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Pauker (née Rabinsohn), Ana

PAUKER (née Rabinsohn), ANA (1890–1960), Romanian Communist leader and cabinet minister. Born into a religious family in Bucharest, she received a traditional Jewish education and became a Hebrew teacher at an elementary school run by the Jewish community. Influenced by her future husband, MARCEL PAUKER (1896–1938), one of the founders of the Romanian Communist Party, she joined the party, which shortly thereafter became illegal. She was imprisoned from 1936 to 1941, and on her release – as the part of an exchange of prisoners – she went to the Soviet Union, returning in 1944 with the Russian forces. During World War II she participated in the Soviet military effort to combat Nazi Germany, organizing a Romanian military division from the Romanian POWS in the Soviet Union to fight against the Antonescu regime and its Hitlerite allies.

After World War II Pauker was the organizer of the Romanian Democratic Front and became minister of foreign affairs in 1947. She also held the posts of secretary of the party central committee and first deputy prime minister in the cabinet of Petre Groza. In 1945 she turned down the post of secretary general of the Party and recommended Gheorghe Gheorghiu-Dej in her place. In 1952, as a result of a move to give a more Romanian character to the party, she was expelled from it, deprived of all her posts, and put under house arrest for several years. Among the charges against her was the accusation that she favored mass emigration to Israel between 1948 and 1951, but this charge was not substantiated. She was also accused of having been both a right winger and a left winger. Long before her death Ana Pauker severed any ties she may have had with the Jewish community, although many of her own close relatives were among the first Romanian settlers in the State of Israel. Nonetheless, she was described by people who knew her well as having continued to show a certain respect for some of the fundamental Jewish traditions, which she knew from her parents' home.

Her husband, Marcel Pauker, whom she divorced, was accused of various "deviations" from the Comintern line, called to Moscow, arrested, condemned to death, and executed.


New York Times (June 15, 1960), 41. ADD. BIBLIOGRAPHY: R. Levy, Ana Pauker, The Rise and Fall of a Jewish Communist (2001).

Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2007 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.