those who survived the ravages of the Second World War, the question
was "Where do we go from here?" Was it possible for the survivors to
go back to their hometown (assuming they wanted to) and start anew,
amidst the devastation? Some did go back and often met with
continuing nationalistic sentiment.
choice of countries that one could immigrate to was usually between
the United States and Palestine (Israel.) There was a great deal of
sentiment that drove the Jewish refugees to Palestine. Before the
war, many had become ardent Zionists, and they believed that the
only place for them was Palestine, or Eretz Israel, the land of
their ancestors. Some chose to immigrate elsewhere, and their
choices often depended on opportunity, or perhaps in which country
they had family that they could go to. Those who would eventually immigrate to Palestine each had their own
story. They brought with them their own baggage (literally and
figuratively) and needed time to adjust to a post-war life in a
country where they hoped they could live free of persecution but
filled with promise....a land of 'milk and honey..."
These Jewish children are on their way to Palestine after having
been released from the Buchenwald Concentration Camp. The girl on
the left is from Poland, the boy in the center from Latvia, and the
girl on the right is from Hungary. June 5, 1945. T4c. J. E. Myers.