Friday, February 2, 2007

Easter in Kishinev: Anatomy of a Pogrom by Edward H. Judge

Great detailed coverage of why the pogrom occurred, what led to it occurring, what happened while it was going on, and what the outcome was for both the victims and perpetrators. The book is a pretty small one, but it encompasses everything you need to know about this specific event in Russian history. The history of the city is given as well as the reason for why Jews were such a large part of the population. How the town was mainly run by anti-Semites and what they did to help push people over the edge and create violence toward the Jewish members of the city.

Starting with the blood libel from another town which was disproved to have been the work of Jews but nonetheless held up as fact within Kishinev's newspapers which increased feelings against Jews and ending with all out violence that went unchecked until the second day when the military was given all power to handle the situation. A large portion of the city was damaged and men, women, and children were killed, raped, robbed, beaten, etc.

Questions about how much was the government really involved are never clearly answered, there is evidence to support both arguments that it was and wasn't. But both are presented and the reader is given the choice of deciding on his/her own. Overall an excellent book, a quick read, and very informational and detailed.

No comments: