Role of Jewish joint distribution committee in Ukraine reconstruction in 1920s




The contribution of American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee and its subsidiary corporation Agro-Joint to the socio-economic development and modernization of Ukraine in the 20s of the 20th century is highlighted. Based on the analysis of historical sources and publications of the Soviet press, it was found that during this period the mentioned organizations played an important role in the socio-economic processes that took place in South of Ukraine and in Crimea. This was connected with overcoming the consequences of the famine, restoration social structure and agriculture, as well as the organization of new Jewish agricultural colonies on allocated lands. The purpose of the study is to clarify the nature of the activities of Joint and Agro-Joint in the 20s of the 20th century in the social sphere and the agricultural sector and to evaluate the results of this activity from the perspective of today. As a result of the research, it was found that the main activity of Joint and Agro-Joint consisted in the organization of large-scale humanitarian, social, technical and agricultural assistance to the inhabitants of Jewish settlements and non-Jewish population of a number of districts in Odesa, Katerynoslav, Donetsk, Volyn provinces and Crimea. At the same time, special attention was paid to the development of associations, the arrangement of life and the supply of equipment, its rational use during agricultural work. It has been found that a public figure, agronomist, and then deputy director of Agro-Joint Samuil Yukhymovich Lyubarskyi (Shmuel-Aba Khaimovich) (1878–1938) played a major role in the organization of charitable and socially oriented aid. Based on the analysis of his article in «Ukrainian Agricultural Gazette» and other works, it was possible to establish hitherto little-known facts from the history of Joint Distribution Committee and Agro-Joint Corporation, which vividly characterize their humanitarian and restorative activities in the specified period.