Forty thousand dollars of the United Hebrew Trades’ campaign for $250,000 for Palestine workers was raised Thursday night at a reception given in honor of I. Ben-Zwi, David Remez and I. Baratz, members of the Palestinian workers’ delegation who arrived in New York several days ago to assist in the campaign.
Max Pine, chairman of the campaign, Col. Josiah Wedgwood, former member of the British Labor cabinet, and the members of the delegation addressed the meeting. Of the $40,000 pledged, $10,000 was raised in cash.
“We hope to move, the heart of every Jewish worker in this campaign. Our opponents within the labor ranks charge that we are dreamers, that the work and sacrifice for Palestine are wasted. Suppose that for a moment we admit that they are right. It is, nevertheless, obvious that the Palestine experiment has cost much less in money and in blood than other experiments, including the Bolshevik,” Mr. Pine declared in opening the meeting.
Col. Wedgwood began his address with the Yiddish words “Yiddische Arbeiter” and declared that he brought the greetings of the British labor party to the Jewish workers in America. “In the fight of the Jewish workers in Palestine for liberty, the British labor party stands shoulder to shoulder with them. We first fought for freedom of the Irish and now we fight for the freedom of the Jews,” he stated.
“Political freedom must come before economic freedom. Nationalism is possible only among equals. You can evoke respect only when you are proud of being Jews. There is no country where the workers are happier than in Palestine. If you want to see agriculture up to date you have to go to Palestine,” Col. Wedgwood declared.
The speaker also emphasized the fact that no one in England considers that the Arab question is serious. “The effendis, the wealthy landowners, do not like the Jews; those who do not like the Jews do not like the British,” he said.
“The Hadassah non-sectarian work in Palestine is bringing about goodwill between the Jews and Arabs,” he declared.
The members of the delegation were received with tremendous applause when they reported on the situation in Palestine. More than 2,000 persons attended the meeting in Cooper Union.