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The article is devoted to the important scientific problem of Jews’ adaptation in Turkestan. Its comprehension makes it possible to consider a specific example of the interaction of representatives of the two main religions in Russia - the Christian and the Muslim ones. The relevance of this topic is also determined by the persisting confrontation between Israel and the Arab world, Jews and Muslims. Moreover, Jews’ resettlement during the colonization of Central Asia allows understanding the contradictions of the national and migration policy of the tsarist Russia at the turn of the 20th century. Through the use of a wide range of sources, the author reveals the peculiarities of the life of Jews in the Russian Empire, various aspects of which were silenced or distorted in the Soviet historiography for a long time. The article contains data on the localization, number and social composition of the Jewish population on the territory of the Russian Empire. It is noted that the vast majority of the first European Jews were former military - privates and non-commissioned officers. The Ashkenazi Jews played an important role in the construction of railways in Russia and, above all, the Tashkent-Orenburg railway. The author concludes that the construction of railways in Europe was an important field of activity for Jewish bankers. In this area, it is the personal ties of the Jewish capitalists with the governments which played an important role, since railways were built mostly on the basis of special concessions and under the official control. Over a relatively short historical period, the Jews demonstrated their high social activity and made a significant contribution to the development of Central Asia territory.

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Semen I Gitlin

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