Andinia Plan

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Andinia Plan (Spanish: plan Andinia) refers to a conspiracy theory to allegedly establish a Jewish state in parts of Argentina. It is partly based on an exaggeration of historical proposals for organized Jewish migration to Argentina in the late 19th and the early 20th century (which, however, did not include plans for a Jewish state there). The name and contents of the plan have wide currency in Argentine and Chilean extreme right-wing circles, but no evidence of its actual existence has ever been brought up, making it an example of a conspiracy theory.[1][2][3]

This alleged plan has been used as a rhetorical device by far right circles to attack Jews and institutions. In 1971 a leaflet appeared among officers in the Argentinean army under the name "Plan Andinia," which accused international Jewry and Zionists of planning to take over southern Argentina. It has been circulating ever since." After the attempted coup, all the rightist, Peronist and neo-Nazi organizations turned on the Jewish community as a means of attacking democratic institutions. They claimed that the Alfonsín government was a partner in a Zionist plot to take over land in southern Argentina. Liberal newspapers, taken in by the rightists, published articles on the plan to settle 25,000 Israelis in the south of Argentina in order to bolster the Alfonsín regime. The fact that the mainstream press lent itself to this forgery, an Argentinean version of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, demonstrates the success of the extreme right in its fight against the Jews and against democracy.[citation needed]

Jewish migration to Argentina and early Zionist plans[edit]

Starting in 1880, Argentine governments had a policy of massive immigration, and the liberal tendencies of the Roca administration were instrumental in making European Jews feel welcome.

In the 1880s and 1890s, France's Baron Maurice de Hirsch organized a campaign to relocate two-thirds of Jews in the Russian Empire. Argentina was publicized as a destination for Jews: Alberto Gerchunoff, a Russian Jew who migrated to Argentina, recalled seeing print articles about the Jewish migration to Argentina in Tulchin, Russia, in 1889. In 1891, Hirsch established the Jewish Colonization Association to coordinate the purchase of land to accommodate Jewish migrants (see Jewish gauchos).

The Jewish population in Argentina grew and prospered in the ensuing years (see History of the Jews in Argentina).

Leon Pinsker, in his book Autoemancipation (1882) and Theodore Herzl, in his book The Jewish State (Der Judenstaat), evaluated Argentina as a potential destination for the oppressed Jews of Eastern Europe.

Some sources maintain that Herzl proposed that the Argentina project be given priority over settlement in Palestine.

The Zionist records attest to the fact that Herzl did consider Argentina, as well as present-day Kenya, as alternatives to Palestine. Also, Israel Zangwill and his Jewish Territorialist Organization (ITO) split off from the main Zionist movement; the territorialists' aim was to establish a Jewish homeland wherever possible. The ITO never gained wide support and was dissolved in 1925, leaving Palestine as the sole focus of Zionist aspirations.

Conspiracy theory[edit]

Extreme right-wing had a strong foothold in the military, mostly through the teachings of Jordán Bruno Genta. In these circles, the Andinia Plan was sometimes assumed to be a fact, even though the Zionist movement had abandoned all plans related to Argentina decades ago, and Argentine Jewish institutions (headed by DAIA) were recognized by (and conversant with) all Argentine governments, including military juntas.

Later versions of the "Plan", as published in Argentine Neo-Nazi media since the 1970s, involved an alleged Israeli intention to conquer parts of Patagonia and declare a Jewish state. This theory did not take hold in mainstream political discourse. Many Israelis tour South America, many of them immediately after their military service, with Patagonia being a favored destination.

During the 1976-1983 dictatorship, some Jewish prisoners of the armed forces, notably Jacobo Timerman, were interrogated about their knowledge of the Andinia plan, and were asked to provide details regarding the preparations of the Israeli Defense Forces for the invasion of Patagonia.

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