Jerusalem (Dec. 2)
(Jewish Telegraphic Agency)
“The Lord shall comfort Zion, He will comfort all her waste places and He will make her wilderness like Eden and her desert like the Garden of the Lord, joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving and the voice of melody. Awake, awake; put on thy strength, O Zion; put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city. Shake thyself from the dust.”
These prophetic words of Isaiah (51,52) were recited in Jerusalem, the place where they were pronounced, at a celebration of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Keren Kayemath, the Jewish National Fund, the Zionist agency for the purchase of Palestine land as the inalienable property of the Jewish people.
A thousand persons, including representatives of the Palestine government, of national, communal, civil, religious, political and cultural organizations, as well as representatives of foreign governments and delegates from the Jewish colonies in Palestine, were present at the celebration. The chapters 51 and 52 of Isaiah were recited in Hebrew.
M. M. Ussishkin, head of the Jewish National Fund, in reviewing the work of the Fund, declared that it was impossible to remain satisfied with the present achievements of the Fund in redeeming the soil of Palestine. He appealed to Jews throughout the world, urging the necessity of hastening the Fund’s activity, declaring that “history cannot wait. A time may come when Jews will be prepared to acquire the land, but the land may not be available.”
Mr. Stubbs, director of the Lands Department of the Palestine government, brought the greetings of High Commissioner Lord Plumer. “The inception of the Jewish National Fund is the practical expression of the desire of the Jewish people to revive the land of their forefathers. The Palestine government has constantly before its eyes evidence of the great work which the Jewish National Fund is performing in the country and it appreciates the benefits which accrue to the country as a whole from the restoration of land which was previously waste and the Fund’s work to reclaim malarious swamps into land suitable for Jewish settlement.” Mr. Stubbs added his personal appreciation of the Fund’s work, with which he is in close touch.
Greetings were brought by Rabbi Uziel on behalf of the Chief Rabbinate of Palestine, Col. Frederick H. Kisch on behalf of the Zionist Executive, Dr. David Yellin for the Vaad Leumi, M. Kaplan Kaplanski on behalf of the Keren Hayesod, Dr. Judah L. Magnes for the Hebrew University and others. A message was received from Dr. Chaim Weizmann and from the Zionist Executive in London.
The concluding address was delivered by Chaim Nachman Bialik.