Fight for Political Leadership in Polish Jewry Again Acute
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Fight for Political Leadership in Polish Jewry Again Acute

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The fight for the political leadership in Polish Jewry, insofar as its parliamentary representation is concerned has again assumed an acute character, after the Club of Jewish Deputies met yesterday.

The revolt against the political course of Deputy Isaac Gruenbeun, who is now incumbent of the office of president of the Club, is being led by the Jewish deputies from Galicia, headed by Dr. Leon Reich.

Fortified by a decision of the Zionist party council in Eastern Galicia, which recently expressed support for the moderate Reich policy, Dr. Reich at yesterday’s session presented a demand that the leadership of the Club be handed over to a presidium of three instead of the presidency now held by Gruenbeum. The Galician deputies were authorized to withdraw from the Club in case this demand is not met. Deputy Gruenbeum refused to yield, declaring that the adoption of the Galician plan would be identical with discontinuing the present oppositional policy of the Club, while the present situation of the Jewish population of Poland, and especially its economic situation, demands that the oppositional policy be continued. Gruenbeum’s followers suggested a compromise by which two vice-presidents should be added.

When the Reich resolution was taken to a vote it was defeated by a majority of 8 to 6. Reich then declared that the Galician deputies will find it impossible under the present circumstance to continue their cooperation with the Club. Although he did not state that his group will resign, he, together with deputies Eisenstein. Rozmarin, Lesser and Schreiber, left the session. Later Dr. Reich declared that his action does not indicate a split in the Club but rather a warning of the eventual results.

The Jewish press, however, interprets the incident as a definite split and Jewish leaders outside of the Club are attempting to bring about a solution of the crisis. The candidacy of Dr. Osias Thon, Chief Rabbi of Crakow, who is a member of parliament, has been put forward and it is felt that his succession to the presidency will remove the comlict. The matter will come up most likely at the next session of the Club.

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