If there is no Holocaust, how do the Jewish communities of Eastern Europe look like right now?

Futurist

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May 2014
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If Hitler and the Nazis never come to power in Germany and there is thus no World War II* and no Holocaust, how do the Jewish communities of Eastern Europe look like right now?

Are Eastern European Jewish communities going to largely follow the example of their counterparts in the US and Western Europe, intermarry en masse with the local populations in Eastern Europe, and gradually assimilate into the general cultures of Eastern Europe? Also, is there going to be large-scale Jewish emigration from Eastern Europe--especially if a Jewish state is still created in Palestine and/or if the US will eventually reopen its doors to large numbers of Eastern European immigrants? In addition, are Jews going to become the financial and cognitive elite of Eastern Europe just like they became in the US--with them holding a disproportionate amount of the wealth and having a disproportionate amount of scientific and technological achievements?

Any thoughts on all of this?

*A non-Nazi German government could attack Poland together with the Soviet Union at some future point in time if it will feel sufficiently confident in doing this. However, without the prior German actions in Czechoslovakia, Britain and France might be unwilling to fight for Poland--especially if Germany will limit its gains to Danzig, the Polish Corridor, and eastern Upper Silesia while the Soviet Union limits its gains to the territories east of the Curzon Line.
 

arkteia

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Nov 2012
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They would probably not be “Jewish” and mix with non-Jewish ones. As was already the trend before WWII.

On a different note, if Hitler’s policy would not be anti-Semitic, if he’d leave in it everything minus anti- Semitism - he had the chance of getting an A-bomb before everyone else. Most of critical participants of Manhattan project were Jewish emigrants from Europe. Who would US get if if were not for Hitler’s anti-Semitism? (Probably, only Leo Szilard, as he was in UK at that time). Even Fermi would not have emigrated, as he left Italy only because his wife was Jewish. Definitely not Einstein.

So question is, how the map of Europe would have looked today if it were not for Hitler’s anti-Semitism, culminating in the Holocaust?
 
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Futurist

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They would probably not be “Jewish” and mix with non-Jewish ones. As was already the trend before WWII.
Would they identify as Jewish?

On a different note, if Hitler’s policy would not be anti-Semitic, if he’d leave in it everything minus anti- Semitism - he had the chance of getting an A-bomb before everyone else. Most of critical participants of Manhattan project were Jewish emigrants from Europe. Who would US get if if were not for Hitler’s anti-Semitism? (Probably, only Leo Szilard, as he was in UK at that time). Even Fermi would not have emigrated, as he left Italy only because his wife was Jewish. Definitely not Einstein.

So question is, how the map of Europe would have looked today if it were not for Hitler’s anti-Semitism, culminating in the Holocaust?
In such a scenario, the Nazis should win WWII. Indeed, London is probably going to look like a total train wreck in such a scenario! :(
 
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arkteia

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Nov 2012
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Would they identify as Jewish?
No. They would be raised in a very secular manner and identify as inhabitants of their respective countries.


In such a scenario, the Nazis should win WWII. Indeed, London is probably going to look like a total train wreck in such a scenario! :(
Do you view it as feasible? Me, very much so.
 
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arkteia

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Keep in mind, German Jews felt as patriotic as Germans. Many participated in WWI. They would support their country. Can you imagine Einstein writing the letter about the importance of A-bomb to Hitler, were it not for Hitler’s crazy antiSemitic policy?

If you Google nuclear fusion...US would have not been able to do anything were it not for the influx of European scientists. Most came because of Hitler’s policy. What if they stayed? All that Hitler needed to do was treat Jews like everyone else. He’d win the war.
 
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Tulun

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Nov 2010
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Are Eastern European Jewish communities going to largely follow the example of their counterparts in the US and Western Europe, intermarry en masse with the local populations in Eastern Europe, and gradually assimilate into the general cultures of Eastern Europe?
In addition, are Jews going to become the financial and cognitive elite of Eastern Europe just like they became in the US--with them holding a disproportionate amount of the wealth and having a disproportionate amount of scientific and technological achievements?
Yes to these, at least speaking about Hungary these things already happened/started to happen before the Holocaust and so did after it (to this day?) They were largely assimilated, intermerry and were overrepresented in intellectual and financial sectors.

However there would be (and there was in reality too) a counter trend too, the presence of political anti-semitism was independent to the Nazis. Without the Nazis there wouldn't be extermination or even expulsion of them, maybe no race laws either. I say maybe, because we had the numerus clausus law (restricting the number of Jews who could enter higher education) enacted already in 1920... which + the general anti-semitic political discourse dominant during the whole Horthy era was a motivation for many Jewish Hungarian scientists to leave the country, Ede Teller, Leó Szilárd, Tódor Kármán, János Neumann, just to name some of them, they first usually went to Germany in the 1920s, and then also leaving the continent when the Nazis rose. So anti-semitism would still be a major political card, and don't forget, in reality it became politically incorrect in large part only because of the Holocaust. Without it anti-semitic politicians could remain in the mainstream for much longer.

But i don't know would we still come under commie rule in your scenario? Commies would of course repress (open) anti-semitism. If we were in the luckier non-commie side of the fence and the SU still posed a threat, probably the anti-semites would continue to use the Jewish-Bolshevik card too for some more decades. In this political atmosphere still many Jews would choose to emigrate (well many of them chose to emigrate from the commie rule too, large part of the Hungarian emigrants who escaped to the West during the 1956 revolution were Jews). But overall the trends of assimilation would continute and still more Jews would remain than now we have, maybe they would make up 2-3% of the population, and the synagogues in the country-side wouldn't be deserted (the Hungarian Jews outside Budapest were almost completely exterminated in the Holocaust).
 
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Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
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Yes to these, at least speaking about Hungary these things already happened/started to happen before the Holocaust and so did after it (to this day?) They were largely assimilated, intermerry and were overrepresented in intellectual and financial sectors.

However there would be (and there was in reality too) a counter trend too, the presence of political anti-semitism was independent to the Nazis. Without the Nazis there wouldn't be extermination or even expulsion of them, maybe no race laws either. I say maybe, because we had the numerus clausus law (restricting the number of Jews who could enter higher education) enacted already in 1920... which + the general anti-semitic political discourse dominant during the whole Horthy era was a motivation for many Jewish Hungarian scientists to leave the country, Ede Teller, Leó Szilárd, Tódor Kármán, János Neumann, just to name some of them, they first usually went to Germany in the 1920s, and then also leaving the continent when the Nazis rose. So anti-semitism would still be a major political card, and don't forget, in reality it became politically incorrect in large part only because of the Holocaust. Without it anti-semitic politicians could remain in the mainstream for much longer.
You certainly can't compare the race laws (such as those prohibiting marriage between Jews and Gentiles; indeed, such laws are absolutely vile, disgusting, immoral, and completely inexcusable :() with Jewish quotas. After all, if one is a blank slatist, Jewish quotas actually make a whole lot of sense. If one believes that all groups have the same potential (on average), then discrimination against the more successful groups (in other words, affirmative action for the less successful groups) actually makes a lot of sense. This articles makes a similar point for Russia--though anti-Semitism there was deeper than merely having Jewish quotas:

Russian Anti-Semitism, Or Just Affirmative Action In Action?

Given the popularity of blank slatism (as in, the opposite of hereditarianism) in the late 20th century, in the absence of the Holocaust, countries such as Hungary could have maintained their Jewish quotas for a long time to come--and Jews wouldn't have had much ground to complain about them unless they themselves were hereditarians. After all, if Blacks and Hispanics in the US deserve to have lower standards, why not Hungarians in Hungary?

BTW, I say all of this as a Jew myself. I've noticed a huge disconnect between the idea of supporting affirmative action and yet at the same time opposing the idea of Jewish quotas.

But i don't know would we still come under commie rule in your scenario?
No; without the Nazis, chances are that the best that the Soviet Union could hope for would be to conquer eastern Poland. Germany won't let them conquer Hungary or Romania or perhaps even the Baltic countries.

Commies would of course repress (open) anti-semitism. If we were in the luckier non-commie side of the fence and the SU still posed a threat, probably the anti-semites would continue to use the Jewish-Bolshevik card too for some more decades. In this political atmosphere still many Jews would choose to emigrate (well many of them chose to emigrate from the commie rule too, large part of the Hungarian emigrants who escaped to the West during the 1956 revolution were Jews). But overall the trends of assimilation would continute and still more Jews would remain than now we have, maybe they would make up 2-3% of the population, and the synagogues in the country-side wouldn't be deserted (the Hungarian Jews outside Budapest were almost completely exterminated in the Holocaust).
All of this makes sense. :)

BTW, wouldn't a lot of the Jews who will stay in Hungary end up moving to Budapest? After all, Budapest does have more opportunity than the Hungarian countryside would have. It's like having a lot of the smarter Russians settle in either Moscow or St. Petersburg due to the greater amount of opportunities there.
 

Futurist

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May 2014
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BTW, in regards to Hungary, don't only something like 20-25% of their entire Jewish population right now in real life actually identify as Jewish? I've seen a figure of 50,000 total Jews for Hungary (based on the Jewish Yearbook, I believe), but the number of Jews listed in the Hungarian census is something like 10,000-12,000. What accounts for this discrepancy?
 

Tulun

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Nov 2010
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Western Eurasia
BTW, wouldn't a lot of the Jews who will stay in Hungary end up moving to Budapest? After all, Budapest does have more opportunity than the Hungarian countryside would have.
And many did (i think they were some 20% of the population of Budapest pre-Holocaust). And there were significant populations in other smaller cities too. I think in the countryside there were many orthodox/hasid too, interestingly there was also some overlap to areas where now many Gypsies live in the countryside, especially in the north-north east. I don't know the details of it, but there was apparently some economic symbiosis between them in rural trades. But i really don't know much about it, just an observation.


BTW, in regards to Hungary, don't only something like 20-25% of their entire Jewish population right now in real life actually identify as Jewish? I've seen a figure of 50,000 total Jews for Hungary (based on the Jewish Yearbook, I believe), but the number of Jews listed in the Hungarian census is something like 10,000-12,000. What accounts for this discrepancy?
There are also estimates which put them to 75-100,000 or even more, depending on who is considered to be a "Jew". Secular self-identity, religion, Nuremberg or Israeli race law.... In the census only those appear who self-reported Jewish religion (in Hungary Jew is officialy not a recognized ethnic group, only a religion). But reporting the religion or ethnic/national identity is not compulsory in the census, it is optional if you want.
Some 18% of Hungarians reported that they have no religion/don't belong to any religious community and 27% just refused to answer the question. A large segment of the society (not only Jews) doesn't trust the state to share their ethnic or religious afffiliation due to the obvious past historical lessons.
So discrepancy is the result of not considering atheist Jews or those religious Jews who don't want to share this info with the state.
 
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Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
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Makes sense. Good points! :)

BTW, do you have any thoughts about my long response to your post above?