June 22, 2023

Israel and Russia – A Troubled 75 – Year Relationship

Robert O. Freedman, Ph.D.

The Israeli-Russian relationship is rather one-sided benefiting the Russian state, and is one of economic, security, and uniquely issued around the role of Russian Jews. Back in the times of the Soviet Union, it was an anti-Zionist state because this movement could take away workers against capitalism, but after a couple of decades with Soviet support, the Israeli state was created. Throughout the time of the Soviet Union, Jewish emigration from the state relied on global relations between the two nations and the rest of the world. If these two nations were in peace around thirty thousand Soviet Jews could emigrate, while in conflict that number would be halted to around twelve thousand people. Post Soviet Union, in the Putin era, certain points of the bilateral relations were great, shown by Israeli commercials being broadcasted by Russian satellites. But, in the latest news, Russia and Israel clash in views surrounding the Russian-Ukrainian war due to President Zelinsky of Ukraine being of Jewish faith and Israel providing Ukraine with warning systems. Following the lecture, Professor Freidman discusses on topics including short-term vs. long-term international relationships, the
significance of Soviet Jew emigration, and recommendations for the Israeli Palestinian conflict.

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