Israel Requests West Germany to Deny Visas to Soviet Jews

Letter from Elias Davidsson to Mr. Helmut Kohl, 23.4.91

Your Excellency, Mr. Kohl,

The Israeli daily Yedi'ot Aharonot of March 15th reported that in your meeting with Israeli Foreign Minister David Levy on March 14th, you "promised Israel to help prevent the granting of refugee status to Soviet Jews arriving in Germany", so that they would be forced to go to Israel.

I am very shocked by these news, as it reminds me the year 1935. At that year, my mother was pressured by the Nazi regime to leave Germany, because she was Jewish. No Western country gave my family a haven. It had to go to Palestine, where I was born. Now as then, Western countries show their cynicism by rejecting Jewish immigration to the West and wishing to solve the Jewish problem on the expense of the Palestinian people.

Israel has for years pressured foreign states to close their doors to Soviet Jews after it found that most of them would - given the chance - move to Western Europe or the United States. Most Soviet Jews are assimilated into Soviet society and are married with non-Jewish partners. They are therefore not interested in going to the Jewish State, Israel, if given an alternative. Israel's leaders consider however their duty to avert the assimilation of Jews into non-Jewish cultures and nations, if necessary by force. They consider assimilation of Jews as "the most serious threat to the Jewish people since the Holocaust".

In doing so, they place nationalist ideology above individual human rights, an attitude typical of a fascist state. Israel's refusal to institute civil marriage and its enactment of apartheid legislation[1] are further highlighting the racist nature of that State.

For us Jews who have non-Jewish partners whom we dearly love, Israel's practices and ideology are abominable. Our love to human beings is considered by the Zionist establishment as treason. We[2] cannot accept that Israel speak on behalf of world Jewry and act as if it represented their interests. It does not.

The State of Israel does not respect the universal principle stated in the Universal Declaration on Human Rights - that everyone has the right to leave any country including his own and to return to it. Such principle implies the right of people to choose their destination, when they leave their country. But Soviet Jews are in fact prevented of this right and Israel is trying to pressure other States to make it difficult for Soviet Jews to exercice this right. It is disgraceful that governments of Western democracies give in to Israeli blackmail.

Moreover the State of Israel grossly violates the right of return of people to their country (if they are not Jewish). Some two million people, originating in areas controlled now by the State of Israel, and who have been thrown into exile, are denied this right. These people are usually called the Palestinian refugees. Their only crime: They are not Jews. By doing so, Israel is also defying the entire international community, which has called yearly in the United Nations on Israel to allow these refugees the right to return and compensation.

Israel's behaviour is neither compatible with Jewish morals nor with the interests of Jews around the world. Those who are really sympathetic to Jews should end all their dealings with the Zionist State of Israel.

I appeal therefore on your government to stop all assistance, material and moral to the State of Israel. It is incumbent that Israel respect international law and U.N. resolutions and begin to act as a civilized nation. Only international and effective pressure on Israel can make the Israeli Jewish public realize that their government is leading them to calamity.

Sincerely yours,

Elias Davidsson,
Composer and pianist

Att.