,000 
persons for the Polish nation as a whole, of which the Jewish component is es¬ 
timated at 3,446,000. We repeat: these figures are not certain [....]” 

Golczewski simply assumes, without even making the slightest effort to 
investigate this topic, that the highly urbanized and persecuted Jews had the 
same growth and emigration rates as the rural Christian Poles. 

The same guesswork is involved when Golczewski deals with the east¬ 
ward mass flight of the Jews at the outbreak of the war. His figure is simply 
based on estimates, claiming that there are no reliable figures. 19 Even 


17 

18 
19 


Ibid.,p. 507. 

Frank Golczewski in his chapter on Poland, in: W. Benz, op. cit. (note 9), p. 417. 
Ibid., pp. 425f., 443. 






W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


209 


though that may be true, estimates can 
still be based on circumstantial evidence 
as presented by Sanning, but Golczewski 
decided to simply ignore them and con¬ 
jure up some figures out of thin air. 

As bad as all this sounds for Benz, it 
gets worse still, because the real Achil¬ 
les’ heel of Benz’s anthology isn’t even 
his ridiculously superficial and incom¬ 
petent treatment of Polish and Soviet 
Jewry. The biggest flaw of Benz’s book 
is that it does not contain even a single 
paragraph on the problem of Jewish 
post-war emigration from Europe. It does 
not even mention that there was a 
large-scale migration after the war, es¬ 
pecially of the European population of 
Jewish faith, which has become kn own as the modern Exodus (as cele¬ 
brated, for example, in the name of the iconic 1960 movie starring Paul 
Newman)! 

The first ten chapters of Benz’s anthology are conspicuous in their lack 
of any mention of post-war emigration, while others (Greece and Yugosla¬ 
via) fashion a fig-leaf for themselves by admitting to a few hundreds or 
thousands who left the country after the war’s end. 

Hence, exactly in the areas where Sanning’s work impresses - mainly the 
fates of Jews in Poland and in the USSR as well as the Jewish Exodus during 
and after World War Two - Benz is completely and utterly silent. 

One important characteristic of a scholarly work is that it mentions and 
addresses the arguments raised by other works in this area. Since Benz’s 
anthology appeared eight years after Sanning’s monograph, it would have 
been absolutely imperative to mention and thoroughly discuss Sanning’s 
arguments. But Benz and his colleagues decided to do the exact opposite. 
Not even implicitly did they mention, let alone address, a single one of 
Sanning’s arguments. Hence, Benz’s work fails the litmus test of being a 
scholarly work. It’s a botched, politically driven job of paid flacks hell-bent 
on proving the veracity of the Holy Six Million figure - despite Benz’s 
claim to the contrary. 

Hence, readers expecting to find answers in Benz’s voluminous work to 
nagging questions and doubts instilled by Sanning’s book will walk away 
disappointed and empty-handed. 

This may also be the reason why no English translation of Benz’s book 
has ever been published in the 24 years after it first appeared in German. 








210 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


Since there do not seem to exist in the public domain any arguments 
refuting Sanning’s hypotheses and conclusions, we have decided to issue 
this essentially unchanged new edition of Sanning’s classic work on Jewish 
wartime demographics with an updated preface by Arthur Butz. Only sev¬ 
eral typos were corrected, and I also translated the few German words 
contained in several tables which the original translator and editor had ap¬ 
parently overlooked. 

Therefore Sanning returns herewith, unchanged, unbowed, and unchal¬ 
lenged. 


Sanning - Swedish for: truth, veracity, realism, exactitude, precision 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


211 


Appendix 

Document 






































212 


W.N. Sanning ■ The Dissolution of Eastern European Jewry 


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THE HOLOCAUST HANDBOOK SERIES 


T his ambitious, growing series addresses various angles of the “Holocaust” of the WWII era. 
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epilogue by Germar Rudolf contain¬ 
ing important updates! ca. 220 pages, 
b&w illustrations, bibliography (#29). 
Air Photo Evidence •' World War Two 

Photos of Alleged Mass Murder Sites 

Analyzed. By John C. Ball. During 
World War Two both German and 
Allied reconnaissance aircraft took 
countless air photos of places of tacti¬ 
cal and strategic interest in Europe. 
These photos are prime evidence for 
the investigation of the Holocaust. 
Air photos of locations like Auschwitz, 
Majdanek, Treblinka, Babi Yar etc. 
permit an insight into what did or did 
not happen there. John Ball has un¬ 
earthed many pertinent photos and 
has thoroughly analyzed them. This 
book is full of air photo reproductions 
and schematic drawings explaining 
them. According to the author, these 
images refute many of the atrocity 
claims made by witnesses in connec¬ 


tion with events in the German sphere 
of influence. 3rd revised and expanded 
edition. Edited by Germar Rudolf; 
with a contribution by Carlo Mattog- 
no. 168 pages, 8.5”xll”, b&w illustra¬ 
tions, bibliography, index (#27). 

The Leuchter Reports •' Critical Edi¬ 

tion . By Fred Leuchter, Robert Fauris- 
son and Germar Rudolf. Between 1988 
and 1991, U.S. expert on execution 
technologies Fred Leuchter wrote four 
detailed reports addressing whether 
the Third Reich operated homicidal 
gas chambers. The first report on 
Auschwitz and Majdanek became 
world famous. Based on chemical 
analyses and various technical argu¬ 
ments, Leuchter concluded that the 
locations investigated “could not have 
then been, or now be, utilized or seri¬ 
ously considered to function as execu¬ 
tion gas chambers.” 3rd edition, 242 
pages, b&w illustrations. (#16) 

The Giant with Feet of Clay: Raul Hil- 

berg and His Standard Work on the 

“Holocaust. ” Bv Jurgen Graf. Raul Hil- 
berg’s major work The Destruction of 
European Jewry is an orthodox stan¬ 
dard work on the Holocaust. But what 
evidence does Hilberg provide to back 
his thesis that there was a German 
plan to exterminate Jews, carried out 
mainly in gas chambers? Jurgen Graf 
applies the methods of critical analy¬ 
sis to Hilberg’s evidence and examines 
the results in light of modern histori¬ 
ography. The results of Graf’s critical 
analysis are devastating for Hilberg. 
2nd, corrected edition, 139 pages, b&w 
illustrations, bibliography, index. (#3) 

Jewish Emigration from the Third 

Reich. By Ingrid Weckert. Current his¬ 
torical writings about the Third Reich 
claim state it was difficult for Jews to 
flee from Nazi persecution. The truth is 
that Jewish emigration was welcomed 
by the German authorities. Emigra¬ 
tion was not some kind of wild flight, 
but rather a lawfully determined and 
regulated matter. Weckert’s booklet 
elucidates the emigration process in 
law and policy. She shows that Ger¬ 
man and Jewish authorities worked 
closely together. Jews interested in 
emigrating received detailed advice 
and offers of help from both sides. 72 
pages, index. (#12) (cover shows new 
reprint edition in preparation) 

Inside the Gas Chambers'- The Exter¬ 

mination of Mainstream Holocaust 
Historiography. By Carlo Mattogno. 
Neither increased media propaganda 
or political pressure nor judicial per¬ 
secution can stifle revisionism. Hence, 
in early 2011, the Holocaust Orthdoxy 
published a 400 pp. book (in German) 






























THE HOLOCAUST HANDBOOK SERIES 


www.HolocaustHandbooks.com 


claiming to refute “revisionist propa¬ 
ganda,” trying again to prove “once 
and for all” that there were homicidal 
gas chambers at the camps of Dachau, 
Natzweiler, Sachsenhausen, Mau¬ 
thausen, Ravensbriick, Neuengamme, 
Stutthof... you name them. Mattogno 
shows with his detailed analysis of 
this work of propaganda that main¬ 
stream Holocaust hagiography is beat¬ 
ing around the bush rather than ad¬ 
dressing revisionist research results. 
He exposes their myths, distortions 
and lies. 268 pages, b&w illustrations, 
bibliography. (#25) 

SECTION TWO: 

Books on Specific Camps 

Treblinka: Extermination Camp or 

Transit Camp? By Carlo Mattogno and 
Jurgen Graf. It is alleged that at Treb¬ 
linka in East Poland between 700,000 
and 3,000,000 persons were murdered 
in 1942 and 1943. The weapons used 
were said to have been stationary and/ 
or mobile gas chambers, fast-acting or 
slow-acting poison gas, unslaked lime, 
superheated steam, electricity, diesel 
exhaust fumes etc. Holocaust histori¬ 
ans alleged that bodies were piled as 
high as multi-storied buildings and 
burned without a trace, using little 
or no fuel at all. Graf and Mattogno 
have now analyzed the origins, logic 
and technical feasibility of the official 
version of Treblinka. On the basis of 
numerous documents they reveal Tre- 
blinka’s true identity as a mere transit 
camp. 365 pages, b&w illustrations, 
bibliography, index. (#8) 

Belzec in Propaganda. Testimonies. 

Archeological Research and History. 

By Carlo Mattogno. Witnesses report 
that between 600,000 and 3 million 
Jews were murdered in the Belzec 
camp, located in Poland. Various 
murder weapons are claimed to have 
been used: diesel gas; unslaked lime 
in trains; high voltage; vacuum cham¬ 
bers; etc. The corpses were incinerated 
on huge pyres without leaving a trace. 
For those who know the stories about 
Treblinka this sounds familiar. Thus 
the author has restricted this study to 
the aspects which are new compared 
to Treblinka. In contrast to Treblinka, 
forensic drillings and excavations 
were performed at Belzec, the results 
of which are critically reviewed. 138 
pages, b&w illustrations, bibliography, 
index. (#9) 

Sobibor'■ Holocaust Propaganda and 

.Reality. By Jurgen Graf, Thomas Kues 
and Carlo Mattogno. Between 25,000 
and 2 million Jews are said to have 
been killed in gas chambers in the 


Sobibor camp in Poland. The corpses 
were allegedly buried in mass graves 
and later incinerated on pyres. This 
book investigates these claims and 
shows that they are based on the se¬ 
lective use of contradictory eyewitness 
testimony. Archeological surveys of the 
camp in 2000-2001 are analyzed, with 
fatal results for the extermination 
camp hypothesis. The book also docu¬ 
ments the general National Socialist 
policy toward Jews, which never in¬ 
cluded a genocidal “final solution.” 434 
pages, b&w illustrations, bibliography, 
index. (#19) 

The “Extermination Camps” of “Ak- 

tion Reinhardt i” By Jurgen Graf, 
Thomas Kues and Carlo Mattogno. 
In late 2011, several members of the 
exterminationist Holocaust Contro¬ 
versies blog published a study, which 
allegedly refutes three of our authors’ 
monographs on the camps Belzec, 
Sobibor and Treblinka (see previ¬ 
ous three entries). This tome is their 
point-by-point response, which makes 
“mincemeat” out of the bloggers’ at¬ 
tempt at refutation. It requires famil¬ 
iarity with the above-mentioned books 
and constitutes a comprehensive up¬ 
date and expansion of their themes. 2 
volumes, total of 1385 pages, illustra¬ 
tions, bibliography. (#28) 

Chelmno'- A Camp in History & Propa¬ 

ganda. By Carlo Mattogno. The world’s 
premier holocaust scholar focuses his 
microscope on the death camp located 
in Poland. It was at Chelmno that 
huge masses of prisoners—as many as 
1.3 million—were allegedly rounded 
up and killed. His book challenges 
the conventional wisdom of what 
went on inside Chelmno. Eyewitness 
statements, forensics reports, coro¬ 
ners’ reports, excavations, crei 
building plans, U.S. reports, 
documents, evacuation efforts 
gas vans for homicidal purpc 
are discussed. 191 pages, ind 
lustrated, bibliography. (#23) 

The Gas Vans: A Critical Ir. 

tion. (A perfect companion 
Chelmno book.) By Santiago 
and Pierre Marais. It is alleg 
the Nazis used mobile gas chai 
exterminate 700,000 people. 1 
2011, no thorough monograph had ap¬ 
peared on the topic. Santiago Alvarez 
has remedied the situation. Are wit¬ 
ness statements reliable? Are docu¬ 
ments genuine? Where are the murder 
weapons? Could they have operated as 
claimed? Where are the corpses? Alva¬ 
rez has scrutinized all known wartime 
documents, photos and witness state¬ 
ments on this topic, and has examined 
the claims made by the mainstream. 


INSIDE THE 
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Alvarez 
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CHELMNO 


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THE HOLOCAUST HANDBOOK SERIES 


www.HolocaustHandbooks.com 


390 pages, b&w illustrations, bibliog¬ 
raphy, index. (#26) 

Concentration Camp Maidanek. A 

Historical and Technical Study. By 

Carlo Mattogno and Jurgen Graf. 
Little research had been directed to¬ 
ward Concentration Camp Majdanek 
in central Poland, even though it 
is claimed that up to a million Jews 
were murdered there. The only infor¬ 
mation available is discredited Polish 
Communist propaganda. This glaring 
research gap has finally been filled. 
After exhaustive research of primary 
sources, Mattogno and Graf created 
a monumental study which expertly 
dissects and repudiates the myth of 
homicidal gas chambers at Majdanek. 
They also criticahy investigated the 
legend of mass executions of Jews in 
tank trenches (“Operation Harvest 
Festival”) and prove them ground¬ 
less. The authors’ investigations lead 
to unambiguous conclusions about 
the camp which are radically differ¬ 
ent from the official theses. Again 
they have produced a standard and 
methodical investigative work, which 
authentic historiography cannot ig¬ 
nore. Third edition, 350 pages, b&w 
illustrations, bibliography, index. (#5) 

Concentration Camp Stutthof and Its 

Function in National Socialist Jewish 

Policy. By Carlo Mattogno and Jurgen 
Graf. The concentration camp at Stut¬ 
thof in Prussia has never before been 
scientifically investigated by Western 
historians—until now. Third edition, 
171 pages, b&w illustrations, bibliog¬ 
raphy, index. (#4) 

SECTION THREE: 

Auschwitz Studies 

Auschwitz'- The Case for Seinitv. A His¬ 

torical & Technical Study. By Carlo 
Mattogno. Prof. Robert van Pelt is 
considered one of the best mainstream 
experts on Auschwitz and has been 
called upon several times in holocaust 
court cases. His work is cited by many 
to prove the holocaust happened as 
mainstream scholars insist. This book 
is a scholarly response to Prof, van 
Pelt—and Jean-Claude Pressac. It 
shows that their studies are heavily 
flawed. This is a book of prime politi¬ 
cal and scholarly importance to those 
looking for the truth about Auschwitz. 
2 vols. (370 pages + 390 pages), b&w 
illustrations, glossary, bibliography, 
index. (#22) 


Auschwitz•_ Plain Facts—A Response 

to Jean-Claude Pressac. Edited by 
Germar Rudolf. French pharmacist 
Jean-Claude Pressac tried to refute 
recent findings with their own techni¬ 
cal methods. For this he was praised 
by the mainstream, and they pro¬ 
claimed victory over the “revisionists.” 
In Auschwitz: Plain Facts, Pressac’s 
works and claims are debunked. 197 
pages, b&w illustrations, bibliogra¬ 
phy, index. (#14) 



The Rudolf Report. Expert Report 

on Chemical and Technical Aspects 

of the ‘Gas Chambers’ of Auschwitz. 

By Germar Rudolf and Dr. Wolfgang 
Lambrecht. In 1988, execution expert 
Fred Leuchter investigated the gas 
chambers of Auschwitz and Majdanek 
and concluded that they could not 
have worked as claimed. Ever since, 
Leuchter’s work has been attacked. 
In 1993, Germar Rudolf published 
a thorough forensic study about the 
“gas chambers” of Auschwitz. His re¬ 
port irons out the deficiencies of “The 
Leuchter Report.” Second edition, 457 
pages, b&w illustrations, bibliogra¬ 
phy, index. (#2) 

Auschwitz Lies •' Legends. Lies and 

Prejudices on the Holocaust. By 

Carlo Mattogno and Germar Rudolf. 
The fallacious research and alleged 
“refutation”of Revisionist scholars by 
French biochemist G. Wellers, Pol¬ 
ish Prof. J. Markiewicz, chemist Dr. 
Richard Green, Profs. Zimmerman, 
M. Shermer and A. Grobman, as well 
as researchers Keren, McCarthy and 
Mazal, are exposed for what they are: 
blatant and easily exposed pohtical 
hes created to ostracize dissident his¬ 
torians. In this book, facts beat propa¬ 
ganda once again. Second edition, 398 
pages, b&w illustrations, index. (#18) 

Auschwitz: The Central Construction 

Office. By Carlo Mattogno. Based upon 
mostly unpublished German wartime 
documents, this study describes the 
history, organization, tasks and pro¬ 
cedures of the Central Construction 
Office of the Waffen-SS and Auschwitz 
Police. Despite a huge public inter¬ 
est in the camp, next to nothing was 
really known about this office, which 
was responsible for the planning and 
construction of the Auschwitz camp 
complex, including “the gas cham¬ 
bers.” 182 pages, b&w illustrations, 
glossary. (#13) 

Special Treatment in Auschwitz: Ori¬ 

gin and Meaning of a Term. By Carlo 
Mattogno. When appearing in Ger¬ 
man wartime documents, terms like 
“special treatment,” “special action,” 
and others have been interpreted as 


CONCENT RATION CAMP 

MAJDAXEK 



CONCENTRATION CAMP 

STUTTHOF 





































THE HOLOCAUST HANDBOOK SERIES 


www.HolocaustHandbooks. com 



code words for mass murder. The au¬ 
thor proves this is not true. 151 pages, 
b&w illustrations, bibliography, index. 
(# 10 ) 

The Bunkers of Auschwitz-' Black 

Propaganda vs. History. By Carlo 
Mattogno. The bunkers at Auschwitz 
are claimed to have been the first 
homicidal gas chambers at Auschwitz 
specifically equipped for this purpose. 
With the help of original German war¬ 
time files, this study shows that these 
“bunkers” never existed, how the ru¬ 
mors about them evolved as black pro¬ 
paganda created by resistance groups 
in the camp, how this propaganda was 
transformed into a false reality. 264 
pages, illustrations, bibliography, in¬ 
dex. (#11) 

Auschwitz • The First Gassing —Ru¬ 

mor and Reality. By Carlo Mattogno. 
The first gassing in Auschwitz is 
claimed to have occurred on Sept. 3, 
1941, in a basement room. The ac¬ 
counts reporting it are the archetypes 
for all later gassing accounts. This 
study analyzes all available sources 
about this alleged event. It shows that 
these sources contradict each other in 
location, date, preparations, victims 
etc, rendering it impossible to extract 
a consistent story. Original wartime 
documents inflict a final blow. Second 
edition, 168 pages, b&w illust., bibli¬ 
ography, index. (#20) 

Auschwitz • Crematorium I and the Al¬ 

leged Homicidal Gassings. By Carlo 
Mattogno. The morgue of Cremato¬ 
rium I in Auschwitz is said to be the 
first homicidal gas chamber there. 
This study investigates all statements 
by witnesses and analyzes hundreds 
of wartime documents to accurately 
write a history of that building. Mat¬ 
togno proves that its morgue was nev¬ 
er a homicidal gas chamber, nor could 
it have worked. 138 pages, b&w illus¬ 
trations, bibliography, index. (#21) 

Auschwitz - Open Air Incinerations. 

By Carlo Mattogno. Hundreds of thou¬ 
sands of corpses of murder victims 
are claimed to have been incinerated 
in deep ditches in the Auschwitz con¬ 
centration camp. This book examines 
the many testimonies regarding these 
incinerations and establishes whether 
these claims were even possible. Using 
aerial photographs, physical evidence 
and wartime documents, the author 
shows that these claims are fiction. A 
must read. 132 pages, b&w illustra¬ 
tions, bibliography, index. (#17) 


The Crematory Furnaces of Auschwitz 

and Birkenau. By Carlo Mattogno. An 
exhaustive technical study of crema¬ 
tion technology in general and of the 
crematory ovens of Auschwitz in par¬ 
ticular. Next to the alleged “gas cham¬ 
bers,” these ovens are claimed to have 
been the main “weapon of crime” said 
to have destroyed the traces of up to 
a million murdered individuals. On 
a sound and thoroughly documented 
base of technical literature, extant 
wartime documents and material trac¬ 
es Mattogno reveals the true hygienic 
function, i.e. the benign nature of the 
crematories of Auschwitz. 2 vols., ca. 
900 pp., b&w illustrations, bibliogra¬ 
phy, index. Projected for 2016 (#24) 


SECTION FOUR 

Witness Critique 

Holocaust High Priest •' Elie Wiesel. 

Night, and the Cult of Memory. By 

Warren B. Rout- 
ledge. Elie Wiesel’s 
lies are exposed 
with rigor and pre¬ 
cision. Routledge 
proves beyond the 
shadow of a doubt 
that, despite all the 
awards he received 
and the huge media 
attention he still 
attracts, Wiesel is 
an arrant impostor who was never 
imprisoned at Auschwitz and whose 
famous story Night is a fable made up 
from delerious imaginations. (Project¬ 
ed for late 2015.) (#30) 

Further projects include: 

Auschwitz: Confessions and Testimo¬ 

nies of the Holocaust. By Jurgen Graf 
Commandant, of Auschwitz: Rudolf 

Hoss. his torture and his forced con¬ 

fessions. By Carlo Mattogno 

Dr. Mengele’s Assistant: Miklns Nv- 

iszli’s Auschwitz Tales . By Carlo Mat¬ 
togno 

Other witnesses about whose testi¬ 
mony monographs are envisiones are: 
Fillip Muller, Rudolf Vrba, Henryk 
Tauber, Yankiel Wiernik, Richard Gla- 
zar. Any scholar interested in taking 
on any of these or other more or less 
prominent witnesses not listed here, 
please feel free to get in touch with the 
series editor using the contact form at 
www.codoh.com/contact-us 


HOLOCAUST 
HIGH PRIEST 


For current prices and availability see outlets like Amazon.com orAmazon.co.uk, and: 
Distribution USA: The Barnes Review, P.0. Box 15877, Washington, D.C. 20003; 1-877-773- 
9077; www.BarnesReview.org 

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Books by and from Castle Hill Publishers 


Below please find some of the books published or distributed by Castle Hill Publishers in the United 
Kingdom. For our current and complete range of products visit our web store at shop.codoh.com. 


Wilhelm Staglich, Auschwitz: A Judge Looks at the Evidence 

Auschwitz is the epicenter of the Holocaust, where more people are said to have been 
murdered than anywhere else. At this detention camp the industrialized Nazi mass murder 
is said to have reached its demonic pinnacle. This narrative is based on a wide range of 
evidence, the most important of which was presented during two trials: the International 
Military Tribunal of 1945/46, and the German Auschwitz Trial of 1963-1965 in Frankfurt. 

The late Wilhelm Staglich, until the mid-1970s a German judge, has so far been the only 
legal expert to critically analyze this evidence. His research reveals the incredibly scan¬ 
dalous way in which the Allied victors and later the German judicial authorities bent and 
broke the law in order to come to politically foregone conclusions. Staglich also exposes 
the shockingly superficial way in which historians are dealing with the many incongrui¬ 
ties and discrepancies of the historical record. Second, corrected and slightly revised edition with a new preface 
and epilogue. 



422 pp., 6“x9“, pb, ill. 


P. Angel, J. Tiffany: Fountain of Fairytales: A Scholarly Romp Through the Old Testament 

Some say the Old Testament is a collection of valuable parables with no basis in histori¬ 
cal fact, while others have made a living of trying to prove that it is an accurate history 
of early man. Fountain of Fairytales takes us on a whirlwind tour of the Old Testament, 
telling us which stories are pure balderdash and which may have some basis in real ar¬ 
cheology and authentic history. And also which tales seem to have been borrowed from 
other primary cultural sources including the Egyptians. If you want proof the entire Bible 
is a faithful transcription of the word of God - straight from mouth to Jewish scribe’s 
pen - read no further, for this book is more of a light-hearted yet scholarly tour of the 
Old Testament, not a dense religio-historical treatise. If you’re ready for a tour of the Old 
Testament like none other, get a copy of Fountain of Fairytales. 

178 pp. pb, 5.5”x8.5” 



Abdallah Melaouhi, Rudolf Hess. His Betrayal and Murder 

In May 1941, Rudolf Hess, Hitler’s right-hand man, flew to England to make peace. His 
plane crashed, and he was made a prisoner of the Allies and kept in solitary confinement 
nearly the rest of his life. What truths about the war did Hess possess that were of such 
danger? The author worked as a male nurse caring for Rudolf Hess from 1982 until his 
death in 1987 at the Allied Prison in Berlin. Minutes after the murder he was called to 
the prison. Ask by the author what had happened, an unknown U.S. soldier replied: “The 
pig is finished; you won’t have to work a night shift any longer.” What he experienced 
there, minutely described in this book, proves beyond doubt that Mr. Hess was strangled 
to death by his Anglo-Saxon captors. 

300 pp. pb, 6”x9”, ill. 



Curtis B. Dali, FDR: My Exploited Father-in-Law 

The author was FDR’s son-in-law and spent much time in the White House. He had an 
insider’s view of who came to see FDR and Eleanor and how often. Dali also was a Wall 
Street banker and knew the tricks and tactics the financial predators use to deceive the 
public. The book is loaded with personal anecdotes of the people Dali met during his life. 
This included such notables as Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, Bernard Baruch, Henry 
Morgenthau Jr., Harry Dexter White, the Warburgs, Rothschilds, and more. Dali views the 
stock market crash of October 1929 as “the calculated shearing of the public triggered by 
the sudden shortage of call money in the New York money market.” He views the Federal 
Reserve and their globalist cheerleaders as being against the interests of Americans. They 
plan and execute the wars that line their pockets and ravage the world. Dali portrays FDR 
as a man who began his career as an optimistic ladder-climber and ended up as one of the 
most manipulated presidents in U.S. history. Reprint with a foreword by Willis A. Carto. 

298 pp., 5.5 “x 8.5“, pb 



For prices and availability see www.shop.codoh.com or write to: CHP, PO Box 243, Uckfield, TN22 9AW, UK 















Herbert L. Brown, The Devil’s Handiwork. A Victim’s View of “Allied" War Crimes 


An amazing compilation of war crimes committed by the “good guys” against the “bad 
guys.” Many of the events covered in this book are to this day censored or twisted in 
mainstream history books. Chapters cover: Death camps in the Civil War; concentra¬ 
tion camps in the Boer War; The Dresden Massacre - the worst war crime in history; 
the Ukrainian terror famine; the gruesome harvest in Eastern Europe; the myth of the 
6 million; Operation Keelhaul; the Nuremberg Trials; the Katyn Forest Massacre; the 
Stuttgart Atrocity; bastardizing the Gennans after WWII; the use of the atom bomb; Cuba 
betrayed; the Invasion of Lebanon; the policy of de-Nazification; the Malmedy Trial; the 
Dachau Trial; the Vinnytsia genocide; crimes during the occupation of Germany; FDR’s 
Great Sedition Trial; the Morgenthau Plan; the propaganda of the Writers War Board; 
myths of civilian bombings; the Lend-Lease fiasco; truth about Auschwitz; Pearl Elarbor; 
the Soviet genocide across Europe; much more. 

275 pp., 5.5“x8.5“, pb 



Ralph Grandinetti, Final Solution. Germany’s Madagascar Resettlement Plan 

Everyone “knows” the Germans had a “final solution” for their so-called “Jewish Prob¬ 
lem.” But Adolf Hitler’s final solution did not involve homicidal gas chambers and blaz¬ 
ing crematory ovens. Instead, Hitler’s final solution offered Jewish leaders the island of 
Madagascar, back then a French colony. In a meeting with Vichy French Prime Minister 
Pierre Laval, Laval agreed to turn Madagascar into a new Jewish homeland where, ul¬ 
timately, all of Europe’s 4,000,000 Jews might be settled. This new Madagascar was to 
be governed by a joint German-French board with representation granted to any govern¬ 
ment cooperating. What a paradise Madagascar could have become, but instead Zionists 
insisted on occupying the “Holy Land,” where they knew strife and conflict awaited them. 

What was the Madagascar Plan, and why did it fail? Which world leaders supported it - 
and which did not? Why was the plan eventually abandoned? 

108 pp., 5.5 “x 8.5“, pb 

John Tiffany, A Short History of the Balfour Declaration 

Few have heard of the Balfour Declaration, the history of which is known primarily to 
students of global affairs. What general knowledge there is surrounding its origins is 
usually limited to dry accounts in diplomatic histories. But here is a case where truth is 
stranger than fiction. The issuance of the Balfour Declaration set the stage for American 
entry into World War I and thereby laid the groundwork for World War II and the many 
consequential global convulsions that followed. And, ultimately, of course, it’s the foun¬ 
dation of the tension in the Middle East today that points toward further war and destruc¬ 
tion. Here is the secret history of the Balfour Declaration, laid out in no uncertain terms 
and devoid of euphemism and political correctness. Those who have any serious desire 
to understand the sources of world conflict need this precise and candid analysis - the 
facts - about the behind-the-scenes machinations that brought the Balfour Declaration 
into being - and why. 

118 pp., 5.5“x8.5“, pb 

Germar Rudolf: Resistance is Obligatory! 

In 2005 Rudolf, a peaceful dissident and publisher of revisionist literature, was kidnapped 
by the U.S. government and deported to Germany. There the local lackey regime staged 
a show trial against him for his historical writings. Rudolf was not permitted to defend 
his historical opinions, as the German penal law prohibits this. Yet he defended himself 
anyway: 7 days long Rudolf held a speech in the court room, during which he proved sys¬ 
tematically that only the revisionists are scholarly in their attitude, whereas the Holocaust 
orthodoxy is merely pseudo-scientific. He then explained in detail why it is everyone’s 
obligation to resist, without violence, a government which throws peaceful dissident into 
dungeons. When Rudolf tried to publish his public defence speech as a book from his 
prison cell, the public prosecutor initiated a new criminal investigation against him. After 
his probation time ended in 2011, he dared publish this speech anyway... 

376 pp., 6“x9“, pb, colour ill. 





For prices and availability see www.shop.codoh.com or write to: CHP, PO Box 243, Uckfield, TN22 9AW, UK