London (Jul. 23)
(Jewish Telegraphic Agency)
The various phases of the present situation in Palestine and in the Zionist movement throughout the world, and plans of Zionist leadership for the immediate future, were submitted for consideration at the Zionist Actions Committee which opened its session here yesterday.
The contemplated trip to the United States of Dr. Chaim Weizmann, president of the World Zionist Organization, the continuation of his efforts while in America to extend the Jewish Agency through his negotiations with the Marshall group, the possibilities of extending Jewish colonization work outside of the present Palestine frontiers, including. Transjordania and certain parts of Syria, were the main features around which the deliberations centered.
The deliberations took place under the chairmanship of Dr. Leon Motzkin, chairman of the Actions Committee, in the presence of nearly all the members of the Committee. Six delegates from Poland could not arrive for the opening session, being occupied in the present session of the Polish Sejm, to which they are deputies. They are expected to arrive here on Sunday.
The Committee’s sessions, which will last about a week, were declared closed to press representatives. In his opening remarks, Dr. Motzkin expressed regret at the absence of Nahum Sokolow, chairman of the Zionist World Executive, who is now on a tour of South Africa. Dr. Motzkin welcomed Chaim Nachman Bialik, Hebrew poet, to the Actions Committee meeting.
It was learned from authoritative sources that in his report submitted to the Actions Committee. Dr. Weizmann summarized his impressions of his recent visit to Palestine, during which he studied the economic and political situation there. His views on the situation were expressed in his memorandum to the League of Nations and in his detailed letter to the British government, Dr. Weizmann stated All the documents pertaining to the matter were submitted to the Actions Committee.
The relations with the mandatory power have improved considerably especially with regard to questions pertaining to the colonization work. The proposals submitted by the Zionist Executive were favorably considered by the British government, emphasis was laid on the allocation of land for Jewish colonization in Beisan and in Southern Palestine. He believes that favorable results will follow shortly, Dr. Weizmann declared. A profound change in the attitude of British public opinion in favor of Zionist is noticeable, Dr. Weizmann declared, pointing to the debate which took place Wednesday in the House of Commons concerning the proposed Â£4,500,000 loan of the Palestine government. This debate in Commons demonstrated an earnest and benevolent attitude toward Zionism on the part of all parties. The British government realizes that the crisis in Palestine is not the fault of Palestine alone, but it is rather a part of the general economic world crisis, Dr. Weizmann stated.
“Due to the success of our colonization work in Palestine proper, it is possible that eventually our colonization work will be extended beyond the frontiers of Transjordania. It is true that the Palestine government has not taken a clear stand in regard to its economic policy, but well founded demands have every prospect of being agreed to. A great deal has been achieved during the last months,” Dr. Weizmann said.
Reviewing the external situation of the Zionist movement, Dr. Weizmann commented on the relations between the League of Nations and the World Zionist Organization. “The relations between the League of Nations and the World Zionist Organization are of special importance, not because the League is to be considered as a legislative body, but because it constitutes the clearing house for world public opinion.
“The delegation of the Vaad Leumi the National Council of Palestine Jewry, to the June session of the Permanent Mandates Commission made a good impression in Geneva. The discussions of that meeting of the Commission were conducted with a more sympathetic attitude toward Zionism,” Dr. Weizmann stated. He commended the Vaad Leumi for its attitude of confidence and cooperation with the Zionist Executive.
“A marked change for the better is also to be observed in the attitude of certain Catholic circles which were previously aggressive. This moderation of attitude is due to the endeavors of the French elements in Palestine. The favorable developments are a result of the creation of strong Jewish economic positions in Palestine. The imperative demand of the hour is the continuation of the work of stabilizing those positions which have already been acquired. For this, two conditions are required, one political the other financial. The first exists, although it is not entirely perfect. The other is up to us Zionists,” he said.
“In this connection the plan of extending the Jewish Agency is important. The Jewish Agency extension must be proceeded with,” Dr. Weizmann stated, announcing his intention to go to America in October to resume the work in the direction. “It is our duty not to leave any avenue unexplored. Our opponents are closing their ranks in a united front. It is our duty to close up in our ranks all who feel for Palestine although they stand outside of the Zionist Organization.”
Chaim Nachman Bialik, summarizing his impressions of his visit to the United States, declared that the work for Palestine in the United States is conducted on a philanthropic basis. It is necessary to get out of this frame of mind, he said. He believes that it would be essential to lay down a definite plan of Zionist work in the United States and in other countries.
Dr. Stephen S. Wise, vice-chairman of the Actions Committee, drew attention to the difference between the atmosphere at the last Zionist Congress in Vienna and that at the Actions Committee, in session now. “It is significant,” he stated, “that during the Wednesday debate in the House of Commons on the Palestine government loan, not a single unfriendly word was uttered against Zionism. American Zionists will make the greatest efforts during the coming year for the rebuilding of Palestine and they will also stand loyally for the realization of the Jewish Agency plan,” he declared. Dr. Wise also urged European Zionists to greater efforts in the collection of funds.
The remarkable progress of the Jewish agricultural settlement in Palestine was reported by I. Kaplanski, chief of the agricultural department of the Zionist Executive in Jerusalem. The land settlements have become independent of Keren Hayesod contributions, representing at present a value of Â£190,000, he stated. The Valley of Jezreel settlements have lost their previous character of camps and are becoming permanent settlements. The irrigation plan had to be temporarily discontinued owing to the limitations of the budget, which it is necesary to enlarge for this purpose, he explained.
Dr. Georg Halperin, head of the Anglo-Palestine Bank, reported on the situation of the middle class immigrants in the towns. The middle class immigrants, he said, brought capital which was insufficient for the industrial undertakings which have been carried on on too large a scale. This was the cause for the acute situation. In the future it will be necessary to establish mortgage and industrial banks, he declared.