Zionist Socialist Workers Party


Zionist Socialist Workers Party

Zionist Socialist Workers Party ( _ru. Сионистско-социалистическая рабочая партия), often referred to simply as 'Zionist-Socialists' or 'S.S.' by their Russian initials, was a Jewish socialist territorialist political party in Russia and Poland, that emerged out of the "Vozrozhdenie" (Renaissance) in 1904. The party held its founding conference in Odessa in 1905.Alroey, Gur. "Demographers in the service of the nation: Liebmann Hersch, Jacob Lestschinsky, and the early study of Jewish migration", published in Jew History (2006) 20:265–282] [http://www.marxists.org/archive/lenin/works/1912/jun/17d.htm] [http://www.zchor.org/plock/sefer2.htm] The party favoured the idea of a Jewish territorial autonomy, outside of Palestine.Ėstraĭkh, G. "In Harness: Yiddish Writers' Romance with Communism. Judaic traditions in literature, music, and art." Syracuse, New York: Syracuse University Press, 2005. p. 30] However, whilst territorial autonomy was the goal of the party, it dedicated most of its energy into revolutionary activities in Russia. The party was positive towards using terrorismclarifyme as a means of struggle against the establishment. [Geifman, Anna. "Thou Shalt Kill: Revolutionary Terrorism in Russia, 1894–1917". Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1993. p. 35]

Nachman Syrkin, Jacob Lestchinsky, Volf Latsky-Bartoldi and Shmuel Niger were amongst the leading figures of the party.Frankel, Jonathan (ed.). "The Jews and the European crisis, 1914–1921". New York: Oxford University Press, 1988. p. 339]

The party played an active role in the 1905 revolution.

At the 7th congress of the World Zionist Organization in 1905, the WZO formally rejected the 'Uganda Plan' (a proposal to resettle Jews in East Africa) after sharp debates. In response, the party and other territorialists withdrew from the WZO.

The party grew rapidly, and became the second largest Jewish labour party after the Bund. The party organized 'neutral' trade unions, in opposition to the Bundist unions. In the end of 1906, the party claimed a membership of 27 000. However, after 1906 the influence of the party began to decline sharply. Many leaders went into exile in Western Europe. The central organ of the party was the weekly Yiddish newspaper "Der nayer veg", published from Vilna 1906–1907. The newspaper was closed down by the authorities in 1907. [http://www.yivoinstitute.org/pdf/newspapers_periodicals.pdf]

In 1917 the party merged with the Jewish Socialist Workers Party, forming the United Jewish Socialist Workers Party. [Jaff Schatz. Jews and the communist movement in interwar Poland. In: Jonathan Frankel. [http://books.google.com/books?id=POkxdm6DoAsC&pg=PA13&lpg=PA13&dq=jaff+schatz+jews+communism&source=web&ots=B5QNMKyJ49&sig=KW-p4_cdwuVM_kHyU9zifzYbX8M&hl=en&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=1&ct=result#PPA30,M1 Dark Times, Dire Decisions: Jews and Communism. Studies in Contemporary Jewry.] Oxford University Press US, 2005, p. 79.]

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