London (Feb. 19)
What will be the effect of the extension of the Jewish Agency upon the activities of the Zionist Organization as such? What should be the functions of the Zionist Organization in the future? How should its methods of organization and propaganda be adjusted accordingly? These questions have come up before the Zionist Organization with the approaching realization of the Jewish Agency plan.
In order to arrive at a solution of these problems an inquiry has been made among leading members of the Zionist Organization. Zionists in all parts of the world have been sent questionnaires and on the basis of the replies the suggestions for overhauling the whole system of the Organization and propaganda will be made by the Zionist Executive. In addition, a meeting was arranged at the Zionist Central Offices at which Leon Simon and P. Horowitz were asked to give evidence on questions put to them by specially appointed commissioners of inquiry representing all parties.
Dr. Rosenblueth as Chairman represented the Zionist Executive, the Rev. J. K. Goldbloom the English Zionist Federation, Mr. Schiff the Mizrachi, Meer Grossman the Revisionists, Dov Hos the Labor Organizations, and Dr. Leo Lauterbach the Organization Department the Zionist Organization.
Mr. Leon Simon suggested that the Shekel, which was originally meant to be the declaration of faith in Zionism, should be abolished, because it does not signify anything to a large number of Shekel payers, who look at it rather as an incidental purchase involving a very insignificant cost. The Shekel should therefore be given free of charge to anyone. Zionist or non-Zionist, contributing to Palestine Funds, and so afford them the possibility of participating in the Congress election, should they desire to do so. Although this might result in a large number of Agency non-Zionist members acquiring the right to vote for the Zionist Congress, no danger was to be seen in that, he said. It might only lead to the identification of the two bodies, the Zionist Organization and the Jewish Agency, in the course of time, which would be desirable. “I am against the division of Palestine contributors into sheep and goats,” Mr. Simon said.
Mr. Horowitz said that he believed that the creation of the extended Jewish Agency would not weaken the Zionist Organization, but on the contrary, its sphere of interest would grow and be intensified as the interpreter of Zionist opinion and sentiment, because as a party it would be compelled to pay more attention to its maintenance and strengthening, in order to foster Zionist opinion, in cases of difference between the Zionist Organization and the Jewish Agency.
He did not believe that a time would come when the Zionists and non-Zionists would be amalgamated into one body; neither did he think that the fact that the Jewish Agency consists of governing bodies similar to those of the Zionist Organization would lead to a clash. The parallel bodies would rather strengthen the Zionist Organization, leaving a clear line of demarcation between the two. The Keren Hayesod should become the money collecting institution of the Zionist Organization whereas the Jewish National Fund should remain as before under the control of the Zionist Congress, he declared.