In the 1880s and 1890s, France's Baron Maurice de Hirsch organized a campaign that was 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 Auto-Emancipation (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. Herzl, who would later become the founder of the Zionist movement, had obtained information about Argentina and Chile from Jewish explorers, who suggested the creation of the state in that region following the South African model, used by Britain, through the establishing of a company.
Some sources maintain that Herzl proposed that the Argentina project be given priority over settlement in Palestine.
Herzl did consider Argentina, as well as present-day Uganda, as alternatives to Palestine. Israel Zangwill and his Jewish Territorialist Organization (ITO) split off from the main Zionist movement; the territorialists attempted to establish a Jewish homeland wherever possible. The ITO never gained wide support within Zionism and was dissolved in 1925, leaving Palestine as the sole focus of Zionist aspirations (the Soviet Union later did establish a Jewish Autonomous Republic in the Russian Far East).
During the military dictatorships in Argentina, extreme right-wing movements (Neo-Nazis, Neo-Fascist and so-called "nationalists") were free to publish and broadcast their ideas (as opposed to mainstream political parties, which were proscribed). Those movements had a strong foothold in the military, mostly through the teachings of Jordán Bruno Genta. In far right publications, the Andinia Plan was 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 the Argentine governments.
Later versions of the "Plan", as published in Argentine Neo-Nazi media, involved an alleged Israeli intention to conquer and occupy parts of Patagonia. This theory did not take hold in mainstream political discourse. Many Israelis tour South America, some of them immediately after their military service, with Patagonia being a favored destination. There are no recorded incidents where Argentines reacted to these trips in connection to an alleged Israeli military plan.
During the 1976-1983 dictatorship, some Jewish prisoners of the armed forces, notably Jacobo Timerman, were asked about their knowledge of the Plan, including military details such as how are the Israeli Defense Forces preparing for the invasion of Patagonia.