London (Jan. 14)
The meeting was called for quite other purposes than political discussions, Dr. Ch. Weizmann said in reporting on the political situation at the first session of the special meeting of the Actions Committee of the Zionist World Organisation opened here this afternoon. But he though it opportune, he went on, to give an outline of the political situation since the last meeting. He proceeded to give a rough sketch of the development and progress of the negotiations with the Government, which were not yet completed. He was unable, he said, to give any details, but was prepared to answer questions at a meeting of the Commission. Dr. Nahum Goldmann, a member of the Special Political Committee, supplemented the political report.
Dr. Werner Senator then presented a detailed report on the financial position in Palestine, and after some discussion on procedure, a general debate followed.
In the absence through illness of the President, Mr. Leo Motzkin, Mr. H. Farbstein, Vice President of the Actions Committee, was in the chair. In opening the proceedings, which he said, were of confidential character, he explained that the meeting was an emergency meeting and he hoped the members would face the present difficult situation, and that their deliberations would be fruitful.
The Chairman referred to the great loss the movement had sustained through the death of Lord Melchett and Mr. Nathan Straus, all members rising in tribute to their memory.
Mr. Sokolow emphasised the critical financial position in which the movement found itself. Drastic means had to be taken, he said, to save the situation. Zionism and its achievements constituted the quintessence of the Jewish people, and they had to preserve it. The Zionists could not go back to pre-Declaration activities. Their Zionist ideal had assumed concrete forms: it had become bound up with Palestine work. They could not and must not go back. The they very foundations of their work, education, colonisation and other vital matters must not be shaken through lack of means. Each and all of them must take immediate action in wakening the conscience of the Jewish people and mobilising all the potential Jewish forces to rescue the position. The Jewish people that dreamt, hoped, wept and sang for Zion would respond if it realised what was at stake.
Mr. Sokolow indicated plans contemplated for the near future. It was intended to send a strong delegation to America, and he was convinced that despite the economic depression in that country, the Jews there would make great sacrifices. It was inconceivable that Jewry in the United States, which had made such large sacrifices for the upbuilding of Palestine, would desert the work at such a critical juncture. There were proposals also for delegations to other countries, and there were also suggestions for now efforts among the masses. They must not under-estimate the enormous potentialities of the Jewish people. The Council had to overlook all internal dissension, and without any loss of time proceed to action. In view of such urgent action they believed that Congress would have to be postponed for some months. The Executive had no other reason to wish for a postponement than that of the crying need and the urgency of the situation, which demanded immediate action.